Music

The best debut EP of the year so far? Sunhaus show bottomless diversity and shining potential on About Yesterday

After listening through Games, the first track of the debut EP About Yesterday from Brisbane indie rock outfit Sunhaus, one could be forgiven for writing the band off as another bright, folk-influenced Australian band.

Lovely, sun-soaked harmonies that evoke those halcyon days spent on whichever beach you choose to frequent with your mates. Nice, comforting even, but not particularly ground-breaking, right?

However, as the opening bars of the second song Bobby drop melancholy chords on top of a tinkling set of piano keys, the tone changes completely.

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Pushing the power of twin vocalists, Sunhaus distinguish themselves from the indie rock menagerie with a deep personability that’s hard to place.

Suddenly you are listening to lead singer Aiden Geraghty belt out something reminiscent of The Temper Trap frontman Dougy Mandagi’s stirring vocals, and you are getting your hair blown back in a big way.

This moment of realisation, when it becomes clear you aren’t listening to another incarnation of the small-time Australian indie band but rather something new and exciting, sets the tone for the next 20 or so minutes that you’ll undoubtedly spend listening to every last second of About Yesterday.

Every song on the EP brings in a new facet of this band’s virtually limitless potential to the fore, whether it be the wistful vocals of Madeleine Kinraid on Home, to the clean harmonies of Games, and the powerful chorus of Realignment. There can be no doubt that the EP’s strength lies in its diversity.

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This diversity is showcased through two lead vocalists with wildly different styles. Geraghty demonstrates his impressive range throughout Bobby, where you see him move through wallowing, melancholic tones all the way into full-blown explosions of outright passion.

Kinraid provides a perfect counterpoint for this powerhouse through her gentle but masterful vocal control, strutted with a special confidence in Home.

Reflective of vocal variety is the multiplicity of the band members themselves. In 2015, the original trio of Geraghty (vocals/guitar), Adela Lau (drums), and Dave Skitmore (bass) collided with the classically trained Kinraid (backup vocals/keys), the result being the wonderful fusion of indie rock and classical sounds that makes Sunhaus powerful.

Without a doubt unique among the numerous up and coming Australian indie-rock bands, Sunhaus are not completely divorced from the traditions of their genre. The difference being that these musos make this effect extremely personal.

Listening to About Yesterday, one cannot help but adopt the presumption that they all know something intimate about each other member of the band, such is the communicative power of their music. Whether this feeling be true or false, it adds an intoxicating layer of originality to the EP

We can only hope that Sunhaus can hold onto this elusive and ethereal gift going forward. While the band is by no means a finished article, their potential is great, and About Yesterday has certainly cemented Sunhaus as one to watch in 2017.