When I was coming to terms with my sexuality I wish I had an album like Cub Sport’s self-titled record to console within. After years of internally fighting with myself and being told who I was meant to be and who I was meant to like, I finally took the early steps to confront my inner fears and admit who I was deep down. I looked at myself in the mirror and said, “I’m gay” out loud. But after I finally said those words to myself I immediately went into a dark seclusion from everyone because I was overwhelmed with what the next step was. There was no handbook at what to do and I didn’t have a strong support system around me because I was from a pretty homophobic family and didn’t have any gay friends. It was a time where YouTubers weren’t open about their sexualities, where artists were worried to come out as it would “ruin their brand” and media was still stereotyping everyone. So it took me a couple of years to really embrace who I was as a person because I was scared. And looking back at my experience now, I wish I had a comforting album like this that normalised my thoughts and made me feel as proud about my identity as it does now.
The third studio album from Cub Sport is a celebratory affair that hears lead singer Tim Nelson telling his coming out and love story in the most intimate and euphoric way. From the opening bars of acapella ode ‘Unwinding Myself’, he reflects on finding that inner sanctuary within himself where he feels free and comfortable. From there the record dives into a glittery and polished synth experimentation that is the most bold and direct into the pop realm they have ever gone before. Channeling the likes of Savage Garden this 80’s pop sound goes from euphoric vibes in ‘Sometimes’ to dreamy and reflective in ‘Come Out’ and ‘As Long As You’re Happy’. But where this album sits most comfortably is within it’s experimental moments. ‘Video’ is an instant easy choice for a future single with it’s festival ready production and it’s smooth Mallrat feature. Where as ‘Limousine’ is the most opposite to anything you’ve heard from the band before with it’s heavy electronic production. But they find their own unique groove within the hook that transitions perfectly into the mostly instrumental ‘Lift Me Up’.
‘Butterflies’, ‘Trees’ and ‘Come Out’ are the redefined moments you expect from Cub Sport that transport you to these dreamy soundscapes. Before ‘Party Pill’ offers a romantic and honest retelling of the time Nelson fell in love with his fellow bandmate and now husband, Sam Netterfield. “I think I’m gonna love you for a long time. Boy, I can’t go a minute without you on my mind”. The sweet chorus will have you swooning whilst the honest verses will inspire you to constantly believe in yourself. Artistically deciding to bleep out the word “shame” from the line “That was love, I was too young to see. My shame took it all away from me”, they encourage people to think “shame” is a dirty word and to fully embrace yourself which is an incredibly strong message for their younger fanbase. Realising that they want to be more connected to the world on the tracks’ Stars’ and ‘I’m Not Scared’ they wrap it all up with the cinematic ‘Summer Lover’.
This whole collection is a very strong and visual journey of love, self belief and self discovery. And will become a very important album to a lot of people who need the reminder that it’s more than okay to be themselves. I wish I had this album to be the soundtrack of my journey but at least now I can reflect back on who I was and focus on who I want to be in the future with the calming and visual tones of this album leading the way.
You can purchase a physical copy of Cub Sport’s new album from Sanity https://www.sanity.com.au/products/2410414/Cub_Sport