The calibre of bands that come from the state that we all secretly wish we could live in (Queensland) is as high as a hippy in Nimbin. (yes I know Nimbin is in NSW, but it sounds good!)
Seriously, there must be something in the water in the Sunshine State, or maybe it’s just that fact that sunshine makes you happy and that translates into cool musos? Please add your favourite to this brief list, because no, we haven’t forgotten your favourite or ignored them, we just like to keep it brief so we can hear from you and get a guage for who your favourtite bands are - so we can write about them more often!
In recent times, I don’t think there’s been a more successful Queensland band. 5 consecutive number 1 albums and EIGHTEEN ARIA AWARDS FFS! Everyone has a favourite 'finger song, and in fact, a favourite 'finger era, some like the newer stuff, some like the OG stuff, but one thing’s for sure, we love Powderfinger in Australia.
I asked Darren Middleton why he thought Powderfinger was successful and he said "Patience, persistence, being ready if an opportunity presented itself. DRIVE".
For all their epic tunes over the trip, sometimes less is more. That’s why I love "Don’t Want To Be Left Out".
Bob Geldof has been quoted as saying "Rock music in the seventies was changed by three bands…the Sex Pistols, the Ramones and the Saints". What more of a pump up do you need? Punk was a burgeoning force, and when The Saints recorded songs that the record companies didn’t want to touch, they formed their own label and released it independently. They sent their discs everywhere both here and the UK, eventually, EMI head office in London contacted the Sydney office and demanded that they be signed to a three album contract.
I’ve written about this band before, and I think it was because when I first heard them, I didn’t know what to make of them. I hadn’t heard anything like it before, ever. They had heavy riffs, sometimes, funk elements, rap elements, electronic elements, they were kinda everything, but nothing at the same time, and that’s what made them so polarising. Catchy hooks, creative film clips, oddball lyrics, they had it all.
Wanna get nostalgic? Screamfeeder were like a solid constant in the 90’s, constantly touring and playing festivals. It was like everything I went to, Rock Above the Falls, Livid, Big Day Out - Screamfeeder was there, and it was fine by me. Their lo-fi style was embraced and used by heap of the Aussie rock bands that rose to popularity in the 90’s, and they just oozed cool. Let’s not forget the way that Tim and Kellie’s voices melded beautifully on songs like "Hi Cs". Check it out.
Formed in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia in 1977 and co-founded and led by singer-songwriters and guitarists Robert Forster and Grant McLennan, who were the bands only constant members. Drummer Lindy Morrison joined the band in 1980, and later the line-up would expand to include bass guitarist Robert Vickers and multi-instrumentalist Amanda Brown. In 2010, a toll bridge in their native Brisbane was renamed the Go Between Bridge after them.
In 1988, "Streets of Your Town", the first single from 16 Lovers Lane, entered the Top 100 on both the Kent Music Report chart in Australia and the UK Singles Chart in the United Kingdom.
Dead Letter Circus
When Dead Letter Circus, an alternative/progressive rock band emerged in 2004, they were, for the most part, and already hardened and gigging band, rising from the ashes of a previous band. They gained great exposure when singles received massive airplay on Triple J, so when their debut album rolled around in 2010, fans were salivating, and weren’t disappointed. Sending it to number 2 on the ARIA charts. If you haven’t (somehow) discovered the brilliance of Dead Letter Circus, you simply must. And go back and start with the first album.
Yes, born and raised in the UK but they moved to Redcliffe and then Cribb Island in QLD which is where they resided when their first hit "Spicks and Specks" launched - so we are claiming it! Bee Gees of course went on to be one of the biggest selling global artists of all time.
Much like their Brisbane friends in Dead Letter Circus, Caligula’s Horse have bloomed (no pun intended) into an absolute powerhouse of progressive rock/metal and have fast earnt a reputation of releasing killer albums and performing stellar live shows. If you’re not familiar with them, again, you gotta go back to the start and ride the bus. By the time they got their album Bloom in 2015, they were ON FIRE, and they’ve followed that up with the top 50 album In Contact.
For me, Custard fall into the Screamfeeder category here. There were just ALWAYS around. I’d see them playing Melbourne often, and always appearing at festivals. Super catchy, and groovy, and I can’t help but feel if it wasn’t for them, bands like Ball Park Music may not have come to fruition.
Alrighty, there is but a few of the many MANY cool bands that hail from the sunshine state. Of course there are loads more, and that’s where you come in, what are your favourite bands from Queensland? Let us know in the comments below!