The unstoppable wheel of creativity keeping Regurgitator spinning

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The unstoppable wheel of creativity keeping Regurgitator spinning

Words by Tammy Walters

If you would rather dance in ugly pants in the comfort of a lounge room in suburbia, the upcoming Regurgitator tour is not for you but ‘! (Song Formerly Known As)’ might be up your alley.

Thirty years and ten albums later, Brisbane boys Regurgitator are still bringing the party to venues around Australia, this time in celebration of their latest body of work Invader. With a mega 23 dates on the touring schedule slipping into small corners of the Australian topography, Regurgitator will be invading Geelong’s Barwon Club Hotel on Thursday 16 May.

Keep up with the latest music news, festivals, interviews and reviews here.

“When it comes to touring I feel like the older we get the more we appreciate what we have. When you’re younger and you do it all the time – I don’t know it was a bit more stressful when we were younger but now we’re older it feels more fun somehow,” says band bassist, Ben Ely.

“The more intimate the venue, the more we love it. I guess it’s that punk vibe where if you can get the crowd included in the show it feels much better, rather than spectators.”


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Their latest offering Invader lends itself brilliantly to the live setting, building on the band’s infectious energy that surges from their genre-bending sonic wallet. Laced in humorous touch-in-cheek lines with titles like ‘Cocaine Runaway’, ‘The Bastard Poem That Nobody Wanted’, ‘Australiyeah’ and the nail on the head hitter ‘Pee Pee Man’, Invader speaks to Regurgitators diverse palette, branding it as their best yet.

“This album took longer than any other album we’ve ever made – it took like almost two years to make. We were really hyper self-critical about what went on the record and what vibe it should be and everything. So when we came to selecting a song, that was primarily in the forefront of our minds as to making sure that when we play these songs live they really translate. I think I wrote so many songs just trying to get to that vibe,” Ely explains.

“Primarily we were trying to write the best songs we could and I think we probably had higher standards than normal. We listened to the songs so many times that by the time we played them to our manager and friends they were like “This is the best album you’ve done in years”. So that was a good thing so it’s probably good we were extra hyper critical of ourselves.”

In complete Regurgitator ridiculousness, Ben Ely, Quan Yeoman and Peter Kostic sunk into the album the only way they know how – by completing an album initiation. Restricting their senses, the trio immersed themselves in a completely isolated sonic exploration. 

“We do this thing when we finish an album that we turn off all of the lights at night and sit in the dark and have a listen to it. We listened to it in the dark and were freaking ourselves out about how it came to us in such a weird way. But when you listen to songs individually it doesn’t sound that strange but when you put them together it’s a bit odd. But we like that!”

It’s this vast breadth of dimension to their craft that has enabled their triple decade career. The ability to mould into new eras of music; pulling from a plethora of inspiration; partnering hiphop with indie rock; placing 80’s pop with funk rhythms; and all the while having exhaustingly good fun with it. It’s the reason Invader sees collaboration with Peaches, JK-47 and Tyson Yunkaporta.

“I think if we played one genre we would have broken up 20 years ago because if we kept to the same style it would get really creatively boring but I guess that’s why we’re still around. It’s really lovely to be in a band where you can hit any style and play with it. It keeps life interesting I think,” laughs Ely.

It’s not the only area that keeps their career exciting. Regurgitator are a true to name DIY band, overseeing the artistic direction and execution of all moving arms including writing, production, artwork, merchandising and costume design.

“I think that’s why I love being in a band so much. If you’re in a band there are so many creative projects you can get involved with if you want to. I usually do all of the design of the costumes and art for t-shirts and album covers and posters – it’s such a great vehicle to get creative in so many ways and it keeps life really interesting artistically. We worked that out very young in our career – I don’t know whether we’re control freaks or we just like doing it our own way but we get a big kick out of the DIY thing.”

They promise bold costumes for their upcoming ‘it’s so invasive..tour’ to add to the best time possible.

Tickets are still available for the show and can be purchased via oztix.