60 Seconds With Oh Mercy
With Oh Mercy just having released their latest musical masterpiece, Great Barrier Grief, and about to head out on a three month tour I could think of no better time to talk to the genius behind the band. I chatted to Alexander Gow about everything music.
Tell me about the making of Great Barrier Grief.
"I went to Brooklyn where I stayed a couple of months working on the album tracks. Then I took them to LA to Mitchell Froom. He really helped me with arrangements. I wanted to make an album with minimal instrumentation. He helped me simplify everything."
What’s your favourite track on the album?
"Blue Lagoon. I like the song because musically it’s one of the more interesting songs I’ve written. I like all the metaphors and symbolism that I use."
I read that you worked through 30 songs to complete the final 12 to take to the recording studio. Why did you choose those 12 songs over the others?
"I suppose I was very conscious of making an album that moves dynamically and dramatically. I wanted it to be consistent in a mood. I chose the songs that seemed to fit together."
Did you find anything particularly difficult when making the album?
"Everything was carefree. I was well prepared and knew exactly what I wanted. And when I was working with Mitchell, he was on the same level as me."
Do you think your music has evolved since your 2009 debut of Privileged Woes?
"I suppose so. It’s kind of like when you’re growing and you don’t notice unless other people tell you. But I’m being encouraged by my peers. I hope I’m developing."
Even now that you’ve completed the album, are you always writing?
"I’m always thinking about music. It’s constantly on my mind- things I could write about, things I could develop."
You’re going to be on tour for the album launch through March, April and May. What would you say are the best things about touring, and what are the worst?
"The best thing is meeting all these wonderful people and being able to experience the landscape that most people wouldn’t have at my age. The worst thing would be the early mornings."
What would be the biggest highlight in your bands' career?
"Playing at a music benefit show at the Tote."
Who influences you in the music industry?
"Paul Kelly. He’s an exceptional songwriter. I’m interested in the idea of being a career artist and looking back at a body of work."
What’s one thing you want to achieve by the end of this year?
"I want to start recording another album. I need to keep on writing and recording while I’m young. I want to have made three albums by the time I’m 25."
Catch Oh Mercy at Push Over alongside Break Even, Children Collide, Dream On Dreamer, House Vs Hurricane, Hunting Grounds, Gold Fields, Illy, Last Dinosaurs, Owl Eyes, Stonefield, The Tongue and many more.
They'll also be on Beat's cove next week so keep an eye out for the full story.