New Music

Listen: Leafy Suburbs – Magic Eye

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Perth’s Lyndon Blue is a prolific contributor to the surprisingly busy Perth electronic scene via his involvement in acts as varied as Spirit Level, Seams, Solar Barge and Heathcote Blue. Leafy Suburbs is his solo electronic project, led by beats and clipping explorations that fade out much more quickly than what the genre’s staples usually warrant.

‘Magic Eye’ is a preview from an upcoming cassette on Perth’s Pouring Dream, the label who also hosts Leaving, who we featured last week. ‘Magic Eye’ lives in a similar realm to the recordings that appears on his LP ‘Slow Lights’, clashing aspects of house and techno with more ambient and exploratory passages.


You can listen to Leafy Suburbs’ most recent LP ‘Slow Lights’ on bandcamp.

New Music

Listen: Leaving – Modern Version

Modern Version

Leaving is the solo project of Perth’s Rupert Thomas, a sparse counterpoint to the more directly expressive forms of music he has contributed to as a part of Erasers and Split Level. ‘Modern Version’ was recorded on a four-track tape recorder earlier this year, and while it doesn’t retain the ragged shapes that often follow the four-track, it seems to have been an influential medium. There’s a sparsity here that’s surprisingly gripping.

Like most good ambient music, ‘Modern Version’ is unlikely to remind anyone of anything in particular. It recalls little more than whatever lies in the most absent recess of your mind at the time of listening. Listening to ‘Modern Version’ gave me a fleeting taste of what having an appreciable attention span must feel like – it was pretty comforting.


‘Modern Version’ appears ahead of an LP to be released at the end of this year on Perth label Pouring Dream.


I Had No Fun: Division Four’s 1983 Demo Cassette EP reviewed


On this reissue of Division Four’s 1983 cassette demo, dual bass players, a synth and a flange pedal create murky backings to the sinister thoughts of a Perth band left forgotten for thirty years. It can sound alien to its time and place, but there are landmarks. The vocals are filtered through Perth’s freely-settled colonial voicing, and overtones of forced UK post-punk swagger are ever-present. Every well rounded lyric has a snarl leering around the back of it, and the effect of the record overall is much the same: this is immaculately butchered flesh that’s been minced joylessly and efficiently.

Division Four concern(ed) themselves with timeless aspects of modern society. Over six tracks, the characters who haven’t fled the dying city of Perth 1983 remain to poke fun at the tabloids, stalk ex’s and fuck strangers for smack money. Cops are horrified by the sights of their work; Azaria Chamberlain’s ghost is mocked three years after it was spirited in 1980; a girl closes her eyes and holds out her hand; a man relentlessly searches the streets for who he believes to be his runaway bride; and an underground civilisation clutches for converts from society’s warm touch. It’s perverse.

The record chokes under tailor-made affronts that, from dehumanised relationships to severed clitorises, are fucked up and discomforting. Down-trodden warbles soundtrack the line, “Open your wallet and I’ll open my legs / Fuck me ‘til you’re broke,” while a jaunty synth line dances over the stalker’s anthem ‘I Was Walking’ Elsewhere, jabbing synths and dirty-sink basslines round out a record that envelopes and attacks without ever resorting to something as simple as brutality to get its kicks.

As far as I know, this reissue is all that’s been preserved of Division Four. It’s satisfying in the same way that finding a 20-year old couch within dragging distance of your sharehouse is, but it’s not like it’s a vital or illuminating artifact. I like it because it doesn’t necessarily feel like it came from 1983 or from Perth specifically, and maybe it’s that (alongside its own inherent qualities as a truly disturbed and entertaining record) that justifies its existence as a document.


DIvision Four’s 12 inch is available through Smartguy Records. It’s available in Australia through Distort.

New Music

Listen: Erasers – This Stays On My Mind


Erasers has always come across as Western Australia’s answer to Fabulous Diamonds. ‘This Stays On My Mind’ doesn’t do much to change that impression: Rebecca Orchard’s nonchalant, doing-her-tax-while-watching-Stateline vocal demeanor still sounds a lot like Nisa Venerosa, and the instrumentation is pretty similar too.

Still, there’s room for two bands like this, especially when most bands in Australia sound like Wavves or Vampire Weekend. And there are elements here that distinguish Erasers: the almost schmaltzy but unaccountably effective electric guitar line drives this track alarmingly close to latter-day Pink Floyd at times, but most will prefer to blame it on German influences.

‘This Stays On My Mind’ is Erasers’ first release since last year’s Twin Spurs EP, which explored a more sedated, new age realm. No word on a longer release to come as yet.

New Music

Listen: Leaving – Endless Paths


Leaving is the solo ambient synth concern of Perth resident Rupert Thomas. He’s released at least three digital and cassette EPs under this name, including 2012’s free-to-download New Needs. Thomas is also one half of Erasers, who released a tape and 7 inch a couple of years ago and then disappeared, so I’m assuming they’re no more (please correct me if I’m wrong).

‘Endless Path’ is a newish track which doesn’t appear on any official release as far as I can discern, but it’s worth a listen and a $0.00 download.