Perth’s Foxes are set to release their debut album, ‘Organic Vessels‘ on Friday 17th July through Firestarter Distribution.
The five-piece have a handful of years under their belt, over which time they’ve earned a reputation for their energetic live shows. They’ve done tours of their own, as well as warmed stages for the likes of mewithoutYou, La Dispute, Funeral For A Friend, and Senses Fail.
Now comes the time for the all important full length release, led by first single ‘Stomp the Earthworm,‘, for which a video clip was recently released. Check that out below amongst the interview.
The band have given us an advance stream to share of the release, give it a listen below while reading all about the album.
Catch them launching the album on Saturday 25th July at Amplifier Bar in Perth with guests Puck, Statues and Apollo Zen. $15 gets you in, or you can get the album + a ticket for $20.
Vinyl pre-orders can be had [Here] and CD [Here].
The album title came with the process of lyric writing. There was an ongoing theme of life, death, struggle and overcoming. Along with this, when we got our artwork back from David Delruelle, he had titled it “Life’s a funny game”, so it seemed like a nice idea to have something relatable to that piece he made for us. I don’t know how it sprung into our heads, but I think it may have had something to also do with watching too many sci-fi films.
“Cast Away Two: Return to the Island.” and “Prognosis Negative” also made the short list.
Tell us about the artwork.
A few years ago I was browsing the net and came across this collage style of artwork and fell in love with it. David Delruelle (an artist from Belgium who we ended up using), Jesse Treece and Michael Tunk all create these amazing landscapes and we knew we wanted to use at least one of them. We printed pages and pages out, but all of us were drawn the earth/beach scene by David that we ended up using. A friend of ours Rachel Unwin-Hatton ended up putting it all together and completely nailed the text we were going for.
What format/s will it be released on and how will it be packaged?
The CD is a 4-panel digipak. As usual we are releasing it on vinyl also through our UK label Dogknights Productions in two different colours. Cant wait until we have the vinyl in our hands and we can admire Davids and Rachaels work in the flesh.
Who will it be released through, and when?
It’ll be released through Firestarter Distribution in Australia, again with Dogknights doing the vinyl worldwide. But if Jay-Z wants to sign us to Roc-Nation, that’s cool.
Tell us about the studio and why you chose to record there?
Studio Sleepwalkers Dread is a little bit south of Mandurah, which is an hour and a bit from Perth. A bit of a trek, but it certainly makes us work because we know we have limited time. At least we thought it would.. The studio is kind of on a farm, so there are no distractions. Plus, if we get stressed we can race the studio dog, Milly or take the dingy out on the dam. Rons dad Phil also has a carpentry workshop next door to the studio. Being out there in the fresh air with no distractions, watching Phil work with natural materials definitely influenced us to keep things ‘real’ and not too perfect.
Tell us about the producer / engineer and why you chose to record with them?
Ron at Studio Sleepwalkers Dread really does get the best from us and makes sure we end up with the best products. Tells us to tone it back when we are being too self indulgent (always) or tells us to pick up our tone game if a riff isn’t sitting where it should. Ron plays in Tangled Thoughts of Leaving, a phenominal experimental post rock band. A band who I think employ the use of dynamics better than any band in the country. Having that kind of writing experience, input and vision really shaped the record I think.
Did you go into the writing process with a clear direction in mind?
Not at all. Write as heavy, soft, cheezy, experimental, ambient or dirty as we wanted. Don’t think we will ever do it any other way, theres no fun in that. That being said, I guess that could be a direction in itself. I still think the album somehow sounds co-hesive, but hearing blast beats and reverb laden Phil Collins-esque bridges on the same album could still sound a little out of the norm I guess.
Were you listening to anything in particular during the writing / recording process that influenced the songs at all?
