If you were lucky enough to be a part of CMJ this year, you may have caught a set by Melbourne quartet The Harpoons. Comprised of brothers Henry and Jack Madin, Martin King, and singer Bec Rigby, the band swiftly demands attention in live performances from Rigby’s powerful vocals and unique sound.
“Ready For Your Love“, the band’s newest single, features a melody that could only be inspired by a vacation in the Australian bush. Pair that with a music video recapping their recent Japanese tour, and you’ve got something special.
We spoke with Bec about her performing at CMJ 2015, discovering new music, and performing across the world.
I saw your CMJ performance at Pianos and was blown away. Bec, how long have you been singing for? How did you and the band work out the unique sound you’ve all developed?
BR: Thanks a lot! We’ve all been singing pretty much our whole lives because we all come from musical families! We’ve been besties (and two of us are brothers!) for many years. We just kind of created this weird thing together from talking and playing and loving the same types of music.
There were a significant number of bands from Australia at this year’s CMJ. Were you able to catch any of their performances, or meet up with friends in bands who also traveled to New York from Australia for CMJ?
BR: Yes! Lots of our favourite bands played actually, so happy to see them all there. Friendships are one of our mega fave duo of legends – although Mish from Friendships fell off a roof really early in the week and broke her arm! She’s doing well now and her bandmate Nick did a KILLER job, he played his heart out, played for two. We also loved seeing Sui Zhen, who wears glorious shiny turtlenecks and sings about emotions and losing her internet connection. </3
Sadly we didn’t get to see many others – CMJ is a busy time!
BR: New York is amazing. They were all great. What stood out was how friendly pretty much everyone who came to see us was! We had super nice crowds.
How did you prepare for CMJ? Was it intimidating that you were booked for a series of dates at a music marathon on the other side of the world?
BR: For sure! We prepared by getting pretty stressed about it and practicing a lot, trying to make sure we were covered for the intense types of shows we’d be playing – 10 minute change over, 25 minute set – it can get pretty tight!
Who were your favorite bands from this year’s CMJ? Did you discover anyone new?
BR: Yes! We saw this incredible trio of singers 90’s-style power pop singers with perfect synchronised dance moves at Pianos one night after we’d played, they were called Romance. If you ever get the chance, SEE THEM. Also blown away by GEORGIA at Rough Trade. She is so musical, watching her slam her songs on the drum kit and whip her hair around and say “WHOO” was mesmerising. Plus there was free packets of Pocky!
You performed in London immediately before coming to New York for CMJ. Do the crowds in the two cities differ at all?
BR: We’ve played in Japan, UK and now USA and what was really cool for me is that we could see that people had the same connection to the music everywhere we went! It’s pretty inspiring playing a room full of people who haven’t seen you before and they seem to get where the music’s coming from, and get the emotions it’s trying to convey!
Were you able to try the pizza while in New York? How did it compare to the pizza in Australia?
BR: I basically lived off $1 slices for a while there, and may I say the $1 slice is HIGHLY variable in quality. I had some best and some blurst ones. But the sheer joy of getting a slice bigger than your head for one measly dollar pretty much beats the disappointment of a bad one every time for me. NY pizza has stolen my heart.
I know you have a few more live performances scheduled for when you get back to Australia. Is there anything else fans can expect to be seeing from you in the future?
BR: We have a lot of new music in the works actually, so fans can look forward to that coming out over the next year or so!