Posts Tagged ‘Brisbane’

Hatchie is the world of Harriette Pilbeam. Step inside her mind; a dreamy landscape where cascading synths, jangling guitars, propulsive rhythms and white noise undulate beneath irresistible pop melodies. Rather than focusing on the external world of her life in Brisbane, Pilbeam turns her gaze inwards, making a soundtrack out of her daydreams, setting her emotional life to song.

Brisbane’s Hatchie, aka Harriette Pilbeam, has released her debut full-length, “Keepsake”. Available through Double Double Whammy.

Following up on 2018’s Sugar & Spice EP, Keepsake spans 10 dreamy tracks that bring in elements of shoegaze and danceable pop. Singles “Stay With Me”, “Without a Blush”, and “Obsessed” have hinted at the influence of the likes of Cocteau Twins and Mazzy Star.

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Speaking about the album title , Hatchie said of Keepsake,

“It was a word that popped up in one of the songs, ‘Kiss the Stars’. I talk about keeping a heart as a keepsake, and I thought it was really nice. I have a bunch of little keepsakes and mementos in a drawer at home. I thought that this album would be a keepsake, kind of like a time capsule of this time in my life. So, it just kind of makes sense. I didn’t put too much thought into it at the time, which is good because I was worried I would be agonizing over it. I really liked that it was an easy decision to name the album Keepsake.”

For more insight into Keepsake, Hatchie has broken the record down Track by Track.

“Not That Kind”:
I wrote this song in mid 2017, when I wasn’t intentionally working towards anything specific like, say, an album. I just wanted to write a fun, rollicking pop song so I started with the lead synth line and guitars. It came together really quickly and I don’t even remember writing the lyrics. It’s got one of my favourite bass lines on the whole album. I used an old multi-effects pedal to create a random rhythm for the guitar in the bridge. I always thought it would be the perfect opener for an album, so I’m glad it’s ended up that way.

“Without A Blush”:
I wrote this one in early 2018 when I was focusing on the more industrial, heavy sounds that I wanted on the album. I started with the bass line and worked on the verses for ages. I actually lost the original demo because my programs kept crashing, but it ended up being a bit of a blessing because the second time around I had a much more concise vision for the song. I agonized over the bridge for months, originally trying a bunch of different vocal lines before deciding it really just needed some breathing space, both for me as the singer and the listener. After all the touring I did over the past year, I realized most of my songs have no breaks at all, so I really wanted this one to have space to grow before coming back with a bang at the end.

“Her Own Heart”:
This track is sonically more similar to the early Hatchie demos and the vision I had for the project back when I started it. As with the EP demos, the original version was also super washy, with 10 layers of guitars stacked up to make it as wet and verbed out as possible. At the time it was really irking me that so many of my songs are about someone else and how they make me feel, so with this one I set out to write about how I hoped I would react if I was suddenly completely on my own and forced to be emotionally independent — hence the cheesy lyrics about shooting your heart with your own arrow, and being your own muse. These are concepts I wish I’d been more aware of when I was younger. The original lyrics were far too long, telling a much bigger story that I wish I could have fit in. I wrote it in third person because I found it easier to open up and see it from a different perspective.

“Obsessed”:
I wrote this song more recently than the other tracks, a few weeks before we went into the studio in July last year. I wanted a super contained, compressed pop song with imperfections to balance out the sprawling, dramatic songs already written for the album. I started with the drum machine and layered up the synths before adding the vocals and guitars, trying to make them sound like samples. It makes me feel really nostalgic for when I was a teenager. It sounds like it’s a love song but it’s actually about my tendency to get obsessed with new friends to the point of pushing them away because I over analyze the relationship and ruin it. I wrote it in a few hours when I was feeling really down about not writing any new songs that I liked for a few months.

“Unwanted Guest”:
I probably shouldn’t say it, but this is my favourite track on the album. It’s exactly what I wanted the whole album to sound like before deciding it needed the balance of other more poppy, light, happy songs for it to work as a whole. I played around with the verse for months, really struggling to figure out where it should go after the spoken line. I just had two parts that I loved – the vocals and a bass line – and couldn’t decide on proper chords to fit under it. I had actually decided to shelve this song after a few different sessions working with Joe where we tried everything from changing the key to changing the entire chord structure. It was driving me crazy and I felt like we just kept getting further and further away from how I wanted it to sound. I gave up and started working on a brand new song, which I realized worked perfectly as a chorus after this original verse, so we put them together in a new session and it was a revelation. Recording all the synths in the outro was one of my favourite days in the studio. It’s an angry song about being dragged to a party you don’t want to be at!!

