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Kevin Parker is an extremely talented musician, an extremely talented producer and just an all-round nice guy. He’s been kicking goals with his latest release Currents while kicking it bromance style with the equally talented Mark Ronson, but sometimes even the best of us fuck up. In a recent interview with The Guardian, the Tame Impala front man said “I don’t think there is [an Australian psych scene]” – a bold and highly debatable statement. So instead of penning a heartfelt letter to Mr. Parker, here’s a slightly passive aggressive article on the stellar psych act that is Pink Harvest.
No psych scene in Australia? Pffft. Pink Harvest beg to differ, their debut effort Big Fancy Modern Architecture is a clever and adventurous psych rock jam.
Pink Harvest, the trio of Ronnie Frew, Rehn Martin and Lachie Keller, was created in early 2013 after five years of musical experimentation and a solid trip to California. Set out on a quest to coin their own genre of ‘spooky groove’, the Melbourne band radiates 1960’s psychedelic rock with an underlying dark edge. Now spooky groove is getting its moment to shine starring in Pink Harvest’s six-track debut LP Big Fancy Modern Architecture.
You may remember track one Effigy from the quirky, fever dream-y music video we premiered in June. Starting off with choppy guitars and loose, expressive singing from Ronnie Frew, Effigy immediately showcases the band’s relaxed sound before ripping into a misty realm of fuzz. The fuzz dies down and nicely transitions into Rainbow, the first single released off Big Fancy Modern Architecture. If dream rock is more your taste then Rainbow should be right up your alley, featuring a nice combination of trippy delays and mellow riffs that feel like they’re expanding deep into the atmosphere.
Track three Haste and Hunger is the moodier, stripped back counterpart to the previous songs, opting for warm slurred vocals with an underlying groove. It’s a wildcard in amongst other overtly funky numbers but works as a nice break mid-release, showing the trio’s diversity within the psychedelic rock genre. Ride Thee then steps in to raise the momentum again, focusing on thrilling electric guitar solos and steady bass work that ties the song together.
This is usually the point in the album where some artists like to sneak in a filler song and start winding down, but not Pink Harvest! Track five is just as passionate and well executed as the first one, only with lighter twangy guitar tones. Sit back and indulge in the murky sounds of Almond Groove whilst Frew murmurs “And my head keeps spinning round”, echoing the swirling rhythms and bashing cymbals.
Pairing nicely with Haste and Hunger, Pink Harvest is a melancholy piece which rounds up the album. Pink Harvest dips into the band’s classic sound by embracing spooky groove with low vocals and a melody which creeps up on you before bursting into a textured wall of sound.
To put it simply, Big Fancy Modern Architecture is an outstanding work from a band that’s relatively new to the scene. By not only creating an album with diversity, technical skill and just plain good tunes, Pink Harvest are successfully pioneering the spooky groove sound they know and love – all whilst solidifying their place in a particular music scene that apparently consists of ten people. Seems a little silly to limit the genre to just Tame Impala, Pond and King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard now, doesn’t it?
You can support your local Australian psych scene by picking up a copy of Pink Harvest’s debut album Big Fancy Modern Architecture (out now via Bandcamp) or joining them at the official launch party on August 13 at Melbourne’s Shebeen.
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