Just keep it hush...
The Very Hush Hush release an album and talk about it, along with Ray Caesar, French speakers, classical training, Kanye Who?, Oakland, Sao Bento Music, losts waves and even a hint of (gasp) humor.
Published: Wednesday, October 19, 2005
Updated: Sunday, July 19, 2009 01:07
Born somewhere in the back pages of early pulp-noir, huddled behind ads for phone girls and x-ray glasses, The Very Hush Hush were flirtatiously brought together by means of competition and spirit. Taking its current form some two years ago, Grant Hazard Outerbridge and Peter Bo Rappmond were both trained as children on classical piano, competed against each other and are now currently working together in the bass and keyboard duo that is TVHH.
The sound of TVHH, which has been known to be hard to describe, might best be summed up with oblique words and uncharacteristic similes to things like, "falling valleys," "driving tonnage," "ethereal planes," or perhaps even, "crashing waves." Case in point, TVHH make big music for big people, with a wide array of influences and sounds at their disposal, they create music that can't be summed up into awkward similes. That's not to say that what they do is entirely new and groundbreaking; it's still, at its heart, rock 'n' roll, but the way that TVHH play rock 'n' roll is by a means that is grounded in something otherworldly, visiting earth only on rare occasions for a snack or soda.
The band, originally from Colorado, relocated to Oakland last year, "We moved to California so we could experience something new. Grant got held up at gunpoint the other month. Outside our house, nonetheless. It is hard to really quantify the intensity out here without you actually experiencing it firsthand." Peter says, quickly adding that, "Denver is a great place, and will always be home to us."
Their new album, Mourir C'est Facile, will be released at the hi-dive next Thursday. The record, the band's first full-length, features the stunning artwork of Ray Caesar. The choice was brought upon by a fascination with Caesar's work by both Grant and Peter, "The ideas presented in Ray's work are very similar to our own ideology and what we want to try to get across to our audience. We want to invite people to peel back a few layers and observe what might be really going on with what they consider to be 'pretty,'" says Peter. The album's cover, which features a bizarrely rendered three-dimensional picture of a Victorian age women whose hand is modifying itself into flower, whose dress is apparently made up of the inside of human parts and whose face features an air of overt distraction, showcases the sounds of TVHH by a means that is rare in the world of album cover art of the 21st century. Peter comments that, "Yes, we want melody to draw you in, but we also want to see you get shivers down your spine."
Music, as a creative outlet, has been more than a hobby to the duo for quite some time. Working with sounds and ideas first, the band has been capable of formulating seven minute long moods, constructed both of melody and emotion, without ever going over the top on either. "Hopefully, when people listen to our music, they are opened up to new feelings and ideas. This goes beyond simply instigating a reaction in someone. Longevity is important to us, as well as connecting with the listener over and over again," says Peter.
Spending a lot of time with a record is something of an inside idea. Many people don't understand what it takes to finish something off and polish it up. Certain sounds and ideas need to be tweaked in post-production and TVHH have become overwhelmingly discerning of that fact. "I think we calculated production time to be somewhere around a thousand hours. In retrospect I'm glad we paid so much attention to details. In return, we got an album that sounds completely different than a lot of what is circulating out there right now."
In the end, The Very Hush Hush have ended up with an excellent record that portrays exactly what they've wanted and showcases a duo that is confident in their sound and music. Mourir C'est Facile, released on Sao Bento Music, will be readily available at their show, with label mates D. Biddle opening up. This is sure to be a Thursday night worth venturing out for.