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Romance in noire – this song by “the Braves” plays like a crackling record on gramophone in a crumbling mansion.

“Side by Side” spits venom in noise-rock fashion. Lyrically verbose and dramatically theatrical, this track brings back sounds dredged up from long ago – proving them palatable for a modern musical appetite.

We can make out a few deeply retro influences throughout the song.

In particular, parallels could be drawn between the Braves and “the Stranglers” in terms of feel and experimentation. But the Braves are darker, more ominously chilled by far and surprisingly sweet to listen to.

The romance is dead…

Dark, dismal romance poisons our thoughts to the tune of a death march. The lapsing rhythm lends a collapsing, suffocating air to the tune.

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Melancholic desperation builds to choral climax repeatedly. You’re lost in your sorrows, trapped in some abysmal crypt. Your lover’s ruinous corpse keeps you company.

Dangerously close to the mouth of the shark…

“Side by Side” is the haunted house tour of tunes.

Every verse screams dark Americana, an interesting direction for an Aussie band to choose.

The guitar work is closely knit at verse and chillingly loose come each chorus. Coupled with pitter-pattering jazz fills from the drums, the guitar effectively accentuates the singer and story – launching into a thrashy, harsh rhythm before receding into musicbox-esque territory.

This song plays like a narration of mad romance in such a cohesive manner it feels hauntingly real. I especially love the INXS feel of the chorus outro, if it doesn’t lean reminiscent of “Never Tear Us Apart,” nothing does.

“Side by Side” is an eerie, almost gothic take on storytelling, with enough grit and distortion to rock you, yet sufficient nuance to entertain and enthrall.

Check it out below and get your own fix of the Braves!



Need more music? Check out our post on Collegians’ “Black Mass”!