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Track by Track: The Wombats on Fix Yourself, Not the World

January 14, 2022, 9:04 PM

Matthew “Murph” Murphy and Dan Haggis take Radio X’s John Kennedy on their fifth album.

The Wombats are back with their fifth album, Fix yourself, not the world. The sequel to 2018 Beautiful people will ruin your life, the record started life three years ago, before COVID arrived and changed the world.

With the leader Matthew “Murph” Murphy now based in Los Angeles, the trio began working on demos in 2019, but had to record the album itself during lockdown: Murph stayed in California, drummer Dan Haggis was in London and Tord Øverland Knudsen returned to his native Norway.

A series of singles with titles such as If you ever leave, I’m coming with you and Everything I love is going to die, continued Murph’s portfolio of honest yet humorous lyrics.

The Wombats in 2022: Tord Øverland Knudsen, Matthew Murphy and Dan Haggis

The Wombats in 2022: Tord Øverland Knudsen, Matthew Murphy and Dan Haggis.

Picture: Press

The title of the album – Fix Yourself, Not The World – also drew some comments in these turbulent times. “It can open doors to conversations that you wouldn’t usually have,” Murph says of the name of their latest album.

Dan adds: “Personally, I remember talking to my mom’s partner about the title and a few days after that he was like, I thought more about this kind of idea… Everybody down their own little terrier from bunny around that kind of thinking.”

The Wombats - Fix Yourself, Not The World album cover

The Wombats – Fix Yourself, Not The World album cover.

Picture: Press

“You accept that in fact, most of the time, you need to figure out who you are, what you want to be, how you want to act and all the rest… So that you can then help your partner or your neighbors be the best they can be…so they can actually work properly.”

Murph and Dan sat down with John Kennedy of Radio X to talk about the songs from Fix Yourself, Not The World, piece by piece.

  1. turn me inside out

    Murphy: “I had this vision of someone kind of trapped in an apartment in Brooklyn trying to figure out their life and failing dramatically. It’s a very offbeat song for us, extremely frenetic. We had the felt like it was a really cool way to start the album.”

  2. This car drives itself

    Murphy: “Someone said to me: we row, but the universe rules. And I became obsessed with this idea and I was trying to find a new way to express it. Once, I was walking the dogs and a Prius passed, but I couldn’t. I didn’t see anyone in the driver’s seat. That’s where the title of the song comes from.

  3. If you ever leave, I’m coming with you

    Murphy: “It’s something my wife told me a long time ago and lived on in my notes. I’m sure I tried to put it somewhere on the fourth album, but I couldn’t. – so I’m very happy that he finally found a home. I’ve tried to explain it a million ways, but really it’s just about not wanting anything very special to happen. breaks down and breaks down. What can I do to make sure that doesn’t happen? And the answer is I’m so desperate it doesn’t happen. I’ll do anything.”

  4. Ready for the high

    Murph“It was the first song we did for the album and it was a big influence on what was to come. We were talking vaguely about going from alternative 90s grunge to something like Blur’s The Universal or Flaming Lips or whatever. thing like that. I don’t know if he fell in either of those places.”

  5. Crazy method

    Murphy: “We have this food delivery thing in Los Angeles called Methodology, so I had this jar that said ‘Methodology.’ honey and some feelings i had after i got married i felt like everything had changed but also everything was still the same the end is about letting it all go and just saying a little f** k it, you’re not going to understand this. It’s very complicated and you have no chance.”

  6. People don’t change people, it’s time that changes

    Murphy: “It’s about an actor or actress who comes to LA for the first time, with all of these high hopes, dreams, aspirations. LA is one of those brutal cities like London that can slowly whittle them down .”

  7. Everything I love is going to die

    Murphy: “It’s not as dark as the title suggests. It should be liberating, I think. It’s about living in the present and maybe being a little more grateful than usual. That also plays with the idea that you have to be present, but you don’t want to live too much at the moment, because sometimes it will have quite dark consequences for your future self. It’s all about treasuring what you have and living in the moment.”

  8. Work is easy, life is hard

    Murphy: “Is it about canceling culture? People keep saying that. I think there are elements. I’m not really trying to do political songs because they’re hard to do. It’s slightly political. I was in a bit of a strange place at some point in 2020, and felt like there were some very simple solutions offered to help solve very, very complicated problems. I’m a little fed up.

  9. Fires

    Murphy: “It has nothing to do with the California wildfires. But I think they were raging at the time.”

    Dan“Describing someone as a wildfire is great imagery and also has a lot of connotations that you can’t control the uncontrollable.”

  10. Don’t touch the bear

    Murphy: “I had a bad cold that Tord gave me, and I was walking around my neighborhood sneezing all over and trying to get the lyrics out. I’d say the meaning is pretty ambiguous, to say the least. can say. But I don’t. I guess it’s probably about knowing when to back off.”

  11. To worry

    Murphy: “It’s also about worry and obsessive-compulsive disorder. I sometimes find myself getting into the habit of saying, Oh, the volume on the TV needs to be at a multiple of three or something, or I’m moving It’s about noticing it, doing your best to dodge it if you can and if you can’t, to really accept it.

  12. Fix yourself, then the world (Go beyond your fingers)

    Dan: “I think it was important to end on a positive note and play around with the title of the album a bit. There’s tons of conversations we can have about the title of the album, but there’s also several ways in which it can be misinterpreted.”