After establishing a brand with their 2017 debut, Polychronic, Sydney multi-instrumentalist duo MEZKO recently unveiled their latest track and music video, Come & Go.
Come & Go is an uplifting track about just getting on with it. The theme: when you’re faced with struggles, sometimes you’ve got to pick yourself up and walk away with optimism.
This single marked a special release for Kate Harley and Laura Bailey, and was one where they started to experiment with different beats, groups and aesthetic of the ’70s to find their influences.
Laura said the sound came from many different eras. “That classic glam rhythm we wanted to apply, really sound levels of electronic music and analogue synthesizers,” she said.
“We’re both people who have a pretty broad range of influences and don’t like to limit ourselves to just one genre or a small collection of genres in our music,” added Kat. “We like to pull from different influences for each song that we do.”
Directed by Ellen Hodgson, the video captures a dark mood. The pair are joined by another set of strangely familiar faces, culminating in a simple, but stunning, celebration of androgyny.
The video comes as a tribute to MEZKO’s love of the early ’70s and glam-era where David Bowie, The New York Dolls, Patti Smith, Iggy Pop and more blurred the divisions of gender through their music and aesthetic.
The duo said there was no genre that celebrated sass in the way glam did, and they used that inspiration when creating their latest song.
“I guess it helps, of course, fitting in with that genre. However, we always want to play with the idea of ‘how are they judging me?’ We kind of wanted to work that idea from that time into 2018,” Kat said.
“The video is just something that we also really wanted to have some fun with, so Blake and Tanya, the whole gang is through people that we met through our lives.
“The idea of them judging you and kind of having some fun with that gender limitation, and how much that can open you up to different kind of experiences and influences is the thing that we were trying to play with.”
Laura said that’s why the duo felt so comfortable amongst the queer community.
“We’ve never really looked at anything being a gender limitation. We don’t ever think of things that way and that’s why we chose the music. Although there are obvious struggles within that industry that are going through a change right now, we always just wanted to be ourselves and whether that’s female or male, we’re just being ourselves.”
MEZKO are a duo who record and produce their own music and want the forefront of their brand to to be about technical skills as well as exploring styles.
The name, MEZKO, is completely made-up. “We were liking the sound of different combinations and letters at the time, I guess. We felt that it would be good to create something from scratch as opposed to having any words that were associated with anything else. It’s very much the way we go about everything,” Laura said.
MEZKO will hit the ground running with their upcoming single tour where they will play tracks from their EP as well as trialling out some new ones.
“We’ve been on tour for the past three weeks supporting Crooked Colours, so we’re getting pretty in sync with things in alignment. It’s just good to continue it on. We love it, we really enjoy it. We’ve got beautiful people that we love to hang out with in each city that we’re very lucky to have around and in our lives. Each time it’s just like going to a different home,” Laura said.
“Different kinds of tours bring different opportunities and challenges. So it’s been really cool to have experiences at a big venue tour and then go back to smaller venues and our own crowd.”
MEZKO are multi-instrumentalists, and what you see is what you get. During the tour, the stage will be split in two – the digital side (Kat) and the analogue (Laura).
The first piece of equipment Kat ever purchased was a “really shitty guitar” – whatever she could afford.
The Australian music scene is something that continues to inspire Kat, who works in a studio.
“Something I find inspiring is having artists continue to grow and thrive. I work at music studio and no matter what they’re still just good bands and I think that’s something that I find really inspiring about music is that people just keep creating,” Kat said.
The duo have no intention on slowing down.
“In 2018, we’re still exploring the possibilities of individuals despite traditional gender limitations and looking forward to a more androgynous future.”