Every now and then a band comes along with a sound that serves as a breath of fresh air because it’s so different from what you’re used to listening to, and, with that, you’re instantly hooked (if the song is good). That’s the case I felt with rAdelaide’s Colour Machine who have kindly offered to Premiere their new music video for ‘Laughing Last‘ with us today.
I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, drummers who sing for bands (Underoath, Introvert etc) are some of the hardest working musicians in the world because not only do they have to maintain the beat, they’ve gotta have a captivating voice that doesn’t get lost when they’re smashing away on their kit. Colour Machine have their own hard worker in Anthony Donato who offers up some nice melodic vocals as he plays along with guitarist Tom Burton and bassist Luke Anderson. I grabbed Ant for a quick chat to celebrate the band’s new video.
Hey Anthony, firstly congrats on the new single/video ‘Laughing Last’, it has everything you want from a great rock song, fast pace, high pitch melodic vocals, air-drum including beats and a funky vibe throughout. Who/What/How was this inspired?
Thank you! The song was written after I finished high school and took a year off. There was a lot of self-reflection going on in that time because I didn’t really know who I was. I’ll save the soppy, romcom style breakdown of my emotional state but in general, I was feeling a lot of doubt and insecurity about myself and everything around me. This song is kind of a journey through that, and the EP is too, in a way. I guess having that kind of lyrical theme isn’t very…normal for this kind of fast-paced song, but that’s what it’s about!
Fast paced emo rock, I can deal with that haha I love it, it’s a breath of fresh air from all the heavy stuff I listen to, will the forthcoming EP Strengthen My Hands featuring similar songs?
Sort of? It’s a bit of a mixed bag genre-wise – generally yes though. There’s some harder stuff then Laughing Last, and some stuff a lot softer. You can hear in the two singles that are already released that while we still have that kind of alt-rock-on-the-edge-of-indie-and-heavy style that we’ve always had, we’re exploring hip hop, funk and other flavours that we all love. To me, Laughing Last is probably the most ‘normal’ song on the EP in terms of what we’ve released in the past and what our ‘sound’ is – so make of that what you will. You’ll just have to wait and see!
You tease hahaha let’s chat about rAdelaide, what is the local live music scene like that way?
Adelaide has some absolutely stellar bands around. Big ups to acts like Bjear, Lost Woods, Sleep Talk, Ripcord, Jettison…there’s many that I’m forgetting but they’re all good friends and make amazing music.
We only hear stories about lack of attendance at shows that come through there (hence why there aren’t many big bands touring there) but on local terms, do people get out for hometown bands/shows?
Hm. The only way I can think to fairly describe Adelaide’s scene is that it’s up and down. We played a show at the start of this year that we didn’t really have a great turn out for – and this was a show we were pretty confident would have some people coming through the door and so on. But that’s just how it goes. On the flip side, in July we played our single launch for ‘Maverick’ on a cold, rainy Thursday night and the room was packed. We went on late too – I don’t think we started until past 11 just because of how the night ran.
I don’t think it’s fair to say Adelaide people don’t come to shows, but I think it’s more that you get out what you put in. We played a lot this year, invested a lot of time into our music, and I think that’s repaid itself with the growth we’ve seen. You’re always going to have bad nights turnout-wise, but if the only focus is getting people in the door and not on the actual music being played, of course you’re never going to see people coming to the show. It’s a delicate balance. Hopefully that makes sense!
That made perfect sense and gave us a glimpse of what it’s really like down that way. If you like something, support it, if you want something new to froth over so to say, go see a show and support the openers too. Do you have any words of advice for locals complaining at the lack of shows down that way?
I’d tell them to get into more bands! Bjear recently put on an absolutely stellar 3-night show (that’s heading to the east coast soon!), Lost Woods recently went on tour for their new single “Cinnamon”, Fyre Byrd are going on tour for their new singles soon as well…there’s plenty of good bands putting on good shows, you just gotta get out there and look for them!
Sounds good, will chuck them on my radar. What’s next for you lads following the EP’s release on October 19th?
We’ve got some shows to announce, and some other exciting stuff in the pipeline. We can’t share it all yet, but we will very soon. Keep your eyes peeled!
Such a tease haha ok before we go, let’s get to know you guys with a quick shot Q&A, just answer which member is more likely to:
Be Laughing Last after a failed relationship?
I don’t know if I would be able to describe any of us as ‘laughing’ after a failed relationship (we’re not very volatile people), but I’m gonna say myself.
Be Laughing Last after quitting a shit job?
Tom used to work at Maccas and was quite happy to leave when the opportunity presented itself – gotta be Tom!
Be Laughing Last after getting pranked?
I feel like Luke is probably the most mischievous of us. Pranks can be…dangerous…in the Colour Machine camp.
Be Laughing Last after not getting any of the beers from the rider?
Definitely Tom – he’ll get around the beer.
Great insight mate, anything else you’d like to add before we go?
Our socials are the best place to keep up to date with all the crazy stuff we’ve got going on, so make sure you keep an eye out there. And thank you for listening to our weird and wacky music!
And thank you for your time, answers and local insights to all things RADelaide.
Interview by Browny @brownypaul
Colour Machine – Strengthen My Hands EP
Out October 19th via Bandcamp and more