Could the ribbits and croaks of Australian frogs outperform Taylor Swift on the ARIA charts?
An album composed of Australian frog noises is hoping to leapfrog Taylor Swift on the ARIA charts. Titled Australian Frog Sounds: Songs of Disappearance, the album is a collaboration between The Bowerbird Collective and the Australian Museum. It compiles 50 minutes’ worth of frog sounds, taken from both biologist recordings and submissions from the public.
The album, which features 96 types of frog calls including those of rare and endangered species, was conceived to raise awareness of Australia’s declining amphibian populations. Proceeds from Songs of Disappearance will go towards the country’s national Frog ID project; an initiative which streamlines the public’s ability to submit frog noises for monitoring and research by scientists.
Dr. Jodi Rowley, the lead scientist for FrogID and Curator of Amphibian Biology at the Australian Museum, spoke of the intention of the album in an interview with ABC. She described hearing the calls of endangered frogs as “moving”, and explained how “[Humans] are responsible for the loss of at least four species of frog in Australia.” According to ABC, Rowley wants the album to usurp Taylor Swift’s Midnights single Anti-Hero, which had remained atop the ARIA charts for five weeks.
A similar instance occurred last year. The first Songs of Disappearance — composed of endangered bird sounds — was released around Christmas, and ultimately soared past the likes of ABBA, Mariah Carey and Michael Bublé to place within the Top 50 Album ARIA Charts. The latest frog edition of Songs of Disappearance was released on December 2, and while Swift has since dropped from the ARIA top-spot, it’s not because of ribbits or croaks.
Jimmy Barnes’ Blue Christmas album is responsible for dethroning Anti-Hero. However, given that it’s only recently been released, there remains hope that Australian Frog Sounds can follow its predecessor in leapfrogging to the top. Anticipating its success in a press statement this week, the album’s producer Anthony Albrech said: “We felt that getting croaking frogs to the top of the ARIA charts in the name of conservation would be a great goal for the project’s second year.”