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Australian band Monks of Mellonwah impress with first full-length album

Thanks in part to the capability to download singles as opposed to having to buy full-length albums in order to get the songs one actually wants, it has become increasingly more difficult to stumble upon albums that are a pleasure to listen to from start to finish.

One such album that should be stumbled upon is the new album “Turn The People” from Australian indie band Monks of Mellonwah. Hailing from Sydney, this quartet made up of lead vocalist Vikram Kaushik, guitarist Joseph de la Hoyde, bassist John de la Hoyde (Joseph’s brother), and drummer Joshua Baissari, won “Best International Rock Band” and “Best Indie Rock Band” at the 2012 L.A. Music Awards and the 2012 AIM Music Awards, respectively.

Following their wins, Monks of Mellonwah originally released their album as three separate EPs in 2013, but “Turn The People” was released as their first full-length album in March 2014. While mostly self-produced, there are even a few tracks produced by Grammy-award winning producer Keith Olsen, who has worked with the likes of Ozzy Osbourne and Santana.

It is a polished, solid alternative rock offering. The first single, “Ghost Stories,” is radio-friendly fare, complete with a catchy guitar hook and repetitive lyrics that are easy to memorize. However, it is far from the gem of the album.

That honor would go to “Tear Your Hate Apart,” a rich and lush sounding landscape complemented by the smooth vocals of Kaushik. Here he sounds like a young Anthony Kiedis (Red Hot Chili Peppers) crossed with the demeanor of Brandon Boyd (Incubus).

Another contender could be “Pulse,” with the expected driving bass line that the title would suggest but with an electronic-synth twist; or “Downfall,” a strong indie-rock track that sounds like it could have been a B-side off the last Muse album (not a bad thing).

The band has been busy touring the U.S. this summer to promote “Turn The People.” Now signed to A&R Worldwide, a label that boasts other artists such as Adele, Keane, and the aforementioned Muse, it is highly suggested that one see Monks of Mellonwah before their ticket prices skyrocket above the current $15 range. Already having visited Seattle back in June at The Crocodile, they return this month to open for Saving Abel at El Corazón on July 14.

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