Tag: Gold Coast Australia

New Video: JOVM Mainstay San Mei Releases “Romeo and Juliet”-Inspired Visuals for “Heaven”

Throughout the past few years of this site’s eight-plus year history, I’ve written quite a bit about Gold Coast, Australia-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer Emily Hamilton and her acclaimed recording project San Mei, which began as a bedroom recording project but quickly received attention from this site and a number of major media outlets including NME, Indie Shuffle, NYLON and Triple J. Her San Mei debut EP Necessary found the Gold Coast, Australia-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist decidedly moving away from the bedroom recorded synth pop that first caught the attention of the blogosphere and towards organic instrumentation and a sound that immediately brings Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Cat Power, Feist and others to mind.

Hamilton met songwriter, producer and musical phenom Oscar Dawson, who has worked with Holy Holy, Alex Lahey, Ali Barter, British India, Robbie Miller and Joyride at BIGSOUND last year, and the pair immediately hit it off. According to Hamilton, taking Dawson on as a producer and collaborator found the duo refining ideas, exploring different soundscapes and laying down the foundation for her — and in turn, San Mei’s — sonic progression. As Hamilton explains in press notes “[Dawson and I] hit it off straight away and it seemed like he understood where I was coming from, even if I had trouble conveying certain ideas in the demos I made at home.”

“Wonder” was the first single since the release of Necessary. Coincidentally “Wonder” was the first single off her forthcoming Heaven EP, which is slated for a November 2 release and interestingly, the single managed to be a subtle refinement of Hamilton’s sound and songwriting that found her creating radio friendly and arena rock friendly tracks, centered around a razor hooks, fuzzy shoegazer rock-like power chords and propulsive drumming — all while being incredibly earnest. “Heaven,” the EP title track is also the second and latest single of the EP, and its centered around layers of power chord-based guitar lines, four-on-the-floor drumming, Hamilton’s lush yet ethereal vocals, and shimmering synth lines.  And while the new track continues a run of arena rock friendly singles, it may arguably be the most shoegazer/dream pop-like track she’s written and released but underneath the song bristles with a bitter sense of frustration and dissatisfaction. In fact, as Hamilton says of the song, “This song is about when love is blind and it feels like heaven, but if you step back you can see things for what they really are. It’s about waking up to reality and letting go of something that’s going to end up causing harm, even if at first it felt like a dream.”

Directed by Somersault Visuals’ Jennifer Embleton, the recently released visuals for “Heaven” continues Hamilton’s ongoing collaboration with the director, and it’s an incredibly cinematic and swooning meet cute among strangers, that’s largely inspired by Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet and Wong Kai Wai’s Chungking Express. As Hamilton explains in press notes, “The idea was to focus on the sweetness of the young love between two star-crossed lovers. Where the song itself can lean towards a more cautionary and even sad tale about love gone wrong, we wanted to keep the video light and the emphasis on the innocence and dreamlike state of the two lovers – the moment where they’re wrapped up in one another and it still feels like heaven (tying in with the lyrics in the chorus “did you think it was heaven?”). The story ends with them still in this surreal moment together before reality sets in to pull them apart.”

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Now, throughout the course of this site’s eight year history, I’ve written quite a bit about Gold Coast, Australia-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer Emily Hamilton and her acclaimed recording project San Mei, which began as a bedroom recording project but quickly received attention from this site and a number of major media outlets including NME, Indie ShuffleNYLON and Triple J. Her San Mei debut EP Necessary found the Gold Coast, Australia-based singer/songwriter, multi-instrumentalist decidedly moving away from the bedroom recorded synth pop that first caught the attention of the blogosphere and towards organic instrumentation and a sound that immediately brings Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Cat Power, Feist and others to mind.

Hamilton met songwriter, producer and musical phenom Oscar Dawson, who has worked with Holy Holy, Alex Lahey, Ali Barter, British India, Robbie Miller and Joyride at BIGSOUND last year, and the pair immediately hit it off. According to Hamilton, taking Dawson on as a producer and collaborator found the duo refining ideas, exploring different soundscapes and laying down the foundation for her — and in turn, San Mei’s — sonic progression. As Hamilton explains in press notes “[Dawson and I] hit it off straight away and it seemed like he understood where I was coming from, even if I had trouble conveying certain ideas in the demos I made at home.”

