Hailing from Australia, UK readers may be surprised to learn that Sick Puppies have been treading the boards for a number of years although it took them a significant time to hit the UK. Formed in 1997, the band finally attracted attention in 2006 with their runaway hit “all the same” which is finally receiving a long overdue UK release this December and which clocked up an awe-inspiring 63 million hits thank to its canny video. With their third album, ‘tri-polar’ available and the band finally getting the chance to hit UK shores, we caught up with the band’s Shimon Moore on the eve of their debut UK show to talk about how they formed, their key influences and why we’ve had to wait so long for the band to make it to the UK. One thing is certain, the Sick Puppies are here for the long haul and you can guarantee that this talented band will soon be household names with their brand of radio-friendly, energetic rock music.
- Where does the name ‘Sick Puppies’ come from and what does it mean for you?
I thought of the name on a train on the way to visit my dad. When I arrived there he said “Hey, I’m reading a book called “Sick Puppy” What do you think of that for a band name?” It was trippy. For us it just means a little out there, which is kind of what some of our music is like.
- Tell us about how you came together as a band?
Emma and I double booked the music room by accident at lunchtime in school. Neither of us would leave. So we started jamming and it turned out we knew how to play all the same songs by the same bands. So at the end of the week we decided to start our own band.
- And what are your key influences do you think?
Anything with a good groove and a good melody. Incubus. Silverchair. RATM. Redhot chili peppers. Greenday.
- Although you’ve been a band for some time, this is your debut UK appearance – are you nervous?
I didn’t think about it till we got here and yes, I was once we had to deliver. But then we sold out our first gig at the Bar fly and everyone knew the words and had a great time so I’m ok now.
- You received a huge boost from the Youtube hit “all the same” – do you feel that the song is representative of your output?
I think it is of PART of it. I think all our favorite bands have diversity and we try to do the same. So we can do the sweet stuff like “All the same” and “Maybe”. But then when you listen to “War” and “You’re going down” It’s a different story. 😉
- Rock Prophecies was a major turning point for your career, how did you come to be involved in that?
Robert Knight was the first person to kind of “discover” us. He is a veteran Rock’n’roll photographer who shot Hendrix and Zeppelin before anyone cared about them. He heard our CD in Australia and invited us to the USA before anyone knew about us and introduced us around. Then, when he was having a film made about his career, he insisted we be a part of it because he believed in us so much. It was very humbling and a great privilege.
- Your last album, Tri-Polar, came out in 2009 – what do you hope to do next?
Tour until everyone has had a chance to hear it.
- Is it difficult for an Australian band to break out into the international scene do you think?
I think it’s hard for any band these days. But the internet has broken down the barriers of oceans.
- With ‘all the same’ coming out as a debut UK single in December, we’re kind of behind everyone else when it comes to Sick Puppies, why the long delay to hit the UK market?
I KNOW! We were bummed too. We just had so much ground to cover in the USA before we could get a chance to do it. I love it here ‘cause so many parts of it remind me of home in Sydney.
10. What can fans and newcomers to the band expect from your show?
Just a good time man. We pride ourselves on being a consistent live band and we’ve done nearly 600 shows since our first USA album 3 years ago. We put all our energy into it and try and make sure everyone leaves feeling better than when they entered.