If you haven’t heard of Cry Club yet, consider this your introduction.
The Melbourne-based queer bubblegum punk duo have only been playing together since 2018, but they’ve already made their way onto virtually every ‘ones to watch’ list going around.
2019 saw the band release three outstanding singles, beating out Tones & I to earn the title of triple j Unearthed’s most-played artist of the year. ‘DFTM’ is a sheer-force anthem urging gig-goers to keep their hands to themselves while ‘2 Hearts’ is Cry Club’s take on a radio-ready love song, proving their mettle as songwriters as much as performers. And then came ‘Robert Smith’, the atonal, time-signature-bending left-turn that saw the duo occupying their own solitary plane in the Australian pop landscape.
They’re currently out touring the country ahead of their appearance at Splendour In The Grass this July. Just in time for their Canberra show, we sat Heather Riley and Jonathan Tooke down to talk us through some their favourite Canberra acts.
Three words: experimental emo folk. Helena Pop makes the kind of music you put on halfway through a road trip when everyone’s going a bit delirious and your mind is more open to new things. It really is so hard to describe them, just do yourself a favour and listen to ‘Punk’s Dead’, and their 2018 EP You Said You Loved Them. Jack’s lyrics are so clever, you’ll find yourself replaying bits of songs over again, wishing you could hear it again for the first time. Also, you cannot go past a literal kazoo solo. It’s absolutely insane in the best way.
Of course, we couldn’t go past one of our supports for the tour, lush lush lush Peach Lane. They’re amazing to listen to when you just need to take a breath, especially with songs like ‘Take This Day’. It’s like a musical oasis. Peach Lane give you that moment of clarity you’re desperately searching for after a busy day or when you’re feeling under the weather. You won’t be able to get enough of their folksy harmonies given new life in between dreamy synths and chill beats.
Another band we’re so, SO excited to have on our lineup, Neko Pink makes sparkling, attitude-infused pop that feels like a mix of Mallrat and Charli XCX. Sometimes you know you like a band before you even listen to them, and they were definitely one of those for us. Africa’s style is out of this world, and her vocals are SOOOO confident. ‘With You’ is a certified bop and you can’t tell us otherwise. We’re VERY keen to boogie with them and super excited to see where they go from here.
Azim Zain & His Lovely Bones
Azim has been such a stalwart of the Canberra scene and while he’s no longer physically located there, his spirit definitely remains. This makes it sound like he’s died – which he hasn’t – which is an oopsie from us but c’est la vie. Recently having released the single ‘Holiday Home’, he’s an absolute star who can articulate so much with the crazy vocal control he’s got. The first time I saw him play it was screaming in Elk Locker so you can only imagine my shock to hear that this was the same singer.
Genesis Owusu is the future and everyone who has seen him play live knows this. Not only is the live show the most infectiously fun thing you’ll see, the songs absolutely slap. If Genesis doesn’t end up as a massive popstar I will be genuinely surprised. Especially if he’s able to continue releasing such bangers as ‘WUTD’ and ‘Good Times’.
Cry Club hit Transit Bar on their ‘Robert Smith’ Tour on Friday 28 February, supported by Peach Lane and Neko Pink. Tickets are $14.28 via Moshtix. More info here.