Tempesst + Snack Villain
Wednesday, 19 September
Tickets available via See Tickets: http://www.seetickets.com/event/tempesst/broadcast/1237960
or in person from Tickets Scotland
If travel broadens the mind, then it’s little wonder London-based five-piece Tempesst have such a wild, freewheeling approach. Colour-laden, chemical-drenched psych-pop with folk overtones, the band’s wild sound and sweet melodies are a rejection of the mundane, continually grasping towards the universal.
Lead singer Toma Banjanin and drumming brother Andy grew up in the tiny Australian town of Noosa, as picturesque as it was conservative. “It was this small town where for better or so worse you weren’t really exposed to anything else outside of what is socially projected upon you,” he recalls. “I suppose its easy to embrace an exploratory energy when you’re from a small town.”
Travelling across the United States and ending up in London, the duo formed Tempesst – alongside guitarist Eric Weber, and fellow Australian exiles Blake Misipeka (bass), and Kane Reynolds (keys) – as an outlet for their thoughts and experiences, the emotions that travel can conjure. “Every year we try to get around and expose ourselves to different people, different cities, different countries,” he says. “I would definitely say travel is a massive part of our sound. As an artist you’re always trying to find different things to inspire you.”
Debut EP ‘Adult Wonderland’ was certainly inspired. Released on their own label, the devoutly independent project draws on almost three year’s worth of material, a time when the five-piece were searching for each other, and for a certain sound. A glorious, inspired, sunshine mesh, the material on the four-track release owed a debt to that classic West Coast lineage – Crosby, Stills & Nash for example – alongside more modern wayfarers such as Damien Jurado.
“I suppose it’s inspired by growing up by the ocean, by the water,” he says. “Maybe we all romanticise the idea of having more sunshine. London can be quite a grey and melancholy environment.”
If ‘Adult Wonderland’ was a reaction against this, then new EP ‘Doomsday’ is a surge forward into uncharted waters. The full EP was written, recorded, and mixed in a matter of weeks, with the Australian connection continued following the addition of producer Elliot Heinrich. Vastly experienced – he’s worked with POP CULT, Doolies, High Tropics, and many more – he added a new dimension both to the band’s sound and the way that Tempesst approach making music.
“We flew him over to London at the end of January and we started recording with him two days after he landed” Toma recalls. “The day before we headed into the studio we were still working out arrangements, finishing tracks off. We’re so proud of what we’ve been able to produce in such a short space of time.”
The speed of the composition is a sign of the incredible chemistry flowing through the band, and that confidence is set to precipitate a huge leap forwards in a creative sense. “All of the songs were written in such a concentrated time that they share similar themes,” Toma explains. “I’m coming to the end of my 20s and there are definitely different questions around – mortality, significance, questions around the purpose of life.”
“I suppose ‘Doomsday’ in a way is like a release, accepting that a lot of things in life are out of our control. You can either take two paths, you can be anxious about it all or accept that maybe we don’t have all the answers, and that’s OK.”
The band want to release each EP on their own label, and record the material at their studio space in East London, one that will serve as a base for their ever-expanding ambitions. “We’re in the process of doing that now,” he states. “It’s a cool little complex. We’ve got two rooms that we’re keeping for ourselves to write and record in. We want to write and record an album per year, and keep releasing as much music as we possibly can.”