Monday 28 April 2014

Remembering A Magnetic Roche

The listless and footloose troubadour Nathan Roche continues his enigmatic journey through the backwaters and neon glare of Sydney’s highs and lows. This second album, Magnetic Memories (out now through Glenlivet-A-Gogh Records), comes five months after his Watch It Wharf debut, and whilst the laconically wasted narratives that Roche drawls remain as acerbic and slanted as ever, there is a weirdness imbued in the lounge-lizard-meets-a-weathered-Lou Reed-cover-band-from-Petersham-with-early-Talking Heads-pretensions instrumentation that is equally as entrancing. It’s almost lysergic in the measured sleepiness that Roche delivers his sermons on the Camperdown mount, tired of running towards and away from destiny, a crooked grin slanting across his dial as he acknowledges and doffs his hat to the ridiculous and the sublime of what is Australia’s most famous city. He may not be our recognised documenter of 21st century Australia – nor would you want him to be – but Roche is a wonderful oddity to have in the canon. Like Brisbane’s James X Boyd before him, put Roche down as Sydney’s sandwich-board-wearing soothsayer of drunken ripostes and stark personal admissions, all wrapped up in a loquacious mirth. And like Boyd, he is soon setting sail for Europe. Let the good times roll.

You can grab Magnetic Memories here.

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