Interview: Leon De Baughn from Crooked Colours on THIS THAT, pre-gig rituals and Vera

With THIS THAT 2017 fast approaching, we're running a series of interviews featuring some of our faves on the lineup.

Electronic-indie trio Crooked Colours have had a chock-a-block year. Not only did they release a stellar debut album, Vera, they’ve also been jetting around on a world tour, playing sold out shows across the nation. Currently touring Europe, the boys will be back on home soil in November to play THIS THAT festival.

To celebrate THIS THAT and the release of Vera, we asked the Leon De Baughn about their debut album, pre-gig rituals, and asked them to play a quick round of ‘This or That’.

After much anticipation, your debut album Vera finally dropped earlier this year! It’s an amazing collection of songs, how long did it take you to pull it all together? 
It was a long process for us. Most of the tracks took awhile to come together. Overall I think we spent around a year on the tracks that made the Album 

How did the process for this album work, do each of you have set roles? Or is it a big team contribution? 
For us its a team contribution. Phil and I bounce demos back and forth until we are pretty happy with them, then we get Liam in to do some drum parts for the songs.
You’re taking this album on a national and world tour, that’s a lot of time together, who has the most annoying habits on the road? 
Would have to be our Manager. His snoring is out of control 

Do you still get nervous before stepping on stage? 
Yeh 100%. I think it’s good to be nervous otherwise you become complacent 

Do you have any pre-gig rituals? Anything to psych you guys up before playing?
We’ve just started planking pre-show. I think we can do about 2mins plank time which is pretty good for us as we are pretty unfit 

One of my favourite tracks on this album ‘I Hope You Get It’ features Aussie hip-hop hero Ivan Ooze, how did that collaboration come about?
We had that song on the back burner for awhile as Phil wasn’t able to put a vocal melody to it. We thought it we would be cool to put a rapper on it. That's when Ivan Ooze came into it and smashed it. He sent the track back the next day with finished vocals.

Aside from Australia, where has been your favourite place around the world to play? 
We just finished a tour in Germany and it was sweet. Really cool seeing people from another country vibing our music

You’re no stranger to the festival circuit, but what are you most looking forward to about playing THIS THAT?
Really keen to see The Presets play. I’ve heard they have new tunes on the way so hopefully, they drop a couple!

2017 has been a big year for you and you’ll be kicking 2018 off with the North America leg of your tour, do you have any downtime planned after that? 
Yeah, absolutely going to lock into writing the second record

Now to celebrate THIS THAT, we’ve got some quick-fire questions…

All leather or all lyrca outfits on stage? Lycra 
Post gig sausage sizzle or Maccas run? Maccas 
Play a midnight set or a sunrise set? Sunrise
Back up dancers or acrobats on stage? Acrobats
Your mum or your grandma to name your next album? Mum

Written by Rowan Montgomery 

THIS THAT festival takes place on Saturday 9th November at Wickham Park in Newcastle. Snap up your tix here

You can check out our THIS THAT feature with Godlands via the link

Video Premiere: Sonori – 'Vanity'

Today, Sonori, who are based in the Blue Mountains, release the music video for their debut single 'Vanity'. The single is a dynamic and soaring number that captures your attention straight from the get-go. It also showcases elements that are cinematic and bold. The music video accompanying the single accurately depicts the cinematic nature of track — presenting an array of picturesque scenes. 

The video was filmed in a stunning old church within their hometown of Katoomba. It was shot by Big Button Films and directed and produced by Jasper, who is a band member of Sonori. 

The single is set to feature on their upcoming debut self-titled EP, which will drop on November 20th. Note it down, Sonori are definitely one to watch. 

You can pre-order the EP here, and purchase the EP version of 'Vanity' via this link.

