New Australian Music: Bat Nouveau + Scrabbled + Backyard Soccer + Cool Sounds

I’ve been pretty fucking slack in reading back over my emails the last few weeks, so here’s a round-up of absolutely gobsmacking new albums from ‘Straya’s finest.


Bat Nouveau –Death Mask/Funeral Eyes 7″

The first and foremost thing to be addressed to here is that it is essential for you to check them out. On the Brissy duo’s fucking sick new 7″, they open with something that could’ve come from any good The Cure track. However, “Death Mask” soon explodes into this Killing Joke-meets-Total Control dark enthusiasm, colliding with the ears like a maelstrom of furious guitars. Like recent acts like Eagulls and Gazar Strips, Bat Nouveau have taken what was fucking cool, and dress it up with modern ferocity.


Scrabbled – Welcome to Pig City

You never would’ve guessed it, but a ramshackle lo-fi band called Scrabbled, with an album called ‘Welcome to Pig City’, and an excellent opener called “Brisbane Town”, are indeed from Brisbane. Even if you were thicker than Joe Hockey, their sound, that’s like depression being laid out in the QLD sun for too long, is instantly recognisable as a product of harsh times, an aesthetic which is easily recognisable in any major city that’s been through tough times. Brisbane in particular have amassed a collection of rough-hewn teeth-grinders, like Kitchen’s Floor and Per Purpose, and Scrabbled are the latest to join the top ranks.

Their album, which spans topics from driving across the Australia in a Kia, to living in everyone’s favourite city, is a pleasure to listen to, combining the grainy poetry and country suburbanite attitude of Dick Diver with a gnarled punk spunk. If you can listen to “Jeebus Cried” and not hear the sound of something that the Violent Femmes would commit satanic sacrifice to remake, then you’re deaf.

Backyard Soccer – Everyone Gets to See You But Me

Like Elvis Depressedly turned somehow lo-fi-ier, Backyard Soccer sound like they’re made out of more tape hiss than actual band. That’s a good thing by the way. It makes it sound like they’re performing through a portal from the 50’s, with the songs coming through like they’re being played through a gramaphone. However, they’ve implemented a solid moper attitude that you can find in bands like Mope City, Kitchen’s Floor and Unity Floors. This kind of scrapings off the floor gives tracks like “Everyone Gets to See You But Me” an instant like-ability, especially if you’re the kind of person that spends a lot of their time beside those floor scrapings.


Cool Sounds – Melbourne Fashion

A fucking delight out of Melbourne is Cool Sounds. Not to be too obvious, but they stick by their name, with their new cassette ‘Melbourne Fashion’ producing sounds that some would describe as ‘cool’. The sounds are aquatic, submerged in a tank of suspension in which the lack of a job and being unhappy are way too prevalent. Songs like “Safe Flight”, “Noise Complaints” and “666” are awesome because they’re pure pop written by a lovesick guy out of Melbourne. The jangle hits perfection multiple times, and the vocals are as mopey as Eeyore without anti-depressants. With the the overlaying guitars, melting sax and softly addictive tones, Cool Sounds make a recipe for something that could be the perfect replacement for The Cure as go-to bummer songs.

Cool Sounds support The Ocean Party in Sydney next Friday, the 22nd of August, as part of those awesome parties that Circle Jerk put on for us spoiled Sydney kids. S’all goin’ owf  at the Corner Store at the Imperial Hotel in Erskineville.


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