To mark the 25th anniversary of their debut, top ten, gold record ‘The Yearning’, Melbourne’s favourite folkies, Things of Stone & Wood, will play the album live and in full for the first time during a national tour.
“We’ve never done that before, not even when the album was released,” frontman Greg Arnold explains. “It’ll be an awesome, fun thing to do, and slightly intimidating for us in that the audience knows the record so well. You don’t want to forget a lyric.”
‘The Yearning’ earned Things of Stone & Wood a Best New Talent ARIA in 1993 for track ‘Share This Wine’ followed by a Breakthrough Artist - Album nomination in 1994.
The album’s second single, smash hit ‘Happy Birthday Helen’, saw Greg crowned Songwriter Of The Year at the 1993 APRA Awards. “It’s impossible to separate out the album from that incredible experience we had as a band and not just the incredible experience of the album coming out and getting such a great response.
“It was also the lead up to that time which was really magic for the band. It was all those shows around inner-city Melbourne as we just got started and suddenly people started coming along to those, and it was in that context that the whole album was written.
“I’ve always loved the vibe of that time and it comes back and evokes something deep in me and I still really love it. I’m really proud if it as a record.”
Ahead of ‘The Yearning’ tour Greg reflects on the album’s 14 tracks in a unique light. “When I listened back to the album, I went, ‘Oh it’s got a little story unto itself’.
“It was never a concept album, but it does make sense from start to finish. We spent a lot of time getting the order right and it really has this little journey across it, so it’s going to be really enjoyable to play it in that context.”
Since reforming in 2014 to commemorate the band’s 25th anniversary, the folk-rock quartet have embarked on annual tours around the country, with many shows selling out with very little promotion.
“That’s been really lovely for us. It reminds me in a really nice way of the early days in the band where things really did build off a word of mouth thing and people just sort of came along to see the band.
“That’s how it’s really felt for these reunion shows. There’s just been a really nice groundswell of good vibes for the band.”
Joining them on the road are fellow '90s indie chart-toppers, Sydney folk duo Club Hoy who supported Things of Stone & Wood in their heyday. “We always got on terrifically well with Club Hoy. We did a big national tour with them I think in the summer between ‘92 and ‘93 and it was great fun.
“They came along to see the 25-reunion tour and at some point amongst that we noted that they were doing some shows as well, so the thought of having them on the tour is unbelievably good fortune for us.”
Things of Stone & Wood Tour Dates
Sat 25 Mar - Lizottes (Newcastle)
Sun 26 Mar - Newtown Social Club (Sydney)
Wed 29 Mar - The Spiegeltent (Hobart)
Fri 31 Mar - The Workers Club (Geelong)Sat 1 Apr - Soundlounge (Gold Coast)
Sun 2 Apr - Black Bear Lodge (Brisbane)