Interview

The Huhu

The Huhu

Monday 9th August, 2010 7:01PM


• Been around since?
B: 1964

S:Testing the braincells… started recording in 2003, so we must have begun jamming and piecing together things sometime in 2002 – we were practicing in a lockup in a storage space in Pirie st, Wellington, a little too close to neighbouring residents who occasionally got grumpy. We didn’t venture out of the practice room much, perhaps playing one gig a year? In the last year or so we’ve been playing a lot more – at Happy, Bodega, Room 101.

C: Sometime in 2002

• Current line up?
B:Soo young park vocals, guitar. Britt walford drums, Colin moulding bass vocals

S: Brett Garrity- bass vocals and the like, Craig Houghton, guitar vocals and the like, Simon Waterfield, Drums and other noises. There was a wee while when Craig was living in ChCh, so me n’ Brett roped in another guitarist for a year or so.

C: See Simons answer, Ignore Bretts.

• Where are you based?
B: Wellington but we are heading to Melbourne soon as that’s where the Wellington scene is.

S: KaroriEastbourneBrooklyn

C: Wellington, except me, I'm in Eastbourne which is actually Lower Hutt.

• Musical history? What were you listening to back in high school?

B: stiff little fingers, David bowie, the knack

S: Depends when you mean. In third form it was Duran Duran, Adam & the Ants, Tears for Fears. Sixth form it was Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Faith No More, Jane Addiction, The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Fields of the Nephilim, etc etc etc

C: 3rd form it was Def Leppard, GNR, Iron Maiden and Motley Crue, I'd moved on to Pearl Jam, RHCP and Nirvana by 7th form. There was some Metallica in there somewhere too. I'd like to say I was listening to something cool at that time but I had long hair, wore long sleeve black tees and Doc Martin boots. It would be obvious I was lying.

• What are you currently listening to?
B: tarlight mints-drowathon(right now)

S: More often than not it’s Fatcat & Fishface, Latin Playground/ other Putumayo cd’s, or Love to Sing cd’s – daughters tastes take preference! When I’ve wrested control of the stereo and in no particular order (it’ll be different tomorrow): Patrick Wolf, Angels of Light, Ladytron, Pinback, Fugazi, Low, Jesu, dubstep mixes, Tim Hecker, Christopher Willits, Fiona Apple, Pinback, Bailter Space, etc etc etc

C: A lot of childrens music in my house at the moment too, though Elizabeth Mitchells Childrens CD's are also fairly palatable for adults. Currently listening to Flavor Crystals, Nina Nastasia, Howe Gelb, David Kilgour and The Sproutts. Old favourites I always go back to are Velvet Underground, Sparklehorse, Spacemen 3, Low, Swervedriver, Tanya Donelly .................................. Def Leppard and Iron Maiden.

• The state of music in NZ is..?
B: in Auckland

S: Pretty good I guess. Be nice if there was funding that wasn’t commercially based – but I guess they have to have a “return on investment” rather than encouraging creativity.

C: I think there is a lot of great music being made in bedrooms, basements, flats, garages etc all over the country, sometimes even in studios too. There is also a whole lot of crap being made all over the country as well. This has probably always been the case and probably always will be so I guess it's situation normal.

• What’s your favorite place to play?
B: the shower

S: Really enjoy playing at Happy in Wellington – they’re a very lovely accomdating bunch there – always handy to have a desk recording of the gig burnt to cd!

C: The Wunderbar in Lyttleton where I used to play with a previous band. I'd happily play there with The Huhu if we ever get out of Wellington to play. Played my first ever gig there. They had lamp shades made out of dolls heads, a lighting rig which looked like a left over prop from Star Wars and a fuseball table where the players were Nazi's versus Jews. Great venue!

• What was your favorite show?
B: the johnnys, cricketers 1985

S: Our last one at Happy with The Sproutts was pretty good, we gelled together well. The one before, supporting the Ghost Club at Bodega was great – we had a descent PA behind us, and a good mix. I’ve had a few comments that we come across better with a bit of volume behind us.

C: Playing with Ghost Club this year was great. I think we sounded good and we got a lot of positive feedback. It was also nice meeting Ghost Club who I'm a big fan of.

• What is your recording process?

B: Craig and Simon set up stuff on analogue 8 track and I drink beer and make stupid comments. Then Craig takes it away and fixes it.

S: Doing it all ourselves and learning from our mistakes. I’m sure Craig will elaborate on the more technical aspects.

C: We've always recorded on my analog 8 track recorder because it sounds so nice. For our EP we recorded on the 8 track, dumped it to computer, sat on it for a while, added more bits to it, sat on it a bit longer, did some mixing, sat on it some more, more mixing, realised we recorded it almost a year ago and finally got it finished. We are working on simplifying the process a bit.

• What's been your best recording experience?
B: Realizing that when you turn the cassette round in a 4 track it plays backwards

S: Doing it all ourselves –not that it’s groundbreaking or anything, cos everyones doing it these days, but it’s pretty satisfying putting out a release that you put together in every way shape or form, from the music to the packaging.

C: Discovering that reverbs and delays will fix almost anything.

• What’s been your worst recording experience?

B: Once was involved in one of those” sound engineer’s courses at expensive sterile studios being in a guinea pig band. Super tapers and white sneakers are de rigueur.

S: At the same time doing it all yourself takes a lot of time and energy – and you do occasionally start questioning what you’re doing without having an outside voice to critique what your doing. I wouldn’t say this was our “worst” recording experience tho.

C: It was at our first recording session back in 2003, the session itself was good. We'd just finished recording the song 'Greetings from Vogeltown West'. It's a long song and took up an entire tape. We got it down and it sounded good so we decided to listen to the rest of the songs we'd recorded that afternoon only to discover we'd just recorded over almost all of them with 'Greetings'. We label the tapes now.

• Favorite radio show/station?
B: We have a game of listening to radio hauraki and taking bets of how long it is until they play zeppelin, the doors or Joe cocker. The longest it’s been has been twelve minutes and that’s only because in a gadda da vida was on.

S: Wouldn’t say I have a favourite, what invariably is on at home is Radio Active or National Radio. Sometimes kiwi fm.

C: I really liked RDU when I was living in Christchurch. They are very supportive of NZ music in general and local talent in partcular. Anyone I know who ever sent anything in to them had something played.

• The Future holds…?
B: the sound of London

S: Some recording – we’ve got a huge backlog of songs. Hopefully recording in August – it always takes a while for us to do things tho, as real life (we all have families n’ jobs) takes priorities, so the band tends to move slowly. But yeah, doing some recording in August is the plan – hopefully will get some people on board to help us, on the engineering side and on the critiquing side maybe too. We’re keen to pull it together a lot faster than the last ep, which took 4 odd years – fingers crossed it’ll be done by the end of the year!
When it comes down to it, we all are in the same boat and know where the band priority stands – we do it because we enjoy it first and foremost. It’s fortunate that we’re pretty self sufficient in terms of recording equipment, gear, and are able to do all the artwork and stuff ourselves - we have no illusions of making it big or touring and the like. We just fit The Huhu in as often as we can, and it’s a bonus if people discover us and like what we do.

C: Recording an album subject to simplifying above mentioned recording process, a few more gigs and hopefully more frequent practices.




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