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A Dirty Dozen with DANIEL CULLEN-RICHARD from ALT. – June 2023

According to a recent press release: “Australian rockers alt. are set to release their new album ABEYANCE on June 16 via SharpTone Records. To herald the news, the band has shared the towering new single, “APEP,” featuring Void Of Vision vocalist Jack Bergin. “‘APEP’ is the Egyptian god of chaos and he is consuming our world,” shares vocalist Daniel Richards. “We see his impacts through the pandemic, our corrupt governments, and social media being used as a weapon to divide people. We need to realize we are not the enemy — we haven’t done this to ourselves or each other. We are being used and it’s time to stand up and fight or this chaos will devour us all.” ABEYANCE is a resounding declaration that alt. are more than ready to take over the world. An album that can trace its roots back to the early days of their debut EP while firmly facing the future, ABEYANCE is alt. assuredly roaring into 2023 with all guns blazing.” We get vocalist Daniel to discuss new music, influences, and more.

1. Tell us a little about your latest release. What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through? Are there any hidden nuggets you put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

ABEYANCE to me is being suspended between death and the all consuming fear of death and the chaos of the world we live in and not wanting to be a part of it anymore. Our two antagonists the “WRAITH” (symbolising death and all its anxieties associated with it) and “APEP” (symbolising the chaos of the world) fight for space over the protagonist’s mind and body. Every track on the album falls into one of their clutches except for the song “THE ONLY GOOD THING” which is something personal that neither can touch for our protagonist. This is something that the fans may or may not know.

2. What got you into music and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

My family loved music, my father enjoyed 80’s music like Tears for Fears, The Human League, Hall & Oates etc. My mum was really into pop music like Kylie Minouge, Savage Garden, Choir Boys etc. Initially I got into that music first but then my older brother introduced me to more alternative music in my tween years by the likes of Linkin Park, The Used & Story of the Year. After that I never looked back. Michael Jackson was my first love musically but watching Linkin Park Live In Texas made me want to be in a band.

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

My biggest influences went as follows (chronologically) Michael Jackson > Savage Garden > Linkin Park > The Used > Parkway Drive > Panic! At The Disco and now sits with the likes of Post Malone, Don Broco and Bring Me The Horizon.

4. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

I have a few all of which I think are very musically minded and gifted. I believe I could learn so much from all of them. Mike Shinoda, Dan Lancaster, Tyler Joseph, Awstin Knight and Taylor Swift.

5. What is your favorite activity when out of the studio and/or not on tour? What do you like to do to unwind?

I read a lot, I’ve read 28 books so far this year mainly mysteries or thrillers. I love sport Boston Celtics, Newcastle United and Port Adelaide Power being my favourite teams and I watch all their games. But most my time is spent with my wife or at work.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

I never know how to describe our music, I don’t think we sound like any one band particularly and we don’t really try to. I normally say we are a heavier Linkin Park with less rapping as people would be more likely to know them. We have been compared to the likes of Bring Me The Horizon, Panic! At The Disco, The Getaway Plan and I have been told I sound like Ian Kenny of Karnivool and Birds of Tokyo a fair bit but I don’t hear it haha.

7. When your band is hanging out together, who cooks, who gets the drinks in, and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

None of us cook, we always eat out or get take away haha. Oscar is definitely the one who gets the drinks in. No one gets out the acoustic for a sing along, I think we all would hate that haha we normally just sit around quoting Adam Sandler movies or something.

8. When was the last time you were starstruck and who was it?

I met Chester Bennington in an airport years ago and he was one of the nicest guys. I was in absolute awe of him.

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

Best part of being a musician is getting to be creative and bringing something to life and sharing it with people and them being interested in your creation, that is really really cool. Also meeting new people and building friendships is great. Honestly I have no clue, being a detective would be cool. Solving cases and what not but I’m sure it’s not how it seems in literature or film.

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

I don’t know, I like talking more in depth about our songs and what they mean to me and dissecting the process of a particular song or how it came to be, but it would take a certain person to want to know those intricate details I guess. The how did you all meet question. It’s a boring one for us and yeah it’s been answered, just Google it haha.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over,” even if it didn’t change your current situation?

That was our entire time in our old band. We did everything wrong and we learnt from it and put all our learnings into this venture as alt. and everything is going great so far. I think a lot of local bands make key mistakes when they’re first starting and just some experience can help with that but you need a few things first. Talent, will and everyone to be on the same page. You can’t just write songs in your bedroom and think it’s a hit off the bat, you can’t go to some producers bedroom who hasn’t worked with anyone notable and expect a diamond. You can’t work with a videographer who hasn’t got more than 2k views on a video and promotion and marketing is just as important as the product. You need to have a clear picture, don’t rush it and execute well. That’s my 2 cents at least (I know nobody asked haha).

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

I’ve mentioned them enough but honestly the album that changed the game… give me a seat in the room for Hybrid Theory please, the first album I ever bought with my own money.





Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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