Calem Pepper-Freeman – Vocals
Tyler Di Palo – Guitar
Kynan Mallia – Bass
Dylan Di Palo – Drums
With only two released singles to their name, Fallout and Blackened Crown, Adelaide’s SIGNV/S (Signals) have gained a steady following very quickly. They have also scored some pretty cool support slots with bands like Inhibitor, Nicholas Cage Fighter, Relapse, Ovtsider and Life Pilot.
The SIGNV/S boys took me out to lunch a few weeks back so we could get to know them and regaled me with tales about Calem……
Calem: Tell Suze the metronome story!
Dylan: We went and recorded with Jarred Nettle at the House of SAP and Calem was having trouble with hearing something.
Calem: This was my first professional recording; I’d never done that before
Dylan: So Jarred was like maybe just turn up the metronome or the music so you can hear it. He did another take and it was better than the last one. Jarred was like yep that was better did you turn up the metronome or the music. Calem said nothing.
Calem: I didn’t know what a metronome was!
Dylan: Jarred was like Yo! And asked him again. Calem said nothing again. Just nothing!!
Calem: You live and learn…
Dylan: Pleading the fifth on all of it!!
So there are lots of stories like that??
Kynan: Yep especially with Calem because our first time recording we hadn’t even played a show because it was during covid. It was all new to him.
Calem: I hadn’t recorded anything; I was very fresh.
Kynan: He was also really nervous. At warm up he just kept apologising.
Calem: Even when I didn’t need to record for like three days I was upstairs doing warm-ups.
Dylan: We would take a break from recording and all you could hear was Calem upstairs.
Kynan: The one that made me laugh the most was half way through the second day recording he asked Jarred if Sleep Talk recorded their album in the studio. Jarred said yep and Calem just got up and left and just went into the stiduo with this look on his face, like he hadn’t been in this room before (Laughs)
Calem: Oh God no. No, okay.. I have this friend who is a huge Sleep Talk fan so I sent a snap to show them, something fun!! I’m not a fangirl.
So did you record some songs or an EP???
Kynan: Back them it was just two songs that we have released, so Blackened Crown and Fallout.
Dylan: We were going to try and go for a music video for Fallout but we couldn’t find anywhere.
Kynan: There were so many issues with getting access to places and stuff that eventually we just dropped the song.
Dylan: Hopefully with our next lot of releases we will actually be able to plan something, have a few more options.
Calem: We are already trying to piece things together.
You have a gig Friday night with Inhibitor.
Dylan: Relapse recommended us. They are the headliners. The contacted us and told us to get in touch with Inhibitor. So thank to Relapse we ended up getting the slot. I’m pretty happy we got on that with Inhibitor. Abhorrence is such a good EP.
Kynan: I had no idea that they knew we existed. The fact they thought of us is pretty cool. They are a sick band.
Who did you play with back in January?
Kynan: We played two shows. One with Mersey Sports Club.
Calem: It was not a heavy show.
Kynan: It was all Indie bands.
And you guys.
Calem: Wolf and Chain played too. That brought a bit of the ‘emo’ crowd I guess.
Kynan: It was pretty weird , but it was actually cool. It was a sold out show, but with restrictions so I think there were about 300 tickets. It was strange starting the set, there was a lot of parents and stuff in the crowd.
Dylan: Lot of grandparents walking out after the first song!
Kynan: The second one was with Plague Keeper for their EP launch with Higher Ground, The Fifth of June and Forest Avenue.
Well when did I see you guys? I didn’t go to either of those.
Dylan: That would have been with Life Pilot. Ovtsider and Those Left Behind.
Calem: That was our first standing show. Our first two shows in October were all seated, which I guess with Covid you took what you could get.
Kynan: It was a weird way to start but it’s fun playing shows.
It’s only going to get easier for you.
Dylan: The funny part was we had put out the one song without any shows. At least with our next lot of songs on the EP we have actually taken it to a crowd to see how they react so we can change it to that. The other ones we were just like lets do it.
Calem: So this show on Friday is going to be our first show with dancing and moshing and stuff so that is going to be cool. We are the opener so not everyone gets crazy for the opener but…
Adelaide seem to be pretty keen from the get-go at gigs these days. And we haven’t had moshable gigs for a while!!
Calem: it’s a sweet line-up.
So what’s next?
Kynan: Mmmmm I don’t know how much we can say!
Calem: We are recording new material. It’s not finished but I like it. I reckon it sounds pretty cool.
Kynan: We are pretty proud of it. It’s zeroing in on the best bits of the last two songs. And I think having played a few shows now we are getting to know what we like and what we don’t.
Starting to find your groove.
Calem: Even the last song we released doesn’t feel like something we would normally write now.
Yeah. Is this the first band you have been in Calem? I know the other boys have played in different bands.
Calem: Yeah it is.
Kynan: You played in that band when you were 10 !
Calem: Oh yeah, I played in my school orchestra! That’s what got me into it. We used to play assemblies and stuff. I was a really bad 10 year old shouty singer. I convinced my teacher to let us do a punky cover version of One Direction which we played at our school fete. I just jumped around screaming haha.
Kynan: There’s a video somewhere of him just jumping around on stage.
Dylan: I was in a band called Sweet Anarchy and we used to work with Dale Taylor from Music SA. Turns out he was also Calem’s music teacher.
Did you guys all go to school together? Is that how you all met?
Kynan: It sort of started with Dylan and Tyler.
Dylan: Tyler is my brother and we have been jamming riffs since day one.
Kynan: They had the other band Sweet Anarchy for a while. I moved schools in Year 10 and met Dylan.
Dylan: He was in my class at Marryatville.
Kynan: Maryatville is a music school. We played a lot of jazz and stuff.
Dylan: We didn’t quite nail the jazz!
Kynan: Then Calem was friends with Tyler.
Calem: They had been jamming for a year without a vocalist and Tyler messaged me on Instagram about something else and he started talking about how he was in a band and they needed a vocalist. I was just at home doing yells by myself, I didn’t really know what I was doing but I told him I was a vocalist! I rocked up at practise and did some pretty cringe worthy takes. And they still let me join!!!
Dylan: It was a slow start. Remember when you would come over after school on Wednesdays and we would workshop the songs. I helped him with timing, he already had tone.
Calem: I wasn’t band ready.
Dylan: You got it really quickly.
So how long have you been a band then?
Calem: We first jammed together in August 2019.
Dylan: We probably rehearsed for six months before we put a song out.
Kynan: I think we have changed heaps as well. I really like thrash and death metal, I hated core music.
Oh you were one of those…..
Kynan: I was one of those. Calem rocked up and we started doing things like In Hearts Wake covers. I hated it but then it grew on me.
Calem: You’re welcome.
Kynan: It was a bit weird at first.
Calem: I didn’t even know your name!
Kynan: Ha yeah every rehearsal you’d be like ‘Hey’and then mumble. He didn’t say my name!!!
What would you guys class yourselves as genre wise?
Calem: I just say metalcore. It’s a pretty blanket thing.
Dylan: Big massive.
Oh yep absolutely Big massive boys. Keep your eyes on SIGNV/S because I think they are going to be talked about quite a lot over the next few years.