Aussie duo Empire of the Sun has done it again! Luke Steele and Nick Littlemore released their latest album Ice on the Dune this past June, and it is a continuation of their musical brillance. Steele and Littlemore met back in 2000 in a bar in Sydney, Australia; each of them had separately been signed to EMI with their own solo music acts at the time. It was not until years later, the two developed Empire of the Sun and went into the studio with Peter Mayes to record their music, (all of which they produce themselves). The band’s name was rumored to have been named after the 1984 novel Empire of the Sun by J.G. Ballard. However, Littlemore denies this and says, “the name comes more from the idea of the fact that we’re traveling around the world going to all the places the empires of the civilization where the sun has been a theme of worship. It’s not based on the Ballard novel or the Spielberg film of the same name.” The electro group rose to stardom back in 2008 when their debut album Walking on a Dream received double platinum success in Australia and gold in the United States. The album charted at number eight on the ARIA Album Charts and later on moved to number six. Their 2013 album Ice on the Dune, continues on with the band’s electro, techno, and disco infused beats as well as lingering vocals throughout its entirety!
The album is a trance of dance style album that mainly focuses on currently being in love with someone or a love from the past that still has a flame to it. We see the current love in “Alive” with lyrics like, “Lovin’ every minute cause you make me so feel so alive, alive!” With its lively beats and harmonic vocals, this song expresses how completely in love a person is with someone else, that the song places the listener in that of a day dream haze. We also see this in the song “Concert Pitch,” with lyrics ” I believe in this world that I created, I did it for you I wish to be your love and save you, I tried to turn back the time, I’ve got to reach against the ages and now I realize you were the one I always run to, O, darling.” The duo slows it down in the song “I’ll Be Around,” which is a song about someone meeting up with a person they loved in their past, and that they still continue to love in the present day. The soft beats and the echoing vocals put the listener’s mind in the frame of a slow dance scene with their own significant other. Overall the album is a great continuation of the group’s musical style and has a deeper aspect with the more personal focus on love and relationships. Ice on the Dune is now available for streaming on iTunes and Spotify.
Check out the music video for “Alive” here!