What’s new this month? Here are 10 Australian release picks for April 2022

Prepare for powerful sounds from Hatchie, Ocean Grove, Mansionair, Charlie Collins and more

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s the summer heat dissipates and Australia looks to its re-flourishing live scene, our best and brightest are gearing up to hit the road with some of their most striking work yet. April seems to be the best month for it all to come out, with career-defining records from Hatchie (the latest NME Australia cover star), Confidence Man, Charlie Collins and Mansionair all hitting shelves.

It’s prime time for creative evolution, too: this month, we’re introduced to the jazzy, disco-infused instrumental side of Donny Benét, the sun-kissed Britpop edge of a reinvigorated Ocean Grove, and the darkest – yet paradoxically catchiest – version of Psychedelic Porn Crumpets. To that end, Nick Ward builds on his soul-baring indie-pop with his second EP, and Romero get the good vibes pumping with their full-length debut. Stephanie Cherote, on the other hand, makes her debut a powerfully rousing, croon-heavy affair. Dive in…

Confidence Man

‘Tilt’

If 2018’s ‘Confident Music For Confident People’ gave a winking side-eye to dance culture, its follow-up embraces it without reservation or irony, gloriously channelling ’90s rave and house influences while turning up the magnetic presence they introduced with album one.

Get your glowsticks out: on ‘Tilt’, Confidence Man are all in. Alex Gallagher

Confidence Man’s ‘Tilt’ is out now via I OH YOU.

Stephanie Cherote

‘Some Holy Longing’

The debut album from this Northern Rivers songwriter is the kind of rare gem that feels at once nostalgic and singular, informed as much by life experience as the likes of Lee Hazlewood and early Leonard Cohen.

Sparse, fingerpicked guitar and Cherote’s distinctive croon are foregrounded with affecting string arrangements courtesy of a 12-piece orchestra, making for a disarmingly intimate sonic world. AG

Stephanie Cherote’s ‘Some Holy Longing’ is out now.

Donny Benét

‘Le Piano’

After 2020’s ‘Mr. Experience’, Benét changes gears with an instrumental EP that serves as a love letter to his funk and post-disco sensibilities.

Letting his charismatic persona take a backseat to the joy of pure creative expression, vintage synths and groove-heavy basslines, the Don’s genuine reverence for his influences is clear across these four extremely replayable cuts. AG

Donny Benét’s ‘Le Piano’ is out now via Dot Dash Recordings.

Romero

‘Turn It On!’

Brimming with charisma, Romero‘s debut album masterfully melds their ultra-catchy power pop sensibilities, ’70s rock influences and raw punk exuberance into an electrifying package.

Led by dynamic vocalist Alanna Oliver, ‘Turn It On!’ shimmers with blistering, intertwining guitar hooks and groove-heavy rhythms, never stopping to catch its breath for too long. Meet your new favourite band. AG

Romero’s ‘Turn It On!’ is out April 8 via Cool Death Records / Feel It Records.

Hatchie

‘Giving The World Away’

“There’s more to me than just writing songs about being in love or being heartbroken,” Harriette Pilbeam said when announcing her second album as Hatchie, ‘Giving The World Away’.

Building on the cool and colourful dream-pop flair of 2019’s ‘Keepsake’, the new record taps more ardently into Pilbeam’s slate of early ’90s influences, tying her uniquely wistful ruminations on millennial life – always sung softly but characterfully – with enchanting slicks of heady shoegaze and glittery disco-popMatt Doria

Hatchie’s ‘Giving The World Away’ is out April 22 via Ivy League Records.

Ocean Grove

‘Up In The Air Forever’

For a band as unpredictable as Ocean Grove, it’s almost surprising that ‘Up In The Air Forever’ is this consistent: from start to end, we’re given a scintillating suite of riff-inflected Britpop, every track equally primed for mosh pits and singalongs.

It’s the band’s most summery effort yet, favouring melodies and hooks over breakdowns and blastbeats – but while it lacks the heaviness of OG’s earlier records, ‘Up In The Air Forever’ nigh-on overdoses on energy. MD 

Ocean Grove’s ‘Up In The Air Forever’ is out April 22 via UNFD.

Psychedelic Porn Crumpets

‘Night Gnomes’

Building on the punchy, melodically charged bite of last February’s ‘SHYGA! The Sunlight Mound’, the fifth album from these Perth psych-rockers ups the ante with wallops of fuzz and distortion, ultra-catchy vocal hooks and serpentine guitar solos.

Its dark and trippy cover art is apt: expect to spend hours on countless replays in your endeavours to unravel all the mind-bending flourishes that stud ‘Night Gnomes’ – a beautiful, scuzzy fever dream of an album. MD

Psychedelic Porn Crumpets’ ‘Night Gnomes’ is out April 22 via What Reality? Records.

Charlie Collins

‘Undone’

As its title and cover make explicitly clear, Charlie Collins’ second album, ‘Undone’, is a viciously intimate, soul-baring affair. It sees the Tamworth songwriter build on her slate of indie-folk stylings, toying with playful, synth-driven pop production (alongside Xavier Dunn, Japanese Wallpaper and Jarryd James) to stunning effect.

Collins says the record sports “some of the most honest, vulnerable music [she’s] ever written”, and its impact is appropriately enormous. MD

Charlie Collins’ ‘Undone’ is out April 29 via Island Records Australia / Universal Music Australia.

Mansionair

‘Happiness, Guaranteed’

The first two thirds of ‘Happiness, Guaranteed’ are pure Mansionair. With singer Jack Froggatt’s smooth falsetto foregrounded by shimmering synths, lively drums and crisp, reverb-washed guitars, the trio build up the smoky, atmospheric indie-pop of 2019’s ‘Shadowboxer’ to arena-sized levels.

Its accompanying final third half compiles their string of recent collabs with the likes of Dom Dolla and Claptone; these are heady, energetic bangers primed for late-night dancefloors. AG

Mansionair’s ‘Happiness, Guaranteed’ is out April 29 via Liberation Records.

Nick Ward

‘Brand New You’

Nick Ward’s poignant emo-pop gets a boost on ‘Brand New You’, the middle chapter of a trilogy that started with last February’s ‘Everything I Wish I Told You’.

As its title implies, the EP signifies a reinvention for Ward – less a personal transformation, but in the context of how Ward is perceived by the outside world – as he beautifully tackles themes of “change, trauma, gender, ego and all the pains of young adulthood”. MD

Nick Ward’s ‘Brand New You’ is out April 29 via Hunnydew Recordings.