Skip to main content

Sydney’s skyrocketing twosome and 2023 ARIA Award Nominees, Royel Otis have released their widely anticipated debut album, ‘PRATTS & PAIN’, out globally via OURNESS. On Friday night, the duo christened the record at one of 2 sold-out shows at Liberty Hall in Sydney, with a hometown performance on the opening night of their biggest headline tour to date. The indie pair’s electric live show will make multiple stops in every state across Australia.

Produced by Grammy Award-winning producer Dan Carey (Wet Leg), ‘PRATTS & PAIN’, is the first jewel in the crown for Otis Pavlovic and Royel Maddell. An album named after the South London pub that sits around the corner from Carey’s famed home studio, the duo often finished lyrics and made sonic directions over a pint on a Pratts & Payne bar stool. Their resulting efforts swing between 13 tracks of melodic, pop-inspired indie and woozy psych that never stays to one lane. Handbraking towards psychedelic weirdness and dissonant noise, Royel Otis have no issue keeping all who listen on their toes. After the release of two EPs that took the band on a fast-track ride to global notoriety, ‘PRATTS & PAIN’ is here to propel Pavlovic and Maddell through their next chapter – adventures abound with no limits

Strip the hood of any Royel Otis song to find a foundational DNA of mutual trust. An unbeatable synergy between two friends who have each other’s backs is a fruitfully fun constant throughout ‘PRATTS & PAIN’. Pavlovic and Maddell whimfully play to the other’s strengths, mixing skill sets as they write songs about drunken arguments and personal trials. Each story is dipped in surrealism and couched within an energetic and oftentimes spontaneous arrangement to become a loose and open formula for Royel Otis success.

A sharp post-punk leaning treat, Adored is the album’s opening song and previous single that became triple j’s #1 played track on release. A dedication to DIY TLC, the snappy beat keeps you upright as Otis’ croon drawls across an earworm lullaby and beckons you to partake in some leisurely pleasure. Next, Royel Otis serves thoughtful craftsmanship with a tongue-in-cheek twist, on Fried Rice. Rattled guitars jangle to a driving rhythm, as Otis’ vocals hold a soothing effect, ready for a long summer’s drive singalong.

A slow energetic chug on the record’s third track, Foam keeps time as Otis repeats “keep my name out your mouth”. Next, Sonic Blue continues a propulsion of underlying energy but sets screeching guitars over the top. Fifth track, Heading For The Door is a Royel Otis tear jerker. A heart-on-sleeve approach with a poignant message, “stop heading for the door” accompanies a wash of shoegaze guitars and the pleads of Otis, to become a sonic companion to your next moment of close contemplation.

Next, Velvet could be the stomping energy of Talking Heads, as the duo chant in unison over a fast-paced jangle of keys and appearance on drums from Dan Carey’s 11-year-old nephew Archie, for a lesson in accepting one’s shortcomings. Airy and introspective, IHYSM is a juxtaposition of upbeat tones against Otis’ sombreness that repeats “my back keeps breaking”. Next, Molly appears from the ashes of The Velvet Underground, marching to the shake of a tambourine as Otis coos “by now it’s all the same” and Maddell’s guitar whammies through an atmospheric slow jam.

A falsetto from Otis keeps the highs coming on Daisy Chain as the duo play around with bright verses before hitting the pedal in the chorus for a ride on a shoegazing wave of bliss. A hypnotising effervescence is captured across Sofa King beneath a baggy beat, as Otis repeats the anthemic, “you’re so fucking gorgeous” across a zooming chorus synthline. Replete with guitar strums and a take it easy rhythm, one listen and fans will be ready to put their feet up and take life down a notch.

Glory to Glory holds a punchy rhythm, as Otis says “I’ll talk forever but the words aren’t getting through”. Next, the slower-paced lovelorn regret of Always Always makes for a second tearjerker from the duo. Meanwhile finale track, Big Ciggie sees the return of Carey’s nephew Archie to the drum kit for a big bash and crash of energy.

As Royel Otis rounded out 2023 in Glenworth Valley, taking centre stage at Lost Paradise festival – they were quick to launch into 2024 with a viral cover of Sophie Ellis-Bexter’s “Murder on the Dancefloor” for triple j’s Like A Version. After receiving nods from Ellis-Bexter herself, it wasn’t long before fans caught on to the distinct drawl of Otis and sent the remake into a flurry of virality across the internet, landing at over 2M+ views. The track is today sitting at #4 on the ARIA Top 20 Australian Singles chart, #11 on the ARIA Top 20 New Music Singles chart, and #35 on the ARIA Top 50 Singles chart. Most recently, the album’s single Sofa Kings landed at #76 on triple j’s Hottest 100 last month, joining the news that GRAMMY included Royel Otis in their 2024 Ones to Watch list.

