As Hit The Deck rolled into Nottingham last weekend, we managed to catch some time with two of Zoax Adam and Douglas, mere minutes after packing out Stealth for one of the sets of the weekend.
Well done on the set today, by all accounts it was pretty awesome. Our photographer actually text me during the set saying “Zoax are fucking awesome.”
Douglas: Oh amazing! We do this because we absolutely love it, so to have that kind of response it just blows your mind.
How was the set for you?
Douglas: It was amazing, it was at capacity so we couldn’t get more people in the room. So we were really happy with that, it was way more than we expected.
So they were stopping people coming for a 14.00 set?
Douglas: Yeah, it’s early in the afternoon and we are only two E.Ps into our career, that’s pretty incredible isn’t it?
Adam: I had a great time, when the rooms are full. I’m just like “yes, here we go. So many faces to grab!”
Oh look it’s a full room, I think I’ll run around.
Adam: I was really happy, because this was our first time playing this festival and I love playing this type of festival.
Do you think Baby Godzilla told all their friends?
Douglas: I think they definitely helped us out. To be perfectly honest with you, touring with a band like that not only did we learn a load from them because they are an incredible band, plus playing around this with their following it’s incredible because they’ve got an incredible dedicated lovely fan base, so to be able to expose them to us is great.
First proper question, how many times have you had to explain the name? I know I watched one with Adam at Download, and the woman clearly has know idea who you are.
Douglas: It happens quite often where you are presented with an interviewer, who doesn’t know who you are, doesn’t give a fuck who you are, and they come in with “So Zoax right, you guys are cool.” It’s much more interesting, because we can have a conversation with you guys because you know who we are, it’s so much better. A lot is basically the answer to your question!
Do you ever consider just changing the explanation each time?
Douglas: I’ve got a good one, there was an American band called Hoax how were thinking of corporate litigation which is apparently punk, so we had to change our name from Hoax to Zoax.
You guys are in contention to play the Fresh Blood stage at Slam Dunk, how much would it mean to you guys to play that festival? And why should people vote for you?
Douglas: There are some incredible bands on that bill, and it would be a privilege to be playing the same festival as them. As I said to you earlier we a very small band, we are very early in our career so something like that would be a huge step up, but in no means do I think we are actually going to win the fan vote because there are so many great band in there.
Adam: There are so many bands that deserve it, but how much it would mean to us any festival or show we get we are like “thank you so much, it’s really important to us.” But basically it would mean the world to us, because when shows like today happen it’s like the best feeling and I just can’t stop thanking everyone for it. I do love to because I want to see Taking Back Sunday as well.
The second E.P. ‘Is Everybody Listening’ seems to have been received well, are you the type of band who goes looking at reviews and looking for critique or do you not really bother about that kind of thing?
Adam: We are the type of band that strives for certain things, we are always developing the sound and with E.Ps they are experiments. You are sorting out what you should do with your act. The recent E.P has certain elements of our first one, but we are a bit more confident on this one and it’s not so much we go for what we think should be our thing, we are trying to create something original. There will be people that say we sound like this band or that band, but we don’t go in just aiming to play really heavy riffs, if there’s a song that is totally chilled and we’re liking it then it’s going to be played live, and if people like it that’s it!
Douglas: One of the things with the second is that the first E.P was essentially was like “this is our first E.P lets go!” But the second one we wanted to try some other stuff, so one of the songs started off as a really gentle acoustic idea of Adam’s and it built into this completely different thing. That was fun exploring that element of being in a band, and approaching writing songs differently. Which means when we do the album, we are able to explore a lot more avenues. It’s about, without sounding like a pretentious wanker, it’s about the creative process and we want to try new stuff on the album but without the two E.Ps I don’t think we’d have been confident enough.
Next up for you is the tour with Fearless Vampire Killers. You mentioned Baby Godzilla opening you up to a fan base, Fearless Vampire Killers what are you expecting from that, because their fans are a bit hardcore.
Adam: They have a huge following that are super dedicated, but I think a lot of the fans are going to be very scared. I think I’m going to make it that bit more over the top, because I’m expecting them to be that bit scared but I think it’ll work out in the end. But we have been thrown in with so many different bands where we are like “we are going to get butchered at this show.” We did a show with Bleed From Within and we are nowhere near as heavy as those guys, so we thought we were going to get slaughtered.
