Death By Denim Break Down Every Track On Their Sophomore Album, 'Moonbow'

18 March 2022 | 9:09 am | Death By Denim

Death By Denim have today released their highly anticipated sophomore album 'Moonbow'. To celebrate the release, the band break down every track on the record.

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In December 2020 and we find ourselves back at Debaser Studio just weeks after our first album 
has been released, eager to take the band into a new chapter of musical madness. 

There's a lot of talk about where to go next; more electronic, more acoustic, strip it back, go into overdrive… the truth is we have no idea where we are going to end up - but we know it's going to be different.


You could say Moonbow is about an epiphany. A somewhat rare moment of clarity about your purpose and future that you had been circling for some time but couldn’t quite put your finger on. This is such a rarity for each of us in the band given the tragic state of the music industry that the only way to describe the whimsical feeling would be seeing a rainbow around the moon at night and imagining you were surfing around it like some transcendent being that had mastered the universe. 

The song was actually inspired by a tarot card reading given by a fan at a show on tour in NSW that surprisingly hit close to home. Not one to buy into those kinds of things too much but it was definitely a moment where you were told something profound you already knew but simply needed someone else to say for it to come into perspective. 

In context Moonbow is basically an elusive answer and resolution to all the questions posed by the other songs, so its almost like we are starting at the end and working our way backwards like some Christopher Nolan movie. 

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Feels Like Fiction 

After the epic ending in Moonbow, we take it back to where it all started with the first track recorded on the album. Feels Like Fiction is the soundtrack to an existential crisis experienced with your sun-drenched morning coffee. 

Without being too pedantic and deliberate, there was somewhat of an intention to use every instrument more cautiously rather than bogging it down in too many muddled layers. The result was a more spacious and airy feel that allows Nik to tell the story unencumbered whilst allowing melodies and parts to shine through as they arise.  


The album steps up a few notches and breaks into gear with Shores - one of the most upbeat and raucous tracks on the record. If our first EP Suburban Royalty had a baby with our first album Sleepless And Sunkissed this would be the result. Fast-paced frantic riffs and drums burst out of nowhere before disappearing in wake of spacious synth grooves reflecting the chaos and calm of an on and off relationship. 

Morning Tea At The Planetarium

We temporarily step away from the brooding and poignant lyricism with this synth-laden instrumental world created by George. Lie back and stare at the star projector as this transports you to the next chapter.


Times up, back on your feet. This tune is about being caught up in a never-ending party lifestyle. The summertime in particular is filled with party shirts and shades that overtime begin to hide weathered skin and a pair of red-tinted eyes that are usually already battered by year-round touring. The last thing I heard was the morning bird whistling at 5am, but wake me up with a beer and a fresh button-up and let’s do it all again… and again. 

We are quite quick to have our arms twisted into festivities but at times it can feel like your friends are beginning to rely too heavily on you and your drinking athleticism. They just want you to be the sparkly life of the party even though it is clearly running you into the ground and causing havoc underneath. “They’ll only sleep when I’m dead.” You can chalk it all down to being good old fashioned rock and roll but it is very important to pull away and take care of yourself routinely.


We’re flying down the coastal drive in a convertible, but you suddenly pressed the red button and now we are swiftly gliding through the air, the final destination unknown. 

Opening with a series of “La La Las” it's like you’ve childishly blocked your ears and are happy to live in your fantasy. There's a lot of vibrant and whacky noise in this track to keep everything cruising on the lighter side though there is clearly some turmoil going on. This plane is eventually going down but please remain calm. Just keep gliding through the clouds and accept what comes. 

You want me numb, want me on autopilot” - it doesn’t matter what you think or how you feel - you’ve got to switch that critical part of you off if you want to stay in this relationship. At its core, it’s about glorifying simple ideals over complex realities when it comes to people. 

The use of a recurring vocoder trading off the main vocal in this track was a lot of fun, it's like the voice of reason trying to call out in your head and get you to see things for what they really are. 

Cause A Scene

Another high energy track in a similar world as Shores, this song is a social commentary on action over words. Even before COVID there was this imminent feeling of frustration and tension in the air, like the whole world was on this collision course and it wouldn’t be long before we all took to the streets for one reason or another. This song tries to channel some of that frustration. The chorus lyrics “some say talk is cheap, so cause a scene" are almost like a call to arms that swiftly descend into a bit of chaos as fuzzy guitar trades off against a synth lead that almost sounds like a moving kickflip. There's definitely a playfulness in the anarchy here, a certain optimism about how it's all going to work out. 

Cause A Scene was never about anything specific, more about trying to break out of the rising angst with a bit of rebellion. This was another one we knew would translate very well to the live performance and ignite the crowd. 

I remember a moment of confusion on the instrumentation of this track being cured by Mai Tai cocktails that had us leaping around Debaser Studio, and we funnelled that wild energy into the song.


