Must-See Coachella Undercard: DMA’s – Aussies with a Britpop punch

dmas

If you’ve been holding your breath for Oasis to make a return since breaking up almost a decade ago, you can exhale. No, the Gallagher brothers haven’t patched things up and announced they’re back together, but there’s another band ready to continue the Britpop legacy that Oasis helped build. The intriguing thing is these guys hail from Australia.

DMA’s came on the scene last year with a self-titled EP that had critics comparing them to Oasis right out of the gate. The band admits they found heavy influence from them, not just in their music but even in their stage attire — bucket hats and track suits are heavily featured.

I caught these guys on Bonnaroo’s first day last year and was wildly impressed by their chops given the limited amount of material to their name at the time. Lead vocalist Tommy O’Dell has very nearly the same vocal stylings of Liam Gallagher, it’s eerie. With their full-length debut Hills End due out Feb. 26 on Mom + Pop Records, they’re slated for Coachella on consecutive Saturdays, April 16 and 23.

“For me Bonnaroo was unexpected as we only had an EP out,” DMA’s O’Dell told Grimy Goods via e-mail. “I guess our plan was to try play Coachella when our album was out.. We are stoked that our US Label and booking agent were able sort it for us. Put our plan into fruition, so to speak.”

I’ve been listening to their album on repeat since receiving an advance copy, it’s pretty impressive. Though holdovers from their EP like “Delete” and “Lay Down” are signature tracks, new material like the opening track “Timeless” and “Step Up the Morphine” have become favorites. They’ve brought the ’90s Britpop sound back in a big way and it’s perfectly fitting for a festival setting.

“I think it’s really important to play well at every show but particularly big festivals, because you can gain heaps more fans,” O’Dell said. “Festivals are always heaps fun to play, so that usually brings on good performances.”

The songwriting is pretty simple but they write hooks as good as any rock band climbing the ladder these days. Many of the melodies manage to remain stuck in your head after just one listen. That they’re able to translate the energy from their recordings to their live show is a good sign of things to come. I’d put them in the same category of the UK’s Catfish and the Bottlemen in terms of being able to do that.

This Sydney trio will surely have an early-day slot at Coachella and are not to be missed if you’re nostalgic for the days of Oasis, Blur and the Britpop invasion of the ’90s. DMA’s has taken the ball and ran with it — perhaps it’s making a comeback the same way ’90s dance music has.

“We’ll watch heaps of bands as fans, we’ll have a sick time,” O’Dell said of their upcoming Coachella performance. “I don’t know what to expect — something like a mix of Splendour in the Grass and Bonnaroo?”

Words: Mark E. Ortega

 

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