“Secret”:
This song was a surprise addition to the album in the final days of recording. We had some spare time after almost finishing all of the other tracks so decided to give something new a go. I had all the vocal and synth parts written, but like Unwanted Guest, I had no idea how to fit them all together and make something that sounded really different from the rest of the album. John Castle, who produced the album, sat down with the parts for an hour and came out with something way beyond where I imagined the song going originally. We were wary about the Robbie Williams piano line he suggested we add in behind everything in the second half of the song, but it’s my favourite part now. I wrote the lyrics last. It’s about confiding in a friend about your mental health.

“Kiss The Stars”:
This song is about seeing a childhood friend after years apart. I wanted to write something super nostalgic that looked back on a much simpler time in my life. I had the ‘kiss the stars’ line in my head for a while, having an idea of how I wanted that part of the song to go but not the rest. I tried adding it to various other tracks I was working on before realizing it worked best with this one. I love that the rhythm guitar and bass alternate between the same two chords for the entire song. In the demo I even just cut the progression in half and pasted the guitar and bassline in the opposite order for the change halfway through. The outro vocal part is such a special part to me, I love stacking up three or four harmonies to mimic a chord like that. It’s also when I reference the album title!

“Stay With Me”:
I heard Joe playing and singing this verse over and over from the other room and fell in love with it. We finished it together for fun, not as a song for any project in particular, aiming for a Kylie meets Trainspotting dance track. It was really exciting hearing it all come together though, and we agreed it was the perfect addition to the album. I love that it’s got a real a crying-on-the-dancefloor vibe.

“When I Get Out”:
This is another track that started off sounding completely different from the final product after merging multiple songs into one. I wanted something that reminded me of the The OC soundtrack that was so prevalent in my teen years.

“Keep”:
This is by far the oldest song on the album — it actually almost ended up on the previous EP. When deciding on the demos I was going to re-record for the album I skipped over it, feeling like I had outgrown the straight up pop sound and had better options. Once I had selected all of the other tracks though I felt like “Keep” would be the perfect connection between the album and the EP. I really like the simple, pop bookends of the album – opening with “Not That Kind” and closing with “Keep”.

released June 21st, 2019

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Holy Holy write dramatic songs that soundtrack imaginary coming-of-age films from the 80s; music with a propulsion built for highways, house parties and death pacts. Teach Me about Dying chugs along as synthetic strings swoop in and out like ghosts, instruments echoing into the void and the song’s main tenet shines through: that in order to live a full life you must keep your inevitable death at the forefront of your mind. Memento mori, as they put it in the medieval period, a concept adapted from the ancient Stoics. As Holy Holy put it: “Teach me about dying”, so I can learn how to live.” A good message that never sounded so alive as when coupled with Holy Holy’s throbbing backbeat.

Ostensibly about dying, this new song reveals itself as a parable on living and parades Holy Holys continued musical evolution as they approach their forthcoming third LP.

Self-produced by Oscar Dawson & Timothy Carroll , Teach Me About Dying was born from a 1980’s-era portable Casio keyboard and features dark driving bass, live and programmed beats, melodic guitar tones, and the return of Ali Barter and Ainslie Wills on background vocals. Just as life itself, the song manoeuvres between jubilance and melancholy at once.

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Frontman Timothy Carroll describes the song as, “an exploration of the way in which our mortality affects our lives … death imbues life with urgency and clarity and a sense that time is precious. And so, although it is by definition morbid, remembering that we will all die is actually a really important tenet by which to live.”

The new single succeeds the fearless left turn on Faces. The first single from their third studio album saw Holy Holy move away from their trademark solos and riffs on the experimental mini-epic, and perform a wildly successful lap of the country on a headline tour.

Holy Holy have their third album due out later this year.

Hatchie is the world of Harriette Pilbeam. Step inside her mind; a dreamy landscape where cascading synths, jangling guitars, propulsive rhythms and white noise undulate beneath irresistible pop melodies. Rather than focusing on the external world of her life in Brisbane, Pilbeam turns her gaze inwards, making a soundtrack out of her daydreams, setting her emotional life to song.

