Dewolff Discuss Their First Ever UK Tour, Breaking World Records, And Tease Us With Some Interesting Plans For 2024

“I think the fans want to be close to our journey; they really want to be involved with what we're doing and to see us on a small stage....

Interview by Mark Lacey

 

 

Despite being a household name in their homeland of the Netherlands, and playing sizeable venues, DeWolff are still relatively unknown in the UK, having played just a handful of small London shows since their formation in 2007. Following their barnstorming performance at the iconic 100 Club venue in March, the band are back in the UK for their first ever UK tour, in support of Jared James Nichols. It’s given audiences a unique opportunity to see three seasoned performers in their prime, yet playing some of their most intimate venues in years.

“I think the fans want to be close to our journey; they really want to be involved with what we’re doing and to see us on a small stage. It’s cool to see us up close, but also to see us struggling because there are not as many people, or the sound isn’t that good as those larger venues, but we’re still rocking your socks off”.

 

MGM: The last time fans in the UK got to see DeWolff was at the 100 Club in March. You were excited at being about to play such an iconic venue with so much history. What is your memory of that show?

Pablo: I was really excited about it because it’s right in the centre of London and I could visit Denmark Street, which was right around the corner. I bought an amp there, and I carried it to the venue. And the show itself was really fun. There’s so much history in there.

Lukas: I was kind of nervous because of the history that was made. I heard that Howlin’ Wolf played in there

Robin: I also felt a bit proud of the venue, because you couldn’t even see it was there. It was surrounded with all these big capitalistic shops. It felt like Asterix and Obelix; you have all the angry Romans, you have this small town that still resists the big, bad companies and, it was really cool to see that.

MGM: It was really exciting to have the band in London. DeWolff are huge in your home country of the Netherlands, but you’ve spoken before about the challenges of being able to travel and tour over here. So, it’s great that you’re back so soon doing these eight shows alongside Jared James Nicholls, and you’ve also just announced that you’ll be back for a headline tour in March 2024. Looks like you’ve caught the bug for the UK?

 

Pablo: Yes, we have. Of course, you have Brexit, and there’s a channel between mainland Europe and Britain, but it’s amazing that we can get our van on a train, and that train drives right to Folkstone. Basically it takes us as much time as it would to go to the middle of France, so eventually it appeared to be a small step.

MGM: When you played the 100 Club, there were lots of your Dutch fans in the audience, which I suspect is because they can watch you up close and personal here, whereas in the Netherlands, you’re playing much larger venues.

Robin: I think it’s also because the fans want to be close to our journey. I have this feeling that our fans really want to be involved with what we’re doing and to see us again on a small stage. It’s cool to see us up close, but also to see us struggling because there are not as many people, or the sound isn’t that good, but we’re still rocking your socks off.

Lukas: Playing different sets, you have to be a little bit more creative first to play abroad. You have a different audience in front of you. So, it’s not the same show as we play in the Netherlands; it’s different. But it’s cool.

MGM: Your shows in the Netherlands have a really big production, and in particular some fans will remember the Metropole Orkest show that was released as a live album and film.

Pablo: For some fans, it’s nice to if they see us in the Netherlands, especially when we play bigger festivals. We sometimes bring the extra band with the two singers, the bass player, and three horn players, and percussion player, which is a lot of fun for us to do. But in the Netherlands, especially recently, we have rarely played with just the three of us. And when we come to Britain, it’s only the three of us.

MGM: You guys have been playing together a very long time, and have known each other long before you became DeWolff?

Pablo: Yeah, Lukas and I are related, of course. He’s my brother. And Robin and I met in this youth choir; I started playing there when I was nine, and then Robin and I met when I was eleven, so I’ve known him for 22 years.

Robin: Wow, that’s almost Lukas’ age.

MGM: Your currently on tour alongside Jared James Nichols. He’s known for his uncompromising sound, and the tone on his guitar, which is something that DeWolff are also recognised for. How did the connection come about and how did you decide to perform together?

Pablo: It’s really funny. I’ve been following him on Instagram for a couple of years and his guitar playing is spectacular. When we do a club tour in the Netherlands, we have some bands that we know locally that we bring along as support acts, but our manager is always saying, I’ve got these offers from bands that really want to join you. And one of them was Jared James Nichols. I was like Jared James Nichols! The guy! We were like, yeah, man, that would be fucking awesome.

Robin: He did our support first. I think he did two or three shows with us in the Netherlands. And now we’re here to do his support in the UK.

Lukas: It went pretty quick because he said, man, we’ve got to do some more shows together. And a couple of months later, we’re here. It went really fast.

Robin: I was blown away. Not only by his guitar playing, but also his personality. I’ve never seen him without a smile.

