It's getting kinda late. Then the beat begins and a choir starts to sing. A diva belts out a hook that instantly grabs you by the earlobes …. “you're just the thing that I need”, she growls.
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Australian Music Online (via the Internet Archive)
My name is Paul Mac.For a while I lived 3000 feet high in Katoomba but after a decent stint of that I decided it was time to come back to the city. The bush, isolation, and mountain friends had provided the ideal space to distill whatever music I was trying to make back then, but I knew if I stayed there I would probably start to repeat myself. New set of stimuli please.... back to the inner city.I found a new home in Sydney’s inner west with an underground space that I turned into my studio. I could make as much noise there as I wanted but nobody outside could hear a thing. The room came complete with a video camera and monitor so I could still see what was happening outside. I realised this was my panic room … a place where I could escape the outside world, and explore the world inside my head. A bit of travel to do Dissociative stuff gave me the opportunity to do some co-writes with singers, and just live and love and refresh to work out where I wanted to go next. So 3 years later, this is the result. Track 1 // PANIC ROOM I wanted to dedicate a track to the new space. A place where much fun has been had writing, remixing, downloading, drinking, smoking, and most of all joking! It can also be a state of mind, an underground club or wherever you go to explore your senses with whoever you invite in! Every home should have one. I needed a voice "other worldy" yet human. Lenka, who you may know from her work with the amazing Decoder Ring, was the person for this song. A breath of fresh air. Track 2 // IT’S NOT ME, IT’S YOUGotta love a good breakup song. We always need a new way to say fuck you very much! I was playing around with some more angular rhythms on this one and buzzy bass lines inspired by a new moog. Needed a singer with enough 'tude to believe in, heard PNG powerhouse Ngaiire, and it all made sense. You go grrrl. Track 3 // SUNSHINE EYESInspired by a New York affair, it is a song about that moment of joy, looking into your lover's eyes, as they smile, and seeing your own reflection smiling back. It is the opposite feeling to the verse which is all about the neurosis of everyday living. It's these moments we live for. Sung by Peta Morris who captures that feeling perfectly. Track 4 // LOVE DECLARATIONI wanted to write a get together song instead of my endless stream of the break up/ fuck you/ get out genre I had been exploring. Written in Amsterdam, stoned by a canal, it was about that special person back home that you are thinking about, and the way your mind works out what is important when given time and space apart. Sung by nu-NZ soul sensation Aaradhna. What a voice! Track 5 // Never Been BeforeA lot of these songs are based around hypnotic piano loops that tend to form in my brain when I'm riding my motor bike. I was matching the feeling to the lyrics, and after many attempts I found the lyrics for which I was desperately searching. Cue celebration drinks at a mate’s place and in walks Sarah McLeod in full Suzi Quatro glory. I'm desperate to hear the new lyrics sung by someone who can sing so it's back to the panic room for a late night fully fueled blast of recording. It felt so good that those original demo choruses made it in to the final mix. Track 6 // HEAVEN WHERE YOU FIND ITPart of a series of tortured collapsed Catholic hymns that I seem to write. Scarred by my years of being the church organist (I used to play weddings and funerals for pocket money) there's something I dig about the beauty of pain, sadness and longing. Perfectly sung by Lenka. Track 7 // AS LONG AS I AMOk, so here the album continues a darker path. When my father died a couple of years ago an old woman from the parish I knew looked into my eyes and noticed the resemblance they had to my father’s. She said that he is still alive as long as I am and it totally helped the grieving process. I wanted this to be my personal message to dad, so needed a male voice to express that. Luke Steele from the Sleepy Jackson was my man! Track 8 // ALL WE REALLY WANTWhilst going all existential, thinking what is it that we are trying to find, what space we are desperately trying to fill with other people, I started to write about being in love with the idea of being in love. A song for the singles, or marrieds looking for "it" in others. Peta Morris knows what we really want.Track 9 // SLOW TIME DOWNThis song has really grown on me. I co-wrote it in London with a beautiful, soulful vocalist Charlotte Kelly. It's when you find "it" you want time to slow down so you can remain in "it" for as long as possible. Aaradhna's vocal is delicious. I really enjoy The Jacksons on ketamine rhythm. Track 10 // THE BEGINNING OF THE END OF TIMEYes.... I know. Another sad hymn!! As I was writing this one I knew it was for Abby. Wasn't quite sure what it was about, but it felt right. Abby came in whilst waiting for her entry improvised the "la la la" melody. I loved it so much I asked her if we could use it. When I got my god daughter Sarah-Jane to sing it (after much bribery and ice cream) it all made sense - life cycle, big bang, the seasons, and our inconsequential place in it. So sad, yet so beautiful!Thanks for sharing!Mac