New Presets album ventures again into sci-fi ‘odd’-ysey but with a rustic touch

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Since the bombastic success of their single Are You The One and the album it spawned from Beams, the release of a new Presets LP has become something of an event. Indeed the dynamic duo of Julian Hamilton and Kim Moyes might look like party boys, leading a decadent life since having been bitten by the fame bug, but really, the boys do keep busy in between albums, crafting new electro gems and preparing us for a blast into sci-fi-like audio orgasma with each new release. Their new studio album, Pacifica, is no different in its intricate craftiness and over-all seductive result.

Kicking off with first single, Youth In Trouble, a disco track whose relentless synths make Giorgio Moroder’s I Feel Love appear positively tame, the album then moves onto current single, Ghosts, an ‘I’ve sailed the seven seas and still not found joy’ kind of ode that’d appeal to club punters and your grand dad alike.

Third track, Promises, brings to mind Eighties electro outfits like Talk Talk, Tears For Fears and Howard Jones while still managing to possess that indelible Presets spunk. Further into the record, the mysteriously titled A.O.  sounds like a critique on modern Australia that sees cocaine and clubbing replacing the raw and the rustic. Indeed, when Hamilton sings of a kookaburra sitting in a tree unnamed as he feels the “sorrow and shame” – two things spring to mind: the debacle in 2010 between the writer of that silly song Kookaburra Sits In The Old Gumtree and his sueing Men At Work for the ridiculous assumption that their Down Under stole a riff from the former children’s song, and the fact that the Presets dystopic vision of modern-day Australia is so far removed from our patriotic past.

I’d go into detail about the remainder of the record – 10 tracks in total – but suffice to say, this longplayer has been well worth the wait, and will make for one of the better party soundtracks as Spring gets set to leap into Summer.


Pacifica is out now through Modular / Universal Music.