“I’m going to hold my horses, it’s not a race,” Free Time frontman Dion Nania insists over unhurried guitars, drawing out the word “race” for a good couple seconds as if to prove it to us. Or maybe to himself. Coming from a track titled “I Lost Again” on his band’s self-titled debut (out May 28 via Underwater Peoples), the play on tempo and subverted ideas of victory speak to a sly self-deprecation that cuts the record’s face-value pleasantness. The Melbourne transplant hones the same seemingly effortless pop of bands like Real Estate or Scott & Charlene’s Wedding (both of whom have shared members with Free Time) but also Kurt Vile’s psychedelic meanderings and Jesus and Mary Chain’s nonchalant cool. He’s straight-faced till the end.
Your first show in NYC as Free Time—where’d you play? How’d it go?
It was at ‘Steve’s Loft’ in Greenpoint with King Cyst, Scott & Charlene’s Wedding and Ducktails. It was super fun. It was more fun than our second and third shows.
On tour for a month, what three albums would get the most play in the van? Ex Tropical by Lost Animal on Hardly Art, She Beats by Beaches (out soon on Chapter Music), and maybe the second Carlton & the Shoes album.
Ideal four-band bill—who’s playing with you, and where are you playing?
The Twerps, Garbage & the Flowers and R. Stevie Moore with us on the New Zealand inter-island ferry.
Favorite song about NYC?
I’m gonna say “Shattered” by The Rolling Stones.
If you had to relocate to another city, where would you be headed?