For songwriter Harrison Storm, this year has been incredibly fruitful. Emerging from his local scene of Wollongong with his stunning Change It All EP, Storm has landed on the radars of international industry, riding the successes of signing with Nettwerk Records at the beginning of 2017. Add to that a new management deal with ie:music that has put Storm in the same ranks as Passenger and Robbie Williams, and it’s safe to say that this songwriter has been going from strength to strength.
When it has come to the Change It All EP, there are some great moments of writing skill on display, as Storm delves into the personal in producing some soaring vocals, heartfelt lyrics and gorgeous musical arrangement. Below, he takes us through the making of each song.
CHANGE IT ALL
During the middle of last year, I was busking in Melbourne a few times a week with my drummer, Jared. I had a Volcano Choir CD floating around in my car, and would listen to it on the journey from the coast to the city. There was one song on the CD in particular that I loved, “Comrade”. It has this really simple guitar riff that I couldn’t get out of my head and I began to kind of obsess over it.
Inspired by this, I started mucking around on the guitar and looped a few riffs I’d written with my guitar in an open tuning. One of the riffs was the start of “Change It All” and I just kept developing the song over a few weeks, trying to turn the vocal melodies into something that I liked. I worked on the lyrics a fair bit once the melodies were down and started to really like where it was heading. Jumping in the studio with Hayden Calnin a few years after I recorded my first EP with him, was super special. This track sort of signalled the start of the new chapter in my musical life and got my really excited for things to come.
MEET ME THERE
I ended up writing a few songs with this loop pedal that I bought last year. It was a fun way to sit back while the loop ran a riff and just focus on singing without having to play the guitar. “Meet Me There” was one of a handful of tracks I wrote this way. I’d just started recording “Change It All” with Hayden and one day in the studio I showed him a snippet from a voice memo I’d recorded of “Meet Me There”. He dug it, so we decided to have a go at recording it. We came out with a demo of the track in a day, with me playing some terrible snare drum on it. I took the demo home and worked on the verses a bit more and really took a liking to where the song was going.
The song is a snapshot of where I was at that time being in a long distance relationship. I’d have these afternoons where I’d be writing and just kind of daydream of what the relationship would be like if we could see each other then and there. I felt like there was huge amounts of time waiting to see each other and that formed the basis for the mood of this song.
OLD AND GREY
I feel a bit sorry for this song. It was supposed to go on my first EP, but I really didn’t have the money and it just didn’t happen in the end. It’s been gathering dust for a while now. But I am glad it got to see the light of day because it does mean a lot to me and I always wanted to record it. This one’s always a favourite of mine to play live with my band mate Ruby Whiting singing the harmonies. She’s got an amazing voice and really gives this song a lot of life, both performing it live and on this recording. Having my good mate Justin Lewis lay down some of his guitar work on this track was particularly special as well. He is a such a talented guitarist and some of the sounds he creates give any track a unique atmosphere.
“Dreams” is one of those songs that took a while to get off the ground. I had a fully finished and mastered version of this track ready for release last year, but canned it last minute.
I really wanted to breathe some new life into it and teamed up with Joel Quartermain, who took the reigns to help rewrite some sections and produce the song.
Working with Joel was a really awesome experience. He has a real knack for getting the most out of performances in the studio. Seeing my drummer Jared Hatton and bass player Xander Theofanis, being pushed in such a creative way, kind of forced me to step up when it came to laying down my vocals.
The song was written during a time when I was starting to head in a new direction in my personal life. So having Joel steer the track with his creative input, lead the song to a place where I felt really proud to be. Being able to finally share this one with the world was a great feeling.
HARRISON STORM TOUR DATES
Supporting Josh Pyke
November 23rd | Ramsgate Hotel, HENLEY BEACH SA
November 24th | Norwood Live, NORWOOD SA
November 30th | Mt Pleasant Tavern, MACKAY
December 1st | Dalrymple Tavern, TOWNSVILLE
December 2nd | Tanks Arts Centre, CAIRNS
December 8th | Sooki Lounge, BELGRAVE
December 9th | Karova Lounge, BALLARAT
December 10th | Theatre Royal, CASTLEMAINE
December 7th | The Workers Club, MELBOURNE
December 14th | The Milk Factory, BRISBANE
December 16th | Brighton Up Bar, SYDNEY
For more information about Harrison Storm, visit his website at www.HarrisonStorm.com.