Listen up music fans, I’ve got some bands from down under that haven’t had much play, if any at all, here in North America (with exception of a couple). These bands are making some great music and are definitely ones you should check out. There’s a bit of something for everyone across the rock genre in this list, but if no one is talking about them, no one is hearing of them. So read through and check these bands out. You might just find a favorite new band here. Here we go…..
Airbourne – (Melbourne) We’ve covered these guys recently so nothing that I can add to tell you about them, but I still say you need to be listening to these guys! I know many people know of them here, but we need to get many more listening to them. I simply couldn’t write a story about Australian bands and not include these hard working rockers. Some of the bands to follow in this list are directly referred to me by Airbourne too, so they come with high regards! You can check out the interview and show review that were done on their recent Breakin Out of Hell 2016 USA tour stop here in Seattle, they are linked.
Black Aces – (Melbourne) These hard rockin guys just came off their European/UK tour. Their sound is raw and hard rock n roll. These are the guys you’d expect to find out on tour with Airbourne. They have a great rock sound and screaming rock vocals. Their music is a great sound track to the party lifestyle many of us are familiar with. Nothing pretentious here folks, just grab a beer then kick back and enjoy the great rock n roll they have. Their debut album (2016) Shot In The Dark is available now.
Black Majesty (Melbourne) – Is a killer Power/Heavy/Melodic Metal band. First run through their impressive 6 album catalog I recognized influences of a few of my favorite bands Dio, Iron Maiden & Helloween from the music to the vocals, yet a unique sound that is all their own. Their music has all the parts the power metal fans are looking for too. Speed, great guitar riffs, strong bass, and drums… lots of great percussion going on in their music. Whilst these guys are not new to the music scene, they are relatively new to be heard of here in the USA (never surprised to say that anymore!). This is the exact reason I am writing about them here and now. So you can discover them now if you haven’t already. Black Majesty are currently writing their 7th full length album and will be doing a European tour in late 2017. Fittingly these guys are signed to German label Pride & Joy Music. Also, make sure to check out the band The Radio Sun further down in this post, it’s a project that also shares Steven Janevski (guitar) and Ben Wignall (drums).
Dead City Ruins – (Melbourne) These guys started out in London and are now in back in Melbourne. They sound a bit like Volbeat meets Black Sabbath but with their own Australian sound for sure. Their vocalist definitely channels a younger version of Ozzy’s vocals. Take a listen to the song Til Death and you will see exactly what I mean! These are some hard working musicians. They have 1 EP and 2 studio albums out now and are working on a 3rd. These guys have been working hard and touring alot. In March 2015 Dead City Ruins had their third headline tour of UK/Europe, following their previous 2011 & 2013 tours of the UK, Europe & Scandinavia. They’ve toured with Skid Row and Ugly Kid Joe as well. Go check them out.
Immigrant Union – (Melbourne, AU/ Portland, OR, USA) This band is a mix of blues/folk/indie/psychedelic pop/rock. Definitely feeling the hippie/hipster vibe in their sound. It’s very eclectic and unique. This band has been featured in PDX Magazine (Portland, Oregon). It’s not a far stretch or surprising since this project has Brent DeBoer of The Dandy Warhols as a member, he’s also from Portland. The rest of the band from Australia. In 2014 Immigrant Union was showcased at The Americana Music Festival in Nashville, TN and the band spent 2015 touring internationally. They have 3 releases, 1 EP The Winter (2010) and 2 albums Immigrant Union (2012), Anyway (2014). You won’t find this band on Facebook. You can find them on Twitter and visit their website.
King of the North – (Melbourne) These guys have an interesting twist by being a simple duo. Hard to believe the sound they have with it just being the two of them, but they really pull it off. There’s magic in the pedal for sure! These guys play some great stoner rock (they call it modern, but I definitely hear stoner rock) with fantastic vocals. KOTN has 1 EP, 1 album and a new single out. These guys are busy touring in Europe at the moment but expect to hear more music out of this duo who’ve clearly found their sound.
Kings of the Sun – (Gold Coast) So some of you know these guys, some of you do not. They are not a new band as far as the name of the band, they go way back. With hits like Serpentine and Black Leather they had notable success in the USA markets in the mid 80’s to late 90’s. They are however a revitalized band after the original band members parted ways and one of the original founding members, Clifford Hoad, reorganized the band. These guys have been busy writing new music and recording. They released a new album in 2013 titled Rock Til Ya Die that was followed up with a performance at Sweden Rock Festival in 2014. The band has just released their newest album Razed on Rock in October 2016. They’ve got a fresh sound to the new rock album after working hard to breathe new life into the band these past few years. The band is eyeing to be out on tour in 2017 so keep your eyes out for them.
