In 2014 Babaganouj garnered serious radio attention with their releases “Too Late For Love” and “Bluff” – leading them to tour nationally twice, play each leg of The Blurst of Times tour as well as support a slew of notable acts such as The Preatures, Smudge, Veruca Salt, The Lemonheads, Northeast Party House and The Creases. The band have just released their ‘Hit song’, taken from their forthcoming album planned to be released in November. Tomatrax caught up with Charles Sale from the band to ask a few questions.
How did the band form?
The band formed out of necessity, because I had a bunch of songs and wanted people to play them with me. We got a new drummer and then Ruby came on board and here we are!
Where did the name Babaganouj come from?
It’s a very short song by one of my favourite bands Smudge. It’s very cute. We had a list of band name ideas given to us by our friend Asho and this was the best. Band names are generally meaningless but also meaningful so I figured it was appropriate.
You received a fair amount of acclaim for your previous releases, did this make you feel any pressure in putting together your latest single?
Nah we don’t really feel pressure from the outside, but certainly from within. Maybe I overanalyse at times, but I want to show progression in different ways and I think ‘Hit Song’ is a good movement forward from our previous releases.
What made you pick ‘Hit song’ as your latest single?
We already had it recorded from a year or so before it’s release, and it was sounding good so we figured “it’ll do”! We have to work like this as as independent band with not much money. Limited resources are one of our main influences.
You mention that Hit song “features chimes like in the intro of ‘pictures of you’ by the Cure”. Was it your intention for the song to sound like the Cure?
The Cure are really cool, not like ‘my favourite band’ or anything, but certainly an influence. I bought this synthesizer called the RS-09 because of their song ‘Funeral Party’ – it has the same synth. It wasn’t an intention to sound like the Cure and I don’t think Hit Song really does, because we’re a bit more excitable or distorted or something. I think we share certain thematic traits and a certain earnestness.
You have an album coming out in November, how will it compare with your previous material?
We MIGHT have an album coming out in November! Our plans change often, but you never know. It might be time.
What will the album be titled?
I’ve had a few ideas. I want to call an album ‘Buzzfeed’ because I think it’s funny.
You’ve just played at the Bigsound festival, what was that like?
It was actually the first time I’ve been stressed out about a gig. I felt really sick before we played, but thankfully I think I got through ok. Despite that, it was a lot of fun and made a whole bunch of new friends and stuff! I got a bag with a bunch of promotional material, including hip flask and stubbie cooler. This is the real reason why we play music!
What was it like to play support for the Lemonheads?
Weird, but excellent. They’re one of my all time favourites and the same probably goes for the other members of Babaganouj. I met Evan Dando and I don’t think he knew who I was, but that’s ok. It reminds me of the time I met J Mascis of Dinosaur Jnr. I got him to sign this record, and the only noise made was the squeak of the permanent marker on the record cover. Hilarious. He said not a word.
Do you ever listen to your own music?
Hell yeah! Not for enjoyment, but more to work out what a song needs or doesn’t need or to criticise a mix or guitar solo or something. I am fairly self involved at times. Thankfully we live in the modern world where we can record anything we want at any time and listen back to it whenever we want. It’s great for productivity.
What other music do you listen to?
I have a pretty limited musical taste, though it’s growing. At the moment I listen to new stuff on Soundcloud (listen to this band EZTV), entire albums on Youtube (filling in the gaps of my missing music knowledge), or occasionally vinyl if I’m at home. I recently bought a couple Todd Rundgren Double LPs, ‘Todd’ and ‘Something/Anything’. Great records.
What do you plan on doing once your album is out?
It’s gonna be summer time by that time, so I’ll probably be going swimming or maybe having shower beers post-workday or something. Maybe we will even go on tour!
Check out Babaganouj’s Facebook page to find out more!