Junior story: Cut Copy’s ‘Zonoscope’, track-by-track, February 2011

A story for Junior. Excerpt below.

Cut Copy: Track-by-track

Tim Hoey – the guitarist and sampler of Melbourne-based synthpop quartet Cut Copy – walks us through Zonoscope, the band’s third album, and their first since 2008’s chart-topping In Ghost Colours.

1. ‘Need You Now’: This is the most personal song on the record, for me. We loved the idea of having this really epic song, like Bruce Springsteen’s ‘On Fire’; a stadium [sized], really emotional song, without it sounding too emo. It’s certainly my favourite, and it’s a perfect way for us to begin the record.

2. ‘Take Me Over’: This one is our straight-up AM radio pop song. It’s pop in its purest form, as far as Cut Copy knows it. There’s a heavy emphasis on percussion, and that song very much is representative of that. It’s certainly one of the more pure pop moments on the record.

3. ‘Where I’m Going’: It’s one of my favourite tracks, because it’s quite different: it’s quite ‘chanty’ and there’s no real chorus. We really like those old Beach Boys records that deal with subject matter that’s quite depressing; the songs are about heartbreak, but the music’s quite uplifting. We always found that really interesting, to see people singing along and smiling to these songs about alienation and heartbreak.

4. ‘Pharoahs + Pyramids’: This track is straight-up house music, boiled down to its simplest [form]. We were listening to a lot of Chicago house at the time; Adonis, and stuff like that. We added live percussion over the top of it, along with sequenced, synthetic percussions, so it helps tie in with the rest of the tracks on the record. It’s quite a pop song as well; it was our intention for it to exist within a club, but you can also listen to it at home.

5. ‘Blink And You’ll Miss A Revolution’: This one surprised the hell out of us. The verses were built on this rhythmic groove that referenced stuff like Moodymann; Chicago and Detroit techno stuff. The choruses burst out into this mysterious ‘Cities Of Gold’ type of thing, which was quite unexpected. We wrote this very strange-sounding chorus that we felt people wouldn’t have expected [to see] coming. It felt like a bit of a stylistic triumph for us.

For the full story, visit Junior. For more Cut Copy, visit their website.  Part 1 of a 3-part ‘making of Zonoscope video series embedded below.

Elsewhere: a ‘first listen’ review of Zonoscope, for The Vine.

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