COVID restrictions have impacted every artist in a multitude of different ways. For Sydney band Crocodylus these impacts have been simultaneously “devastating” and “really productive” according to drummer Mikel Salvador.
At the beginning of the year Crocodylus were off to a red hot start as they were riding the wave of momentum generated by their European tour alongside The Chats at the end of 2019. Just prior to lockdown Crocodylus were in the midst of a string of sellout shows, including selling out a 550 capacity venue in their home of the Northern Beaches, so when the lockdown came into effect they took it quite hard.
“We were gutted,” explained Salvador. “Once we got a taste of touring Europe with The Chats we wanted to get back out their and lineup our own touring. But obviously we couldn’t do that.”
While this had them feeling down initially Crocodylus chose not to wallow in their sorrow and instead saw the break away from touring as an opportunity to experiment, expand their influences and record more music.
“We went away to a secluded location on a farm to write music and had a really productive trip. We wrote around 16 songs, which now just need to be fleshed out and finalised for our upcoming debut album.”
The fact that Crocodylus have built a fan base and toured Europe without releasing a debut record yet is another interesting part of their story. When asked why they chose to go this route Salvador revealed they were perhaps “scared” to release their debut album.
“I guess we were just scared, but I don’t even know why. People see your debut as this big thing but the debut will be followed by another album and then another after that hopefully. So we’re trying not to get too precious about it, but it’s hard not to. Sometimes we let it get to our heads a bit by thinking the debut has to be sick.”
For this reason the time away from touring was perhaps more beneficial than they otherwise may realise. For Crocodylus, who Salford says have a unique way of working, this time period allowed them to really experiment and expand their influences ahead of their debut album’s release.
“We have a really interesting way of working where we’ll go through periods of doing nothing and then suddenly we’ll rip off huge chunks of it,” said Salvador. “We’ve started to add synthesisers and samples, which is really cool and something we hadn’t done before, so we’re really excited about it.”
Although they are experimenting with a new sound and new influences Salvador assures fans this debut album will remain true to form in that it will be “disgusting, sloppy and grungy.”
Nov 21. Oxford Art Factory, 38-46 Oxford St, Darlinghurst. $29.58+b.f. Tickets & Info: www.oxfordartfactory.com