DMA’S Are Sydney’s Defiant Britpop Obsessives

Kevin EG Perry meets the Sydney Britpop revivalists causing a stir who were reared on undiluted Oasis

DMA’s are a band who aren’t afraid to wear their influences on their sleeves – or anywhere else, in fact. From their Kappa hats to their baggy tracksuit bottoms, the Aussie trio of singer Tommy O’Dell and songwriters Matt Mason and Johnny Took (plus three additional live members) make no bones about being in thrall to the Madchester and Britpop sounds that circled the globe when they were growing up down under.

“There are a bunch of bands from all over the world doing that Britpop sound now,” says Mason, “but none of them are from England.” Took nods in agreement. “A big part of it is the generation that we’re in,” he says. “We’re the first generation to have the internet, and that means the world has gotten a lot smaller.”

They’re bullish words, but then again, that’s exactly the kind of band DMA’S are. To witness them play live is to see a bunch of rock’n’roll obsessives who never got as far as 1998 in the music history books – a barrage of guitars (acoustic and electric), major chords, maracas and a bunch of hands-in-the-air anthems. ‘Delete’, their best and only genuinely lovelorn song, is truly thrilling, and at the centre of it all is Tommy and his voice – kookily similar to what Liam Gallagher sounded like back in 1994, before the cigs and booze fully took hold.

Having already conquered radio back home, their plan now involves a move north – far north. “We wanna base ourselves in the northern hemisphere,” says Mason, explaining that although the weather’s peachy back home, logistically the lack of big cities in close proximity is holding the band back.

“I kind of enjoy going back to square one,” shrugs Took about relocating, while Mason says the band are also relishing the way they’ve been taking audiences by surprise over here recently. “People don’t even know who we are. There is almost no reaction. When we walked onstage yesterday [at Brighton’s Great Escape festival], despite the fact that it was packed it was just silence. It’s good.” Just don’t bet on things staying quiet for them for too much longer…