Tag Archives: folk

ON AN ON – Drifting

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ON AN ON were one of the surprise attacks of 2013, cutting through the barrage of indie bands to appear during that year with an absolutely incredible debut album Give In featuring memorable hits like “Ghosts” and “Every Song” that are still in my playlist today.

The new track “Drifting” pulls it back a bit, even by ON AN ON’s folky standards, showcasing a hollow, melancholy tune with real feeling and emotion. Something similar to the standards of Matt Corby or Tan Vampires, to an extent. Some impressive picking and vocal melodies prove a seductive combination, drawing you in with every sad twist and turn.

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Passerby, Overseas Life and Folking Around: Talking With Luluc

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This article first appeared on The AU Review.

To say 2014 was a massive year for Aussie folk act Luluc would be an incredible understatement. Alongside the release of their critically acclaimed album Passerby, they’ve been touring incessantly, playing alongside with some pretty big names and were named by the Wall Street Journal as one of the Top 15 albums of 2014. With an East Coast support of First Aid Kit coming up as well as a support slot alongside Sarah Blasko at the Melbourne Zoo Twilight Series next week on February 6th, Luluc took a moment out of their busy schedule touring the UK with J Mascis to answer some of our questions.

Congratulations on all the accolades over the new year for Passerby! Wall Street Journal, of all publications, you must have been pretty stoked with that?

Thanks. And sure, it is lovely to receive accolades for your work. But it’s really an added bonus and not what drives the work. You do of course hope people will get to hear your records, so that kind of exposure is very helpful.

The album was released halfway through last year, what have you been up to since it launched?

It’s been a busy time. And somewhat upside down in that we really began touring and doing radio etc after ‘Passerby’ was released, having being bit delayed in our travel plans. But once we got back to the US in July last year we started off doing Tiny Desk at NPR, and live session at KEXP, and then began some serious touring late September with J Mascis around the US. I’m a huge fan of his records, so it was a great first tour to do around the US and now the UK. 

2014 was certainly a big year for you guys. What was your favourite moment of the year?

Hmm, never good at faves, too many! One thing that happened a bit on the J Masics tour was seeing people in the audience singing along to our songs, in places like Denver, Colorado – that was pretty wild. The idea that our music and records had reached people there. Pretty lovely. 

And you’ve relocated to Brooklyn. How do you think the scene there has affected Luluc as an act?

There’s an openness or freedom that comes from being away from home. And to be in amongst a city like New York – such a big, brazen and brilliant collection of people and ideas. It really allows a lot of creative liberation. Very important for artistic work and it’s always changing so it’s a big well to draw from.   

Folk as a genre has absolutely rocketed in the last few years, it must be an exciting time to be releasing music with such widespread love coming in from all angles. What are your thoughts on its rise to popularity?

 Not sure I have any, don’t really follow the mainstream. I’ve always enjoyed great songwriters and ‘folk’ music.

That said, Luluc definitely isn’t a ‘heard-it-before’ type act, what do you think sets you apart from other up and coming folk acts?

 Again not really for me to say. I don’t feel confined or defined by the folk genre. Really our intention artistically is to make our own records, of course inspired by all manner of music and by many other things, books, films etc. But how you put it all together, your own unique take, is what makes any work interesting. To me anyway, that’s always the work that stands out.

Songs like the title track “Passenger” and “Small Window” have been described as ‘fragile’ and ‘deeply emotional’. It’s a rare talent, but what do you think you put into your writing that allows the listeners to actually “feel” a Luluc song?

 Well, I guess I work with my ideas and songs until I feel they are complete. So that my emotions, frustrations, inspirations etc have all been explored in the song, to the point where they don’t burden the work. They are the kind of songs I enjoy, where the writer allows you your own space with the song, whether it’s a personal narrative or a character’s perspective.      

And you’re currently touring the UK with J Mascis, that kicked off last night – how has the response been?

It’s been so great touring with J. And this is our first tour around the UK as I mentioned. The crowds here have been fantastic, very appreciative audiences. Looking forward to coming back and doing our own tour.  

Australia-wise, you have the Sarah Blasko show coming up for The Melbourne Zoo Twilight Series on February 6th followed by a short East Coast stint with First Aid Kit, you have to be excited about coming home with those guys by your side?

Sure, they should be great shows. Looking forward to some more summer too. 

You know when you go overseas, everyone has that one obscure thing they miss about home (vegemite, Tim Tam’s, a certain coffee shop). What is it for you?

Chai. It’s not really a thing in many other cities like it is in Melbourne. It’s usually pretty awful. Think we might need to tour in India. 

Luluc will be playing the Melbourne Zoo Twilight Series with Sarah Blasko next Friday, February 6th. You can book your tickets here.

Passerby is available to purchase now on iTunes.

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Grizfolk – Hymnals (RAC Remix)

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Ahhh, yet again. RAC  has developed another gangbuster remix of stellar up-and-comers Grizfolk and their rock epic and opener on the EP, Hymnals. Both the original and the remix are cool little bastards.

Similar to the earlier single The Struggle, Grizfolk have this ability to drive with edgy rock vibes, beats and pumping electronics with this faint hint of folk throughout. RAC’s remix is just the most unbelievable track for a Friday, so crack a cold one, whack this on and get mental.

Grizfolk’s debut EP From The Spark was released on February of this year and is available for purchase on iTunes.

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Dear Fans of City & Colour…

I don’t mean to startle you. But there’s an act from inside our very own country doing a similar thing to our universally loved folk-hero Dallas Green a.k.a City & Colour. Now, before you start to poo-poo the thought of another artist copying this sound, assuming that no one can replicate the amazing stylings of probably the best of his genre; have a listen. He’s actually really great in his own friggen brilliant way.

This musical mimic comes at us in the form of Death & A Curea solo act that began in Perth, Australia in 2008 with singer Ben Blondel. Now, this next part is just way too coincidental (for anyone that knows City & Colour’s back story). According to his facebook page, frontman Ben is recently more widely recognised as the lead singer from post-hardcore outfit “In League” – obviously drawing similarities to Dallas Green’s continuing stint as singer and guitarist in Canadian hardcore outfit Alexisonfire.

Don’t believe me? Check it out for yourself and let me know if you think Death & A Cure lives up to the comparison.

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