20 odd questions with Hannah In The Wars


Songwriter Hannah Curwood comes from the Central Otago region in New Zealand. Hannah in the Wars is a new project, the result of working alongside Roger O’Donnell of The Cure and a handpicked group of musicians…

Where are you and what’s the weather like?

I am in Dalston. The weather is uncharacteristically spectacular, it’s all cerulean skies and pink blossom out there.

What’s your favourite record in the charts?

I have to say, I don’t really follow the charts but I am loving Laura Marling’s new track, ‘False Hope’ and am cataclysmic with joy that Courtney Barnett has another record out.

What are your favourite films?

Such a difficult question but I would have to say that Taxi Driver and Fargo are both magnificent.

What are your favourite books?

Another tough one. In recent days I have really been getting into Anais Nin, Virginia Woolf, Sylvia Plath, Albertine Sarrazin. I love Hemingway, Cormac McCarthy, Salman Rushdi, Haruki Murakami, the list is endless. Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward is one of the most fiercely beautiful things I have ever read. Embarrassed to say I haven’t read Eleanor Catton’s The Luminaries yet but that is next on the list.

What are your favourite TV programmes?

I don’t watch TV but you have to tip your hat to The Sopranos, don’t you? Also loved the latest season of The Fall with Gillian Anderson and Jamie Dornan(!).

What was the first record you bought and where did you buy it from?

Bic Runga’s ‘Drive’, from our local record store in Wanaka, New Zealand. I think my friend David McMartin gave me a home-taped cassette of it first but I wore that sucker out. Incidentally, Dave’s little sister, Fi McMartin is now in the band….

What is your least favourite record that you have made, and why?

They are all my children, I love them equally. Even the ugly ones.

Do you believe in God?

I’m not sure, does she believe in me?

What is the strangest story you have read about yourself?

I dare say it might be this one.

Tell us a joke.

I detest humour in all its forms.

Which football team do you support?

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds

Do you have any pets?

I have a most beautiful pointer/beagle mix called Hayes Dog, the apple of my eye.

What’s the worst song lyric of all time?

‘No,no,no,no,no,nooooooo YEAH’ (Anastasia)

Who do you consider to be the most overrated musical act of all time?

New Zealand’s current Prime Minister, John Key.

What car do you drive?

I don’t drive these days as having a car in London seems silly when you can get around so easily. I have a lovely bike, a BMC SR01, that I use to commute.

Who would you want to play you in the film of your life?

Edward Norton.

Vinyl, CD, Download or stream?

Horses for courses innit. Format is constantly evolving and I think it might be foolish to tie your flag to one mast.

How will you vote in the next election?


When was the last time you cried?

Yesterday. I had one of the most enlightening conversations I’ve ever had and it made me happy. So I cried. Obviously.

What’s the best cover version you have ever heard?

Jeff Buckley singing ‘Hallelujah’

What’s the strangest thing that has ever happened at one of your own gigs?

A young man came and sat in the front row and knew every word to one of my songs. We’re friends now.

Have you ever been starstruck?

Definitely. I don’t usually find it hard to speak to people but when PJ Harvey was standing next to me at an event chatting to Nick Cave it was like my lips were glued together and my eyes were buttoned open. Wide open.

What is your culinary speciality?


The Royal Family: should they stay or should they go?

I feel like if they stay there will be trouble but, if they go, there may be double?

If you weren’t doing this, what would you like to be?

A vet.

What were you like at school?

A gregarious goodie-good.

What’s your poison?


If you could change one law, what would it be?

I would go crazy in Saudi Arabia.

Which decade would you have most liked to have lived in?

This one.

Have you ever seen a ghost?


Hannah In the Wars is released by 99X/10 on May 25.