King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard are a scrappy seven-piece from Carlton, Melbourne. Their long-winded band name stands in contrast to their short punchy tracks, which deliver brief bursts of brutality via a messy and manic sound where passion prevails over precision and savagery enslaves sophistication: in other words KG&TLW are loud, brash and a whole lotta’ fun.
With their debut record due out this Friday, September 7, 2012, KG&TLW will be hitting the road the day after 12 Bar Bruise hits the shelves. In the lead-up to the record’s release KG&TLW member Stu Mackenzie kindly took the time to answer Music Feeds’ stilted questions, and in the process touched on his enjoyment of recording, suggested that too many cooks don’t spoil the broth and revealed the meaning of the band’s latest single, Elbow.
Music Feeds: New single Elbow is 2:40 of raw, raucous noise. How long did it take to write and record?
Stu Mackenzie: That song came together pretty quickly I think. We’ve been playing that song since the end of last year, but we restructured and changed it around a lot for the album. The recording was quick and painless.
MF: Do King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard attempt to record live and in as few takes as possible to capture the band’s energy?
SM: I s’pose so. I really like recording. I love writing a song and then seeing it take shape into a tangible, recorded form. So, we tend to have a lot of fun recording, but that usually means we record a shit load of songs rather than spending countless hours on single songs.
MF: Is there any meaning behind Elbow or is it just a good excuse to dance wildly and shout ‘Aye, Aye, Aye’?
SM: Well yeah, this song is about a particular person. It’s an angry song too. I won’t name names but some people are bad people. I think anyone who knows us personally and knows our band’s history could figure it out. Also it’s really fun to play and yell and sing.
MF: Is Elbow a fair representation of what fans can expect from upcoming debut record 12 Bar Bruise?
SM: Yep. That song represents the heavier side of the album. Not every song is like that though.
MF: The band came together for a bit of fun not so long ago; did you ever think King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard would record an LP and so soon after forming?
SM: Not initially, but we have been working towards it for a long time now. Willoughby’s Beach wasn’t far off an album, so doing a full-length never really felt too out out of reach.
MF: Aside from the time required to finish 12 Bar Bruise, is there any noticeable difference in recording an LP versus an EP?
SM: We put more effort into it I s’pose. But that’s about it.
MF: Seven band members locked in a studio together; how did you avoid cabin fever?
SM: We usually record in a huge open warehouse or at home and without the doors locked. It’s not really cabin fever. It’s actually quite pleasant.
MF: Who came up with the concept to record the title track 12 Bar Bruise with iPhones, and what was the idea behind that?
SM: It was an experiment that was never really meant for the album. I always do little demos of things on my iPhone, but I really wanted to try putting a few of them around the room and singing into one too. It worked surprisingly well I think. Might have to record the next record like that, ha ha.
MF: With so many band members, how are final decisions on songs made?
SM: The band is pretty democratic. I don’t think we’ve really ever had a fight about the way a song should go creatively. Definitely have disagreements, but everything seems to always fall into place. We are all pretty placid guys anyway. I cant think of anything worse than getting into a heated discussion with anyone.
MF: How long after the record comes out will the band be hitting the road and how extensive is the album tour?
SM: Tour datesssss….
King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard – 12 Bar Bruise – Australian Tour Dates
Saturday 8 September – The Nash, Geelong
Wednesday 12 September – Big Sound, Brisbane
Friday 21 September – Castlemaine Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine
Friday 28 September – Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
Saturday 6 October- The Tote, Melbourne
Sunday 7 October – The Tote, Melbourne
Friday 12 October – The Ed Castle, Adelaide
Friday 19 October – The Brisbane Hotel, Hobart