Many artists set out to write original music, to create something that’s completely unlike anything they’ve ever heard. Putting their own songs up against classics can be an intimidating task, but for Michael Rault, early hits by The Beatles and The Kinks served more as a bar, or a standard, that he wanted to uphold.
When the Edmonton native began performing music fresh out of high school, he relied on “almost entirely old blues, country and R&B” renditions. “I enjoyed performing that material more than what I had written up to that point,” he remembers. “I only would add original material to my set if I actually believed it was holding its own alongside those other songs.”
Two albums later – with a third, It’s a New Day Tonight, coming out on May 18, 2018 – Rault is still using that method of songwriting to better his craft, in the hope that “maybe one day, I might actually get good!” Of course, he’s well on his way, with a successful string of records that have formed Rault’s guitar-driven glam/rock/pop, a sound that simultaneously recalls the iconic acts from which he draws inspiration, as well as contemporary acts like Ty Segall and King Tuff.
For his latest, Rault teamed up with producer Wayne Gordon of Daptone Records and Wick Records (Sharon Jones & the Dap Kings, BadBadNotGood) – to the last of which Rault has signed. It’s a relationship that formed thanks to his tour-mate King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, and has blossomed into a partnership of which Rault is very proud.
“Recording at Daptone was a cool experience,” he explains. “Every time we got back in the control room after laying something down, it already sounded right because of the way Wayne engineers, and gets sounds, right on the way to the tape. It’s cool to be able to watch the album take shape in front of your eyes in real time like that.”