I was sad to hear that Hello Moon are splitting up after they release their next EP. It’s called An Elephant Pining and, over the course of six songs, displays everything that I liked about the band – it’s so carefree, so happy and infectious. Sadly it’s not being released on CD or record, but rather 50 T-shirts will be made up with the EP artwork screen-printed by killertees.ie from Galway. The idea, the band says, is you buy a T-shirt for €10 and you also get the download code for the EP. So they’re calling it a limited edition t-shirt/download package. An Elephant Pining is released on Any Other City Records on May 31. You can stream the EP below and after the jump is an interview with the bassist, Alan. He tells us why the band are saying Goodbye Moon, why they have no regrets and why the EP has nothing to do with elephants.

Why have you decided to call a day on Hello Moon? Was it a tough decision?
Eamon is moving to Canada and it wouldn’t be Hello Moon without him. Some people have asked me would we not get someone in to take his place but that wasn’t something Amanda, Al or I even considered so in that way it wasn’t a tough decision but we are all pretty sad about it.

With Eamon moving away, does that just mean this is more of a hiatus so? That if and when he comes back Hello Moon might get back together? I know of a couple bands who still put out music even with another member in another country. Did you ever consider that?
I know what you mean. Everything we’ve ever done though has been absolutely and entirely a band effort. A couple of times we’ve sent on music ideas, guitar or keyboard parts to each other by email but nothing came of them. For us nothing works better than being in the same room, fleshing songs out, playing off each other and for me that’s also the most fun part of being in a band. This just seems like a fitting ending point. We all really really loved being in Hello Moon but this leaves us free to be able to put all our time and effort in to whatever we go on to do from here.

What is each member planning to do next?
I’ve no idea. I can’t imagine not playing music so I’m sure the four of us will find ourselves involved in some new project or other.

Are you pleased with what you’ve accomplished? What are you most proud of achieving? You’re not leaving with a feeling of ‘what if’?
When we first started all we wanted to do was hang out and write and record music that we liked, for ourselves. We had no goals or anything so we’re definitely proud of what we’ve done since. Our album, when it came out, went down really well (Only Count The Sunny Hours, stream above), we got to play with some great bands like Teenage Fanclub and Lower Dens, played lots of fun shows and made lots of friends. We’ve had so many lovely experiences.

hello moon

Do you think it’s good to start out with no goals, like Hello Moon did? Or do you think it might have been better to have gone in with a list of things that you want to check off?
Yeah I don’t think we were ever going to make a living out of it or anything so it worked out fine for us. All the opportunities that came our way, like having one of our songs (‘New Day’) feature in a movie (Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World), came our way on the merit of our songs alone… well that’s not entirely true. James from Any Other City championed us and worked his socks off to promote us and help us. Maybe he had a list.

Tell me about the new EP? The title is rather unique…
Yeah, it’s called An Elephant Pining. Six songs and we’re releasing it through Any Other City Records on May 31. It was recorded mainly over the winter of 2012. The drums were recorded by Ian McNulty in Charthouse Recording Studio in a day and then we recorded the rest ourselves in Eamon’s apartment. We like to work that way where we can just head over after work/college, just the four of us and there’s no pressure, no time constraints. We had the song ‘Elephant Pining’ before we settled on the name for the EP. It’s supposed to mean like a massive pining or yearning for something. Nothing to do with elephants exactly.

It sounds like it’s been a broadly positive experience for you all. Is there anything you regret or wish you hadn’t done?
No not really. Anything bad, we’ve learned from. A couple of occasions I’ve forgotten some peoples’ names. For that I apologies!

What do you think of the music industry in Ireland? Do you pay much attention to any of it, trying to play the game? What Irish bands are you enjoying at the moment?
We always felt pretty detached from any music industry. There’s so much good independent stuff to enjoy though and some of them excite me as much as some of the big names from overseas and they’re all doing it on the tiniest of budgets and on sheer enthusiasm. Some of my favourite shows I’ve seen in the last couple of years have been in the smallest venues for not much more than a fiver. And I suppose because everyone is working on a shoestring all the bands try to help each other out with whatever’s needed like a loan of equipment or a bed for the night etc. I ♥ The Monster Hero and The Former Soviet Republic are two examples and we’re looking forward to having them play with us on May 31 in Anseo.

Hello Moon launch the An Elephant Pining EP in Anseo, Dublin, on May 31, with support from I ♥ The Monster Hero and The Former Soviet Republic. More on that event here.

Hello Moon 31st May 2013