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The Hollows

The Hollows: Contemporary Music’s Roots Rock Solution
by E.J. Judge
June 28th, 2012

A common consensus amongst those who grew up listening to the likes of Bob Dylan, The Band and Neil Young is that today’s music lacks the talent and soul those artists brought to folk and roots rock. A revival of sorts has begun, courtesy of artists like Mumford and Sons and the Avett Brothers.

The Hollows is New York City’s contribution to the revival, joining several talented multi-instrumentalists who combine great songwriting with an energetic live show.

The band’s beginnings can be traced to Hope College in Michigan, where Erik Saxvik (Illinois), Dave Paarlberg (New Jersey), Jeff Kurtze (Indiana) and Daniel “DK” Kwiatkowski (Michigan) were theater majors. They all took individual paths which led each of them to New York City, where after meeting up with Rob Morrison (North Carolina via Boston), they began working together, though, considering their scholastic pasts, not how one would imagine.

“Instead of forming a theater company, we started playing music together,” says Erik.

The band would later find native New Yorker Justin Aaronson through an ad on Craigslist (a legitimate one!), and The Hollows would be complete.

Though the band draws influence from artists like Bob Dylan, The Band, Neil Young and Creedence Clearwater Revival, the decision to make folk/folk rock music wasn’t calculated. It was just matter of moving in a direction that felt natural.

“When we started making music together, it just seemed natural to want to do something that we were all passionate about,” says Rob.

“I think it also happened by virtue of the instrumentation,” adds Dave, referring to the fact that many members of the band have the ability to play multiple instruments, like the mandolin and banjo. “I think that lends itself to more of a folk/folk rock element.”

The Hollows incorporate that talent into their live show. Depending on the song, members will pick up different instruments or fill in for others.

“It keeps the audience on their toes,” says Rob. “It [our show] never feels stagnant, and we’re a very lively bunch on stage anyway.”

That energy was on display when The Hollows performed at Brooklyn Bowl Tuesday night (June 26). The band drew a crowd unmatched by the bands that followed and inspired the entire audience to drop their inhibitions and dance along with them while they played.

Tuesday also marked the release of The Hollows’ new self-titled EP, featuring their newest single “August.”

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