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The Last Dinner Party’s Georgia Davies tells ‘RUSSH’ about her Australian homecoming, style inspirations and sonic evolution

The Last Dinner Party's bassist Georgia Davies tells 'RUSSH' about her Australian homecoming, style inspirations and sonic evolution

British indie rockers The Last Dinner Party are a maximalist's dream – embodying all the wildness, delicacy, mystery and enchantment of a bygone era. After meeting at college, Abigail Morris (vocals), Lizzie Mayland (vocals, guitar) and Georgia Davies (bass), where joined by Aurora Nishevci (keyboards, vocals) and Emily Roberts (lead guitar, mandolin, flute) in 2021. And they've been pretty unstoppable since.

Releasing their debut album Prelude to Ecstasy in January this year, the band is on the precipice of an Australian tour – a series of shows that also doubles as a homecoming of sorts for bassist Davies, who is a Sydney-sider at heart (despite nearly a decade spent residing in London now).

We spoke to Davies ahead of the band's upcoming tour and festival dates in Australia to probe about the band's influences, evolution, what still makes them nervous and pushing the limits...


You haven’t been back to Australia in quite a while. What’s been the most special part about this upcoming homecoming tour and playing Spin Off Festival?

I think the fact that I get to show my friends in the band where I'm from. The thought of them just walking around Sydney is really wild to me because I never thought that these worlds would collide. Also, playing venues like the Hordern Pavilion, which I went to a lot as a teenager, and the fact that we can get close to selling that out – or when it sells out – is amazing!


Who are some of your biggest music inspirations as a band? And do you ever find inspiration outside of the music world?

Queen, Bowie, Florence and the Machine, Lana Del Rey, FKA Twigs, Charli XCX. Just anyone who's creative and commits to the bit. We find a lot of inspiration outside of music, in film, literature, theatre, art and all of those worlds.


What is something you’re obsessing over at the moment?

I’m reading this really good book called Hurricane Season by Fernanda Melchor. It's a Mexican folklore story about a witch. I picked it up at a service station and it’s amazing. That’s my new inspiration for everything, I feel like 'Hurricane Season' would be a great name for an album.


Fashion seems to play a big role in the band’s aesthetics. Where do you pull pieces for your stage outfits and who or what do you look to as style references?

Most of our stage-wear are just things that we own already; stuff that we actually wear in our day-to-day lives. People always think that it's an elaborate costume, but no, that's just what I wear [laughs].

But we do also work with a handful of local, independent designers who loan us clothes for our tours and performances. We really like being able to give publicity and endorsement to independent student designers in London or wherever we play. It's a really nice way to give a platform to designers, by wearing their clothes on stage. The inspiration comes from years of being on Tumblr as a teenager and curating all of that into what we ultimately want to be.


You’ve been on the road for a while now, but is there anything that still brings you out of your comfort zone when touring?

I don't get stage fright anymore – but I used to. I think the stage is actually where we are most comfortable and it's all of the superficial stuff that is what brings us out of our comfort zone, like doing TV shows. We did Stephen Colbert in America – such a big talk show – and we were all really nervous about that. But we can play very comfortably to a crowd of 10,000 and not feel out of our comfort zone there. It’s the other stuff that surrounds touring that is intense.


Your debut album Prelude to Ecstasy came out earlier this year – but you recorded it nearly a year before that in January 2023. What was it like having to sit on that project for so long, waiting for it to be released to the world?

It was frustrating. I just wanted to leak it because I knew that it was there and it was good. I wanted everyone to hear it. So, by the time that it actually came to the release date, I wanted to do new songs. We’ve been sitting on this work for years and it was such a relief to actually get it out into the world because we worked so hard on it.


Sonically or aesthetically, how do you think you’ve evolved since the beginning of the band?

I think that we are more curious now as to what the limits are and how far we can push the ideology of maximalism. I think we're more interested in it because the album is hyper-femme with corsets, ball gowns and running around in the castle kind of vibes. We're also now interested in androgynous and masculine figures like David Bowie and Grace Jones, who are chameleons in fashion and music, constantly evolving and changing. I think we're just more intellectually curious about the limits of what we can do.


What are you most excited about that’s coming up for The Last Dinner Party?

To prove to everyone who was mean to me in high school that I'm actually cool now. Yeah, I moved to London and got cool! [Laughs.] And Japan – we're going there after Australia. I'm just really stoked for that portion of the year!


The Last Dinner Party will be touring Australia from 19–23 July 2024, including playing at Adelaide's Spin Off Festival. Find out more about tour dates, venues and purchase tickets on The Last Dinner Party website.

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