Considering the writing process started in early 2012, I’ll have to scroll back. Artists such as Bon Iver, Sigur Ros, Black Sabbath, At The Drive In, mewithoutyou and Pink Floyd definitely remained a constant source of inspiration throughout. Particularly bands with keys such like Bon Iver and Sigur Ros. Using two guitars to trying to replicate the feeling and warmth certain chords on piano give that are physically impossibly on one guitar without some sort of crazy tuning, was something we tried a few times. Then there were certain albums that one of us thrashed all week which seeped in to various parts. Like Mastodon. It’ll be obvious which one is the Mastodon riff…
Were there any albums you were referencing in the studio to aim for a certain type of sound production wise?
We all really liked the production on a few mewithoutyou albums by Brad Wood. We went in with that in mind, but while recording the parts, certain things sounded better going in a different direction, so we just did what suited best.
How long did you spend in the studio recording?
Too. Long. We need to be less pedantic. We started tracking Late January 2014 and finished probably about March this year. Writing started in early 2012.
Pretty standard I guess. Borrowed a heap of drums, a heap of amps, guitars and pedals, then went mentally insane while we tried tones for hours. A lot of double cabbing for the big boy riffs. We slept at Rons multiple nights after tracking days back to back. If it wasn’t for frequent games of nightcrawlers, we wouldn’t have made it through.
Was this any different to previous processes you have used?
We kept it pretty raw, live and basic on our 5 track. This time we went all out. Les Paul in to Mesa Boogie Triple Recwith the gain all the way up? Would usually sound heinous to us, but whatever, if it sounds big, lets do it. When you have 3 reverb pedals plugged into each other, there is no turning back. Vocals were pretty close to one take to keep it raw last time. This time we forced Shom to do as many as possible until he couldn’t talk. Which is a good thing because we’re all sick of hearing about what Brett Lee is doing on facebook from him.
Any guests involved? if so, who.. and what did they do?
Unfortunately not. If we had friends, we wouldn’t be a true emo band.
When it comes do naming the tracks, is there any particular approach or process to it all?
Our original process was to take the easy road and take some lyrics from the song and use that for a song title. This time we chose a different avenue and decided to play around with our words. We spent a lot of time naming these songs and mostly it was by throwing words around at each other which were sparked by the songs… we did this for months until we all finally agreed on everything.
Any particular equipment outside your usual live gear used in the process?
Heaps. Briggsy, who wasn’t in the band at the time but was down in the studio a lot has more gear than all of us combined. We borrowed a lot of his gear. A Dwarfcraft Shiva pedal, frequently called the worst pedal of all time, and a Earthquaker Rainbow machine for noise. A vintage Sovtek head that Briggsy bought for the last few weeks of recorded definitely made some of the cleaner parts sound perfect. I kept most of my guitar stuff through my Orange AD140 into a Sunn 4×12 as it was an unbeatable combo. The Sunn cab was owned by Drowning Horse who were also recording down there at the time.
Any memorable studio moments?
The idea of filming the show ‘Are you faster than a dog?’ popped up nearly every session. A spin off of ‘Are you smarter than a Fifth grader’. There’s still plans to do it, just gotta get the money from the government grant we applied for.
Any additional tracks recorded that didn’t make the cut but may see the light of day sometime?
Not in the studio, but there are atleast 20 sitting on computer and phone that could see the light of day again….but probably not. No one wants to hear us play wah solos again.
What track/s are you most looking forward to playing live?
We already play Post Utopia live sometimes and I don’t think I’ll get sick of it any time soon. It takes over 5 minutes to get to the end riff, but its always crushing and always worth it. If theres any riff to pump you up before you arm wrestle your dad, its that one.
How would you compare the final product to previous releases?
Other releases seem to have hints on what we have expanded on here. Psychedelica, stoner rock, Post Metal ect. We hinted at it in previous releases, this release we decided to come in nice and hot.
Anything else you want to say or about the release?
Buy it. We need money for a washing machine. Or if you download it, atleast come mill at the front of the stage \m/
1. Post Utopia
2. Cosmic Ballet
4. Albino Bambino
5. Humungous Fungus
6. Stomp the Earthworm
8. Big Ben
9. The Wind and the Wallow