Track: Damien Binder is looking on the ‘Bright Side’ – another wide expansive sonic journey and title track to his forthcoming album.

Feature Photograph: Bridget Julie-Anne Photography

Perth resident and New Zealand native Damien Binder has shone a bright light into the darkest of corners of our world with his brand of shimmering indie pop that reflects with clarity an uniquely antipodean universe. He is back this year with the appropriately titled single ‘Bright Side’ – a shimmering and elegant track that exudes a sense of deep yearning.

The theme is that of a brittle resilience and strength in the face of the vicissitudes of life: putting on a brave face while hiding pain below the surface:

on the bright side
make no waves on the bright side
brittle beneath a smile
on the bright side
there’s no way on the bright side
they’ll ever know otherwise

Binder says of the track:

‘Bright Side’ is the title track off the forthcoming album and kicks off with a wide open road feel – big driving bass & drums with some bell-like guitars.

Thematically it runs through rage, resentment and imagines someone trying to maintain tranquility, who’s putting on a brave face while privately just barely holding it together – You know, living in the modern world and all that!

It’s kind of a different approach from me in some ways in that I’m inhabiting a couple of different characters’ viewpoints in the song and I love a good minor to major shift too!

Binder has the urgency and poignancy found in artists like Bruce Springsteen – crystal clear observations on the realities of existence, pain that is beautifully expressed. It’s a welcome return from the troubadour of the west:

‘Bright Side is out now and available to download and stream here. This is the title track to Binder’s new album due out on 21 April 2023. Binder says of the album:

In the past few years, like a lot of people I’ve been trying to make sense of things we’ve had no control over. A common thread in my work seems to be an overriding optimism. I still have faith in people and the power of human connection to overcome obstacles. So personally looking on the bright side or looking for what is good tends to be something I try and do.

This will be truly something to look forward to.

Feature Photograph: Bridget Julie-Anne Photography

Previous Live Review: Grauzone Festival, The Hague, Netherlands, 10-12 February 2023
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