Douglas: Like physically beaten by them!
Adam: With sticks, setting us on fire! But no, it was a success. So who knows.
Douglas: I think people get it, I think it transcends a few different genres and we are quite lucky in that sense that we can play with bands that are lighter than us or heavier than us, and with Fearless Vampire Killers because there audience loves them I have no doubt that everyone in that room will be there to see Fearless Vampire Killers, so if we can get through to some of those fans that would be incredible.
At the same time bands who are in a similar vein Black Veil Bride and Of Mice And Men, from going to those gigs. Those fans research and go out and listen to the support acts, and are signing every word.
Douglas: I think that they are incredibly active music fan, I think that there favourite band is Fearless Vampire Killers and quite rightly so but I think that they are people that just love music in general and the social media interaction immediately from announcing the Fearless Vampire Killers tour it just went, so they are definitely engaged musically with other bands. Fearless Vampire Killer fans love Fearless Vampire Killers, and that’s an incredible thing and that’s an inspiring thing.
Adam: How many more times do you want to say Fearless Vampire Killers?
Douglas: Fearless Vampire Killers! Shall we say FVK will that make you feel better?
Have you got plans for your own tour? I know in the summer you’ve got Y Not Festival and possible a few others?
Douglas: We just did a headline tour, which was our first ever one and we were really surprised with the response. As I keep saying we are a really small band, so to have that response was incredible. But I think later in the year we might do something similar, maybe package with another band on a co-headliner or something. You never know what’s going to come through, we could wake up to an email tomorrow.
Do you guys like playing festivals?
Douglas: I personally love festivals, because it gives you chance to check out bands you wouldn’t usually come across especially from different genres it’s great.
Adam: I would do festivals all the time, over our own headline shows because of the fact you see family and friends and you get to hang out and check out new bands. There is a way better vibe at things like this, it’s like a little day out. Even though today is the last day, and it’s only a two day thing I wish we could keep going.
What would you like to be remember for?
Douglas: That’s deep! Seriously deep!
Adam: Is this a speed one? You’ve already got me, okay I’d like to be remembered for being a really entertaining guy.
Douglas: Being someone who is incredibly indecisive.
If you could only play one venue for the rest of your career, where would it be?
Douglas: Liquid Rooms in Edinburgh.
Adam: Yeah, I agree with that one to.
Star Wars or Star Trek?
Both (in unison): Star Wars!
Douglas: Don’t fuck about with that one, that’s not even a real question.
How long do spend in front of the mirror?
Adam: About five minutes.
Douglas: Not particularly long.
Adam: It depends how long my hair is at the time.
What was the last song that made you stop and really listen to it?
Douglas: Can I answer for you?
Adam: Starlight by Nicki Minaj I think it was!
Douglas: That made you stop and think “jeez, that’s the one?”
Adam: Yeah, it’s a bit of a tune isn’t it? There’s a bit of a chorus in there.
Douglas: I’m really band with song names but the third track on Ben Howard’s new album, I think is just incredible. Or the second track on Natalie Press’s new album.
Dream dinner guest (dead or alive)?
Adam: I’m going to regret this later on, but I’m going to say Stone Cold Steve Austin.
Douglas: Can I have two? Can I have either Kurt Cobain or Tim C from Rage Against The Machine.
Adam: Jesus, if you were with Kurt Cobain it would be just the most depressing dinner ever.
Douglas: I’d like to meet him, I’d like to see what his pattern is.
Adam: I’d like to meet him to but he’d just be like eating his dinner all sad.
Favourite swear word?
Adam: I was just going to say it straight off there, but I won’t.
Douglas: Were you just going to go straight for the c-word?
Adam: The c-word is a good one, but there is a lady present so I don’t want to be that rude.
Douglas: I’m a big fan of that, it’s just brutal isn’t it!
Adam: I like bollocks as well!
You can catch Zoax on selected dates with Fearless Vampire Killers during May, or the guys are sure to be playing a number of festivals this summer so catch them at one of those. Or check out their newest E.P ‘Is Everybody Listening.’ Believe the hype people, Zoax are about to break and break big!