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.
We got the opportunity to speak with Josh Pyke, one of the most influential and well-loved musicians in Australia, ahead of the release of his Best Of, B-Sides and Rarities album (out June 30) and national tour in July/August.
The best thing about "Meal Tickets" is that we're privy to a group of young, dumb, full-of-cum dreamers slowly acquiesce to being one of the millions who never got their big break; there's a raw poignancy to that, a unique quality which makes this 90 something minute documentary worth the price of a ticket.
Through the magic of Google Docs, Daniel Morey and Eemali McDonald were able to translate their post-viewing discussion of The Black Swan Theatre Company's The Eisteddfod into this review, for your enjoyment.
In Transformers: The Last Knight, the freak show has been toned down; there's precious little human bile forced down your throat this go around. Heck, there's even some attempts at respectability. Which is boring and nullifies the series' proudly nihilistic juvenile identity.
With a fervent belief that true commitment to bad-taste transforms it into something fashionable, fun and infectious, Kirin is a lot to take in.
Slowdive know how to play to their strengths, pulling from the best moments of their discography to present us with something that is at once familiar and refreshing.
I couldn’t think of anything more terrifying than playing a delicate set of acoustic jazzy music to room full of mostly black overcoat-clad, chin stroking, forty-something, ultra-discerning listeners. But for The Necks, that is the thesis for their completely improvised performances.
Remi & Sampa The Great had an amazing energy together on stage, and their genuine and down to earth nature shone through in a tight and powerful, albeit quick performance.
The Exes share a deep passion for vocal harmonies and heartbreakingly good songwriting. This killer combination has crystallised itself on their new album When We Fall. We caught up with the Exes ahead of their two gigs at Babushka and Fly By Night this weekend.
We caught up with Sydney singer-songwriter Montaigne to chat about making positive change, video games, life, death, and spirituality. Have a read, then do yourself a favour and purchase tickets for her performance at Capitol on the 29th of July.