Harvey & Monte: Client Liaison
Take an 80s inspired synth beat, falsetto vocals, a political agenda and ostentatious outfits, and you get the quintessential, unashamedly kitsch Australian duo, Client Liaison. Harvey Miller and Monte Morgan, one of Australia’s most stylish musical duos, have ignited the senses of fans across the country with entrancing dance music, theatrical shows and an image so eclectic, it manifests in an apparel line that mixes uncompromising artistic merit and sheer absurdity.
Reclaiming and recontextualising Australia’s notoriously lowbrow, “cultural cringe”, Client Liaison have garnered a wealth of achievements, including the release of the highly anticipated new album Diplomatic Immunity and fashion label, Client Liaison Designer Line released November, this year.
With an aptitude for combining words, ideas and music to deliver a cosmopolitan-political gesture, Client Liaison shares their tips for business success.
To celebrate the release of their new album “Diplomatic Immunity”, we picked the right beats to get your business on track.
TRACK: #2 Wild Life
TIP: Wild lives mean busy, carefully planned schedules.
“I’ve had two hours sleep most nights, BUT the album’s going well.”
Above the effervescent charisma and a larrikin spirit fit for true blue Australian musos, Harvey and Monte foster an uncompromising work ethic.
With a new fashion line to design and sell, an album to promote and perform, and party-animal image to uphold, Client Liaison owe a mix of organisation, hard work and focus to their ability to successfully juggle so many business ventures.
“We’ve got a festival in every state over the summer planned this season” highlights Harvey when discussing the impact of the new album release on their work schedule.
Monte and Harvey highlight organisation is critical to tracking successes and failings in a small business.
“It doesn’t matter what industry you’re in these days, technology and social media have rapidly changed the game that you have to check so many different portals to understand where you’re at and how you match your competition” highlights Monte.
“For us, in the music world for example, find it is really hard to attenuate and quantify how successful we’ve been, especially with the media being disseminated these days… YouTube, Facebook, iTunes, Spotify, Mp3” comments Harvey.
“Back in that days you used to just point to a chart and you’d know whether you’re doing well.”
In between a hectic lifestyle, Harvey and Monte stress the importance of recovery time for productivity. Only they delivered this message in true Client Liaison form. With a cheesy-but-catchy, Australian jingle serenaded on the spot:
“Live a little, relax a little, sails on the bay”.
TRACK: #4 Off White Limousine
TIP: Try unique business endeavours
With a Music career and fashion label under their belts, Client Liaison always stay at the forefront of new business opportunities. Their most recent venture will turn toward the vehicle industry, mixing transport services with their iconic retro-aesthetic.
“In terms of enterprise, we’re going into the Limousine business.” says Monte.
“Is that for real?” was the only natural response.
“Yes we bought an off white limousine. It’s a beautiful 80s Mercedes, we’re retro-fitting the interior” concludes Harvey.
TRACK: #11 Do it my way
TIP: Know your image & keep creative control
Fashion and image has become synonymous with Client Liaison, with a ‘saturated late 80s aesthetic’ that has fostered a limited edition fashion label. With signature peach and ‘reef’ variations, the unisex beach wear line manifests the crux of Client Liaison’s business ethos:
“Staying true to who we are is everything through every business venture we have”.
Harvey and Monte’s took it upon themselves to design and manufacture their exclusive fashion label, Client Liaison Luxury Line, discussing the ‘grounds up’ approach taken to maintain their creative control with the clothes.
“I mean we didn’t manufacture it ourselves, like no sewing or anything” jokes Monte.
“Yeah but we did design it and liaising with the factories on our behalf. Usually this sort of thing is outsourced and artists team up with a label for a collab. It was a big undertaking but a higher pay off.” said Harvey.
With sold-out pop-up stores in Sydney and Melbourne and apparel available on the musicians’ website, the key focus on image and design has concocted a consistent and truly unique business entity for Client Liaison. The boys discuss the future of their fashion business venture:
“Fashion is a cycle. We obviously want to do this again and make it bigger, better and more efficient with what we learn.”
“We might make it different. We like to change it up. Do winter. Turtlenecks. Turtleneck dresses.
Their sharp wit comes to light.
“Turtleneck Smoking Jackets.” jokes Harvey.
They gaze at each other seriously.
“Well… it hasn’t been done. Yet.”
As close personal friends in high school, Harvey and Monte have progressed from performing and composing music from their garage with local shows at house parties and warehouses, to a nationwide tour, playing at Merivale’s The Newport, Canberra’s Spilt Milk Festival and Falls Festival.