Where are you currently based?
Somewhere in Wellington, well, right now at work, but you’ll find me usually in my “office-turned-apartment” building in a rectangular room creating silly symphonies with whatever I have
How did you first start playing music?
If I knew, I’d tell you, but honestly for as long as I can remember I’ve just known how to play guitar and have always just loved music, I think I started writing when I was about 13, but again, it all gets blurry.
What’s been happening recently and how has your Covid experience been so far?
I’ve just been prepping for this debut LP, though most of the work is done now and I’ve gotten more of a chance to start working on the second. My Covid experience has actually been great! When we went into lockdown here I had everything set up to record the whole thing, no distractions, just me and the studio for a few weeks, then by the time it was over me and the band we’re ready to start playing, so I think I may have been one of the lucky few who managed to keep super occupied during these crazy f*cking times.
How did Voodoo Bloo come about?
I looked at a vape juice bottle. It spoke to me. I listened and carried out its wishes.
Your new single ‘Ha Ha Ok’ is out now from your forthcoming debut album ‘Jacobus’, what influenced the sound and songwriting for Ha Ha Ok and the album as a whole?
Ha Ha is a bit of a black sheep, in the sense that it’s influence does not stem from the same place as the rest of the LP, but I’d say it definitely still had some of the same bands I liked the sound of come into its creation, I like to specifically think of it as a marriage between early “Arctic Monkeys” and “Psychedelic Porn Crumpets” for it’s punk yet kinda groovy sound, but that’s just me.
How did you go about writing the music for your album Jacobus?
A lot of it started from lyrics I wrote while I was in Japan, everything sort of just spiralled out of nowhere in a very short amount of time, as I’d been documenting things I saw every day on my notes, and then when my friend passed while I was over there, I realised that I’d captured a single moment in my life before it even happened. Written down where I was, what I was up to, all the calm before the storm was there, then when I came home all I had to do was navigate the storm and to turn it into something really personal to me. Some of the actual songs were written before, or at least the tunes of them, then I just had to piece them all together, it was a jigsaw where every piece just fell into place with ease.
Where and when did you record/produce/master and who did you work with?
Jacobus was recorded at my house in the suburbs of Wellington, probably around April of this year. We spent a long time working on the production and sound of the album afterwards, but finally we ended up going with Scott Seabright, Ryan Smith, and Gregory Haver for Mixing, Mastering, and Mix advising respectively.
How did you approach the recording process?
This is a mixed bag, I think due to the fact that we had to record, re-record, and touch bits up so many times, but ultimately I just spent hours and hours in lockdown getting it to sound exactly how I wanted it. Some of the songs were prepped before I went in, others I had to figure out while in the studio, but for any time I sung or recorded a song that was about my mate (which is a majority of this project) I usually couldn’t stay in there for long as I just got overwhelmed by everything I felt towards him. It was cathartic yet painful, lovely yet bitter, yet it came out in a way that I could never have even dreamed for, it was the perfect send-off for a friend.
What programs/instruments did you use?
For the most part, it’s your standard 2 guitar, 1 bass, drums and vocals type deal, though I did chuck some synths and other cool trickery in the mix, some of which was done by the lovely production crew, but I’m still waiting for people to pick up on the theremin sample I used. It’s out there already, go look for it!
What did you find most challenging and rewarding during the creation of Jacobus?
Singing “A Brother, A Son, A War that never changes” and “A Friend, Jacobus”. I did the 11 minute trek in one take, and once it was over, I couldn’t bring myself to do it again. I showed my friends the takes because I wasn’t sure if my emotions came off as overdramatic, but they said it felt pure and honest, and ultimately I agreed, and there it sits as my dark and beautiful achievement.
When will you be releasing Jacobus?
December 4th, anywhere and everywhere, I think. Maybe not in starbucks or something? Though I reckon that’d be pretty cool.
Actually nah, Taco Bell, hit me up if you want these sweet tunes in your store exclusively. You make the pure hangover food I desire every Sunday. You know where to find me.
Can you give us an idea of what to expect from Jacobus?
No, but I can tell you how I’d like you to listen to it. 1. Lay down on your bed in your room with the lights off 2. Play the album 3. Return out into the light to a room full of friends.
What’s planned for the remainder of 2020 going into 2021?
I’d like to spend the remainder of 2020 forgetting about 2020, and for my 2021 to be renamed to 2020.
Any shows coming up?
We actually have a charity show coming up in our hometown with Miss June and Curlys Jewels, two of my favorite bands from the country, and all of the proceeds will be going to Lifeline Aotearoa, an organisation who help out heaps of kiwis daily struggling with mental health issues. It’ll be an awesome night for an awesome cause.
Who are you listening to at the moment?
King Gizzard’s new LP, King Gizzards old LP (Eyes Like The Sky, to be specific), and a whole bunch of midwest emo (with a little car seat headrest too).
I’m a sucker for some dude with an acoustic guitar talking about relationship issues from illinois.
What do you like to do away from music?
You’ve got me.
But nah seriously, just chilling with friends, oh and I love pinball, like I have a serious addiction to the sh*t. You’ll find me on my computer or down at my local coffee shop just, well, playing pinball.
Favourite food and place to hangout?
The food at the Coffee Shop I go to.