Sailing Ships & Tarot Cards

Sailing Ships & Tarot Cards

Christopher de Groot

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Sailing Ships & Tarot Cards
Christopher de Groot
Featuring musicians from exotica band, Slide Night


An acid-soaked moonlit cruise through a landscape of 60s exotica, Delia Derbyshire inspired sci-fi soundscapes, classic Bernard Herrmann, a pinch of John Zorn, and a twist of David Lynch. Welcome to the wonderful world of Melbourne-based composer, Christopher de Groot!


“Sailing Ships and Tarot Cards is an engaging musical road-trip that whisks you through a landscape of changing moods, leaving you breathless and eager to hear it again."
Paddy Harrisson, Radio Announcer, Ports of Paradise, PBS106.7FM


Christopher de Groot (flute, bass flute, piano, prepared piano, Rhodes piano, organ, mellotron, synthesizers, Doepfer A-100 analogue synthesizer, hand percussion, guitars, vocals, jaw harp, tone hoses)


Asha Henfry (flute, alto flute, thumpy thumb flute)


Callum Moncrieff (vibraphone, congas, hand percussion)


Cecilia Low (wordless vocals, Tarot card reader)


Nic Synot (double bass)


David Karsten (News reporter)


16-piece flute choir performed by Asha Henfry and Christopher de Groot
Homemade gamelan performed by Callum Moncrieff and Christopher de Groot
Group chanting by Cecilia Low, Asha Henfry, Geoff Baldwin, Jasmine Nelson, Alice de Groot, and Christopher de Groot
Additional vocals by Alice de Groot


Produced, recorded, and mixed by Christopher de Groot
Mastered by Lachlan Carrick at Moose Mastering, Melbourne, Australia
Design by UnkleFranc, Auckland, New Zealand
Printing by Studio Q, Auckland, New Zealand


RAT-D067 (March, 2017)






Sailing Ships & Tarot Cards
Christopher de Groot
Featuring musicians from exotica band, Slide Night


01  Summertime Radio – the First Days of Summer  (2:35)
02  Holiday Road Carnage  (3:57)
03  Beach Beach Beach!  (2:28)
04  Voodoos Clues  (1:33)
05  Stone God  (2:59)
06  Ocean Nymphet  (1:37)
07  Surfing Spice Islands  (0:39)
08  Jungle Assassin  (2:33)
09  Cry Baby  (2:47)
10  The Death Card & the Infinite Highway  (7:04)
11  Barfly Boogie  (2:44)
12  Hidden Reef  (1:37)
13  Heat Stroke  (2:50)
14  Gun Shot Cha-cha-cha  (2:05)
15  Kalgoorlie Lights  (3:25)
16  Cooee  (0:45)
17  Little Camel King  (1:20)
18  Birds of Paradise  (1:01)
19  Sailing Ships & Tarot Cards  (2:21)
20  Get ya Mama’s Bacon  (1:07)
21  Blood Ritual  (3:12)
22  Into the Night  (1:09)
23  Tenderly Watched  (2:07)
24  Underwater Trance  (4:17)
25  Miss Neptune  (1:53)
26  Summoning the Spirit of Maya  (3:11)
27  Tribal Punishment  (2:14)
28  Summertime Radio – the Last Days of Summer  (6:11)


      Total playing time: 71:44


All music composed by Christopher de Groot © 2015
The music on this album originally featured in the Australian independent feature film The Burning Kiss by Robbie Studsor






Christopher de Groot comments on the music


The music contained on this album is some of the most interesting film music I have ever written – and probably ever will!

In 2013 Australian filmmaker Robbie Studsor introduced me to the world of exotica and lounge music – his vision for the soundtrack of The Burning Kiss was a mix of classic Les Baxter and Martin Deny but with a dark edge to it. The end result is a melting pot of 1960s exotica, Delia Derbyshire inspired sci-fi music, Bernard Herrmann, and a pinch of John Zorn. The result is a tropical noir-nightmare!

Releasing film music can be tricky. The success of your music is often tied to the success of the film you’re working on, so only those who like the film are likely to show an interest in its soundtrack (and of course there are those who are never really aware film music at all!). It is for this reason that I decided to release this music as a stand-alone concept album.

Incorporating mysterious sound bites and location sounds, Sailing Ships & Tarot Cards is an auditory journey through a psuedo-Australia soundscape, a fascinating world of mid-century exotica that combines flavours from the Australian bush with a twist of David Lynch.

I hope you enjoy the journey. Seek out The Burning Kiss while you’re at it, a daring and interesting film with an equally daring and interesting soundtrack!

Christopher de Groot, January 2017





Christopher de Groot




Christopher de Groot is a musician that straddles the film/theatre world with that of the avant-garde. De Groot incorporates his interest in new music, electronics, recording techniques, sound-design and cult soundtracks into his composition practice, resulting in music that is at times fragile and delicate and at others visceral and shocking. De Groot is an eclectic artist having worked in a number of different practices from film and theatre composition to free improvisation, sound art and most recently musical sculpture.

De Groot’s unorthodox film music has gained attention in Australia for its genre bending approach and its use of unconventional instrumentation and live musicians. In 2014 De Groot’s score for low budget Australian feature film Sororal was nominated for APRA Feature Film Score of The Year alongside David Hirschfelder’s The Railway Man (staring Nicole Kidman and Colin Firth) and Christopher Gordon’s Adoration (staring Robin Write and Naomi Watts). De Groot regards this nomination as a win for low budget film music that favours daring originality over tired Hollywood film music conventions. Sororal has been labelled by Mikael Carlsson of Movie Score Media “some of the most refreshing and eclectic horror music to be heard in a contemporary film.” Wolf Creek script writer Aaron Stearns is also a fan calling it “haunting, eerie and yet discordantly beautiful… histrionic and yet assured and gripping.”

De Groot obtained a Masters degree in composition from the West Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA) where he studied for 10 years [2001 - 2011]. He has worked as composer and sound designer on several theatre shows including Duck Death & The Tulip [2013, Barking Gecko, Perth International Arts Festival], Thérèse Raquin [2014, Theatre Works], Persona [2014, MUST Container Festival], Dream Home [2015, Darebin Arts Speakeasy, winner of Best Sound/Music Green Room Awards], The River [2016, Red Stitch] and Nought Point Five Above Zero No Wind [2016, La Mama]. De Groot has also been commissioned to compose works for several Australian musicians and ensembles, (most notably Decibel Ensemble and the Melbourne Piano Trio) and performs regularly as a free music improviser. He has released several albums of theatre music through the online label The Mind Is Listening.

In addition to de Groot’s varied compositional pursuits he is music director for Melbourne’s only exotica band Slide Night. Slide Night feature on de Groot’s soundtrack for Australian feature film The Burning Kiss, which he fashioned into his debut released for Rattle, Sailing Ships & Tarot Cards, a melting pot of 1960s exotica, Delia Derbyshire inspired sci-fi music, classic Bernard Herrmann, and a pinch of John Zorn – Tropical noir-nightmare!

Visit the Christopher de Groot website here





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