DAVEY Lane is still feeling the effects of jet lag when he speaks to Weekender a day after returning from a trip to Europe and the UK.
It’s the first proper holiday Lane has taken since joining You Am I more than a decade ago and while he has seen plenty of the world touring with the band, a busy schedule on the road means he has never had a chance to explore cities properly.
The UK leg of the trip included a pilgrimage to Liverpool to visit the sites of his beloved Beatles including Strawberry Fields and the Cavern Club – the latter not quite living up to expectations.
‘‘I went to the Cavern which, I’ve gotta say, was a bit of a disappointment just because the street the Cavern is on has become such a tourist trap,’’ Lane explains.
‘‘I went down to the Cavern Club and thought ‘OK, this is gonna be a quasi-religious experience here’ – even though it’s not the original Cavern – and I got down there and on stage was a guy with an acoustic guitar and some drunk chick yelling out Imagine, karaoke-style.
‘‘I expected to see a band up there playing Chuck Berry covers or something but it was not to be unfortunately.’’
Now back on home territory, Lane, 32, has released his debut solo EP, The Good Borne of Bad Tymes, which will be supported by a national tour in September and October with his three-piece band.
It is not the first time the singer/guitarist has stepped away from You Am I, having previously released three albums fronting alt-rock band The Pictures, but this is his first release under his own name.
The EP’s five tracks are a departure from Lane’s retro rock roots, with synths influenced by ’70s groups such as the Gary Numan-fronted Tubeway Army and German electronic pioneers Kraftwerk working their way into the sound and even a ‘‘space rock jam’’ track.
He plans to release a follow-up EP early in the new year.
‘‘Guitar-based rock ’n’ roll and pop music is kind of in my blood and always will be but this EP wasn’t so much a concerted effort to walk away from that because I do have a bunch of other songs recorded that are more along the lines of what you might expect me to come up with.
‘‘This time around I just wanted to try something different and because it was coming out under my own name, it was almost like I had a clear palette to work with.
‘‘There wasn’t any expectation of what I should come up with or what my stuff should sound like. I made the most of that freedom.’’
Lane is still buzzing after You Am I’s sell-out run of anniversary shows to celebrate their classic albums Sound As Ever, Hi Fi Way and Hourly, Daily.
‘‘That was a big tour,’’ Lane says.
‘‘It was a good few months but it was heaps of fun. People ask if it was a new lease of life for us but we were kind of just happy to do it. We just had a ball playing those songs.
‘‘For me, there’s a bunch of those songs that we hadn’t played as a band together and I mean, the 15-year-old me was getting excited!
‘‘We’re just looking forward to doing something new next and looking to the future whenever that is.’’
Davey Lane performs at The Great Northern Hotel on September 27. Bookings online at oztix.com.au.