Howlite is the reincarnation of Melbourne musician and visual artist Alison Thom. The moniker alludes to a mineral, thought to bear properties that calm the wearer and release old pains. In a way the shift is also a catharsis for Thom, who unburdens herself of her name and her folk roots to delve into pop music, a darker territory of layered vocals and synthetic sounds; freed from the past to create anew.
The Reasons EP, underwent many incarnations prior to its final release, including a session with Mark Lang (Skipping Girl Vinegar) and Nick Huggins (Two Bright Lakes), at the latter's beachside studio, which set Thom down the path of using synthesiser samples and creating loop tracks. Inspiration struck with Melbourne artist and producer Michael Robinson, and the two set about creating a hybrid of sounds, taking elements from Scandinavian pop artists like The Knife and Aurora, the dreamy guitar fuzz and soft harmonies of Daughterand a homage to the grand scale drumming patterns of Florence and the Machine. The goal was to create something bittersweet – uplifting and emotional.
'The whole EP came about as a result of a huge breakdown I had in 2013,"Thom explains. 'I basically threw out all my old songs, had a huge crisis of conscience and identity and slowly began to address all the elements of my personality I was unhappy with – depression and anxieties, my behaviour in relationships, my destructive tendencies. [The EP] was born from that; the constant and seemingly inevitable choice to walk into the worst situations for me, to volunteer myself as martyr or siren – deliberately leading myself or others into danger. I wanted to make a beautiful song about being a terrible person."
For Fans Of: The Knife | Aurora | Daughter | Florence and the Machine
The 'Reasons' EP by HOWLITE is available now via digital stores.