The Basics to launch new album
So recognised in fact that their songs appear on the English film, The Bank Job as well as TV shows such as Packed to the Rafters, Scrubs and Californication.
Kris Schroeder, Tim Heath and Wally de Backer (Gotye) have been touring and performing their music, described as ’60s pop, but in their own noughties style.
Catching up with them can prove difficult.
“Hang on, we’re just dodging people on the escalator in Broadway to get to the car to get to the studio in Stanmore to put the finishing touches on the new album, before we head north,” Kris Schroeder apologised while talking on his mobile phone.
“We’ve been up and down the North Coast probably more than any other band in Australia over the years – and to every corner of Australia for that matter – so why not tour again,” said Schroeder, adding they are launching Like a Brother, their second single from the new album, at the gig.
Last year the boys toured the outback, visiting schools and remote communities around Alice Springs, Darwin and North Queensland and teaching music, conducting workshops and learning a few things along the way.
“It was trying times and the main thing I learned was to bring someone along. Bring someone else along for fun,” Kris laughed.
“It was demanding, three months in a bus with the isolation and just the other two … but they’re still my best mates.”
The new album, Keep Your Friends Close, hits stores in September and Kris is quick to point out “the name is all about their commitment to each other”.
The last time the band was on the road was in April when they launched With this Ship, the first single off the album.
Judging by the photos, Wally, Kris and Tim have gone back to the basics, discarding their trademark suits. While on tour with The Bawdies – a Japanese band, they stole the suits and wore them on stage.
“Ha ha,” Kris laughed. “But that’s spot on, you got it in one. They out styled us but we are working on a new suit for the November tour”.
Laughing too much and with Sydney traffic the way it is – Kris passed the phone over to Wally de Backer.
“The Japanese have a great eye for detail,” Wally noted.
Attention to detail is something this band does well and that’s why they had Peter Cobbin (Franz Ferdinand) in to mix a few songs including With this Ship at the Abbey Road studios in London.
Wally insists “this album is as rare and as close to the skin as to who The Basics really are”.
Wally said he looks forward to the Beach Hotel gig in Byron Bay; it’s the sea where most of his inspiration comes from.
“It’s all those wanders down to the sand,” he said.
“If only I could roll the piano down there.”