The music from Australian singer-songwriter David Bridie features prominently in my music library. Today’s song Breath is from his debut solo album Act of Free Choice (cover above) released in 2000. Unlike the high-art pop music he composed with his band My Friend The Chocolate Cake his solo music is much more experiential and introspective in nature. He seemed to have been exploring a new world of sound by creating a sonic visual to allow the listener to immerse themselves. It took me considerable time to succumb to these haunting songs from Act of Free Choice including today’s track Breath, but I’m well and truly on board now.
slowly shut your eyelids
feel all overcome
something’s working beautifully
something’s this much fun
but can you taste it
sort through it
bite into it spread it round
you didn’t see it coming
now you just hold your breath
I couldn’t help but think of Australian writer Tim Winton’s words in his book by the same ‘Breath’ which I reviewed here – “It’s funny, but you never really think much about breathing. Until it’s all you ever think about.”
PopMatters described Act of Free Choice ‘as one of the most quintessential Australian albums ever recorded. The album, a blue fog of shuddering drum loops, haunting piano scales and sky-sweeping atmospheres, evokes the lonely stretches of Australia’s outback, while narrating a generation’s worth of political strife’.
David Bridie remarked about his solo music and Act of Free Choice: ‘I love working with sound and I love working with story and Australia has an abundance of both. Some wonderful stories and characters….. And the landscape here is this wide brown land is awe inspiring…It is a large, big sky country. It can kill you at a moment’s notice if you aren’t prepared.. There is an intense beauty as well. The sound is quiet, there are harmonic frequencies in the wind, on the salt lakes… the land over powers you, and it is great respite from the mundane city life.’