Rock trio Kingswood happiest on the road

Kingswood.
Kingswood.

IF you told Kingswood’s Alex Laska a couple of years ago that he would meet Queens of the Stone Age frontman Josh Homme, he “would have passed out”.

But being in the right place at the right time at this year’s Splendour in the Grass festival, saw the writer, guitarist and vocalist lucky enough to sneak in to their green room after their headlining set.

“The lady who was the security guard did security for a show we did on the Gold Coast and she really liked us,” he said.

“I said, ‘I just want to say hi. I’m not going to cause any trouble. All I want to do is thank him for having a huge influence on me’.

“I was just really fortunate that the lady knew who I was and was kind enough to let me in.

“I went straight over to Josh, who was getting a photo with what seemed to be family or friends.

“I said, ‘I don’t want to interrupt, I just want to say thanks very much for making the music you did and it had a huge influence on the kind of music I made for a period of time’.

“He was super cool about it.”

Laska said playing Splendour was almost like a homecoming for Kingswood, after winning a slot on the 2012 line-up, having “a whole bunch of technical issues” during their 2014 set and then belting it out on the main stage this year.

“We’re further along our trajectory than we were two or three years ago,” he said.

“It was just incredible; it was three of the best days of my life that I can remember.”

Now the Melbourne rock trio is gearing up for its biggest national tour to date with 17 shows, despite touring the country just four months ago.

“That was the initial tour to bring the new album (After Hours, Close To Dawn) out into the world,” Laska said.

“Now that we’ve done that, we have more freedom with the songs we can play and how creative we can be with them.“You can’t really mess with stuff too much initially because it’s still fresh where as now, it’s been out since February.

“There’s the opportunity to put a twist on things and use improvisational skills that we all really love and having the freedom to present something that we’ve got in a new light and witnessing the reaction and sharing the energy.”

And the lads are definitely not ready to slow down.

“We get very anxious when we’re not touring,” Laska said.

“We’ve done it that much for that long that we’re probably addicted to it in a weird way, which is probably not psychologically healthy but it’s just what it is.

“Eventually there’ll be a point where we can’t, so whilst we can, we should.

“The excitement of being on stage is still as prevalent as it was since the first time we went out.

“Then there’s the camaraderie aspect of it, the travelling family and the fun behind the scenes to make it all happen.

“It’s like Groundhog Day but the day is awesome.”

This tour will see the addition of horns to the stage, along with backing female vocalists who punters would have spied earlier this year.

“That’s a whole other dynamic,” Laska said.

“When you’ve seen us once or a couple of times, you know every show is very different.

“That’s why we can keep touring all the time; we’re always trying to invent new ways to do things and create excitement and be musical and increase our musicality.“And we’ll be throwing in things like the Destiny’s Child cover (from triple j’s OK Like a Version).

“Stuff like that, that’s only going to happen on one tour.”

So what’s next for Kingswood?

“You’ll have to wait and see,” Laska said.

“I’ve already been writing and I can tell you now it’s very different in every way.

“It will probably create the same reaction from the record label when we showed them the last one: They suggested we change our band name because that’s how different it was.”

THE ESSENTIALS

What: Kingswood’s Maximus Tour

Who: Kingswood with guests The Vanns and Dear Seattle

Where: Metropolis Fremantle – October 6

Tickets: kingswoodband.com

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