There’s a reason Snakadaktal won the triple j Unearthed High competition. These five young Melburnians (who are barely out of high school, mind you) have showcased their impeccable talent to combine ethereal dream-pop sounds with delicate vocal choruses that is comparable in quality to electronica artists such as MGMT and Metronomy. Their self-titled extended play, recently released on I Oh You records, will most certainly hook you in, even if dream-pop isn’t your thing.
This six track record starts off with their shortest on the album – “Wake Up”. One of the softer songs, it shows that Snakadaktal are very capable of creating not just a musical piece, but an atmosphere to go with it. This is also apparent on songs such as “Boy” which features a gorgeously addictive composition of synth, percussion and reverberated guitar.
Instrumentally, the record is pristine. The quintet are able to compose songs that seldom grow to be lackluster despite some songs reaching up and over the five minute mark. Their fusion of varied synthesized sounds and effects along with unorthodox guitar riffs and chords seem to always end up entirely complementing each other in every song. They also seem to see and use their instruments as objects that can do a whole lot more than just play notes, which is evident in the songs “Chimera” and “Carnival”.
While this record, as a whole, is nothing short of exquisite, their major single “Air” which held the 3rd most rotated song on radio network triple j has just one minor imperfection. The vocals in this song start with a touching Shins-esque feel until the secondary vocalist enters and starts systematically yelling out the word “air” which seems to be more of a hindrance than an addition to the atmosphere. This seems to prove trivial to the listeners, however, as this song is a fan favourite.
Overall, Snakadaktal’s debut release secured them an attention-grabbing spot in the Australian music industry if nothing else. If you’re looking for a summer record to accompany you while you’re relaxing in your backyard on a weekend afternoon, then look no further than this – you won’t be disappointed.
– Tom Gaffney