From The Life of Pablo to A Moon Shaped Pool, 2016 has been a year full of minimalist electronic statements. You can now add The Bride, the fourth effort from indie art-pop darling Bat for Lashes, to this growing list.
The Bride is a classic concept album, beginning on the eve of the titular character’s wedding. Disney cliché this is not, however, as her husband-to-be dies in a car crash, and she is left struggling to recover and find herself in the aftermath. Given the subject matter, the album can occasionally slip into melodrama territory. However, it manages to avoid the obvious, inviting the audience into the emotion-filled, high stakes world Natasha Khan creates. Khan herself has said the album was written as the soundtrack to a film she hopes to make, and one can easily perceive the cinematic qualities it possesses; you can almost picture the associated moving images as you listen on.
As always, Khan’s flawless and emotionally weighty vocals steal the show here. Her voice soars above the delicate and sombre arrangements, while ghostly choirs of her own multi-tracked vocals haunt the background, as on “Never Forgive the Angels”. That’s not to say the musical compositions aren't more than serviceable, as the album is filled with eerie, orchestral electronics occasionally calling to mind Lana Del Ray (“In Your Bed”) or Radiohead (“Sunday Love”).
The Bride’s ambitious concept is pulled off with ease and conviction, demonstrating Khan’s innate sense of world building theatricality, as well as her strong song-writing skills. While it may not immediately knock you flat the way that, say, 2012’s The Haunted Man did, it’s certainly an album you’ll want to return to and another stellar addition to Bat for Lashes’ heavenly discography.
Mother!, with its meandering pace married with pulse-pounding white-knuckled radioactive fear and fury, is unlike any film I've ever seen in the last few years.
At the hands of master craftsman and director Scott McArdle, a transformation occurs: the story of the Soviet space race goes from a strong script, eloquent and thought provoking but still a mere script, into the play embodied by five superb actors and a genius sound guy at the Blue Room Theatre this month. This feat is comparable to the launching of a man into space, just as worthy of applause but far more successful.
James Francos, the 70s, the porno industry. The new bingo for Peak TV.
The Love Junkies delivered another trademark high-energy, sweaty, charged set at The Bird on Friday, September 8, with New Nausea and Childsaint in support.
As well as smashing out hits from Tremelow, the admirably raucous quartet delivered signature tracks from their Gradient EP. Regardless, the band has come far over the years, with their unmistakable, frivolous sing-along songs and searing guitars, to their exploration of more striking threads.
With no more new seasons of Game of Thrones to look forward to until 2019 (!), let's consider the trajectory of all seven seasons in a way befitting a show that's often as harsh and bleak as the bitterest winter winds.
JACK JOHNSON and his band return this summer playing all your favourite songs outdoors, under the stars, touring in support of his forthcoming studio album, All The Light Above It Too.
Global pop phenomenon, ROBBIE WILLIAMS, has confirmed that he will bring his mammoth Heavy Entertainment Show World Tour to Perth in March.
The Vic Park Summer Street Party returns to the urban village of Victoria Park on Sunday November 19 and promises to deliver another great series of attractions to suit all ages and tastes.
There is a smooth new tune from everyone's favourite scientologist, BECK!