Wrap your ears around these local beauties, Gold Coast.
Lemaire | 20 Dollar Wine
Bass and beats frame Lemaire’s debut single ’20 Dollar Wine’, released in March. It’s the first in a series of new tracks due this year, culminating in an EP scheduled for mid 2019. Burleigh based Lemaire has combined his singer-songwriter roots with hip-hop and rap influences in this polished debut. Listen now via Spotify.
Amy Elise | How Bout No
Gold Coast’s Amy Elise has been singing since she was eight. Now at just 14, she’s cultivating a sound that’s all her own, combining a powerful voice and growing musicianship. Earlier this year, Amy travelled to Nashville to write and record at Blackbird Studios. That trip resulted in three songs, including her debut ‘How Bout No’. The track contains more than a smattering of teenage angst, wrapped in a blanket of alt-pop-country vibes. It was co-written with Katie Cole, but Amy has also been working and recording with Benny D Williams (BDW Music Production), so we’re expecting more good stuff to come.
Liv Heyer | Something in the Water
19 year old Gold Coast songstress Liv Heyer has delivered a slice of dark indie-pop in new track ‘Something in the Water’. The track showcases Liv’s songwriting ability as well as her adept rhythmic guitar work. Liv is fast building a name for herself locally with a charismatic live show which sees her armed with guitars and ukes built by her dad, as well as an entrancing voice. Keep your ears peeled for more, but in the meantime, take a listen to ‘Something in the Water’ in all the usual places.
Yorke | Wake The City
Byron-based Yorke (AKA Grace Hughes) has collaborated with Andy Mak to co-write and produce her latest offering ‘Wake The City’. It’s her second single and comes on the back of a recent signing to Island Records. The track, which is peppered with uplifting melodies and stellar production has already clocked up 150,000 streams and showcases Yorke’s vulnerable songwriting style.
Darkcell | Darkcell
Our very own Darkcell are about to drop their long-awaited self-titled album. Due out 12 April and with guest appearances by a bunch of similarly dark talent the album release also marks the start of a national tour before Darkcell head to Europe in May and June. First single off the album ‘Reign of Monsters’ is a charming taste of what’s to come on the album. It’s four minutes of boogie men, howling monsters and shadowy creatures – not least of which is the band members themselves, helmed by Gold Coast’s Jesse “Dracman” Bateman. Darkcell hit Vinnies Dive Bar on Friday 10 May. Listen to ‘Darkcell’ here.
James McMaster | Heart Beats Right
James McMaster is new to the solo artist world, but not to making music. Currently embarking on a solo journey into the folk-pop world, he’s previously been a member of Gold Coast punk outfit Skyway. New song ‘Heart Beats Right’ is a pretty acoustic number that highlights James’ songwriting ability while telling a tale of lost love. Or maybe it’s found love? James has an EP in the works, so keep your ears peeled, especially if pretty folk songs are your schtick.
Bobby Alu | Finally
Gold Coast’s very own Bobby Alu has released the third single off his upcoming album. This master of island groove has combined serious warmth with the sounds of his Polynesian heritage to deliver a sunny slice of laid-back, guitar-driven beats. ‘Finally’ is out now with Bobby’s third album due mid-year. Check the track out on the Gold Coast playlist on Spotify.
From the Well | My Killer
Spooky Gold Coast rock apes From the Well have released their debut single ‘My Killer’, chock full of killer riffs, wailing guitar solos and wretched grooves. It’s an impressive debut from the five-piece rock outfit and has the Blank office pretty excited to see what might be next on the horizon. If you like your rock on the slightly heavier side, you’ll be into these guys. You’ll also dig on their video to accompany ‘My Killer’, which could have easily come from the cutting floor of David Lynch and was self-produced by the band using 50+ year old 16mm footage filmed as well as locations around Jacobs Well.
Samskara Radio | Can’t Kill The Radio
Samskara Radio is Simon Marrocco’s music project. Beginning in Byron Bay when it was a recording project with Jeff Martin, of The Tea Party, in 2013. Then, the music was a bluesy psychedelic alt-rock, now Samskara Radio’s sound has metamorphosed into an electro pop/rock hybrid. ‘Can’t Kill the Radio’ was released late in 2018, but a new video and remix for the track by Austin Leeds is turning heads (and ears). Take a listen to both the remix and the original version on YouTube.
Brooklyn | Better Before
You’d be forgiven if you’d never heard of Gold Coast’s Brooklyn before. But trust me when I tell you she’s been working extremely hard in a genre that’s very hard to get cut through in and making big waves in the process. New track ‘Better Before’ perfectly demonstrates Brooklyn’s adaptability as a DJ and performer and there’s no doubt she’s honed her live show having appeared at some of the world’s biggest dance and electronica festivals (she’s even toured Vietnam with David Beckham to help promote his new alcohol brand). Check out ‘Better Before ft Rachel Costanzo’ on Soundcloud.
