Currently in the middle of an east coast tour, Lazy Colts are being anything but. With Melbourne dates under their belt, fans can still catch the group as they take Trojan – their debut LP – for a run across Canberra, Brisbane and Sydney.
Their new single Twenty Two, is, you guessed, about relationships formed at that age and the filmclip features Sydney-based model Evelina Milward. Frontman Lacey Cole chatted to me recently about life, love and lyrics and what exactly 'cinematic rock n' roll' means:
Trojan National Tour. We're all in the kind of position where we can't give up our desk jobs for a month long stint, so we kind've organised the tour so we can go away for weekends, play in other states and come back to work for a Monday.
The band in this form has been together for two years – from the point we started working on this group of songs that we are touring. The idea was always, "ohhh, it would be great to play in Melbourne, Brisbane ... all these cities where so many of the band had played in other bands, but, we hadn't got around to it. We were focusing a lot on actually recording the album which was keeping us a little homebound.
And then once we had finished that, it was always like, "okay, we have a full product of what is a good representation of what we can do on stage. We should put the two together and take it on the road and celebrate that we got our stuff together and recorded this thing!"
Production of the songs.
It came together from just playing six songs on the album we were working on. Our violin player had this whole bunch of really lovely recordings and we had the luxury of recording in this big stone church, right around the corner from where two of us live in Glebe, Sydney.
We were like, "we should set up the mikes in here" – which is a set up I'd done for a bigger solo I'd released with a bigger engineer and producer – "and we'll just record the drums in here and the bass. Then, we'll go to our piano player's house in Richmond and then we'll record the baby grand piano" and ... all these grand ideas of what it will be like!
It can be tough recording over a sporadic period of time because you lose momentum. You start to hear the song and the song starts evolving beyond what you intended. The final two songs that made the album, was just me sitting in front of a microphone and starting to play with Sinj, our piano player. They are the two more quiet, I guess down-tempo songs on the album. They just kind of happened sporadically, which is really nice because they have that spontaneity that the album started to lack when we stretched out the album.
That is what is wonderful about recording in non-traditional spaces, it gives the actual sonic element of the album a personality, it is something you can't really fake. Our bedroom is our rehearsal space, it has that tangibility so you say, "this sounds really different". Some of the textures are kind of weird, but it's nice to have an album which sounds like it is a collection of songs from a space in time.
Lazy Colts band members.
The five of us have been playing together for two years. Beyond that, I'd been playing solo in Sydney since my early 20's, for about eight or nine years or so. Over that course of time, you meet people; and I've played with a whole range of people – friends that I grew up with that I just loved hanging out with and playing with, and others you just meet kind of randomly at pubs, or parties or mutual friends. Every single person (in the band) was met differently over different periods of time.
When it came to the group there was just two of us and we were like, "we need a guitarist or a multi-instrumentalist". It just so happened I had already played with Craig – who is an amazing drummer – one of the real like, solid members of the band. When you hear our music style, it is very dependant on his musicality, and then Michael who plays violin, which was an absolute bolt from the blue. To find him – a talented violinist – and such an interesting texture to contribute; those two guys are so influential on what the band now sounds like.
Although I've played with Craig many times over the last ten years, when we came together it's really exciting thing to hear. To see sounds starting to work together and all these very different people in a car crash together, trying to find a middle ground they are happy with. You couldn't take us all to a concert of one members band, because one member will surely hate them, y'know!
Making it work.
It stops you from becoming too much like your influences, because you are always pulled in a different direction. It's wonderful when someone comes up they tell you you sound like someone you've never heard of, and then you find out it is your bass players favourite band! And you are like, "you have been doing this all along!" It is cool and exciting and a wonderful way to work.
I bring the songs at a real bare bones stage to the boys they kind of turn it into something I barely even recognise which is sometimes kind of confronting. I'm like, is my song bad? Trust is built, you start to own the song together and look for each other's input, and that is the wonderful thing. It's definitely something we have discovered working together.
Cinematic Rock N Roll.
I studied film and I work in the film industry. One of my biggest inspirations is movies and it's funny; the single 'Twenty Two' is kind of a reflection on a relationship I had on that time of my life. I remember even as a young guy take my cues from how to live out reality from things like film, and turn my life and those around me into something no-one really wanted – a need for melodrama, or this romantic comedy, the main calling card of everyday existence which is something I have thankfully grown out of!
Musically, there is such cinematic elements in the music. The wonderful synth noises that Sinj conjures up – a kind of sci-fi element, then you have the strings which is kind of this country element and then Craig's style which is very moody and kind of rhythmic – you start drawing these textures which are more visual than something you might've heard somewhere else.
The songs on Trojan.
We have been sitting with these songs for about two years or so. They kind've feel like the kids that have stuck around the home for so long! We'll be glad to see them out there and focus on what makes us such a different sounding band, while trying to introduce some other elements to our music – a better pop sensibility or, something that doesn't go down so funeral dirge, which is our natural (default) if we don't watch ourselves, we kind of go to a heavy, dramatic place!
LAZY COLTS 'TROJAN' NATIONAL TOUR
SAT 13 AUG | SANCHO's DIRTY LAUNDRY, CANBERRA | 18
SAT 20 AUG | THE BEARDED LADY, BRISBANE | 18
SAT 27 AUG | FRANKS WILD YEARS, THIRROUL | ALL AGES
SUN 28 AUG | THE OXFORD CIRCUS, SYDNEY | 18
Tickets available from www.moshtix.com.au | 1300 GET TIX | All Moshtix Outlets