Seven talented young men. One unique take on music. On a cloudy Sunday afternoon I was lucky enough to receive an invitation into the funky world of Sydney band, The Domestics.
Originally formed as “The Funkatronics” at the request of a kooky high school music teacher to fill out a showcase event: Mislav Belobrajdic, Max Dalton, Wil Eastley, Robert Campbell, Harrison Wood, Louis Klaassen and Max ‘Sanchez’ Gosling, have been evolving ever since through a joint love of musical experimentation and originality.
Having seen the band live I found it hard to believe that one of their first gigs was at the children’s stage at the Newtown Festival. Not saying that there is anything overtly R rated about their show, but there is definitely an electric passion that pervades their performance space.
“Even though we followed a hippie dancing troupe.” says lead singer Wil, “We drew a bigger crowd than the acoustic stage.” “The audience really loved our original stuff.” adds drummer Harrison. “We ran out of songs so we just jammed.” This enthusiastic response, say the guys, spurred them on to create more original pieces of music.
The Domestics credit their weekly Jam sessions as the core of their creative process. Trumpet player Rob says “We’d start playing covers and end up with original songs.” It is because of this method the guys say their music is hard to define, Max makes an attempt: “Someone brings in an idea and we just go from there, we don’t sit down and say ‘let’s write a pop song’ or ‘let’s write a rock song’, it just flows naturally.”
When asked about the source of his lyrical inspiration Wil says “It’s all about what’s happening now, like being annoyed at something…being pissed off when people were stopping in front of you when you were trying to catch the train.” Wil says that through the band’s creative process, these everyday experiences transcend into the metaphorical, as was the case he says with crowd favourite “Get Out of the Way”.
Another thing that makes The Domestics stand out is their use of the horn section as a significant melodic feature. “Unlike other bands, who use the horns to embellish what they already have, we start with the horns and they become the feature.” As a result the music becomes a unique yet unpretentious soundscape that could see these guys connecting with a wide variety of audiences.
“Were setting goals for ourselves” says Wil when asked about the bands aspirations, “It’s about growing as a band and growing as individuals, collectively we can all learn from the band and from being in the industry.” adds Harrison.
Overall I’d say my experience with the seven young men went well, despite their lack of concentration and easy maneuvering to creative conversation tangents. Respect must be paid to a band that is truly open to musical inspiration and interpretation, but also a band that maintains their grounded authenticity and personality.
The Domestics are currently working on a self-produced EP and will be performing at the following live shows:
March 25th: The Hopetoun Hotel
March 26th: The Oxford Arts Factory (Exquisite Corpse)
April 11th: The Lansdowne Hotel
April 22nd: The Annandale Hotel (Jager Uprising)
And if you’re keen for more information, check out their MySpace.
Photo By Melanie Touw