Happy Abandon: A Band for Everyone
Images by : Kristen Abigail Collective
Combining genres is common in the modern world of songwriting, but very few bands successfully blur the boundaries so well that it is nearly impossible to comfortably label them.
Meet Happy Abandon. A four-piece indie dream from Chapel Hill, NC, their five-song EP, entitled Heavy Lines, is so well composed, you’d expect the band to have been together for decades. Although they formed in early-2015, Happy Abandon’s resume is quite impressive thanks to their touring record. The guys have been on an 18-date tour of the Southeast and Midwest, including six showcases at SXSW 2016!
“It was absolute madness in the best possible way,” remembered frontman Peter Vance. “We played six shows in four days, and when we weren’t playing, we were seeing and hanging out with bands that we were listening to while on the road between tour stops, like Mothers, And The Kids, Girlpool, Diet Cig, and more.”
Various social media accounts state their influences include Death Cab For Cutie, Alt-J, Queen, and Bon Iver, but as soon as you hit play on Heavy Lines, I think you’ll agree that there is no one word to describe their sound; I mean this in the best way possible. I can hear various influences from the bands listed above, as well as some not listed, but songs like “Love, Like Language” and “Heavy Lines” leave me simultaneously confused and obsessed. I want so badly to give Happy Abandon a genre but it’s just not possible!
Currently, the four piece is working on their first full-length album, as well as gearing up for a busy fall tour. Prior to the creation of their next release, the band went out on an 18-show tour and learned just what it means to be a band.
“Our tour to SXSW and back was an amazing experience for all of us; none of us had ever toured through Atlanta, New Orleans, Austin, Nashville, and most of the other cities before in any of our previous bands,” said Vance. “It was the longest independent tour any of us had ever been on. Every show was a success, both from an attendance standpoint and from how well the other bands fit with us musically and as friends. We made new fans and friends, got some great hometown press for going to SXSW, and after a few days home we couldn’t wait to go back out again.”
As they get down to business in the studio, Vance claims that the writing and recording process feels like anything but work. Happy Abandon is currently recording with Brett Scott, a former bandmate of bass player Justin Ellis. Scott and the band have been friends since the start of Happy Abandon, so “recording with him… [feels like] just five dudes making noise and having a good time.”
According to Vance, Scott has pushed the guys outside of their comfort zones and perhaps expanded their working knowledge of the recording process. With “crazy guitar pedals, amp combinations, recording a harmonium with two players at the same time, [and] recording a real piano as well as a synth orchestra,” Happy Abandon’s unreal sound is about to redefine what you know about music and genres.
It’s bands like these that keep me on my toes when it comes to the NC music scene. Although the Tarheel state has an abundant and diverse music scene, Happy Abandon will happily fit in and stand out wherever they go!
Check out their current dates here.