Alana Jagt Takes Us On A Scenic, Soulful Journey With Debut Album ‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’

by the partae
Photo credit: LALA PHOTO

Stream ‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’

Alana Jagt delivers a bold blend of indie folk, rock and old-school Americana on her highly anticipated debut album ‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’ – out on 12″ vinyl and streaming services on October 7.

‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’ takes us on a personal journey via the handful of small towns that shaped Jagt’s upbringing. We’re driven down the dirt roads of Wangyarra in the Southern Flinders Ranges, invited to bask in the starry brilliance of Napperby skies, and to sleep over on a stormy evening in seaside Semaphore.

These vividly nostalgic tales measure out the evolution of Jagt’s sound, from early days on the periphery of the Tarndanya/Adelaide ‘Americana’ scene, to riveting folk-noir solo sets rendered in her signature bluesy husk, and – more recently – branching out and blossoming into carefree eclectic rock.

There’s been tragedy along the way: during the albums’s long gestation, the Jagt’s family home was destroyed in a fire. Sifting through mountains of cold black slush where the house used to be, Jagt discovered a charred and discoloured photograph, depicting a mysterious cake that bore the words ‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’.

“Turns out, my parents once worked in a tulip bulb sorting factory,” she says. “When their time at the factory ended, they brought a cake in to celebrate. Grote Bollen translates to ‘big bulbs’… there could be a Dutch pun happening there, I’m not exactly sure, but I eventually came to think of these songs as my bulbs and now I’m saying goodbye to them.”

On album opener Stay in Bed’ Jagt surrenders to the comfort of a guilt-free sleep in, while her sunny harmonies fade into a dawn chorus. Jagt plays every instrument on this self-produced track.

Reality sets in on ‘If We Had Some Money’, a sauntering blues groove blown apart by a blistering electric guitar solo. Composed on a five-hour car trip and inspired by a Homer Simpson quote, it engages from beginning to anthemic end.

An unexpected turn brings us the gothic folk sea shanty ‘Darkness Lies’, articulating the human tendency to fear the unknown and paint darkness with the shadowiest corners of our imagination.

Jagt recalls faintly crashing waves from her Semaphore bedroom on ‘Imagining Life’, linking the drama of the raging sea outside with the personal upheaval and turmoil of moving house and finding a new life.

Side two opens with an intimate cover of ‘Sarah’ by one of Jagt’s favourite bands, Ween. Its gentle sway signals a change of pace, and David Blumberg of The Maraby Band turns in a sublime bass clarinet solo.

The band settles in for the New Orleans funeral shuffle of current single ‘Stars of Napperby’ on which Jagt’s powerful rasp leaves a lasting impact atop warped saloon guitars and ramshackle percussion.

The wistful waltz ‘In Some Dream’ has been a mainstay on Jagt’s setlists for years, but reveals its final form on this beautifully recorded version, much to her fans’ delight.

‘Stirred The Dirt’ highlights the lower registers of Jagt’s impressive vocal range to powerful effect. A slowly circling piano melody is pinned down by drawling drums, while lyrically it is reminiscing of growing up on Nukunu Country (SA).

‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’ reaches its poetic end with a mellow instrumental piece, reprising the string quartet section of ‘Imagining Life’. It’s been recreated for Mellotron (an old tape-driven keyboard) and brings the record back to the same homespun, lo-fi feel it began with.

Jagt and her band are eager to share the album with the world, saying “it’s a relief to finally put this record out there…because, as audiences will soon find out, we’ve got some pretty big new bulbs growing already”.

Touring Victoria and South Australia in October, Jagt and her band are bound to turn heads and charm ears. They’ve already garnered support from Triple J, Double J, Triple R, 4ZZZ, FBIRadio AdelaideRadio National and ABC Melbourne.

Previously, Jagt has played festivals such as Bigsound, Dashville Skyline, Folkloria and Bendigo Bluesfest; she’s embarked on national tours with Abbe May and The Roving Commission; supported beloved Australian artists including Paul Dempsey, Archie Roach, Thelma Plum, Aly Barter, Killing Heidi and Henry Wagons; and has even been invited to sing backup for artists as diverse as Kasey Chambers, Mick Thomas and Grinspoon’s Phil Jamieson.

‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’ is out on October 7. More information about the ‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’ album tour below:

‘Goodbye Grote Bollen’ Album Tour:

12 – Ararat Live, Ararat VIC
13 – Shotkickers, Melbourne VIC
14 – The Old Church On The Hill, Bendigo VIC
15 – Macedon Railway Hotel, Macedon VIC
30 – Folkloria Festival, McLaren Vale SA

18 – Three Brothers Arms, Macclesfield SA
25 – Album Launch – Grace Emily Hotel, Adelaide SA

Follow Alana Jagt

Spotify | Apple Music | Facebook | Insta:@alanajagt | Youtube | Triple J Unearthed | Bandcamp

You may also like

Leave a Comment