All posts by Peter Gill

Mitch Galbraith – Ocean Alley

Ocean Alley, one of Australia’s most exciting touring acts, kick off the series with two performances at Cairns Performing Arts Centre on Friday 4th and Saturday 5th February. The band have captivated audiences around the world with their infectious melody lines and memorable blend of psychedelic-surf-rock.

From Northern Beaches dive bars to sold out international tours, Ocean Alley’s evolution has been driven by an endless pursuit to push their sound and abilities to new limits. Operating as a proudly independent band, their output has always been underscored by a refreshingly chilled authenticity and relatability that has seen them achieve more than 450 million catalogue streams.

Peter Gill caught up with Ocean Alley guitarist Mitch Galbraith for a chat..

It appears the name Ocean Alley is no misnomer.. “Yeah we all grew up in Sydney’s Northern Beaches surfing and skateboarding around since we were whippersnappers. Even though we are touring around lots and are deeply involved in the music scene, we still find plenty of time for the beach activities, we all live together near the beach still, and that’s an important part of our music spending time relaxing in nature when we are not on a tour bus or in the studio writing ” explained Mitch

You guys started playing in bass player Nic Bloms dad’s garage, how did you decide what you were going to play?

“Nics dad’s garage was the only place were were allowed to go and make a mess and make some noise. I guess he didn’t mind us being there because he knew we were only down the back yard and now running around town getting into actual trouble. We were all in our last few years of high school and I guess we had a coming of age with our musical tastes when we fell in love with the classic rock genre. We started listening to artists our parents had grown up on like Dire Strait’s, Jimi Hendrix, Black Sabbath, all those kind of classic rock sounds. One of the first songs we played together was Neil Young’s ‘Old Man’ it’s a fantastic song”

I heard that early on, playing down at the local pub was the biggest thing in the world for you..

“Yeah, it was, I think they paid us $200 for playing half an hour, it it was a big thing at the time. We had grown up visiting that pub in the early days of the band and it was a dream of ours to play there one day”

We have previously spoken about you working night after night when you are touring overseas and less over here because of the large distances to travel between show’s, do your performances change then?

“I don’t think so, we are always striving to put on an energetic punchy performance regardless of the audience we are playing to. I think our music gathers a particular kind of audience anyway. It’s great that we are building a good fan base both in the states and in europe”

When you play Cairns, you will be playing 2 shows at CPAC, both seated with masks on, have you done that in any other part of Australia?

“We played Canberra, it must have been around 2 years ago at the start of the pandemic. I remember everyone was seated, but masks weren’t required at that time. It was a bit different, it was a bit of a bummer, but I think everyone had fun nonetheless and couldn’t resist standing up in their seats and dancing”

Peter Gill

Ocean Alley play CPAC on 4th and 5th of February. Tickets available through Ticketlink.

Pic by The Sauce

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