You could call Brisbane outfit DUBMARINE many things, but unforgettable is probably top of the list. When you see this band live, you know you’ll walk away with a grin on your face and sweat on your brow.
High-powered and high-energy the nine-piece tour-de-force somehow smash together dub, dancehall, reggae, drum n bass, and just a little touch of rock into a groove all their own. It’s heavy, in the best possible way.
Backed by a powerful brass section and lead by the vocal gymnastics of Indigenous superstar and Gangulu man D-Kazman, Dubmarine have a mission – to produce bass crunching, rhythm pounding, hip shaking modern music fusing elements of music from all around the world.
And that’s exactly where they have taken their music over the past few years – around the world. Building on a run of acclaimed releases – including the 2010 debut album Depth of Sound – the band has earned fans around the globe, drawn to a near legendary live show. In Europe they have hit stages and festivals throughout Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium and The Czech Republic and this year, they were invited to perform at the truly unique Sakifo festival in the Reunion Islands.
Meanwhile back home in Australia, their star continues to rise thanks to Bluesfest Byron Bay, WOMADelaide, Woodford Folk Festival, The Dreaming Festival, Good Vibrations, Parklife, Island Vibe, Reggaetown alongside numerous appearances at the annual BIGSOUND music industry showcase in Brisbane.
Dubmarine’s live show is built on catalogue of killer releases including Depth of Sound that feature the band’s trademark bass-driven foundations, twin trombone blasts and thunderous synth explosions. Winning support from media and radio across the country, the releases have picked up a run of Queensland Music Awards nominations and have been featured on the annual national HOME compilations profiling the country’s best new Indigenous artists.
And now the band have hit the next level with their simply extraordinary new long player LASER SOUND BEAM.
The band’s second album, Laser Sound Beam finds them moving into new territory. Capturing the legendary energy of a Dubmarine live show, this collection of tracks finds them moving away from their roots in reggae, dub and dancehall and finding a whole new sound that is truly their own. Easily their most powerful studio record to date, Laser Sound Beam is a synth and bass heavy, brass laden record that captures a band prepared to take music in a whole new direction. It’s big, it’s fun, and it’s something you have never heard before.
Recorded over the past 12 months, the album saw the band re-unite with long-time engineer and collaborator Paulie B, with ARIA winning producer Magoo brought in to add the finishing touches.
Laser Sound Beam is more than just a striking sonic landscape, it marks the emergence of D-Kazman as one truly irrepressible frontman. More than a dancer, vocalist and writer he is an Indigenous man with something to say. Talking through the songs, he explains the album moves through many moods.
“The track Beat in Control was first written years ago when I was a dancer working every night at a club, but dreaming of being a vocalist talking about what its like to be in the dance, inside the music, which to me felt mystical…’Close your eyes and you can see the music clearly’, Explains it all to me.” Kaz says.
“With the song Pass it On, We want to promote cool vibes and big energy at our shows, and we want it to be infectious so we ask that everyone ‘pass on’ that positivity to us… and we’ll send it back to you with cool edgy moves that inspire.”
And his growing confidence as an artist finds him turning his attention to more powerful ideas, no more obvious than on the songs Bullyman and Cabinet Fever.
“Bullyman is a look at black deaths in custody and the ‘intervention’ in the Northern Territory. The track also took some inspiration from fellow local band Powderfinger who were forced to take a song off their album because it might affect a (death in custody) trial at the time. They had to take it off their album, and that I felt was a breach of the right of freedom of speech,” he says.
“And Cabinet Fever? It seems like our Government is run by the multinationals, with the ousting of K Rudd and then the ousting of J Gillard. It feels as though there are payments happening under the table and people are paying billions to get their way. This is a take on that.”
The new album comes at the end of a phenomenal year for the band that has seen them take their music to huge audiences around the country and the globe. Earlier this year the band played to more than 3000 people on the Beat in Control Single Tour before they headed off to perform at the International Jazz Festival in Capetown South Africa – that trip was just the latest in a long run of overseas sojourns that has included major shows and festivals everywhere from Europe to the Reunion Islands.
“unlike anything you have seen before”
Scene Magazine Live Review, March 2013
“Dubmarine explode onto the stage both visually and in sound, as each member of the outfit brings their own individual game to proceedings. From Billie Weston dancing around in her rainbow-feather shouldered space dress while calling out to the audience; Mikael shaking his shoulders between breaths from his trombone; shirtless D-Kaz showing of his signature tribal art while jumping on stage boxes to hypnotise everyone with his vocal gymnastics; to bearded bassist Paul Watson keeping his cool while holding the rhythm and occasionally flipping his dreads out.” Time Off Live Review, March 2013