‘Without A Blush’ is taken from Hatchie’s debut album ‘Keepsake’ out June 21 on Double Double Whammy, Heavenly Recordings

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Australian quartet The Jungle Giants will be bringing sizzling hot indie rock anthems to Liverpool Sound City this summer 2019! Creators of music that ‘makes you want to dance, but also clench your fists,’ singles such as ‘Used to Be in Love’ and ‘Feel the Way I Do’ have been racking up millions of streams in their homeland. With 3 albums to boast and a number of sellout tours under their belts, it is only a matter of time before The Jungle Giants make a name for themselves on this hemisphere. check out the album “Quiet Ferocity”:

Listen to The Jungle Giants third studio album Quiet Ferocity and one thing becomes clear: they’ve found their sound. The band – featuring Sam Hales on vocals/guitar, Cesira Aitken on lead guitar, Andrew Dooris on Bass Guitar/Backing Vocals and Keelan Bijker on drums/trombone – met in Brisbane at Mansfield State High, and since their first performance in 2011, they’ve released two EPs (The Jungle Giants, 2011 and She’s a Riot, 2012) and two studio albums (Learn to Exist, 2013 and Speakerzoid, 2015).

Quiet Ferocity combines the signature melodic arrangements of their first album with the percussion-laden production of their second and catapults them into asonic stratosphere that is entirely their own sound.
“After Speakerzoid I didn’t write for a while,” Sam says. “I needed to figure out what I wanted to do. I had to get out of my head. Then one day I was in the pool. It came to me, and I made this conscious decision. I told the band I wanted to make banging indie rock. I wanted to make a strong record that I would be happy to play live.” 

Band Members
Sam Hales – Vocals/Guitar
Cesira Aitken – Lead Guitar
Andrew Dooris – Bass Guitar/Backing Vocals
Keelan Bijker – Drums

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“I’m so scared to get out of here / But I really want to get out of here.” It’s a line from “Strange Light”—a late standout from the sophomore LP by The Goon Sax and I’m not sure there’s a lyric that better sums up the feelings of late adolescence. Those prime years when your conflicting instincts are all fucking with each other, and the endless possibilities preached at you from childhood become paralyzing instead of promising. Growing pains and dawning realizations abound, but it’s in this mess that we finally wind up meeting ourselves. It’s an experience you might have all over again after listening to We’re Not Talking, the latest effort from the Brisbane trio. The band’s first album, filled with achingly familiar suburban references like Target and sweaty-palmed hand-holding, was released when Louis Forster, James Harrison and Riley Jones were just 17. This makes Talking, released two years later, an interesting crystallization of growing up. Taken out of context, a line like “I never knew what love meant / And I still don’t,” would be grounds for a heartbreaking ballad, but here it’s just a passing observation, a scanning self-analysis on the way to being an adult. For The Goon Sax, growing up sounds pretty good.

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2019 is the going to be a good year for Australian band Sweater Curse’s moment. After a year of clever youngsters delivering some of the best indie-rock music, I’m ready for more, and this Brisbane trio is ready to provide. They’ve yet to release their debut LP—or even an EP—but their singles, especially the regretful “Can’t See You Anymore,” were enough to grab our attention. If they opt to release full-length material in 2019, they’re bound to attract fans of artists like Forth Wanderers, Camp Cope and Snail Mail. But Sweater Curse aren’t copy-cats—their walls of sound, tongue-and-cheek phrasing and vocal teamwork are entirely their own. Writing songs that have been described as ‘slightly depressing but still groovy’ and ‘introspective, slightly sparkly indie-rock’ the band carved out a niche for themselves with a throwback feel.

‘Mon’s Song’ is the new standout from Sweater Curse, one of Brisbane’s best new bands. It’s 90s crunch meets millenial angst for fans of CAMP COPE or even City Calm Down. Brisbane has a rich history of amazing indie rock and you are carrying the torch with class. They’re drawn to the honesty of the Australian indie-rock sound citing acts like The Smith Street Band to Jess Locke and everyone in between as big influences. They write about moments in their lives and relatable experiences and situations, extending their domestic experience into song form.

