Like M&M’s through popcorn or fries dipped in ice-cream, electronic musician Brightly’s latest LPOne For Sorrow, Two For Joyis a peculiar clashing of musical flavours that will either charm or alarm you.
Perhaps both. Reverberating with dewy chords, blustery synths and dreamy delay, it’s unsurprising to learn that this third crowd-funded release from the London-based Aussie Charlie Gleason saw him lay down tracks in an isolated Norwegian cabin one bitter winter. What is surprising is Gleason’s voice – a banal baritone – slicing through the cool, vast soundscape like a 747.
“Got cum on my cheeks but I swear I believe in true love,” he croons in single ‘Rugby’. This is but a taste of the delightful disruption at play in these 11 tracks, where polished production, soothing ambience and minimalist beats engage in a tug of war with roughened vocals, gritty realism and skittering electronics. You’ll get mired in the clutter at times (probably between the curious guitar shredding of ‘Lost’ and the jabbing ’00s synths of ‘Bury Us In Fruit Jars’), but surface again during the subdued ballads, like ‘I Will Never Let You Go’.
It’s here where Gleason’s lyrics – these mini-montages of heartbreak – prove most captivating. Like breath in the winter air, they are fragile and linger only briefly.
Brightly’sOne For Sorrow, Two For Joyis out now through Label Pink.