As we discussed the number of up-and-coming bands based in Brooklyn, we asked HWGM who their favorites are; Luke is a fan of Glass Ghost. We were interested to hear whether most of the bands making it in Brooklyn were local or transplants; turns out there's a combination. A good number of local Brooklyn bands were making it because of the high level of exposure one can get there. As Brooklyn earned its musical hotbed status, musical ears across the country perked up. Bands started packed their bags and the city's music scene exploded.
We tried to get the guys to define their sound; our suggestion was art-rock, but Luke wasn't too keen on labels. He was adamant that music is an artistic process, and that he "just reacts to what he sees and feels." His dedication to the music was evident in the passionate response. Jen chimed in about connecting with the audience at live performances. She mentioned their performance at Primavera Sound (a music festival in Barcelona, Spain) as one of the highlights of HWGM's musical career. She felt this was the first time they really felt like they had a powerful impact on their audience, that they really "felt connected" to their fans. We asked the band about the differences between festivals in Europe and here in the States. They told us European festivals are much more laid back because festivals are an integral part of their culture. At Glastonbury, for example, they checked in with a woman who had worked with every band to come through the festival in the last 40 years. Incredible! Give us another 40 years, Europe, and we'll have festival culture down too. We are definitely up-and-coming in the festival world right now. HWGM played at Coachella earlier this year; both Luke and Mike called out Arcade Fire as a hot performance in Indio.
Mike, Luke and Jen were laid back and happy to chat with us about their band's journey. We were humbled that they took the time (thanks guys!). After the interview we went inside to watch them play. I hope they felt connected to their Denver audience; our local crowd received them well. They will certainly have repeat attendees the next time they are in town. HWGM left us promising a clean, crisp set. They delivered with many songs from "Pigeons," and a few from their new "The January EP" (we found out in the interview that these two were actually recorded at the same time). Check out The January EP when it releases tomorrow, 5-10-2011.