Tag: Cut Copy Zonoscope

New Video: Cut Copy Releases a Meditative Visual for Slow-burning New Single “Love Is All We Share”

Initially starting as a bedroom, solo recording project of its Melbourne, Australia-based founding member and frontman Dan Whitfield and expanding into a full-fledge band with Tim Hoey (guitar), Mitchell Scott (drums) and Ben Browning (bass), the acclaimed indie electro pop act Cut Copy have been one of their homeland’s most successful and well-regarded acts over their nearly 20 years together. 2008’s In Ghost Colours, which featured standout singles “Lights & Music” and “Hearts on Fire,” received nominations for ARIA’s Best Dance/Electronic Album and Album of the Year at the J Awards. 2011’s Zonoscope topped the ARIA charts, was nominated for a Best Dance/Electronic Album at that year’s Grammy Awards and won a Best Dance Release ARIA Award. Adding to an enormous, internationally known profile, the members of Cut Copy have gone on a number of successful national and international tours, and have made appearances on the late night TV circuit, including stops on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel Live!

2017’s Haiku From Zero was released to international critical applause and was named a Double J Feature Album. But interestingly enough, “Love Is All We Share,” the acclaimed Aussie act’s latest single is the first batch of new material from the band in three years. and the single is a decided departure from the thumping, club anthems that have won them attention internationally. The song is a slow-burning, intimate, and atmospheric track, centered around a sparse arrangement featuring gentle layers of shimmering synths, Dan Whitfield’s plaintive vocals and shuffling beats. Evoking the euphoric highs of love, our seemingly insatiable desire for connection and physical touch, the song finds Cut Copy crafting a Quiet Storm-inspired take on synth pop that’s eerie and timely. Certainly, in a world in which even being near your friends and loved ones takes on a heightened significance and risk, love in all forms takes on a completely different meaning. 

“’Love Is All We Share’ is a song we made using only a handful of sounds, hoping to create an intimate and unworldly atmosphere,” Cut Copy’s dan Whitfield says in press notes “It was written a year ago about the anxieties of imagined future times, as technology becomes more all-consuming. But in light of recent events the song took on an eerie significance. Now, with our immediate future uncertain and people the world over self isolating, ‘love’ more than ever, feels like one of the best things we can share.”

Directed by American contemporary artist Takeshi Murata, the recently released video for “Love Is All We Share” communicates the track’s themes through his work in hyper-realism and computer-simulated imagery. The end result is a mesmerizing and hypnotic visual of interconnected digital, floating bubbles. “Of the ideas we had, the floating bubbles stood out – representing elements of the song best with animation that’s meditative,” Murata says. “For me, the bubbles point to our relationships and their fragility, relevant to the lyrics and time.”

New Video: The Hazily Psychedelic Visuals for The Babe Rainbow’s “Monkey Disco”

Throughout the fall, I’ve written quite a bit about the up-and-coming Bryon Bay, Australia-based band The Babe Rainbow. And as you may recall, the act, which is comprised of Bryon Bay, Australia-born and-based founding members Jack “Cool-Breeze” and Angus Darling The Hothouse Flower with Venezuelan-born pianist Lu-Lu-Felix Domingo can trace their origins to when its founding duo started a songwriting partnership while in middle school; however The Babe Rainbow started in earnest in late 2015 when the founding duo met Venezuelan-born pianist Domingo while they were traveling in France.

The trio’s self-titled debut was produced by King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard’s Stu Mackenzie, and from album single “Johny Stays Cool,” the band specializes in lo-fi, off-kilter funk inspired by African Diaspora-like rhythms and breezy, Tropicalia-like melodies, while being reminiscent of The B52s. Interestingly, the album’s latest single “Monkey Disco” finds the Australian band meshing sweaty, tribal house, Afropop, psych pop and lo-fi New Wave in a way that’s reminiscent of Fear of Music-era Talking Heads and Zonoscope-era Cut Copy, but while possessing an off-kilter, quirky quality. 

The recently released music video was written and directed by S.L.Kristofski and The Babe Rainbow in conjunction with the Y.P.S.M.C (Young People’s Society of Music for Chameleons) and features hazily lysergic imagery and vibrant colors — and much like the sounds that accompany it, it manages to be mischievously anachronistic. 