Gig Review: Migos | 6LACK | Melbourne | 15.10.17

Photographer: Kristy Smolcic 

Fans of Migos have been eagerly awaiting for the trio from Atlanta to finally make their way to Australia. The timing couldn’t be any more perfect for Quavo, Offset and Takeoff — 2017 has been their year. They finally got their first number one hit with ‘Bad and Boujee’, dropped an album (with another one already on the way with Culture 2), and have been dominating social feeds near you. 

Opening for the trio was 6LACK, who also hails from Atlanta. Before 6LACK hit the stage, there was a ticketing drama at Hisense where patrons couldn’t get into the venue. It was difficult to make sense of what was going on, but it seemed that there was either a problem with the ticket scanners or the metal detectors. Again, it was hard to see what was going on, but there were hundreds of impatient fans standing around. Thankfully, the promoters delayed 6LACK’s set so there was more time for everyone to enter and see 6LACK. Once in, fans were treated to an excellent display of lyricism and amazing live vocals from the up-and-comer.

It was finally time for the moment everyone was waiting for. I know it’s cliche to describe the incredible energy from the crowd, but it felt like the crowd at Migos were possessed (in the best possible way). They were ready for this and it was obvious that they have been waiting for this for a while. Without the passion and love from the crowd, Migos' set wouldn’t have been as impactful. In fact, they had all the components of a memorable show — the pyro, confetti, production values and the over-enthusiastic crowd — but, their live vocals were subpar. Luckily, their awful autotuned mics were drowned out by the constant excitement of the crowd. But, if you were to remove the crowd and all the bells and whistles, what would have been left was well-below average vocals and ad-lids. If I were to only review the atmosphere of the night, then this would be a raving review. However, patrons aren’t just paying to have a good time, they’re paying for the performers on-stage to sound decent. 

They played a range of hits, primarily beginning with tracks from their most recent release Culture, including ‘Get Right Witcha’, ‘Slippery’ and ‘Kelly Price’. They then played some of their older cult-hits like ‘Hannah Montana’ and ‘Fight Night’, as well as ‘Bricks’, which was their collab with Carnage. They progressed through the night eventually playing their 2017 hits ‘Bad and Boujee’ and ‘T-Shirt’.

Overall, Migos did what we expected them to do — bring the fire (literally and figuratively) and appease fans who worship them to the death. 

Written by Amy Smolcic


Feature: Local Artists We're Lovin' Right Now – 13.10.17

As you have probably noticed, we've been off the grid on a mini-break. We're super stoked to be back! To celebrate our return, we've rounded up some of our fave tracks that we've missed out on since we were away. If you're stuck on ideas for your weekend playlist, don't stress, we've got you covered!

'Moth' is poignant, mesmerising and truly beautiful. Everything Lupa J creates turns into gold, and this is no exception. 

It's high powered, and I love it. Hit play and let off some steam to 'Sunny Trude' right now! 

'Light That Fades' sounds like heaven to the ears. All it takes is one listen and you'll be as hooked as I am. Do it.

'Into The Light' is extremely catchy and infectious, and I'm certainly not complaining. 

Magic. Absolute Magic. Thank you The Cactus Channel.

Written by Amy Smolcic

Album Review: St. Vincent – MASSEDUCTION

St. Vincent (aka Annie Clark) is an artist who plays with form rather than popularity. Her music is often robotic, frantic and upbeat — meaning it’s tons of fun and recklessness without the emotion. MASSEDUCTION, is all the electronic artistry but this time tenderness pushes its way through.

The album is about love, heartbreak and drugs. The first song introduces us to the dichotomy of the album, ‘Pills’. It’s playful, with a sing-song chorus and a great mini-guitar solo. The song feels very St Vincent until the experience gets flipped at the end and the electronic beat transforms into a sweet, long guitar strum. The song becomes Beatles-esque, Clark’s voice becomes tender as she sings out to us: ‘come all you wasted, wretched and scorned ... come join the war.’ Now we know how this album is going to go. Now we know two musical identities Clark will inhabit. There’s also a steamy saxophone ending to the song.

