While Australia has produced its fair share of female electro-pop performers, from Our Kylie to recent convert Gabriella Cilmi, most have to leave our shores to get the sound they want.
This makes Sydney-based Chris Sorbello something of a rarity: an electro singer with a swag of brilliant locally-made synth-pop songs under her belt.
“It’s really good to have a bit of female electro-pop in this country. We’re so lucky to have male acts like the Presets and the Potbellez, but I think there is a gap in the market for somebody like me,” she told Sydney Star Observer.
Sorbello recently signed with Ministry of Sound, who enlisted dance producer Sam La More to polish her debut single, the very Kylie-esque So Lonely.
In truth, the singer’s original demos already sounded chart-ready: it seems Sorbello worked hard to create a world-class package before approaching record labels with her music.
“Totally. The landscape of the music industry seems to have changed so much: nowadays, you’ve pretty much already got to be 90 percent there if you want to get signed. That’s the stage my songs were at when I got signed.”
Sorbello, who started singing, dancing and acting when she was five, left her native Brisbane at the age of 19, moving to Sydney in search of a sound that would fit.
“I fronted a rock band and did the Sydney pub scene for a while, which got me used to performing live,” she explained.
“But I always knew deep down that I wanted to do pop. It’s funny, as a teenager I’d listen to every Ministry of Sound compilation, I consumed dance music constantly, but it never occurred to me that that’s the sound I should explore in my own music.”
Those who want to check out Sorbello’s dancefloor pop live will need to head to next month’s urban-flavoured Supafest tour — somewhat oddly, she’s the lone pop performer in a sea of R’n’B stars.
“I have been asked a few times why I’m on the bill. But it’s a pop festival — whether it’s electro pop or urban pop, there’s so much crossover between different types of pop now. Look at Kelly Rowland and David Guetta. Or Akon and David Guetta. Or anyone and David Guetta, really…”
With a debut album on the way, plus a killer second single (the oh-so-’80s Dangerzone — “It’s a little kitsch, but it just works,” she mused), Sorbello knows her brand of music should garner a fair bit of queer interest.
“I really want to look at doing some gay gigs. A lot of my supporters from the start have been gay. I’m all about being fashion-forward and taking risks, and I love that gay fans embrace that.
“I don’t know, I just think gays have better taste!”
info: Chris Sorbello plays Supafest, Acer Arena, April 15. Visit www.supafest.com.au So Lonely (Ministry of Sound) now available on iTunes.