“One of the best songwriters in Australia.”
Noel Mengel, Courier Mail
“Classy, attractive and delightfully melodic songs with a strong base in the 1970s and an eye to something timeless.”
Bernard Zuel, Sydney Morning Herald
“Elvis Costello meets Ice Cream Hands.”
Andrew Murfett, The Age
“I liken my songwriting to a good high street tailor. I don’t do haute couture. I don’t do songs that are the equivalent of catwalk fashion – all power to those who can. But if you’re after a song that’s the equivalent of a well-made suit, in a classic style, that makes you feel a million bucks when you put it on, then I’m your guy.” Paul Andrews
Paul Andrews was a founding member and chief singer/songwriter in Sydney band Lazy Susan, which spent most of the 2000s flirting at the edges of awareness of Australia’s more informed music-loving public.
During the band’s 12-year history (Lazy Susan having broken up in early 2012), Paul was the driving force behind its four albums, six EPs, and countless interstate tours and local shows, both as a headliner and with national and international touring acts (eg: Brian Wilson).
Paul’s songs – ‘Bobby Fischer’ and ‘Canada’ – were two of the most frequently played tracks on Triple J in the first half of the 2000s and the national youth network paid the band the honour of inviting them to perform on their flagship Live at the Wireless program and record a cover of Dragon’s ‘Are You Old Enough’ for its Like A Version album series.
“We were one of the ultimate ‘Oh you’re the guys who do that song!’ bands,” said Paul.
“Mention to a punter who listened to Triple J in the 2000s that you were in Lazy Susan and you get a blank stare. Tell them you sang ‘that Reykjavik song’, and suddenly there’s this flicker of recognition in their eyes and it’s: ‘That was you guys? Oh, I love that ‘No one ever says Reykjavik in a song!’ song.
“I used to get a bit frustrated with it, but now I look back and I’m extremely grateful.”
Paul’s songwriting with Lazy Susan won him a small but devoted fan base alongside wider critical appreciation.
“But in the end, mainly through our own naiveté and lack of organisation, Lazy Susan was never able to convert the breaks we received into something bigger.
“After we released our last album in 2010, our shows became more sporadic until we decided to officially pull the plug in 2012.”
Shortly after Lazy Susan played their final gig – a song-by-song run through of their 2001 debut album, Long Lost (“an Australian indie-pop classic” according to The Age), at the legendary Sydney venue, The Annandale Hotel – Paul began writing songs for a new solo project that was to become Family Fold and eventually its debut album, Lustre Glo.
“Even though Family Fold is basically me – my songs, my arrangements, me making the calls – I was conscious that, given I sang 99% of Lazy Susan’s songs, and wrote most of them too, I didn’t want to just make a record that was Lazy Susan Mark II.
“So on Lustre Glo, apart from a passing parade of musicians, I’ve also enlisted other voices (Sarah Humphreys and Maia Jelavic) to sing lead or joint lead with me on several songs.
“Without being silly about it, I was determined for this album to sound like a different band.”
Lustre Glo is a collection of 11 songs that further confirms Paul as one of Australia’s best – albeit ‘under the radar’ – songwriters.
The material veers between the warm synth pop of ‘Shanie Love’ to the amphetamine-fuelled drive of ‘Get a Grip Upon Yourself’ and the pedal steel flavours of ‘Pot of Gold’.
Along the way, Lustre Glo explodes with marching bands, songs of Oxycontin-infused infidelity and Spector-esque flashes of timpani.
“All my favourite albums un-self consciously embrace diversity of sound and arrangement as a strength and something to be celebrated. I don’t want to record the same song 11 times.
“If it serves the song, I want to bring in a brass band that transports you to some dreary coal-mining town in northern Britain; I want to record something which takes its musical cues from Harry Nilsson, or gives the song over entirely for another singer’s voice to inhabit and interpret. But that’s the litmus test: ‘What serves the song?’
And as for the album’s curious title and cover image?
“Lustre Glo is actually the name of smash repairs shop in Marrickville in Sydney’s inner west. It has the most magnificent writing – in huge cursive font – across its facade: ‘Lustre Glo’.
“There’s a grand tradition in popular music of using the names and facades of shops as album titles and covers. Think Ian Dury’s “New Boots and Panties” or The Beastie Boys’ “Paul’s Boutique”. The moment I saw it, years ago, I thought it would be perfect for Family Fold’s album name and cover.
“When I told a friend where the name came from, she had an unexpectedly poetic take: ‘Smash repairers are all about new beginnings, rebirths. They bang out your dings and you’re as good as gold again. It’s a new start, and that’s what you’re doing with this album. It was meant to be!’
“I liked it so much I told her I was going to steal her interpretation as my explanation for the album title and cover.”
Family Fold’s debut album, Lustre Glo will be released in August 2015.