ALEXANDER BISLEY chats with trombonist Joe Lindsay and drummer Paul Hoskins of The Eggs, Wellington’s funk and boogaloo supergroup made up of members from a mix of bands, including Fat Freddy’s Drop, Twinset, The Recloose Live Band, and Phoenix Foundation.

*   *   *

THE EGGS was born when top Wellington bar the Matterhorn needed a party band after renovation. Let’s get that question out of the way: “There has been some criticism of the “Wellington sound”? What’s your response?” “Tell me who’s been dissin’ us and I’ll give them the bash. I hate player haters! I especially hate player hater congratulators! Eggs’ trombonist Joe Lindsay jokes. “To be honest I’m still not really sure what the “Wellington sound” is. I don’t really think that any of the Wellington bands that have come to national prominence sound much alike at all.” The guy has a point. Drummer Paul Hoskins, another wildly energetic, committed performer, agrees. “It’s pretty easy to point out what you think is wrong with something, but it’s a complete waste of time. Start your own band and play what you love, that’s all anyone round here ever did.”

Lindsay, also a member of the scorching good Fat Freddy’s Drop, says both groups have a propensity for extended jams. “We share two members and the idea that the audience would prefer to shake their collective asses for longer than the 3.5 minute format usually allows. Don’t you find that by the time you really get your groove on the song finishes?”

There are four blood brothers in the Wellington nine-piece, the bigger brotherly connection shape the Eggs. “It’s a family affair. Most of us have been playing together for a while now in different bands. There is a lot of spooky, familial, e.s.p shit going on,” Lindsay says.

Warren Maxwell once said Fat Freddy’s Drop was formed around the dining room table. Lindsay improvises: “I guess we were formed around the breakfast table. We came together to share a mutual love for hard boiled funk and soul”. Hoskins is also a (funk and) soul man. “The band has a big rhythm section and a lot of percussion. There’s enough guys in the band to recreate the sound of all the bands that we love from the 60s and 70s.”

How Lindsay wants an audience to respond is simple. “I want people to lose their inhibitions on the dance floor. Writhe about, shiver and shake. Gyrate and leave with someone they’ve only just met.” Music is a communal event, does he worry about society becoming more individualistic and online? “It will only ever be masturbation, unless you get out of the house and meet somebody else”. In an increasingly commercial society, is music at risk? “I think live music will always be relevant. There is an emotional connection between performer and audience that is unsullied by commercialism. As for the rest? Who knows? I think recordings will become like business cards for live gigs.”

“What separates the Eggs from other jam bands?” I ask Hoskins. “Joe Lindsay. While he’s onstage with us we are unstoppable”. All the world’s an egg, Hoskins riffs. “To enjoy life and all the world has to offer, sometimes you need to let go and be one too…I don’t want people to be able to sit still. I want to see people in a frenzy. I have other bands where I appreciate the fact that people sit quietly and listen rather than dance.”

Hoskins (Twinset) is pleased about the Eggs cracking the hard to please Wellington market. “Great, I love it. No one’s really that hard to please once you know what they want. And the kids today just wanna dance. There’s not too many people that are too cool to have a good time once we strike up a beat.” They’ve poached quite a few members of other leading Wellington bands. “Yep, their yokes just ran off their toast into our band. This band is about the present moment, a chance to forget all the pressure of planning the future of your ‘main band’”. They’ve scrambled genres. “We can’t help it. There’s so much good music out there. We want to play it all.” They’ve devilled up the jam band. “Like us, The Prince of Darkness loves to party”.

The Eggs vocalist is the political Ahmen “son of Taj” Mahal. Hoskins says music is integral to society. “Good music, especially live, is a facilitator. It makes you feel good which makes everything else in life that much easier… We’re about to see a shift away from the mainstream radio driven market to one where it’s much easier for people to find all sorts of really great and interesting music and have that going in the background instead of ads for Mitre Ten and Tony’s Tyre Service. People will always make music and try to get others to listen to it.”

Like Lindsay, Hoskins doesn’t worry about society becoming more individualistic and online. “As long as people remember the technology is a tool. All the networking and sharing is great, but you have to remember to go outside and meet people face to face. There is only one reality. People of the world go outside and enjoy the planet before it gets too fucked up.”

Lindsay, with his “rough and ready” creative philosophy, doesn’t think ever-advancing technology will affect the Eggs too much. “We’ll probably record on two mics straight to reel to reel and released exclusively on 7 inch and cassette tape”. Hoskins is also chipper about the future. “Keep your eyes peeled for many releases from us and our associates in the coming months. We’re gonna get Motown on it and start releasing a serious amount of singles”.