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‘HOY’ A Band With A Genre Of Their Own.

‘We could call it universal-telescopic-indie-folk-rock-pop, maybe?
Cecilia Dowling, HOY.

About to release their EP ‘ 'Brigitte Bardot' in November, and are at present touring with ‘The Basics on their ‘Leftover Ingredients’ tour this September until the end of October. HOY have been filling their beautiful haunting sounds of pop in Australian and European pubs for over four years.
They are now set to release their album ‘Aquaslum’.
‘Brigette Bardot’ The EP features the lead track, 'Brigitte Bardot', as well as debut single 'Get Some Sleep', plus two previously unreleased b-sides. Which will be available online and as a limited edition CD, with artwork by their very own vocalist and guitarist, Liam Linley.

HOY formed in late 2010 after the three band members had completed a tour around Europe as 'Houlette'. Their sound changed as the song writing became more collaborative so they decided to rename the band and start afresh.
The Melbourne-based band are as follows, Felicity Cripps (Vocals, Guitar) Cecilia Dowling (Viola, Vocals) and Liam Linley (Vocals, Guitar). All three write, play and sing on the album, each bringing a unique element to HOY. From backgrounds in classical and pop-electro, 60's rock and French-pop they have been working to combine all elements of the music they love. Produced by award-winning producer Pip Norman (TZU, Sparkadia, Ash Grunwald) and mixed by Dan Rejmer (UK) whose credits include Bjork, Foals and Paul Kelly.

HOY now have three special additional band members and I interviewed Cecilia Dowling to fill me in on the news.

Tameika How did you all meet?

Cecilia Felicity and Liam went to High school together in Wangaratta, so they've known each other for a long time! I joined them in 2008 to do strings for a ‘Houlette’ recording and was invited to join the band. Jimmy Saunders (who now plays keys and sings backing vocals) also went to high school with Felicity and Liam, and played in Houlette. He was away from the band for a while, dedicating some time to his other projects, including ‘Colour Bomb’ (who are about to release their debut album!) and he played in the ‘Gotye’ band. Now he's back in HOY, which makes us all very happy. It was during this trio-phase that we reformed as HOY, left to our own (three) devices for a couple of years. Rory McDougall became our drummer when we recorded our debut album last year. We worked with Pip Norman (Countbounce) as producer. Pip and Rory have worked together many times, so he was Pip's first choice. Lucky us! Now, Tim Heath (from The Basics) is the most recent addition to the band on bass. He's killing it!

Tameika Do you all have the same taste in music?

Cecilia We have quite varied tastes in music, and this is one aspect that contributed to the shift to HOY, as more influences crept into our sound. Sixties rock, Seventies trip-outs, 80s disco, French-pop, Classical, Grunge, Hip-hop and Musicals all make their way in somewhere.

Tameika What inspired the band to use the sound that you have?

Cecilia Our sound emerges from a pretty easy process, where we each write songs individually, sometimes in pairs or as a threesome. Then we take the songs to the band and allow them to evolve further. The ease of writing comes from a freedom to let anything come out, and then present it to the group for development, arrangement, and sometimes refining the lyrics too. We're also inspired by good things: the beach, love, space, friendship, literature, and documentaries on aliens.

Tameika The band has quite a haunting sound but so beautiful, is that what you have set out to achieve?

Cecilia Haunting and beautiful is definitely a nice description. Our sound is still changing and growing, so it is difficult to say what we set out to achieve. For our show at the moment, and the album ’Aquaslum’, we had plans to create something evocative, moving, uplifting, provocative, reminiscent and bopping. Something with a mixture of Fleetwood Mac, Serge Gainsbourg, Led Zepplin and many others! We also aim for strength and a sense of nostalgia, to ground ourselves in great sounds of the past, and also to have a unique contemporary sound.

Tameika I have noticed some people place your band into the pop genre, is this what you all think ? There are many different new types of genres for music in todays industry. I am wondering if you have made a genre of your own for HOY because you have such a unique sound.

Cecilia Pop is a nice open genre so that suits HOY quite well. We think of the band as indie, folk and rock too, but unless we need to describe it we don't really think of HOY in any one clear genre. Someone once called our sound 'telescopic folk', which we thought was alright, because it implies looking to the past and the future and out to the sides all at once - spying islands on the horizon and planets out in space, mountains in the distance and roads that wind on through the desert. We like the kind of songs that make you feel something, whether that's excitement or sadness or joy. So we could call it universal-telescopic-indie-folk-rock-pop, maybe?

Interview Tameika Brumby
Image Gina Diggle

Writer: Tameika Brumby
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