Right now, CASH are the duo on the lips of every dive-dwelling Melbournian.
Taking on 2016 with their debut single Lightning Striking and only recently following it up with the bittersweet Ashes & Bones, Ash Acid and Cassie Hope are setting a blistering pace, one which their fans are heartily following.
And it’s a journey which will culminate in a debut LP, recorded with an all female team at the amazing Newmarket Studios.
In the middle of their high voltage Aussie tour, we took five with Cassie and Ash to discuss that very album, how it was recorded, and some of the awesome women they’ve been working with to create it.
What do CASH have in store for their upcoming debut album? We dive deep on the details with Ash Acid and Cassie Hope.
HAPPY: Hey, how are you going? What are you up to at the moment?
CASH: Sitting waiting for a burrito in The Valley in Brisbane! We are playing two shows at Greaser Bar and then off to play Rush Festival in Gympie!
HAPPY: You’re on tour right now. How have the audiences been treating you?
CASH: Ash Acid has a mantra to play every show like it’s your last. This is where we put our focus every show. The audiences can ebb and flow but the intensity doesn’t. Some of the highlight crowds have been in Moe at The Moe Hotel and our Sydney leg of the tour. We love when people get into it and dance, sing along and just cause a ruckus!
HAPPY: How have they been reacting to the new cut Ashes & Bones?
CASH: We have noticed lots of punters singing along since we released the bittersweet tune a few weeks back. It’s very flattering. Cassie’s lyrics “And we’re nothing, but Ashes and Bones” seems to resonate with many hearts in the crowd. It’s a striking tale of reality, death, beauty and lovers, and one that we tell every time we play. We have actually played Ashes & Bones live for quite a while so the die-hard fans have always sung along!
HAPPY: They’re two singles from your upcoming debut album, correct? What’s the progress on the record?
CASH: We released Lightning Striking last year and Ashes & Bones at the end of September. Both tracks will be on the album, however, we still have a few more singles in store for listeners before the release!
HAPPY: It was recorded at Newmarket Studios, which seems to be an on-trend space at the moment. Why did you want to record the LP there, and what was the experience like?
CASH: The decision to record at Newmarket Studios was born out of Ash Acid recording an album for a friend and working with Lilith Lane. Lilith then began popping into CASH gigs and it just seemed like a natural thing to do. Lilith is a chiller! So it was fairly easy. Ash Acid recorded her drum tracks in a few days and then we spent another four days tracking the rest. Perhaps the greatest thing to come out of the recording was when Ash Acid ordered a 22″ pizza. And then managed to get out of paying for it!
HAPPY: The two singles you have out are quite different, almost like light and shade. Is that going to be a characteristic of the album?
CASH: There is definitely a variety of moods on the album and even stylistic variations. Our intention is to write songs that people can relate to. We like hooks, pop melodies, groovy beats and strong choruses.
HAPPY: Ashes & Bones in particular is quite personal. What topics, personally, does the album confront?
CASH: Each song is essentially a documentation or a diary of personal experience, whether drawing explicitly from direct conscious experience or from sources lurking in the subconscious that have come through in the moment unknowingly. There is a cathartic release in our songwriting process and the heart of the song is often later decoded, similar to the way you may interpret your dreams. There is symbology;
Love, pain, sex, death, anger, darkness, depression, getting high, loneliness, cats…
HAPPY: Are there any songs you’ve been playing live that you’re really stoked to release?
CASH: I think many people will be relieved when Baby Go Down is released.
HAPPY: And you worked with an all female team. Can you talk through who that was?
CASH: Lilith Lane engineered the album and mixed it. We, with Lilith, produced the album and Yolanda DeRose put the bass lines down.
HAPPY: Why did you believe that was so important?
CASH: Women are still under represented in the music industry – working with an all female team that has written, performed, recorded, mixed and produced an album is rare and is a historical moment in Australian music history that should not go unnoticed. It is an announcement to the world that we are here, we are strong, capable and you can’t keep us down.
HAPPY: You’ve got to be one of the only female Aussie duos coming through the rock scene right now. How has that effected your experience? I imagine there are good and bad moments…
CASH: Sure, there are tense times. And there are euphoric experiences too. Ash Acid is up there with all the guys playing Rock, she even fills in for Venom, who used to play in Electric Mary. We have found that with Cassie developing a growl like Billy Idol that there is no real comparison between CASH and male rock duos.
HAPPY: After the immediate tour dates, you’re going to be playing alongside Jimmy Barnes at Rush Festival. I’ve gotta ask, what do you have planned for that slot?
CASH: I believe Ash Acid wants to make Jimmy Barnes wish that he had her as his drummer. Cassie will set the stage alight and leave them all drooling.
HAPPY: And after you hang up the touring boots and set the album out to the world, what’s coming up for CASH?
CASH: Overseas tour is in the works. Child adoption? More touring? Work with Dave Grohl? More touring?
Catch CASH live over the next month:
Sat 14 Oct – Rush Festival – Albert Park, Gympie – Details
Sat 11 Nov – Mr Boogie Man Bar, Abbotsford – Details