The Milwaukee-based band Direct Hit! have been going strong since 2007. Their second album, Brainless God, really put the band on the map and earned them glowing reviews from just about every corner of the alt music world. Now the group has signed with Fat Wreck Chords and their debut album for the iconic label comes out on June 24.
UPROXX is pleased to present the world premiere stream of Wasted Mind in its entirety, which you can listen to below.
Direct Hit! singer/guitarist Nick Woods was gracious enough to give us an interview about how drugs and paranoia inspire their latest effort, how great work can come from laziness, and how the best punk is cut from the Midwest.
UPROXX: Your new album, Wasted Mind, is a concept album, but it isn’t your first foray into a thematic structure. You experimented with serialized releases when Direct Hit! first started, and your last LP, Brainless God, was a post-apocalyptic musical, more or less. What is it that draws you to these thematic through lines for your releases? Can these concept albums be considered a Direct Hit! staple at this point?
Nick Woods: Laziness is the real draw, probably. I find I can write lyrics a lot quicker, and more efficiently if I’m writing a story rather than a poem. Having a narrative structure means the words write themselves a lot of the time. For me, it’s just a matter of finding a concept that’s interesting to explore, or identifying one that’s been on my mind a lot, and picking out lyrical nuggets that can be built into songs. I watch a lot of genre movies and read comic books, and I’ve become relatively paranoid about life and other people. So fantastical or horrific stories are just what end up coming naturally to me – playing out worst-case scenarios on paper, and how to escape them, either mentally or literally.
The specific subject matter is just a reflection of what’s been on my mind. So yeah, I think the concept album thing is probably a staple for our band at this point. We were on tour once with the band Boys, and their singer, Megan, made fun of me once by asking, “So is like, Direct Hit! a concept band?” And it was hard for me to answer “no” to that question. But it’s tough enough coming up with new material, and I’m not gonna make it any harder on myself.