Apollo Blue – Vibrant, Enigmatic, Mysteriously Exciting.
Apollo Blue is one of Australia’s most upcoming acts – with his debut single Moonchild, an ode to self-empowerment, released on October 16; it has been a long time coming – but Moonchild was absolutely worth the wait.
Recorded in Melbourne in 2019, Apollo Blue guided production with audio engineer Jake Rush (Dan Parsons), mixing by James Cecil (The Goon Sax) and mastering by Adam Dempsey (Angie McMahon, Courtney Barnett),
Moonchild is evocative of classics The Rolling Stones and David Bowie, but stings with a uniquely modern twist not dissimiliar to indie pop icons The 1975 and Cub Sport. The song is a true journey, from start to finish – there are peaks and valleys, no musical turn is expected but each is fascinating and innovative. Moonchild is a fearless explosion of a debut, with climbing guitar licks, pounding percussion, gentle piano breaths, all held together by Apollo Blue’s defining, soaring vocal.
Raised in country South Australia, Apollo’s life was changed forever at the age of 17, when his musical idol Lady Gaga read his personal letter aloud in front of thousands and invited him backstage to meet her. Gaga’s message of self-love and equality was deeply inspiring to a young Apollo Blue, and this encounter with his idol caused him to pursue music and drama in his year 12 studies, cementing his love of art forever. Since then, Apollo has studied music at Collarts in Melbourne under the mentorship of ARIA award winning rock siblings Ella and Jesse Hooper of Killing Heidi, and has made waves across Melbourne’s live music scene.
Jack Pierce of Pierce Brothers sits down for a chat with Apollo Blue.
Jack: So Apollo Blue, can you tell us about your creative process when writing a song, and how it worked when writing Moonchild?
Apollo Blue: My process changes with every song I write, the nature of the song usually dictates how it begins. With Moonchild it started as an anthemic rock n roll feeling I had after walk home after a grungy gig in my glam rock attire through a storm. I knew I wanted to translate that powerful feeling into music. The character of the Moonchild came to me first while I was walking home and I built the song around this ominous character, starting with the chorus. As soon as I got home I went straight to my keyboard and built progressions and sections around the sound I wanted to create.
Jack: Moonchild is an ambitious track, with excellent solos and keys, did you feel that from the outset or was that something you really had to build?
Apollo Blue: When I first sat down at the keyboard to write Moonchild I also wrote the backing vocals, guitar lines and keys parts. The sound in my head while writing was anthemic and fantastical, it was definitely my intention from the beginning to make a grand rock song. The build during production was more so the addition of synth and some atmospheric sounds, I wanted the recording to sound lush and full.
Jack: Are you working on new material already?
Apollo Blue: Don’t tell Moonchild but I definitely have some other tracks brewing away. Writing is a constant outlet for me, so I’m always writing lyrics and recording melodies for future music.
Jack: Do you have plans to tour?
Apollo Blue: I definitely intend on touring in the future but I’m going to wait for the apocalypse to settle down first. I don’t think people swarming to gigs in groups is the safest choice at the moment.
Jack: Best show you’ve ever been to?
Apollo Blue: Lady Gaga’s 2014 ArtRave: The Artpop Ball. It was an incredible spectacle from beginning to end. Amazing live vocals, stripped down songs at the piano contrasted by fully choreographed songs with a squad of dancers.
Jack: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Apollo Blue: “Never give a mug an even break” from my Poppa. Haha it came in handy for my tennis matches. Seriously, probably my Mum telling me that I could do anything or be anyone I wanted, I just needed to visualise it and truly believe in it first.
Jack: If it wasn’t music, what would it be?
Apollo Blue: It was almost medicine! I actually did work experience at a medical clinic and assisted in surgery and gave ECGs! It was after meeting my musical idol, Lady Gaga, in year 11 that I changed my year 12 subjects to follow my true passion. If it wasn’t then, it would have been half way through med school, my passion for music runs so deep, it was always going to be music.
Jack: Who would you most like to collaborate with?
Apollo Blue: I would love to collaborate with Stevie Nicks. Stevie is the Queen of Rock Music and her songwriting is some of the most poetic and ethereal the world has seen. A true legend.
Jack: What is your favourite food?
Apollo Blue: Green curry, closely followed by pomegranate. Never together though!
Jack: What’s next for Apollo Blue?
Apollo Blue: World domination and some snacks in bed.