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Exploding out of Brisbane, alternative trio Hot Reno have had a helluva start to the year, dropping their debut EP Stab in The Dark at the tail end of last month.
And it seems like 2019 will only continue to be the year of Reno, with the band now following up the release with a launch show. Before they took to the stage, Hysteria caught up with the band to chat about their history, the record and their plans for the next few months
Hysteria: Let’s get started by getting everyone introduced!
Harley: I’m Harley, I play guitar and sing.
Jack: I’m Jack, I play guitar and bass at the same time. I do a bit of singing too.
Ben: I’m Ben and I play the drums
I’d love to know a bit more about the band and how it got started.
H: It’s kind of first started as a high school duo, we were called Hot Renovation back then. We just gained Jack later on so we restarted and made it a bit more official. We recorded a single and then started getting some gigs from around July 2017.
Congratulations on the release of Stab in The Dark, how did you find writing, recording and just putting it all together went?
J: It was a bit difficult, to be honest, there were a lot of bumps in the road getting there- getting the right sound out of it, getting good quality and finding the right person to help record with. Once we found out where to go and what to do it was pretty easy but it was a good weekend recording it.
All: It was well worth the wait.
We made it into what we needed it to be to play. We had DIY mic stands out of a broomstick and a traffic cone.
[ Ben ]
So, it was done over a weekend?
J: Yes, two days at Bedlam Records in Brisbane with Keelan Sanders. He recorded us, he was the man, he produced and mixed it.
What are your favourite tracks from that release?
B: My personal favourite is So I So You. The ending is my favourite but playing live … More Fun. The ending of Stab in The Dark is also pretty great.
H: I’d say my favourite track is Lighter Fluid but the ending of Stab in The Dark is my favourite to play live as well
J: Yeah when listening back to it I feel like Stab in The Dark as a whole sounds really epic and dramatic. I love some dramatic music in my life.
I’d love to know what your band name actually means.
B: [laughs] Well when it was just Harley and me back in the high school days, we used to practice in my room at my mum’s house and we didn’t have a lot of space or gear or anything. We had no fans so it was very hot in the room and we kind of had to renovate it
B: We made it into what we needed it to be to play. We had DIY mic stands out of a broomstick and a traffic cone. We were trying to think of a band name and we looked around and it floated out. We thought, yeah, we can see that on the billboards! When we started making it a bit more official after high school, when we got Jack, we just decided to shorten it to Hot Reno. It’s a bit more friendly to the eye.
What’s the response been to the tracks live?
H: We’ve been playing the whole EP pretty much since we started. Stab in The Dark and More Fun are more recent songs but we’ve still been playing them for well over six months. We knew people really liked those songs but having them out now for everyone to listen to makes us even more excited to go play them live because now people will be more familiar with them.
What else is on the cards for the band this year?
B: We’ve been writing pretty frequently and we keep coming up with heaps of stuff so hopefully in a couple of months we might go back into the studio and pop out a single or two. Next year, we might write another EP. I think with our pace of writing songs, that’s what we all think might happen.
J: For the rest of the year we want to do some bigger shows. Last year we gigged nonstop and played every show we got asked to do, this year we want to limit it to just some bigger ones we can be prouder of. We really want to say that there’ll be another release or two by the end of the year.
H: We have heaps of songs that have been around for the same time period as the current EP songs, and we just want to get them out as well. We want to focus on writing new stuff as well, we’re kind of overlapping ourselves, it’s good though.