Midnight Drags

Explosive and surreal, noise pop project Midnight Drags has released a new single Ronnie, a wild journey through love and loss and the chaotic dissolution of a relationship kept apart. Midnight Drags, the solo project of artist Lucas James, has also produced a stunning video clip for Ronnie in collaboration with Indonesian artist Galihpanji. Ronnie is the first taste of Midnight Drags’ new album Bad Business, expected in early 2021.

The video for Ronnie is appropriately chaotic, fragmented – the animation style of Galihpanji is perfect for the mood of the track, as the sketchy characters descend into destructive behaviours and hopelessness prevails. Lucas tells Hi Fi Way more about the single.

How has the build-up been leading up to the release of the single RONNIE?
Pretty slow! We finished recording in September and the mixing was finished January or February so it’s taken a while to get here.. But so excited it’s finally out!

Was the process of making your single as challenging as you thought?
Well, I guess recording is always a challenge and especially when you record to tape but I had some pro’s playing on this and the process was very smooth. It was fun and great to make music with a bunch of good peeps. Once we recorded the drums, bass and guitars, the band left for the day I layered some synth on top and played a guitar solo. I then recorded vocals/harmonies over the next few days and voila! The single was recorded and ready to be mixed.

Sonically, how would you describe your music?
A kaleidoscope of brittle guitars, hooks, driving bass and fuzzy melody.

Who would you consider to be the biggest influence on your music and why?
Tough to pick one but today I’m going to say Cheap Trick. I love their first two albums so much, they contain such a powerful bunch of guitar driven pop songs. They always managed to find the perfect blend of melody, aggression and feel with fantastic arrangements.

Best piece of advice you have been given?
Live your life with no regrets.

How did the band get together?
Paul Kelly) if he would be involved in my new project as a co-producer, he said yes (thankfully) and that was great because it meant I now had another guitar player and he is a freaky master when it comes to the guitar. He recommended Brett Wolfenden (The Casanovas, Wolfmother) for drumming duties and I pulled in my old mate Warren Booth (The Good China) for bass guitar. I also asked Bill McDonald (Angie Hart, Stephen Cummings) to play bass on a couple of tracks too.. Nothing too exciting in that story, but the killer studio band was born!

Are you looking to tour more broadly?
We have not toured yet and I’m not sure if we ever will. The project was always more of a ‘studio’ band in my eyes but you never know. If there is an appetite for us to play live and I can wrangle all the guys together when they are not touring with other artists, then maybe!?

What’s next for MIDNIGHT DRAGS?
We have the album Bad Business coming out early next year which I can’t wait for, then we can look at doing some more recording next as I’m writing more songs as we speak. Plenty more music to come!

Which local bands/artists would you like to tour with and why?
The Teskey Brothers because they are such a great band.. I’d be happy to be able to watch them do their musical thing every night for a few weeks.

Interview By Rob Lyon

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