No Mono and Lowlakes singer Tom Snowdon pays tribute to his musical influences, his family and his hometown with his solo debut in the form of EP 'Channel', out now via Pieater.
The EP is a series of low-key, stripped back covers, featuring songs from the likes of Men At Work, Björk and Britney Spears. The collection of covers was inspired by the album 'Messenger' by Australian Aboriginal artist Jimmy Little, one of Snowdon's favourite albums growing up.
Born and raised in Alice Springs from a large close-knit family, he's now based in Melbourne; it's a long way from home. The EP also represents "a way of reaching across the country to my family back in Central Australia” for Snowdon.
Strict coronavirus restrictions in Melbourne meant that the EP was almost entirely a solo affair, even though it was initially envisioned as a live record performed with a band. Snowdon still kept that live feeling though, recording a lot of the material in one take before adding extra elements in post-production.
The result is a set of very intimate covers, most of which sound completely different to their original versions. Through the minimalist instrumentals mainly consisting of soft, lush piano and synths, and Snowdon's signature heartfelt vocals, he really makes these covers his own.
We already knew that Snowdon could nail a cover from his Triple J Like A Version performance of fka Twigs' 'Two Weeks' and his rendition of Alex North and Hy Zaret's standard 'Unchained Melody', both performed alongside frequent collaborator Tom Iansek a.k.a. #1 Dads.
The pair form the group No Mono, who for the past few years have been steadily releasing music. Snowdon has also been busy collaborating with the likes of upsidedownhead and Willaris. K on their recent projects.
This solo venture proves that he can do it all on his own, though. On these six songs he has created a unique atmosphere that ties all of these tracks together even though their original versions have very little in common.
He turns Men At Work's quirky new wave hit 'Who Can It Be Now?' into a haunting and melancholic ballad. He takes a similar approach on 'Can't Get You Out Of My Head', turning Kylie Minogue's house-infused pop banger into a moodier and more lethargic cut.
He covers songs spanning nine decades - Selena Gomez's 2019 hit 'Lose You To Love Me' sits in the same track list as the classic ballad 'Blue Moon', originally penned by Richard Rodgers and Lorenz Hart in 1934. And yet neither song sounds a bit out of place.
Tom Snowdon's influences are all over the place in a good way. The way he brings them all together seamlessly into this six track EP just proves his musical talent. Not that anyone ever doubted it; we've all seen what he can do before. But now Snowdon is stepping out solo, and he's ready to make waves all on his own.