Local rock band The Reductors are hot on their heels from releasing their double single release of Practical Girl/Tremors. Grok found time to chat to frontman Luke Nixon about his musical influences, themes behind their latest release and what lies ahead for the band.
How did the EP Launch at the Bassendean Hotel go?
Terrific! We had a ripping night and got really a positive response from everyone involved.
Caboose is very finely produced and slick, while the sound on the latest double release Practical Girl/Tremors deviates into a direction or sound that is noticeably rawer. What drove you guys to take the music in this direction?
The sound and production of Caboose was based on the idea that we were exploring the negative aspects of institutions in our society by creating a feeling of things deeply rooted in the establishment, using strong elements of polish, familiarity and nostalgia. The latest songs relate to more personal and visceral themes, so we are taking a more raw and reactive approach, deliberately to break the rules that we applied in making Caboose.
Citing influences such as The Kinks, The Smiths and The Velvet Underground, as well as The Reductor’s style of rock often being described as “vintage”—does the band often call back to older bands for inspiration? How important do you think that is when making modern rock today?
Yes, we’re often inspired by the songs and song writing of those bands, as well as a number of bands from the punk and post-punk era such as Richard Hell and the Voidoids, The Buzzcocks, Joy Division, The Clash, and X-Ray Spex. Those bands were all exceptional in that they were able to reduce deceptively complex musical and lyrical ideas to a very simple, resonant form, which is the essence of good song writing. They were also all uncompromising in their authenticity. Absorbing those qualities is an essential part of creating good music in any era.
Practical Girl speaks of conformity versus personal aspirations, while Tremors talks about loss and regret. The tracks have a personal touch to them—does a lot of the sentiments felt in both singles stem from the experience of The Reductors as a band and following the pursuit of becoming a musician?
No, in fact it is really the opposite. The band is a vehicle to articulate and explore our experiences of life more generally, as a means of documenting them and connecting with an audience which can relate to those experiences and the sentiments reflected in our songs.
The band largely started out as a collective. When creating music, how does the magic necessarily happen? Is it a collaborative effort?
Normally, I’ll work on a new song alone for several weeks, or sometimes months, and bring it to the band complete in terms of structure and melody. We then develop the various instrument parts as a band over a period through rehearsing and experimenting with ideas, until we have an arrangement that we’re all happy with.
Anything more we can expect from The Reductors?
We are heading back into Poons Head Studios in the new year to record the rest of the next album, which we’re planning to release in 2019. Sonically and thematically, the songs are going to continue along the lines of Practical Girl/Tremors.
The Reductors latest release Practical Girl/Tremors is out now and available here.