Geelong alt-grunge four-piece Sons of Stereo is a band who not only love playing music, but they love supporting it. With no expectations to take the world by storm, frontman Robin Ricketts and guitarist Ash Laidlaw explain how they’re just out to have a good time. “Everyone wants to follow a dream that maybe one day they can live off of, but the reality is that only a few of us actually get to do that,” says Laidlaw.
As one of the band’s founding members, Laidlaw believes being a musician has proven to be a great outlet for himself.
“Starting this little family has worked out perfectly, since not only do I get to talk nonsense to people I love hanging out with, but I’m also doing what I love the most and that’s playing music.”
Ricketts also has his own positives for taking the rockstar path: “It’s how I met my wife, Cherry. The first time she saw me I was carrying a guitar case and I guess she thought I was kinda cool looking – mission accomplished.”
Although they’ve yet to release a debut EP, Laidlaw ensures that fans may not have too much longer to wait. “We’re aiming for some time in the next couple of months,” he reveals. “We’re putting a lot of time and effort into this baby, so we don’t want to rush things.”
In order to keep the band on track, Sons of Stereo always try to make sure they sneak in at least one band practice per week. As Laidlaw explains, “a weekly band practice is vital, since I believe people love watching a band who own what they do. Things like confidence, sounding tight and just looking like they belong up on stage is something I always keep an eye out for when at someone else’s gig. It takes away from the performance when you can tell they’re rusty.”
On the topic of being rusty, Ricketts mentions that the band may need to work on the decision making process when putting together a setlist. “When you start singing about a house burning down, then get told a family home nearby had been burnt down just two weeks prior … that sucks,” he admits. However, according to Laidlaw that unfortunately wasn’t the only case of a poor song choice suffered by the boys.
“We recently played this charity event for cancer and for some reason it didn’t click that we had started playing a song called ‘Wasting Away’. We felt terrible – then an old guy heckled us. I guess we deserved it.”
That aside, Sons of Stereo is a band who simply loves local music. “Geelong is full of talented musicians who deserve attention. They can inspire, surprise and offer something that you cannot get from sitting on the couch,” say Ricketts. “We are trying to show people that it is the age of local bands again.”
When&Where: The Barwon Club, Geelong – February 7
Written by Brendan Dando