Article by Paranoid
For Relevant BCN
We decided to receive the autumn in Barcelona featuring an interview with Hammock, an american band consisting of Marc Byrd and Andrew Thompson. They have been releasing some of the most special ethereal lullabies for the last 8 years.
All their music is based on their extremely delicate works with electric guitars, reverbs, multi-layered pieces of music, and occasional instruments such as cello, strings, horn, drums, or whispering vocals.

We talked about the beginning of their relationship, the debut concert hosted by the acclaimed Sigur Rós leader Jónsi Birgisson, their conception of beauty behind sadness, and more.
Just let yourself go with the introspective smoothness of their music, and enjoy the article.
Hi there, please tell us where are you now and how are things over there.
We’re located in Nashville, TN USA. The city is growing and it’s a cool time to be here. I think we used to be more cynical about this town but we’ve got great friends here now.

How did you meet?
Well we both played in different bands and did some studio session work and eventually we became tired of working on other people’s music so we just started recording material that we thought would never see the light of day. The music we made was just for us. We were spending time in Andrew’s basement with no agenda but to create the sounds we enjoyed and wanted to hear. We were listening to a lot of old shoegaze, Boards of Canada, Stars of the Lid but also Red House Painters and Idaho. We didn’t really know about post rock. We had heard Mogwai, Explosions In the Sky and we loved Sigur Ros but we didn’t know it was considered “post rock.” By far we listened to more ambient artists than post rock.

Could you describe your first live show? I've read you were invited by Jonsi Birgisson, so I guess that would have been a pretty exciting experience.
We performed at Riceboy Sleeps’ (Jonsi and Alex) after party in celebration of their first state side art exhibit. It was very exciting. We wrote a lot of new material for the event and went back to Nashville where we recorded what became our album, “Maybe They Will Sing For Us Tomorrow.” It was named after one of the pieces in the Riceboy Sleeps exhibit. When we asked if we could name our album after the piece, Jonsi and Alex asked if they could create the artwork for the album and of course we said, yes… We’ve just recently released the record on vinyl and the artwork is beautiful. All formats of the record have been remastered by Taylor Deupree.

Ivan Turguenev once said that music is the only art form that can describe the hidden beauty behind sadness, do you agree with this?
No.. I think poetry is also capable of capturing that beauty, as well as painting, literature and film, etc.
However, when it comes to the “hidden beauty” of sadness, I do think that if you’re listening to music that moves you on an emotional level while reading certain passages or viewing a painting or watching a scene in a film with the right music/mood behind it―that’s when music has the advantage over these other forms of art.

Music can immediately set a mood and stir up certain feelings. Even Nietzsche said, “Without music life would be a mistake” and even a mediocre lyric can have a powerful impact when performed with the right melody and music.

Have you ever conceived your music as pictures?
Yes, but our dear friend Thomas Petillo is able to capture our music and our vision in photographs. Also, David Altobelli who has created most of our music videos seems to really understand our visual aesthetic.

So far you only released music from yourself through your own platform. Have you thought of publishing other artists?
We are considering several artists right now…

What was the latest great stuff you've heard?
Présence acousmatique by Marsen Jules Trio
If You Leave by Daughter
Tomorrow’s Harvest by Boards of Canada
For Now I Am Winter by Olafur Arnalds
Trouble Will Find Me by the National
Stories From Elsewhere by Rhian Sheehan
Atoms for Peace
Nightmare Ending by Eluvium
Kveikur by Sigur Ros
Holy Fire by Foals
Nocturnes by William Basinski

How would you describe each song on Departure Songs?
We’re about to do this on our Facebook page. We want to post descriptions of one or two songs every week until we’ve gone through the entire double album. It’s a long record so it will take some time. Let’s just say that the album overall deals with the BIG themes of what it means to be human. Sonically and thematically it’s dramatic and quiet, beautiful and sad, intensely personal and universal, human…

Thanks for everything, as a last question we'd like to know which are your plans for the rest of the year.
We are currently mixing and mastering our upcoming album "Oblivion Hymns" which will be released in late October / early November 2013.
Article by Paranoid
For Relevant BCN