Brisbane’s The Double Happiness have provided an endless source of brilliant shimmering sounds like no other band over the past few years, carving out a distinct sun-kissed brand of jangle that resonates and captures the sea salt encrusted radiant shores of coastal Queensland. We are ever so honoured to premiere their new single, ‘Smoking Gun’: a release that despite its inherent joie de vivre is touched by personal tragedy that the band resolutely refuses to allow to overshadow the music. So let’s for the moment concentrate on the music.
‘Smoking Gun’ is the lead single from the band’s upcoming album, ‘Roadhouse’ due for release this September. It eschews the standard shoegaze dream pop surf music the band has perfected for something that has a Sergio Leone whiff of bleached bones in the hot dry desert about it, where the jingle jangle sound emanates from the spurs of a posse and rolling tumbleweeds provide an enigmatic backdrop. This is a band, after all, that loves to imbue their music with theatricality and drama laced with an irreverent and dry sense of humour.
Like a meeting between Nancy Sinatra and Johnny Cash on a Quentin Tarantino movie soundtrack, ‘Smoking Gun’ just oozes a laconic and insouciant chic: studied and cool, louche and filled with a wry attitude.
The distant wailing trumpet and crystalline sharp guitars evoke a harsh sunlit world of circling vultures over a parched landscape while the dual vocals are dark and sonorous with a reverberated barbed wire edge – storytelling of the most evocative style that seems laced with an ominous timbre:
This is the product of a band that knows no bounds and willingly explores sounds and visions that, as expansive and cinematic as they are, always has a foot firmly planted in an antipodean soil. ‘Smoking Gun’ is available to download and stream here through the inimitable and rather splendid 4000 Records from Thursday, 21 July 2022.
The track and the forthcoming album are The Double Happiness in full flow before the tragic passing of bass player and singer Meg Welchman earlier this year. The band lets the music speak for itself but I feel compelled to honour a vital part of this quartet which is reflected, as a two couples playing and having fun together, in the band’s very name. I was fortunate to see this band play live last year: a delivery of euphoric sunshine and joy that was infectious and memorable. Vale Meg and may your indomitable spirit shine on through The Double Happiness.
You can catch the band launching the single on 6 August 2022 – tickets and details here.
Feature Photograph: Karen Whelan