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Jen chats to Julia from The Coathangers about their upcoming tour of Australia and their new Music.

If you’re familiar with The Coathangers then you probably know the Atlanta group’s premise. The story goes that four young women decided to start a band for the sole purpose of being able to hang out and play parties. They weren’t going to let the fact that none ofthem knew how to play any instruments get in the way of their having a good time.

Hi, Thanks for your time Julia, how stoked are you to be coming down here for Owls and Young and a few shows after?

We are very excited about touring Australia again!  It’s like an end of the year treat before we go into winter hibernation. And  Yours and Owls will be the first festival we will have played in the Land of OZ.

I love the way you announced it on facebook with one of our unofficial anthems playing!

Thanks!

Your merch is amazing! I particularly like the singlet with the lifeline that graduates into The Coathangers and the fist one too. Are you bringing them with you here?

We have exclusive Australia tour only t shirts available at the shows.  However the regular merch will be available online still.

I love that you are bringing a special edition 7” with a koala and a kiwi on it! Do you design these ideas yourselves?

No we wish! The great folks at Smack Face are responsible for the artwork.  We Love it!

I noticed that after Byron Bay you have a few days before your next gig, are you planning a small vacation there? It is worth it! My fav place in the world.

I hope so! Not sure exactly what the plan is but we love Byron Bay as well!

 Love that fact that you became a band because you wanted to hang out and have parties, I mean why not! You seemed to have picked up along the way how to play instruments haven’t you?

Yeah we have definitely evolved over the past 10 years.  We always strive to be better musicians while still maintaining the irreverence that we had when we started the band.

You are no new comers to the scene you are celebrating ten years in the Music industry have you done anything to celebrate this achievement?

We released Nosebleed Weekend and drank plenty of red wine! Our lives are a celebration of our decade in the business.  We are very lucky to have the opportunity to travel the globe and play our music.

You have over the years moved in to other genres like country ballads and classic rock, was this a conscious decision or was it to mix it up?

We never set out to have a distinct sound or fit into a genre.  We just made the music that we wanted to.  We have always been eager to explore all kinds of sounds.  Because we write about our own life experiences, they tend to be very diverse and therefore our songs will be diverse as well.  There’s no  fun in feeling like you’re in a genre cage.

With you latest EP, ‘Nosebleeds Weekend’ (great punk name btw!) you changed recording studios to Valentines Recording Studios, what was the reason for that?

We wanted to change things up.  Do something different and challenge ourselves a bit.  Being complacent does not foster growth.

I listened to your EP, I really like Perfume so I think I shall be getting that EP, what is your fav to play life off the album?

We love playing all the songs off the new record but maybe a particularly fun one is Squeeki Tiki because I get to play a dog toy.  It’s always interesting to see the audience reaction when they realize what is happening.  Always makes us smile.

You guys are on the bill for Desert Days, on the Saturday, do you just go for the day or will you be there for the three days and catch some other bands?

We will be there Friday and Saturday.  We are hoping to catch all our favourite bands if time permits, but you never know at festivals.  It can be a bit of a jumble sometimes.  That part of California is magical though so I’m sure we will have a great time!

 Thank you,  Julia

Thanks, Jen

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The backstory certainly added to the charm of early songs like
“Nestle In My Boobies” and “Stop Stomp Stompin’”songs that resided somewhere between no-wave’s caustic stabs of dissonance and garage rock’s primal minimalism. In the seven years since their formation, The Coathangers have released a slew of records and toured across North America and Europe countless times. The persistence of such a casual
endeavor is a testament to the infectious quality of their songs and the electric nature of their unruly live show. Suck My Shirt is the The Coathangers fourth full-length. The title refers to an incident involving the salvaging of spilled tequila during the recording s
ession for the album. While the title implies that little has changed with regards to
the band’s celebratory mission statement, even just a cursory listen of their latest album demonstrates that there have indeed been changes in The Coathangers camp. First off, the quartet was reduced to a trio for the latest record, with keyboardist Bebe Coathanger (Candice Jones) stepping down from her duties. But the absence of keyboards isn’t nearly as noticeable of a difference as the band’s refined songwriting approach. Refinement is an attribute we expect to see in any group that has a career spanning more than a couple of years, but the extent to which The Coathangers have honed their trade with each successive album dwarfs most bands maturation. This isn’t to say that The Coathangers have polished their sound; the group once again worked with Ed Rawls and Justin McNeight and The Living Room to attain the same production values of their Larceny & Old Lace album and their recent slew of split 7”s. Rather, the refinement can be heard in the quality of the songs themselves. While the band retains the alluring spontaneity and happy accidents of their early releases, the trio’s current work sounds far
more deliberate and locked-in than anything they’ve done in the past.“It’s a balance between overthinking and just going for it,” guitarist Crook Kid Coathanger
(Julia Kugel) says of their songwriting strategy. It’s a duality immediately apparent with the album opener “Follow Me”. It’s a classic Coathangers tune with the raspy vocals of Rusty Coathanger (Stephanie Luke) belted out over the signature grimyrock laid down by Crook Kid and bassist Minnie Coathanger (Meredith Franco). But the chorus opens into one of the most accessible hooks in the band’s canon, just before segueing into the next verse with a squall of violent dissonant guitar. From there the band launches into“Shut Up”, a title that harkens back to the brash sass of their first record. The song still has its spikey guitar riffs and shouted chorus, but here The Coathangers sound less like a jubilant version of Huggy Bear and more like the art-pop of late-era Minutemen. Dedicated Coathangers fans will recognize the re-worked versions of “Merry Go Round”,“ Smother”,“Adderall”, and“Derek’s Song” from their run of limited edition split 7”s, and hearing them in the context of the
album shows that these tracks weren’t merely isolated examples of the band’s more
sophisticated side, but were actually demonstrative of the group’s increasing capacity for nestling solid melodic hooks and rock heft into their repertoire. By the time the band wraps up the album with the humble pop perfection of “Drive”, it’s hard to believe this was the band that garnered their reputation with raucous bombasts like “ Don’t Touch My Shit”. “ Ultimately, every album is a snapshot of who we were at the time,”says Crook Kid. And while that might mean that The Coathangers in 2014 don’t feel compelled to chronicle the youthful piss and vinegar that yielded the Teenage Jesus & The Jerks-esque spasms of their debut album, it’s exciting to hear the output of the band as they explorethe range of their temperaments with a broader musical palette at their disposal. Suck My Shirt is available on LP, CD, and digital formats on March 18th 2014 via Suicide Squeeze Records.

 

Tour Dates

Wed., 5 Oct.

7:00 pm

Northcote VIC

Northcote Social Club

Sun., 2 Oct.

12:00 pm

Wollongong NSW

Yours & Owls

Thu., 6 Oct.

7:00 pm

Newtown NSW

NEWTOWN SOCIAL CLUB

Fri., 7 Oct.

7:00 pm

Fortitude Valley QLD

Black Bear Lodge

Sat., 8 Oct.

7:00 pm

Byron Bay NSW

The Northern

 

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