What were you doing 32 years ago? I would have been just about two months old and was probably driving my parents absolutely insane (some things never change). 32 years ago, Dawn After Dark released their last recording but time doesn’t stop this legendary band. Like a phoenix, they have risen from the ashes and have just dropped their new track “Maximum Overdrive”. I was given the opportunity to ask this amazing group some questions about what they’ve been up to all of these years so, of course, I jumped on it to ask them just that and some other extremely important questions.

We’re going to start off with a two-parter-

Pick between It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Office, or Parks & Rec

H – The office, but only the Brit version. If you don’t know it, then it’s time to catch up!

Now that you’ve picked, please assign each band member as a character from said show. 

H – Tony (drums) – Tim Canterbury. Russ (rhythm guitar) – David Brent. H (vocals) – Chris Finch. Ollie (lead guitar) – Gareth Keenan. Drew (bass) – Dawn Tinsley

Everyone says that every crowd is their favorite but, what city has the best audience and why is it Minneapolis?

H – It’s Minneapolis, because Prince says ‘Rock And Roll Is Alive! (And It Lives In Minneapolis)’ and that’s double good enough for us. Can anyone set Dawn After Dark up with a gig there?

What’s the worst concert you’ve ever been to and why?

H – French band Trust in Toulouse, maybe 2008. They were an incredible ‘80s rock band that reformed on and off. On this occasion they thought it would be a good idea to return with a DJ and decks. Car crash!

Tony – INXS. Mind-numbingly boring. I got free tickets and was quite pleased to be going, but it only lasted five songs because every song was the same bloody tempo! That’s very annoying for a drummer, so I left.

What’s your favorite local venue?

H – We all live in different cities, some of us in different countries. Local’s all relative!

Tony – The Hare and Hounds in Kings Heath, Birmingham. Brum not only has a rich rock heritage but we’re pretty good at reggae too, and the Hare and Hounds was the scene of UB40’s first ever gig. To this day it’s the best live music venue in Birmingham. 

This new song is your first track in 32 years- How many burritos do you think you’ve eaten in that time?

H – Less than 10, but not through choice!

Tony – Not many at all. Birmingham’s traditional dish by default is curry. And I’ll have a Naga chilli chicken please!  

But, in all seriousness, what in the heck have you been up to?

H – Fighting and falling out, not talking to each other, talking to each other, getting back together for fun, getting together for serious, dealing with covid etc etc. And without wanting to bring the mood down, one of the original band members died. That will tend to put your plans on hold for a while.

T – What H said.

What’s your favorite method of listening to music (i.e. vinyl, cassette, 8-track, etc.)

H – Favourite? Vinyl. But of course, we stream like everyone else, despite the medium killing bands exactly like ours.

Tony – Still CD. I’m way too clumsy for vinyl and everything I owned in my teens was pretty much unplayable after 6 six months. I do have a few tapes though. I like their mechanical qualities!

Are you okay with unconventional interview questions?

H – No.

Tony – Melbourne.

What’s your favorite Blink 182 song? 

H – Not a big fan to be honest, but the one with the video where they take the piss out of boy bands is fun.

Tony – Every song seems to have the same vocal melody, like a nursery rhyme. But, if I had to choose, ‘Happy Holidays’.

If you could compare yourself to a bird, what bird would it be and why?

H – A cock. We make a lot of noise.

Tony – A Phoenix of course, arising from the ashes!

Favorite lyrics of all time?

H – Bob Dylan. ‘It’s Alright Ma (I’m Only Bleeding) “As human gods aim for their mark/Make everything from toy guns that spark/To flesh-coloured Christs that glow in the dark/Easy to see without looking too far/That not much is really sacred.”

Tony – Led Zeppelin. ‘Thank You’ “If the sun refused to shine/I would still be loving you/When mountains crumble to the sea/There will still be you and me.”

If you were to rob a bank, what would be the song playing in the getaway car as you escape?

H – Er, ‘Bankrobber’ by The Clash. 

Tony – The Theme from Benny Hill, Yakety Sax. Or the outro from Bohemian Rhapsody.   

What’s the best concert you’ve ever been to?

H – The Cult in Oxford, UK back in ’84.

Tony – Motorhead, Ace of Spades Tour 1980.

What’s one thing I should know before listening to ‘Maximum Overdrive’?

H – Focus on the triangle. Turn up your speakers. Free your mind. You are about to experience a higher state of desire known as Maximum Overdrive!

Tony – It has backwards messages within in. But don’t worry. It’s just me reading the instructions from my new washing machine.

Right now, this is just a standalone single– could we possibly expect a new album soon? What about a tour?

H – There’s another single at the end of September and an album in December, a veritable flurry of activity! We’re touring in the UK in December. And if anyone wants to experience a higher state of consciousness for themselves in the US then we’re all ears!

Even though H claimed to not enjoy unconventional question, getting these answers back from H and Tony made my day. I had fun reading their responses and promise I won’t hold their answer to my Blink 182 question against them if they don’t hold the fact that I wasn’t even alive during their “favorite concerts” against me.

32 years is a long time to go without recording but “Maximum Overdrive” is well worth the wait. You can check it out below and make sure to follow Dawn After Dark on all of their socials so you don’t miss their upcoming singles and album!

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