omorrow (June 2) is a huge day for Australian punk fans, with game-changing new albums from Body Type and DZ Deathrays. The former shows a whole new side of the Eora/Sydney band, swapping the raw fury of their earlier work for loveably rough power-pop; meanwhile, for their sixth record DZ revisit the scrappy experimentalism that put them on the map to begin with while charging forward into similarly unexpected territory.
- READ MORE: Body Type on their fiery debut album: “I was trying to occupy the space that is so stereotypically male”
They’re far from the only local punk records set to make waves this month – Cable Ties, for example, have their ripping third album making landfall on June 23, the same day we’ll hear new records from Collarbones, Lastlings and Cry Club. The lattermost release falls somewhere between pop and punk, but don’t call it pop-punk. Don’t call ‘Endless Summer’ dream pop, either, as Jack River’s second album is much more complex and dynamic than any one label could justify.
It’s dreamy as hell, though – just like the fourth solo album from Pond leader Nicholas Allbrook, which is strikingly honest and comes with moments of blissful intimacy. But if you’re in the mood for something a little more intense, maybe SUPEREGO’s debut album ‘Who Are You Hiding From?’ – a crunchy, glitched-out crash course in experimental hip-hop – will be more up your alley. And then there’s RVG’s long-awaited ‘Brain Worms’, which is not only their best release but a contender for the best indie-rock album of 2023.
Needless to say, June is a pretty stacked month; we didn’t even have time to mention the new discs from Trophy Eyes, The Teskey Brothers, Sleep D, Carla Lippis… Yeah, we’re eating good this June. Let’s tuck in.
Though it arrives just over a year on from the release of its predecessor, ‘Everything Is Dangerous But Nothing’s Surprising’, Body Type’s second album came together slowly over the span of three years, and shows a side of the band that their rough and raw debut shied away from.
- READ MORE: Body Type on second album ‘Expired Candy’ and lead single ‘Miss The World’: “We’ve worked through a lot of shit to make it here”
‘Expired Candy’ is very aptly titled: it’s much sweeter and more approachable than LP1, but stands out with a distinct pang of sourness. It sounds like a DIY punk band’s take on a power-pop record – precisely because it is – and with every jagged harmony and bent hook they use to command your full attention, it becomes clearer and clearer just how well Body Type nailed the brief. Ellie Robinson
Body Type’s ‘Expired Candy’ is out June 2 via Poison City Records.
Over the course of their last three albums (2018’s ‘Bloody Lovely’ and the two-part ‘Positive Rising’ project), DZ Deathrays refined their sound into a tight and reliable palette of ear-pricking punk inspired by the grungy greats of the ‘90s, but spun through a web of crisp modern production.
‘R.I.F.F.’ sees them tear that formula to shreds, though, tapping back into the colourful, nigh-on hedonistic experimentalism of their early work (particularly their 2012 debut ‘Bloodstreams’) while amping up the shred to reach a level of raw, primal punk energy only hinted at on previous efforts. The title stands for ‘Remember It’s For Fun’, and here DZ Deathrays wholeheartedly embody that ethos. ER
DZ Deathrays’ ‘R.I.F.F.’ is out June 2 via DZ Worldwide.
RVG‘s third album is their best yet. Taking the most vital elements of scrappy 2017 debut ‘A Quality Of Mercy’ and its brilliant, bold 2020 follow-up ‘Feral’, Romy Vager and her bandmates craft an ambitious, lush record full of feeling and executed with confidence.
- READ MORE: RVG – ‘Feral’ review: Melbourne post-punks spin tales of heartache, confusion and overwhelming love
An album about carving a space for yourself outside the perceptions of others and the endless droning chaos of the world, ‘Brain Worms’ features Vager’s sharpest songwriting to date, and sees her and her bandmates more in sync with one another than ever. Alex Gallagher
RVG’s ‘Brain Worms’ is out June 2 via Ivy League Records.
While Nicholas Allbrook can seem larger than life when fronting kaleidoscopic psych-pop band Pond, his fourth album trades aplomb for honesty. Slow burners like Carla Geneve-assisted closer ‘The Night Before You Flew’ are starkly intimate, beautiful while feeling like they may break at any moment.
‘Commodore’ and the devastating, elegiac ‘Jackie’ take sonic cues from Oz rock’s dalliance with new wave in the ’80s, Allbrook pairing meditations on love and grief above retro synths and sparse drum machines. As with the classics of that era, those songs have a painful desperation in them, reaching a hand out for connection. AG
Nicholas Allbrook’s ‘Manganese’ is out June 9 via Spinning Top Music.
‘Who Are You Hiding From?’
SUPEREGO’s journey thus far has been a whirlwind, from their formative years of hustling in the underground (back when they were known as POW! Negro) to their steady galvanisation as one of Australia’s most exciting new hip-hop collectives.
