Photo Gallery: Allday takes us behind-the-scenes of his new album, Starry Night over the Phone
Spanning eleven tracks and collaborations with The Veronicas and more, Allday's third album solidifies his tender hip-hop sound.
In an industry where artists are almost climbing over each other to bandwagon the popular 'sound of the month', Allday has remained uniquely authentic. On Startup Cult, the Adelaide-raised musician introduced a lo-fi hip-hop sound that seemed to blur boundaries more than it did define them, plucking mannerisms of his genre - plus pop music, indie, electronic and R&B - and combining them into one slick sound built upon emotive songwriting and tender production, rather than tapping into trap-rap sound which has become even more dominant in the years since. Throughout the last five years, he's only blurred this genre meeting space more, veering away from rap music's strange trend-following for a sound that's grown distinctly Allday's, regardless of whether he's teaming up with artists like Mallrat and Amy Shark for guest features, or Japanese Wallpaper and even The Veronicas in his own work.
Comparing Startup Cult with his third album Starry Night over the Phone some five years later, you can hear Allday's musical progression and how he's managed to adapt his sound to 2019, rather than change it completely. Restless, for example, sees Allday channel the One Dance-fuelled dancehall sound, but instead of completely building the song around this beat like Drake does, his softly-sung verses (and The Veronicas' duetting chorus) flow around it in the same matter as it would the strumming production on Protection two tracks later, or Lungs' bass-R&B beat aided by Fossa Beats. There are signs he's growing up and evolving in sound - something you'd hopefully expect after three albums, and something Allday has presented with everything he's done thus far - but they're not overwhelmingly different from each other in the fact that you can feel Allday's visions as an artist haven't flipped as he's grown, rather they've grown alongside him.
Throughout Starry Night over the Phone's eleven-track duration, it becomes clear that the album partly centres itself around friendship and collaboration. He's worked with collaborators in the past, but on Starry Night they feel more distinct and in-tune, whether that be through vocal features from the aforementioned Veronicas and Lonelyspeck, or on a production level, with notes from Fossa Beats, Golden Vessel, Japanese Wallpaper, Fossa Beats and Kllo's Simon Lam shimmering underneath.
In a new photo gallery exclusive to Pilerats, we go behind some of the friendships that built Starry Night over the Phone in Los Angeles, whether it be working with names like Golden Vessel and Simon Lam, or the studio doggos that helped him along the way. Stream Starry Night over the Phone below with the photo gallery - annotated by Allday himself - and then check him, Mallrat, E^ST and JXN on tour this August - more info and tickets HERE.
Behind-the-scenes of Allday's new album, Starry Night over the Phone:
My favourite LA is the LA that looks like GTA. Sometimes you just want to steal a car, drive it through the streets at 200kmph and then jump it off the top of a parking garage and land safely back on the road with only minor damage to the vehicle.
Mario's dog Wilco. I love this guy. I let him bite my shoelaces because I thought it was cute but then he ruined my shoes. I guess that's my own fault. Aside from that one minor (massive) incident, it was nice having some company in the studio.
This is Max AKA Golden Vessel and my brother Dec on the beach in Venice. Max is really funny and just generally a good person. We had a writing session together and became fast friends. When it comes to electric scooters you have to choose between riding them and keeping your dignity. You can see here what we chose.
Japanese Wallpaper at the wheel and my engineer/mixer Mario on guitar. We recorded 99% of the album in this studio in Studio City. When I started working with Mario we didn't know each other but we became tight through the album process. Tight enough that when we finished the last vocals he said: "This wasn't sane, this wasn't normal, we have to record much much faster next time."
This is my most frequent view of Simon Lam AKA Nearly Oratorio AKA one half of Kllo. He is a wizard. I was a Kllo fan and went to a gig; Soon after we made the song Atmosphere together. I knew right away our sensibilities matched. I thought "imagine if he'd be keen to come back to LA and executive produce my album." I worked up the courage to ask and luckily for me, he was into the idea. He came in for a month and we worked in Ultra Studios (my label) on LaBrea Avenue every night. By chance, it was only a couple of hundred metres from my house. We would walk up the hill at 6 PM, get a coffee and get stuck into the beats.
This was the last day with Simon. We stood on the roof of the studio in the blazing hot sun, fairly exhausted from all the work. But I think we were happy.
After Simon and I did the month working on the instrumentals we were both pretty burnt out. This was the day he left having a swim with some friends. Should I have rubbed my sunscreen in more? Perhaps.
This is heading east on Fountain, right near my old apt. "How to make it in Hollywood? Take Fountain" - I forget who said that but Fountain Ave is traditionally the route you take to avoid traffic. In the middle of Hollywood the pollution, poverty and filth often get me down; The sunsets in LA though are beautiful enough to make you forget it all for a few minutes.
When I first moved to Los Angeles, I got an apartment by myself in West Hollywood on LaBrea Ave. Kind of right in the middle of the noise and traffic and pollution. Every day I would walk out of the fire exit and see this tree. It gave me a moment of joy seeing it in the mornings. I'm glad I got a photo of it before I moved house.
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