EP of the Week: Woodes – Golden Hour

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Woodes' sophomore EP Golden Hour is a culmination of her continued creative growth, alongside the classic sound she has formulated since her first self-titled EP. 

Woodes’ new EP starts off with 'Hunger'. With building percussive elements, the thumping and driving rhythmic pulse is a constant companion marching through the song — the bass drum is heavy, but drops away in the bridge of the song briefly, allowing what is happening underneath to be enjoyed. The wild and natural ambience of the track is an essential part of what makes this recording so strong and helps it stand apart from some of the other tracks on the EP.

Next up, 'Dots', helps welcome the listener to the new distinguished sound that Woodes is starting to create emphatically — especially with her use of heavy bass drums and swelling pop hooks. 'Dots' impacts with the high choral vocals and thumping drums continually driving the piece. It helps kick the EP off on a high note through the track's earlier success and leads strongly into the third track 'Northern Lights'.

'Northern Lights' brings in all of the new and old sounds of Woodes’ music. It also makes a big statement through the use of lower moments in the song to let Woodes’ playful and melodic vocals shine through before breaking into a rabble of percussion, drums and choral vocals. It continues on the wild theme that was introduced on the opener 'Hunger' and speeds the pace of the EP up — which works well considering it heads into 'Run For It', a track known for its punchy rhythmic phrasing and bouncing melodic hooks. 

'Run For It' continues the upward momentum of the EP with its rumbling drums and rhythmically paced vocals. Something more akin to 'Higher' (which follows later in the EP), 'Run for It' places Woodes’ voice and melody as the centrepiece of the track. 'Run For It' is placed well within the EP, allowing the energy to coalesce before a moving run to the finish. 

'Origami' is the peak of the EP — the track is also her newest single release. While it doesn’t have the pop swell and push that 'Dots' is known for, 'Origami' stands out in its own way. Its upbeat, bubbly personality and tone help the listener digest the 137 different layers, which creates a unique listening experience each time — finding something new to focus on whenever you listen to it. 

'Higher' plays less on the productive layering that pushed 'Dots' and now 'Origami' to their heights, somewhat snapping the rising tension of the EP and allowing the listener a brief moment of reprieve before the emotional finale. 'Higher' plays an important role, as without these mellower tracks that sprinkle throughout the EP, it would be overpowered by the high-moving singles. 'Higher' is appealing charming and strips away the sounds Woodes uses in her other singles, instead focussing on simplistic electronic and percussive factors that emphasise her soft fluid-like vocals.

The closing track 'Still So Young' is a stand-out on the EP. Quiet in its manner, it remains dynamic throughout. 'Still So Young' has a pure tone that flows beautifully. It is the melancholy of youth that drives this touching track, creating a juxtaposition between the bubbly sound and the nostalgia in Woodes’ vocals. Musically, it stands apart from the rest of the EP. Leaving on a bittersweet note, the song is an excellent piece for the completion of the EP.

Woodes' EP Golden Hour showcases her classic and percussive electronic sound  the EP also reaffirms why Woodes is an interesting and forward artist within Australian music scene.

Written by Daniel Hanssen (@dangigman)

You can purchase Golden Hour here or stream it via Apple Music

Catch Woodes live at the below shows:
2nd March - Sydney - Leadbelly (Tickets)
3rd March - Melbourne - The Toff (Tickets)
10th March - Brisbane - Black Bear Lodge (Tickets)