Have you ever tried understand the trippy effects of drugs without ever having to take them? Well, Austin-based psych-dub trio Holiday Mountain, comprised of Laura Patiño (vox/synth), Zander Kagle (drums/electronic percussion), and Bradley Will (synth/bass/vox), is like going into a candy store as a kid, and being given the chance to try an unlimited amount of colorful flavors…and experiencing the sugar rush that follows. For non-drug users, listening to them/watching them perform, is what I imagine tripping out would be like. The band’s general attitude is like David Bowie and Lady Gaga’s younger cousin, who just happens to be hyper all the time, encouraging fans to be themselves.
The band recently collaborated with Grammy-nominated producer CJ Eriksson to help blend genres on their forthcoming EP, You Be You, Pt. 1. Laura Patiño sat down to answer some questions about the new EP, touring, and the band’s crazy, cool style:
Laura Patiño: Hieeee! I’m pumped to be cyber chatting with ya’ll and I’m feeling in the zone as we’ve had a lot of exciting, but hard work to do recently.
LP: There have been a broad range of responses, but a frequently occurring comment is that our music makes people feel like they are tripping on psychedelics, except they get to stay sober!
LP: My favorite song is “Get Really Freaky,” as it was written about a couple different strong females in my life, and it continually inspires me to think about the strength they found in their personal relationships. We will also be debuting a music video for this song in the near future as well.
LP: I love the marathon amounts of time: spending a solid ten hours in the recording studio allows me to go deeper into my mind and creativity than I could otherwise. Usually, after five hours, I feel tired and unpleasantly sassy, but then I turn a mental corner, and I just feel giddy, and my inner child comes out to play! It’s pretty tough/unenjoyable to leave this fantasy world once you’re in.
LP: It has evolved in the time we’ve been writing together, but what’s been working most effectively for us recently is for our drummer Zander to email us a beat, and from there I drive around in my car listening to the beat and I’ll think of vocal hooks, verses, raps, or whatever comes naturally. After I lay down a rough vocal track, Brad finds his synth parts and/or bass lines. From there, we basically have the track and it allows us time to creatively digest an idea in whatever way/time of day works best for us individually.
LP: It was super fun! It was pretty low maintenance for us- it mostly just required us spazing out in front of a green screen!
LP: Our manager, Aaron Brown with Onion Creek Productions, had the concept; he was inspired by visual hallucination videos on YouTube and we already had a song about motion sickness so it was an easy fit.
LP: Yah we love to play shows!! Usually Zander stays up late working on a beat in Ableton out of necessity to not lose his mind, and then I work on the idea once I wake up in the morning. I think Brad usually finds his inspiration at night. We can usually get a song demo’d in a day or two.
LP: We want our listeners to feel excited, motivated to express themselves, and above all we want them to dance hard!
LP: I love playing “Feelin’ It” live; there are mega levels of sass in this song and the chorus groove is pretty inspired by bounce music like Big Freedia. It’s always awesome to see how people choose to dance to this one!
LP: My mom got me into classical piano when I was five years old, along with choirs and plays, and all that, so I really owe a lot to her for always seeing potential in me.
LP: All of us in the band completely love Major Lazer and really anything Diplo does. His understanding of sound and production is so next level and aspirational. All his sounds just have a huge a$$!
PS: When looking at the current music scene, do you think social media is helping or hindering artists?
LP: We love you, and we can’t wait to group hug so many new friends this May and June on our two-month US tour in support of our new EP, You Be You Pt.1, out April 28th!! Keep shining, being weird, and scaring squares!