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May 30, 2024

Adelaide’s best new music

We've rounded up Adelaide's best new music for May, including aleksiah, Electric Fields, Sofia Menguita, Sturt Avenue and more.

  • Words: Claudia Dichiera, Isabella Kelly and Charlie Gilchrist
  • Graphic: Mikaela Balacco

Aaron Thomas — ‘Walk on Water’

The perfect opening to his brand-new album Human Patterns, CityMag just adores Aaron’s new song ‘Walk on Water’.

As bright guitar strums ease you into the three-minute tune, a feeling that can only be described as peaceful bliss washes over you. Aaron begins in an almost Jason Mraz style as he sings about the profound impact of a special someone. “Well you burned my old house down / made me forget my past / the day you came around…Baby I could walk on water / when you get me alone.”

 You can’t help but bop along to this beautiful song, as Aaron introduces light harmonies and string instruments in a way that compliments his voice nicely. With a folky, upbeat tune, CityMag sees this song as the perfect Sunday morning accompaniment to a nice bread-baking session, with the sun shining through the kitchen windows as the birds say hello. This one is hard to beat.


Listen to this playlist on Spotify.

If you’re a South Australian band or musician, join our Artist Network, and let us know about your new release.

aleksiah — ‘Who Are You When You’re Not Performing?’

CityMag is always impressed by aleksiah’s music, and her newest song ‘Who Are You When You’re Not Performing’ is no exception. We could listen to the funky electric guitar opening for hours alone, so when aleksiah’s amazing vocals start to serenade us it feels like we’ve won the lottery. Then you listen to the incredible lyrics and bam! She’s cemented the song as a triple threat, if you’ll allow us the cheesy comparison.

With guitar riffs reminding us of Fleetwood Mac – a bold claim, we know – aleksiah challenges the need to conform, singing “take the pay cut / and give the curtesy / ooh steady / keep your voice breathy / you want to show them they’re strong til you’re dead and buried”.

The bridge shows us a new side to aleksiah’s vocals, reinforcing just how talented she is as she belts out the confronting lyrics “I took the pressure / and I absorbed it / I’ll teach my daughter how to give a good performance”. There’s nothing more to say other than do yourself a favour and listen to this song. Trust us, you won’t regret it.

Axe & the Ivory — ‘When I Was A Shelter’

Axe & the Ivory’s newest hit ‘When I Was A Shelter’ may sound like an upbeat folk tune at first, but lyrically it is a whole different story. Singing of putting someone first, sacrificing yourself so they may be safe and happy, before realising perhaps they were the problem, and would not do the same for you.

Then I learned / that you were the storm / all along / and I’m the avalanche / that needs moving on.”

However, CityMag was still tapping our feet along to the four-minute bop.

Brave Mistakes — ‘Aching Enough’

Brave Mistakes makes no mistakes with their new song ‘Aching Enough’, a bop taking CityMag straight back to the 80s. Disclaimer: please note we may not have been around at the time… The group sings over a catchy tune, insecure about a relationship and whether the feelings are equal.

Is it taking over you the way it’s taking over me too and is the aching enough?”

Discarded – BOUT U

CityMag can see it now: a slightly sticky club floor, reflections of light bouncing off a disco ball and a smoke machine on full blast. The perfect soundtrack? Adelaide DJ Discarded’s new EP, Lost But Not Forgotten. While the entire album is full of hits, we were especially taken by track 5, ‘BOUT U’.

The electronic blend starts slow while the beat gradually picks up, and new layers of sound are added in each bar. Eventually, we are left with an eclectic collection melding together seamlessly, leaving you ready to hit the dancefloor. CityMag loves everything Discarded does, and this EP is no exception.

Electric Fields – One Milkali (One Blood) (Motez remix)

We know what you’re thinking; wait, didn’t Electric Fields’ Eurovision entry hit come out a while ago? Yes! But this month it was lucky enough to receive the Motez remix treatment, reimagined as a club-classic beat-heavy electronic production.

With just the chorus lyrics of the original song utilised in this remix, this track is yet another excellent way to enjoy our home-grown Eurovision stars. Motez’s talent shines through, leaving CityMag with no doubt: this guy well and truly knows his way around a remix.

Emily Bettison — ‘Caffeinate’

We can all relate to the buzz of energy you feel after a hit of caffeine. This CityMag reporter cannot function properly without his medium cappuccino from Roxie’s every morning. So, Adelaide-based musician and vocalist Emily Bettison decided to make a song about it. Her new alt-pop single ‘Caffeinate’ spruiks the benefits of this intoxicating stimulant. “Ooo, hook it up to my veins/stop me going insane,” she sings. Emily’s highly danceable track features her playful vocals alongside piano, synths and sampled kicks and hi-hats. Ultimately, Emily’s song is about more than just her love of coffee – it is a commentary on the pressures creatives face to perpetually perform, with a little help from caffeine.

Hepé Mateh – ‘The Funky Drummer’

Considering Hepé Mateh’s new tune is called ‘The Funky Drummer’, it might seem a bit strange that it starts with a guitar riff. But be patient… you will not be disappointed. This psych-funk banger had CityMag bopping the whole way through. With its infectious bass, drums, guitars and vocals, ‘The Funky Drummer’ truly lived up to its name. This single will be launched at the Cranker on Wednesday, June 5 with Effie and The Dainty Morsels as special guests.

