Not long ago Bored Housewives Club dropped their debut EP Iti, a collective of lo-fi, punky folk. It’s DIY music at its most charming; raw, whimsical and of course, recorded between both band members’ bedrooms.
To find out a little more about the release and the two musicians behind it, we asked members Aaron Pyke and Alayne Dick to interview one another.
New Zealand’s Bored Housewives Club are made up of Aaron Pyke and Alayne Dick. They are best friends who do everything together, so it only made sense that they interview each other to celebrate their new EP Iti.
ALAYNE: So Aaron tell me about how you are a cool band guy?
AARON: Well, I’m not sure if you’ve heard of music but I’m good at it.
AARON: I mean not technically good at it, like I’m not jazz good. But I think I can write good lyrics.
ALAYNE: Yeah I say you’ve got some good heart and that comes across in your words.
AARON: Yeah sometimes they’re earnest, which is something we struggle with in New Zealand.
ALAYNE: We do.
AARON: But it’s something I think I can get away with because then it’s not earnest.
ALAYNE: Because it’s ironic, because it’s in a song. Because that’s removed from the actual feeling and processing and growing as a human.
ALAYNE: Yeah I hate that. I mean I’m so glad we have music to do that for us.
ALAYNE: I think it’s fair to say that 90% of our friendship is communicated through structured comedy, or music. Would you agree?
AARON: I would say very rarely do I hang out with you in a non-structured comedy or music way, and you’re the person who I spend most of my time with.
ALAYNE: : Yeah I would say that’s the basis of our friendship is like, we don’t want the each other to leave each other. So we just keep making another project together and another project together.
Aaron and Alayne met making a theatre project. Then fell in friend love so made more theatre, a podcast, and hopefully a movie together.
AARON: Alayne, I’m going to fire a question at you.
ALAYNE: Fire it right at my face.
AARON: How did you become a cool music girl? Because initially you were a cool film girl, and a cool theatre girl, cool writer girl.
ALAYNE: Hey thanks, well I learnt the drums for – I’m so sorry – another band. I don’t want to cause conflict in this interview from the get go.
AARON: I’ve been in other bands.
ALAYNE: Yeah I know.
ALAYNE: And I’m comfortable with that and I feel okay, because you know what? We’re in our late twenties, we’ve got baggage. We’re not going to be each other’s first band. Because it’s 2018 and it’s cool that we’ve got some experience with other people. So we can grow from that and maybe create something beautiful together. There’s no need to get hung up on each other’s past.
AARON: And now you look at another band and you’re like ‘woah, they got a keyboardist’, that’s cool.
ALAYNE: Or they got a bassist. That must be nice.
AARON: But we’ve been in other bands and we know.
ALAYNE: The grass isn’t always greener. So I started playing for this other band and then decided to get good to impress you, because you are really good at guitar. I’m going to throw that right back at you. Tell me how you got into music.
AARON: I was a very pretentious child. I think it all started when, I don’t want to brag, but my parents split up.
ALAYNE: I’m so jealous.
AARON: Then Dad brought this old car for his partner. Some Japanese imports because their radio frequencies are different, they only go up to like 90FM. So the only radio station it could pick up was this student radio station in Hamilton.
ALAYNE: So you were straight into student culture as a child.
AARON: Yeah I was six years old and very pretentious.
ALAYNE: What was your pretentious favourite band as a child?
AARON: Probably Ministry.
ALAYNE: I don’t even know what that is.
AARON: This intense, dark, industrial, metal.
ALAYNE: So when I was six I was probably listening to the Pokémon soundtrack cassette tape and the Fleetwood Mac tape my parents had, and you were listening to post-industrial wank shit?
ALAYNE: But in a beautiful way.
AARON: Speaking of Pokémon, I really really liked it, but I couldn’t let on to my friends that I liked it and I was too pretentious for it as a child. I secretly had a Gameboy and Pokémon Red.
ALAYNE: Secretly! Like most kids would be like, ‘fuck yeah I have a Gameboy’. I’m going to show it off. But you’re like ‘I can’t let anyone know about this, as far as they know I tell the time with a sundial’. I get my music on the wind. Okay, so when did you start writing songs?
AARON: Third form [Year 9] and we had a really cool music teacher who encouraged us to write songs. And I wrote one. I had been listening to At The Drive In a lot. Who are a cooler version of Rage Against The Machine, my brother liked Rage so I had to be next level.
It was when George Bush was in power, Iraq War, my Aunty had convinced me 9/11 was an inside job. It was very politically charged. Very cringeworthy. I want to talk Alayne’s teen years though.
ALAYNE: I was not cool. I did not really even know music. I did ballet.
AARON: There’s music in ballet I assume.
ALAYNE: There’s classical music. I did think it was very cool to listen to, in my Discman, the songs I was dancing for my Irish dancing production and thinking it was cool to listen to on the way to school. But I did dabble in the mainstream teen stuff, like Green Day, Blink 182, Simple Plan. Nothing cool.
Then I met my first, cool, pretentious, guy, best friend, Martin Sagadin (who directed the video for our second single Personfriend, along with videos for Aldous Harding, indi, and Marlon Williams) and he introduced me to things like post-rock and stuff. But we’ve all been there, in our own person cringe.
