Cocteau Twins disciples’ ears pricked up when Hatchie appeared two years ago equipped with A+ dream pop songs. Singer/bassist Harriette Pilbeam may well echo the cult band’s ticks (Twins’ guitarist Robin Guthrie even remixed one of her songs, ‘Sure’) but Hatchie’s creations are sweeter overall. On Keepsake, the Brisbane artist retains the twinkling tones of her near-faultless Sugar & Spice EP but at points quarries deeper for trudging beats and lurching guitars. Album highlight ‘Unwanted Guest’, a track that recalls the snarl of David Bowie’s ‘Fame’, somehow unites funk-rock, industrial and shoegaze elements without sounding terrible. While Pilbeam can sometimes become too reliant on rehashing similar, gauzy three-chord progressions (‘Not That Kind’, ‘Keep’) songs such as lovelorn, washed-out dance track ‘Stay With Me’ renew the faith.
Buy: Hatchie – Keepsake