Young and ambitious, Canberra’s When Giants Sleep are following their genre predecessors and attempting to push post-hardcore in the right direction. With an EP – Lucidity – dropping and a tour coming up, we caught up with the band to get an insight into it all.
Hi, thanks for doing the interview today.
Not a problem Kane, thanks for talking to us.
As an easy and general starting point, how has the year been for When Giants Sleep so far?
It has been great. I mean so far it’s just prepping and hyping things up for our release, music video and tour. So really so far, it’s just anticipation and building it up for a solid year later on.
You mentioned the new release and music video there. Give us an insight into it all?
It’s a lot of hard work but at the same time we’re really proud of what everyone has done, both past members and current. We cannot ask for a better outcome from all of us here especially Mark our new drummer. He’s just had hardly enough time to learn and perfect all of these songs but hey, we’re here and we’ve got them all down so he’s a good lad. The EP is something we really look forward to putting out and having everybody listen to.
You’ve got quite a few shows lined-up, what else is on the horizon for the rest of 2014?
At the moment it’s looking at releasing a few bits of material here and there throughout the year and a few more tours planned, which we can’t really mention much more about but we’re stoked.
Talk us through what it’s like when you hit the road on tour. This seems to be the point where bands learn the most and decide if it’s the lifestyle for them.
Yeah, well all of us love playing shows and seeing new places. So it’s definitely something we all love doing. Especially with four other mates that you are deeply in love with in a non-sexual way (or sexual) it’s something that we probably won’t stop doing for a long time. The travelling part is exciting but also the “playing hundreds of k’s away from home to a bunch of people” part is the most exciting.
Like with most bands, social media can be a powerful promotion tool. How much does it help a band like When Giants Sleep spread your music to not just Australia, but also internationally?
Without any of it no one would really know who we are unless we toured the country so many times. Even then, anyone across the seas would have no idea. So it’s something we do take advantage of and we would think a lot of people would as well in this day and age. It’s pretty vital but at the same time we try not to rely on it 100%. We take our promoting and music to the streets and try to go by good old fashion word of mouth as well as the powerful tool, which is the internet.
What has your experience been like being an up and coming band in today’s local scene?
It’s been great. The support we are getting from people across the country and some abroad has been too good. We’re loving it and we’re hoping the next few steps we’re taking this year only take us upward. We’ll never forget where we came from and we’ll always consider ourselves as “That Little Canberra Band”.
Might be a hard one to pinpoint, but what was the quintessential record growing up that made you want to become a musician?
I guess it’s different for all of us. We all grew up listening to different types of music, we started listening to early punk, metal and then into the emo punk to coincide with Post-Hardcore. But we all have different tastes in music outside of the heavy genres.
Being a band came be trial and error sometimes. You make mistakes, learn from them and become more experienced as a result. What’s some of the biggest lessons you’ve learnt so far?
That’s absolutely correct, everyone makes mistakes and the thing is we look back at them and think, “okay how do we improve on this?” or “what could we do to avoid doing that next time?” But at the same time, it’s not just mistakes we learn from to better ourselves it’s what we’ve done in the past that has been good but then we say to ourselves “Yeah that was okay, let’s do better”. Our first EP for example has been a stepping-stone to define our sound and to better ourselves as a band.
Favourite album of 2014 so far?
Might be a little too early to tell at the moment but we all have different ones both from this year and last.
Arnie’s favourite album from 2013 was Daughter’s “If You Leave” record. It has so much feel and realness to the lyrics and the instrumentals just tell the story so much better. It’s not a heavy record but it’s something that has inspired him as a writer and singer.
Ian’s record for this year is Architects’ “Lost Together, Lost Forever”
Most anticipated album of 2014?
Whatever the boys in Every Time I Die are brewing up for this year.
Essential items to take on tour?
Our best manners and a warm glass of please and thank you. But most definitely all our phones. We’d deadset die without them. Neck pillows, Rob’s Nintendo 3DS, Arnie’s Surface tablet (we play Nintendo 64 with that), deodorant, undies and music.
Favourite song to blare in the tour van?
Brittney Spears – Toxic. This is compulsory as our manager uses this song to keep him sane. Also, anything by The Getaway Plan. That stuff is always fun.
One song you’ll die a happy man if you never hear again?
Janet Wilson – Only If You Will. This is a song that we’ve never heard of in our entire lives and we only found this by googling “Songs no one has ever heard of” and at the moment we’re pretty happy living without it. We kid. We absolutely have no idea. We respect music in all styles as it is and everyone has their own. Music is music and that’s the beauty of it.