Strangers From Now On | Interview

December 4, 2013

Strangers From Now On are a 4 piece alt-rock band from my hometown of Melbourne. Bassist Dan Myles sat down for a chat about the band, the music and everything in between on the eve of their December 5th show in Melbourne at Boney.

Who are Strangers From Now On?
Ex-lovers who left things irresolvable, the person next to you on the tram, awkward one night stands, old friends that fall by the wayside, the jerk from the bar last weekend, the people you meet traveling and never see again. Either way… an odd name for a band

Describe your music in a tweet
One of our first reviews described as us as an “androgynous, neurotic sex-pot in a world of sleaze.” More or less appropriate…
How was the experience of recording your EP? 
The first EP was recorded some time ago, at the time we only had the money for half a day in a studio. In the end some of the tracking was done in Gab’s garage, some warehouse in Footscray and with Mic Letho at his home studio in Elsternwick. Mic was fantastic and really patient in running us through the mixing process, which was a first for me at the time. We were really very lucky to have his help on it and he managed to create something out of such piecemeal tracks.

We have actually just finished recording our second EP a few weeks ago. This time around we had worked hard to get the resources for more studio time which made a real difference. We were also keen to work with a producer throughout the whole process and got in touch with Lindsay Gravina at Birdland studios.

Having the time to work through some the songs in the studio and transform them a little with Lindsay allowed us to squeeze a little more life out of them. There were a few moments of surprise as old and new tracks came out sounding better than you had expected. We had a week of tracking and then a couple of days mixing, though a lot of the work behind a recording comes in the weeks before you get into the thick of recording. There are a number of tracks in their from our recent live set, but we also put two new ones together in the weeks leading up to recording. It’s set for a release early next year, it will be exciting to move past the first EP and on to new things!
Credit: Amy Walker
Tell us about your song-writing process...
Our process usually begins at rehearsal just playing until something interesting starts to stick. Gab and Aidan have both been spending a lot more time tinkering with synths and that’s certainly changed the way the songs are coming out. We are spending more time in our bedrooms as Aidan fiddles with filters building the skeletons for songs and synth parts which we then all work on developing the song around. The newer stuff has come out of a lot of evenings like this.

As for the inspiration for the lyrical material you’d have to ask Gab to get the whole truth. But I think for him, like for a lot of writers, his lyrics are often abstractions of real life problems he has been experiencing. Thematically there is a focus on the darker aspects of sexual politics and human relationships; guilt and shame, dominance and submission, gluttony these sorts of things.

How long have you known each other? How did you all meet?
Some years now, we all met through mutual friends, gigs the usual sort of things. Miranda joined us after trying out for a mates band and we all became fast friends, we’ve traveled together and spend a fair bit of time with each other. We’re all pretty close these days.
Credit: Amy Walker
What should the audience expect from your live shows?
We all like to get a bit crazy, it’s a really positive way to blow off steam in a way that people seem to appreciate. We really enjoy dynamics, going from wild and loud to tense and quite, that sort of thing can be really effective in a live situation.

If you could ask for anything in your rider, what would it be? What do you currently ask for?
Usually it’s just a pint or two of whatever is on tap, nothing fancy. There’s this little cafe where we often all eat called Sonido, I’m sure we’d all be happy with an unlimited supply of their Arepas!

What music did you grow up listening to?
A generous helping of great Australian music Nick Cave, Rowland Howard and the Go-Betweens, more or less what you would expect listening to the first EP I guess. Then there’s your average Neil Young, Pixies kind of fare.

What music are you listening to right now?
I’ve been really enjoying the new Darkside album.

What’s next on the cards for Strangers From Now On?
We have our last Melbourne show for the year coming up on December 5th at Boney. We have some time off over summer before releasing our second EP early next year. It’s exciting, the new EP is a bit more restrained and moody than the last and it will be interesting to see if whatever audience we have will follow us on it. We are certainly ready for new things!

Where To Find Strangers From Now On

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