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Cabins – ‘Hounds’

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Cabins – ‘Hounds’ (mp3)

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I first heard Cabins when I was helping put together the line-up of showcasing artists at this year’s BigSound Summit. I pretty much loved their demo for the track ‘Catcher in the Rye’ and was sincerely concerned that some studio sheen might cut the bollocks off their sound. Thankfully, it hasn’t.

‘Hounds’ is less of a stoned groove – not just because the cleaner production reduces the general haziness but because the song is more upbeat and direct and the vocals are less drawling. As I said, this isn’t necessarily a good thing since those were the very things I loved about them initially, but some added crispness hasn’ entirely compromised the darker, atmospheric side of Cabins’ music.

This is a track that’s true to their sound – retaining the noodling, reverbed guitars and rhythmic power – whilst also increasing their chances of radio airplay ten-fold, so kudos are in order. Hopefully they get some well-deserved coverage. Looking forward to hearing more stuff from them.

www.myspace.com/cabinsband

Matt Amery

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It’s soo hot. I don’t know if i’ll have the energy to make it through this post without a nap.. But we’ll see… Introducing… *drum roll….. Mr. Matt Amery!

Fledgling troubadour from Sydney writing some great folk inspired tunes. Vocal delivery is reminiscent of a young Paul Kelly, with some sweet harmonies and a knack for coining some great lyrics.

This first single ‘The Boat’ is a track which appears on the upcoming Macquarie University compilation – ‘Universe/City’ (also features Boy&Bear, Bird Automatic, Endusk, Made in Japan) being released in Feb. This version of the song features a fairly stripped back arrangement, but includes a bonus Mandolin solo! For no extra charge!…

Keep an eye out for Matt Amery, and the Mac compilation.
Swim time. Peace.

Mark Moldre – ‘Hushabye Mountain’

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Mark Moldre - ‘Hushabye Mountain’ (mp3)

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It’s been a long time since I saw Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. In fact, it’s a joke amongst my family because I actually had nightmares about it when I was a young’un. Suffice it to say, I can’t recall how the original ‘Hushabye Mountain’ goes, but I’m guessing Mark Moldre’s version is quite different.

That’s right, this is a cover of a song from the aforementioned film, and it is far more Tom Waits than Disney. It’s has a slightly creepy feel about it. In spite of Disney’s intent, Moldre’s bare, carnivalesque atmosphere make’s the titular mountain feel like somewhere I don’t want to visit.

This is weird but also really cool. Especially the whistles at the end.

www.myspace.com/markmoldresolo

Kim Salmon & The Surrealists

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Kim Salmon & The Surrealists - ‘Turn Turn’ (mp3)

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Kim Salmon is no n00b on the the Australian music scene, having started The Scientists in the late ’70s and also this band, The Surrealists, 22 years ago. Despite his age, ‘Turn Turn’ maintains a sense of chaos generally associated with a much younger set. It’s is a minimalist outing driven mainly by rattling percussion and a repetitive bass groove, with some distorted guitar thrown in to add colour. Basically, it leaves plenty of room for the vocals to dominate, with Salmon screaming into each of your ears like a man possessed (or, occasionally, like a frightened woman). It’s short and not exactly sweet, but the wild yet nuanced vocals invite and reward repeated listens.