Interviewed July 2008
In a courtyard at Burnside High School next to the music rooms, The Pulse met Lucy, Rosanne and Gabrielle, three of the four talented members of 3rd Inertia, winners of the Canterbury 2008 smokefree rockquest regional finals.
We set up the mics and recorded the interview just before they shot a video that they hope will win them a spot in the national finals. Alice was at physio when we did the interview.
Listen to 3rd Inertia’s Comforting Lie [2.94Mb MP3]
We started with the obvious question: was there a first and a second inertia?
“No,” Lucy says, “there was just the third.”
“I don’t know how the third got there, but the inertia got there because Alice was listening in science one day and she thought it sounded really cool…"
Gabrielle jumps in to explain : “It was just the three of us without Lucy to start with. Then Lucy came along – but we didn’t want to change our name. Fourth Inertia doesn’t sound as good.”
The question of the name comes up a lot, but Gabrielle said it was good – it helped get the band’s name out there.
“Then people remember the name.”
“What is third inertia? Third inertia, third inertia, third inertia - it just gets repeated over and over.” Lucy says.
The band have been together as a four-piece since rockquest 2007, but Alice, Rosanne and Gabrielle played together before that.
Gabrielle says she hasn’t been playing bass that long.
“I started a couple of years ago with the bass, but I played violin for nine years before that. You flip it over, and make it bigger and then you’ve got a bass. So it’s all right”
Lucy has been playing guitar for “ages” and used to play piano before she “got bored with the classical stuff”.
She joked it was also easier to carry round a guitar rather than a piano.
“Try a drum kit,” Rosanne chimes in.
Rosanne has been playing drums for about five years and most of the group has been involved in music for several years.
The band agree that learning classical music was an advantage for them.
“It gives you an advantage,” Gabrielle said.
“I find if you are looking for another part to a song you can say ‘oh, that note goes above there’. It helps being able to see all the notes happening in your brain rather than just hear it.”
The band played one acoustic and one rock song at the smokefreerockquest regional finals to go for a bit of a contrast, Lucy says.
“The acoustic one me and Alice wrote at the beginning of the year. It was originally meant to be for two acoustic guitars.”
Once the band got hold of it the song changed – bass lines, harmonies and drums were added. The second song was rockier and mashed together lots of different musical fragments.
“We’d tried to write songs that didn’t work,” Lucy says.
“We got the cool parts out of all those songs and put them together into this one crazy song with a million different parts to it.”
“It makes it more enjoyable,” Gabrielle adds, “you don’t quite know what’s going to come up next.”
The variety was something that appealed to Rosanne, who had to play several different rhythms during the one song.
“Variety’s really good – not playing the same constant beat throughout the song. [Sometimes] there’s a big break or a big change – it’s nice to do something different.”
The band say nerves aren’t too much of an issue.
“As a band I don’t think we really get nervous,” Gabrielle said.
Rosanne says she was only nervous for her very first rockquest.
“We’ve done so many gigs now, it was just like – ‘oh, more people’.
“More fun,” Gabrielle adds.
“Before we play we play over and over again, and make sure the songs are tight,” Rosanne says. “There’s no worries.”
One of there songs was put together a couple of weeks before the regional heats, but was practised “over and over and over” to get right.
The band practice in Alice’s dad’s garage, and make “quite a bit of noise”.
“Luckily we have nice neighbours,” Lucy says.
The girls have been on CTV a couple of times but were about to shooting a video, which had to be 15 minutes of them in live performance. How did they like being on camera?
“I hate it,” Lucy says. “I just wish it would go on to someone else.”
“It has to be a live recording – it can’t be two flashy. You can edit all your video but the sound has to be one take.”
Two of the band are in Year 13 and two are in Year 12, so school sports and assessment make life very busy for these up and coming rock stars.
“It’s a bit of a mission some times,” Lucy says.
Rosanne said Rockquest was the reason she came back to school.
“That’s what’s making me stay. All my friends – I just love seeing everyone. I’m not ready to leave school yet.”
Finding time to practice can be difficult. “Me and Rosie are in Year 13,” Lucy says and Alice and Gabby are in Year 12. We all play different sports and Rosie works and all these different commitments … We managed to find Mondays to practice. Monday is our day.”
Lucy is planning to go to Dunedin next year, but the other band members are hoping she will stay in Christchurch and keep the band in one town. The band are keen to play Southern Amp, and have other gigs at “wee local things”.
Mainz is keen for the band to join the school tour – all the schools in Christchurch.
The smokefree rockquest national finals will be held in Christchurch in September.