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Love Letter To A Record: Fresco Kyoto On Haim’s ‘Days are Gone’

Many of us can link a certain album to pivotal moments in our lives. Whether it’s the first record you bought with your own money, the chord you first learnt to play on guitar, the song that soundtracked your first kiss, the album that got you those awkward and painful pubescent years or the one that set off light bulbs in your brain and inspired you to take a big leap of faith into the unknown – music is often the catalyst for change in our lives and can even help shape who we become.

In this Love Letter To A Record series, Music Feeds asks artists to reflect on their relationship with music and share with us stories about the effect music has had on their lives.

Fresco Kyoto – Haim, Days are Gone(2013)

I remember it well, it was the summer of 2013/14. I’d heard of you but had never been properly introduced. As soon as we met, you grabbed my head with your metaphorical hands and twisted it into a new direction: Pop.

I found you on a list, a list that collated and reviewed the best albums of 2013. I chose a few of you to listen to while away on a family holiday in Melbourne. Other selections included CHVRCHES’ The Bones of What you Believe and Sky Ferreira’s Night Time, My Time. Although I loved the other two records, you stood out to me by a long mile. It was like you had found the 11 herbs and spices to make a great record and coated every damn part.

While this is a love letter to you and the sum of your parts, I’m going to tell you 5 things that I think make you great.

‘Don’t Save Me’

This is what I’m referring to as our informal introduction. I’d heard this song on the radio in the lead up to my ultimate discovery, but it wasn’t until I listened to you in full that I made the connection. You showed me some spacey vocals, fat drums, and sparkly synth sounds that I’m still not tired of.

‘Falling’

You taught me about rhythm over and over again. ‘Falling’ was certainly a lesson in it, from the bass guitar, the percussive guitar parts, and the choppy but connected melodies, this was the first part of you I fell in love with.

‘If I Could Change Your Mind’

Here I was talking about rhythm and ‘If I Could Change Your Mind’ is certainly no stranger to it. After hearing this much of you, I could tell that rhythm is your forte and it comes in many forms; catchy drum parts, clever use of delay and percussive melodies that are often interacting with the backing vocal parts.

‘Honey & I’

I was always impressed when you were able to shift the mood from one place to another. ‘Honey & I’ always felt like it was situated somewhere between wholesome and sombre. It’s amazing being guided by the music and the lyrics between these feelings, whenever you felt was appropriate.

‘My Song 5’

You showed me how you can be quirky and badass at the same time and ‘My Song 5’ epitomised this. It was your one feature that stuck out just a little bit, but I loved just as much. The croaky bass in the chorus hits different to the others and for one hot minute, you took me away into an R&B-type haven and gently returned me to where we took off.

You were my personal gateway to pop music and I will be forever grateful for the introduction and the well wishes.

Fresco Kyoto’s powerful new single, ‘Whatever You Say’, is out now.

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