Perth-bred multi-instrumentalist Cameron Avery has toured with Tame Impala and was a founding member of The Growl and Pond. One sojourn in LA later and Avery has channeled the city’s cinematic proportions into a new solo project. His self-produced debut solo album is inspired by the old records he loved, such as Frank Sinatra and Etta James. Darkly romantic, it calls to mind Nick Cave, John Grant and Ed Harcourt, and finds a fan in Alexa Chung, who appears in a sultry slow dance with Avery in the new music clip for Dance with Me. Now based in NYC, we spoke to Avery ahead of the launch of Ripe Dreams, Pipe Dreams on Friday.

Broadsheet: In what way is your solo project a departure from the music you made with The Growl?
Cameron Avery: The music became a lot more personal; it's a very self-indulgent album. I looked inward a lot and tried to make something I was into, first and foremost. It was a lot more cathartic.

BS: Who are your songwriting heroes?
CA: Tom Waits, Serge Gainsbourg.

BS: Favourite thing to do when back in Australia?
CA: Drink Carlton Draught.

BS: What inspires your creativity outside of music?
CA: Films, mostly – a director’s attention to detail and ability to create drama and flow, drawing emotion from people. That’s always inspired me.

BS: Fantasy support slot – any artist, any era, anywhere?
CA: Red Hot Chili Peppers – Blood Sugar [Sex Magik] era, anywhere.

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Ripe Dreams, Pipe Dreams is out Friday March 10.