Melbourne based band Lipstereo creates early 00s influenced indie rock with a modern psychedelic garage rock sensibility. Known for their ferocious and dynamic live shows and enthralling and invigorating musical releases, the four-piece composed of Sam Stranges (vocals, rhythm guitar), Andrew Stainsby (lead guitar), Tage Hosking-Gregory (bass) and Jesse Porter (drums) is one of Australia’s most exciting new rock bands.
Their sophomore EP Live At Bakehouse was tracked during a worldwide live streamed concert “Let Me Help – Children Of The World” which benefited children’s charities across the world.
Earmilk talks with the band about their origin story, unique band name, their propensity for performing live and more.
Hi Lipstereo! Excited to chat with you all the way from Melbourne. Could you start by telling me about how your band came together?
Tage (bass) and Sam (vox) bonded over a mutual hatred of The Andrews Sisters and each other. Andrew (guitar) was wasting time at the drive in where both him and Tage worked, so we decided to start up Lipstereo. We poached Jesse (drums) from another band, which seems to be the go for getting a good drummer.
As for the name, what does Lipstereo mean and where did it come from?
It’s the name of a Japanese city pop track which we found out about thanks to the Spotify Radio algorithm. On the off chance that people get us mixed up, we’re happy that we’re mixed up with a cool little song.
Your latest EP Live At Bakehouse was recorded live. Was recording a live EP something that’s always been a goal for you or something that emerged out of the blue?
Emerged out of the blue! But we’re so glad we got the opportunity to do something like this. Certainly, there are conveniences with recording a live EP, there’s less involvement, and you’re done recording on the day you start. Recording the video at the same time brings a unique set of challenges and opportunities, you’re basically performing twice at once, the first being for the audio which needs to be up to scratch, and the second being performing for the camera and not coming off as boring. I remember watching a video of Weezer performing live on the radio, and they were so into the audio performance aspect, that the visuals looked basically like a Weezer meme. Most of all, the live format has a more raw sound to what we would likely get in a studio, one which we’re really proud of.
How does the process behind recording a live EP differ from your past experiences?
When we recorded Modern Mythology, it was our first time in a studio, so we were pretty green. There was a lot of stress around making sure everything was sounding right and going to schedule. We were working on a pretty short timeframe. This time, even though the recording time was shorter, it was less stressful because we knew there wouldn’t be any overdubs. We only had to play the songs consecutively, and the performance was only a few minutes total.
What is it about your singles “You Got The Things”, “Push The Tide”, and “Feedback” that crave a live take and why did you select them?
When we decided the songs to perform, we really wanted to highlight the ones that we thought would come across best live. In particular, we were itching to do You Got The Things ‘cause of the messy, dirty, grungy sound that the song is demanding.
What is the core message of the Live At Bakehouse EP that you want listeners to extract?
That there are a bunch of bands in your local area who sound awesome live. Here in Melbourne, we’re blessed with an overabundance of talent in our local scene, and by making this EP, we’re hopefully getting people to say “hey, maybe I should get to a gig tonight”.
What was it like seeing your music as a part of the “Let Me Help – Children Of The World” event?
It was nice that we could contribute in our little way of playing music. We’d love to do more of these things in the future.
How does rediscovering your tracks through live music shift your perspective?
It makes us realise that when we’re painting a picture, our music, we can often fall into the habit of picking out little details, but through live recordings, you’re not concerned with that at all, it’s all about the “feel”. It really reinforces that we’re a band first, not a song production factory.
Where do you see the future of live music for Lipstereo?
We’d love to be playing on bigger stages, and make the production a bit more of a “spectacle”. We’ve got a massive back catalogue of songs that we haven’t really had the opportunity to play live, so to get through those as well is important for us.
Choose one word to describe the Live At Bakehouse EP (each band member)
Jesse – Unadulterated
Sam – Dangerous
Tage – Live
Andrew – Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious
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