Rohan Newman is a a Melbourne, Australia-based producer and electronic music artist, best known in electronic music circles as Roland Tings, and back in 2012, as a relative newcomer, the Australian producer and electronic music artist caught the attention of renowned electronic dance music label, 100% Silk Records, who released his debut EP.  And unsurprisingly, thanks to the cosign from the renowned Southern California-based label and the international attention he received, Newman quickly became one of Melbourne’s go-to producers and DJs, performing at some of the city’s most raucous house parties and basement jams. With an even larger profile, Newman quickly signed to renowned Norwegian electronic music label Internasjonal, founded by alt-disco, electronic music star Prins Thomas, and the label released Newman’s 2015 full-length debut, an album that Triple J named their Feature Album of the year.

Newman’s sophomore Roland Tings effort, Each Moment a Diamond was released earlier this year, and the material revealed a subtle yet decided change in his songwriting approach: Newman rented a studio located in Melbourne’s industrial backstreets and treated the entire songwriting and production process, much like a 9-5 job in which he deliberately developed a routine around a repetitive and dependable schedule — every morning, Newman ate the same breakfast, rode his bike along the same route to the studio, spent hours writing and revising and when finished, he’d hang out with the same group of friends at the same places. Being at the studio all day every day was psychologically demanding. For each good idea I had, there were maybe 30 bad ones, which is hard to face when you look back on months of work and realize the majority of the material will never make the record. Eventually though I was able to see each ‘failure’ as a crucial contribution to overall whole,” Newman reflected in press notes.  “The routine also allowed me to grasp good ideas when they surfaced -– when something was different, when something sounded great, I quickly noticed and was able to follow each thread. Another valuable realization from this process was knowing when to stop, when to let go of an idea, power down the studio, get on my bike and head home.”

Now if you were following this site earlier this year, you may recall that I wrote about two of Each Moment a Diamond’s singles — the Zonoscope-era Cut Copy inspired house music track “Higher Ground” and the Larry Levan-era house meets Octo Octa‘s Between Two Selves-like track “Garden Piano.”  Interestingly, Newman has managed to make 2017 an extraordinarily busy year, as he just released follow up single “Eyes Close,” a song  inspired by his recent relocation from Melbourne to New South Wales’ Central Coast, and the song which features layers of shimmering arpeggiated synths,thumping, tweeter and woofer rocking beats and twinkling, cosmic ray-like electronics will further cement his reputation for crafting sleek, assertive yet chilly house music; however, unlike his previously released material, this particular single manages to swoon with a sense of exhilaration and freedom, as though a weight as been slowly lifted — or of closing your eyes on a sunny day, craning your head towards the sun to feel its warmth on you, and then opening your eyes to bursts of light.

As Newman explains in press notes, “I wanted to make a song that would capture what I could only describe as cold euphoria. The exhilaration of being feeling untethered after a long time in the same routine. The intoxicating smell of eucalyptus after a long time in the city.” He continues,  “I wanted to make something that captured the beauty of that coastal landscape in winter. The way the trees on the windward side of the headland grow with twisted branches, braced against the southerly storms. I wanted to make something that sounded like total release, coming out of a dark place into somewhere filled with light.”

Comprised of Gjøvik, Norway-born and-based singer/songwriter and musician Anna Lotterud and New Zealand-born, Melbourne-based producer Brady Daniell-Smith, Anna of the North is an up-and-coming Norwegian/Aussie (by way of New Zealand), can trace their rather unlikely origins back to 2012. As the story goes, Lotterud was working in a  shop in her small town, just outside of  Oslo, and was settling down with her first love, anticipating a life of routine, normality and banality when a customer came in and changed her life. Polite, well-groomed and worldly, this stranger began making daily visits, browsing the shop’s wares but never buying anything. One afternoon, this customer suddenly approached and implored Lotterud to abandon the traditional life she had planned to set out and expand her horizons. This woman’s plea jolted something very deep in Lotterud, and in an act of rather uncharacteristic spontaneity she booked a flight to Australia, leaving her life and her partner behind.

