The Devil Rides Out - Time For Action, X-Press, Oct 2006

Limited to a hand-numbered run of 69 copies, Action Figure is the debut single for local veteran supergroup The Devil Rides Out. Frontman Joe Kapiteyn spills the beans.

“Andrew [Ewing, guitar] and I had been talking about doing something for a while. Nothing serious, just talking over a beer. We never really thought something would come out of it. Then we heard that Royce [Uyen, drums] was back in town and wanting to do something, so we followed that up. Royce is another survivor of that same era of bands we are, so we had a jam, and it went well, and we took it from there.”

Having no plan, as such, The Devil Rides Out as a band was free to shape itself as it went along, as was The Devil Rides Out – the concept.

“This is just a lot of fun for us,” Kapiteyn says proudly, “and all of us have been in serious bands in the past, so it’s nice to have a band that’s about having a good time. We try to let everything be fun, and I think we’re writing some of the best stuff any of us have ever done because of that. They come a lot more naturally. In the past, with bands that were more serious, the songs were a lot more forced. Whereas these ones just kind of grow.”

Kapiteyn is wisely adamant that there are no limitations placed on The Devil Rides Out. While the band was formed, and is upheld, on the notion of having fun, there’s no clause in the manifesto that says anything more is verboten.

“If something more came of the band, then we’d be up for it,” he says, “but we’re not aiming for that. A lot of bands used to succeed because they were focused on the music, but these days there seems to be a lot more marketing techniques coming in to play. We’re happy if something comes of this band, but we won’t be unhappy if it doesn’t.”

Organic growth, such as this, tends to be an integral part of the success story of any great band. While Kapiteyn’s observations of the marketing machine being more deified than it perhaps used to be are correct, its effectiveness is limited at best. People can smell a rat, for the most part.

The Devil Rides Out’s talisman, then, is the fact their concern is for fun. Translating well into their musical output (such as debut single Action Figure), this penchant for personal satisfaction gives the band’s songs a higher bar to reach for, and a greater spirit from which to be forged.

Such sincerity twigs with people sooner or later. “We all wanted to get back to our roots a bit and do a bit more of a metal / rock outfit, but we didn’t want it to be really serious. People seem to be responding to it really well, so we’ll see where it goes from here.”