Interview: Think About You talk being inspired by the beauty of life (and the road-worthiness of their Nissan Pulsar)

Long-lost records, friendship, and breaking down on the side of Geelong Highway – TAY get deep on new single ‘Don’t Die On Me’

Melbourne/Naarm based art-rock quartet, Think About You (TAY), has us all thinking about them with their latest single ‘Don’t Die On Me

The song follows the earlier release of lead single Never Never Creek,  in anticipation of their upcoming sophomore album to be released independently later this year. 

The love child of members Vindi Ferguson, D’arcy Noonan, Jasper Van Daatselaar and Declan Blackburn, TAY has an addictive playful yet grunge sound that we just can’t get enough of.

They’re all friends and you can feel that synergy in the music they make.

Their instrumentation entwines beautifully, drawing inspiration from iconic Australian indie-pop tracks from the 80’s – which members Jasper and D’arcy spent most of their days listening to during their time living together. 

We caught up with the members to talk more about how they came to be known as ‘Think About You’ and what inspires them as musicians. 

Catch the full interview below, and scroll down to listen to ‘Don’t Die On Me’.

HAPPY: What are you up to today?

TAY: It’s not so rock and roll but today I’m hitting the books. At 5 o’clock I’ll leave the State Library to see Dec our drummer at the John Curtin Hotel. We’re meeting our friend Sezzy to practise Spanish and have a beer.

After that I’m going to ride my bike westside to Mama Chen’s. There’s an event tonight called “Nocturnal Voidism”. It’s celebrating the westside and featuring the long-awaited return of Spike F**k. I’m also excited to see Cloud Ice Nine who are on the bill too.

HAPPY: Tell us a little about where you are from? What do you love about it?

TAY: I live and work on unceded Wurundjeri land. Our terrace house is by the Yarra River in a suburb called Abbotsford. My bedroom is small. The door doesn’t fully open. It hits the bed but I have a window and you can see the city.

There is always music. That’s what I love about it.

My housemates play in a great band called The Mirrors. My neighbour is Vindi, our violinist and she lives with our friend Lisa. Next to our street is the old convent and the Collingwood Children’s farm. You can wake up in the morning and get coffee from the farm café and say hi to the billy goats.

A little further north up the bike path is a swimming spot where in the 1890’s, Alick Wickham successfully swan dove 62 metres and upon reaching the surface invented the Australian crawl. Later this was known as freestyle.

HAPPY: “Don’t Die On Me” is a total ear worm, and the first single from your new album. Can you tell us a little about what inspired it?

TAY: Thank you!

‘Don’t Die On Me’ was written in the Floyd room at Bakehouse Studios. The song was built around a simple bassline and features drums, violin and guitar. Jasper and Vindi took the lead on the vocals, in unison.

Vindi told a story about her car breaking down on the way down the surf coast. As she pulled over on the side of the Geelong highway she said to her Nissan pulsar, “don’t die on me, you’re my everything”.

There were times when we thought about adding more lyrics to the song, but a great story can be told in so few words. If you choose them wisely.

HAPPY: The video is a grainy, nostalgic delight. Can you share any details about the story or themes explored?

TAY: The video for ‘Don’t Die On Me’ was shot at a park in Brunswick. Jasper used their dad’s old camera. The video was also staged at Jasper’s workshop, using their old TV. During the instrumental rock out sections, Jasper flings photos upon the TV, photos taken by our friend, Mr Sonny Witton. These photos were captured over the last few years, of friends, and of strangers.

HAPPY: You guys have all been involved in some great Melbourne bands. What sets Think About You apart from your other projects? Who are your biggest influences?

TAY: After playing in so many great bands, I wanted to lead a band. And that band was always going to be a collective.

I remember saying to Jasper in our backyard on Rathdowne Street, “I’m thinking about asking so and so I used to see on the tram on the way to school to play bass in my new band”.

“What’s the band?”, they asked.

“Me and my brother so far. For some songs I’ve written”, I said.

“I’ll play bass”, said Jasper.

I never asked so and so. Jasper chose the name, Think About You. I didn’t think much of it. I was just happy to sing in a band with people I love. I’d never sung in a band. I’d only played bass or cello for friends. My Dad said the name was good because it has a double meaning. Think About You but Think About You. I like the name now. And so, we began in our dusty Carlton garage.

My brother held down the tubs for the first couple of shows until his band, Mouseaoutille, started taking off. Then I met Dec and Vindi and Think About You rebirthed. You never know what’s around the corner.

Influences: Arthur Russell. Two Steps On The Water. Duster. The Go-Betweens (obviously) and much, much more. Vindi grew up in the Northern Rivers playing a lot of Celtic and classical music. Jasper and Dec both learnt the trumpet.

Our name is taken from the I Won’t Have To Think About You compilation by Moopie and Bayu of lost and found jangle pop from the nineties. It features bands like the Cat’s Miaow, Hydroplane and the Cannanes. Most of them Australian, a lot of them involving Bart Cummings (not the jockey, the songwriter). Jasper and I played that record most days for the two years we lived together on Rathdowne Street.

HAPPY: What can fans expect from the overall sound of the record? 

TAY: For all your rock and roll dreams to come true.

We were fortunate enough to work with legend Nao Anzai who has recorded bands such as Cash Savage, Floodlights, CLAMM and The Belair Lip Bombs.

HAPPY: Lastly, what makes you happy?

TAY: Years ago, my friend Sezzy said to me, it’s not about being happy, it’s about being well. I’m on my way to see her now. It’s something that I repeated to Jasper and it really stuck with them too. So in answering this, what makes me happy is being well.

I know I am well when I see my friends and I have a home. I rest, I eat, I swim, I sing, I musick. To musick is what makes me the most happy. To musick is to dance, to deejay, anything from playing music to clapping your hands.

It would be less human not to want to musick. You must! Do it soon my friend. My rock and roll friend.