Better Than Nothing

Better Than Nothing
Article By Cindy James on Jan 27, 2003


  1. So what's the current line-up of Better Than Nothing and who plays what in the band?

Dale Nicholson plays sings and plays guitar, Brenton "Breno" Clarke plays bass, Nathan Shearer plays drums and I play guitar and try and do backing vocals :) 


  1. Where’s the band based?

We used to be born and bred St Clairians, but then Dale went west to become a mountain man. So now we pretty much practice and base our efforts in Penrith, coz its right in the middle.

  1. Were you all in a high school band together or did the band form elsewhere?

Well, Dale Nat and Breno went to high school together and they fooled around in some different bands and stuff for a while. I didn’t meet Nat or Breno until I joined the band in early 2002. I had met Dale through work and we shared similar musical tastes, so we jammed a few times and I guess things just clicked.

  1. How long ago did that all happen?

Happened all pretty much in early 2002, that’s when we kicked off "seriously" (if you can call it that) as a band

  1. How would you describe the music your band produces?

In one word.......probably "Rockin" :D We all like heaps different styles and bands and we all have big differences in our influences. The common theme between all of us i guess is that we love music with good rhythm and feeling, whether it is lyrical feeling through the meaning of the words or just an awesome chord progression or riff or drum beat or something that just gets you into it.

  1. Is there a single band member that writes the music + lyrics in the band or is it a shared job?

Bit of everything. Often we just come to rehearsal and one of us has some idea and then WHAM a few hours later we have a full song that we all love. Other times Dale and I will sit and write a tune from start to finish and then bring it to Nat and Breno to add their parts. And sometimes one of us will just write something on our own. Different methods work for different types of songs i guess.

  1. What would your greatest achievement as a band to-date be?

Being featured in your fantastic zine :D haha Hmmm, not sure....we are still striving to reach it. We have high hopes. I suppose our greatest achievement is recording a CD. that was always a dream of mine.

  1. From what I gather, your current E.P "Caveat Emptor" has a quite an interesting Latin meaning to it, can you tell us a little bit about the release + naming of the title?

Yeah we recorded it in June last year. We did it coz we had written a heap of tunes and wanted to get out there. We have probably changed a bit since we recorded that, but we still reckon its not a bad effort. Caveat Emptor is Latin for "let the buyer beware". we chose that name coz we wanted to warn the paying people that they had to beware.....coz the cd will blow them away :) or alternatively that it would suck. hopefully the former.

  1. From reading your bio, I’ve found that the majority of you are influenced by both NOFX + Strung out (I also noticed Dale was also into Sparta…... Rock! Heheh) what would be some of the other varieties influenced upon band?

Yeah NOFX is kind of the meeting point of all of our influences. We all like different aspects of that band i think. Dale is definitely the band member to go for the weirder, more experimental stuff like Sparta and At the Drive IN, but he also likes old school stuff like the police and stuff. I don’t know how to classify my influences. i have a pop ear i think, and i like good song-writing. i listen to all sorts of stuff rock, punk, classic rock....all sorts. nat is very fast punk oriented, like strung out, frenzal and of course NOFX. but he was impressed with Sparta at BDO i think. breno is a rockin man, bad religion and grinspoon keep him going.

  1. Do the band have any future recording plans insight?

we would love to record again sometime soon coz we are really happy with some of the stuff we are writing at the moment. for now though, its a matter of trying to get more involved in the local scene and trying to develop some sort of fan base, to make the process of recording worthwhile.

  1. What 3 bands have you played with in the past?

um we've played with My Name is John, Stuck on First, and Sweet FA, a couple of times with each. they are all cool bands.

  1. What 3 bands would you like to play with in the future?

hmmm. me personally...the living end, NOFX and.....bodyjar. the other guys might give different answers though

  1. What was the last gig you went to you guys didn’t play at?

Big Day out. awesome day out actually.

  1. C.D you brought?

Me....the Vines highly evolved. awesome CD. i was dissapointed with them at BDO though. dale is right into Sparta at the moment and a band called plain white T's, who i got him in to :D . i think breno and nat are right into an american paradox by strung out right now

  1. All time favourite disc?

ooooooooooooh tough one. im gunna give three. The living end - It's For Your Own Good. NOFX - White Trash Two HEebs and a Bean. and.........ill say Back in black by ACDC

  1. Where do you see yourself in 12-18 months?

Hmmmm… Hopefully with a new CD, a bit of a following and lots more gigs.

  1. Is there a website we can catch Better Than Nothing on?

Indeed there is. and also

  1. O.K have you got any words to sum up Better Than Nothing?

we love music and we want to do our bit to provide the world with some rocking music that is made with real instruments, hopefully people can relate to some of it and enjoy it.