Fair to say Toby Cregan and Benny Reed, the laid-back boys with a chilled-out charisma from Byron Bay, have taken the music world by storm and are only going to get crazier. On the upcoming release of their new album ‘My Own Mess’, to be released on the 7th of September, we chatted to band members Toby and Benny from Skegss about their upcoming Australian and UK tour to get a glimpse of life on and off the road.
Firstly, the boys were both chuffed with the first two singles from their new album ‘Up in the Clouds’ and ‘Smogged Out’ getting off to a huge start. Toby explained ‘we’re absolutely stoked to have the support from Triple J and all our fans to have received the hype we have on our new singles’. Benny says ‘it just makes me feel happy’ as simple as that… and why not.
What’s the meaning behind the new album name ‘My Own Mess’? Toby and Benny both explained ‘it’s pretty much a reflection of our life over the past year and dealing with what goes on, we just write down the shit that happens and now we have made an album out of it’.
What is the biggest set you’ve played to date and has there been a time when you have looked at one another and thought this is fkn crazy? ‘Our biggest set to date was just at Splendour in the Grass 2018 and it absolutely blew our minds during that set playing songs such as ‘Get on my Skateboard’ and ‘New York California’’.
“when you have a crowd of people singing your lyrics back to you, that was definitely a time when we looked at each other and thought, holy shit, this is f**king happening”.
Starting off did you ever think you would be in the position you are now? Benny replied with ‘yeah’. Toby said, ‘It’s Toby speaking now, I don’t want to be held accountable for Ben’s comment hahaha, but I’ve wanted to be in a band since I was a little boy, so somehow I always knew if I persisted I would be able to’. Toby went on to say,‘if people like our music, then we’re not going to stop doing it’.
Right, highs and lows of touring? ‘Let’s start from the lows and finish on a high…’. The boys were both pretty quick to say there isn’t much they don’t like about touring… Toby, ‘ahhh sleep deprivation and the amount of shit food, like bulk Maccas, that’s about it, some people sook about it, but I think its f**king sweet’. ‘The highs are literally everything else like you don’t ever have to stop drinking beers if you don’t wanna’. Choice of beer?‘We’ve been drinking Furphy’s lately and dabbling in Tooheys New’. And for those who have seen them, would agree that they don’t mind a beer on stage, the boys both agreed with ‘why wouldn’t ya’.
For the boys outside of being in a band, we touched base on some hobbies: Benny said, ‘outside of the band I just like writing rad songs, gardening, watching tv and reading a book’, Toby stating that 'me and Benny played golf the other day, which was a once a year type set up, but good fun’.
So, what’s next for you guys? ‘Our album tour is fast approaching, followed by more in the UK, so that’s practically all that we are concentrating on for the time being’.
Wrapping it up with Ben and Toby, for their upcoming tour they have jumped on board with the Mark Hughes Foundation, a foundation which raises funds for brain cancer research, donating a dollar from every ticket sold. Toby says ‘we’ve been wanting to support a foundation for some time now and this one came up and we are more than happy to support it with some hype being around the album release, it was a great opportunity'.
Images by Sam Dougherty.