Neil Finn – a native of Te Awamutu, a small town in the volcanic region of New Zealand – decided to form what would become Crowded House during his final days with Split Enz, who are best remembered for their semi-smash hit single I Got You.
After signing with EMI worldwide and Capitol in the USA in 1985 the band toured Australia under the temporary moniker The Mullanes, then flew to Los Angeles to record its debut album.
The band entered the studio with Mitchell Froom, the American producer/session man.
When Neil Finn’s initial work for Woodface (1991) was rejected by Capitol Records, he decided to bring his brother, Tim, into the band and use material they had been working on for a movie project. This marked the first time the brothers had worked together since Split Enz.
The album marked a change in style and a unique sound that shied away from that of the band’s previous albums. Weather With You was a stand-out track with its beautiful harmonies, an intricate storyline and happy, upbeat melody.
It’s Only Natural warmed the heart with its romantic narrative and further established Crowded House as masters of the everyday love song.
Fall At Your Feet is sheer brilliance, a soulful account of the labour of love. Neil’s vocals are spine-tingling, wavering effortlessly between happiness and pain.
The album met with considerable success in the UK and earned the group several headlining concerts at London’s Wembley Stadium. Their decision to issue the satirical Chocolate Cake as the first US single, though, proved to be their most costly mistake.
Crowded House called it a day at a now-legendary farewell concert at the Sydney Opera House in 1996.
Drummer Paul Hester was found hanged in a park in Melbourne (Australia) on 26 March 2005. Hester, 46, had last been seen alive on Friday night (25th), when he left his home with his dogs. Ambulance officers said he had “attempted suicide” and died from strangulation. He was already dead when they arrived at the scene.
Vocals, guitar, piano