New Zealand’s Kitsch have 7 releases and over 1000 shows on big and small stages over 20 years under their belts, they’ve retained their core members across that time, and are now set to release a new album titled ‘Plastic Lives‘. Due out this Friday 21st November through ElevenfiftySeven Records, the album can be pre-ordered on iTunes [Here]. The band joined forces once again with Andrew Buckton to record the album, and recently recruited Hadleigh Donald (The Bleeders / Cobra Khan) on guitar. To find out a little more about the release, the band answered our On The Record questions this week. Expand this post to take a read of their answers.


Tell us about the release title.
‘Plastic Lives’ was originally a song/song title I came up with whilst traveling around the world a few years back. It was an eyeopener of a trip to say the least, my first OE, and a lot of songs were written in that period. Upon return we started working on said songs and other new material and as the the batch of songs grew, and ‘Plastic Lives’ seemed like a perfect project name, and it has survived the whole process and is more than relevant now. ‘Plastic lives’ taps into modern states of mind, internet anonymity and global disruption, it comments on the rapidly changing information age and the recent development of online and offline personal identity and its effect on human civilization.

Tell us about the artwork.
John Crawford (father of Ben Crawford: guitar and vocals) took the photo independently, unrelated to our album, we saw it and loved it, and he kindly let us use the image. It fits with our intended theme of anonymity and mystery.

What format/s will it be released on and how will it be packaged?
Available digitally, and physical copies are in a super jewel case cd.

Who will it be released through, and when?
The album is available from 21/11 via ElevenfiftySeven records.

Tell us about the studio and why you chose to record there?
Studio 203, Symonds street, Auckland. This was the facility where we had recorded our previous 2 albums and 1 e.p. It has since closed sadly and our album was one of the last to come out of there.

Tell us about the producer / engineer and why you chose to record with them?
Andrew Buckton, is a long time friend and one hell of an engineer. We had recorded with him 3 times before this and were always impressed with the outcome. He agreed to our demands and pumped us out a product that met our expectations.

Did you go into the writing process with a clear direction in mind?
Focused and determined yes, but it took a while to get the cohesiveness required to achieve a clear goal. You never really know how things will sit in the final stages. We demoed over and over, but once Andrew got his hand in the mix, the depths were really brought to life!

Were you listening to anything in particular during the writing / recording process that influenced the songs at all?
Not really. I have a habit of writing music instead of sitting down and listening to lots of music.

Were there any albums you were referencing to aim for a certain type of sound production wise?
Not at all. We like to work things thoroughly ourselves without wanting to sound like anyone else. We really focused on improving on our previous releases, and showcasing our development as a band.



How long did you spend in the studio recording?
Approx 15 days tracking. And the mixing process was spread out over a few months.

Tell us a little about the recording process the band used?
We demo, then demo and demo again. Then in studio we multi-track each instrument.

Was this any different to previous processes you have used?
Our first album was live tracking (all playing in one room with amps isolated) with second guitar and vocals added. Both styles have merit, I find live tracking to be fun and energetic, but not as precise as multi tracking. Multi-tracking gives a little freedom with editing and fine tuning.

Any guests involved? if so, who.. and what did they do?
None on this album. We have in the past and its always fun. Especially when you get 20 guests in to do a “gang vocal”. My highlight for guest appearances was on “the Burning Ground” 2005 where we had a string quartet play an arrangement over some massive rock part and it brought tears to my eyes.

Any particular equipment outside your usual live gear used in the process?
A few extra guitar amps to really define the layers. Between a Marshall stack, Bogner stack and a Splawn stack, we had savage axe versatility to say the least.
I also used and promptly purchased a Darkglass B3K bass pedal.Thanks to Ryan Thomas at THE AMP SHOP.

Any memorable studio moments?
Its always fun but is always a blur. We try to cram as much in as we can in the time we have booked. If your not tracking your instrument your probably drinking beer and critiquing. I always find I recall the hard parts, maybe a bass run I struggled with for an hour, or blowing my voice on the last song, those kind of stressful moments.

Any additional tracks recorded that didn’t make the cut but may see the light of day sometime?
We decided to put all the tracks on the album. We may follow up with something new as we had a list of songs that didn’t make it to the studio which I see now as having potential for the future.

What track/s are you most looking forward to playing live?
Low Six is my favorite off the album. But to be honest I enjoy them all.

How would you compare the final product to previous releases?
Its a big step forward. Sonically it could be our best and personally I believe its my best song writing to date. With everyones input added, I think we have our best album so far.

Anything else you want to say or about the release?
Check it out & spread the word. We would love to tour Australia on this release in the not to distant future


KITSCH – ‘Plastic Lives
Available Friday 21st November on ElevenfiftySeven Records.
Order now on iTunes [Here] or physically [Here].

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