Interview: Cool Sounds on bringing effortless Nashville cool to Bendigo in honour of Elvis Presley

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Interview: Cool Sounds on bringing effortless Nashville cool to Bendigo in honour of Elvis Presley

Words by Alex Callan

Melbourne guitar-pop band Cool Sounds will bring their effortless Nashville cool that’s full of poetic lyricism, whammy-county guitar and Randy Newman-esque melodies to Bendigo.

For the last few years, Cool Sounds have been a staple of the Melbourne music scene.

With their 2018 album ‘Cactus County’ winning over listens due to its unique blend of indie-rock, pop and alt-country and their 2019 release ‘More To Enjoy’ receiving a nomination for ‘Best Independent Country Album’ at the AIR Awards, it seems fairly evident that as a group, they are becoming quite celebrated.

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Now, Burning Love at The Engine Room will give them a chance to showcase the material off their newest album ‘Bystander’ (a nine-track album more implanted in the band’s alt-country subcurrent than ever before), whilst at a new contemporary event celebrating The King, Elvis Presley. 

“That’ll be really exciting,” states the group’s Saxophonist Pierce Morton.  

“It’s got a lot of great artists playing those weekends. And it’s fun to have that kind of context of Elvis while you’re playing original songs. It should be good fun.”

With Gabriella Cohen and Freya Josephine Hollick also playing sets as part of the month-long event traversing the genres that the King helped to define, Cool Sounds will be donning the stage on Saturday the 11th of June. And whilst their set is predominantly originals, Morton did give an indication that there may be a cheeky cover thrown in.

“Playing together and doing covers of other people’s songs just has such an element of  playfulness. That’s a big part of Cool Sounds in general, just keeping it fun. But we may be playing some other people’s songs, and having a tonne of fun doing it, all whilst hopefully adding a Cool Sounds touch to all the classics that people know.”

“But doing an Elvis cover in 2022 is kind of interesting, because they’re songs that everyone is aware of, so you would have to put your own spin to it and make it your own because everyone’s already heard those songs before. But I think that’s really hard not to completely embody the artist. With any cover you’re trying to replicate that artist in a way, but it still has to be your own.” 

On the night, Cool Sounds songwriter/vocalist Dainis Lacey will also join The Burning Lovers on the night as part of their special ‘Elvis Tribute’ set, featuring musicians from Cosmic Psychos, Bluestown Junction, Ramble Town, Benny and the Flybynighters and The Quarry Hillbillies, who have come together for this special series to celebrate the music of the King.


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When asked if he thinks Elvis has had an influence on his own music, he said, “I think in a way Elvis had an influence on artists just being a kind of interesting person himself. He’s entered a lot of musical spheres in a roundabout way. So I guess it’s kind of interesting that everyone knows who he is and his songs. It’s kind of just something on the periphery that is just embedded in what we listen to every day.”

With a handful of members heading overseas later this year to tour with their side project, Partner Look, this may well be one of the last chances you get to catch Cool Sounds in 2022. So make sure you get down to Bendigo’s Engine Room for their Burning Love Event.

“I think it’s gonna be a lot of fun, says Morton, “ I’m really looking forward to playing in Bendigo.”

Burning Love starring Cool Sounds will take place at The Engine Room, 58 View Street, Bendigo on Saturday, June 11. Tickets and further information via the Burning Love website

This article was made in partnership with Hear Them Holler and Bendigo Venues & Events.