RIYL: Julien Baker, Laura Gibson and other modern female singer-songwriter

Label: Self Released

Love Is A Dog is Tinpan Orange’s 5th record and the first on vinyl. Beside the standard black version, there’s a very limited orange one with just 100 pressed. It’s only available from her Bandcamp and on tour, but I recommend to act fast if you want one of these. The price is quite high, but the orange wax looks great and the most important thing – the music is really beautiful. It reminds me a lot of the latest Laura Gibson, and the fragile folk of Julien Baker. Especially the really beautiful duets like “Rich Man” are standouts, or “Cities Of Gold” which is almost a pop song. If you’re into modern singer-songwriter material, you should definitely check it out.



The Details

In 2015 Tinpan Orange returned to the studio to record their fifth record, Love Is A Dog. Inspired, as always, by love, this collection of eleven songs is an exercise in musical portraiture: a rarified, naturalistic world, in which the few essential elements have been arranged to perfection. The deep, throbbing tremolo guitar, the shimmering strings, and the fine threads of Emily Lubitz’s gossamer voice, are the defining components of this album that isn't reliant on tricks of production but rather the raw, live performances that each band member brings.

Uncompromising in vision and astonishingly beautiful in execution, Love Is A Dog represents the culmination of a decade’s work. Recorded live, the chemistry between siblings Emily and Jesse is undeniable – the effortless mastery of blend that is only born from a lifetime’s singing and playing together. Alex Burkoy, full of gravitas on the violin, gives his greatest performance yet – the stark playing imbued with a sense of profound humanity.

The opening track, Rich Man sees Emily's voice soar into a gentle falsetto, the band simmering beneath her as she tells her cautionary tale. Love Is A Dog is heartbreaking ode to the end of a love affair, with Jesse's harmony perfectly complimenting Emily's melancholy refrain. Lucky One and Hear From Me bring a lightness to the album, providing some key sing-along moments. Light Across The Water is a smouldering and emotional peak in the record while Leopards is a folky finale, pervaded by the luscious harmonies that have come to define this band, its soaring climax is a perfect end to a deeply considered album.

Produced by Tinpan Orange and Harry James Angus (The Cat Empire, Jackson Jackson), mixed by Adam Selzer (Jolie Holland, M. Ward, She and Him), and engineered by Matthew Neighbour (Missy Higgins, Matt Corby, Courtney Barnett) Love is a Dog is a luscious and melodic new offering from this prolific band.

The Age writes that “the intoxicating romance of this exceptional band can't be contained…” and while Tinpan Orange are renowned for their idiosyncratic live performances, Emily's wild dance moves and interesting stage outfits, nonetheless, for all the heady glamour, they have always been grounded in a deep sense of emotional honesty. With this rarest golden thread they have woven their cloth.

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Price $38

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