Perth’s industrial metal band Sparrow have just released a new single ‘Machina’ and I am totally digging their sound.
I recently had a chat with Clint, Sean, and Rob about the new song and what else they have planned for us.
Hi Guys thanks for taking the time for a chat. Who are Sparrow?
We’ll give you the short history of Sparrow!!
Clint: Sean and I first met about 15years ago. We were in different bands at the time. Sean’s brother asked us to do a soundtrack for a TAFE film which was kind of grindy dirty pop stuff. We did that and from there we figured we’d start a band together at some point. Jase got involved and another guy Tristan who was the old bass player and we were called I Said The Sparrow. We were very much a pop rock kind of band at that stage.
Sean: Yeah think Good Charlotte crossed with Amy Meredith with a little bit of a dark edge!!
Clint: It was a combination of sounds, but it still had a heaviness about it. About that time all the metalcore bands were around and we just didn’t fit in at all. They were looking at us like ‘what the hell is this about’!! We played with more intensity than they did live so that was the one redeeming factor for us. We released an album at the end of 2013, and we got a bit of traction from that, but we wanted to change up our sound. Sean and I have always been fans of bands like NIN, Marilyn Manson and an Aussie band called Jerk who unfortunately aren’t around anymore.
We started to experiment with some more industrial stuff in about 2014. We released an EP in 2018, Digital People. That took some time for us to put together. We didn’t really do much with that – we played a few shows. Then a few of us had some personal stuff happening and we didn’t get together again for well over a year.
From there I started jamming with Rob and another guy Anthonywho I have known for a long time. I asked them if they wanted to join Sparrow because I hadn’t done anything with it for a while, luckily they were all keen to get into it and that was how these new songs came about. That’s the short story!
So there is all new material. Not stuff that you had previously written?
Clint: The songs we have coming out now are all less than a year old. We do have some older material that we will release I imagine but it’s all been refined and updated. Now Rob is involved he’s really good with the synth. Jacko is a really good bass player and he has brought something else to the table with that. It’s all coming together well. We are stoked on the new single.
Sean: Basically all of us are song writers so its definitely been a bit of an adjustment to work like this since the new guys came on board, but in the same breath all of the songs are really different from each other. We were just like fuck it there’s no rule, we can all contribute to whatever songs there are and however they come out they come out! The way that we have been working everyone always contributes once the song is there, so it all sounds like Sparrow in the end anyway.
Its been really refreshing to see bands experiment and record what they want
Sean: I think that’s the important thing, you can never try to double guess the audience or the market that you are heading in to, so you just have to put something out that hits the spot for you. We sometimes have tracks where we don’t really know how they are going to fit in, but it ends up finding its way. You just treat each track like its own beast.
So what’s the story behind Machina?
Sean: I don’t like to go too deep into the songs because people can take away their own meaning from it. On a surface level it kind of sounds like a really sci-fi spacey track. I like to write lyrics metaphorically so its not really about a space thing its more around Machina is like a machine. Things are on auto pilot so on a deeper level its more around how our lives are almost on like a train track if we don’t actually sit back and look at how we think about things. That all kind of stems from experiences in our childhood and stuff. If you take a step back and look at how your thinking you can see where your life is going.
So you have some material to release. Are we getting an album or an EP?
We’re sitting on close to 20 tracks that we are sort of chewing on. I think our plan is to just keep putting out as much music as we can. I dare say eventually it will be released as a full-length album, that’s what we are aiming for. We literally just keep writing, fortunately each of us has our own studio set up so we go away and tinker and then come together and keep working the songs. We are lucky in that we have a lot of resources so that we can keep creating at a high level really. So far we have been doing all our own production, even down to the video, we work on that all together as well. It’s looking at every part of the art work as it hits the audience and controlling every part of it that we can to keep it all cohesive and a good representation of the band and what we are doing. I think it will probably be more than an album, we will have a lot of video content and different things coming out along the way.
Who are your influences?
Clint: Its really varied. Sean and I have always like pop stuff and Jase our guitarist likes metal and I’m not really sure about Anthony he just loves everything! In terms of bands I discovered a band called Nightclub a few years back. They’re a really simple synth -pop band that are based in LA and they’re really cool. Another band called 3Teeth are a newer industrial band that have been doing really well the past couple of years. Powerman 5000 just released a track a few months ago that was really cool.
Our sound isn’t going to remain industrial. The next track that we release sounds nothing like Machina at all, it’s completely different. It will still sound like Sparrow because of the way we produce our own music. Like Sean was saying earlier because our influences are so varied it’s going to come through in our sound and we don’t want to be put into a specific category. I think in 6 months’ time once we’ve got 5 or 6 tracks out people are going to go ‘well what the fuck kind of band are they?’
It’s good to bring all the influences into your sound and have no limitations of what you should sound like. It’s like someone just wrote a piano melody – great that’s new song or someone just wrote some kind of hip-hop drum beat that’s a new song. That’s where it’s going for us at this point. The influences are many and varied
So who did the art work for the visual video?
Rob: That was me. We are a complete DIY band. Everything is done in-house. It keeps the whole vibe authentic too. The artwork is born from the recording process. This static video came from an idea that Clint and Sean had about animating the original artwork. We put that together and it means that we can work quickly and keep it all in that one discourse, that one conversation.
You guys have supported some pretty cool bands too!
Yeah that was a long time ago. We haven’t actually played a show since 2018. Our last show that we played in May 2018 we had two different band members. During a period of time between 2013-2017 we scored some pretty sweet gigs. Also they were very varied. We supported Amy Meredith, Dead Letter Circus, Tonight Alive, Kisschasy and 12 Foot Ninja. we did the Rock the Bay festival in Melbourne and Hyperfest in Perth. Rock the Bay was such good fun. We’ve been pretty fortunate in that regard to play with some cool bands.
I asked the guys if they could tour with three other Australia bands who would they be?
The first response was Jesus Christ…. Not due to Sparrow wishing to play with him just apparently it’s a hard question…..
Clint: Sean and I would just want to play with Jerk!!
After some discussion around where they would fit into a line up due to their varied sound, and some silence….. the guys finally decided on Karnivool, Dead Letter Circus and 12 Foot Ninja
Keep your ears out for more from Sparrow as I think we are in for an exciting musical journey!
Sean Hendry – Vocals
Clint Gatter – Drums
Jase Shaw – Guitarist
Rob Buratti – Synthesiser and Guitar
Anthony Jackson – Bass
If you haven’t had a chance to check out Machina or the visual clip to go with it click on the link below!
Check out the band’s socials here: