Ever since I heard 'Coffee at Midnight' for the first time, I was instantly hooked. Stand Atlantic ticked all the right boxes for me, echoing the bands I love - such as TAT or The Distillers, but bringing a modern and more melodic approach. As a matter of fact, I liked it so much, I did an interview with Bonnie Fraser which can be found HERE. Fast forward about a year later, Stand Atlantic are releasing their debut full-length 'Skinny Dipping' bringing even more different influences, and giving a new depth to their sound. And once again, I liked it. I liked it so much, that I almost overcame my lavender allergy. So, it was time for another interview, this time a new face in the band - bassist Miki Rich. Check it out below.
Recently, you announced your new European tour. How does it feel to go back and headline the same venues you played as support just a year earlier?
Miki: It’s crazy! I think a lot of us didn’t think we would be headlining these venues in a just a year when we were playing them. We‘ve always loved touring Europe, so we are so excited to be back playing to our own fans, and I think it will be very special.
On this tour, you will be bringing Shaded with you. How did you choose them, and why we shouldn't miss their set?
Miki: We actually met Matt from Shaded in London, he let us stay in his home, and he is genuinely one of the nicest people we have met! We filmed parts of our 'Skinny Dipping' music video in his home, and he even makes a quick cameo. (laughs) They have recently joined the same management team as us, and when they were pitched to us as the support we instantly said yes! We haven’t seen them live yet so I know we will all be there watching, and you should too.
Last year was huge for you, but I guess the highlight was a release of your debut full-length 'Skinny Dipping.' How happy are you with the record and the feedback so far?
Miki: It’s incredible! We are so extremely happy; I don’t think we really knew what to expect, so it was all a bit scary to put it out, but the response has been great. Kids are all loving different songs, not just the single or a particular song, which was also really good to see.
'Skinny Dipping' comes after the great success of 'Sidewinder' EP, follows its steps, but also incorporates more different influences and more diverse sound. What lead you to that change?
Miki: We aren’t one-trick ponies. We know what we’re doing and what we want to do and where we want to take this band, so we just did what felt right. We wanted to make sure we didn't leave people who loved the EP in the dark, but also show them that we can progress and up the bar while introducing ourselves to new people as well.
How comfortable were you exploring your sound? Did you ever feel any kind of pressure of the expectations, from all the people who discovered you after the 'Sidewinder'?
Miki: Yeah, we definitely felt the pressure for sure, but I think that's a good thing though. It made us work harder to make sure we were going to raise the bar and continue to grow from the EP sound and push ourselves to create something even better. As long as you don’t let the pressure get the best of you I think it's always good to have something to actually strive for and push you out of your comfort zone.
From a bit of the time distance, how did old fans accept the change?
Miki: I think, well I hope, that they accepted it! (laughs) It seemed like when we released the album we got a lot of positive feedback - more than we had expected - so it really felt good to know we hadn’t disappointed the people who were here from the start.
Along with the sound, you also offered something different in terms of artwork, and visual part of the record, taking a more artistic, and not so direct approach. How involved were you within the artwork itself, and what it represents for you?
Miki: We were really involved in the process - we kinda knew what we wanted and found an artist who did things a little differently. We collaborated with her on ideas which was great, and she smashed it. We just didn't want to have something representing the album that was generic or run-of-the-mill, the same way we approach our band as a whole. We just wanna do things our way and be different.
Once again, you worked with producer Stevie Knight, who you worked with before. Why did you stick with him, and how important was for you to create a mixture of new and known, and combine him with the new label?
Miki: Given how the EP went, and the way people responded to it, we didn't want to try and fix something that wasn’t broken. Not to mention the fact that we just have a really unique chemistry with him, he’s almost like an extra member of this band. We were all on the same page of where we wanted to take the songs, and it just made sense to include him in the process again.
So, with 2019 catching speed, what are the new accomplishments you want to achieve as a band?
Miki: Well, we are starting the year with headline shows across Australia, the UK, and Europe which is something we have never done before, so we are excited for that. We would love to continue that and take it across the world and go to new places we’ve never been.
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