The Opinion Industry Deliver Highly Appropriate ‘Karen’ Anthem
One of my personal favourite new finds from within our shorelines this year definitely has to be the tongue-in-cheek band The Opinion Industry who we first met when premiering their catchy as fuck single ‘They’re Recording This‘ which took aim at big tech companies listening into conversations and your browsing habits via your smart devices.
Now the band are back with a song dedicated to the infamously wild “Karens” of the world and it’s going to become the theme song we use whenever videos start circulating of them and their crazy antics on the interwebs.
I quickly grabbed frontman Benj Axwel to chat about the song’s conception – come on, a Karen story obviously inspired this – and what else the abnd have planned for 2021…
Mate, please tell us how you came to writing this theme song – which correct me if I’m wrong, but does it rework instrumentals from ‘They’re Recording This’?
Great to see you picked up on our ‘recycling’ effort! ‘They’re Recording This’ is definitely our catchiest song with the whole repeating chorus line thats trying to convey a type of hypnotism of technology in everyday life. So while I was writing that song – Karen from Brighton was all over the media for a couple of days (remember… she walked all of Brighton). ‘Karens’ reporting this’ literally fell out of my mouth and when I bent down to pick it up, I knew I had to write a different set of lyrics. We treat it in the band as a joke song because TRT is so much better but we know people will get a laugh out of all the ways we’ve poked at this phenomena.
There is a slight difference in the music between the two though and I look forward to seeing if you can pick it up!
Surely you’ve had your own personal experience with a Karen in the wild though?
Well I play covers gigs for income and people can be a right/royal Karen at times. ‘Play this bloody song? Why don’t you play something good? What do you mean you don’t know obscure Fleetwood Mac B-side, you’re shit house?’ Listen I don’t speak brain damage… I think to myself.
My favourite moment though was when my Mum came to record the KAREN vocals on the track. I was finding it hard to get a woman to come in a record three lines and eventually Mum got roped in. She is an Evangelical Christian so definitely a fish out of water – she stepped up to the mic and nailed the first take. Mitta (engineer) and I were screaming at each other through the plexi-glass, it was so good and is perfect on the track. On the 8th day, God created Karen… my mum.
Keeping it in the family is better than using a real one! It’s been a huge year for the band, two incredible singles and even praise from Steel Panther as well, how have you boys delt with the reception?
Honestly we are just getting started and have put tremendous amounts of work not only into our videos and content but our concept of ‘The Opinion Industry’. The boys and I have a very clear vision and message with every song we release and we only launch material that adds to that – makes us more than a just a band in that way. So we know that when someone watches us and it’s on their wavelength it’s hitting pretty hard. That’s the best feedback to whether it’s the lyrics, the visuals, how different we are to the rest or even our Tik Tok account.
We are independant at this point so our organic support has been really encouraging and to get murmurs from here and overseas after just two songs keeps us motivated to make more.
What’s next for the band?
We have another single to release in 2021 after ‘KAREN’ and have just finished the video for that (the band favourite). We have a few of our own shows booked in January 2022 (SYD/NEWC) and then the whole EP will drop followed by jumping back in the studio around March. We hope that we can get on some local festivals/interstate shows and finally spread the word outside of a computer.
You’re on the right path and we’ll back you along the way mate!
Interview by Paul Browny Brown @brownypaul
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Stream ‘Karen‘ here
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