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Hollywoodfun Downstairs - The Mancunian Swing Album Review

10 Oct 2013 // A review by Alistar3000

I’ve been following Hollywoodfun Downstairs since their first gig a little over 18 months ago in Wellington. Since then they’ve released a demo and an EP, both of which were fine examples of fast-paced psychedelic, spazz out, post-punk.

Their latest release, the full length The Mancunian Swing, is their best work yet and shows a solid progression from a band that was working out what direction to take its sound, to one that clearly feels comfortable within that sound.

The roughness of their earlier recordings has gone, replaced by a more polished sound, yet they retain enough edge to not reduce the effectiveness of what they’re trying to do. There’s also a continuation of the urgency that’s been within the music since the start, as though the songs are pushing to get out to their audience.

A heavy schedule of touring and gigging around Wellington probably has a lot to do with the refining of the sound, but credit also has to go to produce James Goldsmith, who’s managed to capture and enhance the live sound of the band, while adding elements that take the band outside the punk spectrum and more into the psychedelic realm, managing to make them sound retro and futuristic at the same time.

It was always going to be interesting seeing how such an interesting band would manage to transfer what they do live to a full album, but Hollywoodfun Downstairs have managed it in style, reproducing live favourites like Looking Like Jarvis and 216 accurately, and at the same time building on their live show.

It may be a big call, but this mish mash of so many different styles and influences may well be the future of rock music in New Zealand. With a no holds barred live show, and a relentless work ethic, if anyone is going to change the rock scene here, it’s going to be these three intrepid musicians.

The Mancunian Swing
View Track Listing

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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