- READ MORE: SUPEREGO: Fremantle’s latest musical renegades are electrifying the Australian hip-hop scene
Their debut album, ‘Who Are You Hiding From?’, covers every chapter of the story, bounding from the bold and bristly indie-rap the band cut their teeth on (‘Chrome Face’, ‘HS Oldy’) to the hazier and more experimental sounds they’ve matured into (‘Follow’, ‘Covihaunt’). Through layers of glitchy beats, distorted sax lines, and kaleidoscopic vocals from four unique voices, ‘Who Are You Hiding From?’ paints the picture of a group with lofty and frankly outlandish ambitions – but the talent to achieve them, too. ER
SUPEREGO’s ‘Who Are You Hiding From?’ is out June 15.
Jack River (aka Holly Rankin) has always revelled in the art of escapism. Her debut album, 2018’s ‘Sugar Mountain’, was a dreamy dose of colour she conjured up to escape the trauma that followed her sister’s death as a teenager.
Now in her 30s, the Forster-raised singer-songwriter juggles her indie-pop stardom with a hands-on role as a fierce advocate for climate action; she wrote her second album, ‘Endless Summer’, in the midst of a busy campaign following the Black Summer bushfires of 2019. It began as a protest record, she said upon announcing it, but quickly morphed into another escapist fantasy – a psychedelic cruise through streams of pop influenced by surf-rock and shoegaze, carried by lyrics that paint an oddly alluring picture of an apocalyptic hellscape. ER
Jack River’s ‘Endless Summer’ is out June 16 via I OH YOU.
‘All Her Plans’
Cable Ties just keep getting better. ‘All Her Plans’ finds the post-punk trio’s musical chemistry at both its tightest and most adventurous. The urgent, incendiary ‘Perfect Client’ and ‘Silos’ are classic Cable Ties, searing condemnations of the way capitalist, neoliberal structures keep people from getting the help they deserve. But raw fury isn’t everything.
- READ MORE: “Find something to fight for and be hopeful about”: Cable Ties make music in dangerous times
‘Time For You’ sees guitarist and vocalist Jenny McKechnie reflect on finding a safe home in one’s partner, while ‘Mum’s Caravan’ is a deeply personal song about her mother making personal sacrifices to care for others. This is a record about calling out injustice, trying to find some joy despite it, and knowing that at the end of the day, all we have is each other. AG
Cable Ties’ ‘All Her Plans’ is out June 23 via Poison City Records.
Over a decade since their first album, Marcus Whale and Travis Cook bid their boundary-pushing experimental project farewell. With lush electronics, hyperactive club beats and Whale’s distinctive croon, ‘Filth’ carries the duo’s unmistakable DNA.
- READ MORE: Collarbones announce final album ‘Filth’: “We leave with an appreciation of having a project last this long”
But across many of the album’s tracks, it’s synthesised with the sounds of the nu-metal bands they were drawn to in their youth, to great effect (a truly monstrous guitar riff is the backbone of recent single ‘Lack’.) It’s fitting that for a band who never stopped innovating, their final act makes those nostalgic influences – something plenty within the ‘hyperpop’ bubble have appropriated in recent years, to varying degrees of success – sound this unique. Collarbones forever. AG
Collarbones’ ‘Filth’ is out June 23.
‘Spite Will Save Me’
On their 2020 debut album, ‘God I’m Such A Mess’, Cry Club proved themselves worthy of their self-affixed “bubblegum punk” tag, glazing hooky pop songs with a snarky bite. But as its bold title and eye-catching artwork tease, ‘Spite Will Save Me’ flips the script, flicking glittery pop sensibilities over sharp and snarling punk tunes (think a whole album of cuts like ‘Robert Smith’).
- READ MORE: Cry Club: “If you’re being as fully yourself as you can, no one can take that away from you”
The paradigm shift proves crucial with the album’s loose narrative – it’s a concept album of sorts, diving deep into themes of “queer wrath” and trans liberation in the face of mounting oppression. It’s brash, dramatic and camp, but also beautiful and empowering – it’s the album 2023 needs. ER
Cry Club’s ‘Spite Will Save Me’ is out June 23.
The best electronic music takes foundations that can be icy and jarring, and makes them feel so human it’s a complete gut punch. Lastlings have an intimate understanding of this on their second album.
While the production feels crisp and contemporary, ‘Perfect World’ feels grounded in one of dance music’s oldest traditions: prioritising emotional connection above all. When singer Amy Dowdle’s impassioned vocals soar over shimmering synths and electronic drums, the songs on ‘Perfect World’ – at their peak – feel at once utterly euphoric and devastating. AG
Lastlings’ ‘Perfect World is out June 23 via Liberation Records.