Wonder” was the first single since the release of Necessary. Coincidentally “Wonder” was the first single off her forthcoming Heaven EP, which is slated for a November 2 release and interestingly, the single managed to be a subtle refinement of Hamilton’s sound and songwriting that found her creating radio friendly and arena rock friendly tracks, centered around a razor hooks, fuzzy shoegazer rock-like power chords and propulsive drumming — all while being incredibly earnest. “Heaven,” the EP title track is also the second and latest single of the EP, and its centered around layers of power chord-based guitar lines, four-on-the-floor drumming, Hamilton’s lush yet ethereal vocals, and shimmering synth lines.  And while the new track continues a run of arena rock friendly singles, it may arguably be the most shoegazer/dream pop-like track she’s written and released but underneath the song bristles with a bitter sense of frustration and dissatisfaction. In fact, as Hamilton says of the song, “This song is about when love is blind and it feels like heaven, but if you step back you can see things for what they really are. It’s about waking up to reality and letting go of something that’s going to end up causing harm, even if at first it felt like a dream.”

 

New Video: JOVM Mainstay San Mei Releases Surreal Performance-Based Visuals for Anthemic New Single “Wonder”

Throughout the course of this site’s history, I’ve written a quite a bit about the Gold Coast, Australia-based multi-instrumentalist and producer Emily Hamilton and San Mei, which began as a bedroom recording project but quickly received attention from this site and a number of major media outlets including NME, Indie Shuffle, NYLON and Triple J. Interestingly, Hamilton’s debut EP Necessary found Hamilton incorporating more organic instrumentation, reportedly drawing a bit from Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Cat Power, and Feist. Essentially, the EP’s material saw Hamilton moving away from the bedroom recorded synth pop that first captured the attention of the blogosphere towards fuzzy yet incredibly self-assured, power chord-based dream pop,

Hamilton met songwriter, producer and musical phenom Oscar Dawson, who has worked with Holy Holy, Alex Lahey, Ali Barter, British India, Robbie Millerand Joyride at BIGSOUND last year, and the pair immediately hit it off. According to Hamilton, taking Dawson on as a producer and collaborator found the duo refining ideas, exploring different soundscapes and laying down the foundation for her — and in turn, San Mei’s — sonic progression. As Hamilton explains in press notes “[Dawson and I] hit it off straight away and it seemed like he understood where I was coming from, even if I had trouble conveying certain ideas in the demos I made at home.”

“Wonder” is the first single since the release of Necessary, and while the single continues along a somewhat similar vein as the EP, it also manages to be a subtle refinement of her sound and songwriting that finds Hamilton creating an anthemic track, centered around a razor sharp, radio friendly hook, fuzzy shoegazer rock-like power chords and propulsive drumming — but interestingly, the song is arguably one of her most earnest songs, as it evokes the swooning, butterflies in the stomach sensation when someone who’s unknown to you captures your attention and you can’t quite pin down why. That unknown person becomes part of a mysterious daydream to you, in which you begin to wonder everything about them — and yet, there’s a part of you that isn’t certain if you want them to become more than just some brief, intoxicating illusion.

Directed by Jennifer Embelton, the recently released video for “Wonder” is centered on performance footage shot in an empty studio with a red background: the video begins with Hamilton getting up from the floor, and strumming the introductory chords before slowly pulling out to reveal Hamilton and her backing band. The video ends with the backing band packing up to go home while Hamilton remains in the studio, alone and in her dreams. 

Throughout this site’s almost 8 year history, I’ve written a bit about the Gold Coast, Australia-based multi-instrumentalist and producer Emily Hamilton and her solo recording project San Mei, which began rather humbly as a bedroom recording project but gradually began receiving attention from this site and a number of major media outlets including NME, Indie ShuffleNYLON and Triple J. Interestingly, with the release of debut EP Necessary, Hamilton’s sound adding more organic instrumentation, drawing Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, Cat Power, and Feist  — and a result, the EP found Hamilton moving away from the bedroom synth pop that first captured the attention of the blogosphere towards fuzzy, power chord-based dream pop.

Hamilton met songwriter, producer and overall musical phenom Oscar Dawson, who has worked with Holy Holy, Alex Lahey, Ali Barter, British India, Robbie Miller and Joyride at BIGSOUND last year, and the pair immediately hit it off. According to Hamilton, taking Dawson on as a producer and collaborator — and early on, the collaboration between the pair have found them refining ideas, exploring different soundscapes and laying down the foundation for the sonic progression of San Mei. As Hamilton explains in press notes “[Dawson and I] hit it off straight away and it seemed like he understood where I was coming from, even if I had trouble conveying certain ideas in the demos I made at home.”

