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The Chemist

chemists_state_of_art_pch_wyliepic_6_13_22The Chemist play their final ever show this Friday, November 29, at The Bakery with guests Shy Panther, Kucka and The Weapon Is Sound. Vocalist/guitarist, Ben Witt, reflects on the band that is to be was…

Your debut album, Ballet In The Badlands, only came out mid-year. Why are you closing shop?

We’ve been playing together for five years. We made a record, toured it and played some pretty cool gigs. To return into the studio and do it all again is a significant commitment of time. Given the other dudes have their own projects they would like to pursue, they didn’t want to use up their time continuing The Chemist, which I think is completely understandable.

Is it hard to let it go?

Sentimentality will always evoke feelings of melancholy and regret, however, when standing objectively in this current moment it very much feels like the right thing to do. Sometimes you’ve got to take even your most beloved dog out into the yard and put chrome to his dome.

Looking back what were the highlights?

On paper you would say Splendour In The Grass, Big Day Out, Southbound, high-profile support tours and getting a respectable wedge of airplay. However playing all kinds of gigs and venues, the creative process, trash talking, seeing the country, living in Melbourne, learning from each other and meeting lots of great people is what has built our characters and made it all worthwhile.

What’s your own appraisal at this point of Ballet In The Badlands?

I like most of it, some I can’t really listen to. However, I think it signifies a development in our understanding of our craft. I try not to think too much about it, to be truthful.

What would you do differently?

I try not to think about it, it’s time to break the mirrors off the Cadillac.

What will you do next? 

James’ (Ireland, keys) creative pursuit is Savoir. Hamish (Rahn, bass) has HamJam. Newcomers Phil (Stroud) and Chris (Wright) have MMHMM and Shy Panther, respectively. And I am currently a lone wolf standing on the precipice of a cliff in a kilt, wearing facepaint, wind through my hair, staring out into the horizon of my destiny, man.



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