Brisbane, Australia – it’s a city that’s never really had a ‘sound’. It’s always been a fusion town, a place where bands ignore convention, smash ideas together, and make some pretty exciting music in the process. And you’d be hard pressed to find better exponents of the art than Hungry Kids of Hungary.
To call them a pop band is too easy, too neat. Their brilliantly bent take on the genre has a little bit of everything. Yes, there are those melodies that worm their way in, the harmonies that soar, the hooks to burn. But there’s also that hint of unpredictability that makes them so exciting. Most of all, perhaps, listening to these guys play feels good – it’s fun. People smile at their shows… and that’s just the band.
Little wonder then that in an impossibly short space of time they’ve graduated from local lads who can pen a tune, to serious contenders for Australia’s most exciting new prospect.
Like most bands, the birth of HKOH was simple enough – a bunch of friends drawn together by a love of writing simple, honest tunes. Rather than trying to make waves straight out of the box, the four piece sat back, honed their craft and quickly emerged with tracks like ‘Set It Right’, ‘Scattered Diamonds’ and ‘Let You Down’ and quickly landed all these onto rotation on Australian national broadcaster triple j and embarked on a relentless touring schedule that’s never really let up.
With growing support from Australian radio and an increasing reputation as a ‘must see’ live band, their army of supporters started to grow rapidly – helped by tours with the likes of OK Go, Jamie T, Little Birdy, Washington, Bertie Blackman and Philadelphia Grand Jury and slots at a run of festivals including the Big Day Out, Splendour in the Grass, Falls Festival and Homebake and, of course, a slew of their own sold-out dates.
And it’s not just radio and press taking notice – HKoH tracks have made their way on to television screens across the globe through placement on a run of shows including The Inbetweeners, Grey’s Anatomy, Royal Pains, Ugly Betty and Cougar Town.
In the past the band has appeared internationally at the likes of The Great Escape, Musexpo UK and USA, Canadian Music Week (Toronto) and the epic South by South West (USA). Well now they can add their biggest festival appearance to date by snaring a slot at the Netherlands’ Pinkpop. This comes on the back of extensive airplay across the Benelux region and a signing to Rough Trade.
So as 2012 hits full steam, we find HKOH a band well and truly on a roll. While the early stages of the year will be dominated by recording an album with producer Wayne Connolly (Silverchair, You Am I, The Vines, Youth Group) at Albert’s Studios in Sydney.
This is a band with one eye clearly on the future. Recently expanded to a five-piece, they’re already making some serious headway on a brand new batch of songs that will ultimately form the backbone of the next HKOH release.
How exactly that new record will sound is anyone’s guess. But that’s the fun part, right?
Keeps tabs on the band now at – www.hungrykidsofhungary.com