Interview: Lese Majesty talks new EP and life as a band in Australia

CC: Can you give a brief history of Lese Majesty for anyone that may not know you?

Jodie Lee Gibson: Sure! Although this is a new group, we’ve all been lurking around sharing the stage with each other for years. We used to live in a big shared house; it got knocked down by developers, so we started the band so we could still hang out. We’ve released two EPs and a couple of music videos.

CC: You had a new EP Cold Reason for Change come out not that long ago, what was the writing process like for that EP?

JLG: It was very quick. We brought a producer in for this one which seemed to allow us to go a bit nuts with creative stuff, knowing our producer would reign us in if needed. I think if you flip back and forth between the ‘creative’ and ‘critical’ parts of the brain it can slow you down. None of us have an ego attachment to riffs or lyrics which helps to get the best for the songs too.

CC: What are your biggest musical or non-musical influences?

JLG: I went through a stern Gwen Stefani stage a while back! But recently I’m like a goat with my consumption of music. I don’t really have a staple or restricted musical diet; I roam around having a chew on just about anything! Right now I’m sinking my teeth into a country album called Southeastern, by Jason Isbell. But I’ve also been gnawing on the tasty rock riffs of Lower Than Atlantis and Nothing But Thieves.

CC: How did you come up with the name Cold Reason for Change?

JLG: It’s a lyric from the bridge in a song called “Crown Land” that opens up the EP. Choosing it was a very democratic process. We made a list of about 30 possible contenders, got it down to two – and made them fight to the death in a cage. Cold Reason for Change emerged victorious, although I think the primaries might have been rigged.

CC: Australia isn’t a gigantic place, what is the music scene down under like? Are all the bands like a gigantic family or is it more spread out?

JLG: Australia’s population is so small that when we get 100 views on a video we lose our bananas, because it means everyone in town watched it twice. We’ve got less people than Texas but a land mass that’s almost as big as the USA, so it’s common for bands starting out to travel eight hours to play to 30 people. You need to be in it for the love! The pro touring acts are definitely like a giant family – very closely connected. We’re still a small band, but we try to help out where we can to contribute to a healthy and positive local scene.

CC: I read that you read a book called “Chasing The Scream” and it made you understand addiction better as well as inspire your song “Seeking Escape”. Would you recommend that book to others who may be trying to understand addiction as well?

JLG: Definitely! Although I’m conscious the planet might be fed up with people waving books at them, claiming enlightened revelations. But it was relevant and timely for us in our journey. For those that don’t dig books, there’s even a clever five minute cartoon by the “in a nutshell” crew that allows people to dip their toes into the topic without drenching their worldview too much.

CC: I’m a gigantic Paramore fan and I’m definitely getting some Paramore vibes from your music. What are your favorite Paramore songs?

JLG: What an incredible singer Hayley Williams is! I think the entire Riot album is bullshit from start to finish. In Australia, bullshit means awesome! Things are a bit strange down under.

All questions answered by Jodie Lee Gibson.

Post and interview by Madeline Cronin

What are your thoughts on Lese Majesty? Comment below.

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