Bench Press meet The Teskey Brothers at the top of the community radio charts
Community radio shows a huge amount of support for Australian music, with almost 40% of music played coming from local artists. Taste-making presenters excel at giving airtime to an incredible spread of what Aussie artists have to offer. The Amrap Metro and Amrap Regional Charts provide insight into what’s getting airplay and attention on community radio each week. Here’s the lowdown on some tunes charting this week.
Ella Haber – #4 Amrap Regional
Ella Haber shines on her debut single ‘Old Friends’, a sophisticated and passionate slice of soul that is as unpredictable as it is cohesive. The young multi-instrumentalist out of Sydney showcases her vocal finesse on this one, effortlessly sliding between an assortment of tempos, keys and textures. A smooth, jazzy composition backs Haber’s liquid gold lyricism, showing an apparent curiosity for linguistics. That transforms the arrangement into a gorgeous experiment surrounding the meaning we attach to language and sound. This is only the first taste of her forthcoming CLAY EP and community radio is already digging her creativity with stations like Sydney’s FBi Radio and Triple R in Melbourne bumping her tunes.
Totally Unicorn – #4 Amrap Metro
We’d say Totally Unicorn are spreading their wings and flying in a fresh direction but apparently unicorns don’t have wings. Instead, let’s just say the Wollongong rockers seem to be finding maturation as a band, ready to start a new phase – musically speaking, at least. ‘I’ll Be Fine Now’ sees the four piece delve into some heady, honest lyrics delivered with fervour from frontman Drew. Led by crunchy guitar riffs and a menacing build, the track roars with palpable sadness, rage and eventual relief like a heated therapy session. If the single is anything to go by, Totally Unicorn is turning a corner without losing any of the energy and unpredictability they’re known for. Radio Adelaide in SA, 2XX FM in Canberra and Hobart’s Edge Radio are currently giving ‘I’ll Be Fine Now’ a lot of love.
Jen Mize and Mark Sholtez – #8 Amrap Regional
Jen Mize and Mark Sholtez take a fresh look at the music of past great cowboy crooners of on their collaborative album, Twilight On The Trail, with renditions of classics from the likes of Roy Rogers, Gene Autry and Dale Evens. The talented pair out of Brisbane slow things right down with ‘Home On The Range’, reflecting the space and existential isolation associated with the landscapes described in the lyrics. Mize and Sholtez harmonise in an almost barbershop quartet style manner as the track opens with a crackling fire and chirping crickets – it’s sleepy and nostalgic, charming and somehow personal all at the same time. Radio MAMA in the Mid-West region of WA, The Barossa Valley’s own BBB FM in SA and Melbourne’s PBS are already on the trail to where the wild buffalo roam.
Bench Press – #1 Amrap Metro (pictured above)
Bench Press is making waves once again with their latest unrelenting, loud and sometimes distressing brand of post punk. The Melbourne based quartet have dropped ‘Respite’ ahead of the release of their sophomore record due sometime later in the year. The track is a stripped back, no-frills banger that moves feet and pumps fists echoing the wiry minimalism of early Talking Heads and Devo while beefing up the crunch. Heavy, raw and addictive, ‘Respite’ offers nothing of the sort but promises to shake both heads and minds at the same time. Brisbane’s 4ZZZ, Sydney’s FBi Radio and 3Way FM in Warrnambool, Victoria are already bobbing along to ‘Respite’.
Kirsty Lee Akers – #7 Amrap Regional
Kirsty Lee Akers follows up her huge 2018 with ‘Skeletons’ – the latest single from her celebrated fifth studio album, Under My Skin. Punchy and brimming with attitude, the track has all the makings of a country-rock classic with a contemporary lens. It’s a moody, foot stomping vibe sprinkled with the right amount of banjo and stadium thump. Akers emphasises the relevancy of the ‘glass house’ metaphor in the digital age, pointing out the hypocrisy of online condemnation when any squeaky clean individual can have their closet skeletons revealed to the world. 5GTR FM in SA, Sydney’s 2RRR and Plenty Valley FM Melbourne are all rocking along with ‘Skeletons’.
See the full Amrap Charts at www.airit.org.au