Victorian band Telescopes have released a stunning new single “Grow Lonely,” lifted from their brand new release 001 EP.

This song’s a bit of a slow burner but it really grew on me. It’s got a great ‘90s grunge influence but its vocals are more haunting than most of the acts that decade produced. It builds to a killer crescendo, so make sure you stick with it.

Not one to sit still for long, Telescopes are already in the studio working on a follow-up to 001 EP. It’s due out later this year.

Brisbane-bred and soon to be Sydney-based rock act Interim have put it all out there with their new EP Metanarratives. It’s a bold collection of five songs which the band call “narratives about narratives.” As someone who really responds to lyrics, I appreciate that they’re a band telling stories.

The press release calls Interim a “hard-out rock quintet” but that doesn’t quite convey the whole essence of this band. Honestly, the five tracks we’re treated to probably still only skim the surface, but it’s an amazing start.

The opening track “Jack” grabs you from the first notes. It feels like it could score a modern Western film. There’s a lovely grittiness to it while still being accessible.

I love the simple combination of vocals and sparse acoustic guitar opening the follow-up track, “She’s the Devil.” It feels like you might hear it around a campfire or something in the Wild West until the electric guitars break in and roughen it up. As the intensity lifts it becomes something so much more epic than it began.

“Play Your Game” feels like a throwback to classic rock acts like Led Zep and Deep Purple in the best possible way. It’s all power and passion and sheer grunt.

After such a ball-tearing number it was a relief to slow things down with the bluesy, sensual “For Your Love.” This song is the one which really shows that Interim are much more than just a “hard-out rock” act.

“Way Down” is a big song to end on, but it’s not my favourite. It seemed a little screechy, without the restraint I saw in some of their other big numbers. Sometimes less really is more. It’s epic, but don’t quite pack the emotional punch that I think it should. I can’t fault the band’s ambition though. Sometimes you’ve got to take risks, and they’re not always going to pay off. In the case of Metanarratives, mostly they do.

Metanarratives will be released via MGM Distribution on Friday June 12.

Image via Collision Course

The bright lights of New York City are in stark contrast with the streets of the Southern Highlands, but it’s where locally-born songstress Penelope Austin has found her “spiritual home.” She’s been in the United States for nearly a decade learning her craft and rubbing shoulders with big name artists like the Rolling Stones. And now she’s almost ready to unleash her debut album.

The latest single “Trigger” definitely has my attention. It’s got some polish from famed UK mix engineer Cenzo Townshend (Florence & The Machine, Florence & The Machine), but he’s been careful not to smooth out Penelope’s edges. There’s real heart and desperation in this dark electro-pop song. The clip showcasing New York City looks brilliant, even though it was reportedly shot on a shoestring.

Let’s wait and see whether Penelope Austin becomes our next big breakout star.

We All Want To is one of those bands that nearly passed me by. I remember being directed to the Soundcloud of the single “Road to Ruin” a few months ago and being a bit nonplussed. It wasn’t a bad track, but it didn’t inspire me enough to earn a review. However, now that I can hear the track amongst the others on We All Want To’s album The Haze, I’ve changed my tune.

From the opening track, “Eileen Afternoon” I knew I’d judged We All Want To too quickly. I has such great spirit, like a cross between The Whitlams and REM. It put a smile on my face, and by the time “Road to Ruin” rolled around a couple of songs later I could hear it with new ears. Sure, it’s not going to change the world but it’s damn good fun. Not that We All Want To are all about having a good time. “Remove the Arrow” is so touching. Tracks like this give The Haze the light and shade it needs. I also loved “Like Buildings Collapse,” with its dramatic crashing drums and soaring trumpets.

There’s a great energy about We All Want To. Reality TV judges would say the vocals are pitchy, and the fuzzy guitars aren’t going to be to everyone’s taste, but the songs are catchy as hell. They’ve got more hooks than my dad’s tackle box. I even kind of like their imperfections.

The Haze is light and summery, with fuzzy chords and easy harmonies. It’s a lovely antidote to the autumn chills we’re having, and when warmer weather rolls around it’ll make the perfect barbeque soundtrack.

We All Want To kick off their album tour tonight, so if you’re in Melbourne get your skates on! Here are all the dates.

29 May 2015 – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne
30 May 2015 – The Metro, Adelaide
5 June 2015 – Heritage Hotel, Bulli
6 June 2015 – The Phoenix, Canberra
7 June 2015 – The Vanguard, Sydney
13 June 2015 – Woolly Mammoth, Brisbane
14 June 2015 – Bison Bar, Nambour
19 June 2015 – The Spotted Cow, Toowoomba

Jack Carty and Jordan Millar enjoyed playing shows together in March so much that they’re set to do it all again with an acoustic tour this August.

Jack should be in fine form because he’s currently touring his latest album Esk across the United Kingdom and Europe. Meanwhile, Jordan will be taking a break from recording his next album for this tour. After time spent in the studio, he’s probably itching to get back out on stage!

