Founding members, Evan and Jim met in 2009 while studying music at TAFE in Fairfield, where they bonded over a mutual love of prog-metal and pulling a shifty on keyboard class to jam in the park.
This may have been the origin of the keyboard curse that has followed them through 7 different keys players and counting, much like the Grateful Dead’s “hot-seat” but without any deaths thus far.
After reinventing themselves as a folk duo, their debut gig at the Association of Ukranians in Victoria annual fundraiser featured a combination of Dylan covers and confused prog-folk originals.
They followed this up, playing their first headline show with support from a 16-year-old Tash Sultana.
After joining up with main-stay drummer Chris in 2015, The Shifties went on to record a number of small releases with various additional members, before making their debut album, Dean Hall in 2018.
Originally intended as an 11-track album, the songwriting process for “Washed Up and Coming” began as early as 2017. Shortly after recording the bones of the record live at Newmarket Studio in late 2019 with Guus Hoevenaars, The Shifties parted ways with keyboardist, Jon and songwriter/guitarist, Nathaniel.
With fewer members and a raging pandemic to navigate, they decided to release it as a five-track EP. Once the final touches were completed, the record was mixed and mastered by long-time friend and shifty engineer, Matt Collins at his home studio in Braybrook.
Two years later, “Washed Up and Coming” is finally complete and ready to meet the world. The music is grounded in 70s country, folk and Americana while hinting at various other influences; from New Orleans dixieland to Mali blues and Hindustani classical music. The record also features a variety of wonderful international guest musicians, including Heartbeat Brass Band, Hamilton Belk on pedal steel and Aman Kalyan onTabla.
Evan and Jim’s lyrics incorporate evocative imagery, touching on themes such as addiction, Taoist philosophy and hallucinated dinosaurs.
Available as a digital release on all popular streaming services, “Washed Up and Coming” is the story of a band who have been voyaging the sonic seas for over a decade through endless transformations and have just arrived on the shore of the Melbourne music scene wondering where to find the nearest hootenanny.
Washed Up and Coming
GDR004 Release date 17/03/2022
2. Green Waves
3. Ride The Spider
4. All My Time
5. Out Of Line
Release date 05/12/2018
1. Backwash Beach
2. 40 Years
6. I've Got The Plague
7. Losing Time
8. Without Me