Australia’s queen of soul Kylie Auldist returns with an ’80s-inspired album
27.10.2020

Australia’s queen of soul Kylie Auldist returns with an ’80s-inspired album

WORDS BY JESSICA MAGTALAS AND TALIA RINALDO

Groovy and soulful, This Is What Happiness Looks Like is a dance party waiting to happen.

Often recognised as the voice of behind soul/funk act The Bamboos and the monster summer anthem ‘This Girl’ by Kungs vs Cookin’, Kylie Auldist’s sublime pipes have broken charts across the world, with the remix reaching #1 on single charts globally and garnering more than one billion streams on Spotify and YouTube alone.

With an ARIA nomination under her belt, performing with a variety of funk bands including Polyester and Mega Bias, and lending her voice to legends such as Jimmy Barnes, Renee Geyer and Katie Noonan, she’s clearly talented. However, Auldist remains mostly under the radar in the Australian music scene.

Considering she’s such a successful musician – renowned for her spectacular and charismatic performances – why does she go unnoticed by a majority of the Australian public?

“It’s a strange world out there for the music. I’ve never been a pop singer and I fit a certain genre, which is soul and funk, and that’s very niche in Australia,” Auldist explains. “I’m really lucky though in the way the overseas market has been amazing for me.”

It’s a damn tragedy for those who aren’t acquainted with her music. The Glenroy mother and musician is one of Australia’s hidden gems, blessing our ears and warming our souls for the past decade with the groovy tracks and her radiating aura.

Auldist recently released her newest addition to her discography, This Is What Happiness Looks Like – which will make you want to get up and dance.

Inspired by her favourite ’80s disco and electro artists like Prince and Madonna, as well as the New York club scene during that era, the album sports various tracks mixed with heavy synths, electric guitar and catchy hooks.

Written with longtime friend and bandmate Warren Hunter, This Is What Happiness Looks Like is the follow-up to her 2016 album Family Tree, which marked Auldist’s first foray into ’80s-style funk. Stepping away from her searing soul sound, Family Tree reinvigorated her love for music.

“I had already done three very soul solo albums [before Family Tree], I was in The Bamboos and singing with Cooking on 3 Burners at the same time. I got my boogie fix everywhere else,” she says.

“I love disco and I wanted to break out. You get to a certain part of your career where you just think, ‘I’m not going to rule the world. I may as well just have fun, enjoy the music. I’m not beholden to anyone, I’m allowed to do whatever I want’… And so I did.”

Family Tree fuelled the fire for her latest release which sees Auldist perfecting a collection of amazing new boogie, disco and electro-inspired tracks – you’ll definitely feel a sense of nostalgia.

The opening song, ‘Everythink’ features an electro-boogie sound, fused with lyrics reminiscent of classic Wham! or Hall & Oates tunes. Infectious to the ears, the slinky synth bass line partnered with stunning vocals is perfect for those summery tunes.

Want to recreate Tom Cruise’s iconic Risky Business dance scene?

‘Is it Fun?’ will make sure you won’t be able to sit still. This boogie track is one you won’t be able to get out of your head. With a singalong chorus and irresistible groove, you’ll be transported back to the ’80s.

For a steadier tune, listen to ‘Flow’. Like the track describes, the song features a more easy-going vibe, ending with guitar-heavy melodies to set you up for the next piece.

Growing up surrounded by successful and ambitious individuals, Auldist’s story is an adventurous ride. Attending School of the Air at nine and having lived in Bhutan, China and India, for this soul queen, the sky is the limit.

“I’m really proud of this album, I think it’s beautiful,” she says.

“I just want to go out and share it with the world. Singing for me is like breathing and I feel like it makes me fly and it makes me feel good. I’m missing being inside the music with the band and, you know, feeling those vibrations in my body.”

A release not to miss out on, get your groove on and keep your ears open for the queen of soul.

This Is What Happiness Looks Like is out now via Soul Bank Music.

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