Thursday, 26 December 2013

Disclosure 'Latch' (DJ Premier remix)

‘Latch’ is just one of those songs which seemed to follow me out every time I left the house this year– in the car, at the shops, in the club – and now it’s just one of those tracks that I will forever associate with 2013.

Lucky for us, producers from all around the world have put their own take on the track and we can now hear it in all sorts of non-dance floor situations. Dj Premier– aka producer extraordinaire, also known as Primo / Premo / Preemo is the latest to rework Disclosure.

He has worked with all the big guys in hip-hop – Kanye, Snoop Dogg and Biggie Smalls just to name a few and so it’s no surprise that he’s added the R&B touch to this track. But he keeps it relatively minimalistic and the song begins to sound more like a serenade than a crowd dance hit.

All of which means that it does not completely overwhelm the senses. The one-handed piano melody keeps it sweet (until those rhythmic breaths come in, haven’t heard those in a while) and for those of us familiar with the original, it actually does justice to the vocals from Sam Smith. The mood sits somewhere in between the original and the acoustic version which the singer put out earlier this year.

DJ Premier’s remix joins the work of Kaytranada and others on the official album Settle: The Remixes. For a different take, check out the Frenched-up edition from Stwo & Phazz. The two said that they worked on it over Skype, and while there are different feels between verse and chorus, it works well. It’s also up for free download.

Published on PurpleSneakers.

Artists to watch in 2014: Heartbeat(s)

For all the jokes over the years in the media about Canada, there has been some very slick music coming out of the maple country in the past year. Ryan Hemsworth, Kaytranada and Azari & III have already caught our attention with their free-flowing music, innovative beats and remixes.

Now we’re looking at Heartbeat(s), aka Markus Garcia, to carry the torch of chilled electronic music from the region. This time last year he was part of the duo LOL Boys (alongside Jerome LOL), the duo have since parted ways to pursue individual solo projects.

What Garcia says that he kept from that partnership is his knowledge of Detroit and Chicago house beats. His solo work also features 80s synth pads, R&B beats and pitch-shifted vocals, which seem to elongate the length of each track. His sparse use of vocals also create a sense of timelessness, which means that you can get lost listening to a four-minute track.

Otherwise, for something more classic check out his latest remix of Francesca Belacourt’s ‘Tizzy’ – very, very smooth.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

Anna Lunoe 'Breathe' remixes

We like to claim Anna Lunoe as our own, but the fact is she’s now part of the worldwide dance network. Especially if you consider her recent signing to Fool’s Gold record label and soundtrack mixing for international fashion week shows.

Having just completed a support slot with The Weeknd, Lunoe has put her solo hat back on for ‘Breathe’ and producers both Australian and American have taken on the single for their own.

Two other Fool’s Gold signups feature on the remix set, and while Sleepy Tom chops up the original straightaway, Treasure Fingers echoes freestyle music with syncopated beats and his own keyboard melody added in. They remain strong slick dance tracks with enough irregularities to keep it interesting.

And then some of our Australian friends feature, with Danny T transforming 'Breathe' into something of a noughties house track and Wordlife using their hip-hop beats and vocals as instrumentals to create a sound eclectic and hypnotic.

If you haven't already had the chance, check out the video for the original. Directed by Cara Stricker, it flicks across futuristic basements and dark clubs, strobe lights galore, and girls in latex. You can catch Anna herself dancing in there as a hologram in braids.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Artists to watch in 2014: Basenji

Are you into electronic music but not monotony? Prefer a happy tune to a dark one? Enjoy making faces to surprise quirks that pop up in your dance music? Chances are then that you’ll enjoy the work of Basenji – one artist we’re keeping tabs on for next year.

This young producer goes by the name of Sebastian Carlos and he comes from Sydney. It’s already a well-known fact that he’s buddies with Wave Racer and Cosmo’s Midnight (dofflin dofflin) who coincidentally also make feel-good electronic music.

Basenji only has three tracks out online but they've just been picked up by triple j, so best to get amongst it now and claim you knew of him before the hype. His latest single 'Dawn' is one Nina Las Vegas' picks for December.

His work shows us that a drop doesn't have to mean a louder version of what came before, handclaps are still cool, and that it's totally acceptable to have a sense of humour about it all (re: throwing in dog barks and dolphin squeaks.)