Clark has said that this is her most personal album yet. And for the first time, I really do feel invited into her life experiences, as opposed to just the surreal artistic landscape of her mind. The best songs on the album are the ones which embody both the crazy robotic sound she’s known for and the vulnerability she is introducing us to.

‘Savior’ does this exceptionally. It starts with a funky beat, clear vocals — it’s stripped back and synthetic. ‘I can’t be your savior ... dress me in leather, that’s a little better’ Clark spits out, almost spoken word-like. Then the chorus comes in and the song transforms into a romantic epic. ‘But then you say, please.’ The whole chorus is that one sad six-letter word but it’s enigmatic hearing Clark sing it, a wave in her delivery.

Transitioning from ‘Savior’ to ‘New York’ (another tender tune) is lovely both musically and thematically. When ‘Savior’ deals with Clark being unable to take on the role other people want from her, in ‘New York’ she mourns the loss of ‘the only motherfucker in this city who can handle [her].’

This album is not exactly easy-listening. The execution of the passionate, acoustic moments is so good that it will grab your attention back and make you really feel it. That’s not to say that there aren’t any purely pop beats to enjoy. ‘Young Lover’ is a fun, poppy tune with just the right amount of guitar and electronics in the concoction. ‘Masseduction’ is a glamorous song with the timely lyrics ‘I can’t turn off what turns me on’ — which I can just see being everyone’s caption on Instagram for the next couple of months.

All in all, MASSEDUCTION is classically a St. Vincent album, with a little extra. Whether this one will become a cult hit, like the previous album, is hard to pick. But, give it a listen, it’s worth letting yourself open up to its emotion.

Written by Iryna Byelyayeva

Feature: We Play 'What Song...' with Rya Park

Melbourne's Rya Park recently unleashed her catchy new single 'Billy'. Inspired by the likes of PJ Harvey and Florence + The Machine, the soulful alt-rock singer has been creating waves with her authentic sound, stunning lyrics and powerful vocals. 

Rya Park has dates coming up in Sydney and Melbourne next month, scroll down to find out when and where. 

What song reminds you of your youth?
I used to have a cassette player and I would listen to this song on repeat no matter where I was. My parents love INXS and always had it playing in the background at dinner parties. When I was meant to be in bed asleep I’d sneak out onto the couch just to listen to the music and listen to the chatter of the adults.

What song is your ultimate party track?
My friends get a bit worried when this song comes on at a party because they know I’m going to go wild for it. It’s such a killer track and you just can’t not boogie when it comes on.

What song do you listen to before you jump on stage?
Arctic Monkeys are one of my favourite bands. This song has such an incredible intensity and it just gets me into the right headspace for my performances.

What song would you make your theme song?
I can listen to this song anytime and anywhere. To have this as my theme song would be amazing.

What song reminds you of your first heartbreak?
My first crush moved away to Canada when I was 17 and this was his favourite song, so I used to listen to it on repeat haha.

What do you have on repeat right now?
This song is easily my favourite song of 2017. The quality of songwriting is just incredible and David Le’aupepe’s voice just makes me feel all of the feels.

What song is your guilty pleasure?
This is my guilty, but not so guilty track. It’s just so much fun to sing and dance to and brings back so many memories.

You can catch Rya Park on the road at the below dates:
Saturday 4th November - Oxford Art Gallery, Sydney 
Thursday 9th November - The Evelyn, Melbourne (+18)

Listen to 'Billy' below:

Feature: We Play 'What Song...' with Mario Cuomo from The Orwells

The Orwells are currently touring around the country on tour after a busy year, which has included the release of their album Terrible Human Beings and a tonne of shows. Currently in town for Yours & Owls Festival, Mario Cuomo recently took some time out to share some of his fave tunes. 

Also, scroll down to check out where you catch The Orwells on the road.

What song reminds you of your youth?
'Stan' by Eminem. I just have one of my first memories trying to understand lots of emotion at once at my little desk with my CD player as a little kid.

