Surprise success


They’re the young Kiwi musos who can’t quite believe their own success.

Dunedin rockers Hot Donnas bring their psychedelic fusion rock vibes to Queenstown’s Yonder tomorrow for their first ever gig in the resort.

It’s part of their ‘Melt Ya Face’ tour, which singer and guitarist Jacob Sydney King reckons is a pretty good description of their live shows.

The four-person band, also featuring drummer George McLauchlan, bassist Gene

Mace and guitarist Mitchell Sizemore, got together at the start of last year.

The four uni students were introduced by mutual friends, and quickly started playing lots of music together.

Fast-forward to the start of 2018 and the band were part of the line-up at the infamous Otago Orientation Week Toga Party at Forsyth Barr Stadium, playing to thousands of new students.

“We were like fish out of water,” Sydney King says.

“It was an unreal opportunity to play on a big stage, we had a really, really good time, we’re really, really lucky.

“We got to party with the newcomers to Dunedin, it was mean.”

The rockers are currently working on their sophomore record, a follow-up to last year’s debut, Greek Yoghurt.

The title track has close to 100,000 hits on Spotify, but Sydney King says the band’s hoping to showcase a slightly different sound on their next effort.

“It’s way more rockier, we’re trying to bring that energy into our shows.”

The band members all have varied backgrounds and influences, he says, although he credits Arctic Monkeys and The Strokes as his own.

Sydney King says they’re looking forward to playing in Queenstown for the first time, but a morning flight to Wellington the next day has left a question mark beside any plans to check out the resort’s nightlife.

But, he says, “we’re not good at making good decisions”.

Tour antics aside, the long-term future of the band is vague but bright, according to Sydney King.

“It’s one of those things we didn’t really plan. We’re breaking our own expectations of what we thought was possible.

“We all love the music, that’s where the passion is.

“We just want to play.”