Jamie T – The Hi Fi, Brisbane
The last time I’d caught Jamie T was when he was still a loose cannon touring Kings & Queens in Paris five long years ago (and shall we not mention the incident that left me with a very black eye…), and I’d been anxiously awaiting his return. This show proved as rowdy as expected, but also showcased the musician’s heightened maturity and control he seems to have developed in his four years away. Nonetheless, he pulled off the raw tracks of his earlier years brilliantly alongside the more demure songs from Carry On The Grudge.
Josh Pyke & Sydney Symphony Orchestra – Sydney Opera House, Sydney
How could I not include this one. Josh Pyke has long expressed a desire to collaborate with an orchestra, and this year saw that realised in spectacular fashion. The grandiose nature of the event was relaxed a little by Pyke’s charismatic nature and nervous energy. The orchestral arrangements of Pyke’s tracks certainly brought about a slew of new emotions.
Gold Class – The Curtin, Melbourne
Heck, between Adam Curley’s spot on vocals, the driving, tight instrumentals and the group’s willingness to call out dickhead crowd behaviour, Gold Class are the ultimate live band. After catching these guys numerous times throughout the year, this show certainly raised the bar even higher for the Melbourne four piece.
My Own Pet Radio – Northcote Social Club, Melbourne
My Own Pet Radio is everything we’ve ever wanted from Sam Cromack, and this show only enforced that theory. Alongside his all-star backing band- Ryan Strathie (Holy Holy), Ben Fahey & Alex L’Estrange (Denpasar)- their first ever Melbourne show was phenomenal. Here’s hoping Cromack has plenty of time to focus on touring My Own Pet Radio in the future.
Paul Dempsey – The Gasometer, Melbourne
Dempsey’s last minute announcement of this show sent many into a flutter (myself included). The afternoon show under the open roof of The Gasometer was the perfect setting to hear some of the new tracks from Dempsey’s upcoming second solo record.
Au.RA – The Grace Darling Hotel, Melbourne
Owen Rabbit (Catch Release Label Of Love Party) – Shadow Electric, Melbourne
Art Of Sleeping (Album Preview) – Bakehouse Studios, Melbourne
The 1975 – Festival Hall.
The Cherry Dolls – ShebeEn, Melbourne
I remember leaving this show and being insanely exciting about the next wave of music coming through Melbourne’s local scene. Oozing charisma and owning their incredibly well crafted songs, The Cherry Dolls immediately stood out to me as one of the finest local rock bands of late. They are set for huge things.
The 1975 – Festival Hall, Melbourne
I unashamedly love The 1975, so seeing them at their biggest Australian show to date was beyond brilliant. Considering the last time I’d seen them was at their tiny Northcote Social Club show in early 2014 – and how quickly they rose to fame in that year, things were very different. Having Circa Waves on opening duties was also a treat.
Flying Lotus – 170 Russell, Melbourne
At this show, Flying Lotus was scheduled to take to the stage at 10pm – he made it on at 2am. Flight delays has wreaked havoc, and for a large portion of the night those in the crowd were doubtful they’d even see FlyLo that night. Thankfully, he did – and played one of the most visually stimulating, mind bending sets I’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing.
Hiatus Kaiyote – The Corner Hotel, Melbourne
“The first time you see Hiatus, it’ll change your life!’ I don’t know if that’s actually said – but boy, I feel like it should be. Witnessing an ever evolving hybrid of incredible, inventive music not only impresses you, it envelops you.
Safia – The Corner Hotel, Melbourne
I attended the first night of Safia’s run of 4 sold out shows, then Gumtree’d myself a ticket and went again a couple of nights later. Having followed this band from their debut single, it was so exciting to see how they’d developed into an absolute force in Australia’s music scene in little over the space of a year.
Northeast Party House – The HiFi, Melbourne
City Calm Down – Howler, Melbourne
The Smith Street Band – The Corner, Melbourne