When a politician resigns, the last thing you expect is for them to give a recommendation for their favorite live band of the moment. That’s what happened to UK grunge duo, Drenge. Stranger than fiction? Yes. But another boost for the brothers, who go by Rory and Eoin Loveless, for their raw debut album? Yes. The self-titled album was released in August 2013 and grabbing attention for its potent angst that only the rawness of brothers-that-grew-up-in-suburbia could produce.
Drenge, which means “boys” in Danish, are currently touring the U.S. and banging out the apathy of their songs live. The two brothers, who are 22 and 20, are revolting against suburban boredom with grime-y riffs and lyrics of disdain. Check out the video for their single “Bloodsports” below and keep scrolling to read an interview with Rory. Rory was nice enough to speak to me before their upcoming show this Friday at Bottom of the Hill with Happy Diving, and what he admires about California’s garage rock scene, Dwyer-ists aside.
TBB: It’s a few days before your U.S tour dates promoting your self-titled debut album. How are you guys feeling about playing U.S. shows?
RL: Excited. I’m not expecting big, wild crowds but I know it’ll be a lot of fun. I’ve noticed the more gigs you play in a certain place, the stronger the connection you have with the people there. There’s definitely a different atmosphere between the UK and mainland Europe, so it’ll be cool to see how they compare with USA.
TBB: What can we expect at your Bottom of the Hill show in San Francisco?
RL: My friend is studying in San Francisco at the moment, and he’s going to show us round, so you’ll probably turn up to find two ecstatic, confused and tired British brothers slug it out after a whistle stop tour. I’ve heard there’s a man who flies parrots in a park nearby, so unless he leaves at a good time we’ll probably be late too.
TBB: You guys have toured with Deap Vally, a band from L.A. What’s your take on California’s grunge rock and/or garage rock scene?
RL: Deap Vally were great to tour with, even though they couldn’t get used to the British weather – they stood in the toilets huddled round the hand driers! I’m not too sure about specific genres, but I often see posters for shows like Beach Goth Party with The Growlers, or Burgerama with Burger Records (both at the Observatory), and I feel incredibly envious of everybody able to go – they might as well be my dream lineups. There’s a ton of recent bands I adore from California (Deap Vally included along with FIDLAR), some no longer exist like Girls, others have been around for a while such as Hunx and his Punx and the Growlers. It seems like there’s a big DIY community, and a lot of cool labels based round there which we’re really interested in. I can see myself buying too many records to take home.
TBB: How do you guys translate the raw energy of your album for a live audience?
RL: I think it was more a case of translating a live show onto a record. Some of our first proper demos were put on the album, and we just kept recording until we had a good collection of songs. I had no idea how a studio worked back then, but I was familiar with playing to an empty room, so we worked from there.
TBB: What are you guys looking forward to playing in San Francisco?
RL: (American) football. Is it Super Bowl soon? We’ve got some new tracks but we probably need to learn them first.