Film Interviews

The Big Heat: An Interview with director Robbie Studsor

There can be great mystery in filmmaking, one solidified in the annals of film noir and historical film movements. There were stories hidden amongst the cigarette lit shadows and fire and ash, protagonists whose motives lay hidden behind sweat and reflection, and the echo of dialogue shrouded in the black of night. These are seemingly forgotten traits of modern film, blasted into yesterday by the intolerance of leaving more to the imagination and an impatient audience.

Filmmaker Robbie Studsor is not one to partake in such beaten paths. Having studied film’s great past and the many great filmmakers whose craft was deeply coiled in mystery and imagination, Studsor is taking Australian filmmaking into new and unfamiliar territory. Little is known about his feature film The Burning Kiss, and from its beautifully detailed and richly painted trailer, we can see that mystery and suspense is a big part of its existence. Officially described as a “hallucinogenic summer noir cocktail spiked with surrealism”, The Burning Kiss aims to give Australian cinema its much overdue neo-noir revitalisation. We talk to Studsor about the film, his motives behind its creation and perhaps, a small revealing of what we can expect when the film opens in 2014.

We’ve also got an exclusive still from the film which you can view at the end of this interview.

I was immediately taken aback by the trailer for The Burning Kiss; visually stunning. But it was both revealing and secretive at the same time. How important is it to the film that you’re not revealing too much about it?

Very important. I tend to agree with Roman Polanski’s sentiments from a few years ago that the modern film experience essentially has no regard for mystery or surprise, particularly in terms of promotion. I don’t think I’m alone in the sense that I appreciate film promotion that respects posters, trailers and the likes as pieces of art on their own terms and not even necessarily something that has an obvious connection to the film. I’m very fortunate that my VFX artist Josh Weeks is not only incredibly gifted and original but also very imaginative and completely open to experimentation. He understood the concept instantly, which at the time we were actually calling a ‘moving poster’ rather than a teaser.

What can you tell us about the film in regards to its narrative?

Without giving away too much, the film exhibits a range of different influences and inspirations in its narrative. It essentially combines a character structure you might find in both gothic and southern gothic fiction (archetypes like a stranger, a tyrant, an ingénue etc) with a crime subplot maybe somewhere between Investigation of a Citizen Above Suspicion by Elio Petri and This Man Must Die by Claude Chabrol. It’s also got elements of surrealism, mystery and psychodrama, which make it a very, very wild ride.

There is a distinct visual and aural tone to it; can we expect the film to continue what the trailer has teased in that regard?

Absolutely! This first teaser was designed to communicate a particular mood of the film and it certainly gives a glimpse into what to expect. The music for example is a small sample of a very unique score that is almost impossible to describe. Our composer, Christopher de Groot, is incredible and has created something that falls somewhere between Les Baxter, Delia Derbyshire, John Zorn and Bernard Herrmann. It’s a sci/fi, exotica, noir nightmare and I think people are going to love it.

tbkplaybillWhen can we expect a full trailer?

Mid next year, however we have lots of cool things before it that I’m excited about getting out there. There will be a couple more teasers, more artwork and other cool stuff by a very talented designer based in Perth, Western Australia called Ash Pederick, who has handled all our artwork so far.

Tell us a little bit about your directorial history and how the idea of The Burning Kiss came about?

The Burning Kiss is my feature film directorial debut. Prior to this I was lecturing in film and screenwriting at university and working as a co-writer with a super talented Australian genre director by the name of Sam Barrett, most recently on his film Sororal, which is Australia’s first neo-giallo film and something I’m very proud to be a part of.

It’s hard to tell how the idea came about to be honest, I do remember being very fascinated by the opening titles for the film Lady in a Cage and wanting to do something with the same vibe. It creates this menacing, summer atmosphere in about 2 minutes. It’s like Weegee meets Saul Bass or something. If you haven’t seen it, check it out! I put it up there with the opening of Blue Velvet.

