ALTA - Reasons

“Inclusivity. Community. Authenticity. If you were to deduce ALTA’s ethos down to a three-word mission statement this would be it. The Melbourne duo of Hannah Lesser and Julius Dowson work tirelessly on making intricate dance music with a simple goal: to move you. And not just in a physical sense. While they’re more than capable of filling dance floors across the country, the pair are looking for a more visceral response.

Reasons, their long-awaited debut LP, more than lives up to that lofty goal. Following 2016’s Mess EP and a string of singles - including 2018’s double act ‘Figured Out’ and ‘Now You Want Me’ - the album is the product of many long nights making music together in a back room at their Brunswick home. The pair spent 10 months - from January 2018 to November 2018 - crafting the record, using tape delay effects and a literal room full of synths. Reasons was later mixed by Seekae’s George Nicholas in Sydney and mastered by Grammy-winning engineer Chris Gehringer at Sterling Sound (Rihanna, Janelle Monae, Chvrches).

While inspired by Melbourne’s supportive and diverse music community, ALTA wanted Reasons to reflect the insular way in which they’ve written music from the outset. There were no writing sessions in LA, or guest features on the record. Just two artists driven by a passion to put their art out as authentically as possible into the world.”

Expected release date: November 22nd, 2019

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Fergus James - All Of The Colours

“With 10 million streams across just three singles, Fergus James - the young man from Armidale in country New South Wales - represents a refreshing reminder to seize the moment, but always with one foot in reality. And so, on his debut EP All Of The Colours, Fergus James journeys the listener through the opportunities - high and low - that have permeated his life thus far. 

 

The EP explores clear thematic and sonic threads for James, those of the change and growth that have weaved into his life, in particular over the past two and a half years. “Each track showcases a unique insight into my ever-changing world and approach to music, an overview of all the colours that make me who I am,” explains James. Across five solid tracks, the young artist has enlisted the experience of some of the biggest names Australian music production. Pip Norman, Joel Quartermain, Xavier Dunn, Oscar Dawson and Dustin Tebutt (to name a few) have all lent their excellence to Fergus James’ rising star. 

 

With a humble heart of gold, talent and wisdom beyond his young years and unwavering enthusiasm and determination, Fergus James has delivered an outstanding debut in All Of The Colours.

Expected release date: November 1st, 2019

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Brightness - Brightness

"‘Brightness’ is the self-titled sophomore LP from Sydney artist Alex Knight, recorded in upstate New York with producer Sam Griffin Owens (Cass McCombs, Chris Cohen, Sam Evian),

Regarding the recording process, Knight affirms “the location and pairing (with Owens) couldn’t have been more fitting”. The location was specifically, ‘Spillway Sound’, a freshly opened studio nestled in the Catskills, a spread of nature known to stir wonder in those who’ve beheld it, from the addled attendees of Woodstock Festival, to 19th century transcendentalist, Ralph Waldo Emerson.   

Having already shared singles ‘Dallas’ and ‘Year Of The Goat’, the ‘Brightness’ LP marks the first glimpse of Knight’s follow up on 2017’s ‘Teething’ (a work which Pitchfork described as a “dry, beautiful debut”). If his first two singles are any indication, we can expect a sophomore record of deeper contour, contrast and confidence."           

Expected release date: October 25th, 2019

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N.Y.C.K. - Wild Streak

“Wild Streak is the powerfully breathtaking debut album from Melbourne duo N.Y.C.K. A project by Australian duo Dominique Garrard and Nicholas Acquroff, N.Y.C.K. tell stories about the human form. About our proclivity as people to be vicious and beautiful, kind and cold, chaotic and orderly - all at the same time. 

Like opening a diary, title track ‘Wild Streak’ is the kind of raw portrayal that a writer wouldn’t want anyone to read. It's lashed with hedonism and regret, stuck on the desolate lows and ecstatic highs that are so close together in the bad times. ‘Wild Streak’ was closely followed by ‘LXE’, the second single for N.Y.C.K. since the release of their stunning debut EP Alive (2017) which featured fan favourites ‘Speak My Mind’, ‘Decision’ and ‘This Might Be My Year’.

