THE PRESETS are back and up for it. On the back of their first new tracks in almost four years – triple j favourites Do What You Want and 14U+14ME – the Australian electronic dance pioneers have today announced a national tour to launch their long awaited fourth studio album HI VIZ.
It’s been a decade since this duo – Julian Hamilton & Kim Moyes – first set festival fields alight with breakthrough anthems like My People, Talk Like That and This Boys In Love. The pair had been making waves in Sydney’s clubs since forming in 2003 and signing to the influential Modular Records, but it was their 2008 Oz chart topper, Apocalypso, that first introduced them to wider audiences. That album was certified triple platinum and won them six ARIA Awards in their homeland. By contrast, 2012’s critically acclaimed Pacifica was comparatively introspective but epic gigs around the world – from Glastonbury Festival and Coachella to Splendour In The Grass – forged the duo’s reputation as Australian electronic music trailblazers. Continuing in this tradition, The Presets’ fourth album HI VIZ – which lands May 18 – delivers a ‘back to basics’ set, deliberately curated as a proxy for The Presets’ live experience.
“We wanted to make something that was literally meant to get you out of your head”, explains Julian Hamilton. “All the songs on HI VIZ are outward looking so in that respect it’s much more like our earlier stuff. It’s about trying to capture that energy you get on a great night out with your friends when you get to leave everything else behind you for a while. We essentially tried to create the soundtrack to a party that we would want to go nuts at.”
“It’s taken us ages to make this album because we just kept writing and recording more and more songs”, reflects Kim Moyes. “At one point we had about 50 contenders and, like us, they were all over the map mood wise. Eventually we decided – fuck it – let’s just pick the most ‘up for it’ songs. Those tracks are always the most fun for us to play live anyway so we thought ‘why not have a whole album of them?’”.
HI VIZ has already been teased with two songs – the urgent “Do What You Want” dropped late last year and featured in triple j’s Hottest 100 songs of 2017 and the sweeping 14U+14ME, which is among the tastemaker station’s most played songs of 2018. Most of the album has been mixed by John Hanes who created the classic mix of Uptown Funk as well as working more recently with the likes of Sia, Bruno Mars and Major Lazer. Apocalypso collaborator Scott Horscroft also mixed several HI VIZ tracks while Flume engineer Eric J mixed Beethoven – the pair’s sly nod to their Conservatorium years.
Both Julian and Kim individually produce other artists outside their Presets collaborations, so it’s not surprising that they, once again, are credited as Producers for their own album. It’s also apt that some of the artists with whom they’ve worked should make HI VIZ cameos. For example, Are You Here? features indie rockers the DMA’s, whose latest release was co-produced by Kim. Similarly Alison Wonderland – for whom The Presets recently created a widely played remix – guested on the beaty Are You Out Of Your Mind? while Jake Shears from Scissor Sisters added vocals to the dark’n’steamy Tools Down.
Joining The Presets across all their Australian tour dates, Roland Tings will bring his propulsive cuts and dynamic live set to the fore. Fresh off the heels of releasing his new, stripped back house track One Hundred feat. HIGH HØØPS, the Melbourne producer will be kicking things off each evening with his blistering live set.
HI VIZ is out now via thepresets.com. Appropriately the band will immediately hit the road to showcase the album on their first headlining tour since 2014, presented by triple j. Taking in Perth, Adelaide, Melbourne, Canberra, Wollongong, Sydney, Brisbane and the Gold Coast.
HI VIZ JUNE TOUR 2018
Metropolis Fremantle, Perth (GA/18+)
Wednesday June 13
Thebarton Theatre, Adelaide (GA/All Ages)
Friday June 15
Forum Theatre, Melbourne (GA/18+)
Saturday June 16
UC Refectory, Canberra (GA/18+)
Thursday June 21
Waves, Wollongong (GA/18+)
Friday June 22
Enmore Theatre, Sydney (GA/All Ages)
Saturday June 23
The Tivoli, Brisbane (GA/18+)
Wednesday June 27
Nightquarter, Gold Coast (GA/18+)
Friday June 29
For complete tour and ticketing, visit: livenation.com.au/artist/the-presets-tickets.