For the past few years, Melbourne’s The Pretty Littles have been regular features on the stages of our fair nation. With a string of releases under their belt, they secured themselves a soft spot in the hearts of even our most hardened indie rock fans.
Earlier in the month, they released their third – count ’em, three – full-length album Soft Rock For The Anxious. Soon the band will be loading up the van and hitting the road in support of the release, so we checked in with vocalist Jack Parsons and somewhere, somehow, achieved a state of mindfulness…
The Neversphere: Soft Rock For The Anxious is out now, what’s the vibe been like with fans so far?
Jack: The response has been pretty good, people are telling us they dig it – things like that, which is pretty good. We’re selling tickets to shows, which is new to us, so it’s all happy days.
The Neversphere: Selling tickets is a pretty sweet. What other goals are you looking to kick with the big third album?
Jack: A continuation of the steady improvement on all fronts [laughs]. Every year maybe 3% of people come to shows and stuff. And the songs get 3% better. So until that stops happenings, I think we’re pretty chuffed.
The Neversphere: 3% per annum seems sustainable and logistically possible…
Jack: I think that’s why The Pretty Littles have been around for 15 million years. Keep the markers low and achievable.
The Neversphere: So Soft Rock For The Anxious, is the title literal or some sort of word mastery?
Jack: It’s pretty literal [laughs]
The Neversphere: Well, I do have to say I’ve had a long-ass day and songs like Pride and Sleeping In Water were pretty soothing listens. I couldn’t quite put my finger on why though…
Jack: That’s Awesome. Yeah, I don’t know why either. It’s pretty honest, I suppose, lyrically. Not in all the songs though. In some songs it gets pretty nervous and anxious. It was just a literally title… Which bit did you find calming?
The Neversphere: Sleeping In Water and Tall Man in particular.
Jack: Well shit…Mindfulness with The Pretty Littles [Laughs].
The Neversphere: Wait…Has no one said that to you so far?
Jack: No, no one has said that yet, you’re the first!
The Neversphere: Well…I’m feeling pretty weirdly vulnerable right now then.
Jack: Oh man. 100%. Nah that’s the coolest thing I’ve heard today. Fucken oath. I appreciate that and you shouldn’t back down from it, you should stand by it. [Laughs]
The Neversphere: So you dropped Sam’s Mob, which was about Eddie McGuire and that whole boys club who seem to dominate the media. When you make a song like that, does the buzz around it ever die down?
Jack: It still comes up but we’re not really dealing with anything. Unfortunately, it’s not our problem; we just made a comment on it. We dealt with some backlash, which was pretty fucked up, but also pretty funny. You know, being a target for that kind of Internet stuff is alarming but you have to see the humour on it.
But it’s not our problem; we made a comment on a much bigger problem. So if that’s what we get then that’s what we get. That’s fine because we’re not the ones really coping it.
We’re never trying to fight battles. All we’re doing is raising it and putting forward where we stand. If there are people who like the band and feel a different way, hopefully they’ll either leave, or they’ll go ‘ok I really like this band maybe they’ve got a point’. Maybe that’s too idealistic, but hopefully we can make somebody see something different…or they can fuck off.
The Neversphere Yeah, good riddance to bad company…
Jack: Exactly. We got called turncoats. Just a pack of turncoats is all we are…We had lots of people leave. It’s hard to know if it made any difference at all. On top of that I think we would appeal to a left-leaning audience.
The Neversphere: Yeah, I mean, is it even possible to truly change someone’s mind on stuff like this?
Jack: Oh man…Yeah, it’s so heavy, isn’t it? I don’t really know. I think people forget why they feel a certain way and it becomes less about why they feel that way and more about standing by that initial mindset.
The Neversphere: It’s a super heavy topic. Did you tackle any other heavy topics on the album?
Jack: Well, Tall Man is a old story, but one that’s still current. It’s about an indigenous fella who died in custody on Palm Island. That’s still obviously a fucking huge issue. But I actually think it’s just those two, actually [laughs]. There are a few other songs where it’s more of a reflection of myself.
The Neversphere: Now you guys are hitting the road in October, how’s practise coming along?
Jack: Yeah, pretty good. The songs are translating live in a fairly similar way, just a bit shitter. We’re pretty pumped. Like I said, we never really sold tickets to a tour. We’ve sold some and that’s pretty wild. We’re really pumped man…Hey, Boosey, we pumped?
Someone called Boosey: Yew!
Jack: Yeah, Boosey’s pumped.
The Neversphere: Pumped confirmed.
Jack: Confirmed pumped.
The Neversphere: That’ll keep you busy until the end of the year, what’s on next for The Pretty Littles?
Jack: Well, I think we’re probably going to settle down, buy houses and move out to the country. I think Caroline are going to help us out. Start making cheese, learn how to fly planes and just really take a step back, we don’t want to get too jaded.
The Neversphere: Yeah man take a page out of Dethklok’s book…
Jack: Who’s Dethklok?
The Neversphere: Ah man…There’s just simply not enough time…But thanks for that chat, Jack man that was awesome.
The Pretty Little Tour Dates
With Neighbourhood Youth
Tickets available now
Saturday, October 22nd
Kennedys Creek Music Festival
Tickets: Kennedys Creek Music Festival
Friday, October 28th
Karova Lounge, Ballarat
Saturday, October 29th
Northcote Social Club, Melbourne
Tickets: Northcote Social Club
Thursday, November 3rd
Rad Bar, Wollongong
Friday, November 4th
Saturday, November 5th
Brighton Up Bar, Sydney
Tickets: Brighton Up Bar
Friday, November 11th
Cats @ Rocket Bar
Saturday, November 12th
The Loft, Warrnambool
Tickets: The Loft
Friday, November 18th
The Northern, Byron Bay
Saturday, November 19th
The Bearded Lady, Brisbane