The indie rockers are bringing their dark Americana sounds to Oz, so we chatted to singer Scott Paterson about Glasgow, dressing like a goth and throwing up backstage

Hi Scott, what are you up to?
We’re kind of between gigs. The next batch of stuff we’re doing is a NYE show in Edinburgh with Primal Scream, plus we all do other stuff, with other bands and artists and so on.

Why’s that? To keep it fresh?
Yeah, we’re just all into loads of different kinds of music and Glasgow is, I dunno, there’s always something really interesting going on and you know so many different musicians that it’s kind of hard not to get involved in different projects.

What is it about Glasgow?
I think Glasgow definitely attracts musicians. It’s easy to meet like-minded people and that attracts people to come to Glasgow in the first place. The amount of people I know that have moved from America or England because of the reputation that Glasgow has. It’s a very musical setting. It’s a small city as well, it’s not like moving to London where it might not be so easy to meet like-minded people. In Glasgow, if you go to the right bars and go and see certain gigs, you’ll get to know people very quickly, people that are really into the same sort of thing.

I once read about you that only Glaswegians could be so hard that they make folk music sound menacing…
Ha, I didn’t hear that. I’m semi flattered. It’s a strange thing isn’t it, it’s not like we go out of our way to sound menacing. I know that some of our music does, but it’s a weird thing being from Glasgow. I think it’s because of the reputation we’ve had in the past as maybe a violent city. Sure it has that side to it but for the most part really not, but you go to the States and people find out you’re from Glasgow and they’re like, “oh my god, you must be really hard”. I don’t know what it is, it’s just a reputation. I guess they’re stereotypes that we have to suffer.

Looking forward to Australia?
Yeah. I can’t wait to come to Australia again. I’m not just saying that. Genuinely, the last time we came, in about 2006, it was a place that we never expected to see anyway, but it was absolutely our favourite thing we’d done all year and we’d been on tour like nine months.

I hear you got taken straight to the zoo last time you arrived down under?
That was a great thing because we landed and none of us had quite dressed for the heat. We were all in black. I’ve still got photos of me in black jeans, black cowboy boots, black shirt, my hair’s all greased back, sunglasses on.

We just got straight off the plane and the promoter was like, “no, you’re not going to sleep, we’re going to take you to a koala sanctuary”. So there’s pictures of us sweating in the heat of the Australian summer feeding these little baby kangaroos while looking like pale, skinny, Glaswegian goths.

Do Aussies give you much stick for sharing a name with one of their 80s soap operas?
Not really. We get it everywhere. When we started the band I didn’t even remember the show. Then someone mentioned it to us and I was like, “ahhh, they’ll never remember that”. But sure enough it always comes up. Least we’re not called Home and Away.

You’re renowned for your energetic and immersive gigs…
Bang on. That’s exactly what they are. We all put everything really into the show. I sweat like hell. Every little bit of energy I’ve got from the day is just put into the show. You’re flinging stuff around the stage, you’re screaming your heart out, it’s a full-on kind of thing.

Is it surreal playing shows jetlagged?
Jetlag’s a funny thing. I remember the first show in Brisbane was really weird because we were all feeling sick from the jetlag, but you’re also really amped up because you’re in Australia. We never thought we’d come here and it’s hot and the people are cool. So you’ve got all this adrenalin running through you while your body is trying to shut you down and go to sleep. It was quite a trip. You’re on stage feeling this mixture of natural chemicals. I do remember Brisbane. That was the hottest show any of us have ever played and I remember Dave, our drummer, actually came of stage and was scarlet because there was no air conditioning. We were being called on for an encore but he was being sick with the heat, spewing all over the backstage.

Sons & Daughters play Adelaide (Jan 11), Sydney (Jan 12), Melbourne (Jan 13) and
Perth (Jan 14).[]