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  • India Wallis

Rockin' The Suburbs With The Splints

Born from early indie rock, pop punk, and Aussie rock influences, Meanjin/Brisbane based rockers The Splints have just shared their debut track 'Come And Get It'.

For those who haven’t heard The Splints before, how would you describe yourselves?

Jack (bass): Brit pop rock with some punk elements. Just 4 fellas feelin’ jams until something new comes out. Music to dance to.

Jacob (drums): I’d describe us as a pop rock band that has a taste for delicious hooks! Big guitar music vibes with some brit rock thrown in the mix. The Kooks, The Strokes and the Arctic Monkeys are all big influences, so it only seemed fitting to call ourselves “The Splints”.

James (Lead vox / rhythm guitar): Think Arctic Monkeys and The Wombats have a baby, and it comes out Australian, but nobody says anything.

Josh (lead guitar): A bunch of lost 20 something’s helping each other stumble through this period of life by making really bloody loud, high octane tunes together and loving each other always.

You’ve just released your debut single ‘Come and Get It’ and it’s had great reception! What’s next on The Splints’ horizon?

Jack: Would love to do an east coast tour while momentum is hot, as well as recording new tracks to keep the goods coming in as consistently as possible.

Jacob: We’re looking to keep as much momentum as possible, the goal’s to have another couple of tracks on the table by mid year. Hopefully this year we can tick off a few more venues and even some interstate shows!

James: The Splints has an enormous backlog of songs, which sounds amazing to the average reader but how many of those songs are actually good? That’s the question. We’ve curated a few of the favourite amongst ourselves and we’ll be using my recording studio to get those songs out there. As for shows? I think I’d really like to do a tour at some stage. The main thing is have some fun and show people music they didn’t know they liked.

Josh: We just want to take this as far as we possibly can really. All 4 of us truly believe in this project and we know it’ll take time but as long as we see progress and we’re enjoying ourselves then we’ll be happy. Personally though, just a big world tour, make my millions (so I can buy and run my own kebab shop) and then world domination. Y’know, the usual.

The big question we love to ask: Northside or Southside, and why?

Jack: Southside babey! I spent a lot of time on Northside and I got tired of the 45 minutes it took to get literally anywhere. The south is so tight and everything is mad close.

Jacob: Hahaha Southside for sure! No disrespect to those folks north of the river but I was raised in the Redlands and I bloody love where I call home!

James: The reason there is a Northstar is because the Southside is already full of stars. Hot, sexy movie stars, every one of us.

Josh: Southside supremacy all day baby. I moved to Australia from Liverpool, UK in 2015 and until recently have always lived in the Redlands. Such a beautiful place, it’s like my home away from home and I’m moving back already this year!

What local acts have you been digging lately?

Jack: SPEED have been knocking it out of the park, putting aus hardcore back on the map. World Of Joy are tight, loud and energetic. Citypiss toe the line between hilarious and awe inspiring songwriting, definitely one to check out.

Jacob: Locally we played a gig last year with a band called Boys at the Back. Big Rage Against the Machine vibes! King Stingray have recently taken over a lot of my playlist haha.

James: Honestly, there’s so much talent in the small band scene in Brisbane. So much incredible music and brilliant musicians but not enough attention for them to go around. One band that’s made me sit back and properly enjoy the show though is Max Bader and the Upstairs Neighbours. The music is so interesting in an unconventional way, but it’s dressed up in a disguise as a standard, consumable song. Difficult to describe but that’s exactly the kind of music I look out for, and love. Another shout out to Sailing In Space, the stage presence is a pure show, if you get a chance to see them live, you’re actually missing out not going.

Josh: Boys at the Back are by far and away my favourite live band around at the moment, the energy and charisma they have onstage is crazy and when that feeds into the audience it’s a really beautiful thing. Plus they go so bloody hard. Keep ‘em’ coming fellas, lots of love!

What was the last band you saw live, and where?

Jack: I saw SPEED on the Gold Coast last night! I got a split lip and almost got heat stroke from the venue going 100 over capacity but that’s what it’s all about ain’t it?

Jacob: Coming fresh out of Falls over the new year the last band I caught was actually the Arctic Monkeys.

James: I saw Boys at The Back live in my studio recording their new energy packed, smack-u-in-the-face-for-lookin’ single. Doesn’t technically count but they deserve a mention for being an incredible live band.

Josh: I caught the Geordie legend himself Sam Fender at Fortitude Music Hall a few weeks back. He’s been a favourite of mine for years now and it was incredible to see him out here killing it and representing the UK. Up the toon.

What’s your favourite thing about Brisbane’s music scene?

Jack: There’s so much to choose from. Heaps of venues (unfortunately none of them all ages), heaps of bands doing wildly different things. If there’s a style of music you wanna see, you can bet you’ll be able to see it in Brisbane!

Jacob: My favourite thing about the scene is how many legends there are doing their thing! I feel like everyone you meet is your next potential best mate! The fact that 90% of venues are all in walking distance from each other is something other cities just don’t have, I have many memories of hitting 2-3 venues/shows in one night. Thats undeniably special!