The time Lotterud spent in Australia was both personally fulfilling and incredibly turbulent. She fell in love again, only to have her heart broken as suddenly and inexplicably as her decision to leave Norway and relocate to Australia was, but coincidentally around the same time, she managed to meet her then-future producer and collaborator Brady Daniell Smith. Smith, was also struggling with his own complicated relationships and was performing as an acoustic/folk singer-songwriter in Melbourne. Serendipitously, Lotterud, who was with a group of friends, caught Smith performing at a local cafe. After his set, Lotterud and Smith chatted and quickly became friends  — with Smith encouraging his newfound friend and soon-to-be collaborator to find solace from her heartbreak in songwriting; after all through making music, the duo could exorcise the ghosts of their past love lives. And although the project developed from serious circumstances, its name is actually derived from an in-joke between the two: Smith would frequently refer to Lotterud as “Anna of the North” and the name stuck.

Sway,” the duo’s debut single was released three years and it began an incredible run of attention grabbing, blogosphere dominating singles that have accumulated more than 60 million streams across all the streaming services, multiple number 1 spots on Hype Machine‘s charts and regular rotation on BBC Radio 1, Triple J and Beats 1, thanks in part to the duo’s unique sound and aesthetic, which pairs a brooding, icily Nordic minimalism with bright, buoyant New Zealand/Southern Hemisphere-inspired pop — and ultimately, the duo manages to craft material that’s both incredibly radio and club friendly.

Lovers, the duo’s highly-anticipated full-length effort is slated for a September 8, 2017 and unsurprisingly, the album’s material thematically focuses on heartbreak, in particular, the typical emotional stages people feel after a relationship ends — i.e., turmoil, grief, confusion and the tentative pangs of joy in letting yourself start moving forward with your life. Along with that, there’s the recognition that knowing and having love in your life, including the inevitable heartbreak is necessary and wonderful, because you will know it again and again and again.

Interestingly, album title track “Lovers” found the duo pairing a production featuring layers of shimmering synths, bouncy beats and a soaring hook with Lotterud’s tender and aching vocals, expressing a desperate an urgent longing that’s frustrated and can’t be fulfilled. “Money,” the third and latest single from the duo’s soon-to-be released debut is a breezy, radio friendly pop track featuring shimmering synths and a soaring hook paired with Lotterud singing an impassioned take-down of people who are driven by material goods — and while being among the most decidedly warmest songs they’ve released to date, there’s a subtle, underlying snarl and venom to the song.

“Fire,” Lovers latest single features a slick, radio and club-friendly production featuring twinkling, arpeggio synths, African-inspired percussive polyrhythm,  finger snaps, ambient electronics and a soaring, anthemic hook paired with Lotterud’s sultry crooning expressing an urgent and carnal desire. And while being one of the more seductive songs the duo has released to date, sonically the song manages to be reminiscent of When The Night-era St. Lucia and Zonoscope-era Cut Copy while retaining the buoyant and breezy quality that first caught the attention of the blogosphere and elsewhere; but underneath is a subtle hint of the bitterness and recrimination that one feels when they feel as though they’ve been — or about to be — betrayed.

New Video: French Electronic Music Artist Juveniles Returns with a Sensual Single Paired with Politically Conscious Visuals

Earlier this year, you may recall that I wrote about Juveniles, the now-solo recording project of French electronic music artist and producer Jean-Sylvan Le Gouic, best known as Jean Sylvain. Initially formed as a duo featuring Sylvain and former member Thibault Doray, the project’s debut EP, We Are Young, which was released through renowned French electronic music label Kitsune Records, received attention slick, hypermodern, super-computerized, dance floor-friendly productions. Building upon a rapidly growing profile among electronic music circles, the duo released their 2013 Yuksek-produced full-length debut, which expanded the then-duo’s profile across the European Union, Southeast Asia, China and South America.

Now, as I’ve not so subtly hinted at, since the release of their full-length debut, the project has gone through some significant changes — Doray left the project, leaving it solely under the helm of Sylvain and his sophomore full-length effort Without Warning, which was released earlier this year through Paradis/Capitol Records finds Sylvain releasing music on a new label after several years with Kitsune Records. Produced and recorded by Joakim at Crowdspacer Studios here in NYC, Without Warning finds the French electronic music artist going through decidedly radical changes both in sonic direction and approach as he abandons the fully computerized sound of his previously released work to embrace a much more “human” approach, featuring live instrumentation from The Juan Maclean’s, Holy Ghost!’s and Yeasayer’s Christopher Berry (drums) and Big Data’s Ben Campbell (bass), along with pre-digital and traditional mixing and production techniques.

