Beans release long-awaited album

Beans. (Danysha Harriott)

Matt Hewson

Geelong psych-rock five-piece Beans has just released their new album, but it’s been a much different (and longer) journey than those of their previous releases.

Their third studio album Boots N Cats hit streaming platforms today (Friday, March 15), nearly four years after the release of Beans’ second album All Together Now.

The band, which consists of frontman Matt Blach, guitarist Jack Kong, drummer Lachlan McKiernan, bassist Vincent Clementson and keyboardist Mitch Rice, can be forgiven for the long stretch of time between albums, given All Together Now was launched right at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Clementson said the pandemic couldn’t have happened at a worse time for All Together Now.

“We had all the album launch plans (for All Together Now) and everything ready to go,” he said.

“We were putting some shows together and then we played the (launch) show and then the next day they were like, there’s no more gigs.”

Despite the separation, the band continued writing and developing new songs through lockdowns, which would eventually form the core of Boots N Cats.

“It was kind of a different approach (for this album); half the band was here in Geelong, then Matt and Jack were up in Melbourne, so we couldn’t see each other,” Clementson said.

“I definitely think it allowed for different ways, like different things that we’ve never really thought of.

“I think it had a positive effect, to realise we don’t need to be in the same room together, we can still harness our creativity from a distance.”

Blach agreed, saying while it wasn’t an approach the band really wanted to take it “was the way it was”.

“We couldn’t see each other at all but we wanted to keep the ball rolling; we had all these songs, so we started recording them,” Blach said.

The band members, who are all between the ages of 28 and 31, grew up on the Bellarine, with Blach and Clementson taking their first job delivering papers for the Geelong Independent to earn their “lolly money”.

The lads played music together through high school, officially forming the band in 2017, and Blach said the chemistry and camaraderie developed over the years was his favourite part of playing in Beans.

“We’ve all just known each other for that long and it’s always been a fun time rather than a serious time,” he said.

“(It’s) doing something productive, but we try not to take ourselves too seriously. And that’s reflected to the audience.”

Beans are playing at Aireys Inlet Music Festival on Saturday, March 16.