The video for ‘Cut The Wires’ is premiering exclusively on Gigwise, too
Malvika Padin
11:00 2nd October 2019

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Australian four-piece City Calm Down are attempting to leave their comfort zone as they take the band’s sound in a direction they’ve never taken it before. Having made their debut in 2015 with In A Restless House before taking a darker, more sombre musical route in their 2017 record Echoes In Blue, they have recently returned with the pop-tinged  Television. Fresh off stage after a sold out Electrowerkz show on Monday night, the Aussie indie-pop four piece are now sharing new visuals for their track ‘Cut The Wires’ exclusively on Gigwise. 

The cinematic, grainy black and white footage induces a sense of wholesome liberation, with waves swelling and rolling, hair blowing in the wind, sunlight bleeding through mountainous landscapes and birds soaring in the cloudless skies. City Calm Down are celebrating the small things in life, and it’s beautifully evocative; the visual accompaniment is as expansive as the track itself, which features the use of ethereal synths in all their flickering glory.

Transport yourself into your Aussie dreamworld here:

Speaking on the evolution of their sound, band member Sam Mullaly, says, “With Echoes In Blue, it was quite a dark, sombre record. We made a conscious decision that we wanted to do something different with this one; we wanted to make a more pop version of our usual stuff, moving away from what we’ve done before.”

“Rather than trying to change or evolve, we just try not to do the same things again and again. Our producer helped us look at different influences, so that we could be pushed out of our comfort zone rather than going down the path we’ve already been down.”

The band’s evolution isn’t just sonic, it is lyrical as well. Delving into the messages they pain through their words; Sam explains that they write lyrics that give listeners the freedom to attach their own views to it. He says, “We try to look into how people interact rather than looking particular issues, which hopefully allows people to take away their own understanding from the song.” 

It is this message that forms the basis of their recent single, ‘Flight’ as well. Talking to Gigwise about the inspiration behind the track, he says “It was a narrative looking into conversations among people in the modern day where they aren’t really listening to each other, instead it’s an argument where everyone is trying to get their point across. The result of it is that people don’t really get anywhere, there’s just all this noise with no real progress.” 

Asked if the inspiration for their songs – such as ‘Flight’- comes from their own experiences, Sam takes the example of another track from Television, ‘Lucy Bradley’, to explain that the quartet often use personal lyrics, generally written by frontman Jack Bourke, but adds on an element of imagination or characterisation in order to better convey their music . 

Moving away from their music to chat about memorable moments and future plans, we discuss the quartet’s last tour where they had a chance to perform at their hometown Melbourne. Sam recalls, “We played at the Forum. It was a large, beautiful venue and being there was really wonderful experience because we went to a lot of shows as children and saw a lot of our heroes there. To see our name under that of our musical heroes was amazing.” 

City Calm Down, with their new sound and reinvented production style, are headed to the UK and Europe this autumn and they are looking forward to bringing a new perspective to the band and having more fun on stage. Expanding on what they are most looking forward, Sam says, "Coming to London is always fun, it’s one of our bigger audiences overseas. But we’re looking forward to playing at places we haven’t played before. We haven’t done too many shows in Europe and we’re excited to see what comes of it.” 

Still on the topic of performing and shows, Sam explains that he wishes he was asked which songs the band’s personal favourites were to play live. The answer to this question, which he exclaims they’ve never been asked before, is that the older songs with which they associate many good memories are the best. But he reiterates that picking a favourite song is like picking a favourite child; a tough choice. 

The quartet seem to be the kind of self-aware artists who make music with a message. So when asked if there was one message that the band would like to leave their fans with, the answer is, “Have more awareness about what’s going on around you, be aware of the way different people go about their lives.” 

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Photo: Sam Wong