Ex-pat New Zealanders Ché Walden, Annemarie Duff, and Chris Maclean have been making music together as Miniatures since 2012, creating layered, atmospheric soundscapes.
‘Jessamines’, their first full-length album (EP’s ‘Miniatures’ and ‘DIS’ were released in 2012 and 2013 respectively), was recorded in their adopted home of Melbourne, and is a sweet concoction of dream pop and shoegaze, with layers of synths and guitars swirling on top of each other.
Reverb and echo are used heavily throughout the album on both guitars and vocals, adding to the sense of hazy dreaminess. It is rare that a sense of urgency breaks through within these songs, but it does in places, most notably in the fast-paced, rhythm-heavy title track.
There is a heavy influence from favourite 1980s and 1990s indie pop groups to draw any comparison points, especially Cocteau Twins, The Smiths, My Bloody Valentine, and Lush, although it is a disservice to Miniatures to suggest their sound is only the sum of their influences.
It is easy to feel like you are being submerged in synths, and drowning in sound on ‘Jessamines’, although with music this gorgeous, it’s not necessarily a bad thing. However, they do tread a fine line between being submerged and being overwhelmed.