REVIEW // The Cactus Channel & Sam Cromack – Do It For Nothing

The perfect soundtrack for your Sunday hangover haze.

I’m sorry, but who are these people that can wake up for an 8am pilates class, follow it up with a green juice, and then make it to brunch by 9:30am on a Sunday? Sundays are for wading through that hangover haze, napping intermittently, trying to forget the drunk messages you sent the night before, and throwing old Maccas nugget boxes into the bin (empty ones, of course).

Melbourne instrumental soul band, The Cactus Channel, have teamed up with Sam Cromack (Ball Park Music, My Own Pet Radio) for their Do It For Nothing EP, and it perfectly bundles up that sense of melancholy that usually comes on a late Sunday night, when the glow of the weekend has almost worn off, and you’re seriously pondering your life choices.

It’s a beautiful listen. The Cactus Channel’s instrumentation is explosive and complex, rocking between soul, jazz, funk, and psychedelia. At times it builds up to a grand and almost cinematic experience, but then quickly dials down, leaving you feeling genuinely gloomy.

The Cactus Channel are one of the most interesting groups in the Australian soul scene. Though their chilled-out sound certainly holds its own, their music truly shines with vocals and lyrics layered on top. Do It For Nothing is a glorious collaboration. Sam Cromack injects that Ball Park Music indie-pop warmth, proving just how versatile alt-soul can be. If you haven’t heard The Cactus Channel’s two-track recording with Chet Faker, it’s definitely worth a listen.

They’ve just wrapped up their east coast Aussie tour and we caught the Melbourne leg. Despite the Sunday sadness Do It For Nothing brings, their Thursday set at Howler gave us the warm and fuzzies (with no shortage of emotive hand gestures). The Cactus Channel are the kind of band you need to see live to really appreciate their talent. It felt like we stepped into an intimate jam session where everyone was laughing, drinking beers, and taking turns on vocals. They even threw in a cover of Neil Young’s ‘Out On The Weekend‘ for kicks.

So wind down your Sunday with this six-track EP playing in the background. Maccas is on UberEATS now, haven’t you heard? That’s right. Ponder your life choices.


Based in: Melbourne (The Cactus Channel) + Brisbane (Sam Cromack), Australia.
Sounds like:
BADBADNOTGOOD, Alabama Shakes, Unknown Mortal Orchestra.
Say what? Do It For Nothing came about after Lewis Coleman (The Cactus Channel) saw Ball Park Music perform live. He got home (with a few beers in his system) and did a sneaky Google search to see if The Cactus Channel and Ball Park Music had ever been mentioned together. He found a Spotify interview where Sam listed The Cactus Channel as a band he’d been listening to. Basically Lewis slipped into Sam’s DMs and the rest is history 😉.

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