Sydney-based duo Noire are set to release their debut album, Some Kind of Blue, on September 29th via Spunk Records. Ahead of which, Rolling Stone Australia is hosting an exclusive preview stream of the entire album.
Teasingly revealed over the past few months via a pair of singles — the swooning "He's My Baby" and sparkling "Real Cool" (which vocalist Jessica Mincher unashamedly says serves as "a tribute to Air") — Some Kind Of Blue blurs the genre-boundaries between spacey synth-laced shoegaze, straight-up indie balladry and even, somewhat unexpectedly, swerves towards something like midnight country rock AM-radio. The latter likely an addition picked up during the writing process, which saw the duo decamp to an isolated farm in rural Queensland, after Mincher attended an inspiring talk from filmmaker Miranda July in early-2016.
"She said some incredible things like 'I continue to forget and remember and forget and remember and forget and remember that I'm free.'", Mincher recalls. "The next day I quit my job, Billy and I left Sydney and we moved up to a farm in Queensland, with no phone or internet reception for three months to write an album. We set up a make shift studio in the lounge room, next to the fireplace and tried to record something every day."
The big-smoke detachment has also led to a greater sense of sparsity and white-space exposure that both Mincher and guitarist Billy James use to great effect across the LP's nine tracks. The pair balance their formative pop-chic cool with greater emotive engagement, as both vocal fragility ("Dark Was The Night") and subtle reverb intricacies ("Dreamers) craft some of the album's most strikingly powerful moments. At other times, Mincher is porch-based, bluntly documenting her woes to the empty sky ("Don't Know Where I'm Going"), fantasising of ciggy-smoke filled French night-spots millions of miles away ("Born To Be Blue") or analysing the simply life far closer to home, as with the enthralling "I Saw You At The Store", which — somewhat surprisingly for a band once happy to shuffle on the edges of dark-pop — bounces with a Barnett-like sense of storytelling purpose.
It's a sense of positivity that serves as a welcome splash of diversity to Noire's sound. Something that even surprised the band themselves, with Mincher explaining that "the period before moving to the farm was a really dark time for us and we thought the album would turn out a lot more desperate, but in contrast it created an outlet for us to be more positive about everything."
Stream 'Some Kind of Blue' below: