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February 25, 2021

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Brother Fox, Soundlounge, Friday

Eve Jeffery

Born of a desire to play festivals, Brother Fox has been enjoying success since the win of the much-coveted Byron Bay Bluesfest Busking Competition at Easter this year. Taking out the top prize secured the band an official performance slot at the 2012 Bluesfest and a main stage appearance for 2013, and that’s what the band live for: the festival vibe.

The band’s bio reads:

With a high-energy folk/root infusion, our sole purpose is to amplify your world – to reconnect you with this very moment, the right now, your present and our gift. We aim to make every car ride a road trip, every day an adventure and every moment a never-ending festival. We want our rhythmic jams to be the soundtrack to your world, each syncopation tied with the heartbeat of your experience, so that before long you find yourself forgetting where real life stops, and our world begins.

The Brisbane-based lads have only been together since March this year – not much prep time for the Bluesfest comp, which they won mere days later. Brother FoxTim Orchard (vocals and acoustic guitar), Jon Orchard (percussion and vocals) and Ed Walker (bass and vocals), want to give you a lot, their motto: Your world. Our music. One experience.

Echonetdaily had a chat to Brother Fox frontman Tim Orchard in the lead-up to the band’s massive summer where they simply want to ‘play as many shows as possible’.

Tim says their band leans heavily toward a contemporary world-music fusion. ‘Melodically, the music takes the storytelling qualities of folk music where the instrumentation combines the stylistic features of folk, reggae and African music creating a very percussion-driven genre.

‘Jon is diving into the traditional techniques of the djembe and African percussion and Ed has so much experience playing in roots/Latin bands on the bass guitar so the mix is something quite spectacular. Throw in the jangle of the acoustic guitar and harmony-based vocals and the whole sound is something unique.’

Their music has been described as a lot of things. Some have said they hear a heavy reggae influence and some even say some country elements. ‘One person actually thought our sound could be described as hillbilly reggae! That’s a nice summary. The best description to date would be the committee folk from Grotto Festival describing our sound as the “Australian version of Mumford and Sons, throw in a bit of Bob Marley and a twist of Latin!” We will take that compliment quite happily.’

Do you see yourself as mainly a festival band ?

We see ourselves as an international act in time. That’s what we are striving towards at least. Festivals are something as a group we decided we wanted to be a part of. We feel the energetic vibe of our music is suited to the festive atmosphere and there is honestly no better feeling than performing to huge crowds who are all only interested in the music and the party. You feel part of something bigger!

Had you done much busking before the Bluesfest gig ?

Not really. Jon and I had done bits here and there but nothing substantial. We just thought it would be a fun thing to try out the busking comp. We had a feeling our style would be taken well in Byron Bay, so we gave it a shot.

Is there a recording o the horizon ?

‘Pre-production discussions and rehearsals for our debut EP started in mid March this year. After Bluesfest, we booked in at The Recording Oasis on the coast and recorded the five tracks over two days. Since then it has just been getting the mixes right and the final masters ready for duplication, which all takes quite a bit of time.’

The Brother Fox EP will officially be launched and released early in the new year but you can actually grab a copy at their gigs now.

Who are you listening to now ?

We have been spinning the new Mumford and Sons CD. A lot! It’s a big inspiration for us. Also the new Dave Matthews Band album is wicked. In fact the band’s whole catalogue has been featuring on the last few Brother Fox roadtrips. I can safely say they are our favourite band.

All these boys want to do is gig and it would appear that they are on the fast-track in that direction. ‘The biggest highlight has been finding a group of people that are so passionate about the Brother Fox project. We are all in this for the long haul. We are all putting in the hard yards getting the band to the next level and it has been so much fun. The journey from starting the band to entering the busking competition and that moment. Hearing our name read out as the winners. That will be a defining moment for us for a very long while.’

Brother Fox will be at the Currumbin SoundLounge on Friday as part of the this month’s Original Seeds Showcase.


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