Nothing like a little bit of orchestral crunk wave to start off the day.
Flume adds his Midas touch to Disclosure’s You & Me. Tune.
Nothing like a little bit of orchestral crunk wave to start off the day.
Flume adds his Midas touch to Disclosure’s You & Me. Tune.
Rocking up to the Hordern last Tuesday inadequately loaded with only one margarita I had instant doubts whether I had come to the right place or not? What was in front of me seemed like some sort of mixture between a school fete and an episode of MTV’s my super sweet 16. But I scanned my ticket and all was well so I proceeded into the outside area of the Hordern and quickly got myself a beer (one plus about the high teen concentration was the minimal drink lines)
Chet Faker was first up and I unfortunately arrived about 10 minutes into his set so missed his opening (the most interesting parts of a set in my opinion). But this was made up for with the songs I did manage to catch. Chet Faker’s live sound took on a cool organic tone with Nick ditching the laptop in favour of a nice set of keys. It was the perfect start to the night, chilled but so danceable. Considering the large open venue I was pretty impressed with his set, although a lot of the depth in the sound was lost in the echoey chamber and among the constant screams of young girls when ever Nick opened his mouth. I’m Into You was definitely the highlight for me, and from the response probably the crowds fave too with 90% of the venue singing along in the chorus.
Flume comes on and takes up his spot on his podium in front of a big suspended LCD display… he says a few basic words “Sydney how’s it going’….. everyone screams for a while and then he gets straight into it. His intro is slightly obscure (for Flume anyway) and involves a very ambient track I hadn’t heard before with some African inspired samples. The lighting was kept simple with Flume engulfed in black and white projections. By this stage I was already impressed. He then continued to provide a set that hopped seamlessly through his string of genre defining tracks. A sea of phones held aloft by screaming teens captured an impressive LCD display and the Sydney local, sweating it out for the crowd. With a healthy 1 ½ hour set time he managed to get through all the goodies from Paper Thin (one of my favs) to Holdin On and even a few new ones. Early in the set I hear the deep echoey vibe of Major Lazer’s Get Free and instantly my hands are in the air and I’m screaming with the rest of the crowd. Having only discovered the What So Not (Flume’s other crew) remix a few weeks ago I was frothing to hear it live on a big system and it didn’t disappoint.
Near the end of his set he abruptly says goodnight and walks off, an obvious indication an encore is in store. While the crowd talks amongst themselves and start a ‘Flume’ chant I see a guy come out and set up a mic on stage and instantly I know whats going on. Chet Faker comes on stage with Flume for Left Alone, the crowd goes wild and the addition of live vocals makes for a great encore. I leave before the last song to beat the crowd out of the carpark and my head is filled with a mashup of flume songs all playing at once. Although its easy to diss the hugely underage crowd and abundance of crop-tops and short shorts (slash undies) I must say it’s a step up from when I was 15 and going to Robbie Williams concerts with my parents, at least these kids seem to have some taste and appreciation for one of the world’s biggest up and coming producers.
Photo by Patrick Stevenson of Hobogestapo.
Last night, the final day of April, I trekked over to The Hi Fi to catch one of my new favourite bands Frightened Rabbit.
I have listened to their album a couple of times, though not enough to know lyrics to sing along to – but enough to know that I was listening to Frightened Rabbit!
When they came on stage, the place absolutely erupted – the venue was packed of either honest-to-god fans from Day 1 or the kids who fell in love with the Frabbit at Groovin’ The Moo last weekend.
I’m not really one to dance along to things at gigs, I like to stand and listen (I’m also very conscious of being in people’s way) but from the minute they started playing – They opened the show with ‘Holy’ - I was moving – and not just the generic newcomer nod of the head or tap of the foot, I was bouncing around like I was across the road at the Flume concert.
