Grunge boys Vesper Green chat influences, tour vibes, and their ripper new single

By all reports, Vesper Green know how to rip a stage in two. They’ve spent their formative days kicking around Brisbane and surrounds, earning hearts left, right, and centre with their riotous conglomeration of alt. rock and nu-grunge.

If you’re a newcomer to the Vesper Green camp, their newest single Innocent Illiterate is the perfect place to settle in. Meaty guitar work underscores growling vocals and in-your-face lyrics, making for an altogether gnarly listen.

As soon as we heard it for ourselves, we caught up for a chat.

vesper green interview
Photo: Will Johnstone

In the midst of their raucous east coast tour, we take 5 with Vesper Green to chat their new single Innocent Illiterate.

HAPPY: G’day fellas, how’re you all going? How’ve you been keeping busy lately?

VESPER GREEN: Hey Happy Mag! We’ve been doing really great lately. Having a blast writing and recording and keeping things as real as possible.

We’ve had quite a few good months getting things done in and out of the studio, behind the scenes stuff, shooting a new video and prepping artwork and getting ready to play interstate for the first time! Just the usual stuff every band does. Hopefully.

HAPPY: We’re really digging the new track… could you tell us a little about it?

VESPER GREEN: Yea Innocent Illiterate really just came about from a jam at a time where we were really searching for what we wanted in our local music scene – which is just a no bullshit attitude and a touch of reality.

HAPPY: There’s definitely that no bullshit vibe. How important is keeping things authentic to you guys?

VESPER GREEN: Yea thanks for that, we find it pretty important to keep that vibe up as we’ve always been drawn to music that has some depth to it. Stuff to connect ourselves to. While we’re not always just a bunch of serious people, we think musicianship is important, and I guess it’s not just about trying to write a winning formula, but something that comes from a place of feeling and just something that is natural to us.

HAPPY: You obviously take a fair whack of influence from ’90s grunge… are there any bands in particular that have really influenced you?

VESPER GREEN: Innocent is very much showcasing our ’90s influence for sure. And that was the partly the point. Love Alice in Chains, Soundgarden and Pearl Jam. All those voices do a number on us. The musicianship in those bands is something we greatly admire.

A lot of people compare a lot of the vibes in Innocent Illiterate to something of Nirvana. So I guess you could say they were more of a subconscious influence. But we love their music nonetheless as anyone probably does.

Although you can’t hear it yet John Frusciante, Flea, and Chad Smith from RHCP greatly influenced us as musicians in our formative years (still do).

HAPPY: Do you think that kind of straight-up grunge has a place in Australia’s current music scene?

VESPER GREEN: Yea I’m sure it has a place. Whether or not the scene is entirely ready for it is up to the public. But I think there are those searching for what we have now and what our future releases will confront.

HAPPY: I can imagine your live show is real wild… what can people expect heading out to one of your gigs?

VESPER GREEN: Yea well we like to think we’ve put a bit of effort into making a show worth coming to. You can expect something TIGHT! Unlike most grunge shows (because we’re not just a grunge revival band, as our single suggests) a bit of banter with severe music undertones backing. And just a band trying their hardest to play! And a bunch of rad supports of course.

HAPPY: Is your next single going to be equally as huge as Innocent Illiterate?

VESPER GREEN: I would hope it’s bigger! It’s a lot groovier for sure! Still heavy, more intricate riffs and more substance haha! Recorded mixed and mastered by the same guys who did Innocent Illiterate: Josh Wilkinson (Burrow studio) and Bryce Moorehead.

HAPPY: When can we expect it?

VESPER GREEN: Maybe next week? Maybe within the next month. Definitely keep an eye and ear out! It’ll be worth it.

HAPPY: What else is next for Vesper Green?

VESPER GREEN: A whole lot more, new and better-written music. Video content and many many more live shows. All that after the tour of course.

On Tour

Fri 6 July – Valve Bar, Sydney – Details
Thurs 12 July – The Tote, Melbourne – Details
Sun 15 July – Last Chance Bar, Melbourne – Details
Fri 20 July – The Bearded Lady, Brisbane – Details

Innocent Illiterate is out now.