Ben Wright Smith

by the partae
Ben Wright Smith

This album is a collection of a bunch of creative phases for you, it seems – what does it mean for you to have this music packaged up in this way now?

I think the idea was just to release the album as we were making it. We wanted to keep touring and I just wanted to put new music out there too. It felt weird to be making stuff and having it sit there for a year or two. In the end we’d go in record four or five songs in a  row and then release it soon after. If anything I was more surprised that it actually felt like an album from start to finish when it was all done.

With regards to the new material on Echo Lodge, how does that music sit with you in terms of its significance now?

I really like those songs, although we’ve also not really had the chance to play much of the stuff from the rest of the album either as we’ve been on an enforced hiatus this way. We’ve just started playing shows and we’ve been playing a lot of the new songs. It’s been great to finally get the chance to perform them and reinvent them as we go.

It’s an ambitious thing to release music in this way – did you have any apprehension over the roll out?

I didn’t really think of it as ambitious. I’d just spent a bunch of time with the first record waiting and it bummed me out. I want to play the new songs as I made them. As a band it’s always  more fun to play the new songs we’ve just laid down. Recording wise we’re doing way more stuff at home now which means it’s easier to release music that way.

What does making music (the craft of it) mean to you now as we come off the back of 2020?

I think I appreciate it more than ever. Not being able to play for a while has been strange as most musicians have been doing this for as long as they can remember. We went into the studio to record some stuff recently and it was just so cool to play with the band again. I’ve been at some gigs just looking at the drummer of the band being like ‘Wow cool’ I forgot how fun it was to watch people do their thing.

You’ve been able to perform some shows recently, how were those experiences?

The shows were great and we’re hoping to play more. I think people are feeling the same way as I do, where these things we took for granted, cultural things like seeing a gig that now have a new feeling to them. It was so nice to see people coming out from the other side of 2020 and getting to chat at the shows as if we were just at a show again.

Being based in Victoria, how are you anticipating this year with regards to being able to bring your music to more stages as the year progresses?

I think at the moment we’re working on a new record so I think more than anything I just want to record new music and play more shows. We played in Castlemaine the other day but we’d love to play more anywhere that’ll have us. I’ve toured a lot around Australia and a lot in Victoria and there are places that we’d love to come back to, also of course going on some trips around the country too when we can.

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