There’s plenty of reasons to get excited about Green Buzzard. As well as coming off as incredibly authentic, the eclectic harmony of brit rock and ear-catching melodies provide an unparalleled listen, reminiscent of the 90s alternative golden era. We caught up with Pat ahead of their new EP, Space Man Rodeo, to find what special ingredients went into the release:
What was the motive behind the space theme?
I created a comic book style story, with Green Buzzard as the main character and his sidekicks Phantasy Boy & Phantasy Girl who all lived on a faraway planet fighting different enemies. Originally, when I started the band, I wanted every song to reference that, but eventually got over it after a couple songs. I always loved the idea of a story or concept behind songs so decided for the next release I would properly explore that idea. I guess that’s where it started and eventually led to the space set story of ‘Space Man Rodeo’.
How would you describe yourselves stylistically?
I’ve always written songs with a similar approach. Growing up I was always inspired by British music ranging from the 60’s Beatles-esque psychedelic tunes, through to 70’s/80’s punk and postpunk bands and finishing with 90’s shoe gaze, brit-pop bands. When I started Green Buzzard, I started discovering more 90’s American college rock style, fuzz-drenched bands like Dinosaur Jr and Guided By Voices. I ultimately wanted to write music with the musical bones and melodies of British music and marry it with the sonic, fuzzy-guitar sound of 90’s American music.
Could you give us an insight into the song writing process for this EP?
Most of the songs were written by myself on my guitar. I can’t really start writing a song without an idea, or a visual behind it, so after I came up with the idea/story of ‘Space Man Rodeo’ everything came quite easily to me. A lot of the songs on this EP had collaborations with the other musicians who played on it, Dave Constable on synths/keys and Micky Grossman on guitar, in particular, had a big role in writing, as well as James West, on drums, who I’ve played music with for years, James has been there since the start of Green Buzzard and is a huge part of the song writing process.
There seems to be a washy, lucid quality to your music which works nicely. Is there any special recording tricks you guys use to give off that vibe?
I think what gives that quality is the guitar sound, which is something I’ve been working on for close to 10 years. I’ve got a very specific idea of how I think a guitar should sound. Ultimately, I don’t think it should be over thought. Rock and roll is intrinsically stupid, in a good way, and should always be treated as such. This was also the first time I wrote songs with synths in mind, leaving a lot of space for them. I think the added element of synthesisers really added a new element to our sound.
I’m not sure if I’m imagining it, but I hear a twinge of Oasis, or 90’s rock, in ‘Do You Ever Glow’. Do your draw inspiration musically from that genre/era?
100%. I grew up as a younger sibling to an older brother and sister who both loved Oasis, Blur, The Verve and many other 90’s bands. I guess you could say that sort of music was embedded in me before I even started properly listening to bands. As a result, I’ve always had a strong affinity with the music of that era. In my teens, Oasis, Joy Division, Stone Roses, The La’s and Ride, just to name a few, were my musical bread and butter. I think your early influences always stay with you in one way or another.
Where was the release recorded?
We recorded the entire release at The Grove Studios on the Central Coast with Burke Reid. I’ve always been a fan of his, harking way back to when he was in Gerling. The first time I met him we got real drunk and he showed me a bunch of great bands from the 90’s I’d never heard of.
Do you have any unconventional, or perhaps unusual studio routines?
The way we approached the EP was really meticulous. I had almost every part for all the tracks in my head before we went in. The process was very easy. I always like working quickly. We did 10 songs in 7 days, which I think works in our favour. Not overthinking things is a very important part to the Green Buzzard recording process. We’ve always embraced the ‘warts and all’ approach to recording. Anything too polished becomes boring in my mind.
What’s your favourite Space themed movie? (Apollo 13, Space Cowboys, Space Balls etc.).
The obvious answer here for just about anyone born in the late 80’s or early 90s is Space Jam, which is definitely up there, but putting that aside, I’d have to say, Alien.
If you discovered a new planet, what would you call it?
Space Man Rodeo is out now via I Oh You/Mushroom Promotions