Lyrics & Liner Notes
The band has been known (or not known) under a few different names over the years, most notably The Living Room.
Under The Living Room, Chris worked with long-time collaborator and friend Mark Ewenson, recording a series of ground-breaking tracks on a reel-to-reel 4 track back in the late 80’s-early 90’s. These tracks were never released “officially” but can be heard in the Early Recordings section of this webpage.
Chris also played bass in post-punk band Sing Sing as well as double bass with various experimental jazz-type outfits.
In 1999 Nic Heraclides (Randy and JahRoots) joined the The Living Room on bass guitar and with Mark Ewenson the trio recorded a series of songs, some live and some on the trusty old 4 track. These tracks are fairly rough recordings but there is a quality in the songs and playing that stand them in good stead and we feel that they should be included in our history.
In the early 2000’s Chris formed another version of The Living Room with Vic Phillips (sadly passed away RIP) on lead guitar, Moondog on bass and Sean Raymond on drums. This unit recorded an EP at Pound Studios that can be heard in the Early Recordings section.
In 2020 Cherie Borwick came along as a lyricist, and an amazing new songwriting partnership gave the music a fresh, new perspective.
Chris says “I love the way I get to sing songs, lyrically written by Cherie, that are about me… singing a love song to oneself, so to speak. It’s kind of odd and yet feels totally natural and right.”
This ‘singing to oneself’ can be seen in Thunder Under My Skin among others. Another interesting aspect is how some songs are a combination of two poems by Cherie that Chris kind of cut and paste together, sometimes much to Cherie’s chagrin! An example of this is Someone Else’s Car.
Chris has also enlisted his daughter Stella, who at the age of 16 did her first vocal take on the track Better Days and also appears on Someone Else’s Car. Stella is an amazing songwriter and vocalist herself.
She is currently juggling working on her debut album whilst rocking her final year of high-school… watch this space!
With this latest transformation, The Living Room has become just ROOM… and the name is now going to stick. Room…
Stylistically, the album draws on elements from alternative, rock, alt-country, folk, stoner-rock, middle eastern music, 70s rock, experimental and electronic-based songwriting. Eclectic AF.
Growing up on Dylan, The Beatles, the Stones, Janis Joplin, Pink Floyd, Bowie and Led Zeppelin juxtaposed with Bach, Beethoven, Vivaldi & Handel, opened up the ears to The Velvet Underground, Pere Ubu, Ornette Coleman, John Coltrane, Don Cherry and the plethora of amazing underground bands coming out of Melbourne (and UK/Europe/US) in the late 70s early 80s.
Melbourne (and Australian) artists such as The Birthday Party, The Laughing Clowns, The Saints, Dresden War Crimes and Ollie Olsen (among many others) melded with the amazing and eternal Joy Division, Einsterzende Neubauten, Throbbing Gristle, Gang of Four, Public Image, X-Ray Specs, New York Dolls, Iggy Pop… oh shit the list goes on and on.
But wait… then came Townes Van Zandt, Gram Parsons, Hank Williams, Johnny Cash… and let’s not even get started on Kurt Vile, Sufjan, Four Tet, Caribou, Aphex Twin and all the other amazing stuff.
(I forgot about Nirvana, Kyuss, Mudhoney…)
I think you get the picture.
Specific influences for each track are listed on the liner notes.
See if you can hear it.