Wintercoats : Sketches
Cathedral, the debut EP from Melbourne-based soundsmith James Wallace [aka Wintercoats], has garnered a slow-building wave of universal acclaim since its release mid-2010. Even in the month leading up to the release of the fully realised EP Sketches, Wintercoats’ debut was still being subjected to fresh blog adoration around the world. This somewhat unassuming buildup has led to an avoidance of the follies that come alongside being a certified buzz act – but this has also led to the feeling that the dude wasn’t getting the recognition he deserves.
Upon first hearing the intro to the stunning Windmill [originally from Cathedral, now slightly reworked for Sketches] on the radio, it took a little while to pinpoint why it sounded so damn familiar. Grizzly Bear? Arcade Fire? It’s saying something that those mental comparisons to the giants of chamber pop didn’t seem far-fetched.
Armed primarily with a singular violin, Wintercoats utilises loops and pitch shifting pedals to generate aural magic – conjuring up a swirling array of pizzicato chirps and soaring faux-cello (cellaux?) and allowing the swell to dissipate into a soothing lull.
Instrumental track Working On A Dream plays to these strengths, crafting a powerful movement of sound with the grace of a meticulous conductor with a symphony orchestra at his feet.
Sketches looks set to propel Wintercoats from the rank of unassuming and underappreciated bedroom project to one of the brightest shining forces in contemporary Australian music.
Best Track: Working On A Dream
If You Like These, You’ll Like This: Heartland OWEN PALLET, Ocean Songs THE DIRTY THREE
In A Word: Orchestral