After cracking Triple J Hottest 100 (at #61), announcing a host of international shows and finally releasing their debut album, we were lucky enough to catch up with Sticky Fingers and chat about the highs of their latest successes. Here is what they had to say:
First up, how did Sticky Fingers form and what has kept you together?
We formed as a band in high school during year 11. Paddy actually ran into Dyz when he was busking on king st in Newtown. It’s funny reflecting on that now considering our most recent single and video clip ‘Australia St,’ is filmed right near where Dyz was busking.
We’re still together because we were mates before we were a band. Half the boys couldn’t even play their instruments when we started and we barely knew how to write songs. We hang out together a lot and are constantly reflecting on our music and what we want to create in the future. We’ve gotten a lot stronger as a unit for that reason.
Sticky Fingers is a pretty interesting name, where did the inspiration come from? Were you channelling Pearl Jam vibes by any chance? What where the other names you toyed with?
Sticky fingers is simply an ode to the Rolling Stones album ‘Sticky Fingers.’ We were actually originally called ‘Green Leaf.’ It was a shocking name and the only thing the boys wrote about was getting high, arguably nothing much has changed. After we made the transition to Sticky Fingers we definitely expanded our musical and lyrical repertoire and matured as a band, particularly after endless touring.
Say somebody stumbles across you guys rocking out in your live set. How are they going to describe the Stickies sound and live show to their mates. What other comments might they make?
Loose. It generally gets crazy in the crowd. We just played a couple of crazy shows in Tassie and have some funny footage to prove it. In Hobart at Republic Bar, we’ve got footage on our Facebook of Paddy crowd surfing while then managing to get his feet on the roof. He then starts crowd roof walking, which was pretty impressive considering he’s not the most agile dude.
As for our sound, we describe it as psychedelic /rock/surf/reggae. When we chat to folks after shows they usually agree that it contains at least a couple of those elements. We just like to combine them all cos it sounds hilarious. I think as we progress as a band you’ll see new elements coming in as well
Which bands have had the biggest influence on your sound?
We’d all answer that differently but I’d say the Chilis and Sublime have the biggest impact on all of us. We’re not sure if we can ever match what they’ve done, but we particularly love their melodies and grooves. I think you can hear those influences more so in our album Caress Your Soul.
How do you compose your new songs? Do you rely on the same method, or do you mix it up?
Yeah we definitely try to mix it up. All of us have a go at coming up with an original idea, whether it be a riff, chord progression, melody, beat etc. We usually then jump into the garage and add the additional layers. We can definitely sit on songs for a while, but when we’re all feelin it, we can get songs down within the day. I guess it’s always mostly a creative group process. The five bruddaz.
Your new single ‘Australia Street’ is a pretty homely affair. Does Australia street have a special meaning for you, or is it just a name for a song?
It’s funny you should say ‘homely,’ because the song is based on a house that we all used to party at on Australia st, which veers onto Camperdown Park. If you check our video clip of ‘Headlock,’ it shows us unofficially headlining Newtown fest from the backyard of this house. The following year the festival actually let us play on the main stage!
With the Australia st video clip, we ideally wanted to shoot part of the clip at the house but our good mates no longer reside there. We did manage to have a couple of mates living in separate houses off King st, about three minutes apart. So we thought, why not walk along King st being dickheads spraying champagne in a one take film clip? Turned out pretty damn well for three takes.
‘Caress Your Soul’ cracked Triple J’s Hottest 100 for 2012, what was it like seeing your track slide in at number 61?
It was awesome dude! We were playing on Australia Day but just before we jumped on stage we heard our tune pumping through the pub. We got a lot of love from mates and family and had a pretty crazy party afterwards. Though it’s not hard for us to find an excuse to spray a bottle of champagne these days.
Given you’re rise in popularity, what is the weirdest things fans have done to you guys? Have you seen anybody with ‘Caress My Sould’ tattoos yet?
Actually the only person I’ve seen with a Caress Your Soul tattoo is Dyz. He was pretty wasted after the Australia Day countdown as you could imagine and got a tattoo on his right foot “Caress Your Soul #61.” I don’t think the little leghead cares though.
As for the fans, we recently got some footage from a fan from the Launceston show at the Royal Oak. It shows a chick crowd surfing with her boobies out. This chick kinda started following a trend and more girls followed suit. That was definitely a first for us.
You just released a brand new album of the same name, how does it feel to drop your debut full length album and what would be the ideal listening situation to maximise enjoyment?
It’s a great feeling now that we finally have it out. It feels good to pass it round knowing that we’re completely happy with what we’ve created.
I reckon the most ideal listening situation would be on the road. When the album was in it’s last stage of mixing, the band was driving up to play Woodford festival while Paddy was chatting to our mixing engineer and producer Dann Hume in Melbourne. Paddy was sending us mixes while the rest of the band were driving up the pacific highway. There’s definitely something about listening to music on the road that you can’t beat. We’re actually driving up this weekend to play shows in Brisbane, Byron and Sunshine Coast for the Big Pineapple Fest. Doubt we’ll be listening to the album though. Er!
What does the rest of 2013 hold for Sticky Fingers, will you be taking a breather, seeking international success, or somewhere inbetween?
It’s awesome that we can now confirm that we’re doing a bunch of shows in Canada and Europe in June/July. We’ve booked most of our shows in Holland where we’ve actually noticed a bit of a following. We just found out as well that one of our shows in Amsterdam is nearly sold out and plenty of fans are helping us promote the shows. We’re all pretty shocked by it all but already it’s looking like it’s going to be loads of fun.
Don’t think we’re going to be having much of a breather either, so you can expect to hear some new material towards the end of the year.