ABOVE: HINDS IN NEW YORK, MARCH 2015. PHOTO BY KATE OWEN.
“Is everything loud enough? If we turned everything up louder, would this place explode?” For the Madrid-based quartet, Hinds, these questions are essential, as their energy and music alone could fill a room to capacity.
If it hadn’t been for the couple of Red Bulls we caught them drinking before their first headlining show in New York, we would never have known the four girls of the low-fi, garage rock band hadn’t slept in well over 24 hours. There were no signs of fatigue onstage as Carlotta Cosials, Amber Grimberge, Ade Martin, and Ana Garcia Perrote brought their exuberant personalities and summery melodies to Manhatttan’s Mercury Lounge, where their heroes, The Strokes, played their first show 15 years ago.
Barely able to make it through a full song without laughing, Hinds’ live show brings with it a sense of unadulterated joy. The onstage relationship between the four girls is infectious, making it nearly impossible not to shake your hips to the opening bass riff of “Bamboo,” sing along with the “oohs” of “Trippy Gum,” or start a mosh pit during the chorus of “Castigadas en el Granero” when Garcia Perrote and Cosials trade vocals à la Pete Doherty and Carl Barât of the Libertines.
Hinds was originally a duo, formed in 2011 by Garcia Perrote and Cosials, named Deers. But after threats of legal action by a band of a similar name at the end of 2014, they changed their name to the word for female deers, Hinds. Although it seems like they’ve been at it for a long time, Hinds remained inactive for a year and a half, only adding Grimberge and Martin to the mix last year.
Now, almost a year after the Spanish quartet posted “Bamboo” and “Trippy Gum” to Bandcamp, Hinds is starting to gain international recognition. We caught up with singer and guitarist Garcia Perrote, in the midst of their hectic, beer-soaked first-ever American tour.
BASED: Madrid, Spain
CURRENTLY LOCATED: A van in Santa Ana en route to San Diego, California
ENGLISH AS A SECOND LANGUAGE: When we started the band, Carlotta and I used to do covers since we didn’t know how to write our own songs. We did covers of music in English, so when we first started to jam and tried to write songs, it just came that way. We used to cover “Rich Girls” from the Virgins, “It Ain’t Me” by Bob Dylan, and some Beatles songs. Just two nights ago, in San Francisco, we played “When It Comes to You” by the Dead Ghosts. It’s harder and easier [to write lyrics in English opposed to Spanish] at the same time. It’s harder because we obviously don’t know all of the words we know in Spanish, but we have a dictionary that we use to translate everything to find words that fit the feeling we want to write about. On the other side, it’s easier because we don’t feel that embarrassed since my mom really doesn’t get what I’m saying! [laughs]
16 SHOWS IN FIVE DAYS AT SXSW: We didn’t eat. We didn’t sleep. We didn’t shower. We ran everywhere while we were drunk all of the time. [SXSW] was seriously so, so crazy and exhausting. Having coffee and Red Bull and not feeling anything, but then going on stage felt really good. I can’t think of anything that went really wrong. I don’t know how we stayed alive!
NO PRIVACY: When you have a public life, you don’t really show everything. Even when we’re posting something [online], we still have hidden language and hidden jokes. We’re all best friends and we don’t speak to the media as we should; we really say whatever we think and whatever we want, even if we know no one will get it. This is the longest tour we’ve ever done but we always spend one week per month in Madrid with our friends and family. We really think it’s important not to lose our privacy, but I don’t miss [my life before Hinds]. We don’t get stopped on the street in Madrid yet!
READY TO IMPRESS: Everything came in the opposite way, as it usually does. We released the first singles, “Bamboo” and “Trippy Gum,” but then, while we rehearsed for our first gig, we already had been featured in NME and had 3,000 plays. Our first gig was in Madrid and we had labels flying from London to see us; we had press at our first gig and we were so nervous! We couldn’t sleep and were shaking. Our first gig in London was our fourth gig ever, and we opened for the Libertines for show number 20. We’re used to it now, always having important people or someone we have to impress each night.
BEST FRIENDS: I don’t know how much fun it would be if it weren’t exactly the four members we’re at now. We know how to treat each other and we know the good things and bad things, especially the faces: the “don’t-talk-to-me face,” the “I’m-super-happy face,” the “I-need-to-shout face,” the “I’m-going-to-puke face,” or the “I’m-sleepy face.” We’re so happy and shocked to be where we are and to have friends all around the world who want to drink with you is amazing. When I go home before the others, I feel bad because I’m not seeing everything that I could.
FEMALE HEROES: When Carlotta and I started the band, we were surrounded by friends in bands, but they were all boys. All close examples of musicians around us were boys. When we started the band and playing covers, we would spend a lot of time on YouTube looking for girl bands to model ourselves after, but we couldn’t find any that made me think, “I wish I was her.” We only had this with boys. I think that’s why we said, “I am going to mix everything and be my own model.”
NEW ALBUM: We’re recording it after this tour in April and we hope it’ll come out after the summer, in October or November. We wish it wasn’t a winter album, because I think the sound is not very wintery…
TOP FIVE RECORDS: Room on Fire, The Strokes; 2, Mac DeMarco; Sleep Talk, Shannon and the Clams; The White Album, The Beatles; Zaba, Glass Animals.
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