Original photo by Oisin Darmody / Handmade mixed-media collage by B
Tee Vee Repairmann, Ishka Edmeades, is one of Gimmie’s favourite creatives. Incredibly prolific, you can also find him in Satanic Togas, Set-Top Box, Research Reactor Corp, Gee Tee, Remote Control, Mainframe, 3D & The Holograms, etc. Tee Vee Repairmann is set to release LP What’s On TV? on Total Punk in February. The album is full of some of the best hooks you’ll hear all year—total earworms. Gimmie has a sneak peak of first single ‘Bus Stop’ and found out a little about it from Ishka. There’s a further in-depth conversation in the forthcoming print issue of Gimmie, out soon!
We’re premiering the first single ‘Bus Stop’ off of your up coming new album, What’s On TV?; when did you write the song? What’s it about?
TVR: I wrote and recorded the instrumental around December 2021 along with a couple of the other tracks on the album. The song is basically about waiting around, thinking things over and hoping the bus will come round that corner.
What can you tell us about recording it?
TVR: The album was recorded in my living room on a Tascam 488 I got from Spodee Boy, for the most part the instrumentals came together pretty fast. I can’t really remember too much about the recording of each song, but I do remember it being really hot when doing most of the drum takes.
Sound-wise what influenced the new album?
TVR: I was listening to a lot of late 70’s power pop, 80’s DIY and moody 60’s garage stuff at the time. Bands like Quality Drivel, Funboy 5, early Go-Betweens, The Gizmos and heaps of Garage comps.
Album art by Jennifer May.
Has your songwriting changed much between this LP and your last release?
TVR: I wouldn’t say the process changed too much, I just wanted to make some pop songs. I thought about song structures a bit more and demoed some stuff which I don’t usually do.
Your album is coming out on Total Punk; what’s one of your favourite releases that Total Punk has put out lately? Why does it rule?
TVR: Total Punk are always releasing great stuff. Alien Nosejob, New Buck Biloxi, Cherry Cheeks all RULE, but the Sick Thoughts album [Heaven Is No Fun] was one of my favourite things to come out last year. The whole thing rocks—all hits. Was great to play with them in the States again, they’re tight as hell at the moment.
What’s one song that you’ve had on repeat lately?
TVR: ‘People Say’ by The Go-Betweens. I love the lyrics and organ, it’s a perfect pop song. I hope it doesn’t get used in a car insurance ad.
One of your other bands Research Reactor Corp. recently toured the US; did anything that you saw in your travels inspire you creatively?
TVR: Yeh, the whole thing was great. We met some cool people and saw some cool bands. It was a trip going to New York after seeing it in so many movies and pictures.
What are you focusing on musically next?
TVR: Finishing off a couple of things at the moment, the new RRC LP is gonna be out on Under The Gun this year. A few Togas releases coming too, a 7” on Sweet Time and a split 12” with Gee Tee on Goodbye Boozy.
What are you looking forward to most in 2023?
TVR: Gee Tee and Satanic Togas are going to Europe in July and Tee Vee and 1-800-Mikey are gonna head back to the States at the end of the year.
Original photo: Pierre Baroni / Handmade mixed-media collage by B.
Naarm/Melbourne-based band Imperial Leather deliver punk heat with big emotions, sharp edges, and new wave sass on their self-titled 7” that’s out today on Rack Off Records! Gimmie got an insight into the EP and the creatives behind it – Annaliese Redlich, Emma Peel, Ginger Light and Alice Edgeley.
We understand that Imperial Leather started after a dream and wanting an excuse to spend more time together; what was the dream? What brought you together and what did you initially bond over?
ANNALIESE (guitar, vox): I literally had a dream about Emma when I first met her properly playing footy that we were going to do some cool shit together!
GINGER (bass): To have fun & laugh.
I first met Emma at a Soul A Go Go in 2010. We bonded over her 60s style, music & her incredible thigh high Italian boots. I met Annaliese as a client of mine in 2013. We bonded over music also & got to know each other after dancing at a Slow Grind a fever night. She started dating my boyfriend’s friend. We all went to many gigs together. I met Alice in 2016 when I opened up my salon Ginger Hair in Collingwood. She made an appointment and said she wanted red hair like a Scottish person. I thought that was cool. I’d seen Alice around town with her husband William & their gorgeous dog Rupert. We bonded over small dogs & fashion. Alice has a clothing boutique Edgeley & makes the most beautiful outfits I’ve ever worn. Thanks Alice!
ALICE (drums): Annaliese was putting on a night and asked me if I wanted to come dressed as Poison Ivy. So a mutual love of The Cramps!
How did you first discover music?
GINGER: I discovered music on the radio. Mum use to listen to Gold 104.3 in the car. We use to do lots of long drives. They played 60’s & 70’s music.
EMMA (keys): The classic mum and dad’s record collection. Dad, in particular, had cool stuff like Electric Prunes and other garage artists from the 60s.
ANNALIESE: I’ve never had a time in my life where music wasn’t everything. My Dad really into classical, Mum really into 60s girl groups and The Stones. As a teenager that classical pressure got me into the immediacy of punk.
ALICE: the first record I remember wanting to put on was Bob Marley and the Wailers.That was when I was reeeeally young. I’ve aways been quite obsessed with music. I had a yellow Sony portable tape player and I used to take it around with me and play cassettes over and over until they shredded.
Who or what inspired you to start playing music yourself?
EMMA: Ok, this is really ridiculous, but when I was a tween I was really into…Glenn Miller (LOL – i know) and used to imagine myself playing trombone in a big band. Instead my mother enrolled me in piano lessons….
ANNALIESE: I could never imagine not playing, but for so long it was in my bedroom and just trying to get out stuff that was eating away at me. I grew up with the whole “10,000 hours of practice” mantra and so I kept it to myself. That’s definitely why I found punk so liberating when I discovered it, cause the idea you had to be a musical “genius” to play in front of others just always felt so wrong to me. Plus there’s as much beauty in mistakes, as there is cold and boring clinicism in “perfection”.
GINGER: The Leathers inspired me to start.
When did you start?
ALICE: 2019 at the age of 39 I started learning the drums so that I could be in the band. I had to message them all then to say “Hi I’ve started lessons. Are we going to get together and jam?”
EMMA: 1986, baby!
ANNALIESE: At age 10 with an acoustic guitar in my bedroom, first tunes were Nirvana and Deep Purple lol!
Is there an album or band that has had a big impact on you and what do you appreciate about it/them?
GINGER: So many bands & genres. The Beatles are probably my fave. I love the diversity over their 10 years together. The Beatles always make me happy when I listen to them.
Emma: I have musical epiphanies on the regular, so I can’t narrow it down.
ANNALIESE: Quite literally impossible to answer but Tina Turner, Ronnie Spector and other 60s girl group vibes was my earliest obsession at 6 years old. Discovering Bad Brains and Bikini Kill when I was 12 made me wanna play music. Dean Blunt’s Black Metal and Mike Rep and Tommy Jay marked a landscape of music I’d been previously unable to articulate and it felt so liberating to hear it actualised. Bona Dish, Carambolage, Delta 5 were part of the stomach bacteria that formed my vibes for Imperial Leather. Just to name a few out of the 1000s of key moments for me!
ALICE: I love the Cure, Three Imaginary Boys. Also Kate Bush blew my mind when i heard her on the radio late one night.
We’d love to know more about each of the tracks on your new self-titled EP we’re premiering. What sparked the writing of ‘Heavy Breathing’?
GINGER: We jammed Heavy Breathing at Bakehouse one day. I really like it it ‘cause it was simple & fun. Annaliese always makes it fun, she changes the lyrics & makes me laugh. It’s a hot song.
How did ‘Lewis Lee’ come together?
ANNALIESE: I record demos on my phone and for a period of time everything was getting auto labeled as “Lewis Lee Associates”. At the time I was going through a particularly bad break up and at that point where you wonder if you ever really knew that person you were so intimate with at all. The lyrics of that song are all about the physical and digital objects in our lives that are evidence of our existence and relationships; the pixels that form a message on a phone, sheets of paper etc. And so it’s a break up song to a person I never knew and it felt apt to call him Lewis Lee.
GINGER: ‘Lewis Lee’ came together from Annaliese’s wifi connection at her home. Cool song.
EP artwork courtesy of Rack Off Records.
What inspired ‘Smile Now, Cry Later’? Can you share with us a time where you’ve experienced this?
ANNALIESE: Again with the break ups! I kinda mostly feel motivated to write in these headspaces, or about sex or anger, all strong experiences. I’m trying to work on love songs but I find these tricky.
‘Smile Now, Cry Later’ is wondering if what you went through with someone close ever really meant anything at all when it’s all said and done. Asking what the point of all the good times are when they’re only gonna end in tears. Also doing the dirty on yourself by grinning and bearing it, when you really should just get the hell outta there!
GINGER: This one’s Annaliese. It’s fun to play i really like it.
What’s the story behind ‘Creep Stain’?
EMMA: Band practice is always a very cathartic time whereby we all bring our gripes and grievances and have a big old whinge just to get it out of our systems. Quite often we talk about creeps that lurk around our lives. Mostly ex lovers and insincere people. I was so cross one night that I channelled my rage into the riff and then i took it to the band and we worked it up into a song together.
ANNALIESE: A definite catharsis! A rack off rant dedicated to all the vampires!
GINGER: Hahaha, Emma came up with the riff on this number. Annaliese threw in the words, most of what we all use in our daily vocabulary.
What aspect did you enjoy most creating your EP?
GINGER: I actually really enjoyed the recording. I was nervous of course. But Billy Gardener was a dream, so kind and cool.
EMMA: The last few years of lockdowns stopped us from rehearsing and recording, so to finally be in the same room together doing this thing was incredibly joyful.
ANNALIESE: Recording with Billy Gardner and the process of mixing with Dave Forcier was so great! But just having it out feels really satisfying after the past few years of fuckery tbh. Also working with the Rack Off Records women has been amazing, their enthusiasm and support of what we do is unreal!
We understand that members of the IL are DJs; what’s your go to song for instant happiness?
