INTERVIEW: Hunting Game | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image by Johnny Haynes

When a band cites influences as varied as Deftones, Barry White, Mastodon, Jamie Cullum, Foals and Funkadelic, you know you’re in for a dynamic ride. Hunting Game are an incredibly ambitious four-piece, from the pain-staking attention to detail in their intricately structured songs, right down to building their own practice space. Featuring brothers Josh and Jake Callon (vocals/guitar and drums respectively), Ryan Barnes (guitar) and Marc Burn (bass), Hunting Game first emerged in 2015 with the release of a two track demo La Caza, keeping a relatively low profile while practicing and recording. Now the band are gearing up to release four consecutive singles (recorded with Chris McManus at Blank Studios) beginning with the striking Opaque, interestingly shunning the usual format of releasing an EP with all tracks available at once.

“We planned to release the four singles consecutively as we feel all four tracks shine on their own and they all need the spotlight they deserve individually,” explains Callon. “If we were to release an EP I feel it would be judged more as one whole package – we have been writing and improving our sound so much recently, to show it in the most appropriate way is to give each song its own space.”

Our use of dynamics and ambience is 100% necessary to our sound

For a band so young, the consideration behind their writing process is quite phenomenal. Clearly all heavily influenced by music from a very young age (“the classic cliché of guitars lying around the house due to musical family members would be an appropriate anecdote here” explains Callon), Hunting Game fall under the ‘alt’ umbrella, though there’s much more at play here than just riffs (though there are plenty of them present). “We try to keep our music pleasurable to listen to, tight, in key, with nice perfect cadences and hook lines. Our use of dynamics and ambience is 100% necessary to our sound. We have a pretty guitar driven sound with somewhat R‘n’B-style drums a lot of the time, but then we could go into a quiet verse that is more respective to jazz and pop. Every single song is structured around dynamics, even down to which chords sound most powerful when being really lashed out.”

The result of this attention to detail is indeed four tracks which shine individually whilst demonstrating Hunting Game’s musical chops. Opener and first single Opaque lures the listener in with chiming chords before launching into a powerful, guitar heavy chorus, Callon’s passionate vocal providing anthemic force. Fumbling and Naïve harnesses pop sensibilities to give it a euphoric quality, while Translucid is the most angsty, rhythmically driven of the singles, packing its punch in the last 40 seconds with a confident wall of sound and urgent vocals. Absolute State Of Calm is, as explained by Callon, the main example of the influence of jazz in Hunting Game’s music, utilising “complex jazz chords throughout the song, increasing volume and intensity until it reaches an untamed ending section.”

It’s no stretch of the imagination to presume that if Hunting Game continue along the same path they could be destined for great things. So what does Callon believe the future holds? “Continuous growth, maturity in our music and a headline stadium tour with 1D.”

Hunting Game release Opaque on 27th May.

 

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