“I love the way that music connects people. It doesn’t really matter how big or small it is, as long as I can keep doing that. That’s what I want to do.” (Richelle)
We’re setting up to interview another artist when The Balaclava Hotel is filled with a gentle, refined, lulling harmony. Richelle Boer and Matt Bourne are testing mics over quick plucks of the guitar. The soft timbre of Richelle’s voice pulls our attention away, and the chilling harmony hooks us in.
Richelle and Matt, both members of five-piece band ‘Iris’, played an acoustic cover of “Beat It” that was slow and smooth, and two originals including the incandescent “Vertigo”. The full band sways on pop indie echoes that drop in and out of folk and rock.
“[My songs] are more often about running away than about love. They’re hopeful because it’s usually me working through something and trying to come out the other end okay.” (Richelle)
Richelle grew up with a singer for a father and felt called to the stage from the very beginning. Matt picked up a guitar one day and just kept playing. Both come from different backgrounds, but the story is the same: their music is their life.
“Work hard and keep working hard. And keep showing up; show up to practice, show up to write, show up to sit there and feel like you can’t go on… and then do it again.” (Matt)
Richelle’s advice is to record your music. The pressure of putting it out there makes you question whether the music is as good as you want it to be.
“Make a good recording. Spend the time doing that so you’ve actually got something to show and to give out.” (Richelle)
The band just returned from a house concert tour in Europe, and have released a music video and the first half of their EP. Iris is currently developing the full EP, and will be performing at the Wesley Anne, Fri Aug 22, alongside Wire Bird and Velvet Archers.