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Album Of The Week: Last Dinosaurs 'Wellness'

After hitting the ground running with their sold-out national ‘Evie’ tour and wowing crowds with their set at Splendour In The Grass, local favourites Last Dinosaurs are gearing up for the release of their highly anticipated second album ‘Wellness’.

The infectious four piece are fast emerging from the bubbling Brissy indie-pop scene as clear front runners, with ‘Wellness’ sure to position them above and beyond in the hearts of fans across the country and the world.

First track Take Your Time encompasses the signature vocals we’ve come to know and love from Last Dino’s front man Sean Caskey. It’s not all that different to past offerings from the band, however the stand out on this track is the blistering guitar that forms the base of the whole song and holds it together like some kind of melodic glue. It’s one of those things, which once noticed cannot be ignored. I’m already planning my next road trip to the tune of this song…

Evie is the lead single from the new album ‘Wellness’ and it’s not hard to see why. After being released in May and having over 100, 000 plays on Soundcloud to date, the track is full of summer time indie-pop goodness and a touch of electronica that takes the band on a natural progression from their previous albums. It’s an obvious sing along track built for the crowd, with layered vocals in the chorus are just begging the fans to scream the lyrics back to them.

“I think we have refined our energy more than anything,” the band said, “that connection between the crowd and us became a lot stronger as we grew as a touring band… Now we have a better idea of what we think is cool and we have come closer to something that is cooler. Lots of feels on this album that are a bit deeper.”

Karma is a slightly heavier track from the get go that hooks you instantly. It’s the bass that instantly makes you want to dance. Next up is Wurl and if I thought I could get away with a subtle office groove on the last track and remain undetected, then I’m surely out of luck with this one. Last Dinosaurs have a knack for pairing their heartfelt, emotionally saturated lyricism with surprisingly upbeat dance tunes, proving that you really can always make good of a bad situation. It sounds slightly reminiscent of late night 80’s drive tunes, and I’m not going to lie to you, I love it!

Mid way through the album it becomes clear that this is a collection of pop infused indie rock tracks. It’s around this time that I find myself longing for a bit of light and shade between the tracks that although all great in their individuality have all started to sound mildly similar when played one after the other. Then, Wellness, the albums’ title track starts up.

There it is, the sweet sigh of relief in the form of a song, strategically placed at number 5. A slow building track built on dreamy electronica and floating vocals it takes the maturity of the album up a notch, providing a much needed reprieve from the fast paced dance-a-thon we’d previously been privy to. With swirling synths and Caskey lazily asking ‘can we go back to your house’ it feels like a song made for lovers.

Apollo throws you straight back into a world infused with disco jams, light up floors and flare jeans but by this stage I’ve learnt not to complain. This is what they’re known for, and it’s what they do well. After catching the band at Splendour and watching them rock a crowd way too big for the 3pm amphitheatre expectations it is clear that the people have missed Last Dinosaurs and this album is giving the people exactly what they want.

Always is a slower jam, Purist brings in those familiar guitar sounds we love to boogie to and Stream follows in quick succession. The stand out to me on this record is the depth of the lyricism, the storytelling that exists behind the façade of electronica and heavy dance tunes.

“To be honest, I haven't actually sat down and thought about everything I said. Even though so much effort and deliberation goes into every single word, a big part of me doesn't listen to what I'm saying, because I have to detach myself and say it's all fine, otherwise I'll get nothing done. I find it all too personal even talking about it,” Sean said.

Zero is the ultimate song to tie up what is a wonderful body of work from the Brissy boys. Silky guitar wraps around the track with the phrasing in the chorus providing long-time fans with a new way of listening to the band.

Wellness is a well-rounded, beautifully crafted album that, arguably as all albums should, takes you on a journey. After an extensive amount of overseas touring and a dedicated effort to recording this album, maturity shines through on this record, showing just why these guys continue to remain local, home-grown Aussie favourites amongst the masses.

8/10

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