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Return to Youth Interview

August 22, 2012 by Erin M

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I met up with the lovely Marites, Matt and Alan of Return to Youth to talk about their new single ‘Sail Away’.


How are you feeling about the launch for your new single ‘Sail Away’?

Matt – (laughs) You’re just on topic, actually.
Marites – Yeah, yesterday something happened to our drummer…
Alan – I cut my finger on a tuna can, and it was actually a really, really deep cut and I needed stitches. We tried practicing today, and I can’t… I just hope it heals up before the gig.
Alan – Other than that though, we’ve been so pumped.
Marites – It’s the first one we’ve organized on our own as well, so it’s really exciting. We’ve been organizing posters and whatnot.
Alan – It’s been good for us. We’ve been working really hard in the past five or six months on pushing all our promo stuff.


What do you do before you go on stage?

Marites – Because we play gigs with lots of different bands, we just watch them and get really excited because they’re awesome. And then we go on and hope we’re as awesome!
Matt – Yeah it’s not like we huddle or anything…

So no rituals? I know there’s some celebrity who has to sort through M&Ms before they go onstage…so no M&Ms?

Marites – No, but we might start!


What’s the story behind your new single ‘Sail Away’?

Alan – Redemption…
Marites – Every song that I write is based on a bunch of different emotions that I’m feeling at the time. There’s a lot of confusion, a lot of excitement, just a lot of emotion that I’m trying to make sense of. So in this song it’s about a relationship that’s not good for you, that you know is not good for you but you’re in this constant cycle. It’s trying to let go of that relationship, it’s saying to that person that you’re going away from “come back when you’re better and when you’re ready”.


When will you be releasing your next EP?

All – November.
Matt – we’ve been recording and we’re still mixing the songs for the EP, but hopefully November.


How will this EP differ from your last one?

Alan – The last one, to put it bluntly, was recorded pretty much in my bedroom with my sound engineering skills, which go as far as tweaking things and panning. This one has been recorded by friends, but it’s more professionally mastered and mixed and everyone who participated knew what they were doing.
Matt – And I think in terms of the songs, the sound has become more complex and our sound has developed more. Our ideas have developed, and you can hear that transition.
Alan – It started off as more rock-pop sort of stuff. It’s still poppy, but it’s got this diverse kind of vibe to it now.
Matt – There are more harmonies to it now.
Alan – Yeah, probably because our musical interests have changed over the years. We started off with Chili Peppers and now we listen to a whole bunch of other stuff.


What do you listen to now?

Marites – Florence and the Machine…
Matt – Yeah I think Florence and Kimbra, like the big vocals and the harmonies and all that, have definitely influenced the new EP. And the Jezabels with their drumming, and the way they fill out their sound with bass. We get a few comparisons with the Jezabels…we don’t really see it, but other people seem to.


Where did the name “Return to Youth” come from?

Marites – I was trying to think what music meant to us as a band, and I think the general feeling that we get when we play music and create our songs and experiment and what-not, is that it brings us back to that feeling of youthfulness, of excitement and the overall discovery that you feel when you’re a kid and you’re just in awe of everything.


How was RTY born?

Alan – Back in high school, we were all in music class together, and I think after hearing all of our musical abilities, we had it in mind that we wanted to start something, but we didn’t do that until after school.
Matt – We did some year 12 talent quests and stuff, and we wanted to continue something after high school.

How would you describe RTY’s sound and style?

Matt – Each person brings different influences and different stuff to the table. Even in the way we each play, it’s all different…
Marites – We each bring what we love about what we listen to to our band and that creates a whole different sound.


So…why make music?

Marites – Wow.

I know, it’s a big question…

Matt – Yeah… I think when you have a good practice or a good gig, you get that feeling at the end of it… it just feels really good to play together, and to create. When you’ve come up with a song with each other, and you’ve figured out your parts, it’s pretty exciting.
Alan – It’s a form of creativity…
Matt – Yeah, creating things together and being like-minded…
Alan – Yeah, feeding off each other, definitely. We’ve all built a relationship, musically as well. So Matt and I without even talking with each other will come up with something. Same with Marites. We just work together so well and I think that’s the best part of it.




Return to Youth launched their new single at the Grace Darling Hotel in Collingwood on Wednesday 15th August.

The views expressed in this article are the views of the author and not necessarily the views of Melting Pot.

Author Details

Erin M

Erin M is a Monash graduate of journalism and metalsmithing. She plans on learning as many languages as she can and spends most of her time writing, working/sitting in cafes, and planning which music festival to go to next.

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