Running Touch

Electro-funk outfit daste bring their A-game on new EP, Palette

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Palette has been a long time coming for electro-funk trio daste.

After teasing fans with several tracks over the last few months, the group has finally released their eclectic debut EP ahead of their upcoming June tour, which will see them trek down Australia’s east coast, performing in Brisbane, the Gold Coast, Byron Bay and Sydney.

And it is clear, after listening to this record, that the songs had been worked on for a very long time. Each of the five tracks brings its own style, yet as a whole product the EP feels like a full experience: a clear electro lo-fi style, and tracks slipping silently into one another.

The stage is set early with opener ‘Myself’, that introduces breezy synths and bassline; instrumentation that permeates across the entire record. Lyrically, the song tells a story of a protagonist who wants to be free, be themselves, and leave a relationship. ‘Thinkin’ Of’ keeps that easy-going feel, bringing the trio’s outstanding production to the forefront; with glitches and distortions making the track feel warped and intoxicated, as though we are inside the protagonist’s head. 

‘SOBER’, by comparison, picks up the tempo and presents something more within the band’s wheelhouse, with funky bass and upbeat percussion; yet, it also still keeps the warped feeling from the previous track, something that fans of acts like Running Touch would appreciate.

Penultimate track ‘Overload’ brings that warped feeling back front and centre, matching the lyrics about losing control from spending too much time burning at the candle at both ends. The breezy synths give a merry-go-round feeling to the proceedings.

However, the undeniable highlight is the closing title track: a low-key, sensual, in-a-little-spotlight piano ballad. The addition of glamourous horns is fantastic, filling out the track with a sense of mystical, romantic grandness. Add to the positive lyrics that ‘the music is yours to keep,’ and you have something irresistible, down to its sublime jazzy outro and stiff percussion that, on paper, seems like it wouldn’t work with the live, glamorous instrumentation, yet it does.

Palette is intricate, detailed and captivating, yet it only feels like it scratches the surface of this talented trio of musicians. daste are a group going places, and those places look excitingly bright. A must listen.