Not A Love Song

3 July 2012 | 7:40 am | Michael Smith

"We obviously felt it needed a chorus line so I just went and sat on the toilet – I was actually doing a poo – so I wrote the chorus on the shitter! It’s a nice calming place to think and be poetic,” ladies and gentlemen, Sticky Fingers.

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Finding the right producer can be one of those complex issues for a band, but for Sydney four-piece Sticky Fingers, the person who's co-produced their latest single, Dann Hume, just walked up after a show and offered his services. Of course, how he came to see them is another story.

“All four members are Newtown locals since we were young,” bass player Patrick Cornwall explains, in his usual highly animated way. “We'd always wanted to play Newtown Festival, and after the third year of getting knocked back from playing the festival, we took a whole bunch of crates and plywood and set up a big stage in the backyard of a friend's house, which actually has a view into the festival. So it's virtually inside the festival and then we hired a PA and some lights and unofficially performed from the backyard. You can see that on a video clip for a song called Headlock on YouTube.

“Anyway, the organisers saw that and were very impressed and invited us back to play a prime spot on the main stage the following year, which was last year. Dann Hume was visiting Sydney and saw us play, walked up to the merch desk to buy a CD and found that we'd sold out of CDs and said he'd love to work with us on the next release – and what he's done so far is fucking amazing. We haven't worked with someone who's really encapsulated our sounds so well; really grabs the entire recording by the balls.”

So inspired have the boys been that they've recorded a full length album, Caress Your Soul, due for release early next year. From it they've lifted a first single, the title track, which they're launching as part of the Annandale Hotel's 12th birthday celebrations.

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“All the tracks that we've recorded have an incredibly cohesive sound compared to our other records. Also, it's got an ongoing theme of being a collection of 'psychotic surf dub love songs'. Our lyrical content has changed quite a bit since our last record [last year's Happy Endings EP] because of a few things – we've been touring a hell of a lot and all four members have broken up with our respective girlfriends since then – so that's definitely influenced the lyrical content.

“I wrote Caress Your Soul, and it's quite funny actually because I'd written all the verses, but the chorus line was just a melody. When we went in to record, we obviously felt it needed a chorus line so I just went and sat on the toilet – I was actually doing a poo – so I wrote the chorus on the shitter! It's a nice calming place to think and be poetic,” he laughs.

Sticky Fingers hit the road hard earlier this year, putting in 32 shows between Queensland and South Australia over two months and it's finally starting to pay off, with audiences starting to match those they get in Sydney, particularly at the Annandale, where they've played some 20 times since forming four years ago. Of course, it doesn't hurt that three out of the four members of the band count the Annandale as their “day job.”

“Before I even knew that I loved music, like, cruising down Parramatta Road when I was ten, I knew it was a cool place but I didn't even know why yet. As I got older I started coming to some all-ages shows and as the members of the band got older our dream was to have a band and simply play the Annandale, which I've found has been the origin of a lot of Sydney musicians and their bands, just wanting to play the Annandale stage.”