Image: Gareth Owens
After a long journey, which didn’t always see smooth sailing, East Coast band Greatest Hits have released their long-awaited debut EP, Volume One. The musical project of Australian Musician Ryan Cooper, Greatest Hits began as a worldwide collective of friends, with members hailing from Northern England, the South of France, Los Angeles and Nashville. Having already played festivals across the UK and supporting the likes of Halfnoise, The Mauskovic Dance Band, Holy Wave and The Districts, the band found themselves in Australia, after having to leave the UK due to visa issues.
Known for their 70’s and neo-psych/sunshine pop sounds, their debut EP continues that sonic exploration, incorporating catchy modern melodies. Volume One covers a range of relatable topics. The need to slow down, trying to measure up to peoples perceptions, navigating our own identity to name a few. The band take these heavy subject matters, dissect them and flip them to create something light. The group tackle topics that aren’t easily expressed, using their brand of lyrical sarcasm to approach and represent serious subject matter.
Opening with the undeniably catchy Growler, A Little Bit Of Everyone, the track focuses on the concept of identity, and the idea our personas take on characteristics of the places and people that surround us. Phil, Slow It Down is centred around the fast paced nature of life we find ourselves undertaking. The track is a call to slow down and take in your surroundings and life. On Mortals, the bands debut single, Coopers vocals shine, shifting between falsetto and his middle register.
Trying offers the perspective of an individual who embraces the challenge of trying to measure up to somebody else’s perceived idea of success. The song continues the 70’s and neo-psych/sunshine pop sounds the band have previously explored, but this time with a different kind of groove. Within the collection of songs, Trying sees a more mellow side of the band, with a new groove on the track.
On Lemon Joe, Cooper divides the track into two personas. One voice is more relaxed and plays it safe, whilst the other takes risks. The psychedelic tinged track navigates the coexistence of the two personas within one psyche. The release closes with One Afternoon. The song tackles themes of death, approaching the heavy topic in a light manner, almost brushing off the severity of mortality.
On Volume One, Greatest Hits are carving out their own path and setting the groundwork for the experimental nature of their music, mixing nostalgic sounds with contemporary melodies. The refreshing lyrical sarcastic approach to heavy subject matter creates relatable conversations over an inviting soundscape that offers listeners a space of contemplation. The relatable nature of the tracks are effortlessly introspective without the band attempting to create an ostentatious body of work. Cooper gives an entrancing and stunning vocal performance throughout the EP, with the release being a true testament to the high calibre of musicianship each band member brings to the project.
Volume One is out now!