You cite Chabrol and Mario Bava as some of your influences, is there a period of historical film you can say is your favourite or most influential to The Burning Kiss?

Well, firstly let me say that growing up in the 80s and 90s means some irreparable damage has been done to my brain. Sometimes I find myself thinking that I’m doing something reminiscent of Les Biches or Les Diaboliques but it’s actually more like The Hand That Rocks the Cradle or Single White Female if you know what I mean?

That aside, I certainly love a lot of cinema from the 60s and 70s, but let’s face it, who doesn’t? It’s pretty hard to argue with the output during those decades.

The Burning Kiss absolutely draws from those decades, but we were very determined not to be ‘retro’ and were more interested in capturing a certain mood, emotion or sense of style from a specific set of influences. I actually spent about a month before pre-production searching through photography books and capturing screen grabs from films which I then turned into these crude ‘mood reels’ which I would show to the key creatives and actors. There are a variety of influences outside of film that informed the look and style of the film from photographers such as Martin Parr and Clifford Coffin to painters such as Clovis Trouille and David Hockney.

What were some of the benefits of shooting in Western Australia, in terms of the visual elements you wanted to achieve in the film?

Western Australia has some of the most beautiful landscapes on the planet, which obviously doesn’t hurt the look of a film. Sometimes it feels like if you just point the camera in one direction you’ve got Paris, Texas and if you point it the other way South Pacific or something. That being said, filmmaking is equally difficult to do wherever it goes down. Even considering all the advances in technology, I think when it comes to actually creating a film and telling a story, it’s no easier than it was in the silent era. There are a million problems, anxieties and difficulties that have little to do with what kind of camera you’re shooting on.

The film has quite an ambitious scope and the production was extremely fortunate to have dedicated and helpful contacts that helped us shoot in some very obscure and interesting locations.

The film is slated for release in 2014, will it be aimed at the festival circuit or will it be out on a much wider release?

Definitely the festival circuit at this stage. As we are still in post-production it’s difficult to predict what will happen in terms of distribution although there has been some very positive early buzz which is very exciting, so I don’t want to jinx anything!

I like the idea of presenting a “different kind of Australia”. Why do you think so many Australian films have yet to do this?

I’m sure they all do in their own way. I love Australian films, we just used that description to hopefully pique some interest as the film has genre elements, yet stylistically it isn’t connected to Animal Kingdom or Chopper nor is it Ozploitation. So in that simple sense it is different. In terms of drama and design it’s quite expressionistic and fun which I think people will respond to. A bit more “Ken Russell” than “Ken Loach”.

Our team basically just used influences from European to American, to Australian and arrived at a style that excited everyone associated with the production. It’s not like I’m using the film to apply for residency or anything so I don’t feel the burden of trying to prove my ‘Australian-ness’ onscreen. I do live in fear that the film might be declared ‘un-Australian’ and there will be a rushed Kangaroo court (pun intended!) hearing and Bryan Brown and Jack Thompson will come to my house and personally kick my arse! The last thing I need right now is a beat down at the hands of Doug from Cocktail.

 

The Burning Kiss opens in 2014. Check out an exclusive still from the film below.

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Featured, Interviews

The Astronaut: An Interview with Lights & Motion

From the embers of a thousand stars comes the music of Lights & Motion; the musical project of Christoffer Franzen. A self-taught musician of introspection, his music is a dream-like journey into the stories of his imagination. Written through the clouds of insomnia, Franzen has painted the night sky with his latest album Save Your Heart. Released via noted indie label Deep Elm Records just months after his debut, Save Your Heart has received praise and accolades from countless sources, all citing Franzen’s ability to turn the greatest of human inspiration into music.

We sit down with Franzen to talk about his craft, his passion and where his journey will take his listeners.

Congrats on the release, how does it feel now that the album is out after all those months of work?

Thank you!

