Throughout this site’s eight year history, I’ve written quite a bit about the Sydney, Australia-based electronic music production and artist act The Presets, and as you may recall, the Australian act, which is comprised of Julian Hamilton and Kim Moyes can trace their origins back to when they met while studying at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. Hamilton and Moyes quickly became recognized for crafting electronic dance music with a swaggering, arena rock energy and vibe, and unsurprisingly, the duo caught the attention of renowned Australian electro pop and dance music label Modular Recordings, who released their first two EPs and their 2005 debut, Beams.
2008 saw the release of the duo’s critically and commercially applauded sophomore effort Apocalypso, an effort that went Triple Platinum in their native Australia and featured four smash hits, including “My People,” one of their biggest songs. Adding to a massive and breakthrough year, Hamilton and Moyes won 5 ARIA Awards — including Album of the Year, 2 ARIA Artisan Awards, the J Award, the FBI SMAC Award for Album of the Year, and they shared the Songwriter of the Year at 2009’s APRA Awards.
The duo’s third, full-length effort, 2012’s award-nominated Pacifica featured Rolling Stone Australia‘s Song of the Year, “Ghosts,” and was nominated for an ARIA Award, shortlisted for the AMP Award, the J Award and was named the Herald Sun‘s Album of the Year, the Daily Telegraph‘s Album of the Year and the Sydney Morning Herald‘s Electronic Album of the Year. The members of the duo spent the next few years collaborating with a variety of contemporary artists — Hamilton cowrote Flume’s “Say It” and contributed tracks to albums by Flight Facilities, Steve Angello and Meek Mill, while Moyes produced an album by DMA’s remixed tracks by The Drones and The Jezabels and started an underground techno label Here To Hell.
Late last year, I wrote about “Do What You Want,” the first single off Hi Viz, an album that was released earlier this year, and unsurprisingly, “Do What You Want” further cemented the duo’s reputation for festival bangers with enormous, crowd pleasing hooks and thumping beats — but with a looped glitchy sample that recalled Boys Noize’s “ICH R U,” Tweekend-era The Crystal Method and Come With Us-era The Chemical Brothers. The latest single off the album, “Martini” is swaggering, house music-based club and festival banger, centered around layers of arpeggiated synths and thumping, tweeter and woofr rocking beats; but underneath that swagger is a bit of desperate longing for someone, who’s out of the song narrator’s league — and in a way the song subtly nods at Phil Collins’ “Sussudio.”
Interestingly, as Julian Hamilton enthusiastically explains in press notes, “Martini was a dancer I used to know. She was everything I wasn’t — cool, clear, strong and with a razor sharp edge I found impossible to resist. In the end, she left me completely undone; a crumbled wreck of a man. ‘But was it worth it?’ I hear you ask . . . Every second.
Each time we perform this song I think of her, so it made sense that Martini’s accompanying video is a film of us playing the song live, directed by our new favourite director and…. well hell I’ll just come out and say it… our new favourite person in the entire world SPOD.” And of course, it should give the viewer the sense of what a Presets live show is like.