Following 15 years with acclaimed indie-outfit The Go Find, Antwerp-based musician Dieter Sermeus has a new band called Dieter von Deurne & The Politics and a self-titled album being released next Friday (25.08.2017) via Morr Music. We are delighted to bring you this exclusive stream of the record, plus an illuminating interview where Dieter discusses the LP, his musical heritage and his fridge.
The album harks back to Dieter’s indie nineties roots. It’s an immediate, wild and consistently brilliant work, let’s say it was love at first listen here at SWIT towers. Most of all, it sounds like it was great fun to make and it’s really infused with that joy. Lend it an ear, we think you’ll be impressed.
you can buy the vinyl here.
After so long with The Go Find was it strange to be in a new band?
I guess it was stranger not being in a band for a while. After the last Go Find record, I felt I needed a break. But I kept writing songs. At some point, I asked friends to play a long and eventually I ended up with a new band. Making music together with friends is very pleasant, probably the best thing I can imagine doing together with friends.
How did Dieter von Deurne & The Politics come together?
Except for Hans, all of them were involved with The Go Find. When I told them I was writing new songs they wanted to get involved. First, we just rehearsed like when we were young (a small room and working on the music) and after a while, we agreed that the music was good and that we should release it. But we also understood we had to start from scratch and play tiny venues/pubs. We love tiny venues!
It’s hopefully a bit funny but also because the music/lyrics are in a way about politics. Not that we are fighting against or promoting some ideology… but these times are at least a bit confusing. Things we took for granted as a child are not so certain anymore: Europe, environment, democracy… it’s not that we want to preach it’s more like an observation.
We’re really enjoying the new album, what’s your favourite thing about it?
We recorded it in 4 days. It’s was a very spontaneous process. With The Go Find we sometimes worked months on a new record. A lot of bits and pieces were glued together along the way. This time it was a very easy going process and that was very refreshing.
In the song Channel, after the second chorus, there is this mini guitar solo that I play and there is this really bad note we thought we had to change but we grew fond of it… and in the end kept it. I think that’s a good example of how relaxed we worked on this record.
Did you have a firm idea how you wanted the record to sound while you were writing the songs?
Yes: very direct, recorded with a band, not too much production.
How are you feeling about the state of politics in the world today?
Not that good. It feels like it’s really not going in the right direction: Europe, right wing politicians like Wilders (Holland), Le Penn (France)…, a neo liberal (Chicago boys) devastating ideology concerning economics (the gap between the poor and the rich is growing faster than ever), the environment…. On the other hand, there are also a lot of good things happening: new technologies (medical, energy), the internet gives us a chance to get connected with people who think alike, new ways of making clean energy…. There is hope but we need to watch out.
The video for “I’m On Trial” cracks me up, looks like it was a lot of fun to make?
Yes , it was. I bought a small green key set and just started recording without really knowing how to. I never did this before but the YouTube tutorials helped me to pull this one off. We had a blast and I’ m happy you like it too!
What’s in your fridge?
A lot of vegetables, yoghurt, cheese, some meat too (although we try to replace that), milk… I guess regular stuff? Actually, it’s quite empty at the moment because we are going on a camping trip 🙂
What was the first piece of music you loved, and why?
Hmmm… I remember my sisters playing 7” records and I was totally into their music: Peter Shilling’s ‘Major Tom’, The Cure, Duran Duran, Michael Jackson… later on, they started listening to The Pixies, early Screaming Trees, Sonic Youth… sweet memories!
If you could change one thing in the world right now what would it be?
What is your favourite song that you’ve written and why?
On this record, I guess “Nuclear Love” because it’s a bit Crazy Horse meets Pavement and has a catchy chorus and I like Steven’s solo. When I think of all the songs I’ve written (apart from the ones on this record) probably “Over The Edge” and “Dictionary” from The Go Find are the best pop songs that I’ve written. But ask me this again tomorrow and I probably tell you something different 🙂
What musicians would you consider to be your biggest influences?
Stephen Malkmus, Lou Barlow, my friends at the local club in my hometown when I was young…
What’s exciting you on the Belgian music scene these days?
Joris Caluwaerts the keyboard player from The Go Find has this band called Stuff. It’s really good. Nico who plays bass in DvD & The Politics had his own band Star Club West (always been a big fan of them) there is actually a lot of good music going on these days…
If you weren’t a musician what would you love to do?
I actually have a job at a cultural centre where we book theatre plays, musicians, I like doing that. But I wonder how it would be to be the owner of a pub/club: a really nice one with very good music and only really friendly people…
Can you recommend a good book?
Yes: reading is my favourite waste of time: Knausgard, Don Delillo, Jonathan Franzen… but Jonathan Littel’s “The Kindly Ones” is probably one of my favourite all-time books. But really again if you ask me this tomorrow I’ll be pushing other writers and other titles 🙂
What question would you like to be asked that you never are? And what would be your answer?
You: Is there something you want to ask me?
Me: What records are you listening to at the moment?
SWIT – Right now, it’s Dieter von Deurne & The Politics, El Petit de Cal Eril and Meridian Brothers to name but a few!
Finally, we ask everyone to do a sketch/drawing for us –
I’ll do my best to send you a picture from our camping spot!!!!!! If I had more time I would love to draw something (but we are leaving on this trip) although I’m not really good at it 🙂
SWIT – We await with bated breath 🙂
P.S. Your website is class.
Photos by David Michiels.