Q&A: Long Island Ice Teas + Lots Of Guitars = Loiter
Loiter, the Brisbane five-piece which includes not one, not two, but three guitars, will definitely be one to watch in the pop-punk scene revival. Taking inspiration from bands like The Wombats, Blink-182 and a touch of Middle Kids- this band is the perfectly intoxicating and refreshing blend of Brit-Pop and classic Australian alternative rock. I recently caught up for a cheeky Q&A with the band - here it is!
Loiter - who the hell are you guys!?!
Mitch: We essentially are five people who are perfectly happy to squish together on a couch and watch t.v. but we could never agree on what to watch.
Give us a brief descriptor of how Loiter became what it is today…
Darren: So I came from the UK in 2016 and moved to Brisbane the year after. My partner worked with a musician who put me into a Brisbane musicians Facebook page. I found an ad on Facebook for a band looking for a bassist so I got in touch and eventually Mitch arranged a meet up. After a lengthy talk about music, we arranged a practice. It was clear early on that there were some big creative differences between us all and it was going to clash. But Mitch & I gelled so after the practice was over we decided to start an original band as he knew a drummer, Tim. We had some wings at Stones Corner, where I met Tim, and decided we’d go for it. After a few rounds of tryouts we met Amber who was keen and fresh and would give us new avenues, stylistically, sonically and harmonically on rhythm guitar and backing vocals. She’s now got huge amounts of confidence and has taken the lead vocals on a few tracks. Eventually Mitch thought we needed more dynamics and we enlisted Brandon to pick up additional guitar parts to compliment Mitch’s lead parts. We played our first show under another name, Lakewood, but the name didn’t quite fit. We ended up going with Loiter which was an old band name Mitch and Tim used to be in.
As the age-old saying goes ‘bigger isn’t always better’, so why play with three guitars? (‘it sounds good’ is not a valid answer in this scenario… think wilder)
Mitch: During the tracking stage when recording our first E.P., there were so many guitar tracks that we didn’t know how we were going to replicate the sound live. Amber wasn’t a lead guitar player and as I kept adding twin guitar solos and stuff in the background, it became clear that we would need another guitarist in the band. It’s also nice when we play smaller stages we get to be real close, almost elbow to elbow feeling each other's sweat pour onto fretboards. Would highly recommend a third guitarist.
Which is better; classic Brit pop punk or Aussie alternative punk rock, and why?
Tim: As someone who doesn’t listen to Brit pop, I’ve gotta go with Aussie punk. Something about the Aussie accent mixed with the alt punk sound just hits so much harder. Mitch: It's such a hard choice, I remember loving bands like Blur, Pulp and Oasis through high school and it wasn't until I started driving where we would load up cds with Violent Soho, DZ Deathrays, Children Collide & The Living End. I’d say Aussie alternative punk rock is where it's at. I loved how loud and predominant the guitars and drums were in these tracks and it could really get the adrenaline going.
Which of these styles do you think has been more influential on your sound as a band?
Tim: I think the Aussie alt punk scene has definitely been a huge influence on us, especially Aussie giants such as Violent Soho who are just around the corner from us. Mitch: I agree with Tim. It's hard not to go through a playlist of Aussie punk rock and think how much I loved the sound of a riff or how well they pull off a section I may never have thought of myself. Like the first time hearing ‘Love Is A Heavy Word’ from Violent Soho really brought back punky power chord riffs for me and ‘Same Same’ by WAAX also gets me excited. As soon as I heard that opening guitar riff it made me wanna start a song with a big guitar riff and hopefully one day we hit the mark.
Two Truths, One Lie about the band- (don’t worry, the readers will never know which is which…although if you say you’ve played Reading Fest, they may catch on- or not.)
Mitch: 1. There is eleven years of age between our oldest and youngest member 2. We have gone out drinking together as a band 3. One of us was previously in a band that was signed to Sony Music
What makes you different from every other band out there? Musically, physically, mentally, emotionally… What sets you apart from the crowd?
Amber: We’re all from different walks in life & have such different personalities, which means we challenge each other creatively. What sets us apart from other bands is the versatility of our music and how it blends so many different styles.
Tim: I think having two different and quite distinct vocalists, from two different countries, alongside a tri-guitar section really helps with our uniqueness. I also think everyone having such a diverse music taste helps with crafting our sound.
If you had to collectively choose one song to be stuck on repeat in a broken car stereo, what song would it be and why? (choose carefully- it has to soundtrack both road-trips and grocery shopping…)
Tim: 'I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)' - The Proclaimers. Mainly because of the How I Met Your Mother episode
And lastly, my signature question: if Loiter could be conveyed and described by a simple beverage (alcoholic, tea variety… you name it…) What would it be and why?
Amber: A Long Island Iced Tea, because we have a bit of everything... and it always seems like a good idea at the time.
Cheers to Loiter for having a chat about the inner workings of the band with us.
Loiter have recently released their latest single 'In This Town', which they describe as "an alternative love song written about an abusive relationship". Their infectious vocals and crisp guitars bring a whole lotta energy and good vibes to this new one- you can listen to it here.
Just like a Long Island Ice Tea, Loiter are packing a punch and are a band to keep your eyes (and ears) out for.