Following on from his ‘Run With The Wolves’EP and tour Joel Leffler has released a stunning new EP“Strip Me Bare”, produced by long-time collaborator andARIAwinning ProducerPeterHolz(PekingDuk, Gang of Youths).
The first single “InMySights” from the new EP is the songwhich features a guest vocal fromMelissaJane. Joel and Melissa shared a house together and have worked together on numerous recordings. This poppyanthemic tunehits homeand youcan’t helpbut sing and dance along to this great partysong.
Melissa:‘JoelandI have always written and played together. Our voices blend& complement each other really well. I think this track is just one of those feel-good anthems. Thechorusissupercatchy,you’vebeenwarned.’
Joel:‘I had this melody stuck in my head for weeks. I would wake up, drive to work& go to sleep all with the chorus sitting on the tip of my tongue.I have never been so haunted by a melodic idea as much asI have on “InMySights”.
PeteHolz:‘We’ve taken off from where the1stEP left off and gone a little more into the synth and drum machine world- but still kept a lot of guitar and groove in there!ApleasurehavingMelissaJadefeaturetoo-suchagreatsingerandreallyboughtanotherhigherlevel of thetrack.’
Joel will be performing live at TheBrass Monkey and other Sydney venues for the new release of Strip Me Bare.
If you haven’t yet, read through a QnA with the boys to kick off their latest EP The Door –
Q & A with Jack and Curtis………
What inspired you to become a singer in a band?
The meticulous strain of learning covers and not playing them perfect and or well. If it’s your own song you get to decide what’s perfect and what’s right. It’s a pretty good feeling playing your own music and seeing people in the crowd enjoying themselves as much as you do. Kinda if we get you off then we’ll get off kinda thing.
My old man played guitar when I was young and I always wanted to play. He got me a nylon string and off I went (he still has that guitar). Dad loved James Taylor, Paul Simon, Dylan, and all of those singer song writers, so I guess that is where it started. My teen years in the 90’s in the UK started the band/rock music for me. It was a great time to be around the music scene in England: Oasis, Blur, The Verve even The Spice Girls – ha ha.
Who are your early influences?
As I came to the understanding that I wanted to be a musician I really liked musicians that were unique and matter what they were doing you kinda knew it was them. Early on I was influenced by a lot of bands. I try and steal something from everybody. I am a bit of a guitar pedal addict so if they are using some sort of effect they are an influence. It’s my way of hiding that I actually have no idea what I am doing.
Tell us a little about how you write, how do the songs come? What gets you going creatively?
Usually Jack or someone would come in with an idea, then we try to flip it on its head and make it good, ha ha. No, we jam it out in the room with the boys try new and interesting ideas over the old ones. Really the songs only come together with us pushing each other to be different. I work really hard on them on my own, but no matter how hard you plan and think your idea is right everyone else’s is usually better. That’s the great thing about a band its amalgamation of lots of ideas.
What gets us going is being in that room together, when everything clicks and we all get a little smirk knowing this feels right; probably the beers as well.
Sometimes they just happen. The good ones just flow. It’s usually something I’m angry about. I get some chords going but the melody and lyric is what I find most important. Someone once told me to write what I know and feel don t try to fake it. Which is so true and the best tip I ever heard.
After that I take it to the band. Then they make some noises and change some parts and boom we have a new song. I would say one in every three we write makes it to the live set. One in four get recorded.
Your bio mentions “newsworthy angle/funny story or event’ tell us what went on there.
The Gibson Guitar endorsement was amazing. We had finished pre-production on our album ‘Burning In The Sun’ and we are hanging out in the studio. Marshall, our Publisher & Label) and all round Legend said ‘You guys need anything else for recording?’ Yeah some good guitars, we said and laughed it off. Next day phone rings, it’s Marshall – ‘Go down to the pro shop, they’ve got some GIBOs for you to use’. I jump in the car, the exhaust pipe falls off on the way over, get to the shop meet the Rep, top bloke, we walk out with a Thunderbird Bass, Nikki Sixx Signiture (took it out of the display case for us) an SG and a Vintage Les Paul.
Put about 15 grands worth of guitars in the back of my 1000 dollar car next to the broken exhaust I recovered from the road. A few months after that I was added to the Gibson Artists list. Now I put my fancy guitar into the back of my 1000 dollar car next to the broken exhaust.
What is the first record you bought and why?
It was a Wiggles tape, I was 7.
The one and only, Chesney Hawks, went halves with my brother it was a vinyl single, I have no idea why.
What current OZ acts inspire you? Ditto for international acts?
I am inspired by a lot of bands and artist we play with. The hard work they put in and the amazing talent that goes mostly unnoticed. Australia has a massive music community waiting to be heard. Tune into some community radio is my advice. International acts – at the moment I can’t stop listening to Jason Isbell’s last two albums.
Tell us a little about your music and what a crowd can expect at a live show?
I like to think or music is always evolving, I’m pretty sure we don’t play anything the same twice, we kinda feel each other out and hope that us having a good time shines through. We can get pretty loud but we love it that’s why we do it.
We really enjoy the live shows and I hope people see that when we play. As for the crowd we will take anyone who shows up, ha ha
Favourite artists of all time?
For me, it’s Radiohead , NIN, Queens of The Stone Age, Tool and the two Jimmys’ (Page and Hendrix) with a notable mention to Dave Gilmore. It’s hard though, I’ve been influenced by a heap of bands that I still listen to today. I could be hear all day naming people. Once you find an artist you go and find out who influenced them, it’ a never ending cycle.
Van Gogh. Can’t pick just one for music
You are backstage with ‘insert artist you adore or hate’, what do you say?
Kanye West can you please shut the fuck up
Where do you see Aussie music heading?
I’m really not sure, I’m hoping away from the computer. Hopefully, more performers and lesson button pushers. Don’t get me wrong there is a lot of talent in some of them and I enjoy it, wish more of them would use it as an instrument and less of a cheat.
I think we might be on the bottom of a cycle. The music industry is playing catch up with the internet and more home production and electronic music is flying around. We also have the reality music TV shows that are finally loosing their appeal. I believe that one band will come along and start up a big music movement again like Oasis did for the UK in the 90 s. Maybe it’s time for the smaller independent labels to rise as the big ones struggle. It’s music so you just have to wait and let it do its thing.
What are your future plans for 2016/2017
We are looking at playing as many shows as possible, doing what we love. Work on new material continue to work on us as band and just do what we do.
Tour Drink Sleep Repeat. Play shows keep writing and most importantly, enjoy it.