“a lush eruption of cinematic passion and heavy-hearted emotion” – Atwood Magazine
“blistering guitar riffs and howling vocals filled with raw, boundless energy” – Earmilk
“poised to cement their cult-classic status” – Life Without Andy
“They put the new in new wave on this striking debut” – NME Australia
“Johnny Hunter stand out from the pack” – Newcastle Herald
**** “Want is everything Johnny Hunter could have hoped to achieve” – The AU Review
“A mighty tune, expertly rendered and delivered with heart” – The Guardian
“so exciting and modern” – Vive Le Rock!
Kings of Sydney’s underground Johnny Hunter have today released their triumphant debut album Want via Cooking Vinyl Australia. Led by an emphatic music video for the title-track, Want comes ahead of the band embarking on a 9-date national album tour throughout July.
Rousing blood-pumper ‘Want‘ is a thunderous opening to the album, walloping with insurmountable force. From the outset, the title-track introduces Johnny Hunter as defiant and determined; frontman Nick Hutt shares “it’s a spearheaded promise to ourselves to be the best version we can be. With this song, our self-assured affirmation acts as a hardened fist to the whirlwind of challenges that life throws at us. ‘Want’ is Johnny Hunter incarnate.”
Despite the spirited nature of Johnny Hunter and their confident charisma, it’s the moments of furious honesty and deep catharsis where the strength of Want shines most brightly. Songs like ‘Cry Like A Man’ and ‘Clover’ hear Hutt bare his soul, with each soaring vocal adding another dimension to this six-piece who are destroying the boundaries of man-hood with their powerful vulnerability and proud embrace of self.
Hutt notes “As we were finishing the record, we had just gotten out of lockdown and were certain that we were staring down the barrel of another couple of months in isolation… so there’s an element of structured desperation across the ten tracks.” This raw humanity underscores the entire album; Johnny Hunter are self-aware enough to acknowledge that we are all human and need to embrace our whole selves on the journey to self-actualisation. ‘The Floor’ is an acceptance of our lowest points, while ‘Fracture’ finds the beauty in sadness. “No matter how different we may seem…unbeknownst to what it is we want… we have all been naive, we have all strived to find our version of life, we all fear change, fear sadness, all amidst our own collective fading eternity.” However they are equally fuelled by a grit and hunger that drives them to take on the world, its changes and its conflicts head on – expressed with absolute inviniciblity and naivety on ‘Endless Days’.
On bringing their cinematic soundscapes to life, Hutt adds “Being able to involve our producer Jack Moffitt (The Preatures) into the creative process ensured we could squeeze the best out of every song. Our relationship really drove the direction of the final production and helped to finesse the lyrics. We also teamed up with critically acclaimed producer Adam Greenspan (IDLES, Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, Yeah Yeah Yeahs) to mix the album, and working with him opened our production so much more than we ever imagined.”
Since emerging from the shadows of Sydney’s grim nightlife in 2019, Johnny Hunter have quickly risen to cult favourites, selling out rooms across Australia’s East Coast and winning audiences over supporting the likes of Jack White and The Saboteurs, City Calm Down and Polish Club to name a few. Their debut EP Early Trauma (2020) garnered critical praise and airplay around the country, citing influences and drawing comparisons to The Smiths, Joy Division and The Cure. Though their sound is rooted in nostalgia, their impassioned songwriting and explosive live shows are undeniably made for now.
Friday 1 July – Vinnies Dive, Gold Coast
Saturday 2 July – The Brightside, Brisbane
Thursday 7 July – The Gal, Newcastle
Friday 8 July – Oxford Art Factory, Sydney
Saturday 9 July – Uni Bar, Wollongong
Friday 15 July – Jive, Adelaide
Saturday 16 July – The Evelyn Hotel, Melbourne
Saturday 23 July – The Sewing Room, Perth
Friday 29 July – Republic Bar, Hobart