QUI­ETLY FLY­ING HIGH

Herald Sun - Hit - - COVER STORY -

MELBOURNE in­die band The Pa­per Kites’ song Bloom has hit gold sta­tus (500,000 sales) in the US, and is now closer to reach­ing the mil­lion-mark.

The band are about to em­bark on a world tour play­ing ma­jor venues across the US, Canada and Europe, many of which they’ve sold out. Yet they re­main off the radar for many; re­ly­ing on word of mouth.

“Ev­ery time we go back to the States the shows are get­ting big­ger,’’ front­man Sam Bent­ley says. “We’re play­ing Le Pois­son Rouge in New York and the Fonda Theatre in LA. I don’t think peo­ple in Aus­tralia know how it’s all go­ing but I’m happy to be qui­etly achiev­ing. Peo­ple are hear­ing our mu­sic all over the world and con­nect­ing to it. We don’t need to make a big deal out of it, it’s what we love to do and it’s great to see it grow­ing.”

Bloom, first re­leased in 2010, has had 170 mil­lion streams on Spo­tify and the video has had 20 mil­lion YouTube views.

The com­ments cap­ture peo­ple dis­cov­er­ing the song through stream­ing playlists (The Pa­per Kites’ most ef­fec­tive mar­ket­ing tech­nique), with re­marks like “came across this band by mis­take. Best mis­take I’ve ever made.”

“I’ve al­ways wanted to find this mix­ture of sad but hope­ful in our mu­sic,” Bent­ley says. “You talk to peo­ple at shows on the other side of the world and they’re so thank­ful for find­ing your mu­sic and how much it means to them.”

“I know for my­self there’s bands I lis­ten to that I find a lot of healing in. To be able to be that for some­one else, and have peo­ple so deeply con­nected to your mu­sic and be so pas­sion­ate about it, that’s the re­ward right there.

Af­ter two ARIA Top 20 al­bums (2013’s States and 2015’s

twelve­four), this year The Pa­per Kites re­leased two al­bums, writ­ten at the same time, but re­leased a few months apart.

On the Train Ride Home and

On the Cor­ner Where You Live were both cre­ated in New York last year (and recorded in Con­necti­cut), with Bent­ley writ­ing many of the lyrics imag­in­ing the oc­cu­pants of apart­ment build­ing.

“Hu­mans have a fas­ci­na­tion watch­ing other peo­ple go­ing about their lives,” Bent­ley says. “One (Cor­ner) is more of a band record, one is al­most like a solo record (Train), with such min­i­mal in­stru­men­ta­tion, but they both had the same lonely, ro­man­tic soli­tude, late-night feel about them. They feel like two dif­fer­ent expressions of that same feel­ing and that mood.

“There’s not a lot of room these days when you look at the av­er­age pop record to at­tempt to in­form the lis­tener of what type of al­bum is go­ing to be or set the mood in any way, it’s usu­ally straight in there with the big hits.

“I be­lieve in an al­bum as a full lis­ten­ing ex­pe­ri­ence, I wanted the op­por­tu­nity to paint a theme and give a bit of a tone of what to ex­pect.”

SEE THE PA­PER KITES, The Fo­rum, March 23. Tick­etek

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