Almost nine months after the release of their third – and second chart-topping – album, Brisbane rockers Dune Rats have returned with a new single, sharing the loose punk anthem “Too Tough Terry” this morning.
Introducing the character of “Terry”, the song tells the tale of “a pretty highly strung truckee who, whilst meaning well, can’t help but let his anger get the best of him,” and serves as something of an amalgam of the sort of colourful characters that Dune Rats have met on the road over the course of their career.
“He fucking loves Dunies though and can tell a decent yarn so it’s impossible not to sink a few cold ones with him,” they explain. Much like the band’s music itself, “Too Tough Terry” is outlandish and unapologetic, yet fun-loving and impossible to love.
Having released their third album, Hurry Up And Wait, back in January, the chart-topping record saw Dune Rats exploring something of a more serious side at times. “Too Tough Terry”, however, showcases their classic fun-loving nature, and is much more in line with the boisterous gems that made them household names to begin with.
Speaking to Rolling Stone earlier in 2020, frontman Danny Beus explained that the group already had plans for their fourth album, though it’s unclear just how the advent of COVID managed to change their plans.
“Not to say there won’t be some serious content in the songs [on album number four], but we’ve flexed a bit of the serious side, and now we want to come back,” Beus explained. “We’ve got a few cracker ones for the next one already; we’ve sort of got it half-written. We like to keep it pretty even.
“When we feel like we’ve exhausted this album, we just want to just drop another banger. It’s actually already got a film clip and stuff.”
While it’s not known whether “Too Tough Terry” was indeed the “banger” that Dune Rats intended to drop, the track does indeed have a film clip accompanying it, with the Reid McManus-animated video set to premiere on YouTube this evening.
McManus, a 23-year-old University of Newcastle student who animated the clip as part of his honours program, utilises a colourful, playful style of animation throughout the video, whilst paying homage to ’90s-era MTV cartoons, and providing a creative link between Dune Rats’ style of music, and the visual identity they’ve carved out for themselves.
“Reid worked on this clip for around 6 months and we were super blown away,” the group explained. “It really made the song come to life by a mile and solidified Terry as a character in itself. We didn’t change the clip at all after we first saw it. It was just perfect. Everything we’ve done with Reid since to follow the release is also super exciting and just cracks us up.”
At this stage, it’s unknown whether “Too Tough Terry” serves as the first taste of a new body of work for the group, or if it will remain as a standalone single.