Exclusive EP Premiere: Chakra Efendi – Until The Children Grow Old (2019 EP)

We’re excited today to be premiere, Until The Children Grow Old, the debut EP from the Brisbane via Sunshine Coast singer-songwriter Chakra Efendi. At only nineteen years old, Efendi has already built something of a dedicated cult both at home and overseas thanks to a series of demos posted to SoundCloud. Demos, which to date, have attracted over 135 thousand streams.

Right from the first listen of Until The Children Grow Old it’s pretty clear why Efendi’s songs have been winning hearts the hearts of listeners. Jangly guitars and introspective lyricism combine to create something that is somehow both familiar and unique. At the very least, it’s an impressive addition to the Brisbane musical landscape.

Recorded and produced by Cam Smith at Brisbane recording studio Incremental Records, Until The Children Grow Old sees Efendi build upon those earlier demos with the help of his live band: Rhian Cruice (Guitar), Marli Smales (Bass) and Fin Marx (Drums). Together, the four of them bring Efendi’s unique brand of lo-fi bedroom indie rock to life.

Other than those demos, fans were treated to a taste of the EP with the release of the singles, “Waste of Space”, “Grow Up” and “Mia” last year. The EP’s lead track and debut single “Waste of Space” is one of the collections finest moments. It’s an immersive and frantic mixture of jangling guitars and drums, with Efendi’s cool and calm vocals almost lost amidst the mix. The effect, purposefully, is one of disconnection, allowing Efendi to quite effectively share his own experience with the listener. 

Songwriting appears to be something of a cathartic experience for Efendi, with the nineteen year old describing the EP as “the culmination of life experiences from my youth, I see it as a ‘coming of age’ story of sorts.” He goes on to say, “Every track was written at a different point in my teenage life and shines a brutally honest light onto what I was going through at that point in time and how I was feeling. I’ve always tried to be as transparent as I can with my writing, and looking back upon when I wrote the majority of these songs, I’m not even sure I truly knew what I was feeling at the time. With the hindsight I have now it’s so much more clear what the lyrics are intending, and what I was so desperately trying to communicate to myself. I guess one could view it as depressing but I think it’s important to document your emotions, this was my experience, the reflection of a past life.”

Another of my favourite tracks is the ominously titled “Plague, Struggles and Sin”. It’s upbeat to a degree, but there is just something about Efendi’s vocal delivery that really sets the track apart from the others for me. The EP’s final track, “Home”, an eery and woozy lullaby is an interesting moment. It’s so far removed from anything else on the EP, and really helps bring Until The Children Grow Old to a close on a particularly distinctive note.

Chakra Efendi and his band have spent the last year garnering a reputation as a must-see live act. They’ve performed at King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard’s Gizzfest as well as supporting the likes of GUM, The Ocean Party and Fritz. There is the promise of a small East Coast tour on the way following the EP’s release. But, until then Efendi and his band will be bringing their live show to The Yamaha at Heya Bar in Brisbane next month to officially launch the EP, with fellow Brisbane-based favourites Felivand and Olivia’s World in support.

With a strong lo-fi indie rock sound and quality introspective songwriting Until The Children Grow Old solidifies Chakra Efendi position as one to watch, and with more music promised, it’s just the beginning of his journey. Stream the EP below:

Until The Children Grow Old is officially released tomorrow, March 1st. If you’re in Brisbane be sure to head along to the EP launch on March 15th at The Yamaha @ Heya Bar. Tickets can be found HERE. You can also keep up to date with Efendi via Facebook and Instagram.

Header Image by Jess McDonald

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Simon Clark

Simon Clark is the Books Editor at the AU review. A reader of books and admirer of songs, Simon has a PhD in English and Comparative Literature. All errant apostrophes are his, and his alone. You can find him on Twitter and Instagram at @simonjclark