Interview: The Getaway Plan make a fresh start
Melbourne-based alternative rockers The Getaway Plan are in the midst of their Australian tour. We spoke to lead vocalist Matthew Wright about their new record and about life on the road:
Hi Matthew and thanks for taking the time out to speak with us at Something You Said. Firstly congratulations on the new album. Would you say that Dark Horses is a straight evolution from your previous releases or a completely separate beast that doesn’t share much in common with its predecessors?
Thank you very much. We are really stoked with how it has all been going. Well, with our three releases, because there has been such massive gaps between each one, we almost skip a record time which is kind of natural when spending so much time away from the studio and growing as musicians.
What does this album say about you and the stage of your life that you are in right now?
It is almost like a new beginning for us really because we have some new members in the band, which has really changed the dynamic a lot and it has really opened our ability to jam and experiment and push ourselves in directions we haven’t been before. So for us it is a fresh start.
What have those new band members brought to the table that didn’t previously exist?
Just our ability to jam as a band and write together as a band. In the past writing was a bit awkward for us to write songs at home and then bring them in (to the studio) to nut them out. A lot of new songs on the record came from nothing, that is just playing in the room which is new for us.
Where was the lyrical content for this LP largely derived from?
Personal experience really. I am a pretty selfish writer when it comes to lyrics (laughs) and shit that is happening in my personal life.
You have released this through Dope Mountain, your own record label, was there an added sense of freedom doing it this way or did it bring about a raft of new challenges?
Definitely a bit of both. There was a lot of work that we never anticipated by doing it independently but in the long run it has been way more gratifying for us knowing the payoff is due to our work, it’s a really good feeling.
You have a hefty tour schedule with over thirty dates locked in, how do you maintain the quality when balancing the quantity?
It is difficult to do for sure but we always try to put on the best show we possibly can. We try to treat every show as if we are playing at Wembley Stadium.
It is fairly obvious what punters what when attending a show but what do you want from an audience?
Just for people to have a good time honestly. We don’t care if people don’t want to mosh or head-bang or anything like that. It is kind of almost nice when we play shows and people just stand there, watch and take it all in.
Was there any acts that guys saw as punters that made you think, yes this is how a live band should play?
Absolutely. So many acts when I was growing up which is the reason why I am in a band.
Melbourne has a very vibrant music scene, bursting at the seams with bands. Have you found it to be a competitively beneficial environment that helps you push your own artistic boundaries?
We try and stay in our zone. Over the years the community vide and scene has deteriorated a little bit. A lot of people seem to be out for themselves now which I understand but is kind of sad at the same time.
You are giving some local acts a leg up by offering support slots to your shows, is this an act of karma whereby you yourselves were given some special opportunities and feel that it is right to return the favour?
Yeah we always try to get local bands and give them the same opportunity as when we were starting out which is the reason why we are here today. We find it very important to give those bands a shot. Absolutely.
Sustaining a musical career is no easy task, how do The Getaway Plan approach it?
We just try to be as open as we possibly can be about everything, so with the dynamic between us we don’t really have any rules that we go by. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, everyone’s opinion is valid.
During your many years of touring and performing, you would have encountered some strange and impressive characters. Were any words of wisdom spoken to you that still resonate with you and have helped you throughout your career?
I can’t think of any words of wisdom but more about what not to do in the industry from other people over the last ten years than anything else. Don’t wear sunglasses on stage and always wear shoes on stage.
Do you find touring to be inspirational whereby it helps you write and create more material or are you so focused on the task at hand that writing and creating new material takes a back seat?
There are definitely days where there is no creativity coming from anyone but majority of the time we are always writing on the road.
Are there any particular places you love to play?
So far on this tour the stand out shows for me have been the capital shows. Darwin was really awesome, we didn’t expect much but it was really surprising and a killer show. With this show we have been to a lot of places we haven’t been to before and it has opened our ability to tour there more in the future.
What does music give you that nothing else does?
The ability to not have a full time job (laughs).
What does the rest of 2015 have in store for The Getaway Plan?
Well we are just going be finishing off this tour, take a small break over Christmas and then next year we are planning on doing a little Australian tour and after that we are going overseas for a bit.
The Getaway Plan play the following venues over Oct/Nov. Tickets from their website.
Friday 16th – 170 Russell, Melbourne VIC
Saturday 17th – Riverview Hotel, Tarwin Lower VIC
Thursday 29th – Werribee Plaza Hotel, Werribee VIC
Friday 30th – Chelsea Heights Hotel, Chelsea Heights VIC
Saturday 31st – Workers Club, Geelong VIC
Friday 6th – Club 54, Launceston TAS
Saturday 7th – Republic Bar, Hobart TAS
Thursday 12th – Inferno, Traralgon VIC
Friday 13th – Hallam Hotel, Hallam VIC
Saturday 14th – Commercial Hotel, South Morang VIC
Wednesday 18th – Leisure Inn, Rockingham WA
Thursday 19th – Prince of Wales Hotel, Bunbury WA
Friday 20th – Rosemount Hotel, Perth WA
Saturday 21st – Mojos Bar, Fremantle WA
Sunday 22nd – Dunsborough Tavern, Dunsborough WA
Friday 27th – Whalers Hotel, Warrnambool VIC
Saturday 28th – Fowlers Live, Adelaide SA
Interview by Courtney Dabb.