Raise your glasses; irresistible Melbourne foursome Slowly Slowly are capping off the year with Victorian festival and Forte fave Beyond The Valley this December, alongside acts such as Stormzy, Amy Shark, ScHoolBoy Q, PNAU, Matt Corby and The Presets.
Born out of a label machinery factory in the east of Melbourne, the emo-rock outfit nabbed an Unearthed Feature Artist slot earlier this year and have been getting a lot of love for the hard-hitting honesty of frontman Ben Stewart, whose bittersweet songwriting is captured on record by bassist Alex Quayle.
“We are so keen, we are like pinching ourselves, it’s going to be wild,” exclaims tell-all frontman Stewart. “I didn’t even know that we were an option to be picked so it was a huge surprise; it was so long ago [when we applied] and I never thought that we were short-listed or in the running for anything, I just didn’t think that we were a serious option so it was very surprising,” he grins.
“We’ve never done a festival type gig, especially one where people camp so it’s all completely new for us. We’re just excited to play to some new people that wouldn’t otherwise listen to a whiny emo band,” he laughs.
Being the boys first time on a festival stage, Stewart and his three bandmates are more than ready for the job, already getting a stack of airplay, selling out a headline show and even sharing stages with Ceres, Sorority Noise and Something For Kate just last month. It’s clear the guys show no signs of slowing down, even with Stewart copping a gnarly finger injury a week before the Something For Kate tour, which he insists his power-chord digits are still intact and fighting fit to close out 2017 at Beyond The Valley.
“It’s a little bit tender but it was very scary when it happened because it was only hanging on by a little bit and it tipped over,” he laughs, while giving a gruesome detailed report of the ordeal. “I was just chopping vegetables; I just got a new knife and it was super sharp and I was really proud of it and I was doing a Jamie Oliver with some coriander and then there it went… I’ve been cutting vegetables with butter knives now.”
Coming a long way since their makeshift home studio where they spent countless nights honing their own brand of unabashed guitar driven rock between skating over broken palettes in the car park, the guys have found their sound, mixing fragile storytelling with anthemic rock led by Stewart’s evocative lyricism and powerful vocal delivery, especially with their recent single and title track to their upcoming second album ‘Aliens’. It’s clear their music is carefully considered, precise and yet still vulnerable.
“We have a couple of songs that we jammed as a band, but 90 per cent of the time I just nut everything out and then they [the band] all put their own spin on things,” he reveals of the bands creative process. “We have a really good relationship now where I feel like Albert on guitar, Pat on drums and Alex on base, they’re better than anything I could do, so it’s really nice when I hand it over and they make it their own.
“It just helps when I have an initial idea because it’s all contextual, especially when I write it at home, it can be a bit more measured in all the arrangements. It just seems to work better for us that way with my style of writing because it’s also vocally focused and really lyrical, whereas I’ve been in bands in the past where it’s more about the cool instrumentals and riffs. It seems to be working for us so we’re not going to muck it up.”
Catch the boys among the rolling hills of Lardner Park in Warragul for the four-day end of year celebrations at Beyond The Valley.
For further details and ticket info hit up the Beyond The Valley website.
Written by Talia Rinaldo