Basenji has already booked his first show (as a local support for XXYXX, who we actually featured as an artist to watch last year) but we can see him gracing the summer festival circuit any time now.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Pond at the Metro Theatre

Pond has built themselves a reputation as one of Australia’s top live acts, and it’s not hard to see why, delivering a whole lot of noise on par with the depth of the album recordings.

Support band Doctopus did a good job of warming up the crowd - with plenty of electric guitar, stage banter and garage attitude. Front man Stepen Bellair threw around his messy Kiedis hair while playing guitar on his back, moving around stage and hollering at the audience: “Byron was chill but Sydney, you guys are ready to party!” By the time they played their final song ‘I don’t wanna be here anymore’ the mood in the room was getting manic.

And then Pond took to the stage. Immediately the crowd released any pent up frustration at waiting (the band was only about ten minutes late) and it evolved into one big mess. This lasted right up until the end of their performance when the setlist (a scrap of paper) was thrown into the crowd causing a rupture not unlike seagulls chasing thrown chips.

But while disruptive, everyone there was very familiar with the Pond catalogue and was singing along (even to Nick’s intermittent screams).
Nick Allbrook takes on his role as front man passionately - dancing in between vocals, walking (bravely!) right up to the barrier for ferocious grabbing by the crowd and connecting his craft entirely to the audience. While there was a whole lot of crazy going on, Allbrook remained in control.

Keeping the crowd in check meant playing a mix of popular singles, old favourites and slower tracks. The second song up was ‘Xanman’ off their latest album Hobo Rocket and showed already that the best part of seeing Pond live is when their instrumental jams are brought to the fore. Later, they played "O Dharma" and the mood hung heavy as layers of instrumentals developed into a trance.

For the encore there were about 20 people on stage, friends and crew jumping on stage to dance together, shake tambourines and create a general ruckus. Doctopus returned and Bellair took it upon himself to crowd surf before putting Allbrook - who was playing the flute - on his shoulders for a final triumphant hurrah.

Published on theAUreview. 

Fitzroy 'Noah EP'

Paris is not the first place you think of for Jazz inspired, hip hop infused electronic music but alongside it’s classic dance scene there has been a rise in producer collectives like we’ve seen in the US and Canada. Fitzroy is one such artist, as part of the Cosmonostro record label, which set up only earlier this year.

The label is big on cooperation among its artists as well as graphic designers. We love that they’re generous on the free downloads.

‘Noah’ has quietly emerged on the net, a two-track release (or petit EP on the French blogs). It’s just over four minutes – but four minutes of vintage funk and chilled out sound. Perfect to add to our summer playlist on this side of the globe.

‘Philosophy’ is a downtempo daytime lounger, where old and new worlds meet among hip-hop beats and jazz trumpet adding to the soulful feel of the music. And just when you’re sinking into the loops, there are vocal interludes playing on the title: “Don’t just sit there thinking.”

Then Fitzroy changes the feel on ‘Cabriolet’ and manages to make an R&B track which sounds even smoother than Drake. Yes – snares, a shimmering opening and scratches. Add in the rap vocals dropped in pticeh and it does start to feel like you’re driving along coastal cliffs with the top down. (Or at least having a drink at the end of the day for those of us without convertibles.)

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Friday, 6 December 2013

Purple 'The Club' (Shlohmo Remix)

When Shlohmo lays his hands on a track, he tends to bring out a rawness and melodrama that might not have existed before. ‘The Club’ was already dark and brooding, but this remix enters a sci-fi or non-human existence.

Shlohmo takes the abstract vocals from the original, distorts them even further, completely slows down the tempo and reaches a vampiric sense of evil in the process. It doesn’t sound quite like anything else out there, and we have got London-based producer Purple to thank for the eccentric production in the first place.

Already skilled at working with subtlety, he’s freaked up the percussion and if vampires aren’t your thing then think witchcraft. At least it’s attracting comments such as “majestic,” “DEEP” and “this got that salem vibe.”

And in keeping it all within the family, both artists are part of the LA-based WEDIDIT collective. When Liam Neeson said, “I will look for you, I will find you, and I will kill you,” this is what should have been playing.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Doldrums 'Dive Deep Pt. 1'

While we’re proud of what Australians have contributed to electronic music in 2013, we’ve also been keeping tabs on our Canadian counterparts. Doldrums (aka Airick Woodhead) can say that he shares his home city with Tiga, A-Trak, Lunice and Chromeo.

