It’s time for Track Of The Week! This time around we’re featuring BIMM London students Emmett and Jamie (AKA Hollowers) who are releasing “Nightmare” as the lead track for their debut EP, which is due for release in January. Based on this track, it sounds like it’s going to be amazing!
What was the inspiration behind your track?
Vocally, I wanted to create lyrics that had a sense of rhythm and movement, to instill a feeling of being chased. The song meaning is open to interpretation; we tried to centre the theme around the metaphor of being haunted by something or someone, what that is exactly is up for grabs. It’s also about returning to a negative indulgence, when you should know better- which we all experience at some point.
What did your songwriting process involve?
The song essentially began as a random three-part vocal harmony we recorded at the end of an unproductive writing session. We took this audio recording, reversed, chopped and filtered it, which then became the foundation for the song. You can hear it clearly in the last few seconds of the song. We liked the sound of it, so we added some beats to it, and panned a dulcimer sound effect in the background . As the song was playing back I started singing “la la la’s” over the pre-chorus, to make it sound as though the “hunter” in the song is mocking or taunting his victim, or like a kid teasing another kid in a schoolyard – na na, na na na! (I initially wrote the la la la’s because I hadn’t come up with any lyrics yet, but they felt right so we kept them!). The rest of the song then evolved bit by bit.
What things do you do differently to other bands?
We are a two-man band, so we write & produce our songs, and manage the band, by ourselves. The advantages of that is when you have a good idea, you have less people to win over with it! So you can usually crack on writing more quickly. But then again the pressure is on just the two of us to keep the creative process from stagnating. We are constantly emailing different samples, recordings, and lyrics, back and forth pretty much on a daily basis. I recently recorded a few Hare Krishna performers in the Tube, and sent the audio to Jamie which then somehow inspired him to start another track from scratch!
Can you describe your sound in three words?
Atmospheric, emotive synth-pop/electro-house music.
Have you channeled any artist in particular on this track?
At the time we began creating Nightmare, we had been listening to a lot of electronic/alternative artists like Sohn, Bjork, and Sampha. Sohn plays with a lot of his own vocal recordings by editing and distorting them, and then re-working them into a song. For me, playing with vocal samples can add so much depth and atmosphere to a song, that you can’t always get with an instrument, so it definitely inspired us to experiment with that.
What’s the best thing about studying at BIMM?
There is an amazing feeling of community at BIMM. Everyone is there because they love music, and everyone supports each-other through this shared passion. Also, BIMM is so well connected with the music industry which is incredibly useful – particularly for all us start-up artists!
What’s the best bit of music advice you’ve been given?
Persevere, and ignore absolutely anyone who tell you “you can’t”, even if you look up to them.
What’s next for you?
We are planning to release our debut EP in January which will be available on all streaming devices, so stay tuned for new music very soon.