As the group stampedes toward their first-ever appearance at Earth Frequency Festival next month, bassist Dale Harrison aka Rok Poshtya is busy rallying his crew from their respective corners in order to prepare for the shows. “It's been a long time since we've played a show, so we've been trying to organise rehearsals with one member in Newcastle and another in Melbourne,” Dale says.
“So trying to get everyone in the same city at the same time is difficult, given that Urthboy has got so many things on his plate with his solo career and lots of shows.”
The Herd released their last album, 'Future Shade', back in 2011, yet the group and its members have maintained their presence on the music scene via personal side projects, as well as the work done through their own label, Elefant Traks.
While The Herd never set out to be overtly political in their music, they've also never been shy in standing up for what they think is right, especially where they see injustice and inequality. Dale says the current political climate has given resurgence to some of their earlier works. “It's really fun to play those songs again, it's been a long time and it feels like politically we've come back into relevance, or something,” he laughs.
“It's funny how we've played them so many times that they've become part of our DNA, but I think we'll give them a little airing again.
“Globally there's a bunch of people feeling they're not being represented by politics and unfortunately those people tend to side with the extremes, and they tend to side with the extremes to the right rather than the left a lot of time.”
Asked if he would consider a career of his own in the political arena, Dale responds with a laugh. “Not personally, I get too worked up about things. I got a really thick skin, but I don't like particularly upsetting people and I think you need to be able to upset people as a politician.
“Calling people out is great, but to be a hated individual by a group of people is not something I want to be a part of. That said, I'm sure as we grow older and certain opportunities arise, so who knows; if I got the knock on the door, I wouldn't say no.”
On top of The Herd making their Earth Frequency debut, the band celebrated another milestone last month: the 18th anniversary of Elefant Tracs. “It doesn't really feel like 18 years,” Dale says.
“Funnily enough the majority of my adult life has been spent working in and around Elefant Traks, so particularly for me and Tim [Urthboy]; he's been working at the label for the majority of those 18 years, it's almost part of us as much as anything else.
“The great thing about a birthday is you can celebrate the passing of time and look towards the future as well. It's part of that thing of saying 'let's have a party and celebrate what happened'. We do our best really, that's all we can really do.”
The Herd perform as part of Earth Frequency Festival at Ivory's Rock (SE QLD) 17-20 February.