Dune Rats talk moving towards a "dancier" sound and Too Tough Terry

CHEEKY: Dune Rats spent several months this year living in the NSW south coast town of Eden and working on music for their fourth album, likely to be released in 2021.
CHEEKY: Dune Rats spent several months this year living in the NSW south coast town of Eden and working on music for their fourth album, likely to be released in 2021.

WITHOUT a doubt Dune Rats have a serious knack for delivering fun drug party songs.

The cheeky larrikins of slacker pop-punk have become one of Australia's most popular festival bands in recent years through tracks like Scott Green, Dalai Lama Big Banana Marijuana and Bullshit which can ignite a mosh pit through a combination of crunchy distorted riffs and clever hooks.

It's also delivered the three-piece of Danny Beus (guitar, vocals), BC Michaels (drums) and Brett Jansch (bass) consecutive ARIA No.1 albums with The Kids Will Know It's Bullshit (2017) and Hurry Up and Wait (2020).

Yet Beus has revealed Dune Rats' intention to move in a more mature direction when they release new music in 2021.

"We're super psyched with what we've come up with so far," Beus says. "I'd hate to just keep writing drug party songs for the next 30 years.

"I think people will be pleasantly impressed by the next stuff."

When the COVID-19 pandemic cancelled Dune Rats' plans to tour in the US earlier this year they opted to rent a house together in the NSW south coast town of Eden, 20 minutes drive from Beus' home in Merimbula.

"We thought we better get together and do something constructive or we'll just blow six months surfing and drinking," Beus says.

Beus says the result of those songwriting sessions have led to a "dancier" and more produced sound.

"There's a couple of really cool songs we'll release next year that will probably lose us a few fans, but hopefully it'll gain us more than we lose," he says.

In the meantime, Dune Rats have given their fans another classic slice of pop-punk naughtiness with their new stand-alone single Too Tough Terry.

Dune Rats - Too Tough Terry

The track is a humorous depiction of a very-Australian angry truckie named Terry who hates "flashy f--kers drinking cappuccinos" and "doesn't like sauce unless it's in a bottle."

The song and the character Terry is colourfully brought to life in the animated video clip created by University of Newcastle Bachelor of Visual Communication honours student Reid McManus.

BMG managing director for Australia and Novocastrian, Heath Johns, put Dune Rats in touch with McManus. After Dune Rats provided McManus with the lyrics for Too Tough Terry, the animator responded with a 10-second clip which the band instantly loved.

It took McManus six months to complete the near three-minute video, which takes inspiration from cartoons like The Simpsons and South Park.

COLOURFUL: A clip from the Too Tough Terry video, animated by Newcastle's Reid McManus.

COLOURFUL: A clip from the Too Tough Terry video, animated by Newcastle's Reid McManus.

"I didn't know this until last week but he got a high distinction [for the video], which is sick," Beus laughs. "It would have sucked if he got a credit.

"It was great working with Reid. We're doing a bunch of other stuff with him, little web episodes that are coming out with Terry and he nailed the merch range we're about to release. We're doing thongs and truckie air freshener."

Dune Rats' Too Tough Terry is out now. Dune Rats will also perform at the This That Festival at Newcastle's Wickham Park scheduled for February 20.

This story Cheeky punk lads Dune Rats reveal they're growing up first appeared on Newcastle Herald.