After a long sabbatical, I thought it’d wander onto Triple J’s Unearthed and see if there was any action by way of new decent bands. Bands fly under the radar all the time and the grapevine rarely gets pruned enough to sort the diamonds from the mud. Once I’d entered I then did what most reasonable West Aussies do – I went straight to the ‘Charts’ page and scrolled down the long list of Eastern Seaboarders until I spotted an act with Perth or WA as their location.
Now I must confess: I don’t usually pay much credence to this contraption. It’s not quite sound business acumen to add clout to a free download chart in a day and age when ‘freeness’ of art is almost considered a rule, let alone an expectation by much of the millennial population. Nevertheless, I had a look at the download rate for the current top performing song, “Lions tigers & Bears” by Canberra act, Basslines and Beartraps. These guys had clocked up just over 2,000 downloads and 18,000 plays. Not a bad effort when you look at the overall state of the Australian Recording Industry.
Just the other week new teenage sensation Billie Eilish amassed a mere 15,000 sales of her debut album in Australia and the local industry hailed the result as a triumph. It just goes to show to sorry state of affairs we’re in where the most talked about pop star on the planet right now, who’s been lauded as God’s gift to music by much of the music and lay press alike, manages to sell a mere $300,000 worth of albums (gross) in nation of 25 million.
Anyway! I’m getting off track here but the point had to be made that even in the day and age of streaming and general tight-cuntery, 2000 downloads is pretty impressive. But don’t think I listened to them. No way. I ain’t listening to a band called Basslines and Beartraps. Instead, I clocked at Number 7 a Perth band called Sunday Sundown with a track called Blue. I went straight to the play button and then proceeded to investigate the band’s non-existent online presence.
Sure enough, It did what it said on the tin: feel-good, chilled-back glorious indie rock n roll. You can hear the Ocean Alley, Sticky Fingers, DMA’s and Chilli Peppers influences very clearly, but the execution has a surety and a sensitivity to the one-percenters that make a great, original tune. The song starts out chilled and then gradually builds up like a broad winter swell on crisp, clear Friday morning. The best bit’s the outro (or ‘coda’ to the musically literate) – it’s comes on like a Kiedis/Frusciante LA nightcrawler assault as the sun comes up and you’re left wondering what the hell just happened. It’s evocative of ‘Under The Bridge’ if you stretch your imagination.
Woah – there you go! Who’d have thought you could still find decent new acts on Unearthed – the Napster of the underground? Keen to hear the EP these lad’s are working on. Book some gigs at the Indie Bar now boys.