GINGER: At our first gig supporting Davey Lane at The Espy in December 2020. We were all a little nervous I think. Well I certainly was. I can’t remember if it was Emma or Annaliese but they played Peter Gabriel’s ‘Sledgehammer.’ It was hilarious, we all danced around & shook the nerves loose.
EMMA: Anything by Jorge Ben.
ANNALIESE: Such a hard question to answer. Everything from Adolescents – ‘Kids Of The Blackhole’, Satan’s Rats – ‘Louise’, GG King – ‘Remain Intact’, Thin Lizzy – ‘Wild One’, Rockin Ramrods – ‘Bright Lit Blue Skies’. BUT If I were a pro wrestler, my entry song would be Triplett Twins – ‘Pretty Please’. It’s such an amp up!
ALICE: Kid Creole and the Coconuts- ‘Lifeboat Party’ or ‘Marcia Baile’ by Les Rita Mitsouko.
Earlier in the year you supported Shannon & The Clams; what do you remember most from that show?
ANNALIESE: That was such a rad night. I’d met Shannon several times before interviewing her on my radio show, she is a gorgeous person, so it was amazing to be asked to support them. I was also DJing that night so was mostly running around all night. Shannon is one of the great voices of the last decade imo, and the whole band are extraordinary musicians and people. It was such an honour to be on a line up with them!
GINGER: I remember the sound check thinking…. Wow Shannon’s voice is phenomenal. I love her bass, singing & big hair.
What would be your dream collaboration?
GINGER: I would love if The Leathers could do a video with Nick McKinlay or Izzie Austin.
EMMA: I’d love to collab with Our Carlson.
ANNALIESE: We do a cover of Bona Dish’s track 8am. When we put it up online Steven Chandler of the band wrote to us to say how much he dug it, so that would be pretty amazing! Or I know I’m speaking for Alice our drummer too when I say a clothing collab with Seth Bogart Wacky Wacko, or the incredible Wha-Wha and Kaylene would be a DREAM.
ALICE: A collab with Koffee would be ace.
What do you get up to when not making music?
GINGER: Cutting hair, making people look beautiful & hopefully getting some rest in.
EMMA: Doing a weekly radio show, DJing, running a music festival, parenting and wondering why I’m bloody tired all the time.
ANNALIESE: I’m a full time podcast producer and also do a weekly Saturday music show on 3RRR Fm called Neon Sunset. I’m also always DJing and noodling around with music stuff, and like Emma wondering why I have over committed to everything!
ALICE: I’m a fashion and costume designer and I have a shop so I’m either chained to the sewing machine or computer or doing some shop stuff. We use the shop to rehearse in which is useful.
Original photo by Simon Fazio. Handmade mixed-media by B.
Hot Tubs are back with their sophomore album, Double Tubble! Duo Marcus Rechsteiner (UV Race) and Daniel ‘Tubs’ Twomey (Deaf Wish) bring the goods gifting us a brilliant collection of songs with a cool sonic architecture, courtesy of Tubs, that is creative and varied. Marcus’ lyrics are hilarious, thoughtful and deep at the same time, while his delivery unique— no one else could do it like he does. Gimmie chatted with Hot Tubs to explore one of the funnest records of the year.
DANIEL We just got these today! [holds up their new record Double Tubble]. Marcus just drew on the first one.
That’s awesome! It’s so cool Marcus is hand-drawing a unique picture on each album cover.
D: It’s a good idea at the moment, we’ll see how we feel after 300 of them [laughs]. People at shows will be able to pick which one they’d like.
Where’d the title of the album Double Tubble come from?
D: It popped into my head. There was confusion about it. I said we should call it Double Tubble and Marcus said we should call our second album Double Tubble. I thought, ‘Great! This is the second album.’ But, Marcus considers this the first album because the other self-titled one wasn’t properly released.
MARCUS: There was a tape but not an LP.
D: Marcus got surprised when I was telling a group of people it was Double Tubble.
M: I thought Double Tubble was going to be the actual second LP. It’s a good name! The first album was recorded in secret, as in, I was doing the vocals and he recorded it and it didn’t feel like the usual process. It got released and nobody really picked it up and then Al [Montford] did a tape and radio stations started picking it up. It was all during Covid. We never really launched it. Because it wasn’t going through the regular process, for me it wasn’t a release… but it is.
All the songs on the first album are really great, so it totally has to count for something!
I used to get called ‘Double Trouble’ all the time; I have a twin brother. It’s something that’s always been floating around in my head. People would say it when we walked into the room.
M: It made me think of that song that came out with the Power Rangers movie. [Starts singing ‘Trouble’ by Shampoo] Uh oh we’re in trouble. Something’s come along / And it’s burst our bubble / Yeah yeah. Uh oh we’re in trouble. It’s a hit!
That song was fun! I know that when you do vocals sometimes you get nervous. Was it like that for this recording?
M: He [Dan] held my hand this time [laughs]. Last time it was like, ‘Surprise! You’ve done it.’ This time we recorded vocals at the State Library of Victoria, which is cool cos they’ve got these booths with expensive equipment. You can record podcasts there or interview someone. Because Tubs is a member, we could go there and use it. You get it for free.
D: You get a two hour slot and you can’t book back-to-back ones.
M: You can go under someone else’s name. He could book two and then I could book two.
D: We did two sessions, but most of it was done in one. We just went in to see what would happen. I just sat and laughed the whole time while Marcus delivered vocals. A lot are the first take.
What’s one of your favourite lyrics of Marcus’ on this record?
D: I love the line: what is even zitar? It’s a line from A1 Bakery.
It’s a controversial lyric from ‘Ned Kelly’ but he says: Protestant pigs.
M: I thought that maybe I shouldn’t keep that.
D: We figured it was alright because he’s in character [laughs].
M: It’s almost like I’m doing a radio play, you know, like War Of The Worlds.
D: It’s like a radio drama. I think we should do a whole album of it one day [laughs].
M: It’s very Monty Python [laughs].
Photo by Jhonny Russell.
What weird instruments did you use on this album?
M: A tiny guitar. It was donated to his school and it’s really abrasive [laughs] and obnoxious, but it’s really cool.
The music comes before lyrics?
D: Yep. I’ll cook them up at home and present them to Marcus. I love that because, you have know idea which direction it’s going. I hear what it’s gonna be about, like A1 Bakery, and I’ll think, ‘Oh, I worked a long time on this.’ He’ll start singing and I’ll be like, ‘Of course it’s about A1 Bakery.’
Do the lyrics just come to you Marcus or do write stuff down sometimes and keep it for when you might need it? I know on the first album a lot of the song ideas came from conversations you’d hear people have.
M: It’s still like that. He’ll bring me a song and I’ll say that I have an idea from a misheard conversation.
D: Often Marcus will chew through the lyrics that he has written down a third of the way into the take and then it goes wherever it goes [laughs].
M: A lot of time it’s a topic. I’ll ask him if a particular topic is ok and he’ll go, Yep.’ Especially recording Double Tubble he prodded me a bit more like, ‘And then what happened?’ to help me get more out of it.
A lot of it is stream of conciseness, my brain just goes and I see what he reacts to or when we’re playing live what people react to. Everyone is different. I could say one joke and I think it’s funny and then it falls flat and another time people will think it’s hilarious.
D: It’s amazing… we played two gigs this weekend past and played the same song, and you’re kind of bracing for people to react the same way, but then you get nothing [laughs].
M: Or something resonates with someone. You might just make a throw away line, like in our ‘Southern Christmas Hemisphere’ song there’s a line about Paddle Pops. I said that my favourite flavour is Rainbow, which is caramel. After we play a guy came up to us and was like, ‘I didn’t know Rainbow Paddle Pop was caramel flavour!’
D: We’re an educational band.
M: I was like, ‘That was two minutes ago, it must have really stuck with you!’ That’s what he took out if it.
D: There hasn’t really been anything I would say not to sing about topic.
M: He has told me not to do a song critiquing the art world, cos that’s too close to his heart.
That’s a song I would love to hear!
D: It’s true, I did turn down that one.
M: I just find it pretentious, but he studied art and understands it.
D: It’ll have to be a solo project.
M: Yeah, my dis project when I’m bitter about Hot Tubs.
Let’s talk about the songs on the album. You mentioned the song ‘Ned Kelly’; where did that idea spark from?
D: We were playing in Beechworth [Ned Kelly spent time in Beechworth Prison]. Marcus said, ‘We better play a song called Ned Kelly.’ When I first made it, I didn’t think that we were going into the outback with bushrangers, it’s quite jarring really. It was quite a departure from what I thought it was going to be.
M: A few times I’ve felt comfortable just freestyling on a song. We’re both open to just see how it goes. Our friend, Tim Stratton, runs a pub in Melbourne that we played at..
D: Some things stick, so we keep doing it.
M: We were only going to do that Strat song called ‘All The Drinks’ once and then his friends came along to our next gig and told us to play the song, so we had to bring it out again. Sometimes we think songs will be a one-off, limited edition, that we’ll only do it once. I like that because every gig is different.
The song ‘Ned Kelly’ has its own legs, we did it once in Beechworth and it just kept going.
We noticed that some of the songs you played at Nag Nag Nag that we’d never heard before are on this record, like ‘Gig Face’.
M: People resonate with that song. It’s one of those things that I think people haven’t used that term before. I hadn’t heard it before, I just came up with it. As soon as you say it people know what it is – Gig Face is someone that you always see at gigs. Everyone can have their own interpretation of what that means.
D: When we first started playing it, there’s this breakdown bit where Marcus will be like, ‘And now I want you to look at someone across the room, there might be a Gig Face in the room, why don’t you move towards them, this is an opportunity to say hi.’
M: You know how they do that thing at church, they want you to say hello to the person next to you.
D: You see some people turn their heads and be like, ‘Yes! This is my chance to say hello to that person.’ But then sometimes the other person will be like [turns head the other way] ‘You’re not a Gig Face to me.’ [laughs].
Another lyric we love is from ‘Kickin Goals’ and goes: I can’t run in real life but I can run in FIFIA.
M: I’ve been trying to run, I can jog. That’s why people like video games; you can’t go shooting people on the street but you can in Call Of Duty. Escapism, that’s what that song is about.
Tell us about ‘Street Fighter Man’; did you grow up playing Street Fighter?
