Tag: Melbourne Australia

New Video: Melbourne’s Pillow Pro Teams Up with Endless Prowl on a Multi-Dimensional Journey

The rising Melbourne-based electro pop duo Pillow Pro — Christobel Elliot and Jude Mills — burst onto Melbourne’s music scene with their 2015 self-released, self-titled debut EP, which quickly established their unique production style and sound: thick bass lines, ethereal harmonies and intertwining vocals. Adding to a growing profile, the rising Aussie electro pop duo have played sets at Gaytimes Festival, Melbourne Music Week, Wetfest, Listen Out and Scienceworks — and they’ve shared stages with Divide and Dissolve, Oscar Key Sung, HTML Flowers and others.

The duo’s highly anticipated full-length debut Forever is slated for a June 3, 2021 through Dinosaur City Records. The album’s latest single “Lucky” is a brooding yet club friendly bop featuring Endless Prowl, centered around skittering beats, wobbling and shimmering synth arpeggios and achingly plaintive vocals. And while the song strikes me as a retro-futuristic take on Larry Levan-era house, the song as the duo explains “is about love and lust and the insecurities and vulnerabilities that come with strong, strong feelings. It’s about being honest with yourself about how you feel.”

Created by Endless Prowl’s Dan Ford, an acclaimed multimedia artist and game designer, follows two young people who develop and maintain a connection through the internet, where they exist together in an Avatar-like dream world. Beginning with footage originally shot and edited by Ford in his studio, he then developed the characters in the artists’ likenesses and created a virtual world. The cuts between real life footage and virtual reality wind up creating a mind-bending multi-dimensional experience.

New Video: Rising Aussie Dream Pop Act Aeroplane Mode Releases a Shimmering Ode to New Crushes

With the release of their debut single “Settle Down,” the Melbourne-based dream pop act Aeroplane Mode –Brandon Bergin (vocals, guitar), Sinead Horne (vocals, synths), Carlos Tinsey (bass) and Will Clancy (drums) — quickly exploded across the Aussie music scene: Violent Soho’s James Tidswell signed the band to his Domestic La La Record Club, and the single has received airplay on Triple J Unearthed’s TOPS and Triple J. The song was also added to the Spotify Editorial playlist “fuzzy.”

Building upon the growing momentum surrounding them, the rising Aussie dream pop act released their second single “In A State.” Centered around shimmering and atmospheric synths, jangling guitars, an infectious hook and Brandon Bergin’s plaintive vocals, the Carlos Tinsey penned “In A State” brings 120 Minutes MTV-era alt rock and New Zealand jangle pop to mind, while capturing the swooning, butterflies in the stomach feeling of a new crush. It’s a decidedly upbeat song that finds the band making a specific effort to point out that they have two front people — and with each frontperson, they’re able explore different vocal aesthetics, moods and soundscapes.

Produced by Sucker Co., the recently released video for “In A State” was shot and edited by Aden McLeod. The video features intimately shot footage of the rising Aussie dream pop quartet in front of rapidly changing, brightly colored backgrounds and playfully nostalgic scenes featuring Brandon Bergin on a swing, on a dial tone phone. The video manages to emphasize the song’s dreamy nostalgia-tinged breeziness.

New Video: Mista Savona Teams Up with Cuban Star Cimafunk on an Infectious Banger

Melbourne, Australia-based producer and musician Jake Savona has had a long love affair with the music and culture of Jamaica, releasing a string of critically and commercially successful reggae and dub albums with his recording project Mista Savona.

Eventually Savona discovered Cuban music — and he began dreaming of a collaborative project that would bring top musicians from Cuba and Jamaica together to collaborate on material. In 2015, Savona received a great from the Australian Council that funded his ambitious project. Both countries are connected by common African roots and colonial histories and yet the music of Cuba and Jamaica have largely traveled in separate lanes. And while both countries individually have had an immeasurable influence on music globally, their influence on one another have generally been less evident.

The acclaimed Aussie musician and producer along with Sly & Robbie (drummer Sly Dunbar and bassist Robbie Shakespeare) traveled to Cuba and began recording in EGREM Studio, where Buena Vista Social Club and a number of equally legendary artists have recorded material. More sessions followed, many other artists invited to take part and after years of painstaking effort, Mista Savona Presents Havana Meets Kingston was released in 2017 to worldwide acclaim.

Slated for release next year through Cumbancha Records, Mista Savona Presents Havana Meets Kingston Part 2 continues the bold and ambitious mission of its predecessor — bridging the incredibly diverse and important music cultures of Cuba and Jamaica. The album features a deep lineup of artists collaborating together including Jamaican stars Clinton Fearon, Randy Valentine, Prince Alla, and Micah Shemaiah, Cuban stars Barbarito Torres, Changuito, Brenda Navarette, Solis and Beatriz Marquez, as well as a lengthy list of others from both countries.

