HANDS LIKE HOUSES are:
Matty P | Cooper | Joel Tyrrell | Trenton Todd Woodley | Alex Pearson
“It’s always really resonated with me, that idea that it’s a pretty lonely existence if we hang by ourselves, that there’s a certain kind of music that comes from colliding with other ideas and other people,” says Hands Like Houses vocalist Trenton Woodley. “Even if your natural impulse, like mine, is to be away from people, life is only meaningful because of those collisions.”
The concept of collisions, partnered with resolve, heavily informs Hands Like Houses’ forthcoming self-titled EP. Laying bare the journey that took place penning the release, the band take listeners on a deep-dive into the EP’s whirlwind writing and recording process – scars and all.
Unlike their acclaimed 2018 album -Anon. – created over weeks of cruisy LA writing sessions – Trenton explains that the new EP’s creation took place over a tightly-condensed 10 day period, cooped up in a house together where “we basically stepped out of our bedroom and into the recording environment”. This unorthodox recording session would ultimately squeeze out their most raw and uninhibited body of work to date.
“The songs all capture that particular moment in time,” Trenton explains. “There were a lot of stresses to begin with, we went in with the best of intentions but there were a lot of things that just weren’t ideal about the circumstance for all of us, we hadn’t had that time in a room together to just iron things out and get on the same page.
“We really had to put ourselves through the ringer while in recording so we could figure out collectively what we wanted the EP to be and what would make it feel purposeful, artistic and substantial in the end.”
Musically, the Hands Like Houses EP takes everything the group has become known for over their 10+ years of recording, pulses it together and births their next step forward – a gritty, bold and rock-fuelled effort that is undoubtedly their most refined to date. A true vessel for who they are as individuals and a group at this stage of their lives.
Trenton elaborates that he in particular experienced a rejuvenation in his writing style, embodying a new level of self-awareness and vulnerability in his lyrics that he hadn’t reached before. “I was always walking a fine line between vulnerability and ambiguity, I tend not to write about specific situations because then I feel like I’m immortalising a temporary moment, especially when it comes to personal things,” he says.
“But from day one, my lyrics have very much been about being misunderstood, I feel like my frame of mind can sometimes be a mystery to other people and that can cause a lot of conflicts for me. It sucks and it can be really hard to deal with, so I think a lot of this is internal dialogue for me on trying to create a space where I am able to come to terms with that.”
Communication and expression round out the major threads throughout the EP, from the artwork – an ode to AUSLAN interpreters who have been thrust into the media spotlight through extensive bushfire and COVID coverage – to the tense recording environment, to Trenton’s openness about his interpersonal journey.
The first radio single is the bombastic and gritty ‘Dangerous’, a track Trenton adds was a hard one to pen. “It’s about feeling pretty dangerous and really being afraid of exploding…almost like a tension bottling up and thinking ‘get out of my way’,” he says. “I think it’s similar to a song like ‘Monster’ from the last album, like it wasn’t forced, but I feel like I needed to put on a certain ‘voice’ to make it happen and reconcile with the new tone I was projecting.” He finishes, “It all comes back to allowing yourself to embrace those collisions more…and accepting that you can’t just go through the world invisibly.”
HANDS LIKE HOUSES are:
Trenton Todd Woodley