A delicately meandering journey of introspection, self-discovery, and overcoming life’s obstacles is revealed in Western Australian producer and singer-songwriter Brayden Sibbald’s sophomore EP, We Can Only Move Forward, out now.
Sibbald may be a fresh name on many lips, but his sophomore effort boasts the sincerity and craft of an artist well beyond his years. The Dunsborough local’s unique approach to sound production emerges from the world around him, with his five-track release beaming inspiration from the gentle beaches of his regional hometown, all the way abroad to the mighty glaciers of Iceland.
Brayden talks about the ten songs that inspired the EP.
Foals – Spanish Sahara
My favourite song of all time. I love the feel – how sonically it translates a landscape. I Am The Master Saboteur was heavily influenced by this song.
Jai Paul – Jasmine
I love the production on this – how muddy it is and how good it feels. And it’s full of quirky hooks. Stylistically for some of the songs like Master Saboteur we were going for a more muddy mix.
Volcano Choir – Comrade
I’m a huge fan of anything arpeggiated so the chorus of this song had me hooked from first listen. Originally there were these similar big arps in Sparse but it felt too busy so I took them out – but it definitely shaped the direction of the song.
Childish Gambino – California
This song took a while to grow on me to be honest. But it’s a great song. In the studio we went through a number of different versions of Thin Air until we used this for the beat inspiration and it cracked the code.
Bon Iver – Perth
I had the Bon Iver album on repeat driving around Iceland when I wrote a bunch of the EP songs, so it had a pretty big influence. One if my happiest memories is of driving through falling snow – which was the first time I’d ever seen it fall – while this song was on.
Nick Murphy – Sanity
Another track I was listening to a lot when I was travelling in Iceland. Just an awesome hook filled song – it’s more commercial sounding without anything being cliche. And awesome production. It inspired Afterglow’s more pop direction.
James Blake – I’ll Come Too
My favourite track off Assume Form. I love anything the James Blake does but I feel like this album was a step up in terms of being a songwriter and producer. I love the intricacies and the minimalism across the album and this track – which I took inspiration from when making stylistic choices about the EP. I also love the lyrics in this song. 10/10
Dizzy – Twist
This song has some of my all time favourite lyrics in it – shifting perspectives and twists ‘I’m enjoying all the free time now/I took up writing and a course on how/to stop myself from foaming at the mouth/I am idling at the foot of your house/ while you’re up in your room with someone else’ – it’s my favourite type of lyric and I aspire to use it in my songwriting.
Vampire Weekend – Hannah Hunt
Another one of my favourite tracks of all time. It always seems to creep into any new playlist and I was listening to it a lot while working on the ep. I love the lyrics and the storytelling; and the production choices keeping it restrained until the end just for a few bars. I saw an interview with Ezra who said it was originally slated for on of their earlier albums but they cut it because it didn’t quite work yet – until they got the right feel. I’m glad they waited.
Ben Howard – Nica Libres At Dusk
I’m a huge Ben Howard fan and his latest release is no exception. This is probably my favourite track off Noonday Dream. I draw a lot of parallels growing up more as a singer songwriter and them moving into more electronic sounds so it’s inspiring to see artists I look up to blending the two so well. I’ve definitely tried to so that more on this EP.
Compiled By Rob Lyon