Electronic Aussie trio Crooked Colours, aka Philip, Leon and Liam, stopped by to tell us about their rise from house party DJs to festival features.


We want to party with Crooked Colours. With a dream guest list including Danny Brown and playlist most likely comprised of Justice and Daft Punk, it sounds like a potentially wild night out. Philip Slabber, Leon De Baughn and Liam Merrett-Park came together three years ago and haven’t looked back since. The glory of being (surely incredible) house party DJs wasn’t enough for the trio and they’ve quickly climbed the ranks with their enriched electronica, playing all over Oz and getting steady footing on the festival ladder.

Their most recent release, “Another Way” could be soothing, what with the low grumbling hummed vocals, but it quickly kickstarts into life with warped echoes and cascading synths. The perfect soundtrack to a rose-tinted montage of summer festival fun, we can’t wait for our first opportunity to see Crooked Colours live in the UK, whenever that may be. We can guarantee that if their songwriting prowess continues at this impressive level, that day isn’t so far away.


When did you guys get together and start making music?

It was around the start of 2012, Phil met Leon through some mutual friends and started talking about instruments and influences and stuff. Leon had been buying old synths online and they kept us busy for a while until we booked our first show and decided we wanted a live drummer. A friend had recommended someone whilst we were in Thailand a few months before, so we decided to give him a call and thats how Liam joined us.

Tell us about your individual backgrounds…

We all grew up in coastal Western Australia which is pretty isolated. Liam grew up in the south west with his dad being a music teacher. Phil was born in South Africa and moved to WA when he was 8, didn’t really get involved in much music until high school and Leon grew up in the hills and later moved to the coast. Started collecting synths and DJing house parties around town.

Have you found that three’s a crowd?

Three is a magic number. Its not too many to tour with and there is always a majority vote.

Who are your dance music heroes?

The Presets, Justice, Daft Punk. All the usuals, more recently, Nico Jaar, Caribou.

Dead or alive, who would invite to your intimate house party?

Danny Brown. He’s fucking hilarious and he looks like he gets super loose.

Where does the band name come from, are the colours really crooked?

Leon’s dad used to race motorcycles back in the day and his racing team were called the crooked cats. It took us ages to come up with anything so we just ran with that and changed it a bit. The colours are always crooked..

What would be your dream festival to play?

Burning Man for now. Our friend Matt played there last year and said it was one of the best experiences of his life. That being said, we love festivals so much. It’s one of the biggest reasons we started with music in the first place. So any big festival, we’ll get around pretty hard.

Where are the most inspiring locations in the world for you?

Artistically I think for us it’s more the environment rather than the actual location. Anywhere thats different and fresh can inspire you. That’s why its important for us to be really proactive and move around a lot.

If you compared yourself to another famous trio, who would you be?

Umm.. I’m having the biggest mental blank trying to think of famous trios…

What is your best musical memory together?

When we finished our first proper song together called “Moontan Nocturnal” we got the master back and all listened to it together in the car. We were so excited about the end result and I think it was the first time that we all really started to believe that it was doable for us.


Where are you going in the future? 

Forwards, hopefully. We’re in the process of writing our debut album at the moment which doesn’t have a title yet. But hopefully with that we can get overseas to play some shows, see some new places.

How would you describe your sound?

We’ve been told we sound like a mix of Alt-J, Crystal Castles and Glass Animals. Which is very flattering. We don’t really set out to sound a certain way, its just kind of the best we can do.

Crooked Colours’ single “Another Way” is due for release 30th March .


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