What is your name and role within Second Prize?
I’m Dave Rogers and I produced and played on the Second Prize record.
Where are you currently based and what is the music scene like there?
John and I are based in Melbourne. We’re not far away from each other in sense of distance, but the way the public transport works between where we live makes it feel like we’re in different cities.
Melbournians have always said we have the best music scene in the world, but last year we got proof: The Melbourne Live Music Census found that we had more live music venues per capita than any other city in the world.
How did you first start playing music?
I grew up with older cousins who were great guitar players. When we’d go away together at Easter, they’d be playing Boom Crash Opera songs by ear and I knew I needed that in my life.
What have you been working on recently?
We’ve been rehearsing the band up for the record launch which has been a nice challenge. We made the record with no regard to how we would play the songs live and let the songs grow in the studio. Sometimes we’re all looking at each other to see if someone has a spare hand to play a keyboard part that is suddenly important now that no one is playing it.
Your new album ‘The Heel Turn’ is out now, where and when did you record?
The foundation of the album was recorded in our drummer Dave Kleynjans’ basement. He’s collects vintage Ludwig drum kits and we recorded surrounded by them. We would rehearse an arrangement up, then hit record. It was a great way to work.
What programs/instruments did you use?
Aside from the usual array of Fenders, vintage and new, we used a bunch of different keyboards. I’ve moved away from softsynths lately – I don’t like working with MIDI because it stays editable and recording for me is about committing to an idea. There’s a Teenage Engineering OP-1 on a few songs, which has some seriously lo-fi synth engines but there’s a charm about it too. I picked up a Korg MS-20 in Japan during making the record so it’s here and there. My secret weapon is an old Roland MC 505. It’s a horrendously difficult to use production box that has amazing sounds buried in there.
Who did you with during the recording / production process?
It was John and I really. As far as the production goes, John is the foreign exchange student, I am the interpreter.
What or who influenced the sound and songwriting for the album?
John loves a whole bunch of stuff but I hear Grinderman, Pulp and Belle and Sebastian in these songs. As far as the production, we’re inspired by what Dave Fridmann does for the Flaming Lips as well as the marriage between distorted and clean sounds that Tchad Blake does.
What are your plans for ‘The Heel Turn’?
We’re excited to play some shows to celebrate the release. After that, it’s out of our hands. John has a heap of songs ready so I’m guessing we’ll start working on the next release
Who are you listening to at the moment?
I loved the Rostam album. His production is sublime. The Better Oblivion Community Center album is amazing. I saw Guided By Voices in LA at the end of last year and have been giving their new record, Zeppelin Over China, a good spin lately.
What do you like to do away from music?
I’m pretty passionate about games. Give me anything from the Shin Megami Tensie series and I’m happy.
Any secrets that you care to share?
I once threw up in a bin on Bourke St in front of a large group of friends. I hadn’t been drinking, which added to the mystery.
Favourite food and place to hangout?
Dexter or Noodle Kingdom, both on High St in Preston.
The Heel Turn is out and being launched on March 31 at The Workers Club with support from Magnets and Duke Batavia.