Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Brisbane. Now. #20 - 16

Hey! You know what's awesome? Brisbane, Australia. That's what's awesome. You know what's coming out of Brisbane? Incredible music. That's what's coming out of Brisbane. 

Since we haven't busted out a sweet countdown in some time, Matt thought he'd take a mental break from freezing cold Canberra and head up to the sunshine state to take a look at twenty acts that are making music so good that it's hard to disagree with the notion that Brisbane is now Australia's go to city for amazing new music. So... let's get to it!

#20. Michelle Xen
Experimental Electro Queen...

Accompanied by live band, The Neon Wild, Michelle Xen is doing all the right things to bring the art back into performing artist. She's got the voice, she produces the intriguing beats and she definitely has the looks. While she's certainly beautiful, I mean that Xen has rocked several impressive fashion looks so far, with the former Edge of Colour-er demonstrating a flair for creating a performance almost as awesome visually as it is musically. Her 2012 Synathesiac EP housed electro pop gems like 'L.O.V.E' and 'Cleopatra' that put her more in line with Roisin Murphy and Little Boots than say Lady Gaga. A little bit dark and a whole lot of sexy... Michelle Xen makes pop music for grown ups. New single 'Lose My Cool' is the best thing she's released yet and a 2013 'must-listen.' 

Head on over to Michelle Xen's bandcamp page for free downloads of 'Lose My Cool' and the Synathesiac EP. You can also see her live at Alhambra this Friday night in Brisbane's Fortitude Valley!   

#19. Pigeon
Music You Will Want To Dance To...

So you're a Daft Punk fan? Then you probably saw this epic medley making its way around the internets the last couple of weeks paying tribute to the electronic masters. It was by this Brisbane band called Pigeon and racked up 100 000 hits in a week, exposing the five piece to a huge number of new fans. Hopefully you were one of them and you need to make sure you move onto their original tracks like 'Encounters' and 'Oh Hebe.' These are two singalong, jump up and down, borderline anthemic electronic pop tracks you'll want to hear on the radio just as much as the next time you're at some sort of dance club with the drinks and the loud music and all those other fun things that make you go to a 'dance club.' I've a sneaky suspicion these lads are going to grow into something incredibly special over the next couple of years. You might as well jump on board now. 

Get a free download of Pigeon's Daft Punk medley and a bunch of their sweet remixes over on Soundcloud.

#18. The John Steel Singers
Hip and/or Happening...

You'd think The John Steel Singers had all but disappeared following the release of 2010's Tangalooma. That album contained the boppy and infectious 'Overpass,' a track probably two years ahead of this hipster revolution that's completely taking over. It looks like big things will be coming their way in 2013, with the former triple J Unearthed winners getting ready to release a new album and they've also been announced as performers at this year's Bigsound Live (think SXSW; featuring a mix of incredible established and emerging acts). The John Steel Singers deliver one of the best live shows you can see today, so when you see they're going to be playing somewhere near you, make it a priority to get to the gig and thank me later. 

The John Steel Singers play Bigsound Live in September, but for more live show and album details you should keep an eye on their Facebook page!  

#17. The Phoncurves
Indie-Pop Perfection...

If you love Aussie singer-songwriter heavyweight like Sally Seltmann and Holly Throsby (with their powers combined and alongside Sarah Blasko, Seeker Lover Keeper) you're going to find a lot to love about Abbie Roberts and Naomi Burrell aka The Phoncurves. They cover all your pop needs; a track like 'Do Do Do' is sugary sweet with a vintage flavour, while on 'Feet Made of Lead' heartache has never sounded as good. Roberts and Burrell's voices in tandem literally make for the best all-lady combo since the previously mentioned Seeker Lover Keeper. Their 2012 self-titled EP found its way into my hand through Jo earlier in the year and its found a special place in my car collection. Only the good ones end up in the car. 'Little Bit By Little Bit' is my personal favourite... I'll have to add it to the Top 25. 

 Why not get yourself a free Phoncurves track from their bandcamp page. 'Walkin' is waiting for you right now. Oh, while you're there, just do yourself a favour and buy The Phoncurves EP. 

#16. Jeremy Neale
Spy Rock Champion...

Jeremy Neale is all kinds of ridiculous, but it's the right kind of ridiculous. If he's to be believed, Neale has been in the Himalayas training hard to become the new champion of spy rock and he jumps shark tanks on his motorbike or something. He brings an almost distracting amount of fun to proceedings that you can't help but laugh along with, but he's also an incredibly talented music maker. I really should throw his acts Tiger Beams, Teen Sensations and Velociraptor in alongside him because he's pretty much got these all going at the same time, right? He's been called a songwriting machine and you can see why; Neale's endlessly churning out one fantastic old time surf rock anthem after another. Over the past year we've been treated to solo tracks 'Darlin', 'A Love Affair To Keep You There' and current single 'In Stranger Times.' Not only is the latter one of the best tracks of the year, it's got one of the best videos of the year. And it introduced us to Go Violets. That last one earns Jeremy a ton of points. 

Brisbane peeps can see Jeremy Neale at The Tivoli on June 28, with shows in Melbourne, Sydney, (r)Adelaide and Fremantle to follow in July. You can get those tour details when you pick up 'In Stranger Times' on bandcamp!  

The Brisbane music good times continue rolling on Thursday night with part 2 of the countdown! 

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