Friday, September 21, 2012

Scott & Charlene's Wedding signs to Critical Heights

"Scott & Charlene's Wedding prove to be a cut above talented Aussie contemporaries and far apart from the suburban, feel-good boredom of so many other bands whose guitars 'jangle'." - Ad Hoc

Heartbreak, working shitty jobs to survive and the loneliness of public transport in a city, Craig Dermody knows no other way than heart-on-sleeve. Hailing from Australia but now living in New York, Dermody's debut album under the moniker Scott & Charlene's Wedding is due for release on Critical Heights in November.

Para Vista Social Club (named for the Adelaide suburb in which Dermody grew up) is an off-the-cuff collection of real-life woes, each song spilling out like a soused diary entry. The album is sludgy, hypnotic and true, blending the psychedelic swagger of the Velvet Underground by way of Spacemen 3 with the underlying pop sensibility of the Go-Betweens.

Originally pressed up to just 200 copies with each sleeve painted by Dermody himself, these have now long since sold out, however the album will be reissued to the rest of the world by Critical Heights. Released with deluxe packaging featuring 38 of the different album covers, you can feel free to interchange to your favourite.

The songs on Para Vista Social Club are long, knotty jams, often digging into a single idea and not looking up for the next few minutes with Dermody’s voice ranging from a rough moan on ‘Born To Lose’ and speech-like drawl on ‘Every Detail’ to a bummed flatness on ‘Foreign Lands’ and a surprisingly clean presence on the poppy ‘Wiseman At The Station’.

‘Footscray Station’ is the album’s breakout track, a shuddering feat of shaggy-dog jangle and perfectly bruised lyrics, leading directly on to another train-themed song, ‘Epping Line’, a crawl of a song documenting Dermody’s own crawl to work as well as a demoralising phone conversation with his father. A lot of the themes are well trodden to say the least – heartbreak, working shitty jobs to survive, and the loneliness of public transit in a city – but the delivery is so wincing and unpolished that it socks you in the gut.

Scott & Charlene's Wedding effortlessly sprawl across the generations linking the vintage swagger of the Velvets to the off kilter pop perfection of the Only Ones by way of the Stooges andTelevision, like no-one before them.

Para Vista Social Club was made with help from members of slacker pop peers Family Portraitand Twerps.

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