Putting tur­moil to har­mony

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - WHAT’S ON -

WHILE singer-song­writ­ers of­ten strug­gle to find new ma­te­rial af­ter their first EP, Guineafowl had the op­po­site prob­lem.

The Aus­tralian artist’s life fell apart, just as his ca­reer took off with the re­lease of his de­but EP, Hello Anx­i­ety, in 2011.

‘‘For­tu­nately my life went re­ally, re­ally s---, right af­ter the re­lease of my first EP, ac­tu­ally di­rectly around that time,’’ Guineafowl, aka Sam Yeld­ham, says.

‘‘It was the break­down of a few re­la­tion­ships that were more than pretty im­por­tant.’’

Guineafowl (pic­tured) says it was hard enough to go through, but on top of that he was on the road tour­ing, and in­tensely – in 2011 he played 240 shows across Aus­tralia in un­der a year.

‘‘You’re meant to be think­ing and feel­ing about that EP and my life was dis­in­te­grat­ing.’’

Guineafowl says he was keen to chron­i­cle this time, chan­nelling it into mu­sic, but he couldn’t fin­ish the songs.

‘‘I had to leave the end­ing and then I was able to write about it,’’ he says.

‘‘You can’t write about the jun­gle when you’re in the mid­dle of it.’’

Un­able to sleep, he used to take to walk­ing the streets of Syd­ney.

‘‘My brain was just so over­stim­u­lated that I had to go on th­ese re­ally long walks to get ex­hausted enough to then fall asleep at night. Sounds pretty men­tal, but it worked.’’

And it even­tu­ally led to a stream of writ­ing that be­came his sec­ond EP, I Hope My City Loves Me Still. Guineafowl says the four tracks were writ­ten in the lat­ter part of this dark time in his life and com­pared to Hello Anx­i­ety, it marks a big step for­ward.

While his first EP was about fig­ur­ing out how to record mu­sic, this time around he’s con­cen­trat­ing on the song­writ­ing, the struc­ture of the EP and ex­per­i­ment­ing less.

It’s all work­ing to­wards an al­bum, which he says will fea­ture some of the more in­tense, nitty-gritty songs he wrote dur­ing his time in ‘‘the jun­gle’’, so to speak.

‘‘It’s only go­ing to get more in­tense from here,’’ he says.

Next up, Guineafowl plays a few solo gigs in Syd­ney, Bris­bane and By­ron Bay be­fore join­ing Perth rock­ers Birds of Tokyo for show in Gee­long, on the Gold Coast and in New­cas­tle and Wol­lon­gong.

‘‘I re­ally like Birds of Tokyo, but not only that, I was lis­ten­ing to them while record­ing this EP,’’ he says.

‘‘It’s pretty ex­cit­ing to tour with a big boy band like Birds of Tokyo.’’

Birds of Tokyo and Guineafowl play the Coolan­gatta Ho­tel on De­cem­ber 11. Guineafowl and Set Sail play Al­ham­bra Lounge, in Bris­bane, on De­cem­ber 12 and the Beach Ho­tel, By­ron Bay, on De­cem­ber 13. De­cem­ber 14 – New­cas­tle, Pan­thers

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