Hamilton’s latest single “Wonder” is the first single since the release of Necessary EP and while the single in some way continues in a similar vein of as the material on her critically applauded EP, it manages to be a subtle refinement that finds Dawson and Hamilton crafting an anthemic, radio friendly and arena rock friendly track centered around a razor sharp, infectious hook, fuzzy shoegazer rock-like power chords and thundering drumming. And yet interestingly enough, the single may be among Hamilton’s most sincere song, as it captures the swooning, butterflies in the stomach sensation when someone who’s unknown to you captures your attention and you can’t quite pin down why. That unknown person becomes part of a mysterious daydream to you, in which you begin to wonder everything about them — and yet, there’s a part of you that isn’t certain if you want them to become more than just some brief, intoxicating illusion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Over the past three years or so, I’ve written quite a bit about the Gold Coast, Australia-based indie rock sextet and JOVM mainstay act, FAIRCHILD. And during that period, the up-and-coming Australian act have released three EPs with singles “Relevance” and “Start Again” landing on Spotify’s Viral 50 and FMQB SubModern Charts in the US. Adding to a growing national and international profile, the band comprised of siblings Adam Lyons (vocals) and Nathan Lyons (keys), along with Tim Voeten (guitar), Patrick Huerto (guitar), Tommy Davies (bass) and James Alexander (drums) have toured across Japan, Singapore, Hong Kong and North America, including showcases during Canadian Music Week and Music Maters Live, and while on tour in the UK they’ve opened for  The Human League and MOTHXR.

Up until relatively recently, a year or so had passed since I had last written about them; however, as it turned out, the past year has been an incredibly busy year for the sextet:  After spending an intense two year period in Manchester, UK where they focused on performing, touring and finishing their highly-anticipated Catherine Marks-produced full-length debut So Long and Thank You, the band returned to their homeland, where they are set to share the album and the experiences that influenced the material with the world. Now, as you may recall, album title track “So Long and Thank You,” was written after the death of guitarist Tim Voeten’s father, and reportedly the song is meant to show the sextet’s gratitude for all of the people they’ve had in their lives, especially those who have loved, supported and sometimes left them. As the band’s Voeten explained in press notes “‘So Long and Thank You’ was written in different sections, by different members of the band, but with the same person in mind — my father. When I hear this song, of course I think about my Dad, but I also remember that it helped cement in me my love for making music with these people. During those long nights in the studio, I knew it was okay to not be okay. I’d show up with some half-baked idea and we’d have a few drinks and mess around with it. I never knew one of those half-baked ideas would become ‘So Long and Thank You.’ There isn’t a single sound on this record that can’t simply be put down to enjoying writing music with your friends.”

So Long and Thank You‘s latest single “High As A Kite” will continue a lengthy strength of hook-laden, arena rock-friendly synth rock/indie rock-leaning pop with an overwhelmingly forceful earnestness; however, there’s one difference as the new single nods at the atmospherics of some of their previous singles but paired with a sinuous bass line and Nile Rodgers-like funk guitar. And much like the preceding single, the material is deeply influenced from the soaring highs and crushing lows of love and profound loss, of friendships gained and lost — and they do so with an swaggering self-assuredness beyond their relative youth as a band and as musicians; but perhaps more important it will further cement the band’s reputation for crafting incredibly catchy hooks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Video: The Bittersweet Sounds and Visuals of Leif Erikson’s “Concrete and Steel”

Deriving their name from the name of the famed Icelandic explorer, believed by many to have been the first Westerner to reach the shores of the Americas, the London-based indie rock quintet Leif Erikson have developed a reputation in their native UK for crafting what they’ve described as “quietly emotive, effortlessly, exploratory Transatlantic pop” centered around disarmingly honest, thoughtful lyrics based on intimate observation and personal experience, but interestingly enough as you’ll hear on “Concrete and Steel,” off their self-titled debut mini-album, slated for an August 25, 2017 through Arts & Crafts Records, the British-quintet’s sound, to my ears at least, reminds me quite a bit of Gold Coast, Australia-based JOVM mainstays FAIRCHILD as the band pairs an atmospheric arrangement featuring shimmering guitar chords, four-on-the-floor drumming, soaring synths and an rousing hook with plaintive falsetto vocals. However, in the case of “Concrete and Steel,” the song is a aching and meditative rumination on trying to make it as an artist in one of the world’s biggest cities while juggling the daily struggles of surviving — sometimes with a soul-sucking day job. But at the heart of the song is a narrator, who is doing whatever they have to do to survive and make their dream become reality, suggesting that on occasion you have to seek freedom and spiritual sustenance whenever and wherever you can find it.

