Look, we may have 4.9 million inhabitants and be one of the world’s ‘most livable cities’, but by and large Melbourne doesn’t have much of a math rock scene going on. We often have to wait for the venerable Art As Catharsis folk to travel down with their NegFest, their NiceFest, or their lovely array of Sydney-based acts in tow. You might call our lovely home a cultural tumbleweed in this respect.
So perhaps it is no surprise that Ben Renninson, based on the outskirts of Melbourne, runs his wonderful project AMERICA BEACH out of his bedroom. And what a project it is. What started as a jazzy MIDI-based project has become increasingly guitar-based, to the point where comparisons will inevitably made with juggernauts like CHON, Save Us From The Archon, Floral and others.
As you listen through AMERICA BEACH’s latest single ‘Strawberry Cream’, taken from his upcoming album AMERICA BEACH 2, you will hopefully see what separates Renninson from the rest of these fretboard-tapping monoliths. In this instrumental math-rock feast, the frenetic guitar phrases are balanced with jazz sensibilities, odd key changes, and quirky chord progressions. This isn’t your standard trip down to Noodle Hut; Renninson is infusing the jazzwave motifs pertinent to his back catalogue, offering something a bit more bite.
AMERICA BEACH 2 will undoubtedly be a solid contribution from the lowest latitudes of the math rock globe. It’s an album that will hopefully see another bedroom musician moving from the internet to the stage. Look at where Plini is now…