Late last week Western Australia’s Big Orange released their rousing debut album, An Ode To Odious, through Perth indie label Blue Grey Pink.
The album was recorded primarily at the home of the band’s principal songwriter Daniel Davis, with some further recording by Dave Parkin (Spacey Jane, San Cisco) at Blackbird Sound Studio in Perth. And, despite the name, the album is chock full of uplifting melodies and warm guitars. It’s one of great moments of juxtaposition, where the music, perhaps belies lyric’s darker and more existential themes. In short, it’s a sold and enjoyable rock album, but one tempered by a strong pop sensibility. Here’s what band member, Emma Adams had to say about the album:
“We’ve been chipping away at this album for quite some time now. Some tracks are new but others have been kicking around for what seems like eternity. It’s not a long album, just eight tracks that felt right together at this point in time. We have so much in the pipeline, it feels good to get this train a-rollin’.”
To celebrate the album’s release, songwriter Daniel Davis, is here to take us through the album track by track. So hit play, sit back and let Davis tell you all about the influences and stories beyond the eight tracks on An Ode To Odious:
“In The Shadows”
The idea for the theme of Shadows came from a documentary I saw on the assassination of JFK. It got me thinking about the way so much of what happens in the world is manipulated by people of wealth and power, usually behind the scenes.
I suppose inspired subconsciously a little by the 80s. The synths take pride of place here. It came out more anthemic than I was expecting. The lyrics are a lament of a relationship that you can’t live without even though it’s killing the both of you.
“I Wanna Know”
This song is me ruminating on life and death. Mostly death. I’ve got an unhealthy fixation with dying. We had to record these vocals twice as we weren’t happy with the first attempt.
This was the last song added to the album and was written as I was recording it at home. There are plenty of mistakes and sloppy playing to be found. The piano take is only the first or second take I did and was never intended on being used but the song has a vibe and I think it’s cool and it fit with the themes of the album of humanity being disgusting.
“Killer On The Land”
This is one of my favourite songs. I found the riff while I was going through my old voice memos and it stood out to me. I usually don’t really know what a song is gonna be about I just get hints while I’m playing the music and I follow that. This one was telling me to write about Indigenous peoples encounters with explorers and settlers and how some horrible things were inflicted upon them.
“Goodnight Kiss Vampire Bite”
I was kinda aiming for a concise pop song with this one. Something like the Stones do really well. The lyrics in the chorus just fell out one afternoon about where we are at with the planet today and where we are headed. Dystopia probably doesn’t make the best topic for a pop song though and although it’s fun to play live it’s a hard song to sing.
“So Many Things”
“I wanna be so many things, but me isn’t one of them.” This line sums up what the song is about.
Lyrically this song is a mixed bag. I started writing it around the time my dad died and finished it a bit after. A lot of self-loathing, hopelessness and existentialism.