The Cactus Channel’s third album Stay A While takes the orchestrated soul futurism that has become their signature sound and adds silvery vocal dimensions, as the band’s own Lewis Coleman steps up to the mic. The band has recently shared the video for their first single “Storefront” and announced a huge Australian tour.
Three is the magic number for The Cactus Channel. The ever-evolving Melbourne collective’s new album represents a new consciousness and a decisive turning point. Unloosed from their earlier incarnation as an instrumental soul and funk band into something wilder, a little darker and heavier, the new album sees The Cactus Channel diving in deep to dreamlike soundtracks, electrifying wig-outs and woozy meditations.
The new embodiment of The Cactus Channel flexes their classic soul and funk influences whilst expanding their own songwriting along psychedelic paths, adding weight and substance to their melodic and rhythmic axis. There were signifiers along the road; a boundary-splintering EP with Ball Park Music singer Sam Cromack earlier this year, following a 7” single collab with Nick Murphy, released as The Cactus Channel feat. Chet Faker. These outings were a glimpse of the alchemy of adding vocals to the band’s typically intuitive, instrumental arrangements. And now with the band’s own Lewis Coleman stepping up to the mic, a vocal dimension has become part of The Cactus Channel’s fully formed, signature sound.
Looking back to when The Cactus Channel formed in high school, united by shared interests and a shared sense of humour, they were always set to walk this new path. A love of soul music and the kind of hip-hop, jazz, and alternative releases that spring from it, meant that from the beginning The Cactus Channel have prided themselves not just on eclecticism, but on the constant sharing of influences among their members; exploring new influences and sonic territories.
“The Melbourne collective ascend their future soul to another level on this one.” – Red Bull Music
“Sounds like: BADBADNOTGOOD, Michael Jablonka, Slum Sociable, Grizzly Bear” – Indie Shuffle
“Stay A While sees the Melbourne group move away from their original soul and funk roots and into something darker, heavier and woozy. Think Menahan Street Band by way of BadBadNotGood and you’re on the right path.” – Beat Magazine
“Lewis Coleman’s vocals give what were previously elaborate instrumental tracks something to grab the casual ear, but they’re no afterthought.” – Jake Cleland (Stack Magazine)
“A soulful melange between jazz and funk” – Hypetrak (Hypebeast)
“the harmonies and ride-heavy drums of The Cactus Channel fit perfectly with Faker’s powerful voice” – Hilly Dilly
“absolutely fabulous music” – (on collaboration with Chet Faker) – Triple j (Richard Kingsmill)
“What ensued was an onslaught of pure soul that melted the minds and ears of all surrounding, perhaps not what you’d expect of a young band with a name as unusual as The Cactus Channel” – The Ripe