The Australian quintet’s newest album was shaped by their time traveling on the wide-open roads of America.
The U.S. has been a shit show lately, but at least we’ve gotten something good out of it.
Big White—named after the big white house the band members met in—has been playing together for over four years. Last year on their US tour, something grew inside of them that ended up as the album Street Talk. When they returned to Sydney, Australia they went right to work and their sophomore album was released at the end of last month.
BTRtoday caught up with them at SXSW this year. After connecting over mutual friends and Lone Star beers the band gathered by the driveway to chat about their music making, playing SXSW and their love for Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers.
“We wrote a lot of them [songs] on our last American tour,” drummer Bowen Shakallis tells BTRtoday. “We were driving around in this RV for a lot of miles and a couple of songs came out of that and that’s when we started writing it.”
Guitarist Cody Munro Moore chimes in, “it’s like they [the songs] were brewing in our heads at that point, and then when we got back [to Australia] they came out of our heads and into our amps.”
Street Talk is a rock ‘n’ roll album through-and-through, but with influences from all over the place that make it surprising and fun. Their melodies are bubbly and poppy, with reminiscences of punk innovators like The Talking Heads and Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds. However, Moore and vocalist/guitarist Jack Wotton both stressed that Tom Petty was a huge influence on this album, which you can hear in the fuzzed out guitar solos and harmonized vocals.
Big White “Right Before Everything Dies”
“Our first album was very figuring out what particular sound it was,” Moore says. “Each song is very different, but now I think [our sound] is refined a bit—we know what our sort of style is, not that it’s a genre, but it’s definitely Big White when you hear it.”
Currently back in Australia, the quintet is constantly working on new music and plan on touring the US much more.
Hear tracks from Street Talk and the entire unedited interview with Big White at SXSW on this week’s The Music Meetup.