Sydney-based dream rock band, Crystal Cities, have just released their debut album, Under The Cold Light Of The Moon. The Sydney trio is comprised of Geoff Rana (Vocals & Guitar), Jared King (Bass & Backing Vocals) and Daniel Conte (Drums & Percussion). After releasing their critically acclaimed debut EP, Who’s Gonna Save Us Now in 2017, the band moved from recording in a mate’s garage in Sydney, to recording their debut album at the legendary Abbey Road Studios in London. Talk about a glo-up!
“I feel like Crystal Cities has found its home with this body of work. I can’t wait to complete the journey by finally having the songs out in the world and having people engage with them” – Geoff Rana (Vocals & Guitar)
Under The Cold Light Of The Moon was mixed by world-renowned engineer Paul Lani, who has mixed tracks for the likes of David Bowie, Prince and Megadeath. His expertise has woven together a rich tapestry of distorted guitars and lush textural strings into a strong debut album release.
We asked Jared King of Crystal Cities to compile a list of his top 5 up and coming artists in Sydney for Speaker TV. Seeing as Crystal Cities should also be included on this list, he is uniquely qualified to share his favourite Sydney-based artists! Check out his picks in his own words below.
1. Taylor King
First of all I want to just point out that Taylor King and I are not related in any way despite sharing the same last name. in saying that, I’m super stoked to share the same last name as someone so friggen talented. I heard Taylor for the first time at The Vic in Marrikville. He was supporting a band called Draw. I was sessioning on bass duties for them at the time.
I was immediately taken aback by Taylor’s voice. Seriously, this guy can sing, scream, whisper, wail, and everything in between! His musical inspirations sounded like an amalgamation of artists who I greatly admire – Jeff Buckley and Radiohead among them. And just in case I wasn’t sold on his voice and song writing enough, he decided to bust out a Father John Misty cover! I was smitten and all compliments after his performance. It’s not easy to captivate an audience for 40 minutes or so with just your voice and guitar but for Taylor it seemed all too easy. Anyway, check out his new album and particularly the track ‘Good Grief’.
I’m not sure if Slumberhaze are still in existence or not. I think the term might be ‘on hiatus’… But my God, I hope they get things moving again… Here is a band that was really pushing the envelope in terms of mixing genres and still making it accessible and making sense.
‘Cool Don’t Stop’ deserved to be a huge hit single in my opinion. And while it did garner a bit of attention, it was nothing compared to the scale it deserved. That unrelenting, pulsating bass groove! The hook in the chorus while the chords move underneath! Such a well crafted tune (amongst many others) that deserved a whole lot more ears.
Here’s a band people are starting to become aware of. They are the definition of hard work paying off. Big riffs, thoughtfully put together guitar lines, and some catchy as fuck melodies. However, I think their biggest asset is PASSION. It comes out in their music and in their live performances. You can tell these guys live and breathe their music and won’t stop pushing until everyone hears what they have to say. I’m expecting them to go all the way with their next release and be flung onto the world stage. In the meantime check out ‘Subtitles for X,Y,Z’ and ‘Give Me Yours’.
4. Thunder Fox
Thunder Fox could easily have been another generic funk band with music school graduates looking to flex their musical egos and skills on an audience. Thankfully this is NOT the case at all. Yes, these guys can play but it’s their sense of humour and boldness to push the boundaries in terms of song structure, harmony, and texture that really set them apart in my opinion.
The band is REALLY in their element when playing live so I encourage you to go check out a live gig sometime soon! It’s likely to be the sexiest, most stankiest party you’ve been to in your life! Interesting piece of trivia: I filled in on bass duties for Connor while he was away travelling for a month or so. I also graduated music college with guitarist/lead vocalist, Sam.
Catchy hooks, multiple layers of ear-catching sonic textures, and round, woody bass tones – a few of my favourite things about Raindrop. This is music I put on when I need to give my mind a relaxing warm bath in shimmering synths and washy soundscapes. Perfect post-gig or lazy Sunday afternoon listening. A complimentary spliff is recommended for achieving best results.
Listen to Crystal Cities’ debut album, Under The Cold Light Of The Moon here.
Catch the Crystal Cities at a live gig here.