The Last Breakfast
Hotel Great Northern | Friday 26 April | 8pm | $35.20
Australia’s favourite musical misfits Butterfingers are back, breaking hearts and bones with the 15 Years of Fatboys national tour. These Aussie hip-hop/funk/punk/reggae/pop/rock royalty hail from Brisvegas, and as self-proclaimed, non-genre-conforming fourpiece they’ll be hitting the Hotel Great Northern to play the last of their tour playing tracks from their HUGELY successful debut album Breakfast At Fatboys.
Evil Eddie, or ‘Eddie’ as I refer to him (I just find it hard to say ‘so Evil Eddie’…) reckons the change in technology has really meant they can play their Fatboys live like they never have before.
‘On the original album tour we couldn’t do all the songs. But sampling technology has changed and now we have Fresh Violet on the tour, so she can do the parts for the female MC on the tracks. We couldn’t do that before, and now we have her we can do the whole album, start to finish in the order it appears on the album.
‘We used to have all our stuff on a keyboard and every sound we used was a different key. Now we are working with loops and triggering whole sections to run with a click. It’s still organic, but whenever a loop gets triggered it resets every time. It’s not like a backing track that is exactly the same every time; we have a variation in tempo and within a single song it can change with the audience, you can just feel it,’ says Eddie.
‘Audience engagement is key and Butterfingers love nothing more than vibing off the energy of a room.
‘For example in Get up Out of the Dirt we usually break it down in the middle,’ says Eddie, ‘and talk to the crowd to get a bit of a game happening. Sometimes it takes longer to explain so you just use as many bars as you need. You can drag sections out.’
As the MC Eddie is charged with remembering an enormous amount. It’s something that comes naturally, but there are times when the words just don’t come!
‘I sometimes forget the words with the song Everytime. It has a repetitive setup and no linear story. When we first wrote it I never had a problem and then three or four shows in every single show I screwed up! It just wasn’t in my brain. I don’t know why. I feel like I have used that neural pathway so much I just burnt it out. Luckily I can hold the mic out and the audience knows what comes next!’
Butterfingers have just been nominated for a Queensland Music Award for their video Bullet to the Head. Songwriting is something that Eddie says the band approach in various ways but that when he has a pretty strong idea, he nails it before he takes it to the band.
‘I write everything from the drum to the keys and the vocals. The bones will stay the same, and of course the flourishes will be different. I want to get it as good as I can. You find spaces for extra stuff in the jam room.’
So how does he know if the song he has written has legs? Eddie runs it past his girlfriend. She’s got a good ear for a song that’s gonna fly.
‘Sometimes, you lose perspective,’ says Eddie, ‘especially when you are working on something for a while it’s hard to be objective. My girlfriend is completely un-musical; if she likes it the radio probably likes it. She likes stuff that is more commercial. If she says this is a good song it does well. It annoys me when she doesn’t like something!’
The upcoming show at the Hotel Great Northern is going to be pretty special.
‘It’s the last show on the tour,’ says Eddie, ‘so it will be a party. We play the album start to finish, mostly the same as the record, but we have added a few extra things; it’s all in order. And this time we are filming and recording it. We recorded our show at the Zoo – we got the footage but the audio didn’t come out – it was heartbreaking, so we are doing it again. We have played so many shows on the tour, so this one is gonna be all muscle memory and it’s flowing, it is going to be nice to capture the last one!’
Butterfingers, 15 years of Fatboys at the Hotel Great Northern on Friday 26 August – show 8pm, tix on northern.oztix.com.au. $35.20