‘Dive Deep Pt. 1’ is equal parts soothing and chaotic. While Woodhead’s airy vocals and zen lyrics swirl into a trance, the rusty percussion jangles overhead and the mood unfolds into something haunting.

Doldrums also reminds me of free-flowing music from The Antlers Undersea EP, with tracks starting off with solemn melodies before plunging into a shady instrumental jam. 

All of which creates sensory overload – this is not a carefree summer track. Nevertheless, it’s pretty impressive that he mostly uses analogue equipment to create his music.

And we’re yet to know if there’s pt. 2 on the way.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Cub Sport at Brighton Up Bar

Photo: Antigone Anagnostellis

Cub Sport's music has been described as 'infectiously happy with summer pop vibes'. Their live show does just the same, carrying off a smooth-sailing performance that is surprisingly low-key. Not as in low energy (each band member pays ferocious attention to their instruments) but the night took a friendly register, only encouraged by the cosy venue - Brighton Up Bar in Sydney.

Tim Nelson, lead and songwriter of the band, explained each song with a mysterious anecdote: "This one’s about a girl who wrote off my car"/"This song’s about when my friends and I broke into a pool", but judging by the level of premature audience reactions, most were already fans familiar with the back stories.

As part of their Paradise EP launch, Cub Sport mainly focused on their new tunes but we also heard some old favourites. "Scream" quietened the crowd with the beautiful boy-girl harmonies (Nelson singing with bassist Zoe Davis) and bittersweet words of lost love and then suddenly the mood flipped and they plunged into their indie pop single "Pool", then people started dancing.

But no track was without someone singing along, including one of their earlier Unearthed tracks "Told You So" and the signature Cub Sport Destiny’s Child/Beyonce medley – just as effective in a small room as at a festival. It was a fairly quick set, with no gaps in between songs. Then after closing with "Evie" ("This one’s about my dog"), Nelson extended the Brisbane cheeriness with an open invitation to hang out at the bar after the show.

Published on theAUreview

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

World's End Press + Movement at GoodGod Small Club

Electronic music isn’t what it used to be – where there once were clear lines between house, dance and rock, Australian music has openly taken on all technology so that there is a fusion of the best parts of each genre. Melbourne’s World’s End Press and Sydney trio Movement take on big sound for a live setup and no, they’re not just standing in front of a laptop.

Movement had the support slot; they don’t chat much but keep to a very slick, continuous set. As the World’s End Press frontman John Parkinson said, singer Lewis Wade is very humble about his vocal talents, which are very real in a live context. Even looking at his facial expressions, the approach is soulful and honest. Besides the memorable vocals, Movement have solid production work, especially apparent with some of their deeper house beats and serious stage presence. But then when the group played "Illusions", Lewis broke the intensity, 'I like people to dance to this one'. The group finished with their latest single "Us" - an R&B-infused groove which was very well received by the very smoky, very hot room 'full of sexy people'.

As soon as World’s End Press took to the stage, everyone watching was up and dancing to the instrumental jam that they kicked off their set with. Having seen W.E.P. before, it tends to be the case that they joyfully surprise the crowd with an upbeat set of retro 80s feel (synth pads) combined with live rock instruments. I heard people in the crowd commenting: 'full of soul' and 'great original music'. Unfortunately, part of their equipment broke down (after a really strong performance of "To Send Our Love" – their most recognised single) and keyboardist Rhys had to compromise on some of his live part. Nevertheless, the band was really good about it, keeping us updated and apologising while there were a few false starts. 'We’re going to kept his good vibe going!’ Parkinson said, before kick starting back into their danceable set.

Despite the technical issues, it was a great night to showcase the original, creative Australian talent we’ve been exposed to this year and especially from two groups who don’t compromise on the live show. 

Published on theAUreview. 

Thursday, 14 November 2013

Hudson Mohawke releases "HudMo 100"

Having now hit the big 100,000 (likes on Facebook), Hudson Mohawke has put up an edit of some of his most popular tracks as a quick “thank you” to his fans.

‘HudMo 100′ is a slight step back in time to the R&B/pop classics we heard on repeat a few years ago – includingChris Brown and Ciara – but with calm mood among the complexity. You might liken it to sporadic releases and re-works from Australia’s Ta-ku, and this collection flows real well.

