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Here's Five: A Farewell Tribute To The DHDFD's

Here's Five: A Farewell Tribute To The DHDFD's

Thursday 9th June, 2016 3:05PM


One of our all-time favourite live bands The DHDFD’s have quietly called it quits and rather than let them slip silently away into the sunset we wanted to pay tribute to all the good times they’ve bought us since they formed circa 2005 in the backblocks of Pt Chevalier. So we dropped a line to some friends and dug up some special moments to share. Thanks for the memories guys!! 

1. Sam Walsh
Mole Music

Released the band’s Fromage du Pouvoir EP in 2008
When we first started talking ‘bout the EP Scott invited me to his house in Pt Chevalier. I didn’t know him very well but he introduced me to his family and I hung out with his Mum and Dad and we talked about Wayne Anderson - Singer Of Songs.Then we went to the pub and played pokies with the rest of the band. We never talked about the record and when I got home I remember thinking it felt a bit like an initiation. We put out Fromage du Pouvoir a few months later and they went to Japan and sold every copy. They were young yet self aware, genuine and totally infectious. That was eight years ago and not much seems to have changed. They retained their authenticity and spirit and that’s what makes them so important.

2. Scott Brown
Vocalist and founding member

The first time we toured in Japan, we started out in Osaka. This was also our first gig overseas and being very young, I guess we looked at it with a bit of excitement. The venue was called Hard Rain and it was also raining hard that night. I remember after soundcheck going for a wander and walking into a NZ bar which had a $20 all you can drink deal, called the "Haka Party". It was horrible, I don't think we stayed longer than 5 or 10 mins. Opposite the bar was a porn shop called Banana Kids and being 17 or 18 I was more interested in that.

Anyway, at the gig we met a boy called "Kimmy Hero" and his brother Apache. He had made a homemade DHDFD banner which he hung off his ass. We loved Kimmy and his humour, he was super friendly. The reason I'm talking about him, is because we didn't know who he was or where he came from, but for that whole tour he would surprise us by turning up at our gigs with his DHDFD's banner flapping off his asshole.

I didn't see Kimmy again until last year. His band played with us at a couple of shows and then he took us back to his family house with King Bros and The Vottones. He lives near Fukui in a fishing village with his mother and Apache, who is a fisherman. I think Kimmy is a security guard.

Anyway we had a few days off and mostly spent the time drinking a large mixture of alcohol and fishing. One of the days Kimmy and Apache disappeared for 5 minutes and came back with the asshole banner that read DHDFD. They still had it, 8 years later. I don't know why but it made me so emotional and also very very happy.

I guess I'm telling this story because after 11 years of DHDFD's my greatest achievement by far, is all of the lifetime friends I have made. I could write a story for each one of you but I won't.

Instead I'll just say Thank you to all the members of DHDFD's and everyone that has been with us along the way. You know who you are.

Kimmy backstage, Kobe, 2015

3. Joel Beeby
Bassist, joined circa 2010

It's hard to pick a single thing... I just never thought this band would take me on a tour of Japan. Twice. I don't even know how we did all that without dying, getting lost or going broke. Or all the times we were supposed to disband but didn't. The drummer leaving right after the album drops or right before the tour starts. But it was so enjoyable I guess I just made it work, for my part. Favourite show was any one at Mighty Mighty; or the last show of the last Japan tour, which was three bands (DHDFDs, King Brothers, 888) crammed on the stage all playing [King Brothers’ song] ‘Get Away’ like our lives depended on it. It's always been a seat-of-the-pants experience and I wouldn't change a thing.

Photos by Sean Aickin of The DHDFD’s at Mighty Mighty in 2011, head over here for more.

4. Martin Phillips
Hell Is Now Love
Released the band’s second album French Fries in 2012, and Please Speak Positive, Delicate Flower in 2015.

The first word that springs to mind is impressive. Having a Wikipedia entry if you’re a local band in New Zealand is impressive. Touring internationally is impressive. Having most bands afraid to play after you in the knowledge that they'll inevitably be upstaged is impressive. The DHDFD’s tend to have a knack for such things. When I first heard of them it was through veiled rumours, talk of venue bans and supreme chaos, precocious young punks with no ability to turn it off.

After having the pleasure of working with them I can say that removed from the stage the band are remarkably nice and easy to work with. On stage is a different story, they were one of the best live bands Auckland has produced and they will be missed.

The standout memory for me is from 2009. My band were playing a show with them at Basement Theatre. A wonderfully brutal set was summed up by the sight of Scot rising from the crumpled remains of a failed human pyramid, still singing and dripping in sweat and his own blood, lapping up the mesmerized gaze of the audience. They always maintained an absolute commitment to performance, an indefatigable attack on tedium that plagues so much of music that won't be easily found again.

5. David Skipwith
Former Manager

I first met The DHDFD’s 10 years ago when Scot and James started turning up to weekly gigs I was putting on. They were only 15 or 16 at the time and would arrive several hours early to watch soundcheck and then stay inside to avoid being denied by security for being under age. Scot, often shirtless, looked like one of those missing kids pictured on milk cartons in the US who had grown street smart turning tricks. James was very quiet and let Scot do all the talking. Both were very polite, which initially I took as a cunning act.

A few months later I saw them open for Slavetrader and The Mint Chicks and liked that they shared similarities to diverse and wild acts like Mr Bungle, The Stooges and the Sex Pistols. At that time, there were some popular rich kid North Shore bands and also what seemed like a heap of liberal hipster Christian types wanting to define Auckland's indie scene, and The DHDFD’s stood apart from all that.

I began helping them book shows, mostly because they were too young and disorganised to do it themselves.

Their parents were all very supportive and did what they could to help and the band worked hard to get funds together to record or tour.

They raised money with sausage sizzles outside the Pt Chevalier Mad Butcher and their mums would bake cupcakes to sell at shows, to supplement their meagre earnings from regular gigs. It's that lack of pretension that many people warmed to, I think, and it was also evident in their performance, sound and ever-present humour. Off-stage, individually they are all likable characters, but I’m biased and often turned a blind eye to some incidents or behaviour. They were mischievous but good-hearted kids.

There was a lot of tension around the departure of various members but much of that happened throughout their late teens and early 20s when some friends tend to come and go. And although the band’s line-up changed several times they managed to retain that down to earth-ness while always not giving a fuck, even as they grew older.

I don’t see anywhere as much of them as I used to but those guys are like my little brothers and I love them xx


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