esc – ‘Courtesy’
esc’s track ‘Courtesy’ might initially seem like your classic indie synth pop track, but halfway through something quite odd happens and we find ourselves adrift in space, having been transported by some particularly psychedelic guitar work. Between its monotone vocals and icy electro synths, ‘Courtesy’ seems to have somehow found a way to make a track that is danceable, spacey, and deeply alienating at the same time.
Lazertits – ‘Lil Sister’
Lazertits’ ‘Lil Sister’ comes across as an impassioned riposte to someone who’s opinion wasn’t asked for but was given anyway. Its garage punk vibes definitely lean towards the gleeful sloppiness of the so-called ‘dolewave’ aesthetic but with a feminist spin that seems to find a freedom from pre-defined gender roles in garage punk.
Robert Muinos – ‘As If That’s Real’
Robert Muinos’ ‘As If That’s Real’ feels like the sort of slow-burning daydream that occurs while staring out the window on a grey and rainy day. Muinos starts the song off in a state of apathy and ends it in one of resignation and despair – it’s certainly not an easy listen. The singer/songwriter’s delicate yet emotive voice finds a perfect foil in his guitar work which builds to a crescendo of dissonant noise towards the song’s unexpectedly harrowing ending.
The Barr Brothers’ – ‘Queens Of The Breakers’
The Barr Brothers’ ‘Queens Of The Breakers’ is the kind of rootsy Americana/indie rock blend that makes for great placement on playlists for imaginary road trips. The track’s steady groove manages to suggest that feeling of long, straight roads with a combination of drums, acoustic and bass guitars. You can almost hear wide open spaces within the lazy electric guitar solos. ‘Queen Of The Breakers’ is the title track from their new album, out October 13.
Spinifex Gum – ‘Locked Up feat. Briggs’
‘Locked Up’ is an indictment of the treatment of Indigenous Australians in our criminal justice system. The track comes from the artist Spinifex Gum, a new project featuring members of The Cat Empire. The real star of the song, though, is Briggs with his show-stealing rap that details the inability of the prison system to do anything more than ‘make them better criminals’. The powerful video has Briggs rapping his verses from within prison walls as he makes his passion clear.
Ariela Jacobs – ‘Dare You To Run’
‘Dare You To Run’ is a delicate, emotive single from Melbourne-based songwriter Ariela Jacobs. Her voice soars over a gently repeating piano figure before building to higher emotional peaks in the song’s coda. It’s the sort of song that can leave you feeling emotions you didn’t even realise you had yet.
The Peeks – ‘Super Nintendo’
Never has the offer of a Super Nintendo sesh sounded as adorably romantic as it does in The Peeks’ new song, named after said console. The song harks back to the safe imaginary world of a 90s childhood, where death only meant a temporary setback that sent you back to the last save point. The Melbourne-based Peeks conjure up this twee world with their indie-folk guitar picking and lush harmonising.
Inertia – ‘Blue’
Inertia’s ‘Blue’ is almost too chill (if that’s possible). Between its slouchy tempo, a healthy amount of reverb and delay and some seriously bleary vocals, it conjures up nothing less than the feeling of your body being slowly absorbed into the air, particle-by-particle. This Newcastle newcomer shows a lot of promise with his blend of indie songwriting and electronic production work.
Flu – ‘Anti Hero’
Flu’s ‘Anti Hero’ is an ominous crawl of a track. Over a simple drum break, Flu fires out the sort of syllables that will send chills up and down your spine. Aptly for the song’s title, the track samples one of Daniel Day Lewis‘ ruthless speeches from ‘There Will Be Blood’.