Paces debut album, titled Vacation, is about to drop and boy is it a journey through happy vocals and tropical infused beats. We were given the opportunity to wrap our ears around it before its release and throw down a review!
From the outset, on first track God Mode, the Gold Coast native layers natural beach sounds (even dog panting) behind upbeat future bass drums and synths. Super kawaii. The track continues through a breakdown with a soft glockenspiel to ride listeners through to the drop back into whining synths. A real head-turner of a track to kick the album off.
From there, the album takes an unexpected turn – it tones it down with some soft chimes and floating lyrics on Loop. Although summer is gone, the track oozes sun and vibes, with crisp snaps and a rolling bassline behind May’s tones.
Of course, hugely successful track 1993 (No Chill) steps it up a notch. Caribbean vibes are widely evident in the effort, as the layers simultaneously create a near hip-hop track, as the chorus intertwines Jess Kent’s hook with poppy drums and melody.
Hard for Me takes a similar path – although the tempo is different. This festival-ready track would be no stranger in any headlines set, as it takes swirling synths alongside bell hits and crisp drum fills behind the pitched up vocals of Xavier Dunn. Watch out for this one, a dark-horse for this year’s Triple J’s Hottest 100.
Work Me Out takes Indian-derived drums alongside Paces’ signature synth throughout the album, to create a funky hip-hop track with fire verses from Rye Rye. In doing so, Paces only adds further texture to his multi-faceted debut.
The album subsequently cools it down with some more summery nostalgia, with the distinct voice of KUČKA carrying the album into the latter half across some soft drops within Nothing’s Forever. From there, the debut continues to glide from genre to genre, from the soft harp plucks along Playback, to the Major Lazer-esque Cafuçu.
Paces rounds his album out with a 100bpm finale featuring Guy Sebastian (yep, that one!). The track provides some soulful lyrics alongside the dancefloor ready, feel-good synths and percussion – a perfect ending to a fantastic debut.
Vacation is an essential for those wanting to live in an endless summer – for those in Melbourne where the sun doesn’t come out for months, and the weather stays below 15 degrees almost constantly. This 13 track effort will help you relive those ‘tropical’ days by the pool, the beach, or just help you remember the relaxation of your summer break.
Vacation is out on the 4th March via etcetc! Have a stream below of 1993 (No Chill) while you wait, and let us know what you think!