Hoolahan, the dreamy surf rock band who helped you cruise your way through the summer of 1999 with their album King Autumn, is back after a 10-year hiatus, and they’re better than ever. The Sydney based quartet featuring Tim Kevin, David Orszaczky, Harry Roden and Neil Bateman captured the hearts of their fans with their easy going, beautifully melodic music that’s reminiscent of 60’s surf rock, and the laid-back Australian lifestyle.
After multiple tours, and headlining shows all over the country, the band parted ways in 2007 remaining close friends. Their decision to reconnect and create their latest album Casuarina is highly anticipated and an overwhelmingly beautiful reconciliation. The album was created in collaboration with ARIA award winning producer Wayne Connolly at Turning Studios, and the main track from the album ‘Ev’ry Time You Go’ is an amalgamation of 10 years worth of joint experiences acting as a refreshingly honest pick up from where they left off.
The band took the time to walk us through 6 tracks released in the last 10 years that influenced their album Casuarina, each song sprinkled with elements that have become synonymous with the distinctive Hoolahan sound.
Community Radio – ‘Love to Get High’
DAVE: We’re pretty closely connected with these guys. Community Radio’s keyboard player Jen Kevin is Tim’s sister and guitarist Cameron Emerson-Elliott designed the album artwork for Casuarina, as well as the artwork on our original cassette demos back in the 90s. Above all, they are a fantastic band and the opening track off their last album Look Now You’re Cursed is pure adrenaline rush and sparkling joy – a definite inspiration for us.
My Morning Jacket – ‘In Its Infancy’
TIM: a great psychedelic track from their 2015 album The Waterfall – open-ended and ever-changing, it’s a song cycle that’s a bit reminiscent of The Beach Boys, Surfs Up era or The Flaming Lips, Soft Bulletin. The lyrics are mystical and cathartic. This album has a freedom to it…. goes right into open-ended territory whilst not relying too much on the structure. It definitely influenced the way we thought about some of the Hoolahan tracks.
Beach House – ‘Lover of Mine’
DAVE: Teen Dream feels like a totally complete album, perfect in every way – the sounds, the sentiment, the whole mood. While we were recording Casuarina we managed to get our hands on an old Yamaha PS20 synth from the early 80s (the Beach House keyboard). We used it on quite a few tracks including ‘Country Doctor’ and ‘Sales Retreat’ and it’s got those dreamy, warbly, emotive sounds that are kind of addictive.
Tweedy – ‘Summer Noon’
DAVE: This one comes from a huge love and respect for Wilco and the journey Jeff Tweedy has taken to make some of the most original and authentic records of the past 20 years. Tim and I both have kids who are now growing up with a love and talent for music and can relate to the idea of Tweedy making this beautiful album with his son as musical collaborator. This is a beautifully laid out song – simple and heartfelt.
Holly Throsby – ‘Going to the Sea’
TIM: While we were finishing the album I was also working on producing and mixing this album with Holly Throsby. It’s a beautiful record, filled with great songs and a very coastal, natural ambience. This song is really evocative lyrically and in a different way, we were aiming to capture a similar coastal feel on the album. Comes from the same time we were making Casuarina and represents for us a real sense of re-entering the world of writing together.
Kings of Convenience – 24-25
DAVE: Two voices, acoustic guitars, minor chords, shifting harmonies, boy-girl lyrics, heartbreaking melodies. Doesn’t get much better than this…
Catch Hoolahan playing tonight, Friday the 24th at The Triffid in Brisbane, or Saturday the 2nd of December at Phoenix Bar in Canberra.
Buy Casuarina here.