Full-On And Stimulating

10 April 2012 | 7:13 am | Brendan Hitchens

"Like our music, it’s pretty repetitive with a lot of senses going on.”


What started as a subtle reference to their idols in Big Black has, over the years, grown more and more into a fitting band name. Though their music would be radically out of place in a nightclub, there are distinct dance influences to the My Disco sound. Journalistic hyperbole has seen their influences described as far ranging as minimal techno to post-dubstep and guitarist Ben Andrews is omfortable with that. “Just meeting other people and other bands and seeing what they're into helps broaden your pallet,” he says. Spending considerable time overseas does too, with drummer Rohan Rebeiro's “obsession with minimal techno and house music” coming from his time spent living in Berlin.

In a sense the band has not only created their own disco, or alternative party, but a militant musical niche. Operating outside of the music industry and on their own terms, the band still shares the identical ethos that saw their first show take place in an all ages Collingwood café almost a decade ago. Recipients of an AIR Award for Best Independent Punk Album, while they may shun the acclaim, there's no disputing their connection to the punk scene. “Even though we do operate virtually one hundred per cent outside of those things and don't see ourselves in any kind of Australian independent music context, it was still nice to be recognised for whatever it was worth.”

Together with their sound, a strong aesthetic edge has always coexisted in My Disco, from the panoramic Warwick Baker photography that adorned their Paradise record, to their screen-printed tour posters and provocative press shots. Premiering their maiden film clip earlier this year, the band expanded their artistry with a clip that features a laser light show and an interpretive ballet routine. Andrews says that while the thought of a film clip isn't something they've focused on, he is gratified with the result for Turn.

“We've always been interested in other avenues like touring, making records and playing live all the time. We don't rush things, so we hadn't ever thought about doing a clip up until the last year. But I think the clip suits the ideas and concepts we've put forth with the band throughout our career, being visually full-on and stimulating. Like our music, it's pretty repetitive with a lot of senses going on.”

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Like their visuals, their music may too polarise people, yet it has a strange ability to cross genres and continents, be it the hardcore scene in Indonesia or a club in Prague. “It's hard to describe our music,” says Andrews before pausing, “because if you looked at it on paper you'd see guitar, bass, drums and loud and then it's just a rock band, but obviously it isn't.”

On completion of their upcoming tour, the band will return to South East Asia for shows in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. No strangers to the continent, having first toured there in 2004, the band, as Andrews puts it, have been “everywhere in Asia,” having already played in the Philippines, Thailand, Indonesia and Japan. Along with Asia, they have extensively toured North America and Europe, recently playing in such far-flung destinations as Serbia and Macedonia. Harbouring aspirations to add “Budapest, Romania and Bosnia” as My Disco tour destinations, you get the feeling this trio of globetrotters may just end up becoming our country's greatest tourism exports.