Slow Hollows’ Austin Feinstein talks collaboration & new album Bullhead

Post Author: Myles Hunt

The indie band’s new LP arrives today via Danger Collective

While winter may have some trapped indoors, that does not limit one’s ability to break free of the doldrums. Leave it to the artists to open that door with audible treats. Slow Hollows, led by Austin Feinstein, unveils his newest album Bullhead – which drops today via Danger Collective – that will usher in a bounty of tunes such as the catchy tune “Soap” for the listeners plagued with cabin fever.

A somehow odd mix of brooding pop that captivates best embodies the appeal of tracks like “Soap.” It is a strange brew of genres working in tandem that is unique in its ways. Austin’s haunting vocals keep the listener entranced while the catchy instrumentals keep him afloat. The music really pops about two and a half minutes in with an instrumental riff that is infectious. Fans will lean in and adapt to this tune, and the rest of Bullhead, with relative ease.

Austin laid bare his overall creative process and how it has tied into this latest batch of work.

Your collaborator and producer, Nicholas Noneman, has been present in much of your work. What is that process like creating together? Are there memorable moments you would like to share?

Having someone to work towards the same goal with is the best part. I trust his taste to guide me in the right direction. I sometimes default towards reserved music, and his taste lands in the opposite world. He brings energy out of me. 

Who would be a collaborator you would love to work with in the future and why?

I don’t have anyone in particular that stands out, but it’s always fun to collaborate with artists who are so proficient at their instrument that they bring a whole new perspective to what I’m working on. Olaf Selland who played lap steel on Bullhead did that. So did Sean Brennan who did the string arrangements and played cello. To answer the question, maybe collaborating with a really skilled pianist or someone who understands modular synths because I have no idea how those things work. 

What advancements have you made into your sound on Bullhead? Are there different themes that you are interested in?

I think I’ve advanced in my ability to know when an idea is worth exploring further and when something needs more work. I’ve also been careful about when to choose to work on music because being in an open headspace is hard to access. I usually sit and look at a wall for a few minutes to try and get into the headspace.  

Who is a musician that you think more people should be listening to and why?

Brutus VIII. I think of his music as a mix of genres but the end result always sounds elevated. He’s got a really good understanding of dance music and the live shows are very cathartic. 

What advice would you give green musicians just starting out in the space?

Record everything and play everyday. I do subscribe to the idea that it might take 10,000 hours to understand something. Obviously there are cases where someone’s early songs are amazing, but that’s rare. I’d also suggest writing to make sense of your life. Don’t worry about being understood. Your feelings and intentions for a song are always apparent, so being aware of the feelings you want to convey might be good advice. That’s where the charm in music comes from. You can be “amateur” but if you’re being yourself and expressing something it’s always charming. I also don’t know what I’m doing most of the time so, grain of salt.