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Surprising New Music To Listen For In 2016

WWKD OCTOBER 2013

It’s January, and already there’ve been some incredible albums that have dropped (looking at you, RUFUS). But let’s be real, there’s a long year ahead, and so you’re probably wondering what surprises wait in store for you, music lovers! There are some seriously anticipated records coming soon, so I’ve together a list of some potentially ground-breaking ones, plus a few I personally can’t wait for, in chronological order. You’re welcome!

 

St. Lucia (South Africa) – Matter (January 29)

Been waiting for an album where you can indulge in your guilty pleasure for pop hooks and excellent dance beats? I have already had a listen to this one and can tell you that you’re in for an absolute treat from this South African muso. Spotify that ASAP.

 

Kanye West (US) – Swish (February 11)

Whether you love or hate his attitude, Kanye is influential. And this album could conquer or divide.

 

Jack Garratt (UK) – Phase (February 19)

Garratt has already released some very polished singles from the forthcoming album, and I LOVE what I hear so far. They’re catchy, modern and a mix of R’n’B, pop and electronic that you can’t put your finger on.

 

DMA’s (AUS) – Hills End (February 26)

This band will always have a special place in my heart, because they’re Newtowners through and through (pretty much where I have spent most of my time since I moved to Sydney). Their debut is long overdue and I bet they’ve spent that time making it a good’un.

 

Matt Corby (AUS) – Telluric (March 11)

There are some stunning songs waiting for us on this new album with Corby really challenging his sound in the first two singles he’s released. One thing’s for sure though, the result will no doubt be beautiful.

 

Flume (AUS) – Skin (TBA)

This is probably the album I’m personally anticipating most. After his self-titled debut pretty much influenced a whole generation of electronic artists in Australia, let’s just say there are very high expectations for his second. I’m not sure how he’s going to beat his first effort, but his first singles (like the most recent ‘Never Be Like You’ have built the anticipation even more – they explore his sound…but to me don’t seem to lead anywhere, so am waiting for the signature Flume drops in his new tracks.

 

Meg Mac (AUS) – Unknown (TBA)

She’s got big vocals and tells great stories with her work – I haven’t heard such raw soul vocals in so long so she will surely make waves with her debut album!

 

Big Scary (AUS) – Unknown (TBA)

One of the saddest music moments from 2015 was the end of #1 Dads! Tom Iansek left to focus on Big Scary which I guess means that they’ve got some awesome stuff planned for us in 2016 – awesome!

 

NGAIIRE (AUS) – ‘Diggin’ (TBA)

She’s collabed with some cool people – but 2016 could be the year that Ngaiire really makes it on her own, because she’s got an incredible voice! She’s got a new single set to be released super soon, so keep your ear to the ground.

 

James Blake (UK) – Radio Silence (TBA)

It’s been been less than three years since we were graced with James Blake’s new music, but it feels like a LOT longer. He’s confirmed collabs with Kanye West and Justin Vernon (Bon Iver) so it could well be a goodie.

 

Radiohead (UK) – Unknown Title (TBA – probably around June/July)

Rumour has it that Radiohead could be dropping their new album this year, and if so… YAY.

 

One more artist that I can’t wait to hear more from is Gordi, who won the Josh Pyke Partnership last year and has since signed two global booking deals. Nothing confirmed on if she will release new music this year or next, but I will be listening!

 

By Erin Rooney

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Artists We Love: Meg Mac

Meg Mac Music

We hear a lot of big voices in pop music bathed in auto-tune, and a lot of catchy melodies, but it’s much more rarely that a vocalist comes out with something truly special to offer from their raw sound. Meg Mac does just that, boasting big, bluesy vocals, writing some iconic originals and making covers completely her own.

Her song “Roll Up Your Sleeves” has earned the most love so far with a #24 spot in the triple j’s Hottest 100 this year and we can see why: it really shows off the range of her voice and is passionate – a great car sing-a-long tune!

 

But as much as I love her original music, it’s the way she covers music that really impresses me. It makes you see the song from a new angle, and she’s got the voice to make anything her own. Take “Grandma’s Hands” for instance, a Bill Withers original about his grandma, written after she passed away. Meg Mac maintains the meaning of the song yet renews the whole rhythmic feel and adds a suspenseful build:

 

My other favourite is her take on “Bridges” by Broods, which she performs with her sister and band – again, she makes the song her own and it’s got a great groove to it, working on a build and using harmonies to add depth.

 

Meg Mac’s got such a great voice, and it’s instantly likeable, so I imagine she can only move onto bigger and better things from here!

 

By Erin Rooney