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Interview: Matt Buchli from ’77 Bombay Street’

77 Bombay Street

Swiss 4-piece 77 Bombay Street have been making waves with their stadium-sized folk-rock in across the northern hemisphere for years. After going M.I.A for a while to record their new album the snappy-dressed gents are back with impressive new single Seven Mountains, and song which lyrically will easily resonate with Australian audiences. We asked main vocalist Matt Buchli a few questions about the band’s musical direction, working with siblings, and how they came to record their new songs in little ol’ Sydney.

Seven Mountains has some deep lyrics like, “have you always thought that this was going nowhere” and “broken mountains can never stop us”. What influenced the lyrical content of the song?

A broken relationship which meant a lot to me. It was also my first real relationship, with many ups and downs. But there always seemed to be some kind of shadow over us, as it was very difficult from the beginning. So I asked myself, as you probably would too, if I should have known from the beginning that this is leading nowhere. On the other hand, I guess, nothing is impossible and if you really want something, nothing can stop you. Well in my case, the mountain was just too big.

The new track has some stronger vocals and instrumentals, how do you think your sound is progressing in terms of the folk/rock genre?

We think more about what we want say with our songs and it’s important that the lyrics really mean something to us. On the first two albums we focussed more on including nice sounding words and repetitions. Now it’s more about our true feelings.

Seven Mountains strays from the folk sound when compared with the EP ‘Up In The Sky’, does the rest of the upcoming EP follow suit or are there some surprises in store for fans?

As we are four people writing songs for this album, the spectrum of styles is quite big. We also wanted to have the best songs on the album and not necessarily the songs that just fit best.

You’ve added in string and wind arrangements to some of the tracks, why did you choose this instrumentation?

We wanted to try something new and it was amazing! Our producer inspired us and took away our reservations about trying new things.

How does sibling rivalry impact the creative process and on-stage chemistry?

It all comes down to good organisation. We worked really well together for this album thanks to our producer Chris Vallejo. He respected every one of us and in turn was respected by us. On stage I think it works even better than in the studio, as we know each other so well that we can be very spontaneous on stage, understanding each other without talking.

The upcoming EP was recorded at Sydney’s Linear Recording Studios, why’d you choose to record in Australia when you’re born and raised in Switzerland?

We used to live in Adelaide for two years, so we had a bit of a connection to Oz. But the main reason was our producer. We chose to work with him and wanted to record in his studio. The fact that it was in Sydney and during Australian summer was a big plus for us.

How did winning ‘Best Album Pop Rock National’ and ‘Best Hit National’ at the Swiss Music Awards affect the band’s morale?

Not much to be honest. For us it’s really important to have good shows and connect with the people. That’s what it is all about. Awards are a great thing and we’re really thankful for it, but I think it shouldn’t get you depressed when you don’t win them.

You currently have a competition to win a boat trip with you guys for “the most privatest concert ever” in Amsterdam, how did that idea come about?

We love boats and we love intimate small shows…so here we go!

When can Australia expect a visit from you guys?

You can’t expect it. We will suddenly be there and maybe stay forever…