Friday, September 30, 2016

Osaka Punch || Death Monster Super Squad

These Brisbane superheroes have a new EP out and are all set to blow up the eastern coast of Australia with their current tour dates. Osaka Punch's Death Monster Super Squad is ready to save the world, one prog-track at a time. Everyone's heard of Marvel and you're all familiar with DC, but now there's a new home of the hero and it's a seven track EP.

With new characters appearing frequently on the group's Facebook page, the songs are fast paced, spy-robbing-a-bank-scene, and are completely stuck in my head. With heavy drums, guitar riffs and vocals to pull anyone's attention, this is an EP worthy of its superhero roots.

If you're into high octane, prog-superhero rock vibes, buy Death Monster Super Squad here.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

DOT || The Preatures || Carla Wehbe

Dot - Weekend (Stohou Remix)

Brisbane-based songstress Dot has teamed up with London artist Stohou to release this remix of her single Weekend. With the original track receiving global airplay, this new release is only a further reason to pay attention to Queensland's latest pop darling.

With EDM making a whole lot of noise at the moment - think Closer by The Chainsmokers or the latest Calvin Harris smash This Is What You Came For - the time for a remix of an already seriously catchy song is rife. And Dot is set to lap it all up, Weekend is the break from life everyone needs right now.

The Preatures - I Know A Girl

This is a true girl-power anthem for a new generation. The Preatures have offered up their latest track I Know A Girl giftwrapped and ready for a generation of gals who aren't content with the plain and simple. This is a track for the girls, girls with 5000 Facebook friends or the ones who have a best friend who knows everything, and everyone else in between. This is a track that is about self-love a whole lot more than relationships.

The 80s pop nostalgia coupled with soaring vocals and indie/rock influences creates a cocktail that absolutely everyone (18+ of course) should have a taste of. This is a masterpiece quietly slipped out to the universe. You'd be kidding yourself if you thought giving this one a miss was a good idea.

Carla Wehbe - Electric Field

One of the best parts of being the author of this site is the music that gets added to my playlist. Carla Wehbe is a new addition, but has already been well played, well listened and well shared. With a voice fair more mature than her years, and the musicality to back it up, Wehbe's debut offering Electric Field, pulled from the EP of the same name, is an undeniably strong starting point.

Another newcomer to share in the EDM vibes currently playing out in the music world, Wehbe has carefully constructed a world that is both familiar and yet entirely unique. No mean feat for a debut artist. This is a girl who's landed on scene fully formed and ready to cement herself a spot at the top of everyone else's playlists too.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Welcome to the Quick n the Dead

"I feel like we have something to offer. I’m really proud of this album and hopefully people will dig these new tunes."

Hailing from the small Victorian town of Glenrowan, the Quick n the Dead are a trio of rockers with a self-titled album that I just can't stop listening to. The band, two brothers and their long-time friend, who perform "southern-rock" are proof of the value in independent music. This stuff is gold.

The EP, which was released early September this year, is a fourteen song tale straight from the band's heart. And, luckily for them, it succeeds in their goal: these are melodies I can't get out of my head.

I always like to start off with the name, so where did the Quick & the Dead get its name from?
The boring version is that it was just the name left on the list after we crossed all the others off haha. The inspiration for it was a hybrid of Western films and old English language. Quick used to mean alive years ago, in old bibles there’s verses about God coming back for the quick (living) and the dead.

This is your second album release, how are you feeling now compared to prior to your debut?
I think we’re more confident. Maybe. Our first release we didn’t really have any idea what we were doing or if anyone would buy it.  Now I feel like we have something to offer. I’m really proud of this album and hopefully people will dig these new tunes.

How do you think your sound’s changed between the last release and this?
For our first album we recorded all the instruments live in a room together over 2 days then all the vocals over another 2 days. We took some more time with this one, putting a little more focus on the creative process not just capturing the energy of a live rock band. I think it’s got more depth musically and lyrically and that it’ll take a few listen’s for people to appreciate all the aspects of the songs.

Where did the inspiration come from for this album?
That’s a very broad question, each song has its own unique story. Lyrically it’s my questions/ideas of how belief and the pursuit of truth interact with our everyday lives. Musically it draws from Jack white, Tom Petty, Cry of love, Josh Garrels, Robert Cray band, Aaron Gillespie, U2, Zeppelin, Maylene & the sons of disaster, Foo Fighters etc.

How long has this self-titled album been in the works for? How has it changed since the music was initially written?
The first song we wrote for this album was The Blacksmith and it was written the week after we finished recording our first album, that’s around 2 ½ years ago. I think really there’s just been minor changes as we’ve played these songs live and realised what works and what doesn’t. Little things like using an acoustic not a piano, going double time in this section, slight change of melodies etc. The major themes/ideas have stayed constant.

