Local band Imogen Brave will valiantly release their new EP Fall or Fly this weekend at Jive.
Supported by Ice on Mercury and The Crown, the four-piece rock outfit will launch the recording that’s been two years in the making on Saturday 7th February.
Frontwoman Stef Crowley says her and fellow members Mick McClounan (guitar), Andy Cienciala (drums) and Jake Brackenridge (bass) can’t wait for people to hear their new music.
“It feels like this music has been in our heads for so long that it’ll be really exciting to finally get it out and have people hear our stuff. It’s so different to be able to hear something recorded than live,” she says.
“We’ve got a great little following in our hometown, and we have friends and fans who know our music, but to be able to upload the songs online and hopefully distribute the music to a bigger circle is what we’re looking forward to.”
Imogen Brave started as a two-piece about eight years ago and grew to the lineup that stands currently.
“We started as a song-writing project in about 2007. That was Mick and me. He started off writing his own stuff and I just leant my vocals to his ideas initially. After a little while of doing that, I started writing my own ideas and a couple of guys we knew from the cover band we were in at the time jumped on board,” Stef says.
Since then, the band have had three bass players, with the third, and current bassist, Jake being a perfect fit for them.
“He’s a godsend,” Stef says. “Because he’s such a great guy and really solid as well. He answered an ad we put out once we lost Neil, our old bass player. Jake just came out of the woodwork and he blew us away.”
Originally from the country, Stef moved to Adelaide and took to singing in bands as a way of meeting people and developing her confidence.
“I started a little bit later than some may have with singing. I lived up in the country in Burra for most of my young adult life so I just started doing a bit of karaoke there because there was nothing much else available musically,” she laughs.
“So I moved to town, joined a cover band and haven’t looked back since. I was originally a dancer so I was always into performing but when I joined a band, it brought me out of my shell, boosted my confidence and I met people that way too because I didn’t know anyone in Adelaide until I joined the band.”
After starting Imogen Brave with Mick, Stef started to contribute to the writing of their songs and has since become the band’s primary lyricist.
“I’ve always written poetry, since I was in primary school, so once I started with the original music, Mick allowed me to put my stamp on some things and I had the back catalogue of poetry to refer to. I always found writing lyrics easy but melodies developed over a longer period of time,” she says.
“What we do now is, I write the melodies and lyrics for 99% of the songs and the guys work collaboratively to write the music.”
The group’s new EP Fall or Fly has been a collaborative effort, but the style has been somewhat shaped by the arrival of their new bass player.
“We had a few of the songs in the works for a while. The last CD we released in 2011 had Neil on bass and when Jake came into the picture, our style changed a based on his influence,” Stef says.
“Generally Mick churns out ideas like there’s no tomorrow so he will put down an idea and we all work on it from there, but over the years, Andy has contributed more and more ideas so it’s kind of almost become 50/50 with the boys writing. When we all come into the rehearsal room, it usually ends up being quite different to how it started.”
Stef says the recording of Fall or Fly happened in a number of different places, and the band are really pleased with the final result.
“We had all songs written before we went into the studio. We’d played a lot of them live too so we’d been able to nut them out and really get a feel for them. We ended up doing all the guitars, vocals and bass in Mick’s home studio and then we did drum tracking in another studio,” she says.
“We had it all mixed at Mixmasters so it’s been a bit of a collaborative process. We used three different studios and now it’s all done! It’s taken us nearly two years to do, with life getting in the way, but we’re really pleased we’ve got it finished.”
Fall or Fly is ready to launch and Stef reckons there’s no better place to celebrate that achievement than live music venue Jive alongside two other Adelaide rock outfits.
“Andy our drummer is also our booking agent and he came across The Crown about a year ago and thought they were a really solid band. Ice On Mercury have a really good reputation too. They’ve had some great local success in Adelaide, and touring, and released a really good CD. We wanted to have a really strong lineup for this gig that reflected the rock scene in Adelaide and having them on board is a real blessing,” she says.
“We’ve been wanting to play Jive since the band first started. It is a fantastic venue; quite an iconic venue. We’ve played pretty much every other rock venue in Adelaide, so we’re really excited to play Jive.”
Imogen Brave will launch Fall of Fly by playing it in its entirety on Saturday 7th February; doors open at 8pm and tickets are available through Moshtix.
By Libby Parker