Photo by Eric Kelly
Photo by Eric Kelly

Recorded at LA’s famed Sunset Sound studios with producer Lewis Pesacov (Best Coast) and mixed in London by Gareth Jones (Grizzly Bear, Interpol, Depeche Mode), ‘Astrid’ is built around a pulsing vintage-synth pattern courtesy of the Roland Juno 106. Into this heavyweight foundation are layered crisp propulsive drums, divergent keyboard melodies, dazzling guitar runs and Sarah Negahdari’s strident vocal, evocative of Karen O or Siouxsie Sioux. Lyrically, ‘Astrid’ plays on the idea of drawing consolation from concepts of destiny and fate: “The song captures the longing for a simple time when human agency and the movements of heavenly objects were believed to be one and the same,” explains Sarah. It is a subject matter of cosmic scope, a mood replicated in the tune’s sonic breadth.

About Happy Hollows
An everyday trip to the mall for student, bass player and new-man-in-LA Charles Mahoney proved serendipitous – and fortuitous for Californian music fans – when he came across free-spirited guitarist Sarah Negahdari reading tarot cards to pay the bills. Before long, the two would be touring the region, clocking up supports to the likes of Japandroids, Silversun Pickups and Deerhoof, and composing the hook-laden power-pop that would sparkle across two full-length albums – ‘Spells’ (2010) and ‘Amethyst’ (2013). As the band’s lineup was embellished by guitarist Matthew Fry and Mahoney’s experimentation with synthesisers, Happy Hollows soundtracked a US-wide mobile-phone commercial for Samsung and featured in a guest appearance on NBC TV’s Parenthood.

Live, Happy Hollows’ melodic, high-energy alt.pop, which has drawn comparisons to Blondie, Kate Bush and Yeah Yeah Yeahs, is topped off by the eye-catching, super-energetic performances of frontwoman Negahdari, a bona fide star on stage with a powerhouse vocal range to match. Their latest set of releases, commencing with ‘Astrid’, is sure to cement Happy Hollows’ universal appeal well beyond the borders of the Golden State.

Catch Happy Hollows touring the UK in May and June:

  • Friday 29 May: The South Sea, Sheffield
  • Saturday 30 May: The Crauford Arms, Milton Keynes
  • Thursday 4 June: The Loft House, Nottingham
  • Friday 5 June: The Dog & Parrot, Newcastle
  • Saturday 6 June: The Castle, Manchester
  • Sunday 7 June: 13th Note, Glasgow
  • Tuesday 9 June: The Finsbury, London N4

“Sounds like Stevie Nicks getting heavy into Kate Bush… this is pop, sure, but pop with plenty of secrets at work within each song” LA Times

“[Sarah Negahdari is] an obvious talent… let her hog the spotlight she so clearly deserves” Pitchfork

“Instantly catchy shimmering pop hooks are just what you need to get the weekend rolling” Nylon