Who are Cut Copy? Cut Copy present you with a glowing slice of the future, their debut long player, Bright Like Neon Love, released on Modular Recordings.
Since their 2001 EP, I Thought Of Numbers, Cut Copy have kicked it in dance circles here and abroad with their blend of futuristic house and vintage pop dynamite.
With Bright Like Neon Love, main man Dan Whitford has shunned your stock dance album self-consciousness, and aimed straight for the heart.
Post I Thought Of Numbers, Dan found himself more drawn to the radio-friendly tunesmithery of 70s rock titans such as ELO and Fleetwood Mac than any of his dance music contemporaries. Having found inspiration in the simplicity and lyricism of disco-era pop, he began writing a series of un-pretentious future-love ballads.
This collection of dream and love-laden tunes, pulled together with Dan’s inside-out knowledge of 80s flavoured synths and studio trickery, set the mood for writing the record.
That’s just the tip of the pop iceberg on this album. Repeated listening reveals an array of speckled, layered influences – from House to low-slung, fuzzed up punk garage, seminal 80s raincoat-wearing Mancunian electro-pop to Nouveau Disco – often within the one song.
Part of this stems from the unorthodox approach to the recording. Dan began recording and programming initial demos in Melbourne, whispering vocal takes in his bedroom at three in the morning (whilst his flatmates slept).The tracks were hashed out on a platoon of analogue tube-synths and broken guitar pedals. Having blown up the sampler at a live show, Dan decided to make a second series of recordings, with a group of mates bashing out the same tracks live as a sloppy indie four piece.
For a final sprinkle of magic Dan looked abroad for someone to mix the tracks, tossing about the names of legendary producers past, died, fried, retired, insane. Finally a match was found - Philippe Zdar, one half of French House royalty Motorbass and Cassius, whose studio work for the likes of Phoenix seemed to speak a similar language to the sound Dan was aiming to achieve.
Taking the tracks over to Paris, Dan and Philippe retained the freshness and immediacy of the two sets of Melbourne recordings and enmeshed them with a veritable chateaubriand of Parisian house panache.
The result? An album that refuses to be pigeonholed. It’s overground, it’s underground. Pop and dance. Happy sad. Simple and yet complicated, sincere yet keep-your-distance-cool, slightly naïve but definitely clever. It’s like a soundtrack to a coming-of-age montage in a John Hughes film.
Lead single Future is a prime example – a broody slice of electro-pop that was all over radio this summer. With its cutting synths, low-slung bass, fuzzed out guitars and Dan’s dispassionate vocals it won hearts in dance, pop and rock worlds alike.
Going Nowhere is equally infectious, Saturdays may as well be called dance me.
This summer saw Cut Copy hit the road with their new-wave garage four-piece set-up, with Dan and crew (Mitchell – drums, Tim – guitar, Bennett – keys and bass) giddy off the enthusiastic response from crowds up and down Australia. The guys will continue to spread the sonic love in 2004 to a venue near you. Cut Copy can’t wait to see you there and buy you a cocktail.
This here’s a record to light up your life. Bright Like Neon Love.