It’s been a busy year for Sydney alternative rockers The Spirits. The hard work is finally paying off though, with the release of their much anticipated new EP The Other Half this week. Bucking commercial trends, the band are offering it as a free download from their website for a limited time. Jesse Hayward caught up with the group to find out more.
Music Feeds: So what have you guys been up to lately?
The Spirits: We’ve been pretty busy planning the release of our EP The Other Half, working on our live show and writing new material. Also working on a new film clip and watching late night winter Olympics, especially the Curling.
MF: How long have you been working on the EP?
TS: The EP took just over a year to get together. There were definitely a lot more hurdles along the way than most bands face, but we have got through it and are really happy with the result.
MF: What made you decide to release it as a free download?
TS: Being an unsigned band we don’t have the obligation to sell units and we would rather our music be listened to by as many people as possible. It equates to more people at our shows etc etc.
MF: You guys have been getting attention recently, any plans to turn up the heat? What’s next on the schedule?
TS: We are launching the EP this Saturday night at Spectrum and will be promoting it all this week on Fbi. We have a film clip to follow and we will be heading back into the studio with a bunch of new songs to record. Expect a lot from The Spirits this year, we are really looking at working hard on all aspects of our recorded and live material.
MF: How do you react to comparisons between your music and U2?
TS: Not too badly, they are a very successful and extremely wealthy band so it can’t be a really bad thing. I think it’s a first impression that a lot of people get but as they delve a little deeper we are very different.
MF: What do you think of U2?
TS: U2 are a great band with some really impressive albums. They have managed to evolve over the years to maintain their popularity which is extremely hard to do. We wouldn’t site them as an influence, nor our favourite band but they definitely deserve recognition. Their egos may be a little big however….
MF: Would you say you had a musical philosophy?
TS: We definitely have a musical philosophy which we think is very prevalent in all our songs. We try to write music that we are genuinely emotionally connected with that is also instinctive.
MF: If we refer to you as ‘the indie U2’ will you hurt us or hug us? This is the last U2 question, I swear.
TS: We would probably ignore you for asking another U2 question, then hug you so hard it hurts.
MF: What’s good in the Sydney scene?
TS: There are so many Sydney bands that offer diversity and originality. You can go out most nights in Sydney and catch a great performance. We think that Sydneysiders need to embrace this more. The mid week gigs are often the best because they are usually free, intimate and lack the scenesters/partyboys that head out on a Friday or Saturday. Not saying stay home and knit on those nights, but endeavour to see a live act on a school night, it will make your week.
MF: What’s your favourite thing about Sydney?
TS: You never get over how visually stunning it is, the harbor, beaches all mean a lot to us.
MF: And most hated thing about Sydney?
TS: The lack of genuine attitudes. In the indie music scene you are constantly exposed to people trying to take advantage of you, pretty over that.
The Other Half is available now as a free download from thespirits.com.au. The EP launch is this Saturday, 6th March at Spectrum with The Decorated Generals and Lockwood. Tickets are only $10, and include a physical copy of the EP.