Music Opinion

'Great Southern Land': New ice in Aussie classic's veins

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Multi-instrumentalist and producer Cassian (Image supplied)

Iconic Australian song 'Great Southern Land' is rocking a cool new coat, courtesy of Sydney-via-LA multi-instrumentalist and producer Cassian.


With no less than the blessing of ICEHOUSE frontman Iva Davies himself, Cassian’s brand new single has breathed fresh life into the Australian classic 'Great Southern Land', ready for a new generation.

Of his new creation, the talented producer said: 'Being involved with the legacy of this song is probably the greatest honour of my career thus far, one that I don’t take lightly.'

Wrapping it in shiny new clothes while keeping the essence of the original — this is Cassian’s love letter to his home country.

Cassian told Independent Australia:

I feel like it's a song that is unavoidable growing up in Australia, especially in the '90s. For me personally, it just always resonated, always felt meaningful, always felt cool, always felt fresh and unique. It's a song I found myself always coming back to. Finding out how Iva produced it in his bedroom using synths that I'm still using today only strengthened how I feel about the song and his legacy.

It was definitely a labour of love for Cassian, going through over 100 iterations of the piece, meticulously manipulating and crafting each individual sound.

Having previously worked with artists Rüfüs Du Sol, Peking Duk and Hayden James, Cassian has developed his craft well — to justly apply it to something as beloved as this and emerge with a work that is fresh and vital is no small thing.

'Great Southern Land' may have been remixed before, but Cassian has created something uniquely special.


New Jersey lads The Gaslight Anthem have reunited after an eight-year hiatus and have released their first new music since the Get Hurt album in 2014.

The new single 'Positive Charge' sees the band bringing their typical heart-on-sleeve earnestness once more. There’s a tenderness here that would suggest vocalist Brian Fallon has found a new sense of pathos and vulnerability.

It’s great to see them back in the studio and trodding the boards again. If this is any indication of what the new album will sound like, then it will be a brilliant one.


Adelaide band Teenage Joans are made of two inspiring young women: Cahli Blakers on guitars and vocals and Tahlia Borg on drums and vocals.

Their early promise was rewarded by winning the Triple J Unearthed High competition for high school bands in 2020.

A couple of years ago, the Joans released a great track called 'Three Leaf Clover' that I was really excited about. Their brand new single 'Superglue' is equally good. The clever lyrics, punchy music and melodic hooks are of the kind that will have you singing all day.


Isn’t it great that we share the planet with a band calling itself Turtle Custard?

These Central Coast lads describe themselves as:

'... a delicious, three-piece, funk-rock feed with a side of chips and a drink. This culinary experience is infused with psychedelic sounds and a healthy helping of heaviness so when you lick their licks and chew their tunes, you might just be left wanting a bit more Turtle Custard in your tum tum.'

'Polyethame Street' is a multi-layered confection of groove, soul and melody that needs to be consumed to be appreciated, not just listened to! Look out for the new album that’s in the works.


Artificial Intelligence (AI) has been getting a lot of conflicting press lately. Especially in terms of its ability to create music that sounds suspiciously similar to other well-established artists. It does present as many opportunities as challenges, regardless of what field of expertise it is being used in.

I still think it has a while to go yet before it is of any real threat to the music industry. Here's why.

Kirt Connor (whose website was unavailable at the time of writing) is a comedian who has used an AI-styled process based on the concept of the Markov chain to generate new sets of (albeit) fake lyrics from actual databases of lyrics by actual artists and turned them into new works.

He performs all the music himself. This process scraped every lyric ever sung in the vast back catalogue of AC/DC and it learned enough to train itself to create a new set of lyrics for a song it called 'Great Balls'. Connor added some realistic riff-rock backing and did his best Brian Johnson impersonation to create this unusual track.

However, as you will hear, the process either needs work or better source material, as the lyrics are a bit… hmmm, how to (digitally) say the words...


David Kowalski is a writer, musician, educator, sound engineer and podcaster. His podcasts 'The Sound and the Fury Podcast' and 'Audio Cumulus' can be heard exclusively here. You can follow David on Twitter @sound_fury_pod.

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