Civilians : People music purveyors
Civilians are a 6-piece indie rock collective hailing from Sydney, who have a simple dream of bringing people together through their music. With an electric ukelele (that's a thing??) and violin, as well as two trombonists in their arsenal, they have been steadily catching the public's eye since their formation in 2012. Backyard Opera had a chat with them in preparation for their single launch 'We Were Wrens' (ha, try saying that 10 times really fast), which you can listen to below:
What brought you all together, as a band and as friends?
We had been involved in other projects together over the years and finally found time to work on some stuff together in a more serious sense. That, and a little eastern suburb’s watering hole!
What song best describes your work ethic?
Patience’ by Guns ‘n’ Roses
On your Facebook page, your style is described as 'people music'. What do you mean by that?
Lochie and myself had known each other for some time and we tended to be on the same page about the music we liked and the music we wanted to create. We also had a similar view about some of the music out there lacking any real soul for people to connect to. Our aim was to make music for ‘people’, not radio or advertisements or whatever, but for it to maybe help those who feel isolated within society or on the fringe feel like they are part of something bigger. We wanted it to a have sense of community.
In one sentence, can you please tell us about the kind of music you guys make?
We make positive, soulful music that will hopefully help you shake off a bad day’s funk.
What has been your most rewarding experience since starting out as a band?
Working towards releasing the recordings with some very talented and generous artists based abroad in India and Seattle, as well as locals in Lillyfield and Surry Hills, and the resulting friendships and bonds.
Any hidden talents?
Gavin is a professional dancer and Lochie has a mean drop punt.
What do you like to do as a band, when you're not making music?
Drink coffee at ‘Not-Rubys’, seeing other great bands and surfing.
I know you're launching your single 'We Were Wrens' at Brighton Up Bar on September 19th, but what can you tell us about your future projects? What can we expect from you?
We’re not young upstarts anymore so our goal is to release singles to build an album by mid next year. To have our songs on vinyl would be splendid.
Quick! A gorilla walks through the door wearing a sombrero! What does he say and why is it here?
He introduces himself as Bollo and performs the under appreciated classic ‘Ape of Death’ whilst Vince and Howard get there scat on around him.
Catch Civilians at Brighton Up Bar on September 19th for their single launch 'We Were Wrens' (tickets $10 at the door). In the meantime, you can Facebook stalk them here and check out their soundcloud here.
- Gabriella Khouri