There’s no denying it, the Rawr-ing 20s have officially begun. My Chemical Romance has risen from the dead, The Used is dropping a new record in April and Green Day, Fall Out Boy and Weezer are banding together for the Hella Mega tour in November. If that wasn’t enough, Australian pop-punkers Short Stack set the internet on fire this month after announcing that they’re reuniting for a nationwide tour this July. The shows will stop off at five cities including Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide and Perth. No stranger to a comeback, it’ll be their first run of live gigs since the Homecoming tour in 2015.
This five-year radio silence hasn’t subdued their zealous fan base, though. All it took was for the trio to blackout their profile and banner pictures to spark a flurry of tour rumours on Twitter. Some savvy fans also picked up that a Google search for “Short Stack” reveals a hint of new music titled ‘Sandy’ in the band’s website description. Whispers of fresh tunes aside, the tour will cater to old school Short Stack lovers. The boys may no longer be sporting their iconic fringes and eyeliner but they’ve assured fans that the setlist will be a throwback to the early hits in all of their angst-ridden glory. It’s time to start relearning the words to ‘Sway Sway Baby!’, kids. Just joking, I know you still remember them.
We had a chat with frontman Shaun Diviney about the tour, the truth around the ‘Sandy’ song rumours and why 2020 is the right time to get the boys back together.
Music Feeds: Short Stack is back and you are about to hit the road! How are you feeling now that the cat is finally out of the bag?
Shaun Diviney: We’re so excited. We’re back, again! We’re like emo John Farnham (laughs).
MF: Um, I love that! Before you even announced the tour, a few updates to your website and social media sent the internet into a tizzy. What have been some of your favourite fan reactions so far?
SD: It’s been so overwhelming. That’s been the biggest thing about it when we were first in talks about it. We were like, “We kinda miss playing shows but is anyone even really going to care?”. So we’ve been super overwhelmed. People have been making videos and funny Tik Toks and memes about it and stuff and I think that’s kinda funny (laughs).
MF: Oh, yeah. This is Short Stack in 2020. No more Myspace, it’s all about Tik Tok.
SD: I know! I don’t even have Tik Tok. We just learned what it was. I’m such an old man (laughs).
MF: But in all seriousness, is it crazy seeing the fans having such passionate reactions after all these years?
SD: We were really just blown away. I think it’s been about four or five years since we’ve done anything which is a pretty long time. So the fact that we still have people out there who are somewhat excited by what we’re doing is a really humbling feeling.
We all caught up last night and spoke about how the responses have just blown us away. Especially because it’s something we did so long ago. Two or three of the songs on the album, we wrote in high school and played for our HSC. It feels like a million years ago. The fact that something we created in the garage resonates with people just blows us away.
MF: I bet it’ll feel pretty surreal playing those old songs live again too.
SD: Yeah! Well, we’ve got to learn how to play them again (laughs). That’s the biggest thing! We’re going to have to practice pretty hard because we haven’t played live in like five years.
MF: You’ve said in past interviews that you put things on hold because you felt like the band had achieved everything it needed to at the time. Why is the timing right now?
SD: We just missed it more than anything. We missed hanging out and playing music. Beyond this tour, we don’t know what we’re going to do next. We’re going to take it one step at a time.
At one stage we were touring like six to eight months of the year and you can’t really have a family or live a normal life doing that. We were a little bit burnt out I guess. I want to go surfing every day and I can’t really do that when I’m in London (laughs).
MF: (Laughs) You can take a boy out of the Central Coast…
SD: Yeah, I know! What a bogan, hey? (laughs).
MF: I also read that Short Stack wouldn’t reunite unless you were touring with My Chemical Romance. Was their reunion also a bit of an inspiration for the reunion?
SD: You know what, that’s the one thing we never did. All of the bands we loved growing up like Fall Out Boy and Blink, we got to meet them and hang out with them for a bit but we never got to meet anyone from My Chemical Romance. That’s still on the bucket list. Unfortunately, we don’t have any of that Netflix Umbrella Academy money so we’ll just be front row going to their show like everyone else (laughs).
MF: What goes into preparing for a tour after a break? Is it like riding a bike?
SD: Well, we haven’t actually started yet (laughs). I hope it’s like riding a bike but we’ve got our first rehearsal scheduled in March or April. We’ve got a few days then to nut everything out and figure out what we want to do then. We’ve got Frontier promoting it which is awesome. They’re really helping us out and giving us some direction.
We want to make sure this is the biggest tour we’ve ever done because the response is warranting that. So now it’s a case of not only learning the songs but we also want to put together a really cool show. So it’s going to be even bigger than what we were first hoping which is cool.
MF: Can you give us a sneak peek of what we can expect from the shows?
SD: I think we’ll just be having more fun with it than we’ve ever had. You see bands playing the same shows for a hundred nights in a row and it loses how special it is. I think we’re really embracing the moment and we’re having so much fun with it. So I think that the energy around it that we’re going to bring to the tour, I don’t think we’ve ever looked forward to a tour more ever. It’s going to be pretty special.
MF: Is there any part of you that’s nervous about it?
SD: Oh, yeah! We’re really nervous about it. We haven’t done this in like five years. We’re really nervous about but I suppose it’s more excitement than nerves. We toured for like five-ten years straight, so it’s not completely foreign.
MF: You’re touring with Between You & Me. How do you know them and excited to hang out with them on the road?
SD: So, I don’t know them personally but I’ve heard that they’re a good time. We have friends of friends. We really like their music and when we approached them to do it and they said yes, we were blown away. It’s awesome to have another up-and-coming band with a lot of excitement around them with us. Hopefully their fans like us (laughs).
It’s just exciting to hang out with other bands and chill out and I’m sure their experience in the industry is so different to how we started. We’re excited to party with them, definitely.
MF: So, your fans are very savvy. They’ve pointed out that your website description currently reads “’Sandy’ out March 13”. Does that mean there’s new music in the works?
SD: Yeah, I have no idea what that is! We don’t have a new song at the moment. That’s not me being coy or anything. We haven’t really thought too much beyond the tour. We’re just playing it by ear!
It’s pretty crazy that people look into stuff so much. When they looked into the tour we were like, “Ah, ok. They’ve figured it out” but now they’re figuring out stuff that’s not there and we’re like “No, too far!” (laughs).
With no immediate plans to write new music or tour beyond these five dates, Short Stack stans will want to jump on this one fast. Who knows if it’ll be another five years before they hit the road again. Short Stack’s reunion tour tickets are on sale Thursday 13 February and you can check out tour dates below.
Short Stack 2020 Australian Tour
Saturday, 20th June – NEW SHOW
Metro Theatre, Sydney (18+)
Friday, 26th June – NEW SHOW
Croxton Bandroom, Melbourne (18+)
Wednesday, 1st July – NEW SHOW
The Triffid, Brisbane (All Ages)
Thursday, 2nd July
The Triffid, Brisbane (All Ages)
Friday, 3rd July
170 Russell, Melbourne (18+)
Saturday, 4th July
Metro Theatre, Sydney (All Ages)
Friday, 10th July
The Gov, Adelaide (All Ages)
Saturday, 11th July
Astor Theatre, Perth (All Ages)