Archive for July, 2013
Melbourne tape rap duo Brothers Hand Mirror bring you their third EP today, this one titled Picture Tape EP, most likely a reference to the pictures that Grant produces and the tapes through which Oscar generates his beats. You see? There’s logic in the madness. Not a whole lot of logic within the tunes though. If you thought the last set was left of center then prepare your shock receptors (probably real) and assume your power stance cause this one ain’t for the conservative. You’d have to say that we’re pushing the boundaries of an EP by definition. Three tracks is almost a single but I’ll take it because on the whole it’s most excellent. The highlight is ‘We Don’t Hide’ which features an Oscar chorus (never a bad thing), a big rumbling round bass hit and a whole bunch of tones that wouldn’t be out of place on a FISHING record. You know what, it’s actually kind of reminiscent of beats from the original Oscar & Martin record, with the interchangeable flute/recorder/children’s toy situation repeating over the hits.
Here’s another 33% of the EP in ‘Twirl’ which I think is worth acquainting yourself with because it’ll set the ground arumbling when it comes to the live set. Plus, it also sees HTMLflowers experimenting with some new delivery around the 1:14 mark which comes off a treat. It is known. We’ve journeyed through two prior BTM EPs over the past few years (here and here) and I’m pretty glad to say that you and I are no longer alone in our affections. Brainfeeder offshoot label TAR will be putting out this triune gem.
So this is the fourth time I’ve written this review and it’s been what some would call a learning experience. I’m finally returning to it now, a month later to finally put it to bed. And now, well… I have to decide whether or not I like it. This is what I was stalling on – aaaaaaaaaah. Here’s my dilemma: I’m a huge Whitley fan. I first received Whitley after seeing him solo at a Sydey Uni O week deal in ’08. I went straight to JB HiFi (back when that was a thing) and asked for “Whitman, or Whitey or something”. i got pointed to “either the Whitlams or Billy Idol’s White Wedding“. Being a red blooded hipster I ignored Megadeth’s suggestions and perused ‘alternative’ until I found The Submarine. I loved that record. It really brought something to my nineteen year old self, like a sweet melancholic cocoon that I need never leave. The sort of record that constantly reminds you that every silver lining has a cloud. MY SORT OF RECORD.
When I heard ‘My Heart Is Not a Machine’ I went straight back into that place. Tommy sent me the record and I was pumped – ready to go. But it just didn’t grab me; and I got sad. That space is still Whitley’s territory. He’s still just trying to figure it out and I really like that. But for me? The pieces aren’t there on this record. It hasn’t stuck with me- and I haven’t listened to it more than I’ve had to for this so called review.
Whitley is a great musician, his songs are actually songs (a rare thing at the moment) and his heart is honest – but this record didn’t hit the mark the way I was expecting it to but that may say more about my own state affairs than the emotion compass of this record. Listen to it. See if it aligns with you – then flood Tommy’s blog with comments telling him why it’s awesome or hatemail for my misdirected opinions because honestly, I’d love you to prove me wrong.
Hi friends, how are we doing? Great, that’s great. Really glad to hear it. Wait, what? That sounds awful. I’m sorry. I have something for you though. It’s the perfect thing. It’ll be like the two of you never dated at all! It’s not as as heavy on the surf end of things as their first EP but Sydney’s Sures kind of hinted towards a dwindling surf-pop asthetic on ‘Stars’ and here we are. It’s not altogether absent but we’re probably seeing its back as it wanders slowly out the door, pawing a few of your choice possessions, leaving dirty fingerprints and generally being a pest. See ya surf-pop aesthetic, catch ya later buddy. There’s still reverb in droves but since when did surf-pop have the monopoly on that? Never, that’s when.
I have a whole bunch of mixed reference coming at me when I hear this track. Is this the disenfranchised pop-punk of 2013? Is it the anthem of the lovelorn young adult? It’s got some nice guitar tones but it’s not guitar driven and the way the bassline syncs with drums to to keep things moving forward? We’re not talking about groundbreaking technical ability here but it’s simple and effectively allows the vocal melody to be everything. If you never made the purchase then you should certainly get a-hold of their first EP prior to the release of the second. It’s due on August 23rd, reportedly, and if this first song speaks true then there’ll be no downside to owning the both of them. It’s what we in the business of victory refer to as a ‘win-win’.
Oscar Key Sung back on another collab proving that he’s the Allday of the beats scene. Here aligned with future classic Brisbanite Charles Murdoch, he floats above the clicks, snaps and eventual synth blow outs that make for a refined three minutes. I’mma just sit back here with my san pellegrino in hand and get involved with this track for a little bit this morning. I can’t think of anything more palette cleansing for a Thursday morning than Oscar’s vocals, drained a little of their usual colour, and then filtered over Murdoch’s watery take on garage. The accompanying video is sweetly shot too, science in reverse and so on, and adds to the experience. You’re welcome, thursday friends.