The Chats have announced their debut album, High Risk Behaviour, out March 27 on Bargain Bin Records/Cooking Vinyl Australia. To mark this occasion the band have released an eye-watering new video for their new single The Clap, take it in below on an empty stomach.
This is the closest you’ll ever hear The Chats get to write a love song (that is unless you are talking about their love of beer). A cautionary tale about a root gone wrong (direct quote), and an STI that just wouldn’t leave. The Clap features guitarist Pricey on vocal duties and is taken from the forthcoming album.
WATCH THE VIDEO FOR THE CLAP HERE:
The Chats have the cops to thank for the title of their debut album, High Risk Behaviour.
On their debut album, singer-bassist Eamon Sandwith says “I don’t want to make the songs boring, so I just keep them short and sweet.” A fair point from the man whose mullet became an international talking point following the success of 2017 viral hit “Smoko”. “We try not to think about it or complicate it too much. You don’t want to force it or the song’s going to turn out crap. Some of the songs were first-take and we were like, ‘That’s good, whatever’. We’re really not perfectionists.”
Since forming in their mate’s bong shed in 2016 while still at high school, that attitude has taken The Chats – completed by guitarist Josh Price, who once wrote a song called How Many Do You Do? in which he boasted of doing 52 “dingers” in a night – from the sleepy coastal village of Coolum (located roughly two hours north of Brisbane) to venues around the world. Their fanbase includes Dave Grohl, who loved the video for Smoko so much he showed it to Josh Homme, who then asked the trio to support Queens of the Stone Age on their 2018 Australian tour. Iggy Pop is also a card-carrying member of The Chats’ fan club, requesting that they support him in Australia in early 2019 and peppering them with questions like, “What’s a smoko?” and “What’s a dart?”
The rest of 2019 was spent taking the world by storm armed with nothing more than guitars, drums, shorts, shirts and thongs (or, if it was a formal occasion, sandals and socks).
The end product is an album that buzzes like an out-of-control chainsaw, propelled by Sandwith’s spoken-spit-sung vocals, their three-chords-is-one-too-many approach, and an exacting combination of youth, vigour and drunkenness. But don’t mistake simple for stupid – if it was easy to make songs this short, this catchy and this downright brilliant, everyone would be doing it.
“I think they’re good songs,” says Sandwith. “And at the end of the day, if I like it then fuck it, who cares if other people do?”
Despite being the subject of a record label bidding war, The Chats are releasing High Risk Behaviour on their own label, Bargain Bin Records. It’s indicative of a band that have embraced DIY culture since day one, to the point where Sandwith used to spend his days at the post office sending out merch orders. “We thought, if we just do it ourselves we don’t have to worry about getting swindled,” says Sandwith. “We’ve always done it our way.”
Their determination to do things “our way” extends to their music, which is why High Risk Behaviour delivers everything you’ve come to love from The Chats – only more of it – and confirms their status as Queensland’s greatest ever export. “I just want people to have a good time,” says Sandwith of the album. “I want them to dance around and have a beer and enjoy it. We don’t make songs for people to look at in a fucking emotional or intellectual way. We just make songs for people to jump around and have fun to.”
The album is already up for preorder here.
Catch The Chats at the following dates in October:
Fri 16 Southampton, 1865
Sat 17 Nottingham, Rock City
Sun 18 Bristol, 02 Academy
Mon 19 Ireland, Dublin, Olympia
Tue 20 Belfast, Limelight
Thu 22 Glasgow, Galvanizers
Fri 23 Leeds, Stylus
Sat 24 Newcastle, Boiler Shop
Sun 25 Manchester, 02 Academy
Mon 26 Brighton, Dome
Wed 28 London, Electric Brixton
Thu 29 London, Electric Brixton
Tickets available from the band’s website (on sale 24th January 10am)
All words by Nathan Whittle. Find his Louder Than War archive here.