M: That’s an experience that I had at a caravan park when I was six or seven. My dad didn’t like caravans so he didn’t come with us, but my uncle, his older brother had one at this park on the Mornington Peninsula. It was the start of school holidays so we we were there for a week. It was awesome, they had a video game arcade. I wanted to play Street Fighter and this other kid wanted to play Street Fighter, so we ended up fighting each other over it. It happened before I even realised it was happening. We pushed each other and other boys gathered around. It was weird.
D: That song is all of Marcus’ recollections about the Peninsula. We did it really late in the recording session. I was like, ‘Just sing about whatever’ and Marcus told me he’d just been down at the Peninsula, so he sang about it. We get people coming up to us wanting to talk about Street Fighter, we don’t really know that much about it [laughs].
M: I guess, you kind of would get that feeling about the Gold Coast, it’s beautiful but people ruin it, everyone ruins it. It’s the same with the Mornington Peninsula, everybody wants to enjoy it at the same time, so everybody ruins each others experience. Everyone is annoyed at everyone else but not themselves [laughs]. That’s what that song is about, you try to go down there to have a good time and you want to just be there by yourself, but everybody else is there and you get frustrated.
I’m a disability support worker and I took someone down there and we were on a pier, there was this teenage boy on an electric scooter hooning up and down. People had young kids and babies and were like, ‘Slow down, slow down, it’s dangerous!’ Teenagers will be teenagers and be jerks, but the vehicles just change, right? Electric scooters weren’t electric about 20 years ago. They were both trying to enjoy the same spot but they had different ways of going about it and different priorities. Pretty much every tourist place is like that.
What can you tell us about the song ‘Sizzler’?
M I went to Ballarat, which is an old gold mining town a bit outside of Melbourne near a place called Sovereign Hill. They have one of the only Pizza Hut all-you-can-eat restaurants in Victoria, if not Australia; there’s not many left. I went and it got me thinking about the 1990s, my parents never really took us to restaurants except for special occasions. Dad was a tight ass so we always ate at home; now I see kids and babies at cafes. Going to a restaurant used to be a real treat. Going to all-you-can eat at Pizza Hut, that was the highlight of my year sometimes.
D: We really bonded over it. Our family went to Sizzler, another all-you-can-eat place. They had one on Bell Street for a while, we went there so many times [laughs]. We’d stay for hours and ate as much as we could.
M: A few years ago, my friend told me about this Smorgy’s place that had a volcano. Dan’s brother worked there. We bonded over this… I told him that I took a friend there that was really into architecture, Andrew from Constant Mongrel and Taco Leg. He’s an architect, he heard they put up this volcano. It was kind of closed down then, but I took him. [Looks at Dan] Your brother used to put the stuff in the volcano?
D: Yeah. You work your way up. You start as a dish pig and then you get to be the guy that puts the smoke in the smoke machine in the volcano. They’d go into the volcano and smoke ciggies on their break [laughs].
Photo by Jhonny Russell.
The next song on the album is ‘Property Game’.
D: I gave Marcus a song to sing on and he had just bought a unit. He was always going to sing about the unit.
M: We played our first gig with Blonde Revolver and then we thought, ‘Should we keep going?’ We thought, ‘Yeah.’ And I bought a place in April last year. I was driving here when the real estate man called me and told me that I got the place.
D: It’s funny, the way a crowd receives that song is so dependent on…
M: Their age!
D: If you play it to an older crowd they are like, ‘Yes!’ There was a guy at a gig we played once and he had to be a real estate agent because no-one would have got into that song more [laughs]. We’ll play it to a younger crowd and they’re like [folds arms], ‘Why would we care?’
M: I feel like they judge me like, ‘Jerk! You bought a place, you’re part of the problem.’ [laughs].
The crowd reaction to you guys at Nag Nag Nag was great, people seemed really amazed.
M: Greg really looked after us at Nag Nag Nag.
Yeah, he’s super lovely. We’ll be at Nag Nag Nag next year and we’ll be at Jerkfest again in Melbourne too.
M: We might be in France when Jerkfest is on.
D: We’re going to France. We don’t know where we’re playing yet, but we know that we’re doing it.
M: It’s getting done! There’s only two of us and we don’t spend much band many, we don’t have rehearsals costs. We can hop in a car and just hang out.
It’ll be the first time Hot Tubs have played overseas?
M: UV Race toured America twice and Europe once. Deaf Wish did a fair amount of touring too. It’s going to be fun just hanging out for two weeks, eating cheese and croissants.
So lovely! I’ve been seeing all the instagram stories that Exek have been posting on their European tour and it looks like such a nice time. I love the European way of eating.
D: It’s going to be great. The two of us love getting up early on tour and checking out places wherever we are. With just two of us it’ll be different from previous tours, you don’t have to wait for five people to have a shower.
M: Yeah, and there’s always someone that’s hungover and grumpy.
D: That’ll just be me [laughs].
M: Sometimes. You know how I said we didn’t really launch our other album? Well, we did. We played four gigs. We busked on Bourke Street. I’ve always wanted to play Bourke Street, because I’ve seen the buskers there and I’ve thought, ‘I can do a better job then that.’ I was telling Tubs that we should try and make enough money for our breakfast. Europe is the best for town squares, we can just go there and try and busk for 20 mins.
D: Part of our setup is just going to be a simple busking setup.
M: I can sing with a megaphone. We can try and make 10 Euros for our breakfast and then go to the next city.
When we did it in Bourke Street, these guys wanted to give us a couple of bucks, but we weren’t actually busking. When Tubs was talking to this guy about his setup, he said to the busker, ‘I don’t want to make any money.’ The busker was like, ‘You don’t want to make any money?! Why are you doing this for?’
D: It was like sacrilege amongst buskers [laughs].
M: [Laughs] Is there any other reason to busk?
What’s another interesting place Hot Tubs has played?
M: We played a school fete. It was awesome!
D: It was great!
M: Luxury, the band Hot Tubs came out of…
D: Luxury was with our friend Brett.
M: We had a song called ‘Box Maze’. It’s a thing they do at the fete where they get all of these boxes and make a maze. His [Dan’s] primary school is in a pretty well to do area, there’s lots of architect and engineer dads, and one day they engineered it too hard, kids got stuck. I wrote this song about it. He said, ‘We’re playing the school fete, we have to do ‘Box Maze’.
When we did that first gig with Blonde Revolver, they asked if Luxury could play but we couldn’t because Brett is such an influential, important part of that band we didn’t feel like we could do it without him [he went overseas]. Because we were doing the fete though, we had to do ‘Box Maze.’ One of the teachers, Terry, who is also a musician, joined in. The kids absolutely loved it, they’re like, ‘I know the box maze, I went in it!’
D: The parents were a crowd that got into ‘Property Game’ [laughs].
M: We also played a live talk show. They had a house band and I went on too early. Tubs was told off for me, like she didn’t tell me off. I realised afterwards that the house band was like [sings] ‘Hot Tubs Time Maaaaachine’ but a really funk version. I was just standing there and thinking, ok finish up. They went on for about a minute [sings] ‘Hot Tuuuubs! Hot Tubsssss Time Maaaaachine!’ Then Tubs got on stage and it was a whole awkward thing.
Photo by Jhonny Russell.
D: That was a fun show!
M: It was cool because everyone was sitting down in silence. They were so well-behaved. There was no talking, usually there’s murmuring in crowds. You could hear a pin drop. There was this one woman with a really loud laugh, she was just like, ‘Blaaaaah haaha’ [laughs]. I was like, ‘Yeah! Someone’s loving it!’
D: A month ago we played a Spoilsport Records showcase at Thornbury Bowls Club. We were a late addition. Sam asked us to do the soundtrack for pass the parcel. That was another odd one.
M: It was 30 second snippets. He snuck in ‘Love is In The Air’. I’ve told him I don’t want to do that and he just put it at the end. There was a hundred people doing pass the parcel! It was massive. When we did it everyone simultaneously just went into the middle. The circle just went in and everyone was like ‘Love is in the air!’ I was like, ‘Ok, we’re doing it.’
D: It was beautiful.
M: I’m warming up to it.
D: I’ve always got covers I want to do but it’s always hard to talk Marcus into them. He’s got his unique way of doing vocals.
M: I just find it hard to learn other people’s lyrics. I have a slight learning disorder, so I’m very verbally focused. A lot of people write lyrics differently to how I do. My brain just wants to go that way and their lyrics are usually the other direction. It’s a lot of work and I’m kind of lazy about it. We’ll have to learn a Serge Gainsbourg song for France.
Let’s talk about your song ‘Lunch Envy’.
M: Another food song. It’s about my workmates judging what I eat for lunch.
D: So many people can relate to it. You’re sitting in the lunch room and people go…
M: ‘What have you got?’ and ‘Oh, you’re being good today’ – that’s my least favourite comment ever. It’s like you don’t see what I eat for breakfast or dinner. A chocolate bar for breakfast, you would judge me about that. The same people that say you’re being good, are the ones who’ll rock up at 8 o’clock with a Red Bull and ciggie (the Tradie’s breakfast of champions).
We love the video you did for ‘Street Fighter Man’. We were excited to see it on Rage.
D: Thanks. It’s been played a bunch of times. We have one for ‘A1 Bakery’ coming out by the time this interview comes out. It’s shaky, wobbly handicam -style.
M: But, very charming.
D: We’re doing one for ‘All The Drinks’ as well.
M: He wants to go all arty!
D: I played the ‘Street Fighter Man’ clip to the kids at the primary school. They were like, ‘How are you small?’
M: Tubs edited the clip and the one for ‘A1 Bakery’. It’s made on the cheap just using his time.
Original photo courtesy of Sooks. Handmade collage by B.
Sooks are a punk band from Boorloo/Perth, Western Australia via Brazil, that we discovered this year when they released debut songs ‘The Bends’ and ‘Bushfire’. The members also play in other bands, Asbestos Face, Lounge Tourist and Wound Honey. Their DEMO 22 cassette rules! Check them out, they may become one of your new favourite bands. Gimmie caught up with the four-piece for a chat.
What makes Sooks, Boorloo via Brasil? What are the music communities like in both places?
