Archive for the ‘Earthless’ Category

Two Minutes With Fuck The Fitzroy Doom Scene

Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

Before they open proceedings for Earthless and Elder at the Corner on Saturday October 24, we spend a couple of minutes with Melbourne’s doom revellers Fuck the Fitzroy Doom Scene.

Describe your music in five words or less.
Birth. Life. Love. Death. Peace..

What’s going on in the world of Fuck the Fitzroy Doom Scene?
About to embark on our second album recording. The plan is to track, mix and master ourselves, all on tape… Here’s Dave with the gig updates: “We’re Supporting Elder and Earthless on their Melbourne Show!” Pretty stoked!

What motivates you to make music?
Life seems to pile up in the subconscious and spew out through music. It’s cheaper than a shrink ;) . But only just.

What have been the high and low points of your musical experiences so far?
The first record is something we are immensely proud of and the Boogie Festival show was very special. There was a blood red moon rising up over the crowd as we played — that place just rocks!
The low point was nearly driving our car off a cliff in dense fog at a Mt. Hotham show but even that was fun. P.S. Luke, you’re designated driver from now on ;-) .

What music are you listening to at the moment?
Apart from our phone demos: Down, Mad Season… Lots of live and local stuff including Magic Mountain Band… also Elder’s Lore! Luke’s griming on the Mark Ronson/Mystikal collaboration, Feels Explicit. Ali’s car radio is tuned to ABC Classical for late cruising.

If you were stranded on a desert island, which member of the band would get eaten first?
Dave. His hair smells scrumptious.

Here’s an opportunity to bitch about something, whether music related or not. What really pisses you off?
Dave’s hair in my teeth.

You’re putting together your perfect gig featuring Australian artists. Who would you get to play and where? Feel free to include acts/DJs/bands/venues that no longer exist.
In no particular order:
Bon Scott w/ AC/DC, Fraternity, Madder Lake, ’80’s-Midnight Oil, EasyBeats, Daddy Cool, The Purple Hearts, The Birthday Party, The Scientists, The Church, Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu, Master’s Apprentices, Billy Thorpe and the Aztecs, Chain, Buffalo, Dragon, The Dirty Three, Pirana, The Zoot, GutterSnipes, The Missing Links, The Drones & Frantic Toss… All at the Espy Front Bar for $5!

Fuck the Fitzroy Doom Scene support Earthless and Elder at the Corner Hotel in Melbourne this Saturday October 24. Tickets are on sale now through

Interview: Earthless

Monday, October 19th, 2015

Earthless weave dreams. Reaching the limits of what three human beings can achieve with a guitar, a bass and a set of drums, the California trio have carved a sonic palette the size of the Mojave desert with blistering guitars, inimitable grooves and an allegiance to the might of the riff. Here, on the week of their upcoming Australia tour with Elder, guitarist Isaiah Mitchell talks intuition, religion and playing on the fly.

Matthew Tomich: Earthless has been operating for almost a decade and a half now with the same three members, which is a pretty rare feat. How have you guys kept it together so well over the years?

Isaiah Mitchell: I don’t know. We just kind of do stuff on our own terms, I guess. Not overdoing it. If we can’t do something, we won’t do it. We all got along before we were in a band – Mike and Mario were friends and I was good friends with Mike. I knew Mario – we all came from the same town and knew each other. It’s easy. They’re easy going guys. I think the three of us are easy going for the most part, about playing music and everything. No assholes in the band or anything like that.

MT: Does the dynamic still kind of evolve now you’ve been playing together so long? Do you still find ways to surprise each other?

IM: It seems like there’s clearly the same formula to everything in the past couple of albums. I think we’re just getting better at listening to each other. I think we’re getting a lot more dynamic about feeling what each other’s going to do. I’d say that’s definitely it – being a little bit more intuitive with how someone’s going to react to something someone else does.

MT: I’ve read you talk about intuition a lot. How long did it take to come to that level where you felt you could read each other well and allow yourself to improve in a live setting from that?

IM: I think it happened pretty quick. They’re great musicians, so if you’re a good musician, you can play by feeling instead of being extremely mathematical about it. That stuff is already there and finding like-minded people that maybe come from the same place – it came pretty quick. It wasn’t this difficult thing, which is why we keep doing what we’re doing. I don’t know. When I hear other bands that do that, it’s like I really like that band because I can tell they’re kind of getting into the jazz a little or something, I don’t know, just being intuitive. Not saying we’re exactly like that, but just that feel and intuitiveness.

