26 Jun 2013
Naked Maja "Take" Review
Reviewed by Nathan Ford
What's the deal with all these brilliant Australian psychedelic bands at the moment? Whatever's in the water supply has made it to Brisbane now if Naked Maja's new E.P "Take" (available on limited edition cassette or bandcamp download) is anything to go by.
With influences including Slowdive, Brian Eno and Stereolab, Naked Maja have proven ambitious in the shoe-filling department, and they only come up one size short at most.
Dreamy psychedelic pop characterized by inventive synths, carefully layered sheets of guitars (run through an arsenal of pedals) and precise, supple drumwork, "Take" is very promising indeed.
The song itself is a multi-hued dreampop gem in it's original form, and also featured in a remix that sounds like early, 'not facing the crowd' era New Order taking on Visage's "Fade to Grey", only with a warm, approachable, psychedelic sheen.
B-side "VOID" is even better we reckon, with a mellow post-rock vibe, layers of lovely, chiming guitars channeled through extreme amounts of delay, burbling vintage synths, and vocals that sound like a haunted computer or the little girl trapped in the TV set from "Poltergeist". Beaut.
Then there's "Bicycle Thieves" moodily remixed from their debut E.P and starting off with a spooked hauntological vibe (complete with field recordings) before heading into more blatant electro territory.
While a number of the albums you discover on the Active Listener may sound like exotic artifacts of a bygone age, Naked Maja manage to channel the same influences into something thrillingly contemporary. It's a varied and inventive E.P that could literally lead anywhere. It'll be interesting to see exactly where their sound evolves to from here.
Available on cassette or digitally here :