What song would you love to sample?
I would rather cover something I like, it's already good enough if you wanna use it. Roy Orbison maybe.

What song did you last listen to?
'Born Too Late' by The Poni Tails 

What song do you wish you collaborated on?
An Angel Olsen song, definitely a chick, she's got heart and isn't faking. I'm sure I'll meet some cheap knock-off that would be down.

What song is your ultimate party track?
UGK (Underground Kingz) - 'Int'l Players Anthem (I Choose You)'.

What song has been your favourite track of this year?
'Bodak Yellow' by Cardi B. It's been a hell of a year for music.

Tour dates:
Thursday 28th September - Melbourne - Red Bull Sound Select - *Free Show*
Friday 29th September - Sydney - Red Bull Sound Select - *Free Show*
Saturday 30th September - Central Coast - Sweaty Palms 
Sunday 1st October - Wollongong - Yours & Owls Festival
Monday 2nd October - Wollongong - Yours & Owls Festival Wind Down Party @ RAD  
Wednesday 4th October - Sydney, Sosueme @ Beach Road Hotel

Feature: The Inspiration Behind... 'The Birds' by Halycon Drive

Michael Oechsle from Halycon Drive recently took some time out to give us a little insight into the inspo behind their track 'The Birds'. Halycon Drive are currently prepping up to kick off their single tour for 'The Birds', which will include stops around the country. You can find their tour dates below!

'Cough Cough' - Everything Everything
As longtime alt-pop heroes of ours, this tune by Everything Everything is a modern classic in our eyes. We’d like to think a little of the cutting production and stabbing percussion has made its way into 'The Birds'.

'Dinner For Two' - David Byrne & St Vincent
I was flogging this album during the making of our latest record, and I just love this song. Beautiful songwriting, lyricism and some lovely melodies to boot.

'Burial' - Miike Snow
It was the snare roll in the chorus of this we took as a reference when in the studio for 'The Birds' chorus. A nice percussive change up - something we’ve never really tried on a Halcyon Drive tune before.

'Never Be Like You' - Flume
A reference we used in the studio and when mixing 'The Birds'. So many little creative production details in here that pop out and smack you in the face.

'O.N.E' - Yeasayer
Longtime pop-influencers of ours. Love the percussion in this tune.

'Fall At Your Feet' - Crowded House
While maybe not an explicit reference, I was going back trying to think of which Neil Finn melody (because I’m sure it was one) subliminally influenced 'The Birds' chorus melody. This could easily be it!

'Idiot Oracle' - Paul Dempsey
See above. If it wasn’t a Neil Finn melody had to be old mate Paul Dempsey. A master of the long, sorrowful tune.

'Seeds' - TV On The Radio
TV On The Radio are so often a production reference for us here at Halcyon Drive HQ. That dark synth bass in Seeds has definitely made its way into our stuff in recent times.

'Bulletproof' - Mutemath
The edgy Juno-esque synth chords from the bridge of 'The Birds' are heard all over Mutemath’s album Vital’s, particularly this tune. As usual for us, Mutemath were listened to regularly during the creation of The Birds.

'Out Of Line' - Gesaffelstein
Max has listened to Gesaffelstein’s Aleph album fairly intensely in the past! So the industrial dance percussive layers would have almost certainly subliminally influenced or encouraged the percussion heard in 'The Birds'; in feel and arrangement.

Listen to 'The Birds' by Halycon Drive below:

If you enjoyed the playlist, you can also stream it on Spotify via the link.

