With the release of their new EP, 'Dreamin' Heavy', Brisbane indie heroes I Heart Hiroshima take the next step forward in what's being labelled a new era for the band.
'Dreamin' Heavy' comes nearly a year after their previous EP, 'Spillin' The Light', which showed off a revitalised version of the band following an uncertain hiatus.
Guitarist/ vocalist Matt Somers says the new record is another step in the same direction. “The new EP came about in a pretty similar kind of way to 'Spillin' The Light',” Matt says.
“There are two songs I've had kicking around for a while that we ended up reworking into some other stuff, then there's one song – the first track ['One Click'] – that came out of a jam and then a couple we specifically wrote brand new from the start for the recording.”
In the ten-plus years they've been making music together, I Heart Hiroshima have released two full-length studio albums as well as a healthy handful of EPs and singles.
Yet, Matt says it's not been until recently that they've established a comfortable relationship with their compositions. “I think the song 'Workin'' delivers what we were trying to do on our second album ['The Rip' 2009] a lot better than we did at the time,” he says.
“It's just from playing together for longer and having the time apart as well to analyse and rethink things.
“Especially with the new songs we wrote for this EP, I think we're really starting to figure out how to play together finally, which is ridiculous,” he laughs.
Matt says the new EP also sees the band stepping away from the deeply serious themes of their earlier releases and working with some lighter subject matter. “'Key To Life' especially is a really stupid song and a lot of the lyrical content has changed a lot as well.
“The new stuff is really tongue-in-cheek rather then being straight-up dark like some of the old stuff. It's a bit more stupid and sarcastic.
“A lot of our older songs, especially stuff off 'Tuff Teef' [2007 studio album], there's a lot of fairly serious subject matter in there, very vague, but it would feel a little bit odd – especially these days – playing some of those songs now.
“There's a couple of songs that are stacked full of late teens/ early-20s feelings and it gets a bit rough playing those.”
I Heart Hiroshima play shows in Sydney and Melbourne this weekend before a Brisbane gig early next month.
Matt says the most important thing at this point is to make sure they deliver the songs live on stage with the same integrity they have on the record. “The main thing we're trying to nail down is the last song on the new EP, which is called 'Action',” he explains.
“It's the first time we've ever used anything but two guitars and drums on a recording; it's got a full drum machine, suicide-style [sic] backing track. We've been trying to work on getting that down because we've never played it live yet.
“If we can do that I think it will be a new thing for us and a big difference for people who have maybe seen us before but haven't heard the new EP. Having a song like that, that is so different in every way than everything else we've done, I think it's a good thing to have that to be able to chuck into our set.
“I'm really excited about playing all the new songs. We're pretty much going to be playing every song off the new EP and then a selection of some older stuff.
“It's always exciting playing the new stuff, especially when it is a bit different and takes us out of our comfort zone a bit, which is nice.”
I Heart Hiroshima Shows
Fri 24 Nov - Factory Floor (Sydney)Sat 25 Nov - Gasometer (Melbourne)15-16 Dec - Netherworld (Brisbane)