The rest of 2019 is shaping up to be massive for Meg Mac with the release of her brand new EP Hope which is a powerful set of new songs which includes the anthemic Give Me My Name Back and emotionally charged offering, Something Tells Me. Meg Mac’s career has soared to ever-increasing heights since the release of her self-titled, platinum selling EP and debut album Low Blows, which landed at number two on the ARIA Albums Chart.
She has one of the most breathtaking and profoundly soulful voices in music today; an expressive and emotive instrument that brings drama to her songs about vulnerability, self-worth and loss of identity. Meg Mac follows her sold out 2019 Give Me My Name Back Australian tour and the release of Hope with a performance at Splendour in the Grass in July and a show in Adelaide next week. Meg speaks to Hi Fi Way about her new EP.
It must be really exciting on release day for your EP Hope?
I’m excited and I’ve been playing some of the songs on tour and they hadn’t been released yet. I’m excited that they are out and people can finally be able to hear them.
Is that something that is hard as an artist managing that limbo phase before the release comes out?
Yeah, I think you’re desperate to play the new songs but it is hard when the album hasn’t come out yet. I’d like to be able to change the whole set list and make it the whole new album.
Was it a deliberate choice to go with an EP to release this group of songs?
When we started putting together this record there was no pressure, no plan over my head of what I was doing. I didn’t even think about whether it would be an EP or an album, I was just taking my ideas of working with this producer in Melbourne, Myles Wootton, who lives down the road from me. This was when I was still on tour with my last album and I would go over to his house in the afternoon and show him some of my new ideas and just started working on the songs. It just came together without noticing that we had created Hope which would be seven tracks. Once it got to that point where we had seven songs it felt really good and that it could be something so I could move on to the next thing.
Is that hard stopping when you have that purple patch when you’re working on a lot of songs?
I guess so, I have been writing so much since the last album and I have so many songs I want to record. It is hard but you have to stop at some point and put a full stop at the end of those ones then I can get my next bunch of songs that feels right. It always has to make sense in the bigger picture.
Also, with so many songs to choose from is it a healthy problem knowing what will make it and what won’t?
Yeah, you know never know what is going to happen. One of the tracks from Hope, Before Trouble was a song I had written a while ago and played it live, played it overseas and I had never recorded it. Now it has been recorded, so you never know if there is a song that I am writing today I might not end up recording it for some time later.
How do you compare Hope with your debut album Low Blows?
Low Blows I made in Texas and that was my first album and I still feel that those songs were based around the piano and close to the original demos that I was making myself. It feels natural but Hope feels like the next step and I really loved working with Myles on different sounds and going somewhere darker. I had heaps of fun working on this album.
As these songs started to unfold do you start to think there is a special quality about them?
Give Me My Name Back was the first song I had put out as the first single and that felt to me like a song that I was so clear on the message and what it was about. It’s a simple song but there’s so much in those lyrics, it was five words I never knew the impact that could have.
Are you enjoying playing these songs live now?
Playing the songs live is where it starts to feel like it is starting to come together. That is where I have the most fun and is the reason why I do what I do.
What are plans once this tour is finished for Meg Mac?
I’m heading back overseas, playing Splendour and I’m in LA at the moment working the last couple of weeks as I had a break in the tour so I’m just going to keep going.
Do you prefer your own shows over festivals?
I love playing my own shows but playing festivals is really fun. It is a different environment .
Who are you looking forward to seeing at Splendour In The Grass?
I’d love to see Tame Impala, they are playing on the same night as me so I should be able to rush over and catch them after I play.
Do you have a favourite tour moment from playing in Adelaide?
When I played that festival at Glenelg Beach, Summersalt, that was amazing with the sun setting and was a really special moment.
Interview By Rob Lyon
To buy a copy of Hope head to Meg Mac’s official website and Meg plays in Adelaide this Thursday June 13 at HQ Complex and at the Astor Theatre in Perth on Friday 14 June.