Seasoned folk darlings Tinpan Orange have today announced their fifth studio album, Love Is A Dog (set for release April 8), alongside its breathtaking first single, Rich Man (out February 12). The virtuosic trio will hit the road to celebrate the release kicking off at the Fairbridge Folk Festival (WA) on April 15, moving through Tasmania, Melbourne, Mullumbimby, Brisbane, Sydney, Darwin, Fremantle and finishing up in Adelaide on June 5.
Over a year in the making, Love Is A Dog is a luscious and intricate concept album with soaring string arrangements, thoughtful, sparse guitar hooks and Emily Lubitz's delicate, show-stopping voice. Produced by the band in collaboration with Harry James Angus (The Cat Empire, Jackson Jackson), and mixed by the renowned Adam Selzer (M.Ward, She & Him, Jolie Holland) at Type Foundry Studios in Portland, the album presents a vulnerability and a beauty that captivates and inspires. Love Is A Dog explores the paralysis of privilege, the precariousness of having too much to lose and the pain of loving someone too much.
The stunning lead single, Rich Man is inspired by a sad, over-satiated character who is surrounded by great wealth but locked into a loveless relationship. It has a dark, rambling quality, championed by Lubitz's first ever recorded exploration of her falsetto range. 'When I first heard the final mix, I had the feeling that it could have been used as a Bond theme if David Lynch was directing," says guitarist Jesse Lubitz. The single is accompanied by a simple yet intriguing video. Directed by Jam Nawaz of Jam Design (Remi, Tully on Tully) the clip depicts mysterious hands thrusting fur, gold and pearls upon a wealthy housewife (played by Emily Lubitz), until the very end, where she removes all in defiance, unadorned and free.
To celebrate the release of Love Is A Dog, Tinpan Orange will embark on a national tour in April and May of 2016. Enthusiastic about the current lineup of the band, Emily Lubitz says: 'We are enjoying playing as a trio at the moment...I like singing in that space and I love to hear Alex (Burkoy) fill some of the spaces with his strings. Our shows are intimate, and when I'm feeling safe and sound, I will tell a few stories and share some thoughts…and Alex might even tell a joke!"
Tinpan Orange are Emily Lubitz, Jesse Lubitz and Alex Burkoy, with the in-studio help of Daniel Farrugia (Angus & Julia Stone, Missy Higgins) on drums and Jules Pascoe (Clairy Browne & The Bangin' Racketts) on bass guitar.
Tinpan Orange -Love Is A Dog' Album Tour
Fri 15 Apr Sun 17 Apr I Fairbridge Folk Festival, Fairbridge Wa
Tickets available from http://fairbridgefestival.com.au/wp/buy/tickets/
Fri 29 Apr I The Grand Poobah, Hobart Tas
Tickets available at www.tinpanorange.com
Sun 1 May I Fresh On Charles, Launceston Tas
Tickets available at www.tinpanorange.com
Sat 07 May I Toff In Town, Melbourne Vic
Tickets available from http://thetoffintown.com/ 9639 8770
Sun 8 May I Rattlers Hotel, Wallan Vic
Tickets available at www.tinpanorange.com
Sat 14 May I Civic Hall, Mullumbimby Nsw
Tickets available from www.redsquaremusic.com.au/
Sun 15 May I Old Museum, Brisbane Qld
Tickets available from http://oldmuseum.org/
Fri 20 May I The Vanguard, Sydney Nsw
Tickets available from http://www.thevanguard.com.au/
Sat 28 May I The Railway Club, Darwin Nt
Tickets available from http://www.darwinrailwayclub.com/
Sat 4 June – Fly By Night, Fremantle Wa
Tickets available from www.flybynight.org/
Sun 5 June – The Wheatsheaf, Adelaide Sa I 4.30pm
Tickets available from www.wheatsheafhotel.com.au/
Question:How would you describe your music?
Jesse Lubitz: I'd call it melodramatic folk. We write songs about things we experience and stories that we hear.
Question:What was the main inspiration behind Rich Man?
Jesse Lubitz: Rich Man is a cautionary tale. The paralysis of privilege is a theme that runs through our new album and this song gets the ball rolling. It's a story about an over indulged wealthy man and a warning to those who come to know him. When we got the first mix back, I thought it could be a Bond movie theme if David Lynch was the director.
Question:What can you tell us about Love Is A Dog?
