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BAND OF THE MONTH DECEMBER: POND


They graced the stage of Clockenflap only a few days ago, bringing their psych rock vibes straight to Hong Kong. Perth locals Pond are Rug Lane's Band of The Month this December.

(Nick Allbrook - Clockenflap November 2017 by Billie-Grace Dunk)

Nick Allbrook, Jay Watson, Joe Ryan and Jamie Terry are currently Pond, Perth locals who formed the band in 2008 alongside the growth of Tame Impala. If you've seen these guys play live you'd know they are mesmerising - Nick Allbrook especially. The two bands are known to share members with Nick, Jay and Kevin Parker (the leading member of Tame Impala) working on both over the years.

Pond have said in interviews their reason for forming was to play what they wanted, when they wanted and how they wanted. As Allbrook stated in an interview with NME at End Of The Road festival earlier this year, they're just "a self aware psychedelic pantomime". Don’t mistake them for a spin-off project of Tame Impala though. While Tame is the mind and machine of Parker, Pond is a collaboration between a fun loving group of guys who just want to explore their musical talents and delve into their frustrations on love, life and the state of the world.

In 8 years the band have released 8 albums, giving Rhinana a run for her money. Their first album was released in 2009, shortly after forming, titled Psychedelic Mango. They followed quickly in June that year with their second album, Corridors of Blissterday, a live album with an eight piece band that was completed in five days. This then led to their 2010 album, Frond, which was more pop orientated than the previous releases. After Allbrook and Watson worked on Innerspeaker, the breakthrough standout for Tame Impala, they then continued on Pond material and Beard, Wives, Denim, their fourth album, was released to critical acclaim in March 2012. Beard, Wives, Denim was recorded in a ramshackle house in Western Australia over a two week period. As with their other works, the albums was free spirited and whimsical - a true reading of the guys in the band.

Hobo Rocket was recorded and released in 2013 and again the boys followed with Man, It Feels Like Space Again in January 2015 which as per some of their previous albums, was produced by Parker at his studio in Perth. Earlier this year the band dropped The Weather which has been said to be their poppiest album yet - Allbrook admitting the bands love of pop and his appreciation for Beyonce’s Lemonade as a recent pop record (check out Watson and Parker also talking about their love of pop on Zan Rowe’s Take 5 from 2010). In interviews throughout their extensive touring schedule this year, the band have talked about working on the new album and, for the first time in a long time, all living in the same city. Previously they'd written albums as a global effort, contributing bits and pieces to each other online. "Paint Me Silver" from the new record is an example of that with Watson sampling Todd Rundgren and Utopia's "Cosmic Convoy" and spending hours on hours trying out samples that could work. They have a collective feeling The Weather is their best work yet, they haven’t grown sick of listening to it or playing it and enjoy the sounds still according to Jay Watson.

On the album’s content and themes, Allbrook has talked about the state of Australian culture and political positioning and as a band, their struggles individually with not taking responsibility for how we are as a country. “We’re stupid confused young boys who don’t know how to change anything except to try and be happy and make other people feel happy” (Allbrook on Entrevista at NOS Primavera Sound 2017). Their song 30,000 megatons was suddenly dropped the day of the US election in 2016, a reflective song on the state of mind and one which worked well at that moment, essentially calling to end it all “I look out at the mirror/Look out at the world/30,000 megatons is just what we deserve.” He also expresses similar feelings in “Edge of the World, Pt 1,” where he states “We’re all just a waste of good meat/In a godless world”.

As for new works, the band have said they're still working on new stuff so expect more in the coming year or in the meantime catch them at any of their upcoming dates on the Laneway lineup or other solo gigs.

(POND Clockenflap November 2017 by Billie-Grace Dunk)

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