Well you know, it’s sort of a weird feeling, because I have been working so hard and so focused towards making this album a reality that I haven’t really stopped and taken a look around. I never took a break after releasing Reanimation, my first album, because once that was done I got this feeling that I kind of have right now, which is a feeling a completion in the sense that this has been the big goal all along, but also a bit of emptiness due to the fact that this is something thats been taking up most of my life for this past year. You go from working 40 hours a week non-stop on this thing and then all of the sudden it’s done, it’s out, and people hear it for the first time and it’s somewhat scary. It’s been yours alone for such a long time and then you get to share it with the world, and I think that this is something that all creative people experience, the gratitude of having your work being noticed and the fear of letting it go, and to say that this actually is the finished thing, and I’m not going to work on it anymore. It’s out of my hands. I feel proud

What about all the overwhelmingly positive feedback?

The feedback, as you said, has been overwhelmingly positive and that’s so humbling, I can’t tell you. Because you don’t really think about this things when you are in the middle of the process, or the eye of the storm as I like to call it, because then it seems so far away until a possible release, so you sort of just focus on the music and that lays before you. But to get this much appreciation is extremely fun and something I never count on because who knows what people are going to think. But for the most part, the thing that makes me really amazed is that people still take time of their day to actually sit down and listen to something that I’ve created. That still blows my mind, and to be able to share this music with people from all around the world, it gives me endless joy. The feeling is like you are alone in the creation, because I always work alone on these Lights & Motion albums, it’s just me in a dark studio all through the nights, but then you walk out the door when it’s all finished and suddenly I feel like I’m in a band of 30,000 people, it’s absolutely amazing. I really feel like I have a close bond with my fans, and maybe it has something to do with what I just mentioned before, being alone in the creative space, but I feel such a commitment to them, and it’s that personal interaction that makes me work that much harder in order to achieve my goals.

How did you get started with the “self-learning” of music?

That’s a good question. I first started playing guitar when I was 16, that was the time I got my first ever acoustic guitar for christmas, so I began pretty late. Then I practiced for probably 4-5 hours every day (my poor mom and dad) and then I got into bands and all these things that you do as a young musician.

After a few years of things not really taking off, I started to feel this itch to not having to depend on other people for creative purposes. I used to wish that I was a singer and not just a guitar-player because then I actually could steer the ship a bit more and not be forced to check the schedules of 4 other people with busy lives.

I managed to get access to a studio, a very simple set-up, and during a time of sleep depravation and insomnia I started to basically spend all my nights there by myself, just fiddling on different instruments and ideas. I used to record small pieces of music that sounded awful, but I loved it because it gave me such creative freedom.

I would go there on saturday nights while everyone was out partying, and I wanted to join them but I just couldn’t let go off the studio. Just 30 more minutes I would say when they called and I would be there until 5 am.

Eventually after battling with this thought that I wanted to do something by myself, I decided to buy a bass-guitar, some drumsticks, I started to play the piano, and even though I didn’t really know any theory, I could hear when it resonated and that was a big kick. So I would try all these different instruments and record myself over and over in layers so that I could make it sound huge and not just like one guy in a dark room. I just had such a need for control and I knew exactly what I wanted, so I ended up doing every single sing by myself. I learned all the instruments I needed for what I could hear in my head, I recorded and recorded and recorded until my ears bled, and slowly I got better at it

I now have two albums out, and still I have no formal training. I have been responsible for composing, playing, arranging, engineering, producing and even mixing. And that’s what I always wanted. To be able to go from the first fleeting idea to a finished product without breaking the chain of command, which in this case is just me.

I have never actually considered myself to be that musically gifted. I always just said that you just gotta put in the hours and practice. And a lot of that self doubt was blown away after I took the courage to record Reanimation. And that I owe everyone out there who has emailed me, written on Facebook or soundcloud about how they enjoyed the music and made it a part of their day. That was incredibly humbling for me, and for that I will always be grateful.

