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It’s that time of year again. The time of year when we scour the depths of Australia and New Zealand to bring you some raw talent as part of our Needle in the Hay vinyl competition.

To celebrate, we’ll be bringing you our favourite artists from each state in the country as well as New Zealand. Next up is Happy Mag’s home base, New South Wales.

New South Wales

We’re looking all over Australia and New Zealand to give one artist the chance to press their record to vinyl. Here are 5 artists from New South Wales we’re digging.

Lola Scott

With a string of increasingly impressive singles under her belt, Lola Scott has been blowing us away for a couple of years now. Her vibrant and refined brand of electro-pop seems to only get stronger with each release.

Her most recent single, Take Me Back, perfectly showcases everything that makes her great — explosive hooks, emotive vocal delivery, and flawless production. The Sydney artist also has a bank of A-grade music videos behind her, all of which are definitely worth checking out.

The Melodrones

Having only released their debut single R.I.P Hollywood last year, The Melodrones have quickly become one of Sydney’s favourite new bands. With their jangly, hook-driven, garage-pop sounds, the group have already laid down a series of packed-room shows around the city. That is, of course, before the virus took hold.

We understand the band have an EP ready for imminent release, so keep your ears peeled for that. We’re expecting plenty more great tunes.

Griffin Ford & The Variables

Griffin Ford & The Variables make music that’s unlike anything else being made in the state right now. It’s a chaotic-yet-measured blend of country, post-punk, and psychobilly that could draw comparisons to Country Teasers or The Birthday Party, but still exists in a world of its own.

Their 2019 album Dirt Music is a wild listen from start to finish, guiding you through barren sonic landscapes of sparse instrumentation and frantic lyrical bursts. Do yourself a favour and check it out.

DOG DICK PINK

One of the wildest live bands currently terrorising Sydney, DOG DICK PINK’s music explodes with a furious energy unlike any other. Watching them perform live is like watching some bizarre exorcism; a purging of social frustrations; a shedding of musical expectations.

With two singles now behind them—ABC (Her Body) and Bitten By The Hounds Of Love—and a full-length album on the way, we can’t wait to see what the future holds for this manic sextet.

The Brights

The Brights are one of Sydney’s most underrated bands. The quartet lay down subtle, distinctly Australian, Go-Betweens-esque indie-rock tracks that are full of blissful melodies and dry textures. Their songs are understated but deeply addictive; they creep up slowly behind you and get stuck in your head for weeks.

Their latest single, Siamese Cats, is a perfect example. The song floats in and out of existence, never really making too much of a fuss. But I guarantee you’ll be humming that guitar line in the chorus all weekend.

Needle In The Hay is a vinyl competition targeting the next generation of exciting musical talent across Australia. Find out all the details and enter here.

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May 21, 2020