Three years after the acclaimed Hurtsville and a move from the inner city of Sydney to the Blue Mountains, Jack Ladder returns with his new album Playmates. The album is produced by Kim Moyes of The Presets, and mixed by David Wrench (Jungle, FKA Twigs, Caribou, Seekae). The Dreamlanders (Kirin J. Callinan, Laurence Pike, Donny Benet) reunite to play on the record, with Sharon Van Etten contributing vocals to two tracks. Playmates will be Jack Ladder’s fourth album, and the first on his own label, Self Portrait. His previous two albums (2008’s Love Is Gone and 2011’s Hurtsville) were shortlisted for the Australian Music Prize. It’s been a long journey to this point, as his life as the former bassist for Expatriate seems like a lifetime ago. After the masterpiece that was Hurtsville, Jack Ladder has evolved again. Ladder’s latest work cogently recalls a time when albums were made to the parameters of the encroaching technology of the compact disc. But this album is where songs take precedence over an idea.