London Grammar: This three-piece’s music can be described in one word: ominous. Their trippy, airy dance beats build slowly, teasing listeners with a climax that never comes, but rewarding their patience with an equally-satisfying, reverb-heavy pop sound, laced with emotive lyrics. They prove that there is power in restraint when it comes to conjuring emotions.
Thu, Jul 24th, Hordern Pavillion.
Sky Ferreira: Since she was discovered online at the ripe young age of 15, Sky Ferreira has been a musician, actress, and model for Calvin Klein. She is also proof that Myspace can do big things for a teenager with a webcam. Ferreira admits to being a Britney Spears fan, but also discloses an appreciation for Sonic Youth and Brian Eno, which gives her pop melodies and simple lyrics about teenage romance a seductive, dark edge.
Fri, Jul 25th, The Metro Theatre.
Donny Benet: For the sake of sanity, it’s always a good idea to have an alter ego. Ben Waples, a highly respected jazz bassist and ex-member of Jack Ladder’s Dreamlanders, is Donny Benet; a middle-aged balding man who could be wearing a stereotypical Hawaiian shirt when he rips it up on stage with a band of accomplished and highly trained musicians. It’s ‘80s synth-driven, jingle-inspired pop-rock, but in the best way.
Sat, Jul 26th, Lansdowne Hotel, Chippendale.
Sheppard: This is a sibling band that could give the Partridge Family a run for their money. Their single Geronimo is currently the highest selling Australian single of 2014, and now they are following it up with Something’s Missing from their debut album Bombs Away. The song is consistent with the band’s explosive pop sound that is becoming somewhat of a trademark. This album launch show is an all-ages gig.
Sat, Jul 26th, Luna Park Big Top.
First Aid Kit: They’re a little bit country, a little bit melancholic, completely mystical, and totally down to earth. These Swedish sisters and their four-piece band delicately interlock vocal harmonies, strings, keys, and light drumming to create stories and soundscapes that put you in the back of a rundown two-door sedan on a long, dusty highway that leads anywhere but here.
Tue, Jul 29th, The Metro Theatre.
Cabins: The band has very clear touchstones, but rather than impersonate or copy musicians from bygone eras, they take the best bits, chop them up, put them through a blender, and stir until smooth. The resulting concoction is a melting pot of intricate and repetitive riffs, hypnotic rhythms, and lyrics that toe the line between poetry and absurdity.
Wed, Jul 30th, Newtown Social Club.
BY ALEXANDRA ENGLISH