Sports Dreams is a collaboration between Palmerston North’s Shannen Petersen (Fruit Juice Parade) and Fraser Williams (First Move), and this, their debut release, is 15 minutes of minimal, spacious, shoegazing synth-pop.
Recorded by Harry Lilley at budget music facility The Stomach in their home town, the five-song EP matches perfectly with a wistful drive from the Manawatu, down the coast to Wellington, where the duo has gigged frequently throughout 2019.
Despite the simplicity of arrangements, there is plenty of variation in the grooves and tempos to keep things interesting. Petersen’s naturally emotive voice immediately hits the listener in the chest, soaring above her jangling guitar work and Williams’ drum loops and synths.
Late floats along on minimal lyrical content and a spindly drum beat that evokes The War On Drugs, while the meandering funk of SD3 is a definite highlight. Lyrics like, “…sometimes I hate being alone, but often it’s fine” only add to the overall sense of melancholy, especially when paired with Petersen’s haunting vocals.
The EP seems to pass in the blink of an eye, but repeated listens reveal extra layers to all five songs. Hopefully, the duo’s next release will expand on the unique sounds that have been uncovered here.