KYLE [guitars & composition]: Our beautiful drummer Rudah is originally from Sao Paulo.
RUDAH [drums]: It is impossible to answer this question without talking about politics, which would make this answer too long, but basically there are a lot of similar things between the punk/hardcore scene in Perth and in São Paulo (where I came from). At the same time, I think in Australia people play punk music because they like it, other bands play punk to express their feelings and to protest for improvements in people’s lives, while in Brazil we make punk music as way to fight for our basic rights that are not respected or they were stolen from us and to protest against corruption and political decisions that affect everyone. A hypothetical situation, Australia is worried about fixing the roof of the house, in Brazil we don’t even have the land to build our house yet.
Like Australia, Brazil was invaded, colonized, indigenous peoples were enslaved and many people brought from different parts of Africa were used as slaves. There was no historic repair. There is no regret or intention to fix this dirty past. Femicide is something that shames us too. Brazil is the seventh country that kills most women in the world. Since President Bolsonaro (alt-right) took office four years ago, Brazil has returned to the world hunger map and the number of people living in extreme poverty has increased too much. Punk in Brazil fights against all this. Nowadays, unfortunately, Brazil is a country that flirts with fascism. That’s the main enemy, but I hope this is going to change in the future.
About music, I reckon in Perth there are many places for bands to perform. In Brazil bands are struggling to find a place to play. The media hardly gives space to punk and hardcore bands. They always prefer other musical genres that are more traditional in Brazilian culture, so that’s one thing hard to explain and people in Australia will never understand it… and honestly, they don’t need to understand that, but many friends have asked me about politics, culture, punk scene and why I decided to move to Australia. Anyway, I love my friends and my bands (Sooks, Nervous and Asbestos Fence).
ANGE [words, vocals & guitars]: We love having Rudah in the band, he’s so passionate about social justice in both Australia and Brasil – thanks for your answer Rudah we love you.
Boorloo is the Noongar (Indigenous) name for Perth where we live and make music. We want to highlight that sovereignty of this land has never been ceded and First Nation peoples are custodians of the longest continuing culture in the world, which is why we use this traditional name. Rudah has put it eloquently, we are a lucky country here in Australia but we have a ways to go, especially in our journey to reconciliation. My hope for the immediate future is that we finally establish a treaty and begin, genuinely, to decolonise.
Sooks had their first jam in January 2022; what do you remember about it?
KYLE: Ahh well, I remember booking the first rehearsal before I even had any fully formed songs ha-ha! It gave me a deadline to consolidate my ideas such that I had something to pitch to the “band”, so we weren’t just staring at each other in the room. From memory I wrote the first 4 tracks in less than a week.
ANGE: I remember having a lot of fun with wonderful humans and having a sore throat the next day – that jam was the first time I’ve ever tried yell-y vocals! I am an average singer so learning how far I could push my voice was a challenging and fun experience.
MORGIN [bass and vocals]: I remember being very nervous and worried that I wouldn’t be able to play fast punk riffs with a pick (I’d always gotten frustrated using a pick in the past and given up), but I was super excited to start a new music project with my close friends. I couldn’t wait to see what Ange was going to come up with lyrically and how she was going to sound as a punk vocalist (I had high expectations and she only exceeded them)
RUDAH: That summer, Kyle and Angie invited me to start a new project. They said it was just to record some songs and release them online. I think things started to happen in such a natural way that we kept rehearsing and playing in gigs. It’s really good when the energy is good. Kyle, Angie and Morgin are amazing people.
You were set to play your first show a few months later in April with Sweat, but one of you got Covid; what was your first show like when you finally got to play it?
ANGE: This was a bummer to miss but I guess the reality of playing shows right now. We were lucky enough to be approached by Sweat again in June and played their EP launch at The Bird (a bit of a live music institution) which was a blast!
KYLE: Yeah and we actually go an opportunity to fill in for our sister band Nervous for a hardcore show at North Perth Bowlo in May. That ended up being our first show and it was good to get the ball rolling. I remember there being lots of crossed arms and blank looks across the room. There’s footage on Youtube of Ange trying to jump around and make up for the lack of crowd movement.
MORGIN: On the drive to the North Perth Bowlo gig I just remember feeling like I was going to vomit. I had only memorised my bass lines the week prior so was veeeeery worried I would make lots of mistakes (which I kind of did haha)
RUDAH: I remember that night it was really hot and there was a sink and a fridge behind the drums. I was literally playing drums in a kitchen. It was a special night. I really like playing gigs that don’t have a stage. I don’t like big stages. I think this goes against the essence of punk.
All live photos by Tom Tufnell.
Members are in other bands and/or have been in many bands previously, can you tell us a little about them and of how Sooks came together? Why did you start making music together?
KYLE: Rudah and myself have played in Asbestos Fence for a number of years now. I responded to an ad online of his and we bonded over a mutual appreciation of Fugazi. Half of Asbestos Fence are in Nervous . Morgin and I have been friends for ages, and she plays bass in Lounge Tourist, an excellent local post-punk outfit . Ange plays solo and also in Wound Honey and I figured her lyrics would work wonderfully in a punk setting. Oh, and she’s my partner. I guess I cherry picked the members for the band and wrote songs knowing what everyone would appreciate and enjoy playing as a unit.
How did you discover music? Is there an album or band that had a really big impact on you? What do you appreciate about it?
KYLE: Great question! I had to think about this – hearing Eddy Current definitely spurred the ‘aha moment’ when I realised I could potentially write songs and be a member of a band. My introduction to the world of this kind of music was through the discovery of post punk, listening to bands like Wipers, Gang of Four, This Heat (to name a few) for the first time and then going down the rabbit hole.
These days I discover most of my music through Bandcamp – trying to listen to everything that comes out on labels like Iron Lung, Static Shock, La Vida Es Un Mus etc.
ANGE: Seminal albums for me would be Bjork’s entire body of work, In Rainbows by Radiohead. More recently, releases from Perfume Genius, Wet Leg, Mitski, Angel Olsen, The Beths, Big Thief & Parquet Courts
MORGIN: I owe all of my music knowledge and ability to my Father. He was the bass player of a cover band throughout my younger years, so I have memories of attending rehearsals/ watching gigs and even getting on stage as a ~10 year old and singing with them. My childhood was filled with the music of The Beatles, Prefab Sprout, James Taylor, Prince and loads more. My Dad continues to be my biggest musical inspiration and the reason I play music. I actually used his vintage Harmony bass guitar when I first started playing shows and didn’t have my own.
RUDAH: Music has always been part of my life. My grandfather worked at the first vinyl factory in Brazil (Odeon). He used to make that label that goes in the middle of the vinyl. Sometimes he made a mistake on purpose and took the vinyl home. My mother told me that instead of taking toys to school, I took vinyl.
Musically speaking, I grew up listening to a lot of Brazilian music (MPB, Bossa Nova and Brazilian rock bands from the 80’s) and was also introduced to many bands by my father, cousins and friends. I remember my dad introduced me to Nirvana in 90/91. My cousin showed me the Ramones around the same time, right when Brain Drain came out (the last record with Dee Dee playing bass). Afterwards, I started looking for more bands, but at that time it was very difficult. In Brazil we exchanged letters with fanzines and made compilations on tapes. Skate videos were really important for us to find out new bands too. It is worth mentioning the importance of MTV in the 90s. This happened in a pre-CD era. Sorry, I’m feeling like the old lady from the Titanic movie lol
We’ve heard you describe your music as “big, dumb, punk”; what influenced this sound?
KYLE: Ah yes, this meme! I don’t know how it started but I struggle to describe our sound beyond an amalgam of a bunch of very simple first-wave sounding stuff. We generally use tried and true progressions leaning on a bunch of tropes that make our songs familiar-sounding, but I can’t think of any one specifically?
ANGE: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it! That being said, I am no punk expert and I think in some ways my distance from a lot of punk music can be a boon. I am always trying to come up with unique phrasings or so-dumb-its-smart wordplay to keep it interesting. Not to say that all punk is dumb! I just put thought into trying to have a different vocal style or delivery in every song to keep things fresh.
RUDAH: There’s a Brazilian punk band from 80’s called Os Replicantes that used to say: be punk, but don’t be dumb. There are several ways to interpret this.
Artwork by Francesco Goats
We love your Demo that came out in August this year; what can you tell us about writing this collection of songs? What does Sooks’ creative process involve?
KYLE: I generally have a half-cooked idea then we workshop it as a band. Lyrics are usually written on the spot by Ange, and we have a new song by the end of the rehearsal. Occasionally, I’ll go home with my tail between my legs and work something out before reconvening and trying it again.
ANGE: There’s always giggling from Morgo and I as we watch Kyle try to explain to Rudy what he wants from the drum sound (with Rudah doing his bombastic Brazilian style anyway). The whole band end up teasing Kyle a bit for cracking the whip and being our ‘chefe’ (boss)
RUDAH: My mission is to play drums in time and put all my energy into the songs. I show them some ideas and beat variations, but basically Kyle and Angie already have some ideas to show me. It makes my job easier.
What’s your personal favourite track on your debut release? What’s it about?
KYLE: ‘The Bends’ – it feels the most visceral and I love Ange’s vocals. It’s about toxic relationships coming to an end.
ANGE: ‘Idiom/Idiot’ – Short, fast, loud. I challenged myself to write a nonsense song entirely made up of idioms but it ended up being a statement on the complexity of the English language and how we tie ourselves in verbal knots trying to communicate a simple point.
MORGIN: ‘U.D’ – it goes hard from start to finish and Ange kills it with all the vocal gymnastics. It also has a powerful message about all the bullshit in the world (‘Bushfire’ is my favourite to play live – love the doom groove)
RUDAH: NFT. I don’t know what it is about because I can’t hear anything while I’m playing drums (sorry, bad dad joke).
Demo was straight to tape recorded live by Will Hooper at Stable Sounds; why did you chose to do it this way?
KYLE: I guess I’m responsible for spearheading this ha-ha. I am a big fan of all the releases he’s been involved with, and the fact he prioritises getting a true live sound. I believe the tape hiss and snarl helps but I’m no expert. From my limited experience lots of other producer types don’t work this way. There’s a certain energy in his work and I’m hoping that was captured in our demo.