MT: Do you reach that similar level of intuition with the other players in Golden Void or any of your other projects?

IM: Yeah. I’d say so because the drummer and I, we were in our very first band together. I know him really well. In junior high school we were in bands, so I know him pretty damn good. I know what he’s going to think about. You can communicate with a look, and if you work something out in a practice space, same with Earthless – OK we’ll go this long, then do this fill to move to the next part, this riff to move to the next part – I feel like we gel really well and we take our live performance on a little trip sometimes.

MT: Does that mean you guys don’t really put together strict set lists? Do you kind of leave a lot of room to feel how the set’s going so you have different directions you can take it?

IM: Yeah, sure. We do that. Are you talking about Golden Void?

MT: With Earthless, mainly.

IM: Yeah, of course. We know what we’re always doing. We talk about it beforehand but there’ll be times when we do something – if we’re in the middle of a part that we know is going to be a long, drawn out section where we’re mainly improvising — that’s always spontaneous and we don’t talk about that. Sometimes we’ve taken it to really weird places, which is awesome. It’s invigorating. Sometimes we kind of stick to what we’re used to and somewhat planned out. It just depends on the night.

MT: I’ve been talking to a lot of people lately about the link between spirituality and music and how certain genres – usually the ones that break away from the pop song structure like doom metal or post-rock or psych – work to fill this psychic void that non-religious people have. What’s your experience with religion and faith – did you have a religious upbringing?

IM: Not really. My parents are groovy, I know that much. They were brought up going to Catholic church or some Christian church or whatever. One of the two. They didn’t force it on me. It’s something that I was just by myself a little drawn towards and interested in. I got really into Buddhism for a long time, meditating and all that. I definitely spent a good portion of my youth really involved in that. Playing music and being involved in religion and mediation and all that, it really goes hand in hand.

MT: Are you still practising that – do you still consider yourself a practitioner of a particular belief or faith system?

IM: I mean, I don’t know. A lot of it is just golden rule kind of stuff. Just treat people great. Treat them vas you’d like to be treated. But no, I don’t really immerse myself in reading religious texts all the time. Actually, more so Native American ideas and the spirituality of that, I’m really into that lately, so I guess that counts. But just trying to be more in harmony with the Earth and yourself. It’s just like a daily thing. I don’t really think about it too much all the time unless I’m reading about it.

MT: The reason I ask is because in the live footage I’ve seen of you guys, there’s that sense of something ephemeral going on – you’re locked into some kind of immaterial groove and you’re not just playing music but conjuring it. I know that sounds kind of cheesy but do you know what I mean? Does that reflect how it feels for you?

IM: Yeah. There are times when it feels like I’ve gone to a different place. I might not be feeling very good – I might be upset or I might be sick or I might be in pain or whatever, and then you go play music, play a show, even rehearsal — it all stops. All that stuff stops. You’re just in the moment and you don’t feel any of that pain any more. But as soon as you stop you’re like, “oh shit, here I am again. There it is.” So it definitely takes that stuff away for me.

MT: What’s the status on a new Earthless album? Are there songs in the works? Is there a rough timeline for anything?

IM: Yeah. Last time we got together, we had to record something for a Vans surf video so we ended up writing a few songs for that. But we had a bunch of leftover stuff that we didn’t use for that. Last time we rehearsed, which was maybe a month or so ago, we were focusing more on that. I feel like we probably have half a side of a record, more or less, started. We just have to hone and tighten stuff up. We’ve got stuff in the works.

MT: Will you be playing any of that newer, unreleased stuff while you’re over here?

IM: I don’t think so, but you never know. We might play something new. It’s hard to say. I think it was two times ago when we were in Australia, we did an in-store at Tym’s Guitars in Brisbane. We were waiting for Mario – he was out in the back or something – and I just started to jam and he got on the drums and that’s how he opened the set and we thought that was really awesome. It was something totally brand new and we just played that for the rest of the tour and that became “Uluru Rock” which we recorded. Stuff like that happens – we just start doing something out of the blue and that becomes a new song right there. But I mean, that’s quite possible that that’ll happen again. But yeah, nothing planned. Nothing planned right now.

Earthless and Elder hit Australia next week on the following dates:

Thursday October 22 — The Rosemount Hotel, Perth
w/ Puck
Friday October 23 — The Corner, Melbourne
w/ Fuck the Fitzroy Doom Scene
Saturday October 24 — Newtown Social Club, Sydney
w/ Hawkmoth
Sunday October 25 — Hermann’s Bar, Sydney
Monday October 26 — Crowbar, Brisbane
w/ Hobo Magic

Tickets are on sale now through, Oztix and venue outlets.

