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The Medics

“The Medics don’t simply make music – they move people.” Time Off Magazine

 

Music is at its best when it’s unpredictable. When it comes packed with surprises, the unexpected. Truly great music has always been about challenging convention, the ‘didn’t see that coming moment’. It’s a tradition that’s at the heart of The Medics – as both people and as artists.  It’s a sound that is all over the band’s stunning debut album Foundations – instores and online 18 May 2012 (Footstomp/Warner). Overflowing with ideas and emotive intent, the record captures a band that has truly made good on the standout promise they have shown since day one.

The band’s history of confounding expectations starts in Cairns, far north Queensland. A postcard tropical paradise, it is an outdoors town of fishing, swimming, running in the summer storms – not the kind of place one would normally associate with the cinematic rock The Medics make today.  But it was here, just a few years back, that this collection of cousins and friends came together to make music for the first time. From the get go The Medics were never about killing time or breaking the regional town lethargy. They’ve always wanted to write, to do something more than simply messing around in a jam room.

While originally a five piece, the core of the band has always been cousins Kahl Wallace and Jhindu Lawrie, alongside friends Andrew Thomson and Charles Thomas. Quickly making an impression on the nascent Cairns music scene, the band soon found themselves playing any show they could find.  This was a band constantly on the move from day one – both literally and creatively. Their first recording session turned out an EP that was soon overhauled by a seemingly endless fountain of new songs as the band began finding their sound, and flexing their newfound creative confidence.

The Medics are the first to admit their take on soaring rock didn’t always fit with their home-town scene. They were always on their own path and pretty soon, bigger opportunities started calling. The two-day road trips to Brisbane became more frequent and when they were invited to showcase at the 2009 BIGSOUND music industry conference, things really took off.

Having convened in the home studio of respected engineer Mark Myers (The Middle East) the band soon took the wraps off their first official release – 2010’s This Boat We Call Love EP. ‘Unearthed’ by national broadcaster Triple J, the band went on to collect a swag of rave reviews and accolades – including earning spots in the finals of the annual Queensland (Q Song) and International Songwriting competitions.

The EP also provided the band with the fuel they needed to launch a full scale touring assault and since its release they’ve hit the road across the country. They’ve played alongside Birds of Tokyo, The Grates, Gypsy and the Cat, The Jezabels and The Panics while also turning in highlight sets at the Dreaming, Woodford, Peats Ridge, St Kilda and Groovin’ the Moo festivals. Just this past summer alone, the band put in show stopping sets at Laneway, Big Day Out, Perth International Arts Festival, Woodford, and Festival of the Sun – with an appearance at the 2012 Splendour in the Grass just around the corner.

Live, The Medics are truly something to behold. An exhilarating blur of passion and movement, the band bring an all-too-rare sense of urgency to their songs that underpin Kahl’s emotive delivery. It’s an intoxicating spectacle and has seen them quickly become one of the country’s most talked-about new outfits. And anyone who has caught their live show wouldn’t have been surprised when they collected the Band of the Year award at the 2010 Deadly Awards. 

Capturing that live energy and intensity was the driving motivation behind Foundations. The tracks, recorded by producer and confidante Yanto Browning (The Jungle Giants, Tara Simmons)  – capture The Medics’ growth as artists, individuals, and a band. While The Medics will tell you they are still exploring exactly what their ‘sound’ is, these songs are brimming with confidence – a kind of reassured energy and scope that only comes when four people work as one. Layers of atmospheric guitars to rumbling bottom end, each track is its own little world. But always front and centre of it all there’s ‘that’ voice. Fragile one minute, on the edge the next - it speaks volumes about the band’s commitment to make music underpinned by honesty and integrity. 

The reaction from critics and fans alike has been overwhelming. Recently named Triple J “Next Crop” artists the singles ‘Beggars’, ‘Joseph’ and, most recently, ‘Griffin’ have all scored high-rotation on the national broadcaster while J Mag describes the new album as an “…epic vision realised”.

Just in their early 20s – and now permanently located in Brisbane – The Medics know that while this is their most complete record to date, it’s just one step on their creative evolution. They’re in this for all the right reasons

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