“Someone Better,” Without Warning’s preceding single features a sinuous and propulsive bass line paired with blocks of arpeggio organ and synth chords, four-on-the-floor drumming, and Sylvain’s sensual and seductive crooning with some of the sharpest, most dance-floor friendly hooks I’ve heard in quite some time. And while arguably being one of the warmest, most soulful, the French electronic music artist has released to date, the song clearly draws from classic disco, bearing a resemblance to Cheryl Lynn’s “Got To Be Real,” Sylvester’s “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)” but with a subtly modern production sheen. “Love Me” continues in a similar vein, nodding at Nile Rodgers’ work with Chic, Zonoscope-era Cut Copy and DFA Records as the song features an arrangement consisting of shuffling funk guitar, a sinuous bass line, cowbell-led percussion and squiggling synths and some incredibly dance floor-friendly hooks. But just under the surface is a plaintive yearning to be desired and loved that’s innately human.

Directed by Aube Perrie and David Moerman and starring Laure Berend-Sagols and Flore Gandiol as the video’s very pregnant leads and love-struck couple, the recently released and lushly shot video pairs surrealistic and psychedelic-tinged animation and impossibly vibrant colors to evoke the leads swooning passion and desire for one another. And while placing the video’s central pair in surreal situations, the pair radiate sweetness, light and the sort of love that feels (and looks) as though they may be the only people in the entire world, if only for a moment. Certainly, in light of our current political climate in which a presidential administration is in a vicious war against women (in particular single mothers), our dear friends, lovers, colleagues and associates in the LGBQT community, non-Christians and anyone not White, Berend-Sagols and Gandiol’s dignity and decency feel powerful and revolutionary. One day love will be simply that — love.

Rohan Newman is a Melbourne, Australia-based producer and electronic music artist, best known as Roland Tings — and in 2012, the Australian producer, who was then a virtual unknown caught the attention of renowned Los Angeles, CA-based electronic dance music label, 100% Silk Records, who released his debut EP. Unsurprisingly, as a result of his connection to the renowned label, Newman quickly became one of Melbourne’s go-to producers and DJs, performing at some of the city’s most raucous house parties and basement jams. Adding to a growing national and international profile, Newman was signed to renowned Norwegian electronic music label Internasjonal, founded by alt-disco, electronic music star Prins Thomas, and the label released Newman’s 2015 full-length debut, an album that Triple J named their Feature Album of the year.

Each Moment a Diamond, Newman’s much-anticipated sophomore Roland Tings album reveals a change in songwriting approach, with Newman renting a studio located in Melbourne’s industrial backstreets and treating the songwriting and production process as a 9-5 job, in which Newman developed a routine deliberately based around a repetitive and dependable schedule: every morning during the writing and recording of the album, Newman ate the same breakfast, rode his bike along the same route to the studio and hung up with the same friends at familiar places.  Being at the studio all day every day was psychologically demanding. For each good idea I had, there were maybe 30 bad ones, which is hard to face when you look back on months of work and realize the majority of the material will never make the record. Eventually though I was able to see each ‘failure’ as a crucial contribution to overall whole,”Newman reflected in press notes.  “The routine also allowed me to grasp good ideas when they surfaced -– when something was different, when something sounded great, I quickly noticed and was able to follow each thread. Another valuable realization from this process was knowing when to stop, when to let go of an idea, power down the studio, get on my bike and head home.” Certainly, when you deal in a creative world, some of the lessons Newman learned while writing could be useful. . .

“Higher Ground” is the first single off Each Moment a Diamond, and the song is a collaboration featuring the breathy and sultry vocals of Nylo in a percussive, Zonoscope-era Cut Copy inspired house music track, featuring shimmering arpeggio synths, thumping beats, an rousing and soaring hook, and about 3/4s of the way through some Nile Rodgers-like funk guitar are added in a slickly produced song that focuses on the urgently swooning passion of first love. And while being a club-banger, the song manages to possess a radio-friendly vibe.

