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  • Vasili Papathanasopoulos


Read our interview with d4vd before he hits the stage at Laneway Festival!

Image: Supplied.

Next month, Laneway Festival will once again bring some of the worlds finest talent to stages across Australia and New Zealand. We caught up with genre-defying artist d4vd ahead of his appearance at the festival to chat all things Laneway and new music.

Kicking off in Brisbane on February 3, the touring festival will continue on to Sydney before crossing the Tasman to Auckland. The following weekend will see Laneway stop in Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth. Final tickets are on sale now!

Joining d4vd is headliners British Rapper Stormzy and GRAMMY Award winning artist Steve Lacy, who will both appear exclusively at the festival, and American singer-songwriter Dominic Fike. The line up is rounded out by AJ Tracey, Angie McMahon, Confidence Man, Cordae, Dope Lemon, Eyedress, Faye Webster** – horsegiirL – Nia Archives, Paris Texas, Raye, Skin On Skin, Teenage Dads, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, Blondshell, DOMi & JD BECK, Hemlocke Springs, JK-47, Miss Kaninna, Pretty Girl and Vacations.

It's not long until you are back in Australia and New Zealand for Laneway Festival, and your headline shows. Obviously you were here earlier this year for some sold-our shows. What do you have in store for everyone attending this new run of shows?

I'm gonna say there's gonna be a lot of new music out before I get there. I'm gonna try to craft a show to where it feels very much like more rockstar than before. Especially in New Zealand, I know like that's where the rock presence is. So yeah, I'm gonna just try to, I don't wanna say too much 'cause I don't want give it away, but I'm just gonna try to make it as rockstar as possible.

Laneway is such great staple festival, the lineup is so sick. What are you like most looking forward to about performing at the festival and like who are you most excited to catch?

I'm looking forward to just seeing how the crowds differ, because I know it's a whole run of a festival. So I'm just trying to like, take notes of every single like little thing that happens between shows and in these shows so I can take notes and be like, 'okay, this is how this was, this song was received at this point in the set or this and that in the third.' I'm super excited to see Steve Lacey and Dominic Fike and Raye. I just love those artists. Just to be like a fan too 'cause I get to see all these artists perform. I'm excited to be a fan.

Yeah, living your best life. From taking notes on each crowd you'll be able to settle the debate on which crowds are better: Australia or New Zealand

[Laughs] Exactly.

How important is performing live to you? Not only in terms of showcasing your art but making that in-person connection with the audiences who do resonate with your music.

Oh, I feel like it's the most important thing you can do as an artist besides making the music. If you're not connecting to your audience, I feel like what are you doing? People call it crowd control. I like to call it crowd connection. How well can you resonate with the people that listen to your music, you know, when they're feeling sad or as a comfort song or to get them out of a bad mood or to put them in a good mood. So I feel like performing live is the most intimate thing you can do besides making the music.

It creates a special bond and connection. Now, even since you've last been here to Australia, you dropped a new EP and so much new music. You've also just said there's more music coming on the way. But in looking at your recent album The Lost Petals, how did you craft the overall dynamic sonic palette that the release exists within? It's so textually beautiful.

Yeah, thank you. I feel like I tried to tell the best story I could of a cliffhanger 'cause I left a cliffhanger on on Petals To Thorns with the bridge and I was like, 'how sad can I get?' [Laughs] That was the whole mood it was like, 'how do I make it even sadder?' I think those four songs kind of had the emotional rage that I wanted from Petals To Thorns. But then also like the melancholic really beautiful, almost like walking through a garden and then stepping on a bear trap 'cause Rehab is in right in the middle and it's like the super rock track. It's like walking through a garden, stepping on a bear track and then like getting released from it and then finishing walk through that garden.

That was such a great analogy. So then for this new music, are you going even sadder than the saddest?

It's a mix. I feel like I've done the sad thing, so it's time to like get some more things in there, you know? Exactly. Get some more Take Me To The Sun's in there some more You and I's. I wanna be a storyteller. I feel like the best music you can make is where people feel like it's narrating their lives when people think that they're the main character. I call my music main character music because I feel like you listen to my song, it kind of soundtracks your life in a way. So I wanna make more of that.

Yeah, I back that. You've been releasing music for a few years now, but I feel like you've had such a great trajectory and growth. So how do you think your artistry has kind of evolved from those earlier days? From when you were making music in your bedroom closet to the music that you're working on now and it'll be releasing over the coming months.

I feel like it's been a lot of self-reflection and like introspective thoughts and stuff like that. I mean my voice went out at the start of my Asia tour and I kind of was not able to make music for a minute up until now. I literally just came back from the doctor's office, that's really crazy. But yeah, lost my voice and when you lose your voice, you're not able to kind of express yourself in the way that you normally used to. It's like I became a listener again. Like I went through all of my songs, I went through my entire discography, all my release music, all my unreleased music and it's like I was listening to myself not as a creator, but as like a taste maker at that point. And it kind of shows you what you need to work on and what you need to kind of go back to and expand upon. It shows you what you need to do and I think I know what the next steps now more than ever, so.

That's so interesting, that reflective approach. You've said that there will be new music by the time you get here, but what is your plan for the rest of 2024? What can you tease?

Album. I wanna make an album, man. I wanna like go crazy internationally too. I love like going overseas like New Zealand, Australia and just seeing the different cultures and it's so inspiring to see. It's like, you know, the first couple songs I did in 2022 I put on like an Australian and British accent [laugh] kind of. I was like messing around and experimenting with all these different mediums of creation. I just wanna get back into that bag and just like have fun with it again.


BRISBANE / Turrbal Targun (16+)

Saturday 3 February

Brisbane Showgrounds

SYDNEY / Burramattagal and Wangal Land  (16+)

Sunday 4 February

Sydney Showground

AUCKLAND / Tamaki Makaurau (18+)

Tuesday 6 February

Western Springs

ADELAIDE / Kaurna Yerta (16+)

Friday 9 February

Bonython Park

MELBOURNE / Wurundjeri Biik (16+)

Saturday 10 February

The Park, Flemington

PERTH / Whadjuk Boodjar (16+)

Sunday 11 February

Wellington Square


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