Opening with some beautiful minor chord piano, ‘White Cliffs’ – the debut single by Belgians Antler – is a chilled, mellow little alt-rock track ballad, all gently swelling guitar chords, piano parts, and mature, focussed vocals courtesy of frontman Dean Vandeplassche. There’s a definite indie feel to this, that sort of dreamy, psychedelic Tame Impala feel; think Beach House, Yumi Zouma, or Still Corners, that dream-pop vibe reminiscent of Nicholas Allbrook, Cameron Avery, or Noir Disco, with some Barbagallo-style vocals. It’s that kind of relaxed, melodious, and easy-going thing; calming, sweet-sounding, and well-rounded, and for a first single it bodes very, very well for Antler’s future.
Melbourne two-piece Zone Out have emerged with a second taste of their forthcoming LP ‘Transience’.
New single ‘Breakdown’ employs much the same approach that saw their debut release ‘Inside’ so well received (and already rubbing shoulders on-stage with the likes of Homeshake, Sonny & the Sunsets and Lost Animal, despite their relatively recent conception).
Masterfully blending elements of new-wave, dream-pop and electronica, ‘Breakdown’ basks in it’s own rich, broody soundscape, bringing to mind ‘80s synth-pop syndicate Berlin.
Originally forming in 2012, the Melbourne-based ex-shoegazers dispersed in 2014 following a string of critically acclaimed independent releases.
2015 has seen one-half of the band’s original lineup in Ashley Bundang (Totally Mild, Sui Zhen, Ciggie Witch) and Dove Bailey (Scotdrakula) re-assemble with a new direction, though very much the same manifesto.
Despite boasting a brighter, more pop-inflected sound, Zone Out are no less fittingly titled. The new-look outfit released their debut 7” single ‘Inside’ late last year, chanelling ʻdream-popʼ at its slow-burning best – fragile in nature, yet full-bodied in sound. Each strum of the guitar and croon of the voice simply drips with reverb and bursts with charm.
Bundang’s lilting vocals paired with Bailey’s jangly guitar-interplay on ‘So Bright’ recall Teen Dream era Beach House , whilst a syncopated beat and swirling synth pad draw stronger comparisons to their more electronica-influenced neighbours, Yumi Zouma .