Old Sault | Melbourne
Old Sault’s new track unfolds exactly like a saunter through Melbourne does. Weaving and winding through spots dark and sunny, full of nostalgic charm and beauty. ‘Melbourne’ is the first track off an independently released 12-track album ‘Higher Harm’, funded by the Australian Council for the Arts and produced and recorded alongside ARIA Award winning producer Govinda Doyle.
BB Factory | Sweet Refrain
Blues outfit, BB Factory is set to release its next single off ‘First World Blues’, an album they dropped earlier this year. It’s got a classy black and white video to go with it too, which features footage from the band performing ‘Sweet Refrain’ live at Blues on Broadbeach next year. Check it on YouTube. ‘Sweet Refrain’ is out 29 March.
Brandeus | Scared
Young GC-based hip-hop artist Brandeus scored more than 100,000 Spotify streams of his single ‘War’ which brought him to the attention of taste makers and playlist curators. Follow-up single ‘Scared’ is a trap-pop number that highlights the artist’s beguiling style blending old school and new school beats. The half Brazillian MC has integrated a melancholic undertone and a melodic hook sampled from XXXTentacion. ‘Scared’ is out now.
The Oogars | Scream
I’m going to keep it short and to the point. The Oogars rock. This surf-pop quartet, fresh outta the Gold Coast has released a debut single packed full of jangly and bright sounds, dreamy harmonies, psych-rock and a smattering of surf guitar. They ooze confidence and charm. If The Oogars were striving to represent the best of the Gold Coast aurally, these ladies have nailed it. Take a listen to ‘Scream’. I reckon you’ll like it. A lot.
Hussy Hicks | Get Ready
It’s the first track “legit girl band” Hussy Hicks have released since their Album of the Year win at last year’s Gold Coast Music Awards, so you know it’s going to be a cracker. ‘Get Ready’ is the lead single off an album they’ve been beavering away at during this short stay at home – Julz says eight to ten songs are tracked and ready to go. I won’t go into too much detail other than to say the single – due for release 18 April – builds on an already massive list of career achievements, not least of which was two 2019 Golden Guitar nominations for Julz Parker (guitar) who produced the first 100% female created album in Australian country music. ‘Get Ready’ is the first song in 12 years completely recorded, engineered and produced by the band.
Phil Barlow | Sweet Sunrise
A sweet slice of sunny folk music has been unleashed from Phil Barlow this month. ‘Sweet Sunrise’ has a more uplifting groove than previous singles and marks the beginning of an east coast house tour for the prior bluesman. There’s beautiful guitar with tinges of Hawaii, and a tempo reminiscent of breezy days and warm evenings. ‘Sweet Sunrise’ is out 27 March.
Gary Collocott | Hey
South African born solo guitarist Gary Collocott now calls the Gold Coast home. He’s collaborated with drummer and synthesiser James Palmer and producer Zak Muller to deliver brand new single ‘Hey’. The track is an upbeat indie-pop-rock number with a strong singalong chorus and big radio-ready sound. “I want people to follow their feelings and discover the possibilities that can spark from a simple conversation. It’s funny to think that life changing experiences can originate from just one word, ‘hey’,” Gary says about the song. You can listen to ‘Hey’ on the best of the GC playlist on Spotify.
Atlamer’s Muse | Storm Seed
New Gold Coast electronic duo Atlamer’s Muse only formed in 2018 but the outfit’s singer-songerwiter Naia Neith and partner musician-producer James Arrowsmith have just released their debut EP. The Gen X couple, busy with three kids, have managed to find time to record and release the six-track recording which delivers bangin’ soulful vocals over seriously ambient and sweeping electronic layers. When I read that Naia had a background singing and performing in large-scale musicals and that James had a penchant for collecting synths, the origins of Atlamer’s Muse’s sound started to fall into place. ‘Storm Seed’, with its piano, guitar, violins, bluesy arrangements, military-style beats and occasionally brassy synth and gritty vocals is out now.
Bligh | Nissan Patrol
Buckle in for a fun ride with Gold Coast alt popsters Bligh, already touted as “one of the country’s most exciting indie bands” for their hook-heavy, synth-driven POPera and energetic live shows. Their new track ‘Nissan Patrol’, out 14 April builds on the success of previous single ‘Mrs Jones’. Making waves locally, Bligh have impressed taking out numerous Battle Of The Band comps ‘Mrs ‘Jones’ charting on triple j Unearthed. Just like penniless P-platers on the highway, Bligh are putting the pedal to the metal, speeding towards shiny, pop nirvana.
Boing Boing | JT (C’mon Fellas it’s not a library, talk it up)
A rollicking five-minute tribute to Johnathan Thurston in the vein of the Chats is the latest offering from Gold Coast (previously FNQ) four-piece Boing Boing, otherwise known as the Boingers. Guitars are front and centre here and listeners won’t be surprised to hear a touch of Eddy Current Suppression Ring given the track was mixed and mastered by Australian punk legend Mikey Young. The band are hitting the road to mark the sing’s release and you can catch ‘JT (c’mon fellas it’s not a library, talk it up)’ live when they hit Mo’s Desert Clubhouse on Sunday 28 April with Hobo Magic and The Black Armada in support. Or listen on the #gcmusic playlist.