TRACK BY TRACK: Peter Bibby Takes You Through His New Album

18 September 2020 | 3:13 pm | Peter Bibby

WA legend Peter Bibby today drops his highly anticipated third studio album alongside his band, Dog Act. To celebrate the release of ‘Marge’, the singer-songwriter takes us through the record track by track.

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I wrote I’m On Fire after watching an English gangster film about a man who did not give much of a damn about what he did to those who got in the way of his rise to power. I chose to record this one solo to portray the loneliness of that nasty character.


Oceans started out as a little sea shanty-esque poem scrawled on a piece of paper about going mad in the middle of the ocean. With the help of the Dog Act, it soon morphed into a fairly raucous tune. I used vibrato on the guitars to give it a wobbly seasick kind of sound, and we had some mates join us in the studio to sing along and clink beers together in the final chorus to give it the vibe of a pack of people getting drunk on a boat. As far as I recall, it is the only song I have written about losing ones mind out at sea.


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You know that feeling when you’re right out the back and this huge set starts rolling in and you take off behind the lip and pull into the biggest pit of your life, sun shining through the greens and the blues and every colour in between. You ride that barrel before it spits you out and you carve so much spray through the air you could soak a small village. This song is about that. I had to scoop my face up off the floor after watching Strawberry Pete track the bass on this.


Whyalla is an ode to a town in South Australia. The song provides information of almost tourist centre standard. Strawberry Pete’s backing vocals and keys going through the Leslie speaker in the chorus gives the impression that Whyalla is a nice and dreamy place to visit.


This is a ‘punk rock’ song about being a turbocharged noonty brain. I feel we captured the erratic lunacy of an idiot let loose through careless use of fuzz, pumping bass and firmly whacked drums.


A few years back I made a gruelling road trip across the Nullarbor in the height of summer. This song was invented by my mind and it constantly taunted me as I slowly made my way across the desert. It is a song of frustration and desperation.


Batteries begins with lovely birds and cars captured on my phone out near my family home in Swan View. It makes me feel comfortable and safe. Strawberry Pete then lulls us towards one of the most brutal songs I have written from one of the most brutal bits of life I have lived. I think this recording sounds a bit like an old Paul Kelly & The Coloured Girls recording which fills me with pride and joy.


This is a very self-explanatory song. I decided to add it to the record in the final hours of our week-long recording session. I showed it to Pete and Dave there and then Dave came up with a delicious beat for it and we nailed it down in one or two takes.


Your Mum is a bitter old tune. I’m definitely having a go at someone here. Whoever you are, I hope you enjoy this winding journey of jabs I mapped out for you. This song may have taken 30 or 40 takes, thank God I can’t remember.


Craigieburn is a sad tale about giving up lovely nature-based dreams of romance for the convenience of housing estate living, home loans, concrete, etc. We had a red hot crack at emulating the repetitive doom we imagine this to be in the final movement of this track. I remember Mitch mic’d up the toilet cubicle so Pete and I could stand in there and record throat singing. Great reverb in the dunny.


I wrote this song on the back porch of Ben and Rob’s place in Mt Lawley. I remember having read a lot of mumbo jumbo about the dairy industry at the time. The lyrics felt silly but the tune felt so nice to sing. Mitch pulled a real shifty on me and put my guitar solo in reverse, resulting in me being a happy boy. We popped this one at the end to give you a nice soothing “Until next time” kind of kiss goodbye.