Daniel Clarke spoke with Tom from Celadore about recording in a beach house on the coast of Victoria and what its like being on the road.
MF: So first off, I read that Michael and Tom had been playing together for quite some time. How important was it that you guys found the right drummer to round out the trio? Was your decision based purely on David’s skills, or was it important to find someone you got along with on a personal level too?
Tom: The most important thing for us as a band was to be in a group where we are all passionate about what we are doing. We were already friends with Dave before he came on board and Dave’s skills certainly don’t disappoint. It’s great to be in a band where we are all great mates and working our hardest towards our goals.
MF: Distance Is A Gun is the title track from your debut EP, yet it seems like it was the last one that was even considered for recording. What was it about that track that prompted the decision to include it? Do you think that’s a sign that your writing is still changing and developing, even now that the EP has been recorded?
Tom: We had plans lined up to record before the song was written, yet when Michael wrote it and showed it to Dave and I we all knew straight away that it was definitely going to be a part of the EP. It’s funny how the last song considered became the title track; I think it reflects on us as a band and how we are continually developing and refining our sound. We certainly haven’t stopped writing or experimenting with new things over the course of this EP’s release and touring, Michael is always bringing new songs to the table.
MF: How was the recording process? Have you guys had much experience before in a studio environment? What’s with the beach shack? It sounds like it would have been quite an inspirational place to lay down some music.
Tom: We have all had a fair bit or recording experience, and wanted to do something different to the usual process of recording in a studio. We wanted to work somewhere that would be inspirational to us all, and setting up a studio in a beach house down in coastal Victoria turned out to be the perfect answer! We feel that the area, as well as the experience down there, definitely worked its way into the sound of the EP. We were pretty much living in a studio / beach house and waking up to a fresh day of recording each morning. It was an experience pretty hard to top.
MF: Getting Chris Sheldon on board to mix the EP seems like quite a coup. What do you think he’s brought to the recordings? Was there any surprises when you got the tracks back and mixed. Anything you kind of said ‘wow, I’d have never thought of doing that?’
Tom: It was great having someone that we admired and who had worked on a few of our favourite records (Foo Fighters – Colour and the Shape, Motor Ace – Five Star Laundry) mix our stuff! The biggest surprise for us was finding out that he was on board to mix some tracks for us, it definitely added more to the sound of the songs. We were blown away when we got the tracks back from him.
MF: You guys have toured quite extensively already. How has life on the road been? Have you found that there’s already some recognition out there for Celadore, or have you needed to kind of build your fan base through touring?
Tom: We really love touring, it’s awesome going to new places, playing to some new people and having heaps of fun along the way. Touring has definitely been a large factor to building our fan base, though it’s always a nice surprise meeting some people who already know our music!
MF: How have Popboomerang been to work with on the EP release? Have you found they’ve been supportive of what you guys are doing? With the major labels quickly losing their financial base, it seems like mid-level labels are where it’s all happening these days. Has there been any pressure to deliver anything particular with regard to the Celadore sound?
Tom: Popboomerang are really great to work with and are very supportive. It’s great being with a smaller label because we get to have a great relationship with the label owner, which is really handy. It’s nice working closely with your label towards the band’s goals, and with someone who encourages our sound to develop naturally. There’s certainly no pressure for the ‘Celadore sound’ from the label, which is fantastic.
MF: What’s next for the band? I know you’ve got the regional Victorian tour in July, will you be heading on the road again after that? Any new songs in the works, and have you found you can actually write material while on the road, or are those two very different beasts, writing and performing?
Tom: Well after this VIC regional tour we’ll be embarking on an extensive national tour for a while, hitting NSW, QLD, ACT and SA, hopefully bringing our music to plenty of new places and people! We’re continuously working on new material (even sometimes on the road). Though writing and performing are quite different, we certainly don’t shy away from playing a new song in a set now and then. The way a new song is taken by a crowd is a great indicator of what works, and is an element that can be very handy in preparation for recording. We’ll hopefully be looking at recording again over the summer period and releasing a new EP early next year.