Welcome to the first round of a new feature for The Soundcheck - each week, Sound Off Saturday will bring you a little peek into the mind of some of our best and brightest local bands, discussing all things sound, songs and a secret or two.
And first up to sound off is Melb alt-rockers Have/Hold: potent, brooding and dipping their toes beyond their alt-rock label, there's a gripping urgency to Have/Hold and their mesmerising tracks. Oscillating between post-rock soundscapes, emotive cadences and tinges of melodic hardcore, Have/Hold certainly hold you captive in their lush and dynamic world.
So without further adieu, here's Have/Hold's Luke Shields (Guitar/ Vox) sounding off with The Soundcheck.
WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE SOUND IN THE WHOLE WORLD?
This might sound a little perverse but I’ve always loved the sound of glass breaking. It’s so inescapable and the tension and release it tars the air with is electric.
WHAT'S THE FIRST ALBUM/SINGLE YOU EVER BOUGHT YOURSELF?
The first thing I ever bought with my own money, that I earned watering local gardens like every other Norman Rockwell painting, was a CD copy of ‘From The Muddy Banks Of The Wishkah’ the Nirvana Live Album. I’d already dubbed Nevermind and In Utero from friends and well and truly worn the magnetic tape down on my copy of Unplugged in New York but this record changed my world. The performances are frightening, there’s moments of sardonic wit that only heroes of the 90s could really pull off and it was everything that a pre-teen me could’ve asked for in a record.
WHAT'S BEEN YOUR FAVOURITE RELEASE OF 2018 SO FAR?
My friend Tiaryn put out her ‘Let Me Fall’ EP earlier this year. The song Quicksand absolutely breaks my heart, I’m a mess every time I put it on. When she weeps the line “I was cruel to you…” in ‘Just Another Year’ I die! Her partner Danny Barwick also put out his ‘Distance’ EP a while before that. I had the great honour of working on it but that pales in comparison to what is a genuinely unique, challenging and emotionally rewarding listen. Plus there’s a new Daughters record, they’d have to be one of the most original bands in history I reckon.
WHAT'S YOUR DREAM GEAR SET-UP? ARE YOU LUSTING AFTER ANY PARTICULAR INSTRUMENTS/EQUIPMENT?
I kinda feel like I’m pretty close to it at the moment but of course every time a new song shows up in my life that all changes. I have an army of hollow body guitars that I switch between on any given day but my Duesenberg Starplayer TV and my Gretsch g5620t get the most work. From there I go into a few too many pedals, my Keeley Caverns and four-knob compressor are always on and augmented by my old Boss DD20 and Wampler Hot Wired V1. They go stereo into a Fender Hotrod DeVille 4x10 and Supro Coronado which are an odd but wild combination of modern utility and vintage inspired character. All up it's about as close to Neil Young on his ranch at full volume with a smattering of Jeff Buckley’s chiming reverb tails as little ol’ me can get.
WHO'S YOUR FAVOURITE AUSSIE BAND RIGHT NOW AND WHY?
Personally I love artists like Jess Cornelius, Romeo Moon, Jade Imagine, Leah Senior, Jess Ribiero and the inimitable Augie March but bands like My Disco, Ylva, Neighbourhood Youth, The Sinking Teeth and Rad Island get much more of a run on the aux cord in the tour van.
WHAT'S ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU WISH YOU WERE GIVEN WHEN YOU WERE FIRST STARTING OUT IN THE INDUSTRY?
Get in the van and drive it yourself. Whatever you do, don’t EVER EVER expect that anyone is going to do any of it for you or show up without you asking them to. Ask for help all the time and gather an army of likeminded creatives around you but make sure that you get up in the morning and use every twitch of your every muscle to make music or paint or blacken the pages of your notebook or capture light or whatever you’re called to do. Whatever happens DO NOT do it later because there is no later. Later is a name cowards give to Never.
WHAT'S ONE SECRET ABOUT HAVE/HOLD YOU'RE WILLING TO DIVULGE?
Last tour we willingly listened to the album’ Dizzy Up The Girl’ by The Goo Goo Dolls from start to finish. Ryan had this idea that we were going to learn something from it. All we end up learning is that the songs you already know are the only ones worth knowing.
WHAT'S NEXT FOR HAVE/HOLD?
I already have a few sketches for the next record so we’ll probably get stuck into those soon. I’d like to do something completely different to anything we’ve done before, like trip-hop or an acoustic album, but we’ll see what happens when we’re all in the room with the muse next eh?
FOR MORE HAVE/HOLD INFO, HEAD HERE
BY TIANA SPETER