With their huge and hearty fifth album Good Mood freshly available for us to devour, Oz indie rockers Ball Park Music are now frothing at the thought of their upcoming national tour. The five-piece band out of Brissy will be live in action on Sunday, March 4 at Badlands Carpark where they’ll unleash their new tunes on top of old classics. Known for their killer hooks dressed with intense emotional impact, their latest work is some of their most diverse and multi-faceted material. Lead vocalist Sam Cromack spoke to SARAH DAY to unveil details of his favourite track and what the significance of the album cover of Good Mood is.
Congratulations on the new album. There’s just three days until its release, how are you feeling about it?
Yeah super excited and positive, this is kind of like the lead up to Christmas in our world. The next two to four months I’m just looking forward to so much, I really am (laughs). I’m super excited for the record to come out we had a really a really great time making this one, I feel particularly excited for a change. I usually feel just kind of nervous and have started to hate the record by this point but it hasn’t happened this time so, feeling good! The shows follow immediately after that so I really am like a kid waiting for Christmas.
How does Good Mood differ from the work you’ve produced in the past, what can fans expect from this record?
Gee, well it definitely has elements of everything we’ve done in the past. I feel like I say this every time but it sort of feels like a combination of everything we’ve done in the past. I always feel like I’m learning from the last thing I do and I guess since day one you have this vision as an artist and you’re just slowly chipping away trying to perfect that, so I don’t think the mission has changed since day one really.
We definitely came into this record with some new and fresh perspectives. I had done a bunch of work outside of the band like I did a solo record and some other collaborative releases, I did a theatre show and even the last Ball Park record is easily the biggest odd one out in our catalogue. We were pretty stubborn about making that one, we really wanted to kind of bury our heads in the sand and be like “fuck you, we don’t care what anyone thinks you know,” every band wants to make a record like that from time to time. I was in a pretty poppy mood when it came to this record and I didn’t see that as a dirty thing you know, I just really wanted to simplify my approach and my writing and I sort of enjoyed the shit out of it.
What was the process like in bringing the new album to life, did you have a clear vision for what you wanted to create?
I think every record starts kind of earnestly, you never have a day where you just sit down and you’re like alright let’s plan out the next album it’s always very organic. You accumulate four or five songs and you kind of start think oh maybe yeah we could get a record happening and by that point the collection of songs you have will have a flavour and you can start to have a vision of where it will go. I think once I had five or six demo’s and shared that with the band, that was when we started thinking let’s do it and do it quickly to get back into and we decided to hire a space and build a little studio in that space. We spent three months throughout winter last year recording.
You guys were at Party In The Paddock in Tassy recently, how was that? Has it got you pumped up to play Groovin the Moo again later this year?
It was mega, a really really fun festival. Oh yeah absolutely, we love Groovin the Moo so much, I mean we’ve got to do it six times. I always tell people it’s like playing Splendour six times in a row; it’s fucking rad, so yeah we’re extremely pumped. I wish Groovin the Moo had a Tassy component to be honest, I was thinking that last weekend.
Can you tell me a bit about the photo on the cover of your new album?
We had sort of nearly finished the album and I randomly got really interested in pictures of horses rearing I thought it was really (laughs) kind of a powerful look. It’s weird too, like I didn’t think about it until afterwards but so many luxury brands have imagery with horses rearing. I think I mostly hate luxury brands and I was like it’d be cool to have like a scuzzy Brisbane version of this, and how badass would it be if we could find an actual person to do this out the front of our studio.
Is there a favourite song from the record that you’re particularly keen for your fans to hear?
Yeah absolutely, there’s a song on the record called Hand’s Off My Body which is probably the closest we’ve come to being punk I guess. So the concept for that song, with the whole chopping your body parts off, that was an idea of my wife’s. She’s not a musician and she had that idea, and not in the like “hey can you turn this into a song” kind of way, she’s got more of a cheeky competitiveness with me so it was more like, “If I was in a band, this would be my song” (laughs). It came together really quickly and we were like holy crap, this is so exciting! Obviously the lyrics seem vulgar in some sections but I see it as more of a positive, uplifting song about learning to love and accept yourself through learning to reclaim your body.