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Song You Need to Know: Lachlan Denton, ‘You’

The Melbourne musician and furniture maker has released the second single from his forthcoming third solo album, ‘Furnishings’

Lachlan Denton

Simon Fazio (@faz.io)

If anyone had a strong claim to be the most popular musician in Melbourne’s music community, it could be Lachlan Denton.

Popular and prolific. From The Ocean Party to Ciggie Witch to, more recently, Partner Look, Lachlan has been a key contributor to some of the finest jangle pop Australia has produced in the last decade; his beautiful collaborations with Emma Russack also deserve mention.

As a solo musician, Lachlan has been penning finely observed songs for a while now, and his third solo album, Furnishings, is set for release this April.

The latest single from the record is “You”, which ever so slightly dims the jangling sensibility in Lachlan’s usual step. A gentle synth pop number, it’s a springy ode to finding love in the most desperate of times.

“”You” is a love song for what can feel like a dystopian time to be alive,” he says. “A song about finding solace in the one you love, at a time when environmental disaster and hyper capitalism paints a grim picture of our future. “As we stood watching the seas rise, fires burning before our eyes”. “Even if our futures been sold, right now I am here with you”.

There’s a good reason the album is called Furnishings: Lachlan also makes furniture (it’s telling that his main Instagram page handle is @lachlandentonfurnishings), and his upcoming album documents the shift in his focus from music to furniture making.

The launch of Furnishings will actually be accompanied by the unveiling of his first furniture collection, which will be on display in Melbourne in April.

And the accompanying music video, directed by Simon Fazio, captures Lachlan in his workshop, his element, quietly working away. “It is a bit of a day in the life concept,” he explains. “I tinkered around in the workshop, had a Velcro rehearsal (my friend Curtis’ project in which I play drums) and went to the post office at the same time as taking my dog Sam for a walk.

“I told Simon I liked the bleak yet pretty vibe of the film Nomadland, and also that I like film clips where people are talking but you can’t hear them because of the music. That was the brief. I look like a bit of a dork at times, which I think is quite funny, and I like it.”

Aside from “You”, half of the songs on Furnishings are dedicated to different members of Lachlan’s immediate family, “in an attempt to say the things that could easily go unsaid before you ever get the chance.”

This isn’t new territory for the always-vulnerable songwriter: his 2019 album, A Brother, was a sincerely moving portrayal of loss and grief, capturing Lachlan’s memories of his late brother Zac, who tragically died in 2018 at the age of 24. Before his passing, the brothers played together in The Ocean Party and Ciggie Witch, and Zac was, undisputedly, one of the best songwriters this country produced in recent memory (this posthumous album, released last year, does a good job of cataloguing Zac’s talent).

This is a circuitous way of saying that songwriting runs in the Denton family’s blood, and if Lachlan’s solo musical offerings become more limited in future as he transitions further into furniture making, each new release like “You” will be something to treasure.

Lachlan Denton’s Furnishings is out April 14th via Osborne Again/Spunk Records (pre-save here).