Feature: Coda Chroma Dream-self
Dream-self is the third studio album by Ballarat based cinematic indie-folk project Coda Chroma, fronted by award winning singer/songwriter Kate Lucas.
Encapsulating a cinematic indie-folk approach with experimental pop songwriting that is instantly nostalgic.
Dream-self plays with shadows and light in a landscape where fragile introspection is at home alongside upbeat jangle-pop, and synthetic sounds mess around with acoustic instrumentation.
The 10 tracks selected for Dream-self were chosen from a larger body of work that came to Lucas during an extended period of life change where she clung to music as a buoy and a best friend.
Matched with the immaculate work of producer Damien Charles, the album features a string ensemble, swirling layers of synthesisers, a driving rhythm section and ethereal backing vocals by Natalie Lewis.
Opening track ‘I’m Not Fighting It’ introduces us to the key themes of the album; giving into the subconscious, lamenting the unknown and looking further into our dream state.
There is an experimental twist to Lucas’ writing however the strong pop sensibilities make the listening experience instantly nostalgic. ‘If I Imagined’ brings forth influences such as Echo and The Bunnymen and Laura Jean, the cyclic melody immediately hummable. ‘Back To The Theatrette’ features side guitar and keening vocals.
The instrumental bridge lets us exist in Charles’ superlative world of production for a while, then catapults back for a final taste of the pop-infused chorus. ‘Attic’ is an important touchstone for the album, verse lyrics hover like a spectre above everyday scenes and hang on a repeated warbling Telecaster line, only to be blown apart by a tempestuous chorus.
The pace picks up for ‘Frankenstein’, utilising the steadfast drumming of Holly Thomas (Husky, Quivers) and reminiscent of ‘She’s So Heavy’ by The Beatles, building to a humming and swirling chaos which suddenly dissolves.
The glistening space on this record is married with the mysterious knack of storytelling commanded so brilliantly by Lucas, and is another fascinating contribution to the indie folk genre.
Of the album Lucas reflects, “Most of these songs were bursting to get out, requiring very little encouragement – the lyrics build scenes mainly through abstraction and metaphor, with some direct hits here and there. Production concepts were guided by the songs’ storytelling not by genre. It was really hard to choose which songs should be on this album, and we made changes right up to the eleventh hour, but I think Dream-self flows really well now.”
Coda Chroma‘s third studio album Dream-self is available now via Echo Foxtrot.