On the eve of their third album, Technology (out Friday via SharpTone Records), British indie rockers Don Broco are sharing their stirring new track “Tightrope,” which explores the delicate balance of human relationships. Their latest track shares a poignant message about needing support from a loved one who doesn't have the emotional reserve to be there for you.
Vocalist Rob Damiani says while he was writing the song, his mom told him a story he couldn’t believe, which inspired the lyrics. She had reconnected with a distant family member, now in his 50s, who found out he had a brother he never knew about.
“He had these memories of a friend he used to play with. He didn't really know what went on with his friend, and it was something buried deep in his memory,” Damiani shares. “He found out [his brother] suffered [from] mental disabilities, and his parents—who were seemingly the most loving parents—unfortunately couldn't deal with it.”
The vocalist admits this wasn’t the time we are in living in today, and there wasn’t the same help and support for families struggling with something like this that there is now. “It’s still heartbreaking. He ran away from home, and they would bring him back again, then he would run away,” he says. “It was a source of disruption within the home, and I’m sure it caused emotional heartbreak. It can’t be easy. They ended up giving him away and erased him from their past and history.”
That’s why his family member never knew of his long-lost brother, who he later found out had been living on the streets for years. By then, he couldn’t talk to his parents about this or why they had removed any trace of him from their lives.
“These were good people who were there for him, and he couldn’t believe that his parents were capable of this and couldn’t be there for someone with these disabilities,” he says. “It’s a really tough situation, and it really hit me hard because I know these people, and I knew how nice they seemed. It reminded me of when things get tough and you have to make decisions.”
Even when people want to be there for you, Damiani says, sometimes they only have so much to give, and it doesn’t always work out in the way you’d like. It can be massively heartbreaking when someone like a parent or a close friend who you expect will always be there for you isn’t.
“I guess that’s what the tightrope is,” Damiani says. “You don’t want to upset people because you don’t want them to leave. You can’t always be yourself because you’re constantly scared of turning people away and people giving up on you.”
Damiani cites “Tightrope” as one of the most emotional tracks on the album, and says things came together fairly quickly during its creation. “Sometimes we write songs, then take them apart, we put them back together and all that,” he says. “This song was always there, and we knew there was something special about it.”
The biggest edit to the song came late in the recording process when the band opted to remove an entire section, which he says creatively was one of the most exciting and terrifying things for the band. “It’s a scary feeling when you cut a whole section out. To do that with this song so far along the album process, as well,” he says. “This song kind of shed its skin, being this awkward cocoon creature to be this beautiful butterfly. It hit home a lot harder and cut straight to the point. No bullshit anymore.”
For Don Broco, who are known for ultra-catchy, dance-ready songs with seriously heavy riffs sprinkled in, emotional might not be the first word that comes to mind to describe the band. However, Technology explores some heavy topics upon closer listen.
“I think it’s true we’re more emotional,” he says. “Most songs lyrically are tongue in cheek, and they then take on some heavy subject matter and real personal issues that I’ve gone through or we’ve gone through. I don’t know if we mean to do this, but if the music is super-fun or super-catchy, there’s a hook to get this message across, but it doesn’t always get across because you wanna dance or sing along. It takes a minute to catch the lyrics, and what I’m actually singing about. It can be a contradiction to what you’re listening to. I like hiding messages and lulling people into ‘Oh yeah, good time listening to this,’ and then realizing what they’re listening to.”
The band certainly have a sense of humor, but behind the self-deprecation, sarcasm and poking fun at new societal norms, a deeper message can usually be found.
“Most people think were fun, fun, fun guys, but we are very serious about our music,” he says. “We like to have fun with our music and what we do, in the music and videos and everything. But the core of what we are, we just want to write incredible songs that really touch people.”
Don Broco’s third album, Technology, is out Friday, Feb.2. They will embark on a North American tour in March. You can find more information on both here.
NORTH AMERICAN TOUR DATES with OUR LAST NIGHT:
03/08 – San Francisco, CA @ Slim’s
03/10 – Portland, OR @ The Hawthorne Theatre
03/11 – Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
03/13 – Salt Lake City, UT @ In The Venue
03/14 – Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater
03/16 – Chicago, IL @ Bottom Lounge
03/17 – St. Louis, MO @ Firebird
03/18 – Pontiac, MI @ The Crofoot
03/20 – Toronto, ON @ Mod Club
03/21 – Montreal, QC @ Corona Theatre
03/22 – New York, NY @ Irving Plaza
03/23 – Baltimore, MD @ Baltimore Soundstage
03/24 – Worcester, MA @ The Palladium
03/25 – Philadelphia, PA @ Theatre of Living Arts
03/27 – Richmond, VA @ Canal Club
03/28 – Carrboro, NC @ Cat’s Cradle
03/29 – Nashville, TN @ Rocketown
03/30 – Atlanta, GA @ Heaven at The Masquerade
03/31 – Orlando, FL @ The Beacham
04/02 – Houston, TX @ White Oak Music Hall
04/03 – Dallas, TX @ RBC
04/04 – San Antonio, TX @ Alamo City Music Hall
04/06 – Mesa, AZ @ Club Red
04/07 – Los Angeles, CA @ Teragram Ballroom