Anthony’s Airwaves – Transmissions From Joe Agius of RINSE

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Today, I have an interview for you guys with Australian Shoegaze/Dreampop artist Joe Agius AKA RINSE. Shoegaze/Dreampop is something I’ve only just been introduced to, and I can see its appeal with the hypnotic and relaxing melodies that take you into a dreamlike state that Joe’s music certainly will. Joe’s music takes inspiration from similar styles from the 80s, such as New Order and Pale Saints.

Anthony:
Joe, thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview with us! I hope all is well and you’ve been able to navigate your way through this dumpster fire of a year! How’ve you been holding up through it?

Joe:
Yeah, not bad! I think working on this EP, amongst other things, has kept me relatively sane and busy through the last year, thankfully.

Anthony:
Before we get into this, can you tell us a bit about who you are and where you’re from?

Joe:
My name is Joe; I’m from Brisbane, Australia, and I release music under the name RINSE.

Anthony:
You just released your first solo EP, Wherever I Am, but you have a bit of a storied background that leads to this; how’d you get started, your musical roots?

Joe:
I started playing music around ten years ago because I hated university and found music was the only thing I enjoyed working on. Since then, I’ve written and released music in a few bands and began this new project RINSE about a year ago.

Anthony:
You seem to be pretty established as a Dream Pop/Shoegaze artist; who are some of your inspirations? I can imagine New Order, and maybe some A-Ha are a couple. How would you say you define your sound?

Joe:
New Order is one of my favorite bands ever. I also love Pale Saints, The Cure, and Primal Scream, to name a few. Without pigeonholing myself, I would say my sound is a combination of genres sitting somewhere in the Dream-Pop/Shoegaze/Post-Punk world.

Anthony:
I just recently got introduced to the genre, and I have to say, I’m starting to like it the more I hear it. That said, it doesn’t seem to get much coverage in my area. Is there a decent Dream Pop/Shoegaze scene over there in Australia?

Joe:
Yeah, there’s been an increase of that kind of music over here, especially in the last five years. It’s still quite a small scene, though. I’d say the Surf-Rock/Garage scene is the most popular genre over here nonetheless.

Anthony:
Now, I’m currently watching the video for Tamaryn (Wherever I Am), which you released this year. The video is a beautiful mix of nostalgia, with modern elements sprinkled throughout, with a heartfelt story of love. Can you tell us a bit about what was behind the video and lyrics of this song?

Joe:
I wanted to make a video that emphasized the lyrics and story of the song in an exciting way that didn’t have the two characters meeting. For me, the song is about when you’re lying at home, going crazy thinking about everything you said or did in front of someone you like. I wanted to recreate that feeling in a physical space, so the small cube room for me represents that trapped feeling of what is going on inside your head.

Anthony:
You sing and play guitar, can you play other instruments?

Joe:
I’d say my main instrument is probably keys, but I’m okay at guitar too! I’m trying to get better at percussion and a couple of other things.

Anthony:
So, here’s one we ask everyone we interview, do you collect any physical forms of music? Records, CDs, cassettes?


Joe:
I used to collect records, but it sent me a bit broke and took up a lot of space, so I try only to buy random second-hand stuff or records I listen to regularly digitally.

Anthony:
Are there any albums or songs that mean the most to you?

Joe:
The Strokes – Is This It 

I don’t think I listened to a record or band more as a teenager.

Pale Saints – The Comforts Of Madness 

I think this record perfectly combines so many of my favorite elements of Indie Rock and Shoegaze into one record.

David Bowie – Ziggy Stardust

I just love everything about this record and era of Bowie and have done a lot of vocal damage trying to sing along to it in the car over the years.

Anthony:
Musically, we know some of your inspirations; what about when it comes to directing? Is it a style you’ve come up with yourself, or did you have any influences for directing?

Joe:
I’m not a film buff and don’t have favorite directors or anything like that. Most videos I make are the first thing I think of when I close my eyes listening to the song. Songs, in general, are visual for me. I’m already usually thinking about that side of things when I’m writing or recording them.

Anthony:
Once COVID dies down, which is hopefully soon at this point, do you plan on taking Rinse on tour? Do you have any places you’d like to see and go to?

Joe:
I’m keen to focus on doing some tours around Australia just anywhere, really, but I guess for now. I’m sure I’ll be jumping on a Hatchie tour or two overseas at some point, though!

Anthony:
Where can our readers find your music?

Joe:
All the usual streaming services, or you can buy my new EP physically over at rinse.bandcamp.com.

Anthony:
Joe, thanks again for taking your time to do this with us! Is there anything else you’d like to share with us or talk about that we may have missed before we go?

Joe:
Thanks for chatting!

Interested in learning more about the music of RINSE? Check out the link below:

Dig this? Check out the full archives of A.M. Radio, by Anthony Montalbano, here: https://vinylwritermusic.com/a-m-radio-archives/

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