Triple R Soundscape: 28 September 2020
Soundscape is a weekly look at local and international releases making an impression on our musical radar. The list offers a cross-section of EPs and albums arriving at the station.
We have been busily scouring the Soundscape! Check out some of our favourite finds for this week 28 September 2020.
MILDLIFE - AUTOMATIC (INERTIA MUSIC)**ALBUM OF THE WEEK
Automatic is the second album from Melbourne's Mildlife, following their acclaimed 2018 debut Phase. The four friends in the band continue to explore a rich spectrum of shared musical passions, fusing fresh cosmic rock rhythms and timeless pop songcraft with elements of jazz, psych, electronic and disco. The attention to detail and dedication to groove is impeccable, as always. Or, in other words, Automatic is another stellar set from an interstellar crew of musicians, and a timely reminder of their captivating live performances.
GL - You Read My Mind (Pool Records / Thinking Loud)
The second LP from Melbourne duo GL (aka Graeme Pogson and Ella Thompson) is a distillation of their singular pop and electronic sound. The album is an emotional and thrilling soundscape, coloured by a palette of rhythms, textures, dreamlike trances, impassioned tones and body moving sensibilities. Exploring life in all of it’s complexities and frustrations, the duo allow the instrumentation to shape a fluid movement of positivity from start to finish.
Sleeper & Snake - Fresco Shed (Upset The Rhythm)
Sleeper & Snake is the project of Al Horford (Dick Diver, Total Control), and Amy Hill (Terry, Constant Mongrel), both familiar and prolific names in Melbourne’s music community. On Fresco Shed, the duo focus on that which is local, with sympathetic portraits painted of inner-city Melbourne life, through their dreamy tapestry of watercolour pop.
Róisín Murphy - Róisín Machine (Skint/BMG)
The fifth solo record from the former Moloko singer is her strongest and most consistent record yet. It’s a powerhouse of future-disco, gorgeously produced by Sheffield DJ Richard Barratt (Crooked Man). Like Goldfrapp or Robyn, Murphy has long existed outside of mainstream European pop, referencing and influencing what’s happening in the top 40, but maintaining a distance of independence and edge of creativity. On Roisin Machine she folds her disco heritage into a palette of house and techno. “This is the simulation, this is the demonstration” she sighs, “this is the realm of my wildest dreams, these are my wildest dreams”
Marie Davidson & L’Œil Nu - Renegade Breakdown (Ninja Tune/Inertia)
Renegade Breakdown is the first album released by the Montreal producer after she quit touring the international club scene in mid 2019, citing burnout and fatigue of club music. On her new project, Davidson layers her vocals against compositions she constructed with collaborators Pierre Guerineau and Asaël Robitaille. Opening with a self-conscious rejection of the club scene “Take your prescription and shove it up your ass…Your party sucks anyway.” Renegade Breakdown becomes a rejection of aesthetic posturing and a celebration of unloved and unfashionable sounds; lounge, soft rock, 80s synth-funk, French chanson, cheap MIDI and drum machines. “The uglier I feel, the better my lyrics get”, Davidson sings, “This time I’m exploring the losers point of view.”
Beverly Glenn-Copeland - Transmissions: The Music of Beverly Glenn-Copeland (Transgressive/Inertia)
Transmissions is a career-spanning compilation of the many musical facets of Beverly Glenn-Copeland. From his early career with a series of jazz-inflected solo albums in the 1970s, two decades as a writer and performer on children’s television (Mr. Dressup, Sesame Street Shining Time Station), early explorations in electronic music in the 1980s, to River Dreams, his first new song in 15 years. The non-chronological path takes the listener on a journey through the many ecosystems explored during Beverly Glenn-Copeland’s remarkable career.
Plastic - New Hands (Spoilsport Records)
New Hands is the debut album from Melbourne five-piece Plastic, recorded over four weekends between 2017 and 2019 at VCS in Collingwood. The record's 10 tracks spiral and swirl around influences and genres without ever becoming anchored to any clear reference point. It’s a refreshing and energising take on guitar-noise-pop, which takes the listener on a compelling journey in equal measures clinically designed and effortlessly freeform.
Steve Arrington - Down To The Lowest Terms: The Soul Sessions (Stones Throw)
The first album in over 10 years from funk legend Steve Arrington, Down to the Lowest Terms: The Soul Session was first envisioned by Arrington as a young man, and is essentially decades in the making. Over slick sound palettes composed by a cast of leading new generation LA producers, Arlington unfurls his ever charismatic and vitalic vocals, untarnished by the weight of time, fame or politics. While covering well trodden ground, the creative feedback loops between Arrington and his production team make the album feel wholly fresh and new in 2020.
Various Artists - Dear Sunny (Big Crown Records)
Big Crown Records presents Dear Sunny, a compilation of Sunny & The Sunliners covers by artists on the Big Crown roster. Over several years, Big Crown have been on a mission to bring new audiences to hear the music of the under-appreciated San Antonio Tejano master Sunny Ozuna, with a series of reissued albums, release of interviews and photos, and the 2017 compilation, Mr Brown Eyed Soul. On Dear Sunny, Ozuna’s gorgeous music is reanimated by the likes of The Shacks, Bobby Orosa, Holy Hive and Brainstory.
Chris Smith - Second Hand Smoke (IT Records)
Legendary Melbourne guitarist Chris Smith’s first album in a decade is built on a foundation of 8-track home recordings, found sounds and field recordings, all collected in the past decade following Smith’s move to the Victorian countryside. While continuing his unflinchingly experimental disposition, on Second Hand Smoke, Chris Smith gathers the textures and sounds into a more coherent and structured whole. Of the album, Smith has said “a big influence on what the recordings turned out to be was having a lot of time and space out in the country. I was out of my element which allowed me to internalise (obsess) over what I was doing. And I think you hear a lot of that space on the record.”