Hudson Mohawke is already good at the big-room beats. But this release features his intricate reworking with fractured synths and spaced out sounds in the back lifting the originals away from their rooted hip-hop grounding.

In ‘Kiss Kiss’, the tempo drops and Hudson adds in his own backstory with melodic swirling synths and rolling snare.  Then it’s upbeat and expressive for ‘Midas Girl’, with slick underlying percussion almost pushing vocals from the fore of the jivey original.

Best part is, it’s up for FREE DOWNLOAD.

1. ‘Who Run It’ (Hudson Mohawke Edit) – Three Six Mafia x Tycho
2. ‘Kiss Kiss’ (Hudson Mohawke Edit) – Mammal x Chris Brown
3. ‘Midas Girl’ (Hudson Mohawke Edit) – Hell Interface x Usher x Midnight Star
4. ‘Go Longer’ (Hudson Mohawke Edit) – RJD2 x Ciara

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Wednesday, 13 November 2013

Album review - "Matangi" by M.I.A.

It’s kind of been the thing lately for female artists to take on an I Am Sasha Fierce attitude towards their work. Lorde is outspoken, Miley rouses media outrage, Iggy Azalea swears like there’s no tomorrow and fellow rapper Azaelia Banks…well we can’t say that she hasn’t enjoyed getting her diva on.

Similarly, M.I.A. is back to confront the haters on Matangi. When she raps, “systems shouldn’t operate by sticking me in a cage” she really means it – having created an expressive album with so many references that is difficult to describe.

The album opens with one big Om, before plunging straight into heavy bass, profiling the spirit of the album: Matangi as the Hindu goddess of speech, music, knowledge and the arts.

Maya’s voice becomes a rhythmic instrument where she almost whispers on “Karmageddon” and then later chops up her own vocals on tracks such as “Bring the Noize.”

The album picks up new influences, with trap elements on second track “Matangi” and Major Lazer-style dancehall beats on “Double Bubble Trouble.” Matangi also interweaves distorted sitar and animal roars into R&B song craft and reggae percussion.

All of which means that M.I.A. pull diverse references from the past two years: “Eat, pray, love/ Spend time in the Ashram / or I’ll drone you /Kony 2012.” Ultimately, Matangi is not only futuristic in its sound but also in her signature messenger-style lyricism.

And just when you think it’s deepening into the calm and spiritual, M.I.A. breaks down the sound again bhangra-style (Punjab Indian).

There are two tracks where she collaborated with The Weeknd – “Exodus” and “Sexodus” – which are less frenetic tracks but with Kanye-style introspection: “My blood type is no negative/But I’m too positive that I’m too deep.”

“YALA” is one of my favourites off the album (you only live always), as a response to YOLO – loud and full of attitude. But “Bad Girls” is still the strongest song off the album as the middle-finger anthem following her 2012 halftime stunt.

Published on adamNOTeve.

Monday, 4 November 2013

Album review - "Make Light" by DEJA

And now for something completely different. From the depths of a self-made studio in Melbourne, DEJA put a dark twist on electronica. At least some of their tracks belong in a dirty Berlin nightclub.

Their debut EP Make Light is ironically made for the night. Think intense layering, alluring vocals and orchestral dimensions, all of which don’t make for background listening.

If you’re into Australian eclectics like Willow Beats or Empire of The Sun, and the Scandinavian sounds of The Knife and Rokysopp, then you will dig this one.

The duo has even given themselves some hard-hitting monikers to match: “haxx” (Jack Arentz) and “Rromarin” (Claire Rayner).

Make Light opens with bird noises, dark synth and glitchy sounds on prelude ‘Enter.’ As something listeners of the last century would have envisaged when they heard the year “2013.”

Suddenly, the chaos becomes calm and distils into a steady dance track for ‘Still Falling.’

The beat picks up again for ‘The Outside’ and we’re veering towards Britney Spears around Toxic time (obviously there’s a difference with progressive electro but they share strong structure). Never mind those husky vocals (brought to you by Rromarin) – this sounds like something off The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo soundtrack.

‘Luststruck’ is the most powerful track on the album, harnessing the extremes and developing into something quite complex.

I would say it’s one of those albums that you have to listen to as a whole but the singles work just as well on their own.

Published on AdamNOTEve.