You can catch Halycon Drive on the road starting tomorrow at the below dates:
Thursday, September 21st - Marly Bar, Sydney
Saturday, October 7th - Yah Yah’s, Melbourne
Thursday, October 12th - The Front Gallery, Canberra
Friday, October 13th - Record Crate, Sydney
Saturday, October 14th - Rad Bar, Wollongong
Friday, October 27th - Black Bear Lodge, Brisbane
Saturday, October 28th - SolBar, Maroochydore
Sunday, October 29th - Broadbeach Tavern, Gold Coast

Gig Review: Billie Eilish | Melbourne 15.9.17

Not many fifteen-year-olds can say that they've been able to tour the world with their music — Billie Eilish is one of the few exceptions. Though she's only new to the scene, she's been creating waves, especially after the release of her debut EP Don't Smile at Me

Opening for Billie Eilish was Melbourne's very own Alice Ivy. The multi-instrumentalist killed it on stage in a magician-like manner, creating beats, playing instruments and jumping on the vocals. Her energy and skill left everyone in The Toff in awe. If you ever see the news of Alice Ivy playing a show in a town near you, do yourself a favor and grab your yourself a ticket. 

Billie Eilish kicked things off with 'COPYCAT' and 'idontwannabeyouanymore' in dazzling fashion, next up was 'watch', where she kept everyone hyped up. She grabbed the ukulele and launched into a cover of Drake's hit 'Hotline Bling', which was without a doubt one of the highlights of the night. She deconstructed the track and stripped it down before launching into 'Party Favor'.

The relationship between Billie and her brother Finneas O'Connell was a beautiful sight. Finneas produced her debut EP and works with Billie on her music. Billie gave her brother a shoutout, before giving him a moment to take over the mic and perform his own tracks. If Billie and Finneas aren't your sibling goals, you're doing it all wrong. 

For the remainder of the set, she played the rest of the tracks her EP, including tracks such as 'l i s t e n', 'my boy', 'hostage' and 'open eyes'. After disappearing for a few moments, she returned to the stage for a well-earned encore, giving her fans 'bellyache'.

Billie Eilish won't be playing intimate venues like The Toff for very long, she'll be selling out arenas across the globe in no time. Now to sit back and watch her dominate. 

Interview: Godlands on THIS THAT, 'Finally' and live shows

With THIS THAT 2017 fast approaching, we're running a series of interviews featuring some of our faves on the lineup. 

After dropping her hit 'Finally' recently, Godlands is now on everyone's radar. With even more new music coming soon, she's one to look out for! To celebrate THIS THAT, we asked Godlands about 'Finally', live shows and asked her to play a game of 'This or That'.

THIS THAT festival takes place on Saturday 9th November at Wickham Park in Newcastle. Grab your tix here

Congrats on your single ‘Finally’ We've had it on repeat since I first heard it a couple weeks ago, what was the process of putting it together?
Thank you! I always start with a good beat I like and then build off of that. Then played around with a  bunch of different lead sounds. The plucks came together first and then the second drop lead. Soon after the melodic side came! I think I just played around with a heap of ideas and then it all fell together.


If you had to take any non-electronic track and make a trap remix out of it, what would you choose?
The Kath & Kim theme song

When playing live, what’s your favourite track to play to get the crowd amped?
Finally ;)

Do you approach playing festivals differently than club shows? 
Certainly. If there are songs that I play in club gigs by artists on the festival line-up, I won't play it because that's DJ etiquette. But generally, with festivals, you get to go as hard as you like, whereas unless you're a headline act sometimes you have to pull it back and cater to a time slot. I love playing festivals as I have free reign to show exactly what I love!

There’s quite a few incredible electronic artists playing THIS THAT this year, is there anyone you’re looking forward to catching? 
The lineup is fire, there is no one I don't want to see tbh. Alison is always a favie, Paces and Luude are my dudes. Zeds will bang. EVERYONE GUYS I CAN'T DECIDE.

What else do you have in-store for 2017? 
I'm about to go on tour with Shockone this October and November, which I'm stoked about! Plus I have 2 more singles out before the end of the year, so keep an eye out.

Now in the spirit of THIS THAT, we’ve got some quick-fire questions where you choose one or the other...

Gig on a boat or an island? 
Either would be so okay with me.

Rihanna’s Anti or Rihanna’s Rated R
This is an unanswerable question.

