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Broadwing & Xavia Collaborate On New Single ‘Collective Quiet’

Words by Steve 'Habibi' Kelk | Images: Steve 'Habibi' Kelk for Foldback Magazine

The ever-surprising Darwin-based artist Broadwing (Ben Allen) has joined his exceptional producing talents in tandem with Alice Springs’ Xavia to bring about a stunning new track, ‘Collective Quiet‘.

The ubiquitous Mr Allen, involved in everything from producing At The Dakota’s indie-pop bangers to performing live at this year’s National Live Music Awards in Darwin, is known for his musical vision and foresight. Collaborating with Xavia, one of the NT’s most ethereal vocal and string talents, is a musical match made in heaven. ‘Collective Quiet‘ is the result of a long-distance email loop of ideas over nine months between the two artists.

The track commences with fluttering syncopated beats underneath Xavia’s honey-soaked vocals – this device lasting for some time before eventually resolving and then starting again – an effective method of creating ‘tension-and-release’ that Braodwing has perfected over the years. This is made even more effective by Xavia’s vocals holding a straight line, creating a perfect juxtaposition between the beat and the flow. This makes for interesting listening, and young beatmakers could do well to study Ben’s works.

Our song is coming from a place of numbness, where the scrolling and the pressures we build up around ourselves make it impossible to connect and feel, to process the colour and joy and tragedy of the real world

The breakdown at the three-quarter mark features a barely audible Broadwing layered harmony (less is more – another effective Broadwing tactic) before Xavia takes off and takes the listener into the firmament, and indeed leaving you there for some time after the music has stopped.

Xavia has brought her best to this track and doesn’t waiver. Her voice is the epitome of the subtle, seemingly effortless strength that defines great vocalists around the world. Of the creation of this works, Xavia says: “Our song is coming from a place of numbness, where the scrolling and the pressures we build up around ourselves make it impossible to connect and feel, to process the colour and joy and tragedy of the real world.”

Truly a song for the digital age, then.

Collective Quiet‘ is out now as a digital single on the Alice Springs label Sing Hum – have a listen here: https://soundcloud.com/singhum/broadwing-and-xavia-collective-quiet/s-nM9zQ

Xavia plays the Epilogue Lounge, Alice Springs NT on December 7th.

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