More than a year-and-a-half since Glass Animals were forced to cancel their tour as COVID-19 sent the world into lockdown, the band returned to play San Fransisco's Outside Lands festival on Friday, October 29.
Frontman Dave Bayley joined Audacy to talk about the hectic beginning of the pandemic for the band, and how their lives have been over the course of the past 19 months.
"We came to the Bay! We were at The Independent. We were loading our stuff into the venue and then we realized there's no one else out in the whole city," Bailey tells Audacy about the start (and end) of their Dreamland tour. "'It's empty. What is going on?' -- Then the government had just announced a lockdown for you guys and we were like, 'oh my god, we better book a flight back as soon as possible,' and we got on the next flight."
The band had recently begun touring in preparation for the release of their album Dreamland, and when asked if they had a feeling that things would be cut short, Dave said, "I think everybody in the world at that point was getting scared of the virus. I was scared. At one point I went into a Chipotle and taken all of their hand sanitizer into a water bottle. I was that scared. Sorry, Chipotle, I owe you."
With live music and the world coming to a halt in 2020, did the band consider shelving Dreamland until things got back to normal? "We asked ourselves that question all the time," Dave admits. "We were going to release it the next month [April 2020]. We pushed it back two weeks, then another two weeks, then another two weeks, then the depths of this virus really sunk in."
Eventually releasing the record, Dave noted that it's taken the band on a wild rollercoaster. "We honestly thought we were going to put the album out in the middle of the pandemic, not be able to tour on it, it was just going to tank. I was ready to start writing the next one. I feel very, very lucky."
The band had said that if that milestone actually happened, they'd each get the continent tattooed on their butts. So -- are they holding themselves to that? "Things have just opened up in the U.K.," Dave says, "but I have it booked in at a tattoo parlor very soon, next week. I'm a bit nervous. I don't have any tattoos, this will be my first one. On my ass."
Glass Animals are set to play the first of two days of our Audacy Beach Festival -- this December 4th and 5th at Florida's Fort Lauderdale Beach -- along with Twenty One Pilots, The Lumineers, Modest Mouse, Bleachers, WILLOW, Beabadoobee, Steve Aoki, Milky Chance, The Regrettes, and Cannons on Saturday, December 4.
And on Sunday, December 5, Lil Nas X is set to close out the sun-filled weekend alongside Swedish House Mafia, Weezer, AJR, Bastille, All Time Low, Yungblud, Walk the Moon, Cold War Kids, Tai Verdes, Mod Sun, Girl In Red, and Nessa Barrett. Tickets are available here.