Thomas Keating

Brooding and enigmatic, Thomas Keating has released his yearner of a new single, Cold Night. Inspired by distance, a cold Melbourne winter, and dreary early mornings, Cold Night is an exciting addition to Thomas’s glowing discography. The track is also accompanied by a stunning clip, directed by Kieran Gilfeather.

Evocative of Elliot Smith, Phoebe Bridgers and Angie McMahon, Cold Night is a broody rambler, made for grey mornings and stomping through puddles in the rain. Thomas’s gentle voice wraps around a slow, steady beat as delicate strings float around the arrangement, like the silver lining on a cloud. Thomas tells Hi Fi Way more about the single.

How has the build-up been leading up to the release of Cold Night?
The build up leading up to the release has been interesting. It is such a different time for putting out music, I am still kind of in shock of how the world has suddenly changed so much. But I’m really grateful to have the opportunity and means to keep putting music out and making it.

Was the process of making your single as challenging as you thought?
You know, it’s really hard to look back now and remember exactly how I felt about creating this new music, but I believe I was really focused on creating something that was a bit more progressive than my previous releases. The process was pretty enjoyable and natural, it was the first time I had been back in the recording studio with my old drummer – David Pearce and Bass player – Mitchell Crum for some time, so I was a little nervous whether we would still have the same rapport that we used to. It turned out that the whole process was really natural and enjoyable with the guys, so that was really special for me.

Sonically, how would you describe your music?
I would describe it as cinematic folk rock. I feel like I write quite emotional music and I am always working hard to create a production that helps to increase the intensity of whatever emotion I am striving to provoke in the listener.

Who would you consider to be the biggest influence on your music and why?
I would probably have to say that the biggest influence on my music today would have to be Elliot Smith. I think he was just so prolific and just had such an amazing sensibility of melody, harmony and lyrics. I am also a huge fan of emo and I guess I kind see me self as a bit of a flag bearer for that style of emo folk rock.

Best piece of advice you have been given?
Don’t try to jump the canal… I have learnt that it is good to break my goals down into smaller stepping stones rather than to just jump straight to the end goal. I can get stuck in a lot of really anxious thinking sometimes around my career and where I want to go. This piece of advice helps me to centre myself and go a little easier.

What is the Thomas Keating life story?
Wow, the whole story? Haha. I guess my story is that I have always seen myself as a musician, I can’t remember ever wanting to do anything else with my life. Music has led me to some pretty amazing places so far and I have also seen some pretty dark periods in my pursuit of a career in music. It took me a long time to settle down in my twenties and start to be comfortable with who I am. I have had my struggles with anxiety and substance abuse but thankfully today I lead a sober life free of a lot my old self destructive behaviours. Though some do tend rear their heads still. I am really grateful today for the amazing relationships I have in my life, today it’s those connections that I value the most.

Are you looking to tour in 2021?
I would love to! That is the plan. Things definitely seem to be starting to open up again and I am so excited that Victoria are opening their borders soon. I am hoping to do a run of shows around February/ March.

What’s next for Thomas Keating?
At the moment I am really focused on recording new music and that’s how I spend most of my weeks. I also have a whole bunch of new music ready to go and I am planning to get it all out pretty soon!

What is your all time favourite song?
I don’t feel like I have just one song but, the one that comes to mind is Nick Cave’s – Into My Arms. I think it is so incredibly special, a masterpiece.

Interview By Rob Lyon

Connect with Thomas Keating
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