Label: Self Released
‘Personal Hotspot’ is the second album from Melbourne based band Ferla. From the album cover alone which sees frontman Giuliano slathered in blue and white face paint staring in to the lens, you know this isn’t going to be a straightforward listen. When opener ‘Violence’ floats in on the breeze, Ferla’s brand of flowery pop is there to mask a darker undertone in Giuliano’s lyrics such as “I can’t read the news without falling to pieces cos it’s just more of the same”.
On songs like ‘Too Dark To See’, Giuliano’s vocal delivery is reminiscent of Jarvis Cocker as he slides out the opening line of “revenge porn and animal cruelty”. This aggressive lyric sits at odds over a smooth future lounge track which floats around in the breeze. This dichotomy embodies Ferla, with the lyrical content being a lot darker than their dreamy pop would have you believe.
‘Nothing Else Matters’ plays a little more like an 80’s shoegaze track yet still stays within Ferla territory of slightly quirky pop.
‘Only The Beginning’ is the sore thumb here with it’s dark, grinding synth paired with industrial sounding electronic drums. Seemingly there to keep you on your toes, Ferla are merely showing you that they have more arrows in their quiver than just lounge pop.
While ‘Personal Hotspot’ may be quirky and slightly left of centre, it has a pop heart to it that bands like Pulp have been excelling in for years and it seems like Ferla may have some years ahead of them yet.