suggestioni musicali a cura di raffaello russo
Title track of the comeback album by Art Of Fighting, out June 7th via Remote Control.
“We’re beyond excited to announce that we will have a new album, our first in 12 years, out on June 7th, 2019. It’s called Luna Low and features ten tracks recorded and mixed by our very own Marty Brown at Brunswick Masonic Hall and Standalone Studios over the last couple of years. It’s been a long time coming but we’re very proud of it and we can’t wait for you to hear it. In celebration, we’re releasing the title (and closing track) of the album, which you can go and listen to right now.
What to say about it? Well, it took us a long time to make it. Which is not that strange for us and our glacial pace. In fact, Marty and Ollie started jamming up the skeletons (ahem) of some of these tunes way back in 2012. When it came to recording it, we tracked it in a big hall in Brunswick to try and capture some natural reverb, which has given it a pretty spacious sound. Thematically and lyrically, the album reflects on some of our own could-have-beens and would-have-beens. It’s about dreams past becoming reduced dreams of the present, ageing and lifestyle colliding, growing up after growing up, and perhaps, it’s the first set of AOF songs that approach these themes with a sometimes playful eye.
Moving on from their delicately controlled sophomore album Second Storey, Melbourne quartet Art of Fighting return with their beautifully intuitive third, Runaways. Described by the band’s front man, Ollie Browne, as “open and relaxed”, the songs captured on Runaways are a mix of introspective [‘Sycamore & Sand’], playful, romantic, [‘Less than an Instant’] insightful [‘Distance as Virtue’] and brutally honest [‘Mysteries’].
“Second Storey was a very considered album,” Ollie recently told music website and magazine ‘Mess & Noise’. “We spent a lot of time arranging the parts and adding lots of textural overdubs and little extras.” “As a response we wanted this one to be far more impulsive, almost as if the songs were controlling us and not the other way ‘round.”
Formed in 1997 by three high school friends, including Browne and bassist Peggy Frew, Art of Fighting in its first incarnation quickly released their debut EP ‘The Very Strange Year’ , followed by the ‘Empty Nights’ EP , both on the Half a Cow label. During this time, the band’s line up continued to evolve, with the inclusion of Ollie’s brother Miles Browne on guitar and keys, and drummer/multi-instrumentalist Marty Brown completing the line up in 2000.
Already beloved by many, the band recorded and released their debut album ‘Wires’ on the Trifekta label in early 2001. Highly anticipated, the album went on to exceed all expectations of the band’s hopeful fans, garnering considerable critical recognition in the process. Late 2001, an absent Art of Fighting made their musical presence felt at the Australian Record Industry Awards ceremony by taking out the ARIA for Best Alternative Release. ‘Wires’ saw Art of Fighting connecting with international audiences also, the band securing releases in the US, Japan, Germany and Taiwan. At this time Art of Fighting embarked on their first tour of the UK and Europe, bringing them to the attention of former Cocteau Twin and Bella Union label boss, Simon Raymonde, who would later go on to release the band’s second LP in the UK and Europe.
A prolonged break followed, the band emerging once again in 2004 with the glorious, aptly titled ‘Second Storey’. Carefully crafted and obsessively detailed, the album reveals a more mature outlook – a slight hardening of the youthful honesty that was characteristic of the first album. The depth of the band’s experience delighted many; tracks such as ‘Busted, Broken, Forgotten’, ‘Sing Song’ and ‘Along the Run’ peeling away intricate protective layers and revealing the darker depths that lay below.
With the remainder of 2004 and 2005 given away to promoting ‘Second Storey’ internationally while maintaining their love affair with Australian fans, Art of Fighting commenced 2006 with their first trip to Taiwan and a series of performances where they previewed the very beginnings of Runaways. Unlike previous Art of Fighting recordings, which were carefully prepared before entering the studio and putting songs to tape, Runaways continually evolved throughout the recording process. With the band happily living ordinary lives in their home town, the genesis of Art of Fighting’s third album involved a long and collaborative process which saw the four band mates relax as they took the time to let their new songs unfold.
With the help of engineer Steven Schram [Ground Components] at the Guruland and Martin Street studios [both in Melbourne], Art of Fighting set about capturing their live sound on record. Long time collaborator Tim Whitten joined the band for mixing in the closing stages of 2006. “When we play live the sound is very stripped back, very spacious,” says Ollie. “We wanted to capture that as much as possible.” “We wanted this album to be very direct, warm and honest: the sound of us in a room.” Runaways was released March 2007 on Remote Control Records (in Australia) and Wonderground Records (in Japan).