An independent online music magazine

Interview with James Ross from Wild Meadows

Wild Meadows present their debut self-titled LP, featuring recent
single ‘First Exit’ a dark, foreboding tune built on a rollicking rhythm
section and atmospheric vocals.

Tomatrax caught up with James Ross, one of the band’s vocalists, to ask a few questions.

You’ve just released your debut album, how does it feel to have it out? 

It feels really great, Ive been making music for twenty years now and finally there’s a full album that were really proud of. Its on vinyl too which feels even more special.

Was it hard to pick what made it onto the album? 

We did have an idea but some of the hard choices we left up to our producer Woody, we really trust his experience and expertise. Also someone listening with fresh perspective and with no emotional involvement in the songs can be really helpful.

You’ll be playing a few shows in support of the album next month, what can fans expect from your show? 

Loud! For us the live stuff has been getting better and better, we’ve been really getting immersed in playing them live and were having a lot of fun playing them.

What was the inspiration behind the album’s front cover? 

The cover photo was taken by an amazing photographer and close friend Paul Armour. Its one of his favourite photos and mine too, taken when him and his family travelled around Australia for two years.

This photo is called “letting go”, and its really special to all of us.
What was the inspiration behind the video for ‘Stay for a while’? 

The stay for a while video was the brainchild of Oliver Ramsay, an awesome filmmaker and all round legend. He picked “stay for a while” and dreamt up the whole concept, were absolutely thrilled with it.

With two vocalists, how do you determine who sings what? 

Jess is our main singer, occasionally I write lyrics for a song and get bullied into singing it live. I prefer to sing backup harmonies to be honest but ill do whatever the song needs.

You’ve also released the album as vinyl, what made you decide to put it out as a record? 

We’ve all been lovers of vinyl for ever, so it wasn’t really a choice, it was just always going to be that way.

When writing what comes first, the words or the music? 


You’ve received a fair amount of crucial acclaim already, does this make you feel any pressure going forward? 

Not really, the next album already sounds amazing to us and we’ll just keep doing what we do.

It really is about the process of being able to create something thats true to us, rather than trying to write something thats fashionable at any one time.

Now that your debut album is out what do you have planned next?  

The second albums already sounding great, were playing a heap of gigs to support this release so that will be a lot of fun. Playing in Sydney for the first time too, which were all looking forward too.


Check out Wild Meadow’s Facebook page to find out more!

Interview with Bridget from Simone & Girlfunkle

Perth Avant-folk darlings Simone & Girlfunkle are pleased to announce the March 24 arrival of their sophomore album Hold On, the much-anticipated follow up to 2013’s Hurry, Harry. Tomatrax caught up with Bridget from the band to ask a few questions.

You’re just about to release your second album, how does it feel to have it finished and ready to go?

Pretty ace! The hard work is done and now it’s just celebrating – a lot of celebrating! it’s been a long time for us between records so things are going to get loose on tour.

How do you think it compares with “Hurry, Harry”?

Quite nicely. We have many new members and we are more accomplished musicians now, so likely it’s better. Also this one is engineered and produced by the golden-eared Dave Parkin, so he makes us sound sooooo slick.

Where did the title “Hold on” come from?

It’s one of our songs that was axed from the record because the arrangement didn’t come together in time. Also it felt like we had some barriers to releasing music quickly, I got sick and needed time out for surgery, we lost a bunch of members (especially drummers, it was very Spinal Tap) so Hold On felt right in a kind of hold on it’s coming kind of way.

What made you pick ‘Fight On’ as the album’s first single?

It was the only one we had recorded at the time and we wanted to feel like we were moving forward so we jumped in. Also we love the track, it’s pretty quintessential SnG.

You received a fair amount of acclaim for “Hurry, Harry”, did this make you feel any pressure when putting “Hold on” together?

Hahaha nah, besides, pressure is waster. You can’t force writing you just get what you’re given from the sum of your experiences. This record is a representation of this time in my life. It doesn’t matter if other people deem it successful or not as it’s a physical reminder of whole bunch of feelings I had and a whole bunch of people who I spent my life with. I will listen to this when I am very old and remember that I was young and that I spent my time well – singing with incredible people, playing music and eating nuggets. Success!

What was the inspiration behind the “hands and lyrics” video for ‘Girls’?

We made it because we had the photos of the hands for the album artwork. True story. Sorry not every exciting 🙂 We like karaoke videos though and also learning about editing software should have been on the cards years ago with my film degree. We had no coin to drop on videos but we have a band full of photographers and designers, so we did our best to not go into debt. With musician budgets at an all time stingy low I am in awe at anyone who can pull it all together.

Where did the name Simone & Girlfunkle come from?

Our love for Simon and Garfunkel. When we were just a folk duo it felt so right, now it feels like it needs explaining but it’s still us (dorky as) and not likely to have any name disputes anytime soon 🙂

Do you ever listen to your own music?

I listen to it a lot when I’m writing it and demoing but once it’s recorded and out there, I don’t and when I hear it in the world by chance, it is unpleasant and makes me feel quite awkward.

What other music do you listen to?

I love harmony pop from the 50s, The Everley Brothers especially, Simon and Garfunkel (of course) and at the moment I am enjoying Ryan Beno from Perth, Angel Olsen as she is a goddess and Slow Dive’s newest record.

What do you have planned once the album is out?

Bulk Touring of WA and some in Melbourne. Then a little break to re-group, then recording again in June down south in a cabin somewhere. I want to produce the next one ourselves with a dear friend. We have some pretty beautiful earnest folk music planned for the next release.


Check out Simone and Girlfunkle’s Facebook page to find out more!

