Australian artist Cody Munro Moore is clearly a millennial, even if he’s not. His music is a little bit of this and a little bit of that, a sound that hearkens to something specific but upon deeper reflection, carries notes of a vast array of influences that inevitably create his own unique flavor of 80s inspired alt pop. These elements are evident on his new record, Perfume Nights.
On “Just Don’t Need It Enough,” he carries Joe Strummer’s heavily reverbed, almost wailing tone from The Clash’s early days. The sonic space given in the middle part of the song allows the listener to ponder a scene of their choosing, letting the echoes bounce around their own imagination, right as the song builds back in to get you grooving again. Moore does this beautiful balancing act between blending upbeat danciness and spatial vibes.
“No Matter How Hard” borrows some notes from The Cure in vocals, as well as some modern influences like Tame Impala on the bass line, but again one can’t shake the visions of The Clash on this record. There is a fond sentimentality as Moore embraces the rawness of punk sensibility with a stronger emphasis on a “prettier” sound (reverb, echoes, distant horns), which is what always endeared me to those formative Clash albums. There is also a roughness to Moore’s voice that he doesn’t try to hide- in fact emphasizing those notes give his voice that special quality. Where someone like King Krule goes all the way, Moore is more subtle, allowing the glowing production to exist in the same sonic forum.
On “Gold Watches,” Moore goes all in on the 80s feel. Echoing sax lines and unintentional visions of traveling through the city are almost reminiscent of Bruce Springsteen, the king of sentimentality. What I love most about Moore is that while he clearly has an audible aesthetic built around a relatively recognizable sound, there are so many bits and pieces of his influence that make these songs a cut above. Check out Perfume Nights above and purchase the vinyl through Dinosaur City Records.
Keep up with Cody Munro Moore here.
All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.