photo manipulation by nacrowe
my ongoing gripe with INDIE ROCK in general is its interiority and self-containment. it always felt low-stakes sonically as well as conceptually. seemed like people were reusing and reordering the same toys in the sandbox over and over again afraid of what their peers might think if they attempted something with a sense of risk or, dare i say it, ambition.
this is not the case with AUSTRALIA's EMPIRE OF THE SUN, a collaboration between LUKE STEELE (THE SLEEPY JACKSON) and NICK LITTLEMORE (PNAU) which on the face of it seems to be in danger of falling on its face with their gimmicky easter-influenced garb and iconography and over the top baroque artwork.
but it doesnt. the hooks are there and its kitschy without being lame in the least. in fact, it almost dares you to mock it because of its ambition. if you fall into that trap then the joke is on you for being a superficial moron.
EMPIRE OF THE SUN is an example of having ambition without pretension. definitely worth check out.