Album Review: Confidence Man // TILT

Aussie band Confidence Man go above and beyond with their new rave concoction TILT. Proving their penchant for exceeding expectations, there is a certainty in their albums for greatness. A force of nature not beat by a global pandemic, but rather spurned on.

Janet Planet, Sugar Bones and producers Reggie Goodchild and Clarence McGuffie put their energy into something sensual, cut-throat and potent. It’s hard to believe it’s only their second album.

It’s certainly a dance record, pinching from turn of the century floor-fillers. Rapturous and youthful. The albums’ electronic production toes the line between nostalgia and experimentation, fun and serious musical construction.

They launched Tilt with ‘Holiday’; a euphoric tune which stands alone in the band’s short but varied discography. “We’ve been trying for the most epic, hands up, euphoric anthem for a while and this is the first time we’ve come close… Turns out it’s pretty difficult, but nothing’s too hard for con man,” said Sugar Bones in 2021.

It is as if summer has come to stay, a celebration of living free, spending big and soaking up the rays. On the EPs release Planet noted: “A vacation is just sunburn at premium prices but a holiday is a state of mind.”

The tune was formulated in a six hour session, mashing electronic groups Underworld and M.I.A with their individualistic witty lyricism into a delightful few minutes

The sense of the exotic does not end there. They prove Latin is not a dead language by dripping it, and French, into their already multi-dimensional tracks. It transports the tracks onto another level of sophistication. Very English of me to believe that having lyrics in French makes them somehow more classy. But I can’t help but think it. It’s clear on the closing track ‘Relieve The Pressure’, that the band want to create something so overwhelmingly full of energy. It’s a perfect closer to something so rhythmic and cool – it makes the listener want to start the album all over again.

Confidence Man’s characteristically wild lyrics and blissful melodies are still found in TILT. Songs present themselves as the slither of light, in a world that can prove itself to be increasingly dark.

Their poeticism can be tongue in cheek, wink and grin, with little wordplays such as: ‘With a face like that you don’t need to work hard / With an ass like that you don’t need to work’ in Top Boy.

It’s just a bit of fun. That would be the best way to describe it. TILT is laced with joy, to stimulate the senses and gear one up for a party. In the age old epithet, it’s is full of bangers.

And one of the strongest examples is ‘Luvin U is Easy’. With a baseline infused with nostalgic familiarity, the song is an elixir of funky piano riffs, alternating trills and those infamous illogical lyrics.

I think the best way to describe this album is with the words of the band themselves: “With a Balearic pulse and horizontal attitude throughout, this record is ready-made sunshine – MDMAzing pretension-free fun for the masses. This is the album we need in these hard times, even if we don’t deserve it. Put this record on, dance until sunrise, gurn through Brexit and rave until war is over.”

Author avatar
Maia Gibbs

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