Cool Sounds – Dance Moves (LP)
Debut LP from Melbourne “jazz-gaze” pioneers Cool Sounds (featuring members of The Ocean Party, Ciggie Witch and No Local).
Available on 12″ vinyl and digital.
“Dance Moves likely isn’t the first title that might come to mind when naming an album centred around anxiety, but for Melbourne band Cool Sounds it works. Lead singer Dainis Lacey’s half-nervous/half-demoralised voice manages to carry an entire album despite it always sounding like it’s always at arm’s length. The strength comes from concise lyric writing that focuses in on Lacey’s shortcomings and apprehensions without ever becoming too sulky or uncomfortably personal. Often it’s easy to sympathise with him struggling to leave his front door (“Nervousness”), pouring over his regret (“In Blue Skies”), or just trying to keep hold of everything at hand (“Control”). Lines ring out with sorrow – “I can’t trust myself”; “You gotta know I still got feelings” – and become the melancholic core of Dance Moves as Lacey moves cautiously between self-doubt and desire.
Lacey’s dejected persona is help significantly by a backdrop of smooth Balearic indie rock and glassy synth pop that helps it glide along. Often the music is sweet and lulling, but it’s not without occasional hurry (“Runs Wild”) or fuller substance (“Dance Moves”’ airy but full guitar solo). The main proponent is the smooth sax notes by Liam Halliwell. While often an instrument that might feature on just one or two tracks for music of this style, Dance Moves has Halliwell all over it…
Dance Moves is a quietly noble, personal step out into the open at its heart, and on the surface it offers music that’s easy to get caught up in. It swims in and out of your head and through your body, like a nervous feeling, or indeed, like any dance move should.”
– Ray Finlayson, Unrecorded
Digital, LP + download