Article Archive

White Sirens

Author: Alias
Sunday, 1 January 1995
Ethereal beauty created through a mix of the artificial and the organic.

The contrast of light and dark to create tracks of sublime elegance.

Frantic beats mixed with fragile vocals and charming ambience. Therepertoire of White Sirens is nothing less than impressive, and eversince his first forays into electronic music at the tender age offourteen, Adrian Watkins has proven to be somewhat of a revelation. Thisshould be of no shock though, Adrian is a classically trained musician,began studying the violin at age four, and the piano at the age of ten.

His first real exposure to electronic composition was through computergames.

"I've got a classical type of background but I got into the electronictechno thing just because I like it," states the softly spoken Adrian,"Otherwise I wouldn't be doing it. Initially what got me into electronicmusic was getting into computer games, hearing computer game music andgetting into that. Gradually I got to a stage where I was programmingthe computer to write music on, and then I kind of kept on going. At thesame time that whole kind of techno thing that was happening was reallystarting to grow here. I knew it was already happening in Europe andother places, but it developed a little later on in Melbourne in termsof accessibility, and people being able to hear that music." Afterknocking up his own tracks using his computer and various samplers andsequencers over the past seven years, White Sirens has finally releasedhis debut album. Titled Manifesto, it is sure to serenade the ears ofany who come across its abundant charm, and is a testament to the hardwork and dedication Adrian has put into his composition since his firstencounters with music seventeen years ago. In his own words it is 'a mixof elements from high art music and music of a pop culture, bringingtogether elements from both spheres'. However It is also most certainlymusic that would hold up better in a place like Europe, as opposed tothe small and rather close minded and under appreciative Melbournemarket.

"I guess my sound is sort of an European kind of thing," contemplatesAdrian. "I was there earlier this year and it was amazing just how bigdrum and bass was in London. Just walking down the street you hear it inevery cafe and little fashion boutique. That is the kind of music I likeand what I do." It must be amazingly frustrating for someone based onthe other side of the world to know that the style of music he loves andperforms is being welcomed with open arms in Europe. Could it be thatAustralia may lose some of its most promising artists to the NorthernHemisphere through a lack of a sizeable market here- You would mostdefinitely hope not, but the situation just seems so right for theartists themselves. "It's a funny situation," voices Adrian, "it's notthe kind of music I would do in Australia because you are not going tosell that many copies no matter what you do because it's not really thatpopular here. I have been thinking about going overseas next year andseeing what I can do over there, because I would really like my music tobe promoted over in Europe. I think it is good enough and I would reallylike to be over there representing Australian music."

In the meantime, Adrian has his brand new album to promote. Which meansthe inevitable live gig thing. Adrian has taken White Sirens into thelive foray previously, playing parties such as Cyber Trek 3, Earthcoreand Technofest in more of a hard drum and bass style, and at Revolversupporting Renee Geyer using more of a organic band set up, in whichAdrian would perform such instruments as violin, keyboard, and sampler,backed at times with heavenly singers, live percussion, and wondrousflute. Still, a live situation that Adrian feels comfortable with, andone that represents and succeeds in the sound he is trying to achieveremains a challenge. "Sometimes I love<

Tags