Mista Savona Presents Havana Meets Kingston Part 2’s latest single “Beat Con Flow” can trace some of its origins back to 2015 when Savona first saw Cimafunk performing with Interactivo, years before Cimafunk became a household name in his native Cuba. The backing band, which featured Sly Dunbar (drums), the late Winston “Bopee” Bowen (guitar), Gaston Joya (bass), Julito Padrón (trumpet), Savona (piano, Hammond organ) and DJ Wasabi (turntables) recorded an infectious and hook-driven, strutting party anthem that’s indebted to old school reggae, hip-hop and pop.

Later Cimafunk recorded his vocal parts at a small, rundown Havana recording studio, bragging in Cuban slang that he’s dope and spits fire on the mic — and that along with the backing band, that’s providing the infectious funk that will make you get up, dance and forget your problems for a little bit. 2020 has been difficult for all of us, and the song offers the much-needed fun and upbeat vibes our exhausted hearts and souls need right now.

Directed by Rick Mereki, the recently released video for “Beat con Flow” features beautiful brown and Black people dancing to the song in a variety of colorful and interesting spaces from graffiti covered streetscapes, living rooms, clubs and an abandoned pool.

New Video: Rising Pop Artist Elizabeth Releases an Atmospheric Cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way”

Beginning her musical career as the frontperson and primary songwriter of acclaimed Melbourne, Australia-based pop act Totally Mild, an act that recorded two critically applauded album before splitting up, Elizabeth Mitchell has stepped out into the limelight as rising solo artist, writing and performing under the mononym Elizabeth.

By going solo, the rising Aussie pop singer/songwriter has been able to reimagine and reinvent herself — and with the release of her full-length debut, last year’s the wonderful world of nature, Elizabeth transformed herself into a sort of patron saint of anguish, heartbreak and woe, all of which have allowed her to develop a completely unique sound apart from her previously known work. imbued with desire, lust, shame, guilt, uncertainty and a glamorous debauchery.

The Melbourne-based pop artist will be releasing a deluxe edition of the wonderful world of nature on October 23, 2020 through AntiFragile Records — and the deluxe edition will feature a handful of new material, including her latest single, a slow-burning and atmospheric cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “Go Your Own Way.” Centered around twinkling piano and the rising Aussie pop artist’s tender vocals, Elizabeth’s version strips everything away to the bone, revealing the bitter heartache at the core of the song.

Directed by Elizabeth and Xanthe Dobbie, the recently released video is a hazy and intimate visual that follows a brooding Elizabeth, on the verge of tears.

New Video: Rising Aussie Act Telescreen Releases a Bold and Striking Visual for Anthemic “Moving On”

Last year was a breakthrough year for the rising, Melbourne, Australia-based indie rock act Telescreen — Nic Schwarz, Dan Carolan, Ali Ward, Matt Martin and Ollie McIntyre — with EP title track “Growing Pains” getting regular rotation on Triple J Unearthed and community radio across the country. “Growing Pains” was featured on British blog Scientists of Sound before landing at #1 on the global Hype Machine charts. And as a result, the track garnered 15,000 SoundCloud streams within a few days. The rising Aussie act also released their first music video for EP track “In Mind,” which received airplay on rage, a national music video show — and was featured on popular music site ClippedTV.

Adding to a growing profile, the band opened for for the likes of Mosquito Coast, STUMPS, DIET., Francesca Gonzales, Creature Fear and The Attics, before eventually selling out their biggest headlining shows. And they played some of their first festival sets in the history. Interestingly, with the band’s rapidly growing profile, the band’s frontman Nic Schwarz left his full-time job to pursue music full-time. Schwarz has spent most of this past year cowriting with producers and artists across Australia through video conferencing during pandemic-related shutdowns and in-person when he could.

Of course, much like countless other bands across the globe, the members of Telescreen had hopes of making big moves this year, but they all managed to buckle down to write new material, including their latest single “Moving On.” Officially, serving as the follow-up to their attention grabbing debut EP, “Moving On” is centered around a rousingly anthemic, shout-along worthy hook, angular guitar blasts, staccato hi-hat and a slick, radio friendly production. However, under the studio polish, the song expresses the anger, frustration, shock and dismay over a disconnected and failing social order — but through the prism of a romantic relationship gone wrong.

