With a new year of music already well under way, we’re looking down the barrel of an exciting 12 months of international and Australian releases, that much is obvious.
While 2016 introduced us to some of our now-favourite artists who really took off in their own way, we also twigged to some bands and solo musos who were generating heat that can only get hotter throughout 2017.
Dynamic vocalist Baker was seen on stages right around the country through 2016, performing her own solo material, as well as dropping in on shows with Briggs and Trials as A.B. Original came to fruition.
You might know Caiti from her work with Darwin future-soul duo Sietta, but 2016 was about the formation of her solo catalogue, which we got a taste of on recent single, “Heavy On My Heart”.
Dumb Punts really came out of nowhere last year and took the garage rock scene by the reins along with emerging bands including the likes of Skegss and Verge Collection. As a trio, they’ve really kicked it up another gear and have been fashioning for themselves a strong and dynamic live show that only indicates some huge things are on the near horizon for 2017.
The term ‘slacker’ is thrown around a lot when it comes to these bands but you take look closer at what they’re doing and you’ll come to realise that their approach is anything but.
HIDEOUS SUN DEMON
We’ve seen WA’s Hideous Sun Demon, much like Dumb Punts above, really strike out on their own through 2016. Well received performances at BIGSOUND and during Perth’s WAMfest put the four-piece further on to the radar of many around the country.
One of Pilerats’ latest signings, Hideous Sun Demon have lit a fire under the asses of a few who might’ve been wondering what the West Coast was cooking up, new music-wise – we can’t wait to see where they go now they’re well and truly on the board.
The singer songwriter hailing from Forster, NSW has truly impressed over the last 6-8 months. Since joining the I OH YOU fold and releasing her Highway Songs No. 2 EP, Jack River has been ticking all the right boxes.
She deftly moves between indie-rock and folk-pop, introducing beautiful psych elements in beneath flawlessly, while vocally, Jack River is a charmer. Currently Sydney-based, the multi-instrumentalist also known as Holly Rankin has a bright year ahead as shows continue to come together, as well as that juicy debut album material.
The new Melbourne hip hop collective have been enveloping some great R&B and jazz vibes into the mix and off the back of BIGSOUND appearances and various shows in their hometown and interstate recently, we can see why they’ve become a name that has been bandied about quite a lot throughout the second half of 2016.
The grooves are entrancing, the vocals hypnotic (Allysha Joy is one to watch all on her own) and we’re not even touching on the production quality of their music yet. A definite must listen and must see, should you have the opportunity to do so.
We were first introduced to Indigenous rockers Lonely Boys when we were up in Darwin last year for NT Song of the Year. From the remote community of Ngukurr in Arnhem Land (we’re talking roughly 700km outside of Darwin), the band has developed a fiery brand of guitar-inspired rock music that is catchy as hell to listen to.
Expanding on their influences in the studio though last year as they work to complete their debut studio album, Lonely Boys have benefited from writing sessions with Nicky Bomba and Bustamento, not to mention the sheer amount of festivals and shows throughout Arnhemland.
Occupying space brilliantly on their 2016 EP release Growing Pains, Adelaide hardcore band Sleep Talk have been making moves subtly but no less effectively through 2016. They pay homage to the bands who made the genre beloved through the 2000s in particular, while displaying a fresh and exciting approach that stands out as their own.
There’s something particularly cathartic when it comes to seeing these kinds of bands live too – it doesn’t matter whether you’re 18 or 28, if you’ve ever had moments of feeling alone or like nobody understands, the welcoming environment bands like Sleep Talk provide is always going to be there for you to vent, relate and find relief.
Cover photo credit: Jett Baker