ARIA platinum-selling four-piece, Cub Sport announce their forthcoming album, Jesus At The Gay Bar, due for release on Good Friday, April 7. The band celebrate the news with an adjoining new single Keep Me Safe .
For their entire career, Cub Sport have been searching for some kind of absolution. To listen to the Brisbane band’s music is to see a process of unburdening and unlearning in slow motion: their four albums to date plot a progression away from shame and towards joy, celebration and pure euphoria. On their resplendent, forthcoming fifth album Jesus At The Gay Bar – the title of which was inspired by writer Jay Hulme’s poem of the same name – Cub Sport finally reach that point of ecstatic lightness, or at least somewhere close to it. Using the language of bright, crystalline dance music as shorthand for a kind of hard-won spiritual freedom – with nods to house, 2-step and UK garage, while retaining the lush fragility of Cub Sport music past – Jesus At The Gay Bar finds Tim Nelson, Sam Netterfield, Zoe Davis and Dan Puusaari largely shedding hangups and celebrating love and life in all its manifestations.
On their recent singles Always Got The Love and Replay, Cub Sport capture the pure heat of a single moment – the elation of a road trip, for example, or the thrill of letting go of the past and looking towards the future. Keep Me Safe changes that: intimate in its detail but never less than grand in its scale, it’s a remarkable reckoning with love and shame, a postcard to a former self written with impossible care and grace. Musically, Keep Me Safe continues the thread of dance music that runs through the singles from Jesus At The Gay Bar, building from ambient balladry into fleet, skyward-looking house.
Detailing the secret teenage romance between Cub Sport’s Tim Nelson and Sam Netterfield, as well as the internal conflict Nelson felt in the period afterwards, Keep Me Safe reclaims a period in the pair’s life that was initially shrouded in stress and confusion. It’s a million miles from stereotypical narratives of trauma or repression, instead emphasising the fragile rush of first love through a fluttering, emotive beat reminiscent of The Blaze and Fred Again…
Noting on the song’s inspiration, Nelson says: “I wrote ‘Keep Me Safe’ about a euphoric but complicated time. Shedding some light on it now feels like I’m validating my younger self and celebrating the magic in something I was so ashamed of at the time.”
In the video for Keep Me Safe, Cub Sport tell the story of Tim Nelson and Sam Netterfield’s relationship through a dreamlike haze. Emphasising the song’s idea of a secluded space for a relationship to bloom in private, the song takes place behind obscured windows and inside cars, an ultimate symbol of youthful privacy and queer independence. Directed by Berlin-based filmmaker Adam Munnings and shot by Eora (Sydney) DOP Jack Birtles, Nelson says the video captures “what it felt like on the inside of our secret world.” Referencing Baz Luhrmann’s iconic Romeo + Juliet, the Keep Me Safe video is rich in iconography of protection and safety – chainmail, bodies of water, private bedrooms – and captures the spirit of Cub Sport’s Jesus At The Gay Bar, which walks a line between intimacy and grandeur, maximalism and minimalism, the profoundly heightened and the immovably real.
Enjoy the imminent arrival of a new chapter from Cub Sport, by listening to Keep Me Safe, and preparing for the band’s forthcoming fifth album, Jesus At The Gay Bar.
JESUS AT THE GAY BAR TRACK LIST
- Always Got The Love
- High For The Summer (feat. Shamir)
- Keep Me Safe
- Songs About It
- Beg U
- Yaya (feat. Mallrat)
- Magic In U