Shop Spotlight: Found Sound in Melbourne

Australia’s musical legacy on the global stage goes deeper than most Americans know. From classics like AC/DC, Midnight Oil, and INXS to more recent acts like Silverchair, Wolfmother, Tame Impala and Courtney Barnett, the Aussie invasion has been happening for decades.

Where there’s a strong music scene, there’s a strong gear scene. Found Sound in Melbourne has been a part of that for a while now. They recently joined the Reverb community as well, bringing their unique inventory of hard-to-find-in-the-US items to a wider audience.

We recently caught up with Lewis Boyes on starting the business, native brands in Australia and the big names who have come through the shop.

Running a music shop in Australia presents its own set of challenges. How did you get started in the industry? What are some of the mountains you've had to climb?

I first started working in a music store off and on straight out of high school.

I’ve been collecting gear since around the same time. It was through realizing that I was ready sell that helped me to finally open my own store.

Before I opened I was so stressed out that there would be nothing to offer but an empty shop. It turned out I already had more than enough gear to fill the space. It feels really good to now be making my living from something I have had a genuine interest in for so long.

2016 Aged Sunburst Harvester

Rare Mid '90s Klein Electric

Found Sound has some amazing vintage gear and bizarre synths and effects. How do you go about sourcing your gear? Is there anything in particular that's in demand right now?

This also concerned me prior to opening, but it’s been incredible. The most amazing things just walk in the door.

I have some extremely supportive customers who are able to turn up some of the most remarkable gear. I have also been fortunate to score a couple of accounts with major brands like Fender which have allowed me to offer new gear as well.

It’s very hard to put my finger on what’s hot right now. It’s cyclical, I guess. Perhaps it depends on what current bands are using. Tame Impala have sold many a [Roland] Juno 106, that’s for sure.

What's the coolest piece of kit that’s walked through your doors?

John Murphy and his EMS Synthi AKS

A couple of weeks back we sold an EMS Synthi AKS. I never imagined I would even play one, let alone have one for sale in the store. It belonged to John Murphy [punk and post-punk drummer, industrial pioneer and son of jazz drummer Russ Murphy] who passed away late last year.

While I didn’t know him personally, I was very glad to help with the estate and get a good price for John’s wife and family.

We all know Maton and Cole Clark. Any lesser-known Australian brands or builders making a splash?

There are a few really interesting local builders putting out some exceptional stuff from right here in Melbourne.

Notably Harvester, Shub Guitars, New Complexity, T, and Clingan. Between them, there is no shortage of eccentric guitar designs and high end craftsmanship. I really admire what they are doing, and their work just gets better and better.

Not to mention the modular synth scene with builders such as Worng, Smiley and across the ditch in NZ Synthstrom plus pedal makers such as Paul Crowther, Tym, Dazatronyx and Klinger Custom Pedals.


Australia, and particularly Melbourne, is known for having a vibrant local scene. What role does Found Sound play in the local music community?

We take care of setups and repairs for a lot of people like The Drones, King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, Jay Watson, Courtney Barnett, Dan Kelly & Paul Kelly to name a few, not to mention selling gear to Hans Zimmer and Ryan Adams. We often get visits from international artists on tour which is always pretty exciting.

There is a fair chance a few bands have been formed in the walls of Found Sound, too. Hope to have some in store performances in the near future. Stay tuned!

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