High School students and epic musicians, Connor Barton (Drums) and Naomi Robinson (Lead Vocals and Guitar) have had one busy year, taking out the Triple J Unearthed High Competition, recording with one of the most renowned producers in Australia and completing their last year of school. The Perth duo just officially released their second single 'Commotion', following their winning track 'Call My Name'. We got to have a chat with Connor before he headed off to school...
Thanks for chatting to us so early, does it suck going back to school after a few epic months for you guys?
Not really, I've tried to keep it pretty separate, keeping exams from band time, it has put stress on but it's still been a really fun year. We finish up with school at the end of the year, I've actually only got 9 more days left, then we've just got our major exams and then we're all done.
What were the following weeks like after you guys taking out the Triple J Unearthed High comp?
Well it's consisted of a lot more interviews, people contacting us wanting to give us a hand, and also a lot of gig offers but we haven't been able to play them because of all our study commitments, but I guess we've just had to slot back into reality, I was even studying economics the night that we won the comp...
So had you guys heard of the other finalists in the unearthed high comp prior to them being announced?
No we hadn't, but after hearing them we realised how talented everyone was, we always thought Lupa J would win, I thought she was incredible that she produced all her music as well as playing all the instruments, and she had a bit of a one up on everyone else as she was a finalist last year as well. I also love Spire, I think he's awesome, when we were both finalist he messaged us, because he's also from WA, he's a really lovely guy.
You guys just released your single 'Commotion', which you recorded with major producer Greg Wales, how was that?
Yeah, he's such a cool guy, he knows absolutely everything that you could ever think of, if you have a favourite band he's worked with them. we went into the studio with a pretty good idea of what we wanted the song to sound like he knew what we wanted it to sound like too, so the final copy came out and it was just what we wanted it to be, he had so many great ideas and heaps of small details to add or change. gotta thank him for making it sound the way it does.
How long did it take you it smash it out?
So we recorded it in one day, which is pretty normal but what was really speedy was he mixed it over Sunday and Monday and then it was released on the Wednesday, usually it takes a lot longer than that but we had to get it out to keep the hype up I guess. It was so cool that we recorded it and literally 5 days later it was released, I was so excited for people to hear it and they didn't have to wait weeks for it.
With 'Commotion', had you guys written that prior to the competition?
We actually wrote it quite close to when we left for recording it in Sydney after winning the comp, we cut it quite fine, as we usually do with most things. We had everything ready other than the lyrics, which Naomi wrote half an hour before hand, we didn't have it before we won, once we won we knew the pressure was on, we had about 4 different song ideas, so we kinda just fleshed them out and went with commotion.
Have you met anyone in the industry that has been quite a big deal for you?
Well meeting all the people at Triple J was a really great, meeting the people that are on your radio constantly was awesome. we've met some really great people within the industry that have contacted us from other bands, booking agents. it's just been really cool to have heaps of people wanting to chat to us.
I read that a lot of the artists you guys are influenced by are Hendrix and a lot of 70's artists, is that the music you grew up listening to or something you've rediscovered of recently?
I don't think either of our parents were listening to much of that stuff, I think it comes down to the internet, you can just troll and troll through Soundcloud's and YouTube videos so easily, I know Naomi is a massive troller, especially on the suggestions list, she just clicks and clicks until she comes across some obscure 60's funk band. So yeah that's definitely contributed to our sound.
Seeing as your finishing school at the end of this year, what's on the cards?
Well both of us are taking a gap year next year, It'll be a lot more flexible for us to jam, it wont be restricted to one afternoon a week type thing, so lots more gigs, writing and hopefully a bit of travel.
You can grab Mosquito Coast's new track 'Commotion' and 'Call My Name' now.