Gotta get some Go­tye

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Music - JARRAD BE­VAN

MAK­ING Mir­rors ’ beauty hides in plain sight.

ARIA award-winning singer, song­writer and multi-in­stru­men­tal­ist Go­tye de­liv­ers a rich, de­tailed, exquisitely tex­tured third al­bum that is heavy with hooks and lay­ered with in­tri­cate mu­si­cal trick­ery.

In the past he has leaned heav­ily on sam­ples to cre­ate his al­bums, but there’s a new ap­proach hap­pen­ing here.

As well as op-shop vinyl sam­ples, he’s recorded more acous­tic el­e­ments than be­fore. This gives the songs an en­tirely new char­ac­ter and feel. He works the sounds in his unique way. In­stead of strum­ming an au­to­harp slowly, he painstak­ingly recorded ev­ery pos­si­ble note into his lap­top, mapped the sounds to a midi key­board and played the harp sounds at a speed not nor­mally pos­si­ble.

Tech­niques like this make Go­tye stand out from the pack. But don’t get the wrong idea, the re­sult is not weird or in­ac­ces­si­ble.

He’s a ta­lented alt-pop song­writer. Through­out Mak­ing Mir­rors, el­e­ments of old school R& B and retro psy­che­delic rock also bleed into his mu­sic.

It would be im­pos­si­ble to talk about this al­bum without men­tion­ing the beau­ti­ful, genre-less, chart-smash­ing sin­gle Some­body That I Used to Know, a duet with up-and-comer Kim­bra.

It’s got stun­ning emo­tional punch, is easy to re­late to, has universal ap­peal and feels hope­ful – all in all a crack­ing tune.

Easy Way Out rides the wave of a fuzzy bassline and a straight-faced gui­tar riff. Go­tye’s calm and var­ied vo­cal de­liv­ery is im­pres­sive.

A dusty horn line opens I Feel Bet­ter, which is a perky, up­lift­ing pop song. The or­gans in its back end are sub­tle but es­sen­tial to the song’s suc­cess.

There are yet more horns on State Of The Art, this time swag­ger­ing like a scene from a Play­boy man­sion doc­u­men­tary. Go­tye twists up his voice in a fu­tur­is­tic ro­botic style for this ode to his favourite or­gan, which was a present from his folks.

There’s crunchy, swing­ing beats, a cool walk­ing bass and a re­strained spo­ken vo­cal on Don’t Worry We’ll Be Watch­ing – ‘‘ Don’t worry, just do what we say’’. No idea what he’s singing about, but it sounds ominous.

Thank­fully the mood lifts again with the clos­ing trio, Giv­ing Me a Chance, Save Me and Bronte.

Go­tye has proven him­self a con­fi­dent, ac­com­plished, in­ven­tive song­writer. The sky is the limit for what he could achieve.

GO­TYE Mak­ing Mir­rors

★ ★ ★ ★

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