Quarantine Questions: Hushtones


Quarantine Questions

Additional Words and Photos by Gary Lambert

Quarantine QuestionsThere have been loads of cancellations and rejigging of events caused by the lockdown we are all under, but one of the biggest hits to the heart of Popped Music has been the postponement of Threshold Festival.  One of the acts we had planned to be on our Popped Music stage was Liverpool’s Hushtones who are a wonderful example of the grown up pop music which is resurgent throughout our creative industry at present.  Somehow the band manages to be loud and powerful without being noisy and losing even a fraction of the delicate hit to the heart and ears that pop records should bring.  Double A-side, The Birds Are Coming / Keep Running, is testament to the vibe their live show brings.

1.  How are you doing?

We’re doing alright! Missing each other and missing performing but we are trying to stay positive. We have started writing music together through the might of the glorious internet which is helping us all through this enforced hermit phase. 


2.  Do you have any releases coming up?

Our next release is one we’re all really excited about… A double A-side featuring 2 tracks produced by the fabulous Steve Levine.


Hushtones 13.  What are you doing to keep yourself occupied whilst stuck at home?

Martha – I started off the lockdown in high spirits and decided to start jogging and yoga and learning guitar and I turned the spare room into a “studio” so I could learn how to use garage band properly and I was like “yeeeeeeeah I’m gonna smash this”, but not even 2 weeks I started to lose a bit of motivation, I’m not gonna lie.  We have started sharing some band projects though. We’ve just got to adapt and keep creating I guess.

Mick – Trying to stay away from the news as much as possible, writing, drinking and living in fear of the virus have all been high up the list.
4.  Who have you been listening to recently?

Martha– I started my quarantining listening to bit of Steely Dan out loud on my doorstep in the sunshine (hoping to annoy/bless the neighbours with the my music taste), and after that I’ve moved through the sounds of All We Are, Angel Olson, Billie Eilish and obsessively playing Christine and the Queens album Chaleur Humaine on repeat.  It has such a lovely vibe!  I’ve also discovered the story of Mother Maybelle Carter and the invention of the “Carter Scratch”, so I’ve been listening to some of the Carter Sisters vintage recordings.  Their songs have lovely harmonies.  But as the Lockdown has moved on I’ve found myself playing the song Everybodys Got To Live by Love on repeat.  The message feels strangely important to me right now. 

Mick – Harry Nilsson, James Taylor, Neil Young. Some stuff I haven’t heard for a good while. One I’ve discovered since Lockdown Ella Fitzgerald Sings the Duke Ellington Songbook.  Funny though I don’t really feel like I’m listening to much more music than I usually would.  Trying to stay motivated to write has been the main focus and a good chunk of time has been going into that for me.
Hushtones 25.  What has been your favourite gig that you’ve played?

Martha – One of my favourite gigs so far has been our last gig before Lockdown.  It was our first time in Manchester at Night and Day Cafe.  We were all really excited to be there, gelling really well, and our energy on stage felt like the best so far.  We were all gearing up for that to be the start of an exciting series of gigs for us but hey, that will just have to wait.

Mick Skeleton Coast Festival for me. I think we have a lot of better material now than we did then though.
6.  If quarantine only allowed you to listen to one album as many times as you wish, what would you pick?

Martha – Well I’ve already answered that, it would have to be Christine And the Queens, Chaleur Humaine! Deffo one to stop you decending too far into madness during this strange time.

Mick– Maybe The White Album (The Beatles’ eponymous classic double album) because it’s so long.  Get a bit of mileage out of that.


7.  What would you say represents the sound of Hushtones?

That has always been a tough one for us to answer. I’m sure everyone thinks this but we genuinely think our music has its own sound right now. We love harmonies and have been called “the Scouse Fleetwood Mac” before but that’s probs mostly attributable to the fact that we have a mixture of male and female vocals. We’ve also had The Beach Boys cos of our harmonies. We all have a mixture of influences that we bring to the table so the whole thing is a nice big musical soup. 


Stay in Touch

Find Hushtones on Facebook

Instagram: @hushtones_liverpool

Twitter: @hushtonesmusic

Listen to The Birds Are Coming / Keep Running here

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