In the past, Fire! Santa Rosa Fire! have been hailed for their 80s video game vibe, being musically lateral thinkers and having the ability to outdo any pop mobile ringtone (do not scoff – generation Y is going to be remembered in part for Crazy Frog being a charts sensation). But F!SRF! prefer to describe themselves as “an enormous Cyclops sprinting through the village eating as many children as he can.” In layman’s terms, what they’re trying to explain is they’re indefinable, “mish mashy,” “we’re an indie rock band, but…it is pretty hard to pin us down” sound.
The now five-piece from Adelaide are preparing to annihilate Sydney soon at My Filthy Riot, the upcoming music extravaganza set to demolish the Annandale Hotel.
The introduction of chanteuse, Caitlin, has taken the band from strength to strength, allowing the rest of the band to focus on writing and playing. The inability to rest on one musical idea definitely helps “keep it fresh and add some longevity.”
Caitlin’s lingering dulcet tones and the band’s driving, sharp and clean sound in their recent single War Coward (that landed them on the musical map and is to be released digitally through iTunes soon) deliver a unique ambience, that still packs power, and with their debut LP soon to be released as well expect to hear a lot more from these Cycloptic sonic mish mashers.
“We’ve done our recordings with the same guy every time,” they say of their past EPs that helped garner attention. “Musically, he is our friend…but I think the key lies in not getting carried away [with recording and mixing gadgets and techniques].” Such simplicity in recording is probably what has made them so successful live, being able to deliver what their records promise.
The secret? “Letting the songs stand on their own two feet.”
However while the addition of Caitlin to the bands has seen the band attack songwriting with confidence and a sense of autonomy, it still presents a challenge in terms of the live show. “Adding someone new is hard, just even on a personal level.” Although they have a strong background as a support band, losing and introducing members could have unfavourable effects on their live performances, as well as future writing – their musical influences may not just vary, but clash. The current sound is promising though, proving that “we’re all starting to gel,” the change in vocals and more directional writing taking F!SRF! to a different arena and potentially widening their appeal.
Having clocked up numerous shows and support slots since the line-up change, it’s probably safe to say Fire! Santa Rosa Fire! are prepared for My Filthy Riot. With a sound that intrigues and ensnares, they are likely to be an act to stick it out for, especially since they look like a Cyclops. Perhaps they’ll be the band’s own mythical creature, the Mantaur this time: “the Mantaur is three quarters man, one quarter cow. We’re yet to assign body parts.” Maybe such mythical flirtations are behind the strength and enigma of Fire! Santa Rosa Fire!?
“Plus with all the bands and choas of the ‘Riot’ we might be the band that destroy the Annandale”…or maybe it’s the muscle?
Fire! Santa Rosa Fire! are playing My Filthy Riot at the Annandale Hotel on Sunday 22nd March. Catch them before they get all Cyclops and eat you first.