Tag Archives: ghost beach

The Very Best Of 2014


It’s almost the last day of the working year at my day to day; and as you can imagine, as things wind down, cranking out some decent tunes in the office becomes a big part of the vibe leading up to Christmas. Looking through the 2014 playlists, it’s very clear that this year has been one of the best years in a long while for music, in particular Australian music. We’ve had some sure-to-be historic debuts, some impressive first time interstate players, and the expectations put on many emerging artists for their scheduled releases this year shattered with an unprecedented amount of consistently high quality records.

Now, this is down to pure personal taste, and if you would also like to input, you can either email suggestions next year or start up your own blog. But I’d like to take a silent minute to just respect the year that’s been, and deliberate on the very best of the year that was 2014.

Acoustic Cover of the Year: Bad Suns (Calif.) – Cardiac Arrest

Among the slew of emerging artists this year, Bad Suns stood out for their unreal ability to craft a pure pop song with all that raw rock vibe imbued inside of it. Cardiac Arrest was perhaps the best example of this, the single off their debut Language & Perspective, because of the sinister lead guitar hooks and impressively spot-on vocals. That was made entirely clear when they played it acoustic, knocking it out of the park vocally, while the band plays nice and tight.

Live Show of the Year: The Griswolds @ The Metro, October

Sydney was treated to some sweet as live acts passing through this year. Among the slew was St. Lucia, CHVRCHES, Kishi Bashi, Circa Waves, Bombay Bicycle Club and a huge amount of increasingly noteworthy locals. But by far the most incredibly performance was when Sydney natives The Griswolds returned home from their huge touring schedule in the US in October for one of the best live performances I’ve seen yet. Their latest single If You Wanna Stay absolutely brought the house down.

Emerging Artist of the Year: Coach Bombay (Melb.)

When I say “emerging” artist, you might not think Melbourne’s Coach Bombay fits the profile. They’ve been around for quite a while. But it’s surprising to note that this year in September was the first time they ever played live outside of the state of Victoria. We interviewed the man and reviewed his Sydney performance at the time and you wouldn’t believe they only started touring as a live act in the last year or so. They were so tight, so huge, dancey but humble. His unique brand of happy times electro-pop deserves a tip of the cap and we hope to see them doing big things in 2015.

Australian Artists of the Year: Northeast Party House (Melb.)

2014 was a really awesome year for a lot of Australian bands. I’ve followed Northeast Party House closely for over two years now and anticipated their debut Any Given Weekend for a long time. Well this year it was released in line with a stretch of hectic tours up the east coast of Australia. The album and their shows were true to the consistently and beautifully shambolic nature of the boys themselves, solidifying their spot in my party playlists for years to come.

International Artist of the Year: Ghost Beach (New York)

Ghost Beach have been busy little Brooklynites this year, with the launch of their record label “Crazy Heart Records” and the debut release from their signing PROM. Alongside this, they used billboard space in Times Square to open a discussion on music privacy. In between all this, they released in Australia their kick ass album BLONDE complete with some of the most original songwriting I’ve heard in a long time together with killer iconic vocals. Ghost Beach were easily the band that made the most profound impact of 2014 to anyone that was into them.

EP of the Year: Great Good Fine OK (New York) – Body Diamond

Great Good Fine OK got their break through the blog-o-sphere with one of our favourites, “The Wild Honey Pie”, who further pushed them in 2014. The release of further singles after last years You’re The One For Me, got me ridiculously excited for the EP, and they delivered with epics like By My Side and Not Coming Home. In an EP there is little room for mistakes, and this one was as flawless as they come.

Single of the Year: Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. (Detroit) – Run

I’ll be honest, I didn’t take quite as much notice of this song when I first heard it, and although I deeply regret it at least I came around and that’s the main thing. Joke was on me, because Run is a stellar single, released in January of this year from the 2013 album The Speed Of Things, it involves a very unique style of songwriting and Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr. in the best form they can be. When their mellow, wacky lyrics join hands with their strangely elusive yet fun electro-pop style, amazing things happen.

Album of the Year: RAC (Portland) – Strangers

Anyone who reads this blog knows I froth over RAC. So it’s no surprise that his debut full length of originals brought me to my knees this year. Strangers was a collaboration with many of my favourite vocalists, Speak, Tokyo Police Club, Kele, St Lucia and Alex Ebert to name a few. But it was those I had never heard of that really broke the roof of this album. Tracks like Ello Ello (Ft. Body Language) and Cheap Sunglasses (Feat. Matthew Koma) made this an album that I will never forget, and will most likely still be pumping on some futuristic sound device 40 years from now.

Merry Christmas and look forward for more tunes in 2015!

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PROM – Switch On


The label child of Ghost Beach are back with another killer single ahead of their October 10 release; the debut EP Keeping Company. In the first couple of bars, the new single Switch On already exceeds the impressive nature of the first Flickers. This is a serious pop tune with legs for days.

The artist behind it, PROM are phenomenal up and comers that were hand plucked for the debut of Crazy Heart records, and this new track is a perfect example of why they were chosen.

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Live From Hong Kong Int. Airport

So I’ve officially departed Sydney and arrived at Hong Kong International for the first of two layovers. I’ve got 5 hours to kill before connecting through to Helsinki so I figured I might as well share some travel inspiration with anyone who cares to read.

Music has played a big part in every trip I’ve ever had. It’s always acted as a kind of vessel to capture however I’m feeling during that night in whatever city or that nervous/excited feeling flying to somewhere new, and then replicate it whenever I hear that song for the rest of my life. When I first flew to Canada (unbeknown to me that I would spend the next two years living there), I’ll always quietly mention that the entire Owl City collection from their album Ocean Eyes backwards was able to inspirationally sum up those first few weeks. Travelling overnight through the snow covered rocky mountains in minus 30 degrees. The feeling of loneliness starting a job as a housekeeper at a resort weeks before anyone arrived and not knowing anyone there. The feeling of fucking amazingness when I did know absolutely everyone and had the best winter ever, riding, drinking and just generally being epic. For that, I’ll always have a soft spot for Owl City. Even though everything he’s done since has been utter garbage.

So today I flew out towards Europe with my taste in music what I consider to be much more developed than what it was four years ago. The song of choice that I cracked on repeat as I stood at the gate eager to get amongst my Deutsche brethren, was a shit load more fun that anything I was listening to when I ran away to Canada four years ago.

This is where I present to you, Caaalifornia (Yes, the overload of “A’s” are deliberate) by French Horn Rebellion feat. Ghost BeachI could bore you some more with wanky adjectives that try to encapsulate just how much this song makes you want to just  party, but all I can say is listen to it and thank me later.

Admittedly this post has been a touch heart felt for a music blog, but does anyone agree? I’d love to hear some songs that seriously take you back to some fucking good memories of amazing times in the comments below.

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