Lasers on stage or confetti? 
Confetti in the day, lasers at night 

Eating before or after a gig? 
Before. You must line the stomach before delving into your rider.

Diplo or James Van Der Beek playing Diplo on ‘What Would Diplo Do?’ 
OR James Van Der Beek playing Diplo and Diplo playing Dillon Francis?

Interview: Memphis LK from SAATSUMA on Overflow, water and dance moves

SAATSUMA recently released one of my favourite albums from the year thus far. Memphis LK from the duo shared the process of putting Overflow together, the theme of water and how they're evolving their live shows. 

If you're in Melbourne on Saturday 23rd September, head over to Northcote Social Club for their album launch! You can grab your tix via the link, and you find out more info here

Congrats on the release of your debut album Overflow, how long did you spend putting it together?
Thank you! It’s pretty surreal having it out in the world after working towards this dream for so long. We spent a solid chunk of last year writing, and since moving into our own studio space in Brunswick we just entered a full-blown writing tundra. We initially wanted to release an EP but ended up having enough content for an album so we just thought, let’s fucking go hard or go home. It’s been a massively challenging and rewarding process, and it's a body of work we are both incredibly proud of. It’s the most honest, open and vulnerable representation of ourselves we could possibly imagine, which is a pretty scary thing to release into the world, but here’s hoping people respond to and connect with it in some way.

Where did you record the album? Did it involve any travel during this process?
The majority of the album was recorded and produced in our studio Grenadilla Studios in Brunswick. We recorded drums at our friend Evan’s beautiful Park Orchards studio engulfed in naycha, and vocals at our mate Josh’s (Smooch Records) studio in Brunswick. I went overseas in May/June while the album was being mixed by my brother Declan. I remember listening to our production mixes while I was away and tweaking parts, obsessing over the finishing touches for each track before sending the sessions off to be mixed. So yeah, I guess you could say the final process of production happened in the back of a van driving through the US.

I read somewhere that water was an inspiration for you when creating the album, which I can hear lyrically and feel on an emotional level as a listener. What aspects of water did you want to capture on the album?
It didn’t occur to me that water was a common theme until the album was finished; we only decided on the title Overflow midway through the mixing process. It’s an ongoing theme that has always been present in my writing, not just lyrically but in the production as well. I’m constantly drawn back to it. The fluidity of water, it's beautiful, almost poetic imagery, the unattainable nature of water, its purity, its calming, comforting effect, contrasting with its unpredictability, and sometimes has panic/anxiety-inducing properties.

Listening to the album, I particularly loved ‘With U’. How did that track come about? 
Thank you!!! That’s one of my favourites too, so it’s nice to hear others connect with it in the same way. This song was actually co-written with our friend Joel Ma and was one of the first SAATSUMA songs ever written. It has evolved so much since then — we basically re-produced the entire thing and changed the outro entirely to make it feel more cohesive with our sound. Production-wise its one of the more refined, stripped-back tracks on the album, and I really love the space that this minimal production creates. The lyrics I think are something that a lot of people resonate with, as it reflects the fear many of us have of being alone; that we will often stay in something based on ease and comfort even if we’re unhappy, ultimately losing our sense of selves as a result.

When creating music, do you develop your lyrics or the beat first? Or is it a mixture of both?
It differs from song to song, but I think the most common way we seem to work is starting with a beat, then coming up with a couple of different chord progressions, then an arrangement, and working on melody and vocals towards the end. The lyrics almost always come last. Once we’ve got a general vibe and structure we’ll just start refining parts and layering synths and textures. Cesar and I have a really good flow in the studio and it’s always super collaborative and fun. We thrive off each other's excitement when we create new stuff. It’s great to have someone to bounce off creatively.

You have your live show coming up soon at Northcote Social Club, which tracks from Overflow are you excited to perform?
Yes it’s so soon! We’re playing the entire album start to finish which we’ve never done before. It’s a pretty nerve-wracking thing to play so much new content all at once, but I’m really looking forward to seeing how the new tracks are received in a live setting. I’m most excited to play 'With U' and 'Crescent', because they’re both new to the live show but mainly because Maddy (my sis) and I have choreographed some dance routines which is a brand new addition to the live show and a serious life-long dream of mine. Dreams really do come true.