I’ve always wondered what makes a band decide to release a self-titled album, was there a reason you’ve chosen to with this album?
Yeah. Scattered through the album there are 4 songs’ (chapter I, II, III, IV) that tell a western story that expands on the ideas behind our name. So the title covers those themes plus we wrote, recorded and produced it by ourselves so we feel that this album really defines who we are and the music we create. So hopefully the ‘self-titled’ helps keep the concept simple and lets the music speak for itself.

What do you hope people take from the music you guys put out?
Question’s that keep them thinking and a melody they can’t get out of their head.

And for anyone new, why should we give this album a listen?
If you’ve read all the way to the end of this interview you really owe it to yourself to listen to at least one song! If nothing else just to see if you wasted the last 5 minutes of your life.

Thanks for stopping by Love ‘Em!
Anytime, thanks for the chat.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Hot Spoke || Katie Buxton || Wren

Hot Spoke - Outlines

The alt-rock/indie vibes and old school nostalgia are perfectly combined to create Hot Spokes' lead single Outlines. This is a feel good track. You know the sort. As soon as it's playing there's nothing to do but enjoy the music. The very best of sorts.

Originally a Triple J Unearthed standout, Outlines has since gotten airtime on Triple J across Australia. And it's completely obvious why. Ness Muir's vocals are to die for and the guitar equally as divine. This is one I've already had on repeat and, slightly unfortunately, I can't keep it all to myself.

Katie Buxton - You Flew

Ah, Katie Buxton. She's the girl with a voice so silky it's hard to believe there's no autotune in sight. This is raw talent at its best; and any longtime of the sight will know how much I love nabbing budding stars to share. This Nashville-based songstress' latest single You Flew is a heartfelt ode to unrequited love and those too afraid to open their hearts.

Everything about this song is so peaceful, that it's almost surprising at just how powerful the lyrical arrangement for this song is. A songwriting major at Belmont University, it's not as surprising that this powerhouse of a ballad has been created by Buxton. She might just be the best thing you hadn't even heard of.

Wren - Here

Entrancing is really the only word that comes to mind whenever I hear Wren's violin based single Here. The vocals I could talk about all day, but that violin..well, that's something to really gush over. And it's only made more spectacular in the accompanying film clip.

There's just something so special about an artist that can do it all. Wren is the one-man-band to end all else; she has the spunk and drive of more than just one, albeit incredibly talented, lady and she's just getting better. Wren's music is the glitter dust of something magical.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

The Winter Gypsy || Page I

Potentially because I have quite a unique one myself, but I get very excited about names. I know you aren't meant to judge a book by its cover, but I'm 100% guilty of judging by a name. So when I saw a band called The Winter Gypsy appear in my inbox, I was intrigued. And thankfully not disappointed.

I could go on for ages about this band, their energetic, easy grooving beats and those vocals.. But they can do themselves a lot more justice than I can. So sit back and take it all in, this is a train I'd be willing to travel for days.

So to start, where did the band The Winter Gypsy come from, how did you become the group we know today?
We all kind of knew each other through various mutual friends. I started The Winter Gypsy with Max. It was a project that I had been wanting to start for the past couple of years, but never really found anyone I wanted to venture into it with until I met Max. I had been jamming with Dave and Isaac since 2012. Max knew Jonny through music school and we all met Sean through Dave, and he kind of joined our band when we went on a road trip to play in Canberra. He filled in for Jonny who was unable to make the trip.

Now we are a family.

What about the name; is there a story behind it or did you just like the sound?
I came up with the name. I usually played backyard shows with Dave (pianist) when we both started to collaborate. Friends used to call us gypsies because of our style and the way we would just set up anywhere, shoeless, and play a set filled with random sounds involving, guitar, piano, melodica and xylophone, topped off with some vocal harmonies. Winter happens to be my favourite season of the year. during Winter, 2014, I had come up with the name, and it stuck with me.

You’re about to start a string of tour dates, how’s the preparations going?
It's going well. Max and I planned it all ourselves, so we're stoked with it. We planned our tour in the span of three weekends. We're kind of treating our first east coast tour as a holiday more than anything! [NB: Tour is underway.]

