Tue. Oct 22nd, 2019

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Interview: Spiderbait

6 min read

Australian rock staple Spiderbait have recently made a triumphant return with the bands first album in close to a decade – 9 years to be precise. Though the music landscape has changed quite significantly since the last time we were presented with a new studio album from the trio, the bands new self-titled release contains a warm nostalgic quality yet fresh essence to bring us quickly up to speed with where the Aussie icons are at these days musically.

With the records success sweeping across the country, we caught up with Spiderbait guitarist Damian Whitty to talk about the new album, joining pop superstar P!ink on tour and the bands return to the forefront of Aussie rock. Here is what he had to tell us:

Brendon Veevers: The band have recently made a successful comeback with a couple of tracks, Straight Through The Sun and It’s Beautiful. How has the comeback gone for the band so far and did you expect the fan reaction to be as welcomed as it seems to have been so far?

Damian Whitty: It’s always exciting putting out a new record, and we can’t wait to start playing the new material live. The response from people has been really great so obviously we’re very happy about that.

Spiderbait - Self TitledBV: Spiderbait have been on a hiatus for the last 9 years. What have you all been up to in the time away from recording and touring together?

DW: I think the longest we’ve gone without doing a show was nine months back in 2006 so we’ve still been moderately active as a band although there have been no albums recorded and released. Kram has been busy doing solo stuff and Janet and I have been doing various things. It’s great to be releasing a Spiderbait record and to be working together again in the studio.

BV: You are gearing up for the release of your first album in almost a decade. Can you tell us a little about the record and what we might be able to expect from the new collection?

DW: Franc Tetaz who produced the record was fantastic to work with. It’s self titled and somehow feels like a celebration of 23 years together and a debut at the same time. I wouldn’t know where to start trying to describe the sound of it except to say that music that has influenced us both collectively and individually throughout our lives and career is pretty evident throughout. It’s all over the shop, as they say. We’ve often been described as eclectic and this album is no exception. It’s a Spiderbait record.

BV: Would you say that the tracks that you have released from the record so far are indicative of the rest of the album in terms of the style/sound?

DW: Yes and no and everything in between.

BV: Is there a track or tracks on the new record that resonates more with the band than others and if so, why?

DW: Each track is a world unto itself. There’s something about each track that illustrates the bands love of music and all of the joys that that can entail. Metal, pop, punk, etherial, moody etc…FUN!

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BV: What inspired you the most during the writing and recording process of the new album?

DW: We drew on so many influences working on this record. Anything went, but I’d say the most inspiring element was the simple fact that we were in the studio together again making our 7th album. It was a very special experience for us and working with Franc was just awesome. A lot of fun.

BV: What would you say at the key differences, if any, between your upcoming record and previous Spiderbait albums?

DW: Probably that it was written over a long period of time. About 3 years. And the fact that it’d been so many years since the last album. There was a lot to get through and that’s an area where Franc was invaluable. He was able to be objective and have some kind of game plan for achieving what we wanted to achieve. When the time came to begin recording there was a lot of material to be culled and his vision for making an interesting album that was inherently true to the band was vital.

BV: What about 2013 made it feel like the perfect time to launch a comeback?

DW: It just felt right.

BV: Were there any apprehensions about recording a new album and launching a comeback?

DW: I think in this industry any band that has managed to achieve any level of reasonable success, every record is a ‘comeback’. We’ve never had trouble coming up with material for an album. It was just simply time to do another album.

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BV: The band recently supported P!nk on her Truth About Love tour. How did that go?

DW: It was the last show of her tour so there was a real sense of occasion about the night. Also her birthday. It was a huge production and fun to be a part of.

BV: After so many years recording together, how do you keep things fresh for yourselves as a band? Are there any hobbies that the band like to indulge in?

DW: Everyone’s influences are changing all the time so it’s always interesting to see where we’re all at musically. I think the key is to keep things very free and to try to enjoy ourselves as much as possible in a friendly relaxed way, but to also keep things moving along and to push ourselves too.

BV: What do you think is the most fundamental thing to making a band who spend so much time together in the studio and on the road together work?

DW: Friendship, respect and humour….and a love of making music together.

BV: Will you be heading out on the road to promote the album at all during these last couple of months of the year or during 2014?

DW: At this stage we’re headlining a both the Queenscliff Music/Folk Festival (Saturday 23rd Nov) and Meredith Music Festival (Saturday 14th Dec).

BV: With Christmas and the New Year quickly approaching, does the band have any big plans for the festive season?

DW: Spending time with family. Outside of that-Janet likes to spend time working on her illustrations and various graphics mediums in her studio. Kram plays a lot of sport with his kids down at the beach. I like spending time in my music studio and swimming down at the pool and beach. We all like bikes too…it’s a country thing that we all still enjoy to this day. Summer means bikes, beaches and pools, exercise and acoustic guitars and laptops out on the garden swing!

Spiderbait’s new album Spiderbait is out now.

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