The Best Of #DebbieUnearthsSeptember (Part 2)
As I was saying, September was an odd month. The original Shapes flavours returned after a disastrous relaunch, we all cringed as AusPol attacked everything that’s good in the world (music, art, culture, love etc.) and of course Triple J Unearthed was flooded with the brightest emerging talent Australia has to offer. I jumped at the chance to highlight a new independent act every day for a month, and documented it all through #DebbieUnearthsSeptember. It was a simple task: find a new song on Triple J Unearthed every day of September, review it, share it, and revel in the sheer underrated beauty of local music. In part one of this series I celebrated songs about heartache, faith, and rabbit-infested islands, and everything in-between. Now here’s a second recap of what unfolded this past month…
My boyfriend wants to talk. My boyfriend talks too much.
Janet Planet. Sugar Bones. Reggie Goodchild. Clarence McGuffie. Who are these people? Where did they come from? And how do I inject their sharp, straight-talking tune directly into my veins? The Brisbane electro-pop-disco fusion that is Confidence Man appeared virtually out of nowhere and caused widespread panic when suddenly no one could stop their bodies from uncontrollably grooving to this ridiculously funky song. What an absolute nightmare, how dare the people of Australia dance until they can’t stand any longer, and how dare Confidence Man spring this upon us with no warning? What would Mike Baird think? There’s so many fabulously kitschy things to love about this song, one of these being the sassy girl vs. pathetic boyfriend dichotomy. She complains about things he does; he thinks she likes these things. Basically, if you don’t have a smile on your face by the end of this song, then you need to seriously think about your life choices.
Our love is what you want to be, there’s hope as long as you believe. Climb up, the branch is breaking free. Reach forward, holla out to me.
Australia is newly saturated with dreamy electro-pop artists who all sound quite beautiful but also very similar. It takes a lot to stand out amongst the wave of floaty rise-and-fall pop songs but this is where LANKS excels. The Melbourne-based singer/multi-instrumentalist breaks any stereotypical mould with his unique brand of soulful goodness that continues to bloom release after release. Holla is a luscious soundscape, anchored with warm synths and a quick, scatting beat that underpins each chorus. Every single note seems supremely considered, and LANKS’ vocals are as flawless as ever. Rather than playing it safe, this is an artist who constantly explores textural atmospheres and challenges his own sound to come up with something I can only describe as both striking and heartfelt. Holla features on LANKS’ EP Viet Rose, set to be released this week, and I can hardly contain my excitement.
Do you feel this pain? Am I not the only one? Should I feel ashamed?
Let’s just start off by saying Newcastle is the unofficial punk capital of Australia and I am no longer surprised when I hear a killer heavy band and discover their origins are here. Face it, the city breeds some of the most cathartic, passionate bands in the country and it’s impossible to deny the strong sense of community surrounding it all. If you’re a fan of driving rhythms and undeniable energy, then Introvert is should be right up your alley. Everything is Different Now shreds as one of the band’s best tracks to date. It’s three and a half minutes of aggressive heartache channelled into a smart, relatable, completely addictive punk song. Introvert have also just been announced as support for Birds of Tokyo's national tour this November/December, so that's pretty cool too!
This is nothing like we said, but it is what it is.
Occasionally I’ll stumble across an artist whose raw vocals are utterly breathtaking. The ability to stop someone in their tracks through sheer talent, without any overbearing bells and whistles, is so powerful and this is something Eilish Gilligan does effortlessly. Here is an unconventional ballad: emotive and soaring, yet somewhat theatrical. Her angelic pipes sit nicely over swelling synths and little pops of sharpness give that slight eerie edge. Here is the kind of song you arrogantly think you know where it’s heading, but then it takes a surprising turn and throws everything a little off-kilter. We are not worthy of this kind of organic music that tears apart your soul in a flush of feelings before promptly repairing it with a beautifully delicate melody.
Like what you see? You can keep up with the best of Australian music throughout October with #GeorgieUnearthsOctober by the lovely Georgie Wilkie.
ps. Debbie is not employed or sponsored by Triple J/Unearthed and doesn't necessarily represent their thoughts (although they probably agree all these artists are incredible).