Welcome to Beat’s best of Bandcamp, a fortnightly roundup of the best new Melbourne/Naarm bands and artists making waves on the internet’s most indispensable music platform.
Bandcamp has been incredibly supportive of artists during the COVID-19 crisis with its Bandcamp Fridays initiative, where for 24 hours, the site takes no fee and 100% of profits go directly to artists. Bandcamp Fridays are in full swing for 2021, with the next one taking place on Friday April 6.
If you’ve been meaning to buy some new music, are a seasoned Bandcamp veteran looking for something fresh, or are simply intrigued at what Bandcamp has to offer, then this column will have you covered every two weeks with Victoria’s finest.
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This time last year, Big Yawn released No! — their debut album of left-field motorik sounds. The quartet are well known for embracing various different sides, from moody dub techno and post-punk through to krautrock and minimal wave. So it’s no surprise to see them enlist some of the hottest producers of the moment for a remix EP.
While most remix EPs tend to push the original music in bold and brave new directions, No! Remixes is instead a true companion piece, pulling and stretching the music rather than completely reinventing it.
On ‘Reflex’, Sleep D lend their hand to turning the track into a certified club belter, unearthing the heady dancefloor rhythms that were previously buried in the original. Jay Glass Dubs amplifies the percussion and makes meditative loops out of ‘Body Double’, creating a murky, highly hypnotic alternative cut. Meanwhile, Maria Moles beefs up ‘Doodle Damage’, adding dreamy vocals and gentle synths into the mix.
No! Remixes is out now on Bandcamp.
It’s been three years since the original First Light compilation by beloved Melbourne DJ CC:DISCO!. The original compilation shone a light on artists local and global who were considered underground and underrated, with the support well and truly paying off.
Many of those on the first instalment — including Sui Zhen, Rings Around Saturn, Jace XL and River Yarra — have gone on to do great things, and while Volume II goes for more of a global feel, it’s still a fantastic showcase not only for some unsung talent but also CC’s impeccable taste.
There are two cuts currently available for listening – the sunny, Italo-nodding ‘VGF (DUB)’ by Donald’s House & Lipelis and lo-fi Balaerica of ‘Laamore’ by electronic chameleon Hidden Spheres. The compilation promises to cover all the bases CC has become known for, traversing jazz, disco, house, Balaeric, trance and techno – meaning just like CC’s iconic parties, there’s truly something for everyone.
First Light (Volume II) will be out on Friday May 7 via Bandcamp.
Melbourne clubbing regular Prequel is due to release his debut album on UK label Rhythm Section this month. Love Or (I Heard You Like Heartbreak) is as much the producer’s ode to the feeling of love as it is to Melbourne’s nightlife, with the tracks released so far not only building on his trademark jazz-influenced sound but also expanding it into deep house and funk too.
‘And That’s The Story Of Their Love’ rolls across nine minutes, encompassing a glitchy, percussive beat around the hooky, titular vocal sample. It’s just the kind of dusty, late-night vibe you’ve come to expect from Prequel, complete with subtle jazz flourishes towards the end. ‘Love Is’ — featuring a poem by long-term collaborator Cazeaux O.S.L.O. — is downright gorgeous; a masterstroke of jazz-house that evokes Ron Trent in both sound and its melancholy and meditative nature.
Love Or (I Heard You Like Heartbreak) is out on Friday March 19 on Bandcamp.
Miss the last instalment of our Beat’s best of Bandcamp column? Give it a spin here.