Thirstlands is a new band from Brisbane, Australia, and is made up of lifelong mates Simon Watson (vocals/piano), Phil Hirvela (guitar), Craig Kickbush (bass) and Darran Muller (drums). Their recent release Patience lies somewhere between mainstream pop (going as far back as the ‘80s) and hipster laced indie rock. As I was listening to their songs, between the vocal delivery and the song structure, I was reminded of ‘80s pop not unlike that of Bryan Adams and The Scorpions. This is a point that is arguable but I think it’s noticeable to anyone with a wide palette of musical exposure.
The first song “Cold” sounds a bit like a motivational ‘80s pop song mix that you might hear during a montage mixed with contemporary indie rock sensibility. Something about the production makes the song feel refined and clean. I would have liked to hear some more intensity at points but overall that is subjective. The band’s best moment comes before the three-minute mark where they pull off some inventive musical segues that display some creativity.
The second song “She Dances” was the track that had the most overt ‘80s influence from lyrics to music. “She Dances” starts with a lone piano and vocals that are a mix between motivational and cheesy. That’s fine by me – it’s like ninety percent of the songs by Journey. Watson sings, “Put away your light / For she shines like the sun / Give up all your fight, for the war’s already won / And she takes a hold, she grips you like a vice.” The band goes epic in a U2/Cold Play kind of way at points.
The highlight for me was “Patience.” I was immediately attracted to the melancholy and drum beat. On top of that I thought the vocal delivery was inspired. The mix of the guitars and piano is atmospheric.
Thirstlands’ style is hard to pinpoint and I’m not exactly sure what demographic this music will appeal to since it has disparate genres but hopefully that will work towards the band’s benefit. The band is off to a decent start. I would take a listen to see if this is your cup of tea.
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