Hey everyone, Brendan the blind guy here! Just For You, my Friends, I’m chatting to true rising Stars of indie-pop/rock from the Sunburnt Land of Sydney, Happy Days! Ladies and gentlemen, THE KAVA KINGS!
Brendan; Happy Days indeed for you guys! You recently released your new dreamy EP ‘Two Strangers’ featuring the intoxicatingly aurally flavoursome single ‘Stars’. Apparently this EP is essentially a piece of a larger puzzle, and is about relationships in their different stages. So tell us, I take it this is the inspiration/the common thread that links the songs together in a sort-of musical mosaic? In that case, what about the writing and recording process? Take us into the melting pot of creativity when/how you crafted the songs both musically and lyrically?
Chris; Yeah the songs all link together in a way, visiting the different stages in relationships.
We started writing for the EP a year ago. It’s been a long process. Tom and myself will usually have the songs as far along as possible, with the music and lyrics done. Even before showing the rest of the band. Most tracks were quite personal as you can tell, so was the process of creating. But once we get in a room together the magic happens and everyone has the freedom to push it in anyway they want.
We were lucky enough to have Joel Quartermain (Eskimo Joe) produce and engineer the EP. It was like having a 5th member. The way he pushed us musically was something we’ve never experienced. His creative input and sonic vision was something that made this EP stand out for us.
Brendan; Your new single (which got my attention) ‘Stars’ is a perfect winter-warmer for the soul, but why did you guys choose this as your first single?
Chris; As soon as we wrote the song we knew it would be a single. And throughout its whole musical life it stayed that way.
Brendan; You’ve also released a video for this feel-good track. Me being blind, I’m not even going to try and guess/analyze it, honestly, it could be of a baby elephant on a tricycle playing bagpipes… that’d be a cool video! But I can’t imagine this is the case, so tell us about the process of filming/curating it?
Chris; Ella Tubman, a film maker from the Sunshine Coast created this awesome film clip for us.
We have spent a lot of time up there. She had footage of her friends surfing and roaming around the coast. It just suited the track. There is some sneaky footage of our last European tour in there.
Brendan; This I will try to guess/analyze. Thus If I had to guess, I’d say the title ‘Two Strangers’ would refer to the process of two strangers coming together/finding each other, and on the flip-side, perhaps becoming simply strangers to one another after a relationship ends. So, was I anywhere close to the inspiration behind the name?
Chris; Definitely hit the mark on that one haha..
‘Are we two strangers in our bed’ is one of the lines. It refers to a feeling of disconnection towards someone, having a change of heart.
Brendan; Speaking of funky names, The Kava Kings, what’s the story behind this name?
Chris; The Kava Kings came from a trip Tom and Nuge had to Fiji. Drinking a lot of kava between them, they were joined by a man called Whammy. Who crowned them The Kava Kings after lengthy session on the drink. It kind of stuck with us.
Brendan; More happy days on the horizon, because you guys are doing a string of shows around Sydney, Wollongong and Canberra (head to the What’s On? Page for details). Fingers crossed I can make it to one of these shows to horrify people with my dance moves. If so, what can I expect from a Kava Kings show? I,e energy, production, chaos, possible need of first aid kit etc.
Chris; We always love performing. And it’s a new challenge for us pulling these songs into a live show.
You can expect the whole EP to played, we always try to burst into moments and push songs into a new place. Spontaneity is a key part of our show. Plus beers are to be consumed as always.
Brendan; Right, now I reckon it’s time we get exclusive guys! So, what is an exclusive fun fact about each of yourselves? (doesn’t have to be music related)
Chris; Tom, Nuge & Brann were all in separate metal bands before Kava Kings.. haha.
Brendan; Now for my favourite question of all, that’s right people, it’s W.T.F time! Being fun, lively lads, you guys must’ve come across some priceless moments on your careers. So which one takes the cake as being the most hilarious, priceless, W.T.F moment of them all?
Chris; A pretty memorable moment for us was over New years 2016. We were playing a show over in Yallingup, WA. Nuge’s guitar was lost in transit and was sent to another state.
Being left handed, a guitar was hard to come by. We somehow got onto a bloke in Perth, he had a guitar called a ‘Johnson’. It was no exaggeration the worst sounding guitar to date. But we were grateful.
Setting up for the gig we spotted Kevin Parker of Tame Impala walking down past the outdoor stage. He took a glimpse on stage and we all melted. We played so bad and Nuge played through 3 hours of music on the worst instrument possible. We were laughing about how much that gig sucked, and why Kevin Parker had to witness it. Haha..
Brendan; Well I think we’ll leave it with one more! You’re bringing your music to stages in the near future, but what else can we look forward to hearing from you guys in the near future?
Chris; In the near future we will be gearing up for more music. Getting some studio time in before the years over. Also we did a commentary on the whole ’Two Strangers’ EP. Track for track. So keep an eye and an ear out for that.
THE KAVA KINGS ‘TWO STRANGERS’ TOUR DATES
Friday September 27th Solbar Maroochydore
With The Fins, The Sundowners
Thursday October 10th The Lansdowne Sydney
With Gold Member, MVRKS
Thursday October 31st Transit Bar Canberra
With Powder Blue, Slow Dial
Saturday November 2nd The Junction Katoomba
With Bush Plum, Ear Sponge
Sunday November 10th North Gong Wollongong
With Wharves, Greta Stanley