Now – while we’re on that note - The boys from Frabbit had a funny little banter about rocking up to the venue and seeing the Flume Fans lined up outside the Hordern and thinking “Our demographic is rather different in Australia to anywhere else” the audience joined in with the playful banter on the obvious sightings of underage girls in nothing but a pair of denim underwear and tops that are meant to be worn UNDERNEATH their clothes.
My absolute favourite song of the night (apart from The Woodpile – my now-favourite song) ‘Late March, Death March’ would have to have been the stand out performance of the evening for me. Especially as he opened the song with an anecdote about his preschool aged niece telling her teacher that her all-time favourite song was ‘Late March, Death March’ – instead of the obvious Old McDonald Had a Farm – brilliant.
Another banger song of the night would have to have been ‘Oil Slick’ that roller coaster riff would have to be one of the coolest I’ve heard in a very, very long time.
About mid-way through the set, Scott stayed onstage alone to play a little solo version of ‘Poke’ which was an absolutely beautiful performance filled with lost-love nostalgia and followed up by ‘Good Arms, Bad Arms’ where the band slowly rejoined him on-stage – and I mean, who doesn’t love that guitar opening with the pedal? It sounds like Dory speaking Whale – in the most beautiful and best possible way.
They wrapped up the “show” with ‘Acts of Man’ and soon returned to the stage for the encore wrapping the show up with my now absolute FAVOURITE song ‘The Woodpile’ (From latest album Pedestrian Verse), ‘Living In Colour’ and ‘The Loneliness and the Scream’ from their 2010 album The Winter of Mixed Drinks.
This show was one of the best I’ve been to in quite a while (let’s also just say that the recent shows I have been to includes Paramore, KISS & Motley Crue and I’m heading to TOOL on the weekend..)
I give the show 5 Frabbits out of 5!
Getting home was a different story though – between the hundreds of millions (ok, it was probably more like 5,000) tweeny things pouring out of the Hordern Pavilion after Flume… contending the carpark was awful – Turns out it’s still cool to sit in your car and continuously toot your horn at nothing… But hey – not even that could have dampened my spirits on the night!
Words & Pic by Amy C
Aussie electro beat maker Flume (aka Harley Streten) has been garnering quite a bit of attention with his undeniably contagious tracks. At just 21 years old, Flume has been called an electronica/indie genius, taking on music venues around the world.
But don’t let his age faze you. His self-titled debut album was described by Rolling Stone as “scarily close to perfect” and went platinum in less than five weeks after its release. Did we mention his album also sold more copies than One Direction or Justin Bieber in Australia? That’s brush-the-dirt-off-your-shoulder worthy.
His unconventional approach to mixing involves taking elements from mismatched genres, from hip hop to straight up pop—Streten is open to it all. We managed to pin him down to answer some of our questions about his beat-making process, influences, dream collaborations, and to see what all the hype was about. Starting with moving his studio out of his childhood bedroom, the hungry producer isn’t slowing down.
Let’s start from the beginning. When did it all begin?
Probably when my next-door-neighbor’s older brother would play a whole bunch of trance music. I’d go over there when I was nine or so and I’d hear all this music that he was playing, which I guess I hadn’t been exposed to. I’d hear this crazy trance music and I totally got into it. I started bringing CDs over for him to burn new music onto every week.
Do you remember the first record you ever bought?
Well, the first record I ever bought was Aqua featuring some of the singles [like] “Barbie Girl”, “Doctor Jones“… a few other ones there (laughs). That was the first I ever bought with my own money. I’ve listened to Moby for a long, long time—since I was very young to quite older. Also, one of the first records I was ever given was Deep Forest, which is a pretty wild kind of record. It’s world music, so a lot of African scene and stuff like that.
Word on the street is that you got your first taste for mixing from a toy you found in a cereal box at the age of 11. Can you tell us a little bit more about that?
