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Interview With Nathan Ro of Lonehill Estate

I hope Billy is feeling alright after interviewing a band member whose bandmates are down with the flu (Rings CDC). Well he is well because he did give us this interview to listen to and we got to do other stuff (I digress)

LoneHill Estate is not the name of some suburban housing development but of a 4 man musical band with 5 albums!!!  Yes they’ve got 5 albums. a very creative and dynamic musical group and Billy takes them back to the beginning and how their sound has been influenced over time. A really engaging and entertaining piece as usual from Billy,  have fun.

The Interview

Billy (Audioinferno): Thanks a lot of making out time to talk to me today Nathan. How have you and the guys been?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Lately we have been horrible. It’s our winter so some of us have been sick with Flu. We also had a terrible show on Friday… the kind that makes you rethink all your life choices. *laughs*
But I suppose we are still blessed to be doing what we love so I guess our worst day is better than one else’s best.

Billy (Audioinferno): I’m so sorry about that. I hope you all recover soon.

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Thanks. I’m currently drinking vegetable juice to get some vitamins and it’s pretty gross. *chuckles*

Billy (Audioinferno): Cool. I think I speak for everyone when I say we need you in the best shape.

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Getting there.

Billy (Audioinferno): This is the first anyone from Audioinferno is speaking to you guys. Can you tell me a bit about the history of the band?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Sure. We formed back in 2005 just after I placed second in a reality TV show called Project Fame. I won a record deal with Sony BMG and I decided to record with the band. We only hit our stride in 2010 however with the single Gangstar. Just after then followed with four numbers namely: Technoband, The Green Pocket, Daans and Look Good. We are a fun rock band that hopefully, you can dance to.

Billy (Audioinferno): That sounds awesome. I’ve listened to a Techno Band and Daans and the electronic elements are very evident in your style of music. How would you describe your sound though?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): We used to call it Neon Rock. But it’s changed over the years. We have a DJ who is part of the band now called Kharmatronix. He brings a very progressive and tropical house element to the music. If you listen to a song called Always Come Together you will also hear some funk influences. We love music that makes people feel good regardless of the genre. But, I guess we are a rock band with EDM influences

Billy (Audioinferno): It’s a very interesting amalgamation of styles.

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): The more amalgamation the better

Billy (Audioinferno): The first song I heard was “The Green Pocket” and I was absolutely in love with it. It was alternative rock but it has an electronic ambient feel to it. How many releases do you have so far?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Thank you so much. That song is one of our slightly more serious songs. We have three albums out. All are so different they could be different bands. The last one (with Green Pocket on it) is definitely the most “us”. That is why it is self-titled.

The Green Pocket is allegorically about a separation in a relationship and the separation of mankind and nature. The Green Pocket implies a homely place that is lost.

Billy (Audioinferno): That explanation makes me love the song a lot more.  What are the names of the other two albums and when were they released?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): In 2005, we released one called Take It All and in 2008, we had one called Hong Kong Dollar. The self-titled album came out in 2012. So we are LOOOOONG overdue for a new one.

Billy (Audioinferno): I was just about to say that. Although you dropped “Drive” about two years ago. What are the plans for a new album?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): We drop odd songs all the time. *laughs* Well we really want to see what happens with the collaboration with Kharmatronix. He is bringing a fresh sound to our writing. We are just finding our FUN

Billy (Audioinferno): I’m excited about that. Let’s talk about the South African scene for a bit. How has the response from the people been all these years?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Where do I start? *pauses*

Just over a year ago, it was tough for rock bands to get any type of radio play. Then the government said that all SABC stations had to play 90% local content. I think it’s been easier since then. I’ve discovered new, amazing bands like Opposite The Other, The Sweet Resistance, Al Bair, December Streets, Monark and a host of others because of it.

Of course, we haven’t had much luck in the radio play department in that time. But we will try harder. *chuckles*

Billy (Audioinferno): Okay then. Would you say that Rock music is in a comfortable place right now in SA?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): I don’t think it’s as big as it should be when compared to the EDM and hip hop genres… but there is definitely a following and radio is slowly starting to realise that. If by comfortable you mean a rock musician can afford comfy clothes and a comfy car then no. *laughs*

Billy (Audioinferno): *chuckles* So things definitely need to get better.

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Things can always get better. Another problem we have had is venues. Very few venues that play Rock music and this a problem. Most people get their fix on YouTube…

Billy (Audioinferno): I get that. We have some of these challenges and more over here as well.  Are you familiar with the rock scene in other parts of Africa?

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Not really to be honest. But I am really excited that there is one. I was excited to hear about you guys because if there is media covering bands from all over Africa then that means the genre is growing!

I have heard a few bands though. Some from Nigeria, Zimbabwe and Tanzania.

Billy (Audioinferno): It is growing. Slowly but surely. We hope in time we become the vehicle that connects them all.

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): We surprisingly cut off from the rest of the continent down hear in South Africa. But let me not make too many excuses, I need to be more woke. *chuckles*

Billy (Audioinferno): Yeah, you do need to be more woke. *laughs* Thanks for talking to me again, Nathan. I had a great time.

Nathan (Lonehill Estate): Awesome thanks so much for getting in touch Billy.

Billy Praise

Engineer, Quintessential Hippie, Writer, Pianist, Art Enthusiast. (If I talk about it, I'm probably about it)

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