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Tunng - Tunng In Cheek

Author: Rezo
Friday, 14 December 2007
3D's Rezo had a chat with Mike Lindsay of acclaimed folktronic six-piece Tunng ahead of their visit to the Spiegeltent for Sydney Festival.

Tunng's sound is somewhat detached from what might be considered cool or modern today. It is unashamedly eclectic folk music, laced with an independence that is refreshingly brilliant. “I think the finished product is pretty much the way you describe it,” says Lindsay. “It turns out that much of the stuff we were writing on our own turned out to be what we were doing when we worked with each other. I was always acquainted with wonky sounds and nice melodies and atmospheres that take you into other areas. It was something that felt natural for me.”

The same goes for vocalist Sam; with his northern accent and profound/other-worldly lyrics, which tell stories about things that do not even exist. Put it all together and you have music where the style and influence isn't easy to pinpoint. Think of it as a 1970s folk element mixed with The Beatles and then garnished with a little of today's more modern pop. “It's the way we amalgamate the whole thing,” explains Mike.

The group's modus operandi is now all about their studio based project, which is just as much about messing around in the studio with computers as it is with instruments. “Computers have given us opportunities to produce music whether it's in our own way or in another person's way - and by that I mean with their guidance or expertise. You can produce a track and play it straight up or you can glitz it up and put it back together. Now whether that's good or not I don't know, but those ways of producing music are something from the last 10 years. But we always strive for a unique sound and there's been a whole scene that's been developing in the background and it's been exciting to meet people from similar backgrounds and know that people are doing similar things as part of a bigger movement.”

Of course we touch on the Good Arrows album, which was released late this year. Mike reflects upon how it was the first time the entire crew - all six of them - pitched in ideas and had creative input. They've also spent plenty of time touring it. Ironically, the album itself was written while the group was on tour and now they've gotten back to London - they still don't know how they managed to do it - they are writing again. 
“Now we've been putting out a record every year for three years. We hope to spend more time in the future touring as well - that includes coming to Australia! In the interim, I think we're going to take some time off after our American tour and think about what we'll be producing next. The Melbourne and Sydney shows though, will be like a campfire sing-along! It will feature a full band with all the electronics and live production.” Bring the marshmallows!

WHO: Tunng
WHAT: Play the Famous Spiegeltent for Sydney Festival
WHEN: 13-15 January