- How did you get your initial start in music?
All the members of the band grew up in very musical households and were fortunate enough to be introduced to a broad range of influences, from classical to Flamenco, there is quite a melting pot going on! We were all mentored by family members in our formative years and feel very grateful to have had such support growing up. However, as a band we consider our initial start as having met whilst studying music in London and the Tech Music Schools (now known as BIMM) where we gravitated towards one another early into our course and proceeded to play in lots of different types of bands together. Over the years we felt that we really wanted to put our own spin on the pop genre and hence The Hallows came to be!
- What would be your ultimate aim in the industry?
We would ideally like our crowning glory to be playing a citywide gig in Tokyo mounted atop a 1:1 scale Mechagodzilla and dispensing our music to the masses whilst people have hugely mixed emotions of bewilderment, terror and euphoria (we must stress that this fantasy does not seek to emulate the citywide destruction usually associated with a Godzilla appearance)… if this does not come to pass then we would really like to share a billing with bands that we hold close to our hearts, such as Muse, Imagine Dragons, Coldplay, Haim, Bastille and Florence and the Machine – we would love the opportunity to share our music with as many people as possible and to have a sustainable career in the industry, doing something that we truly love… we would however always put the opportunity to ride a massive Mechagodzilla at the top of our priorities.
- How long have you been writing your own music?
All the members of the band have been involved in writing original compositions since their early teens, however some of us have more success than others… Sarah is definitely the primary songsmith of the outfit and does a remarkable job of pulling pop hooks out of thin air… it is then Joe and Dave’s job to offer support and sometimes guidance to ensure that some of Sarah’s less “cool” influences don’t raise their ugly head… we will say no more on the matter!
- Who are your top three influences and why?
We would have to put Muse high in our collective influences as we have been inspired not only by their songwriting but also by their stage presence and attitude. The whole band create such a wonderful and meticulously arranged live performance, Dom Howard and Chris Wolstenholme are truly great players and Matt Bellamy’s stagecraft is incredible… not to mention the number of anthems they have in their set, they can open with Hysteria when most bands would be saving that song for an encore!
The Beatles are also a huge influence on all of us, the diversity of their writing and their ability to re-invent themselves so successfully has always been something that we have looked up to. They have so many classic songs in their arsenal that it is almost impossible to pick favourites, from a bass playing/songwriting perspective Dave will always ask himself first “what would Paul do?!”
On another point, Ringo is a left handed drummer playing a right handed kit… he gets extra cool points for making life difficult for himself…
Queen – We are all massive fans of Queen, (in fact it was Rodger Taylor who inspired Joe to take up playing the drums many moons ago). Queen epitomise our love of soaring vocals, majestic melodies and the wonderful theatricality that places Freddie Mercury on a god like level as a singer and performer, also his piano centric approach to writing has really influenced Sarah over the years. The whole band are masters of their craft and really put the songs first (John Deacon and Rodger Taylor having created some of the most anthemic and iconic rhythm arrangements using simple ideas) an as a result we love the elegance and confidence they have as musicians. On a closing note, who doesn’t love Brian May?, the man is an institution and will always be welcome to contribute some guitar to our live performances… go on Brian give us a call…
- Is there anything you would like people to know about your current release?
The first single taken from our debut album “Of Time and Tides” is called “Element” and was produced by the magnificent Seb Pecchia (Jeff Beck, Robert Plant) of Riverside Studios who has been a huge help in shaping the direction of the album. The single is accompanied by a wonderful video that was put together by an incredibly talented director by the name of Luke Robinson, with on set help from his partner in crime Rebecca Handley. We would recommend you check it out and admire the wonderful cinematic styling and storytelling that he brought to the table. You will also get the opportunity to see Dave (our bass player) wearing an elderly woman’s clothing and becoming a wolf… its all a bit bizarre sounding but makes sense in context, hopefully you are now feeling intrigued and want to go and see what it is all about… please be our guests and visit our very modern retelling of some classic tales here:
- Where are you based and what’s your local scene like? Any favourite venues?
The MK local scene is fortunate to have several dedicated and excellent music venues that provide opportunity and support for bands at all stages of their career – particular faves are as follows:
The Stables – This venue is nationally renowned and for good reason, it is a wonderful place that hosts a wide array of artists and is run by really lovely people who are passionate about the tradition of keeping live music front and centre of what they do. Their main auditorium is absolutely stunning and plays host to everything from Jazz and world music to pop and rock acts, we would recommend you pay it a visit!
MK11 – This venue has established itself as one of the top venues in town and is getting a reputation as a must play venue on the UK touring scene. They have everything from Akala and Grandmaster Flash to Local Metal Bands and acoustic singer songwriters – eclectic is the word! Pair this with a team that are thoroughly professional and supportive of local acts and you have a venue that is a real credit to the MK scene.
The Craufurd Arms – This may sound like its a pub… and it is a pub, but then it is so much more! – The Craufurd Arms is a venue that books some of the finest touring bands (UK based and international artists) and is keen to give opportunity to many of the up and coming bands in the local area. Paul Rivers is a stalwart of the MK music scene and has always been a force for good in keeping the local scene alive and well. This is no normal music pub, this is a dedicated live music specialist venue that any band would be thankful to play, again another jewel in the crown of the MK live scene.
- Who else can you recommend from your local scene for people to have a listen to?
Our local scene in sunny Milton Keynes is remarkably varied and awesome – we have had the pleasure to spend time with, and see in action the following bands and would heartily recommend them:
Forest of Fools – Absolutely epic “Jump Up Folk” – these guys played Glastonbury this year five times, and its not surprising that they were so in demand… see them live and you are in for an incredible show that can get any party started… you will never see a sousaphone played in quite the way this band can manage!
Icarus Fell – An incredibly tight rock band that draws influences from QOTSA amongst others, these guys are killing it on the local scene. They have just started to headline their own shows and are moving up to bigger and brighter things including supporting some really well established touring acts – it’s great to see a band with such hunger and drive and talent.
The Shamed – This band draws on the rich heritage of bands like Nirvana and The Damned and have their own awesome take on punk rock going on, with massive hooks and take no prisoners attitude. They are awesome live and have put out some very unexpected but beautiful acoustic versions of their songs recently. They are true gents who have really honed their craft and put on one hell of a live show!
Anthony Hill-Hyde – We had the pleasure of having Tony Hill play alongside us at our recent gig at The Stables in MK and he was absolutely brilliant. He writes heartfelt and catchy acoustic pop and uses a loop pedal to create really lush and textured arrangements, paired with his splendid vocal work it is a thing of beauty!. Tony is like a hybrid of Russell Brand and Jack Sparrow and has some of the best stories to share about his exploits – we would recommend you catch him live!
- Give our readers a round up of where they can find you online and hear more of your music.
We have a very active website, which really is a catchall for what we are doing, be it new releases, gig dates or announcements:
Our Facebook page can be found at the following link… go on drop by and leave us a message… especially if you can build us a Mechagodzilla…
We also have a Youtube Channel so if you would like to be kept in the loop with our new video releases then please subscribe… we have some really interesting videos on the way, you won’t want to miss them!