Melbourne’s Magic Hands are a dream-pop duo inspired by traditional music cultures, modern electronic music and 1970’s psychedelia. Their debut album, aptly and snicker inducing-ly named Let Me Hold You While You Fail is the product of twelve months spent writing and recording.
The 10 track LP opens in a slow hypnotic drawl with seminal track Golden Boy, where you will be instantly reminded of a video game soundtrack by the orchestral synths, that is until the hearty mature voice of Lucy Roleff adds a complex character to the overall sound, indicating the demanding listen in store.
Indulgent and calming electronic pop from Melbourne’s Magic Hands’ latest Let Me Hold You While You Fail. The airy and delicate vocals with the ringing electronic melodies is bliss.
Roleff’s voice is confronting, she is the type of female vocalist who seems to have entirely side stepped what is stereotypical of her peers in this day and age. There is knowledgeability and powerful reproachfulness over the mainstream snatch and grab attempt at sounding ditzy and sexy. Some will find it confronting, uncomfortable and outside their safeguards, while others will find it sounds comforting, like a gypsy mother whose dreadlocked head is wrapped in a red bandana.
Honey Dew incites bass throbs as slow moving as a prehistoric beast trapped in tar. This entwined with light twangy guitar notes and a repetitious synth melody is super nice on the ears. Occasionally the voice of Alex Badham slides subtlety into the background, underneath the lead sounds of Roleff to add a deep vibrational hum. This provides extra substance and duality in tracks such as Pines and would actually be further welcomed throughout the album, though it appears not often.
Single Limousine, which we wrote about earlier this year, see’s Magic Hands sounds take a dip in the mainstream. It instantly sounds better than the softer, less layered earlier tracks, but one must ask whether this is simply due to quality, or have we actually have been conditioned to like what we have been accustomed to hearing? None the less it’s a fantastic track melding mellow guitar twinkles with electronic bass that dives and thrives alongside a synthetic hi hat.
As Holy Times marks the halfway point of an already impressive release, it also brings forth an eerie church choir quality to Lucy Roleff’s voice, as is reflective of the title, though it feels as if the electronic bass groove break at the two minute mark could have used an up in volume. This track cements Roleff’s status of having a commendably versatile voice at her immediate disposal, it is one of the most impressive tracks on the album.
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Collarbone invites a pleasant theme of liquid into the soundscape provided by Magic Hands, with drips and trickles slipping rhythmically around the ever present synths that radiate like shining lights, it sets a great mood of contemplative relaxation, like watching light pierce the surface of a shaky body of water.
The prevalent gentleness of Let Me Hold You While You Fail means that you may find the previous tracks not to be so memorable, but that may be in the wake of the brilliance of the track that is currently spinning. Needless to say it brings for a seamless listening experience; just as the Oroborous unwittingly gulps upon its own tail, you may find yourself accidentally listening to the album multiple times without noticing be it on repeat.
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