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DOLLY ZOOM run us through the gear behind their immersive synth-pop sound

If you haven’t already immersed yourself in the sprawling synth-pop sounds of DOLLY ZOOM, stop what you’re doing and go listen to their latest single I Think You’d Know By Now right now. The track is a melodic, synth-driven slice of psych wonder, and we’ve had it spinning on repeat ever since we first laid ears on it.

So fresh off the track’s release, we caught up with the band for a run-down of the gear that helped shape their sound. Take it away, DOLLY ZOOM.

With an amazing new single fresh under their belts, we caught up with Brisbane outfit DOLLY ZOOM for a run-down on the gear that shapes their sound.

Ed – Guitar & Vocals // TC Helicon VoiceLive 2

I would describe myself as a ‘bedroom musician’, so onstage I like to hide behind as much gear as possible. To translate our studio sound to the stage, we reverse engineer the effects we use on our recordings, and find the gear that best replicates our sound live. Vocally, my most important tool is the TC Helicon VoiceLive 2. It’s a vocal stomp-box with “on/off” customizable delay, reverb, harmony, distortion, and more – to be honest, I don’t really like hearing my own voice, but this thing makes it sound like I might know what I’m doing behind a microphone.

Kat – Synthesizers // Korg Minilogue Polyphonic Analogue Synthesizer

Since starting to dabble into the world of synths and soundwaves, I’ve learnt that the possibilities are overwhelmingly endless. Having grown up playing classical, acoustic instruments (whilst being heavily influenced by artists using cool electronic sounds) the transition to analogue synth was inevitable. The presets in the Minilogue have given me a solid foundation of sounds to play with, and I love being able to experiment with the various parameters in this hard synth. On stage, I’m really into being able to play big harmonies and chords, so the polyphonic segments the Minilogue allows me to create is critical for me in a synth. Chrome Sparks wrote a song called “Attack Sustain Release” – an ode to synthesisers. I feel like my Minilogue has given me a newfound appreciation for Chrome and this song, maybe one day I’ll write a song dedicated to the Mini.

David – Bass guitar // Boss BE-5 multi-FX pedal

I’m a big fan of shoegaze and pop, but have rarely been in anything than more straightforward pop or rock or teenage punk bands. Dolly zoom is the first band I’ve been in where there is space for bass and capacity for creativity with sonic depth and quality within that bass sound. I’ll cheat and say my Boss MultiFX Guitar Pedal, because it allows me to use Boss compression, chorus and delay, to really create the consistent, shimmery and at times synthy bass line to fill that space in our songs, and in case my teenage punk band start calling again, it also has a meaty overdrive…

Lachlan – Drums // Stagg 18” crash

I always wanted to play the drums as a kid. School tried to force classical instruments on me, which I appreciated from a music perspective, but learning and rehearsal was too regimented and tedious. I knew that rock music was a way that I could play and not lose any enjoyment so I had to get me a kit! I stuck at weekly lessons until I was 18 without actually performing much at all. I was saving myself for the right bunch, and here we are. When I went to Billy Hyde in the valley one day I realised as I walked in that it was closing down, and everyone was going mad trying to take as much stuff as possible for cheap. My heart rate jumped and I raced for the cymbals. I picked up a Stagg 18 inch crash for $50 that can birth a galaxy when you hit it.