EP Focus: The Tommyhawks

9 September 2015 | 6:33 pm | Travis Johnson

What’s the Tommyhawks story?

Well. (Addison) Axe (vox/guitar) and Ness (Thornton - bass) met in London a few years back; and then Ness lured Axe to Perth by promising her she could play in a band in Perth - so that was Axe Girl. But then when they started writing songs that were I guess a bit ‘darker’ they got in touch with Jess (June - drums) and she fit in beautifully. Then they decided a bit of sax might jazz up a song or two so we had a jam and it was kinda as easy as that - we had our first gig less than a month after our first jam as a four piece! 

Tommyhawks of course share personnel with Axe Girl  - how would you compare the two acts? 

Axe Girl is the punk sister. Tommyhawks songs have the moodier vibe - so more sax and vocal harmonies, things like banjos and mandolins, and a few mellow moments (only a few). I think we can be a bit looser with the forms of the Tommys’ songs - that came about earlier on when we had long sets and at that point not enough songs so we’d include ‘jam’ sections to pad out time; and then left them in when we’d rehearse next.

Tell us about We’re All Meat... 

Don't miss a beat with our FREE daily newsletter

So it’s a lyric from Mr Magpie, which is a pretty sinister song about Axe coming to Australia (she’s from London - where they only have little things that chirp and tweet) and getting swooped for the first time. A rite of passage for all us Aussie kids, but obviously a slightly traumatising experience as a fully grown adult who’s probably only been pre-warned about drop bears and all the snakes that will kill you and not so much the birds that actually want your eyeball.

Where did you record?

We recorded with Dave Parkin at Blackbird Studios. He’s a total legend. So enthusiastic and so lovely and so talented with sounds. It was like this beautiful little time warp and he has this energy that makes you just want to keep going back and recording more and more.

You have a tour coming up, yeah?

Yes! We’re playing The Mitchell Creek Rock ‘n’ Blues Festival on the Sunshine Coast and also the Great Southern Blues Festival in Narooma in NSW. So we’re touring the east coast between those festivals and will be doing shows in Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra too. We’re so excited. We have a green camper van that has two double mattresses (one of those is on the roof) so its going to be terrifying and hilarious all at once. Luckily; we’re pretty used to that band-room-funk kinda smell.

Originally published in X-Press Magazine