Rock

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music Reviews - Emily Ritchie

Ev­ery­thing is For­got­ten Methyl Ethel Dot Dash West­ern Aus­tralia quickly is be­com­ing the home of Aus­tralian psy­che­delic rock, fu­elling dream pop pro­cliv­i­ties and in­spir­ing in­fec­tious grooves. It’s from the same Perth tal­ent pool that ac­claimed Aus­tralian bands Tame Im­pala, Em­pire of the Sun and Methyl Ethel were born. The trio Methyl Ethel, with its sopho­more re­lease, has cut loose to ex­plore the full po­ten­tial of its sound. Puls­ing synths and syn­co­pated em­bel­lish­ments are in­ter­min­gled with the smooth, an­drog­y­nous vo­cal of front­man Jake Webb to cre­ate a won­der­fully stim­u­lat­ing lis­ten­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. Evoca­tive ideas are paired with ab­surd lyrics, like the repet­i­tive cho­rus of Ubu: “Why’d you have to go and cut your hair?”.

Oh In­hu­man Spec­ta­cle, the band’s de­but re­lease in 2015, lacked a co­he­sion that, de­spite the awk­ward acous­tic aes­thetic of Act of Con­tri­tion, has been cul­ti­vated this time around. Pro­ducer James Ford (Arc­tic Mon­keys, Foals) in­jects uni­fy­ing el­e­ments, par­tic­u­larly in tex­ture and rhythm. Twitch­ing synths and a rich gui­tar hook rem­i­nis­cent of Bris­bane indie rock­ers Last Di­nosaurs start the al­bum on Drink Wine, a strong opener with a swelling mo­men­tum that is con­tin­ued through­out. Femme Mai­son/One Man House hums with a catchy arpeg­gio be­fore it crescen­dos to a far darker and dis­torted place, and Groundswell is self-ex­plana­tory, a com­mand­ing beat that bub­bles from the ground up.

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