With the success of their current tour for new EP, 'Social Slump', the band has been selling out shows. Connor from Bugs took some time out of his day for a quick chat with Anna Leathem ahead of their Gold Coast show this Sunday at Miami Shark Bar supported by Sweater Curse, Syrup Go On and Pure Milk.
RR: Hey Connor! This is Anna for Rabbit Radio, how are you today and what have you been up to?
Connor: Oh, I was actually just about to answer with my work greeting because I’m still at work, I’ve been working all day, how are you?
RR: Yeah, good! So you just released your EP, ‘Social Slump’ last month. How’d that go? Are you happy with how it’s been received?
Connor: Yeah, it went really well. Very happy with how it’s been received and a bit overwhelmed, definitely. We played a few shows on the weekend and had a couple hundred people yelling the words back to most of the songs, so that was very weird - a very surreal reception.
RR: What was the writing process like for the EP? Did you just get in a room and jam on it or did you have a set direction in mind?
Connor: Well, as a band we work full time or part time and it’s always been a hobby project, so it’s always just slotting in-between which can be hard to get a clear idea of things or have enough time to nut-out something a bit more intricate. It’s just a mix-match of songs that are a snapshot of the past couple of years - things I’ve been going through or dealing with. I try to make it as honest and genuine as possible.
RR: You also released a video a few months ago for your single, ‘Glue’, with a bunch of other cool, local acts. What was the inspiration for that video concept? Did you have a lot of input in the ideas?
Connor: No, I had no input. Our videographer Will just came to us and said “Hey, I’ll do a video super cheap!” and we just said “Yeah, that’s our budget”. It was basically an excuse to all hang out together. Since we all work full-time, when it comes to any of the band stuff we like to make it… not work-y, kind of.
RR: And now you’re amidst your ‘Social Slump’ tour, how’s that going?
Connor: Yeah, nuts! Very – again – surreal. People with tattoos of our album artwork, getting photos and stuff. They’re actually awesome! Just meeting heaps of people who have been following us for years and people who saw us at Falls.
RR: Do you have a favourite song to perform on tour? One that you always look forward to playing?
Connor: I want to just fence-sit it, and say “I like all of our songs equally, cos they’re all great and I don’t write bad songs”, but nah – I wish! I’d probably say ‘Stutter’ because that’s a really fun, happy one and everyone sings along to it, it’s a good infectious one.
RR: Are there any venues you’re keen to play that you haven’t yet?
Connor: Well, promo - Shark bar! I’m from the Sunny Coast, so Gold Coast is like our big brother and I’m so about the regional, surf towns. That’s totally the kind of place I grew up so I can’t wait. Also, Perth. Perth will be sick, ‘cos everyone’s really friendly and a bit more trendy than Brissy.
RR: For those of us who haven’t been to your shows, what can we expect from this tour?
Connor: For anyone who hasn’t been there I’d say a pretty high energy level, expect a lot of hugs and handshakes. Not high-fives, I hate high-fives, I always mess them up ‘cos I’m too tall and I’m always coming down towards the person, but yeah! Just people having a good time. We’re just trying to make a safe, fun, happy space for people.
RR: You guys got the opportunity to play Falls Festival last year too, what’s the difference between playing festivals to your own shows?
Connor: Pressure, totally. No pressure with our own shows because it’s all stuff we have experienced before and it’s just like a big, family gathering of friends. I’ve played hundreds and hundreds of shows now so it’s chill as, but festivals is a bit different. There’s a bit more unknown because of the lack of frequency with which you play them. Logistically it’s a bit weird, you have to be a bit more constrained. I like the intimacy of what we do as opposed to Falls for example, where there were so many more people than I was expecting. I fully face-planted in front of them too! That’s a good metaphor for my entire musical career.
RR: There were definitely some pretty big names on that lineup, and you’ve also played with bands like Hockey Dad and Modern Baseball right? Is there anyone in the music scene right now that you’d really want to play with?
Connor: Not really, I’m really fucking lucky! I’ve literally played with all of my idols so far. Like we started out playing with Dunies and Soho who got me into writing, and even Cloud Nothing. I’d love to be able to play more with friend’s bands from Brisbane. It’d be cool if we could play with a few more mate’s bands. I like diversity on lineups as well when it comes to genres and gender.
RR: I usually end with a weird question to top it off. Would you rather never be able to speak again or never be able to stop talking?
Connor: Awesome question, ‘cos I speak so much. Would speaking include singing? I was leaning towards talking full-time anyway, because I have a lot of feelings and if I was alone with them in my head for too long I’d just go insane. It’s always good to get your shit out.
RR: Good answer! So, for everyone listening make sure you catch Bugs on tour really soon, before we say good bye is there anything else you’d like share with us?
Connor: No, nothing else to really say to the peeps.
RR: Thanks so much for chatting! And we’ll see you for your Sunday show at Shark Bar!