King Parrot – (Melbourne) These guys, they are getting known pretty fast today. They’ve been in Europe on tour with fellow extreme metal bands Obituary, Exodus and Prong this fall and it’s hard not to demand to be known when you are touring with those 3 bands! But we still have some work to do getting their name out here in the USA and North America. For those of you who love your extreme/thrash metal, this is a band name you will want to remember. Extreme metal from these guys is fantastic!! They have a couple of albums out now, Bite Your Head Off (2013) and Dead Set (2015) that will please your extreme senses. Ha and I had to use this photo from their Facebook page, um.. we are in the Northwest and our neighbors down in Portland is where that pink Voodoo box hails from ha! Nice choice there guys! Get to Seattle King Parrot, we will get you the Voodoo!! So now you guys really need to check them out.
Massive – (Melbourne) I stumbled across these guys in February, not sure how but I did and have been listening to them ever since. The first song I heard from this band was One By One off of Full Throttle (2014) and it just started out with such a demanding tempo and then added with the vocals this band grabbed my attention with their rock sound. It’s a little gritty and just good hard rock. Since then they’ve released a new album full album Destination Somewhere (2016). The second release has a little more blues/grunge/garage sound to it and departs a little from gritty hard rock sound on their for a heavier sound, especially notable on the track The Fall. Well worth checking these guys out.
The Mis-Made – (Sydney) This all female group that formed in 2012 has a hard rock Indie sound that mixes in influences of punk and grunge in a sound they have also referred to as dark pop. Their sound goes between a punk sound to a bit more tamed down Indie sound. The Mis-Made have 2 EP’s and are working on a full length album with the first single due out in November 2016. They have some videos on Youtube you can check our their sound there and they also have some videos on their Facebook. Keep an eye on these ladies, I think we will be hearing more from them in the future.
Ne Obliviscaris – (Melbourne) This extreme progressive metal band has been to the USA this year, early 2016 on the Cradle of Filth tour and then a 2 week run in July on their own headline tour run, with one date in Seattle. Talk about a thrill for so many of us who do follow them. So you’d think a band that sounds this good and has been together since 2003 would widely known, but again as I keep hearing about many other bands, they just are not that well heard of. So let’s add them to this list. With this band be prepared for a lot of extreme instrumental metal and plenty of gutturals in their vocals. You can expect their music to reach into your inner most darkness and pull it out of you, leaving you wanting more. They had a 2012 release Portal Of I and were then signed to Season of Mist in 2013. The band has been touring Europe the last few weeks and will be continuing on tour at the end of November back in Australia. I suspect once these guys get off tour their may be new music coming from them.
Palace of the King – (Melbourne) I couldn’t quite put my finger on how to classify this bands rock sound. The thought that kept running through my head at first was some sort of hippie rock, but that wasn’t the right fit. Psychedelic rock, that fits this band. A little bluesy and a lot of psychedelic. These guys have a fun sound that I know people out there will really enjoy listening to. For those who love Led Zeppelin, this is more of a LZ meets Rival Sons kind of sound. Very much in the way that the UK band The Struts have taken a step back into a more unique sound, so has Palace of the King. POTK have 2 EPs, 1 limited edition LP and 2 full length albums. You can find out all about their catalog on their website. Give these guys a listen.
The Radio Sun – (Melbourne) The Radio Sun has a great melodic rock sound. I recently had a chance catch the band live at Rock N Skull Festival in Joliet, IL in October. The guys put on a great live show. I had a chance to chat a little with them as well. Really a great bunch of guys. So who are The Radio Sun? The band formed in 2012 and have since released 3 albums Wrong Things Right (2014), Heaven or Heartbreak (2015) and Outside Looking In (2016). On their latest release “There’s a good balance of uptempo songs with some superb ballads that sees the band throwback to bands like Firehouse and Trixter along with a good dose of Jani Lane/Warrant school of song writing.” The band will continue to tour with their latest album early next year in London, Wales & with dates in Greece. The Radio Sun is also currently looking ahead and writing their 4th full length release. Go check these guys out, you will be glad you did.
So there you have, 13 Australian bands across the wide rock genre I think we all need to be listening to. We need to all do our part to keep the music alive. So try these artists out.