By Tom Tozer
There are few bands with as rich and fulfilling sound as Ocean Alley. The Australian groove masters capture the essence of the greats before them whilst putting their own twist on the surf-rock/psychedelic sound.
With their recent single ‘Tombstone’ further throwing us into awe we were eager to have a chat with the band. We pinched their ear about new music, life in Australia and much much more.
Tom: How do you think your music will affect the generations coming through? To what degree would you want to affect them?
OA: We hope our music inspires people to make and perform new music. It would be cool to think of our music being listened to by other generations. It’s the ultimate goal of most artists to have their work admired or hated long after they are gone.
Tom: What do you think of Scott Morison? Do you think that he is trying to help the environmental issues within Australia? There seems to be lots of opposition towards his behavior towards the matter recently.
OA: We don’t agree with the level of support that the government has failed to show for this recent disaster. We need to take more action when it comes to pollution and climate change. Our generation are now charged with taking care of this planet for all of those to come.
Tom: What music does Ocean Alley get its inspiration from? What music do you all listen to in your own time? Do any other bands inspire you?
OA: All music really, we all have very broad tastes but we’ve grown up mostly on our parents music. The likes of Hendrix, Dire Straits, Santana, Bee Gees and Fleetwood Mac just to name a few. Groups like King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard and Pond inspire us to make new and different music and to always be in control of our own musical destiny. Having a loyal fan base and operating without a label are two things very important to us.
Tom: With two albums and several singles out, we would like to know your writing process. Is writing a collective effort or is there generally a select few poets in the group writing the gold?
OA: We all write the gold. All of our music we write and compose together and that’s how we like it. It’s a true representation of our time spent playing together.
“Having a loyal fan base and operating without a label are two things very important to us”OCEAN ALLEY
Tom: Having toured the UK, do you enjoy playing outside of Australia? How does it feel to be recognised while across the other side of the world from home?
OA: We love travelling overseas to play to new crowds and to our old fans in the UK. It’s the best feeling to have people singing your music back to you in the crowd let alone being overseas when that happens. We can’t be more thankful for all of the support we have received abroad.
Tom: Recently, as we know, the band has released the new track ‘Tombstone’. I was wondering why this song was written, Is it a political song? Spreading awareness on environmental issues. Is Ocean Alley political?
OA: Defiantly apolitical. More coincidental. But the climate is still fucked.
Listen to ‘Tombstone’ here:
Tom: Do you have any pre-show rituals? Before and during playing, do you get nervous or worried? Does this fluctuate depending on where you are playing in the world?
OA: Not really as every show is different. We just play it as it lies each night.
Tom: What does the future hold for Ocean Alley? What is happening to your knowledge show wise and should we be expecting some new music from the band? Possibly a new album to be released when the time is right?
OA: We are always working on new music and we have another full length record in the works which will be ready later in the year. We’ve built and grown on the sound of our last album and spent more time honing the tracks in the studio so we hope everyone likes it.
Tom: Finally, we at CLUNK like to finish our interviews with a story! Can you tell me the craziest, funniest, worst and best things that have happened with Ocean Alley on tour? Don’t hold back!
OA: We have had our fair share of stitch ups on our travels in New Zealand. Angus and Tom got lost at a festival and missed a flight across the country. Our sound engineer Cal dislocated his shoulder at a house party and had to escape the hospital to go back to the party. Most recently in New Zealand it was Lach’s birthday the day we were playing Bay Dreams festival in Nelson so we took him go-kart racing before the gig to get him all revved up.