We caught up with The Presets to discuss their recently released album titled ‘HI VIZ’ and the tour kicking off this week to promote it.
Adel-aliens prepare yourselves! An electro band from another world are supposedly coming to take over our city on Friday! It is said they will be landing at Thebarton Theatre and that they are under the impression that we’re the native people of their home planet…
J: Hi Viz come out a little over a week ago, how’s everything taking off?
The album has been received incredibly well. It’s a funny old time when you’ve been working on something for so long and sitting on a finished project for six months, then all of a sudden it’s out there. It leaves you feeling a bit strange, there’s a sense of completion, but a sense of depletion, your mind starts to unclog and you start to think about other things. We’re really looking forward to getting out there and playing shows, the tour starts this week and we’re hitting Adelaide on Friday. Hopefully people who’re coming to the show have listened to the new tracks and know the tunes a bit!
J: Have you played at Thebarton Theatre before?
We were there on the ‘Apocalypso’ tour, looking forward to getting back there!
J: Tell me about the video for Downtown Shutdown it’s groovy!
We did Downtown Shutdown with the same director who did “Do What You Want”, “R U the 1” and “My People”; Chris Moyes (who is coincidentally my brother). The video’s we make with him are whacky. The idea was to be a performance based video, dispersed with an array of effects from the disco era. The concept of the video was having us there with the choir performing the song and a bunch of trippy effects going on. At certain points the music takes over everyone, that’s when the lightning comes in and it starts to penetrate everyone in the room, by the end everyone is kind of glowing with the spirit of the music.
J: Will you mostly be promoting new songs in your set list for the tour or will it be a good mix of new and old?
It will be a good mix of new and old. We’re here promoting the album and tried to fit in as many tunes from ‘Hi Viz’ as possible, but at the same time, we’ve got a lot of hits that we just can’t leave out. We’re four albums deep now, putting a set together for a tour is getting hard. We’ve spent months putting this show together, there’s surprise moments and many tunes people know and love. It wasn’t a problem to incorporate tracks from ‘Hi Viz’ because we really made an album full of bangers. It will be something for everybody.
J: Do you have a favourite song from the new album?
‘Feel Alone’. That song was one of the last ones when we were finishing off the album. It was really fun. We had the vocal idea floating around for a while on many backing tracks that weren’t really working. We created the track for that song and we layered the vocals on the top. It ticked all the boxes. ‘You won’t ever have to feel alone again’ is such a beautiful sentiment. Sometimes we find ourselves in situations where we’re really lonely, feel isolated, heart broken, and down in the dumps. When you find yourself in those positions in life, music is strong all of a sudden and really means something. I felt like ‘Feel Alone’ was definitely one of those songs that hit a spot emotionally.
J: You’ve collaborated with Allison Wonderland and DMA as well on the new album I wanted to ask you how those working relationships came about?
With ‘Out of your Mind’ which was the one Alison ended up singing on; We had this song, we liked the track, Julian really didn’t like his vocals on it and we were starting to think about guest vocals. We wanted a punky female voice. We knew that Allison was a big fan of The Presets, we met her at a few festivals beforehand, so approached her and she was interested. After a festival we played in Newcastle she came down to Julian’s studio for a couple of hours and smashed it out. With the DMA one, I was up there with them working on their record. We had the bed for “Are You Here” for ages, and it was one of my favourite beats that we’d done and it was something that we had sitting around for years. I showed them the bed track and they loved it. They threw down an idea for it quickly, a couple of weeks later and it sort of stuck and we thought ‘this is gonna work really well’. We got into the studio with them and smashed out the lyrics and the melody pretty quickly and the rest is history.
J: The video for ‘14U+14ME’ is really cool. I thought the beat was very similar to ‘MY PEOPLE’ what do you say about that?
It’s got a very similar sounding bass. It’s a sound we’ve never used since ‘My People’, so you’re right. It’s funny, a lot of bands would make a sound library and just rinse those sounds and maybe write twelve songs with it. We’re the sort of dudes that make a sound and never use it again. We were like ‘why haven’t we ever used the ‘My People’ bass sound again on another track?’ We were working on ‘14U+14ME’ for ages, but we couldn’t get the bass right, so we tried the same kind of tone that we used in ‘My People’ and it worked really well!
Don’t miss THE PRESETS who are back and bigger than ever, performing TONIGHT at Thebarton Theatre!