Way back in 2014, David Bowie, Leonard Cohen and Harambe were still alive, the UK wasn’t marching deludedly out of the EU, we could still watch the episode of The Simpsons that saw Donald Trump as US President and not wince at their aforethought… and APES were burying themselves deep underground to hone their sound, and to write and record their debut album.
And while the rest of the world has pretty much imploded since then, the Ballarat four-piece have re-emerged from their bolthole, album in tow and with a distinctly developed sound sculpted from that intense, isolated period to show us that 2016 has a few silver linings after all.
If You Want It from APES is still energetic, but richly textured in dense layers of sound that assemble themselves into buzzy wistfulness.
APES’ single If You Want It is taken from that upcoming album – Stranger Than Stranger, due out in 2017, and comes from a band matured. Produced by Michael Belsar and mastered by Brian Lucey, the track is wistful – finely spun and more delicate than their earlier, guitar-driven singles like Pull The Trigger and Seven.
The track’s seductive and trancelike, built around those distinctive, hazy vocals that climb into falsetto moments, supported by dreamy, melodic guitar that ushers along the sound rather than dictates it.
Add to that this underbelly of raw, thoughtful bass, a wash of percussion, and thumping, relatable lyrics that you’ll suddenly catch yourself singing inadvertently, even hours later. It’s the perfect summer afternoon anthem; carefully formed, but edgy and blurred all at the time, like a Polaroid slowly pulling itself into focus.
APES’ east coast tour will see them showcase new material from their upcoming album. And, if you ever needed convincing that the band is a stellar bunch, they’ll be donating a dollar from every ticket they sell to animal welfare charity PetRescue.
It’s maybe no surprise then that the accompanying video to If You Want It features a ton of pawsome pooches frolicking around on the beach. And so probably a good life lesson to take from this is that if 2016 has left you feeling ruff and a little melan-collie, you can just watch videos of dogs and the world might feel a little less pawful. Woof.
If you’re keen to catch APES on tour, take a look at the dates below:
If You Want It by APES is out now.