Even at HONEYMOAN’s very first jam in their native Cape Town, it was clear they had a rare
creative spark. By the end of day one they had already produced two ready-made bangers –
the bracing guitar-driven rush of ‘</3’, and the slick down-tempo earworm ‘We’ – that were
only a taste of what was to come. That spark has now been fanned into an intense flame.
HONEYMOAN, consisting of frontwoman Alison Rachel, multi-instrumentalist Skye McInnes
who she’s known since their teenage years, and producer Josh Berry, are fast hurtling
towards the release of their debut album ‘Sorry Like You Mean It’.
It’s a record of enormous scope, from the dynamic psychedelic pop of ‘Sit Right’ to the
bracing electroclash odyssey ‘Bad News’; gritty pop-punk on ‘Sorry Like You Mean It’ to
afropop-indebted grooves on ‘Pickup, Don’t Pickup’; to a masterpiece in melancholia on
indie-tinged lead single ‘Shortcuts’. At ease in every one of the record’s myriad styles,
Alison’s lyrics delve deep into the personal.
Now based in London, HONEYMOAN’s journey to this assured point has been turbulent,
seeing the trio operate at times with members scattered across different continents, and
maintaining momentum through the coronavirus pandemic, but whatever has come their
way they’ve never lost that sense of creative freedom that was there from the start. “We’ve
always managed to maintain that energy of playing for fun,” Alison says.
Their roles in the band are balanced and well-defined. Skye works out the group’s infectious
instrumentals primarily on guitar and Alison handles vocals and lyrics, both placing emphasis
on hooks and maximum impact. Then, it’s Josh’s turn. As a producer he’s been using
HONEYMOAN to sharpen his skills to a razor’s edge and is by now a master of his craft.
Thanks to him, their songs bustle and fizz with texture – blasts of synth here, slick and
innately danceable basslines there. That said, the three are wary not to rely entirely on his
wizardry. “One thing we were very aware of with the new album was making sure that the
songs still stand up on their own. They should be able to be stripped down to just guitar and
vocals and still slap.”