Exclusive Q&A: 51st Avenue (Alt-Rock, Australia) New Single ‘ICU’

Sydney pop-rockers 51st Avenue unveil their vulnerable new single ‘I.C.U’ featuring all the best ingredients of contemporary heavy rock, from its vibrant and uplifting synth samples, crashing anthemic choruses to intimate vocal work from Alynnis Zizza. The group bares it all to explore fear and uncertainty through brilliant lyricism and infectious melodies accompanying the lively instrumentation. Showcasing their fresh take on modern rock with pop sensibilities, ‘I.C.U.’ is a bold and fiercely addictive tune that warrants repeat listens. 

“We sat down with Australian pop rock act 51st Avenue to talk about their latest single ‘ICU'”

What’s your name and position in the band?
Hiya! I’m Alynnis (A-luh-neece) or Aly for short and I am the singer in 51st Avenue.

Which genre(s) do you feel best represent your band?
We definitely have that Electronic Pop/Rock feel about us but it’s always been difficult to place us into a solid genre. We’re too heavy for some and not heavy enough for others, too Pop for Rock but not Pop enough for Punk haha.

What was your favorite thing about writing, recording and filming the latest release?
My favourite thing about writing ‘ICU’ was definitely the ease of writing the lyrics. There isn’t a song we’ve written that doesn’t come from a personal experience by at least one member of the band but I was living in that world while writing those lyrics. I was by my husband’s side in the ICU ward for over a week and writing down all the craziness going through my head so it came as the easiest lyric writing for any of our songs to date. Vocal recording is my absolute FAVOURITE part of the entire process of writing our music. I already have my lyrics, I’m not performing live and usually it’s just myself and the producer and maybe at least 1 other band member (this is only important to me because I’m lowkey introverted). It’s just me singing verses, choruses and bridges over and over again all day and that’s what I never tire of. I just get to sing all day! Filming is definitely the most exhausting but ridiculously most fun part! It’s not like we get to do a music video for every song so the few times we did, it’s been a blast. The music video for ‘ICU’ had a few more story interpretations going on than our last music video so it was even more exciting and rewarding watching it all come together for the final product.

What is your favorite part about touring?
We’re embarking on our first ever tour with ‘ICU’ and we have been absolutely hanging for it. It’s super exciting for us to be playing interstate and for crowds outside of our local shows. We also have killer lineups for each show and I always love standing back, hearing other bands and watching their shows. We’ll be driving to Brisbane, Melbourne and Newcastle which is the one a lot closer to home but family road trips are awesome (I am the one who’s sleeping most of the time). Spending good quality time with the band fam is always fun and never a dull moment. I guess we’ll find out real soon which part of touring is my actual favourite. Looking forward to the whole tour.

In an alternate universe where you are not a Musician, what kind of activities would you be interested in?
I could not even imagine a universe where I don’t sing. It is literally my only talent haha. I would definitely still be somewhere in the performing arts. Probably dancing or acting. They came hand in hand when I was growing up singing so that makes sense.

When did you pick up your first instrument?
My parents would tell you that I’ve been singing since I was born but then isn’t that like every baby haha. It really has been for as long as I can remember. My family just love to sing and dance so it was going to come naturally. Eventually I started singing lessons when I was 10 years old.

Did your school have a supportive Music Department/Teachers?
They absolutely did! I loved my music teachers and loved my music classes. My 10th grade music teacher asked if we could go on an excursion to see the musical Wicked and there were only 12 of us in the class so it was super cute and amazing to see because I think it’s only come back once since then! I was also in the stage band which was awesome. They took us to Mt Gambier for the Generations in Jazz Festival. That was 12th grade but 11th grade music class was actually where I met our drummer Scott and we’ve been besties ever since and yeah, we had a pretty awesome music teacher for 12th grade too.

Do you have any pre-performance rituals?
I don’t have any for me personally but as a band, we like to re-group 5 minutes before we go up on stage (if we’re not already together) and have a little huddle/pep talk (what is said in the huddle changes each time). It just gives us all a level head before performing together rather than everyone on different sides of nerves or excitement. We all have very different things going through our heads before performing so it’s nice to connect and give us a sense of unity before jumping on stage and performing together.

What do you think the Music Industry needs right now?
A hell of a lot of love. Covid really did a number on everyone. The music industry definitely copped it so more shows, more chances to show support and love to local bands would be amazing. Covid effected our writing, recording and performing so as a band, we were really in an unproductive slump. There was so much we wanted and planned to do that just went out the window with the lockdowns and we definitely weren’t the only band. Yep. The music industry needs a lot of love.

What’s next for you?
The ‘ICU’ tour is right around the corner with our first show at Brisbane on the 29th September! I believe right at the end of our tour there may or may not be another music video to be filmed…

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