For many people, New Year’s Eve is a way to say goodbye to the previous year and look forward to greater success to come.
For London rockers Hiroshima Hearts, the night was instead the culmination of an immensely successful year, one that saw the Forest City embrace the band like never before.
Not only were they chosen as the winners of the Free FM Made In London contest, but the band was also selected to join fellow Londoners Taylor Holden & the Law of Averages in opening for Canadian rockers Finger Eleven at the Rockin’ New Years’ Eve festivities in Victoria Park.
According to lead singer Jenn Marino, having been voted — through a contest sponsored by the London Music Office — to the New Year’s Eve event shows just how supportive the local music scene, and its fans, have been.
“We’ve had the luck all year long in 2016 that people from London have come through — friends, other bands, and our city just helping us,” she said. “We won Made In London; we won for New Year’s Eve, just with people voting for us. We’re really thankful for that. It really was probably the highlight of the year and was a great ending of what 2016 was for us, which was really great.”
Joining Marino in Hiroshima Hearts are Michael Del Vecchio (bass), John Huff (drums/vocals), Kimi Maruoka (vocals/percussion) and Tyler Turek (guitar).
Turek explained the New Year’s Eve show felt like the first opportunity the band has had to put them in front of a number of people who hadn’t seen or perhaps even heard of them before.
“They probably weren’t there just for us; I think Finger Eleven and New Year’s Eve had something to do with it,” he said. “But it was certainly a nice way to end the year on a note of knowing we’ve done well and people are willing to push us in front of thousands of people on live television.”
Marino described 2016 as “a great build,” with there having “never been a dull moment” the past two years she’s been in the band.
They released their five-song EP Bone Music in July 2016, which was recorded at EMAC Studios in London, thanks to the band’s Made in London win.
To push their new music out, the decision was made “to do some really great videos,” she said, adding the first will be for the song Four Steps Down, which was released on Jan. 11.
The band, Marino added, has “a little surprise” in store for people watching the video. “A great friend of mine was gracious enough to come do the video with us.”
Turek said he’s happy the band found Marino, who has a strong theatre and stage background all her own, and he’s happy to concede to her whatever spotlight might come his way.
Hiroshima Hearts, he said, came together five years ago “just to play some tunes, maybe play some shows.”
The members had no inkling of where this venture was headed, but the video release, he added, represents the perfect way to share the band with audiences both old and new.
“You can’t ignore the video and you can’t entirely rely entirely on the video. Rock ‘n’ roll is a lot more than heavy guitars, drums and vocals,” Turek said.
“It’s having a good time, getting people moving with some energy. The video is a piece of that much larger puzzle of what we want to do.”