Words by: Laurent Shervington, Interviewee: Tim Steward
Hey guys, how’s it going?
Going good, cheers!
Congratulations on the new album Pop Guilt, when and why does one feel ‘Pop Guilt’?
Haha! Everyone’s been asking that question. I guess it was a title that we happened upon accidentally and it kinda resonated straight away. For our first few albums we were only concerned with making a racket, basically, hiding the vocals back in the mix and creating what we considered “our noise” and some kinda art statement most likely. With the benefit of hindsight it’s the songs with the least fluff, the least complexity and the strongest hooks that earn their place in the setlist after years have gone by. So really in the end we were always a pop band, we just covered it up pretty well.
Any pivotal reference points in particular (books, films, life events, other music etc) for this particular record?
Good question, undoubtedly, yes. I mean 12 years have gone by in between releases for us, so our lives have progressed significantly. In the time away from Screamfeeder we all released music under different names or with different bands, which was in itself a pretty big learning curve. We’ve all got older and uglier and come back to the band with all that additional experience as well as a bit of a renewed sense of what this band is worth to us after all this time.
What spurred your return to music and what was everyone doing in the break?
Ah, I kinda answered this.. Kellie released a solo album and an album by her band The Warm Guns. She also put out one or two EPs with other people. I released a solo album as well, and also 3 albums with my other band WE ALL WANT TO. Dean got his life together, he and his partner had a kid, who’s a really cool little dude. After doing one or two incidental ‘Feeder shows over the last few years we all realised how well we know how to do what we do, and that in the end it wouldn’t be hard to make another record.
What is the Brisbane music scene like at the moment?
It’s big and busy, I know that. There are tons of bands and you have to book gigs like 3-4 months out. Same as everywhere I guess. I don’t go out much but when I do there’s definitely a good energised feeling around the venues – a few years ago there was a bit of a stale vibe but I think that’s passed now and we’re into fruitful times again!
You guys have such a huge body of material, how do you go about writing up a setlist?
Well we don’t remember all our songs! Old songs usually take a little bit of work to polish up again. Plus there are a lot that we just don’t like any more.. after so long they don’t do anything for us now. But – we do have more than enough to choose from on any given night. Certain songs belong together melodically, and certain songs have to live together because of guitar tunings. It’s not too hard to work out a pretty good order of songs so they flow well.