INTERVIEW: Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs

A lot has been happening recently for our favourite dino Orlando Higginbottom, better known to the prehistoric world of music as TOTALLY ENORMOUS EXTINCT DINOSAURS. Since he was about 11 years old, the ex-choir boy has shown an avid interest in the production of electronic music.

Now well into his career, Higginbottom released his debut album Trouble just this year and watched it quickly climb it’s way to the top spot of Australian electronic album charts. He has since taken it worldwide to some major festivals as well as some sweet parties, and will continue to do so as we roll into 2013.

Being out of the studio and into performance mode, we caught up with Orlando (again) for a chat before he packs his suitcase and gets down to the land of Australia for our kick ass Summer festival season!

Now Orlando may have a totally enormous name, but when I asked him how he came up with the moniker Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs, he didn’t have an enormous amount of words to say. Which is totally fine! Quality over quantity!

So how did he think of this stage name?

I had lunch, one day, and came up with it.

Simple.

Orlando released Trouble in the middle of this year through Polydor Records, and has since watch it skyrocket. After previously asking Orlando about his first record on the lead up to its release (you can read the interview we conducted with him last year HERE), does he feel as though his hard work has paid off due to the success of his debut Trouble?

Uhh yeah! I don’t really think about it like that, it’s just kind of a balance between hard work and result, but I’m happy with what’s happened and I’m happy with the record and where I’m at so yeah it’s been good.

If you’ve been a TEED fan for quite some time now, you may know about his former sidekick, Box Man.

Orlando previously told us that Box Man wasn’t a part of the live show anymore, yet was still in and out of the studio. Is this still the situation?

Not exactly, but we still hang out.

“So you’re more just friends rather than working together?” I asked him.

Yeah. He’s a very busy musician as well so sometimes we get together and write some stuff but not as much as we did.

You may have listened to some of TEED’s remixes for artists such as Darwin Deez, Crystal Fighters and Lady Gaga. But what about the reverse? Have you heard the remixes of his originals?

It’s inevitable that many musicians have wanted to or already have remixed the work of TEED, and there’s been some great versions of his tracks, ‘Tapes and Money’, ‘Your Love’ and ‘Household Goods’ (to name a few).

Orlando told me his favourite.

There’s a guy called Lapalux who remixed my track, ‘Trouble’. I think that’s really great. I’ve been really happy with the remixes. It’s a heaps good thing about the project that people have managed to get to do.

On the topic of music alone, who is Mr Higginbottom’s favourite producer?

That would be – tough question – I think probably this guy KiNK. He’s my favourite producer.

Fans of TEED know that when Orlando performs live, he always sports an amazing outfit, representing and paying homage to his moniker. How did this idea evolve and who designs these amazing costumes?

Oh it was just from the very beginning, as soon as I started the project. I was like, “I’m gonna dress up.” And yeah I do that kind of work with people to make the next outfit and I come up with the ideas and stuff. And obviously I can’t make them myself but it’s something that I like being involved in and yeah, it’s cool.

You may have heard or even attended the I OH YOU Sydney party that TEED headlined, with support from one of our favourite Australian producers, Flume. It was held at Oxford Art Factory (holding a capacity of 500) and sold out in a very short amount of time. I asked Orlando if he expected this party to be as popular as it was.

No, not at all. That was really fun and really exciting. Nothing like that’s happened before so yeah that was cool, I had a good time. Hopefully the people who came were happy and had a good time.

We did, we did! So much so that it was easily one of the greatest shows I’ve been to for all of 2012.

I would apologise for the praise, but if you’re a proud owner of a Falls Festival, Field Day or TEED tour ticket, you’re in for a real treat.

Speaking of which, what show is Orlando most excited to play when he’s back here in Australia?

Probably the Falls Festival stuff. Just because people have told me so much about it and it seems to have a really great reputation in Australia. Also Field Day in Sydney on New Years Day should be great as well and yeah, I’m quite happy about the lot of it.

With these upcoming festivals hosting some amazing acts, is Orlando excited to be sharing the bill with anyone in particular?

I haven’t had a full look at the lineups yet but I know that a few friends are out there so yeah I’m just excited to see friends.

Although Trouble was only released this year, can we expect another Totally Enormous Extinct Dinosaurs album in the near future?

Not in the near future, no. I haven’t started writing yet so it will be at least a year before there’s any more album action.

To wrap up, Orlando tells me his TEED plans for the new year.

Yeah, touring and writing, but you know, I’ve got lots on. Just getting on with it [laughs].

If you are looking to catch Orlando’s acclaimed live set, make sure you get yourself a ticket to next year’s Field Day (Falls has sold out, ya hear) on New Years Day in Domain Park, Sydney. More info and tickets can be found at their website – fielddaynyd.com.au.

Words by Hannah Galvin.

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About:

An avid fan of Sydney’s jazz and found sound scene, as well as eating peanut butter from the jar.