Made up of lead singer Robbie Kingsley, bassist Andre Escobar, drummer Zach Levy, guitarist Dylan McCue and guitarist/back up vocalist Franco Solari, The Hails put out their first release earlier this year. We were able to talk to them about their EP, working with producer Bobby MacIntyre of Studio 71 and more.
You released your first EP, Impel, in July. Was there a certain sound you were going for with that release?
Robbie: Yeah, it was very simple. It was us in a room. We live tracked it until we got it right. It’s raw- it’s a great representation of us as a new band.
How would you describe your writing style?
Robbie: Our writing style is whatever it wants to be that day. If it’s me, if it’s Andre, if its Zach, or any combination of us. It can come from anyone and it can come from anywhere. It’s not a set process, it just happens
Zach: Personally, sometimes I will have a drum beat idea in my head that drives me crazy and I’ll record that. But also, on a broader spectrum, I feel like everyone brings an idea to the table and we will build on that idea and it becomes a song. There’s no one way to write a song in this band, we have a lot of good writers and it’s a very cohesive process.
What were some of your influences while writing and recording that release?
Robbie: The song West End Girls by Pet Shop Boys.
Andre: Yeah, that’s the feel, young and fun.
Zach: I would say those were the first few songs we wrote together as a band and they were honestly just the best 5 songs we’d thought we had written at that point and it was time to record them
You worked with producer Bobby MacIntyre of Studio 71 in Miami. What was that experience like?
Robbie: It was cool, his house is crazy. There’s like every musical instrument you can think of. His dog peed on Zach. But Bobby is a character- he has no rules, but you have to abide by his rules
Andre: I think he really worked with us to achieve the sound that we wanted. You could definitely tell his hands were on it and you can see that translate in to the recordings.
Being a relatively new band, what would you say is your biggest challenge?
Robbie: Giving people a reason to go to the shows. Attracting new fans to go to the shows. And that relates to attracting new fans to listen to us online. Our live shows are our greatest asset. You gotta win them over live.
Zach: Getting outreach and getting the most exposure that we can, trying to play bigger events.
As a Gainesville band, how would you describe the local scene and what are some of your favorite local bands?
Andre: It’s a melting pot we have everything here. I think its cool that Gainesville has so many different musicians of different backgrounds that bring so many different sounds. The energy of the scene is actually very accepting and supportive.
Robbie: The scene is cool. There’s no one really like us, but I like King Complex, they play around here a lot and we’re good friends.
Zach: I think we made this a cool thing for people to go to, people genuinely enjoy going to shows. I feel like most college students don’t think to go to local shows, but we’ve made this a cool thing for people to go to.
What are some of your goals for next year?
Robbie: Just landing bigger shows, putting out new music and more content, it all depends.
Andre: I guess grow our social media and reach out to more blogs. Maybe get signed and hopefully make some money. We want to get closer to doing bigger things.
Zach: To release new music and to get some music videos going for some of these songs. We want to put out a professional video of our favorite covers and just play shows as much as we
Do you have upcoming plans you can tell us about?
Andre: We are going to be recording over winter break.
Robbie: We have an event January 7th at First Magnitude Brewery.