School Damage is one of the latest additions to the Chapter Music roster, and the label always has their finger on the pulse in Meblbourne’s thriving scene. Bits of keyboard give the song a feeling of “wobbly” pop, but it’s the frantic pace of the percussion that provides an energetic push. You can hear faint little guitar notes too, jittering behind the front of the mix; it’s just weird enough to keep you inthe cool, but pop enough to make you come back for more. Look for the band’s self-titled LP to hit on June 2nd.
In case you hadn’t heard, The Stevens have a brand new album coming out this July. Why is that important? Well, if it picks up where they left off with their last album, then the band’s sure to be a household name by the end of the year. On this first single, the band are offering up a traditional guitar pop sound, though with a definite Oceanic bend; I also like that the length on this number is almost twice as long as anything on History of Hygiene. That length allows for more to sink your teeth into, be it the chugging ring of guitars are the gradual cool of the melody. Look for Good to hit in stores on July 14th via the esteemed Chapter Music.
I’m always going to post new tunes if they come out via Chapter Music, as that’s one of the first labels I fell in love with over in Australia. Today, the label is bringing you School Damage, a slightly odd-ball pop outfit that features members of Chook Race and Ausmuteants. They begin this tune with a deep tone before guitars ringing in patiently in the background, paced by a bobbling bit of synth. Vocals dance on top, calmly flowing from Carolyn Hawkins; the song discusses the concept of death, with tall poppies growing atop our narrator…I love how she elongates the lines “bury me”. You can grab the band’s self-titled debut in June.
Everyone that adores indiepop, or Aussie tunes, should now stand up and clap for Chapter Music. The Australian label are reissuing A Love Affair with Nature from the Cannanes; they aren’t settling there, as the new reissue is a picture disc, new liner notes, and a collection of bonus tracks from the early singles. Listening now, you’ll probably realize that the band’s mark is omni-present in much of the indiepop of today, which just goes to show how timeless the songs from that album truly are. Probably your first chance to get your hands on the LP version since the 90s, unless you’re getting luck with Discogs or Ebay, so grab your copy on September 16th.
Not sure this one has completely broken the shores of the US yet, but Sydney’s Holy Balm definitely have a dance floor house hit on their hands. I love how the vocals seem really disinterested in their own delivery; it’s an intoxicating approach that almost seems like some club singer from the 80s got thrown into the mix. Of course, that’s not the case, as you can tell that the construction of the track is far to clever, and careful; dig the sax sample grooving in around the 4 minute mark. Their newest album is titled Activity, and it’s being released in August via Chapter Music (continuously impressing us with their good tastes).
Pikelet is a project that has put a stamp on Melbourne’s music scene, and it’s important to note that its very existence provides a look into the scene, demonstrating that it’s more than just a home for incredible guitar pop. Evelyn Morris and her group return with Tronc, an eight song piece that promises the weirder side of pop. While musically you can see the affiliation to acts such as The Blow, that really just revolves around Morris’ voice. The construction seems to be a hodgepodge of understated beats and electronic tinkering, creating more of an artful approach to the genre. Look for this song and seven others when it’s released by Chapter Music on May 6th.
The sad truth of my life is that sometimes I take everything to seriously. And I mean everything. I forget to give in to emotion and silliness and let go…and then I hear something like Gregor. Oddly, I hear hints of Orange Juice, but mostly I just hear a pop musician willing to forgo modern cliches in order to make music that’s as weird as it is infectious. It’s just a reminder to let go and enjoy what’s coming through the speakers, and I definitely am digging the deep tones of Gregor’s voice. This track will appear on Thoughts and Faults, a collection of home recordings he’s releasing via Chapter Music on April 8th.
After the exceptional “Boyfriend” single, my expectations for the Goon Sax debut album were riding super high. Their new single takes on a slightly different stroke, but it’s keeping it’s lofty aim. There’s a slower pace hanging out in this song, similar to other Australian artists who’ve been unfairly titled dole-wave. What’s most astonishing is how polished and perfect these tracks are, and the band themselves aren’t even in their twenties. This IS the next great Australian band, I promise you that. Look for Up to Anything on March 11th via the ever-reliable Chapter Music.
I’m really excited by No Zu. In a world where people often get thrown into genres or defined by their past efforts, this group of Australians remain undefined. Think of yourself combining elements of funk, jazz, punk and other dance (hall) elements, combining them all to form an entirely new sound that you’re not likely to hear anywhere else. Seems like the gradual progression of where Chk Chk Chk and LCD Soundsystem crashed into the sound the Clash left behind at the end of their career. It’s rad, and this track will be featured on their new album, Afterlife, which is released by Chapter Music on February 5th.
You shouldn’t be surprised that Australia’s the Goon Sax are making waves, seeing as sites all over are clamoring for the next great thing to come out of the country. Luckily, this young group has the leadership of Chapter Music to guide them in the right direction, though this song might show that they don’t need too much. It’s the sort of casual pop that’s been popping up here and there on the Interwebs, always with positive commentary. Really, when there’s good songwriting, you can’t help but to listen…pretty sure this song qualifies. That’s my advice to the world: write simple, good pop songs. This gem will appear on the band’s forthcoming Up to Anything record, which is being released by Chapter in April of next year.