Lizzie Hosking — ‘Bubble’

This week, CityMag’s resident sexologist Jamie Bucirde shared her advice on breaking free from a situationship. It seemed fitting, then, that Lizzie Hosking’s new single, ‘Bubble’, would be included on our list of the best new music. Lizzie uses the metaphor of a bubble to express the longing desire caused by a non-committal relationship. “I can feel you pushing the bubble that I’m holding onto/Do you want to set yourself free,” she sings. “Don’t be the space in-between us/Yeah, when you were in my bubble.” The use of a Rhodes keyboard adds a jazzy, playful flavour to this track, which contrasts with the dark interlude at the 1:54 mark. CityMag is hooked!

Lucas Day – ‘Deja Vu’

Haven’t we heard this song somewhere before? Lucas Day’s new single ‘Deja Vu’ feels like a throwback to the classic rock of the 1970s, albeit with his own unique take. At its heart, this is a love song, with its constant refrain: “déjà vu feels new when I’m falling for you”. According to his Spotify bio, Lucas spent thousands of hours performing on cruise ships in North America and the Caribbean before launching his solo career with his debut EP Knots. His new rock n’ roll single is a total headbanger, with its funky guitars and passionate vocal performance.

My Chérie — ‘Darkness & Gold’

Taking her inspiration from ‘80s alternative pop goddess Kate Bush, My Chérie invites you to “enter an ethereal land” in her new song ‘Darkness and Gold’. Her new song was co-created with South Australian singer-songwriter/producer/sound engineer Mario Spate and local producer Benny Tamblyn. Describing herself as having “wild-child appeal”, My Chérie creates “pop-tinged songs, featuring ambient guitar, live looping, atmospheric synth and hip-hop grooves set apart with her angelic vocals”. The sleek Alice in Wonderland-inspired music video directed by Two Up Films lifts this song to a whole new level.

Myrrhe — ‘Numb the Pain’

‘Numb the Pain’ is the newest dance track from Filipina-Australian singer-songwriter Myrrhe. The fun beat of this song, influenced by Medusa and Madison Beer, is in stark contrast to the poignant and sombre lyrics. “I love writing music from the perspective of lives I could have lived if I didn’t choose happiness every day,” says Myrrhe. “[The] majority of my storylines are fiction. However, the emotion and what I’m trying to convey are very real”. ‘Numb the Pain’ was composed by Julian Fridolin Auer with lyrics from Marylou Cotton, mixing by Tancredi Maria Trionfi and production by FRIDO.

Ricky Albeck — ‘Get Me Outta Here’

Oh, Ricky Albeck. The music-making, fun-going, bop-producing musician we love from Adelaide (and sometimes Melbourne, but shhh). He came into the music scene when he was 19, and has only just released his debut album titled Nocturnal — which took him five years to write. Our top pick goes to track three, ‘Get Me Outta Here’. Although he cries and tells us about the tricky times between him and his significant other, the song is the happy-go-lucky fun track we need. It’s a repeat offender in our ears at the moment. Ricky says this album “represents a whole lot of learning”.

“In some ways, you can really tell I’m just finding my feet, but I also think it’s really interesting noting the different production choices made across different tracks,” Ricky says.

Sofia Menguita — ‘Puddle Jumping’

‘Puddle Jumping’ mourns the loss of Sofia Menguita’s childhood. She says it’s a “Pinegrove-esque track, reminiscent of [her] childhood in the Philippines”. The ballad begins in a soft manner, quietly walking us through Sofia’s experiences. From two minutes 50 onwards, the intensity grows as Sofia riffs and shows her range in a way that sends shivers down our spine.

Sturt Avenue — ‘How Much It Costs’

Every musician trying to make it big knows the feeling Sturt Avenue is telling us about in ‘How Much It Costs’. The song reveals the struggles faced when trying to chase your dreams but succumbing to everyday routines as they sing: “You never really know how much it costs / until it’s taken everything you’ve got”. The band, along with Bromham frontman Dave, paint us a picture of reminiscing on your life and all the pieces that made it so special as they sing: “sang that song that always used to make me cry”. The song is soft and boasts raw emotion through the delicate sounds.

Sturt Avenue frontman, Bryn Soden, says he chose to embrace a wholesome life, shown through ‘How Much It Costs’.

“The song is about the apathy that lets you fall into the grooves of an ordinary life rather than pursuing the dream you had for yourself when you were still idealistic,” Bryn says.

Tessa Bird — ‘I Guess She Breathes a Little Calmer’

Tessa Bird was cut out of our best new music write-up for April, simply because her song was released a day after our column was published, but there was no way we could miss out on this song. It’s an anthem — a heartbreak anthem. The eery beginning slowly welcomes us into the punchy chorus, where Tessa cries for the life she once had with an ex-partner, but has to watch this life take place with someone else. ‘I Guess She Breathes Little Harder’ is a song about pain, but we can’t stop listening.

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