The Griswolds burst onto the Australian music scene in 2012 with two killer singles in ‘Mississippi’ and ‘Heart of A Lion’, and have now just won Triple J’s Unearthed competition to play Parklife!
Aside from winning this competition which will see them line up with Parklife heavy weights Tame Impala and The Presets, The Griswolds have also played with the likes of San Cisco, Millions and Last Dinosaurs. We caught up with the boys before this great news to find out more about The Griswolds and when there EP will finally be dropping. Here is what they had to say…
Lets kick it off easily, who are The Griswolds? How did you meet, how did you come to make music, and why call yourself the Griswolds?
The Griswolds are essentially Dan and Whitehall as the singer song writers, then theres Timmy, Robbie and Riley on bass, samples and drums. We’ve all been friends for a while through various “band” connections, we’ve all played together in some kinda way before we decided to start our own band and call it The Griswolds. The name came from a drunken night in the studio, we were taking the piss and coming up with all sorts of whacky band names because we were pissed off that we couldnt seem to come up with anything decent that wasnt already taken. Someone mentioned ‘The Griswolds’, we couldnt believe we all liked it and it stuck!
Where was your first ever live show, and who were you supporting?
My first ever live show was when I was 15, playing blink 182 and mxpx covers at a friends party, haha we were so shit!! The Griswolds had a really cool kick start into the gig scene, our first shows were playing along side Last Dinosaurs and San Cisco. Both great bands, we were very chuffed!!
You have a pretty cool profile pic with all the colourful dyes, taken from the video for ‘Heart of A Lion’. Whose idea was that. It looks like it did/could have easily get further out of hand – did it?
The video was actually a friend’s idea, we were staying at a beach house for the weekend and we had a massive party and took a heap of photos of the night. The next day we went through the camera and were so blown away by how far out of control the party got, the photos looked great!! Our friend said we should do it again and use it for a music video. So we started planning it all out and the ideas kept getting messier and crazier, we bought 100kgs of powder, we had 50 litres of coloured milk, shit got crazy!! Noone could have predicted how nuts it got that day, I blame the sangria! Anyway in the end it took us a full week to clean and re-paint the studio. Worth it though!
The first time I saw you guys, one of you was rockin’ the double denim look – perhaps best kept in the 90s – who decides what to wear when you go on stage? Any other bad costume choices?
Haha yeah, gotta love the double denim, we just wear whatever we feel like, theres no real rhyme or reason to it. Weve all played in bands before where every member wears black skinny jeans and a black shirt, it’s been done. I think everything we wear on stage is the stupidest thing we ever worn, the double denim is a great example! we’ve also done snake skin tights, ridiculous cowboy boots, bad tasting hawaiian shirts, top hats, its all in the name of fun.
You guys are pretty love-able and put on a super energetic live show, so what is the strangest/worst thing that has happened when you have been performing so far?
We had a shocker not too long ago, we had been celebrating some good news just before a gig and every member was reasonably plastered, we played a pretty horrible gig haha! Lesson learned – lucky it was free!
The big question that everybody wants to know about. The feud with Hey Geronimo, how did it kick off, did you really poo in their shoe?
Oh geez, umm, I’m pretty sure we started it. It was a series of pranks that went wrong, they are actually great dudes, we really like them (except for the keyboard player). There’s a heap more I could add to this story, but that’s for another time ; )
You have just been playing shows with Jakarta Criers, Go Violets and City Riots, did you get up to any more ridiculous shenanigans?
We’re all about having good times, and quite often take it too far, but no, we’ve been pretty tame. We usually go out for a few drinks or dinner with the bands we play with, that’s always good.
How do you go about making your music? What is the first thing you do when writing a new song, is their one creative influence in the band (maybe tequila?) or is it a group effort.
We have no set strategy or plan when we write, every song has come about differently than the last. Some songs were definitely helped along by a bit of Tequila, then others just write themselves, one song actually came about within a dream, we woke up and started tracking it at 3am so we wouldn’t forget it.
Heart of A Lion is your latest energetic single, is Steve ‘The CEO of cheap arseholes and petty woes’ a real person? How did this song come about?
Yep, Steve Levene is as real as you and me! Heart of a Lion is about a guy with a big heart, and an even bigger ego, pretentious fucker, but we love him all the same!
You have already released two singles and there have been rumours of a forthcoming EP, can you shed any more light on the matter?
There is indeed an EP on the way, it is in final stages now and should be out by late August along with another single and another film clip not too long after.
2012 has seen The Griswolds burst onto the scene smashing everything in their path, what is set to happen in 2013?
We’re hoping that 2013 will see us on festival stages around Australia and some decent international tours. We are already writing our first album which we will release next year too.
Check out the Griswolds on Facebook. Watch their music video for ‘Heart of a Lion‘, and download the track for free here.