Chemist //

Album label: 
Release date: 
Recording location: 
Recorded at Megaphon Studios Sydney. Mixed and mastered at Sony Studios East Sydney
Recording date: 
Sunday, January 1, 2006
Artwork design: 
Asi Föcker
Mastering engineer: 
Paul Bryant
Mixing engineer: 
Tim Whitten
The Necks
Recording engineer: 
Tim Whitten
  • 1. Fatal (21:13)
  • 2. Buoyant (19:51)
  • 3. Abillera (19:50)

Chemist, one of The Necks' most popular albums, sees them taking on a format of three tracks, each about 20 minutes duration. Alt Rock grooves and twittering electronics are to the fore here.

Fatal is a steady grind in odd meter. Hallucinatory textures materialise before the listener's ear and vanish without trace.

Buoyant starts with tiny electronic sounds. Gradually a pulse emerges, Chris Abrahams's Wurlitzer a nod to late 60s electric jazz. Ultimately, the pulse vanishes, leaving music hanging in the air like spider webs.

Abillera, the most overtly rocking track, sets out with what bassist Lloyd Swanton described as his attempt to evoke a giant wind chime, eventually supplanted by a shimmering texture of piano and electric guitar. As for Buoyant, Tony Buck's rock-hard groove eventually bows out, leaving swirling, cascading tendrils of sound dancing past one's ears.

Chemist was the winner of the 2006 ARIA Best Jazz Album Award.

"A better title for this CD would be Alchemist, because The Necks have yet again succeeded in turning base metals into gold."