Sydney experimental techno duo Four Door are a shining light in the Australian electronic underground. Featuring members of Naked on the Vague, Holy Balm, and Half High, Four Door's slick minimal approach is one of the most fully realised and conceptually rigorous manifestations of synthwave in this country. Heavy analogue sequences are locked on to stomach churning rhythms and muted cosmic noise, all tastefully delivered with a bleak as fuck vocal delivery. Four Door also employ a total of zero laptop computers to control their perfectly arranged layers of burbling synthesisers. This is full-hardware, acid-influenced techno with a deliciously gloomy bent. I caught up with the guys to chat about patch-lead fetishism, gothic ravers and sampling sticky nightclub floors.
THUMP: You guys have close ties with Nihilistic Orbs scene in Melbourne. How would you describe the underground electronic scene in Sydney? Who would you say are your peers there?
FOUR DOOR: In Sydney the scene we mix in consists of some electronic/techno acts, but also punk/goth type bands, and tangents from these. Holy Balm and Lucy Cliché have strong links, but it wouldn't be uncommon for us to play with any of the RIP Society associated bands or a group such as Lakes. But then we'll play at more dance/electronic/techno orientated parties such as Pelvis, or somewhere with acts such as Black Vanilla.
Your music is extremely dancefloor-friendly yet also has a rather malevolent tone. Are goths attracted to your sound?
I'd like to think someone is at home burning candles, rocking themselves along on a wine soaked floor listening to Four Door in the dark, but not sure if this is so? Hopefully. There have definitely been some audience members I've seen dancing at our shows where I can see the darkness in their eyes…
You've played a range of shows from band nights to club nights. What's your favourite environment to perform in?
We really do enjoy the late shift. The Nihilistic Orbs festival at Liberty Social was a good environment; sticky floors, people primed for dancing et cetera. Generally it seems to go best when it's late, loud, and loose.
When you guys played at the Liberty Social last year you were talking about sampling the sound of your shoes getting unstuck from the floors there. Has this track ever materialized?
Ha! Nothing as of yet, but thanks for the reminder, we'll get to work on that. A nice sticky shoe mixed in with a distorted snare drum perhaps? Yuck.
As a hardware-based electronic act, where do you stand on the issue of laptop-wielding spacebar hitters?
It seems like hardware is more cheaply and readily available these days, so haven't seen many space bar hitters of late. I suppose now it's common for the computer to be just one element amongst an array of devices, whereas maybe it was all screen and space bar at point. Lots of patch leads and crap looks better strewn about a big table though wouldn't you say?
Yes I agree, much sexier. What do you have coming up release-wise?
We spent the first part of the year recording a bunch of new tracks which are all ready to go. Really excited about these new tracks. Just working on finding them a home. Stay tuned for more information.