Music

Rolling Holy share their ideal B-side covers: a divine ’60s rock n’ roll balancing act

John Cotter from Sydney’s latest bohemian group Rolling Holy, has some choice A-side/B-side pairings to divulge.

The ultimate A-side/B-side pairing is heralded as being a tough but necessary talent. Imagine The Beatles’ Abbey Road A-side, without its fervent vinyl flipping contender. Since the release of their ethereal psych-pop single Now I Know, Sydney’s Rolling Holy have done the hard work for you. Like a spicy Thai dish and dry rosé or a blue steak and with a full-bodied Shiraz, they have chosen the ultimate varietal to sit with their latest tunes.

John Cotter from the band has taken us, in his own words, on a sincere musical journey. Take a peak inside the mind of a true rock n’ roll fiend and 7″ connoisseur. Covering some classic tracks from 60’s legends, Cotter explains their reason for the Gemini-joining songs.

Rolling Holy

I’m a bit of a traditionalist when it comes to music formats and have always loved the 7” single, especially where the B-Side is a well-thought-out tune which gives its A-Side a run for its money: stuff like Led Zeppelin’s Immigrant Song/Hey Hey What Can I Do or The Kinks Sunny Afternoon/I’m Not Like Everybody Else

We also do a load of covers when we jam and usually try to sneak at least one in every Rolling Holy live set for fun. When I find a song I really love, I can’t help myself but I always have to figure out how to play all the parts. Consequently, I also end up recording covers all the time.

While we’re working up to a full-length release, the idea was just to chuck in some of these covers, showcasing some deep-cuts and influences of mine, as freebies (which probably aren’t free on the digital storefronts come to think of it…).

Rolling Holy – Now I Know /  The Easybeats – Land Of Make Believe

For our latest release Now I Know, I paired it with Land Of Make Believe which is probably my favourite track from one of my all-time favourite albums; The Easybeats’ 1968 Vigil; which in itself doesn’t get anywhere near the attention it deserves as a psychedelic pop masterpiece. The whole album has great harmonies, some of the best 12 string electric guitar riffs and just goes everywhere in terms of genre. All in all, it was a huge inspiration on Now I Know and some of the tracks we’ve got coming up, and I wanted to do it as an almost ‘replica’ of the original – covering it like a performance of a classical piano piece, and then having fun with it in the mixing process.

Rolling Holy – Euphoria / The Four Tops – You Keep Running Away

For our debut Euphoria, I did a Holland-Dozier-Holland track called You Keep Running Away, which was apparently a minor hit in 1967 but has completely disappeared from most people’s memory of the Motown catalogue. It has to have one of the grooviest Jamerson bass lines I’ve ever heard and is a super hard song not to tap your foot to. Euphoria is always a track that gets people grooving at our gigs so You Keep Running Away seemed like a perfect partner to it, and something I could pay tribute to H-D-H with, albeit with octaved guitars and a bit of psychedelic flavour.

It would seem we’re sticking to the 60s for now because it’s probably the most fun for me on the production side to just do something way out-there from the reference track. But there’s a heap more half-finished covers hanging around that will surely end up on the next few singles, and hopefully escape that decade.

For the moment, it’s just about having some fun, doubling the output, and trying to give people more to listen to while we finish up recording the next thing.

Enjoy Rolling Holy’s full catalogue on Spotify here.

Their latest visceral experience for Now I Know is below: