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Listen: T54 - Birds (First Practice)

Listen: T54 - Birds (First Practice)

Thursday 18th August, 2016 11:56AM

Christchurch trio T54 are kicking off a four-date tour tonight with a hometown show before working their way up to Wellington, then Whanganui and eventually ending up in Barrytown. The long-awaited jaunt has been timed nicely to coincide with the cassette reissue of their 2011 debut EP, Drone Attacks, which is coming complete with a whole bunch of previously unreleased demos and being released via local label Melted Ice Cream as well as Fast Forward from Philadelphia.  

One of those aforementioned demos is this version of EP opener 'Birds' which, as bandmember Joe Sampson explains, is "literally the first few seconds" of the band playing together for the first time. Take a listen to history in the making while you read our wee interview with Joe below...

Hey Joe! What was the driving force behind T54 deciding to re-release Drone Attacks out on cassette now?

Hey! I’ve been into the idea of putting up a bunch of old demos online and also releasing Drone Attacks on cassette for a while now, so combining the two ideas seemed logical. It also coincided with the tour which made even greater sense.

You also look after Melted Ice Cream, which are putting out quite a lot of tapes. How is the cassette business these days? What’s the appeal of the format?

Tapes are good for an independent artist (especially in NZ) because they don’t cost thousands of dollars and take months of waiting like vinyl does, for instance. If I could afford to do vinyl I probably would but people like tapes and really they're just another format that's just as valid as anything else.

You’ve included a bunch of previously unheard material on the cassette, including this cut of 'Birds'. Can you walk us through how the track developed from this ‘First Practice’ to the final version included on the EP?

This version of ‘Birds’ is quite literally the first few seconds of us playing together for the first time ever, so it sounds exactly like that. Over the year following it gained a structure and some lyrics but the main idea for it basically stayed the same. The song was kind of a blueprint for the overall sound of the band, which we basically nailed at our first practice!

Has T54 got any new material in the works?

Sort of... We’d recorded an album (and-a-half) in late 2014 but we’ve all been genuinely too occupied with other endeavours to give it the time it needs to finish it off. We are however planning to release a vinyl compilation sometime next year which will include some “new” stuff but mostly centred around old stuff.

You’ve got a four-stop tour kicking off this weekend, no upper North Island shows though! Another time??

Yes, most definitely. We also haven’t played Dunedin in three years so that’s also on the calendar for Christmas :)

T54 On Tour

Thursday 18th August, Space Academy, Christchurch
Friday 19th August, Caroline, Wellington
Saturday 20th August, Lucky Base, Whanganui
Saturday 27th August, Barrytown Hall, Barrytown

Head over here for more information


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Sat 27th Aug
Barrytown Hall, Barrytown

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