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MALLEE SONGS.

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This one has been sitting in the inbox for a little bit, and it’s only now, on Good Friday down at my parents place in Melbourne that I’m sitting down and listening to this pretty excellent collection of songs.

Mallee Songs is the project of Michael Skinner. The album, Gum Creek and Other Songs is a sprawling account of the past 5 years where Skinner travelled from his Melbourne home to Japan and then back home again.

We got the opener ‘Egyptian King’ below. It’s simple, nothing completely out there. But it’s straight up, honest, and sets up this amazing sense of journey that the album then embarks on.

You can stream the full album here.

Skinner also has a full band album due for release in the 2nd half of 2014. Keep an eye out for that one.

Miks

FISHING.

fishing

So this is me breaking a rule.

I had a silent agreement with myself that I would not post any productions (at least for a few months) that featured synths or samples approximating steel drums, marimba’s, kalimbas or frankly any mallet-use instrument potentially associated with notions of tropical islands.

I know that’s shallow and I love the summer breeze as much as anyone, but if one attempts to listen to a lot of Aus electronic these little things can hit one’s own private limits in 2014.

But then Fishing.
I choose to make public my shallow inconsistency just to highlight how endearing the stuff is from these two gentlemen – up to and including this new ‘Chi Glow‘.

This one is all full of their best strengths – nostalgic sample cuts, dreamy beats and unique rhymes put together with organic feels and interesting friends – like Marcus Whale from Collarbones. That doesn’t really capture it though. I always find that the more I listen the more I hear their different approach in all the little details. It sounds familiar, but many of the micro-ideas are actually quite new to my ears.

This is of course the opposite of a copycat, in fact I’d I consider them ‘producer’s producers’, quietly making their own thing in their own space. So the steel drum sounds are overruled and here we are – me looking a bit silly, you a bit confused, them winning. Just hit play and all will resolve. I posted the video, as the visuals continue the casual haze just so.

Oh – full disclosure, I did catch their live set supporting Elizabeth Rose recently and that’s probably further tainting my opinions. Great risky set with nailed vocals and crazy amounts of manually triggered groove. Whether that is a conflict of interest or a legitimate track-feature-factor, Sydney dwellers may want to claim a spot at the vivid launch for the album due in June.

Adam

TOTAL CONTROL.

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k. So this new one from Melbourne’s Total Control has been playin’ over and over in the head for the past coupla days.

Where the synth was just part of the band in their earlier work, the newy, ‘Flesh War’ brings it closer to front and centre. It’s softer in feeling, but still manages to feel dark, at times dissonant, and always pushing and edging towards something.

Pretty bloody killer.

The track is taken from the band’s second full length entitled Typical System due out June 20.

Miks

YEO.

Yeo - Promo

So this guy made my top tracks list last year. Yeo is a Melbourne guy who’s been kicking around for a fair while, but, it seems, is only now really hitting his stride.

Last year’s track ‘Girl’ had enough groove to make you want to automatically take off all ya clothes.

This new one, presumably an ode to Lakers finest, ‘Kobe’ takes more of a pop structure, but keeps that BIG production amped up, pulsating throughout. And…clothes are nearly all off.

Wouldn’t be surprised if this guy went all big pretty soon. He’s heading over to Canadian Music Week in May before coming back home for a national run of dates in June, so keep an eye out.

Miks

EAST.

east

Have you ever noticed how some Australians sound more Australian than others? I have. And to call a knife a spoon, we’re not always into it.

But we have our reasons. I know I’ve found the most “audibly Australian Australians” do tend to position themselves in backpacker hostels around the world, methodically eroding my love for my own accent.

But sometimes there are shining beacons who learn to use their power for good. Beacons like young East here.

This first taste from her is as Central Coast NSW as my family summer holidays, and yet it may be my new benchmark for pop music on this big old island.

Yes I said pop on a blog. Without any fear whatsoever of your haughty internet eyes.

Let’s all be honest and admit that good pop is an especially noble thing when it’s done right – lean, genuine and characterful. And this ‘Old Age‘ ditty sounds to me like an authentic (pretty gifted) 16 years old’s songwriting wrapped up tight into a 2.42 cannonball.

The production is angular but supple, and proper nods to John Castle for keeping all the heart along with the shimmer and punch.

If you like it catchy and audibly aussie without it being over-calculated, add a play to all of mine.

This one is probably ripe for more jplay too (edit: yes Dom is on it), so attending her unearthed might be the way to show yet more love. Because maamf readers do show yet more love.

Adam

DUNE RATS.

