Alpine reach amazing heights and I’ve fallen for them

Hands Across Australia Tour
Artist: Alpine
Label: IvyLeague Records
Tour: Hands Across Australia Tour
Venue: The Corner Hotel
Date: Thursday – 19th of January, 2012

Alpine formed in 2009 and appeared on the scene with a set of demos that quickly caught the attention of music lovers across the country. The line-up includes Phoebe Baker and Lou James on vocals, Timothy Royall on keys, Phil Tucker on drums, Ryan Lamb on bass and Christian O’Brien on the guitar. 2010 saw the release of their debut EP Zurich which featured the singles Villages and Heartlove. They’ve toured alongside the likes of The Naked and Famous, Cloud Control and Sparkadia. Alpine opened the main-stage at Splendour in the Grass earlier this year, and have performed alongside The Jezabels on their huge sold-out tour of the country.

Alpine have been likened to Phoenix, The xx, The Jezabels, Beach House and Bat for Lashes. They are currently on their  Hands Across Australia tour, promoting their Debut Album that is due out soon on Ivy League.

Don’t you love it when you discover a new band that sounds fresh and exciting but also feels somehow familiar, like you’ve known them since you were a wee little thing back in primary school. That’s how I feel about Alpine. I’ve only known them a little over a week, but their addictive blend of hypnotic interlocking disco-like rhythms, swirling synthesizers, luscious ethereal harmonies and catchy riffs has really got me hooked. This is one addiction I don’t think I’ll be able to break. I’ve already listened to their EP numerous times on repeat.

With the standard assortment of drums, guitar and bass waiting on stage at The Corner Hotel on Thursday the 19th of January, I didn’t expect anything too different from the band about to walk out on stage. But only a few bars in and I found my chin starting to droop in awe, with the luscious harmonies of Alpine beginning to melt in my mouth, as the two front women slowly but surely aurally seduced me and took me on a musical ride for the next 50 minutes that infected me with child-like excitement.

The two women in question are tag-team duo Lou James and Phoebe Baker, who were beautifully intertwined and complimentary in the delivery of their lyrics and luscious harmonies. They were complete with gorgeous outfits and cute little British-style accents that provided some very entertaining banter between songs at Thursday night’s gig. Their ethereal blend of harmonies demanded the whole of your attention for what was a very lengthy set, yet never did I feel like there was a diva in the room. The two girls are truly compelling.

They were backed by a band full of enthusiasm. I’ve never seen a bass player skip around the stage with the excitement of a 5 year old in a lolly store, or a drummer with a smile as big and bright as that of Phil Tucker. The movement of his black and white stripy t-shirt had me hypnotized. I was a little disappointed with the guitarist and keyboardist on the right side of the stage, where there was a noticeable lack of energy in comparison, but the pizzazz and lively animation exuding from the rest of the band more than made up for this.

I had such a great night and am so glad to have been introduced to Alpine. I hope you like them too.

I’m giving them 5 out of 5 kisses. Check them out. They’re worth it!

Copyright 2012 – Written by Amy Bastow for the “Kiss My Arts” show on Joy 94.9 – Monday evenings. 9pm. 

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