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Even With All Their Successes, Matt Young's Mum Still Isn't Totally Sold On What King Parrot Do

13 December 2017 | 11:36 am | Brendan Crabb

"We've made some serious sacrifices to do what we do. We're always on board basically, and it's usually majority rules in terms of when touring opportunities come up."

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The previous occasion this scribe conversed with King Parrot's amiable off-stage, maniacal on-stage frontman Matt "Youngy" Young, he remarked that some of the band's previous eye-catching, "pretty uncouth" video clips had repulsed his own mother so much she almost dry-reached.

A couple of years on, and said parent hasn't been enamoured by recent videos for songs from chart-bothering third album Ugly Produce. "Yeah, Mum wasn't too impressed with any of them," he laughs. "She's never really that impressed with it. She's happy that I get to do what I get to do. She says, 'Oh yeah, it's good, it's good, well done,'" he adds, jokingly imitating her between chuckles. "But I can see her blushing and shaking her head, and just going, 'What the hell is he doing?'"

She would surely approve of her son's near-peerless work ethic and dedication though; the Melbourne grind'n'thrash outfit are almost perpetually on the road. At the time of The Music's interview, the vocalist is recovering from two months of "pretty fucking hectic touring", including gruelling runs in the US, UK and Japan. Young estimates they've "done nine or ten tours of the States now, and we've been over to Europe four or five times".

Nonetheless, he believes the hard graft is starting to pay dividends, as their in-your-face, frenetic live shows have endeared them to progressively larger audiences. Australian shows - some of the biggest gigs they've played here as a headlining band - also await. "It's not like we have to sit there and deliberate over, sit there and scratch our heads and go, 'Oh, can we go on tour this time? Can we do this? I don't know, it's my second cousin's wedding and I can't go on a tour.' We've made some serious sacrifices to do what we do. We're always on board basically, and it's usually majority rules in terms of when touring opportunities come up.

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"I think that's something bands have to do these days. You've got to say 'yes' more than you say 'no'. And as long as it's a good decision, a calculated decision and you know when you're getting in for, you've got to get out there and be seen, and be working hard all the time. That's something we pride ourselves on, we have great work ethic in the band and we know how to operate as a band on the road as well. We're a little rough around the edges as always, that's part of what King Parrot is. But we know how to put on a show and we know how to get organised, get on tour and we've got our shit sorted in that regard."

One of the "cool things" this organisation and professionalism has spawned is their inclusion on the Download Australia festival bill. "It's a testament to the shit that we've done. You don't get people like Download knocking on your door saying, 'Hey, come and play at our festival,' if you haven't paid the dues a little bit.

"I guess for the past three or four years we've been away for six to nine months of the year," Young laughs while pondering that realisation. "We're still working on it I guess, we're putting in the really hard yards and making a big investment into our band, and the future of our band. We're under no illusions that it can take such a long time to get these things established. For some bands it happens quicker than others... We're playing a pretty inaccessible kind of music, but we're good at what we do, and we've honed our craft a lot over the past five or six years and over three albums. We've had some incredible experiences doing what we do.

"When we first started doing this band we just got together in the jam room, everyone would get drunk, we were just taking the piss and not even thinking about anything, and weren't even worried about playing gigs or anything. We were just a bunch of mates having a bit of fun and from that, when that was happening around 2010-11, to what's happened now, it's fucking incredible man," he laughs in disbelief. "I can't believe what we've been able to do and what we've been able to achieve, and some of the places we've been."