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These Idle Hands is a collaborative union of like-minded musicians. Their music is best described as hauntingly retrospective, emotive & impressionistic Alt-folk & Americana. The band are always refining & expanding their luminous acoustic balladry. Not afraid to explore the darker aspects of the human condition, their music at times conveys an intensely personal lyrical perspective. These Idle Hands members hail from the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia.
Murray is a self-taught musician with a passion for Alt Folk/Country. His music career began in the vibrant 90’s Brisbane band scene. Having cut his teeth on some of the now-infamous stages of The Orient Hotel, The Outpost, & The Playroom to name a few, he has also received critical acclaim for various releases resulting in regular airplay on Triple J & NZ stations. Murray then moved back to Byron Bay and worked as a chaperone for performers in The East Coat Blues Festival & found himself in the lucky position of jamming with international blues legends Taj Mahal, Norton Buffalo & Elvin Bishop. A career pivot soon followed by way of an 11-year stint as a lead performer 5 nights a week in musical theatre, at the popular Gold Coast haunt, Draculas. After leaving his full time performing role, Murray took a much-needed break before forming duo (Black Kite) with fellow local musician Linda Angledal & proceeded to release a couple of singles under the name of Heron Blue, followed by his current passion performing & writing songs for These Idle Hands.
Michael’s musical training began just north of Sydney, firstly on piano at the age of 12, followed by guitar shortly after. His wide-ranging musical tastes and playing ability makes him one of the most versatile & in-demand musicians going. Before moving to QLD Michael had a residency playing piano at popular Newcastle cafe/bookshop Pepperinas. These days he can often be found either performing his own solo instrumental classical guitar pieces around local haunts & has recently performed & recorded with local acts Kate Leopold, Julie Hayes & Heron Blue as well as recording a video of his original material with Linda Angledal. Michael’s starkly beautiful piano parts & double bass are the backbones of These Idle Hands rich sound.
Kieran started playing on a beat-up classical guitar 24 years ago and soon developed a fondness for blues/folk and alternative Australian music. A multi-instrumentalist in the true sense of the word, Kieran is proficient on didj, banjo, 12 string, dulcimer, uke, Charrango and Weissenborn lap & if that wasn’t enough, he also builds his own instruments from scratch. Kieran has busked in the USA, Central America, Europe and Asia. Since returning to Australia he’s gigged extensively with Kate Leopold and helped kick start the morning music cafe scene on the GC. One of the founding members of Leopold’s Treat, a band that went on to be awarded Emerging Artist of the Year in the Gold Coast Music Awards in 2016 Kieran now brings his considerable musical experience ( and a truckload of instruments) to These Idle Hands.
Josh has been writing & performing folk-inspired music since his mid-teens with a strong penchant for rich layered harmonies & a simple driving beat. Josh began playing on the Gold Coast & has graced the stage with well known local Alt Folk outfit Leopold’s Treat. Followed by time spent in Montana (USA) playing and performing with Bluegrass outfit Babaganoush. Josh’s rich baritone & fingerstyle guitar compliment“These Idle Hands” lush arrangements like a match made in heaven.
Lauren started learning violin & piano at an early age, soon deciding that violin resonated strongest (She still kills it on the keys BTW!!) Lauren began her musical journey competing in eisteddfods and playing in the orchestra for musicals including Chicago, Annie, The Addams Family, Legally Blonde to name but a few. Then she joined North Coast folk/punk outfit The Moonshiners for a period of two years. She now enjoys bringing her achingly beautiful violin strokes to These Idle Hands.
Amaya is our songbird. Not just an incredible voice, she also can hold her own on both violin and guitar, playing with the school senior orchestra. Originating from the Gold Coast & still at high school, this hasn’t stopped her from taking the stage with Leopold’s Treat & finding her place as a valued member of These Idle Hands. Having completed a Cert lll in Music Industry at TAFE, Amaya has a keen interest in the business side of music. Amaya has developed a rich uniqueness to her voice which is rarely found.
Inspired by the rich tapestry of music of the 60s and 70s, Craig Johnston decided to invest some quality teenage years teaching himself to play Guitar. After several years of jamming along with his fathers extensive record collection he decided the Bass Guitar would be his weapon of choice. He played in a few band in high school and whilst studying art in Brisbane, formed the band George with some old high school chums and likeminded new ones. Whilst fully immersed in the thriving Briz music of the early/mid 90s he also had stints playing bass with electro/hiphop outfit Soma Rasa at venues like The Zoo, The Arena and Ric’s Bar etc. Craig compliments the acoustic-eclectic sound of These Idle Hands with a sweet Fretless Bass.
