Brothers Louis and Oli Leimbach were brought up by “hippy parents” on a small island off Sydney’s northern beaches.
Not satisfied with working within the limits of a quiet surfie lifestyle, the pair began to work together on a number of musical projects, which has since culminated in the launch of their band, Lime Cordiale.
Described as ‘summery indie pop’, Lime Cordiale has released two well-received singles this year in ‘Road to Paradise and ‘Not That Easy’, which are now being used as a the platform for an east coast tour this spring.
The film clip for ‘Not That Easy’ was shot in drought-afflicted northern Queensland as a show of support for communities throughout the region.
Wild recently interviewed Louis to discover how the brothers’ unique upbringing continues to influence the way they produce music.
What’s it like growing up on an island on Sydney’s northern beaches? How did you get around?
We were pretty feral kids; never wore shoes and were always covered in dirt. We had to get a ferry to school every day. There are no shops on the island, so if you forget something like milk you’re pretty buggered. Or your hippy parents go ask the hippies next door for some… and hope they’re not vegans.
What led you guys towards the arts in terms of your careers?
Our mum is a muso, so she got us into playing clarinet and trumpet pretty early on. Dad makes docos so they massively support the creative path and understand that it takes a lifetime of work before you ever see a buck. Surfing was always for fun. Like music, you have to be at the top the game to make money. I competed a bit when I was younger but it wasn’t for me – it takes away from the relaxing side of it.
Have the two of you been working and travelling together your whole lives now, or have there been extended stints apart?
We haven’t really spent much time apart. We’ve lived together our whole lives. I think we sort of need to be living together because of the band in order to write, brainstorm and stay on the same page sonically. But when we need a break from each other, we find ways to spend a little time apart.
Have you done much ‘wilderness adventure’ around Australia beyond surfing? Any favourite places or activities you’d highlight?
I love the bush – getting away from the festering city. Any more time spent sitting in Sydney traffic and I’m going to lose the plot. We usually head to a mate’s farm about six hours north of Sydney with instruments, no internet and no phones a few weeks each year. There are horses and a beautiful swimming hole there. Paddling down on a canoe and fishing. It’s so relaxing.
How did Lime Cordiale come about? Both in name and the group itself?
We started playing house parties to begin with, got some mates to play with us and then moved from parties to venues because there were too many shows being shut down due to neighbours calling the cops with noise complaints.
How long has Lime Cordiale been producing music? How do you describe your music?
We have been producing ‘music’ for about four years now. The music to begin with sucked and so did we. We still don’t really know what we’re doing to be honest, but we’re all a more on the same page now and know what we like. We all love a bit of soul, psych and hip-hop.
Your latest video project focuses on the plight of drought-stricken Queensland – why Queensland?
We went up to outback Queensland to play a few shows for a film festival. We were always planning on backing the drought appeal once we got there, but didn’t really understand the seriousness of it all until we got there. It was like nothing we had seen before. The locals told us it hasn’t rained in about six years! And they’re desperate for it.
The agriculture industry use to thrive and it’s now looking hopeless. Farmers are having to pack up and sell after doing the same thing for generations.
It sucks that we can’t do more to help out. If we could, we would. This project is a small attempt to spread the word as much as we possibly can; spread it to a water-rich urban crowd that aren’t aware of what’s going on.
Lime Cordiale’s ‘Road to Paradise’ EP tour is presented by Chugg Music and the Harbour Agency. Tour dates and additional details can be found via the group’s website.