There’s a half-eaten plate of salami on the table and the band is watching a funny You-Tube video on the computer. It all seems very casual, and that’s good because I’m holding three used cups and a stolen jug from ANU Bar and Woroni Radio’s Stephen Kenny is cradling a goon bag behind me. “OHHH You brought a goon bag” Stav exclaims. University livin’.
Stav and Jake are no strangers to university. Both front men have completed a degree, and the band has played several university shows including UNSW’s O-Week and the ‘Winter Of Our Discotheque’ university tour in 2012. “We’ve always relatively speaking, represented that [university] age group. Going out, getting really drunk and going really crazy” Jake remarks. With playful lyrics and catchy choruses to be belted out in a crowd, Bluejuice creates an energy that “works for people who want to get fucked up at O-Week”.
However, Bluejuice does not only represent what Stav likes to call the “drug and alcohol fuelled mental-ness” of students. When asked about the douchebags that inspired the band’s SOS film – douchebusters, a take on Ghostbusters but fighting douches – Jake expresses the sentiment of a little ‘l’ liberal student: “the douchebag of the moment is Tony Abbott. There can be no other. He is trumping all others in my opinion. We didn’t include him in the clip but now I wish I had. He seems a great deal more relevant as a douche than Kanye West who I think we can all agree is an artist and a douche”.
This is as serious as the conversation becomes. Two seconds later, Stav’s reporting on Bluejuice’s Big Day Out antics. “It was pretty crazy fun on the last night of the tour. There was a fun after-party in Perth. The Arcade Fire guys were DJ-ing. And I ah think I tried to push Diplo into a urinal. Although at the time I didn’t know it was Diplo, who I didn’t realise was Major Lazor’s main guy. I was just standing next to a couple of guys in the urinal… and I was like ‘if I knew you guys were better I’d probably do this’, then grabbed them with both my palms on both their backs”. “That was kind of silly” Stav reflects.
The most recent Big Day Out tour was the fourth Big Day Out for the band. Since playing the Lily Pad stage in 2008, the band has come to headline the festival playing Main Stage in 2012 and 2014. The progression from Lily Pad to Main highlights the long length of time Bluejuice has been together. Starting with pretty rudimental lyrics such as “I rap because I wanna make a real friend rub me, suck me, fuck me…” in their first album Problems, Bluejuice has honed their sound into a tight, electro- pop soundtrack eleven years later. They’re still singing about simple things; however their music has progressed from a highschool audience to… university?
The band is currently working on a new single with Dan Hume formerly from Evermore. Jake is also working with a young folk artist, Matt Gollan with good friend Nick, from Sparkadia. “I’ve been trying to do other things as well as the band like lots of co-writing and other things to keep me busy because when you’re not touring ie. When you get back from Big Day Out you sort of find yourself sitting on the couch in your underpants playing Battlefield and you quickly realise that’s not going to occupy all your time, no matter how much weed you decide to smoke”.
Photography by Ross Calwell