It’s not often that such a prolific songwriting duo as Spit Syndicate go over four years without releasing an album, but that’s how long the lead-up to Jimmy Nice and Nick Lupi’s new record One Good Shirt Had Us All Fly has been. The reasons behind the gap are complex, with their work in the One Day collective obviously being a key factor, but another obstacle to the release of their latest work has been their time spent in between labels and management.
By all reports, the creative material behind the new album has been finished for some time, so it was a relief when Spit Syndicate secured a new deal with Inertia in late 2016. “We just haven’t really had a team around us, just not having management or labels, and we’ve been doing it ourselves,” Lupi explains.
“The past few years we’ve just been navigating it ourselves, and that doesn’t really impact the creation of the music, and the writing and recording of the music, but it does impact the stage between finishing the songs and releasing the songs. So it definitely has had an impact on that part of the process. Now we have a bit more clarity in terms of our team in that area, but we’re still very hands-on, we’re still steering the ship.”
One Good Shirt Had Us All Fly is Spit Syndicate’s fourth album together, and definitely stands out thanks to the sheer number of featured artists. The guys worked with the likes of Remi, Joyride and Thelma Plum, among stacks of others, making the record one of their most diverse works to date – and it’s easy to tell how happy Lupi is with the final product as his voice swells with enthusiasm and pride.
“I think the One Day project definitely had an impact on the way we make music, this sort of collaborative spirit,” he says. “It just showed us how having this energy in the room when you’ve got different writers and musicians, how ideas can just flow and bounce and change shape. That definitely affected us and the way we make music. We carried that through for this record as well.
“I guess one of the things that is different about this record is that Jimmy and I were in the room with each of the different producers from the very start of each beat. You know, from the very first kick drum or the very first piano chord played, we were there – mainly back-seat driving but still in the car. With this one we were a lot more involved in the process, and that results in a deeper connection, and we find more meaning in the beats, being there from the start and watching the song come together.”
Although they’re hugely chuffed with the final result of their hard work on this record, Lupi and Nice are still constantly looking at fresh ways to get their music out there and connect with new audiences. They could be touring on their own, but instead have just wrapped up an appearance on their good mate Illy’s Two Degrees Tour.
“For us, it [was] a great opportunity to be touring the country right before we put out our album – playing massive rooms with someone who’s been a friend of ours for many years,” says Lupi. “It was really just a no-brainer for us to do this tour. The whole idea of any support slot is to gain exposure to some different crowds, and maybe get our music in front of people who might not have heard it before or who have some familiarity with our name but aren’t across our live shows. We want the rest of the world, our fans and our public to hear this music.” ■
[Spit Syndicate photo by Cole Bennetts]
Spit Syndicate’s One Good Shirt Had Us All Fly is out Friday April 14 through One Day/Inertia.