Chet Faker – Built On Glass Review

Chet Faker’s debut album is finally here, and oh boy are we excited. Built on top of rock solid singles, EP’s and collaborations, the promise of Built on Glass has had ears burning with anticipation. The album certainly delivers and then some, with Nick Murphy pursuing his love of various electronic genres as well as analogue instruments. His charming, soul-soaked vocals providing the sweet little cherry on top. Playing just short of all the instrumentation himself, Murphy has sculpted a sound and album that is at least equally as luscious as his beard (and it’s a damn good beard).

Melbournian Nick Murphy’s Chet Faker project took flight in 2011 with his cover of No Diggity before releasing his stunning debut EP Thinking in Textures, harbouring gems like I’m Into You that earned him AIR and Rolling Stone Australia awards. Along the way were appearances with the likes of Ta-ku and Flume, as well as the hugely successful collab with the latter. Last year, he released the promo track Melt which features on the new album, and earlier this year the first official single Talk is Cheap, two diversely excellent tunes that were fair warning of what was to come.

chet fakerBuilt On Glass is the debut, and long awaited, album from Chet Faker. Contradictory to it’s title, its a piece of work built on the most solid foundations.

Built on Glass opens with Release Your Problems; a slow keyed introduction leads into a wandering, soulful track packed with Chet’s sultry crooning. Talk is Cheap follows, dripping with sexy saxophone from the get-go. The crisp drum machine and flirty synth line are emphasized with yearning vocals, the longing is tangible in the melancholic sax. Melt is a more quirky adventure into electronica, with bassy, loungey sentiments. Kilo Kish features on the track and adds a dichotomy to the vocals; both are effortlessly flawless and seem to fit each other perfectly.

To Me is another standout track, with more simplistic instrumentation and the sax returning to give emphasis to the disheartened lyrics. With a catchy canter all throughout, the track has an instantly addictive quality. 1998 sees Chet dabble in house, with deep bassy synths driving the track, while Gold and Blush front highly electronic composition. Cigarettes and Loneliness – a throwback to Thinking in Texture’s Cigarettes and Chocolate in both name and instrumentation – presents the most optimistic character on the record courtesy of a neat guitar riff. Lesson in Patience is a rather tongue in cheek title referencing the intensive process of recording the album alone, whilst exhibiting in itself the breadth of instrumentation and layering on offer. Dead Body brings an R&B slow jam vibe, with a pretty guitar solo playfully tangled with piano organ fading the album out.

Built on Glass feels like much more than 12 tracks thrown on an album, with gorgeous instrumental pieces dotted throughout, tying the record together. In contrast to its title, the release is built on solid foundations and without a single fracture; Chet Faker’s brand of electronica and modern soul is always on point. Of course, there is a tour to complement the album release, you can catch Chet all around the country throughout June/July. Tickets here. Winter is coming.



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