Updated: Sep 6, 2019
BIGSOUND 2019 has almost wrapped up. And what a whirlwind it has been. The festival is dubbed the "cynosure of newborn music" and with more than 150 artists performing 270 showcases at 19 venues its hard not to agree. And of course as an international showcasing event it's hosted a vast array of presentations where artists and industry heavyweights can rub shoulders.
With only two feet each, we endeavoured to cover as much ground as possible in Brisbane's Fortitude Valley to bring you a list of 10 artists who we thought smashed their BIGSOUND showcase performances.
Without further ado here's the list (in no particular order):
Greta Stanley is a unique singer-songwriter whose toasty indie-folk style isn't genre-bound. Forgive us but if a comparison is to be made she blends the spirited vocals of Lisa Mitchell with the austere tones of Mazzy Star into something completely unique. Her voice is simply mesmerising and everywhere we looked the packed out crowd stood bewitched by her fiercely real lyrics. The poignancy of what she calls "feeling overwhelmed by an ever-changing mountain of social issues" is certainly amplified on stage. She recently released single 'Pour' alongside a stunning music video which stars Matt Okine - see below. FOLLOW GRETA STANLEY
Greta has a voice that you feel instantly connected to and I'm more than happy to ride whatever emotional wave she dishes up. – Declan Byrne, triple j
Wow! Multi-talented in every sense of the word Hope D really sets the bar high for young artists. The onstage energy, the charisma, the great production, the heartfelt lyricism and the ability to spit white hot rhymes - we're smitten. Hope D is a ubiquitous part of the growing tapestry that is the tightly-knit Brisbane music scene but we can see her exploding onto bigger stages very soon. FOLLOW HOPE D
Hope D is a delightfully fresh voice that we’ll no doubt will be hearing a lot more of – Nicholas Robertson, Livewire AU
3K put on a high energy show at BIGSOUND 2019. At a time when hip-hop crews are making a comeback, the "BROCKHAMPTON-esque" Melbourne rap group brought a dynamic set to 'The Valley Drive In'. They got the crowd to bounce, they got them to sway and they most certainly got the crowd to mosh. Single 'WOOF!' really showcased their ability to command the stage serving up a super energetic set complete with guttural barks from each rapper. FOLLOW 3K
3K have got the crowd eating up every moment of their energetic live show and are an act you should get around stat. – Celline, Narinli, triple j
LÂLKA threatens to overload your senses. Its bratty yet opulent electro infused hip-hop to the highest degree. She produces, she sings and she plays violin like a beast on full tilt but loses no finesse in the act. As our photographer puts it "LÂLKA is the lovechild of Die Antwoord x Grimes and I f*cking love her."
Robots would freak the fk out to this - Declan Byrne, triple j
Mariam Sawires is a neo-soul heroine. Her ethereal voice floats carelessly above her recorded tracks but live its plain gorgeous - think Jorja Smith. She hit every note perfectly and she certainly flexed her impressive vocal range. There's a lot of groove, hype but most importantly soul behind Mariam Sawires's music. FOLLOW MARIAM SAWIRES
If smiles had a sound they'd sound something like her voice! - Bryce Mills, triple j
Nancy Schipper enthralled the cozy crowd at Brisbane's beloved Black Bear Lodge. She has a tender, powerful, inescapable voice that can only be fully appreciated live. The full band doesn't hurt either and definitely upped the energy without stepping on toes. Certainly some Middle Kids vibes but the songwriting is brilliant in its own right with a bank of standout songs that hardly fit in her short showcase. FOLLOW NANCY SCHIPPER
We've been struck by pure, glistening gold. - Claire Mooney, triple j
Hallie is honest, quirky and really quite nice. For someone relatively new on the scene the crowd reaction was electric - there were hands over mouths, eyes glistening with tears and faces transfixed upon the stage. And it's all to be expected when you listen to the maturity in her voice and canny smiles above which heartbreak bubbles to the surface. Hallie's show delivers the whole package, soaring vocals, distinctive lyrics and a solid band for a hecking good time. If you have to compare there's a Stella Donnelly meets Maddy Jane in Joni Mitchell's house vibe and we're all about that. Hallie put on one of the cruellest half hour performances of BIGSOUND that left the crowd literally begging for more. FOLLOW HALLIE
Thought your voice was going to be the thing that bowled me over but those guitars are doing an equally good job. - Tommy Faith, triple j
Fierce. Enigmatic. Intense. Artists like Jaguar Jonze are in short supply. Before we even get into the music there is an air of polish and panache to the Jaguar Jonze show - from the striking visuals, leaping dance-moves, to the culture-rich dress - they ooze style - Jagged, mighty, virtuosic style. The vocals are raw yet ferocious suspended perfectly between fragile silk and the power of a thousand red suns. It's held back only by the music's bittersweet beauty - which has elements that remind us of the eclectic Portishead. FOLLOW JAGUAR JONZE
There's acid at the end of her pen and her stroke is on the money. - Dave Ruby Howe, triple j
Mickey Kojack knows how to throw a serious jam. As the night grew old the crowd huddled in at Brisbane's 'Flying Cock' and three bristling gentlemen took to the stage. When we heard the Star Wars theme we knew we were in for a good time. And His Imperial Majesty Mickey Kojack delivered that sleazy royal jelly that we all craved. But it's not all disco club thumpers - there are funk numbers and lush paced electro-pop too. He pulls all this diversity off really well which makes for a damn fun show. We saw him twice and we'll go for round 3 any day.
He always seems to find a way to outdo himself with each release - purplesneakers
Tones and I
Ah, the meteoric rise of Tones and I is the stuff of legend and odyssey. Never in the past decade of our experience with BIGSOUND have we had to queue and then ever-so politely push our way through literal hundreds of punters, booking-agents, photographers and misc. to attend a solo artist. We can't quite put our earlobes on it but something about that tight production, hyper-colour voice, and
intoxicating pop is sending the music scene into a frenzy over the Byron Bay local. Shh. No talk. Just listen. FOLLOW TONES AND I
It's hard to find something to say about tones that hasn't already been said. - Tommy Faith, triple j
Well that's it. We're all abuzz. What an exciting time for music in Australia.