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Hollywoodfun Downstairs - So Post Modern EP review

17 Feb 2013 // A review by Alistar3000

Hollywoodfun Downstairs are one of Wellington’s hardest working bands. They seem to play live more than most bands in town, and if they’re not gigging then they’re rehearsing four or five times a week to tighten their songs up. And somehow in the middle of all that they manage to record pretty regularly.

Early last year they threw out a six track demo, full of raw, fast and aggressive post-punk, then followed it up with a single later in the year. Now they’re back with a new EP that sees three of those demo tracks re-recorded with Wellington engineer James Goldsmith, along with two new tracks.

The EP kicks off with long-time favourite Bangkok Hilton. This version is a lot cleaner and tighter than the demo I heard last year, and really shows the progression of the band. It’s obvious from the song that the hours of practice, and plenty of live shows, has really honed their sound.

Up next we get two new tracks, Colours of Soho and Looking Like Jarvis. Colours of Soho is pretty similar in style to Bangkok Hilton, but Looking Like Jarvis mixes things up a little and is a more interesting sound. Starting out with a pounding drum beat before the song really takes off, this is probably my favourite track on the EP. The vocals are little less intense, with a bit of reverb on them which softens them up. Don’t get me wrong, it’s still a full on blast of spazzy punk, but there’s a greater use of dynamics and tempo changes than in the other tracks.

New Town Killers and Eerie Tales, both re-recorded for the EP, round things out. New Town Killers is another great track, and a staple of the band’s live set. Eerie Tales is a freaky little number, and a lot different from the demo version. It’s full of atmospherics and a much longer intro. When it does kick in, it’s with some restraint compared to the demo.

The EP really captures the energy and strengths of the band, and it’s great to see that progression from demos to finished products. The band is rumoured to be recording an album later this year – it’ll be interesting to see where they take their music from here. As long as they stay on the path they’ve been travelling it could end up being one of the albums of the year for me.

About Hollywoodfun Downstairs

Hollywoodfun Downstairs was founded in London, England in the early months of 2008, ending up in Wellington in 2011. Last year featured the release of our debut EP So Post Modern as well as numerous performances around the North Island.




Visit the muzic.net.nz Profile for Hollywoodfun Downstairs

Releases

The Mancunian Swing
Year: 2013
Type: Album
So Post Modern
Year: 2012
Type: EP

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