Yes, the cereal box thing is true. It was like a little gimmicky music program that the cereal had in it—Nutri-Grain to be exact. It was one of those free giveaways. I was pretty young at the time and I thought it sounded pretty cool, so I got my dad to get the cereal for me. I took it home and installed it. And I thought it was really cool—the whole concept of how there was the drums on one track, the synth on another, and the bass on another. And if you joined them all together, it would make a full song. I’d never thought of music being laid like that. When I saw how it worked, I became really interested and started poking around.
Growing up, you played the saxophone. When did you make the transition into electronic music?
I played the saxophone throughout school, but I had always been into electronic music. I guess the reason I didn’t continue playing it is because I can’t really play the music that I’m into on it, you know? But I’m thinking about trying to incorporate more in the future with the new music. I’d like to add that kind of live element on stage if I could. I think it’d be pretty cool.
Do you think your music has evolved since you began producing?
Totally. When I first started writing music, I was writing heaps of 140 beats per minute, like euro trance. Really cheesy. And then, it developed into writing a huge range of genres, be it pop music, crazy orchestral pieces with no drums, really experimental stuff, R&B, indie, disco—literally everything. The thing is I like all kinds of music. I think that gave me the flexibility as a producer to understand how all these genres work. And therefore, I could take the best elements of each genre and put [it] into one.
On this weeks installment of Five For Friday we take a look at 5 pretty ace new music videos doing the rounds featuring Portugal. The Man, Beach House, Flume, Eagle and the Worm and Phoenix.
Dear summer festival attendees,
As an avid and long-time music festival-goer, I have, in recent times noticed a shift in the clientele frequenting music festivals. Music festivals used to be not just great value for money, but a whole experience, a getaway, an opportunity to be immersed in brilliant music with friends, nature and your choice of substance. A chilled out environment that people from Australia and around the world would flock to inhabit. A cohesive headspace, where everyone has the same goal and true infatuation: great music. After my latest stint at Falls Festival in Lorne and cemented by the 2013 Big Day Out, I fear that this has died.
Long gone are the chill vibes of Falls. It has been infested by the most insufferable of vermin. The festival dickhead.
The festival dickhead has become an epidemic. It was only a matter of time given the nauseating over saturation of music festivals in Australia. In the same way mosquitoes flourish in monsoon season, a monsoon of sweltering cesspools of loud sounds, overpriced canned alcohol, unregistered food trucks and dirt have created the optimal environment for these creatures to congregate.
How does one spot the festival dickhead? Unfortunately, the persistent animals are difficult to avoid. Festival dickheads are often identifiable by a certain level of intoxication. They have bleary eyes that uncannily focus at the mention of Flume or Macklemore. The most common male coat is the wifebeater with faded short shorts rolled at the cuff. They may be found in fluorescent clothing, argyle knits, or khaki, and be very wary of trucker hats. Not to be mistaken for the hipster, these ‘dickhead’ creatures adopt articles of hipster attire in order to blend into their surroundings.
The female adopts a more flamboyant plumage. You can spot them by their somewhat offensive native American Cheiftan headdresses, glowing flower crowns or felt granny hats, filled with the zombie girl spirit of Lana Del Rey. They dance in a daze, like they’re directing traffic underwater. They congregate in tiny, sparkly clusters, worming their way through the tight crowd and shirking off people’s annoyance with the occasional giggle.
I attended Bombay Bicycle Club’s set at Falls, unaware that I might encounter the pest. Amidst what anyone might assume to be a relaxed crowd, I was attacked, bowled into by an incredibly tall, intoxicated ‘dickhead’ who looked astoundingly like the stoner meme guy. He had a sweaty friend. The two of them worked in tandem to piss everyone off as much as humanly (or animally) possible. They pushed and shoved until the sea of spectators bowed like dominoes, tried to climb on shoulders, including those of little 5”5 me, and continually gassed me with UDL soaked breath.
This summer festival season, and in the wake of the latest Hottest 100, something strange has happened to the alternative music scene. We’ve just toppled over the precipice. This shit went properly mainstream. Everyone wants a piece of festival action now, and people will pour into the once unheard-of Laneway Festival in thongs and chinos to watch a 19 year old play with his MacBook.
