What is your name and role within Allola?
Singer, producer and songwriter
Where are you currently based and what is the music scene like?
I am very lucky to have grown up here in Melbourne. We have a crazy live music scene where you can hit up a show almost any night of the week and discover new music. We have a great little community of female electronic artists as well which is so amazing to be a part of!
How did you first start playing music?
I was a classically trained singer and pianist from a young age and eventually moved into studying a Jazz and Contemporary vocal course at University. We had access to a lot of great production tools there and I would spend a lot of time in the studio making my own tunes.
How did Allola form?
I had gone through a period of writer’s block after completing my course. I found I was constantly writing piano ballad after piano ballad and this made me super frustrated. I picked up a drum machine one day and began experimenting with beats and this suddenly opened up a whole new world for me. I invested in a Roland synth which has a sequencing and recording feature built into it and I created a lot of my tracks using that in the beginning.
I had a gig opportunity with a band called “Tora” come up while I was in the middle of writing my setlist, and I had about 2 weeks to finalise half an hour worth of songs. The show went well…and that’s sort of where it all started!
What’s been happening recently?
I released my first single “High Horse” last November, which I worked on with an amazing US based producer (and now one of my best pals) Mark Eckert. It had an incredible response gaining airtime on Triple J and featured in the CHVRCHES episode of “If You Like” on Triple J Unearthed. Since then, Mark and I have been working on a bunch of new tracks which are set for release later this year.
On August 16 your new single ‘Carry’ will be released, what in influenced the sound and songwriting for this track?
“Carry” is an observation on how different people tackle mental health and how it effects those around them. I think it’s important to continue to encourage your mates to talk, listen without judgement and give them a little love.
How did you go about writing Carry?
I was listening to a lot of Broods at the time. There’s this really cool arpeggiator in the track “Hold the Line” off their Conscious record and I was vibing on that hard, so I layed down a few different sounds and took it from there. My producer had flown out to Melbourne to work on this track with me and we were writing the middle 8. I really liked the idea of having some uplifting vocal chants through this section so we spent a couple of hours recording this one vocal line sung from different areas in the room – we must have done at least 50 takes! Mark got back to the US to work on post prod and he suggested putting in the sax solo which I was totally down with! He got his mate Adrian Crutchfield in and he slayed the solo in 1 take. I later found out he had been the touring sax player in Prince’s band. I think that solo is my favorite moment of this track.
Where and when did you record?
We worked on this record in my home studio in Melbourne. In other words the tiny second room in my two bed apartment.
What instruments/programs did you use?
To form the basis of the track I used my Roland JD-Xi, the final track still features some of these sounds. Then we recorded through Ableton using a Roland Juno and a live tom to fill out some of the beats. The rest of the sounds mainly come from plug-ins on Ableton and there’s also a little live guitar in there too.
What do you have planned for Carry?
The track talks about that inward battle you can find yourself facing at times, that constant chatter in your mind telling you nasty things, creating unnecessary anxiety in your life. I hope people can listen to this if they’ve ever felt this way and just understand they are not alone and there are always people to talk to. I also hope people can have a little boogie with this one!
What did you most enjoy and find most challenging during the creation of Carry?
Creating this track was actually a very quick and painless process, all the sounds came together quite quickly and the vocals kinda just fell into place. I found adding all the small nuances and the finalisation of the track to be the most tricky, its a fine line between getting too messy with sounds, so we just had to make a call in the end of what to keep in there and what to get rid of. But super happy with the result!
What do you like to do away from music?
I love cooking! I find it really creative and I love eating delicious food so it’s a win win really.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
At the moment I am in love with this group Fickle Friends from the UK. They have such a sweet and fun vibe, you should definitely check them out!
What’s planned for the remainder of 2019 going into 2020?
There is another release on the cards but I can’t say when just yet, and a short tour planned for the end of the year, so stay posted.