Aoife Barry met up with Alan from Hooray For Humans to talk about being in a DIYpop band and the perception of selling out.
It’s a bit of a tradition when forming a band that you post the obligatory notice on messageboards (both real and virtual), listing your influences and looking to recruit new members. But it doesn’t always happen that just a few months after you tack your A4 note over the poster for some yoga classes, you’re being touted as one of Ireland’s best new talents. For Cork’s Hooray for Humans, the last year and a bit has been a whirlwind as they went from a fledgling idea to one of Ireland’s best loved new bands. But where did it all begin?
The genesis for H4H came when guitarist Alan decided he wanted to form a synth-pop band. With a background in heavier acts – having played with hardcore outfit My Remorse for a number of years – Hooray for Humans (named after a song by Q and Not U) was his chance to indulge himself in his other love – pop music.
Just a few weeks after nervously touting his idea on various internet forums and among friends, Alan had recruited two other similarly-minded musicians in Cork – drummer Darragh and keyboardist/vocalist Aine – and H4H was born. Just a few months after forming, they had recorded three tracks that were getting them huge attention on Myspace and beyond. After Darragh left for a spell in Mexico, the rhythm section of Cork band Waiting Room – drummer Wayne and bassist Dave – joined the fold. Since then, there has been another line up change, with both Wayne and Dave leaving at different times due to other commitments, and Galway musician Tom (of the Ghostwood Project and Only Fumes and Corpses) recruited as drummer. But despite the line-up changes, H4H forged ahead, signing to the rather fantastic Out On A Limb label. Meanwhile, Alan was immersing himself in the writing of their debut album, before the band went into the studio and recorded Safekeeping, which was released to huge critical acclaim in late October last year.