Sloan Peterson set for the Moon & Back on first national headline tour

DOOR OPENING: Sydney indie-pop artist Sloan Peterson, aka Joannah Jackson, begins her first national headline tour on Thursday after several years of support slots. Picture: Sarah Adamson
DOOR OPENING: Sydney indie-pop artist Sloan Peterson, aka Joannah Jackson, begins her first national headline tour on Thursday after several years of support slots. Picture: Sarah Adamson

EVER since she announced herself in 2017 with her retro-leaning pop-rock and French '60s yé-yé aesthetic, Sloan Peterson has been one of the more interesting artists to emerge from the Australian indie scene.

Peterson, whose real name is Joannah Jackson, released the EP Midnight Love (2017) and the album Midnight Love, Vol 2 (2019) and has dropped a series of stylish video clips, each designed with a distinct purpose in mind.

So it's almost incredulous to state that on Thursday Sloan Peterson will finally begin her first headline tour.

"There's always elements of nerves that go along with it, but it's also a very exciting experience," Jackson said.

"It's going to be fun to travel around and showcase my new music and be on the road."

Indeed Sloan Peterson's music has taken a drastic turn in the past six months.

After initially channeling the retro guitar sound of The Beatles and The Strokes, mixed with the Californian dream pop of Lana Del Ray, on tracks like 105, Rats and I Want You, she explored a playful R'n'B pop sound on the single Nightmare, released last October.

Then earlier this month she released the 2000s Gwen Stefani-inspired Moon & Back.

"I myself, don't really see it as a big change when I look at it and all of my work," she said. "Other people are a bit more surprised because the production is a lot cleaner and I've been able to work alongside other musicians who have helped me navigate my new sound."

Sloan Peterson - Moon & Back

It's been a result of Jackson moving away from her former band, also known as Sloan Peterson, and becoming a fully-fledged solo artist.

That in turn, has led to Jackson opening herself up to co-writing with Andy Hopkins, aka Hauskey.

"My debut album I had written the entire thing and it was essentially recorded live in a studio and we added elements to it," she said.

"Now I have a lot more doors opening for me to come in with a song I've written and show it to someone and they can help me dissect it and help with the top line."

Becoming a solo artist has allowed Jackson to fully express her vision of Sloan Jackson and her visual representation through her music videos is an essential part of the process.

RETRO: Despite a more modern sound, Sloan Peterson has maintained her '60s look.

RETRO: Despite a more modern sound, Sloan Peterson has maintained her '60s look.

In the video for Moon & Back, Jackson wears a mirrored 1967 Paco Rabanne dress worn by French musician Francoise Hardy to combine sc-fi with minimalism.

"I like to dabble in a little bit of everything when it comes to my music, it's not like I'm really confident about my songwriting skills or my singing or my capabilities with music, but where I shine is I'm an artist," she says. "I focus more on the whole picture - the video clips, the clothes I'm wearing, the networking. There's a vision I see all the time that I would like to translate to my audience.

"I work extremely hard around my whole vision and some people mightn't think I'm the best singer, but I translate that with my own Sloan world."

Sloan Peterson's Moon & Back tour visits La La La's, Wollongong (Thursday); Waywards, Newtown (Friday); Hamilton Station Hotel, Newcastle (Saturday); Volta, Ballarat (May 6); Major Tom's, Kyneton (May 7) and Workers Club, Melbourne (May 8).

This story Sloan Peterson going it alone to the Moon & Back first appeared on Newcastle Herald.