14 Sep 2015

Premiere: Commune 84 'Circles'

11:31 am on 14 September 2015

The Wireless presents the premiere of Commune 84's new single 'Circles'

When we first introduced Commune 84 back in June, the band had only just started out. Born out of a couple of bored weekends experimenting with things, the Auckland duo – made up of Carl Redwood and Ukiah Brown – landed on a sound they both liked and went from there.

They describe the results as sounding like “The Black Angels trying to get on Factory Records”, a nod to the psych-rock approach of the former mixed with the notable dance/electronic trajectory of the latter’s ‘80s heyday.

“We're both really into that sort of psychedelic sound but I like the idea of bringing that into the realm of New Order style repetition and electronic sound,” says Carl.

“Writing within software is particularly fun for this sort of music because you can quite quickly get a structure down to work from, which makes it easy to focus in on sounds and progression.” 

Everything you hear on ‘Circles’ was built around the synth sequence that kicks off the song, and the band say it came to them as they were packing up at the very end of a day spent recording. Once Ukiah came up with the hook, they both fell in love with the track.

The duo first met each other while studying at uni and they jammed and played together for years before they finally decided to come together as Commune 84. Carl previously played in the short-lived indie trio Yolanda, while Ukiah splits his time between C84, a solo project and playing in hard rock act Husk. Both are also members of local experimental/psychedelic instrumental band Thudd, as if they didn’t already have enough on.

The band name came from a running joke of reading depressing stories in the news and concluding that society is screwed and the only way to escape is to start a commune. “When we were preparing our first releases we were making one of these jokes and thought that idea, with an aesthetic nod to '1984', would make a good name for the sound we were working with,” says Carl.

They have a bunch of other tracks up on their Soundcloud page, but ‘Circles came from a recent session with Djeisan Suskov (Cool Rainbows, Trees Climbing Trees), which was supposed to result in their debut EP. Their plans changed slightly, but Carl says that working with Djeisan was a great experience, and instead they’ll follow-up ‘Circles’ with another single in the near future.

For now, they have no immediate plans to tour their new music, but say they are pretty keen see what they can do with things once they’re ready.

“We'd love to see how we could flesh out our sound as a live band,” says Carl. “Especially compared to everything we've done in the past.”