“I think a lot about the very early days when we met. We were both drumming in different bands I think we were in a similar place, sort of tiptoeing into songwriting, with very modest ambitions,” Charlie Martin of the pop duo Hovvdy says. “But we were both so inspired and in meeting each other I think we realized we could lean on each other. Together we had all the pieces we needed to start a project, and it kind of immediately clicked into something that felt special and really fun. So it’s been a really sweet journey.”
Martin and Will Taylor joined forces in 2014, and as he tells American Songwriter, their collaboration since then has been sonically remarkable. The two drummers came together to form their indie/pop duad under the musical moniker Hovvdy. Just last week (October 1), Hovvdy dropped their most authentic record to date titled True Love.
“I’m proud of the new record, True Love, in that it feels like a singular breath,” Taylor says. “The lyrical content—I feel like we’re both at a place in our lives where we are a little bit more confident songwriters. [We] have a little bit more perspective about our lives and our families.”
As Hovvdy’s fourth studio record, True Love embraces a folkier sound as the two plunge into the depths of their musical abilities. Taylor also explains that their co-producer, Andrew Sarlo (Nick Hakim, Big Thief, Bon Iver), played a crucial role in pushing the Hovvdy to create a truly heartfelt collection of songs. “It’s our best songs,” Taylor plainly states about Hovvdy’s most recent album.
“We worked in a pretty small space with just like a handful of instruments. We had a couple of acoustic guitars, an upright piano, some drums, and then Sarlo and all of his toys. But the elements were pretty, pretty minimal. Just really what felt right for the songs,” Martin explains.
As far as the twelve tracks themselves, there’s not one that doesn’t swell with emotion and hopeful lyricism. The title track, in particular, stands out for its charming positivity. “‘True Love’ was the first song, where I felt a real jolt of excitement and confidence that this record was going to be another big step forward for us,” Martin says.
Also featured on the record, “Lake June,” a song that reflects on the fuzzy feelings of a relationship just beginning to form. “Around Again” encapsulates the ups and downs of a partnership and the resilience found within the fluctuation. Additionally, the steel guitar makes an appearance on “Blindsided” to finetune the track’s sweet vulnerability, and “Hope” brings in the sounds of polished chaos.
Overall, True Love is an honest, acoustic-driven album with a dozen earnest songs. “I hope that [True Love] is a ray of sunshine or like positivity for people,” Taylor concludes.
Listen to Hovvdy’s latest album, True Love, below.
Photo by Adam Alonzo