We cannot get enough of the Blue Velvet boys!
With Blue Velvet’s solid debut EP ‘Collide‘ now behind them and with them now managed by Columbus drummer, Daniel Seymour, this young band are really on the upward climb lately.
Case in point, their ripper of a new single, ‘You’re Not Going Home‘. It’s a fine collaboration of their work with producer/mixer/good friend Fletcher Matthews, a neat master job courtesy of Jay Maas, a stronger focus on angsty emotions and tight, to-the-point songwriting; all with a nice little music video directed by Nick Hargans (the guitarist from Caloundra outfit, Vitals).
Check out this budding Sydney four-piece’s latest tune as well as our recent interview with vocalist/synth-player Sam Bauermeister from the band below!
First off, once ‘You’re Not Going Home’ goes live, will any of you be getting an angry message or phone call from an ex-partner or an old friend?
[Laughs] I’m really hoping not, thankfully everything kind of ended like a spectacular train wreck that all points of communication have been cut off.
I’ve always kind of been as introverted dude and keep my feelings all bottled up. Writing lyrics and playing these songs live has always sort of been this insanely therapeutic thing for me. I keep the way I feel about certain relationships and situations pretty close to my chest, but yelling out about my feelings into a microphone has always allowed me to be completely honest with myself and sort of look into the ways I deal with shit. ‘You’re Not Going Home’ probably has me at my most bitter and in a weird sort of way. Writing that song really helped me get over my last relationship and being this honest about it has been so refreshing.
Working again with Jay Maas and Fletcher Matthews for this single, I take it that the first time worked so well you figured there was no need to fix it as it wasn’t broke?
Fletch and Jay are the dream team together. Both Fletch and I are family friends and we’ve been best friends quite literally since we were born. We’ve had this close relationship for decades so it’s always been a no-brainer to work with him. Next to that, the dude is (in my opinion) one of the best god damn producers in Australia and has sort of become another member of Blue Velvet for us.
For our last EP ‘Collide’, we loved just how relaxed and flexible he was with everything and the sounds he was able to make out of the drums, our guitar tones and my keyboard were just perfect for our sound. When we were picking out who to master the EP, Fletch suggested Jay and we all loved the idea of it as we were all big fans of his previous work when it came to the mastering. The two worked closely together to create the final product and I honestly can’t imagine anyone else doing what they were able to do. After ‘Collide’ dropped, it was a no-brainer to us that we’d be continuing to work with these two for a long time.
What do you think that those two guys bring to the table for your sound? Apart from you know, making you sound good.
They’re just so in sync with each other that it blows my mind. They worked together originally when Jay produced Columbus’s ‘Spring Forever’ record and I feel like they just clicked. They both share a similar vision in that they actually care about how the bands are sounding and put their souls into everything they do. Nothing is half-assed with these dudes and I feel like that’s pretty rare to come by.
In terms of your sound, with the addition of synths to the instrumentation, which often comes first when your writing a new song – the lyrics, a riff idea, or the keys? Maybe all of the above?
Our usual writing process usually involves either myself or our guitarist Brendan fleshing out some basic chord structures on the guitar that we’ve written at home by ourselves. Brendan and I started this band with the mantra that we would never over-complicate the way we write. Essentially we wanted our songs to be as basic as possible because when you put so much thought into making your song as complex as possible, you eventually lose what you were hoping to achieve.
After we make a basic structure of chords on the guitar, we get everyone over to jam out what we’ve written so far and kind of finish the puzzle of what’s missing. I fucking suck at playing keyboard so I like to keep my leads on my synth as easy as possible but still something that’ll be stuck in your head after the first time you hear it.
While we jam out, our other vocalist Michael and I start humming some vocal melodies that would work with each part and then fit in lyrics to those vocal ideas. Our demos always consists of us singing jibberish into the microphone, it’s pretty hilarious.
‘You’re Not Going Home’ is one, if not the shortest song that Blue Velvet has released so far but is still melodic and still fits within the punk rock realm. Is this new song any indication of where your music will be going on the next release?
Definitely man. After Collide dropped we all got together to discuss what we liked and didn’t like about the release. One thing that we all agreed on was that the faster, shorter songs like ‘D K R’ were always our favourite to play live.
We don’t want to write songs that overstay their welcome and feel like we write those fast, aggressive songs, it’s what we’re most comfortable with. Our main goal is to write fast, catchy Punk songs that make you want to listen to it again and again and ‘You’re Not Going Home’ is definitely a taste of what’s to come form us.
Now, were you actually playing anything on the PS4 in the clip or where you just being a phoney?
God dammit! I thought I was so convincing in my aggressive button mashing [laughs]. I turned on the PlayStation to get that controller light on and everything. Fuck, was it really that obvious?
Yep! Also in the film clip, whose idea was it to film the air-playing parts?
That would be our director Nick Hargan’s idea. We wanted the shots of us playing to be edited fast, fun and aggressive. He told us it’ll either look completely ridiculous or completely awesome and I feel like we got a nice combination of the both. Nice spotting though! A bunch of my friends who saw the video didn’t even realize we were rockin’ out to air instruments!
I’ve got an eye for detail. Also, at the end of the video, there are some photos shown on this art piece you’re making, are those actual photos or were they merely taken to add to the video?
The idea for the photos was always planned. We wanted to make a collage summarizing the whole video while putting glitter and making this heart look all pretty and sparkly and thought to put it all in some scrapbook would look mad. So each activity we did, we ended the shoot with a Polaroid photo of it. I still have all the Polaroids somewhere in my room as a result I keep finding glitter all over my room, send help.