This week Australian band Crystal Cities released their debut EP “Who’s Gonna Save Us Now”. The EP collects their songs which were separately released over a period of almost 2 years. This is their story of how their time of recording and practising in a small garage led to their EP with a grand dreamrock sound.
The members of Crystal Cites are Geoff Rana (vocals, guitars), Jared King (bass, backing vocals), and Daniel Conte (drums). The three of them were in a band previous to Crystal Cities, but some the songs they’d written didn’t match the band sound anymore, so they started again. This became Crystal Cities. The first song was their debut single “Cut Me Loose” and marked their new identity as a Dream Rock band.
All three have specific skills that contribute to their sound. “Myself and Jared have a bachelor of music in performance. Jared Majored in Bass Guitar while I majored in Voice”, explains Geoff. “And Dan our drummer has a background in music production.”
With only the three of them they sure know how to create a full sound. They started writing, recording and practising in a friend’s garage, but that didn’t create ‘garage rock’, instead they have a full ‘studio’ sound. “Dan’s music tech skills really come in handy as our songs require a lot of different layers to complete our sound”, tells Geoff. But that doesn’t limit their live performances. “Dan runs backing tracks that we have pre-recorded into his drum pads and then he can trigger them live, giving us a big lush sound when we are doing our live shows on tour.”
“Recording is a big part of the musicians art form and we love being in the studio recording and experimenting with new sounds and techniques to keep evolving our sound.”
The band members love jamming at home together. “And I think this is really important in building your band skills”, Geoff adds, “It’s about having fun and building the skills to become a tight band later on! Our ambition is to be a successful band that can continue to write, record and perform, and make it a successful career for the years to come”, concludes Geoff our interview.
And now the garage door is open and the band ‘set these tracks free into the world and into ya ear holes!’ The EP contains songs that were released over a 2-year period, but is a cohesive collection with a dreamy rock feel, including lyrical themes about social and political structures.
The title track “Who’s Gonna Save Us Now” is about the implications of the loss of social cohesion in our society. “Who’s gonna fix that?”, they wonder. It’s a very catchy song without losing it’s message to the accessible music. Both guitar and the tight beats drive the song so you keep listening and dancing. We like the 2:30 minute breakdown, a moment for thoughts before the song gets back to it’s melancholic yet hopeful sound.
The second track is their debut from July 2015 “Cut Me Loose”, a peaceful, dreamy song. The next two songs best fits their own description of their sound: “dream rock that sounds like Death Cab For Cutie had a War On Drugs with The Beatles”. “Good Life” resonates sunny 60s psychedelic pop and is a celebration of living in the moment. “Talking To Myself” is a classic ‘driving with windows down’ song, enhancing the feeling of freedom and enabling to let go. “Tell Me More” has a tighter and firmer rock sound, while the new song “Binary Eyes” sounds looser and lets some garage pop shine through. The song questions what we would see if everything was made of numbers. Despite the theme of seeing everything binary, i.e. black and white, it’s sound is soothing and even uplifting. A perfect song to end this grand EP with dreampop gems.