Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Port Douglas

Okay, I'm back from a sabbatical in Far North Queensland. Whilst on holiday in the tropics I was listening to some 60s Australian rock. The Mrs then says "Sometimes rock and roll is a bit incongruous." Who was I to disagree? Once while visiting Mildura at the height of a gruelling Australian summer I remember going for a walk in the 35+ degree heat. On my i-pod I had The Kink's Something Else while sweating in the semi arid conditions. The incongruity of that was precisely the point. I loved listening to tales of 60s British suburban life, it didn't fit at all. When I saw The Trip with Steve Coogan playing Joy Division in the picturesque English countryside I thought 'Ah a like mind, with a perverse sense of humour.'

Anyway I thought about Emma's comment and thought okay let's see if I can match this scene of humidity, palm trees, insects, lagoons, jellyfish, The Great Barrier Reef and The Pacific Ocean. A quick check of the I-pod showed I currently had 3 Dolphins Into The Future releases synced. I put one on and immediately there was synchronisation between the world in which we were in and the sounds we were hearing. The funny thing is from our room with lagoon views in which you could see palm trees, gum trees, brightly coloured tropical birds, the Pacific Ocean etc. you couldn't open the window for fear of giant mosquitoes entering your space and destroying your pleasure. With that window being closed all you could hear was a low hum of the air conditioner. Putting on the Dolphins put the sound back into our room. It fit like a glove. In some way though this was just as fake, like a sound designer putting the environmental sounds retrospectively onto a film. It made me think that in some ways this is as incongruous as the rock. Anyway for the next week it was all Three Dolphins records as the soundtrack to our balmy holiday. The perfect soundtrack.

The only other album I put on the i-pod dock was Paul Shutze's New Maps of Hell III. This fit as well. I remember a critic once describing it as music from the pacific rim. This however was a slightly darker take on similar themes. I checked the title of one track, it was called The Rapture of Drowning. The next day while on a boat for a Barrier Reef snorkeling tour I couldn't get that kind of horror vibe out of my head. I thought if Radha Mitchell turns up and starts talking to us we're definitely doomed.

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