ANGE: I love recording live but this was my first time recording to tape. I really enjoyed working with Will, it felt pretty effortless and we managed to smash it all out in the space of a weekend. The scariest part of the whole thing was trying to figure out if I could do a better vocal take each time! If you re-take the vocals, you lose the previous take. The immediacy of being pressured into making those choices was kind of cool though and forces you to leave your perfectionism at the door.
RUDAH: I had already recorded on tape in this analog system in Brazil a long time ago (98/99). I particularly like this format. Will is an amazing guy. It was a pretty cool experience. We had a lot of fun that day.
What are some great bands local to your area that we should know about?
KYLE: The local music scene here is shockingly good. As far as punk is concerned everyone needs to hear (in no particular order) No Future, Krimi, Helta Skelta, Ghoulies, Bikini Cops, Semtex 87, Paranoias, Aborted Tortoise, Cold Meat, Gaffer, Total Defeat, MSOL, Nervous – Basically everything that comes out on Helta Skelta & Televised Suicide Records.
RUDAH: Whenever I have free time, I go to gigs to meet new bands. I’ve seen a lot of bands since I came to Perth. I really like all the bands that Kyle and Angie mentioned, besides them it’s also worth mentioning the bands from Another Rat Records and the Black Diamond Lake band.
What do you do when not making music?
ANGE & MORGIN: Collaging and drinking zooper dooper-based cocktails
RUDAH: Running, crossfit, playing soccer and FIFA on my PS.
What’s something really important to Sooks?
ANGE: Social justice & work-life balance.
RUDAH: Making music without forgetting our roots.
KYLE: Having an excuse to cancel plans.
What’s next for Sooks?
SOOKS: We’re super excited to be playing ALT fest at Badlands Bar on November 12th and will be cooking up new music in the very near future.
Original photo by James Caswell. Handmade mixed-media collage by B.
Dynamic Meanjin/Brisbane based pop duo Doggie Heaven pull from well-worn paths of new wave and post-punk to create a freshness with their expressive and magnetic sound. There’s twinkling magic offset by emotional lyrics with bite on latest release double single Berghain / Haircut. We’re premiering song ‘Haircut’ today. Gimmie caught up with vocalist Isobel and multi-Instrumentalist, producer Kyle.
How did you both first meet?
KYLE: We met back in early 2020, at a call centre we both worked at. We were both stationed in different sections of the office, so we didn’t actually interact with one another properly until we bumped into one each other at rave one time.
Did you grow up in a creative family?
ISOBEL: Not particularly, although I definitely have a lot of music enthusiasts/snobs in my family. Growing up, my mum, uncle and I would have discos in my living room with blankets covering the windows listening to weird electronic music. Mum is mental for Bjork. My Granddad is super into his rock and jazz so I spent a lot of time listening to records with him from a young age. I was basically not allowed to listen to pop, which is ironic because I love cheesy pop music now.
K: No, not at all, although my grandad was a professional jazz musician. I think he even released a few albums, though, I’ve never been close with him/ had much to do with him.
Is Doggie Heaven the first band/musical project you’ve been a part of?
K: yeah pretty much, but I’ve been producing music alone for years without ever releasing it.
I: I was in a punk band a few years ago that never really amounted to anything unfortunately. I never imagined myself making music until that point because I was basically just a huge drama kid who loved to write and perform and didn’t (and still don’t) know how to play any instruments.
What made you want to make music with each other?
I: Kyle and I instantly bonded over our love of New Wave music from the 80s and I think we just balance each other out really well in terms of our creative approaches and skill sets. Kyle is incredibly good at all the things I have no idea how to do. Without him, I would probably just be doing terrible stand-up comedy or something.
K: Yeah, I think me and Izzy clicked pretty quickly over our shared taste in music. Even beyond the new wave and 80s stuff; we both listen too many styles and genres and are always sharing new discoveries with one another. Aside from that, after meeting Isobel I very quickly learned how fun and unique she was. I remember her telling me she could sing early on, but even before we’d ever sat down to jam or whatever I knew there was something special about her; and then yeah, shit just kinda worked/clicked immediately.
Doggie Heaven’s name is a Simpsons reference; do you have a favourite character or episode?
K: Yes it is, haha. I love the Simpsons so much. I was raised on that shit. Tough question, I couldn’t tell you what my favourite episode is, but my favourite character is Mr. Burns.
I: There are too many brilliant episodes… but I definitely always go back to the episode where they go to New York. Mr Burns is for sure the best character, but also Marge is so hot and I love her sexy voice.
We’re premiering song ‘Haircut’; what inspired it lyrically and musically?
I: ‘Haircut’ is the tortured tale of having a crush on someone when you have an anxious-preoccupied attachment style. You just want to feel butterflies and excitement, but it’s clouded by an overwhelming feeling of stress. Having said that, this is undoubtedly a bop that you can dance that pain away to.
K: I did the instrumental for haircut around this time last year. I wasn’t really sure what our sound was supposed to be yet, (and we’re still figuring that out!) But I remember I was defs inspired and listening to a lot of 80s pop and new wave tracks (which you will still find me doing regularly). Think Madonna, Tears For Fears and New Order etc.
‘Haircut’ along with song ‘Berghain’ is out as a double single 7” on Colossus Records; what can you tell us about the cover art image?
I: So that’s a photo of me when I was around 6 years old dressed as Cruella Deville from 101 Dalmations. We thought it was very fitting for our band name. Photo credit to my Grandma, Margaret.
You’re launching your release soon; how do you feel when performing? What was the best or worst show you’ve ever played and what made it so?
K: I used to be a little nervous at first, but now I really enjoy getting into it and try to put on a show. The way I write/record music is maybe a little less traditional than your typical band, I kinda just sit down and record every individual part, layering everything as I go. And there’s also no real limitations when you’re in a studio environment, I can sit down and just do a hundred takes on a part to get it right if I have to. So it can get kinda tricky when It comes time to translate it all to our live show, especially when the part I’ve written is outta my reach skill-wise. I think I learned pretty quickly that I’m not at all the musician I thought I was in terms of discipline after performing regularly. Huge wake-up call there.
Hard to pick a best or worst show; a bad show can be a fun show and a good show can be a stressful one. It’s what you make of it really, and I’m just happy to be here. I think they’re all great.
I: I’ve been performing basically my whole life so as cringe as this sounds, I think I feel a lot more comfortable on stage than I do off it. I would definitely agree with Kyle in that a bad show is kind of fun and hilarious. There has been a couple of times that we’ve played in front of like 5 people and we really just let loose and had a laugh. Obviously it’s just such a beautiful feeling to perform for a full house who are dancing and know some of the words though.
Photo: Jhonny Russell.
What excites you the most about music at the moment? What have you been listening to lately?
I: I’m loving discovering local music at the moment. There’s nothing like turning up to a show and not knowing what to expect then being blown away! Some local acts that I’m obsessed with would be Square, Scraps, Verity Whisper, Guppy and Naaki Soul.
K: I just loving writing new music. It’s so fun and fulfilling. It never gets old. I’ve been super into Show Me The Body’s new album, Alex G’s new one and also Dry Cleaning’s!
What’s your most precious possession?
K: I would say my cat but he isn’t exactly classed as a “possession” lol. Probably my bed or something. Idk. I really love sleeping. I would sleep more if I could.
I: I have this Teletubby toy that is the most munted thing you’ve ever seen in your life. She’s been mauled by a dog and out clubbing to the valley a few times but still going strong.
What’re you looking forward to and what’s in the works for Doggie Heaven in 2023?
I: Super keen to get an EP out soon. Our sound is already developing a lot and we can’t wait to show you how much it’s grown!
K: Looking forward to taking our live show interstate and maybe overseas. The Doggie Heaven EP is half done, aiming for a late summer – early autumn release!
Dungeon synth-punks Lassie bring a winning combination of excitement, wit, punchiness, fun and escapism on their latest full-length album BEHOLD. The band are at the tail end of a European tour. Gimmie caught up with them to chat about the album and their record’s launch in a medieval village, playing with the Osees, music they love (including Australian bands we love too – CIVIC, Pinch Points, Gee Tee, R.M.F.C.) and more. We first spoke to Lassie a couple of years ago. They’re one of our favourite German punk bands.
How have you been? What’s been happening in your world lately?
MARI: Oi Bianca! Thanks – been alright, the usual insanity of our quasi-dystopian here and now, I had Covid two times but feel alright generally. We just returned from a festival in the south of France called Montesqiou – it’s a small festival in a medieval village there’s a hill where D’Artagnan’s mother was born. A ideal setting for us. Organized by very nice people and the whole village, old and young are pulling it off together. We saw great shows by Pogy & les Kefars and Powerplant! It was also the first time we toured by train.
KATHI: I am OK. Lots of different projects I started during lockdown were due now, so I’m actually a bit overworked, creatively speaking, but I go on holidays soon.
SHREDDY: It’s Autumn now, which is actually my favorite season, but it’s cold and I wish I could go on holidays too.
TEUN: I’ve been traveling a lot this year: a full-fledged European tour with my other band Lemongrab, the France trip with Lassie as well as visits to many other countries. It’s been exciting but a lot of fucked up stuff happened in the last months so I’m really happy to be back in Berlin for the moment. I just moved to a new place, and I’m excited for new beginnings. Something that includes less traveling and less partying hopefully, and, at risk of sounding like a total twat, a bit more financial security.
FRITZ: Busy busy! Not enough time for what really matters and that often is playing music and coming up with new ideas. Other than that I’m still pulling the strings here and there, setting up DIY shows in Leipzig and releasing tapes of friends via my little tape label Universum Bacteria [ubac].
What’s something you’ve been listening to a lot?
TEUN: Sun Cousto, Quintron & Miss Pussycat, the sounds of my new dishwasher, BBC fucking 4.
SHREDDY: ‘Access’ by RMFC, Dorothy Ashby, Kate Bush, Michele Mercure, Peace De Résistance, Podium, Taqbir, Joy Division, Linda Smith. Also I’ve been really into ‘Caprisongs’ by FKA Twigs lately, she’s such a great artist!
