Owner of Howl & Moan Records at Byron Bay, Mario Fraietta is super passionate about supporting loval and independent music from around Australia.
Owner of Howl & Moan Records at Byron Bay, Mario Fraietta is super passionate about supporting loval and independent music from around Australia. Marc Stapelberg

Music experts reveal their favourite new local bands

THE Northern Rivers is bustling with talented musicians, bands and solo artists.

Howl and Moan owner Mario Fraietta has been helping bands get their music out to the public and we thought we would not only speak to him, but to two other big supporters of music in our area - Lennox Groove manager Nathan Luke and Dusty Attic owner Kate Stroud.

First up, we talked to Mario Fraietta about his top 10 up and coming local artists and bands and why he thinks they are making a splash.

1. No Parade

"No Parade is a just out of high school band, which I gave their first gig over a year ago and they are doing really well, and they are like a post-punk band with a great attitude. They are obviously very talented, but we have got an 18-year-old frontman in Lachie who is basically a Nick Cave clone and they love that music and they are able to transmit that music when they are live in a very engaging way. Last week they did the pre-Splendour Thrills party and it was amazing. Just one of those bands that have a great sound."

2. Chilli Gomez

"I've known them for a little while and see them play for a few times. Again young students of SAE, good background of playing in bands and a grungy indie rock vibe. It's nice, pretty heavy, good guitars and a good frontman. They are pretty awesome."

3. Visas

"They are a new pop band on the scene. I gave the lead singer Jackson a gig in here last December and that particular night he met his drummer and then they met their bass player and it was a sort of connected to a show he did in the shop as a solo artist and now they are just exploding. Just a good heavy guitar, grungy sort of sound. I wouldn't say surf, but heavy rock."

4. Plenko

"There is a young band out of Lismore called Plenko which again I have hosted a few times. Highs school students that have just finished school and they are hitting their stride. They are playing quite well and playing in Byron this week, I noticed. I rate them pretty well and again a punkier sort of band. A good party band and when they play everyone is jumping around. They are real high energy sort of band and they are pretty solid and some songs have got really good airplay on Triple J Unearthed. So I think they are going to be someone to keep an eye out for."

5. Masochist

"I really like Masochist. I think what those guys have done is really positive. Think of a hardcore punk band but very socially conscious. They have a really good visual presence on stage. Rose as a frontwoman is amazing to see and they also build a story to their songs. If you are thinking hardcore punk they don't really make out a lot of time for lyrics because it is hard and fast but she does give it an introduction for the song. So I really rate them and a big supporter of them."

6. Sophie Ozard

"There is a young girl from Byron call Sophie Ozard. I have her playing here tonight again on Tuesday and she has played a few times in the shop. Supremely talented and she has been around in the Byron area for about three years. She writes her own songs, and we are talking about a singer/ songwriter in the mould of maybe Gabriella Cohen or almost PJ Harvey. But really just does it well and as a young person she is up at that level where they are writing songs and putting things out so I think this year could be big for her."

7. From Crisis to Collapse

"Obviously From Crisis to Collapse which is an extreme metal band. I have so much time for them. If you are going to perform in those fringe sort of genres you got to do it well and everyone I know who have seen them in the shop, or went to Falls or other gigs just raved on about them. And they played Dead of Winter last week and even people I knew who were there were saying great things about them. Angus as a frontman, he is a legend. They will be something to keep an eye out for."

8. Flat Bickie

"They have just recorded a few new songs - a local punk band. Again they have been on a bit of a hiatus for maybe six months and haven't really done any shows but are getting back into it and their new stuff sounds really good and I am keen to see it online and they have a few shows coming up."

9. Garage Sale

"They are another big up and coming band. Dan and Ben being the main guys in the band and again a really good indie, grungy sort of sound and we are talking somewhere along the lines of between a Violent Soho, and a nice noisy guitar-based band. I think they are someone to keep an eye out for."

10. Bedclub

"These guys played at the Thrills party and they were great. And it just creates a different vibe. We are not just about all hard and heavy. So we want to see other people doing things and Bedclub are one those at the fore and they are playing some awesome shows and recording new music."

Lennox Groove manager Nathan Luke's top 10

1. Wharves

2. Garage Sale

3. Visas

4. No Parade

5. The Oogars

6. The Buckleys

7. Mini Skirt

8. Seaside

9. Flying Machine

10. Liquid Face

Dusty Attic owner Kate Stroud's top 10 selection:

1. Alisha Todd and the Volcanic Lovers

2. Karl S Williams

3. Benja Meek

4. AKA Lui

5. Mykaela Jay

6. Art Pleasley

7. okmattcollins

8. Tahi White

9. Master Leech

10. Lady Mondegreen.

  • Who's your favourite, local, up-and-coming band or artist? Email news@northernstar.com.au and let us know.

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