It’s been a long time coming, but after many years of waiting, cult Melbourne outfit Plaster Of Paris are set to release their long-awaited debut album, Lost Familiar, unveiling the video for new single ‘Internalise’ today.
If you’re a fan of the Australian music scene, then the Plaster Of Paris story is one that you either know quite well, or one that will come as a total surprise to you. With the seeds for the band being sewn many years ago when guitarist Sarah Blaby’s band Remake Remodel played with vocalist Zec Zechner’s Bracode in Sydney, it took a while for things to fully form.
Though a a 7″ record arrived in 2017, and a live digital EP arrived in 2020, the road to the group’s debut album has been a long process. As they explain, the original band first broke up in 2013, but after Zec and Sarah met drummer Nicola Bell, Plaster Of Paris was somewhat revitalised, with the name remaining the same, and a few old songs carrying over.
Ultimately, it’s viewed by all involved as a new band, and while an EP was planned to arrive in 2017, life had other plans, with Nicola forced to undergo “serious ankle surgery”.
“Following Nicola’s recovery, we got back into the studio in 2019 and record another set of songs to complete the album,” the group explains. “We wanted something full-length and divine looking and to piece together the wonderful work of Casey Rice and Paul Maybury in the studio.
“Then 2020 happened and we had to wait another year! As a result, this album has captured the survival spirit and the patience of our collaborators and we can’t wait until it’s out!”
“This album has captured the survival spirit and the patience of our collaborators.”
Now, the group’s long-awaited album, Lost Familiar, is finally set to be released on June 23rd. A record described as being “about chosen family, the journey of finding your familiars, underground communities and uncovering precious stones and bones”, Plaster Of Paris also refer to it as being “unapologetically Australian” in its imagery, with its “rock-solid feminist and queer heart” being complemented by the striking imagery and emotional depth of Zec’s lyrics.
“We started working with Casey Rice who is someone we have circled around for a long time and respect immensely,” Plaster Of Paris explain. “Casey really understands our punk and riot grrrl influences, being from Chicago originally. We recorded vocals on those tracks in a Chapel in Castlemaine with reverb galore!
“Cut to 2019 and we needed somewhere closer to finish the album quickly so decided to work with Paul Maybury as he is a master of massive drum sounds and gorgeous guitars and has worked with Casey, so we believed we could mesh the two recordings together. Paul’s Fairfield studio is its own rock n roll church of sorts and with Covid restrictions became ideal due to its sheer size. We could easily be metres apart and within our 5k zones for final mixing.”
Check out Plaster Of Paris performing live:
Now, Plaster Of Paris have shared their latest single, the monumental ‘Internalise’, a sadly all-too relevant song that focuses on internalising the fears that external forces bring upon the lives of many.
“A huge amount of people in this world can’t walk around without fear of violence,” the group explain. “Our worlds become smaller and smaller. So many people cannot enjoy outdoor spaces, can’t walk home safely, can’t wear headphones at night, can’t be free to wear what they want and not get hassled.
“These fears become internalised, and we don’t even realise that we are avoiding spaces, mapping routes for safety and tensing our senses constantly. It’s emotionally draining to live this way and the song tries to shine a light on this and the strength and determination it can take just to be outside.”
To complement the song and its release, the group have also shared a striking video for the song, with Kalindy Williams of Orbit Arcade serving as Creative Director, and helping to produce something truly amazing. Featuring appearances from the Body Electric dance troup, Gummo staffers, local band luminaries, and long-term co-conspirators, the result is a stunning effort that helps to contextualise the track and offer a mesmerising visual aspect to the powerful single.
“We met with Kalindy Williams to talk about the themes of ‘Internalise’ and we just couldn’t get away from the songs stomping beat, building the clip around that movement,” they explain. “The video’s stop animation footage features this wondrous and continuously changing world. Beautiful rock formations, planets, oceans and cities whirl passed in technicolour.
“We asked friends to play a character distracted and completely absorbed by their own pathways and their nostalgic retro ‘tech’ toys or random objects of fascination. The aim was to symbolise how we use (or don’t use) outdoor spaces – caught up in our own much safer, but smaller world.
“It calls for women, queers and people who are marginalised in society to get out and walk freely as themselves, enjoying their inner world as well as what is around them. It was a huge endeavour on a tiny budget. We’re indebted to everyone involved but especially our creative director, Kalindy!”
While the video for ‘Internalise’ is being shared today, Plaster Of Paris’ debut album Lost Familiar will be officially released on June 23rd via Psychic Hysteria, with pre-orders available now.