Experimenting with a fusion of different sounds, dub-roots band, Mar Haze are at the forefront of a booming influx of up and coming artists in Sydney. Comprising of old-time mates, Chris, Dean, Kane and Jarin, they incorporate aspects of soul and R&B into their dub-groove, with their latest EP Mar Haze taking a new turn in their writing style.
We chat to the lads from Mar Haze about their latest EP, where it all began for them, and the intriguing ways that they mix things up on tour. Ayla Dhyani writes.
You’re on tour at the moment, how has that been so far?
Chris: Yeah, really good. Good response.
What’s been the best show so far?
Chris: Probably the Captain Cook Hotel. It was a really good turn out and everyone really got into the music.
You lads ran a competition where a band member had to wear a speedo at your Port Macquarie show. How did that go down?
Dean: (Laughs) yeah, it was a good idea. The bass player, Chris thought it up and then he was the lucky winner of the whole competition. Shot himself in the foot.
Chris: It was going fine until one of the forty-year-old ladies in the front thought it was some sort of interactive stripper show. She got a bit hands on and security had to get involved (laughs). Everyone knows there’s no touching.
You just dropped the Mar Haze EP, how has the response been so far?
Chris: Yeah, it’s been really good. We’ve been selling them at shows and there have been a couple of orders in shops as well. The new track is now sitting at number 10 on the roots charts of triple J Unearthed, and we’ve just been getting a lot of positive feedback so far.
Jarin: There was nice little review with The Music magazine as well, with nice comments from them, which is always good.
How was the experience working with producer, Ian Pritchett for the project?
Jarin: We get along really well with him. We joke around a fair bit in the studio, and he really slots in with us, so it’s quite easy working with him. But he’s also got a world of knowledge behind him when it comes to producing and getting the right sound.
Where did it all begin for you guys? How did you originally get together?
Kane: We met at Uni. Chris, Dean and Kane met at Uni and started playing together just because we were mates. We had an old drummer, which fell through a couple of years ago and I knew Jarin from primary school and just contacted him. He slotted in at the right spot as he just finished up with another band at the time. It changed our sound a lot too. A new drummer and a new approach to things. He’s really good with writing and has a good input on things, so it’s really worked out for the best.
Was the choice of genre a fairly organic progression for each of you?
Dean: Yeah, it’s pretty much a mixture of all the things that we listen to. It just comes together when we write stuff. It’s hard to put a defined genre on it. It’s a bit of roots, dub, rock, a bit of everything in there.
Who would you say has musically influenced you the most?
Chris: We all really have different influences, which is what we bring together when we’re writing. We all have different ideas of music. Reggae and roots mostly, but also artists like Red Hot Chilli Peppers and heaps of different styles.
Any other projects in the works?
Jarin: Yeah, just trying to get this EP heard at the moment. We’ve got a Saturday off in between shows up North and usually when we’re up North we tend to lock ourselves away and have a bit of a write, so that might happen while we’re up there.
How do you find the writing process between the four of you?
Dean: Usually we’d do it all together. Everyone knows their parts and it’s easier to work together. Sometimes we do write separately, but this EP has pretty much been all together. It’s good because when we’re all together we can straight-up say whether we like something or dislike something, so we don’t waste any time on something that we don’t agree on.
And you all get along fairly well? How has it been on tour together?
Kane: Yeah, we all get along well.
Jaren: Gets a bit cramped in the car sometimes. Dean gets a bit agitated about two hours into the drive. Goes a bit cabin-crazy.
Chris: Redbull and a cigarette and he’s alright.
What moves you?
Chris: I guess getting out of the city and travelling and playing music. I always really look forward to the weekend.
Dean: It’s a good chance to escape reality and get away. We can go surfing and hang out with all our mates. It’s always great meeting new people.