Echolily’s debut track has already generated 50k plus Spotify streams, not only confirming the appeal and potency of DIY art but introducing the writing savvy of a curiously emboldened contemporary musician.
Quietly bold yet supplicatory when it needs to be, Under The Clocks (Stay) is a convincing, proficient musical statement.VINCE LEIGH
Born in Malaysia and now based in Melbourne, Echolily, aka Michelle Chong, produces idiosyncratic, experimental ambient pop that can be as surprising as it can be subtly dense. Echolily’s debut, Under The Clocks (Stay), shimmers with covert hooks—which is less of an incongruous description than one thinks—sly, melancholic allure, and an assortment of both bright and sombre rippling textures.
The track’s slice of life introduction segues into various otherworldly musical passages, with Echolily’s vocal performance guiding us through an elusive landscape of synth tones, machine beats and a host of background ethereal colours, all solidifying an understated romantic vein.
I wish you love until the end / But now that you’re gone / Can you hear the music? / That played the night we danced until the dawn.
Reminiscent of some of Björk and Portishead’s work, Under The Clocks (Stay) is accessible, without adhering to obvious melodic choices, and manages to maintain a sort of transience that adds to the governing idea, cleverly conjured by Echolily’s quite raw and mercurial musical jaunts.
As Echolily says about the inspiration behind the track,‘I was busking near Flinders Station when I met this man. He was older and played the trumpet. He told me that he used to meet his lover at Flinders Street railway station under the giant clocks.
He would say, ‘Just meet me under the clocks.’ Well, that and many other love stories combined, including my own, became the premise of Under The Clocks (Stay).’ Echolily’s appropriation of this tale only reinforces that sense of untethered yearning eddying through the track, providing a clear picture of the artist’s intentions—despite some of the musical ambiguity.
Quietly bold yet supplicatory when it needs to be, Under The Clocks (Stay) is a convincing, proficient musical statement.