I very vividly remember watching The Rangoons playing this at the Marrickville Bowlo a few months back and thinking, “Wow – this band is cool”. Not in the way that sleeping in is cool, or finding a new cheap pork roll shop is cool. I mean cool in that what you’re witnessing is above and beyond you. It’s cool in that you feel like you’re peering into some sort of secret society that has its own rituals and habits. There’s an excitement and a rush to it, discovering something that you aren’t supposed to. I watched The Rangoons, still and quite but bubbling underneath, close to erupting, as the band rolled the words “Which” and “Witch”, around their mouths, spitting them over a cerebral guitar lines.
The song I heard that day now has a name, “Cult of Thorns”, and an official Internet release as of yesterday. Recorded, The Rangoons have maintained that itching paranoia that contaminates the live version, a subdued serial killer edge of mania smothering the song. I was right the first time – The Rangoons are one of the coolest bands in Australia.
Post-punk is like the weird step-brother of punk, alone and angsty, and into The Gun Club when everyone else was still shitting their diapers:
The Soft Moon – Black
No one quite does ethereal disturbia to the same extent as The Soft Moon. With tortured synths that remind of a maniacal executor pulling out someone’s fingernails and translating the results into white noise. It’s the kind of thing that the new, hip J.J. Abrams’d Darth Vader would listen to on his way to Force-choking a motherfucker. As far as darkwave goes, The Soft Moon are on top.
Orion – Demo EP
Orion have been kicking around Sydney for a while now, confined to a few support slots in our city’s stranger and greater venues, such as 107 Projects and The Lansdowne. However, their freaky, ethereal pop can not be contained! It is simply too great! And with this four track demo EP, thankfully released through Paradise Daily Records, hopefully more and more people will become privy to this little secret. Their sound is like if Q Lazzarus had a shy cousin who adored The Jesus & Mary Chain, and wanted to make home recordings inspired by said recordings, albeit with a little more sadness. Ingrained in 80’s philosophy, Orion excel with bawdy bass, thrilling synths, weeping guitars and timidly brilliant vocals. “Red Light District” and “Sexy Alien” are lite-goth masterpieces.
Dianas – 1000 Years
Recently announced as being part of the Perth Laneway lineup, Perth’s Dianas are two syllables of drop-dead gorgeousness. Take a look at “1000 Years”, a riveting tale of guitar pop, linked with some rough, hurriedly scaling guitar work. It’s like the sweetest thing you’ve ever known grew up on a steady diet of Beach House and Dum Dum Girls. The work is frail and personal, intimate as an Oscar clip, but has an element of hugeness to it, an ideal that this could touch a fair few people around the globe. Overall, it’s just a really beautiful song.