Dirtycakes is an exciting three-piece band that can be described as DIY Ethos Punk. the members, Charley, Rick, and Becky, all come from vastly different backgrounds. With Dirtycakes, they aim to create music that puts equality above all. Dirtycakes is the power of three different people coming together to share Love & Angst.
Personal turmoil or reflections on the darker side of life have long been a crucial muse in hard rock/punk music and within Dirtycakes’ writing. “Gimme Some” is one that cleverly hints at a certain struggle or battle but leaves just enough to the imagination that those feeling similar will be able to connect and relate to the words and the intensity of the music in their unique way. The grungey leading vocals throughout “Gimme Some” encompasses the varied emotions of the lyrics incredibly well. The verses are enough to fuse melody and grit with that unmistakable Dirtycakes tone, then you get the drop into the weight and scream of the hook, and the whole thing just pours emotion and volume into the room in a way that completely relieves you of your stresses for a while and releases you from the grip of uncertainty. Another step in the right direction for modern music, and yet another hit of creative individuality and musical realness from Dirtycakes. Listen to "Gimme Some" here.
Welcome to BuzzMusic Dirtycakes! It’s such a pleasure to be chatting with you. How did each of you get started on your own musical journey, before Dirtycakes?
Becky - I've been playing since I was 8... I've been trying not to take shit from people since I was born and realized women were treated as less than men & weak - I use my drums as my weapon & my lyrics to voice my outrage. I opened for The Cramps in 1981 drumming for the sick kids, played with and toured the world in The Lunachicks.
Charley - I grew up listening to the "Top 10 at 10" on WBIG FM... I built an electric guitar in woodshop in 9th grade and finished it the day I was expelled. I spent my teen years and early 20s making records on tape decks, playing as often as possible at open mic nights and nerding out on any gear I could my hands on. I built a few recording studios and ended up going on the road playing rock and roll with several bands before moving to LA and starting Dirtycakes.
Rick - Had a couple bands, (Supreme Beings Of Leisure, and Bitter: Sweet) Played lead guitar for The English Beat.
You seem to be a band that puts a substantial amount of thought into your lyrics! Who/what has inspired each of you to be the artist you are today?
Charley - Maybe this is a bit coy, but what inspires me the most is the art that challenges me, and the music that jumps off the wall. I never want our thing to be wallpaper, being ignorable is a waste of time. I want people to make a decision, the room will divide and folks will pick aside. I hope you dig it, but if you don't, it won't be some passive dismissal. The words give context to the boogie, for me, the boogie always comes first. Rock and Roll should hinder someone from being able to sit on both heels at once. The themes focus on honesty, resisting the need for validation from outside, which is how I get strength from the music. They travel from some braggadocio, to melancholy, and directly address intoxication, fornication and call back to my childhood time in the church... and very little is more powerful than those forces.
"Gimme Some" is an incredible track! Can you tell us about how you come to create your authentic sound?
Charley - Sometimes the simple answer is the easiest... what you've described as 'authentic" is just the sound of us in a room all playing together. We don't use a bunch of studio tricks, we don't have to auto-tune, we don't program our drums... we preach honesty and our music sounds "authentic" because of it. That, and we're all nerds about our gear, and have listened to several imperial system metric f*cktons of records over the years. Not too mention, we've also collectively played thousands of shows.
How have you honed your songwriting style over time, and what do you think are the main qualities that make a song truly connect and last in the long-run?
Charley - Songwriting, as an extension of your id... grows and evolves with time. Being on stage and having to be compelling to rooms full of strangers, forces you to be brutally honest with the quality of your work.
When we take the stage, I personally have this duality of both being as inclusive and open with everyone in the crowd and the other bands... but I also, and more and more lately, flip on my 2 amps with full knowledge that this is “Cowboys and Indians”, and we're bringing home scalps.
When you are willing to remove your ego, cut the tunes that don't win on the battlefield and be your own best critic, the live set gets filled with songs that can all stand on their own. Often I'll take a look at the live footage that fans post after the show. If your song is good, the phones comes out, and at the end of the show... any song that you don't have footage of, isn't good enough. When we finally hit the studio, the only songs we record are the ones who have come back from war with a backpack of skulls. What they tend to have in common, can vary widely... but we have found that when we are honest, open, inclusive, and unwaveringly committed to constant improvement and experimentation... the songs just get better and better.
Thank you for taking the time to talk to us! What’s next for you after the release of “Gimme Some”?
We just got back from Joshua Tree, making a record at Rancho de la Luna with Dave Catching and John Russo. We'll be releasing a 7" single on vinyl, and put together a full-length recording of our battle-tested set. We're going to shoot videos for every song and work on honing in new sounds and working on the getting next set of stories we need to tell, down on the fuzz and drums. It's scary, it's exciting, it's uncomfortable and we wouldn't have it any other way. I hope that we have a whole new set ready in the next few months. I hope we are terrible on stage for gig after gig. I hope we go through song after song until we can rely on a brand-spanking' new 27 minutes to come home victorious from battle. Growth and greatness comes from adversity, fuck the crutches and excuses... we'll break on through to the other side one way or the other.