The latest track has a really special story behind it, can you share that with us?
Back in 2008, Tush's mum was diagnosed with breast cancer, and she continued to battle this until 2011 when she finally overcame it. Following this Tush moved schools and really started to focus more on music.
The single Took Me By relates to the thoughts that were going through his head during this time in his life - "...Paradise we live in is coming to an end". However the song itself is also about the uncertainty and fragility of situations that are out of your control. Despite the minimal lyrics, the message resonates through the song. It was written in 2012, and had previously been recorded three times, but due  to the personal nature of the song Tush wasn't willing to release it until he was content with the sound; a feat that has now been accomplished

You’ve had so much praise from the media already, did that make you guys more or less nervous for the EP?
It definitely didn't make us nervous. If anything, we were excited for people to hear the rest of our songs.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Montaigne || Glorious Heights

The thing about Montaigne is the only person she really can top is herself.

The newly 21-yer-old, with a brand spanking new album that made its debut at #4 on the ARIA charts, rarely has trouble with doing just that. She's the girl that just keeps getting better and everyone is falling in love with Montaigne. Jessica Cerro, better known by her stage name, is the pocket rocket oozing confidence as she makes her firm impression on the music industry. Although her debut album, the appropriately titled Glorious Heights, is for many a first glimpse at this talented songstress, she has the poise and confidence that lets everyone know that she's in the game til the end. 

First off, happy belated 21st birthday! Did you have a weekend off to celebrate?
Yeah I did! It was very nice, there was a surprise party and vegan fairy bread and everything.

I can’t say I was surprised when your debut album, Glorious Heights, debuted so high on the ARIA charts. How did you react to scoring the #4 spot?
There was a severe under-reaction. I don’t have a good gauge on what should in fact be exciting when it comes to that stuff, but my team all told me that it was an impressive feat and a big deal, so what I lacked in excitement I made up for in gladness.

Glorious Heights has received some glowing reviews, it you had to give the album a review what would you have said?
I don’t think I have the necessary perspective to give it a review haha, the songs are all deeply intertwined with my life and my feelings and so they always resonate with me (except for Consolation Prize, for some weird reason). A lot of the context in which those songs take place are in the past, but I guess the core sentiments are still pretty relevant to me devoid of personal details.

How did you feel releasing a full length album? Did it feel different then what you’ve done previously?
Yes, because there was a lot more emailing that had to be done, haha. It felt like a big deal so I put a lot of thought and effort in to make sure that it was the closest to exactly how I wanted it to be. Regarding the recording and writing of the songs - the only difference I’d say was that we had much more time to write. With the EP, I went in with four penultimately formed songs and that we just pre-produced and then recorded and mixed and mastered over about 5 weeks. We got to write for about that time, with a bit of pre-prod here and there, and then the usual few days restriction on recording (because of expense).

You’ve already established yourself as a girl with a serious voice in live gigs, how was it to capture your spark in a studio session?
I find it much harder. There’s more of a vibe in a room full of people hanging on your every word and note. It takes a bit of acting to record in a session, and I feel that I still have a bit of work to do to get really good at it.

And now that you’re almost ready to step back out on the road, how do you go about turning these tracks back into a live show?
We actually have our first rehearsal for this tour from 9-12am tonight! (I’m going to die, I’m usually asleep by 10:30pm.) We start playing with what we have, which is keyboard & synths, bass, drums, SPD-SX, my voice, and track, and then see how much on the track we can make live with just the four of us. The set list I initially write up tends to get changed,  but it’s good to have a starting point anyway. I’m not precious about sticking to my own guns.

Is there a track that you’re particularly excited to share to an audience?
I think Glorious Heights is very fun, I played that one at Splendour [in the Grass].

And just because I know you’re a huge Harry Potter fan, have you managed to read ‘The Cursed Child’ as yet?
I have. Terrible as a realistic representation of Rowling’s wizarding world, enjoyable as fanfiction written by a 15 year old.

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Monday, September 5, 2016

Sorrel Nation || Kids On The Run EP

It wasn't all that long ago that Sorrel Nation called England home. But this bright, young muso packed up her bags and moved to Australia. Her latest EP Kids On The Run has been helped along by acclaimed British producer Ian Barter (who's worked with the likes of Guy Sebastian and Amy Whitehouse, but no big deal or anything..), together creating what they've described as the best work of Sorrel's career to date. The lead single from the EP, Watch Me As I Go, is the powerful story of leaving behind loved ones and it's the song that always makes Sorrel's mum cry (and honestly, probably yours too).

Sorrel is a powerful songstress, but no amount of vocal ability can truly compete with the emotion she pours into her art. The songs aren't forced, they flow easily and can be listened to in the same way. And while it may have taken Sorrel a while to decide on her preferred genre, now that she's found it you can be assure that the music that follows is nothing but spine tingling.

Welcome to the site; it's a pleasure to have you stop by! What've you been up to this week?
This week has been so exciting in the lead up to my EP release, I havn't been able to sit still - writing songs, planning outfits for my gigs, rehearsing for my release show on the 27th. There is just so much happening right now and I couldn't be happier.

