Ahead of this fridays LP launch ‘HAVE FRIENDS AND VISIT THEM AT NIGHT’ SMRTS (guitarists Pex and Rachael) took some time to talk about the new album and the recent shows in Sydney and Melbourne
1: Tell us about the story behind the album art and title?
The artwork was taken from a 7”Ep by an amazing Serbian jazzy pop 60s group called Vokalni Kvartet Predraga Ivanovica. It was released in either late 50s or early 60s. I bought it on vinyl a few years ago and was really impressed with the artwork – it’s warm and melancholic, just like the SMRTS’ music. That is why I asked the other band members if they would be happy to use it and they were. It was slightly changed from the original, though.
The title came up on me suddenly, as most things do. Without any warning. It just grabbed me by throat. Again, I asked the band members what they thought of it and they liked it. To me it is a suggestion: YOU should have friends and YOU should visit them at night when you are lonely. Or when they are lonely. Or when you just want to have a chat and a drink and play some music with the people you love. The title could also mean that SMRTS have friends and we visit them at night when they play our record at 1am – we just pop out of the vinyl grooves into their living room and say “Hey there, long time no see…”
2: Please tell us about the origins of some of the track titles on the album?
Just three for this occasion:
PALANKA CALLING – Smederevska Palanka is the name of the town where I was born and grew up. It’s a typical small town – beautiful and evil at the same time. Last time I went to Serbia I really wanted to visit it, but didn’t… So, I thought if the Clash can have “London Calling”, so can I!
THE SIGNS LEFT BEHIND – we live, then we die and some of us leave some signs behind, something that generations after us can look into. My dad passed away a year ago and I’ve been finding many signs he left since then.
A VERY HUMAN LANDSCAPE – I went to this party and got totally smashed/passed out. When I woke up, there were all these people who also passed out on the floor around me. It looked like a very human landscape to me.
3: This album was recorded/mixed over a few days in a ‘proper’ studio, do you think this have any effect on your playing? Was there a bit more pressure because you were ‘on the clock’ so to speak or was it a pretty smooth recording session?
We are pretty relaxed as a band although we like to get things done pretty quickly. Of course with studio time there is some pressure to finish in time, but while the drums were done in the studio, we recorded the guitar parts at Matt’s house in our own time.
4:SMRTS recently embarked on their first tour, playing shows in Sydney and Melbourne. How was the tour overall?
We didn’t have any preconceived expectations for the Sydney and Melbourne tour, but found the shows were well attended and got a good reception. I think Pex would like to go back on tour again soon.
SMRTS launch ‘HAVE FRIENDS AND VISIT THEM AT NIGHT’ on FRIDAY 20th April with special guests Craig McElhinney, Pallas Athena, Andrew Sinclair Ritual Band, Water Temple. Tickets available at nowbaking.com.au and on the door.
SMRTS will be touring Sydney and Melbourne in support of their new album “HAVE FRIENDS AND VISIT THEM AT NIGHT”!
3 shows in Sydney:
Friday 9th March at The Landsdowne Hotel, 8PM FREE entry!
Saturday 10th March at The Townie, 8PM FREE entry!
Sunday 11th March at Blackwire Records, 3PM All ages/BYO $8!
And 3 shows in Melbourne!
Come down and see SMRTS and pick up a copy of the new LP ‘HAVE FRIENDS AND VISIT THEM AT NIGHT’
Stream/Purchase here also: http://heartlessrobot.bandcamp.com/album/have-friends-and-visit-them-at-night
In other news we have a lot of cool releases coming soon, just a little snippet (more info soon) here is the art to the new album from BROWN:
SMRTS new album ‘HAVE FRIENDS AND VISIT THEM AT NIGHT’ is now available!
Buy an 11 track 12” LP(with download card) or digital download here:
Preview of all the tracks/mashup here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfOQ8b1oXC8
Smrts is the sound of world music dying at the hands of garage rock. Pushing through the wall of sound created by three guitars and two drums, beautiful and heroic melodies emerge victorious.
In October 2011 Perth instrumental combo Smrts entered Loop Studios to record the follow up to their critically acclaimed debut Sun Sets on a New Tomorrow. Instead of the baking heat conditions imposed by the one day warehouse recording of their first album, the band sped through three days of studio and home recordings and two days of mixing to create Have Friends and Visit Them at Night.
Smrts are Matt Bairstow, Chris Cobilis, Predrag Delibasich, Rachael Kuan and Scott Smith. The album was recorded and mixed by Lewis Ryan (ex-The Typhoons) and Smrts’ own Matt Bairstow, and mastered by Bob Weston (Shellac, Mission of Burma) at Chicago Mastering Services. Have Friends and Visit Them at Night brings another dose of the upbeat melancholic sounds that Smrts are known for.