I met up with Alex Black – the lead vocalist of Lost Tropics – randomly as we both ended up at Splendour In The Grass. His band is from the southern beaches of Sydney, and their first single Charlie’s Van itches of mature, pop-driven, DIY garage. So far they’ve been playing a heap of shows around Sydney and are going to do their first festival at Sounds of the Suburbs on September 3 alongside Skegss, Camp Cope and Ruby Fields.
1. Why are you here. Who do you have to see?
Just gotta see Lil Yachty – not even sure if I’m a fan, it’s just for the meme.
2. Who else are you excited to see today?
Ooft. Queens of the Stone Age – but the clash with Two Door Cinema Club kills me! Also – Catfish and the Bottlemen, and Hockey Dad – that’s going to be cool.
3. How’s Splendour been so far?
It’s Friday and I’ve only been here for an hour, hahaha, but it’s been fucking fantastic. This is my fifth Splendour. It’s quite familiar for me now – so it’s good to be back!
4. Where will you be this time next year?
Hopefully right here! Except not just hanging out – playing one of these Splendour stages.
5. What made you want to start a band?
In my teens I was a really big fan of Sticky Fingers, Catfish and the Bottlemen and The Strokes. I was really heavily into it, so I decided that I didn’t want to be a lawyer of a doctor or anything conventional. I wanted to be a musician. Then, I decided I was willing to spend my whole entire life trying to make it work. Starting the band was really easy – we have all been good mates and are really in sync with each other.
6. Why ‘Lost Tropics’?
We were almost a reggae band- and at the time we were really digging Ocean Alley and they’ve got an album called Lost Tropics and we really vibed it, so it’s kind of a homage to them.
7. You guys are a six-piece band? Six is a lot of people.
We’re all good mates and we hang out anyways to it’s never hard to rehearse – which helps.
8. Your new single Charlie’s Van – tell me about it.
I wrote the track last September. It was a while ago. I wrote it in my friend Charlie’s van, so that’s why it’s called, ‘Charlie’s Van’. It’s about growing up, enjoying life. My friend Charlie is a fucking amazing person, but all he does is smoke weed in his car. But, I feel as if people like him shouldn’t just get… forgotten? So, I wanted to put those feelings into a song.
9. You’re playing Sounds of the Suburbs this September!
Yes! Well, actually I have a story for this one. I sleep in a lot – so at about 2 in the afternoon I was asleep. I got a call, and it was Jeff, and he said he had a couple of dates for me. Then he was like, yeah I got a date – September 3 at Sounds of the Suburbs – and I swear I squealed like a little girl. AHHHHHHHHHHHH. Also funnily, I wrote Charlie’s Van on the same day as Sounds of the Suburbs last year! It’ll be really funny playing it at the festival.
Pic at the top: Leila Maulen.