Save Your Heart comes less than a year after your debut, how did it come around so quickly- was it just natural inspiration to keep writing?

After Reanimation was out I felt that I had so much creativity left that I didn’t want to stop. I jumped right in and started recording ideas, the first of them being ”Heartbeats”, the opening track. Even though it was written probably 1 month after the first album was out, I already knew it was going to open my second album, whenever that was going to be or whatever it was going to sound like. Then of course I would sit on things for months, just listening back and forth and adding sprinkles of sonic fairy dust and try to really make it shine in it’s own right. I tend to work like that; very fast and effective when laying down the foundation, but then I spend an enormously long time finding the sound for things, getting into the arrangements and the production side of things. In the opening track there is probably 80-90 different tracks layered, and if you listen really carefully in good speakers I’m sure you would be able to make it a lot of details in the background, ambient movements and stuff that you might not think much about but if you were to take those sounds out, a lot of the magic of the song is lost.

How did you and Deep Elm come together? It seems like the perfect fit for both of you.

Deep Elm signed me back in 2012, after hearing one of my first tracks called ”Home”, which was released on my first album, but back then it was only a demo. I knew them through Dorena who I had met in the studio, and I thought that they would be a perfect fit for my vision of this project. Since then, John (who runs Deep Elm) and I have been working very close throughout this entire process. They give me complete trust and creative space, and I look to them for everything surrounding the releases to the day to day givings of me sending them tracks and asking for their opinion. Its’s been working really well I got to say, for the both of us. I’m just grateful we got the chance to meet because it was a series of small stuff that led us there.

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Listen to music from Save Your Heart:

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You talk about music similar to painting and how your songs have a certain hue to them, what are your favourite “colours” to paint with at the moment?

Yeah that’s right, and I understand that it might be a hard and abstract concept to grasp but I really do think of music in terms of colors. If something sounds earthbound and calm I immediately think of colors like yellow and brown, whilst sounds that have a big quality and a sort of distance to them are blue/violet to me, and blue/violet was exactly what I wanted to bring into this record, Save Your Heart. This is all very visible in the artwork as well, done by an amazing artist called Elias Klingen. I went to him and I pretty much said; “Look. I have all these colors in mind and I want to make em shine and blend together to represent the music I’m writing for this album. It’s called ‘Save Your Heart’, so maybe that could be a starting-point for you. I want the colors to feel alive and to illustrate the sonic identity of this record.” He did an amazing job, I couldn’t be happier with the results.

I wanted this album to venture higher up in the skies, towards the stratosphere, and then stay there. In comparison, Reanimation is more earthy for me, it takes place down here while Save Your Heart is up above the clouds in terms of the sonic identity.

What was your process for writing Save Your Heart, did you write a lot of the material at once, or was it more of a gradual process?

I never really took a break, but the process was different. Some stuff came right away and then I worked on it for months. Snow was an early one, and I probably did 3 different versions of the outro before settling on the one you hear now, and that’s also how I work. I search for that, in my mind, perfect thing.

Some of the tracks like “Save Your Heart” and “Atlas” came to life just 3-4 weeks before the mastering was scheduled to begin. Then we have tracks like “Sparks”, “Bright Eyes” and “We Are Ghosts”, who have in one way or another been sitting around on tapes for years. I tried to dust them off and I obviously changed a lot of things within them but It’s kind of funny to think that these demos I made back when I was just alone in a studio with no name or anything, would end up on this album all this time later. Very rewarding for me personally.

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Your songs have a very dream-like, stratospheric aura to them— would you say that Save Your Heart has a distinct “theme” or story to it?

