Tag : papa-vs-pretty
Tag : papa-vs-pretty
Papa vs Pretty have returned from the wilderness with a record that has seen the group mature from a band with promise to a band that delivers. AP sat down with the band for a chat on the eve of their co-headline tour that just wrapped up with fellow rockers Ball Park Music.
Tom Rawle of Papa Vs Pretty doesn’t do things in halves. Even the band’s last album, United In Isolation, was accompanied by a bonus disc of material that couldn’t fit on the solid debut. Seemingly that proliferation of songs has continued, with the band forced to pluck the fourteen best from a semi-trailer load of goodness.
“Yeah, there was a lot of songs,” admits Rawle. “I think there was about 80 songs for this particular record… I’m always writing. Often I will write about something almost like it’s a musical. I also tend to write in records so I’ll write a bunch of songs that go together and then put that in a batch and then go again. I’m never really not writing or making something.”
Although it seems a while since we’ve seen PVP, 80 songs is a tall order for a fledgeling band – and it has been frequently said that bands have a lifetime to make their first album, and not a lot of time to follow it up. Surprisingly, however, Rawle tells us he didn’t feel the pressure of following up their highly successful debut album.
“I didn’t feel any pressure at all. Commercial success isn’t really why you make music, not for me anyway. I’m just always trying to get better at songwriting, eloquently summarising things. I find joy in putting those themes into three minutes as an art form. That’s what drives it for me. It’s kind of like being a language teacher.”
Papa Vs Pretty have unsurprisingly made a lot of noise for a little band. Originally a three piece outfit, the band has now grown to include a fourth member, Luke Liang on guitar. Rawle is candid in telling us that the decision to add a second guitarist was a necessity rather than an experiment.
“It was the songs really, it made it a lot easier to play them live. When we started jamming with Luke on our old songs and the new ones it made the decision really easy. It was very organic.”
Organic is perhaps the perfect word to explain PVP’s quick rise to indie darlings, after building huge momentum leading up to the release of their debut album. So how did the band feel about stepping away from the spotlight in order to complete work on a new album?
“It was necessary – and we also had Luke join the band and that just focused the whole thing. The band is now better than it ever was. We couldn’t have done this record without him. We weren’t sitting on our hands at any moment, there was always a lot of work to be done.”
The band took two years off the treadmill to deliver White Deer Park - produced by Dave Trumfio of Wilco and My Morning Jacket fame. And with the band seemingly regenerated, a sense of renewal was a theme within the album’s title, Rawle tells us. “There’s a show that I used to watch when I was a kid called Animals Of Farthing Woods – I used to watch it a lot and that’s my earliest memory of television. The title is a reference to that, and the themes within it.
“I kind of like the idea as a human being, that you consistently die as you get older, and your bones regenerate, and you’ve got different blood every ten years – I like that idea of regeneration, and that idea that there could be five or six of your previous selves lined up behind you. I guess I’d like to think that the band has evolved. Whether we’ve grown from a caterpillar to a butterfly though is anyone’s guess.”
That evolution is clear in the development of the band’s sound – even White Deer Park’s first single My Life Is Yours seems a world away from the screaming guitars and crashing cymbals on the bands debut. It appears as a statement – the first from an album that heralds the band’s growth from a collection of thrown-together friends to a local success story.
“It was the song that I like the most. I guess it seems like a statement because all the songs that bridge the last album and My Life Is Yours aren’t out or didn’t make the album – it was kind of like evolution, but you didn’t get all the in-between to see where it’s come from.”
It’s inevitible that the album should see its day on the road – and Papa vs Pretty have never been one to shy away from loading the van. Having just come off the road after a huge double headline tour with Ball Park Music (yet another great local band cementing themselves as part of the ‘next-crop’), it seems Tom was moderately excited at the prospect of sharing the stage with his contemporaries.
“I guess the powers that be kind of put this in place – however I am a fan of the band, I really like their songs and we’ve met them before and they’re great guys.”
However it’s clear the band are itching to get out on their own tour, playing their latest album to a crop of fans that are surely itching to get their fix of the new album. Rawle, however, is hesitant to anticipate the likelyhood that their fans are in waiting after such a long haitus.
“I’ve got no idea, but we hope so. You can never really expect anything of anyone or you’re forever disappointed.”
-David Noordhoff / @catch__release
The leaves are turning, and soon we’ll be in the depths of full flung winter; but it’s all ok as long as you’re joining us at Splendour In The Grass year to lap up some sun in Byron whilst sipping on a bevvy and chatting about the best Outkast single of all time. But if you missed out on tickets, never fear – we deliver a double page spread this month on the best Splendour sideshows you can get your hands on.
