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IVEY on Tia Gostelow, The Beatles and Musical Evolution

Millie is 19 and likes the Beatles, Lachie is about a year older and loves The 1975. Put them together with three other Gold Coast up-and-comers and that’s Ivey. The band released first single Smell of Smoke in 2015 and have undergone more than a few musical evolutions since then.

While the group are still searching for the perfect sound, their ambition, it feels, is fully formed. Catching Millie and Lachie at BIGSOUND 2019 this is what they had to say.

Photos: Dani Hansen

As the music evolves, we’re evolving as well. We’re growing but we always keep our fans in mind. We want them to love our music as much as we love it.

HAPPY: Good to see you at another BIGSOUND!

LACHIE: It’s been our first official time here. We played here…

MILLIE: Two years ago.

LACHIE: At a Gold Coast music showcase, but no official showcase until this year.

HAPPY: Then it’s been a bit of milestone?

MILLY: Yeah.

LACHIE: It’s so funny. It’s something we apply for every year. And then we finally got it this year. It feels like the time is right for us as well.

HAPPY: Tell me a little bit about what you guys are up to at the moment…

MILLIE: We just got signed with Mirror Music, we’re under new management with Kurt and Ash Bailey. Then we got signed with Lucky Number [Music] in the UK. And then signed with a booking agency called WME. Lot’s of things happening at the moment! We just released two singles and are recording soon.

LACHIE: Lots of behind the scenes things. We haven’t done much touring this year. Our first show in four-and-a-half months was here at BIGSOUND. We’ve been on the back pedal with shows but on a very big front peddle with everything else.

HAPPY: Correct me if I’m wrong, but some of the band were also backing another Brisbane artist called Tia Costello? Is that right?

LACHIE: We used to! Me, Matt and Dante.

HAPPY: I saw her play a few months ago and thought, “Oh, these guys look familiar!”

LACHIE: We were touring with her for about two years. Millie was still in school for one of those years and we spent last year [playing in both bands]. It was really hectic. We’ve now made the decision just to focus on Ivey. As much as its fun playing with Tia our careers have to move forward as well.

HAPPY: Is that a relief Mille, not having to share the band?

MILLIE: A little bit, yeah! As much as me and Tia love each other…

LACHIE: It got a bit hectic toward the end. The end of last year, when we were doing our Gorgeous EP tour, playing Falls Festival with Tia and Falls with Ivey as well.

MILLIE It was hectic.

LACHIE: It kind of took our own brand away. People were like, “They play with Ivey and they play with Tia?” It was kind of good to put that to rest. Now we’re just really best friends with Tia. It’s great.

HAPPY: Ivey has been together for a long time, right?

MILLIE: Ever since I 12!

LACHIE: Since Millie was 12. She’s 18 now, almost 19. So that would make it, over the past six years?

MILLIE: Six years with the four of us. And then Riley, the guitarist, he came in about two or three years ago now and that kind of really kickstarted everything.

LACHIE: We definitely had a career – we definitely moved forward – with Riley.

HAPPY: So it was that one extra thing that did it?

LACHIE: Riley bought a lot more to the table than just being a member. He bought his software production and kind of kickstarted Matt and Dante’s software production.

MILLIE: He pushed a lot of us to do different things.

LACHIE: It’s why we’re sounding the way we are.

HAPPY: Ivey’s music started out very summery and kind of boppy but I think it’s evolved since then. Where are you going to be taking your sound from here?

LACHIE: We’re still boppy but obviously we’re using digital editing, trying everything out. We’re definitely going to take it [toward] a little bit more of an electronic sound. Just because that’s the music we’ve always liked [but] never knew how to create.

HAPPY: What are some bands with the sound you’re trying to describe?

LACHIE: I mean we’ve always loved Hayden James. FOALS are more along the line of that kind of electronic ounce! And then they have all these guitars on top. Then there’s bands like Broods. We never knew how to do a lot of those things – we just wrote everything on guitars. The 1975 have been a huge influence as well.

HAPPY: That’s a very – not an electric mix of good bands – a good mix of eclectic bands! I feel like a lot of these acts you’ve mentioned are the types of groups who can do almost anything…

LACHIE: And that’s why we like them. That’s what we’ve been doing as well. We’re writing a lot more.

HAPPY: How have you found your fans’ response to your latest EP Gorgeous?

MILLIE: They’ve been…

LACHIE: It’s hard to tell because obviously our old stuff is so different to our new stuff. We just hope that people understand that a band evolves. And also, we were so young [when we started].

MILLIE: We were very young. I was 15 when we released [our first single] ‘Smell of Smoke’. I was still a teenager, we were all teenagers. It’s kind of like we’ve grown up and have been moving through our stages of life.

HAPPY: That sounds very The 1975!

LACHIE: It is!

MILLY: Exactly. And I think people just need to understand that…

LACHIE: … our music evolves.

MILLIE: As the music evolves, we’re evolving as well. We’re growing but we always keep our fans in mind. We want them to love our music as much as we love it.

LACHIE: We’re always going to play old stuff live.

HAPPY: What’s something you haven’t done yet that you would like to do in future?

MILLIE: We’d love to get into some more writing sessions and collaborations.

LACHIE: I guess we forget that if you’re an individual songwriter or an individual artist you collaborate with heaps of people. But we already collaborate…

MILLIE: …with each other!

LACHIE: Every single day! It would be good to get [some] outside opinions and songwriters in.

MILLIE: We would love to play more festivals!

HAPPY: What’s your holy grail? Coachella?

LACHIE: Yeah, or Splendour!

MILLIE: Splendour’s a big deal because we go to it every year. That would be great. And I would love to get on a line-up of a festival that tours.

LACHIE: Like Laneway or Falls. We played one [Falls] stop in Byron at the Jack Daniels Bar and that kicked ass!

MILLY: Yeah, it did! We weren’t expecting it either.

HAPPY: You can get some really good responses on those smaller stages…

LACHIE: Yeah and once you get a feel for a festival you feel like you can take on any festival. Like, we could be a festival band! (Hopefully.)

MILLIE: In the future I’d love to tour overseas.

HAPPY: Who could you see yourselves touring with or playing with overseas?

MILLIE: Ideally, music wise, our dream band would probably be The 1975. I feel we’ve got that similar sort of vibe if you know what I mean.

LACHIE: We’d like anybody who would take us on overseas!

MILLIE: Pretty much!

HAPPY: Do you have a favourite 1975 album?

MILLIE: Ask Lachie, he’s the fan.

LACHIE: Well, the most recent one [A Brief Enquiry Into Online Relationships] is probably my favourite.

HAPPY: Do you have a favourite album Millie?

MILLIE: In general? I’m pretty old school. My all-time favourite is [the Beatles’] Abbey Road.

HAPPY: Who’s got the weirdest musical tastes of all the band?

MILLIE: Probably me. Or Riley.

LACHIE: It depends on what you define as weird.

HAPPY: Well maybe in relation to the music that you put out as Ivey…

LACHIE: Probably Millie. She listens to a lot of old ass bands. Everyone knows everybody’s music but not many of us know Millie’s music and she sucks with what’s been going on.

MILLIE: I keep up with old bands!

LACHIE: We’ll always be like, “Oh were going to play with this band!” And she’ll be like, “Who?”

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September 13, 2019

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