Introducing: Caine

London-based Grammy considered Nu-Core band Caine have just released their latest single ‘Gaslight!Gaslight!’ and guitarist Dan M Hicks (aka Rev) joined us to talk about the single, as well as his own musical background. Check-in with Rev, below.

What are the origins of Caine, how long have you been playing together?

Caine started as a bedroom project with some buddies and evolved toward the end of 2019 with the release of our first single ‘Get Up 42’. Within a few months of our first show, the world went into lockdown so we had to completely change our approach to what we knew of band life.

How did you feel performing your first gig? And how was it?!

It was very different for us all but we loved it. James’ [James Sanger-Brown, Caine vocalist] old bands weren’t as heavy as Caine and he hadn’t really embraced the rapping side of his vocals before. Similarly, I’d spent over a decade fronting a hard rock band with two guitarists and so playing in a band with one guitar and shifting to backing vocals was a big change… but we loved it and it gave us some real freedom to explore a new approach! A sold-out show in Brighton was a great start for us!

What should people expect when they check the band out? How would you describe Caine?

We’re a loud down-tuned modern NuMetal band that embraces our Pop Punk hearts and proudly shows off our South London roots. Think Limp Bizkit and Chunk! No Captain Chunk with a splash of Beastie Boys. Personally, I spent a long time taking myself too seriously and so we try and have as much fun as possible with it, we take the craft seriously but not ourselves.

New single ‘Gaslight! Gaslight!’ has just been released (streaming here), I believe it tackles the issue of how manipulative social media can be at times, as well as tackling mental health issues?

James’ approach to lyrics is always topical. Almost always taken from things he sees around him but he also tries to have some positivity in there. Gaslight! Gaslight! is his way of drawing attention to how social media is not always ‘real life’ and that you almost always only see the version that people want you to see. The 47th take of the ‘got it in one’ or the ‘I woke up like this’ selfie. As with a lot of his lyrics, it touches on the effects this all has on mental health.

What other current issue are you particularly passionate about?

Hmmm, what can of worms do I want to open? Haha. A big one would be acceptance, particularly with the LGBTQ+ community – everyone has a right to love and no one should dictate who they can and can’t love. Growing up in ‘the church’, I’ve been constantly disappointed and angered with how that particular community of people has been treated by people that are meant to be ‘God-like’.

For ‘ Another Light ‘, Caine was one of the first unsigned and self-managed bands to be considered for a Grammy nomination within their first year. That must have been pretty surreal!?

That was crazy! Our producer, Andy Brook, has been such an integral part of the journey since ‘Get Up 42’ and we love working with him. Making ‘Another Light’ felt special and when he gave us the news we were so stoked. It’s like the Oscars of the music world and to be considered in categories like Song Of The Year and Best Rock Performance was mind-blowing!

The new music scene is bursting at the seams with fresh talent, in what ways do you feel that a band has to stand out from the others trying to build a name?

Man, there is so much noise out there at the moment! It’s really tough for new bands! The really important thing is consistency and making sure you’re always moving forward. One of the things we wanted to do was create a journey, especially without live gigs being a thing. So we decided to only release singles free of charge so that people could actively come on the journey with us. Most bands write and record 11 songs in one hit and that’s a snapshot of the band at that moment. By writing, recording, and releasing a new song every few months, it meant there were more snapshots and a clearer progression in that journey.

What band out there at the minute do you feel that you would be best suited to open for?

Can we do 3? That way at least one of them has to see this and take us on tour, right?? I think it would have to be Limp Bizkit, Skindred, or Fire From The Gods… although, each of us would probably have a different answer!

Who do you feel is the next band to break out?

I’ve been saying for some time that the Grunge/NuMetal era is coming back around. You had the resurgence of late ’80s and early ’90s classic rock breaking through and the late ’90s early ’00s is next to make waves. The forefront of that I’d says is Profiler and Blue Eyed Giants. Both KILLER bands!

What are your first musical memories? And what was the lightbulb moment that made you go “I want to do that”?

My Grandad, Dave Markee, was a big session bassist whilst I was growing up. He played with some huge names. When I was 4, he sat me on his lap, held my arms, and played drums along with music… I played drums for 15 years before moving to vocals and guitar. That man was one of the best musicians I had the pleasure of hearing play and for me, the lightbulb was always on.

What was the last gig that you attended as a fan?

Is tough to separate gigs as fans from gigs I’ve played and gigs I’ve attended as a Tour Manager. I think the last show I attended as a fan and distinctly remember coming away from being blown away is Architects at Wembley Arena sometime in 2019! Covid has not been kind to our industry!!!!

The album that you have in your album collection/Spotify playlist that would surprise most people?

I’m obsessed with Snarky Puppy at the moment. ‘We Like It Here’ is an incredible album. I also currently have a ’90s hip hop playlist on repeat!

So far, 2021 has seen some incredible music released, what new albums have you been enjoying?

Mammoth WVH – possibly a perfect album
Beartooth, Below – some huge riffs

What are your plans for the remainder of 2021?

We’re almost done with the video for Gaslight!Gaslight!, we’re booking up shows from October and have another single to release around then. We’re on the constant writing cycle for the next couple of singles so we’re not planning on slowing down!!!


Follow Caine on social media, here.

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