Along with peers Dune Rats, Australia’s indie, twee-ny favs, Last Dinosaurs, came back to Kuala Lumpur once again after the success of their Urbanscapes show late last year. Drumming up a strong pack of screaming fangirls (and boys), the quartet gave The Bee and us a beautiful memory of what indie music is all about (or has become) – screaming fangirls. Before the show though, we managed to convince them to sit down with us for some good ol’ fashion craic, and so we muck about random stuff. Suffice to say, they were much less uninhibited than the punk slackers that were Dune Rats.
Previously when you guys were here, you guys played a pretty big festival, recently it’s a much smaller gig. How do you guys feel about playing a small gig as compared to a big show?
Dan Koyoma Better.
Lachan Caskey We prefer [smaller shows], actually, because we grew up this way, playing these sort of venues. Festivals are actually a relatively rare occasion for us.
With the change in the lineup, replacing your bassist-vocalist with Michael, how has that changed your music?
Sean Caskey Um… we took a few steps back actually, he was actually the singer before I was the singer. It’s funny because this band and that band (points towards Dune Rats), we’ve been tight for a long time. It’s a big triangle of a family.
D I don’t know if it’s changed our music that much.
L I think it’s better, like the vibe is better.
You and Dune Rats seem really tight despite the difference in genres and personalities. Is that how Brisbane’s music scene is like?
S There are like close circles that are connected with each other in various ways, I like it though, because it’s so strong in that way. It helps a lot when you’re coming out. There’s also a competitive nature, we’re all trying to outdo each other, but in a friendly way.
Tell us a bit of the history between you guys.
S Well, I used to play bass for them and BC, their drummer used to be in another band called The Cairos with me. A lot of us also played for a short time in Dune Rats. When they first started out I just helped out whenever, we just hang out, they would call us up and ask to jam or whatever.
Cool. Would you guys be looking to make music together in the future?
S Oh, I don’t think it’s possible, we’re in different worlds. We’re all close friends but our music is just completely different.
What about your new album, can you tell us about that?
S It’s going to be 10 songs, which are probably better than the last 10 songs we released. That’s about it.
D Well first of all, Michael is writing on this album as well. The last album was pretty much just Sean writing it.
L We’ve all been hanging out a lot and jamming together, so it’s actually more of a collective effort this time around. In general, the songs are just way better.
Does the name Last Dinosaurs have any relationship with the 1977 movie The Last Dinosaur?
S Um… really, there was a movie?! (Turns to the guys) Let’s just say that from now on eh, guys? (Laughs)
D I was listening to a Japanese band called The Pillows and they had a song called Last Dinosaurs and it was suggested, I thought it was funny so we ran with it. But the name sort of becomes just a sound after a while. It doesn’t really have much of a meaning to it. Dinosaur in Japanese is actually called kyouruu, and if you put his name and my name together, it says that. It’s pure coincidence but I wish that were the reason behind our name. (Laughs)
Speaking of which, do you guys listen to a lot of Asian bands?
D Not so much Asian bands, we listen to mostly American and English bands.
S I went through huge phase of Twin Sister.
D Into The Beatles right now
L Toro y Moi
S I really like to find stuff on Spotify, because when you turn on the radio feature, you skip songs until you like something, I just really like finding songs that give you new ideas and stuff.
Do you guys have a dream band that maybe you guys want to play or work with?
S The original line up of Phoenix probably, a lot of the main inspiring bands for us when we started, we feel like they’ve sort of plateaued for a bit recently.
D We’ve actually played with them all anyways, so yeah, not really.
Say you guys met a person that has never heard of Last Dinosaurs, how would you guys describe your music to that person?
S (Scratches head)
L Straight up I would say, don’t even bother! (Laughs)
S Um, I want to say guitar indie pop but that just sounds really stupid, technical guitar indie?
D It’s like basically heavy metal but with a country swing.
Michael Sloane A tinge of medieval in it.
D Indie pop rock with a bit of Asian zest.
L Squeeze the lime, add some wasabi and Australian seasoning. (Laughs)
In an alternate reality where Last Dinosaurs never happened, what would you guys be doing now?
S Well I don’t know, I might be on the streets, selling my body (laughs). I actually wanted to be an engineer, a civil engineer, but I don’t think I could ever carry that, it’s just really boring
M I’ll be doing film stuff I guess
L Professional soccer player
D I actually have no idea, probably skateboarding and being a whore.
Last Dinosaurs played at The Bee, Publika for the Upfront series on Tuesday 20 May ‘14.