Posts Tagged ‘Australian’

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If you’ve been listening to Aussie music with sharp ears over the last couple of years, there’s a pretty strong chance that you would have already been exposed to the two members of St. Ives in their solo guises, but now the two talented artists have joined forces to create something especially tasty.

St. Ives is a relatively new collaborative project combining the stunning voice of Perth’s Anna O’Neil (better known as Anna O) and the musical talents of Melbourne producer Arik Blum, as they pay homage to the downtempo trip-hop sounds of the mid-’90s, with a contemporary alt-pop edge.

Their tender debut single ‘Nowhere’ shows the duo’s respective talents coming together to create something brilliant, with Blum’s gorgeous, lush instrumentation the foundation, and O’Neil’s emotive vocals the varnish that makes it shine.With the new project having only been on the scene for a short time, they’ll be continuing to share more tracks with the world over the next few months, and we’re already intrigued to hear what St. Ives have in store for us next.

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Liv Cartledge has spent most of her life playing music, busking on the streets of Beechworth, Australia as a child, and playing pub gigs as she got older. All this practice has clearly paid off, with the Victorian singer-songwriter releasing the astonishingly genuine “Timber” EP.

Following the release of her debut single ‘Please Stop Messing About’ back in 2015, she’s been biding her time, honing her craft, and polishing off five tracks of stark, honest, and introspective lyrics. The end result is a beauty, those lyrics brought to life through wistful, folk-styled instrumentation, and delivered with Cartledge’s gorgeous, raspy voice.

With a unique style of songwriting that many accomplished musicians with years of experience would envy, Timber feels like equal doses of talent and hard work coalescing into one, with the potential to take the glowing embers of Cartledge’s early promise and build a bonfire.

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Australian alt-rock trio Middle Kids followed up this year’s excellent self-titled debut EP by offering covers of Car Seat Headrest’s “Fill In The Blank and Crowded House’s “Don’t Dream It’s Over,” and now they’ve added another cover to that list: a spare, haunting version of Blink-182’s pop-punk classic “All The Small Things” that they recorded for Amazon’s Amazon Acoustics playlist. “In this recording, we were attempting to re-imagine a pop-punk classic as a sad country ballad,” the band explain. “We kept the beautiful words and the melody, but changed instrumentation to bring out different emotion.”

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With her debut album, Don’t Let The Kids Win, still fresh in the memory, Australian songwriter Julia Jacklin is wasting no time in putting new material out into the world. Today see’s the release of her new AA-single, featuring the previously shared Eastwick, and brand new offering, Cold Caller.

I fell in love with Julia Jacklin last year when she released Don’t Let The Kids Win. definitely an album that was well-played. Now she’s ready to release a 7″ tomorrow.

Cold Caller was written as a tribute to Julia’s pregnant sister Emma, as Julia explains, “I know people get pregnant all the time but this was different, this was my sister. Cold Caller is a classic slice of alt-country, gently strummed guitars accompanied by twanging slide guitars and the gentlest of ticking drum beats, as Julia’s emotive-vocals comes across all Nasvhille, with a touch of Caitlin Rose or Angel Olsen. Heartfelt and beautiful, if Julia’s got songs this good to throw out as half a stand-alone single, just imagine how good her next album is going to be.

Here’s some more info on the track Cold Caller.

“I started writing this song when my older sister told me she was pregnant. I know people get pregnant all the time but this was different, this was my sister. The one who explained tampons to me, told me what kissing felt like, convinced mum to let me shave my legs, sung ‘Boys of Summer’ a capella at the school talent quest.

“I went to New Zealand to record this 7 inch and on the first day she went into labor, I was checking my phone every 10 minutes but managed to write the second part of the song. That night I had all these crazy nightmares, where she kept disappearing into the dark and every time I caught up to her she’d slip out of my hands again. Woke up in an absolute state to the news that she had given birth to a healthy baby boy. I went into the studio and recorded this song. So this is for her, my wonderful sister Emma.

Eastwick/Cold Caller is out today via Transgressive Records (UK)/ Polyvinyl (US).

If in a parallel, time, Bruce Springsteen, instead of selling out arenas, ended up singing resentful songs in a dark Las Vegas bar. In our reality, this same person lives in the body of Alex Cameron. We see him in a smart suit with slicked back blond hair, sometimes his cheeks are wrinkled, as is an older version of himself possessed his figure unexpectedly. He is almost kneeling on stage while holding on to his microphone; It’s impossible to foresee if he’s about to burst into tears or into a fit of rage. But nothing happens, the song ends, the action stops. He’s still there, on the empty stage, in the empty room, and you can’t help but keep thinking of his words, his voice, his hopelessness.

“And I’ve sat here thinking, I hate my god damn life/ I used to be the number one entertainer, now I’m bumpkin with a knife/ I’ll never get my show back.” he sings, in one of his tracks, titled “The Comeback.” Oddly enough, despite what you might think, “The Comeback” isn’t the opening song on Cameron’s debut album: the first place in his record titled “Jumping the Shark” is, indeed, for a song named “Happy Ending.” It’s as if we are taken backwards in the life and the career of this unfathomable music business man from a timeless place. the fact that the record in question, “Jumping The Shark”, was actually sneakily released by Cameron way back in 2013, and merely saw a wider U.S. release last year, with the record getting a proper release this year from new label Secretly Canadian and producing some of the best video clips this year, Alex, who knocked it out of the park this year with a aforementioned string of brilliant videos taken from the record,

“I’ve got, everything I need/ It’s a strong connection, that’s high-speed/ Got two modems, and a fax machine/ I got receptionists, they keep my office clean/ I’ve got, a master plan/ I’m my own boss, I’m the man/ I got business cards, you can find me;” .

