Golden Guitar awards season is frantically approaching.
And this means we are currently getting a flood of new releases from both established and exciting new talent, as the awards entry deadline approaches.
Here is our list of terrific recently released tracks and music videos from the stars of Australian and New Zealand country.
1. The Wolfe Brothers – ‘Hey Brother’
Australia’s biggest Country/Rock band say ‘Hey Brother’ is the “most important song” they have released to date. It’s the latest single from the four-time Golden Guitar winning album Country Heart.
“It is a song directly inspired by those who’ve served our country. Through touring Australia in 2015 as part of the “Spirit Of The Anzacs” tour [with Lee Kernaghan] we got to meet so many incredible veterans and hear their stories,” say The Wolfe Brothers (pictured).
“The veteran space is such a complex and sensitive one and it’s been a honour to learn more about it through the journey of this song. It is our hope ‘Hey Brother’ will be a discussion starter, so that the wider civilian community gain a better understanding of our veterans, as well as being a song of survival, mateship, hope and healing.”
2. Jetty Road – ‘Bumps and Bruises’
This is the latest single from Jetty Road’s sixth album, Because We Can, which is released on September 20.
“We quickly realised that this was an anthem for the everyday person. The ups and downs, the good and bad decisions, the baggage we carry with us throughout our lives, the blood, sweat and tears, the triumphs and the heartaches,” says Jetty Road.
“These marks on your body and the lines on your face, are a map of where you’ve been,” they conclude.
“Don’t erase them. Embrace them. You don’t have to be perfect to shine in this world.”
3. Abby Christo – ‘Body Language’
‘Body Language’ is the follow-up to Abby Christo’s debut single ‘Kiss Me Into Monday,’ which has already scored over 1 million audio streams.
“Body Language is about reflecting on a previous relationship and wishing you’d seen the signs of it failing, before it gets to the brutal breakup. I’m a very open book and this shows in my song-writing. I usually struggle to get into my creative headspace so soon, but it all felt so real, so this was almost my way of dealing with everything,” says Christo.
“It wasn’t a bitter breakup, but I’d best describe ‘Body Language’ as sweet but frustrating. It sums up the relationship.”
4. Josh Setterfield – ‘The Way God Made Me’
Setterfield calls this new single a “feelsy” song about depression.
“They say Country Music is all about the truth. So I wrote the truth,” he says.
“’The Way God Made Me’ is about my struggle with depression and not knowing how to get out or explain it to people when they ask. I hit rock bottom one day and thought it was time to address it.”
5. Rachael Fahim – ‘Homewrecker’
Fahim is the face of Spotify’s Fresh Country playlist this week, with her new track ‘Homewrecker.’
It’s the new focus track from her EP Iconic that was released last Friday. The EP also features the tracks ‘Crush,’ ‘Brake Lights’ and ‘What I Don’t Know’ which have all done big consumption numbers on streaming services.
6. Stephanie Penrose – ‘Body Talk’
New local artist Stephanie Penrose has released a raw and honest song about giving in to forbidden desire.
“There’s so many lines that we have crossed, when we’re ‘fraid to say it, our bodies talk,” she sings.
7. Jack McDougall – ‘Let Me Out’
Like Setterfield, Jack McDougall touches on his mental health struggles with his debut single.
Not long after he left school, McDougall was working three jobs, had very little social life and was struggling to cope with life. He says that writing this song with co-writer Peta Cherae helped him work through his issues and feel better again.
He hopes this song will encourage others to open up to friends when they are feeling down.
8. Jody Direen – ‘All Nighter’
Last but not least, Jody Direen is in love and she shares her joy in this super-catchy new song and video.
‘All Nighter’ was written by fellow Kiwi Kaylee Bell – singer of the recent hit single ‘Keith.’
Direen is currently recording her fourth album which will be released next year.