Music

Two Of Australia’s Pop Heavyweights Have Returned, And They’re Bringing Bops

Washington and Montaigne? We're not worthy.

Today is a good day: after going quiet for two years, two of Australia’s pop pioneers, Washington and Montaigne, have reemerged to release new music. Both are excellent — not that we’d expect any less.

You might have heard Montaigne’s ‘For Your Love’ earlier in the week. It’s been floating around on triple j since its premiere on Ben and Liam’s breakfast show this Wednesday. Consider it the companion piece to ‘Because I Love You’, the devastating lead single off her debut album Glorious Heights, which placed at 25 in 2016’s Hottest 100.

Reportedly, the two songs are flip-sides of the same relationship. Where the baroque pop of ‘Because I Love You’ soared as the song romanticised the flaws of a relationship, ‘For Your Love’ is a dark-synth affair, as Montaigne un-tangles a tendency to show devotion through submissiveness.

Despite the sonic shift, it’s as dramatic as the brashest moments on Glorious Heights — it’s also the first song off the Sydney artists’ sophomore album, which we’ll hear sometime next year. In the meantime, she’s announced a national tour for April.

And now for the double-hitter: after dropping solo single ‘Saint Lo’ in 2016, Washington has given us a taste of her forthcoming third album with ‘Claws’.

According to Washington, the song is inspired by the gift of female sexuality and intimacy when un-warped by an insidious, sexual gaze: suitably, the song’s sensual and gleeful, an introspective yet playful mix of indie pop synths and dramatic, luscious horns. Complete with sweeping vocals and sharp, evocative lyrics about a tug-of-war relationship (‘Show me your features/and I’ll find all your flaws’), it’s peak Washington.

There’s even a stunning music video to match: co-directed with filmmaker and husband Nick Waterman, the video sees Washington and a troop of dancers move through an empty hotel. Think of it as the introspective ‘New Rules’. Watch it below.

While Australian pop music definitely doesn’t need saving (in fact, we reckon it’s some of the best in the world), it’s great to have both Montaigne and Washington back.

You can find both tracks on Spotify. They’re also on our Noteworthy playlist, along with the rest of this week’s excellent new releases. Get into it, would you?