Festivals have always been about the combination of music, people and atmosphere. To all those currently poisoning that atmosphere with their ignorant and obnoxious smog, please cease before you kill the delicate ecosystem that is the music festival.
The festival believer.
It’s a pretty damn exciting time for the Australian beats scene at the moment, where such a wealth of talent seems to be pushing all the right
It’s not as if there’s ever been a shortage of exciting beat makers in Australia but more often than not a lot of them are held back or at least limited from world domination as a result of working with local emcees, which let’s be honest to a global audience isn’t the most appealing of accents to grasp.
This new breed have ditched the guest rappers (read: their stoner mates) and instead kept things instrumental or enlisted the services of other local artists like vocalist Chet Faker who is no stranger to international praise himself and started making
Australian beats that hold their own on a global stage.
There’s probably no one that’s creating a bigger buzz in this new musical landscape than 20 year old wonder kid from Sydney - Flume and his atmospheric beats.
He first popped up on a lot of peoples radars thanks to his remix work for acts such as Hermitude (who probably should have got a mention earlier in the article), The Aston Shuffle and fellow beat maker Ta-Ku. Since then he’s gone on to play all the important festivals and as I type this he’s on a plane to America for shows in NYC & LA before heading back here for more summer Festival action including the run of Laneway shows.
I guess with all the hype surrounding him there comes a concern that it might be a bit hard to live up to when it comes album release time BUT if the teaser below is anything to go by I’m pretty confident we’re in for an absolute treat on November 9 when this thing drops.
You can pre-order the record on iTunes already and for your troubles be instantly rewarded with the bangin’ Holdin On album cut to tide you over until release day.
The album is out on the aptly titled Future Classic label.
I’ve had a few musical cool accidents over this week – all of which are constantly on loop either on my computer, my car, at home, or on my iPod. I seem to have a real habit of absolutely thrashing the living daylights out of records that really turn me on – and even then, I never tire of them. I am even listening to one of these records as I type this!
So firstly, I hit Catcall. Now I discovered this track called Swimming Pool ages and ages ago, and loved it. I then ran into Satellites and loved this a little bit more. Then boom – a chance chat with one of my colleagues and hey presto, there’s my cool accident. I spot a copy of Catcall’s album on his desk. I grabbed it. Funny to think that he’s actually the least likely guy to have a copy of this! That’s not to be unkind – I just didn’t think that he’d be into it.
Last night I thought I should do the album and my ears some justice and actually explore all the other tracks rather than just repeat the 3 that I had found and already caned. The 3rd being I Believed – I bounced and bounced and boomed to this! Super sexy with a great wallop of a bass line; my ultimate companion. So flicking thru, I landed on this funky little number which had the most catchy, flirtatious guitar riff, complimented by some feel good 80’s-esque vocals. Fuck I love it – you have to hear it. It’s called Art Star and I think you’ll want to bump and grind to this tune. A lyric which kicks some ass: “my name is Acid, I’ll rain on your parade”…
Check out her album The Warmest Place and see for yourself. Not a one hit wonder in my ears.
The next cool accident was walking into our kitchen to fix myself a coffee and as I did I heard a sweet and sultry melody gently playing from the TV which captured my attention. I turned it up and was gripped to the sound – the visual was pretty amazing too. This young woman who is ultra beautiful, with gorgeous dress sense and natural sexiness sings a song called I Met You. Her name is Anna Lunoe and the track is produced by up and coming beatsmith Flume – I have hit YouTube probably a good 100 times in the last 24 hours – check her out, I am so loving this:
My favourite musical collisions are the ones that happen atmospherically. They don’t come around often but when they do, I feel re-connected to music – and to myself.
I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.
PS: check out Van She’s Jamaica – have managed to let this slip in and out of my ears during all the above listening!