Hazel English’s music sounds like her EP artwork looks: hazy, golden, grainy, romantic. It has drawn comparisons to dreamy-sounding, fuzzed-out bands such as DIIV and Pains of Being Pure at Heart. English created an online buzz with her debut EP Never Going Home last year, and has another in the works that will be released internationally through Courtney Barnett’s label, Marathon. Based in Oakland, California, English comes home this month for shows in intimate venues.
Broadsheet: What first took you to Oakland, California and what made you stay?
Hazel English: I originally moved to the Bay Area to do a study-abroad program; it was a decision based purely on intuition, just a weird gut instinct that I couldn’t shake. I didn’t know anybody there when I first arrived, and it was pretty scary, but it was easy to meet people and make friends. So many things clicked into place after that, it just made sense for me to stay.
BS: What do you miss about Australia? And what are you looking forward to doing when you're back? HE: I really miss the brunch food – I can’t wait to have an avo smash. I try to explain that to Americans and they just don’t get it. Oh and eating mangoes – so excited for that!
BS: Songwriting heroes? HE: Morrissey, Trish Keenan, Jim Morrison, Stevie Nicks, Robert Smith.
BS: What do you like to do outside of music that helps to inspire you?
HE: I really enjoy biking – it’s very calming and I tend to come up with a lot of melody ideas while I’m riding my bike. I also write poetry and often bits and pieces of that will end up in my lyrics. I enjoy making videos, too; I guess I try to tie all these things into my music somehow.
BS: Fantasy support slot – any artist, any era, anywhere? HE: Opening for Broadcast in 2000, although I would have only been 10 at the time.
Sydney Thu January 19 – The Newsagency, Enmore (sold out)
Melbourne Sat January 28 – New Lease at The Curtin (free entry)