Song of the Day: Blank Realm - Palace of Love

Song of the Day
01/05/2016
Jacob Webb

Every Monday through Friday, we deliver a different song as part of our Song of the Day podcast subscription. This podcast features exclusive KEXP in-studio performances, unreleased songs, and recordings from independent artists that our DJ’s think you should hear. Today’s song, featured on the Morning Show with John Richards, is “Palace of Love” by Blank Realm from their 2015 album, Illegals in Heaven, on Fire Records.

Blank Realm Palace of Love (MP3)

Over numerous releases, the guitar-based rock of Blank Realm has run the stylistic gamut, jumping from noisy- and bluesy-garage rock to laser-precise post-punk with little hesitation (for their part, the band calls their music "Australian occult boogie woogie"), but at the core of it all is the charismatic interplay between the bandmates and their admirable willingness to dive into a sound with full commitment. Consisting of siblings Luke, Sarah, and Daniel Spencer, as well as guitarist Luke Walsh (their "spiritual brother"), the Brisbane quartet formed in 2007 and began putting out a slew of one-off releases and recordings. By the time their 2013 breakthrough Go Easy had arrived, the group were one of Brisbane's most beloved bands and picking up steam with overseas critics. Their fifth proper album, last year's Illegals in Heaven, is their most sharpened release to date. To call it refined wouldn't be entirely accurate – it's still gloriously unbridled – but the band's focus has never been more clear or magnetic. "Palace of Love" shines from its first riff, but it's glimmering texture covers a monstrous, bending riff that loops the song through an elliptical rhythm. Riding C86-style melodies through a bounding rhythm, Daniel and Sarah's shouted rallying cry in the chorus ("Locked in the palace of love/waiting for someone to pick me up") is the perfect peak to the phased-out storm they've brewed at the local pub, only this dive bar is gilded with dizzyingly fun riffs delivered by a group who sound like they're having the time of their lives.

Blank Realm have some Australian dates lined up for the new year, but no announced plans to travel overseas at the moment. Keep up with the band at their Facebook and watch the video for the Illegals in Heaven track "River of Longing" below.

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