Finn Hill, Washington. It’s not quite Los Angeles, California, but for one local band, it’s the raison d’Ítre, the root of their existence.
“Finn Hill is a little suburb in the woods, the ‘dark hidden drunk place of my adolescence’,” says Butterfly, one of the co-founding members of Finn Hill (the band) and a former resident of Finn Hill (the town).
These five friends joined up a little more than a year ago to form today’s embodiment of Finn Hill, a self-described “pop-punk” group. Venice resident, guitarist and singer Butterfly co-founded Finn Hill with drummer Alicia Williams three years ago, and were soon joined by guitarist Justin “Juice” Jones, bass player Suede, and singer Jenny Davis.
“Our music is like pop rocks for your ears, definitely kind of pop-punky, and in some of the songs there’s a ska riff, but mostly it’s just high-energy,” Butterfly says.
“We’ve been compared to the B-52s, or a girl Green Day,” Davis and Butterfly say. “It’s kind of hard to put yourself in a genre like that, obviously, but we try to be original.”
In a practice studio lit by Christmas lights, albums and music booklets cover the walls as inspiration for the band.
All of the bands (on the walls) have influenced the band in some way, like the Pixies, Nirvana, Bob Marley, Sublime, Erykah Badu, and more, say the band members, as each calls out a personal favorite.
Down the narrow corridor to the room, various other bands rent out the practice studios, and the music can fill the hallway, Finn Hill says.
“It’s really cool to rock out because there’s tons of bands here, and it’s actually really good for networking,” Davis says. “We’ve been lucky and had opportunities to perform, but I’m sure we will be able to use this networking tool to get some more exposure.”
“Another guy who has one of these rooms down the hall has a little recording studio, and he heard us all the time and liked what he heard,” Jones says. “He kept saying, ‘I can’t wait to get my hands on this!’ and really wanted to record our songs.”
Their four-song release was chosen carefully, the group says.
“We chose the songs that we felt most comfortable with and best at, and certainly we wanted a range,” Davis says.
Beneath the friendly, pop-punk exterior of the band, though, a deep sense of responsibility breeds a desire to spread messages and make a difference.
“We write about what we care about, and that’s going to come out no matter what we do,” Davis says. “We don’t want to create filler, we want people have a good time and think, too.”
Finn Hill’s next appearance will be a Mardi Gras show, Venice Rocks at Air Conditioned, Tuesday, February 5th. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. with a lineup of various local bands performing, and Finn Hill scheduled for 8 p.m.
Information, www.myspace .com/finnhill5/.