From the outside, Ball Park Music's budding music career looks to be on fire. The Brisbane five-piece went from a bunch of jamming uni students to being named the 2011 Triple J Unearthed act of the year and playing to sell-out crowds across the country.
But frontman Sam Cromack says the dramatic change of pace hasn't always been easy to deal with.
''Everyone kind of sees the successes of the band and congratulates me and my band mates,'' he says. ''But I've had a lot of personal struggles amid all of that because just being in this band involves so much hard work and commitment and often not a lot of reward.''
Despite his feelings, Cromack says he's fortunate to be part of Ball Park Music and doesn't want to be labelled as ''a whingy rockstar''.
''I just remember being younger and feeling like I had a tighter grasp on my life and everything that was happening in it, whereas sometimes now it feels like its spiralling out of control,'' he says.
''I guess the most common feeling is just being burnt out. I just feel so scatter-brained all the time.''
Cromack's confessions explain the mood shift that is evident in the band's recently-released second album, Museum.
Fans have been surprised by the new offering, largely because of the stark contrast between that and their fun debut, Happiness and Surrounding Suburbs.
''A lot of the songs are just inspired by how I felt over the last year, which has been a pretty interesting time in my life,'' he says.
''People perceived the first record as being almost exclusively happy and upbeat whereas I'm sure this record has moments like that but it definitely has some more downbeat, moodier moments.
''We never really set out to be that [happy] in the first place. We just made the first record and didn't really think about it too much.''
While the more serious aspects weren't intentional, Cromack says Ball Park Music did aim to generate a more creative album.
''With this record, especially because we turned it around so quickly … I would write the bulk of the song and then we'd arrange it in the studio,'' he says.
''A lot of the songs, we'd never played them as a group or rehearsed them or anything, we just showed up to the studio … and make it all up as we go.
''A lot of the songs - this is a bit nerdy - but we'd record it to tape and then we'd either learn the songs faster and in a higher key or we'd learn it slower and in a lower key. And then we could speed it up or slow it down.''
Although the technique came in handy while recording, Cromack says it made rehearsing for their national tour a little more difficult.
''It's only after the record's done that everyone can kind of listen to it a bit and get familiar with what we've made and work out how to play it,'' he says.
''When it comes time to learn them we really have to learn them from scratch because we were playing totally different versions in different keys.''
It might sound complicated, but Cromack claims the technique is actually pretty old-school.
''There's so much trickery you can use with digital recording but we actually steer away from a lot of that,'' he says.
''We don't use metronomes or anything when we record and we don't really prepare any of the mistakes. We sort of have a more old-school approach to our recordings.''
Ball Park Music
WHERE: Foreshore Festival
WHEN: Saturday, November 24
■ Naomi Fallon is a staff writer, a music lover and a keen baker