It’s been quite the 2017 already for Irish trio Dead Label. In February they were announced for Download Festival and the following month they dropped a new single, Pure Chaos, with a quite sinister video that can be viewed at the bottom of this interview. At the end of April, I had a quick chat with drummer Claire Percival about the new song, how the video came about and what it will mean to take to the stage at Donington this summer…
Let’s start with the single itself – what’s it about?
Pure Chaos is about just all out madness, achaotic description of things! When we wrote the music it was so much fun to play that it felt like there would be chaos when we played it live and that in turn inspired Dan (O’Grady, bassist and vocalist)!
Was there a particular event that inspired the writing of the song or did it just come to you one day?
No particular event, the riff inspired the song and the song inspired the lyrics after much jamming and enjoyment!
Did you try anything with Pure Chaos that you hadn’t before in terms of style or sound?
Yes, we took our experience with Fear Factory and all those shows and kept imagining how everything would land live. We wrote this song with mosh pits and walls of death in mind. We also weren’t afraid to keep some parts simple if the song called for it!
You worked with Michael Richards and Chris Rakestraw when it came to recording and producing the song – good working relationship between them and yourselves?
Yes, two amazing guys. We have been recording with Michael Richards for years and years -he is amazing! Trackmix is a killer studio as well. His knowledge is vast both in terms of gear and recording; we would spend every day in there if we could! Chris is an absolute legend as well, again another fountain of knowledge and experience.
Where does this song fit in the grand picture of Dead Label- is it a song leftover from the Throne of Bones sessions? A one-off single? The first song from the next album?
It’s a one off single to bridge the gap between albums; album three is well on its way so we just wanted to give everyone a taste of what’s to come!
The music video is incredibly powerful as well; did you have a good idea of what you wanted to portray when you came to shoot it?
To be honest we went to the lads in Crooked Gentlemen with the song and gave gem the lyrics and they came up with the idea of taking the Jim Jones story and making a killer video! It’s really cool because we wanted something different and they certainly delivered!
You chose Sally Gap in County Wicklow, Ireland to shoot a number of exterior shots – outside of the fact that it’s your home country, are there any reasons why you chose that area in particular?
Again we can’t take any credit for that decision. Shaun and Jeff from Crooked Gentlemen, they did all the location spotting and chose Sally Gap! It’s a beautiful piece of Ireland! Also the van in the shoot is our van, Betsy!
Talking of Shaun and Jeff, what was it like working with them when it came to shooting the video?
Amazing!!! Two absolutely wonderful dudes. They are so creative, talented and sound and they have such imaginations; you could never even begin to think of the things they come up with! They’re also so busy with projects right now, they’re about to become huge!!!
Similarly, how were Johnny Elliott and Sue Walsh, who played your leading actors?
The first day we met Johnny, he was already on location and in character. All our family and friends played the extras. He didn’t break character the entire day. In fact we never met Johnny, we met the leader of a cult! Sue was spectacular! She would be chatting away so nice and then called for her scene and just straight away in character!!!
You’re also playing Download this year on Saturday afternoon – excited?
So fricken excited! It’s a huge deal for us – we’ve been dreaming about this for a long time and now it’s a reality! The line up is killer too!!!
Is there anything special planned for the set?
We are hoping to play loads of new stuff! We are trying hard to find the perfect set to wake everyone up! Get them set up for a Saturday of madness!
Finally, any closing words?
Planet Mosh, we love you! You’re always so good to us! Hopefully see you at Download!
My thanks to Claire for taking the time out to speak to me.