VOIID’s Watering Dead Flowers debut album tour will be a celebration of the career so far and a look forward to the future. With a newly confessional bend and a sound that straddles the faultline between post-punk and alt-rock, the band’s debut LP, Watering Dead Flowers, couldn’t be anything else either.
Since 2015, VOIID has excavated a space in Australia’s DIY underground which belongs solely to them and their voracious set of fans. Based in Meanjin, VOIID’s acerbic EPs – Pussy Orientated (2017), Drool (2019) and Socioanomaly (2020) – followed in the footsteps of the feminist punk bands before them, exposing the physical and emotional brutality which pushes young women to the margins. Anji, Mina Cannon (drums), Antonia Hickey (bass/vocals) and Kate Mcguire (guitar/vocals) have built a haven for listeners to feel empowered in their anger, their wildness and their friendships.
Recorded in 2021 by Matt Cochran (Talk Heavy, WALKEN) with assistance from Caleb Anderson (Mouse), Watering Dead Flowers sees VOIID break from their external focus, turning their gaze inwards for the first time. Influenced by the likes of that dog., Juliana Hatfield and Beabadoobee, its diaristic songs are both headstrong and unsteady, calculating and vulnerable in the way they explore the defining relationships and emotions of young adulthood. The personal remains political, but the record’s strongest anchor is the unit of the band and the connection between its members, a sacred constant in the face of ever-shifting romantic and family dynamics. Anji Greenwood talks to Hi Fi Way about the album and tour.
Was it a feeling of satisfaction and relief finishing your debut album?
It is a really good feeling because it has been so long since we have recorded it. It has been super good, really scary to be really vulnerable. It has been super rewarding to hear all the feedback and comments now that it is out there.
How exciting was the build up to the album release?
It was really hard, we always wanted to play new songs that shows that we have been playing. It was like can we slip that one in, no, we need to wait to play, we played a few of them when people would ask in person. In general, it was keep it on the down low so it would be a really good surprise when it did come out.
How did you celebrate release day?
We had a little party at O’skulligans in Brisbane, we did some DJ sets, we had the Water Dead Flowers cocktail that the bartenders made up for us, sold a bunch of merch and that was really fun. We had our friends and heaps of people who like our music their which was nice and a great way to spend the night.
Now the album is out have you been able to listen to it as a fan would?
Oh yeah, I’m really proud of it and it is one of those things that I forget how good it is and I go back and listen thinking oh wow, it is actually a good album I think personally.
Did Covid slow things down a bit making this album?
There was a few times during the recording where we would have a weekend set aside, we recorded at Birthday Boy Studios which was in a house, and someone living there would get Covid and then we couldn’t do it that time. Then someone else would get Covid, it was that kind of thing with having to keep testing but eventually we had to push back a couple of things and rework a couple of days to make it work. It ended up working out really well and I got to go back having that time to think in between recording times. We could say whether we or not we were happy with that take and redo it which was fine.
Having that luxury of time did you end up being too hard on yourselves?
Yeah, when we were writing all the songs, we were already in our heads producing it as well. When we record it we can do this. When we recorded it, I was twenty and now I’m about to turn twenty three, I was still learning a lot about how to sing properly. Even now, preparing for the tour, I’m singing things so differently compared to when we first recorded it all. I definitely get a little bit hard on myself because I feel that everyone is so good that I need to be really, really good otherwise it is not that good. I did have to go back and re-record a few lines to give it more punch. At the end of the day we are all really happy with how it turned out.
Having the songs for so long was it hard letting go?
Kind of, Kate and I were re-writing the lyrics up and to the last moment where we just started recording demos at least. We had demos that had completely different lyrics. It was hard but once you get the full vibe for it, that’s the song, it is done! Then let’s do the next one but never mulling to much over it and giving ourselves time to think about it. It is a bit like staring at a painting for to long, you think it is terrible because you have starred at it for to long, so you have to go back later on and say that what was missing. It was good having lots of time to work on everything.
Did the songs change much from how they started out?
When we got in to the studio and realised all the different things that were available to us was really good because we could actually do that. We figured out what we could get done instead of thinking it would be cool if we could do that. We gave our producer ideas who was amazing to work with adding what works well with the songs.
Are you excited about this tour you are on now?
It has been great and we have been playing the album in full. We have been really stern on that. Every other show after the album tour can be any other songs we want to play and what people want to hear.
Interview By Rob Lyon
Catch Voiid on the remaining dates to support their debut album Water Dead Flowers…