I always try to think conceptually and visually while I write. Reanimation came from me not being able to sleep, and by chance discovering this amazing world which I would get lost in, and I never wanted to wake up. I would sit in my studio at winter, 4 in the morning, looking out the window and see everything being lit up and covered by snow, and I would feel like I was the only living person awake in the entire city. That was pretty magical sometimes. For Save Your Heart, I really wanted it to be an escapism as well, but the main thing for me with this one was that determination of having the courage to go with your passion, and not cave in even though it’s easy to do. This project takes up a huge amount of time and effort in my life, and sometimes it’s hard you know? You see friends and family doing “proper” jobs and giving in to the “conformity” of society. At times it’s a struggle not to let your passion go because it’s hard doing this. And that is really what Save Your Heart is for me. It’s an encouragement to stick with the things you love and see them through. If you find that thing, you owe it to yourself to keep it alive. I think that’s extremely important. For me it is.

Do you have a particular track on Save Your Heart you can say was the most satisfying to complete?

Well it’s hard because every song has different things related to it, but if I have to pick one I would say “Heartbeats”. Simply because that song turned out exactly as I had hoped, and it was the foundation on which I would then proceed on with the other songs of the album.

Will you be touring in support of the record?

I would love to tour, but right now it’s not planned at all. I spend so much time writing this music that once I’m done, I sort of step out into the world again from my studio and realize that it’s a much bigger place then I remembered, and so if I were to tour I would want to do it just as had envisioned it, like I did with my music.

It would take a lot of planning and ambition, and I have simply not had the time to do that properly yet with touring. But I’m thinking about it a lot now so who knows..

Now that you’ve conquered the stars so to speak, where do you go next with Lights & Motion music?

Haha, well I definitely want to keep writing. I might release some new music next year and in the meantime I want to keep writing film music which I have been doing a lot this part year in between the more traditional L&M songs, and these pieces of music has become quite popular on Soundcloud, so that’s a big ambition right now.

I would love to score a film someday. That’s a big dream of mine for sure. I am such a movie-goof and I probably check IMDB on my phone 5 times everyday for new trailers, so being able to score one one day would be so cool.

Who knows..

If listeners can take one thing away from your music, what would you like that one thing to be?

A sense of hope.

 

Lights & Motion’s new album, Save Your Heart, is available now via Deep Elm Records. You can read our review for it here.

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Film Interviews, Interviews

Trading Spaces: An Interview with Make Money director Sean Monteiro

In all the years I’ve known Sean Monteiro, one thing has always been crystal clear; his passion for films and the art of making them. He’s been at it on a smaller scale for years- from short films to screenplays, his ambition and drive to succeed on a big level has never waned. Now after years of hard work, Monteiro’s big screen debut is just weeks away with the release of his first feature film, the Indonesian comedy Make Money.

He spent years in Australia doing what he loves, and I saw the products of his craft when he filmed and directed in Australia, but when he told me he was flying home to Indonesia to do a feature, I only imagined how difficult it would be to do a feature in Indonesia’s complex and multi-layered film industry. Yet as I spoke to him about it, he seems more poised then ever, with the challenges he and his production crew faced giving credence to his dedication towards the art form.

I spoke to Monteiro as he jetted back and forth from Jakarta to Bangkok just a few weeks before the film’s November 14th premiere.

So the film is finished? Ready to go?

We’re in Bangkok right now, last night we just finished color grading the movie at Technicolor. So I guess the film is now officially finished. Wow, that feels good to say, it’s been a long journey!

What is Make Money about?

Make Money is about a rich advertising mogul named Pak Tri who has succeeded in business but failed as a father. His two sons, Aris and Rachmat are spoiled and arrogant. So to teach them a lesson Pak Tri leaves everything in his will to a poor garbage man that accidentally saved his life. Later when the old man passes away the two rich sons lose everything and the garbage man inherits it all.

How did you conceive the idea for the film?

I was really inspired by Trading Places and thought that structure could work really well for an Indonesian comedy. But instead of focusing on race, I wanted to focus on class and how wide that divide has grown.

This is your first feature length, was the process and outcome just as you hoped it would be?

