Speaking during an quick break between tours, Brett Jansch (aka Brett Dune Rat) is a young, energetic and carefree soul who is loving every minute of his ride on the music wave at the moment. Having recently returned from the US, and about to head off to South Africa, Brett says that “things have been ‘Heckas Bonjeckas’ (Dune Rat speak for hectic) recently with the band’s success”, but he’s super excited that their music has been gaining exposure.
The Dune Rats are Brett, Danny and DC, and if there’s a genre that can be assigned to them it could fit somewhere in the realm of punk rock with a boppy tinge. Think Dead Milkmen blended with early Blink 182 and that’s the cool and fun sound of ‘The Dunies’.
The band’s youthful sense of humour is none more evident than in their hilarious music video for ‘Red Light, Green Light‘; a sendup of DZ Deathrays’ ‘The Mess Up’, where the DZ Deathrays down a bottle of JagerMeister in 3 minutes. The Dune Rats version has them smoking bongs of what Brett described as ‘Lavender’ during the song.
Citing influences such as the Celibate Rifles and The Lemonheads, the Dune Rats have developed not only their own sound, but also an image of being carefree larrikins who love a party and to play music. To get an idea of just what we’re talking about, check the video ‘American Death Trip of Dreams’– their fundraiser to get Brett along on the US Tour. It’s part Jackass, part documentary, but completely anarchic and reflective of the Dune Rats’ party life.
The guys enjoy a spontaneity like no other, preferring to just go with the flow rather than take life seriously. Not to say that they aren’t responsibly enjoying the journey, they’ve done quite well for a group that’s been around barely a year. Not only that, but they are quite nice lads by all accounts. Brett is polite, cheerful, and eminates the youthful exuberance of a young man enjoying his moment in the sun. They’ve travelled quite well over the past year, and Brett discusses his recent trip to China as “a bizarre, but mind opening journey. Eating a plate of Soy Sesame Pig Dicks in China was a cultural experience, but you just gotta rip into it otherwise it doesn’t open your mind. We ate turtle, and loads of other weird food and we went just along with it. But all that ‘krill’ has a real bad texture and when you’re eating it, it’s fucking terrible”, says Brett.
Back home, the Dune Rats have a reputation for putting on a crazy show (when they make it to the stage). They were recently VERY late for the SXSW Aussie BBQ gig, having forgot what time they were on and instead of playing for the scheduled 45 minutes, ended up doing a 10 minutes set only. “No stress though, we got to play but not as long as we wanted”, Jansch says. Such is the guys approach to life, there’s no use stressing about these things.
Their newest self titled album is out June 1 and has a dozen tracks for your listening pleasure. To get a taste of what’s on offer, check out ‘Funny Guy’ on Soundcloud to get an idea of the ‘Dunies’ upbeat sound.
They’re also touring Oz after their overseas jaunt, and are looking forward to playing Adelaide’s Uni Bar on June 14. I explain that Adelaide crowds LOVE live music and have always had an impressive live scene.” I love Adelaide, I always have an awesome time there…but I heard that you guys actually squeeze sauce into the pies there, is that true.” I confirm the truth in this, and recommend that he tries the State dish of a meat pie with sauce, which gives the pie a bit of a ‘zhoozh’, and an Iced Coffee to wash it down with when they visit Adelaide, which he gleefully accepts.
Getting back to music, we discuss other bands and in addition to DZ Deathrays, Brett says the Dune rats are a huge fan of Violent Soho and would love to play with them someday.
Brett is asked if he thinks the Dune Rats bear any similarities with Silverchair, specifically their early days getting started and his response is ”as great as they are, we’d rather not be compared to anyone else”.
No worries about that at all, the Dune Rats are definitely unique on all fronts! If it’s fun your after, get into these guys!
Dune Rats self titled album is released on June 1- available here.
Tour Dates: Facebook
Interviewed by Darren Hassan