The duo met as tearaway students at Sydney’s Conservatorium of Music: by day they were battling Beethoven, by night sweating it out in seedy clubs to the strains of New Order, Bjork and The Smiths. They’re now one of the most talked about and in-demand live acts today, with a catalogue of dance smashes, adored LPs – Beams, Apocalypso & Pacifica – and ARIA’s aplenty, there’s obviously a method to the Presets’ madness
New Single Goodbye Future out now: http://m.odu.la/M7VXi5
Thanks to The Presets
Will & Jess / Parallel
Jordan Graham and Elvis Di Fazio
Kim Moyes: Im at home in Sydney. My day has been great, Jules and I have been working with the Australian Chamber Orchestra today on a piece called « Timeline ». We’ve been working on this piece with the ACO for about 4 months now and its really starting to take shape. Very excited to perform this work later in the year.
I think your new single Goodbye Future is a great track. Can you tell us the story behind the song?
KM: Thankyou, very happy you like it. Jules and I wanted to make a really fun, upbeat party track to start things off for us in 2014. Lyrically
the song deals with themes of freedom and losing yourself in the moment. Its a positive message about having fun.
Are you working on a new music video?
KM: As we speak a music video is being made and should be ready in a few weeks.
Can you guys give us any hint on what might the upcoming album sound like or is it a secret?
KM: We’ve decided to spend the year working exclusively on singles, there will be an album eventually but not for a little while yet.
Do you think there’s any song on the upcoming album that may surprise people who know your previous works?
KM: I don’t know yet!
The Presets have now been together for a decade. Is there anything in particular you are proud of in those ten years?
KM: I am proud with the fact that we are still going and that people out there still pay attention to what we do. Other than that there have been many shows and achievements to be proud of, for example, being the first electronic act in Australian history to win Album of the Year in 2008 is a very definite highlight.
Many of your tracks are made of a progression and a bridge/middle-eight. I definitely associate this structure to dance music rather than indie pop. When you’re composing tracks, do you know in which style you want your music to tend?
KM: We always try to make songs first and foremost. Stylistically we are very attracted to Techno, House and Electro. Generally our tracks are some kind of
bastardised version of these styles.
Acid house and late 80s/early 90s dance culture are used so much these days both in terms of music and aesthetics; what’s that about?
KM: Nostalgia is a hell of a thing!
Let’s get back in time a bit. When parts of Apocalypso began finding their way out of Australia, did you begin to think that things were really moving forward?
Julian Hamilton: Sure, when My People came out it definitely felt like we touched some kind of nerve with people, and fans were really starting to respond positively to our new music.
Finding out songs are being played in places where not even released has to be a good feeling, right? Some time has gone by now. Did Apocalypso fulfill artistically what you wished?
JH: Of course! We don’t release music unless it fulfils what we artistically set out to do at the time. That’s the main reason we do this! Of course, we often look back and feel we might do things differently at if we had our time over – but when we are making it, we only complete and release the stuff if we dig it.
Do you often listen to your debut album Beams? If so, how do you feel the band has evolved?
JH: I don’t really listen to any of our music once we’ve finished making it. Of course we hear it a lot when we perform it but that’s a different thing. Occasionally I’ll hear some of our music out somewhere. Are You The One? came on the other day at the gym during my boxing class which was pretty funny to hear.I think back then we were making music that was a but more raucous and rocking – kind of more a punky, trashy version of techno. These days I think we’e getting more back to a more pure traditional techno sound – more like the Detroit style techno and house we liked listening to when we were younger.
Do you remember the first moment when you realized the music went beyond your thoughts? Do you remember one particular live performance where you knew something had changed?
JH: Certainly when I see fans in the audience singing along to the lyrics – that’s pretty nice. I know it’s common for fans to learn the words to my favourite songs – but I admit it’s still a huge deal to me to think that total strangers go to the effort to do that. It’s really cool.
When you’re putting songs together, do you think about how they’re going to translate on stage, especially in front of big festival crowds?
JH: Sometimes. I guess some songs are destined to be bigger slamming tunes that people can jump around to, while others are perhaps more quiet and considered. We don’t attempt to force any song into something it is not – a banger has to stay a banger, and a ballad stays a ballad – but we always try to help each tune find it’s natural home so to speak.
In the past couple of years, Australian music has found its way overseas. How do you think Aussie music gain attention so much?
JH: I remember 8 years ago a lot of people in Europe and the US were talking about us and our friends Cut Copy, The Midnight Juggernauts. Now of course there’s a new wave of really amazing artists coming out of Australia doing great things like Flume, Taku, Flight Facilities. It tends to happen in waves like that. I think the cool thing about Australia is we’re so far away from Europe and the US, we’re not really part of any long history of dance music – it’s still relatively fresh and new.
Many fans wish for a The Presets / Kylie Minogue collaborative track. Can we make that happen?
JH: Is that what they really wish for? Kylie is a national treasure. Confide In Me is one of my favourite Australian songs. Who knows what might happen in the future.
Aside from music, has there been anything you have grown interested in or captivated by?
JH: I have two children and they are extremely captivating! Although they don’t leave me much time for anything else – my kids and my music, and the odd crossword if I’m lucky.
Were there any artists in 2013 that you discovered and loved?
JH: I love FKA Twigs. Her song Water me is so great. Arca’s production is amazing – it reminds me of Tricky. I also really loved Blood Orange’s record.
I love your collaboration on the last Kris Menace album. How did this happen?
JH: Thanks! He just emailed me and asked if I wanted to sing a song with him and I said yes. It was pretty easy.
What’s the overall plan for 2014?
JH: More songs and more shows as always. We’re also collaborating with the Australian Chamber Orchestra on a new piece with them which is super fun. And a million other things.