It is with immense pride and anguish that Sadults bring you the first single from their upcoming album; ‘Walk the Boy’. PLEB is a song about the appeal of normalcy and the sweet sounds of Coldplay. Sad reacts only please.
Laith Tierney spoke with the band to see what the fuck is up.
It’s not easy being SADULTS. One member takes photos of buses to survive and the whole band is distracted by wanton lust for fellow Melbourne band ‘BOX CRUNCH”. You can’t help but wonder if things would have turned out this way, if they invested in bitcoin earlier.
Not everyone understands like they should. Most commonly they’re instructed by audiences to “play more punk songs”.
CONOR: We’re all about being positive in this band and we don’t endorse any antisocial or aggressive forms of art.
I’m not entirely sure if he’s taking the piss or not. But there’s certainly enough of that crap going around and Sadults should sure-as-shit have the freedom to explore any style and sound they want without the pressure to conform with anyone.
CONOR: Everybody in the band influences the sound and we aren’t trying to make any particular type of music, so we end up with a real mixed bunch of songs which inevitably means that people won’t necessarily like all of them. We sometimes get told that we should play more of this and less of that which we understand and appreciate to a certain degree, but I think we are only capable of playing what we like and what we want to play.
So, what got these guys started in music?
LILLI: When I first started it was to emulate my favourite wiggle, Anthony. That was like 10 years ago now so obviously, that’s changed a bit.
RORY: I first started playing music due to my fascination with the hypnotic rhythmic qualities of slap bass. I was amazed at how fast the technique can be performed and how intricate the patterns can be. I spent years obsessed with this technique and actually became a reasonably capable slap bassist. Unfortunately, none of the music I play now requires this ability, so I’ll always somewhat regret not spending those years refining more traditional techniques.
MATT: My Daddy was and still sort of is a musician, if you wanna call it that. So you could say that I got a lot of my inspiration and motivations off of him but was luckily never pushed like some nerd who plays the piano because their Daddy forced them to and they don’t actually want to play piano. Later I heard my mum’s boyfriend telling my brother that guitar would get him laid so learning the guitar shortly proceeded that. How’s that for motivation?
What brought the band together?
LILLI: I decided Sadults were the one pretty much straight after our first gig: we played a festival and Matt got a blood nose right before we went on stage. I don’t think anyone else really cared about it but I took joy from their apathy and had a blast.
Everyone except Conor went to high school together. The boys played in a band in school together and I guess always planned to play again sometime. Sadults started with Matt, Tully and me rehearsing at my parent’s house. Conor was always hanging around because we were banging so he just started playing too, then Rory came in like the sweet icing on a delicious cake.
It might seem like the band aren’t taking things too seriously, but take a closer look at you will begin to appreciate their nihilistic and self-depreciative brand of humour. The band seems to be fuelled by equal parts their Nihilism, disdain for others, sense of humour and their rejection of expectations.
TULLY: Yeah that sums us up pretty well really. We never take anything too seriously, which means we can really struggle to be sincere without being negative. But I think if we tried to take things too seriously we’d end up hating each other and breaking up, so it’s about trying to find that happy medium.
It’s a refreshing self-awareness in a climate of posturing wanker rock bands, besides the band expose some genuine motivators that most artists should be able to relate to.
CONOR: Music is a therapeutic outlet for my flaws, anxieties and inadequacies, the shame associated with my privileges, my fear of rejection and my hunger for attention. I’ve sacrificed so much to do this, and it gives me a reason to get out of bed. Music is cool and I want to make music and be cool.
TULLY: A good dose of self-hatred and anxiety keeps you in check. Without it, you blame others for your shortcomings. Always assume it is your fault, and that you are an oblivious asshole that everyone hates. People who feel comfortable with themselves should be feared and pitied.
It’s great to discover a band that has a mind and sound of its own. We couldn’t agree more with Connors statement about music being an outlet and holy shit, Tully; You just made our readers take a long hard fuckin’ look at themselves.
So with all these feelings swirling around in the head of this band, what are the subjects covered in their soon t0 be release album?
Tully: parasites, motivational speakers, love, worthlessness, inadequacy, ugliness, pain and cars. There’s a lot of whingy songs. a bunch of new ones and some old ones we just never released.
The new single ‘Pleb’ talks of settling down with a Coldplay fan. The very thought of it gives me the heeby-jeebies..but do they they speak from personal experience?
MATT: You have to listen to Pleb to answer that question, but yes, unfortunately, we all have dated Coldplay fans before. Rory actually does love Viva La Vida, and he’s definitely bangable, so there’s that.
Could life with a Coldplay fan be simpler than dating within Melbourne’s music scene?
MATT: In a way; it definitely would be for a while. It depends whether they play the trombone or not, that’s a massive factor for us.
The front cover of their album features a child on a leash and the image is repeated in their most recent photo shoot by Louis Rocketeer. It had me wondering if anyone in the band was actually kept on a leash as a child.