Jesse Lubitz: Love is A Dog is an album that we're really proud to be putting out into the world in a couple of months (April 8th). We went into the studio with the idea that we wanted to make a coherent album. Some people have said that the era of the album is over and that music is consumed in singles and small doses – we didn't listen to this. We all still love listening to albums – being taken on a journey by a band. I think Love Is A Dog is one such journey and I can't wait to put it out into the world.
Question:What should we expect from the upcoming tour?
Jesse Lubitz: Our upcoming tour will take in all Capital cities of Australia and most Territories. We'll be going back to some of our favourite stomping grounds and reaching out to some new places along the way. We've taken the past couple of years off touring (my sister Emily who is the singer in the band has two young kids and I just had my first child last year so we had some time away from touring to write and record an album and be with our families). We're really excited to be getting back on the road and playing these shows.
Question: Did you have any pre-conceived ideas about the music industry?
Jesse Lubitz: I think I had the usual pre conceived ideas about the music industry – glitz and bright lights and all that. The reality is far less glamorous! I always knew that it is a difficult industry to get ahead in, but there is also a great community in the Australian music industry.
Question: Do you write your own songs? What's your inspiration?
Jesse Lubitz: Yes, I write songs. My inspiration ranges from personal experience to stories I hear or read about.
Question: What music/artists do you listen to when you are not playing your own?
Jesse Lubitz: So many! The albums that I've been going back too over the past couple of years include Husky - Rucker's Hill, Neil Young – Harvest, Jess Ribeiro – Kill It Yourself, Father John Misty – I Love You Honeybear to name a few!
Question: What's next? Tour/Album/Single?
Jesse Lubitz: We've just released a single, Rich Man, and we've announced our album release and national tour in April/May. We'll be heading around the entire country and we have plans to head over to Europe in the second part of the year.
Question: Was there a moment you contemplated throwing in the towel?
Jesse Lubitz: Yes. I contemplate throwing in the towel from time to time. I think this is healthy. It's a hard business and it's worth checking in regularly to see if you've still go the passion and energy for it. I'm glad that we've never thrown in the towel, but I think it's important to know when to walk away from anything.
Question: Do you prefer performing live or recording?
Jesse Lubitz: I like both for different reasons. Recording is more comfortable – we do this near our home and at our own time. Touring is a buzz – performing gives a rush and I love most aspects of traveling, but it can get tiring after a while.
Question: What/who was your inspiration to go into the music industry?
Jesse Lubitz: I think my first musical inspiration was probably my dad. He had an old acoustic Fender guitar that he kept in a hard case in my mum and dad's wardrobe. I have memories of lying next to the case playing hide and seek and I remember the smell of the guitar when he opened the case up. My parents and some of their other musical friends would have soirees from time to time and I remember lying in bed and songs would drift up and keep me awake in the best possible way.
Question: What is the biggest challenge you have faced along the way to your musical success?
Jesse Lubitz: This is a big question – there are many challenges to getting where we want to get in the industry. From a personal perspective, I think the most difficult thing for me to overcome has been my shyness and performance anxiety. There have been times where I've found it extremely difficult to get up on stage in front of a big audience and I've worked hard on feeling better about performing and comfortable on stage. From a professional perspective, there have been times where I've found it challenging to navigate the path of making something I'm passionate about (music) into my business and mixing passion and money.
Question: What's a typical day like?
Jesse Lubitz: I work full time at the Australian Independent Record Labels Association so a typical day is get up, go for a run and have breakfast with my family and head off to work for the day – most nights I work on a wide range of band related things – rehearsing, recording, performing, band admin (there's a LOT of band admin, it's actually never ending!), and talking band strategy with my wife, who is also my manager!
Question: What has been your favourite part of becoming a music artist?
Jesse Lubitz: Getting to travel around Australia and the world to perform in beautiful places with interesting people is my favourite part of the job.
Question: If you could collaborate with another artist, who would it be?
Jesse Lubitz: Father John Misty, or maybe Kanye West. Yes, Kanye…
Question: Can you tell us 5 things required for a happy healthy & enjoyable life?
Jesse Lubitz: Balance, love, hope, MUSIC, and family
Question: What is the story behind the band's name?
Jesse Lubitz: We just made it up one night, with a bunch of us throwing words out and seeing what stuck. We used to make up stories about how it has a deep significance, like our grandmother used to make orange marmelade in a tinpot when she lived in Africa or that it was a term made up by some song writers in Tin Pan Ally in New York in the 30's that described the moment when you are writing a song and you can't find a rhyme (because orange doesn't rhyme with anything). But they were all lies.
Interview by Brooke Hunter