Release Date: Feb 26, 2013
Record label: Astralwerks
Genre(s): Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock, Alternative Pop/Rock, Indie Electronic, New Wave/Post-Punk Revival, Alternative Dance
Gold Fields' 2013 debut album, Black Sun, is an infectious, dance-oriented release that summons the new romantic spirit, if not the moussed hair and neon blush, of such '80s bands as Duran Duran, ABC, and Spandau Ballet. Centered around the lead vocals of Mark Robert Fuller and featuring a heavy dose of guitars, keyboards, and drums, both real and electronic, Gold Fields know how craft an instantly catchy pop hook. Any fan of '80s dance-rock will certainly recognize the way Gold Fields layer disco basslines, tribal drums, and pulsing keyboards over chiming guitar lines and Fuller's languid croon.
Although Black Sun is Gold Fields’ debut full-length effort, the Australian electro-pop group is currently proving they are not only dedicated to creating a sonic atmosphere specifically designed for the live concert setting, but that they are already a force to be reckoned with as well. Each song, from album opener “Meet My Friends” to tracks like “Treehouse” and “The Woods,” is constructed carefully and intentionally, much like their album as a whole, which saw three full revisions before it developed into what it has become. Ultimately, songs like the standout track “Dark Again” show that Gold Fields’ vision extends beyond the studio.
Black Sun, the debut album from the Australian quintet Gold Fields, does not offer anything terribly new. The band trades in sharp, propulsive, generally catchy indie dance-rock. Their sound is heavily informed by 1980s synthesizer pop. Specifically, Gold Fields project the kind of upscale melding of new wave and disco that Duran Duran perfected in the early 1980s.
Australian group Gold Fields went into recording their debut EP, Black Sun, with a philosophy that was both dangerous and intelligent. “From the beginning, we made it a big point to make every song sound different,” says guitarist Vin Andanar. “We didn’t want to be pigeonholed as part of any scene or specific sound.” This thought process could have given them a scattershot, confusing album, but instead they were able to keep themselves from being just another club mix.
It took Australian electro outfit Gold Fields two years and three tries to get their debut album right. Listening to the results, you can understand why they scrapped some big-name sessions and held out for these recordings made in a Ballarat garage. There’s a sense of wonder on Black Sun—exemplified on “The Woods” and the percussive “Treehouse,” which survives here in its original, homemade incarnation—that might have been tough to capture otherwise.