It’s time to grab your mates and head for the Stro at UNE. Regurgitator is promising a great night out on August 10, in keeping with their extensive performing and recording career.
Tell us a little bit about your new soundtrack called One Day. What was the influence behind the song?
Over the last couple of years I visited Japan and went to a Zen Buddhist camp and experienced a lot of that culture there.
Their attitudes towards death are kind of simple and realistic and in line with my whole understanding of it in the past.
I have seen it written down in spiritual guides, and it kind of resonated with me, so I wanted to write a song about it as well.
What can we expect from your concert at UNE this August?
You can expect a fairly fresh show. We will probably play between 8 and a dozen new songs. We like to get the fans involved in the show.
Who would be a highlight act that you have toured/performed with in the past?
We have played with a hell of a lot of really great bands! Some of them have been really small, interesting, noisy kind of acts. The Boredoms from Japan were a real highlight for us, because we got to meet so many strange people on that tour!
In Sydney in particular, we played this great metro show, where the support band was basically all people from a mental asylum.
The Boredoms are an incredible experimental band from Japan, so that was an eye-opener.
The Mint Chicks from New Zealand; I think they are one of the best bands we have had on our tour supporting us. They are just incredible, and I really love their record, so they are one of my favourite acts.
What would you say to up and coming artists/bands who are looking to have longevity in the music industry like you have?
Really, just do it because you love doing it; don’t think about longevity, don’t think about why you are doing, it just do it because you are into it. If you’re not into it, do something else. It’s just a matter of how impulsive and addicted you are to the art form that you are doing, really. It has nothing to do with what you think about your career or what other people think about you either.
It’s really about just loving what you do, and that is all that matters in the end.
What do you and the rest of the band enjoy most about being on tour and playing at festivals?
I guess it is the band camaraderie that you miss when you aren’t on tour. Being home, getting back into the swing of things with your family, your partner, your kids is always hard. When you are on tour, it’s almost like being at school again – a bunch of guys that you know really well, so a lot of camaraderie and a lot of fun.
There is a lot of comedy that goes on and you really enjoy it – and kind of miss when you are not on tour, I guess. It’s the thrill of playing live shows … it is like a second family – especially when you are on tour for a long period of time. It is a bit of an us against them kind of feeling, which is nice sometimes.
What is something that fans wouldn’t know about you?
(Laughs). Fans seem to know everything these days!
How do you stay connected to your fans with all of the social networking opportunities these days?
It’s a bit funny; we have a funny attitude towards all that stuff – against the social media of Facebook and things, because we grew up in an era where these things didn’t really exist.
It actually has changed so much during our lifetime as a band. We are not confused, but we are not really as natural with it as other bands are … not completely I suppose, the way we integrate and talk to fans.
I still prefer to see people at shows and shake their hands and talk to them, signing stuff if they want it signed.
I prefer that kind of human face to face thing, rather than the modern media thing. The echo of reality is not really real in lots of ways. It’s just nice to be able to chat with someone and see who they really are
Since you have been at the forefront of the music industry for a long period of time, what else has changed from the time you started out until now?
Pretty much everything; the whole record industry has undergone a huge change. Being on a major label for 4 records then going independent opened this whole wave and reassessment of what the industry is, who has all the power with the major labels and just seeing the pyramid getting smaller and smaller.
When you have been through all that, you realise the positives and negatives. Then you see the positive and negative side of how it is now, and what you have to do to maintain your career and to be able to keep doing what you love to do.
I can’t believe how different it is now. It’s completely democratised now compared to what it was. We were basically pushed along by a giant machine and the label was there to sell; they didn’t care about the music side of things too much. Now it is up to the artist to do all of that leg work, but sometimes you get sucked into that whole … well, how am I going to market myself? It’s a lot more personal, but there is a lot more leg work to do, because a lot of artists don’t have that big machine behind them any more.
What’s next for Regurgitator?
I am actually going overseas for a little while to get some inspiration for some of my side projects. I‘m going to Tokyo, doing a bit of a hip-hop duo with my girlfriend called ‘Disaster’, so we are going over there to play some shows. Regurgitator have just finished the big recording and have the tour coming up, so we are all looking forward to what is next.
Interview with lead singer, Quan Yeomans.