Do you ever wonder why a song hits you like a ton of bricks? The power of instrumental music paired with lyrics that seem to mutter out of your own thoughts, make the tears fall upon your cheeks effortlessly and pure. I would always mutter to my students in my music teaching days proud and strong, that Vocalists are the “voice of the people”. As a singer, you are the therapist many desperately need in times of happiness, sadness, and confusion. It can be a bit scary how much music actually influences a person.
Writing lyrics to a melody is not as easy as it sounds. For some musicians, it can take up to a year for words to pour out of the soul for a 3 to 4-minute song. Fueled with the gas lyrics, a masterpiece of songwriting is a skill that can be developed over time. It is a form of structured poetry. Everyone has a poem in their hearts. A true example would be of a sibling duo that started with lyrical ideas, to blossoming into impactful songs for the global music scene. The Australian band Angus and Julia Stone hit the global stage with their deep lyrical vibes mixed in with the sweet sounds of Indie pop!
The Siblings with a Song in Their Heart
Born in Sydney, Australia to parents John and Kim Stone, the musical sibling duo were heavily influenced with the sounds of music at an early age. Growing up, Angus (brother) had an extreme love for songwriting and began dissecting the structures of pop songs in the form of lyrical content, throughout his teen years. After graduating from high school, Angus went on to a career as a laborer while simultaneously learning guitar. At the time, Julia (sister) taught intensive trumpet lessons.
According to Wikipedia, the duo began developing their indie pop dynamic through various open mics throughout the Australian area. Indie pop is a musical subculture that incorporates pop, guitar, and tasteful (intricate) sounds that opposed the generic mainstream pop sound. Julia would accompany Angus with backing vocals, as he did the same with her. Having an experienced brother gave her the push needed to form a strong artistic foundation amongst the two. Julia began to write her own selections at the time.
As their songwriting skills developed, the musical duo found a well-engineered machine in terms of their impactful collaborations. With their individually unique perspective on pop music, Angus and Julia stone became artists on the Australian rise. With similar sounds such as “Jolie Holland” and “Paul Simon”, the band released their first EP, “Chocolates and Cigarettes” in March 2006. The EP created a huge buzz and stabilized the duo’s unique interpretation on pop music. Their single “Paper Aeroplane” began playing on multiple Australian radio stations. The single was listed at No.43 on the Triple J Hottest 100 in 2006.
Concluding their debut EP, Angus and Julia Stone began collaborating with artists such as “The Beautiful Girls”, “Chris Potter”, and “Fran Healy” to produce their second EP titled “Heart Full of Wine”. The project was released in February 2007. The band drove into the Australian horizon for their first national Australian tour, selling out venues effortlessly.
With two prevalent EPs under their belt, Angus and Julia Stone later recorded “A Book Like This”, their official debut album. Presented with an offspring of their current recording contract, the duo signed with an additional US agency which then catapulted them into true global indie pop stardom! The band would later perform for different festivals around the world such as Woodfork Folk Festival and Latitude Festival. Although creating individual names for themselves separate from their band projects, the siblings remain focused on their ongoing collaboration. Their song “Love will Take You” was made famously from this little movie about a high school girl who fell in love with a mysterious, introverted vampire named Edward Cullen. I’m sure you have never heard of it. The song became a hit as it illustrated The Twilight Saga: Breaking dawn Part 1.
Unique Australian Sounds
What draws my love for this musically gifted band is its incorporation with traditional Australian sounds. The Folk-Rock mixture of modern indie pop interpretation gives the band a unique and historic style that pays homage to sounds such as Bush Music. The brother and sister group have a talent for incorporating impressive soothing harmonies that melt into the chord progression throughout their musical material.
The song “Chateau” is my favorite song of the band. The track off their 2017 album Snow builds a room of romanticism and utter belonging. “I don’t mind if you wanna go anywhere. I’ll take you there. We can go if you wanna go anywhere. I’ll take you there.” The listener falls into this mesmerizing melody that’s repetition prolonged through the song. Elements build on top of the melody as harmonies linger in the background. The song traps me in this metaphoric fairytale state. It creates tears of joy, tears of longing, tears of romantic movement, as the track produces an intimacy surrounding love. The music video is a beautiful cinematic portrayal of what the song embodies.
Angus and Julia Stone creates a sound for Australian music that crosses ponds, mountains, and seas. Through their musical skills, the lyrics they create are simply the cherry on top of an already existing music masterpiece.
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