MARI: Exxon – Diesel Tape, Cex Crime, Natoxie & TKD – Applaudissement, Imaginary, Worlds Podcast, Alvilda – Negatif, Nikki and the Corvettes, Pinch points, Powerplant, Crime of Passing, SICK THOUGHT’s new singles , Skin Deep – Football Violence, Famous Mammals, Decoder Ring Podcast, You’re Wrong About podcast, Mark Mothersbough – Midnight Muzak, Violenta & URIN , Alt NYC 88 Soundtrack, The End – People talk, Graveturner, Cuero, Soup Activists and Coins paraléles.
KATHI Random Dungeon Synth (old and new), Phantasia, Plantasia, Peace de Resistance, Poison Ruin, Taqbir, Warthog, NTS radio Feelings playlist, Hex Dispensers, Straw Man Army, Linda Perhacs.
FRITZ: Oog Bogo, Poison Ruin, ATOL ATOL ATOL (my new favorite band from Wrocław/Poland), Bili Rubin (SPAM: just released his new cassette on UBAC), Peace de Résistance, Plastics, Giulio Ersamus, Gee Tee (Rock Phone 7”), Famous Mammals, Duster, Acetone.
In June Lassie released a new album. The name suggests that the listener is about to experience something remarkable or impressive with the album; where did the title come from?
SHREDDY: It’s that phrase sometimes used in medieval-themed and/or fantasy movies.
When there is something about to happen and a knight or a wizard shouts “BEHOOOOLD!”. We used that phrase like a running gag in daily life. I think the title wasn’t necessarily supposed to point out something impressive with the album. We just thought it would be funny to name it like that, because it sounds really epic!
MARI: Well the listener is wrong – just kidding – ya BEHOLD comes from a long running gag between our friends who like us love to talk nonsense in medieval english or german or what we think that might sound like. (I am pointing the mace at you governor and leader of the water people Warberg!). Some of us also have a soft spot for sci fi and fantasy, especially pen and paper RPGs and magic so there is def. a connection.
TEUN: Some of us, that is to say you haha.
Again, we love Shreddy’s artwork! What can you tell us about it?
SHREDDY: Thank you so much!! It’s the first time I did the artwork for a LP and I was very happy to do it. The font from the cover is the same one that has been used for ‘Bat Out of Hell’ by Meat Loaf.
MARI: I can tell you that I do also love it to death and that she is always way too shy about it. So I am gonna do a lil advertising for her newest strike of genius ( don’t know if you can use this German expression in English lol) A zine called PATCHES (semi-autobio) and generally about how FLINTAS feel on and off stage in this band, scene and I guess in general – correct me if I am wrong. There is also a soundtrack and spoken dialogues by Kathi that complete this piece.
KATHI: Yeah, that was a really cool and intense project! and Shreddy’s drawings are supercool as always. For the cover its the same, all the tiny details are just perfetto
What were the best and worst bits of making the LP?
SHREDDY: Covid started when we wrote the first songs for the album. I think that’s why the process felt kind of slow and some of the “new” songs already seemed like weirdly “old”, because we couldn’t practice together for some time, or play live etc.
For me the recording was lots of fun. We could experiment with sounds or developing parts that didn’t seem finished before. This was super refreshing and really nice!
MARI: It was amazing to work with our friend Tobi Lill in Berlin, he was very patient and didn’t produce or intervene much only in the right moments he would be like “nah don’t do that it’s stupid” – which I think is a quality that most recording engineers lack – the ability to step back and let the madness play out. The worst was how long it was taking lol – I caught Covid in-between so the whole thing happened over 3 sessions of 4- 5 days, from which during the second I was quarantined in a hotel room in Berlin, we luckily had the money to pay for one night and traveled back to Leipzig the next day. Also the nature of the building and its neighbors we recorded in is worth a lil story but maybe someone else wants to describe that lol.
KATHI: It’s a huge building, and there are people practicing, living or partying (or all at once) so its smelly and noisy around the clock. and there is also a cute dog. So it was a bit hard to chill when we had breaks during the recordings. Constant Bass equals Constant Pain (btw also the title of a cool album by New Project 666 from Hamburg, Shreddy also did their cover)
TEUN: Yes that building is mad. It’s got a lot of good bands in it but also a lot of junkies and sometimes when you go to the bathroom some wino’s passed out on the floor and everything smells of piss. Tobi has created a little paradise in there however, he’s got a lot of beautiful shiny equipment and a nice couch that I slept on more than once. We bought loads of food and beer from the supermarket and practically spent many 12-hour days in there working, waiting, joking, partying, and shredding.
FRITZ: All in all an amazing experience to record in entirely new surroundings. I didn’t know Tobi before and also really admired his patience, never felt any pressure. A trained ear might really sense some acid techno frequencies underlaying the entire album. I have learned to accept them during my stay at this madhouse.
How would you describe your life when making the album?
MARI: Frustrated yet eager.
TEUN: My new dishwasher.
FRITZ: Drunk on love.
What kinds of things were inspiring you when writing the new collection of songs?
SHREDDY: The Internet, Blade Runner, modern life of spiders and humans.
I think the lyrics of ‘Hurricane’ are inspired by ‘Cross the Breeze’ by Sonic Youth, because it was my favorite song at the time I wrote them.
MARI: Tobi’s KILLING JOKE obsession inspired some of the lyrics of ‘ZYCHOKILLER’.
The inability of saying “no” and therefore getting swamped in deadlines and things to do.
The passing of my uncle. General shit state of society we are living in. “It was capitalism all along!” (quoting You’re wrong’s Sarah Marshall here). Powerpop. The works of Ursula K. le Guin, Octavia Butler, Phillip K. Dick. ‘1 4 the Road’ is about a creep I hitchhiked with on the way to the call center I worked at a long time ago – he at some point got a paranoid boost, switched lanes and shouted “I can kill you all”. Civic. German conspiracy honks who were demonstrating against Covid measures and ‘celebrities’ making money off hopping onto that.
What lyric do you most love on the record?
MARI: “I wanna breathe your whistling lightness – your moonlit eyelid – is pounding frightless”~ ‘HURRICANE’
TEUN: I love the lyrics to ‘Frowning Term’ and how it’s a play on the CAPTCHA test, as well as on Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick. They are like an elegant philosophical joke that flows very nicely along with the tune. Very DEVO: are you human? Bravo guys!
KATHI: BBF, ’cause its so much more than meets the eye or ear. It’s about friendship.
FRITZ: Puh…where do I start? Well, answering to this on my laptop after just clicking through pixilated images after logging in somewhere again and again and again, it always strikes me how ‘FROWNING TERM’ is brightening my boring office hours. I really liked our high speed demo version of that song as well, which we released through our friend Jonas’ label Turbo Discos.
SHREDDY: “It makes no difference what you choose to be – even if it’s something real cool like a wizard” ~ ‘MULTIVERSE’
How did you approach songwriting this time? How similar are your approaches to making music?
MARI: We started by doing 4-track home recordings during lockdown – sending them around so each party would contribute their parts – recording them at home or in the rehearsal space. This was the starting point, from which the recordings went through a lot of stages and also the songs changed quite a bit – you can hear this process pretty well when listening to the 3 released versions of Temporary Cemetery (Flennen compilation version is the roughest most demo-ish but it’s so cool I love it personally – then you have the single version which is still recorded by Lassie alone but mainly digital – and then you have the 16-track studio version on the album recorded with Tobi).
TEUN: This remote way of recording didn’t really work for me. I’d record the drums in Berlin and it felt strange, the others not being there. In the end we ended up not using these tracks at all. The band can be more than the sum of its parts, provided that we actually have a sense of togetherness. So I think it’s good that we changed our mind and recorded the album being in the same room physically. Although the recordings on it aren’t live, we used a lot of ghost tracks, where someone else would play along and you’d hear them in the headphones so that it didn’t feel like you’re playing in a vacuum.
What’s your favorite song on the album and what’s it about?
MARI: ‘Zychokiller’ is my fav, and it’s not really about anything specific – but that is also what I like about it – the lyrics where kind of made up on the spot before singing – just phrases with a certain feeling – so anyone can project, at least that’s what I am hoping. But for me if I’d to pin it down – it’s about these teens who grow up together outside of society kind of, falling in love, coming of age, developing in different directions, being frustrated by their ‘scene’ and betrayed by their kind and ideals and also gender dynamics, how teachers are always bastards, and revenge haha. Kind of a gory Ghost World scenario.
KATHI: Phew, I can’t really say. I like ‘Spiderweb’ cause it’s about spiders and I think that’s cool. And sounds cool.
TEUN: I like a lot of them but I also think ‘Spiderweb’ is my favorite. It’s a funny, cute lyric that fits the slight horror/fantasy theme of the record, but this contrasts with the fact that the song is aggressive and a bit over the top at the end – which I really like, it could be the soundtrack to a thousand knights galloping down a mountain. I think a lot of what we did on the album is a bit over the top, and to me that’s not a bad thing; everything’s densely packed with *stuff*, and that makes it sound very bombastic which ties in well with the album name.
SHREDDY: It’s hard to say, I think I like a lot of songs for totally different reasons.
‘Modern World’ and ‘Multiverse’ are very cool, they are also fun to play live. Hurricane too, because we switch instruments there. ‘Spiderweb’ is about a spider who is going out at night and she puts on her going-out shoes and going-out gloves and stuff like that.
FRITZ: No downsides in my opinion. I love the album in its entirety, how everything melts together and how we decided not to fill it up with too much extras this time. It’s such a punch in the face!
You had a record release party for BEHOLD and encouraged everyone to dress in medieval costume; who had the idea for this? Who had the best costume and what did it look like?
MARI: Honestly, I don’t remember who or how we came up with that idea – but the medieval theme has been a long running gag between us – me and ‘others’ love to use medieval speech sometimes and it was just natural that it would evolve into sth like this at some point haha. Also I grew up playing fantasy pen and paper RPGs and LARP a lot, so this is kind of a natural development. I’ll send you some pictures of the best costumes!
KATHI: Yeah actually there were a lot more great costumes than i imagined, I felt underdressed haha. There were even self-made Lassie shields.
SHREDDY: So cool!! ❤
FRITZ: The venue [“Recycling Museum”] was also the best spot to set up such a wacky themed party. Formerly some kind of a junk shop we were surrounded by all kinds of trash that shaped our stage fortress in the end.
