Upon submitting my first article to editor-in-chief Charlotte, she suggested that I should probably introduce myself, being that this is my first article. So…Hello. My name is Huckleberry Hastings and I am a rambunctious at times slightly over excitable singer songwriter from Sydney. I play almost weekly, either in my solo project or alongside my bandmates in our act Hollow States. My music and art tends to teeter on the brink of mania at times and others falls down to a very sad sullen emotional mess, so if you are slightly self indulgent, I’ll provide links below.
I am needless to say, disturbingly passionate about music and art, and I cannot describe how grateful I am to live in a city and be surrounded by opportunities to witness an overwhelming plethora of exciting content. Over the next few months I will be teaming up with the amazing Bitter Sweet Symphonies to bring all you yonder to my home town and hopefully give you the gift of some amazing new musical companions.
Its Wednesday night in Sydney, I’ve just finished a set at Blender Gallery in Paddington, found my way to a DJ set at the Flinders by Doc Holliday Takes The Shotgun’s Jam Hound James and finally arrived at Freda’s bar in Chippendale for the first Post Paint full band show I have seen in a while.
The first time I saw Post Paint was in Newcastle…I was playing at a mini festival at the Gateway Hotel. As Post Paint were playing towards the end of the night, it is safe to say that I was well on my way to tipsy. I made my way into the back room, and made my way to the front. Their atmospheric dream like music was very visual to me, and I remember getting lost in the soundscape. It wasn’t until a gig later in the year at the Vanguard that I really fell head over heels in love with their unique anguished shoe gazey sound. In the green room I met front man Bligh and he gave me a copy of their three track EP By Muskrat and Sextet. It was gold and shiny….two things that immediately grasp my pea sized attention span…first win. I remember being in a car afterwards…not sure who with as I can’t drive (didn’t think it smart with my attention span)…but I put the CD on and that was it. I must have listened to “You are what they say you are” a hundred times that night. It was like a beautiful lullaby that I’d waited forever to hear. The lines “Don’t waste your time, trying to be sane” particularly got me…I think I even tweeted them. The surging escalating nature of the song felt like insanity to me…like a beautiful, bone deep surrender, and right at the end…there is this feeling of exposure, like you are left bare naked and everyone can see you. It’s beautiful…uncomfortable…but beautiful. There was no going back from there. From then on I was hooked, every time I thought someone might like their music I made sure to give them ample opportunity to. I spent a many time wandering the streets singing it aloud, and matching my pace with its tempo.
This particular Wednesday evening the room is fairly packed, and I notice a good handful of other Sydney musicians spectating…which is always a good sign. When you have good musicians making a trip out to see a band…it’s usually going to be great. Freda’s is a pretty great bar…I love it more every time I return. Low lights, a designer menu and some impressive looking cocktails…so naturally, I grab myself a $5 dollar VB and move raiiiiiight down the front. Uncomfortably close…and I surrender. I forget the people behind me and I just sway. A particular favourite of mine that evening was another off By Muskrat and Sextet…”Treasured Property” …probably because I’m not exactly rolling in the dough. Naturally they didn’t let me down. They have had a few line-up changes since I have been a fan, but it appears they have found the perfect fit. Together they somehow manage to balance this ethereal kind of Cocteau Twins type dream pop with a dirty gritty almost sonic youth type allure…like audio art.
Another notable release which I absolutely adore, is the calypso tinged “Crest Of The Wave” which is a collaborative split single with other Sydney powerhouse Kira Puru & The Bruise. The duelling vocals complement each other perfectly, over ambient noise and soaring violins.
Keep your eyes peeled around October for their expected 7”, and hopefully an accompanying video, which if its anything like the cult art surrounding the bands image, will be off the hook.
I have seen Post Paint a fair few times, many as just a solo set by front man Bligh under the moniker Total Bore, which is also bloody amazing to say the least…I regret once running my mouth off a bit too much, after a few too many wines…and said that I prefer him solo…Retrospectively what I meant was that both are fucking incredible and hold their own on every level. Today’s lesson…Head to their bancamp (which I will feature below) and get yourself a copy of all of their songs. It will be the best thing you do all year.
Here is some live footage I took of a Post Paint/Total Bore Solo Set at Captain Cook Hotel…
Twitter/Instagram @huckhastings @hollowstates
Love ya’ll, next week be something sick, check in.