Q&A: Stonefield Talk Growing Up On Stage And New Tune ‘Golden Dream’
Written by Matilda Edwards on 6th July, 2015
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After bursting onto the scene via Triple J’s Unearthed High competition in 2010 as a quartet of, then, baby-faced rock Goddess sisters, Stonefield, aka Victoria’s Findlay sisters, have continued to impress not just Australia, but the world, with their unearthly (lol) talent, and ongoing evolution as a contemporary rock outfit with strong ties to the past.
Returning in 2015 with a Kram-collabed new single Golden Dream and a current tour, the girls who have practically grown up on the stage in front of our eyes, make no apologies with their kickass chunky guitar and anthemic vocal styles once again at the fore.
We got the chance to have a quick Q&A with the ladies, and chatted everything Golden Dream, the importance of keeping your regional ties and how they’ve changed with five years in the spotlight.
Listen: Stonefield – Golden Dream
So we’re looking at the second coming of Stonefield now, if you will – a more psychedelic dreamy sound rather than those really punctuated, driving tracks of the first album. How did the shift come about – who did you start listening to/reading/watching/noticing?
Stonefield: I think the shift came about quite naturally. We’re constantly growing and learning and being exposed to new things so the change in our writing has gradually shifted as well… it definitely wasn’t something we sat around and discussed but I guess as we grow older we’re gaining more influences and it’s all coming through in our music. Don’t get us wrong though… we still have quite a few heavy pumping songs!
Did all four of you decide that was the way to go with that new sound – are big ideas generally unanimous between the four of you?
SF: Most of the time our ideas are unanimous although we have our occasional moments where someone will have a slightly different perspective on how something should be. We started writing for this album as soon as we finished the last one so we’ve been through a heck of a lot of songs and ‘the new sound’ just gradually happened as we let the music we were writing take it’s own course without limiting ourselves to a certain style. I think being so close, and all liking pretty much the same things, clothes, music taste, movies etc really helps us to all be on the same page.
And how long has this next record been in the works – do you remember what the first idea you had was, or what sparked your desire to make another body of work?
SF: We have always had plans of making more music after our first album. I think we will always be continuously writing. We pretty much started working on this album straight after finishing the debut. I don’t remember what the first idea was… it’s probably recorded on one of our phones. Now that would be interesting to hear!
Watch: Stonefield – Put Your Curse On Me
There’s a lot of positive female energy in Golden Dream. I was wondering who each of you would credit as strong female influences – in or outside of music?
SF: We all absolutely love Chrissy Amphlet, she was such a bad ass and really helped pave the way for girls in rock. She wasn’t intimidated by men belittling her and was such a strong, powerful woman.
It does really feel like there’s this strong female energy and buzz in rock music all around the world at the moment – back to the whole riot grrrl type sentiment. Do you see that coming back as it did sort of around the third wave in the early ’90s?
SF: Definitely! There are so many wonderful female musicians around at the moment that can really kick butt. Girls rule.
Obviously your lives are very different to how they would have been before the first album or the EP – do you think that’s reflected in your music; that experience and everything moving much faster for you?
SF: I think we have all grown in so many ways. We have been lucky to experience so much in our lives and I definitely think it has reflected in our music. We have so much more to put into our songs now just through our everyday lives and growing as individuals and musicians.
Watch: Stonefield – Through The Clover
I suppose when you first hear about the four girls from country Victoria there’s a preconception that that’s the seller – the novelty factor. Did you ever find it hard to shake something like that?
SF: We don’t put any emphasis around the fact that we’re sisters from a country town but of course everyone loves a story and will take what they want from it. For us, it’s 100% about the music and just doing what we love and having fun. I guess people can make up their own mind whether they think that’s the major ‘seller’ of our band.
You tend to include a good mix of regional and capital city shows into your tours – i suppose that’s a nod to where you grew up, and making gigs more accessible?
SF: Everyone should be able to go to see bands every now and then without having to travel to a city. Playing regional shows is special. I think they appreciate it a lot!
I’m curious; what’s your demographic at live shows? You seem to appeal equally to guys and girls; and with those 70s rock sounds there has to be some pull for an older audience. What does a Stonefield show generally look like?
SF: Our music is influenced by the ’70s, but with our own modern touch to it. I think that plays a big part in why it appeals to a wide demographic. We often see younger kids bopping along, to quite a few oldies dancing away and many in between. We feel extremely lucky to appeal to such a wide audience.
Watch: Stonefield – Ruby Skies