Band Members

Chris | Monica | Rei

Music written and performed by Sweater Curse

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A band of 19-year-olds from Australia who have a knack for incredibly thoughtful and structured indie pop, the Goon Sax’s second album is a tremendous reflection of the leaps and bounds the band has taken over its short life. They fall very easily into the grand tradition of Australian and New Zealand indie bands without batting an eye, which is both to be expected considering member Louis Forster is the son of Robert Forster of the Go-Betweens, but also a bit of a surprise since his reported musical awakening was not his dad’s band, but Green Day’s American Idiot. “We Can’t Win” is the album’s understated masterpiece, something that both evokes and transcends its teenage story and authors, much like the album as a whole.

Named after Australian bagged wine, the Goon Sax travel in teenage ennui, that era of your life where the possibilities are endless and your ability to do anything — or even know which movie to watch — feels infinitesimal. Their sophomore album, We’re Not Talking is full of e•mo•tion and teenage malaise, and “Make Time 4 Life” might be the band’s masterpiece so far: It’s a song full of tiny moments of young love, both flourishing and dissipating. This was the best album to overthink your life to this year.

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Band Members
James Harrison, Louis Forster, Riley Jones

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On her debut EP Sugar & Spice, the young Australian singer songwriter Hatchie has established herself as one of the smartest and most eloquent voices in indiepop. Written in the glow of her first romantic relationship, these five songs deliver grandiose melodies and glimmering arrangements that recall the sparkly jangle of Real Estate. By exploring the space, implicit in the project’s title, where the saccharine euphoria of budding romance ends and its grittier complexities begin,

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Australian singer-songwriter Hatchie released her debut EP, Sugar & Spice, in May, and she’s been kicking up quite the shimmery storm ever since. She’s currently playing a sold-out string of tour dates with Alvvays and Snail Mail (what you might call an indie fan’s dream lineup). Before supporting that bill at a trio of shows at Warsaw in Brooklyn, N.Y., Hatchie carved out time to play a set in the Paste Studio, and her starry session is guaranteed to make your day brighter.

1. Sure 0:47 2. Sugar & Spice 6:19 3. Bad Guy 10:41 Watch Hatchie live at Paste Studio NYC

The Goon Sax

Still in high school when they made their first album Up To Anything in 2016, their brand of awkwardly transcendent teenage guitar pop took them into end of year lists for BBC6, Billboard and Rough Trade, and earned them raves from the Guardian, Pitchfork, Spin, Uncut, Rolling Stone and elsewhere. According to Metacritic, Up To Anything was the 8th best-reviewed debut album anywhere in the world in 2016.

Up To Anything, their 2016 debut from Brisbane, Australia group The Goon Sax, was a brilliant reminder of indie pop’s effectiveness when it’s distilled to its simplest form: loose, jangling guitars and wry, understated vocals. But when it came time for the trio to record what became their second album, We’re Not Talking, each member of the band found themselves pondering the definition of “pop,” and how it related to the ways they wanted to develop their sound.

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“Pop’s a really odd thing,” says bassist/guitarist/vocalist Louis Forster (who is the son of Robert Forster of The Go-Betweens). “I think some people just see [pop] as something sounding polished and ultimately very accessible. But I think pop’s something that exists in a lot of forms, in all kinds of music. On jazz records, there are parts that are really poppy. I guess our idea of pop is a very westernized thing, and it comes out in funny forms; to me, [pop] satisfies something human and subconscious—or it should.”

Accordingly, We’re Not Talkingbalances the band’s usual laser-focused emotional acuity and economical instrumentation with a more expansive take on pop formalism. The keening opening song, “Make Time 4 Love,” boasts insistent cowbell, delicate strings, and jaunty horns; “Sleep EZ” joins delicate, harmony-rich choruses indebted to ‘80s U.K. dreampop to a contorted bridge that boasts a spurt of disco-punk beats, wherein Forster stutter-sings like a skipping LP; and the fierce, emotionally wrecked highlight “She Knows” charges forward on turbulent strings and livewire bass grooves. Even the more straightforward, strummy acoustic-pop songs boast more (and different) hues; the lovely “We Can’t Win,” for example, adds mournful piano and glassy twinkles of percussion into the mix.

“We wanted to make this record more collaboratively,” says Forster. “We had more ideas and more things that we wanted to try out.”