Basecamp 'Emmanuel’ (Hayden James Remix)

Hayden James has delivered a crisp rendition of Basecamp track ‘Emmanuel’ with a good dose of synth and intricate percussion.

Basecamp is three producers from Nashville (Aaron Miller, Aaron C. Harmon and Jordan Reyes). Miller takes on the vocal duties and they form the core of the original – super soulful reminding me of James Blake, or even Lewis of Sydney’s Movement.

Hayden James partially distorts the vocals but does not lose their lush quality. The remix also livens up the original, picking up the pace halfway through. Despite the chilled mood, if you listen closely there’s actually a lot going on.

For the sake of even more name dropping, fans of Banks and Jai Paul will appreciate the melancholy tinge and heavy bass undertones. And be sure to listen to it in its entirety right up to that fade filtering out at the end.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

AlunaGeorge ‘Best Be Believing’ (Ta-Ku Remix)

Possibly two of the most hyped electronic artists of 2013, the sounds of AlunaGeorge and producer Ta-ku meet in this remix and it’s not quite what we expected. This is one of Ta-ku’s sharper tracks and would go down well live, now that he’s sped up the original and added in tricky percussion.

Ta-ku is the master of careful restructuring – here, the lyrics are out and in come choppy hip-hop beats. Sound effects are sprinkled throughout and the track surges into a frenetic jumping chorus. Aluna’s unique vocals, which we have grown to love, become a part of the instrumentals. While there is a lot happening around them, Ta-ku has firm control over the changing dynamics.

Often times the word “remix” doesn’t do justice to such tracks, as there is a lot of work added in. Best to play this one through quality listening equipment.

Ta-ku’s remix of ‘Best Be Believing’ is part of the official AlunaGeorge remix package out November 4th.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Sunday, 6 October 2013

Interview with Jo of Big Scary

Big Scary have just finished touring nationally with Bernard Fanning and are soon to head to theCarlton Dry Independent Music Awards, where they are up for three nominations, including best independent artist and best independent album for their latest Not Art. Big Scary have released their two albums through their own label Pieater. We spoke to one half of the duo, Jo Syme, on working independently, orchestral visions and the hectic new years ahead.

What are the pros and cons of making an independent album apart from more control and unrestricted studio time?
Those are some of the main things. I’ve guess I’ve heard horror stories during the recording process where the label would call up and say 'more drums' and 'you need to write a pop song' and all this kind of stuff. I guess it’s good to be able to learn everything that you’re doing. If you’re in an ignorant these days then you have no control for the next 20 years – you know it’s not just about the album that you’re releasing. I guess it’s an advantage if you’re only in music for the long term and being able to decide how it gets used and how it’s portrayed and stuff.

How does touring change your relationship with the music? I’ve spoken to musicians who say that months of working on the album drive you crazy but touring can reinspire. How has it been for you guys?
Yeah, that’s really funny. I think Tom [Iansek] probably got more sick of the songs than I did because he was down at the nitty-gritty levels doing every track and on the computer screen piecing it all together. I got to do the drums and a bit of singing and come back to it when it was pretty much done. But it’s true – we’ve hired some extra musicians to really do justice to these songs live so it’s been really fun getting extra people on stage - and I think we feel a lot more confident about the live show now. I think in the past Tom felt like we were playing catch-up with the live show to the amount of effort we put into the recorded stuff, so now that we’re thinking about that a lot more and having new people to really play the part, it’s really fun, I’ve really enjoyed playing the new songs.

Have there been any tracks that have resonated particularly?
There’s always one song that goes down well live called “Belgian Blues” and I think crowds just like a good rock song. I’m doing a bunch of stuff on the drums and everyone has really busy parts, so it looks like there’s a lot happening on stage, so I think that one goes down the best live. And it’s not a single, which is cool.

Was "Luck Now" always going to be a single? Is it hard to pick a single?
It’s always really hard to pick a single because we’re usually wrong. Sometimes when we thought this would be a great single and no one’s really taken onto it and other songs have surprised us. It was hard to choose. During the recording process of the album, I didn’t think there were really any singles on this album. I didn’t really get it at first, I thought, 'this feels weird', but it’s got to the point where I’m obsessed with it. I have the demo on repeat in my car. I think to me that was why I really pushed for that first single, because it had really struck me so strongly and I think it was a really good statement piece for the album – quite different from our previous stuff. It was a hard decision and we’re still choosing what’s going to be the next one, but we don’t know when we’re recording songs.

