What is your name and role within Totty?
My name is Max and I play bass along with Kell on guitar and Chris on drums.
Where are you currently based and what is the music scene like there?
We’re based in Wollongong and the music scene is definitely unique and going strong. There aren’t crazy amounts of people like in the bigger cities so a close knit community exists in the scene, with Rad Bar being the home base where you can easily pop in any night of the week and see something new.
How did you first start playing music?
I had my first introduction around age 14 or so where I bought and electric and pretended to rock out in my bedroom. I’d always listened to heaps of music but it just never seemed to translate into my ability. That guitar collected a lot of dust until me and Chris ended up living together years later, and him and my other housemates basically forced me to pick it back up and learn so that we could start a band.
How did Totty form?
We were all up in Newcastle one night playing shows with our previous bands, something must’ve clicked right because a few weeks later Kell and Chris were in the shed recording what would become the first Totty tracks.
You’ve recently released your EP Cut The Poppies, where and when did you record?
The songs were mostly recorded in the shed down at Kell’s mum’s house by Chris over a few months in late 2017, the drums were recorded at Rad Bar though cos the sound of the bar is so unique. We zoomed up to the Grove Studios for a couple of days to mix it all down too, that was nice, they’ve got a spa and everything.
What equipment and programs did you use?
Chris did all the recording with his assortment of gear he’s collected, notably (I’m pretty sure) the compressor is the same one used on the April Sun in Cuba song by Dragon! I think it was all chucked into Pro Tools.
Who did you work with on the EP?
Mostly it was all in band work, we would love to give a shout out to Jack Nigro up at the Grove Studios for being such a top dude and helping us out while we were up there.
What influenced the sound and songwriting for Cut The Poppies?
Primarily we tried to capture our live sound as best we could, the songwriting kind of just evolved over the months we spent locked inside Rad with the lights down and amps on.
Favourite track from Cut The Poppies and why?
For me it’s a tie between Ovaryt and Uncomfortable. Uncomfortable is such a driving and powerful song I can’t really explain but it’s sick. Ovaryt is heavy as fuck live and that makes it equal top for me.
Where can we listen/buy Cut The Poppies?
Cut The Poppies is all up on Spotify for a lil stream and you can buy it on Bandcamp if you want your very own special copy.
How do you usually go about writing songs?
Normally we’re in the Bar once a week, we’ll just bring riffs and stuff we’ve been working on at home and go from there.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
I’ve been listening to The Drones/Tropical Fuck Storm lately, completely obsessed.
You have a Australian tour coming up in July and August of 2018, what can we expect from these shows?
Loud amps, big smiles and as much energy and sweat as we can pull out of ourselves. I also hear rumours that our favourite doggy plush toys are coming for a ride?
How do you prepare for gigs?
Normally I just sleep as much as possible and try not to get too excited. Kell has a heaps nice bottle of lavender water or something so we all get a spray of that over the face to calm us down before performing, it’s the best.
What do you have planned for the remainder of 2018 going into 2019?
After tour we’ve got Bigsound in Brisbane, which is absolutely unbelievable that we’re being given that opportunity so early in our career, so we’re all heaps excited for that. I think there’s a cuppla exciting things going on in the background at the moment so you’ll all just have to wait and see.
What do you like to do outside of music?
Not too much that doesn’t include music, getting a beer with mates and playing video games is about it.
Favourite food and place to hangout?
Harry’s Café de Wheels – Hotdog de Wheels. Cannot be beat by anything in the world.