Picture: Sara Hannagan
Originally posted on Music Insight:
If you were under the assumption Melbourne’s dream folksters The Paper Kites were hardcore party animals on the road, you’d be wrong – in fact they’re quite the opposite. The band is currently living the dream though, as a result of their successful critically acclaimed LP twelvefour and that calls for a little celebration.
Just last year, the record earned them places on the ARIA charts, placing within the top 10 in one category and number one in another.We now find them smack bang in the middle of their Australian Midnight tour before they head off to North America where the quintet has previously shared the stage with the likes of City and Colour and Bombay Bicycle Club.
Bassist Sam Rasmussen took some time out to have a chat with Music Insight about life on tour, past, present and future.
“Across the board everyone’s been great, we’ve been lucky enough to tour with some great acts and perhaps the first meeting we might’ve been awestruck but we always move past that,” said Rasmussen.
Despite the excitement, Rasmussen revealed his heart can be pulled in two different directions when it comes to his family.
“We all have our partners, families and lives at home and going out on tour can be hard in that respect because we’re leaving everyone at home and sometimes for quite a long time.”
When the band isn’t playing sold-out shows Rasmussen said he can be found doing pretty ordinary things – almost like living a double life.
“At home I have kids and work, it’s just another house on the block and I love that and then we go on tour and it’s so different,” he said.
The indie rock quintet’s recent efforts with current album twelvefour ensure the band will remain in the foreminds of many fans for sometime yet. The record, which features popular tracks Electric Indigo, Revelator Eyes and Renegade,was written entirely as a concept album.
“The other Sam [Bentley] did all the writing, and he is a bit of a night owl. He doesn’t normally make a habit of staying up between midnight and 4am, however for writing this album he did do that intentionally,” Rasmussen said.
The decision to move away from their original sound was a conscious one and has proved a resounding triumph for the fivesome.
“We decided after looking back at our previous records that we wanted to add a bit more fullness to the sound and the songs Sam was writing were working towards that,” he said.
When asked if he could stay up as late as his fellow band member did during the writing process, Rasmussen had one thing to say:
“I’m personally not a night owl, I fall asleep pretty early usually, I’ve got a few kids and they tend to wear me out. It’s kind of funny because that’s my life at home and then we go on tour and it’s a very different life.”
To accompany the LP, the group made another excellent judgement call to create a trilogy of distinct storytelling clips all happening around the same time of night. Working alongside Dan Huiting (Bon Iver) and his team for all three music videos, Rasmussen revealed the band was lucky to have had him on board.
“We had the idea to tell three different stories, which took place at that time of night. A lot of the inspiration and creativity came from Sam – he worked very hard on those videos collaborating with different directors and we’re very happy with how it turned out.”
Having just wrapped up their Australian tour, the Paper Kites will spend the next few months touring North America and Europe.