“What makes us different is that we always try to make each song we create different and original with lyrics and sound. We want our songs to have meaning and texture, we want to set ourselves apart by taking people on a trip with our youth. This album we’re releasing is called, “The Day Moon,” because whenever it’s broad day, or before sunset, there’s a day moon that’s just so beautiful; that acts as a beauty mark in the sky. The vibes you get are too surreal sometimes.”
A passion that acts as a canvas, we sat down with Nicholas Bodenstadt of The Howlies to talk about the ambitions and idea behind San Diego’s latest “psychedelic surf rock” band.
The group is complied of Alec Castor on bass, Caden Hooker on keyboard, Seth Farr on drums, Nicholas Bodenstadt with lead vocals and lead guitar, and his twin brother Andrew Bodenstadt on rhythm guitar. First thing’s first, I had to ask how they came up with their name, one that’s not only iconic, but memorable. Nicholas responded with, “The Howlies name is the Hawaiian term for white people, but it came up after every time we jammed, we would howl like wolves.”
“We always have been good childhood friends and we all have a thrill for music,” Nicholas tells us in the interview. “Our good friend Nolan Grahm was in a band called ‘The Meadows,’ and he inspired us to start one of our own.” Today The Howlies are frequent performers alongside The Meadows, but it took a lot of hard work to get to that point. I’ve talked to many individuals that have expressed interest in creating a band and playing music in the local scene, but when asked why they don’t, it’s usually because they think that they’re not good enough. The Howlies are a perfect example on why this isn’t a valid excuse, no one starts out amazing, you have to work hard and have a real interest in what you do. “I remember that our first jam session was ass,” Nick exclaimed, “Seth didn’t know what to do at all as well as myself and Andrew. That didn’t discourage us, even though we totally sucked… We started to practice everyday and eventually got better and better. We landed our first gig at the Chè Cafè April 6th and it was so sick to know how far we have come.” Personally, I can second that, it is actually amazing to see a band progress and grow as a team, and I can’t wait to watch this group evolve even more than they already have in this short amount of time.
As stated above, the members describe their sound as “psychedelic surf rock,” which is the best way possible to phrase it. The moment I saw a photo from their first show, the vibes given off were purely… well, psychedelic. It’s hard to explain, but the chill, laid-back music style and persona they carry is infectious as well as captivating.
“We want people to visually see our music as a wave of fresh music splashing into our audiences faces as they become fully emerged in it.”
The passion that these boys posses clearly shines through, this was apparent as I was interviewing Nick about the band and their upcoming album. They take things to a personal level, a place most are hesitant to share with others, and that’s something to be respected and admired. “We play music because it’s a way to paint our imagination and express ourselves,” says Nick. “The Howlies is almost like our child, and we really enjoy what we do, as we can do anything we chose with it, there are no limits. Music is our passion.”
A passion for what you do is not something that can be faked or imitated, it’s a genuine feeling that surrounds the musician and the music. It’s what sets others apart, makes you feel, and effects a mass of people on a personal level. I think that that’s what The Howlies have in abundance, and it’s what helps fuel their drive to grow and share their sound. You can expect to find their music online soon, but until then, keep an eye out for one of their shows if you’re in the San Diego area!
Article by Kyla Rain
Photographs Provided by The Howlies