This year’s early recognition follows a nomination as Breakthrough Artist for the 2023 ARIA Awards, alongside a sold-out multiple-date national tour, a debut performance at Splendour in the Grass, and a rapturous sold out UK and European tour, including performances at Leeds and Reading FestivalElectric PicnicPukkelpopEnd of the Road and more, all in support of their third EP, ‘Sofa Kings’. From cleaning up ‘Ones to Watch’ lists by the likes of Matt Wilkinson at Apple Music 1NME, and the Daily Telegraph, to earning Spotify’s RADAR Artist recognition, and being featured in Vogue and GQ, Royel Otis only continue their ascending trajectory.

‘Sofa King’’s singles Kool Aid, Going Kokomo and I Wanna Dance With You were quick to receive international and local press adoration from Paper Mag, Purple Sneakers, NME, consistent airplay from international stations such as BBC Radio 1 and Apple Music 1. The titular track, Sofa King peaked at #25 on the Billboard US Alternative radio charts. On home soil, the duo have held the status of triple j’s #1 Most Played track, and was announced as the #8 most played artist on the station at the end of 2023. Produced by Chris Collins and Royel Otis, the EP delivered visceral stories and quick wit atop blissful guitar-fuzzed haze, landing in major global playlists such as Ultimate Indie, All New IndieDOPAMINE and Today’s Indie Rock (including featuring on the cover). The record followed the band’s sophomore EP ‘Bar ‘N Grill’ in 2022, which saw the pair grace the covers of global playlists including Indie Arrivals and Supersound, Apple Music’s Heaps Indie and more, amassing over 70 million+ streams, and garnered widespread playlisting support across Australian community radio, US college radio and BBC Radio 6. The band earned a slot in triple j’s Hottest 200 of 2022 for Oysters In My Pocket.

Royel Otis will continue to celebrate ‘PRATTS & PAIN’ throughout the year, following their current national tour by taking to the United States, for a run of shows between capital cities across April and May 2024, before landing in Barcelona for Primavera Festival on May 29, 2024, and Porto for NOS Primavera Sound. Scroll down to secure your ticket below.

Enjoy the arrival of ‘PRATTS & PAIN’, as Royel Otis take to the road in celebration of their determinedly fun and loose spirited debut album, performing in a city near you.






February 16 – Liberty Hall, Sydney, NSW
February 17 – Torquay Hotel, Torquay, VIC
February 18 – Corner Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
February 21 – Corner Hotel, Melbourne, VIC
February 22 – Liberty Hall, Sydney, NSW
February 23 – Kambri at ANU, Canberra, ACT
February 24 – UOW Uni Bar, Wollongong, NSW
March 1 – Lion Arts Factory, Adelaide, SA
March 2 – Freo Social, Fremantle, WA
March 8 – The Tivoli, Brisbane, QLD
March 9 – Miami Marketta, Gold Coast, QLD
March 10 – Solbar, Maroochydore, QLD
March 14 – King Street Bandroom, Newcastle, NSW

*with Girl and Girl

April 20 – The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory, Irving TX
April 23 – Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Saint Paul, MN*
April 24 – Lincoln Hall, Chicago, IL*
April 26 – Longboat Hall, Toronto, ON* SOLD OUT
April 27 – A&R Music Bar, Columbus, OH*
April 28 – Grog Shop, Cleveland Heights, OH*
May 1 – Racket, New York, NY*
May 2 – Johnny Brenda’s, Philadelphia, PA* SOLD OUT
May 3 – DC9, Washington, DC* SOLD OUT
May 4 – Cat’s Cradle, Carrboro, NC*
May 26 – Boston Calling, Boston, MA
May 8 – Parish, Austin, TX
May 9 – Rubber Gloves, Denton, TX*
May 10 – Kilby Block Party, Salt Lake City, UT
May 11 – Meow Wolf Denver ,Denver, CO*
May 15 – The Rebel Lounge, Phoenix, AZ*
May 16 – The Roxy, Los Angeles, CA
May 18 – Rickshaw Stop, San Francisco, CA*
May 20 – Mississippi Studios, Portland, OR*
May 21 – The Pearl, Vancouver, BC*
May 22 – Tractor Tavern, Seattle, WA*
May 24 – BottleRock Festival, Napa Valley, CA

May 30 – Immergut Festival – Neustrelitz, Germany
June 1 – Primavera Festival, Barcelona, Sant Adrià de Besòs
June 2 – Primavera in the City, Barcelona, Sant Adrià de Besòs
June 6 – NOS Primavera Sound Porto, Porto, Porto District
June 28 – Lincoln Castle w/ Kaiser Chiefs – Lincoln, UK
June 29 – Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod w/ Kaiser Chiefs – Llangollen, UK
June 30 – Guildhall Square w/ Kaiser Chiefs – Southampton, UK

Photo credit: Georges Antoni
Photo credit: Georges Antoni

Thanks to Thinking Loud

Leave a Reply

Optimized by Optimole