Message Board   |   About    |   Home

Featured Band

January - Hymm From The Hurricane

Hymm From The Hurricane, a relatively new 7 piece band on the Lincoln music scene, play beautiful, melodic songs. Their string section and awesome vocal harmonies really set them apart from most other acts currently playing in Lincoln (with the possible exception of Floating Opera). A few of the members play in other bands. Drummer, Boz Hicks, plays in Her Flyaway Manner, and guitarist, Jim Reilly, plays in The Bad Sects. Their other bands vary as much from each other as they do from Hymm From The Hurricane, but their talents, as well as those of the rest of the members of HFTH, combine to create a beautiful sound. Marta, Jim, Boz, Nolan, Brooke, Carrie, & Grace recently gave me the scoop on what's up with the band.

SCS: How and when did Hymn From The Hurricane form as a band?

Marta: In mid 2002, I recorded some songs with Vince Miller, Nolan, and Brad Kindler, then gave these cd's to various musicians. The line-up was changing until October 2003 when the current crew began to rock it.

SCS: How would you define your sound to someone who’s never heard you?.

Marta: We've got two ex-members of Experiment #13, the drummer of Her Flyaway Manner, and four classically trained musicians bashing heads to make something beautiful.

SCS: How would you describe a Hymn show? -- If people come to see you live, what can they expect?.

Nolan: Two words- HOT CHICKS!

SCS: What types of music and which musicians/groups influenced the band members?

Jim: The Cure, Joy Division, Beatles, Pink Floyd, Doodle Town Pipers, Syd Barrett, For Against, Ella Fitzgerald, Macha, Canadian Springs, Side Pocket 40's, and Mother Earth.
Boz: Everything.
Brooke: Modest Mouse and Pleasure Forever.
Marta: I think it would be impossible to credit them all, but there are some I consistently come back to: Bob Dylan, Patti Smith, Neutral Milk Hotel, The Beatles (all of it), Grandaddy, David Bowie, Bright Eyes, and Leonard Cohen. I think the common thread is lyric strength and imagery.
Nolan: I play for this music, it's really the influence, but if you want to know bands I listen to right now Outkast, Clinic, Ween, Camaron de la Isla, Syd Barrett, and the Amelie soundtrack.

SCS: Which do you prefer, writing/recording or live performance?

Marta: We haven't recorded anything as a band yet, so that will be a whole new endeavor, but since writing is personal and often hit or miss (I never know how a song will sound until it gets to the band) I would have to say I enjoy performing the most. That's where it all comes together, the symphony of it, really, considering our formula.
Jim: I would say performing. Practices are exciting and strange. I'm actually getting to know Brooke, Grace, Carrie, and Boz every practice. On stage we are all about doing our parts to put on the best show we can and it's fun. There's nothing like playing for people. They pay so I try to make it worth it for them and myself

SCS: What’s the band's working relationship, as far as the musical process is concerned? Marta, do you write all the songs and score the string parts and stuff, or is it a collaborative group process?

Marta: I write a song and bring it to the group where it grows and bends into music. So far I've written the string arrangements, but we all have input on the final product.

SCS: Are you working on album now?

Marta: No.

SCS: What are the plans for one?

Marta: Right now the plan is to record an EP of four songs at Presto with A.J. We're looking at late May.

SCS: How has the band grown, musically and creatively, since it first started?

Marta: Those two are the same questions in this band. As we've practiced and played we've gone from a concept of a band into a constantly growing and evolving band that offers something back to everyone playing in it.

SCS: What was your first local show?

Marta: At our friends' Marco and Mike's house. We opened for rockstars Ralphie vs. the Sunrise in October 2003.

SCS: Who are some local bands or musicians that you admire or feel should be recognized?

Nolan: Nationally, Bright Calm Blue should already have denied spots to VH-1's shows. but. Javid is too ahead of his time that it's future past.
Marta: Nolan stole my answer. Bright Calm Blue is amazing. They just keep getting better. And the vocal synergy in Crush the Clown is special.
Jim: I haven't heard a lot of local bands, but the ones I've seen and become friends with are truly fantastic at what they do. I say put a spotlight on Nebraska.

SCS: Do you think growing up in Lincoln influence your music, insofar as the people you had to play with, things like that?

Marta: Yeah. Seeing so many friends making music and being so supportive of each other made me less afraid to try. I wrote the songs earlier on without the intention of doing anything else but getting a feeling out and letting it go. Being in a band wasn't really on my mind at the time.
Jim: Yeah, definitely. But not as much as the Brits.
Nolan: Lincoln has always had a really strong scene since I've been fortunate enough to go to shows. I mean, I think that it's gone out of basements to bars, and I'm not sure if that's progress. But its strength remains intact.
Grace: Actually, I grew up in Omaha.

SCS: Where do you get inspiration from for your lyrics?

Marta: I don't know. Watching life and living. Trying to keep my head clear. It isn't always successful, as a purge, but when it is, it's worth it.

SCS: What’s your favorite song of yours to play live?

Jim: The last song.
Grace & Nolan: The new one. We don't know what it's called-none of the songs have names, I guess it's the fast song with the build-up.
Marta: It depends on the night, whatever song matches my mood most. I never know until I'm singing it, and afterward, it's like "that felt good".

