Sticky Fingers don’t care much about their image.
Unpredictable, raucous and loud, their infectious enthusiasm for all things rock and roll has earned them significant success and a well deserved fan base. Following a massive 2012 that culminated in their single, ‘Caress Your Soul’, reaching number 61 in Triple J’s Hottest 100, they released their debut album of the same title this year to glowing reviews.
Born out of the suburbs of Sydney, the band made their mark in 2010 when after being knocked back repeatedly they crashed the Newtown Festival on a stage made of milk crates. It was an anarchic act that not only made people sit up and pay attention but set the tone for the kind of band they were to be.
“We were kind of no holds barred like ‘yep, this is what we’re doing now and if people aren’t going to take notice then we’re going to make them take notice,” the group’s drummer, Beaker says.
The one factor defining them in a significant way is the complete sincerity they have as a band. Without constantly working to create a specific image or reach a particular demographic, they have opened their music to a wide spectrum of different people. Furthermore, their music has an aspect of honesty to it that other bands can lack when trying to stick to a formula for success.
“I think that you’re going to get a more real band and you’re going to get real music that people are going to relate to more, if you don’t have people posing or whatever. If you’ve just got people being themselves, the crowd is going to relate to that more and people like that.”
Currently writing and demoing songs for a new album, Sticky Fingers are set to record in December. However, it could have a completely different sound compared to ‘Caress Your Soul’.
“We’re writing a new album now and the way we are doing it, is basically someone will bring in a riff or a whole song, it can go either way. There’s no real set standard to the way we write. We just love every style of music so we write it all. We’ve been listening to a lot of Gorillaz and a lot of The Clash, I don’t know what kind of direction we are going in.”
Combining a mixture of reggae, Britpop and psychedelic rock, frontman Dylan Frost’s voice adds a beautiful smooth layer to the bass heavy tunes.
“Everyone loves a good bassline, don’t they? Get down and dirty? I don’t know. Pat, our bass player, really likes to crank his own bass — he likes to be heard. Yeah, it’s just kind of the way it’s worked out, we’ve never really set out to write any particular music in any particular way, we just write.”
With the majority of their music videos looking like acid flashbacks, it’s no surprise that the clip for their latest single, ‘Freddy Crabs’, contains not only a character vaguely reminiscent of ‘The Mighty Boosh’s Old Gregg but also flares, World War Two gas masks and mermaids.
“That ‘Freddy Crabs’ [video] actually came from a drive from Melbourne to Sydney with a bottle of gin. So that’s like a nine-hour drive and, you know, that’s a lot of gin.”
Set to play Island Vibe Festival at the end of the month, Sticky Fingers are no strangers to a festival stage, but don’t necessarily favour them over their own headline shows.
“I don’t think we really mind, it really depends on the crowd that you’re playing to because we just like to make sure everyone is having a good time. That’s what our music is about so it can work either way, at a festival or a bar.”
Having done an extensive tour of Europe earlier this year, they played and sold out the infamous Barfly in London.
“We sold out a show in London at the Barfly, a lot of really cool bands come through like Oasis and Muse and stuff, that was really fun playing there. In Amsterdam we played this other place and sold out there, the Paradiso. Which is probably the coolest venue in the world. It’s an old church.”
Wonderfully talented and unashamedly extroverted, the band found the main difference between playing to an Australian crowd and playing to a European crowd was simply a lack of exposure.
“Because a lot of them really hadn’t heard us, we were still kind of proving ourselves overseas, you know. But they like to get rowdy too, which is good. So they get more rowdy as we get to know them and they get to know us.”
Sticky Fingers perform at Island Vibe Festival October 25-27.