MGM: You’ve previously played just a small number of UK shows, all of which have been in London, and so this tour is your first chance to explore more of the UK. You’ve already been to Wolverhampton, and Nottingham which both have huge thriving rock music scenes. How are you enjoying it, and have you seen much of the UK whilst you’re here?

Robin: It was our first time outside of London, so we didn’t really know what to expect. During the set we felt like the audience really came just for Jared James Nichols, but then after the show, everybody at the merch is like, ‘this was so amazing’. There were actually some people that saw us at the first show, and they came yesterday to Wolverhampton, and they’re coming tonight, so they are already big fans.

Pablo: We did see quite a lot of Nottingham because we arrived the day before, so we had the whole day to explore the city, which was really nice.

Robin: Yeah, we saw the Homebase outside of the city, as we had to get some electrical sockets.

MGM: You’ve been touring your new studio album, ‘Love Death & In Between’, and it’s exciting to see that you’ve just released a new live album too called ‘Live & Outta Sight 3’. Much of that was recorded in Europe in the Spring; were any of those recordings from the 100 Club show?

Pablo: I don’t think so, but we do record almost every show.

MGM: Earlier this year, you famously succeeded in achieving the word record for the fastest studio-to-store vinyl release with the epic ‘Rosita Rapida’. That sounded like a wonderfully crazy thing to do. What prompted that?

Pablo: We have the largest record pressing plant in Europe, which is in Haarlem, in the north of the Netherlands, and we’ve had a good relationship with them for years now. They were going to organise a vinyl festival, and to make extra promotion for that festival they asked us if we wanted to collaborate in some way. Robin came up with the idea of breaking Jack White’s world record for the fastest record, which was about four hours from start of recording until the first sold record. Since we could collaborate with the pressing plant, we were like, this is the perfect occasion to do this, because they have a recording studio inside the pressing plant. That plan really came together.

Lukas: We did it like just under three hours, and it was like a 23-minute song. You can only record for fourteen minutes on one side of the vinyl.

Robin: There was this one riff and we just kept on playing it. We looked into the control room where the guys with the cutting machine were, and they would have to flip the record around and prepare it for the next side. And when we got the thumbs up, that’s when we continue with the song.

 

MGM: That’s an awesome initiative. One of the most recognised things about your band is that you put out lots of these limited releases, and ‘Rosita Rapida’ initially had a limited run, and you’ve also produced anther 100 copies on orange vinyl.

Robin: They’re already gone. And they won’t be any more, like with the NFT, like the blockchain thing. They’ve got a chip inside, so it’s only going to be 100.

Pablo: One of our goals is to create as much confusion as possible regarding albums. I have completely lost track of all the versions and colours that we release of every record. I love that, and our fans love that because there are some fans that claim to own everything we put out. Sometimes we’re in a conversation, and I’m like, oh, wait, do you have this EP? And they’re like, no. Instantly they go on Discogs.

Robin: Sometimes they present us with a promotional CD that was used in Australia, and I’ve never seen it, so they surprise us as well.

MGM: Thinking about the ‘what next’, you’ve just announced a series of dates in the UK for March 2024. And this time as a headliner.

Lukas: We’re already planning something for later next year, around September. I think more as a headliner; that feels comfortable because you can only do so many supports, and then you really have to do it on your own. You can play longer shows. You can really give the audience the full DeWolff treatment. On this tour we only get to play 50 minutes, which is cool as a support act.

Pablo: On this tour, it’s like a dilemma every night. We only have 50 minutes; are we going to play Rosita? Because it’s close to 25 minutes. It’s half of our set, and if we play it, it’s so much fun. But we can only play five songs.

MGM: As a band you’re always thinking about the next project, so I’m guessing you’ll already be thinking about songs for your next album. Where are you with that?

Pablo: Well, we’ve just started writing some new music. In January and February, because Holland is so small, we only do weekend shows, so on weekdays we’ll have writing sessions. So, there’s going to be new music. It’s in the making, actually, and we’re going to record it with someone very special, hopefully.

Robin: Another cool thing that’s happening is there’s a photo book coming out. Pablo’s wife, Nikki has been around since the beginning and she made photos of us since the beginning, so she’s got a really cool collection of our career, and she bundles it beautifully. It’s going to come with some stories that people don’t know, and some ins and outs.

 

DeWolff will be back in the UK in March 2024

 

Tickets available from: www.dewolff.nu/#/shows

 

13th March:        The Cluny, Newcastle

14th March:        The Voodoo Rooms, Edinburgh

15th March:        The Tunnels, Aberdeen

16th March:        Hug & Pint, Glasgow

17th March:        Night & Day, Manchester

19th March:        The Louisiana, Bristol

20th March:        The Bullingdon, Oxford

21st March:        Bodega, Nottingham

22nd March:       Black Box, Hastings

23rd March:       Omeara, London

 

www.dewolff.nu/#/home

 

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