Owl & Mouse

New album Departures out now

Owl & Mouse

Owl & Mouse. What’s in a name? In a just world, the seemingly bottomless talent pool that is the Botting family would be held in the same regard as the Osmonds and Jacksons thanks to their assorted attempts to charm both London and the wider world. Bill Botting, Allo Darlin's perennially pogoing, perma-grinning bassist (and, more recently, solo artist in his own right) has been winning hearts and fans for half a decade and more, but the imminent release of Owl & Mouse's forthcoming début album, ‘Departures’ marks the turn of his siblings to take a star turn in the limelight.

The songwriting vehicle for talented young Brisbanite Hannah Botting, which began as a twosome with sister Jen, those early outings have quickly grown into something altogether more fully formed. “The name was kind of silly,” says Hannah, reflecting on the band's early days. “It came from a song I wrote years ago about an owl and a mouse that go to war together. In the beginning it was just Jen and I doing shows and people would always ask who was the owl and who was the mouse,” she reminisces, before adding with a certain dry humour, “we had to grow the band to avoid that question.” And grow the band has, with the addition of Tom Wade (We Aeronauts) and the prolific pairing of Emma Winston and Dan Mayfield (Enderby's Room, Darren Hayman's Long Parliament).

The extra additions – playing alongside star turns from Michael Collins (Allo Darlin') and Paul Rains (Allo Darlin', Tigercats) – have given Hannah's songwriting an added musical depth, complimenting the record’s overarching themes and ideas. Straight out of the same school of Australian songwriting as The Go-Betweens, Triffids and Courtney Barnett, Hannah's words follow her compatriots' ability to be widescreen and personal at once, infused with an added degree of delicacy and poignancy. “There’s definitely a theme of travel and adventure running across a lot of the songs,” she says. “It’s now been eight years since I moved away from my home town, and it’s getting to that point where you’re not really sure where your home is any more. That feeling of being a bit lost and a bit unsure but at the same time excited, is something that sits underneath all the songs.” The results manifest themselves in an album that's both infectious and joyous – 'Misfits' and its ruminations on family; bittersweet – the brass-laden title track and its tales of airport arguments; and understatedly emotive – the turmoil of deciding whether to hold on to someone you love or not hold them back, detailed in 'Canvas Bags'; and 'Sinking Song's memories of the struggle of making friends in a new town, led by Wade's Stephin Merritt-esque baritone).

While nationality, family associations and honest songwriting invoke comparisons to Allo Darlin' – which Hannah diplomatically bats away by saying “It’s very flattering but not very accurate in my opinion”, while allying the band more with Camera Obscura and early Slow Club) – that ignores Owl & Mouse's own sense of individuality and cohesion belying their relative youth as a band. In their début album they've made music which both swells the heart and conjures quiet reflection. Most of all, ‘Departures’ is, as its name suggests, music to escape into.

Bio by Gareth Ware


Press for Somewhere To Go





Visit Bandcamp


Press enquiries should be directed to Chris Stone:



If you'd like to get in touch to discuss bookings, or just for a chat, you can do so below.