Sky’s the limit for Sneaky Sound System

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Sneaky Sound System are back with a third album and new lease on life. Now down to two members, ‘Black’ Angus McDonald and Miss Connie make the coolest duo on the Australian dance music circuit. Interview with Angus by Antonino Tati.


Congratulations on an excellent new album: clean, fun and instantly infectious. What would you say is the main point of difference between ‘From Here To Anywhere’ and your first two LPs?

Well thank you very much. It was a totally different approach on this record, we wrote and recorded on the fly – just the two of us… in hotel rooms, planes and studios in Sydney, London, Paris, Moscow, and Ibiza – it’s almost like a postcard from various dance floors around the globe. The original plan was to collaborate with lots of people but the ideas were flowing so freely we ended up writing it all in a few months. I tried to keep the production as simple as possible and let Connie’s vocals shine. And while it’s a record for the dance floor, the lyrical content is quite emotional at times. We spent a lot longer living with the songs and letting them take their natural course. It’s a proper collaboration and we really enjoyed making it. It’s the start of a new chapter for us.


Could you enlighten Cream readers on why it was that Daimon left the group? Some of our contributing journos have assumed it was because he partied too hard? Is this true?

Hahaha… not quite, no. We returned from a long patch overseas and he told us he wanted out, that he wanted to pursue his art career, that he was sick of living out of a suitcase. It was a testing time for all of us, but I was still surprised he quit. We’re still mates and life goes on. I mean some people get freaked out if they can’t keep the status quo, but change can lead to all sorts of new opportunities – and that’s how we dealt with it: as a great opportunity to freshen things up.


Is the dynamic rather different with Daimon gone?
Absolutely, like chalk and cheese as my mother would say. We took six months off to clear our heads and when Connie and I got together again we found ourselves full of ideas and [feeling] reinvigorated. Our friendship has grown a lot deeper, as you would expect when you’re living in each other’s pockets, and Connie’s confidence has grown enormously. It’s a very clear relationship now… Connie is the voice, ‘the star’ and I am the music, ‘the machine’. There is no confusion whatsoever and we have total trust in each other.


Your videos are always a little risqué. We love the innuendo in ‘We Love’. I don’t think Freudian symbolism has ever gone that far in music video. How important is the selling of sex in the music business?

I think you’ll find we’ve done just the one risque video. The so-called raunchy bits were shot after we left the shoot in London, so it was a bit of a surprise when we got the first edit. However, if commercial television can give it a G rating then it’s pretty safe to say it ain’t exactly scandalous. It’s very hard to get noticed these days so every little bit counts, and that video got tongues wagging so… mission accomplished!

The new album, in title alone, connotes a sonic adventure / getaway. Do you consider your music a primary source of escapism for listeners?
That’s what music is all about, isn’t it? When I’m absorbed in music I don’t have a care in the world and I hope when people put on this new record it does take them somewhere else; that would be a good result.


Where did the ‘Black’ in Black Angus come from?

Bill Hunter played Angus McDonald, the dodgy police commissioner in ‘Blue Murder’, and his nickname was Black Angus. Well my name is Angus McDonald so you can follow the bouncing ball here. That was 10 years ago before McDonalds burgers were using my name… Bastards.

Any interesting gigs / tours / festivals coming up that Cream readers should know about?
The record is just out in Australia and out October 17 around the world, so the plan is to spread the word far and wide around the globe over the next two years. There are going to be gigs galore so best to head to to get the lowdown.


‘From Here To Anywhere’ is out through Modular / Universal Music.