The Test Drive: Elstow - Planets AwayElstow formed in 2012 after playing Peats Ridge Festival (Australia) on the back of a few rough demos. The songwriting duo Jared Shaw and Chel Browne expanded to five members by 2014 and released their debut EP ‘As The Sun Falls’, a low-fi Psych Folk offering drawing on the melodic psychedelia of the late 60s. Described as “a psychedelic romance”, it preceded the single ‘Evil Dreams’, which blended their hazy 60s vibe with a 90s neo-psychedelic sound, with crisp tambourines, dreamy vocals, and self-indulgent lyrics.

Moving forward, Shaw took the role of sole songwriter and spent the better part of 2015-16 crafting their debut LP ‘Planets Away’, to be released in December. Further evolving Elstow’s palette, the album merges 90s neopsychedelia with a distinctly 70s sound, drawing on modern influences like The Flaming Lips and Jim James, as well as taking inspiration from George Harrison and Marvin Gaye.

Shaw admits being infatuated with the science fiction of John Wyndham when writing Elstow’s new record, discovering new imagery to express his own ideas and thoughts. The sun and moon feature prominently throughout the work, tying together the different parts into a coherent whole. The resulting album is awash with vivid synths, warm guitars, and bright commanding vocals, with Browne providing signature vocal harmonies in all the right places. Driven by hypnotic drum and bass grooves, ‘Planets Away’ is rhythmically-driven space-infused Psych Pop, that will confound and surprise listeners as it evolves with each listen.

Co-produced by Darragh Nolan (Sacred Animals) of Asta Kalapa Studios in Ireland, and mastered by Andrew Davenport at Edgeworth Studios in New Zealand, ‘Planets Away’ is to be released December 1st.