The recently released animated music video features people, who are drawn like ants marching single file unceasingly day and night towards a city where they never escape — and in some way, the city is viewed as cruel and unforgiving.  The visuals further emphasize the narrator’s desperate struggle to survive and make himself known as a unique person in arguably difficult circumstances.

Just last week, I wrote about an old JOVM mainstay, the Gold Coast, Australia-based multi-instrumentalist and producer Emily Hamilton, whose solo recording project San Mei began humbly as a bedroom recording project; but during the past three years, Hamilton has seen attention and praise from several major media outlets, including NME, Indie ShuffleNYLON and Triple J, as well as this site — and in turn, Hamilton has seen a growing national and international profile. Now, as you may recall, “Until You Feel Good,” the first single off her forthcoming EP, Necessary was produced by Konstantin Kersting, who has worked with The BelligerentsWAAX, and Tia Gostelow managed to be a radical change in sonic direction, as her lilting and coquettish vocals were paired with an organic arrangement of fuzzy Brit Pop and shoegazer-like power chords, a propulsive groove, along with a soaring hook. And while being radio friendly, the song manages to evoke a complex array of emotions — desire and longing, frustration and the sense of something being unresolved, along with some self-assured and ambitious songwriting.

The EP’s second and latest track, EP title track “Necessary” sounds as though it were influenced by A Storm in Heaven and A Northern Soul-era The Verve, as Hamilton pairs a rousingly anthemic hook with layers upon layers of pedal effected guitars and thundering drumming in what may arguably be one of Hamilton’s most swaggering, self-assured singles she’s released to date, while continuing to reveal some of her most ambitious songwriting as well.

 

 

New Video: The Gorgeous and Time-Bending Visuals for San Mei’s “Until You Feel Good”

Now, if you’ve been frequenting this site over the past three years or so, you may have come across a handful of posts featuring Emily Hamilton, a  Gold Coast, Australia-based multi-instrumentalist and producer, whose solo project San Mei began humbly as a bedroom recording project; however, during that aforementioned three year period, Hamilton has seen a growing national and international profile as Hamilton has seen attention and praise from major media outlets, including NME, Indie Shuffle, NYLON and Triple J, as well as this site. 
Produced by Konstantin Kersting, who has worked with The Belligerents, WAAX, and Tia Gostelow, Hamilton’s first single of 2017 “Until You Feel Good” is a mid-tempo single that is a change of sonic direction for Hamilton, as her lilting and coquettish vocals are paired with a much more organic arrangement of fuzzy Brit Pop and shoegazer rock-like power chords and a propulsive groove, along with a soaring hook and a subtly moody vibe. And while being radio friendly, the song manages to evoke a complex array of emotions — desire and longing, frustration and the sense of something being unresolved, along with some self-assured and ambitious songwriting. 

Filmed and directed by Brisbane, Australia-based filmmaker Jennifer Embelton, who has produced videos for Babaganouj, Huntly, Good Boy and Jeremy Neale, the video is follows a young woman’s time-bending journey across the present, the past, the future, the real and her own dreams when she encounters a boy from her past, who suddenly returns to her life. And as soon as he appears, he’s gone. The harder she tries to find the boy, the quicker he slips away. Is he a ghost of her past, haunting her at an inopportune time? That remains to be seen; but it further emphasizes the sense of things being unresolved within the song. 

Emily Hamilton is a Gold Coast, Australia-based multi-instrumentalist and producer, whose solo recording project San Mei, began as a bedroom project that has quickly seen a growing national and international profile — and if you had been following this site over the years, you may recall that I wrote about “Wars,” the follow up to her debut single “Brighter.” However, since then Hamilton has seen praise from major media outlets including NME, Indie ShuffleNYLON and Triple J, which featured “Rewind” on its rotation.

Hamilton’s fist single of 2017 and latest single, “Until You Feel Good” was produced by Konstantin Kersting, who has worked with The BelligerentsWAAX, and Tia Gostelow, and the mid-tempo single pairs Hamilton’s lilting and gorgeous vocals creating a lush melody, with fuzzy, power chords, a soaring hook and a moody undertone. While being rather radio friendly, the song manages to evoke a complex array of emotions — desire and longing, frustration and the sense of something being unresolved. But along with that, the song reveals some self-assured and ambitious songwriting, as well as a change in sonic direction towards a more organic, indie rock-leaning sound.