Music

The best of both worlds: Introducing twin-headed powerhouse Dhana Bhutan

Dhana Bhutan is an experimental project headed by Ollie Whitehead and William Base, the pair each bringing in a distinct flavour to co-create something wondrous.

Today they drop their newest video, and the first for 2018, an 8-minute jam piece titled Welcome To. Shot entirely on Super 8 over the 24 hours celebrating Melbourne’s last New Year’s Eve, the clip is as evocative as the music itself, a kaleidoscope of character which draws you in like a hypnotist’s pendant.

dhana bhutan ollie whitehead
Ollie Whitehead

Embrace the exploratory world of Dhana Bhutan, a two-piece dreamworld grounded in flawless production and earthly instrumentation.

Whitehead has spent his time as a saxophonist and lyricist in acts like Yeo, Albert Salt, and Francesca Gonzales, whereas Base has spent more time on the production side with Slim Jeffries and MAYA. The two of them are previous members of Animaux.

This blend of in-the-box wizardry and live instrumentation serves as the main push/pull dynamic to Dhana Bhutan, creating a sound in the vein of cinematic wunderkinds like Floating Points, DJ Lycox or more recently, Mikey Young’s solo work.

Welcome To therefore rings with both a cosmic and worldly charm, at times feeling distinctly human and others feeling like pure electricity. The track is a slow crescendo akin to a rocket leaving Earth or a dose of acid taking hold, a sure-moving and evolutionary composition you’ll get absolutely lost within.

The saxophone is a clear highlight, played by Whitehead. While most of the track has a slight improvisational feel, the sax captures the live feeling most honestly. That said, I may just be a sucker for some sax.

dhana bhutan William Base
William Base

Welcome To serves as Dhana Bhutan’s first release in 18 months, the band’s leading members forced to put their project on the back burner as other touring commitments hit hard. Obviously, some pent-up musical energy was hitting critical levels, because this is a fucking jam – and it’s the beginning of things to come.

Dhana Bhutan are back as a full four-man ensemble, ready to hit 2018 with renewed intent. After the wonderland they’ve given us on Welcome To, we’re itching to see and hear whatever comes next.