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Animal Hands

Danielle Whalebone fervently and passionately asserts that “Animal Hands, the name, just comes from the human condition. You know, we’re all animals, just doing stuff. It’s what drives us to create art. People have the hands of an animal, they make stuff, they kill each other.”

Animal Hands are a Melbourne indie-rock three-piece who are launching their debut self-titled EP this Friday at Cherry Bar. Whalebone says that she “has to keep reminding [herself] that it’s a celebration, to not freak out.” The importance of the gig is not lost on her though.

 

“We’ve been working tirelessly, it’s been full on. Juggling life, and this and all that other stuff. We know this is the big one, our biggest show yet. April 19 is an important one for us. Come to it!”

 

After only a year together, Animal Hands pulled their debut EP together, recording it at Birdhouse Studios with Lindsay Gravina. “We’re super excited to have done. It was such an amazing experience. The launch is going to be huge. We have Vinal Riot, a local stoner rock band. Also, Claws and Organs. They’re similar to us, kinda grungey, but a bit heavier.”

 

Danielle mentions that touring post-launch is definitely in Animal Hands’ future. “We know that we wanna do it, an east coast tour. We just have to figure out the budget,” she laughs. “We don’t know if we wanna do the road trip thing or just get it done quickly and fly everywhere. Money will be the big factor. If not, we just wanna get back in the studio.”

 

“I saw a Black Flag documentary that showed all these punk guys touring around and just sharing accommodation, gear, everything. People could just toured and were set up wherever they went. I think that’s the kind of thing that can happen in [Australia]. We’re starting to connect with a few bands so hopefully we can fly around and share backline. Don’t want to have to take too much gear. Maybe it even has to happen, if bands [at this level] want to survive and be able to tour.”

 

Animal Hands provide a typical, yet hardworking snapshot of the DIY indie band journey. “We chucked the songs from the EP up on triple j [Unearthed] for people to download. No presenter love yet though. It can be hard to get them [interested], but I did send Richard Kingsmill a little doll’s head.” Whalebone speaks on the triple j process without a trace of resentment. “It boggles the mind to think how many artists are out there and how many emails, how much mail they must receive. I feel like you can’t just focus on that though. It would be great but if you just try that you’ll go crazy. [Unearthed] is great but it seems like all these voices shouting out at once.”

 

Animal Hands have clearly taken their own advice and branched out from the triple j paradigm that many bands get stuck in. “Community radio has been absolutely fantastic for us. We got play in Adelaide, Nimbin, everywhere. PBS, RRR. It’s really nice to have these little pockets of support.”

 

Whalebone’s enthusiasm is infectious. “Just come to our show, buy our EP. It’s going to be awesome. We do everything ourselves. We do publicity, mailouts, we did our own film clip. Everything is DIY.” This is definitely one hard-working, dedicated, hungry band.

 

BY REI BARKER

ANIMAL HANDS’ self-titled EP launches at Cherry Bar on Friday April 19.