Sydney five-piece Endless Heights released their sophomore album, ‘Vicious Pleasure’, back in February – a whopping four YEARS after their debut, even if there were a few EPs scattered in the middle. The thing is, a large part of that lengthy stopgap lay in whether or not Endless Heights were going to no longer be endless.
The idea of parting ways behind them and over in the UK touring as support for Casey, we headed along to the London show of the run at the Boston Music Room to ask vocalist Joel Martorana and guitarist Jem Siow exactly what’s with the hold up, and what’s a-coming in 2018.
DP!: Welcome to the UK! How’s the tour going?
JS: It’s been awesome! Half the shows have been sold out, it’s been amazing. We’ve got along really well with Casey and Rarity, they’ve been two awesome bands to tour with. I think in general just being able to play intimate shows that have been packed for the most part across Europe has been really awesome for us, as it’s a long way for us to come from Australia. It’s a big investment. We had this awesome off day in a place called Cesky Krumlov in Czech Republic, where our driver is from, and he took us there for the day and it was magical. That’s definitely a highlight so far.
JM: Yeah, we were hanging out with our driver’s friends, and just seeing all these really cool sights.
JS: We’ve never been to a village before. In Australia, we don’t have villages.
JM: There was a castle. It was awesome.
DP!: How do European crowds differ from Aussie crowds?
JM: They’re very honest, which is super interesting, but really cool. So, people will come up and be like “You guys are amazing! The first song was so good, it’s like my favourite song! The second song sucked!”. I found particularly in Germany they were really enthusiastic, and almost like they were your friends and they were just giving you a brutally honest review. I don’t know if we’d get that in Australia.
DP!: Who would be your dream band to go on tour with?
JS: For our other guitarist, Christian, I’m going to have to say, Red Hot Chili Peppers.
JM: Yeah. I would like to do that just for him, and the joy he would get out of it! I mean, it’d be sick too, but he would love it the most, haha.
DP!: So, your second album ‘Vicious Pleasure’ just came out. Was there anything that you wanted to do differently this time around compared to the debut?
JM: Yeah. Everything, really. We weren’t sure if we were still going to be a band at one point, and we all sat down at one point and decided to write this album and that everything about it would push us beyond every boundary in terms of creativity and what we’re comfortable with, even who we work with and write with. The way we approached the songwriting was more collaborative. It was uncomfortable, but incredibly rewarding. It was the first time we ever worked with a producer, so we brought in this guy called Lachlan Mitchell who’s worked with some pretty big rock and pop bands from Australia, like The Jezebels and The Vines, and that was the first time bringing someone else into our creative sphere. It was scary for us to trust someone else in that process, and we didn’t think we were going to create a record that sounds the way this does, and he helped us to get it there.
JS: It felt like he gave us permission to push things a bit further than I think we would’ve otherwise.
DP!: It was four years coming! Your debut came out in 2014. What took you so long?
JS: We did two EPs between, and we also had a period where we weren’t sure what we were going to do. We’ve been a band for ten years, and no member has changed. We’ve known each other since we were like 12. So, we’ve committed a lot of our lives into the band, and we came to a point where we had to decide whether we were going to do another record, or break off and do our own things. That took up about a year or two just deciding what we were going to do.
JM: Yeah, and I think because we’re just such great friends before band members, and we really respect each other’s life choices. A few of us have gone through university and other people have started businesses. We didn’t want to step on each other’s toes. I feel like when we went into this record we’d all decided that we wanted to put everything into this right now.
DP!: What songs are you looking forward to playing live?
JM: Yeah, ‘Run’ is probably the heaviest song we’ve ever written. It’s a song we nearly DIDN’T write, and it’s already the favourite for the other bands too – they always pop out from backstage when we’re playing that song. The other one for me would be ‘Heart Of Your Lie’, which is a song I wasn’t even that into when we were writing it, but now it’s just so much fun. We close the set with it.
DP!: So, what’s next for Endless Heights?
JS: We’re going back to Australia to do a headline tour. It’s like five days after we get home! We’re just going to play as many shows, and tour as much as possible. Hopefully we’ll come back to Europe again. And go to more villages. And castles!
The band’s second full-length album, ‘Vicious Pleasure’, is out now through Cooking Vinyl.
Interview by Lottie Cook (@pixelottie)
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