Future soul masters Levingstone are switching up the game in a good way. The band has only just released their first official track ‘One Up’ which beautifully fuses that crazy soul and jazz goodness that everyone is digging at the moment. Levingstone can pretty much be summed up as a bunch of crazy eccentric members formed together for their love of music from different backgrounds to create something unique.
We catch up with Levingstone as they embark on their East Coast Tour, how an eccentric lad gave them inspiration and what started the fusion madness. Margaret Tra writes.
How did you guys come up with the name Levingstone?
Got us! There's this guy that went to our university who was an eccentric type, foil hats and all of that. He kind of became our secret mascot. We once saw him spend the majority of a day walking in slow motion. Brilliant. It’s an homage to him.
You guys have just dropped 'One Up' how did you guys come up with the track?
‘One Up’ began as just the introduction (keys and vocals) and we sort of didn't know what to do with it, but it really stuck with us. It developed over a number of weeks in bits and pieces, and we gradually stitched ideas together until it became a song. It’s a good introduction to the band in that way as it shows a progression in sound because each part was written almost as its own song.
What made you guys get into fusing genres together?
It happened almost by accident, definitely unintentionally. We came together just to create music that felt natural to us, because we were close friends and loved playing together. Levingstone is just what came out of that fusion of personalities and tastes. We all come from very different backgrounds, spanning pop-punk, prog, alt. pop, post-punk, funk... you name it, one of us has probably been involved in it in some capacity! But what really drew us together was a mutual love of jazz, and the exciting new music under the banner of "soul" coming out at the moment. It’s a very broad term these days, which is very liberating as a musician.
You guys are gearing up for a tour, this would be your first? Are you excited?
Yeah! We're loving it. We just did a show in Newcastle, and it was ridiculous! Everyone was so chilled out, really cool audience, very engaged and invested in watching and enjoying the performance. We'll definitely go back there! We're also doing Thursday nights in September at The Captain Cook in Sydney which we're loving. The best part about that residency is that we got to choose all the acts that played with us, so its kind of a live mixtape of the artists in Sydney that we're digging at the moment.
What will you guys be playing at the shows?
We'll be playing the collection of songs intended for our debut EP, to be released next year, as well as some arrangements of our favourite tunes by the artists that inspire us. There's also space for us to play songs that we're still creating so you can expect some surprises!
What other projects are you guys working on?
Levingstone is an all-consuming beast, so most of our energy is going in to that! The guys are all session musicians in various capacities too, so if you catch gigs in Sydney often, you'll probably see them popping up in various guises around the place.
How did you guys get together?
We all met studying music in Sydney, and became friends pretty quickly. We're all very different people, but we share a similar twisted sense of lets say “humour.” Studying music, you're exposed to myriad genres and musical situations, and we were often placed in situations where we had to play unfamiliar kinds of music together so our musical bond is pretty strong!
What stimulates your soul?
Pokemon, goon, and group snuggles!
WED 2nd Sept // Newcastle // The Lass O’Gowrie (NSW)
FRI 25th Sept // Melbourne // The Grace Darling (VIC)
SAT 3rd Oct // Bellingen // NO. 5 Church Street (NSW)
WED 14th Oct // Brisbane // Ric's Bar (QLD)
THU 22nd Oct // Baulkham Hills // Bull N' Bush (NSW)
You can also catch Levingstone every Thursday night in September at the Captain Cook Hotel with special guests.