Key Out are a phenomenal Sydney band – I recently rated their brilliant album ‘Anthropomorphia‘ a well deserved nine out of ten. Backseat Mafia is therefore utterly delighted to premiere Key Out’s new double sided single consisting of the opening track from the album, ‘Buildings’ as well as a remix of earlier single ‘Chorus’.

‘Buildings’ is a blast of an opening track to the album – it sets the pace for Key Out’s magical delivery and enigmatic sound. It’s altogether too brief – clocking in at just over two minutes – but it is two minutes of sublime melodies and dreamy, mesmerising sounds. You just want to immerse yourself in it endlessly: it, like the album itself, is a warm enveloping cloak that provides comfort and joy. Patrick Haid says:

Buildings was always the obvious album opener. It’s got a hopeful momentum, escapist lyrics and a fuzzy accidental-guitar line that survived from an early demo.

The video sums up the entire ethos of the band – there’s a simple and innocent warmth, a sense of uplifting, inherent joy that shines through the melancholic air.

We tried to make something that looked the way the song sounds: dreamy and soft focus. The outdoors is Two Valley Trail around Wolli Creek.

There is, indeed, a deep connection to the environment in Key Out’s work:

‘Chorus’ was an earlier single that we criminally missed, but which has been remixed and released as a b-side to ‘Buildings’:

The b-side is a remix of Chorus by An Heirloom from Brisbane. They reimagined it as a dark and moody song with glitchy beats and arrangements that wash over you.

The remix does add an Arctic chill to the gorgeous song with its swooning chorus and air of deep melancholia. The synth piano refrain lends a haunting layer, and there are bubbling echoes and sibilant whispers set far above the stratosphere of the mix. This is really a remix that creates a whole different interpretation – one that manages to augment the original and present a whole new aspect.

The double single is out on Friday, 21 August 2020 through the inimitable Half a Cow Records and you can preorder through the link below. Key Out is Paddy Haid, Rohan Geddes and Caroline Wake.

Key Out very kindly agreed to put together a list of ten songs that influenced the writing of ‘Anthropomorphia’ for Backseat Mafia – and a fascinating and educational list it is too. You can hear their choices in the special Backseat Mafia Spotify list below.

10 Songs that influenced the making of Anthropomorphia for Backseat Mafia

Johnny Foreigner – Salt, Pepper and Spinderella

This feels like a rock song gazing longingly at electronica. It also has cool filtered drum effect before they ‘turn on the real drums’ which we obliquely referenced in the Buildings video.  

Jess Locke – Drive to Drink

This song rises and falls around the same chord progression throughout, but remains captivating. There’s a real skill and sophistication in making the small changes hit their target like this does.

070 Shake – Under the Moon

We were obsessed with this song while we recording. The updated take on that classic drum machine sound and square bass was a real influence on some of our arrangements.

Boards of Canada – Dayvan Cowboy

This is the first BoC track I ever heard. I love the way the guitars and synths encroach on each others’ territory. When we pulled songs apart and began rearranging them, we found synths fitting where guitars were and vice-versa.

Bon Iver – Circle 8

The big droning pads and synth bass on this track feel like they have been picked up from the 1980s and taken to the future. I think there’s a bit of Yamaha DX7 on this track, and that’s the synth we used almost exclusively on our record.

Royal Headache – Carolina

The first time I saw this video I was living just around the corner from all the noteable Petersham landmarks in it, and it struck me how exciting it is to see your area on film. All of our videos were made at home or within minutes of it, given the current situation. (This is a great song to go along with the vid!)

Screamfeeder – Stopless

This is such a dreamy track, full of cool loops, elegant vocal harmonies and cascading guitar parts. It’s the sort of feel we were aiming for all across our record.

Elliott Smith & Mary Lou Lord, I Figured it Out

Apparently Elliott hated this song because it sounded like the Eagles, which reminds me of the Big Lebowski and makes it even better. All of our initial demos were made with electric guitars, but when we started swapping them out for acoustics a couple of the songs reminded us of this sort of song and we doubled down on them.

Machine Translations – Sola

This song is why we made our previous album with J Walker, and subsequently got delusions and started recording by ourselves this time. It’s got incredible dissonant guitars that pull at the edges of its perfect pop feel.

The Beths – You Are A Beam Of Light

The constant subtle harmonies and vocal arrangement counterpoints in this song are incredible. It came out after our record so is technically not an influence, but I did see them at The Crowbar in late 2019 just before we got recording.