Benny D Williams
Widely acknowledged as one of the most talented performers and hard-working musicians in South East Queensland. A true multi-instrumentalist, Benny commands a pure essence of high energy performance blended with beautiful harmonies and rhythm. Benny brings his piano chops to These Idle Hands, melodically building dynamic crescendos then stripping the jam back to its bare beginnings.
Jamie Mercer started his love affair with music at the age of 13, on a vintage drum kit acquired by his mum. Originating from Wollongong, Jamie cut his musical teeth on rock and roll, rhythm and blues and heavy metal. 37 years on, Jamie has developed an ear & the skill set required, for any style of playing. He’s mastered the art of playing to space & having the musical smarts to know just when and where to pull the trigger. Jamie brings something unique to every performance. A seasoned working musician, with loads of experience as a much sort after session musician & general gun for hire Jamie slotted into the TIH family easily, With the unique vibe he brings and his willingness to explore new musical ideas, it was a match made in heaven.
GOLD COAST’S BEST-KEPT SECRET: These Idle Hands’ debut is the luminous acoustic balladry you’ve been searching for
After an 11-year stint on stage at Draculas self-taught musician, Murray Webber began exploring his love for Alt Folk/Country. And his time spent playing iconic venues in the vibrancy of Brisbane’s ’90s band scene and jamming with international blues legends Taj Mahal, Norton Buffalo & Elvin Bishop backstage at The East Coat Blues Festival, meant he was well equipped.
The collaborative union of These Idle Hands came after the release of critically acclaimed single Since I Found You, written and performed by Murray and local musician Linda Angledal under the name Heron Blue. When Linda moved to Tasmania Murray decided to forge on, heading into the studio with some of the local scenes’ most accomplished musicians. The time in the studio produced the band’s debut My Heart Left Long Before I Did.
In 2019, Gold Coast’s music bible Blank said the single was “heart-wrenchingly beautiful, flawlessly recorded and comparable to any popular alt-country / Americana song doing the rounds”. The debut was only a taste of what was to come. And after the recent release of Just Maybe, the bands follow up single, the forthcoming album is highly anticipated by lovers of the genre.
The debut is intensely personal, hauntingly retrospective and emotive. Musically the talents of musicians Murray Webber, Michael James, Kieran Richardt, Josh Morris, Lauren Illig and Amaya Coburn are on show like never before. These songs are rich and layered with moments of beauty that urge repeat listening. But it is perhaps the way the band play space between the notes that is the real highlight of the release. Restraint and purpose are applied just as an artist would approach a canvas.
The debut album from These Idle Hands is set for release mid 2020.
Album Review | Meraki: Blank GC (February 2022)
Following on from their highly impressive mid 2020 release, ‘Petrichor’, multi-faceted alt-folk collective These Idle Hands have once again alighted onto the musical landscape with a sweeping, eleven track song-suite which goes by the name of ‘Meraki’.
Album Review | Meraki: BEAT Magazine (February 2022)
Exploring themes of relationship breakdowns, disenchantment, forgiveness and gratitude towards family, Meraki is the expansive collective’s follow-up to 2020’s critically-acclaimed debut Petrichor. Building upon songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Murray Webber’s deeply resonant vocals and heartbreaking lyrics, These Idle Hands conjure a beautiful album, uplifted by haunting orchestration and enchanting backing vocals.
Album Review | Petrichor: GC Live (August 2020)
Every now and then, some music comes into my life that makes me stop and appreciate just how magic music really is. Every now and then, I am near lost for words because a piece of music touches me so deeply, so emotionally, that I cry.
Album Review | Petrichor: Beat Magazine (June 2020)
Petrichor puts the band’s penchant for illustrative balladry and introspective songwriting front and centre, melding soaring violin melodies with bellowing double bass amidst a striking palette of sonic elements.
Album Review | Petrichor: Blank Gold Coast (June 2020)
This is music, much like fine wine, to be imbibed and savoured within the shadowy twilight of self-reflection and contemplation, rewarding aplenty those seeking an emotionally resonant listening experience.
These Idle Hands have to be Gold Coast’s best-kept secret. Their single ‘My Heart Left Long Before I Did’ is heart-wrenchingly beautiful, flawlessly recorded and comparable to any popular alt-country / Americana song doing the rounds on the charts at the moment.
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