Music / Features
They Made Me Do It -
Talking Influences with
Julia Why?
Words by Shelby De Fazio
Tuesday 4th September, 2018

Sydney based garage rock three-piece Julia Why? have released their powerhouse new single ‘Pocket’ off their forthcoming second album. We caught up with the number one Julia (Wylie) to chat influences of all kinds behind the rapid fire alt-rockers sound.
A seasoned name within the Australian garage-rock scene Julia Why? released their debut album back in 2015, earning them a national spotlight as winners of Triple J Unearthed’s NIDA competition as well as garnering praise from all corners of the globe. Touring extensively throughout Australia and Canada the visceral live set of Julia Why? have earned them coveted supports including Hinds, Waxahatchee, The Courtneys, The Lemon Twigs and Fat White Family. While the outfits energy has been bubbling since their first release, there's no better time than now to join Julia Why?’s riot grrrl call ahead of their massive east coast tour this month.

The unapologetic single ‘Pocket’ takes a slower approach than expected as a more subdued pace draws greater attention to front woman Julia Wylie’s powerful lyrics. Wylie explains how the politically charged single was written in response “after the government announced it wanted to drug test welfare recipients.” Drenched in distortion, the single drives home a raw and honest message - “When people are down and out, they need help - not another knee-jerk policy that demonises vulnerable people and does nothing to address what leads to addiction in the first place.”

With a huge east coast tour around the corner and the release of their second album on the horizon we caught up with Julia Why? to chat influences of all kinds!
Patti Smith
I read two of her books in 2016 - Just Kids and M-Train. I loved learning the backstory of those iconic images Robert Mapplethorpe took of her in the 1975. I saw her perform in Sydney at the State Theatre in 2017 and she was still punk as fuck aged 70. But not just that - she's also gentle and thoughtful, rebellious in her positivity, spiritual in her sentimentality. Boss Bitch.

Julia Why? was the support act for Hinds on their first Australian tour in 2015. They have the craziest live your life to the absolute maximum positive energy. I love that the biggest indie band to ever come out of Spain are four women playing DIY garage rock. They’re down to earth, incredibly hard working, the biggest party animals, total shredders and their new album is an absolute BANGER. I hope we get to play with them again one day.

Laurie Anderson

Seeing her perform at Dark Mofo this year was probably the best thing I’ve ever witnessed on a stage. She made everyone in the (sold out) theatre scream out their worries at the same time. Can you imagine the feeling of 1000 people screaming for 10 seconds? My heart was beating a million miles an hour for the entire show. I laughed and cried and felt alive.

'Malibu' by Hole
Oooft what a banger. Perfection. Anyone that still thinks Courtney killed Kurt is an idiot (and probably a misogynist FYI).

Last Thoughts On Woody Guthrie by Bob Dylan
I listen to this poem when I’m lost. If you ever feel hopeless, depressed or broken give this a whirl. It always makes me feel better. It’s a real beauty.

David Attenborough’s Great Barrier Reef
I watched his documentary series about the Great Barrier Reef over and over in 2016 when I was writing a lot of the new album. I was totally intoxicated by how incredible the world under water is. It’s actual magic. It’s excruciating to think our government is selling it off to Adani to make a quick buck. There is nothing else like the Great Barrier Reef in existence. I hope we can protect it.
Catch Julia Why? at The Tote on October 11 and The Grace Darling on October 12 as part of their east coast tour!