Hailmary released their debut album, Choice Path Consequence Solution, back in late 2012. The Perth band didn’t want to wait too much longer to put out another release and support its new material on the road. Hence the dual EPs lined up for this year.
“The plan for 2014 was – and is – to release an album’s worth of material over two EPs,” explains vocalist Kevin Curran. “The first being Navigate The Sunrise, which we released in May and have been touring across May and June, and we’ll kick off work in the studio on the second EP in July.
“Our schedule for 2014 was really tight and as such we wouldn’t have had the time to record once again in the States. So, given our drummer Vas [Shevstov] had recently built a studio at his house – aptly named Vasectomy Studio – we thought we’d give the engineering side a go this time around. It was certainly trial and error, but we are stoked with the result.”
Given some of the songs on Choice Path Consequence Solution are at this point several years old, the opportunity to perform fresh material is a must for any touring band. That’s certainly how Curran sees it.
“I feel they are a step above the songs on the last record,” he says. “Certainly we have a clear ‘Hailmary’ sound now, and there is no doubt they are super fun to play live. They are a fair bit grittier and have been received really well.”
Navigate The Sunrise was co-produced by Curran and Shevstov alongside famed US producer Jeff Tomei (Jerry Cantrell, The Smashing Pumpkins, Skid Row), who is by now a long-time Hailmary mentor and collaborator.
“This is the third release that Jeff has worked with us on now, so we have infinite trust in Jeff and the part that he plays in the Hailmary sound,” says Curran. “It’s very much a team effort in delivering the final product – despite being located in two countries, the process worked really well.”
With bassist Nairn McKay having left the band before the recording, Karnivool’s Jon Stockman stepped into the studio to help out.
“It waspretty amazing, to be honest, and he certainly blew our minds in the studio,” Curran says. “Jon is a super nice guy and it was really awesome to have him play on this EP. His bass is like another arm in the way he plays, and he really brought some awesome stuff to this record.”
Melbourne bassist Mick Quee from Dead City Ruins stepped into the bass boots for the tour, and it sounds like a good fit.
“He’s a killer player and has bought such a strong dynamic to the band, both onstage and off,” says Curran. “He’s a funny bugger. He’s road-hardened after multiple tours through Europe with his own band, and we’ve really enjoyed playing with him.”
In between those studio dates for the next EP, Hailmary head back east for some shows at the end of this month. Later in the year they’ll do another lap of the country, with Europe beckoning afterwards. In the meantime, it’s all about finishing off the national Navigate The Sunrise tour.
“It’sbeen amazing,” Curran says. “14 shows done so far across five states and we just finished the Victorian leg on a massive high, with our best show of the tour at the Rock N Load Festival at The Espy. The energy and support that has been coming from the punters has blown us away.”