Lassie recently played a show with the Osees and King Khan; what’s your recollections of the show?
SHREDDY: Thee Osees have two drum sets on stage.
MARI: The day after we had that medieval release party and naturally we invited them to come because King Khan also played in the city, there was big hectic and nobody really knew how to work that digital mixing desk which was new in that location ( recycling museum ) – at some point Leyton the sound-guy of King Khan showed up with their guitarist and offered to take over the live mixing – from then on it sounded really massive – very cool move!
KATHI: I feel more comfy on smaller stages.
TEUN: I remember going to the back stage fridge during the Osees set to get a beer but they were all gone; at this moment the Osees were doing a longer instrumental jam and John Dwyer barged in like a madman screaming for a beer and when there were none, he cursed King Khan loudly for having drank them all and slammed the fridge door before grabbing a soda and making his way back to the stage like an angry bear, pushing people to the side. Kinda freaky but also a bit understandable and funny.
FRITZ: (The) Osees brought me back a few years ago when I was digging Thee Oh Sees a lot. What was I doing in all those years?? Their show was insane. And incredibly loud! Lost track of time during their 5-hour set and zoomed out.
What’s been your scariest experience as a band?
MARI: Recently we played a festival in the south of France and went there by train to hang out in a bungalow with a pool (!!) before a bit – it was in this setting that Teun told us he wanted to quit the band for a bunch of personal reasons – I’d say the time since then was the scariest part of the band’s history so far. Because of the conflicts and uncertainties which come with a landslide decision like that.
TEUN: Yeah this is scary, in a real-world kind of way, not like Exek having their tour van roll down a cliff or anything spectacular like that. It’s scary because you build this thing over time and get to identify with it and with the others. You are a kind of powerful institution that defines you and which you represent when you go anywhere. However, to what point this is solely a good thing, no one can ever tell you. Are Lassie destined to play ‘Spiderweb’ and ‘Gimme A Break’ at the age of 81, like the Stones? I’m joking, but I am scared. I was scared of making the wrong choice and still am. You know, it’s hard for a lot of musicians and band people to talk about this kind of thing. I often feel like my bands and all my friends’ bands are doing great and we’re happy when we’re doing band stuff and we pretend that’s all there is, but in the meantime our everyday lives are going to shit; we’re broke as fuck and frustrated with society and we’re not getting any younger. Having said that, Lassie is probably the best thing that ever happened to me, and we still have a common goal. I’m not planning on leaving the stage with a whimper.
What ideas do you have for future work?
MARI: We booked a big tour to play the new album in October, it’s still uncertain if we are going to do it or not because of aforementioned reasons, so we are also not really big on ideas for the future. I think a lot of us need some time to find a better balance between the different lives we are living. Especially when it comes to financial and psychological safety, playing so many shows and doing everything that comes with that is often hindering when it comes to establishing your “other” daily life if you know what I mean. None of us have real jobs so a lot of times we either don’t have money or have to rely on the annoying Jobcenter options in Germany – that can wear you down pretty easily. But I don’t wanna sound too pessimistic here as well, we just have to figure out a lot of stuff for now.
KATHI: We decided to go on this tour together. And then we see from there. It’s pretty confusing, but a change always is a possibility. Right now i have absolutely no idea what is going to happen. I think I am gonna focus on university and my instrumental skills. And then we will find out what the future Beholds haha.
TEUN: I want to us to play a kick-ass tour. And to do it as a team.
SHREDDY: I have nothing to add : – )
FRITZ: Everything is said! This tour will be a blast!
Lastly, what do you hope listeners can learn about you from this record?
MARI: As always from Punk and R’N’R – that you can be whoever the fuck you wanna be and most likely you are not alone out there!
KATHI That it’s cool to try stuff and experiment. You don’t have to be perfect on an instrument or with your voice in order to use it for a song. You just have to like it.
SHREDDY: Yes, and have fun doing the stuff you like.
TEUN: I don’t have anything to add. Except that it’s OK to trust people over 30 sometimes.
We first saw a Guppy show early last year—we were totally blown away. They quickly became one of our favourite Meeanjin/Brisbane bands ever. We started the label to put their debut album out, because it’s THAT good!
777antasy is built on instinct and intuition. Guppy relish in the spirit of creation on this deeply engrossing album. It’s varied and surprising. Check it out!
Naarm/Melbourne five-piece Gut Health’s’ EP Electric Party Chrome Girl is one of the fieriest debuts of the year. Their no wave, queer rave culture inspired post-punk floor-fillers are uninhibited, full of energy and addictive. The biggest strengths of the four-track collection is its joyous fun and assertively tongue-in-cheek wit. It’s full of character and panache. We saw their LGBTQI+, femme, and non-binary heavy lineup play a wild show earlier in the year and from that performance alone, we were hooked, and patiently awaiting a release!
We are thrilled to be introducing you to Gut Health and premiering their debut single ‘Inner Norm’ today. We recently got to know four of the band’s members Athina Uh Oh, Adam Markmann, Dom Willmott, Eloise Murphy-Hill and hear about their musical journeys, inspiration and music.
What have you been up to lately (band-wise or otherwise)?
ADAM: We had a little rest for a couple of months just before this release. Athina and I had an amazing trip through Europe and Egypt. It was spectacular! Now we are getting the ball rolling again, getting back into venues and getting excited about the release of our new EP.
Tell us about Gut Health’s origins.
ATHINA: Gut Health was Adam and I making fun during lockdown. Though we both had aims for the project, it grew naturally out of a connection to music we shared a love for, each other, and later to the rest of the lovely band members.
Dom and Adam are also long time collaborators, so their process is rather organic. Myka and I had met a few times through some of my friends who play music with them. I was very honoured that they were interested in being a part of the project after nervously hitting send on that first message. Long time admirer. Eloise and I have a few mutual friends, so when I heard that they shred I was very excited. Oh, and Angus and Adam met truckin’.
Each of you are from different backgrounds from punk to jazz, and influenced by queer rave culture; tell us a little about where you’ve come from?
ELOISE: Most of the work I’ve done is mostly in the folk-pop music world, playing in bands with close friends and for a couple of my friend’s solo projects. What I really love about Gut Health is that it’s given me a space to play guitar in a completely different way than what I’m used to.
DOM: I’ve played in different noisy bands with Adam for about 5 or 6 years now but our first ‘music date’ was him showing me James Chance and then us writing a complete rip-off track. In a way, Gut Health is us just getting back to what we started.
ATHINA: The only other music project I was involved with was with some dear friends playing more soul driven tunes and a short DJ stint. I was definitely in need of a little more confidence then! Life’s a mission of finding your own voice – it’s possible that people can tell when you’re being true to yourself or not.
How did you first discover music?
ADAM: I’m very lucky to have an extremely musical family. My Mum and Dad were always listening to great punk, goth and new-wave music from the 80s. My mum worked in a record store when she was younger, and my dad taught me my first guitar chords. My uncle is a bass player too and inspired me quite a lot to pick one up. I grew up with a healthy dose of Stone Roses, My Bloody Valentine, Elliott Smith and the Cure when I was little.
ELOISE:I think I had just the old CD’s in the car, acoustic guitar around the house, childhood discovery of music. Lots of Paul Kelly, Crowded House and Stevie Wonder. I remember when I got an alarm clock that also had a CD player in it- such a game changer.
ATHINA: I’m also grateful to have a family who mainly work in creative fields. If we go back, my granddad was an accountant but he collected a fuck-tonne of trumpets throughout his life and would play for hours out of passion. My grandmother was a conductor and played a few instruments. Dad therefore grew to love music, collecting records that I was able to put on as a child and playing it.
My parents recall me jumping off the walls to The Collins Kids, and bringing a CD of The Stylistics so the whole class could lie down in rest time and listen to it in prep, because it would make me cry, haha. My mother’s family would put rembetika among other things on the speakers.
Who’s one of your musical heroes?
DOM: R. Stevie Moore changed my perspective on what music can do and what a musician can be. He was so unapologetic and so varied, always making, always acting on impulse and always doing it for himself.
ADAM: Elliott Smith is my favourite musician of all time. I grew up on him, my parents would always be listening and my dad would always be singing and playing his songs. I feel like he’s become part of me in some way. I love his vulnerability, truthfulness and talent.
ELOISE: I think the way that Arthur Russell made music was just incredible, seems like music would just be constantly coming out of him. Such a variety of styles as well.
What’s an album that’s helped shape you and what do you appreciate about it?
ADAM: I think that listening to Loveless for the first time really changed my view on how music can be made. I don’t think I was the same person after listening to it for the first time. I like how you feel like you’re falling slowly through the air and completely weightless.
DOM: Modern Lovers (S/T) was a big one. ‘Comedy’ in real music was something I hadn’t considered until I heard Jonathan Richman being a big dumb fool.
ATHINA: Betty Davis (1973). An unapologetic babe.
ELOISE: Donny Hathaway’s Live 1972 – ridiculously energetic music, being able to hear the audience so clearly be a part of the music is so captivating.
When and how did you come to pick up your instrument or use your voice?
ADAM: I started playing bass when I was in high school. I play guitar a bit too, but it didn’t speak to me as much. I used to de-tune my Dad’s old acoustic guitar and slap it to pretend I was flea at about 14, I think?
DOM: I did a lot of singing as a kid but when my voice broke I had an identity crisis, got disillusioned and ended up picking up the bass thinking it’d be easy…
ATHINA: I actually can’t remember, but I was always obsessed with singing. I’ve never been very technical when it comes to instruments or vocal training even though I participated in a couple high school things. I always wrote and sang for catharsis.
ELOISE: My older brother started learning electric guitar when I was a kid. As a younger sibling I think I got a bit jealous, and wanted to get better than him, so I did. Kind of sinister really.
Why is it important to you personally to make music?
ADAM: It’s strange, the more I think about it the more I’m not actually sure. I know it’s because I love music. It’s holds so much significance for me, not only because of the sound itself but the communities that you form. But I have a bit of trouble putting my finger on where the exact compulsion stems from. Maybe it’s because of how significant it has been to my family? I’ve grown up for it to feel like home.
