Ghost in the Machine took out the Eastern Metro Regional Final last year and are now on their way to the big stage for the Push Start Grand Final at St Kilda Festival!
What’s the name of your band, who’s in it and where are you all from?
We’re called Ghost in The Machine. We’re a five piece from the Eastern suburbs of Melbourne, made up of Sophie Chauhan, Ben Rizio, Alex Siderov, Liam O’Luanaigh and Marc Scollo.
Briefly tell us the story behind your band and how long you’ve been making music and writing songs?
We’ve been a band for a little over two years now, but most of us have been playing together in different line-ups for a while. Alex, Liam and Marc go to the same school and have been playing together casually for years. Marc had also been playing with Ben and Sophie for a while, so merging the two groups together was really easy. We quickly got to work and as we started writing our own songs and playing gigs we gathered a great reception from our friends, releasing our first EP ‘Seasons’ in June 2016.
What are your band’s musical influences? Have they evolved from when the band first started out?
As a band our taste is pretty diverse, we all have really different personal influences and listen to different music in general. This is a pretty important part of what makes us as a band, as we try to focus on blending all our individual approaches rather than following a specific style or genre. That being said, there are a few that we’re all big fans of. We really enjoy Last Dinosaurs, Radiohead, RÜFÜS, Foals, Tame Impala, Neon Indian and other bands like that. Bands that combine great production with great song-writing and musicianship to create really immersive and creative music that change what we think rock or pop music is supposed to sound like.
Which Regional Final did you win, and how was the FReeZA Push Start competition experience for you all?
The Push Start competition has been amazing for us. It’s definitely pushed us to improve our performances and really think about our live shows a lot more critically. We knew the competition would be tough (which it definitely was!) so winning the Eastern Metro Regional Final was a complete shock to us.
You’ll now be battling it out with eight other bands at the Grand Final at The Push Stage at St Kilda Festival 2017 for a pretty sweet prize pack. Which prize excites you most and why?
The most exciting prize to us would have to be the Jack the Bear mastering session. Tony Mantz is an absolute legend and it’d be amazing to meet him and learn from him. Not to mention getting our EP mastered by him would definitely take it to the next level.
What were your favourite songs or albums for 2016? What music are you most looking forward to next year?
Radiohead’s A Moon Shaped Pool is probably our favourite album of 2016. It’s pretty hard for a Radiohead release not to be an instant favourite. We’re all pretty big fans of electronic music so Kaytranada’s 99.9%, and RÜFÜS’ Bloom are also some of our favourites. We’re also all going to the Porter Robinson and Madeon show together so we’re all really excited for that. Song of the year would have to be Tommy Cash’s Winaloto. As far as 2017 goes we’re all pretty keen for new albums from Flying Lotus and Asa, and fingers crossed we hear something from Last Dinosaurs!
Where have you performed? What are your favourite shows to play at?
We’ve performed at Yah Yah’s, The Gasometer, The Bendigo, The Channel at the Arts Centre, some underage shows and a few other pubs and bars. Minus18 have been great to us and hooked us up with some great opportunities over the past year or so which are always really fun and a great crowd. Last year we played Minus18’s SSGD Formal at the St Kilda Town Hall to around 600 people, which was a huge step up for us. Our favourite gigs are the all-ages shows, most of our friends and fans are under 18 and we love having them come along.
If you had unlimited amounts of money, what would be your dream gig or tour?
If we had unlimited money (and unlimited fans) we would love to play a show at Red Rocks in Colorado, it’s just a really unique and beautiful venue. We would also love to go on a festival tour, like Laneway. Something like that would be awesome.
What’s the plan for your band in 2017, what will you be doing or working on?
This year we’ll be releasing our second EP, which we’ve just gotten out of the studio recording! Aside from that we hope to be gigging regularly and of course working on some new material. We won’t say too much but we have a lot planned!
Where can fans find out more about you and upcoming shows?
You can keep up to date with us at: facebook.com/gitmachine