Listen: ‘ I Want U 4 Myself’ by Venus II

Heading on down to Sydney towne for this short and sweet little humdinger of a track from Venus II (Jarrad Brown & Ryan Grieve) Complimented by a video clip that takes more than a few inspirations from Peter Weir’s classic 1975 film Picnic at Hanging Rock. I Want U 4 Myself is the lead single from the band’s new album Inside Your Skin.

Jarrad Brown had an epiphany. As writer and frontman of freewheeling eight-piece collective The Eagle & The Worm, Brown was accustomed to delivering smart pop song writing with lashings of ragged rock’n’roll. But when completing a new batch of demos, he found himself seeking a new landscape, synthesised energy and electronic sound in his head.

A chance meeting led Brown to Sydney-based producer Ryan Grieve, who runs Hole in the Sky Records, a label known for discovering Tame Impala. With over ten years’ experience in the Australian dance scene, working at the intersection of dance music, indie-pop and immersive audio-visuals as one half of band Canyons (DFA) and with recent project Heart People, Grieve saw Brown as a kindred spirit. Collaboration is second nature to Brown. He is a long standing veteran of the Melbourne jamming scene and a stalwart in bands like Eagle, Dorsal Fins and Custom Kings. These bands – and spiritual cousins like King Gizzard, Jagwar Ma and Saskwatch – work in different ways, unconstrained by traditional release wisdom or formats.

Working collaboratively, the unlikely pair raked open-mindedly through Brown’s band tracks, trading records and ideas without limits. Inspirations shared – from Baldelli’s cosmic disco to Talk Talk live sessions through Brown’s beloved Beach Boys and Stones to Psychemagik and Weatherall’s screamadelica  – became twisted into a new eclectic sound that Brown was searching for – a widescreen exploration of cosmic dance music through an fresh pop prism. So pleased with the results were Brown and Grieve, they anointed the partnership with a new name – Venus II.

The deceptively minimalist, “I Want U 4 Myself” pairs Venus II’s main man Jarrad Brown against a backdrop of stark percussion and moody pulsing bass: “It’s a step back to find some space,” says Brown. The raw elements of Grieve’s production of IWU4Myself capture the kind of smokey atmosphere reminiscent of The XX’s early work, and Brown’s understated vocals are not far removed from Gainsbourg-esque moments. IWU4myself finds its own place in its moody space, pop credentials, and its raw atmosphere.

“Sparring frenetic synths against an endless procession of euphoric hooks, with more than a few side-line spins towards the acid-holes of that hedonistic U.K. dance era” Rolling Stones Australia
“An acid-soaked rave-up that takes cues from baggy-era Manchester and weaves it through string-tinged psychedelic-techno” Tone Deaf
“One of the country’s most buzzworthy emergent acts” The Music AU