Write Up

Partner Look - By the Book

'By the Book' is the fun and ever-so charming debut record from Melbourne/Naarm super-group Partner Look.

Time and time again we've received some fun and charismatic music from the Osborne Again community. From Ciggie Witch, to The Ocean Party, to Snowy band - it seems each act that has a seat at the table has left a distinguished mark on the Melbourne/Naarm DIY scene.

The more recent band to come out of this is Partner Look, who earlier this month released their debut album By the Book lead by the charming single Rodeo Tragic.

Partner Look is a kind of super group, if you will, made up of German sisters Ambrin and Anila Hasnain, and their partners Dainis Lacey and Lachlan Denton, who each bring their styles and talent from previous projects Studio Magic, Cool Sounds, and The Ocean Party. They first came together to write Jana - a wedding gift to a family friend whose special day they couldn't attend. But something clicked between them, and the four stuck together to form Partner Look.

The band, whose name comes from the German term describing two people wearing matching outfits (cute), continued writing, and recorded an album's worth of songs during a short window between lockdowns. With five people allowed to congregate at ones home, they headed into Dainis' and Ambrin's home studio in Brunswick.

The result of the month-long recording process came into fruition earlier this month with By the Book, a twelve-track LP mixed and mastered by Liam 'Snowy' Haillwell, that's become an easy-listening and early favourite of mine.

While you can find a lot of experimentation throughout the record, you can also hear the simplicity in each song. Simple in such a charming and fun way you don't often see.

Take Rodeo Tragic - the jangly indie-pop guitars, pulsing keys, and cowbell feel free and blissful, a compliment to the seemingly straight-forward lyrics and themes of the track. Rodeo Tragic comes across as a song about a horse on a beach - no jockie, no cowboy, just a free and wild horse doing free and wild horse things.

There's so much charm to a song like this that comes across as honest and clean as every. It's a common trait you'll find across the album. Songs that are pretty straight forward in their themes; songs that you don't have to listen to over and over again to finally get what the song is about. These songs, for me, are then the most enjoyable and charming to listen to. I feel like the sounds and themes combined make for a record that's easy to consume and easy to leave on repeat.

This record had such a strong first impression on me. I remember hearing about it, playing it once, and not touching again for a couple of days. But yet the melodies and sounds from the songs kept playing in my head, which eventually had me standing in the Australian section of the record store and seeing the large pink artwork and thinking "I need this in my life".

I think with boundless creativity and experimentation that can be done, there's no limit to the fun and charm Partner Look can provide, and with such a like-minded community around them, I sure hope we get to hear more from them one day.