Interview with The Holidays



Barely a month after their successful national tour for their latest full length offering Real Feel, The Holidays, fronted by Simon Jones, will be setting off again on an East Coast Tour, coinciding with the release of the albums third single, Tongue Talk. Simon tells us what it’s like to play the big rooms and how long he can hold his breath for.

We really dug your cover of The Preatures’ Is This How You Feel  for Like A Version the other Friday, it was better even than the Wolf Like Me Like A Version from a few years back, how much time goes into putting one of those together?

We spent a while on it. For our first one, the Wolf Like Me one, we literally found out the week before that we were going to be on the show so we left it until the day before and just came up with something really quickly.

This time we had heaps more warning so we spent about three weeks mucking around with ideas for it. We knew we wanted to do that song but we didn’t know how we wanted to do it, so we tried a few different ways, made some recordings and went with the slowed down version, which was fun to make.

So will you be putting that in a live set soon?

Possibly, we haven’t actually discussed it yet but we could. I’d actually like to put a cover of Sexual Healing into the set, or we might be able to do a more extensive sort of mash-up.

You’ve said touring your debut album Post Paradise was the best year of your life, how has touring Real Feel compared?

It’s been kind of similar really, the difference was in whatever year that was (2010) we went overseas a fair bit which was really cool. We didn’t do that this time because a lot of the stuff we’ve done before like SXSW. But that was my favourite thing about that year and we all took time off in Europe afterwards.

For this one we’re only halfway through it but we’ve done a couple of tours in Australia which have been good and the rooms are getting bigger.

That first time around we didn’t manage to get to a room the size of the Metro or the Hi Fi in Melbourne.

 Is that time off in Europe when you wrote this album?

That’s where it started, the bulk of it got done when I got home but I came up with ideas and sketches over there, then it was like lets get home and record it and make it happen.

So you were trying to make this album a little darker, and I can see that on tracks like Japan Window and Voices Drifting, but Home and All Time High seem like the classic upbeat Holidays of 2010. Did you achieve all you wanted to in terms of darkness on this album?

The original idea was to make it darker but somewhere along the way we came back to our sound. There’s definitely a couple of darker tracks but Home and All Time High were more kinda classic Holidays song that we wrote and we felt they had a place there too. We came out with an album that didn’t really fit in any time period scene or anything popular at the moment, it’s tough to know how people are going to receive things but when Voices Drifting was released it kind of went off on a lot of the blogs and we had the feature album on Triple J one week so we’ve been really happy with the reception

You mentioned Voices Drifting, how long were you holding your breath for in that film clip? Is that clip in slow motion?

I can’t remember exactly how long it was, probably about two minutes ten seconds, a really long time.

Are you an elite diver? How did you manage that?

I literally trained for about three weeks and I thought it was fine. After practicing at home, not in water just holding my breath, I started to get up to about two and a half minutes. All you’ve got to do is relax and control your heart rate. But when we went to film our indoor pool fell through so we had to do it in an outdoor pool in the middle of winter, and it was too cold to keep my heart rate down but we got there. I’m glad we got the shot in the end because if I couldn’t do hold my breath for that long it would have just been a very bitter experience.

If the Holidays holiday, where do they holiday?

Probably… Japan, Tokyo, it’s probably my favourite spot. We’ve never played there, we had our album released in Japan but never actually played there so I’ve only been there as a tourist, it’s just like being on another planet which is why I love it.

  So you went to school with the guys from Art Vs Science and played against them in talent comps, who had the upper hand? Who used to win?

 Yeah they were a few years above us I think. I cant really remember, I never used to win so it definitely wouldn’t have been me I’m not sure if they did either. I don’t think either of us won <laughs> some really crappy half assed stuff used to win.

So there’s no lingering high school rivalry between the bands then.

Definitely not, we never went toe to toe. I wonder what the guys who used to win are up to now.

I know you just released an album but do you have any idea when we’ll here more from the Holidays?

We’ve got a lot of songs from Reel Feel that didn’t make it onto the album, and we’re always experimenting with new ideas so I guess it’s just watch this space.




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