Do you guys know we’re you guys will be on NYE?
Yeah we’re playing Falls. We’ve just looked at our flight schedule – it’s pretty hectic. We’re probably going to be having a quiet night in Melbourne because in five days we’re in Tassie, Lorne, Byron Bay and Busselton. Pretty sure we’ve got some sort of ridiculous flight on the first in the morning so we’re just going to come back in from Lorne some time that evening, getting ready to get up early again. We might have a little party in our studio or something.

New Years Day – starting work straightaway!
That's right.

Is there anything you guys would like to add to your music in terms of instruments or sound?
There’s heaps of different synths used in the recordings, a bunch of different ones. The main thing we’ve added is a Juno synthesizer, which comes along live. And we’re slowly building up an arsenal of sweet synths, which we don’t know how to use yet, it’s pretty funny. We’ve got this analog synthesiser called MS-20 and I’m kind of like 'woah', turning knobs for this pulsating sound, I have no idea what I’m doing. There’s nothing really we feel the need to include. I guess the dream is when you have shitloads of money you can bring the gospel singers on tour and bring a horn section and a string section – stuff like that.

Big Scary + Orchestra.
I think every band secretly wishes they could do that.

Very cool. I’m sure Tom would love writing for that as well.
Yeah I can’t wait 'til he writes some scores, because I think he’d be really good at it.

Yeah definitely that 'atmospheric', 'complex' sound that comes up in reviews.
Oh yeah – without the orchestra.

On the awards night you guys will perform live along with Seth Sentry, Violent Soho and RUFUS- how’s that going to sound? What do you think about the Australian music industry since you started [around 2006]?
I think it’s really autonomous and really creative and really supportive as well. It doesn’t matter what genre – because it’s such a small world and everyone can write to each other on Twitter and always playing at festivals – you kind of come to respect everyone’s different angle, for the most part. And I read articles from old-school rock and rollers complaining about downloads and I honestly don’t care because I guess I’ve never had to make money off people buying music and I’m not used to it. Now it’s so foreign to me - I’m used to people getting their music for free but then kind of getting out to shows more. I think it’s great.

I just saw this morning your collaboration with Jonti is out and that’s a free download.
Yeah, exactly. I guess it was sponsored by industry - Adidas. It was great because it meant that we got to do something creative with this guy whose music we love already. So we definitely took on that opportunity. It was really good, because I’ve never really collaborated before, so I was nervous and thought it would be super awkward or something, but it was just so easy and fun and we made a track that I think is really interesting.

How did the collaboration come about?
I don’t know how they chose the bands, but we got an email from VICE saying, 'are you interested in this?' to pair with Jonti and that’s pretty much how it happened - and we were up for it.

How’s the international signup with Barsuk records [Seattle-based, Death Cab for Cutie] going? Do you have much to do with them in Australia?
Not much yet. We’re kind of building the campaign at the moment. The album’s going to be released in January and we have chatted to them on Skype and they’re absolute legends so we’re really pleased, they’re really similar to us in their ethos to music and belief in music. But I guess at the moment it’s kind of emails and building content before we release the album over there. Then it will all start next January.

Would you then have a US tour to follow up?
We’ll definitely be going over there in the first couple of months next year but nothing’s booked yet.

It would be great to get to SXSW.
Yeah we went to SXSW last year and it was so much fun so hopefully we’d love to get onto that as well. But we’d also love to get on a cool support tour as well, that would be very handy.

You guys just toured with Bernard Fanning – was that a different audience to your own?
Yeah, definitely. They were a bit older and they hadn’t all heard of us. They were pretty cool. There were probably some people who weren’t interested at all but they were a different crowd and in different towns. We were in far North Queensland and places we’d never been but they were awesome. It was an awesome tour to be on – all these sweet venues like really old-school theatres and stuff like that. So it was good.

Are there any standout releases of 2013 that you guys have been listening to?
I haven’t stopped listening to Cloud Control’s new album, it’s pretty awesome - also Courtney Barnett's two EPs. I’ve been listening to a lot music recently which is good because in the first half of the year I was really, really bad and then since I’ve been back from touring I’ve been trying to listen to as much as possible. Those ones I reckon are so awesome, I’m really excited for everyone.

