Author: Carlisle Rogers
Monday, 16 June 2008
The latest, and weirdest, hipsters to emerge from the indie soup we call Brooklyn are called Telepathe. They just signed their debut LP to Speak N Spell records, a bunch of cool Melbourne hipsters who also just signed the Dandy Warhols to Etch N Sketch, and they make a noise that, while vaguely immature and innocent, is pretty cool within the current milieu.
Melissa Livaudais and Busy Gangnes are the heart of Telepathe, but people like Ryan Licero, Lane Lacolla and Shannon Funchess help out now and again. The biggest name on the record though, is producer Dave Sitek, from TV on the Radio.
'A friend of ours played him our music and he really liked it,' Melissa says of the hook-up. 'He told us if we ever wanted to do any recording, we could drop by his studio. We were like 'Yeah, of course!' And he said 'Well, how about the entire month of November-' That's how it all happened.
'He is an extreme person in the best way,' she says of Sitek's production technique. 'We basically went there with a blueprint for our record and took all of the files we had been working on. To compose our music, we used Soft Synths because we use the program Logic. He has an enormous synthesiser collection and made us replace or double up everything on the record with his synths. It sounds ten times larger than when we were doing it by ourselves, which was totally his goal.'
While the word hippie gets thrown around with this band a lot, their chanting rhythms could be read that way; Melissa says she hopes that is not how they are perceived. 'I hope by the time this record comes out people won't be thinking we are hippies at all. This music is totally dance music. It's not disco. That's not my goal. I listen to syncopated rhythms and I want to make something that's not as straightforward as four-to-the-floor, but it's definitely our goal to make hooks and dance music. If we haven't entirely accomplished it on this record, it will definitely be the next record.'
Working together previously in Wikkid, which Melissa describes as a 'crazy math rock band', Busy and Melissa grew bored quickly on drums and guitar, respectively. 'We wanted to do everything because we are control freaks. And then we met Ryan and she's the easiest person in the world to work with and she has really good ideas. The three of us really get along and are able to make stuff pretty easily when we are together. We want to be different, it's our goal to make innovative music.'
Melissa says that when they hit Australia, the show will be a little stripped down. 'There's no way that we can perform how we like to right now,' she admits. 'There are drums, a guitar, a laptop, a synth to control the filters and the drummer will also play another synth, so we'll have two synths going. So it's Melissa on laptop, Busy Gangnes on drums, vocals and synths, and Ryan Lucero on guitar.'
WHAT: Play Vice fifth birthday / Oxford Art Factory
WHEN: Friday 20 June / Wednesday 25