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Sometimes you can't see The Atlas Mountains for the trees
Sometimes you can’t see The Atlas Mountains for the trees

The Western Trend Festival (WTF) happens on Saturday, March 14, at Canefire Gardens in the Swan Valley. The Atlas Mountains will headline.

Dave Tucker – Bass

The Western Trend Festival is a new start up event for Perth live original music. Given the recent discussions re venues, how important do you think this event could be?

It’s definitely been a tough couple of years for venues in Perth and we’ve seen a lot of our favourite live music venues shut down. While that can be pretty de-motivating for bands, potential venue operators and everyone involved in live and local music it could also be a bit of a ‘necessity is the mother of invention’ scenario. What WTF and other events seem to be doing more is utilising multi-use spaces to put on shows. I think it’s a good direction to explore, for bands and venues alike. I think too that playing somewhere a bit novel – like Canefire – and where we haven’t played before can be a good drawcard to some of the fans that may have seen us play 10 or more times in the same venue.

I’m hoping that WTF can be a bit of a poster child for the possibility of doing things differently. In that sense I think the sky is the limit for the flow on effect of an event like this. We’re also hoping it doesn’t rain.

Have you as a band had much in the way of outdoor/festival experiences?

We have played a few outdoor events and really enjoyed them. Over the years it seems Perth people have come to realise just how great local festivals can be, with events like the Beaufort St Festival going from strength to strength. The variety of festival-type events in Perth has, I think, to some degree lessened the impact of the loss of the BDO and Soundwave here. That said, AJ if you’re reading this we’re ready for our BDO tour invitation now…

Describe the evolution of your band, how it was at the start and what it is and is becoming…

It feels like just a couple of months ago we played our first gig together, but it’s been almost six years. Time really waits for no one, and while there was no conscious attempt to ‘evolve’ it’s really interesting going back and listening to our first album. Still love it to bits, but it’s really different to the stuff we’re working on for our third album now. I think we’re still distinctly ‘The Atlas Mountains’ the main changes being less of the 12-minute epics and probably a bit more up tempo and ‘rocky’.

We were really fortunate to last for quite a few years with the original five members, but we’ve recently had a new keyboardist join us (Scott Robinson) and Callum Nash (formerly of Nevada Pilot) has been drumming live for us. There is definitely no conscious plan for changes into the future, we just want to keep making the music that comes naturally and let evolution take its course.

What’s your gameplan for the rest of the year?

We’re really excited about 2015. We’re well and truly over the teething issues that characterised the early years, specifically keeping Taylor (Smith, vocals) visa’d and legally in the country! We’ve been working on our third album for quite a while now with James Newhouse from Reel2Reel. After recording our first album in one day, and our second in a week or two we decided the really take our time with this one and see where it took us. So we will be releasing that very shortly, and along with gigging locally as much as possible we’d like to tour the album nationally and get cracking on our fourth!

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