Every week we collect a new batch of songs for your listening pleasure – plus a classic that you should definitely know and love. Here’s this week’s Blerg Bangers:
Shrapnel – ‘Another Year’
Despite expanding his bedroom project into a fully formed unit, Sam Wilkinson (Day Ravies, Mope City, Beef Jerk) has found real success in this first big single from his Sydney band Shrapnel by simply wringing the neck of his guitar with the most basic of chords. The driving, chiming strums act as a metronome for splashy drums to wash over and a plodding bass to carry the melody of multiple stereo panned voices – but it’s all held together by that ring, ring, ring, ring – in an almost hypnotic holding pattern. In fact the rhythm of it is so alluring, it’s practically impossible to listen to it just once – while repeat listens only reveal the song’s subtle intricacies and delicately intimate lyrics. Sticking to the basics never sounded so beautiful.
The Nation Blue – ‘Erectile Dysfunction’
My ears are still ringing from the last time I saw The Nation Blue around this time a year ago. That may read as ridiculous hyperbole, but for those of us that have held on in awe through the avalanche that is the legendary Melbourne three-piece’s live show, you know exactly what I’m talking about. It’s totally heartening to see that despite spinning other multiple musical plates that are just as awe-inspiring (Harmony, High Tension), time has been spared to breath life back into one of Australian music’s truly intimidating beasts. The jarring opening notes blare like an air-raid siren, announcing their impending return like a squadron of B52 bombers about to deliver a payload from the skies. And then boom, boom, boom – the bombs detonate one by one, as Tom Lyngcoln’s lungs burst and fire the words out like pistons driving a V8, seemingly energised by his return to his roots as he screams, “wrong with you, is wrong with me!” There’s plenty wrong with me, but it feels like there’s a little less listening to this.
Clowns – ‘Destroy The Evidence’
As the punk rock resurgence continues to grow and grow in Australia, Clowns – easily the best showmen of this new generation of short, fast and loud musicians – have criminally been marginalised from wider exposure due to the fact that they rock a lot harder, louder and faster than some of their more pop driven contemporaries (this is throwing no shade at anyone), and therefore are much more intimidating. That being said, this has to be one of their most accessible songs ever released – it’s punchy, it’s catchy, it’s grimey but also sleek – it’s pure. It’s also already made some in roads with major radio, and fingers crossed it continues to push Clowns in front of the larger audiences they deserve. And as an added note, this has to be one of the best band goes on tour, films it, turns it into a video clips I’ve ever seen. Kudos to cinematographer and editor Aidan McDonald and his additional camera operators David Mckinnar, Red Stevenson, Laura Scheirich – knocked it out of the park dudes.
Moreton – ‘The Water’
It’s aptly titled ‘The Water’ because you feel like you’re swimming through melancholy and gloom in this dark new track from Brisbane three-piece Moreton. There’s a mystic aura to this song that lures you closer and closer to the edge and threatens to suck you down into its depths, almost convincing you that it really would “feel good to drown.” But just like similar contemporary artists Chelsea Wolfe or Savages, it’s the beauty of frontwoman Georgia Potter’s graceful vocals that stops you from spiralling to the murky bottom – instead coaxing you to the surface to make sure you hear everything she has to tell you. It’s their first release – can’t wait to dive in and hear more of what’s on offer.
Falling Joys – ‘Lock It’ [Classic Track]
There is a massive wealth of great indie rock bands in this country that have seemingly been lost to the ether of time. And yet when I hear a band like Falling Joys like I did for the first time just a month or so ago, I already feel a deep connection to their music like I’ve spent a lifetime with it. This is majestically cinematic dream pop that should be championed now more than ever – especially when you consider just how hard the local music scene is being dominated by incredible frontwomen, armed to the teeth with brilliant songs. I’ll put them up on the pedestal alongside The Stems, The Humming Birds and (for a little bot later reference) Modern Giant as bands you need to invest more of your life into, and give yourself a history lesson on how we’ve arrived to where we have in contemporary Australian music.