Davey Lane – Across The Ocean

Davey Lane

Davey Lane the star guitarist in You Am I ventures out under his own name with a killer new release titled Duo-Monophonic Explorations: Volume 1 which features the legendary Tim Rogers and Stu Mackenzie (from King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard). Davey Lane talks to Across The Ocean about the challenges of going solo and a little more about his new vinyl release as well as revealing what is on the horizon for You Am I.

davey-lane-promo

It sounds very exciting that You Am I are back in the studio rehearsing new material?

Just thinking about how long it has been since the last time, nearly five years I think so it is long overdue in a way.

Is it a bit of a juggle deciding when is the right time is to slot in the Davey Lane thing?

Not really, I’m chipping away doing what I do when I have free time anyway. I have a little recording studio set up at home so I guess it is fortuitous in that way that I can record in my down time and just get in to it working on new music with myself. Everything pans out one way or another.

Duo-Monophonic Explorations: Volume 1 sounds like an interesting project, was the intention always to release it on vinyl?

When I kind of envisaged it, I always planned on it being on vinyl. I imagine folks with the ‘ole seventies style amplifiers flicking the balancer left and right to hear the different versions. Vinyl, there are ways to make it work digitally via iTunes but it isn’t quite as tangible and fun as messing around with the balance fader on your stereo.

Was it weird working with Tim Rogers on something that wasn’t going to be a You Am I track?

Tim and I are really close, he is one of my closest mates and I explained the concept to him then he sounded really keen. The song we worked on together I had lying around for a little while, musically anyway, I had sketches for lyrics. If you’ve got fucking Tim Rogers to write lyrics for you then you would be mad not to.

Speaking of Tim Rogers he’s smoking hot at the moment with his work on The Bamboos new album.

Absolutely, Tim’s always been so prolific anyway and he’ll keep going on. He’s got dozens of great records left in him.

How about the contrast though working with Stu Mackenzie who is making a name for himself in King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard?

When I first started I kind of held on this idea for years and I thought that someone must have done it before or it may be too fanciful a concept to pull off. I had those songs written early this year and I had done some research to see if anyone had done it and it had turned out that no one had. I thought I had better jump to it before someone else thought of it.

Does it eat away at you when you have these songs lying around for years when there isn’t necessarily the right timing or other factors which prevents you from getting it out?

It is frustrating and having made a record last year then putting out a record then do a couple of shows then that’s it. It is a bit blink and miss and it is like ‘fuck what do I do now’, usually when you put out a record you hope that would facilitate a bit of a tour or some festival shows. When that doesn’t pan out you just have to keep the ball rolling. The thing is the amount of material that I have that will probably stay unreleased just because of timing or money, it costs so much even if you record everything yourself even if the recording budget is zero dollars. An artist like myself whose music only reaches a handful of people it gets pretty prohibitive sometimes with the cost of getting stuff out there. I don’t know but you have to think of creative ways to do it.

Is it frustrating that twelve months in music is over in a blink of an eye the amount of time on a touring cycle for an album is getting shorter and shorter?

Yeah, in one way I see that as a positive. Take bands like King Gizzard who are getting a couple of records out every eighteen months those guys are getting something out there. They are on a really good wicket and are in that position where they can keep putting records out there and there are a bunch of people who are ready to snap it up. In a way it is good because it gets more music out there but for independent artists like I say the prohibitive costs of releasing music it does weigh down a little. Like I said I think you need to find new ways to get your music out there.

Would you need to relocate to the US or the UK to build the Davey Lane brand to get noticed back here at home? Just look at Fraser A. Gorman for example…

I was playing guitar in Fraser’s band but I had to take a backseat because I didn’t want to sacrifice working on my own stuff. It means missing out on a bunch of overseas touring but Fraser is definitely on an awesome wicket at the moment and is set for great things. I would absolutely jump at it if the opportunity was there to head overseas. I feel like there is only so much you can do here.

Atonally Young was such a great album packed full of singles I find it disappointing that more people didn’t get on board to discover this. Does it feel like trying to win the lottery coming up with a single that resonates with the masses?

Absolutely, I try not to think about that too much. I look at a lot of my favourite bands such as Big Star and Badfinger unfortunately a lot of people didn’t give a fuck about those guys but they have some great records that people would pick up later on. Maybe it is a hidden gem or a hidden record that someone might pick up some time and maybe appreciate.

Where to from here? Are you looking to tour?

In the mean time I have another record in the can and ready to go of my own. I’m thinking instead of just whacking a record out there I might be just putting out singles throughout the year. Even if I’m busy with You Am I that I can still get music out there. I might do another round of these Duo-Monophonic things as I have a couple of ideas for a second one and some people who I have in mind for it who are damn keen.

Did you get encouraged by how strong the pre-sales for Duo-Monophonic Explorations: Volume 1 have been?

It is definitely the way of the future for a lot of artists, you just have to keep pushing forward. It really is encouraging to see that there are folks out there who you can put a vinyl pre-order out there and they’ll put down their hard earned for a copy of it.

Do you have any other side projects on the go? Will The Pictures make a resurgence?

I think that’s left in hibernation and I know Luke’s really keen for the band to do something again. At the moment I’m just enjoying the freedom putting music out with my own name on it so there is no expectation that it should sound a certain way. In a way I can let my freak flag fly and do whatever I like. If the right stars align and a right time to do something with The Pictures then I’ll leave that open ended but for now I’m enjoying the freedom of putting out my own music.

Is it too early to start asking about what’s in store for the new You Am I album?

It’s all going great, Tim’s written a bunch of crackers and for the first time I’ve thrown a couple in to the pot. It’s looking pretty at this point, it will be pretty raucous and recording at Dapto we’re looking forward to recording straight to eight track tape and pushing it sonically in to the red. It probably will be the rawest sounding record to date but who knows where it will end up but it will sound pretty shiny. At this stage everything is sounding pretty frenetic, loud and fast.

Will it be released late this year?

That’s the plan any way, things always get thrown up in the air. We’ll see how we go sometimes these things often, inevitably, get delayed.

So are you or You Am I touring any time soon?

I dare say with You Am I there will be a tour and I hope to tour off my steam, I’ve always got my fingers crossed.

Rob Lyon

Rob Lyon

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rob Lyon has been writing about all things music for well over ten years in Adelaide clocking up more live shows each year seeing the best going round.

Whether it is rummaging through vinyl at record stores such as Clarity and Title finding hidden gems to scouring the internet to find that album by the next big thing or chasing bands to get that elusive autograph and photo his passion is music all the way.
Rob Lyon

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