DRUMMER for Newcastle band The Owls Matt McDonough said you can hear the natural progression of the rock band over its three EPs. And he's right.
The band's third EP, Own The Streets, sounds complete. It sounds like the New South Wales quartet are sure of what direction they want to go in and it rocks.
"It's nothing too far-fetched from where we started but we are becoming smarter about writing things. It's been a bit easier (to write) over last two years," McDonough said.
Filled with tempo changes, a strong guitar sound and some addictive choruses, the EP has started to find success on Triple J and is the perfect platform for The Owls' debut album.
"I'd say an album is next. For the EP we had about 10 songs and were considering an album," McDonough said.
"But we decided on an EP and to save some for later. We're happy with where it’s all going."
Own The Streets is full of fast energy and quite a few tempo and sound changes.
It is never more evident that on singles Ocean and Krakow.
"We delved in (tempo changes) early on but never mastered it onto a tune," McDonough said.
"Producer Lachlan Mitchell sat down with us when we rehearsed and put his input into some songs and now those elements completely work. It sounds so much better to how we used to play."
The band is influenced by Queens of the Stone Age, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club and Kasabian but never tries to emulate those bands.
"We have all grown up with those bands and all love their music," McDonough said.
"You can definitely hear elements (of those bands) in our tunes but our music stands alone and is around the corner from those bands."
Own The Streets was released on July 5, just in time for fans and industry experts to have a listen before The Owls head out on a 26-date tour.
The tour starts on July 31 in Adelaide and heads to Bendigo the next day before finishing up with a hometown show in Newcastle in October.
But despite such an extensive tour and support acts with bands including The Preachers and Queens of the Stone Age, McDonough said the band members still don't feel like pros.
"It's hard to say. I don’t think we are," he said.
"We grew up playing gigs with The Preachers and look where they are, international artists playing overseas.
"That's a level we look forward to getting to but until we're at that level, I'm not sure.
"We're definitely professional in what we do but we're a long way from doing it every day of the year. We've still got bills just like everyone else."
The band formed in 2006 thanks to lead singer Josh Bailey and includes McDonough on drums as well as lead guitarist Lewis Gillespie and bass player Joey Bourke.
McDonough has known Bailey since he was young and was asked to not only play drums but learn them for the band.
"I was overseas and three months later I was back learning drums," he said.
"I had never played them before but my dad and brother had, so it was a bit of a natural progression."
When the band heads to Bendigo next month it plans to blow audiences away with its first gig in the region.
"It's going to be all new to some people and we don't leave anything off stage. It's all on there and full of fast paced energy," McDonough said.
The Owls play at the Musicman Megastore in Bendigo on Friday, August 1. Tickets are available at the door.