How do you plan on finishing up 2017?
We’re really excited to play lots of shows over summer and do a proper album tour. Once the launch is done we’re keen to get back in the studio and start writing again. Album two here we come. 2017 has been so real, 2018 we’re ready for you. 

Written by Amy Smolcic

Feature: Local Artists We're Lovin' Right Now – 14.09.17

We’ve trailed the web to search for some locals who have been killin’ it lately. Below are some of tracks we’ve had on repeat from our faves!

This one is fresh, but it’s been stuck on repeat since it dropped. ‘Nylon’ is a serene soothing number that features stunning arrangements and introspective lyrics. The Melbourne duo, who are cousins, have created something truly special and I’m eagerly awaiting for their next move. 

Bus Vipers is a multi instrumental from Sydney, and he unleashed his debut EP Federal Highway recently. ‘Palace’ is a wonderland of all that is beautiful about psychedelia and we’re hooked. 

It’s hard not to love 'Don't Let Go', it’s infectious gold. I can assure you that you will have it stuck in your head on the commute home and you won’t be mad. 

We featured ‘Frails’ the other day, but it’s so damn good that we had to slide it into another feature. If you haven’t listened to the magic that is elkkle yet, stop everything and listen to ‘Frails’ now. Do it. 

Melbourne-via-Narooma artist Emma Russack created ‘Body Goals’ as a sardonic take on Instagram culture. It’s a reflective track that looks at the very familiar world we live in where so many are obsessed with the constructed realities of social media. 

Written by Amy Smolcic

Single Review: Sam Smith — 'Too Good at Goodbyes’

After a long hiatus from the music scene, Sam Smith is back with ‘Too Good at Goodbyes.’ Filled with a classic combination of soul, heartbreak, and effortless vocals, this track will win over the hearts and ears of listeners all over.

Listening to 'Too Good at Goodbyes' is like taking a deep breath and slowing down. Delicate, simple and emotional, the song is a definite standout from the hectic and noisy pop chart we see today. Starting off with simple piano chords and that incredible voice, the track gradually builds to a full blown chorus with strings and an epic gospel choir that just hits all the right spots.

A collaboration with Jim Naples and Stargate, 'Too Good at Goodbyes' sees Smith taking on the familiar subject of heartbreak. “This song is about a relationship I was in and it's basically about getting good at getting dumped,” he says in a statement. Smith has always written honestly about his personal experiences and this track is no excuse. Gut wrenching lyrics like “And every time you walk out, the less I love you” will definitely resonate with many listeners.

While I do love this track and will probably play it on repeat, it is worth mentioning that musically, not much has changed. Is this new territory for Smith? Not really. As the title suggests, his 2014 debut album In The Lonely Hour was chock full of bittersweet, mournful yet powerful ballads. Smith’s voice is so unique and emotive, and it would be interesting to see him tackle a gutsier song in the future.

Needless to say, 'Too Good at Goodbyes' will be a sure fire hit. As one of the biggest breakout artists in pop music with over 12 million global album sales and countless awards, it is obvious that Smith is doing something right.

'Too Good at Goodbyes' is a promising insight into what is to come for Sam Smith. If his debut album is anything to go by, I am sure that his second album will be filled with sing your heart out tunes that can help mend any broken heart.

Written by Sallie Rodriguez

Single Review: elkkle — 'Frails’

Fresh from supporting Golden Vessel on tour, Melbourne’s elkkle has dropped his new single ‘Frails’, which is the second from his highly anticipated forthcoming EP. 

