Immerse yourself in a dreamy tranquil wonderland with Coda Chroma’s third album ‘Dream-self’

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Immerse yourself in a dreamy tranquil wonderland with Coda Chroma’s third album ‘Dream-self’

Words By Alex Callan

Dream-self is the third studio album by Ballarat based cinematic indie-folk project Coda Chroma, fronted by award winning singer/songwriter Kate Lucas

There’s just something so magical about Coda Chroma. From the breathtaking vocals of Kate Lucas to the swirling layers of synths provided by Natalie Lewis, the Ballarat-based indie-folk outfit possess a dreamlike quality like no other. 

Their aptly named third album, Dream-self, continues to showcase a natural knack for creating atmospheric landscapes, with the group bolstering their enigmatic sound through a wealth of synth-driven cinematic soundscapes and awe-inspiring jangle-pop melodies.

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‘I’m Not Fighting It’ sets the tone well, providing contrasts between synth-heavy dream-pop sensibilities and wistful Spaghetti Western guitar licks. ‘If I Imagined’ adds vibrancy through its up-tempo snare patterns and surf-rock guitar riffs, whilst ‘Back In The Theatrette’ sees dual vocal harmonies and rattled percussive elements shine through in its stripped-back approach.

‘Castle’ further highlights the group’s conceptual nature, utilising mystifying string arrangements and melancholic reverbed vocals to enhance its austere atmosphere. The Weyes Blood-inspired ‘Attic’ echoes this, with subdued guitars, dissonant key patterns and soaring vocals used to shift back and forth between the songs’ simmering rhythms and visceral crescendos.

Matched with the immaculate work of producer Damien Charles, ‘Frankenstein’, on the other hand, ambitiously leans into industrial-tinged symphonic soundscapes.

Of the album Lucas reflects, “Most of these songs were bursting to get out, requiring very little encouragement – the lyrics build scenes mainly through abstraction and metaphor, with some direct hits here and there. Production concepts were guided by the songs’ storytelling not by genre. It was really hard to choose which songs should be on this album, and we made changes right up to the eleventh hour, but I think Dream-self flows really well now.”

It really is a ride. At times dark and brooding, other times uplifting and inspiring; it’s an album that will tell you how to feel. Evocative in its nature and true to its title, Dream-self will have you feeling like you’re inside a dreamy tranquil wonderland.

Label: Echo Foxtrot

Release date: 31/03/23