'I'm Sick of Your Medicine' is the first full length record that I've released, and I'm really proud of it. It isn't your standard pop record with a couple of singles and some other tracks- it has a start and an end, and I would like to believe that all of the parts in-between are necessary and inclusive.
With this record, all of the takes are the first take. Whatever I recorded, I kept it, moved on, and those are the takes that I kept.
The album came about at a strange point in my life and was originally supposed to be a totally different record filled with covers of songs that meant a lot to me. There was some stuff by City & Colour, Ryan Adams, Bruce Springsteen and even an Iron Maiden track that I had quietened down and 'folked up'.
The demos for all of these had been tracked between my friend Jake and I, and after about a month, the record was pretty much put together, apart from a few vocal tracks.
At this point, a couple things had happened in my personal life and I found myself having a lot of stuff to write my own music about. Before I knew it, I had a bunch of songs and I decided that I'd rather put those out instead of the covers.
So, demoing all of these new songs came and went… Time to make this record for real. However, more and more songs kept coming, and coming from an audio engineering background, I found myself really not enjoying the process at all. Firstly; I was struggling to find studio time, and I was really pushing for perfection on the production. When I couldn't get it right, I found myself getting frustrated and impatient. Cue a couple weeks of not being able to get any studio time, some brand new compositions, and before I knew it, I found myself scrapping another record.
The next few months were pretty hectic, as I found myself in the midst of quitting university and wrestling with a bunch of other decisions and problems. I spent a lot of time on trains, in cars and genuinely running away from a lot of the problems that I found myself stuck with.
The recording process was really good for me, because the lo-fi, Mount Eerie, style really let me get away from the idea of production perfection and just record and enjoy it.
I love tattoos. For me, my tattoos don't have to have a special meaning behind them, or anything like that. It's all about a time and a place in my life. I can look back and say 'oh yeah, I got this tattoo when me and my friends just went out after hanging out and each got lucky dip tattoos'. To me that always overshadowed any meaning that I could force on to a piece of ink to justify being tattooed again.
This idea is really the overall concept of ISOYM. The thought of 'a time and a place', which I think that a lot of us forget to really consider in the fast paced lifestyles that we all seem to live nowadays. Everything is so disposable, especially music; so why should we strive for perfection in anything? Why can't we just appreciate it for what it was in the moment?
The best example I can give is on the track 'Hands'- which was recorded at about four in the morning. The recording that you hear on the album is the first take I did, and the first time I had properly run through the song after putting all of the lyrics and melody together. It's messy, it's not a great vocal performance at all, but it's honest. It's one mic, a guitar and a voice.
At it's core, a recording is meant to be a performance. An idea that we have definitely moved away from, sometimes for better, sometimes for worse.
This album features tracks that were recorded on trains, in cars, uni halls, on my phone, and a load of other weird things; but again, it's a time and a place.
I hope you enjoy listening to it. I'm really happy with it, and if anyone else can find something in it that they like, or if it helps someone get through something in their life, then that would really make my day; because writing these songs helped me get through a lot of things, and the idea that they could do the same for someone else was the reason I decided to release it and not just leave it on a hard drive in my cupboard, like so many other projects.