“We, as a group, felt as though there was this real disconnect between the actions of Australia’s leaders and the true needs of those affected by the fires,” the band’s frontman Nic Schwarz says in press notes. “‘Moving On’ addresses our politicians’ disregard for public opinion, along with their seemingly growing inaction and detachment from issues in order to protect their self-interests.”

Earlier this year, the members of Telescreen put together a benefit show with fellow rising Melbourne acts Feelds and El Tee to raise much-needed funds for bushfire relief. And although, the year has been a loss, they did receive some incredibly good news: they won this year’s Triple J Unearthed NIDA Competition, in which the winner would be provided an opportunity to work with a team of students from the National Institute of Dramatic Art to create a music video. (Full credits are below, if you’re curious. Plus, we should try to always shout out talented young people, right?)

Shot with pandemic-related restrictions and limitations, the entire creative team came up with a bold and striking visual featuring a diverse cast of models/actors at a photoshoot. Initially forced to conform through wearing all black outfits. But as the video progresses, the actors strike back out of frustration and annoyance, eventually letting their freak flags — and their true selves proudly fly.

New Video: Melbourne’s SHOUSE Releases a Euphoric New Single paired with 80s VHS-like Visuals

Rising Melbourne, Australia-based electro pop/house music act SHOUSE is the latest collaborative project of two of that city’s grizzled music scene vets — IO’s Ed Service and The Harpoons’ Jack Madin. The duo specialize in a unique take on house music, collaborating with a collective of local vocalists and musicians. Additionally, they showcase talent at their OPENHOUSE parties, as a way to cement a sense of community while providing fertile ground for new ideas.

The duo’s latest single “Love Tonight” finds the duo collaborating with an All-Star cases of local scene talent they love and admire that includes Oscar Key Sun, Client Liaison’s Monte Morgan, The Harpoons’ Bec Rigby, HABITS, Pillow Pro and a lengthy of others, creating a crew that champions unity. As for the song itself, it alternates between slow-burning verses featuring plaintive solo serves atmospheric synths and two-step inducing house featuring stuttering and thumping beats, shimmering synth arpeggios and Gospel-inspired choral arrangements. Yearning sax lines and euphoric hooks hold the two different sections together, making the song a trippy and infectious synthesis of Quiet Storm-like Soul, yacht rock and house music. As the duo explain in a statement. “‘Love Tonight’ was written as a message of hope and unity for the underground!”

“Love Tonight” has amassed over 15 million streams across Europe — in particular the Viral 50 Spotify playlists in France, Estonia, Ukraine and Lithuania — and is rising on several other streaming charts, as a result of love from the likes of Solomun, Tensnake, The Blessed Madonna, Agoria, Tim Sweeney, Kraak & Smaak and others.

Directed and edited by James Robinson, the recently released video for “Love Tonight” is shot on a grainy VHS tape, and may remind some folks of security footage — but interestingly enough, the video takes cues from the video for “We Are The World.”

New Video: Follow Acclaimed Aussie Indie Rocker Peter Bibby on a Hilarious Night Out in New Visual for “Calcium”

Over the past handful of months, I’ve written a bit about the rising and critically applauded Fremantle, Australia-based singer/songwriter and guitarist, Peter Bibby. Bibby’s music career started in earnest when he turned 19: he quit the unfulfilling job he was working at the time to busk, eventually landing a few paying gigs. Sometime later, the Fremantle-based singer/songwriter and guitarist landed a high paying job that he wound he losing because he would show up hungover from the gigs he’d play the night before. So, he played even more gigs with a series of different backing bands including Frozen Ocean, Fucking Teeth and Bottles of Confidence developing a rough and tumble sound and approach, a sound and approach that a critic described as being like Shane McGowan screaming at bleeding laudanum and typhoid hallucinations while his guitar playing has been described as being like a dog drunk on rum.

With the release of his first two albums 2014’s Butcher/Hairstylist/Beautician and 2018’s Grand Champion, Bibby proudly championed — and has been championed for — being a working class and wholeheartedly independent artist, which was documented in greater detail in the 2018 film Chasing Palm Springs, which followed Bibby on a cross-country trip from Perth to Melbourne in a temperamental van. Since then, the Fremantle-based artist has begun to build a growing profile and reputation as a must see act, as a result of a rowdy and raucous live set — and through headlining shows and international festival circuit stops at Laneway, Falls and SXSW.