If you’re on the fence about the shows, take a look at this video capturing one of their performances together in March. Do you really want to miss two singer-songwriters of this calibre playing together? I think not!

It’s also worth pre-ordering your tickets, as every one bought on presale comes with an 11-track digital live album Jack Carty & Jordan Millar – Live @ The Front Gallery. Tickets are available from Jack Carty’s website.

1 August 2015 – The Ellington Jazz Club, Perth
6 August 2015 – The Commons, Newcastle
7 August 2015 – The Street Theatre, Canberra
8 August 2015 – Venue 505, Sydney
14 August 2015 – The Milk Factory, Brisbane
15 August 2015 – Rous Mill Hall, Rous Mill
20 August 2015 – Grace Emily Hotel, Adelaide
21 August 2015 – Grace Darling Hotel, Melbourne
22 August 2015 – The Grand Poobah, Hobart

I’ve had one of those weeks. You know the ones, when there’s too much to do, not enough time to do it in, and far too many interruptions. But thankfully it’s Friday, there’s a weekend just around the corner and I have awesome tracks like Sydney duo Lime Cordiale’s new single “Feel Alright” to listen to.

“Feel Alright” has got such an easy groove and those horns are killer. If you’re digging it too, you can catch Lime Cordiale promoting the tour with an all ages show at Sydney’s Metro Lair on July 11 and an over 18s gig at Melbourne’s Shebeen on July 16. They’ve earned rave reviews for shows here and abroad, including gigs with The Griswolds, Ball Park Music, and sold out American dates with The Delta Riggs, so they’re sure to be in fine form.

Image used with permission from Rare Finds

Hockey Dad are putting a smile on my face with their fun single “Can’t Have Them.” It’s a great feel-good jangly number with a surf rock influence that has me craving warmer weather.

Hockey Dad have been honing their craft as the support act of DZ Deathrays recently, so they’re sure to be in fine form when they tour “Can’t Have Them” along the East Coast next month.

4 June 2015 – Shebeen, Melbourne
5 June 2015 – Shebeen, Melbourne (SOLD OUT)
6 June 2015 – Brighton Up, Sydney (SOLD OUT)
7 June 2015 – Brighton Up, Sydney
12 June 2015 – Elsewhere, Gold Coast
13 June 2015 – Trainspotters, Brisbane
14 June 2015 – Rad, Wollongong (SOLD OUT)
20 June 2015 – Rad, Wollongong (3pm SHOW – SOLD OUT)
20 June 2015 – Rad, Wollongong (SOLD OUT)

Image used with permission from Habit Music Company

I’m sitting here bleary eyed and bursting with pride following this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. I’m an unashamed Eurovision tragic, and I’ve been up at 4:55 am three times this week (just enough time to grab a piece of paper to take notes to remember who to vote for and a Coke to wake up). This was the big one though, Guy Sebastian’s appearance, the first time Australia has competed and voted in the competition’s 60 year history.

Other singers got pitchy as the nerves caught up with them, but not Guy. A consumate professional, he truly did Australia proud with “Tonight Again,” a song that had me grooving around the loungeroom. But of course, a great song and performance is no guarantee of Eurovision success. There was a part of me before the event that worried that there might be some backlash from people who thought Guy and Australia had no place in Europe’s contest. I feared we might end up getting no points at all. Instead we got 196, including two douze points (that’s the maximum of 12 for those playing at home). Thanks Sweden and Austria! That put us in fifth place, behind the winner Sweden, Russia, Italy, and Belgium.

Fifth is more than credible in a field of 27, especially considering some of my favourites Lithuania and Cyprus were number 18 and 22 respectively. It’s not enough to see us back next year, but more than enough for us to hold our heads high. Personally I’ve had so much fun voting and even getting up early for it. It was amazing to feel part of a contest that’s been one of my year’s highlights for more than two decades.

Thank you Austria for including us in the celebrations. And thank you Guy for doing this country proud.

There’s something so appealing about straight up rock and roll. And that’s what Melbourne band Society of Beggars give us with their debut single “Hyena.”

There aren’t any bells or whistles here. It’s rough around the edges, and it looks like the clip was probably made on a shoestring. But there’s real heart here. And I love the huskiness of the lead singer’s voice. It doesn’t have the spit and polish of big label releases, but it’s also got a bit more soul than many of them do.

What do you think of “Hyena”?

It’s been an awfully long time since I pined over a guy. I celebrated my ninth wedding anniversary last week, which makes me feel very old. It’s funny though, even though it’s been a long time since I hurt like that I was taken back to my early twenties and all of the tears I cried then with Little Sleeper’s angsty debut “Middle of the Night.”

I will warn you that this Gold Coast songstress is fond of a four-letter word, so this isn’t the track to play in a conservative office environment. But if you are in the comfort of your own home or you have headphones, let this one and all its pain wash over you. “Middle of the Night” is one of those songs that just begs to be felt. Even if you’re not in Little Sleeper’s situation, I’ll bet that you’ll be as moved as I am by this one.