Artist: The Presets
Album Name: Beams
Release Date: 14/09/2005
Retail Date: 12/09/2005
Ripper: Team OZM
CD Time: 42m 42s
01 4:35 Steamworks
02 3:24 Are You The One?
03 3:17 Down Down Down
04 4:42 Girl And The Sea
05 1:38 Black Background
06 4:00 Worms
07 2:42 Kitty In The Middle
08 1:42 Hill Stuck
09 3:49 Girl (You Chew My Mind Up)
10 5:09 I Go Hard, I Go Home
11 4:09 Bad Up Your Betterness
12 3:42 Beams
If you could imagine a yearbook for 2005's School of Rock, The Presets
would stand out like a jet black ink blot on the page: defying
categorization in their recorded work, exceeding expectations above and
beyond in sweat-drenched live shows that leave the competition for dead,
releasing videos and artwork as beautiful as they are twisted. They would
be crowned the official class odd bods. And they like it that way.
Julian Hamilton and Kim Moyes share a skewed, singular vision that
reassembles pop music into a streamlined, sexy, scary creature, lurking
in a corner entirely of its own.
Welcome to the world of Beams, debut long-player from The Presets. It's
where the wild things are.
Rewind some ten years. Two class outcasts shackled to their study of
classical music ("Jules looked like a raver with baggy pants and old
school Pumas" says Kim, "I looked like an old man in skivvies, vests and
corduroy trousers ") meet at college. In a sea of squares they blow a
gasket discovering their shared love of new music.
"By day we battled with Beethoven, Stockhausen and 18th century harmony,"
explains Julian, "by night we were out dancing to the Pet Shop Boys, New
Order and Acid House." No stone was left unturned in their passion,
running the gamut from beer swilling rock and introspective Indie pop to
high-camp Euro disco.
Like, duh, they had to make music together.
Of course all good things take time, in the case of The Presets a number
of years and bands. Gestation began in a jam session after practice with
their old band Prop; Kim and Jules uncovered a sound from outer space,
far from their regular band, but closer to their hearts.
The sound was twenty-something years of misinformation, of high and low
culture crammed into the brains of these two ne'er do wells: TV ads and
school hymns, World Series cricket chants and John Coltrane, gamelan
orchestras and glass players, pounding amyl house and sci-fi soundtracks.
In the jungle a monster had awoken: the sound of The Presets had been
The first seeds to be sprout were on 2003's Blow Up EP, which painted
dark dance circles around the eyes of seven rock songs, creating a new
genre of its own. In a pleasingly contrary mode the band followed with
the pristine melancholy of 2004's Girl and the Sea EP, featuring detached
vocals, shimmering synths and swooping pads.
Along the way the duo created a live show that straddles both rock and
dance circuits in its infectious, sweat soaked sensibilities. From
opening for the likes of Wolfmother, Colder, the Faint and the
Dissociatives to playing to packed houses of their own, the Presets have
officially come, seen and conquered (not necessarily in that order).
"We were so disappointed when we saw electro acts or DJs because
something incredibly important was always missing," explains Kim.
"Julian's performing antics are unique. We are good live because we are
musicians and performers first and foremost. Oh, and lets not forget `The
Drama'! At the moment itЖs a real anything goes policy in terms of style.
Our fans like it too. They want to jump around and act dumb like we do:
its called FUN!"
A sense of drama is no stranger to the Presets. A cursory glance at the
cover art for Beams suggests a super-staged and unreal world,
unparalleled since the cocaine castle fantasies of Fleetwood Mac sleeves
from the late 70s. Not to suggest that The Presets are anything other
than modern. Ladies and Gentlemen, without further ado, the futuristic
beast that is Beams, track by track by The Presets themselves.