Grace Shaw, known to many as Mallrat, can claim something pretty unique; that she gets to collaborate and tour with the artist who first inspired her to start making music. So the story goes, while at an Allday concert when she was still in high school, two things happened. First, she had a premonition that she would one day be spending a lot of time in airports with Allday, known to many as Tom Gaynor, and second, she decided then and there that she wanted to make her own music.
Since that time, Mallrat and Allday have spent a lot of time in airports together while touring Australia, and soon they’ll be spending even more time in them when they tour America. Outside of touring together, they’ve been hanging out and collaborating as often as they can. They first linked up back in 2017 for two tracks on Allday’s album Speeding, and they followed that up in 2018 with ‘UFO’, a track from Mallrat’s EP In the Sky.
They were in the middle of their national tour when we caught up for a coffee and let the two friends and collaborators ask each other some ‘hard-hitting’ questions. What followed was a conversation that explored everything from their favourite Drake songs, a controversial would you rather, and whether or not Mallrat can actually drive.
Mallrat: Ok! What show are you most excited for on this tour and why?
Allday: I’m most excited for Adelaide because it’s my home town and my mum is going to be there.
Mallrat: Aw, I finally get to meet Lucy!
Allday: She also said can we bring Nana, who’s 90.
Allday: Mary, yep. It’s kind of in a big club though so—I don’t know. [Laughs] But we might.
Mallrat: I brought my grandparents to the last Brisbane show we did and they had a really good time.
Allday: Alright, question for you! You moved away from Brisbane. Does that mean you hate Brisbane?
Mallrat: [Laughs] We’ve been over this! And kind of yes. [Laughs] I think I just feel uncomfortable in Brisbane and I don’t know why, but I like my dog and I like the sun there. I like a lot of my friends there and I really like playing shows there, too.
Allday: I was planning to do all rude questions! So if you had to kill either your DJ, Denim, or me, who would you choose?
Mallrat: I’ll be honest, Allday texted this question to me in advance and I said “I don’t like hypothetical questions” and he said “Just kill me”. I would have done that anyway, I need Denim for the shows. What were you listening to when you made Starry Night Over the Phone and how does that compare to when you were making your other albums?
Allday: I was listening to country music like Townes Van Zandt. I guess I was listening to singing more, soft rock, Cigarettes After Sex and stuff like that. I know they’re a little bit embarrassing, a little bit “softboi underscore beam me up”. But that’s why there’s a lot of singing on the album.
Mallrat: And what were you listening to on the other albums?
Allday: On the first album I was basically exclusively listening to Drake. [Laughs] That’s the difference. Ok, how about this? In your music you sing about your personal life and love and coming-of-age. Does that mean that you don’t care about climate change?
Mallrat: [Deadpan] It’s not a priority for me. [Both laugh] That’s not going to look good in writing.
Allday: That’s a funny answer but we know you care about climate change, [but] maybe it’s not a priority for you in your art.
Allday: Mallrat is trying get cancelled so she doesn’t have to do any more shows.
Mallrat: You know me too well.
Mallrat: I have a fun question, what are your favourite and least favourite Drake songs?
Allday: He’s got too many good songs. In the Scorpion era I like ‘Summer Games’, ‘Ratchet Happy Birthday’, ‘Nonstop’, and ‘In My Feelings’.
Mallrat: I like ‘Nice For What’.
Allday: That one’s good. I feel like with these newer Drake albums, I feel mad at first cos they aren’t as cohesive as Take Care or Nothing Was The Same but there’s actually so many good songs on them. Ok well let’s ask you something about Kanye, then. What are your favourite Kanye songs and what about his approach to music has affected you and your process the most?
Mallrat: Thank you, I love to talk about Kanye. I love all of his songs but the ones I find myself coming back to the most are ‘Homecoming’ and ‘Hey Mama’. I also really like ‘All Mine’ because of the melody and the production. I love his honesty in how he talks, and his impulsivity in how he creates, and I’m trying to be more impulsive so I’m really inspired by that.
Allday: I’ve got one more. Your new EP is called Driving Music—you say you have your licence but I’ve never seen you drive. Do you feel guilty for lying to your stans?
Mallrat: I’ve never once said I was driving. Also, it’s true I have my drivers licence but the last time I drove was the day of my driving test. So I don’t consider myself someone who drives but I do have my license.
Allday: Even though I joke about you lying to your stans—which you would never do—it’s a sublime EP and I suggest whoever is reading this to preorder it!
Mallrat: Thank you! What are you looking forward to at the moment?
Allday: Umm. The sweet, sweet embrace of death!
Mallrat: [Laughs] Soon or?
Allday: Nah later, later.
Mallrat: How are you feeling about our American tour? Because I’m not feeling good about it. [Laughs]
Allday: Should we cancel it or? [Laughs] I’m looking forward to it, but you’ve been touring so much!
Mallrat: I’m just not keen to be in a car is all.
Allday: I’m looking forward to it because we’ll be with good people. Just think of it like a American Contiki tour.
Mallrat: We should end on a positive question though!
Allday: Hmm. What about you say “Are you looking forward to our American tour?” and I’ll say “Yes.”
Mallrat: [Laughs] Are you looking forward to our American tour?
Allday: Oh my god yes. I can’t wait to get out there and meet people and see all their happy faces. It’s a primal need for humans, and we get to share in a language of pure escapism. It’s just magic.