If you’ve ever been to Walthamstow in North London, you’ll know one of its main roads is the amusingly named Hoe Street. For Dead Man’s Whiskey, this nudge-nudge thoroughfare inspired a song of the same name from their debut album, Under The Gun, which paints a vivid picture of the road as a stretch of rock’n’roll iniquity.
“I wonder why everybody asks us about that song,” laughs appropriately-named bassist James Titley. “When Nico (Rogers, singer) found out about it, he couldn’t get over it, so we took him for a night out on Hoe Street. It’s kind of our version of Iron Maiden’s 22 Acacia Avenue. Maybe there’ll be a plaque there one day.”
Dead Man’s Whiskey might have only been together since early 2016, but they’re already thinking in terms of leaving their mark. The five-piece came together from various other bands who all fell apart for various reasons. Titley says that DMW are determined to learn from past mistakes.
“We all had a determination that we were going to do this, and do it properly,” he says. “Eighteen months ago, we were literally playing on the same bill as a sock puppet, which is mad. We’ve played on bills with indie bands, hardcore bands, metal bands – we’ve always been the odd one out.”
Their determination has garnered them a dedicated fanbase who call themselves the Whiskey Chasers. “It’s really overwhelming,” says Titley. “There were a few people out there who said, ‘We really love this band, it would be great to have an independent platform where we can talk about our favourite songs and share photos.’ It means a lot to us. One of the reasons we’re on at Ramblin’ Man is because of them.”
Dead Man’s Whiskey – completed by guitarists Billy Kons and Elliott D’Alvarez, plus drummer Charlie Grey appear on the Rising Stage on Saturday June 30. Their muscular hard rock is the perfect soundtrack to warm up for the whole weekend, while the band’s name suggest they like a tipple or three.
“We all like a bit of whiskey,” concedes Titley. “We all have our favourite. Some of us are into Jack Daniel’s, but I’m more of a Jameson’s person.”
And what about a hangover cure? “Well, they say tomato juice or two pints of water,” says the bassist. “But really, the only real cure is more whiskey.”
Dead Man’s Whiskey play the Rising Stage on Saturday June 30. Buy your tickets here