Lou Scarrs’ schedule for his former musical project looked like a young musician’s dream come true: Glastonbury in the UK, check. SXSW in the States, check. Aussie Festivals: Splendour In The Grass, Big Day Out and Golden Plains, check. With all this, spurred on by substantial airplay on Triple J, it seemed like he had it made but the time had come for the former Money For Rope guitarist to follow his own sound, take the leap and go solo. Scarrs enlisted fellow Aussie, producer Oscar Dawson (Holy Holy) to help shape the songs and sound. The entire debut EP What We Do was recorded at Dawson’s Abbotsford Aviary studio’s and the Lou shared a few words about the whole experience with Hi Fi Way: The Pop Chronicles.
Glastonbury, SXSW, Splendour, Big Day Out, Golden Plains – what’s next?
I like to keep it simple, so I’m writing a new bunch of songs that excite me and with a bit of luck they’ll excite other folks too. We’ll see where that takes me.
Is there no looking back now after going solo?
Well, not in the sense that being in band was bad. I do look back and think of all the awesome stuff we did together and reminisce about all the ridiculous in-jokes we had with each other. Great times. But from a creative sense, I’m in a good place doing it on my own at the moment. Less arguments now too!
What stopped you doing it earlier?
For a while I was so busy playing and having fun in my previous band that I didn’t really have the inclination to create my own sound.
What pushed you to make that leap?
I reached a point where I was feeling a little musically unstimulated and then I wrote a song called ‘Let You Down’ that really got me excited about music again and going it alone. The song felt unique and it really compelled me to grab that idea, expand on it and see how far I could take it. It almost seemed like I had no choice but to go solo in the end.
What’s the toughest part of going solo?
In a band you have that immediate sounding board of a few people to let you know if something sounds awesome or shit. Sometimes as a solo artist you can chase something that’s not worth chasing or stroll past something that was worth pursuing. Keeping perspective is a challenge.
How satisfying was it making the EP What We Do?
Incredibly satisfying. To hear things that started as a tiny idea come to life and become a force to be reckoned with is an awesome experience. I love that I can still picture where I was when I came up with different tracks and how far they’ve come since that first little melody or riff.
How would you describe your sound?
Someone recently described my music has what would happen if indie rock and hip hop had a child and I don’t think I’ll do a better of job of describing it myself than that.
Biggest lesson learnt so far?
It would have to be to involve people in the project. Just because you’re a solo artist, it doesn’t mean you have to record and completely produce yourself. Unless your Kevin Parker. I recorded this EP with Oscar Dawson from Holy Holy as producer and there’s no doubt working together we produced something greater than I could have done completely on my own. Lesson learnt; shared experiences fuel creativity and as a bonus are also a hell of a lot of fun.
Where to next for Lou Scarrs?
I have a new single ready and raring for the studio. It’s tentatively titled DNA and was inspired by the 90’s film Gatacca that starred Jude Law back when he wasn’t a two-timing scumbag. I joke but they have similar themes. Anywho, DNA and a bunch of other epic tunes are coming in 2018.
Interview by Rob Lyon
For more info about Lou Scarrs head to his official website