Not only does Australian Ilirjana Alushaj run successful online magazine The Pop Manifesto, she also runs a record label of the same name, DJ's anywhere from Sydney to New York (where she now resides) and fronts Brooklyn based band Apache Beat. Well, if that isn't a women to be admired, I'm not quite sure who is. On top of all that, Apache Beat's debut LP Last Chants is an absolute cracker. From driving drum rhythms, to soulful vocal harmonies, Last Chants is rich in texture, layers and diversity.
Not only is it a wonderfully crafted album, the huge range of collaborations Last Chants employs will leave you salivating. From members of Lightspeed Champion, The Rapture and Yeah Yeah Yeahs, as well as high quality production by Martin Bisi (Sonic Youth, Swans) and mixing by John Agnello (The Kills, Dinosaur Jr, Patti Smith), this album deserves the hype that it is receiving.
Walking on Fire, the second track on the LP is especially notable. Alushaj's growling vocals are accompanied by forceful drumming, intertwining to create a crescendo before breaking off into soft, almost whispers of "walking on fire". Then the song goes again with a perfect balance of hot and cold extremities, how I'd imagine walking on fire would feel like. Other notable tracks include Let It Go, Nightwaters and the infamous Tropics.
If you need more reassurance, have a listen to their debut single Another Day, featured on the highly anticipated album due out October 22nd on Pod through Inertia.
Review as also seen on The Spit Press.