The group known as the Hollywood Horses spend most of their free time drinking champagne, eating strawberries, and trying on clothes in their favorite consignment shop. Sometimes, they buy the best outfits of the day.
When they’re all out of fabulous games to play, the band spends the rest of its hours writing precious melodies and rocking harder than most. The Horses have kind of a chip on their shoulder about it all. Something to prove.
Actually, the Birmingham, Alabama-based glitter-grunge rockers already have proven a lot. Last year alone, they released their “Funny Sexy Cool” album and took home the grand prize at the Sidewalk Film Fest Music Video Contest for “Heavy Rubber Gloves.”
Their song “Girl” also won the 2017 John Lennon Songwriting Contest.
PW recently caught up with Breely Flower (drums, vocals) and Andrew Hollywood (guitar, synth, vocals), who, along with bassist Michael Hollywood (relax, they’re stage names), make up The Hollywood Horses to talk about their music and their April 5 performance at Pharmacy (it’s still on the schedule as of press time, but check with the venue closer to the show), which also will include local comedians Gregg Gethard and Jason Sims, as well as local bands Johnny Petunia and Sheena & Thee Nosebleeds.
Talk a little about how the band came together and how the name Hollywood Horses came about.
Andrew Hollywood: We’ve been playing together for years. Everyone was in bands of considerably less talent and character. Fortunately, we all met at various shows, abandoned those sinking ships, and here we are.
Breely Flower: And after going through literally 18 other bass players, we knew Michael was special.
AH: The name Hollywood Horses came about because it’s the first thing that came off the top of my head when I was thinking of a band name that sounded the way we need to sound. Hollywood = sexy, Horse = powerful. Horses = plural, ‘cuz there are three of us.
BF: I take all the credit for that one.
Your sound has been described as “glitter grunge” and “a mix of power-pop, glam, alt-rock.” Is that accurate? How would you describe your sound and its influences?
BF: Yes, we wear glitter.
AH: If that’s what someone says about us, then it must be true. We just make music. What everyone says and thinks about it is out of our hands. A wise person might say that it’s none of my business what you think of me. And that wise person would be right, like most wise people always are. Our influences are bands that also kick ass. Look good, sing some melodies, rock ass.
BF: Yes, we’ve been compared to the Breeders, Nirvana, T. Rex, Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine, the White Stripes, Joan Jett, the Replacements, Patty Smith, the Muffs, Best, and … Rush? Huh? And many more that I can’t remember, but I would rather know one thing. Don’t tell me what it sounds like but, “IS IT GOOD?” “DO YA LIKE WHAT YA HEAR?” Tell me, babies.
You’re in the midst of a tour that will take you to more than 20 cities in less than a month. How is life on the road these days? Is it difficult to keep a high energy level after days and days on the road?
AH: We love touring. Eight to 100 shows a year is usually more fun than work. We tour to play shows in places where we don’t live. This is a fun thing. New cities, new venues, new faces, same old beer. That should be enough to keep the energy up. You should ask my van though. It just passed 280,000 miles. Hang on, I will ask my van if it’s difficult to keep the energy up.
BF: Life on the road consists of a few things only. How many half jars of peanut butter can I not eat? It also consists of me making peanut butter sandwich bagels for Andrew while he steers the ship.
AH: With banana.
BF: As long as we’re all laughing together, my energy levels stay high. Humor is essential. We’re laughing at everything.
“In five years, maybe we’ll be so big that the Philadelphia Daily or even Manayunk Monthly will want to interview us. Then, I’ll write the Worst American Novel. BTW, New Jersey sucks!”– Andrew Hollywood of the band The Hollywood Horses
AH: Not me.
BF: Our sanity is dependent on how many Bucee’s and Wawa’s we can yell at in between cities. We will all need therapy at some point for sure.
AH: Yes. My van says that 280,000 miles is a long way and the thought of going on tour for another month makes it tired already. Do you know what gets my energy level slumping? Booking 100 shows a year. Hey, somebody take over booking duties for me and help us play shows that make big $$$.
What can your fans expect to see April 5 at your Philly show? What’s the Hollywood Horses’ stage show look like?
AH: They can expect to see us rocking ass and looking like the three sexiest pieces of meat this side of the Jersey Turnpike, at least for 30 minutes. I’m looking forward to some good laughs from comedians Gregg Gethard and Pennyslvania’s newest Philadelphian, Jason Sims. They will also see, and maybe even hear, music from two other locals, Petunia and Sheena & Thee Nosebleeds. I hope that people at the show also see other people at the show. That would be good for everyone. Especially us and Pharmacy.
What does the future hold for you? Where do you want to be in a year or five years?
AH: Well, I assume the person that is going to take over booking big $$$ shows for us is reading this article right now. Hello, person. Thank you for reading the Philadelphia Weekly interview with the Hollywood Horses. Within a year, I hope there will be an article in the PW where I’m talking about how great it is to have more time to work on music, Tae-Bo, and memorizing every episode of the Simpsons and X-Files now that we have someone booking big $$$ shows for us. In five years, maybe we’ll be so big that the Philadelphia Daily or even Manayunk Monthly will want to interview us. Then, I’ll write the Worst American Novel. BTW, New Jersey sucks!
BF: Is this a job interview?
The Hollywood Horses | Sunday, April 5 at Pharmacy, 1300 S. 18th St. thepharmacyphilly.org