Tours: Sharon Van Etten, Toby Martin, ESG

– Being pals with The National, Wye Oak, and Beirut has worked out well for Sharon Van Etten, who had members of each band appear on her third album, Tramp, earlier this year. One of the only Brooklyn-based musicians who wasn’t booked for the Laneway festival, Van Etten is instead coming out for her own show with a three-piece backing band as well as special guests Grand Salvo in December.

Sharon Van Etten concert:

Friday December 30 – The Corner, Melbourne

– Toby Martin, frontman of Youth Group, will be joining Robert Forster for some of the gigs on his current tour. Forster is touring for the first time in two years, coinciding with the release of Quiet Heart: The Best of The Go-Betweens. Martin will be joining him in Sydney and Melbourne, playing songs from his solo album Love’s Shadow, which by his own admission was partly inspired by The Go-Betweens’ classic 16 Lovers Lane.

Robert Forster and Toby Martin tour:

Sunday October 28 – Caravan Music Club, Melbourne

Friday November 9 – The Vanguard, Sydney

Saturday November 10 – The Vanguard, Sydney

– South Bronx band ESG were influenced by Motown, but their sparse sound and dominating basslines got them billed in punk clubs in the 1980s, where they became a surprising fit for the “no wave” scene they’d never heard of. ESG went on to be both an influence on post-punk as well as heavily sampled by a long list of hip-hop acts. They’re still around but have never visited Australia before, so it’ll be a bittersweet occasion when they do because they’ll be touring the album that will be their last, Closure.

ESG tour:

Friday January 18 – Oxford Arts Factory, Sydney

Saturday January 19 – Sugar Mountain Festival, Melbourne

Sunday January 20 – The Bakery, Perth