Music

Introducing: Julia Why?

The thought about living in a share house can be daunting for anybody, I mean what if your future housemate is a complete dick and likes lame bands. Sometimes triumphant things happen though and housemates become mates. For avid musician Julia Wylie, well she struck it rich, sharing a place with seven loud musicians.

Julia Why?

After hearing their punchy garage rock, you won’t be asking “Julia Who?”. The name is Julia Why?, and this three piece are set for a rockin’ year.

Julia is the front woman for Sydney three-piece Julia Why? (A band name I dare say is named after her) and this crowded lifestyle has influenced the very sweet and sour tunes of Julia Why?’s punchy garage rock. The group write in a simple collaborative style that can be attributed to boozy studio improvisational jams. It also helps that their drummer Peter Beringer built and operates Audile Design, a recording studio based in Marrickville where their jams involve Julia synchronising bass with vocals while guitar duties belong to Matt Frederickson. The pair does however switch instruments from time to time to a winning effect.

2014 was a huge year for Julia Why? as the Sydney three-piece won last year’s Triple J Unearthed’s NIDA competition for their hard-hitting song Just One Night. As a reward a video clip courtesy of post-graduate National Institute of Dramatic Art students was made for Just One Night. The music video for the 90s alt rock influenced track features an American style prom night complete with unfortunately tacky vintage clothing, disco balls, spiked punch and a rebel girl the emerges from beyond the grave in riot grrrl style with a bewildering free flowing dance routine in a zombie love story scene. Spoiler: the zombie likes her meat very rare.

The band have had some more success on Triple J through their rapid-fire song Painkiller being featured on the Triple J Unearthed Aus Music Month mixtape alongside other Happy favourites Hockey Dad and Japanese Wallpaper. Painkiller is a thrashy piece of work complete with panicked vocals, speedy chords changes, long drum rolls and a feedback overloaded solo.

Their song Turntable is featured on the Inhalation Compilation cassette tape released in late 2014 by Julia’s own label EXXE Records. It features 13 bands that were associated with the share house that crowded Julia belongs to. Turntable includes a loud poppy hook, a sweet bassline with sinking guitar solo. It’s got us hook, line and sinker. It sounds great live too.

Julia Why?’s first album Part One & Part Two recorded mid 2011 showed a slightly different side of the band as it was recorded at a time when Julia Why? was a strictly solo project for Julia Wylie. Long dreamy sounds dominated on the debut album but were played with the same spirit and intensity of their newer songs. The speedy tunes of late can probably be attributed to Peter’s skilfully speedy drumming ability.

Julia Why?’s now upbeat and fast nature as a three-piece expansion is certainly a welcomed change that can probably be attributed to maximising creative ooze. Yeah artistic discharge! If 2014 is anything to go by 2015 will be a huge year for the group with a huge new album called Wheel due out in March. Watch out for a North America tour too. Up tha punx! Sydneysiders can catch Julia Why? at the following shows:

31 January, The Annandale Hotel

8 February, The Hollywood Hotel

18 February, GoodGod Small Club

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