I just think it’s weird to see you guys in categories with Flume but I guess that’s the music industry these days.
Yeah I know, it’s really funny but I think it’s cool. I’m glad someone made the effort to highlight independent labels and bands.

Published on theAUreview. 

Saturday, 28 September 2013

Say Lou Lou cover Tame Impala's "Feels Like We Only Go Backwards"

Say Lou Lou aka twins Elektra and Miranda Kilby have handled the super popular “Feels Like We Only Go Backwards” with much respect.

Their cover focuses more on the track’s clever lyrics and atmospheric sound than the psychedelic back work. A good decision on their part as it suits the moody slow burn of the duo.

For starters, they kick off with the verse (rather than chorus as in the original) and a slower tempo which allows for more audible layering. Despite the slow, whispery delivery their cover is by no means quiet. “It’s like there are several different worlds inside one song,” they wrote of the original.

They’ve got the changing dynamics covered. And what Say Lou Lou has added are these light feminine vocals in the back (no drama in recording overlay when you’re twins), which bring lyrics to the fore.

Here’s what they had to say on their cover (via soundcloud):
We’ve always loved Tame impala, not only because they’re a fantastic Australian band, but because it also hints at music we listened to growing up. There is something sweetly familiar and nostalgic about the music, yet still fresh and innovative.

Feels Like We Only Go Backwards’ is really enthralling, it’s like there are several different worlds inside one song. How it feels like a simple rock song (with almost pop melodies) but with a field of colour bursts of warm layered instrumentation that re-invents itself throughout the whole song… but it wasn’t until we started making our own version that we discovered how beautiful the lyrics are – another world in itself – so we decided to strip the groove back and take it into another place.”

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Monday, 23 September 2013

Father John Misty - "I'm writing a novel"

In exactly what you’d imagine as “life on the road” for a Californian
musician, Father John Misty (a.k.a. Josh Tillman, former drummer of Fleet Foxes) brings us kids with hula-hoops, dressing room shenanigans and plenty of sitting and waiting in lanes with a cigarette in his new music video for “I’m Writing A Novel.”

The single comes off his 2012 release Fear Fun and channels Beat Generation antics with Tillman on road-trips, wandering the beach alone, and occasional self-narration: “this is where I fell over the other night.” The cuts between live shows and kaleidoscopic lights to amateur-shot scenes with friends produce the sense of an old Super 8 film.

“I’m Writing A Novel” is one of the more country-sounding songs off the album (rather than crooning Fleet Foxesfolk). Tillman generally looks like a fun guy to hang out with, serious at gigs but goofy at any other time – never mind that eccentric dancing where he seems like almost like a friendlier Jim Morrison.

Published on Purple Sneakers.

Album review - Damn Terran

Damn Terran (2013)               1/2 

Australian music seems to be going two ways these days – at the same time as an explosion of electronic producers, we’ve got these old-school garage bands with plenty of attitude and high energy music. Damn Terran is one such post-punk arrangement – especially known for their loud live shows.

The Melbourne group is fresh from performances at the annual Bigsound conference in Brisbane and has also just released their self-titled debut LP. You may have heard their single “Lost” from triple j Unearthed.

Damn Terran kicks off in full force – the track names and cover conjure up dark metal niches but this band has a good sense of rhythm. The twin vocals from Lachlan Ewbank (also guitarist) and Ali Edmonds (also on bass) create jarring male-female harmony. Ali E almost channels Blondie in the fierce vocals (or even the more contemporary Lindsey from Deap Vally).

It’s not all singing though – with shouting, chanting, and heavy drumming – we can only imagine the amount of sweat produced in the recording process. Damn Terran take the time to indulge in instrumental breaks rich in guitar, thumping bass and strong drumming (that’s Leigh Ewbank), which drives most of the tracks.

As the album progresses, it begins to sound more punk. The guitar is harder and subject matter veers towards drugs, drinks and relationships. In fact, some of their lyrics are almost soundtrack-worthy: “You are in a dark place/You are losing what is left of your mind/and I know that you’re leaving alone tonight.”

It’s not going to be for everyone but fans of Dune Rats, Violent Soho and DZ Deathrays will dig the upbeat messy aesthetics and “fuck it” lyrics.

Simon’s Song
A Killer
Wrong Things
Burlesque Dancer
So Ordinary
Uncanny Valley
In Your Dreams 

Published on AdamNOTEve.