Jesse Forde wrote a brilliant review of Josh Pyke on Tuesday and to follow on from that, here’s my interview with him.
“There’s a Line” music video that was released in May, can you explain to us a little bit as to how long it took to make and what the concept of the video was?
The concept was to avoid any cliché romantic stereotypes. I wanted to really get out of that box and actually focus on like a post-apocalyptic genre, like walking dead and stuff like that. Overall it took 2 days to shoot, up in New South Wales and walked around the back of the mountains and such. We pretty much roamed around and looked for anything that seemed to be abandoned…
Not long ago you released a video on YouTube explaining the artwork for your album But For All These Shrinking Hearts. In the video, you explain that perpetual motion machines were what you were wanting to base the cover art on, can you elaborate on how that came to mind when you were deciding on cover art?
I was looking for a tattoo design… I thought what a cool design would be like an old ‘sketching’ style of a perpetual motion machine. But when I was researching pictures for it I found that perpetual motion machines don’t actually work. I even found out that a man called Charles Redheffer claimed that he made one of those machines and actually charged people to come and have a look but a sceptic found a cord that lead upstairs and it lead to a person upstairs cranking a wheel. I just found that to be a good metaphor for lots of things going wrong in the world of today and we are essentially pushing ourselves forward in the exponential race that we can’t exactly support and then behind the scenes are people cranking the wheel that may not even have the best interests at heart. So it seemed like a good visual metaphor to me.
Releasing your 5th album But For All These Shrinking Hearts on July 31st and going on your Fan’s First tour on the 29th, it’s safe to say you have an absolutely packed out couple of months ahead… What do you like to do on your downtime?
At the moment, I’m actually renovating my studio at home. It’s probably a stupid time to do it with being so busy but I just really want to have my own studio to just jam and experiment. But it’s good to have my own studio that I can jam and fool around in.
I consider “The Summer” to be one of my all time tracks produced by you, it is a golden track from your album Chimney’s Afire… for those times where you’re laying on the beach and just relaxing; it honestly is just one of the catchiest, ‘daydreamer’ songs. What’s your favourite track that you’ve produced so far and why?
It’s really hard to find a favourite because I love them all for a hundred different reasons. It especially changes whenever I release a record, but right now my favourite has to be “Book of Revelations“. It’s the first song I wrote for the album so it has a bit of a symbol as to what direction I wanted the album to go towards.
“The Summer” is what I would best describe as being a ‘Post-holiday depression’ sort of song with the message being in the chorus ‘We should be living like we lived that summer’. Is this based on a particular personal story?
It is! The Summer is about Patonga on the central coast of New South Wales. I went there every year from the time I was born to 16. When I think about the summer, I think about those two weeks there, surfing and fishing… to me then and now, it is an ideal time of how life should be.
The first song I heard you feature on was “Throw It Away” with 360, and from then on, I was a fan of yours. Can you elaborate on how that collaboration came to be?
A friend of mine worked at the record company that he worked for and at the time he was looking for collaborations and my friend mentioned me. I loved the track a lot. The lyrics… The story telling… To be honest, I have never actually really met him. We were both available at different times so we never actually were in the same room at the same time until the track was released, but nonetheless it was a fun track to produce.
You’ve also collaborated with other artists such as Passenger and even Urthboy, all of which are outstanding pieces… if you could collaborate with any artist/s in the world, whom would you choose?
One of my favourite artists is definitely James Mercer from The Shins. I definitely think it’d be so awesome to do something with him.
Do you have any musical influences?
From the time when I was a kid, it’d be more like The Beatles, Beach Boys, Elton John and music like that. But now it’s more The Shins, The National… music like that, I am really enjoying at the moment.
Apart from your tour in late July, what else can we expect from you in the future?
In the new year, I will be focusing on a proper album tour in February which I am really excited about. So between then it gives the fans time to listen to the album and get a feel for the songs then see it performed live.
If there were to be a movie based on your life, whom would you like to play your character?
Oh god, I don’t know. Maybe someone waaay better looking than me so people would say ‘oh, that actor is good looking, I bet the actual musician is good looking too.’ Maybe Ryan Gosling … He does that romantic movie, right? The notebook? Definitely him.
Two ‘Must brings’ when you are out on tour?
My iPad. I can read, watch TV… also a great pair of headphones, for sure.
What are the most played songs on your Phone/iPod?
At the moment, it would be “Death of Dignity” by Sufjan Stevens. . I’ve just been flogging that.
Josh Pykes album is available for preorder now.