DOM: I think sound as an art material is simply amazing. It’s got something to do with it being invisible yet physical and only describable through other senses (warm, bright, crunchy, smooth, etc.) Specifically with music, I really marvel at its capacity for defiance. Placing expression, sensation and presentness on a stage and collectivising people around an appreciation of those concepts is an incredibly powerful thing.
ATHINA: I also think it feels like home because of my upbringing. I don’t necessarily believe that I’m saving lives playing music. However, there is something very special about people coming together to dance, to share their sensitivities or their rage. To comment, question, find catharsis, or to escape. I don’t know what I’d do without it.
ELOISE: I think for me it’s just one of those things that there is nothing I would rather do. I can never get sick of playing with music.
Where’d the band name come from?
We thought it was funny how trendy it had become in Melbourne – such a talking point for everyone suddenly. Phonetically it’s quite satisfying to say too. It’s quite silly.
We’re excited Gut Health are releasing debut EP Electric Party Chrome Girl; what’s the story behind the title?
ADAM: Myka once misheard some lyrics that were ‘electric, kind of home grown.’ We all just thought it was very funny and became a little in-joke for us. The song isn’t even on the EP hahaha
How long have you been working on it?
DOM:Most of the songs were written in fits and bursts between lockdowns, with the recording happening mostly late last year. When we initially started recording, the aim was to make some demos just to hear ourselves back before the ‘real studio sesh’. We never ended up having the patience to do it all over again, plus the tracks didn’t sound so bad to begin with.
We’re premiering lead single ‘Inner Norm’; what’s it about?
ATHINA: Inner-Norm is a bit of a tongue-in-cheek, self-deprecating look at Naarm/Melbourne’s Inner North, observing how over time the self-identified ‘alternative’ residents begin to morph into what many northern resident’s proclaim as ‘normies’/normalcy. I’ve always struggled with the term ‘normie’ because it comes off as a little high-horse to me.
I think a lot of us, particularly young people, find ourselves trying to navigate where we fit in, how we fit the ‘mould’. Humans are strange creatures, we often have a desire to categorise ourselves and others on a surface level.
We love the song ‘Barbarella’ too; what inspired you to write it?
ATHINA: It is about Barbarella (1968), played by the icon Jane Fonda. Male gazey stuff aside, Jane Fonda is so sexy and I like to see her fighting evil while wearing amazing campy outfits. Maybe it’s a crush song to Jane Fonda, because she’s great, and her playing a superheroine just, like, tipped me over the edge. The song is based around the line in the script ‘Genius is Mysterious!’
The band self-recorded the EP in a storage facility in Brunswick; what do you remember most from recording?
DOM: We had a pretty small amount of equipment to record with so all the main elements were tracked pretty basic, but for some reason I went all out on the percussion day. I placed mics around the room in this huge stereo image, most of which was either summed to mono or just thrown out!
ADAM: I guess cause the storage units are all just concrete cubes, you can hear – in very intimate detail – every band’s sessions around us. There was a particular band right next to our room that was insanely loud. It seemed like they knew our calendar, and every time Dom and I went to do some of the more nitty gritty recording that required silence and concentration they decided it was a great time to start blasting their tracks. I really can’t emphasise more how loud it was.
Simon Maisch from Bitumen, OV PAIN, Telekninet, EYESØRES mastered it; what made you want to work with Simon?
ADAM: Simon was recommended to us by our friend Ferg (Laughing Gear/Romero) when we were toying with who should mix it. It just made total sense – I love Bitumen so much and everything he has mixed and mastered comes out amazingly.
We first fell in love with you band when we saw you play a show while we were in Naarm at the start of the year. What’s the best and worst shows you’ve played and what made it so?
ADAM: I dunno about best or worst, but we once played this little doof/party over New Years in Torquay. We were planning on driving up with a fill in drummer George, as Myka wasn’t available, and had our gear packed and ready to go. After we had packed everything the next day and were about to leave, George messaged us saying they were a close contact so we were kinda just stuck with all our gear. We decided to drive up anyway with everything and see what happens and party regardless.
We ended up rocking up and the guy who was running it was trying to convince us to play anyway, and introduced us to this drummer Luke. I was pretty nervous and apprehensive of improvising, but we decided to agree to it anyway without ever having played music with this guy. It was a bit awkward at first when I met him, then we smoked a bit and had a big skate and threw ourselves around and bonded quite a bit.
We decided we were going to do a Pittsburgh show (short for The Pittsburgh Enlightenment Experience) the name is a whole different story, but the short of it is that me and some friends did an improv show once under that moniker at the Coburg RSL, we call improvised sets ‘Pittsburgh shows’ now. Anyway, the show went off, it was super fun and I think we all got closer from the experience.
Playing at last week for Dr Sure / Bench Press recently was also a really fun time. We also had heaps of fun playing with Screensaver and Loose Fit – such a lovely and talented crew.
What have you been listening to, reading or watching lately?
ADAM: I’ve been listening to a lot of DJ Screw recently. I can’t seem to stop, it’s hypnotising.
DOM: I’ve been obsessed with this polish no-wave band Atol Atol Atol. It sounds like someone live-dubbed the universe collapsing in on itself.
ATHINA: Last film I watched was The Worst Person in the World. I found Nina Hagen’s New York New York album when I was away, so whacky wild and fun! It was produced by Giorgio Moroder.
ELOISE: I’m embarrassingly late to watching Squid Game. It’s great. I’ve been listening to a bit of Gang of Four this week as well.
When not doing Gut Health-related things, what can we find you doing?
ATHINA: Making films, eating bagels, and watching Rocky Horror.
ADAM: Playing RPGs and listening to Silmarillion audio books.
ELOISE:Probably in a pool, or in line to pay for a pastry and coffee that is a bit out of my budget.
We’ve been excited about Naarm six-piece, Phil and The Tiles, since we saw live footage of their debut show late last year at a DIY punk gig held in drains in Moone Ponds supporting Gimmie favs, Enzyme and Alien Nosejob.
Phil & The Tiles play exhilarating punk that borrows from garage-rock and new wave. Today we’re premiering their first single ‘Nun’s Dream’ from a forthcoming EP S/T 7” release on Anti Fade Records. Guitarists Hattie and Reilly tell us about the band, their music, fun shows they’ve played, and about what they’re listening to.
What first ignited your passion for music?
HATTIE: School of Rock.
REILLY: My mum bought my sister some guitar lessons and she didn’t want to go, so I did them instead!
What’s an album that really had a big impact on you and what do you appreciate about it?
HATTIE: Unknown Pleasures [Joy Division]. It made me realise I didn’t have to be that good at an instrument to make good songs.
REILLY: There’s heaps, but probably listening to Primary Colours after I saw Eddy Current at Big Day Out when I was like 14, put me on the right track music-wise I think!
Which bands, albums or songs have you been listening to most lately?
HATTIE: ‘Boys’ by U.S. Girls, Snow on the Sahara by Anggun, and ‘I’m on Fire’ Electrelane cover.
REILLY: Been pumping Combat Rock by The Clash. CIRCUS ST from Cloud Ice 9. Rock and Roll by Charlie Feathers. The second Durutti Column album all been on heavy rotation.
How did you first meet each other?
HATTIE: Met Reilly and Powelly at parties, they introduced me to Andre, we were all playing together for a bit. I met Reef through Reilly at Meredith. Reef, Reilly and I made some darkwave stuff. Met Charlotte through Reef at the Northcote Bowls Club.
REILLY: Me, Powelly and Andre used to play in a fuzz band in high school, that we still have phone recordings of somewhere. Hattie and I met at parties. The first two times I met Reef he was on acid, we started hanging after I saw him try to stage dive at a UV Race show with Powelly and nobody caught him. I met Charlotte at Reef’s house.
Phil & The Tiles got together in 2019; what brought the band together?
HATTIE: Phil the house cat.
REILLY: We were jamming before then at my old house in Mordialloc doing minimal-synth post-punk stuff, but that sort of fizzed out. We moved it to Hattie’s garage, got our mate Eli to drum and it caught a second wind. We’ve had a few different lineups and reshuffles since then.
Who’s the funniest person in the band and what’s the last funny thing they said or did?
HATTIE: Reef thought it was his birthday next weekend, but it’s actually two months away.
REILLY: Andre’s just suggested we do socks on cocks for our launch like the Red Hot Chili Peppers.
What was the first song you wrote together? How do Phil & The Tiles’ songs usually come together?
HATTIE: ‘Health/Body’. Someone usually comes in with one or two parts already written, then we play it a bunch and write each part over the top.
REILLY: Yeah, ‘Health/Body’. We did a cover of ‘Stuck On You’ by Sardine V as well. Usually, someone comes to the group with a riff and we go from there.
What’s your favourite song from the EP and what’s it about?
HATTIE: ‘Nun’s Dream’; sex.
REILLY: ‘Nun’s Dream’ is actually about going to a Catholic school.
What did you love about the process making the EP?
HATTIE: Adding the backup vocals and vibraslap.
REILLY: Cheers to King Gizzard for letting us use their egg shaker thingo while they were away! Also, massive cheers to Lewis for bringing the other slab!
Phil & The Tiles have played a few shows this year including gigs with Civic, Research Reactor Corp, Ouzo!, Future Suck, Shove and The Shifters; what’s been the best or worst show you’ve played and what made it so?
HATTIE: Playing with Civic is always fun, they bring a big and rowdy crowd.
REILLY: Our first show in the drains supporting Enzyme was psycho. We played before Alien Nosejob, four hours later than we were meant to, because they couldn’t start the generator. We’ll probably never have that many studded leather jackets at one of our shows ever again. Cheers to Reis from happytapes for filming it!
Have you ever stuffed up anything when playing live?
HATTIE: No comment.
REILLY: Every single time.
When not making music what could we find you doing? What’s your day job?
HATTIE: Studying and teaching kids about dinosaurs, but Centrelink is where I make the real money.
REILLY: I build mini golf courses and laser tag arenas.
What are you looking forward to at the moment?
HATTIE: Seeing Reilly’s art in the flesh on our 7” cover.
REILLY: Extra public holiday for the dead Queen is alright, they should kill a royal every year!