Also this month we have Little Dragon gracing our cover for the second time – and if you’ve heard their experimental, beautiful new album Nabuma Rubberband, you’ll know why. The intellectual music crush just keeps growing.
In case you don’t follow our editor on Instagram, we wrap up all the goodness from H&M’s Melbourne launch, and Sydney Fashion Week – as well as chat with up and coming designer Kaylene Milner.
Plus, there’s chats with Josh Pyke, Papa Vs Pretty, Thief, Dune Rats and more – and if music ain’t your thing, then you can read our review of Wes Anderson’s wistful movie, The Grand Budapest Hotel, or Melbourne’s newest hot breakfast spot, Hammer and Tong.
See you next month, and try not to get caught fly kicking your sister’s hubby in the elevator…
From the Alphabet Pony Team x
Click below to view the new issue. Enjoy!
Picking up from where they left off on their ARIA nominated debut United In Isolation, Sydney’s Papa Vs Pretty haven’t changed much with their follow up – and that’s probably for the better. Still as slickly produced as ever, PVP’s White Deer Park delivers just the kind of modern rock that sits perfectly on commercial radio as a shining beacon of the genre. Case in point: It was triple j’s album of the week last month (no, they’re not alternative radio, soz peeps).
But don’t let that distract you: For every radio-friendly single like Suburban Joan of Arc and My Life Is Yours (and there are many on this album), there’s a genuine, paired back track like Roses After Dark, or a 90s-tinged noise-rock ditty like Rain Check.
There are those trademark epics too: To Do showcases the best of Papa Vs Pretty when they’re left to their rambling, unedited selves – something I personally would like to see more of on a third album in the future. Even their first single Smother has been left to kick around, on the edge of letting go, but reigned in just-so. It’s a gift.
Are this band trying to hedge their bets whilst also making the kind of rock album they can be proud of? Absolutely. More proof of that bands-writing-for-triple-j argument? Perhaps. One thing’s for sure: If anyone can walk that line with admirable precision in recent years, it’s this band. See them live, and you’ll be converted.
Rather than toll the bell for the death of rock, Papa Vs Pretty are playing it smart. And that’s what good bands do. Hell, even Nirvana got played on commercial radio.
-Bianca O’Neill / @musicjourno
Papa vs Pretty have unveiled their new single Smother via a special hotline, ahead of its release this Friday 6th December, in a move that’s straight out of The Simpsons playbook. Now here are some words that rhyme with Smother…
Yep, telephones. I’m assuming old-timey ones that you have to drag the numbers around to dial. Fans can call
1900 MIX-A-LOT and kick them nasty thoughts the Smother Hotline (1300-552-550) to hear the new single as well as leave a message for the band. Warning: Last time we saw PVP play a gig, they publicly broadcasted some of the funniest messages, so maybe don’t use your real name.
Thom Rawle had this to say about the track you probably totally just heard over the phone: “You know those kind of days where it’s like your trapped in a shrinking glass box on a crowded train. ‘Smother’ is about the aggression in claustrophobia, like punching through a wall of frustration… And I guess it’s a song about suddenly realising you don’t care what anyone thinks.”
Papa Vs Pretty’s new album White Deer Park will be out in February 2014. Also, this.
-Bianca O’Neill / @musicjourno
This month Alphabet Pony amps up for Big Day Out Festival with an awesome cover for Issue 14, even if we do say so ourselves… Sgt Pepper eat your heart out!
We catch up with our favourite acts playing at the Big Day Out and find out who they want to see and what’s on their rider – and give you our AP Recommended Timetable so you don’t get frazzled on the day. Don’t worry, Kanye’s in there!
Also in our January issue, we delve into our first ever AP In Studio exclusive with local rockers Ghoul. Check out the awesome five page pictorial spread and Quick 10.
In our food section we have a great cocktail recipe from our first World Class Bartender of the Year, and share our delectable New Years Eve degustation experience at Melbourne’s Eau De Vie.
In our film section we review Matt Damon’s latest in We Bought A Zoo, and as always bring you the best events in January from around the country.
Check out Issue 14 by clicking on the cover below, and as always tell us what you think! Enjoy your Big Day Out – and don’t miss Kanye! #thatshitcray
xo Alphabet Pony Team
It’s fair to say that Papa Vs Pretty’s swift rise to the nation’s rock consciousness seemed to come from nowhere. However Thomas Rawle, the band’s frontman, has been making music for years under the moniker. Alphabet Pony sits down with Rawle to chat about how an ARIA nomination on your first album feels for a young band doing great things for the Australian rock industry.
Thomas Rawle of Papa Vs Pretty is in a good place. After the highly anticipated release of his band’s debut LP, United in Isolation, the band’s profile has continued to skyrocket, with many proclaiming them as the next big thing. With the band set to embark on yet another national tour, I caught up with Thomas to discuss their ARIA Award nomination, Triple J Award nod, tours, and what’s next for the band on everyone’s lips.