Bibby’s highly anticipated, third album Marge sees it official released today through Spinning Top Records/Caroline Records Australia. The album, which features Bibby’s latest backing band Dog Act — Pete “Strawberry Pete” Gower (bass) and Dave “Dirty Dave” Taylor (drums) derives its name from Dave Taylor’s grandmother Marge. The titular Marge is prominently featured on the album’s cover art, smoking a cigarette on a beach in Darwin, Australia, seemingly watching her corner of the world go by. “I felt there was no better image than a smoking nanna to be the face of this album,” Bibby says. Sonically, the album is splintered and volatile and written as a sort of soundtrack to a surf movie from hell, where there’s blood in the water, a dirt road leading to a dead end — and everything is covered in diesel fumes and dust. “The Dog Act and I recorded this album in a week off in Perth between two Australian tours. We were match fit and full of beans,” Bibby says of the album. “It features a selection of songs, some fun, some completely bloody miserable. It was made better by the involvement of the fourth Dog, Mitch McDonald, who engineered the record and offered endless energy and ideas. I love this record.”

So far I’ve written about two of the album’s previously released singles: the disorderly, wobbly and boozy “Oceans,” a track full of spittle, fury and howled invective centered around fuzzy and lurching power chords, thunderous drumming and drunken shout along worthy choruses reminiscent of Johnny Thunders‘ “Born to Lose,”and John Cale‘s “Pablo Picasso” — and “Whyalla,” a love letter and condemnation of rural Australia that viciously points out the hopelessness, small-minded thinking and boredom of that world with the sort of lived-in hate, despair and deeply abiding love you’d feel for a dysfunctional and fucked-up family member.

Marge’s third and latest single “Calcium” is a slow-burning track that’s one part sarcastic yet scientific study and one part late night, shitfaced blues, centered around shimmering guitars, BIbby’s earnestly howled vocals, twinkling piano and shout along friendly hook. The song features a narrator, who’s deeply concerned about his calcium intake — mainly because he’s concerned about his teeth becoming jacked up. See, vanity, they name is male!

“I wrote this song on the back porch of a mate’s place in Mt Lawley. I remember having read a lot of mumbo jumbo about the dairy industry at the time. The lyrics felt silly but the tune felt so nice to sing. Engineer Mitch pulled a real shifty on me and put my guitar solo in reverse, resulting in me being a happy boy,” Bibby says of the new single.

Co-directed by Bibby and Billy Bowen, the recently released video for “Calcium” follows Bibby on a typical night at his regular bar: Bibby having preternatural restraint and control as friends and regulars offer him booze, cigarettes and alcohol, which he steadfastly refuses. Throughout the video we see Bibby drink milk, lose terribly at pool and hunt for vitamins like a fiend. It’s hilarious and absurd — but at the end, Bibby can say that his grill looks good.

New Video: Aussie Indie Act Children Collide Release a Jittery and Anxious New Single

Critically applauded and commercially successful Melbourne, Australia-based indie act Children Collide — Johnny Mackay (guitar, vocals), Ryan Caeaser (drums) and Chelsea “Chela” Wheatley (bass) —  have released three albums, 2008’s The Long Now, 2010’s Theory Of Everything and 2012’s Monument, all of which feature some of the most beloved Aussie indie rock tracks of the past decade including, “Social Currency,” “Skeleton Dance,” “Chosen Dance,” “Loveless,” and Triple J Hottest 100 singles “Farewell Rocketship,” “Jellylegs” and “My Eagle.” And as a result, 2010’s Theory of Everything debuted at #5 on the ARIA Albums Chart and landed a Triple J album feature — and the band has received twoARIA Award nominations, including one for 2012’s Monument. 

Adding to a growing profile, the bad has played sets across the global festival circuit with sets at SXSW, The Great Escape, Splendour in the Grass, Falls Festival and Big Day Out. They’ve played tons of headlining shows across Australia, as well as dates in London, Paris, Los Angeles, Tokyo and NYC. 

Recorded by Loren Humphrey at The Diamond Mine and Stockholm Syndrome, “Funeral for a Ghost” is the first bit of original material from the acclaimed Aussie indie act since Monument and the propulsive and anthemic single is full of the jittery and anxious energy that seems to define our current moment while sounding mischievously anachronistic, as though the song could have been released in 1991, 2001, 2011 or this week, As the song seems to say,  everything is infuriating, cruel and stupid — and nothing can be trusted. Be paranoid ya’ll.  “I wrote it on an old Roland loop pedal when I was living in a dungeon in North Melbourne an eon ago,” says frontman/guitarist Johnny Mackay of the track. “I had to open a trap door to get down to my room and you could see where a tunnel had been bricked up on my bedroom wall. I was listening to a lot of Sonic Youth at the time, constantly rotating between Murray St and Confusion is Sex. Listening to it now, the lyrics sound like I wrote them last week about covid conspiracy nuts. Time is a flat circle,” he muses. 

Beginning with a PBS-like into, the recently released, Lord Fascinator-directed visual for “Funeral for a Ghost” captures the band’s live energy in a variety of trippy scenarios. 

