The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - FRONT PAGE - NOEL MEN­GEL

The way they saw it, An­gus and Ju­lia Stone were not a band any more.

They had made two al­bums and achieved more than they ever imag­ined was pos­si­ble – top­ping the chart with Big Jet Plane, ARIA awards and a smash hit with 2010 al­bum Down the Way.

It all started rather ca­su­ally. At 18, An­gus made a demo for a record company in Syd­ney.

He brought along his sis­ter, two years older, for vo­cal support. Ju­lia pitched in some of her songs, too. And away they went, al­ways writ­ing sep­a­rately, per­form­ing and record­ing to­gether.

But by 2012 they were both com­mit­ted to sep­a­rate ca­reers, Ju­lia re­leas­ing her sec­ond solo al­bum By the Horns; An­gus fol­low­ing up with his Smoking

Gun al­bum. Yet here we are, two years later, and the sib­lings are in the of­fices of their Syd­ney record company ex­plain­ing how con­tent they were on their sep­a­rate paths – and the ten­ta­tive steps that led them back to­gether.

An­gus ex­plains: “When Ju­lia and I were on stage to­gether, some­times I would drift off and see some­one in the crowd. I would won­der what it would be like to be that per­son, leav­ing your body and watch­ing from the out­side in.’’

It fi­nally hap­pened in De­cem­ber 2012, when An­gus and Ju­lia, both pro­mot­ing solo al­bums, were booked to play sep­a­rate sets at Wood­ford Folk Fes­ti­val.

“I got to fi­nally live that ex­pe­ri­ence. I saw Ju­lia play­ing her show in the am­phithe­atre at Wood­ford to 30,000 peo­ple. And it was mind­blow­ing. I was re­ally touched,’’ An­gus, 28, says.

Then An­gus walked out on stage and joined his sis­ter to per­form the song Santa Mon­ica


“It was mag­i­cal,’’ An­gus says.

Ju­lia thought so, too. “We both had such great sets that night,’’ Ju­lia says. “It was, ‘You can’t top that’. Then An­gus came on and we sang to this mas­sive crowd and you could hear a pin drop.’’

Rick Ru­bin does not set bound­aries on the kind of mu­si­cians he works with. He only cares that the mu­sic is great. He has pro­duced records by artists as di­verse as The Beastie Boys, Johnny Cash, Jay Z, Neil Di­a­mond, Kanye West and Black Sabbath.

Ru­bin heard An­gus and Ju­lia’s mu­sic play­ing at a party and con­tacted them.

He of­fered to pro­duce them … if they worked to­gether.

Ru­bin spent some time with An­gus and Ju­lia, sep­a­rately, in Los An­ge­les, get­ting to know them, chat­ting about life and mu­sic. Much of a pro­ducer’s job is as a psy­chol­o­gist who works to en­sure his charges make the best record they can.

He told them he felt like they had not made the record they were ca­pa­ble of yet.

And the re­sult? They made the record of their lives.

An­gus and Ju­lia Stone is go­ing to be in a lot of crit­ics’ best al­bums of 2014 lists. An­gus & Ju­lia Stone play The Gold Coast Arts Cen­tre on Sun­day.

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