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Urthboy, Busby Marou, Oh Mercy, Violent Soho Lead Bleach Festival

30 October 2012 | 3:30 pm | Dan Condon

The first announcement for this Gold Coast festival is a cracker.

More Busby Marou More Busby Marou

 The Gold Coast has a reputation for a lot of things; a few great surfing spots, a fair contingent of tourists, the occasional dodgy businessman and a whole heap of seriously good parties.

One thing that people outside of the coast probably don't realise is the region's hunger for quality live music, so the Bleach Festival has this year stepped things up further than ever before to deliver a line up that is sure to satiate the most fervent live music buffs on the coast and those looking for an excuse to get down to Coolangatta for a weekend or two.

The main part of the Bleach Festival will take place at the Coolangatta Hotel on Friday 22 February, Saturday 23 and Saturday 2 March, though there will also be a series of free gigs littered around the area through its duration. Here's the first announcement!

Urthboy, Oh Mercy, Busby Marou, Violent Soho, Diafrix, The Medics, Loon Lake, Kingswood, Seven, The Lamplights, Oceanics, Thelma Plum, Blonde Bear and plenty more still to be announced!

Have a listen to the line up here:

URTHBOY:

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With a new record just released and scoring hugely positive reviews, Urthboy (aka Tim Levinson) will be unleashing new material along with some of those older favourites. Levinson, who first surfaced as a member of Aussie hip hop outfit The Herd, already has three solo albums under his belt and is a co-founder of Elefant Traks. He's a force to be reckoned with! He'll bring some of his super cool Aussie hip hop to Bleach

OH MERCY:

Melburnians Oh Mercy have just stepped off the road from their massive tour in support of album number three Deep Heat and now they are just about to head back out to play a few summer festivals and general good time shows. If you're a fan of these guys then you'll be singing and dancing like mad when they hit Bleach, the new material is just so damn conducive to both those activities. A lot of people are starting to treasure this band and we're expecting a big response come February.

BUSBY MAROU:

Rockhampton hasn't exactly been a hotbed for good quality pop music over the years, but Busby Marou are bucking the trend in a big way. The guys play a rootsy brand of music that is so well suited to an environment like that of Coolangatta and given the success of their debut album, we reckon there will be plenty of music lovers of all ages very keen on checking them out as a part of the Bleach festival. Apart from this, their summer is looking rather quiet, can we expect some new tunes from the lads? Time will tell.

VIOLENT SOHO:

Brisbane's Violent Soho do things their own way. Straight out of the mean streets and Christian Colleges of their home neighbourhood of Mansfield – the emblazoning of its 4122 postcode across the city in recent years is thanks largely to them – the band shot to notoriety after years of slogging it out on the road in their home country. A record produced by Gil Norton, a year of nonstop Stateside touring and props from every heavy rock band worth their salt have made these guys one of Brisbane's most adored bands. A killer single has given us a taste of what to expect from them in 2013, they'll start their campaign nicely with Bleach on the Gold Coast.

DIAFRIX:

With their brand new LP Pocket Full Of Dreams, Diafrix look set to reach a wider audience than ever before. Released just a few weeks ago, the record has scored rave reviews all over the shop and a couple of singles that have scored plenty of airplay across the country. They will really put these big, slick songs to the test over the summer as they play them at a couple of the country's finest festivals and by the time Bleach rolls around in February, we reckon they'll be in the best live form that we've seen them.

OCEANICS:

Ahh, the hometown boys. Oceanics have been slogging it out for a fair while now and they are really starting to make some inroads on the national scene. The lads have just dropped their new single In The City and celebrated that with plenty of time on the road, as they continue to win fans all around the country over to what they're doing. We don't think they'll need to win anyone over at Bleach and we look forward to seeing them on their home turf early next year.

THE MEDICS:

Brisbane's The Medics caught a lot of people's attention with their album Foundations and the indie band were a crowd favourite at Splendour mid-this year. The band aren't your regular kind of indie band though; their performances are intense and their sound big and powerful. After taking home a swag of National Indigenous Music Awards and touring the album a couple of months back the band have been scaling back the live performing, but they'll be doing their best to blow you away when they hit Cooly for Bleach.

LOON LAKE:

These three brothers make you want to dance with their simple, melodic rock. They will no doubt get the crowd up with their hits Bad To Me and Cherry Lips – you can expect an epic crowd singalong for that latter track – but they will truly impress you with their seriously impressive knack of writing fun, catchy tunes with a little bit of quirk that, somehow, aren't even annoying. Well that's what we reckon. It has been a big year for Loon Lake and hopefully Bleach is the start of a big 2013 for them as well.

THELMA PLUM:

This young Brisbane based artist has been wowing crowds with her intelligent songwriting and proficient performing style since she appeared pretty much out of nowhere just a couple of months ago. One gets the feeling that, if she wants it, Thelma Plum could have a long and fruitful career as a performing artist – if you haven't caught her yet, make sure you see her performing at Bleach and get in on the ground floor.  

SEVEN:

Boosting the hip hop and electronic side of the festival comes local MC Seven. He released his first EP a couple of years back, but it was this year's Floated that really saw the rapper find his feet as he collaborated with a heap of great up and coming producers. A bunch of live shows in support of the release this year have seen his star continue to rise and he'll no doubt turn plenty of newcomers on to his style at next year's Bleach.

KINGSWOOD:

After winning the triple j Unearthed slot for the Splendour In The Grass festival earlier this year, Kingswood have been one of those bands on everybody's lips this year. Comparisons have been made to Queens Of The Stone Age and more, check them out for yourself when they head back to the Goldie for Bleach early in 2013.

THE LAMPLIGHTS:

Another bunch of Gold Coast locals, these dudes have just dropped their second record What Love Is, after selling a veritable shitload of their eponymous debut LP upon its release, even without any traditional distribution. The Lamplights are great musicians playing an uplifting style of rootsy fare and they'll feel right at home when Bleach rolls around, we reckon.

BLONDE BEAR:

The music of Blonde Bear doesn't quite conjure images of lying on a beach, soaking up sun onto your bare skin as the omnipresent stench of sunscreen makes you yearn for a simpler time. No, their style more calls to mind being in the middle of a deep, spooky ocean as mammoth waves pick you up and throw you around. Their atmospheric brand of rock music is dark but melodic with slight post-rock touches bringing everything back to ground. Their debut EP came out early this year and we bet they've got big plans for 2013.

The Bleach Festival website has tickets on sale now, with a three night package setting you back just $55, with nightly tickets going for $25.