EXPATRIATE are Ben King (Vocals/Guitars), Cristo (Drums), Damian Press (Keys/Guitars) and Dave Molland (Bass).
Expatriate by name, Expatriates by nature. Originally from Australia the 4 piece, fronted by lead singer and guitarist Ben King, was created by its definition and due to their own life story. Two of the four band members spent their childhoods as expatriates – growing up in a foreign culture, a country far away from home, a cultural circle, as alien as exotic, as exciting as disturbingly bold.
Expatriate released their first material in the form of 2 EP’s in 2006, ‘Lovers Le Strange’ and ‘Play a Part’ followed by debut album ‘In The Midst Of This’ in 2007. Produced by John Goodmanson and recorded at the Robert Lang Studios in Seattle, it was released on Universal imprint label Dew Process and debuted at number 38 in the ARIA charts and were subsequently nominated for an ARIA Award for “Best Breakthrough Artist for an album”.
An Australian touring campaign followed, including numerous festival appearances and national headline shows and in the winter of 2008, Expatriate packed up and left for the colder climate of Berlin to coincide with the Continental European release of the album through [PIAS] International in 2009. The European touring campaign saw them play most of Europe’s largest rock festivals and was spectacularly rounded off with a 26 arena date tour across 7 countries as main support to PLACEBO, rounding up the year with sold out headline shows in Switzerland, France, Germany, UK and Greece.
In 2010, the band headed to the famous Monnow Valley Studios in the Welsh town of Monmouth in the UK to start production on their 2nd studio album ‘Hyper / Hearts’ with producer Andy Savours (Pnau, The Killers). However, on the band’s return to Berlin feelings were that the songs weren’t quite finished yet and were consequently taken back into their home studio, adding additional production to a number of the tracks plus re-producing another two tracks from scratch, up to a level where thy were ready to finally let go of it.
Four tracks were collectively co-written by the band; ‘School’, ‘Easier’ and ‘KunstKopf’, born from a band writing period together at Damian’s Ginsberg Studios in Sydney, and ‘On The Inside’ written together in their Berlin studio with the remainder of the tracks written by Ben in various modes of bedroom / apartment home studios across the globe; ‘Miracle Mile’, ‘By Design’ and ‘Do You Remember’ were all written in Jakarta whilst visiting his Dad and ‘Dangerous Stranger’, ‘World To End With You’ and ‘Love Away’ were written at the bands Berlin apartment.
The new album, titled ‘Hyper / Hearts’, is a product of the bands experiences over the past few years, from going back to the beginning of the whole album campaign, which, for the most part coincided with moving to Europe, taking that step to move opened a magical window through which passed a stream of fresh and at times surreal experiences. The feeling of looking at a new horizon, as though experiencing it all through a hyper state – fuelled by new energy and momentum. The idea that change can be a good thing if you throw your heart into it and work hard to make it work, which in a much bigger sense, ties into what the world feels like it has going on at the moment, apparent in lead track ‘Miracle Mile’, a bass driven high energy track drawing on political issues and awareness to citizens and cultures living in rapidly evolving 3rd world countries, awakening to their own ‘Hyper Heart’ state. “All these hyper awakened hearts, banging the drums for survival and living through change, not being stuck in a negative experience but rather, wanting to push on and go beyond that. The majority of the songs have the same sort of theme throughout them.”
‘Hyper / Hearts’ is a record with a great sense of detail- true to the energy, intensity and passion in the classic Expatriate style.