So I've got to start by saying that your voice is crazy. How long have you been singing and working on your voice?
Thank you so much! I've always loved singing, since I can remember I've always wanted to be on a stage, singing my heart out. I was about 10 years old the first time I got up and sung Norwegian Wood with a Beatles tribute band.. haha!.. and I've never looked back. I'd take any opportunity when I was younger - talent shows, classical/opera singing lessons, reciting the entirety of Disney sound tracks with my best friend. Singing is and will always be one of my most cherished memories.

Is singing something that you always knew you wanted or did you have to fall in love with it?
I always knew I wanted to be a singer, I was just never sure what kind.. I was happy to do anything.. Musical, Opera, Folk, Singer/Songwriter... It wasnt until I was about 13 or 14 when I picked up a guitar and maybe a year after that that I started writing songs that I knew I wanted to be a songwriter as well. I love singing with bands, but getting up on stage, just me, my guitar and the songs i've written, makes me so happy and proud.

Your latest, Watch Me As I Go, is such an emotive tune. Can you share the story behind it with us?
Watch Me As I Go is a song that always makes my family tear up. I feel so bad!! haha! It is a heartbreaking bitter sweet song though. I fell in love with a gorgeous Aussie man and decided to pack my bags and move to Australia at the age of 19. My family are always so supportive of everything I do, but they were so sad to see me go - it was heartbreaking for me too after having lived at home my whole life with my incredible family. I wrote this song two weeks before I was due to leave, and performed it for the first time at my farewell gig in my hometown of Tunbridge Wells - safe to say there wasn't a dry eye in the room, myself included. I now have an incredible life in Aus, and a song I'm so proud of. I just wish my family were here to celebrate with me!

How long did it take for this one to become fully formed as we hear it today? Was it a long process?
It was a fairly short process to start with, it all happened so quickly... I wrote the song and was about to leave for Aus, but managed to squeeze in a recording session with British producer Ian Barter (Amy Winehouse, Paloma Faith). He absolutely loved my demo, so in one day we recorded the song and shot part of the music video. I played the guitar parts down on all the tracks, and then he worked his magic. It wasn't until the following year when I returned home that we recorded the rest of the EP and finished the music video... so in that respect, it has been as long time coming and it surreal that its now being released!!

Your EP release is fast approaching, how are you feeling knowing everyone will be sharing in your music so soon?
I've loved these tracks for so long, my family and friends have heard them, but its exciting and nerve racking knowing that the rest of the world (hopefully) will now hear them! I love singing, I love writing and performing, and I love my EP so i just hope everyone else does too.

Is it scary to share something that you've worked on in private for what I can only assume has been a fairly long and intense time?
It is a little scary! I've never been one to get nervous before a show, or worry about my music... but this is such a big moment in my career, and all the songs are very personal, which is what I believe makes them so special, but yeah, I'm a bizarre mix of nervous and excited right now!

Is there anything else you'd like to say before everyone gets to have a listen to the EP?
I'd just like to say a big thank you to everyone who I know has already bought the EP, and everyone who has been there throughout my singing career so far... I've had some wonderful family, friends, producers, managers etc... who has done nothing but believe in me and put in a lot of hard work to help me achieve my dreams!!

Thanks for stopping by Love 'Em!
Thanks so much Love 'Em! Enjoy the EP!!

Friday, September 2, 2016

MAYA || Sinners

Their aren't too many people who are prepared to bring soulful pop to the Aussie music scene, but thankfully MAYA has well and truly landed with her debut single Sinners. The mature vocals and string heavy music are welcome additions to today's often heavily produced Top 40 pop. Having grown up singing blues alongside her father, MAYA is an artist who truly embodies music as a lifestyle. And it shows.

Hey, I’m…MAYA.

My music is…Soulful Jazzy vocal stacks on electro hip hop inspired beats.

I began writing music…When I was 6 years old. Improvising blues with my dad.

When I’m not working, you’ll find me…Riding my bike, listening to music and dancing my stresses away.

People say I’m…Insane.

I’d describe myself as…Unique.

The quality I most admire about other people is…When they give you their undivided attention.

My greatest achievement so far is…Saving $30,000 in a year, working three terrible hospitality jobs when I was 20. Just so I could travel the world and experience other cultures.

Something you wouldn’t guess about me is…I have a African/Native American father, Hungarian mother and natural red hair…

The new track is…Sinners.

Take a listen because…It's a fresh sound!

One last note…Come to my single launch at the Evelyn Hotel on the 2nd of September and thanks for reading!

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