James: The community, the friends you meet who sometimes become family. The potential of every musician plodding home with their gear after getting paid $25 each, and still going out and getting it the next weekend. I love being in it together, and knowing we’re all there to have a good time, egos are pretty non existent, big fan of that.

Josh: I think for me it’s just the amount of love and support within it. From the artists, to the sound guys to the people at the bar etc, everyone looks out for each other and wants the best for each other and I love that.

Plus artists are supported really well. A lot of people here moan about what they get paid for shows etc but let me tell you it’s better than being a 17 year old in Liverpool pretty much paying to play shows with your band. When I moved here the fact that I could show up, play a show and still have money afterwards for a kebab and an Uber home was crazy to me, it felt like winning the lottery. Onwards and upwards eh?

Time to give some local businesses some love. What are your go-to restaurants and bars in Brisbane and why?

Jack: Slice Pizza & Pasta in West End, best pizza in the city!

Also just across the road from there, shoutout Petra’s for the loose cigarettes and machetes you can buy over the counter.

Jacob: Holy Basil at Windsor has the best Thai food in Brisbane if you know, you know!

James: Erase the other answers - get a pork crackling banh mi from Cafe Omai in Annerley or a Platter for two from Lefka’s Taverna in west end. I’ve lived here 6 years and tried many-a-foods. These are the pinnacles of eat.

Josh: Can’t go wrong with Finn McCools for a pint and a game of pool, big love to those guys. Right opposite music hall too so perfect for a pre gig tipple. Speaking of tipples, Tipplers Tap on James St is bloody awesome. Crazy selection of beers and a $3 taco Tuesday. Need I say more?

Do you have a favourite cafe?

Jack: 7/11 $1 hot choccy baby!

Jacob: I spent a bit of time in New Farm, where there was quite a selection of top notch coffee spots. I can say hands down ‘Samson and Sophie’ takes the cake!

James: I make instant coffee at home because I’m saving for an avocado - pass

Josh: I also make instant coffee at home but I’m saving for 2 avocado’s. Man’s gotta eat - Double pass.

What venue in Brisbane would you love to play that you haven’t yet?

Jack: Ultimately I would really like for house shows to make a comeback. Nothing beats the energy of a bunch of buds playing music in the backyard in my eyes.

Jacob: I’d love to play The Triffid one day. I could only imagine the view from behind the kit, looking out at hundreds of faces all contained in an old air base hanger.

James: Fortitude Music Hall would be a trip but it’d have to be with a sentimental lineup for the close mates I’ve met along the way in the music scene. I’d only play there if it was Beddy Rays, Radolescent and Semantics playing with us. But I’d also play there if they offered us a show. Take it or leave it Fortitude Music Hall.

Josh: Princess Theatre for sure. It was always The Triffid for me but my old band were lucky enough to play there a few years back with The Smith Street Band. I’d say the next step up’s probably Princess Theatre, right? Plus I watched our good mates Beddy Rays pack that place out and it was absolutely biblical. Yes please, I’ll have a bit of that.

You've just bumped out of a gig, it's after midnight, where's your go-to for a late night meal?

Jack: 5 Dogs is a great place to people-watch in the valley, and they don’t even yell at you if you ask for pineapple on your hotdog.

Jacob: Can’t go past a good kebab in the twilight hours! The health benefits are surely endless and nothing settles your gut better after 2 or 20 beers.

James: Yiros babay. That place a few doors down from 5 Dogs? Expensive, but you’re drunk and they know it. Dive into the trap head first, a bed of yiros is waiting for you but your money may never return.

Josh: Fortitude Valley Kebabs. Big dirty Mexican kebab with Holy Trinity sauce, get it in me.

From photographers to visual artists, videographers or booking agents, do you have any Brisbane creatives that you’d like to give a shout out to?

Jack: Nick Hargans has been killing it with the wedding stuff and all the music videos he’s been pumping out. Highly recommended!

Jacob: Big shoutout to our long time mate James at Hindsight Visuals (@hindsight.visuals). He’s always looked after us for show shots and just documenting our antics!

James: Absolutely. Big shout out to Sam Elliot (@samelliottfilm), a passionate and brilliant photographer who’s just kicking off. Brilliant work, worth a message if you’re playing a show in Brisbane.

Umbrella Creative are brilliant and their content is a masterclass on social media. Darcie Medlyn of (@D_art_stipples), incredible artist, deserves more credit than she gets. And finally Brook Wakeham, an old uni friend of mine who’s kept pushing at her goals and has become a very proficient, talented live sound engineer, probably the best in the area. I have a huge respect for her and her tenacity to show a male dominated industry that sound has no gender (duh). I know all of these creatives will experience success in their own ways, it’s just a matter of time, and to experience, and sometimes be a part of their journey, I think, is incredibly lucky.

Josh: Yes!! Too many to name because Brisbane’s full of so many talented dawgs. Off the top of my head though my good mate James Deakin is killing it with Hindsight Visuals as well as the work he’s done managing Moree legends Kicked In Bikkie Tin (if you don’t know then go check them out)!!

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