A small dwelling above an antique store on a main road near Bondi Beach is not the ideal studio space. Add to that a main bus line and a few microphones and you’ve got yourself a very unlikely recording sanctuary. Yet, this is where Guineafowl chose to record his first ideas. With merely his laptop, its in-built microphone and a soda water at his side, the beginning ideas of his debut EP “Hello Anxiety” began to take shape.
“The recording process was a little frustrating. I would often have to stop what I was doing every ten minutes to let a bus pass. The antique store below would also be moving heavy furniture each day that added to the loud outside sound. I chose to do it there though as I had ideas bursting out of me and I wanted to get them down by any means possible,” the songwriter explains.
Take a quick look at Guineafowl’s creative family and it’s no surprise he is bursting with inspiration. His mother, stepfather and brothers are all visual artists, living successfully off their paintings and artworks. His sister is a film producer, and his father an ambitious fashion designer that owns his own boutique. Although this artist does not follow the line of visual art, he does take on the philosophy that his family has taught him.
“My family, particularly my brother showed me that art is about capturing stories. Although I’m not a painter, that’s how I’ve always seen my songwriting – another way to translate a story.”
Debut EP “Hello Anxiety” is just that, a translation of Guineafowl’s life stories; a scrapbook collection of of fuck-ups, frustrations and elation. From the stomping ‘Botanist’ to the harsh ‘My Lonely Arms’ to the grateful ‘Little Fingers’, this talented lyricist is translating his take on the world, assessing circumstance and critiquing every move.
Guineafowl’s peers have always been supportive of his creativity. Once his trusty laptop and in-built mic had recorded the loops and melodies that he was satisfied with he showed it to a friend who urged him to put it online. From there his fanbase grew, and after a playing a few solo shows, he realised these tracks could not make the impact he wanted them to if it was only him on stage.
He again called upon those friends, as well as a few other stragglers to help him with his live show. “In choosing my band there was only one rule: they had to be better players than me. As a result I’m surrounded by some genius players, that makes the on-stage work feel playful and easy.”
Next came the more serious work of getting their hands dirty in the studio. Soon they transferred to BJB studios, laying down what the motley crew had formed together. The band worked hard over a short 48 hours, tracking two songs and mixing four. “We took it all very seriously, making sure we got things right and got things done quickly,” he grins.
The result was “Hello Anxiety”, an EP which Guineafowl sees as a melding of his sounds from the small room above the antique store with the melodies of the in-studio time with his band. ‘Botanist’ still contains his original vocal takes from the humble beginnings with his in-built microphone, whilst ‘My Lonely Arms’ delivers to you Guineafowl as a band through a large mixing desk. Each track brings its own colour to the palette, and although it’s not in his family’s tradition of visual art, he has succeeded in putting together a canvas of stories in “Hello Anxiety”.