Interview: South Summit talk their new EP, headline tour and loyal fans

Credit: Sarah Haleem

Perth indie-rockers South Summit have started 2023 strong by already exceeding expectations as ones to watch. With the release of their new EP Creatures on 12 January, the band have also announced a 10-date national headline tour supported by Slim Jimz.

Featuring the groovy and soulful singles “Promise Me”, “Tired of Waiting” and “Runaway”, the seven-track project discusses adversity, change and culture. The band worked chiefly with go-to producer Dave Parkin at Blackbird Studios in Perth and recorded “Changes” with Callum Howell at Forbes Street Studios in Sydney.

Following a breakout year in 2022, South Summit have played a number of festivals – Falls Festival, BIGSOUND, Springtime Festival, Rolling Sets and NYE on the Hill – and landed #4 Most Played on triple j, as well as a nomination for Artist of the Year. The upcoming national tour includes appearances at festivals Vanfest in Mount Panorama, Shell Harbour Rocks Festival in Wollongong and A Day on the Lawn in Hobart. You can get your tickets HERE.

South Summit have developed a deep connection with their loyal fans through performance and positivity with an impressive 600+ sold-out hometown shows under their belts. They also took the time to visit schools, prisons and youth detention centres across WA for NAIDOC week last year, as if you needed another reason to fall in love with them.

We had a chat with the band about the EP, tour and more.

Congratulations on the new EP! How has it been received so far?

Thank you! We’ve had so many amazing responses so far from people all around the place, which is something we’ve always been very appreciative of. Getting those messages from the fans telling us how much they’re enjoying the new tunes is a massive highlight of releasing new songs. It’s pretty surreal to have people you’ve never even met enjoy the music you make. Big ups to all the radio stations giving it some airtime too.

Where does the title Creatures come from?

The meaning behind the name ‘Creatures’, which we chose to call our latest EP, refers to all these songs being their own sound and their own creature. The EP itself is a collection of all these songs we’ve been making as individual pieces, into one body of work. It’s a token of appreciation to the fans who have supported us through a huge year.

The tracks “Yaama” and “Yaluu” bookend the EP, meaning ‘hello’ and ‘bye’ respectively. Was this a creative decision to isolate the project as a standalone concept?

We’ve always been a fan of the idea that an EP or album has a concept or a story behind it. That’s all it has to it really, we just wanted to make it a story and it helps encourage people to listen to the record from top to bottom.

The songs on the EP discuss the challenges you’ve faced personally and as a band. Was writing the project a cathartic experience for this uphill battle?

The messages in the EP are all about our personal experiences in early adulthood just trying to figure things out. We try to make relatable songs, hopefully people can make a bond with them.

Has it been particularly difficult to emerge as a local band from Perth?

Actually the Perth music scene is incredibly supportive, everyone helps each other out. So we feel really grateful and lucky knowing that the hometown has had our backs from the beginning. I guess the main difference between Perth and somewhere like Sydney would be the complete isolation from any other major cities. Which made flying over east for the first time a bit nerve-wracking. Like has our music even made it over there? Do they even know us? But those thoughts quickly left after the first show.

You’ve just announced a big national headline tour kicking off this March in Newcastle that will see you play larger rooms in new cities with Slim Jimz. How are you getting ready for the road, and where are you most excited to perform?

We’ve been writing a lot of new tunes, so getting those ready for the stage has definitely been a priority for us. And of course, putting into practice all the things we learnt from the last few tours. Always bring spares! One of the places we’re always super keen to play in is the lively city of Melbourne. They just always take it to another level, and the crowds are so into it. But of course, we have to shout out the home crowd in Perth. There isn’t a better place for us to finish off a tour.

The tour includes appearances at Vanfest, Shell Harbour Rocks Festival and A Day on the Lawn. Is there a particular festival on the bucket list for the band?

We’re so lucky that we’ve been able to already tick off a few of the bucket list festivals we wrote down when we started the band a few years ago. But a local one we’ve always wanted to play is Laneway Festival, that would just bring it full circle. And as for down the track, Glastonbury is something we’ll always be dreaming about playing at.

Which are some of your favourite Perth locals killing it right now?

Good to see some other Perth locals getting out and about around the nation. Old Mervs, Dulcie & Dice all putting on great shows around Australia. West is best!

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