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The Presets: Interview [Backstage Parklife 2012]

Last weekend, acid stag did the Melbourne leg of Parklife 2012. Whilst there, we rubbed shoulders backstage with tour headliners The Presets. This is our interview with Julian Hamilton and Kim Moyes, Australian electro royalty.

How did the previous Parklife gigs go?
Julian: They were great but Perth was probably the best one so far. It blitzed them all!
Kim: Yeah, the crowd was really enthusiastic and they just really wanted to dance. It was so warm over there too (laughs). Sydney was so freaking cold and it’s freezing here today too!

The new record is quite diverse. There are a few poppy sing-a-longs mixed in with some 3AM club anthems. How did you go about piecing this one together?
Julian: Well that’s actually a big question. I mean, it’s hard to answer that in just a few sentences. It took us 2 years to put this one together and everything on there is compiled of sounds and the styles of music that we wanted to make. We just worked with what we came up with on a day-by-day basis and in the end we just hoped that it was coming together as an album and not a sort of compilation (laughs).
Kim: It’s funny you know. If you look back at our other two records, it’s basically the same format. I guess with this one though we wanted it to be a cohesive example of what we do and I guess we just felt that we needed to tick a lot of boxes in order to make that happen. I think this time round we reached a point where we could truly just be ourselves.
Julian: Yeah, and whether it’s a poppy song or a 3AM banger, people should know by now that that is what they can expect from us. That’s what we do (laughs). We were pretty much left to our own devices on this one. We had the time to spend on it without some of the pressures we’ve had in the past. So that was a really nice experience. We didn’t have a release deadline, which took a lot of pressure off, and we were really able to relax into it.

How many demos did you have to choose from in the end?
Kim: Heaps! We had countless ideas and maybe 40 or 50 actual contenders. From that we just pulled the ones that spoke to us the most.
Julian: It’s funny you know, with Apocalypso we made like 12 songs and 10 of those went on the record, one was a b-side and the other we just threw out.

Will some of those other tracks ever see the light of day?
Julian: Yeah, I think a lot of them will eventually find a home somewhere.
Kim: Yeah, for sure. There were tracks that we both really loved that didn’t make the cut for this album. They were really exciting but just not right for this record.

Which track are you most excited about playing here today?
Kim: ‘Youth In Trouble’ is a really obvious one for me. It’s constructed to be experienced in this kind of environment – big stadium, big lights, lots of people and lots of dancing. That’s when it really comes to life (laughs).

We were thinking today: What is the ultimate question to ask the Presets?
Kim & Julian: THAT! That is the ultimate question! We’ve never been asked that before, and I don’t think anyone could come up with a better one than that (laughs).

The Presets headlined the main stage at this year’s Parklife festival and it was a fantastic display of how epic the Australian duo have become. It was refreshing to hear some of the oldies being tweaked slightly to fit such a large sound and space. Looking around the Sidney Myer Music Bowl during some of the newer tracks, there were smiles from ear-to-ear, legs dancing, heads shaking and mouths screaming along to the lyrics.

Relive Parklife memories by streaming new album Pacifica below. If you didn’t make it along to Parklife this year, listen along with us anyway. We’re sure you’ll get a sense of how big these shows really were.

If you don’t own this yet, get it now from their website.

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Filed: Interviews, Streams

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