Loiter and linger… Lick at wounds…
Blush or burn… Become a better you.
Songwriting and storytelling lie at the core of Brisbane-based alternative folk group, Elbury. Born in a brick-and-concrete pillbox on the side of Red Hill, as an acoustic folk duo making awkward tunes in minor keys; strained lyrics, obscure themes – the prototypical outputs of new voices trying to mark out a piece of original territory. Through the churn of the low-profile original folk scene, Elbury persisted – knowing that a band can find their own sound and beat a path forward on their own terms.
With the introduction of bass, drums and piano in recent years, the band have shifted from traditional acoustic folk to a fuller alt-folk-rock sound, including progressive and ambient elements. But the music, at heart, remains the same: honest observations, translated into verse, and multiple musical elements jostled into occasional cooperation. The band defy easy categorisation, shifting between mellow jazz interludes, jagged guitar lines, rollicking folk-rock triumphs and intricate Baroque passages. Winsome melodies take centre stage, with three-part harmonies and a close weave of sonic textures wrapped around. Without the power and bombast of harder styles of music, the beauty of the phrase and the arrangement becomes make-or-break.
In concert, Elbury’s music is energetic, surprising and engaging. Songs (and sets) that lead the listener through moods, through lightness and darkness, through lush warmth and brittle emptiness. Deceptive complexity that rewards close attention. And even the odd danceable number!
Elbury will release their second long-player – a still-unnamed child – in mid-2021.
Heroes & Villains (2021)
Heroes and Villains is the first single from Elbury’s second LP, slated for release in mid-2021.
Prompted by a songwriting challenge that seemed simple enough – write something from the perspective of the opposite sex! (Embarrassingly) inspired by those most-tawdry of reality TV offerings – the Bachelor and the Bachelorette – H&V is about the rules and roles of the courtship game and how it might look from the other side. A simple male/female harmony carries this theme through each verse, with additional layered vocals coming in to build up each chorus. The song ends with a classic rock guitar solo!
Elbury recorded Heroes & Villains at Hunting Ground Studios, in Moorooka, Qld, with producer Luke Woollett, who was also behind the band’s last releases – Whispers and Half the Night in December 2019. The release is supported by a cinematic music video by director Patrick Delaney, starring Tahlia Downs and Daniel Hutton. Check it out on YouTube.