Interview with Shelley Q

Shelley Quartermaine (aka Shelley Q) is an up and coming solo artist from Perth. Mixing electronic, roots, indie, and pop she has created her own style and has recently released her first two singles! Tomatrax caught up with Shelley to talk about her music!

What inspired you to become a musician?

I grew up around music, and drew great inspiration from my elder sister, Hayley, who is extremely talented herself and has taught me practically everything I know when it comes to music. My earliest singing memories are of me as a 3 year old being encouraged to harmonize with her, at 15, while she hummed a tune.


When did you write your first song?

When I was 10, I would often write songs about silly little things like ‘being lonely at a table and drinking tea,’ or anything that I thought could be song worthy! At 12 years of age, I wrote two songs, called ‘Fly’ and ‘Fadeaway,’ which I then went on to record in Toowoomba, just for a keepsake and to share with family and friends!  It was then that I realised making my own music was something I felt strongly about!


Youve put out two singles so far; are there any plans for an EP or LP?

I actually have a collection of originals (both finished and unfinished) that I plan to record as soon as I can – some of which are already partly recorded! The only thing stopping me is money and time! I find it quite time challenging being a full-time university student and simultaneously wanting to be at the recording studio; however, I hope to (very soon) start producing my own music on my computer, saving both time and money.


What made you decide to write a song about Australia?

Despite only just releasing the song, I actually wrote ‘Australia’ on the farm (in my home town) when I was 12 years old! I wrote it one night after hearing from some friends about how good a ‘White Christmas’ is! And, even though I had never been overseas before, my 12-year-old self couldn’t comprehend how a snowy Christmas could even compare to a true blue Aussie Christmas in the heat by the barbie! However, I could never seem to write the bridge of the song. So I never finished it…until at the end of 2017 when I graduated from High School! At 12 years old I set my mind on finishing the song, and who would have predicted that I would go on to finish it 6 years later!

What was the inspiration behind the video forLife goes on‘?

One of my talented friends from High School, Hannah Howard (who had studied media in Yr 11 & 12), told me she’d love to direct the music video for ‘Life Goes On’ when I approached her with the idea! So I contacted some close friends who said they’d love to be in the music video. We decided together to film it around Fremantle since the suburb is known for being an iconic and aesthetically attractive area.

Youve covered various musical styles in your music; is there any style youve wanted to take on but are yet to do so?

There are still many styles I’m yet to explore (and discover), so am glad I have time ahead of me to explore and submerge myself in all the different musical tastes of the world!


Is there any music genre you would never touch?

No way! In fact, that’s what makes it so hard for me to narrow down my artist ‘genre.’ I’m always experimenting with different styles – whether it’s country, jazz, classical, pop – I love putting my own authentic spin on every genre I come across.


You are also planning on becoming an engineer; how does studying engineering compare with writing music?

Although studying engineering expands my knowledge and is greatly rewarding, I find it’s a whole other world to writing music. In music, there are no right or wrong answers!



Is it hard to balance study and music?

Currently I’m finding it difficult to balance the two, as I’ve only just started university: everything is quite content heavy and the work load is huge! It’s also hard to remain focussed on studying when I’m always thinking about making music. However, I find I compose best when I’m under the pump and stressed! I also thrive on being busy … I can’t stand the thought of ever being bored! So studying on the side line actually has its advantages.


Have you considered writing songs about mathematics and/or science

No, I actually haven’t! However, it’s funny you say that, as last week in one of my physics lectures, I was trying my best to remain focussed, yet couldn’t control my mind …. and I kept writing a song in my head! I couldn’t help myself – so I gave in, pulled my phone out and wrote all the musical ideas I had in my head so I wouldn’t forget about them!


When writing, what comes firstthe words or the music?

The music for sure! Whenever I’m sad or stressed, often I try to take my mind away from what’s worrying me by humming or thinking about different chords. I then go straight to my guitar, and play whatever I feel – letting my emotions guide the chord progression. Then I find the words and melody flow effortlessly from my mouth after the chords are down pat.


Do you ever listen to your own music?

Of course! Listening to my own music – particularly to draft songs I’ve written (stored as recordings on my phone) – helps me to critically analyse and improve them. I oppose following the un-written rule that artists must conform to specific styles (of the time) in order to be successful …I’m always trying to find ways to make my songs authentic. By re-listening to my voice recordings, I find I can easily separate the catchy songs from the rest…as they’re the ones I can’t get out of my head all day!


What other music do you listen to?

My three favourite artists (of all time) would have to be Michael Jackson, Johnny Cash and The Seekers! I fell in love with MJ when I was a little girl – constantly prancing around the house listening to ‘Billie Jean’ and trying to nail the moonwalk! When I first taught myself the guitar, all the first songs I learnt were Johnny Cash’s … I felt an immediate attraction to the raw emotion in his voice in every country song of his! At the start of Yr 12, I discovered The Seekers on YouTube while procrastinating with study … and, as of then, I’d say I’d be their biggest fan. Yes…I know every word in their Golden Jubilee Album haha!


Check out Shelley Q’s website to find out more!

Superorganism debut self titled album

Comprising of members from England, Japan, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand, eight piece electro indie pop outfit Superorganism have just released their debut, self titled album. Cramming just about every musical genre into the mix, the group produces some of the most unusual sounds that are wonderfully colorful and infectiously catchy. As a result the album features some of the most exciting new music around.

A major highlight is the groundbreaking warped yet poppy debut single ‘Something for your M.I.N.D.’

A further highlight is the band’s latest single ‘Everybody wants to be famous’ providing some sharp tongued social commentary backed with a quirky yet endearing soundtrack.

Album is embedded below. If you can’t see it click here.

Blog at

Up ↑