Dedo Podre are a Hardcore punk band from Brazil who are about to embark on a UK tour and 2nd appearance at Rebellion. I caught up with lead vocalist Otavio Ramone about the tour, the bands influences, and the Brazilian punk scene.
SOTS: Otavio thanks for taking the time to speak to me. Can you just begin by introducing the band and how you guys got together?
Otavio Ramone: Well, come on, I first thank you for the space given to us. It’s me on vocals, Guto on bass, Paulo on guitar and Roberto on the drums, who is already our fourth drummer. We had problems last year because the old drummer could not make the tour but we solved this with Roberto and even recorded the new album with him. We got together in 2015 because I wanted to play again so I called Guto who I played with in The Jerks from 1995-2003. Paulo was without a band too and he jumped at the chance. The task really was to find a drummer, we rehearsed with one for half of the year but he left. We put up an advertisement and Luiz, who is also a guitarist in “Insubordinados”, appeared until we recorded the first album and toured last year.
SOTS: For anyone that hasn’t heard of you could you describe your sound and your influences?
OR: We basically play punk rock with hardcore and hi pitches. We have influences from the Ramones, Buzzcocks, Cock Sparrer, GBH, Cockney Rejects and Gimp Fist. They are common things that we like and we listen to. But listening to our sounds we do not follow a definite line, we have melody and beating on our discs, it is very variable so you don’t get tired of hearing only one kind of melody.
SOTS: All of your songs are sung in Portuguese, can you give us an idea what the lyrics are about. Would you consider releasing an album in English?
OR: Yes, all in Portuguese. I think English is kind of impossible, half English is bad, it hurts to sing (hehehe). I think if you go to Italy for example, you would like to hear a punk band sing there in Italian and not English, right. Well, our songs speak from the daily life we live in our country, the difficulties of reaching and striving for our goals, to grow and do good for everyone and even our families. I think it’s the basics. But we also sing about events with us and friends in our lives. About being strong, working, knowing how to stand up against obstacles and everything that life can provide good and even bad, and in this case know how to strengthen in the face of these bad things. We also talk about what is happening in the world today, the forms of prejudice and racism, which we are totally against, we sing for a better place for all to live.
SOTS: You have just released your excellent new album ‘Sem Mais Desulpas’ which is the follow up to last year’s debut ‘Lutas & Vitorias’. 2 albums in a year is pretty impressive what kind of reaction have you had to the releases?
OR: The “Fights and Victories” (Lutas e Vitórias) were songs from the beginning of the band, since the “No More Excuses” (Sem Mais Desculpas) had to be more rushed with the compositions and the recording, because when we came back from the tour last year, we changed the drummer and we only had one song for our record. With the first album, being a new band has had a good reaction from the public, because it is a novelty in the scene. A lot of it is thanks to the Rebellion Festival, for having given us the invitation to play last year, so a lot of people come back to see and listen to what we’ve done. Already with the “No More Excuses” you will notice that it is a more refined album, I think, even though the songs were being created, the recording was more detailed, the band was more involved with Roberto’s presence, which helped a lot. It may be that even with continuity there is a very nuanced evolution of melodies and songs.
SOTS: What’s the punk scene like in Brazil? What bands would you recommend?
OR: In Brazil we have a good scene, which comes from 78-79, where we had and still have these bands playing, like “Colera”, “Ratos de Porão”, “Olho Seco”, “Lixomania”, “Inocentes” Fogo Cruzado” among others. Brazil is a barn of bands, anywhere there is a band, there is always something good. Our own city is full, see that the “Sem Futuro” was the second band playing Rebellion and we were the third, and this year they will have 6 bands. I like many bands both old and new, I do not even know how to tell you because I wouldn’t want to miss any of them out, but you can start with the ones I mentioned above and you will like it very much. And not only punks, we see the case of “Sepultura”, which also has its punks punks …
SOTS: You played some shows in the UK last year and are coming back over to this month to play some more shows. Are you looking forward to the shows? Do you enjoy play here?
OR: Po ,, always a tour outside your country is cool, because it is a novelty, new people, new places. This is exciting for us. Enjoyed the tour from last year, the reception in all cities were great. The people there are very receptive, come to talk, have a beer together, talk about everything. And we still have the chance from time to time, when we have to, to walk in the cities, we can know and see the differences and habits of another country, that is legal.
SOTS: How do the audiences in the UK react to the band?
OR: So, as I mentioned above, at the beginning people do not understand much when they are close to us, it is these 4 guys speaking a strange language and laughing a lot …. this is before we play. When we play, I think they feel the vibration and notice that it’s only 4 guys from a different country making the sound they like but with a language that you can not fathom. But they like it, and in the end they see us say hello, talk, photo shoot, buy merchandise and even pay for beer, and that contact I think is wonderful and important for us and for them as new fans. So we made many friends last year, and we will see them back this year, and make new friends.
SOTS: What do you think of the punk scene in the UK? What bands do you like?
OR: UK bands have always been my influences in the past and are still today, old bands and new bands, I mention almost all that I love, Buzzcocks, Damned, Cock Sparrer, Adicts, New Model Army, 999, UK Subs, Stiff Little Fingers, Toy Dolls, GBH, Exploited, Angelic Upstarts, Vibrators, The Boys, The Drones, Undertones, Lurkers, and have the smaller ones like Gimp Fist, Terminal Rage, Top Dog, Sick on Bus, Epic Problem , etc. sorry if I forgot some others ,,,, there are so many that I like.
SOTS: As part of this tour you are playing Rebellion festival for the 2nd time. Are you looking forward to it?
OR: Always the Rebellion Festivals is a different experience, as I speak there in Brazil, I’m going to my Disneyland, and that’s it for us. The best festival of its kind in the world, with bands and cool people, who do not want to be there and still playing, so we are very excited and excited. Until we set the set list for the festival, see that at dawn before the presentation (Rebellion day 3 at 5.40pm at Arena Stage) we will play August 2nd at 2am at the Tache, and we will do a very different set list. We think of everything for those who will see us, and hope you enjoy it.
SOTS: As well as yourselves there are another 5 bands from Brazil playing this year’s festival including Sem Futuro, Supla, Sindicato Oi!, Subalternos and Agrotoxico. This has got to be good for the Brazilian scene to get to play to different audiences.
OR: Outside the United Kingdom and United States, we are the third country with more bands this year, very important for us this. The first band that played was many years ago; the year after the “Sem Futuro”, last year us and them, and now 6 bands, this is incredible. Opening doors this is the most important, I know that it is difficult to play in Brazil due to lack of structure and financial aid, so we care a lot to come here, last year brought a lot of material from other bands to further publicize our Brazilian scene. Today, if you see a name or listen to a song from someone it is easy to go after and find more on the digital platforms, it helps a lot to discover new bands. That’s what I do, even in relation to Rebellion, when I have empty hours between bands I like to see new acts that I haven’t listened to before. It is always good to represent your country and show that we can make a good sound that everyone enjoys.
SOTS: Thanks again for your time and I wish you well the new album and the tour. See you at Rebellion.
OR: I thank you, on behalf of our entire band, we will meet here for a few beers for a few days and play chit-chat, that’s punk.