These Idle Hands’ hauntingly restrospective alt-country returns with ‘Meraki’

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These Idle Hands’ hauntingly restrospective alt-country returns with ‘Meraki’

These Idle Hands

Eight-piece Gold Coast Americana extraordinaires These Idle Hands have released their second album, 'Meraki'.

Exploring themes of relationship breakdowns, disenchantment, forgiveness and gratitude towards family, Meraki is the expansive collective’s follow-up to 2020’s critically-acclaimed debut Petrichor.

Building upon songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Murray Webber’s deeply resonant vocals and heartbreaking lyrics, These Idle Hands conjure a beautiful album, uplifted by haunting orchestration and enchanting backing vocals.

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These Idle Hands describe themselves as a collective of like minded musicians. Forming in 2019, 11 musicians feature on the new record, bringing a wealth of musical expertise to each song, which sound carefully arranged but never overwhelming.

The album’s lineup is led by Webber on vocals, guitars, piano, and banjo. Webber’s a self-taught musician who’s previously jammed with the esteemed likes of Taj Mahal, Norton Buffalo and Elvin Bishop.

Josh Morris is the lead songwriter and vocalist on three tracks, also featuring on guitar, Kieran Richardt on the slide, banjo and ronroco (a South American lute-esque instrument), Lauren Illig on violin, Amaya Coburn on vocals, Michael James on piano and double bass, Neil Macleod on bass clarinet and harmonica, KiarosL on vocals, Crick Boue on double bass, Scotty French on drums, piano and bass, and Lachy Dwyer on drums.

It’s perhaps spectacular that despite such an expansive lineup the album always manages to sound both personal and restrained, with each element complimenting rather than distracting from the storytelling nature of the genre. The bass clarinet and ronroco are new additions to These Idle Hands, further expanding their sonic horizons, while three main vocalists lend the songs to mesmerising vocal harmonies.

Taking most of 2021 to complete due the obstacles around Covid, Meraki was recorded at Love St Studio’s with French at the helm, and mastered at 12th & Vine with Paul Blakey.

Find out more about These Idle Hands here.