My Friend The Chocolate Cake
About My Friend The Chocolate Cake
Eclectic Australian chamber pop outfit My Friend the Chocolate Cake were founded in 1990 by singer/pianist David Bridie and cellist Helen Mountfort. While the band initially served as a more acoustic-oriented side project of ambient/world music ensemble Not Drowning, Waving, Chocolate Cake quickly found an enthusiastic audience in their native Melbourne and released their eponymous debut album in 1991. A curious mix of folk, pop, Celtic, and semi-orchestral fare in the vein of Penguin Cafe Orchestra, Bridie and Mountfort's second album, 1994's Brood, became a breakout success, earning an ARIA Music Award for Best Adult Contemporary Album, a feat the band would repeat in 1996 with its third album, Good Luck. Their raised international profile saw Chocolate Cake headlining the Edinburgh Festival and embarking on a tour of Europe in support of their 1997 U.K. compilation, Review. 19 Easy Pieces, a 1999 collection of rarities and unreleased material, served as a stopgap during a period when Bridie had relocated to Papua New Guinea and begun a new side project called Hotel Radio.
Regrouping in 2002, Chocolate Cake returned to the studio to record the lush, introspective Curious before entering another hiatus. With their Mushroom Records contract having expired in 2000, Australian indie Liberation Music stepped in and reissued the band's entire back catalog in 2005, along with a companion greatest-hits collection called Parade. Home Improvements, their first new release for the Liberation label, arrived in 2007. Following the departure of mandolinist and whistle player Andrew Carswell, Chocolate Cake recorded 2011's Fiasco, their sixth studio album. My Friend the Chocolate Cake continued touring over the next few years, issuing Best (Cake) in Show, their second live LP, in 2014. Released in 2017, The Revival Meeting offered a thoughtful mix of instrumental and lyrical fare. ~ Timothy Monger