February 25 - March 2, 2024: Issue 615

 

ah honey 

One of the great new bands residents have had the pleasure of hearing around local venues in the past year or so is Ah Honey.

With their debut single ‘Chelsea’ out this week on March 1st, and a launch for the single happening Saturday March 9 in Chippendale, February’s focus on local groups closes with a few opening ‘notes’ from this great group of dedicated musicians.

Ah Honey are a Sydney-based indie-alt rock band that will leave you craving more. Led by Lilly on vocals, Noah on keyboards, Chieco on guitar, Matt on bass and Fin on drums, Ah Honey’s raw energy draws you in with their brilliantly smooth sound, makes you stop, look again and ask yourself 'what the?'. 

Beginning in late 2022, Ah Honey’s journey  as a group has only just begun, but they are so good you have to wonder if they were born playing music.

Ah Honey are:

Lilly Lucas on vocals, 

Noah Bloom on keyboards

Rohan Chieco on guitar

Matt Johns on bass 

Fin Hogan on drums

How did the band first form?

Matt: I met Rohan when we were both playing for HSC. We both moved to the city within a short time of each other and met up again and began playing together for a few months. A guy called Travis met Rohan on a train and introduced Rohan to Lilly as Lilly was looking for bandmates. We then met up at Rohan’s Uni and started jamming. A few more months went by and we lost a drummer and then we found Fin through Noah, but Noah wasn’t in the band as yet then. We played a couple of times and then Noah joined the band to make the group we have now.

Lilly: Matt, Rohan and I were attending AIM (The Australian Institute of Music) and then Fin came in later and then Noah.

Where does the band name come from?

Matt: it’s from a song I’d written. 

Lilly: it sounds too similar to ‘Oh, What a night’ so we made it the band name instead.

How did you choose what instrument you would play, or in Lilly’s case – the voice? 

Noah: I started playing the guitar when I was around 8 or 9; my dad got it as a Christmas present. A family friend taught me for a few years and I started playing in bands at the start of high school. I picked up the piano later.

Rohan: My dad always played guitar around the house, so there were always guitars around our home and I started teaching myself and my dad was also helping me.  I then took lessons in early high school and went through a few teachers learning what I could.

Matt: My dad used to play a lot of music in our home, but I never played an instrument until I was around 11. I started playing guitar and mostly song-wrote during high school. I joined a band but they didn’t have any more room for a guitarist so I hopped on the bass and decided I liked that. When we started Ah Honey I’d already moved into the bass and became our bass player.

Fin: I too grew up in a very musical household, my dad has been a singer and guitar player all his life. My elder brother, who is 10 years older than me, is a drummer as well. So he was always in bands and would have his bandmates over to the house and I thought it was the coolest thing ever; these dudes playing music. That inspired me to pick it up as well and I began by teaching myself and I’m pretty much self-taught although I’ve had some help and tips along the way. Having that musical experience in the family has inspired me to branch out into other musical instruments as well.

Lilly: I grew up in a musical household as well; my mum is a singer and all of my siblings are as well. For as long as I’ve known we’ve all always been performing and singing in bands. So I guess it just came naturally to me to keep progressing that, it’s always been a part of my life. 

Your music is described in a bio as ‘Mixing old school rock and roll and laid-back summer surf flare’ – is that anything to do with 1970’s pants?

Lilly (laughs): No; we wrote that a while ago and could update that. We’ve just been in the studio and recorded two songs, so the genre we’d be closer to now is more psychedelic rock than surf rock at the moment. 

Matt, his songwriting is more old school. He draws a lot of inspiration from groups like The Beatles and older iconic rock music, the same with Rohan as well, so a lot of our music draws its influences from that. We all write together and bring in our ideas, but Matt writes a lot of the melodies for our songs and we go from there – and that is probably where we get a lot of that old school sound from.

Fin: As far as the old school melodies mixed with the psychedelic rock, we are influenced by that old-school rock but we also are influenced by new-school indie bands such as Ocean Alley. So our sound is a little bit of an amalgamation of those, along with a bit of funk and soul elements as well.

Original material – you are currently working on some singles, when will they be available?

Lilly: We are releasing the first single ‘Chelsea’ on March 1st – people can sign up to presave via:


There will be a singles release with two great other acts. Details are:

Ah Honey Single Launch
Saturday 9th Mar 2024,
The Lord Gladstone Hotel (Goodspace Gallery)
115 Regent St, Chippendale

Brace yourself for an extraordinary evening of alternative rock as Ah Honey takes the stage for the debut single launch of their track, "Chelsea," hosted at the Goodspace Gallery. This event promises an immersive experience, giving the opportunity to intimately connect with the bands and their performances.

Prepare to be captivated as Ah Honey shares the spotlight with two outstanding acts, Milly Mcpherson and Maybe in May. Trust us, you won't want to miss the magic these artists are set to unleash!

Found within The Lord Gladstone Hotel, the Goodspace Gallery is a relatively new gem on the venue scene. Renowned for its dedication to showcasing emerging talent and nurturing artistic expression, this carefully curated space serves as the ideal backdrop for an unforgettable night of musical exploration. The gallery's commitment to amplifying the connection between performers and the audience ensures that this debut single launch will be nothing short of a transformative experience.

Don't just mark your calendar; clear it for Ah Honey's "Chelsea" launch at the Goodspace Gallery.

What else is coming up?

Matt: We have also been getting into the studio in the first few months of this year to rehearse, write some new stuff and focus on what’s coming up in 2024. We have the single launch coming up in early March and will be looking to do more gigs.

We are also excited we will be playing with Ocean Alley for their Wollongong show. Pre-sale tix are now on sale.


You are all studying, working, focussed on the band – a lot of hard work. What did you do for ‘time out’ over Summer?

Rohan: I think we all like to go to the beach, and get out and listen to some live music.

Fin: yeah, even if we’re not playing music together during time off we all still like playing music, whether that’s just playing an instrument around the house, that’s always part of our lives.

Lilly: Matt and Noah are going away for a bit.

Matt: I went to the Philippines for a short time over the Summer break – we were having a really big family reunion.

Noah: mum and dad have always wanted us to do a family trip to Africa, so we had a great expereince spending some time there.

What are your favourite places in Pittwater and why?

Noah: I’ll answer that on behalf of everyone. So I’d say McKay Reserve up in Palm Beach – because it’s beautiful, has a lovely outlook over the water of the estuary. You can see all of the bush as well as up and down the estuary.

Does Ah Honey have a motto or phrase it aspires to or works by?

Matt: that reaches into what our core values are.

Noah: I think one of those is we like to keep things original as much as we can.

Lilly: Noah encapsulated that. We like writing music that we find interesting – whether that is getting inspiration from other bands or writing something that it a little bit different. One thing we’re doing at present is experimenting with vocals and getting Rohan to add other harmony vocals in. We like to experiment and figure out ways we can make it better. That applies to performing live as well, we are slowly getting better at performing live – I think we hold value in experimenting, working towards how we can do it better and figuring out all of that as we go along.