Interview: Strange Talk + MUST LISTEN: Young Hearts

Ever hear a collection of music from the same band and every song just makes you want to dance, express your feelings yet more importantly just enjoy life? Yes, well Strange Talk, which consists of Stephen Docker, Gerard Sidhu, Travis Constable and Gillan Gregory, are an Australian band whose music gives me that same incredible feeling. With the U.S. getting a slice of the cool synthpop Melbourne-based band, plus having released the new song Young Hearts and having their track Morning Sun featured on the hilarious film That Awkward Moment – wow, that’s a lot –  I got the chance to ask Strange Talk some important questions about their music and the difference between being in Australia and the U.S. 

For your album Cast Away, which was released in Australia last year, you wrote the songs at a friend’s farm and then at a beach house in Mount Martha, which when you think about the fact that your music is a mixture of indie dance, electropop and synthpop, you wouldn’t expect that music to be created there, was it easy to write the songs in those places? 

The best thing about the places we wrote in was the fact that there were no distractions, we could work around the clock, we could make as much noise as we wanted without having to worry about volume levels and it was a change from being within the same 4 walls of our home studio. It was just a nice change of scenery. We also had a whole lot of fun, which for us is more important than anything else.

For some bands it takes a while to find the sound that suits them, did it take you a while or were you able to straightaway understand what you wanted your music to be?

We didn’t think too much about the direction of this record. We had a rough idea of the elements we wanted to include but overall, each song evolved in its own way. Eventually, once we had a few songs written it set the wheels in motion for the rest of the record.

You have a new single called Young Hearts, which is this week’s MUST LISTEN, what’s the song about? What was the inspiration for it?

In a nutshell it’s about embracing Youth. It’s a song that everyone can relate to as we’ve all been there at some point. As a band, we’re now in our mid to the late 20s and it feels like yesterday that we were in school. How many people do you hear talking about “Where has time gone?” or “Do you remember when we…?” It’s also a view from us as adults. With the lyric “Grown Ups, what do they know?” it insinuates that today’s adults never quite understand the relevance or the changing times and ways of today’s youth.

The song’s being added to the upcoming North American release of your album Cast Away, which when you released the debut album in Australia last year, Young Hearts wasn’t featured on it. So what can fans that have heard your music style before expect from this new track?

Stylistically we wanted to keep it similar to that of the Album as we wanted an extra song for the US release. Having said that, I think it definitely shows a development in our song-writing.

With Young Hearts being a new addition to the album was it quite difficult as a band to get back into making new music again? As the rest of the music from the U.S. album is the same as before.

Funnily enough it wasn’t. We never really see making music as a chore or something that we “have” to do. It’s something we love doing and something we can’t get enough of. The first demo for Young Hearts was written in about four hours. It was co-written with an amazingly talented songwriter Marius Moga. I remember turning up to his house with a few instrumental ideas who were passed onto me from a friend back from Lionel Towers, and within 4 hours we wrote the song.

How has promoting the album in the U.S. been different to when you released it in Australia? Because you did another video for the single Climbing Walls for the U.S.

It’s been an amazing experience so far, and a very different one at that. In Australia, you can achieve a complete countries worth of promo in one or two long days, whereas the US is so big that you can put a couple of weeks hard work of promo in and you’ve only reached a quarter or half of the country. It’s definitely been great to see a big part of the U.S.

Here is the Australian music video version of Climbing Walls (I especially love it where all of a sudden colours starts flashing in front of you and you then see dancers simultaneously dance together):

And here is the U.S. music video version of Climbing Walls:

Out of the two videos for Climbing Walls, which do you prefer?

I’m going to be diplomatic with this one and say both. They’re both so different that I still haven’t been able to choose my preference.

And your track Morning Sun is featured in the new film That Awkward Moment, which stars Zac Efron. That’s pretty exciting and I guess that has an impact too?

Yeah it’s our first movie Sync, which I’m sure is always an exciting thing for any band/artist. We’ve noticed a few comments on the social medias about hearing the song during the film.

Have you seen That Awkward Moment yet?

I’m not sure it’s been released in Australia yet but I’m dying to see it.

And out of the songs from Cast Away, which is your favourite to perform live on stage in front of everyone and why?

Climbing Walls. It’s just a lot of fun to play and because we’ve had a bit of airplay for that sone people always love to sing along.

What are the plans for the rest of 2014?

At this stage, we’re locking in a whole lot of touring plans for the U.S. Furthermore, the release of Cast Away, and no doubt we’re definitely going to be continuing to write new songs, which with any luck we will have enough demo’s before the year out for album #2

Thanks Strange Talk for taking the time out to answer the questions. These guys are incredible so if you want to find out more about Strange Talk and their amazing music then go on their Facebook page here. And on Twitter here. Or for more of their music head to their SoundCloud page here.

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