With their catchy new single ‘Fever Dreams’ out today, we thought it was time you get to know Brisbane’s own combination of alt-rock, punk, and power-pop: WALKEN.
Formed of three pals who met up at numerous gigs in Brisbane back in the day, WALKEN is a force to be reckoned with, releasing their latest single ‘Fever Dreams’ today.
Powered by an immense combination of both punk and alt-rock, with a little power-pop thrown into the mix, this new tune from WALKEN marks an incredible follow up to their single ‘Regular Human Person’ which released earlier this year.
The new track, out today, is a catchy four-minute tune that brings the best of three genres together, diving more and more into a pop-driven bass while still nodding to their signature punk sounds.
On the release, frontman Matt Cochran explains how the song came together: “I usually always write instruments first, but ‘Fever Dreams’ was completely built around a hook – the main synth line in the verses.
“Eventually I stumbled across the right chords, and the rest of the song soon followed. I came up with the verse melody before falling asleep one night – that voice memo was saved in my phone as ‘Rivers Cuomo thing kinda’, because it reminded me of Green Album era Weezer.”
Lyrically, ‘Fever Dreams’ came together following “an ongoing casual relationship” Matt held with a friend of his.
“I personally had only been in one proper relationship, whereas she was a few years older than me and had a lot more experience in being open, communicative and romantic with people. So, it’s basically about falling for someone who is showing you the ropes of how to be romantically vulnerable and honest. It’s also wrapped in a lot of metaphors as well.”
With this band rising in all things good, including their own spot on the Brisbane leg of Good Things Festival, while also supporting The Bennies and The Smith Street Band in addition to their own Aussie headlining tour, we thought it was high time you got to know this trio of buds.
Check out ‘Fever Dreams’ by WALKEN:
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**WARNING: THIS INTERVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS OF THE 2017 MOVIE BABY DRIVER FOR SOME REASON**
How did your artist name come about?
Matt: Well, when the band originally started it was actually a two-piece project with me and a drummer named Joe Daley. Joe came up with the name because him and I would do awful Christopher Walken impressions and find it hilarious, we’d quote the Goodnight Moon reading scene from The Simpsons a lot in particular. I was always terrible with deciding on band names, so it was kind of just like “yeah screw it, that’ll do” and here we are.
How would you describe your music to your grandma?
Pat: I would say that it is probably not her “cup of tea”, but it comes from a place of love. I’ve honestly never seen her listen to music in my whole life, so I wouldn’t even know what IS her “cup of tea”. Except having a cup of tea, she loves a cup of tea.
Tell us about a few of your tracks; their titles and what they’re about?
Matt: I’m not too sure what songs to talk about specifically, so I’ll just go through our current top 2 on Spotify and our new single ‘Fever Dreams’.
‘Unomi’ is a love song about falling for someone you’ve been friends with for a long time and coming to the realisation that they’re the person you want to be with. The title comes from the Japanese noun Unomi, which means swallowing or to swallow. I chose that word to substitute the name of the person I was singing about and to represent how love and affection can devour you sometimes.
‘Eagle Eye’ is a hypothetical judgement day song – like, if you’re living your life how you have been or how you currently are, how would you feel if a religious style judgement day occurred?
‘Fever Dreams’ was written after reflecting on a casual relationship with someone who was a bit older than me and more experience when it came to relationships. So, it’s basically about falling for someone who is guiding you through how to be romantically vulnerable and honest.
Check out ‘Unomi’ by WALKEN:
What do you love about your hometown?
Pat: My hometown is a small seaside town on the north coast of Tasmania. My brother and I were recently talking about it and compared it to the Iron Islands from Game of Thrones, so it’s a bit cold and grey and bleak. But I love it because it reminds me of my family and being young and happy, so I don’t mind the cold and grey at all.
Matt: Beej [drums] and I are both from a south-east area of Brisbane called the Redlands. I grew up in Capalaba, then moved to Redland Bay (both suburbs in the Redlands) whereas Beej grew up in Victoria Point (the next suburb over from Redland Bay). It’s just a nice bayside area, you can go camping on nearby islands like Stradbroke pretty easily. It’s pretty relaxed but working class, I guess.
Career highlight so far?
Matt: A personal highlight for me will always be when we opened for Violent Soho in Toowoomba. They were one of my favourite bands when I was in high school, so that was a huge moment for me to share the stage with them and share a one hitter with Henery and Tidswell. I’m not sure what’s Pat’s highlight would be though…
Pat: Meeting and talking to anyone that has experienced enjoyment out of any music I’ve been part of making or performing. Any time someone tells you how good a set was or how much they love a track or anything, it’s one of the best feelings in the world to connect with a stranger like that.
Matt: Oh, well that’s way better than my answer. Now I just seem selfish, thanks Pat.
Fave non-music hobby?
Matt: I love playing NBA 2K a lot. I used to play basketball as a kid and teenager, so I’ve always loved it. I’ve only properly gotten back into following the league and playing the video games over the past six months, though.
I also LOVE skateboarding games. I’m a huge fan of the THPS + Skate series and I’m super eager to play both SkaterXL and Session when they’re released on Xbox over the next few months. A few of our songs actually made it into the Session game soundtrack, which is a super cool thing for us.
Asides from that, I usually spend my free time watching funny social commentary videos on YouTube (like Drew Gooden, Danny Gonzales, Kurtis Conner, Eddy Burback, Gus Johnson, etc.) or just watching movies with friends.
Check out ‘Regular Human Person’ by WALKEN:
What’s on your dream rider?
Pat: Beer, Skittles, Mario Kart 64, mangos, seasons 1-9 of The X-Files.
Matt: Yeah that’s pretty solid, just add a Playstation 1 with Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 2, Season 1 & 2 of Arrested Development and some red wine.
Dream music collaboration?
Pat: Limp Bizkit and Sia.
Matt: If we’re talking about collaborating with us, it’d have to be Jeff Rosenstock or Yoni Wolf. If I’m making a dream collaboration happen, it’d be a weird supergroup consisting of Jeff Rosenstock, Yoni Wolf, Conor Oberst, Jamie T and Sean Bonnette.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Matt: I’ll be finishing my robbery related prison sentence early to be reunited with Debora, a local waitress who became the love of my life. She’ll greet me with a vintage car, that she knows I love. And we’ll spend the rest of our days together. Oh wait, sorry, that’s the ending of Edgar Wright’s Baby Driver.
What’s your go-to karaoke song?
Pat: Anything by Limp Bizkit or Sia.