dEUS – You Don’t Want To Go On Tour With Three Laptops

With your twentieth anniversary as a band coming up, do you ever look back over your career or do you just prefer to keep moving forward?
Sometimes we have to look back because there’s a documentary and they ask me for some footage and we did a re-release of Worst Case Scenario, so then I have to and I do but I’m kind of fed up with it the last couple of years. It’s happened at least once a year where I’m asked to do a talk about a certain period or something. Generally though we just want to do new stuff and evolve, as they say. I don’t think we’re going to do anything special for the twenty years, which will be next year. Nothing special except having a great tour, that’s obvious that we would like that to happen. We’re not going to do any special celebrating or specific gigs for it. Though, that said, about a month ago we played a beautiful little festival on an island in Holland called Into The Great Wide Open. We played the first songs from all the albums and that was great. We might be doing a couple of those shows. It was really fun to do, it’s a completely different atmosphere where you don’t feel the need to rock out and you can keep it low all night. So maybe we’ll do a couple of those shows next year. We’ve always played a mix of new and old material on tour, so we’ve always kept the back catalogue alive in that way.

How do you see the band evolving at this point in the journey? What kind of things are changing or growing for you as a band?
It started on the previous album, a song like ‘Slow’, where it was very much rhythm-based and the rhythm section directing where the song was going. That was kind of the beginning point for this album in the sense that we had nothing prepared and we wrote everything together. I think here and there, songs like ‘Constant Now’ or ‘Easy’, were really touching on something. I have no idea where it came from but it happens and it’s very exciting in that way. It kind of liberates me from the A minor, G song writing that I do, just to simplify things. It was, all in all, the most fun records to make. There were no disasters happening, there were no big fights and everybody was really contributing. It’s not that that hasn’t happened in the past but this was first time that we had everything together from zero. They’re fun to play live and there’s that groove in them that I really like. I like to see people dance at a rock concert and I think people do at a rock show.

Do you think that your Magnus project (with techno producer CJ Bolland) would have influenced that kind of danceable, rhythm-driven style?
I couldn’t really compare the two because Magnus was really a studio kind of thing which we don’t play live. We will in the future I hope but for the time being we’re working on a second album which is half way done. It’s a different way of working. We get musicians in to play parts but it’s mostly electronic based. I don’t think dEUS is that much inspired by dance music, I think dEUS is inspired by those great rock bands, the bands who could make emotional music but at the same time you have an uplifting feeling, you dance and you have a good time. I don’t think electronic music is a very big influence on dEUS. I think the proof is there because we have tried to play Magnus songs with dEUS and the other way around, and it never really works.

Finally, there aren’t many Belgian bands that have made a name for themselves in this part of the world. Is there much going on there? Are you still interested in Belgian music?
It’s funny because it doesn’t seem to seep through to the UK and Ireland but people in France and Holland are always asking me about the Belgian scene and why it’s so good because there’s a lot of Belgian bands which do very well outside of this little country. We always take Belgian bands on tour and our support band this time is a really great band called Balthazar. They’re have some really great melodies and they’re a great live band. France seems to take Belgian music as some sort of quality mark, bands do really well in France, especially in Paris. Why that is, you’d have to ask them! Back in the nineties, you could talk about a Belgian scene but that scene was built around bars and going out so now that we’re all a bit older, I don’t really follow it that much.

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