Archives for posts with tag: Perth

Rat Columns David WestCan’t pretend to have kept up with the journey of peripatetic Western Australian musician David West and his band Rat Columns over the past 10 years, but here we are in 2019 with a hypnotic and beautiful single on San Francisco Bay Area label Slumberland Records (released a year ago in October 2018) – “Sometimes We’re Friends”:

Rat Columns on this single are David West (guitar and vocals), Amber Gempton (bass, vocals), Louis Hooper (keyboards), and Chris Cobilis (drums), with Cohen Bourgault guesting on violin.

Rat Columns have always had a knack on invoking the spirit of all the best melodic pop elements of post-punk and original ‘indie-pop’ era. “Sometimes We’re Friends” pulses along for 5 minutes of sparkling choppy pop with hints of Lightning Seeds and that special Sarah Records¬† euphoric-melancholic essence, while also mixing in textured layers of noise as the track surges to its end.

The songs on the EP were recorded at the same time as the most recent Rat Columns album Candle Power, so if you enjoy the songs here, seek out that album as well.


Michael SavageMichael Savage resides in Perth, Western Australia. It’s half a world away from NZ, but his bio includes a Dunedin link: “…expansive, emotional jangle-psych-pop – think a triangulation of The Lucksmiths, The Zombies and The Clean.”¬† He released his third album “Won’t Die Wondering” last year. Here’s the atypical “To Be Loved” as a Psychedelic Sunday shoegaze treat.

The album is co-produced by Ricky Maymi of Brian Jonestown Massacre, and while there’s heavy psych factor, the album is a varied collection, packed full of lush, crafted, skilful psych-pop and a few dreamy shoegaze trips like “To Be Loved” here with it’s infinite delay wash.

The opening track and “To Be Loved” are a slightly misleading introduction though. After the saturated sonic wash of these two shoegaze-psych songs the album takes on a more varied range of styles with a surplus of melodic hooks.

Overall, the album takes a Sparklehorse (or Michael Penn, if anyone who remembers him) via late period Beatles/ Badfinger/ Zombies style approach to pop-craft, even down to the levitating McCartney-esque bass-lines here and there. There’s loads of acoustic and electric 12-string, a bit of rotary-speaker effect on the vocals here and there to add colour and character to the songs.

Savage is recording a 4th album at the moment, so now’s a good time to check out his back catalogue to prepare yourself for his next release.