Initially starting as a bedroom, solo recording project of its Melbourne, Australia-based founding member and frontman Dan Whitfield and expanding into a full-fledge band with Tim Hoey (guitar), Mitchell Scott (drums) and Ben Browning (bass), the acclaimed indie electro pop act Cut Copy have been one of their homeland’s most successful and well-regarded acts over their nearly 20 years together. 2008’s In Ghost Colours, which featured standout singles “Lights & Music” and “Hearts on Fire,” received nominations for ARIA’s Best Dance/Electronic Album and Album of the Year at the J Awards. 2011’s Zonoscope topped the ARIA charts, was nominated for a Best Dance/Electronic Album at that year’s Grammy Awards and won a Best Dance Release ARIA Award. Adding to an enormous, internationally known profile, the members of Cut Copy have gone on a number of successful national and international tours, and have made appearances on the late night TV circuit, including stops on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and Jimmy Kimmel Live!

Cut Copy’s sixth full-length album Freeze, Melt is slated for an August 21, 2020 release through Cutters Records/The Orchard — and the album reportedly finds the band expanding and refining the sound that has won them national and international acclaim. Written during an especially cold European winter, the album sees the band pulling the emotional leanings of their work into the foreground with the material thematically exploring love in strange and perilous times.

So far two singles have been released off the album, “Cold Water” and the slow-burning, intimate and atmospheric “Love Is All We Share,” which I wrote about earlier this year. Melt, Freeze‘s third and latest single, “Like Breaking Glass” may arguably be the most dance floor friendly single. Centered around shimmering synth arpeggios, stuttering beats, a soaring hook, some subtle industrial clang and clatter, and Whitfield’s plaintive vocals, “Like Breaking Glass” is a bit of a return to form for the Aussie act, as it sounds as though it could have possibly been part of the In Ghost Colours sessions. But at its core, the song is emotionally ambivalent, evoking the confecting emotions of a relationship on the verge of a breakup — especially

Dan Whitford says of the single: “In the beginning ‘Like Breaking Glass’ started out as a completely different track. Before one weekend I was mucking around in the studio with just a drum beat and an acid bassline. I never managed to finish it, but when I came back to it the next week there was something about that beat that felt compelling, so I started writing a song over the top of it. It is about the conflicted feelings of a relationship that has begun to unravel. Where sometimes against all logic, you discover that affections run deep just as a break up becomes inevitable. It was also one of my favourite songs working in the studio with the band when we crafted the middle section of the song comprising of weird delay effects, off-beat drum hits and metallic clangs where Mitchell was throwing a box of metal objects around the room, and we stood there recording him.”

CASCINE · Roland Tings – Lights On The Headland

 

Rohan Newman is a Melbourne-based electronic music artist and producer, best known as the creative mastermind behind the acclaimed recording project and JOVM mainstay Roland Tings. Back in 2012, Newman caught the attention of renowned, Los Angeles-based electronic music label 100% Silk Records, who released his debut EP.  Since the release of his debut EP, Newman has become one of Melbourne’s biggest names while releasing material through the aforementioned 100% Silk Records, Internasjonal and Sony Records that has has found him expanding upon and experimenting with his sound and songwriting approach.

Last year’s Salt Water was a cohesive and introspective album inspired by Newman’s 18-month stint living on the Southern coast of Victoria, Australia, surrounded by rugged coastlines and verdant rainforests. Newman’s latest Roland Tings effort, First Wave EP is slated for an August 14, 2020 release through Cascine Records. Written in isolation shortly after the Salt Water sessions, the EP’s material is a marked shift from its highly collaborative predecessor, an effort that featured live drummers and vocalists. As Newman says, First Wave signals a return to a more instinctive approach — the same ethos that guided him while he crafted some of his earliest Roland Tings work.

“It took me a long time to find a way to come back to this more solitary way of working,” Newman explains. “After my first few records, I felt like I had really exhausted all the possibilities of working by myself, which is why so much of Salt Water was about collaborating and pushing further into new sounds. I felt a lot of pressure to go beyond what I had done before, so the goal of that record was getting others involved and trying to make something that was new to me.”

Although dramatically different from Salt Water, Newman’s forthcoming effort continues to draw inspiration from his coastal surroundings. The EP’s latest single “Lights On The Headland” is centered around glistening synth arpeggios, stuttering and swirling beats, rolling bass, hot flashes of snare and a sinuous melody — and while evoking shimmering sea creatures effortlessly swimming just under the surface, the track possesses the sort of free-flowing effortless feel that reminds me of Between Two Selves-era Octo Octa.