Two Minutes With AVER

Thursday, October 15th, 2015

Before they join Elder and Earthless on one of the psych bills of the year at Hermann’s Bar in Sydney on October 25, we spend a couple of minutes with heavy, handsome lads of AVER.

Describe your music in five words or less.
Heavy psych. Three extra words.

What’s going on in the world of AVER?
We’ve recently signed with Ripple Music in the USA, who are putting our latest album, Nadir, out on vinyl. We’re in the process of recording a couple extra tracks for it at the moment so the whole thing will be a fairly beastly hour an twenty minutes or so over two vinyls. This has also given us an excuse to give in to our GAS (Gear Acquisition Syndrome) and spend far too much money of new noise making trinkets. Oh, and we’re organising a tour overseas next year.

What motivates you to make music?
That’s a tough one. After you’ve been doing it for long enough the question of “why” sort of becomes alien. It’s just part of your routine like eating breakfast. Or sneaking a couple of beers immediately after breakfast. I guess the easiest answer is that it’s cathartic, meditative, and you’re hanging out with your mates while finding an outlet for your nervous energy.

What have been the high and low points of your musical experiences so far?
The high point has definitely been the love we’ve gotten online for our two albums. It’s weird being in this rinky-dink city (Sydney) that doesn’t have a lot going on in terms of a stoner/psych scene, but at the same being contacted by people all over the world about your album, asking when you’re coming, or just saying “hi”.

As for the low point? You’ve got to remember, we started this band in high school. That means we were using absolutely rubbish gear, with no rehearsal space. So we were all crammed into our drummer Chris’ bedroom. So imagine it’s the middle of summer, four sweaty teenagers crammed into a tiny bedroom with a drumkit, three amps and no air conditioning. It’s weird, whenever we get to spread out on stage and not have a guitar headstock inches from your face you get slightly agoraphobic. On the plus side, we’re pretty grateful for any less-than-terrible travelling or performing arrangements, so there’s that.

What music are you listening to at the moment?
Child and Comacozer, who we just had the pleasure of playing in Melbourne with. Also, Sahara Surfers’ new album which just came out and absolutely slays. We’re also in the middle of a Supertramp revival period. There just came a day where we were hanging out, and somehow Supertramp’s greatest hits ended up playing. And then again. And then every week. We’re pretty sure this is just something that happens to everyone naturally with age along with back aches, nose hair and not trusting teenagers.

If you were stranded on a desert island, which member of the band would get eaten first?
Jed (bass). He actually goes to the gym so he’s got some muscle on him, while the rest of us look like particularly neglected mops. Although this would most likely lead to our downfall as he’s probably the most prepared for a desert-island type scenario, whereas the rest of us would immediately regress to a state of child-like panic upon realising there’s no Wi-Fi.

Here’s an opportunity to bitch about something, whether music related or not. What really pisses you off?
Honestly? The live music venues in Sydney dying off. Every few months we end up losing another one. And there’s only so much blame you can try to level at people who move near venues and then suddenly discover that live music venues aren’t silent after 6PM every night. The truth is that it’s the mentality of a lot of people in this city to not bother seeing live music unless the band is already trendy and you gain some scene-points for being there, or they’re mates of the band. We just got back from Melbourne and people just went to gigs to see some music, places were packed at 3 in the afternoon. About 4000 people went to the last ever show at the Lansdowne in Sydney when it closed last month, as if they really cared, but where were they for the years before? People go on about how sad it is to lose all the iconic venues they never visit, and the dwindling of scenes they never support. These are usually the same people who think nothing of dropping 50 bucks in the pokies and spending a hundred bucks on cabs in a night, but being part of a scene and supporting live music is a bridge too far, and it brings my piss to a boil. Rant over.

You’re putting together your perfect gig featuring Australian artists. Who would you get to play and where? Feel free to include acts/DJs/bands/venues that no longer exist.
One more heavy show at the Annandale, loud enough to dislodge the new owners’ monocles into their daiquiris. Tumbleweed, Child, Comacozer, Kaleidoscope. And probably Savage Garden. Gotta have some sweet with the sour, y’know? Some yin with your yang. Some gin with your tonic. Some Simon with your Garfunkel.

AVER join Elder and Earthless at their second Sydney show on October 25 at Hermann’s Bar. Tickets on sale through