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Ohhh mate. ‘Funny Guy’ is the new track from Brissie stoners Dune Rats and it’s really really ace. Think feel-good indie garage punk [enter another genre that does not help explain how bloody catchy this tune is] done at its best.

The track is taken off the boys’ self-titled debut full length due out on “Dune 1″ (gosh pr people are so humorous when they crack jokes in their press release emails). They’re also doing a pretty massive world tour in support of it (deets here). Should be a goodun.

Miks

MARCH ’14 MIX.

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Ohh mate. Here be the March tape for this music blog that you are currently visiting on the really big web of things and information and cats.

Big ol’ mix as per usual. Even including some neo-classical this time round (basically it’s just an excuse to include something from the new Duet Duets record from the master Tim Shiel). There’s also a massive 15 min jam from Darren Sylvester (who also worked with Conrad Standish and James Cecil). There’s also some repeat offenders – namely Blaq Carrie, Snowy Nasdaq, and Deja. But, ynou kow what? It’s all good.

EXCITING BEGINNING TO YOUR WEEK.

TRACKLISTING:
Vacant Field – Run Down (Right Click/Save As)
Rat & Co – Vocal Insanity
Blaq Carrie – Reality (Right Click/Save As)
Darren Sylvester – For You
Frames & Felix Lloyd – Pacifique
Dianas – Static (Right Click/Save As)
contrast – pipe dreams (Right Click/Save As)
Tim Shiel and Luke Howard – Greater
White Caves – Dig
Deja – Heavy Water (Right Click/Save As)
Snowy Nasdaq – Sisters
Fraser A Gorman – Book Of Love

Miks

WIREHEADS.

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oh mate. it’s always good when new labels start up. especially those that are artist run and support local scenes.

Format Records have just started up proper in Adelaide. You may have heard about the Format guys before – they’ve put on a coupla fests in the past and curated a stage at Adelaide Laneway this year.

Their first release as part of a label is the debut full length from WIREHEADS, a rad Adelaide band featuring members of Old Mate, Bruff Superior, Big Richard Insect and Doe. The album is gonna be called The Late Great and will be due out sometime in May.

The first taste is ‘The Way It Is’, which you can stream below. If you dig your slacker vibe punk style, then WIREHEADS might be up your alley. ‘The Way It Is’ features your normal band get up, but comes complete with a little flute and some violin for your earholes. It’s a mix that on paper seems suspect, but mate, it’s actually pretty fuckin’ good.

Miks

HOPIUM.

Hopium

This here is a song about desperation.

HOPIUM are a duo from Melbourne, and although they’ve only one track to their name, and very little is known about them, they’re already hitting it up rather massive online.

Their track ‘Cut’ is about just that. It’s a track about the prospect of loss, a track about the intimacy and physical embodiment of human emotion. It’s dark and industrial sounding, but provides enough space for for just enough emotion to seep through.

And then there’s the clip. As a heads up, it is NSFW, so perhaps if you’re sick at home, like me, it’s fine. But not in the office. The clip captures that intimacy and dark nature of the track really bloody well.

If the clip reminds you of some gritty fashion clip, then you’d be sort of right. It was put together by Yoav Lester and Chris Mitchell at Floating World Films and Ribal and Gil @ Superteam Studios. These guys usually work in the fashion world, but are lending their expert skills to the music video world.

Miks

ANDRE EREMIN.

andre eremin

Full disclosure: if you’re here for primarily slacker/guitar tunes thanks to Miks’ rather solid ear for such, this post may require you click away or seriously brace yourself. As in, brace yourself for dirty techno. As in, the weirder end of dirty techno.

Melbourne’s Andrei Eremin was ktsche up until this track – you may have heard and melted over his beautiful I’lls remix. I did. Any Australian music blog reader would have probably heard his handiwork as mix and mastering engineer too – and he is justifiably in serious demand. I can confirm this as I too jumped in that queue and became a believer myself.

So for his own stuff, one would expect there may be some creative variety and sonic treats packed in there…
Still, I’d say none of us could have expected this ‘Voynich Manoeuvre‘ chaos.

Warped sci-fi quotes and sultry deep pulses start in underground Berlin, and then pretty much burrow down to the centre of the earth from the halfway point. The burrowing grind starts from 2.30 – and I don’t mean it’s a little bit gritty. This is a massive, deep, tasty and frankly apocalyptic use of synthesizer technology.

Whether or not this kind of music has been on your radar before, try letting this one envelope you. The movement and the pulse has a way of stopping time, and you will not find better execution anywhere in the world right now. If you have a pretty decent sound system, I would try putting this on large – just make sure you’re sitting down by halfway.

Adam

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