What is your name and role within STOKA?
Az, I sing and play guitar.
The South East of Melbourne bruz.
My brother Bo and I have been jamming together since we kids. We’ve known Moose our whole lives, and when he brought Scotty along to jam one day, STOKA just kinda started. It was more just a way we hung out, but then things like supporting Boo Seeka and Bootleg started happening, so it evolved from there.
Most of our tracks usually start with me jamming on an acoustic, freestyling a bit. It’s easier for me to write when I’m not really trying to write (laughs). All of STOKA listen to different kinds of music, from Moose and RNB to me listening to grunge, so when I go “Guys, I’ve got a track” we just jam the structure, and see what happens. It’s great cos everyone just adds their own style and flavour to it. Basically we just try build it up, and drop it as hard as possible.
At the moment I’ve got Sam Fender, Forth Wanderers and Anderson Paak on high rotation.
Yew, everyone better get tickets soon (laughs). We recorded in the little jam bungalow we have at our house in April.
Half of the EP are some of our very first songs, so they’re influenced by the Sureshaker crew. The other half are songs we wrote just before going into the studio, or in the case of FEELING, in the studio. They’re a bit more Gang of Youths, Dear Seattle, Lime Cordiale flavoured.
Our boy Kyle Gutterson. He’s a local lad on the Melbourne music scene, and he’s recorded a couple of our mates’ bands. We were stoked to work with him, he really became the fifth member of STOKA, plus he dealt with all our idiosyncrasies really well (laughs).
Get this EP out, and smash out our EP launch. We’ve got our second EP in the works already, so hopefully we’ll drop that this year as well. We’re also in the process of starting a fundraising gig where we’ll donate all profits to the homeless of Melbourne. It’ll be another mini fest in conjunction with a local organisation in order to provide clothes for the homeless, calling it “Arm The Homeless”.
Salty Chicken number 59 on the menu at All Season Dumpling in Oakleigh. We end up there a lot.