The Safety Word

FRESH: ‘Games’ – The Safety Word

The Safety Word remix “Games”

Australian synth-pop outfit The Safety Word release Volume 2 of their triple remix album. The Safety Word are an electronic duo from Melbourne, Australia their works inspired by dream pop, chill wave and trip-hop sensibilities. The band consists of core song writing team John Rousvanis on (vocals/electric guitar) and Simon Quinn (laptop/keys) who either play as a compact duo unit or expand the band’s sound with an assortment of guest musicians for unique performances.

Their sound can be described as down tempo electronica with a twist of trip-hop and future R&B. Thrown into the blender are soulful vocals, abstract guitar, deep bass and ambient synth soundscapes. “The Safety Word (REMIXED Vol. 2)” is out today! This is the second instalment of three remix albums that the band have curated. Vol. 2 will feature collaborations and remixes by CITY OF STARS, Houg, Dada Droog, Craigus McVegas, The Monkeynauts, Mr. Rachele, Peter Nigido and Arcane Trickster.

This project was put together as their plans to record their sophomore album were put on ice due to the lockdowns caused by COVID-19. Instead of burying their heads in the sand and crying themselves to sleep they decided to create a fun lock-down remix project. So they reached out to their favourite producers to seek interest in creating remixes of their songs. The response was so unbelievable that they had enough artists really keen to be involved that they decided to release the 30 plus tracks over 3 separate albums.

The genres covered on Volume 2 range from synth-pop, trip-hop, indie dance, experimental electronica, progressive house and ambient. The album is all tied together by the distinctive vocals of John Rousvanis and the warm synth tones from producer Simon Quinn. The lead single from Volume 2 is a collaboration with synth-pop/indie-dance duo CITY OF STARS featuring Julian Smith and Scyia, together they reworked the track “Games” into an a darker more brooding electro-pop banger. Part-way through reworking the track, the CITY OF STARS pair found themselves observing a world falling to its knees under the spread of COVID-19 and race riots.

Scyia noted “We were checking in with each other several times a day whilst making the track out of concern as well as for creative purposes, and as we were recording we both noticed that the song had struck a different meaning than the one Simon and John (The Safety Word) had possibly intended. The song was originally about the‘push-and-pull’ nature of someone’s personal relationships, but I think our version ended up applying to a crippled world and the desperate state in which we found humanity”.

Given that CITY OF STARS reworked the song, it seemed only fitting that they proposed a new film clip to go with it, a process overseen largely by Scyia, but contributed to by all members of the collaboration. As Smith observed, “Scyia’s strength in visual arts is as commanding for him as his audio, but I was terrified of suggesting the idea to The Safety Word. I needn’t have been, they were gracious and open to the idea. I shot my contributions local to where I live in rural Victoria, and Simon and John did the same in Melbourne. We shot separately because of lockdown conditions, obviously, but Scyia has been able to knit a beautiful and simple clip together in a very personal way. The entire collaborative process between us and The Safety Word has been remarkably easy -it’s a testament to the way they handle themselves in their musical community -respectful and dignified and open to exploration of all ideas. Scyia and I have felt honoured and received with every idea we’ve put forward for this project. It’s been incredibly heart-warming as an experience”.

For more about The Safety Word, check out their WEBSITE and their FACEBOOK page

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So perhaps you’ve read an article or two that I’ve written and wondered “just who is this character?”! Well I thought maybe it would be time to introduce myself and what I’m all about. Well it’s all about the music! Having been born in the late 1970’s I was heavily influenced by my parent’s love of ‘popular’ music and rock and roll of the 1950’s and 60’s. My Mother always said she should of married Elvis and my father was, and is still, in love with Sandie Shaw! But while my Dad’s tastes stopped in about 1967, my Mum carried on loving music throughout the 70’s, 80’s and beyond. My first memory was playing on the floor whilst my Mother was ironing one day with the radio on, and hearing ABBA’s “Super Trouper” dancing my nappy off to it! Maybe that’s where it all went wrong…?! Having been subjected to all and sundry in my infant years, I finally found my feet in the mid-1980’s and began ‘partying’ to the likes of Culture Club, Stevie Wonder(!), Elkie Brooks and Bananarama to name but a few! The year 1987 would have a profound effect on my listening tastes and from thereon in my life would be dominated with buying and listening to music. Any number of outstanding songs were released and listened to that year, most notably “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “La Isla Bonita”. That Summer my mind was completely taken over with music and sounds I’d never heard before and I was totally taken in by it all. My father would say “whaaar rubbish you got on naaaaao?” (I’m from Norfolk!) but I was hooked. And it continued so for the rest of the decade and the next. At the beginning of 1988 I ‘met’ my true love and the singer I’ve worshipped more than any other artist or group. You may know of her. She’s from Australia…! Aside from pop music, my tastes are many and varied and continues to grow and expand as I ‘mature’ in age. I’ve always been heavily interested in films and in particular the mechanics of film making and of course film music, so scores and subsequently orchestral music takes up a lot of my tastes and collection. 90’s dance and club tunes also takes up much of the space in my head and I’m surprised my brain has stopped shaking from the years of abuse it took being dragged to nightclubs, often three times a week in my 20’s! I find with each year that passes I regress back to my youth and of course the 1980’s. 80’s music dominates and the lust to see as many 80’s acts and singers play live now is insatiable. I’m still getting into the groove as much as every breath I take, but I’m never gonna give up listening to my heart and pumping up the volume, simply because I LOVE MUSIC…any kind of music!