Courtney Barnett

Harley Young & The Haymakers’ New Indie Bop Is The Essence Of Aussie Summer

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It’s the sound of getting sunburnt during a game of backyard cricket, even after you’ve slipped, slopped and slapped. It’s the sound of your dad knocking back a stubby of Tooheys New on the back verandah as the sun goes down at 8pm. It’s the sound of watching seagulls maul each other on the beach as you chuck your leftover fish & chips in their general direction.

Harley Young & The Haymakers’ freshie ‘Barina Jean’ is a breezy indie rock hymn that’s got Aussie summer written all over it, from the endearingly ocker twang of its dual male/female vocal passages to its charmingly mundane music video packed with quintessentially Straya’n visuals.

Bright guitars skip merrily along to a clapping rhythm on the snare in this infectiously sunny bop, as frontman Harley Young’s lyrics drip with locality and romantic nostalgia, referencing everything from TV Hits Magazine to the Bruce Highway.

Produced by John Willsteed (The Go Betweens) and following on from their 2015 album Flinders Parade, the Brisbane sixsome’s musical drought-breaker marks the first cut of their upcoming LP Little Songs For Big People, which is set to be released (on vinyl, no less) this March.

Stay tuned for national tour dates to come, but for now you can pour yourself a chilled glass of January jangle juice courtesy of the delightful ‘Barina Jean’.

Grace Turner – Delivers the gut-punch final blow to 2018 with ‘Easy I Fall’

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With the curtains closing on 2018, and as Australian music fanatics looked to the festival season, I was lost in the horizon of the new year, setting myself up for an earth-shattering blindside that has left me rolling on the ground in a daze. Not to worry though, I have a big smile on my face, as that cheap shot comes in the form of indie-rock-fuzz gem, ‘Easy I Fall’, from Newcastle-based singer-songwriter, Grace Turner.  

Over the last year, Grace has slowly been wowing Australian audiences with her brash, poignant lyrics and slow-burn, driving indie rock. With ‘Easy I Fall’, Turner presents her most fascinating work to date, with the sunset-filled cascade of her songwriting washing over you, listen after listen.  

‘Easy I Fall’ kicks off with the most face-slapping, memorable lyrics of 2018, Grace begins; “If you want to fuck me then just tell me that you love me, don’t know how easy I fall”. The apathetic style of Turner’s vocals, mixed with the raw-emotion of foreboding loss, make for a heartbreaking gut-punch of an introduction. From here, Grace has you clasped by the throat, gulping, as she croons; “There is no room for you, there is no room for two”.

Turner explains “This song is about being tirelessly perused. I used to play it first in my set to shock people into listening to me. I often joke in my live show that it’s about trying to break up with someone but sleeping with them instead. In a deeper sense it’s about power imbalances in relationships, not being listened to and putting someone’s wants and needs above your own.”

‘Easy I Fall’ holds your hand tight and walks with you into the eclipse of 2018, equal parts heart-wrenching and warmly embracing. As the festivals roll in and the feet-stomping dance hits commence, I will quite happily lie back on my couch, with a beer in hand and this beauty on repeat.

Turner has so far supported the likes of Alex the Astronaut, Gabriella Cohen, Jess Locke, Kingswood and Phil Jamieson (Grinspoon) in 2018. Grace and her band head to Festival of the Sun and Mountain Sounds Festival this festival season, with more shows to be announced in 2019.  Stay tuned.

GRACE TURNER 
LIVE DATES

THU 13 DEC | Magic Castle (Headspace Fundraiser) | PORT MACQUARIE
FRI 14 DEC | Festival of the Sun | PORT MACQUARIE
FRI 15 FEB | Mountain Sounds Festival | CENTRAL COAST

DONNARUMMA - WILL KICK YOU IN THE TEETH AND YOU'LL LOVE IT

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As this year rockets towards its inevitable end, with everybody spinning around in a daze & wondering where the heck it escaped to, outstanding new Australian music continues to drop out of the sky and give you a good kick in the ears.

Today I have the pleasure of introducing the teeth-knocking goodness of Adelaide-based quartet Donnarumma & their new brash, frenetic but charming indie rock track, ‘Rollercoaster’.

Rollercoaster’ starts with light, plucky guitars, giving the veneer of being a cruising ballad, before the driving riffs and drums send your eyebrows northward and the track lifts off. Lead singer Louis’ crooning vocals, bouncing in between falsetto and low growls, are the perfect addition to the driving rhythms that power the song with overflowing energy.

When the chorus hits, it feels like the perfect storm as twirling guitar riffs, vibrant drum hits and the repeated phrase “My head is a rollercoaster ride”, form into a beautifully infectious hurricane.

 Louis explains:

 “I based the narrative around the idea of being self-critical, almost like a person arguing with themselves in a mirror”.

And the storm surge doesn’t abate as the final chorus gets faster and faster (and faster again) and the track spins out of control with almighty force. Louis’ yells are of pure want and desperation, bringing the perfect end to a track blazing with pure elation and vibrancy. '

‘Rollercoaster’ proves that Donnarumma have well and truly landed, and just like Big Kev, I’m excited. Now go and get kicked in the ears by ‘Rollercoaster’ at their live shows coming early next year, so you can jump on that rollercoaster as well (apologies, needed to sneak that in somewhere).

 DONNARUMMA 'ROLLERCOASTER' TOUR DATES
FRIDAY 11 JANUARY | Crown & Anchor Hotel | Adelaide, SA
THURSDAY 17 JANUARY | Grace Darling Hotel | Melbourne, VIC
SATURDAY 19 JANUARY | Frankie's Pizza | Sydney, NSW
SUNDAY 20 JANUARY | Hamilton Station | Newcastle, NSW
FRIDAY 22 FEBRUARY | Heya Bar | Brisbane, QLD
SATURDAY 23 FEBRUARY | Miami Shark Bar | Gold Coast, QLD