Brisbane band The Belligerents have had a big year.
After six years together and three EPs, the five-piece band have just recently released their first ever full length album, Science Fiction, and are headed out on a countrywide tour later this month. Recorded in a remote farmhouse on Stradbroke Island, Science Fiction is full of psychedelic grooves that are guaranteed to embed themselves in your brain and stay there for good.
We caught up with frontman Lewis Stephenson to go behind the scenes of their latest music video for their track ‘Science Fiction’ (directed by Julian Lucas and produced by Wildebeest), which you can watch for the first time right here, right now.
Who would you credit as the brains behind the clip, and where did the concept come from?
For the first ‘part’ of this story, we worked with an amazing director called Greta Nash from Melbourne. She came up with the initial concept of the dog going to space and we wanted to provide some closure on the story. Julian Lucas took the reins on the ‘Science Fiction’ clip, and he had a brilliant series of ideas that brought this final installment together. We really loved working with them both across each phase of the narrative.
As this was a kind of sequel to ‘Flash’, could we maybe expect a trilogy to round it out?
I don’t think we’re going to make it a trilogy, the story is kind of complete now. We’ll move onto something new next, not exactly sure what yet! Hopefully something involving animals again.
Who owns the cute dog?
Sparky is actually a professional actor dog. I didn’t know that was a thing until we did the video. He was a very good boy and probably deserves to earn more than he did for the clip.
When you guys hired the place in Stradbroke Island to record the album, did you also spend a lot of time watching sci-fi films and series? The video feels very 80’s inspired.
We watched a sci-fi film called The Lobster, but that was the only film we watched during the time away. A bunch of the artwork and video stuff is all pretty sci-fi inspired.
You’re the only one from the band in this film clip. Would you say that’s because you’re the best dancer?
I’d like to think so, but I’m pretty sure everyone in the band thinks they’re a great dancer. We wanted to do something a bit different than the performance-style stuff we did in the last one, and a story-line kind of made sense.
You’re often labelled as a psych-rock, but your music sounds like a blend of so many more styles. Did you have any particular influences for ‘Science Fiction’?
A whole bunch of stuff really, kind of anything and everything. This track, in particular, was probably born out of some kind of blend of Split Enz, Metronomy, MGMT and a few broken synthesisers.
How did you feel walking the streets in that impressive space suit?
Embarrassed at first, but after walking around a bit it felt pretty cool. I was stopped and asked for photos over and over again and it kept interrupting filming. During filming in the travel agent, the agency was still open and the desk next to me was serving customers as I was belting out the lyrics, that was kind of awkward too. It was also really heavy and hot, and walking up and down streets was a bit tiring. It was still fun though.
Finally, and most importantly, if Elon Musk offered you a spot on his Mars voyage trip with the knowledge you couldn’t return to Earth, would you take it?
I’d like to think yes, but I get quite nervous when I fly, and I imagine a rocket-ship wouldn’t be any easier than a plane. So I’ll have to sadly turn it down.
Australia Tour Dates
Friday 20 October – Jack Rabbit Slims, Perth
Saturday 21 October – Jive, Adelaide
Saturday 28 October – Sol Bar, Sunshine Coast
Thursday 2 November – UOW, Wollongong
Saturday 4 November – Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
Thursday 9 November – Transit Bar, Canberra
Friday 10 November – Howler, Melbourne
Saturday 11 November – The Zoo, Brisbane
Purchase tickets here.