His narrative is evil and repulsive, yet we can’t help but listen carefully to the stories he sings, fascinated by this corruption and determined to save his poor, self-destructive soul, always concerned to find out that its us he’s talking about. The electronic arrangement, made of straight synths and guitars, remind of the new-wave, post-punk era – vintage or out-of-date, it’s difficult to tell. But the result is an album that sticks in the listener’s mind, persistent in the thoughts, coming back when least expected; impossible to give up on, just like a crushing addiction.

Listen to Gordi's Haunting Acapella Cover of Bon Iver's "00000 Million"

The Australian musician and 21 year old Sydney indie-folk singer songwriter known as Gordi recently covered her Jagjaguwar labelmate Bon Iver’s “00000 Million.”

On the decision to do an acapella cover, the musician says, “I think words can be best understood when they are all you can hear.” Listen to Gordi’s beautiful and haunting cover

Gordi will support Bon Iver at his upcoming Hammerstein Ballroom show in New York on December. 10th. Leading up to that show, she will support The Tallest Man on Earth for a string of Australian dates.

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The Aussie from the Blue Mountains is supporting the ace country-soul seven-piece Whitney on tour this autumn and her singles to date suggest her debut album will be just as perfectly formed as theirs. Not an album many would expect to see on an end-of-year list but it is there for a good reason. In a sea of solo artists laying down their songs and trying to impress – few make such a mark as Julia Jacklin. The Australian newcomer wrote the album in response to those around her growing-up and developing in life. Whether buying a home or moving abroad: Jacklin felt grounded and rootless by comparison. The songs address the need to make changes and the issue of age. The catchy single Coming of Age finds Jacklin tackling premature middle-age (Jacklin is twenty-five) and the necessity of making the most of time. The rest of Don’t Let the Kids Win is complex and diverse. The compositions are constantly agile, rich and unexpected – not what you’d expect from a debut album from someone entering the Indie-Rock milieu. Eccentric, charming and witty at times – various moments find Zach Braff cast as Jacklin’s dad and Catherine Deneuve as her mum – the shining star of the album is Jacklin’s voice. Quirky at various moments yet always heartfelt, spirited and beautiful. 2016 has seen many debuts and new artists emerge but few are as memorable as Julia Jacklin. The media and international radio have fallen for her music and no wonder: Don’t Let the Kids Win is a sensational album that deserves big big love.

“Leadlight” is taken from Julia Jacklin’s new album Don’t Let the Kids Win, out 10/07/16.

Methyl Ethel

Methyl Ethel the Aussie trio turned in a solid debut effort with their far-flung yet fluid album “Oh Inhuman Spectacle” early this year. We haven’t heard from them since then, but today they’ve come with a new single entitled “No. 28″ along with a matching set of visuals. The song picks up where the album left off, but quickly veers into psych-leaning exploration, teasing out the ’70s singer-songwriter vibes that were present but much more subtle on the album. As for the Olivier Groulx-directed black-and-white clip, it features a couple performing a beautifully choreographed dance routine that mixes contemporary and ballroom styles mirroring the genre-melding of song. It’s a video that as simple as it is pretty  Oh Inhuman Spectacle  and ’No. 28’ by Methyl Ethel, out now on 4AD Records:

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Not many people’s route to international critical acclaim takes in several years working on a factory production line making essential oils, but Australian songwriter, Julia Jacklin, isn’t most people. One of the joys of those years spent in tedious employment, was that it allowed Julia to hone her musical craft, to think of little but music, and how it was her ticket out of there.

Born in the Blue Mountains, Julia’s music is surprisingly un-Australian, it nods in the direction of alt-country, a world of twanging electric guitars, smooth ticking drum beats, and her trump card, her spectacular vocal. More than just a wonderful voice though, Julia is also a superbly cutting lyricist, as she sings on recent single Leadlight, “I love you my darling, but I can’t promise I’ll be here to see this whole love through.” With a debut album out next month and seemingly every radio station and music rag queuing up to rave about it, don’t expect Julia Jacklin to be playing the smallest tent again anytime soon.

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The first single from the self-titled debut by Australian alt-country duo, Eagle & The Wolf.

“Two of Australia’s finest singer-songwriters, indie-pop goddess Sarah Humphreys and alt-country troubadour Kris Morris, met, fell in love and now they’re making they’re making beautiful folk music together as Eagle & The Wolf. The project is in its infancy but they’ve already secured a major tour, Eagle and the Wolf is the perfect example of a coming together of artists whose sum is great than it’s parts. Alt-country singer-songwriter Kris Morris and indie-folk chanteuse Sarah Humphreys are both celebrated artists in their own right , but this EP  has elevated them to a new level. Humphreys’ voice seems to have been unshackled and is out in full force. Morris’ guitar work is pitch perfect – blistering in the bluesier numbers and restrained in the ballads. At only 5 tracks the self titled Eagle & The Wolf is the perfect taster for a partnership that has a big future ahead of it.

We recorded our album mostly live in September, 2015 over three beautiful days at an old farmhouse in the southern highlands. Syd Green is our producer, drummer, friend and engineer. He did wonderful things and we loved working with him on this always special, often magical project of ours.

This song is called ‘When The Love Has Died’ and it is about a relationship that needed to come to an end not out of deep sorrow or hatred, but simply because it was time.

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