Seven-piece band The Pinheads look like an eclectic mix of hipsters from the Illawarra’s north, but on closer inspection you discover these bunch of 20-somethings have a successful enterprise.
Their long-awaited debut self-titled album is to be released May 12 with a national headline tour to match, though the group already has a lot to be proud of.
“A fair bit of our music gets used in surf videos,” theremin player Chris Zanko said.
“Red Bull used one of songs recently … and different surf companies like Billabong and stuff like that.”
Their connections come from pro-surfers who have played in bands they’ve toured with over years, while their drummer James Kates is a smooth network in himself.
Kates is a professional bodyboarder as well as a surf photographer and has shot some big names.
“A lot of our audience comes from the surf culture. So it kind of helps when we play coastal towns, like people have seen us or heard our music through surf videos,” Zanko said.
Not bad for a band who “accidentally” formed in 2013, after sharing a love of cheap bowling and musical tastes.
Each got hold of what they refer to as “an assortment of shitty instruments and strange recording equipment”.
Their songs resemble fast-paced surf rock from the 1960s, all written and recorded over several years inside an old shed (possibly a retired horse stable) in Stanwell Park.
It follows on from their EP I Wanna Be A Girl and numerous tour support slots, such as for Hockey Dad, Drunk Mums, Skeggs and Tumbleweed.
Zanko said they their second album shouldn’t take as long as the first as they’ve already spent time recording demo’s for new songs.
The group were visiting his grandma’s place in Victoria’s Yarra Valley in between shows, so booked in some time at an old studio in Warburton.
The Pinheads are just one of several Illawarra bands soaring to new heights that also signed to the locally owned Farmer & The Owl label.
Stanwell Park singer-songwriter Bec Sandridge has had a stellar couple of years after winning a spot to perform at the Yours and Owls festival in 2015.
While Windang surf-pop duo Hockey Dad have been in the United States recently, recording in Seattle in the same studio once graced by Nirvana and the Foo Fighters.
The Pinheads play UOW Unibar, Saturday July 8. Tickets $12 plus booking fee, for more information visit: www.moshtix.com.au
The Pinheads are: brothers Jez and Luke Player, Al Webster, Tanya Avanus, Tex Crick, Chris Zanko and James Kates.