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Award-Winning Australian Singer-Songwriter Melody Moko Releases Title Track From 'Suburban Dream'


By Stevie Connor.



It’s no secret Melody Moko suffered greatly with post-natal depression after the birth of her third child. As a form of therapy, she turned to songwriting and allowed songs to flow without being censored.


That process became her current and highly acclaimed album, “Suburban Dream”, which debuted at the top of the ARIA Country Charts back in February.


Moko releases the title track and the song that really shaped the entire concept for the album. “I love an album that tells a story and Suburban Dream is the first chapter of this album’s story”, says Moko. “It was hard for me to write this one as it’s honest and really hits hard on some personal subjects, but it’s a vignette of life as a wife in suburbia and doesn’t shy away from the truth of life with kids and how that affects a relationship dynamic”.


The album is like no other release. Putting her life under a microscope, Melody magnifies the struggles and joys she’s experienced over the past few years. “Suburban Dream was born from darkness and depression, the record is a diary entry into what it looks like to hit rock bottom and documents both the downfall and the recovery, it’s equal parts hopeful and hopeless”.

Melody also picked up a finalist nomination for the 2024 Golden Guitar Awards for Alt Country Album of The Year announced in Tamworth on Tuesday.



TOUR DATES

Fri 24 Nov – The Centre, Beaudesert QLD (special guest Lisa De Angelis)

Tues 23 Jan – Grounded, Tamworth NSW

Thurs 25 Jan – Rebel and Roar Showcase @ The Press, Tamworth NSW

Fri 22 Mar – Brolga Theatre, Maryborough QLD (with Ian Moss)

Sat 23 Mar – Moncrieff Entertainment Centre, Bundaberg QLD (with Ian Moss)



Melody Moko is an artist who doesn’t take shit. From anyone. So don’t even try it. Things will not end well. Melody is a focused, opinionated, observant and perceptive chronicler of both the large and small things in the world she lives in. And frequently both merge in one song.


It doesn’t take much for Melody to have an opinion – and when she does you won’t die wondering what it is. She is an artist – a singer and a songwriter if you will – who believes in that apparently old-fashioned notion that songs should be about something and that articulating universal themes and concerns through the personal can and will confront listeners and hopefully prompt reflection, and maybe change.


In every sense Melody is a musical activist who speaks about what she believes in and what she stands for as a human. On her new album, “Suburban Dream”, she’s dealing with social issues – sometimes from her personal world, other times from her observations of others. She does it with heart, swagger, attitude and commitment.


Melody is a woman who embraces and thrives on change. Born and raised in Adelaide, SA, she’s lived in Queensland and NSW, become a mother of three, and as a critically acclaimed songwriter she’s taken her music to the world since the release of debut album in 2017. Since then there’s been other albums. They’ve all been strong and impressive, some of them even garnering significant awards and accolades. All those songs were part of Melody’s growth as a writer, as a singer, as a person existing in the contemporary world.


Now, with “Suburban Dream”, she has made an album that transcends anything that’s come before from her. It’s powerful, intense and almost certainly going to garner a degree of controversy and divisiveness – just like Melody. This is an album that doesn’t pander to anything or anyone. It’s that sort of collection of songs. And they are sung like they matter – very, very much. And they do.


One of those artists whose style is a natural and heartfelt extension of her personality and perspective on life, Melody’s songs reside under the wide umbrella of Americana. But there’s a lot more going on as you’ll discover when you listen. Really, Melody is simply a very very fine contemporary singer and songwriter. There’s no genre’s required.


On “Suburban Dream” Melody melds contemporary and edgy lyrical content with finely finessed Americana production. It’s unlike anything she’s done before and that’s the mark of a true artist. Keep pursuing your own vision, throw caution to the wind, make a statement and see who wants to come along for the journey. Artists like Melody find their people – and people who need Melody’s words and insights find her.


In terms of the new albums creation, following on from her wildly successful release, “Two Kids and A Radio”, which saw Melody bring home a QMA Award, a Golden Guitar Award and a nomination for the prestigious Australian Music Prize, Melody and producer/instrumentalist husband, Michael Moko (Fanny Lumsden, Sara Storer, Kasey Chambers) finished a national tour with Ian Moss and Troy Cassar-Daley, boarded a plane to play revered US music festival, AmericanaFest.


Whilst in Nashville they worked with Grammy Award nominated producer, Neilson Hubbard (Mary Gauthier, Matthew Ryan) - this time collaborating with the whole band as producers, including Ruston Kelly’s guitarist, Juan Solorzano and engineer at East Nashville’s Skinny Elephant Studio, Dylan Alldredge.


The result is an album that starts with the strong foundations of incredible and tasteful musicians serving the songs, hits you in the guts with its unbridled honesty and leaves you with a lasting impression.


As a whole, “Suburban Dream”, is an exploration of life as a wife in suburbia with Melody putting her life under a microscope, magnifying the struggles and joys she’s experienced over the past two years. One thing you need to know and should expect from Melody is her no-holds-barred honesty and guts to frame it exactly how it is.


The album is also the first since Melody’s signing with Cheatin’ Heats/Spunk for Australia and New Zealand. With an experienced manager and an ambitious label Melody has expanded the team around her so that the songs will reach a wide audience. She wants her opinions to be heard!


With the ability to reach more people after the success of her previous record, Melody set out to show what she stands for, to make insightful statements on the issues that she faces as a mother, a member of the queer community, an activist, and a woman.


And Melody’s ongoing activism extends beyond writing songs, recording them and touring. In 2022 she and manager Kaz Waters formed Rebel and Roar to support empowerment and change in the music industry, including advocacy for more women to be played on radio and booked for festivals and other live music events.


In keeping with this, Melody’s new album is almost protest art, bold and emblazoned with hard-hitting, and sometimes hard to hear messages.


“Suburban Dream was born from darkness and depression, the record is a diary entry into what it looks like to hit rock bottom and documents both the downfall and the recovery, it’s equal parts hopeful and hopeless”, says Melody Moko.




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