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Love Letter To A Record: MOBS’ Scott MacDougall On Arctic Monkeys’ ‘Suck It And See’

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 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.

Scott MacDougall, MOBS – Arctic Monkeys, Suck It And See (2011)

Dear Suck It and See,

You beautiful masterpiece. Being a fan of Arctic Monkeys’ previous albums, I was not too sure how to approach your style – it’s so different yet so familiar in a ‘classic’ kind of way. I first heard ‘Don’t Sit Down ‘Cause I’ve Moved Your Chair’ on a music television show called RAGE one early Saturday morning in 2011 and I was intrigued. The recording of the ‘rock n’ roll’ guitars mixed with big drums made it sound like you were born in a 1960’s garage, so it sold me.

The songwriting aspect of this album by Alex Turner was different, but genius. The way he overlapped his solo ‘Submarine’ acoustic work to upscale it into a polished, vintage, and eclectic record will always be an inspiration to me as a musician – songs like ‘Piledriver Waltz’ to ‘Suck It And See’ are performed as timeless ballads and this can be a direct result of Turners’ lyrics.

The hardest part about writing this was deciding which song I loved the most – the romance in ‘Love Is a Laserquest’ to the humour in ‘Library Pictures’, which were key songs, but it came down to ‘The Hellcat Spangled Shalalala’ and ‘That’s Where You’re Wrong’. I mostly resonate with these tracks because of the simplicity, and the rhythm at which it was created. The bass and drums go together like bread and butter, and you can feel it create space for the rocky verb-guitars to produce clever hooks that just stick in your head all day.

This album changed the way I listen to music, as it tells a story. It is not an album you skip, pick and choose. It’s a masterpiece you listen to from ‘start to finish’, whether that be through the CD player in your living room, to the stereo of your beaten-up car that you are driving windows down on a sunny Sunday afternoon feeling like a million bucks – that’s how it is for me anyway. I am always going to come back to this record to find and feel something new, and that’s just what makes it so classic.

Melbourne-based indie-pop band MOBS’ debut album Cinema Paradiso is out now, featuring eleven conceptual tracks of joyous 80’s synth pop, with each song being influenced by a classic 80’s film.

“We have always been a huge fan of the 80’s era, musically and cinematically,” explains drummer Matt Purcell.

“To gel these two concepts together, we believe it represents our vision within the band. The nostalgic pop sound that we have put out there is something that we have been working on for a really long time and it’s great that we can branch out into such a broad genre yet still recognise where we have come from.”

With ‘Cinema Paradiso’, MOBS have produced a joyful set of empowering pop anthems, sure to get the dopamine flowing and your feet tapping. The record is an amalgamation of 80’s influences; bright synths, sharp guitars and rolling bass lines. In basing each track off an 80’s cinema classic, the band have rolled nostalgia together with fist-pumping power-pop to keep your smile beaming all weekend.

The album follows the release of previous single ‘Find Another You’, an uplifting and life-affirming burst of nostalgic synth-pop goodness, complete with a joyous, screaming sax solo, which you can check out below!

 

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