Canadian Musician - November/December 2017 - Page 53

CM: What is the most recent piece added to your live set up and why did it earn that spot? What can you tell us about this theme on the record? MM: I guess the latest would be the wood beater I got for my kick pedal. It’s a red wood beater and it’s been a great addition. MM: A lot of the album is reflective of the current climate right now with all of these crazy politics that of have been going on and a big overall theme is about climate change. The whole concept of living in a dollhouse is just shutting it out, except that we’re not interested in just shutting it out; we need to all be aware and not just hide in our little dollhouses and pretend everything is fine. CM: What is the one thing you can’t go without behind the kit? MM: I couldn’t go without my snare. I’ve got a Yamaha copper snare and it’s the best thing ever. I hate carrying it around airports because the thing weighs a lot, but it’s beautiful. CM: It’s been 10 years now since your first release. What’s been the biggest change in your approach to drumming? MM: I don’t believe in over-drumming anything. Drumming just the right amount for a song is all you need. Anything beyond that is just unnecessary. I only drum exactly what I think the song requires, so mainly I focus on being consistent, loud, driving. I’m not into flourishes; I barely ever do anything that would be remotely considered fancy. CM: The cover of your latest album, Dollhouse, is eye-catching and features a dollhouse scene. CM: You’ve characterized The Pack a.d. as a “workhorse band” in the past. What does that mean and do you still feel this way? MM: Yeah, I think we’re still that way. You know, there’s always like a “cool band” and we’ve just never been that cool band. We’re a working band and we have wonderful fans and we put out albums and we’ve managed to do this. I’m grateful for that because so many bands you hear about, buzz bands, quite often, they don’t last. They just have one hit or whatever. So to make a career out of what you’re doing is an excellent goal and I think that’s what we’re doing and I’m happy with that. I couldn’t imagine being buzzy and having to live up to it, though I wonder what it’s like to feel cool? The Gear Yamaha Phoenix Maple Drums • 12-in. Rack Tom • 16-in. Floor Tom • 22-in. Kick Yamaha 14 x 6.5-in. Copper Snare Paiste Cymbals • 14-in. Alpha Powerslave Boomer Hats • 16-in. Rude Crash/16-in. 2002 Crash • 17-in. Alpha Powerslave Boomer Crash/17-in. Rude Crash/17-in. 2002 Crash • 22-in. Alpha Powerslave Boomer Ride Los Cabos 5A Yellow Jackets Drumsticks Yamaha Pedal with Danmar Wood Beater Yamaha Hardware Kurt Dahl One Bad Son Kurt Dahl is the drummer for One Bad Son and also works as an entertainment lawyer. Music is the magic of life that keeps him going into the office and on the road, which the band will be doing in the near future in support of 2017’s Made in the Name of Rock n Roll. CM: What is the most recent piece added to your live set up and why did it earn that spot? KD: Well, fairly recently I got a brand new drum kit. It’s all about finding that signature sound and for me, it’s all about the big, booming, sort of washy sound … combining the bigness of [John] Bonham but the crazy erratic side of Keith Moon. You know, like my rack tom is as big as some guys’ kick drum. The cymbals are all Istanbul ride cymbals, just big and washy. To me, rock n roll is big and badass and over the top, and my kit reflects that. CM: Tell us about that process or moment of fully finding your sound as a band. KD: With OBS, if I’m being honest, it took us some years to find that thing that made us different and special from every other band out there. We started in 2004 and we had our first sort of breakthrough hit in 2012, so it took us a few years. Not that you have to sell records to make good music, but the masses can be a good indicator of finding your sound. People think that success builds character, but it just reveals character. It’s all that work behind the scenes – those tough years where we were playing to 30 people if we were lucky. That’s when we became OBS. The Gear YC Drums • 14-in. Rack Rom • 16-in. Floor Tom • 18-in. Floor Tom • 26-in. Kick Ludwig 14-in. Supraphonic Steel Snare  Istanbul Mehmet Cymbals • 14-in. Samatya Hats/16-in. 61 st Anniversary Hats • 20-in. Samatya Ride • 20-in. Traditional Ride • 22-in. Mehmet Legend Ride • 24-in. Nostalgia 50s Ride • 24-in. Nostalgia 70s Ride Evans Drumheads Promark Drumsticks C A N A D I A N M U S I C I A N • 53