With his sixth studio album, Hit The Ground Running, Newton Faulkner rediscovered his passion for writing music solo whilst simultaneously realising the importance of experimenting creatively in other mediums.
Many of Faulkner’s previous albums were co-written with his brother, so when Newtown took his first pitch for the album to him he was shocked when his brother flat out said ‘no’.
“He was thinking that he had watched me kind of forget how to write on my own so he wanted me to regain that skill,” Newton explained.
If writing solo wasn’t already tough enough Newton also wanted to push his voice more than ever on Hit On The Ground Running, which added yet another layer of complexity to the writing process.
“I spent a lot of time working on my voice through training and felt like I had reached a point where I could safely push it to see what I could do,” Faulkner said. “There is no way I would have been able to sing stuff like Hit The Ground even three years ago.”
This sense of experimentation and boundary pushing was awakened within Faulkner immediately before sitting down to write this record when he stepped outside the purely music realm by partaking in theatre productions and also writing music for films.
According to Faulkner working in these new artistic mediums influenced Hit The Ground Running in two major ways.
“It massively influenced the record even just in terms of my own confidence. I think because I was being challenged outside my comfort zone quite dramatically in two different ways it opened up parts of my brain that wouldn’t have been ready without those challenges.”
Once taking these new experimental songs on the road to live shows Faulkner was once again “genuinely shocked” by the response from audiences.
“There were instances on tour where I was being heckled to play more new stuff, which I don’t think has ever happened to anyone and genuinely shocked me every time.”
In just over a week Faulkner will return to Australia for the first time since 2013 and says he “can’t wait to reconnecting with Australia again.”
Despite the incredible response to Hit The Ground Running for this show Faulkner won’t just be playing new material but rather a mixture of tracks off his extended catalogue because as he explained, “I’m not the kind of guy to come out and just play new stuff because I think that’s mean.”
Apr 1. Factory Theatre, 105 Victoria Rd, Marrickville. $62+b.f. Tickets & Info: www.factorytheatre.com.au