 

 

 

Over the course of last year, the London-based indie pop duo Ten Fe won the attention of the blogosphere and this site with the release of anthemic singles  “Make Me Better,” and “In The Air,” followed by “Turn” and “Overflow” off the duo’s much-anticipated full-length debut effort Hit The Light, which is slated for a February 3, 2017 release through Some Kind of Love Records/[PIAS] Recordings. The duo of Ben Moorhouse and Leo Duncan ended a breakthrough 2016 with a Christmas gift to their fans, a moody, New Order-inspired take on Underworld‘s 1996 thunderous, club banger “Born Slippy.” And building upon the increasingly buzz for the band and their forthcoming (and highly-anticipated) full-length debut, the duo released Hit The Light‘s latest single “Twist Your Arm,” a single that sonically nods at Zonoscope-era Cut Copy and the soaring, earnest pop hooks of Snow Patrol as the duo pair shimmering and bluesy guitar with enormous, tweeter and woofer beats, plaintive vocals and an undulating groove. And much like their previously released singles, the duo’s latest single will further cement their burgeoning reputation for slickly produced yet incredibly sincere, anthemic pop that effortlessly meshes analog and electronic production.

 

 

 

 

Earlier this year, I had written about Los Angeles, CA-born and based producer and multi-instrumentalist Ronald Kaufman, who began his solo, electronic music recording project Kauf after several experimental rock bands split up — and an eventual return back to his hometown. Kaufman received international attention for the release of his critically applauded As Much Again through Cut Copy‘s Dan Whitford’s highly-regarded indie dance/indie electro pop label Cutters Records. And adding to a growing internationally recognized profile, Kaufman toured with Cut Copy,   Maribou State and others, as well released remixes of the work of PoliçaThe Big Pink and Public Service Broadcasting and others.

Regrowth, Kaufman’s forthcoming full-length debut is slated for a 2017 release and thematically the album’s material reportedly will focus on exploring the small fractures that come about within one’s closest relationships — the ones that have long been there; but have been willfully or ignored or conveniently missed until a situation in which you’re forced to try to repair the relationship before it shatters. And unsurprisingly, as a result the material also focuses on the denial and doubt that can blind and distract you from relationships issues. The album’s first single “Through the Yard” bore a resemblance to Zonoscope-era Cut Copy as the song possessed an ethereal tropicalia — shimmering synths are paired with sweaty, tropical beats and Kaufman’s plaintive and yearning vocals in a song that evokes a sweaty and lingering fever dream full of regret and doubt.

 

 

The album’s latest single “Pacify” is a lush and slickly produced single consisting of shimmering and twinkling synths, swirling and undulating electronics, a sinuous guitar and bass lines paired with Kaufman’s plaintive vocals in a song that describes a relationship, in which every bitter sentiment and feeling has been revealed in a nasty fight  — and it does so with an accuracy in a mid tempo song that sounds as though it could have been released in 1984 while drawing from I Love You It’s Cool-era Bear in Heaven and others.

55 Lakes is a mysterious and fairly anonymous EDM/tropical house music production and recording project of two Toronto-based ghost producers, ghostwriters and musicians for several top Canadian artists — and their latest project together was specifically designed for the duo to create, have fun and anonymous collect the credit for their own work. Their debut single “I’ll stay for you” is a slickly produced track that has the duo pairing finger-snap led percussion, twinkling keys, layers of shimmering and undulating synths and electronics, a looped vocal sample and an infectious hook in a propulsive yet breezy and tropical song that sounds as though it drew from Larry Levan and classic house, as well as Zonoscope-era Cut Copy.

 

Ronald Kaufman is a Los Angeles, CA-born and based producer and multi-instrumentalist, who began his solo electronic music recording project Kauf after his early experimental rock bands split up and a return back to his hometown. When Cut Copy‘s Dan Whitford released Kaufman’s critically applauded As Much Again through Whitford’s highly-regarded indie dance/indie electronica label Cutters Records, Kaufman quickly received international attention; in fact, Kaufman has toured with the likes of Cut Copy, Maribou State and others — and he’s remixed the work of Poliça, The Big Pink and Public Service Broadcasting and others.

His forthcoming full-length debut Regrowth reportedly will explore the small fractures that come about within one’s closest relationships — the ones that have long been there but have either been willfully ignored or conveniently missed until you recognize that you should try to repair it before it shatters to pieces before your eyes. And as a result much of the material also explores the related themes of denial and doubt but with a sense of hope — that you can actually get things right if you’re truly honest with yourself and about your motivations. The album’s first single “Through the Yard” sonically bears a resemblance to Zonoscope-era Cut Copy as the song possesses an ethereal tropicalia — shimmering synths are paired with sweaty, tropical beats and Kaufman’s plaintive and yearning vocals. In some way the song feels like a sweaty and lingering fever dream; the sort of fever dream that at its core possesses a palpable sense of regret and doubt.