An elusive and intriguing artist, Angus Andrew, aka Liars, is a man on a mission. After the break-up of Liars as a band, a move to country NSW and the subsequent breakdown of Andrew’s existing creative process, his new project, 1/1, marks a new era for the artist.
1/1 is the soundtrack to Jeremy Phillips’ directorial debut that was released July 17 this year. A film that focuses on dark themes such as sex, drugs, love and loss; 1/1 is an electronic soundtrack that both transforms and compliments the film, while holding up as an album in its own right.
Ahead of his show at Yours and Owls later this month, BYO had a quick chat with Angus about his past, present and future. Check it out.
BYO: Tell us about your new release, 1/1.
It’s the soundtrack to a very dark film starring Judd Nelson. We holed up in Denmark for a month to compose it.
BYO: Did you work in collaboration with Jeremy Phillips when writing 1/1?
We read the script and then he sent us really abstract but inspiring descriptions of the moods he wanted to convey. For one scene he wrote something like - ‘I want the audience to hate themselves’ and for another ‘imagine your mouth is full of mud’. One of my deepest regrets in life is losing those descriptions.
BYO: What other influences went into writing 1/1, apart from the film it’s based on?
Hmm, well during that time period we had just finished writing our album MESS and were still very interested in ‘within the computer’ production. So, when I think of what influenced the sound of the record I’d say programs like Native Instruments’ Reaktor.
BYO: Are you happy with the final product?
As a body of music - very much so. I was surprised really. When I first heard the tracks all back to back with my eyes closed, it worked!
BYO: Tell us a bit about Liars as a project; what is it’s past, present and future?
Oof! Liars began as an art project - then we started making music. Eight albums later I still struggle with musician as a signifier.
BYO: Liars has recently become a solo project. How has that changed the way you will make music as Liars?
The structure of Liars has always been amorphous in that there were never any defined roles like drummer or singer. I’ve always written songs alone - never been able to jam - so things aren’t that different.
BYO: How has your relocation to Australia impacted your sound and the way you go about your music?
Well the most immediate result was that everything went off grid. Literally in both senses. The music moved from being made in time signature and fidelity grids to falling out of time and key. This was because I moved from a massive city to the bush just north of Sydney. Nature took its course.
BYO: How would you describe your music style/genre?
BYO: Which artist inspires your music the most?
Lawrence Weiner. His Statement Of Intent (1969) identifies ‘universal availability’ as a guiding principle:
1. The artist may construct the piece.
2. The piece may be fabricated.
3. The piece need not be built.
BYO: Are you excited for Yours and Owls?
Yes! I’m a super fan of heaps of Australian bands so I’m hoping to see some there.
BYO: What do you have planned for your live shows? How do you expect they will go?
I’m hoping to pull off at least one song from each album. That’ll make for a bit of a schizophrenic overview.
BYO: Any new projects or releases in the works?
Yes - a great label out of NY called Famous Class asked Liars to do a seven inch and to pick a B-side band. I chose TFS. That’ll be out really soon, and available at our shows in Australia. There’s also a deluxe version of the last Liars record TFCF about to be released which includes another album titled TWTWF.
You can catch Liars at Yours and Owls Festival in Wollongong’s Stuart Park on September 29 to 30. Tickets are running out fast. http://yoursandowlsfestival.com.au/
Liars will also be performing in Melbourne and Sydney in late September, details below: