Putting the 'New' in Navy
It wasn't quite Zimbabwe, but Uluwatu, Bali, was likely the better choice for New Navy to get inspiration for the sweet summery pop they came up with on their debut EP.
The tracks that came from the band's writing sojourn, and aptly released on the EP Uluwatu, were very much in the joyful vein of glittering guitar-driven beach songs with afro-beat-brushed percussion.
As complex as that sounds, picture yourself staring at the ocean at sunset at that moment when the light hits the ripple of the water. Now imagine how it would translate sonically.
If we're on the same wavelength you've got UK outfit Foals-style guitar ringing through your ears with the Beach Boys hanging around in the background.
The four-piece, who now base themselves in Sydney, met in high school at the New South Wales coastal town of Ulladulla, playing in various bands before melding into New Navy.
Guitarist James Chave-Dubois, who speaks to Pulse before ducking down to the beach, spent his formative years in Ballina, which for our purposes were the most important ones, of course.
"I haven't really kept in contact with anyone from up there," he says, "but I think playing the gig is a good excuse to get back up there."
The band had its first success rising to the top of Triple J's Unearthed website before taking out the JD Set competition, which landed them the supporting slot with Wolfmother at The Esplanade Hotel in Melbourne.
They've since been signed to Future Classic and have become somewhat of an "it" band despite having only released an EP.
The singles from the EP, Zimbabwe and Tapioca, have garnered them enough attention they haven't needed to rush themselves into a studio to record an album.
But when they do, James says they'd be happy to head back overseas for inspiration.
"Getting out of your comfort zone is the best when it comes to being creative," he says.
"It's worked for us in the past anyway. I think it's a great idea to get out of the everyday to come up with something new."
For the most part the EP was self-produced, James says, though Jono Ma (Foals, Whitest Boy Alive, Cold War Kids) added a few final touches.
"(Working with him) was awesome," James says.
"He helped bring out the songs a lot. It was mainly just final touches, but for the little time you actually get to spend with a producer it really does make a difference."
As for an album, James says the band hasn't really got there yet.
"We just need to find the time," he says.
"Our label is really easy going so they're happy for us to go at our own pace, which is great."
New Navy plays alongside label mates Flight Facilities on Sunday as well as Bangs, Adam & Eve, Stretch, Rushton, And Oh! and Easy P at Sunday Safari, The Byron Bay Brewery from 3pm. Tickets $20 at the venue or www.moshtix.com.au