If you haven’t noticed, we here at WoS HQ have been ALL OVER Central Coast quartet Reliqa since they burst onto the scene with their debut EP, its mind-blowingly impressive follow up Eventide EP (our review here), their rise to fame in such a short amount of time and their kick-ass attitude which scored them plenty of eyes at last year’s Big Sound (revisit our interview with the legends here).
So you can imagine the look on our faces when the band announced their brand-spankin’ new single ‘Mr. Magic‘ dropped today which we are bloody stoked to bring to you today. These kids have been finding their sound, voices and their progression has to be heard to be believed and evidence of this can be heard with their new release with sees the band honing in on their proggy undertoned they experimented with on their last release.
We grabbed frontwoman Monique Pym for a chat all about it and what the band have been up to over these past few months since we last heard from them…
Welcome back Reliqa, it’s been a hot minute since we caught up at Big Sound. Whatcha been working on?
It feels so good to be back. How fast did 2019 go?! You really don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone! With all of the awesome shows and moments that packed last year right up, it was important for us to go off the social grid for a while so that we could map out the future, which meant composing more music and honing in on a fresh plan. It felt really nice to jump into the studio for our new track and start a new cycle!
The first taste of new music is here with Mr Magic. It’s got that unique Reliqa sound to it with a more proggy undertone. No new ground there for you all, but are you heading in that direction musically?
“Progressive” is such a fun buzz word for me. When we’re listening back over something we’re writing and say it sounds proggy, to me that translates to an exciting indicator that we’re advancing and maturing our sound. Like a “level-up” moment. Mr. Magic definitely feels like a step forward in sophistication. We challenged ourselves with this song – it was a whole new ballgame for us to consider a song as its own holistic product without the necessary responsibility of fitting into a larger release, so that means we got to cram in so many twists and turns and nuances. It’s been so liberating, so we’ll be keeping that in mind for the long haul!
And what’s this one all about?
Speaking of maturing, there was this mutual feeling hanging around that it was time to try writing material that’s rooted more personally and is connected to our experience, since our previous work has been largely concept-based, like storytelling. Mr. Magic started taking its full form around the time when our country was in flames late last year, and it really brought to life this deep, burning frustration towards the world’s powerful figures ignoring the catastrophic state of our planet. It’s got a bit of satirical bite, maybe even what you’d call a “clap back”, but it comes from a really sincere, distressed place. It’s direct, it demands accountability, and it doesn’t hold back.
Not gonna lie, it’s great to see you touching on important topics like this early on into your careers. Well done to you! Side-note, in your honest opinion, what is the BEST Magician movie and why isn’t it Now You See Me?
Oh man, The Prestige is a RIDE! It’s the exact kind of frustrating-and-then-satisfying that any good magician movie should be. But then again… how many even are there? Also, unpopular opinion, Now You See Me ain’t that bad. You didn’t hear it from me.
This is the start of what’s to come, would I be right in saying there’s more music on the horizon?
It is definitely the start of something. We’re actually treading some cool territory that we’ve never really chartered before, especially now that we’ve opened our eyes to the gravity of writing what you believe in. It’s a difficult climate to be working in a band currently, I will admit that, but it hasn’t held us back from laying down some pretty powerful work, only forced us to reframe our strategies.
And how are you all coping with this isolation?
We’re one of many bands who had some big plans put on hold, so it’s been tough, and certainly an interesting challenge re-learning how to communicate as a band. Our motivation levels can fall out of sync when we’re not together to bounce off each others’ energies. But going through the process of a release cycle almost gives a sense of normality, which is definitely uplifting in a lot of ways. If anything, this whole experience is going to make coming back into the swing of things even more special than ever before.
Love that mentality… Anything else to add?
Just a thank you in advance to everyone who is giving us their time, especially during a scenario where the incentive to seek out new music can feel halted, maybe even futile. It means so much right now to hear your voices and see your engagement and know that there’s so much to look forward to, for all of us. And as always Browny, thank you for having us along, we’re forever grateful for WOS!
My absolute pleasure, looking forward to what’s next!
Interview by Browny @brownypaul
‘Mr. Magic‘ is out now!