Sarah Blasko – ‘don’t u eva’
During university I went through a phase of audio engineering and did some work experience in the Roundhouse, a venue at the University of New South Wales. One night I was helping out the house sound tech doing the university band competition and I saw band called Acquiesce belting out folk rock tunes, complete with a violin. They were the most professional out of the usually crappy entrants, but what set them apart was the female singer’s voice. It was just so beautiful I stopped and watched the entire set. They won that competition of course, I got the EP and set out to see them again. But I never did. The band broke up and the vocalist Sarah Semmens disappeared from the music scene entirely. I couldn’t believe it. I asked around and scanned the papers for her name to appear solo or in another band but it never happened. It was very disappointing to think that such a talent had just given up on the music scene.
A few years later I had forgotten about the whole thing when I heard the same voice coming out of Triple J, this time much more mature and confident. It was Sarah Blasko and right at that moment I just knew it was the same Sarah from Acquiesce. Her voice was so unique it couldn’t be anyone else. I went to one of her solo shows and talked to her. She never did explain why she changed her name, but I was just glad she was back singing. That was before she released her EP Prelusive. Two years ago she went to LA and recorded The Overture and The Underscore – it’s one of my favourite Australian albums of all time. I think a lot of people dismissed it as another sooky solo singer songwriter record, but this record had such incredible melodies that only Sarah can pull off.
The good news is she has a new album coming out called What The Sea Wants, The Sea Will Have. The track ‘Explain’ has been on high rotation on Triple J and it is just fantastic, backed by piano and sweeping string arrangements. I couldn’t get an mp3 from her label, so this video will have to do for now. Directed by Lucy Dyson & Isobel Knowles.