Dream Days At The Hotel Existence, Powderfinger’s 6th full-length recording was released on 2 June 2007.
Breaking away from the previous 3 albums, the band recruited Rob Shnapf (Beck, Elliott Smith, Guided By Voices, etc.) to produce it, and headed to the US to record for the very first time. All tracks were recorded at Sunset Sound, LA, except for Black Tears, which was recorded by Mark McElligott at Leafy Bug Studios (Bernard’s home studio) in Brisbane.
You might think that heading to California to write an album would literally be ‘dream days’ for Powderfinger, but this was not an easy or settled period for the band. Bernard has since joked that ‘maybe it should have been called Dark Days’.
Cogsy says about the Dream Days At The Hotel Existence era, ‘We were all a little lost’. Perhaps some of the band’s collective psyche seeped in to the lyrics of lead single, Lost And Running. But to many fans this song was classic Powderfinger, with a similar laid-back swagger as earlier breakthrough track, Pick You Up.
Other singles followed, including I Don’t Remember, Nobody Sees, and Who Really Cares (Featuring The Sound Of Insanity). Dream Days At The Hotel Existence took Powderfinger’s career to new heights and a wider audience. It entered the charts at number 1, and went platinum in its very first week.
Around this time, the band also embarked on their biggest tour ever, playing 33 shows in 26 cities across Australia and New Zealand (with Silverchair) on the Across The Great Divide Tour. At the heart of the tour was the desire to promote reconciliation with Indigenous Australians, and address issues like the 17-year life expectancy gap.
Despite the difficult process writing and recording Dream Days At The Hotel Existence, every band member looks back very fondly on the songs. No doubt many of you do too.
Next release: Golden Rule