AARON: I was just lucky, I grew up on a farm, so didn’t have the internet. So all of my cringe is locked away in my mum’s house.
ALAYNE: So tell me about our EP, tell me about the song choices and how you wrote them.
AARON: So yeah, the EP is all my stuff, but from now on it will be a collective effort. But I just had songs lying around. So track by track.
ALAYNE: Okay so there are three songs. You have to summarise them in one sentence
AARON: Personfriend is about modern romance and how you can’t tell the person you like, you like them.
ALAYNE: So true, they will end it immediately.
AARON: Cafe Art is about this time, we didn’t do full on banging, but I stayed at their house and tried to play it off as nothing. Much like cafe art, it means nothing. If you’re ever in the cafe Whispers in the New Zealand town of Levin, it’s full of the worst art.
ALAYNE: On record?
AARON: On record. Great food, great service, but terrible art. Zooey Deschanel, um, I was listening to a podcast called high expectations and they were talking about manic pixie dream girls and I just, yeah, it was probably like the least personal one for me. So I was like, yeah, wrote a song.
ALAYNE: It’s a great song.
ALAYNE: Very clever lyrics, you’re very witty, um, you’re very…
AARON: Hey, takes one to know one.
ALAYNE: Hey, right back at you.
ALAYNE: That was a cheeky lil’ burp you just did.
AARON: It was.
ALAYNE: You don’t have to hide it, this isn’t a-
ALAYNE: You can burp away, we’re best friends. Aaron, I know you burp.
AARON: No! I’m a boy, I have no bodily functions.
ALAYNE: So, we haven’t toured yet as a band, but we have toured a comedy show, and we learnt, on that trip, that we both wear Old Spice deodorant and we take the same antidepressants. If we were to go on a cool rock star tour, what do you think we would learn about ourselves?
AARON: Um, I think, you would learn that… I’m a terrible travel companion and you would start a solo project.
ALAYNE: Aww, no!
AARON: Where you just play the drums with like, the sound of a vacuum cleaner through lots of effect pedals, and you would play two songs and then halfway through the second song would stop playing and then go “You fuckin’ can’t hear it!” and storm off, but you’d storm off the wrong way and so you’d be stuck in the toilets for the rest of the concert ‘cause you’re too embarrassed to leave through the real door.
ALAYNE: Why, why are you painting such a bleak future for me? You like started so complimentary…
AARON: I just, I started and then I just remembered the only time I’ve seen a solo drummer and that’s what happened.
ALAYNE: Haha wow. I think… that we would really learn that we actually can’t just communicate via jokes, and that, in some point in the future we’ll have to have a genuine heart to heart about our lives.
AARON: Yeah, I might cry in front of you.
ALAYNE: That’s cool, you might learn that I also cry. Oh wait, you’ve already seen that haha.
AARON: I’ve already seen it.
ALAYNE: You’ve already seen it.
AARON: I’ve got one up on you.
ALAYNE: You’re winning! Congratulations. So Aaron, you’re devastatingly competitive about being pretentious. Sometimes I think you hate popular bands for no reason.
AARON: Yeah, I just, do you ever get like, I know you’re an only child…
ALAYNE: I am an only child, thank you for bringing that up.
AARON: And so I’ve got this, like, because my brother was into something, I couldn’t be into it. I don’t know what the only child equivalent is?
ALAYNE: Um, the only child equivalent is, uh, you never have anyone to compare yourself to, so you don’t develop any sort of personality.
AARON: Cool. So yeah, I couldn’t like Rage Against The Machine because he liked them… Ok, so I’m gonna talk about, Blenheim [Alayne’s hometown].
AARON: What does it mean?
ALAYNE: Um, well the nickname for Blenheim was Beavertown.
Interview stops for a hot minute while Aaron composes himself.
ALAYNE: … Because it would always flood. And that’s still pretty much the vibe of Blenheim. But uh, not literally, I think they built a dam or something?
AARON: Classic Beavertown move.
ALAYNE: And yeah, it was fine. It was a weird place to be as a sad gay, because um, because did you know that homosexuality and depression don’t exist in small towns?
AARON: I’m gonna, I’m gonna raise you one and say there’s no depression in New Zealand.
The two eat to novelty size Zombie Chews that Aaron kindly bought for a snack.
ALAYNE: So, you know, there’s some really weird music out there. I don’t know what your weirdest gig you’ve been to is but mine was that I went to a Fine Arts party, it was in an abandoned building, it started with people in Mariachi masks scaling the building. And then there was this performance artist and her performance was dancing with small boats and then cutting her hair. And then there was this noise band and they were so abrasive that literally everyone just left the party.
AARON: Aw, I went to a similar… uh it was at a Wellington place called Heavy Metal Party Club Oi, and then this band played and everyone left because for some reason their guitarist didn’t turn up? So they were just a drummer and two bass players playing different things. And I was talking to one of the bass players and he was like “Yeah it was a real good gig, I think there were only like three people left at the end”.
ALAYNE: Wow, well I hope when we do gigs there’s more than three people left at the end.
AARON: Yeah, or our goal isn’t to make people leave.
ALAYNE: Yeah cool.
Iti is out now.