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New Music Friday: Moaning Lisa

Jacqui Douglas

Canberra grunge outfit Moaning Lisa place their sound somewhere between “composed restraint and fuzzed-out, life-affirming alternative rock.”

Today marks the release of I Want A Girl (Carrie); at once intimate and defiant, controlled and unleashed, the song is the first of a series of anticipated 2018 tracks.

The song’s essence was penned by the group’s Charlie Versegi, who initially doubted whether it was a fit for Moaning Lisa.

“I think a part of me thought it was too personal (I wrote it after a girl left me for a guy) and another part of me didn’t want to subject the band to my unabashed view on sexuality…I realised both things were what made the song so important.”

Transformed with the full band, Versegi’s self-described “melancholic lament” took on a boldness and a free-spiritedness.

“A big influence on the recording of the song was Angel Olsen’s My Woman. I love the playfulness that comes out in the treatment of the distorted guitars and reverb-heavy vocals.”

While the name pays respect to Carrie Brownstein, fellow frontwoman Hayley Manwaring reflected on how the song became “an homage to a whole plethora of queer women who came before us.”

In just under two years, Moaning Lisa have taken out the top spot in the National Campus Band Competition and collected two nominations for National Live Music Awards. Their debut EP The Sweetest enjoyed airplay on Triple J/Triple J Unearthed, FBi, Triple R and SYN radio. However, the group’s upward trajectory hasn’t distanced it from a close connection to their audience.

The video clip for I Want A Girl threw open the gates to a host of women and non-binary people, using an “intentionally low-fi” aesthetic to celebrate rather than obscure lived experience. Versegi described the importance of ensuring “the people who volunteered to be involved were represented authentically…what better way to do that then to get them to film themselves on their own cameras, in their own homes, and on their own terms. We wanted to capture the raw attitude that is so integral to the song.”

I Want A Girl (Carrie) available to stream or downloadvideo clip online now.

Moaning Lisa will appear with Cape Cope and Chastity Belt @ The Basement, 21 March. Tickets available from Kingdom Sounds.

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Jacqui Douglas

Jacqui briefly entertained the notion of becoming a drummer. Fortunately, singing, writing and drinking coffee generally required less coordination. Best known as one-third of vocal trio Kaleid, Jacqui loves all things live music and dreams of opening her own venue. Her New Year’s resolution? Talk less, and say more. More about the Author

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