SCS: Where did the band's name come from, and does it have any specific meaning?

Marta: The name comes from a posthumously published Bukowski poem. It seemed to sum up his experience of living. It became our band name by default. We couldn't decide on anything. Grace read the poem when we were hanging out and smoking and writing a semi-serious list of possible band names. It went on the list, and then won in a showdown of eeniemeenieminiemo.
Nolan: Plus it rolls off the tongue better than Her From the Himicane.
Jim: That's true.
Grace: I don't smoke.

SCS: Yeah, I wondered if it was from the Bukowski poem...What song would each band member like to cover the most?

Grace: "In Dreams" by Roy Orbison, I guess.
Marta: The Beatles "Oh Darling" with Nolan singing. And "To Ramona" off Another Side of Bob Dylan.
Nolan: Danger Zone.
Jim: Siamese twins...duh

SCS: What do you like and dislike about the music scene in Lincoln?.

Nolan: I like that musicians are really supporting other musicians and if you're not cool you can't talk to any of them.
Marta: Lack of venues. The ones we have are great, but there should be more.

SCS: What band would be your dream band to tour with?

Grace: I'd like to tour with Air, 'cuz then we could go to France.
Carrie: Probably Motley Crue in the 80's so I could die and come back to life with Nikki Six.
Nolan: I toured with Widespread for two years and it was super dank.
Marta: Anything that would take me to California to my best friend. Grandaddy's from California- hee hee

SCS: Who do you think is the most underrated artist > in the music industry

Marta:I don't have much interest in top 40 lists, I mean, if that is what the artist or band is going for, then they should. But I guess it depends on whether a person views music more as entertainment or more as art. The creation process is different. The purpose is different. Most of my favorite music comes from "underrated artists".

SCS: Who was the first person or band you saw that made you want to play music

Nolan: Armatron was the first live band, but I remember as a child thinking I could be twice as good as the drummer of Def Leppard.
Marta: I think it was hearing songs my aunt wrote being played at family gatherings when I was young. She would also play Joni Mitchell and Simon and Garfunkel and even though I didn't start playing guitar until later, I always wanted to write and sing.
Grace: The Pumpkins

SCS: What was the first album/CD you bought?

Carrie: Madonna "Like a Prayer", we listened to it everyday at daycare and made up dances until the teacher said we could never play it again. But I think the first cd was Green Day. I listened to that while we were practicing for cheerleading tryouts in 8th grade.
Marta: Boyz II Men "End of the Road" was my first tape and then in Junior High I got Bob Dylan "Blood on the Tracks" for Christmas and that changed everything.
Nolan: First tape was Def Leppard, first cd my mom bought: DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince and DC Talk because she knew I was into hip hop at the time and was doing her best.
Grace: Blind Melon

SCS: Whose music are you listening to right now that you would recommend other people check out?

Marta: I listen to Neutral Milk Hotel's "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea" at least once a day, even if it's just a few songs. I've been listening to Johnny Cash's Sun Studio recordings. I listen to different music in the winter. Leonard Cohen is great for the cold. His voice is a warm contrast on "Avalanche".
Recommended bands: Carissa's Wierd, Neva Dinova, Neko Case, Bettie Serveert.

SCS: Back at the end of 1999 a website I was writing for had people submit lists of what they felt were the top 100 albums of the 20th century, and "In The Aeroplane Over The Sea" was #3 on my list. What about the rest of you?

Carrie: Right now I'm listening to Thunderstandable, Mars Volta, Beyonce, and since it's Christmastime I've been listening to this CD that my friend Adam made for X-mas two years ago, where he wrote a song for each of his friends.
Recommended Bands: More people should listen to Her Flyaway Manner and give them lots of money because they are really, really good.
Nolan: Z-ROCK Hawaii, Matmos, Manu Chao, Andres Segovia
Grace: Soundtracks. Exclusively.

SCS: What are your top five favorite albums of all time.

Nolan: I only have four albums so I can't answer.

SCS: What single song, in the entire history of music, do you most wish you'd written?

Marta: They wouldn't be the same had I written them, but a few favorites are "Five Years" by David Bowie, "I'm So Tired" by The Beatles, "Simple Twist of Fate" by Bob Dylan, the first song on Fevers and Mirrors. The one people skip over.
Nolan: I wish I could sing like Paul Anka.
Grace: "Love is Blue" by Paul Mauriat.

SCS: What was your most memorable live performance and what made it that?

Grace: First is the worst.
Nolan: We haven't really played a lot of shows and I have never really remembered being on stage with any band, i'm not sure why. I probably shouldn't answer this question.

SCS: Who/What do you think is the embodiment of evil in the music industry?

Carrie: Carson Daly? I don't really like him that much.
Nolan: I've never really trusted Roy Orbison, I think there's some crazy shit happening behind those shades.
Marta: It's more an issue of what's wrong with big money in a few hands.
Grace: The same thing that made Mariah Carey go crazy.

SCS: What can we look forward to in the next year from the band?

Nolan: two words: HOT CHIXXX! they'll be older, but...
Marta: New songs.

SCS: Any releases or shows you want to plug or any last comments?

Grace: Ditto.

- Tery Daly