If you’re not across Austen yet you would be forgiven before today. The moody-pop act from Brisbane has just released her debut EP Passenger Seat, which takes us on a wild electro-pop journey through the beginning and soul-crushing end of a relationship.
Austen isn’t your average newcomer. She was named in triple j Unearthed’s Top 40 Most Played Artists last year after releasing only one song, ‘Too High To Cry’. She was then handpicked by unearthed to play their BIGSOUND showcase in 2018 and has since supported Paces, The Kite String Tangle, Nicole Millar, KLP, Running Touch, Col3trane, AURORA and Nyxen.
Now, with Austen about to head off on tour with Love Fame Tragedy (the new project from Murph of The Wombats) on October 6, we asked her a few questions to learn more about just what makes her tick.
Get To Know: Austen
How would you describe your music to your grandma?
Indie pop you can sad-dance to, but it’s made, like, INSIDE the computer mostly.
Tell us about a few of your tracks; their titles and what they’re about?
‘Passenger Seat’ – a song about a 12 day road trip I took with someone at the very start of a relationship, and the intense process of getting to know someone so quickly so soon.
‘Money’ – a self-love song about getting things done for yourself and staying unbothered by fake people.
‘Young & Numb’ – written about the aftershock of a brutal breakup, as well as the effect of social media on people’s mental health (and my own).
Stream Austen: ‘Money’:
What do you love about your hometown?
The people in Brisbane are super friendly and down to earth. It’s summer all year, and the local indie music scene is extremely sick.
Career highlight so far?
Jumping up on stage at Splendour In The Grass, and just getting to play support slots for so many artists that were the ones that inspired me to make music in the first place, and writing with some of my biggest inspirations. Having people tell you they flew interstate just to see you play a show is so nice too.
Stream Austen’s EP Passenger Seat:
Fave non-music hobby?
Dance or photography or yoga or listening to podcasts about aliens.
What’s on your dream rider?
Oh my god. Last year on a tour the venue accidentally sent me the headliner’s festival rider instead of the one for smaller venues, so it had catering for an entire big crew plus dancers.
We’re in this regional town and there’s five of us in the room, and they start bringing in food and alcohol for 30 people and an entire cake. It was the most uncomfortable, hilarious thing. Anyway, my dream rider would just be Ramen, a cocktail waiter, Mario Kart and Street Fighter, and a backstage puppy.
Dream music collaboration?
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Either living on a big piece of land with a lot of dogs and a huge home studio, or part of the first human colony on Mars.
What’s your go-to karaoke song?
10000000% ‘Mr Brightside’; never fails.
Austen – ‘Anthem’:
Love Fame Tragedy debut Australian tour
Tuesday, October 8th
Oxford Art Factory, Sydney, NSW
Wednesday, October 9th
Howler, Melbourne, VIC
Thursday, October 10th
The Zoo, Brisbane, QLD