Al Grigg plays in a band and is really into blue leather shoes, Twin Peaks, the phrase ‘eating humble pie’ and being slightly assertive.
The last time I saw AlexFromRedRiders, he was singing loudly to The White Stripes in the VIP bar’s balcony at the BDO, dancing drunkenly with some hot hipster chick. How do I know this, oh readers of this article? Cuz that girl was me. You should have seen the dress I was wearing. It’s my favourite; it’s red and white and I got it made in Vietnam. But that’s not important right now because right now, we’re talking about the Red Riders, and not the red and white dress from ‘Nam. That’s completely irrelevant to this story, so stop thinking about it.
Right now the boys are spending late nights mixing their third EP Replica, Replica with producer-extraordinaire Wayne Connolly. Music kids will know this is The Man – he’s worked with a tonne of bands over the years, to the point where if in a rock trivia game you’re asked to name the producer of an Australia album, no one’s gonna look at you like you’re retarded if you guess him, even if you’re wrong. Too bad I was slightly drunk by the time Al and myself removed ourselves from the Civic Hotel and headed back to the studio, although I’m sure Wayne is used to meeting people who are tipsy all the time, because this is the music industry, and everyone involved has some kind of substance abuse “issue”.
Mixing an album basically means you listen to one part of one song over and over and over and over again, and then you make some adjustments unrecognisable to the layman’s ear, and then you listen to it over and over and over again. You also eat junk food, gossip, read Mojo magazines and muck around on gee-tars. That’s what mixing is.
After releasing this EP in late March through Ivy League, the band will drop their first LP which won’t feature any of the songs from the previous three EPS. Not many bands do that.
Al’s Guide To What’s Awesome Right Now
The Phrase ‘Eating Humble Pie’
I love this phrase. And I love people who refuse to eat humble pie, who are like, ‘Fuck you, I refuse to eat your pie’. Humble pie would be made out of nails and broken glass and it would cut your mouth when you eat it. So it’d be like eating nails and drinking your own blood at the same time. The crust would be made of the paper that’s on Vietnamese rice paper rolls, cuz I hate that paper.
When was the last time you ate humble pie?
Every day I eat humble pie. Whether it’s like, having to be really nice to someone whose horrible at work or being like ‘Thank you so much for that show’, when it was a horrible show and you never wanted to play it.
Really, every day? I don’t think I eat humble pie that often…
Yeah but you’re probably different to me – you’re not as much of a good natured doormat as I am. I’m like a self-reflective good natured doormat who resents being a good natured doormat.
Is that why you’re getting so drunk these days, so you can be an asshole?
Yeah, exactly. When you’re really drunk you don’t care about anyone. Humble pie no longer exists. You are the greatest person ever, no one can make you eat humble pie.
‘From St Kilda to Kings Cross’ by Paul Kelly
That’s my favourite song right now. This is my thing at the moment: all I wanna do is hang out in someone’s basement with a hundred people, play guitar and have massive singalongs. It’s a song about how he’d trade all of Sydney Harbour, all that land and all that water, for St Kilda Esplanade. You know me, I’m totally reactionary. If everyone liked that song I’d be like, ‘I like slutty electro disco shit’. Everyone likes that so I’m like, ‘I love one guy and an acoustic guitar singing about Melbourne.’ And let’s be clear about this, this isn’t Paul Kelly – huge Australian bogan superstar Paul Kelly – this is like junkie troubadour residency in the Hopetoun in the early-to-mid 80s Paul Kelly.
OK, I’ll be sure to include the phrase ‘junkie troubadour’.
Yeah you better!
Or what? You’re gonna be nice to me?
“Alex shakes his fist violently”.
Have you noticed when you wear sunglasses you can do way more? If we go swimming and I’m wearing some ugly board shorts and ugly t-shirt, if I have my sunglasses on I’m like, ‘Whatever. You can’t touch me’. It’s nice to have something between you and the world. I think the big theme here is “Alex’s Newfound Love of Being Remotely Assertive”. It’s all about taking stances.
It’s the greatest TV show of all time. Desperate Housewives owes fuckloads to Twin Peaks. You just pine for a time when David Lynch could make a TV series that rated massively. There’s a scene where the detective whose come to investigate the murder has a dream sequence where there’s midget walking around talking backwards and a lookalike of Laura Palmer whispering shit in his ear and there’s this weird Tiki music playing and you’re like, “This is a mainstream show? That’s fucking amazing”. I ran into Linda from Teenagersintokyo and she was like, “We’re going home to watch Twin Peaks” – something about right now is just screaming ‘Everybody must watch Twin Peaks’.
The Whingey Totally Rich New York Existentialist Character
I just finished reading this book by this guy Nick McDonald whose the son of a really famous publisher – Hunter S Thompson before he carked it was like, “This guy is amazing”. He’s 18 or 19 – so from JD Salinger to The Strokes to this guy, there’s something about the really rich, New York kid who loves being really philosophical and existential but whose so rich they just sit around doing nothing and judging everyone else. It’s the sort of cool that’s reserved for the really rich and the really poor. Like Bret Easton Ellis and Fitzgerald and Igby Goes Down. You can be totally tragic and drink all the time and then just make a few comments about ‘your lost generation’ and you’re suddenly insightful.
More: myspace.com/redridersmusic and redriders.net