I wrote a synopsis for this idea in 2009 and it’s getting released in November 14th 2013 so it’s almost taken 5 years to complete. So the process was more challenging than I ever imagined and there were a few moments where we almost didn’t make it. But I gotta say, the outcome has been so sweet and made it all worthwhile. I think the film has improved so much since that first synopsis.

You’ve made films in Australia and now you’re making films in Indonesia, what are some of the key differences between the two industries?

The biggest difference is that Indonesia produces around 200 movies a year and Australia makes far less than that. In terms of shooting Indonesians work long hours, and the tropical heat makes it feel like an all day bikram yoga session. But as a testament to the Indonesia crew they never complain or get lazy.

For those who may not be familiar with the cast- they’re some pretty noted names.

Our more senior actors like Ray Sahetapy who was the villain in The Raid and Tarzan who is a comedy legend from Srimulat are very well known. But I wanted to pair them with fresh young talent so we searched around for a long time. Our main actor was Pandji Pragiwaksono is a well known stand up comedian but had never acted before. There are other comedians like Ernest Prakasa and Arif Didu making their acting debut alongside veteran actors like Verdi Solaiman and Aida Nurmala.

As a director of an international background, did that have an influence on the film or did you want this film to be 100% Indonesian?

If you own a good camera I bet you take lots of pictures when you travel because you know what’s unique and interesting about that place. But you rarely take pictures of the place you live in because it seems ordinary. I think living outside of Jakarta gave me a good eye for what is really interesting and unique about this city. One of the most exciting locations for me was shooting at a garbage dump, I was loving every minute of it!

So what is the plan from here and until release date?

We’re going through the censorship process. The rules about sexuality are very, very strict here in Indonesia and religious parties pay close attention to this. This is a family friendly film but there is a really funny sex scene and a pool party with lots of bikini clad babes. So we’re fighting the good fight right now.

Will the film see release in the major cinemas in Indonesia? Will there be international distribution as well?

We’ve had a really good experience working with our distributor Cinema 21, who are releasing the film nation wide. We are still looking for major distribution throughout the rest of South East Asia. Most likely we’re submit the film to the Asian film festivals.

That divide in class, its your commentary about Indonesian life? The divide is pretty big isn’t it?

This film is my own observation about life in Jakarta, more than a commentary about Indonesia. Jakarta is unlike any other city in the country and it’s very capitalistic. That’s where the title comes from. And yes, the divide between the rich and poor is huge, it’s unfortunate but it’s also part of what makes this city so unique.

How did the mostly experienced cast take to you, as a first time big film director? How did you approach the situation coming from your perspective?

That’s an interesting question and I’d love to hear the cast answer that. There is a certain leap of faith that an actor has to make when working with a first time director. The reverse is also true because I cast a lot of first time actors, but thats exciting to me. We had an intensive 2 week rehearsal before we started shooting, which was invaluable. It really helped bond the whole cast together and established a trust between them and myself, so that when shooting started we were all working toward the same vision.

What’s the most important thing you’d like the audience to take away from this movie?

I want this movie to remind people that money means nothing unless you have someone to share it with. Family and friends have to come first. It’s a simple message but an important one.

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Make Money is in Indonesian cinemas starting November 14th. 

Bonus video: Watch the trailer for Make Money below

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Interviews

The Warmest Heart Attack: An Interview with Gameface

Vocalist and songwriter Jeff Caudill has spent a great deal of his life writing and recording songs with his band Gameface. They started making a name for themselves with their melody-charged, pop-tinged punk debut Good (1993), before going on to record albums for Revelation Records through the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Unafraid of fusing punk urgency with catchy choruses and heartfelt content, the band proved to be the perfect crossroads between punk, hardcore and the original formation of emo. In 2003, after the release of their Doghouse album Four To Go, the band members went their separate ways but never kept too far away from music.