Expected release date: October 18th, 2019

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DZ Deathrays – Positive Rising: Part 1

"After a four-year gap between releases, DZ Deathrays imposing third album — 2018’s Bloody Lovely — saw the Brisbane duo of Shane Parsons and Simon Ridley’s shredding rock maelstrom reach audiences they’d only ever dreamed of. It lead to critical acclaim, a Top 4 ARIA Chart debut, huge tours, headlining festival slots, and playing the biggest venues of their career.

Following Bloody Lovely’s demanding touring schedule — and now with third member Lachlan Ewbank along for the ride full-time — DZ Deathrays found themselves with more song ideas than they’d ever had. The addition of Lachlan as a full-time member of the band meant a new set of ears to bounce ideas off, and a new set of riffs to dig into.

So doing things the way they had before, well… that wasn’t big enough. Not challenging enough. Not out of their comfort zone enough. So they did what every band worth their salt and wanting to change things up does: go record the first half of a double-album opus in LA with Miro Mackie (St. Vincent, Cold War Kids, Hatchie, WAAX).

Positive Rising Pt 1 bucks and heaves with disparate, heady atmospheres and avalanching instrumentation that pushes the DZ Deathrays into corners they’ve never visited. What’s on offer is a DZ Deathrays that swings quickly from leaner and meaner, to blown-out and expansive — and sometimes downright weirder —  while still packing enough punches to be destined to soundtrack flying bodies in mosh pits the world over."        

Expected release date: August 30th, 2019

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City Calm Down - Television

City Calm Down – one of Australia’s most exciting bands – will release their much-anticipated third album Television on Friday 23 August. Faster, simpler, tougher: this is City Calm Down like you’ve never heard them before. 

Television is a spectacular record: short, sharp and focused. Recorded with producer Burke Reid (Courtney Barnett, DZ Deathrays, Julia Jacklin) at The Grove Studios in NSW, it sees Jack Bourke (vocals), Sam Mullaly (keys), Jeremy Sonnenberg (bass) and Lee Armstrong (drums) chase something new, without hesitation or second thoughts.

City Calm Down stripped back their sound and focused their message: wake up, the world’s happening to you. Sonically, Television is a direct hit to the body, packed with both punk energy and City Calm Down’s trademark emotional intensity. It’s also the band’s finest work yet. Television is the follow-up to 2018’s Echoes In Blue and 2015 debut In A Restless House.

With over 12 million streams so far, City Calm Down’s accomplished songwriting and exhilarating live shows have earned them praise from fans in Australian and across the globe. Airplay on triple j, RTR, 4ZZZ + more plus UK’s Radio 1 and BBC 6; international press coverage from outlets including NME, Rolling Stone, The 405, Stereogum, Consequence Of Sound, Indie Shuffle, Clash, The Independent + more. CCD have performed multiple sold-out headline tours and at festivals including Splendour In The Grass, Laneway, The Great Escape, Gold Sounds, Falls, Sugar Mountain, Beyond The Valley, Yours & Owls + more.

Expected release date: August 23rd, 2019

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Seeker Lover Keeper - Wild Seeds

Wild Seeds is the second full-length album from Seeker Lover Keeper - beloved Australian indie folk supergroup comprising of Sarah Blasko, Sally Seltmann and Holly Throsby. A collection of 12 songs, it is the long awaited follow-up to their 2011 self-titled debut.

Thematically the songs sit together effortlessly, reflecting a shared outlook and lived experience: the nostalgia of youth, the gravity of growing up, the endurance of friendship, and the ever-evolving process of self-realisation. These are both personal narratives and universal stories. There are yearnings for connection and celebrations of solitude; a vivid sense of past and present.

The title track ‘Wild Seeds’ seemed to capture the essence of it all – a woman, once wild, reflecting on her former tumults with a sense of grace and solace. It seemed a fitting title for such an assured record, an album that emboldens Seeker Lover Keeper’s sound with lucidity and strength.

Expected release date: August 9th, 2019

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