This was one of earlier recordings where we really dove headfirst into a synth world and it definitely paved the way for other synth-heavy tracks like Fools Gold. Sweeping pads rise and fall against the staggering groove - providing the foundation for gliding vocals and sparse guitar motifs. I think this is one of Nik’s most impressive vocal performances on the record. 

Falling over yourself just like a stereotype” - this line loops throughout the song. It’s as much about someone else as it is about yourself - not being sure who is in the right or the wrong and trying to see it from both perspectives.

Make It Up As We Go

The title pretty much describes our current life mantra at the moment, week to week we are just making it up as we go. There are a lot of questions, a lot of hangovers and we are all dead broke on the other side of 25 but you can’t deny it has been a blast. I think we all thought we would have it figured out by now but the joke is on us and we are the ones laughing.

This song is definitely a nod to the Beatles. We had been loving the softer acoustic vibes being channelled into our sound and this was a universally relatable catchy sing-along motif that stood out from the pack and reminded us of Here Comes The Sun

However, after our first demo, it was clear we had taken the acoustic guitar to its limit, initially building the entire world around this mellow ingredient. The restrained, understated brand of rock was causing a part of our identity to fade, the part that wants to recklessly run out into the night, beer bottle in hand, chanting our favourite song. Out came the Fender Jag plugged straight into fuzz pedal for a swift rescue. It was no coincidence the next song we recorded was Shores

Stand By The Driveway

Another top-down convertible bop with a few claps and slick melodies sprinkled throughout that had us on our feet in the studio for a good boogie. 

Whilst on the surface it’s fun, a couple of quirky dissonant chords chucked in the mix highlight the confused, yearning undertone of the lyrics, smooth as they may be. 

I’m stuck in it, stand by the driveway, four minutes feels like a nightmare” - I like to think of it as the darker contemporary remake of the cliche '80s movie scene of someone standing out the front of their ex’s house with a stereo blaring their favourite song to try to win them back. It's not quite the story, but the feeling of being on the outside, shut out from someone you were once close to, echoes throughout this tune like some constant nagging feeling in the back of your head. No matter where you go, at the end of the night there is this search for closure and resolution and you don’t want to go home until you’ve found it.

The First Time It Was Snowing

This song really showcases our range of influences flowing through this album. It's the woozy DBD you know and love, with a bit of a twist. I think it is at this point you can really get a complete sense of an alternative direction emerging in our sound. 

Perhaps a unanimous favourite amongst ourselves, it reflects on the magic of things discovered for the first time wearing off over the years. The swirling hit in the pre-chorus symbolises the moment that magic hits and quickly begins to fade, all before widening into a reminiscent chorus. I think the lyric “Change, won’t you just stay the same” says it all. It’s somewhat of an exploration of how we romanticise the past, which is probably quite common us kids in our late 20s coming to the terms with the fact we are now considered fully fledged adults. 

Fools Gold

Synth take the wheel, this is our most electronic-based song to date. If you’re wondering how we go from a song like Make It Up As We Go to this one in the same record, don’t worry, we are too. It's funny what happens when the electronic layers come to the forefront and the guitar takes a backseat. Fools Gold definitely stands out but it does breathe a new dancey life into the album - it's like a teaser of what could be next in the future. 

Small World

This song is one of the more personal and emotionally charged lyrics on Moonbow. It centres on growing feelings of social anxiety and inadequacy that came to a head in the forced break from touring caused by covid restrictions. 

Verse one is about feeling like a broken record. Catching up with friends or family week to week and complaining of the same issues that you can’t seem to escape or control - eventually, you stop bringing it up though the issues remain. This was a big vibe when live music had ceased indefinitely and it was like we had lost our identity and been cut off from our lives and the connections we were starting to build around the nation. Continuously scratching our heads all while the bank balance remained a sorry sight. 

The rest of the story evolves this feeling into a greater sense of inadequacy and despair. Small World was another instance where we wanted to soften the world around Nik’s vocal and really let his voice shine through. The force behind the guitars and synths is a bit more restrained and constant, whilst the emotional intensity of the lyric builds. 


Wasting no time in playing into the title, we really wanted this song to feel like you were lucidly free falling through the sky. The introduction being the slow climb, leading all the way to a turbulent bridge and soaring finish as if you had jumped out of a plane and are now flying through the air with your life flashing before your eyes. There are plenty of moments where you can almost feel the wind on your face. The oscillating guitar riff falls on a bed of atmospheric synth while the drums carry you along weightlessly until it all comes plummeting down at the track's wild end. 

Skydiving brings the album full circle in a similar way to how it started with a sense of awareness, only its not so readily accepted and is consequently more self-destructive. “If there’s something wrong about this, what is right about bliss?” - this line speaks volumes to perspective given in the track - blind and careless ignorance could be better than accepting the truth. Yet for better or worse, we’ve all been forced to slow down over the last couple of years, screw our heads on, exercise some self-care and change this self-destructive approach to something a bit more balanced and wholesome.

Cue Moonbow.