Brutal, abrasive and harsh; Too Birds’ music is about as comfortable as burning asphalt. Having said that, if you’re plugging into their new record, Melbourne 2, for a calming, soft and squishy listening experience, you’ve missed the point entirely. Melbourne 2 is pins and needles; a disembodied scream; musical urgency. What the album lacks in manners, it makes up for in oomph; it doesn’t bounce off the walls, it smashes straight through them.
A tapestry of hip hop, noise, and straight-up metal, Too Birds thrive in an inhospitable musical climate, a sonic no man’s land, and that’s just where vocalists Teether, Realname, and producer Mr Society planned on landing with the project. It was a trajectory they set out on with their 2016 mixtape, Where My Jacket, and stayed on course with the debut album, 2017’s I’m Going to Die.
The chaos isn’t just contained within the tracks, either. The group have shared official visuals of a live performance of singles ‘God’s Pharmacy’ and ‘7000000000 Chumps’, which proves that the energy carries through to the stage, too. It’s a headfuck of DIY sensibilities and in this total rejection of polish and shine, Too Birds have unearthed what we would call brilliance.
There’s a lot being thrown at the listener at any given moment throughout Melbourne 2, so we had the trio explain in their own words what’s going on in each track for before you hit play.
My boy paid his money, he’s got to get his money.
This song began its production out of a bad bluetooth speaker in California. We recorded the vocals after we got back home to Melbourne 1 (years before the sequel). The song is about sitting around the campfire with your friends.
This song is way too old to say anything about, and we’ve heard it too many times. I think we all hate it.
The original instrumental for this song was an epic guitar trap beat. We’re so glad it is no longer guitar-based, nobody should be touching that weird-shaped wood and the damn strings in modern times. Lyrically, we wanted to discuss Jafar, but it might be too soon to bring it up.
The last change we made on the album was changing the pitch of the kick drum on this song. We noticed it was off by 1 semitone because we went through a phase where we could only listen to the album pitched and sped up.
‘I’m The Peak’
The main sample in this song was a busker we recorded in Santa Monica that was performing right next to a doomsday preacher. We stood in the middle of this preacher and busker and got the harmonious sounds of both at once.
‘Easy 2 Love’
A song for both the heartstrings and the ages. We recorded this in Realname’s boat-shaped bedroom in 2018, before doing some deep breathing exercises to calm down.
‘I Live Here’
This was one of the first songs that materialised for the album. It quickly became an essential part of our live shows and car trips around the old city. The middle section is an ode of sorts to the 2017 period of Soundcloud rap and beat tapes. We poured our hearts and souls into this one and if you don’t like it, just go to hell.
‘Snake City (Take me There…)’
You know we needed to do a rock ‘n’ roll song for the kids \m/ Going to Snake City seeya!