SEED is a Gold Coast music program that brings the best of Queensland Conservatorium’s Bachelor of Popular Music to the ears of people who need to hear it. And by that, I mean YOU. And now, by partnering with our friends at NightQuarter, SEED will bring some of its best artists to the stage as they launch the SEED Volume 5 album.

The launch night happens on Friday 20 May and features electronic producer Keelan Mak, blues looping legend Benny D Williams, country darling Mikayla J and infectious surf-pop outfit Twelve Past Midnight. And this year, SEED Volume 5 can be downloaded for free via Bandcamp – Then every Friday until 24 June other SEED artists will get the chance to strut their stuff at NightQuarter.

Who made it onto the album?


Deep Inside // ANGUS OASTLER. Written by Angus Oastler. Produced by Fletcher Babb. Mixed by Caleb James. Mastered by Brendan Anthony.

Influenced by Rufus Wainwright, Ryan Adams and Justin Townes Earle, Angus Oastler is an alternative folk singer-songwriter based on the Gold Coast. Angus’ love of different genres is conveyed through his use of intriguing textures and grooves. Picking up on grunge music, alternative rock and metal bands, while never quite grasping the whole teen angst thing, it was inevitable that it would be incorporated into his writing and the way he played. With a unique perspective and thought-provoking lyrics, Angus’ songs will bring life to your lungs and a sense of calmness to your mind.

Blue // ATHENA JOY. Written by Hannah Joy, Jacob Smith, Shoota Tanahashi and Tommy Sheehan. Produced and Mixed by Anthony Lycenko

Athena is the Goddess of reason, craft, intelligence, wisdom, strength and war. ATHENA JOY uses this as inspiration for her music in order to create memorable melodies with identifiable, humbling and sometimes quirky lyrics, ultimately communicating a strong alternative pop sound. At 20 years of age this Gold Coast artist writes music from the heart, set out to sonically and lyrically capture the emotions behind it. Often compared to the likes of Florence and The Machine, Lana del Rey and early MS MR, her music has been described as ‘hauntingly beautiful’ by AAA Backstage and already earned her a Queensland Music Award nomination for her second single.

Faded // AUSTEN. Written by AUSTEN (Miranda Ward). Produced by Vespyro (Lachlan Bambach). Mixed by Peet Gardner. Mastered by Ben Feggans

Come with AUSTEN on a trip through cosmic RnB, pop and electronica… Having recently lent her ethereal voice to showcases for BIGSOUND and the Gold Coast Indie Film & TV Network, AUSTEN’s signature sound combines tight electronic production with atmospheric layers and songwriting that soars. With her debut single Faded clocking over 150,000 Spotify plays just weeks after its release, her captivating sound has already graced the Triple J airwaves, garnering attention from Aussie tastemakers Pilerats and being featured at SXSW thanks to Sounds Australia. AUSTEN’s live show is a sultry blend of spacious dance vibes and sophisticated electro-pop, with an infectious live energy that’s sure to fill the dance floor.

Whole Night Long // BENNY D WILLIAMS. Written by Benjamin Daniel Williams. Mixed by Caleb James. Mastered by Brendan Anthony

Widely recognised as one of the most hard-working acts in South East Queensland, Benny D Williams is a born entertainer. Known for his unique “junkyard soul”, beatboxing grooves and looping prowess, Benny weaves a psychedelic tapestry of soul, blues, roots and trip-funk. His performances redefine the modern solo performer – enthralling and captivating the audience as he effortlessly switches between instruments and genres. This is one man… and his sound is infinite.

Bittersweet // JAKE FOX. Written by Jake Fox. Produced by Niall McDicken. Mixed and Mastered by Brendan Anthony

An adventurer, surfer and lover of nature and inspired by the works of Paul Dempsey, Pete Murray and Ben Harper, Jake Fox’s music is a fusion of roots, reggae, jazz and psychedelic rock. In 2015, Jake performed in the Philippines, United Arab Emirates and Northern Europe where he gained international recognition for his original work. Passionate about philanthropy, Jake has played at numerous charity events and donated to groups such as Sea Shepherd, Healing Hooves and Toms, The Surf Rider Foundation and One for One Project.

Anymore // KEELAN MAK. Written and Produced by Keelan McCoy. Engineered by Niall McDicken. Mixed by Caleb James. Mastered by Matthew Gray

There’s a dark and light to Keelan Mak’s music: a push and pull between melancholy and enlightenment. It breaks through into a dark and haunting place, an ethereal dreamscape, where song is melded with consciousness in his fragile form of expression. The smooth velvet of Mak’s voice pushes through his rich production in an inviting manner, as we fall down the rabbit hole and into his imagination.

Fly Away // KIRSTY ABRAHAMS. Written by Kirsty Abrahams. Produced, Engineered, Mixed and Mastered by Jared Adlam.

From a young age, it was clear that Kirsty Abrahams had a passion for performing. For seven years, she learnt ballet, jazz, tap-dance, hip-hop and street-funk dancing at the Hillsong Performing Arts Academy in Sydney. When she moved to the Gold Coast, she picked up a guitar for the first time and soon enough, dancing took a backseat to her passion for spreading joy through music.

Can’t Tame Me // MIKAYLA J. Written by Mikayla Birthisel, Jared Adlam, Caleb James and Brendan Huxley. Produced, Engineered and Mixed by Jared Adlam. Mastered by Paul Blakey

Raised in small regional mining towns across Queensland, Mikayla J was spoon-fed Australian country music from a young age, including music by Troy Cassar-Daley, Kasey Chambers and Lee Kernaghan. Her desire to connect and communicate through honest storytelling has already taken her music to Nashville, The Desert Harmony Festival in the Northern Territory and all the way to Papua New Guinea. Mikayla J has shared stages with a long list of country music royalty including Warren H. Williams, Catherine Britt, Graeme Connors, Melinda Schneider, Adam Harvey and Neill Murray. Most recently Mikayla travelled to Uluru to work alongside the Jimmy Little Foundation and perform and learn from the Mutitjulu community.

Bad Habit // PIRATES OF THE TEMPEST. Written and Co-produced by Gabrielle Lambe. Engineered and Co-produced by Niall McDicken

Drawing inspiration from the likes of Jeff Buckley, Hiatus Kaiyote and Jaala, Pirates of the Tempest is a three-piece band known for rocking out smooth and funky tunes. Dreamy, groovy, jazzy – this band will hypnotise your soul. Originally a solo project, Gabrielle Lambe was soon joined by drummer Sarah Mills and bassist Jedd Wolters to form the formidable trio they are today.

Surfin’ // TWELVE PAST MIDNIGHT. Written by Jordan Pineda, Aidan Salvador, Cayden Scott, Ryan Brook and Alex Cremin. Produced, Engineered and Mixed by Jared Adlam. Mastered by Paul Blakey

Blending blues, rock and reggae, Twelve Past Midnight is the ultimate summer soundtrack, quickly becoming known for standout performances at venues like QPAC, The Arts Centre Gold Coast and NightQuarter. Drawing inspiration from John Mayer, The 1975 and Allen Stone, the Gold Coast based four-piece band are comprised of Queensland Music Award finalist Jordan Pineda (lead vocals), Ryan Brook (lead electric guitar), Alex Cremin (bass guitar) and Aidan Salvador (drums).

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SEED showcases take place at NightQuarter every Friday night from 20 May – 24 June 2016.  Download the album at

Photo: Benny D Williams

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