If you haven’t been keeping an eye on Friday, it’s going to be a pretty hectic schedule; there are just too many releases to keep an eye on. But, one that’s been on my radar is the new LP from Cong Josie, the alter ego of Nic from No Zu. He’s crafting this dark synth pop that feels part Las Vegas entertainer and part deep house techno orchestrator. At times, he seems to be poking fun at the listener, throwing in these little kitsch elaborations to catch your ear. Still, you can’t help but feel that he’s got his finger on the pulse here, tapping into our desire for high octane synth pop madness. Cong! drops Friday via It Records.
Already a fan of No Zu, it didn’t take much of an art twist to turn me onto Cong Josie, the alter-ego of bandleader Nic Oogjies; today I’m stoked to share the latest single from the project’s forthcoming LP! Dipping my feet into this one, it’s definitely the opposite of what one would expect, particularly in the pacing of the song. This one’s entirely slow-burning, dripping with heavy vocal curls and angelic uplifting backing tracks, all walking carefully in this synth-laden landscape. Still, a slow burning synth track isn’t outside the norm, but what Cong Josie does it develop the song into a bit of a stretch, tossing in little nuggets of joy just before the 2 minute mark, and again twisting about in the close staring at 3.5 minutes, almost hyperventilating with sensational pop bravado. This single is out courtesy of It Records, with a debut LP to follow this year!
I’m just going to come out and say this, I had absolutely no idea who Hunters & Collectors were until I heard this No Zu cover, so I’m going to go back and remedy that before this day is up. But, for you, maybe you’re new too, so why not go back in time by visiting one of my current faves, No Zu. This video is live footage, with a recorded version of the song; you can see just how much the band has going on; it’s visually intoxicating in and of itself. Their recording takes the sort of post-punk style, hangs it up and seems to infuse a bit more of a funk aspect and swagger, turning it into an all out dance party you wish we could attend. This track comes out as a digital Double A-Side single, with a cover of “Sensation” by Bryan Ferry also featured…all courtesy of Chapter Music.
I’m really excited by No Zu. In a world where people often get thrown into genres or defined by their past efforts, this group of Australians remain undefined. Think of yourself combining elements of funk, jazz, punk and other dance (hall) elements, combining them all to form an entirely new sound that you’re not likely to hear anywhere else. Seems like the gradual progression of where Chk Chk Chk and LCD Soundsystem crashed into the sound the Clash left behind at the end of their career. It’s rad, and this track will be featured on their new album, Afterlife, which is released by Chapter Music on February 5th.
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I’m not quite sure a lot of people Stateside have heard of No Zu…unless they picked up the Cut Copy compilation Oceans Apart from awhile back. But, the groove on this track from the Melbourne artists will surely perk up some ears here. First, there’s that throbbing pulse, yet you can also hear the influence of so many other areas like big band to 80s pop music. It’s an interesting pastiche, and one that should come across as rather refreshing in a genre that can often grow stale. You can grab this new single from the band’s new label, Chapter Music, or wait for their next LP on the label early next year; it’s titled Afterlife.
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