Emotionally heavily, ‘Frails’ sees elkkle reflects on the conflicting nature of attempting to balance physical and mental health. In a statement, he says “Sometimes when one begins to slip, it's very easy to let it drag the other one down”. This is echoed in the beat, where elkkle has used haunting and shadowy synths to show these feelings of dejection and struggle. Combine the impassioned nature of the production with his vocals, and it will leave your skin covered in goosebumps. The lyrics are also reflective and capture the heart of the story elkkle shares.

Along with appearing on his upcoming EP, ‘Frails’ also features on Kitsuné’s latest ‘Hot Stream’ collection.

Written by Amy Smolcic

Listen to 'Frails’ by elkkle below:

News: The 2018 Laneway Festival Line-Up Is Here!

Laneway Festival's annual lineup is always highly anticipated, and yet again, the festival has come through with the goods. With an an array of no-to-be-missed locals and internationals, it's the place you want to be early in 2018. Next year's event features festival-exclusives such as BABADNOTGOOD, ODESZA, Bonobo, The Internet and Wolf Alice.

The 2018 festival is also set to feature appearances from Alex Cameron, Father John Misty, Mac DeMarco, The War On Drugs and Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals.

Tickets are set to go on sale Monday 18 September, 9am local time. If you need anymore deets, check out lanewayfestival.com.

Aldous Harding
Alex Cameron
Amy Shark
Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals
BABADNOTGOOD (exclusive to Laneway)
Billie Eilish
Bonobo (exclusive to Laneway)
Cable Ties
City Calm Down
Dream Wife
Father John Misty
KLLO (not playing Fremantle)
Loyle Carner
Mac DeMarco
Miss Blanks
Moses Sumney
ODESZA (exclusive to Laneway)
Rolling Blackouts Coastal Fever
(Sandy) Alex G
Sylvan Esso
The Babe Rainbow (not playing Fremantle)
The Internet (exclusive to Laneway)
The War On Drugs
Wolf Alice (exclusive to Laneway)

Adelaide - Friday 2 February, Hart's Mill, Port Adelaide (16+)
Melbourne - Saturday 3 February - Footscray Community Arts Centre and the River's Edge
Sydney - Sunday 4 February - Sydney College of the Arts and Callan Park, Rozelle
Brisbane - Saturday 10 February - Brisbane Showgrounds, Bowen Hills (16+)
Fremantle - Sunday 11 February - Esplanade Reserve and West End

Feature: We Play 'What Song...' with Toby and Cam from MOZA

Sydney duo MOZA recently dropped their single 'Keep Up' last month and also toured with Just A Gent. They were also named as one of the 17 Electronic Artists To Watch in 2017 by Pilerats. Toby and Cam from MOZA recently shared some of their favourite tunes with us.

What song reminds you of your youth?
If I had to settle on one song right now it would be 'Fader' by The Temper Trap. I always get throwback nostalgic vibes when listening to it.

What song would you love to cover live?
We have done a bunch of covers live and recently we’ve been smashing a live cover of 'Mr. Brightside' by the Killers. Every time we play the song people go nuts. Its timeless. 

What song would you love to sample?
I think after a long hard think 'Bohemian Rhapsody' by Queen would be the song to sample. Can’t quite imagine where to start on but definitely sample worthy.

What song would you make your theme song?
I think our theme song would be 'Radioface' by Gang of Youths. I love the sentiment behind it, the idea of the sense of underestimation and knowing you're striving for something more despite the initial doubt of the "gatekeepers".

Plus one time we were drunk at their concert and pushed everyone out of the way to be up the front for this song.

What song has been your favourite track of this year?
Favourite song of the year would have to be Lorde's 'Green Light'. She's an incredible songwriter and although this one had a mixed response, as soon as we watched the music video we were hooked. Such awesome, honest and effortless passion.

What song is your guilty pleasure?
My guilty pleasure is 'A Thousand Miles' by Vanessa Carlton. Don't care what anyone says, this song is killer, the piano riff is one of my favourite things play and when we play in our cover band it's really touch and go and to us that's hilarious.

Listen to 'Keep Up' by MOZA below:

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