BIRTHED FROM UNEARTHED
triple j’s Unearthed has produced quite the monumental music pool. Some artists flounder and defect. Others, however, really come into the fore. When HUSKY won the triple j Unearthed award they didn’t brag or preen, they were grateful. “It’s helped us in a big way,” lead-man Husky Gawenda attests. “It’s difficult to get your music out there. You could have great songs or a great album but if no one is hearing it there’s not much you can do with it.”
The attention motivated Husky to move forward, recording the album Forever So. While they seemed eager to develop an album relatively quickly, they also put in the hard yards to ensure their debut was of a high calibre. Forever So was recorded patiently over a number of months, not in a recording studio but in Gawenda’s backyard bungalow. Of course such a venue requires setting up with sound-proofing, among other things. The decision not to record in a rented studio space was designed to spare them from “the feeling that time’s running out and that we had to finish by a certain time. We knew that recording an album would take space and time, and we wanted a cosy feel that would carry across to the sound of Forever So.”
But it wasn’t an easy process. “We based most of what we did on blind intuition and watching instructional videos on YouTube,” Gawenda says, slightly unhinged. “Honestly we didn’t know what we were doing. We spent quite a few months feeling our way through it and teaching ourselves how to record, where to put microphones… But once we found our footing, and realised that we were achieving what we had set out to achieve, we gained a little more confidence and it became an amazing experience! It was really satisfying knowing that we had arranged it all ourselves.”
In promoting the album’s release, Husky is currently touring Australia, pretty much everywhere. They even performed in Belongil (Byron Bay), including an impromptu gig. They are playing just about everywhere, it seems… except Canberra! “A couple of people have asked us about that,” Gawenda starts, sheepishly. “We were playing so many towns that I didn’t really think about it until somebody mentioned it. And I thought to myself ‘why not Canberra!?’ So I will be making sure that on our next tour (sometime early next year) we come to Canberra.”
The current tour involves performing at the meritorious Laneway Festival. “They always have amazing line-ups,” Gawenda marvels. “Rather than booking a few huge headliners and then not such good quality bands for the rest of the line-up, the primary goal of Laneway seems to be to have a consistently good line-up throughout. I think Laneway also has a way of booking great bands that maybe no one’s heard of or heard a lot from. But [ticket holders] know that when they attend, most of the acts are going to be enjoyable.”
You can catch Husky live at the Laneway Festival at the Sydney College of the Arts on Sunday February 5. Tickets through the festival’s website.