Decoder Ring

Beat The Twilight from the album They Blind The Stars

Jets from the album Fractions

Welcome Shoppers from the album Decoder Ring

“Part symphony for the subconscious, part soundtrack to your daydreams,” reads the bio for Sydney fivepiece Decoder Ring, and that’s pretty much spot on. Think hypnotic beats, electronic meanderings, walls of sound courtesy of clanging guitars and bass, all mixed up in emotive, psychedelic musical highs and lows.

Recent History:

They Bind The Stars, And The Wild Team
Let A Thousand Flowers Bloom is a generously euphoric moment taken from Decoder Ring’s fourth LP They Bind The Stars, And The Wild Team.

The album, which was recorded with American producer Scott Colburn (Animal Collective, Arcade Fire, John Fahey, Yeasayer), is the conclusion of a journey that began with the 2004 soundtrack to the Australian film Somersault, and was swiftly followed by Fractions in 2005.

The band’s guitarist, Matt FitzGerald, says the long break between Fractions and this new album was a deliberate one. Returning from a tour of North America in March 2006, Decoder Ring delivered an unforgettable live rendering of Somersault at that year’s Splendour in the Grass festival, before resigning from gigs for a full two years.

During that time the band’s members Matthew Steffen (bass), Pete Kelly (guitar), Xavier Fijac (keys & beats) and FitzGerald (guitar) spent a lot of time exploring sounds. “Before we got to songs, there was finding the sounds,” says FitzGerald. “We wanted to find new sounds – find our sound.” Let A Thousand Flowers Bloom is a sample of Decoder Ring’s new sound.

With soaring jubilance, the song takes the listener on an explosive journey from quiet reflection to exhilaration.

Soundtrack Score to ‘Somersault’:

Already filmic in their sound and approach it was a natural progression that Decoder Ring would become involved in writing music for film and their opportunity arrived when writer/director Cate Shortland asked them to compose the music for the new Australian film ‘‘Somersault”.

A visually haunting story of sex, guilt, love, relationships and the confusion these forces can cause, ‘Somersault’ is the based around a young girl’s journey of self discovery set in the striking landscape of Jindabyne in southern NSW during winter. With some stunning performances from local actors Abbie Cornish and Sam Worthington , and with Anthony Anderson as Producer and the acclaimed Jan Chapman as executive Producer ‘Somersault’ is the most highly anticipated Australian movie release of 2004.

Somersault earned the much coveted ‘Official Selection’ and received a standing ovation when it screened at this year’s Un Certain Regard category. Its local debut was its (sold out) screening at the Sydney Film Festival 2004 , the film will also open the Melbourne Film Festival in July. ‘Somersault’ has already been sold on to 13 countries, and will be released locally by Hopscotch 16 th September 2004.

The visual elements and the languid pacing of ‘Somersault’ marry beautifully with the luscious sounds of Decoder Ring – and the result is wonderfully moving, honest and dreamy. Working the film score into an album complete, Decoder Ring have created a release that works both as companion to the film, and as a stand alone album.

The ‘Somersault’ album was produced by Decoder Ring. The band recorded much of album at their studio which they relocated to a farm outside Kiama (where their first LP was also recorded). Further tracking and editing work was done at Soundfirm at Fox Studios alongside ‘Somersault’s sound designer Sam Petty (The Boys, Soft Fruit, The Bank) and at BJB (Big Jesus Burger Studio) in Surry Hills, and mixed at Mangrove Studios. The album and the lead single ‘‘Somersault” feature the beautiful, delicate vocals of new vocal talent Lenka .

Decoder Ring Live:

Decoder Ring’s spell binding live shows have been described as both “remarkable” , “brilliant” , “psychedelic” , “inspirational ” and “life changing” – not only due to the music that Decoder Ring play but also because of Simon K’s hypnotic live film projections (Simon K is Decoder Ring’s 4 th member and also responsible for their artwork and videos). Decoder Ring are now making preparations for a short run of very special performances to coincide with the film’s release with visuals by Simon K, along the East Coast in October – dates to be announced shortly.

Select Media for Previous Releases:

“a hugely impressive album that straddles electronica, rock, arthouse and dancefloor and does it with not just bravado but with finesse” Sydney Morning Herald

“rock from the heavens … original is not a word that can be thrown around easily however Decoder Ring define it … there is now proof electronica can live side by side with rock.” 9.5/10 Noise Theory Net

“Outstanding debut … imaginative, insouciant, cool but aggressive. An album with flair and emotion. A major talent is born.” 9/10 Revolver

“Their simple, synth heavy sound that clashes, in parts, with fiercely distorted guitars is a welcome panacea of the recent endless wave of garage rock … CD of the Week ” The Brag

“This is a stunning debut album from Decoder Ring … the quality and depth of material achieved in such a short time is remarkable.” **** The Age

“Listening to this unique, abstract debut is like therapy without the shrink ” **** Rolling Stone

“… newcomers Decoder Ring should take a bow … a clever, diverse and wonderfully arranged set of songs that is so much more that just background music … Decoder Ring is a fifty minute journey well worth taking.” **** The Courier Mail

“One of the most seamless and powerfully uplifting album we’ve heard from a local in years … sprawling soundscapes that utilise sounds so engagingly that you just can’t help feeling transported to a higher plane of sonic bliss .” **** Lucky Mag

A beautiful blend of moods, a deft mix of styles. Soulful, mournful, happy, angry: the five songs on this CD put you through a month of emotions in the space of 25 minutes . BMA

“Decoder Ring is a revelation. At some points watching this band I was so dumbstruck by the overload on all my senses that I was worried I couldn’t fit more in. The visuals were beautifully thought out short films designed specifically for Decoder Ring’s music.” Revolver

“an astonishing and moving exploration, showing us that music doesn’t just have to be popular, it can also be art – complex, compelling and ultimately enlightening” 12 Apostles(UK)

Tour dates

Date Venue


Albums / Lp’s

Pete Kelly (guitar) They Blind the Stars and The Wild Team (2009)
Simon K (visuals) Fractions (2005)
Matt Fitzgerald (guitar, synth, keys) Somersault Soundtrack (2004)
Matt Stefan Decoder Ring (2002)
Xavier Frjac Spooky Action At A Distance (2002)

Latest Release


They Blind The Stars and The Wild Team (Released 2009)

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