Automatic Love – Hey! Hello!

The second Hey! Hello! album (cheekily titled Hey! Hello! Too!) found a way of working around the fact the female voice from the bands first record (the Banshee Pop sensation Victoria Liedtke) has left the band. This multi faceted approach has been used twice by Dave Grohl (Probot and Sound City) yet we will come to know it as the Slash method or the RnFnR Solution.

A guest vocalist on every track is an unusual trick to making an album sound like a cohesive whole. It works when you’ve got a house sound like Foo Fighters Plus on Reel To Real and it works when you have the pop hooks of Ginger Wildheart driving a project.

And Yet, that’s not how Hey! Hello! Too! was initially supposed to come to the world. There was a first draft of this record which didn’t see the light of day where Victoria’s place had been taken by new vocalist Hollis Mahady. The V.1 track listing was mostly the same as the version that got released. Bar this track. Automatic Love disappeared during the re-recording and was replaced by the anthemic All Around The World.

The cartoon killer bunny on the sleeve seems to have more than a bloody baseball bat hidden behind their back. Automatic Love was the lead track on that first incarnation. It came with all the urgency and distortion of a Wildhearts single but with that punk girl vocal it’s somehow frothier than the pummeling riff rock would have you believe.

The shenanigans around Hey! Hello! and Hey! Hello! Too! and the sheer amount of vocalists who have been through the booth make a Hey! Hello! Free! unlikely but Ginger loves a challenge (Triple album projects, Mutation and the G.A.S.S works) so don’t bet against it. Hollis went solo after leaving Hey! Hello! and her output is considerably more light weight than the cacophony she cooked up with Toshi and Ginger. Before Hey! Hello! she fronted pop punk outfit Love Zombies. Again, not the megaton minimum of a Ginger track, but not without it’s charms.

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