I’d be lying if I said that some sector of this music critic’s shriveled heart doesn’t love the name Fazerdaze, because I really do, but what’s more is that, like the Grinch Who Stole Christmas, my heart grew three sizes while listening to the music of Amelia Murray.
The brainchild of Amelia Murray, Fazerdaze’s self-titled EP is an intimate, tender and versatile debut that boasts impressive quality for a bedroom production.
Coming out of New Zealand, home of such excellent things as Flight of the Conchords, Lord of the Rings, Kiwi Birds and The Haka, Fazerdaze’s debut, self titled EP is bedroom pop at it’s bedroomiest. Combining drum machines, Bored Nothing-esque guitar work and double-tracked vocals, Murray’s music is quaint, it’s personal, and it’s easy to lose yourself in.
Driven by a range of guitars and Murray’s hazey, reverbed vocals, this EP is a piece of home broken up into small, digestible stories for the listener. From the summer-y Jennifer that offers shades of Lisa Mitchell, to the fuzzy, angst-filled Tired of Waiting, each song offers a differing side to Amelia Murray’s songwriting abilities and influences. Combined with a very intimate, self-produced ambiance, these tracks don’t hold back on tenderness. These songs are designed to feel close and familiar. While at times, certain lines can feel a little too drawn out, such as the guitar picking on Somethink or the electric strumming behind Zero, these are minor infractions, and don’t take away from the listening experience as a whole.
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Although this is a self-made, self-produced release, the EP is surprisingly palatable to ears, with care taken for each individual track to sound as complete and considered as possible. Murray’s vocals, though often veiled behind a wall of reverb, atmosphere and double-tracking, are quite stunning, particularly on the track Tired of Waiting, and is one of the most arresting features of Fazerdaze’s music.
For a debut release, Fazerdaze’s self-titled EP showcases striking songwriting potential from this NZ artist, and will hopefully lead to future releases from Amelia Murray. Made in one bedroom, reviewed in another, Fazerdaze will prove to be a steadily maturing project as Murray grows as an artist and continues to develop her craft.
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