Speaking with The Heart Collectors on ‘Fever Dream’ and harmonic sound

The Heart Collectors have been creating 4-part harmonies and “epic folk” songwriting for 5 years now. We discussed their latest, Fever Dream.

The Heart Collectors caught our attention with their emotionally vulnerable return single, Fever Dream. Its soft piano balladry and lush harmonic backing had us reeling at our desks.

We were blessed to chat with the 4-piece about their journey with music, the deeper story behind the single, and future plans. Take a look.

The Heart Collectors

HAPPY: Hello Heart Collectors! Where do you find yourselves today?

THE HEART COLLECTORS: Hello! Right now, we’re at home in Northern NSW – sitting by the windows at the kitchen table and looking out over the border ranges, in the foothills of Mt Wollumbin. It’s a cold wintery day, with the possibility of snow falling in Tenterfield… so we are getting the frosty winds.

HAPPY: You guys have such a beautifully sustained and effortless sound, how long have you been playing as a group for?

THE HEART COLLECTORS: Since 2016, the driving impulse for us as a band has been to bring about the lyrical lilts and mysterious sounds of four-part harmony – which we’ve grown in our capacity to bring about over the past 5 years.

HAPPY: How would you describe your sound?

THE HEART COLLECTORS: We don’t fit the usual genres, but have been described as ‘Epic Folk’, which we’ve claimed as our brand! We have a strong influence of the Americana ’60s and ’70s, mixed with our Celtic roots.

HAPPY: Congratulations on the release of your single Fever Dream! The story behind the track is just spectacular… Kymrie, how do you feel singing a piece of work about such a challenging time in your life?

THE HEART COLLECTORS: It’s a story that I want to tell, an experience that has changed me in every way, and I feel hopeful that my journey might bring a sense of peace, like a soothing balm, to someone who is or has suffered… No matter how many times we play it, I am always taken to this same space, a place of vulnerability, a place without knowing – mindless – where everything dissolves. It’s just the feeling of being present, and as though I am being carried within spheres of sound.

HAPPY: The video for Fever Dream is also gorgeous! What inspired the beach, sunset setting? And how on earth did you get a piano to the shore? Haha

THE HEART COLLECTORS: Kymrie had the vision – it came to her during the night – we were all awoken with the text and felt the wonderment of the imagery. We didn’t have access to a sailboat… but had the headlands all around us… the rolling clouds over the dawn helped create the feeling of mystery… The piano on the beach is a whole other story… there was a white Subaru involved, helpful locals with a tow truck, and luckily we have three strong men in the band… There is a ‘making of’ video coming soon, so stay tuned! Also – the piano had been discarded, so we up-cycled it twice – once for the video, and it now lives in a record shop as a display cabinet.

HAPPY: How does the creative process typically look for The Heart Collectors?

THE HEART COLLECTORS: For our songwriting process, there are often 4 chairs facing each other in the kitchen. A melody, or progression, is brought to the circle and from that place we allow the song to evolve. It’s very organic – a natural progression and collection of words, poetry, layering of sounds – combinatorial moments as we all participate. The beautiful thing about words or melody, is it can come to you anywhere – there is an unknowability as to how it arises – we just have to be ready.

HAPPY: Despite restrictions last year, you guys managed to release an album! Tell us a bit about the highlights/challenges of Time To Say I Love You.

THE HEART COLLECTORS: We were two days off releasing the album with a 65 date tour of the USA when the news broke and Mummager made the call – we had to cancel. So, in Australia, with a brand new album in hand, we took the initial in-breath and just stopped. We didn’t know exactly how or what to do, but we knew we needed to share this music – and connect with our hearts around the world, particularly at this time… So every fortnight we released one track as a single from lock-down, keeping a global conversation going. A highlight for us was the opportunity to give something to people everywhere who needed that feeling of connection. We became comfortable with the whole new platform that has come out of 2020, Live Zoom concerts are a new way for us to share our music.

HAPPY: What are your goals for the group this year?

THE HEART COLLECTORS: We have almost finished writing our 5th album! We’re meeting with our producer this week to make some plans for studio time, and to get it recorded. Also, right now we’re looking into some exciting tour plans for the rest of 2021 and early 2022.

HAPPY: Do you have any live gigs coming up?

THE HEART COLLECTORS: End of July will see us heading Northbound for a regional tour of QLD and the Sunshine Coast.

HAPPY: Cheers guys!!

THE HEART COLLECTORS: Thanks Jazz and all at Happy, for having us and allowing us to share our story!
Cheers, The Hearts.

Watch the music video for Fever Dream below:

Interview by Jasmine Kassis