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We’re Not Talking shows how much can change between the ages of 17 and 19. It’s a record that takes the enthusiasms of youth and twists them into darker, more sophisticated shapes, full of lines like “When the bus went past your house and past your stop my eyes filled with tears” and “I’ve got a few things above my bed but it feels so empty, I’ve got spaces to fill and we’re not talking.” Relationships are now laced with hesitation, remorse, misunderstanding and ultimately compassion.

Strings, horns, even castanets sneak their way onto the album, but We’re Not Talking isn’t glossy throwaway pop. Sounds stick out at surprising angles, cow-bells become lead instruments and brief home-recorded fragments appear unexpectedly. This is a record made by restless artists, defying expectations as if hardly noticing, and its complexity makes We’re Not Talking even more of a marvel.

Forster and his bandmates bassist/guitarist James Harrison and drummer/vocalist Riley Jones were determined to push themselves on We’re Not Talking. Forster cites Scott Walker’s Scott 4 and the Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds as inspirations, as well as the work of ESG, Liquid Liquid, and Jenny Hval. “I really like how [Jenny Hval’s] record had those bits where everything sort of drops back, and it’s just spoken word,” he explains. “We were very obsessed with making something very honest, and she does that really, really well in her lyrics. They’re incredible.”

Jones spent much of the recording sessions trying to funnel her love for Tall Dwarfs’ Chris Knox into the final product. “I’d always be like, ‘Chris Knox reference, Chris Knox reference,’” she laughs, “and it just didn’t really come across. I don’t know if anyone else was behind [the idea], but I was just very inspired by him as a pop songwriter.”

The slippery definition of “pop music” was another topic of intra-band debate during the recording process. On Talking, the group worked with outside producers—Architecture In Helsinki vocalist Cameron Bird and the band’s former drummer/keyboardist/guitarist James Cecil.

“We wanted it to be more polished and poppier than the last [album],” Jones says. “We tried to explain to them what we wanted, but I think they really had different ideas about it, so it was a bit tough sometimes. We were all pushing for things, and we couldn’t communicate or couldn’t find a middle ground.”

Those clashing ideas didn’t undermine the final product, but they did give the band more insight into the ways they approach their career—and the possibilities available to them as a result. “When I said we wanted it to be more poppy,’ they were like, ‘OK, poppy,’ and then they had this completely different idea of pop,” Jones recalls. “I just had no idea that things could be that clean and so produced.”

Adds Forster: “Sometimes you forget that there are words that other people have a very different version of, you know? To us, ‘pop’ probably meant something worlds away from what other people would think. We think quite similarly sometimes, the three of us—we often think that because all three of us are on the same wavelength about something, it must be very obvious to anybody else, when it’s not.”

This deep, personal connection dates back to before the Goon Sax’s 2013 inception, when Forster and Harrison forged a fast friendship thanks to their shared musical interests (the Raincoats, the Clean, the Fall, Marine Girls) and—to borrow Jones’ phrasing similarly “silly” personalities; five years in, those personal bonds continue to provide a much-needed buffer against the trials of being in a band. “After the last tour, I was like, ‘Oh my God, can’t wait to get away from these guys,’” Jones recalls, adding with a laugh: “[I was] really ready for break, and then on day two, I was like, ‘Hey guys, are you doing anything today? Do you want to hang out, maybe?’ I just missed them.”

As the Goon Sax gear up for yet another tour—they’ll be spending the fall playing throughout England and North America—they remain cognizant of (and confident about) where they want their band to go in the future. To that end, We’re Not Talking is not so much a bridge to the next career milestone: it’s more like a roadmap.

“I definitely learned that I don’t want anyone to tell me what to do anymore,” Jones says. “We really thought, like, ‘Oh, we’re young, we probably need some grown-ups giving us some good advice.’ But I just want to be free to create stuff naturally, and to push it really far.”

This Brisbane-based group taps into the mystic energies of both ‘60s flower power and the 1980s days of wine and roses. Their organ has a nasty bite, their guitars leak fuel all over the place, the drums soundtrack a “youth in revolt” movie. With disaffected alternative vocals moaning lines like “listen up, disengage, fade away” over wah-wah pedals and sitar, it’s not hard to figure out what shrines they worship at. Still, on Trail to Find, they mix together the mysterious and the upbeat with unfettered verve.

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