“It’s something we’ve never really thought about, it was a big surprise,” insists Tom when quizzed about the Sydney trio’s nod for a J Award nomination for ‘Album of the Year’, as well as an all-important industry voted ARIA Award nomination for ‘Best Rock Album’. “I never got an award at school, so (being nominated) is something that I’ve never really contemplated. We’ve always been a band, we’ve always done what we’ve done, so this is just something that has happened along that journey.”
With so much success since the release of United In Isolation, and requisite boxes ticked, surely the band have made time to celebrate and reflect on what has been a remarkable few months? “I’ve never really looked back on it,” says Tom. “You know that cliche everyone says, ‘looking forward’? I’m always looking forward, which is good because it means as a band we’re only ever concentrating on what’s in front of us, which has helped us to keep focused.”
In the spirit of looking forward, Papa Vs Pretty’s next venture is a joint one with Melbourne grunge rockers The Vasco Era. Rawle adds that the idea of a co-headline tour emerged out of a mutual desire to elevate both bands to the next size of venue – as well as a common love of noise and distorted guitars. “Since I found out we’d be doing the tour together, I’ve seen The Vasco Era three times. They have so much grit to them that it is a bit like a kick in the teeth with a steel capped boot, which is what I like! It’s always good to tour with fellow rock bands with similar ideals.”
Rawle’s prolific song writing has been well documented since the bands inception, so will they be previewing any upcoming material on this next run of shows? “I know there’s two or three songs that we’ve been waiting to play and we’ve certainly discussed some sort of collaboration between ourselves and The Vasco Era. Whether that will happen or not we’ll have to wait and see.”
Despite the band seeming to have burst onto the Australian music scene relatively suddenly, Rawle maintains that their rise has been a very gradual one. But the undeniable growth Papa Vs Pretty have encountered, in addition to their many national tour supports, has made the prospect of stadium shows in February 2012 with Incubus far less imposing. “We’ve played a lot of different venues in our time, and Incubus are actually one of Tom’s (Myers
- drums) favourite bands, so It’s more exciting than daunting,” explains Rawle.
Beyond this tour, Papa Vs Pretty plan to continue work on a sophomore album, and there is no doubt the music community will be eagerly awaiting the results from one of Australia’s brightest and most genuine prospects. Good luck for the ARIAs!
- By David Nordhoff
This article is taken from the November issue of Alphabet Pony. For more news, fashion, music and design, read it online here!
Papa Vs Pretty + The Vasco Era tour dates:
Wednesday, 23 November 2011 – Karova Lounge, Ballarat VIC
Thursday, 24 November 2011 – Hi Fi, Melb VIC
Friday, 25 November 2011 – Bended Elbow, Geelong VIC
Saturday, 26 November 2011 – Adelaide Uni Bar, Adelaide SA
Incubus support dates:
Friday, 3 February 2012 – Hordern Pavilion, Sydney NSW
Monday, 6 February 2012 – Aec Theatre, Adelaide SA
Wednesday, 8 Febraury 2012 – Festival Hall, Melbourne VIC
Friday, 10 February 2012 – Convention Centre, Brisbane QLD
For Issue #12 Alphabet Pony is celebrating our 1st birthday!
Our birthday co-incides with ARIA Awards month, so for our ARIA special issue we have a brilliant cover band in the form of Best Rock Album nominees Papa Vs Pretty. Thomas Rawle chats to us about what it’s like to be nominated for the first time, their upcoming tour, and a possible collaboration with tourmates The Vasco Era.
Also joining us in our birthday month is the race that stops the nation, the Melbourne Cup! We look at the four key dates on the Spring Racing Cup Calendar, and give you some tips for dressing for the racecourse in our double page fashion spread. And for the lads this month, we deliver Cup-savvy boys buys in our dedicated Shopping page.
But if that wasn’t enough, we follow our ARIA cover story with the Alphabet Pony ARIA winner’s predictions (shame we can’t predict the winner of the Cup), review a swag of great albums, as well as deliver a special double edition of our usual Quick 10 – with both Lights and Firefox AK.
Also this month, we bring you two great cinema reviews, as well as the best movies and dvd titles out this month, filter the white noise as party season approaches and show you the best events happening in November, and recap on the epic Parklife Festival national tour with an amazing double page of live pics from the 2011 edition!
Get the cake and candles ready because we’re gearing up to celebrate a year online by partying with the rockstars at the ARIA Awards this year – and we promise to report back (as soon as the hangover clears…) Just click on the cover below to read this month’s issue – and as always let us know what you think. Enjoy… and thanks for reading!
From the Alphabet Pony Team x