In 2012, the band reformed to play selected shows and not long after, signed to Equal Vision Records. Now on the doorstep of their first recorded material in years, a new 7”, and a decade removed from their last album, Southern California’s Gameface are back doing what they love most.

You recently said that getting back together as a very natural process, did you all want the same things when you first go back together? Does this feel like the next chapter or starting over?

Jeff Caudill: Yeah, it was natural in that it took a long time to actually happen. It took the last few years to really understand the reasons we gave it up in 2003. We had to put all that to rest before we could pick up our instruments and really move forward. Now we’re all back on the same page and we all have the same expectations. That’s important because that was one thing that destroyed us before. We’re very fortunate to even have this opportunity at all so our only real goal is to make great music again. This band means a lot to us. It’s really a gift to have it back in our lives.

During Gameface’s hiatus, what kept you all busy? Jeff, I know you’ve been writing and performing as a solo artist and in Your Favorite Trainwreck, does this mean those projects are on hold?

Yeah, I never stop. For better or for worse I just can’t stop making music. I’m proud of all that I have done with my solo projects and the YFT album…but Gameface is different for me. Gameface is my guts. I know the other guys feel the same. They’ve done other bands and whatnot but there’s just something about Gameface that couldn’t be replicated with anyone else.

Gameface is my guts. I know the other guys feel the same.  – Jeff Caudill

Equal Vision is a great fit, what was the reasons for signing with EVR? And were Revelation interested in doing new Gameface material?

EVR was at the top of our list from the beginning. They come from the same place in the scene that we do. Their label has found a way to grow and stay relevant and maintain itself for over 20 years and that’s impressive. The label roster is really diverse and the staff is great. We’re really fortunate that they believe in our band like we do.

It’s been a decade since we’ve had Gameface music, are the reasons why you write songs now still the same as back then?

Yeah. That never changes. I write about my life, as a way to deal with things and share and express myself. I write about myself but for others – hoping to connect with people that feel the same things and need an outlet.

Your new song, “Come On Down”, has some personal and important meaning behind it. Did this become the catalyst for the rest of the new material, the creative spark so to speak?

Yeah. I wasn’t sure Gameface was going to write any new material. I figured we’d do some reunion shows, play the “hits” and that would be it. But that song changed everything. An avalanche of new songs followed after that one. It was that Gameface feeling all over again.

Listen to Gameface’s new song “Come On Down”:

 

What are the plans for the next few months, is it all new album or will you be out on the road?

Just recording the album and making sure it’s as great as we think it is. We’ll start playing in 2014.

Have you guys ever been to Australia?

We haven’t but would absolutely love to go someday. If you’re offering, we’re already packing ; )

Looking back at your discography, are there particular songs or albums you’re still most fond of?

There’s a decent list of songs that I feel are the standouts in our catalog. The ones I like most may not be the ones you do but I think there are some obvious ones… “My Star”, “Only Souvenir”, “Laughable”, “Gibberish”, “Mean”, “Friday Matinee”, “Only Chance We Get”, “The Pirate Song”, “Chasing The Sun”, “How Far is Goodbye?”…

This question is a little self indulgent on my part, but the song “How Far Is Goodbye?” has always been a favourite. Do you remember why you wrote this song or whether this was about a particular person or place?

Yeah, as I was saying a lot of the songs are pretty autobiographical and that one is no exception. The song is generally knowing when it’s time to move on from a group of friends that you are obviously not happy being around. I drew references from a few times in my life where I was living somewhere and with people that were ultimately holding me down. I don’t like to be very specific when I talk about my lyrics mostly because I don’t want to ruin anyone else’s interpretation of them. Sometimes their vision of what the song says is way more interesting than mine. But when we get to Australia I’ll tell you all the details about this one.

 

Gameface’s new 7″, Come On Down, is available from Equal Vision Records starting November 5th. A new album is due in 2014. Photo by Kip Terry

 

Bonus video: “How Far Is Goodbye?”

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