the AU interview: Eddie Alexander of Goodnight Owl (Melbourne)


Kat Mahina recently chatted with the lead vocalist of Melbourne’s Goodnight Owl, Eddie Alexander. He let’s us in on who Goodnight Owl are, what they’re all about and what’s next!

How did the band meet and start playing together?

We started playing together because Joe and I recorded the EP and then obviously needed to launch it. Joe, Bella and I grew up together for a couple of years in ALice Springs in the mid 90’s and that was the basis for goodnight owl. Now we’re a five piece with eric and glen, both from deniliquin nsw. Eric and Joe go to uni together and then Glen and Eric are best mates from high school. It’s a good mix of past and present relationships that works quite well.

Who are you biggest musical influences?

I’d have to say at the moment…Bon Iver, Sigur Ros, Antlers, Band of Horses, Whitley, and have just started to really get into the Joy Formidable.

Your music is a lush mixture of folk and electronic glitches, which is a rather unusual and striking combination. How did this ‘folktronica’ sound evolve?

At the time of the EP I was quite inexperienced when it came to music and particular sounds that I thought would work. But if you listen to Whitley’s first album and The Postal Service, it’s quite easy to see where I got the idea from. Joe was also heavily into electronic music and so it just started out as a bit of fun in his bedroom. There’s nothing incredibly different about it, but not many bands have tried it.

How would you describe your sound?

Folktronic ambient pop, and now it seems to be moving more towards a heavier and more ambient sound, if those two sonds work together. I think they do.

The Goodnight Owl EP was recorded back in 2008. Have you done much studio work since than and are there any plans for an album release in the near future?

There aren’t any plans for an album as of yet, I don’t think we’re at that point in regards to the experience we have playing together and our exposure in the music scene so far. I don’t think there’s any point in recording an album until a lot of people want to hear a Goodnight Owl album. I’ve just started on a new single which is a change in sound when comparing it to maps and compasses. It’ll be really good though.

The video for Maps & Compasses has recently been released (and you’ll be celebrating this fact at the official launch at the Worker’s Club on July 31st). Who did you work with on the clip and what was the filming experience like?

We shot the clip with Hayden Calnin on the Mornington Peninsula over two days of shooting. He was great to work with as he left the concept side of the video to me and I was then able to tell him what sort of shots would work well. He helped a lot with how the clip looks and how well it flows between landscapes and plot points. It was extremely fun to be creative in a new way.

What do you enjoy most about playing live?

I’m always really nervous before a show, but once we start playing it’s quite a comfortable feeling up on stage and everything just flows really well. The slight adrenaline rush is nice too, but it’s just great to express how you feel to other people.

What have been your touring experiences been like to date?

Not much at all really, just a trip to Geelong and Ballarat. We haven’t even been playing for a year so we’re happy with how things are going at the moment and we’ll do some touring when the time’s right.

Best live band you’ve seen lately?

I’d have to say White Rabbits and Yeah Yeah Yeahs at Falls, but I’m seeing Band of Horses soon and Jonsi so both of those bands will be incredible.

Name 5 tracks on your Ipod play list

1. While the Flies (The Joy Formidable)
2. Hazelton (Justin Vernon)
3. Angel Echoes (Fourtet)
4. Funeral (Band of Horses)
5. Intervention (Arcade Fire)

What are the goals and future plans for Goodnight Owl

Release some singles, support some good bands, play some nice festivals, eat good pasta…