Interview: With Lucas Stone From Hammers

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Photo by Daniel Ramsay.

Hammers, as described on their Facebook page: ‘Stoner Rock, Metal, Blues with an anecdotal lyric style of Country then spat in your face with the attitude of Punk!’ Ahh yep! That is pretty accurate! These guys have a sound and style of their own and that is one of the many reasons why we love them. Hammers are all talented and experienced musicians with a bond that is made clear through their music and live performances. They will blow your head off at every live show and then make you laugh your ass off when you watch their film clips. Hammers are the perfect blend of talent and good humor and to top it off, they are all just really nice guys. Shannon had a chat with guitarist Lucas Stone about their upcoming gigs, their recent EP launch tour and a whole heap more.

So how did Hammers first get together?

Well Hammers were a band before me. I used to front a band from the Coast called Helm. The boys in Hammers were mates and we used to have them as supports a fair bit. We got closer and closer over the years. I ended up doing some production; I co-wrote a song with their other line up and produced a song for them in the studio. I helped them out with a couple of shows playing bass for them because their original bassist had a baby. Fast forward a year or two and Rick started playing with them. Rick and I had a long history as mates. We lived together for a long time and he helped me look after Helm back in the earlier days until towards the end. So there was a bit of a disbanding and it kind of just happened as we were stoked at different line up. Basically it just happened by sheer accident and good timing. Things have started to happen over the last year and a half and it has been a really good time. I never really pictured playing stuff again after Helm as far as the live stuff goes. This has just fallen into place really easily and it’s been more than enjoyable and I am a little bit more relaxed about things these days. So it’s been a year and a half-ish with this current line-up. So with Rick and I as mates and Ruckas and I as musicians and mates, because he played guitar in the last line up of Helm,  we had 2 or 3 years playing music together. Leigh and I go way back as well. We have got mateships that span over 10 years. It is a great foundation to build things on. We just have a fucking ball together, sharing a heavy riff and a scream together and if the fans are vibing off it as well, you can’t ask for much more really. Bands are a marriage in more ways than one, I have got fucking five wives *laughs*

You guys just had your ‘Homeblokin’ EP launch tour in August, how did that go? Any funny stories from the tour?

All the shit we do is funny hey, we are always fucking laughing *laughs* Well we think it’s funny, don’t know if it’s funny to anybody else. The tour was really cool. We did 5 shows; we wanted to test the waters with it. Every one of them was pretty full considering it was our first tour. The response was awesome. Keen to do it again down the track.

So the next big gig for you guys is this weekend with Halloween Hysteria, how amazing is the line up?

Oh yeah, it is a slab of Aussie excellence. Heaps of bands on the bill that are mates, it is going to be a good time. The guys from Hysteria have been super supportive of us which we can’t be more appreciative of, it has been great. It’s a great festival. It has got a real authenticity about it. All the bands that have been chosen are all really well aligned.  Some bands are mates or bands we have shared the stage with or something. Seeing Hard-Ons on the bill is sick because that goes right back to my, I think I saw them back when I was a grommet at the first Big Day Out in Sydney. King Parrot, Bare Bones, there are heaps of bands, it is going to be sick.

Then you are backing that up with a Sunday gig with Totally Unicorn, how great are those guys!?

They are awesome. They are actually from my home town so it is going to be sick. They are gold.

Then after that you guys co-headline with Dirty Brew at Rock For Rain. You must be pumped for that one too?

Yeah it is going to be sick and it is obviously for a good cause as well which is always good. Yeah we are pretty lucky to be included on all these shows, we are pretty appreciative. Rock for Rain will be great, good mates, good bands. The Jubilee have been supporting some good stuff this year, it has been gold.

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Lucas and Leigh (Fish) on stage at Wallapalooza Festival earlier this year. Photo by Elizabeth Sharpe of Ummagummamumma – Live Music Photography.

Hammers are well known for your clever and funny film clips, who is the mastermind behind those?

*Laughs* Oh look, I guess we all are. I have written the last couple of general scripts and stuff. But in saying that, it’s unanimous between all our ideas that spark and stuff. I don’t think any one of us in particular is the mastermind. I think we are all pretty fucking stupid but we have like stupid conversations about different things and sometimes one of us will have an idea and the other ones will kind of run with it. As far as the film clips go, it is myself writing the scripts but then it is an amalgamation of loose ideas. It is hard to explain because again, going back to the first question with this band, same as with the music, it all seems to happen really seamlessly, I think it is just more to do with the spark between us, there is obviously dominant personalities and creative forces that come from different parts of the band. We bounce back off each other; you need that sounding board to kind of get there. Most of the stuff I have done before as a front man was pretty dark and heavy, but this band is more like me as a person as opposed to me as an artist going through some kind of weird catharsis. For us to just get together and have a laugh with these ideas, it seems almost to have more of an effect on people, people seem to dig it and we are enjoying it. It is a result of four idiots getting together and bashing heads *laughs* I would probably use the term mastermind very loosely *laughs* As one of the main song writers in the band, it is like you come up with an idea and you have to tread that line pretty carefully I think, you want to have enough seriousness in your music so it is actually a constructed song that peoples emotions or subconscious can latch onto without too much effort. But then as soon as you start flirting with humor, it can very easily take the shine off the music, so I think clever placement is probably the key with that stuff between Leigh and I working out vocal parts we start from where the music sits and what is going to work with what part. Even with the story of a song, like you might have a story that has aggressive or humorous tones to it you’ve got to place it I guess where the music is going to best carry that part and work out you know, it can be tricky, but then pull yourself straight out of that thought process and just vibe with it. It is the same kind of effect.

Who are some local bands you would like to give a plug too?

Bare Bones are doing some cool stuff. Hanny J, she plays bass with Clowns, but I watched her acoustically about two years ago and she is awesome. She is so good to watch. I just saw The Bronx and Private Function were supporting, they were fucking hilarious *laughs* There are so many amazing Aussie bands at the moment, it is endless and all different styles too you know.

What does the future hold for Hammers, are you just going to go with the flow or have you got big plans for certain things?

We are just concerned with having a good day you know, enjoying life as it comes. This little Hammers explosion has been more than surprising and unexpected. We will keep rolling with it, we are trying to make smart decisions on the way. You know, I have a fully functioning business and I work very hard and all of us do. I think the biggest and first priority for Hammers at all times is to enjoy ourselves and that is really all that matters. If we stop enjoying ourselves then shit slows down. That is what Rock And Roll is about, if you have been playing for a long time you have stages where you tend to forget that. But I think the whole ethos of this band is to maintain that first and maintain the mateship first and make sure we are all smiling and having a ball doing it and then whatever else happens is just a bonus!

Hammers are really good at making us all smile with their awesome music and their sense of humor. Make sure you catch them at their next few shows! They will be hitting the stage at Halloween Hysteria this weekend on Saturday the 27th at the Jubilee Hotel. Then you can catch them at Miami Shark Bar on Sunday the 28th with Totally Unicorn and Plastick. November 17th is Rock For Rain at the Jubilee Hotel with Dirty Brew and an awesome line up of hard rocking bands.

Follow Hammers on Facebook HERE.

Get your tickets for Halloween Hysteria HERE. 

Get your tickets for Rock For Rain HERE. 

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