It's Magnetic are a post punk, noise rock band from Brisbane.
It's Magnetic are Ben Ely, Mia Goodwin and Jamie Trevaskis.
Longing vocalisation from Mia, anchored by Ben's Cure'esque bass rhythm and punch drums. Wrapped together in a controlled maelstrom of noise by Jamie.
Last year they released the hypnotically good 'untitled' album – a collection of haunting, gloomy, sparse, gothic post punk songs. Work has already begun on a follow-up record.
The formation of the band; how did you three come together? Mia: Jamie was layering beds of guitar onto his tape machine making soundtrack music which then led to adding his old Yamaha drum machine.
Then I came along and we put vocals on the track and then decided we gotta get Ben up to play bass on this because he had been wanting to jam for ages, but we had been too busy with The Junk Bar.
And then we were all so happy creating together it just evolved into the band. And that song was 'Leaving Is Neon' from our first album. Our very first song.
The elevator pitch for the band's style... how would you describe it? Ben: It's Magnetic sounds like the distant sound of an old cassette tape machine in a drive-in theatre in 1982 whilst a teenage couple are making out in the back seat during a horror film.
Creative influences; what does each member bring to the project and how does it all filter through to the songs of It's Magnetic? Mia: It's such an organic project with all of us in that we all write together sometimes, just from a studio jam. Sometimes we bring our own individual songs in and then just work out the arrangement between us all.
Jamie: There's nothing really to pre-conceived about it. We generally just start playing off someone's idea and a song is born pretty quickly.
Last year, you released the hypnotically good 'untitled' album; haunting, gloomy, sparse, gothic post punk – it could be the soundtrack to 'Twin Peaks'; was it a collection of songs that naturally came together? Jamie: It was a very quick grab at capturing what we were doing musically all together at that time. We definitely didn't slave over the first release. We just threw it out there.
How vital, important was the natural environment that surrounded the studio in Mt Nebo to the writing and recording of the songs? Mia: I feel there is an energy up here at the studio that you can't ignore. And it's far away from town you know. And there is a shift when you drive up the mountain from downtown. Ben: I agree.
Recording straight to tape; how did that old-school technique shape, direct the creative flow of the music? Jamie: Wild Mountain Sound Studio is a tape based studio and it's generally the way I approach all records. It's not really overly discussed, it's just the way the studio works.
For the first record, the majority of the record was recorded live to tape in a matter of hours. We just hit record, the tape had 33 minutes before it ran out and we just played 4 songs live. The analog process cancelled out overthinking every process we just caught what we do to tape and left it natural.
On the new record we will use a mixture of vintage consoles and outboard gear, tape machines, drum machines and computers. New and old.
I'm told work has begun on a follow-up album to 'untitled'; what can you share with us? Ben: We've begun the process and we are halfway through and hopefully it will be ready soon. We are very happy with it so far. We've tried out the songs live this year and we have had a great response to the new material.
Mia: I think it will showcase how we have evolved as a band. Purely because we spent a fair bit of time last year playing and writing together whilst there were no gigs going on.
What's it like collaborating with an icon of Australian music like Ben, particularly given the music of It's Magnetic is a major departure from Regurgiator, even his solo work? Jamie: Ben has the most interesting and eclectic taste in music. Ben knew exactly where and what to do despite any other music styles he may have released. He is just a legend of a human being.
Mia: He encourages all expressions and he has such a positive outlook, he's also a very accomplished musician and that pushes you to be the best you can be.
Ben: I don't feel like an icon of Australian music.
The band have an upcoming live show at Live Spark; what can punters expect, particularly given it's a Sunday afternoon slot? Ben: It's going to be like attending a double horror feature with your Nana whilst drinking a cup of tea at a Saturday matinee.
Will there be more shows upcoming in 2022? Mia: We are optimistic.
Some fun questions: Best local takeaway joint for a midnight feed that will leave you with a food coma? Ben: Cheese on toast at home in front of the fireplace cos we live in Brisbane and there's no where open at midnight to eat we can think of.
Last show you binge-watched? Mia: 'The White Lotus' (cracking soundtrack).
If we were coming over to your place, what would you cook us? Mia: Meera Sodha's black dal makhani. Ben: Mexican, extra spicy.
What's the one chore you dislike the most? Jamie: Most. Ben: Doing the dishes.
Which fictional character best describes your personality? Jamie: Jamie from 'Jamie and The Magic Torch' (kids show 1976-79). Jamie would take a torch and shine on the ground opening a portal to Cuckoo Land; and he would take his dog on his adventures.
Mia: Lucy Pevensie from 'The Lion , The Witch and The Wardrobe'. Hopefully people would say I'm kind and optimistic, and I have a big imagination.
Ben: Dopey from 'The Seven Dwarves'.
It's Magnetic play Livespark at Brisbane Powerhouse 26 September.