Vocalist Adrian Fitipaldes discusses the release of Singularity and the importance of representing Australian music internationally ahead of Northlane’s 2014 Big Day Out appearance. AARON BRYANS reports.

Living the definition of the boyhood dream, Sydney metal group Northlane have achieved the goal they had never expected to reach. Forming in 2010 and quickly became a standalone act in their local scene; the quintet released their debut EP Hollow Existence independently with only one goal in mind.

“We were insecure, unsure, uncertain; with the attitude of wanting to have fun and play some shows and share some music with some people. We weren’t really expecting much to come out of it to be perfectly honest.”

However, in 2011, the band signed to the Australian label UNFD, releasing their debut album Discoveries on 11/11/11 and embarking on a 20 date headline and supporting tour with bands such as August Burns Red, Blessthefall and Parkway Drive.

“We did a string of shows. That period was the first time for us where we were doing a lot of international support and it definitely helped our band out and expose us to more listeners.”

Adrian isn’t taking the opportunity lightly though. The importance and meaning of being able to write and perform influential music internationally is one very few get to experience.

“It’s definitely a blessing. Not many people get the opportunity to do what we do. Even on the scale that we’re doing it. We may not be the biggest band in the world but we’ve managed to reach some success. You can’t spend your time thinking about bigger and better things, you’ve got to appreciate what you have. I’m very appreciative and very thankful for what we’ve managed to achieve so far. Representing Australia is very important. Mainly because Australia has only just started to be on the map in regards to music. People are starting to realise there is a market here for music and it’s exciting to be one of the bands alongside the greats like Parkway Drive to really show the world what Australia has to offer.”

2013 saw the release of the band’s critically acclaimed sophomore album Singularity, which was recorded between tours during a brief four-week stop in New Jersey with Will Putney of Machineshop. Singularity debuted at #3 on the ARIA charts and was also nominated for Triple J’s Album On The Year as well as the ARIA’s Best Hard Rock/ Heavy Metal Album. The album catapulted Northlane into the spotlight worldwide.

“It’s pretty much a sign for us that what we’re doing is right and that the ball is still rolling. I guess for any band the worry is that people stop listening or people stop caring; but with things like this it’s a clear indication that people do care, people are interested and it’s being recognised which is amazing.”

The cover art for Singularity is indistinguishable and a clear highlight amongst mass releases in 2013.

“The initial concept was thought up by myself with the supervision of the rest of the band. An artist from a group called Apollo Collective, Pat Fox, helped us to get it out into a visual format. Running through the album art; it’s set in Egypt and it’s got the three pyramids of Giza. We’ve always been fascinated with ancient history, especially for myself, I’ve always been fascinated with ancient Egypt. It is the home of a lot of knowledge for the human race. To put it very simply, a lot of Western society is based off a lot of Greek philosophy and a lot of Greek philosophy and mathematics came from Ancient Egypt. A lot of people call it the womb of knowledge or the cradle of knowledge. The man and the women on the left and right symbolize duality, good and bad, right and wrong, male and female, day and night. The singularity is supposed to be within the cube that has been the symbol of Northlane on the last two records. It brings the idea of the two sides coming together to become one, which is the singularity.”

Singularity is only the beginning though, with the band looking to constantly expand its musical talent and range.

“I guess you always want to evolve your sound… I’m a big fan of anything that is weird, because if it’s weird, it means you’re not used to it. It’s different, which means it’s unfamiliar and you haven’t heard it before. I’m all for pushing things to obscene, weird, different areas just to get peoples eyebrows raising and push the boundaries a little further.”

For Northlane, performing at Big Day Out to a ‘mainstream’ crowd is pushing the boundary itself; but that isn’t holding them back. Festival goers can expect a slightly catered setlist, but an incredible atmosphere.

“It’ll be a different string of shows for us as we are probably the heaviest band on the lineup. I really think that it will be fun to get the crowd involved and get everyone jumping up and down. Even though we are a heavy band we still have a lot of groovy, bouncy beats that you can get into just like a hip hop band. I’m hoping that people will feel the music and get into it. We’re going to play most of our singles as they are most likely the songs that people who attend BDO have heard from us. We’re going to try and play our best hits and get everyone into it.”

Northlane are touring nationally at Big Day Out in late January/early February before undergoing a 63-date tour that will take them to America, Europe and the UK. If you’re a first-time listener be sure to check out Adrian’s favourite song Dream Awake.

“The song is all about being in the present moment and being attentive and noticing your immediate surroundings whether it be any moment in your life. Sometimes in life you do have to stop, take in the experience. Whether it’s with your girlfriend or with your family or at a beautiful location or on tour with a band or in an airplane, sometimes you really need to bring your attention to the present moment and remember that’s where the happiness and peace truly lies. It’s about that awareness. Life is an amazing thing. It’s a really positive and powerful song.”

Northlane play Big Day Out 2014.

Get your tickets here.