RORY: No, but by god we wish we had have; maybe we would be better adjusted and well behaved. There are so many of those kids around though, especially in Northland and Northcote plaza. The backpacks often have a bear attached to make them socially acceptable.
Looks like the album was mixed by a relation of Rory’s. What it like working in the studio with a family member?
Conor: Jordan is Rory’s brother, and they are both polar opposites and exactly the same. Watching them interact was hilarious for the rest of us. Jordan is just a more patient, beefcake version of Rory, and we were pretty lucky he was keen on recording us.
We have to remember that this isn’t a major label band, tracking in a million dollar recording studio. There is no cocktails and cocaine on a yahcts. They haven’t had their “big break” just yet, but who knows, right? For now, they are just trying to make ends meet, hoping for a big break. So what is life like for a SADULT?
MATT: Eat, sleep, rave, repeat. Buuuut raves stress me out because everyone else seems like they’re cooler than me and they look at me like they know it too.
I’m not a paranoid person but I KNOW that when I dance everyone is studying every movement I make and making little assessments on me.
so yeah, that was a bit of a lie but it sounded cool and that’s what it’s all about in the end.
We all have pretty shitty day jobs, make no money off gigs, waste whatever profits we make on partying, because we big dum dums.
RORY: I take photos of buses…I also work a few nights a week at RMIT libraries as a library officer. With a portion of this money I invest in a number of highly volatile assets, so that one day I may become extraordinarily rich. If this happened then I could quell my greatest fear of becoming trapped in a dead end job and slowly growing to resent my future family. A far more realistic aspiration would be to work in film and TV whilst playing some bass guitar on the side…
I get stressed about all my career choices and volatile crypto assets, interspersed with fleeting moments of happiness playing music with my friends. Right now I’m only working a couple of days a week and the lack of structure has been torturous. So my lifestyle is pretty hedonistic at the moment and I mostly fill my days with playing a very nice sounding Wurlitzer preset on my midi keyboard, shooting/editing videos for some extra income and going to the gym to fill in an extra hour when I feel lost and without structure. I’ve also been playing lots of Pool at the Preston hotel, although unfortunately they just got rid of their pool table so I guess I won’t be doing that anymore.
The Melbourne Music scene is one of, if not the healthiest in Australia. With a wide variety of rooms and a healthy alternative and left-leaning community, we were curious as to where exactly Sadults see themselves in the mix.
TULLY: Everybody is really progressive and I don’t tend to come across many people that think too differently to me. Having a conversation with someone that agrees with you is a lot like masturbating. Its harmless and it feels really good, but afterwards you sometimes feel a bit yucky. But sometimes, if you are lucky, you roll over and say “I am a super hero” and stare at ceiling.
CONOR: We’re just going through the motions. The songs are always being changed and rearranged, its always a struggle to get a good sound at gigs, we’re probably doing irreversible damage to our backs trying to carry more gear than we than our weak bohemian bodies can manage and we spend twice as much money as we make to do this but enduring this suffering is what makes me feel a sense of satisfaction. That and when the songs are sounding really good to me but even that is rare as I struggle to see past all the imperfections and appreciate it for what it is, which is arguably a healthy perspective.
RORY: Trying to figure out how to look like I don’t give an EF when I’m on stage when I inherently do. It’s a difficult thing, as they are both in direct contradiction of each other and the more attention you pay to appealing relaxed, the worse your anxieties become. For this reason, I often enjoy the smaller shows that the others hate, where you can just enjoy giving your bass a good pounding and not worry about judgement.
Do you feel a part of the Melbourne music community or a particular scene within it – or are you more outsiders ?
RORY: We are definitely the best band and therefore the kings of the Melbourne music scene. However, nobody else seems to understand that. There are a coupla bands who we’re really tight with, and we love going out to see different people play, but we’re not necessarily a part of any clique in particular.
Saying that kind of thing in Perth, would probably get you laughed out of town and tortured endlessly on facebook, but it’s probably gonna get SADULTS another gig and a round of beers bought for them in Melbourne. Even with their melted-plastic attitude, they’ve made some allies.
LILLI: BOX CRUNCH. We want to bang every member of the band and it gets distracting. They’re also just sick to watch in general so it’s a real hard act to follow. Matt also plays in BRAD POT and we’ve only played with them once or twice, but that’s sick because they’re way better than us and we can ride on their coat tails to success.
If you could turn back time and if you could find a way..what would would you do?
CONOR: I would tell myself to invest in bitcoin immediately, and just pour heaps of money into it. “Quit while you’re ahead idiot” I would say to myself.
We’re hoping that the time and energy SADULTS have invested in their music pays off bigger than bitcoin ever could.
SADULTS launch ‘WALK THE BOY’ on DECEMBER 23 at The Retreat Hotel. Supported by The Braves, Box Crunch and Julan Tuss.
event is here: https://www.facebook.com/events/1203814213095258/