Australian punk malcontents Ausmuteants tore us a new one in 2016 with Band of the Future, an album that skewered taste-making institutions and musicians alike with quick-witted and agitated barbs. The band are ushering in the new year with a clip for the rapid-fire number ‘New Planet’, created for the band by Sean Mcanulty and Alex McLaren.
In the multitude of releases that came out in 2016 that I didn’t write about for whatever reason, Band of the Future by Ausmuteants was easily one of my favourites. It doesn’t mean much after so much time has passed (the album came out in August and currency – that is, timeliness – is one of the most valuable forms of currency – that is, tangible relevance), but the speedy, no-fucks-given approach to the album and its sentiments struck a couple of chords with me. The group’s apparent disdain for favourable yet inane platitudes from the music media was evident, and though I don’t claim to be an integral cog in the industry machine by any stretch, I could easily see the humour inherent in my desire to pen some words about the record anyway.
The term ‘band of the future’ is lathered in ironic derision. Ausmuteants don’t claim to be more musically adept then any of their peers, but the relentless chug of the hype machine is fuelled by a never-ending cycle of unearthing the ‘next best thing’. The idea that Ausmuteants are a new breed of punk probably rankles somewhat with the band, but sometimes when there is an edge to grip on to it’s hard to let it go when everyone else is clambering for some sort of purchase.
Ausmuteants will probably hate this next sentence as well, but I see them less as the ‘band of the future’ and more as the ‘band of right now’. Powered by impulse and reaction, the group is a great foil for the self-gratifying majority of the music ‘biz’. Critical of everything and everyone that offers up even a whiff of bullshit (even themselves), Ausmuteants are of the moment, which is probably exactly where they want to be at all times.
‘New Planet’ is one of the quicker cuts from the record, but what it lacks in length it makes up in Ausmuteants’ signature frenzy. The band is releasing a new clip for the song today, viewable below. It has been created by Sean Mcanulty and Alex McLaren, who have also made clips for ORB and The Frowning Clouds. The plasticine world fits the sonic squall perfectly, and is a nice irreverent addition to the band’s catalogue to date. I took the opportunity to ask Jake Robertson a few questions surrounding the record, but before you read that, view the video here:
It’s been a more than six months since Band of the Future came out – from your perspective how was the reception to the work?
It was the first time I’ve had a couple of randoms stop me on the street and tell me they liked the album. It’s a weird feeling but I appreciated it. It came out during a European tour, so it is hard to gauge how people reacted to it. I think Tom Meldrum’s production on it is the closest to a live sound we’ve had. It was all done really quickly. Written in a couple of weeks. Recorded in one day. Mixed in one day.
To me the album is very critical in a lot of aspects – almost as if you’ve realised everything is bullshit in some way. Does this afford a different level of freedom for how/what you choose to create and the thought you put towards how it is taken?
To be honest it’s just because I couldn’t come up with any other ideas. Maybe I was listening to a lot of Kool Keith. Fuck the critics, everything I make is a hit. I also remember writing most of it while I was at my parent’s house on the Central Coast of New South Wales over Christmas. High school vibes.
Slightly related, any hints as to how the next batch of music is taking shape?
There are some kinda weird ones coming up. We’ve got an album entirely written by Shaun (guitarist) from the perspective of a police officer. Also, we’ll release an internet-only EP called HORNY WORLD sometime this year.
You toured the record first over in Europe. How’s the reaction been from international crowds for Ausmuteants? Do they pick up on different nuances or ideas more than Australian audiences?
They seem to like us more than Australians. I don’t know why. It’s a strange planet. Maybe because they don’t know who Tism and Regurgitator are and can’t see the blatant plagiarism.
Talk me through the clip from your end – did you provide any brief on what you wanted or did toy let Sean and Alex take the reigns fully?
Sean Mcanulty and Alex McLaren are a couple of legends who have made a bunch of videos from us and our mate’s bands. We’ve never asked them to. They’ve always refused payment from us, which is ridiculous. They literally made this clip without us giving them any direction. Far better quality than any over priced, “here’s my portfolio”, Chardonnay-sipping offer we’ve ever had and they tried to do it for free. They deserve more credit than what they get.
You can get a copy of Band of the Future by Ausmuteants from AARGHT Records.