While Australia didn’t fair too well in the highest selling singles and albums for 2011 (who am I kidding, Oz music didn’t even rate on the charts apart from Gotye!), it’s time to look at 2012 and see what Oz artists are doing this year. There are a lot of debut albums from Oz acts in 2012, and here are some that got my attention…

Catcall
Satellites – an electro fusion with coatings of sugary pop – Catcall is the guise of Catherine Kelleher. Her debut album The Warmest Place is due out in April or May this year, and I, for one, am excited to see what this kitty can pull off.

Gold Fields
During 2010, Ballarat fivesome Gold Fields went from day jobs to a sold-out gig at Melbourne’s Ding Dong Lounge in less than six months. Here’s why: you take little bit of Friendly Fires, mix it up with some dark, dramatic pop elements and add some glow-in-the-dark body paint – then you have Gold Fields. Their debut album is due in April-May.

Ladyhawke
Kiwi lass Pip Brown stole our hearts – and some ARIAs – with her gorgeous synth-infused debut album. In March, Ms Brown will release her follow up, Anxiety, and she sticks to her roots – there’s still an electro heart with some heavier guitars this time around.

San Cisco
From the cutesy call-and-response pop tune Awkward, this Fremantle-based indie-pop band perfectly captured the 21st century teen dilemma of text messaging and stalking after a first date goes awry. They currently have two EPs out, so a debut album could be close behind.

Last Dinosaurs
Expect more weird dance-pop craziness from this Brisbane band with their first album In A Million Years, due out in March. Strangely enough, two of the band members’ names translate to variations of “dinosaur” in Japanese.

Bleeding Knees Club
Part surf sounds, part indie-punk, this Gold Coast duo releases their debut album Nothing To Do in March. Sounds a little like the Beach Boys got drunk and had a fling with Joan Jett and then these two crazy kids are the love children from that fateful tryst. Like ear candy, only tastier.

Pond
Three members of Tame Impala got bored and decided to churn out some pop-rock with a neon-bright synth core. Think MGMT on steroids. This March, we’ll hear more of the trio when Beard Wives Denim comes out. Mint.

And keep your ear to the ground for…

The Temper Trap – The Melbourne lads are launching a follow up to their crazy gazillion-platinum selling album Conditions mid-2012.

Stonefield – Rumour has it this cute-as-pie sweethearts with the bluesy-soul vibe will record their debut album in Melbourne with a producer who was once part of one of Australia’s leading rock bands. Yes, I have the insight goss.

The Veronicas – yes, Billy Corgan wrote some tracks on the record but no word as to when the twins will release it.

Empire of the Sun – Luke Steele and Nick Littlemore have kissed and made up, so we can expect some new euphoric electro splendour sometime this year.

Have I missed any Oz acts? Which Australian releases are you excited for this year?

Mascara and Monsters is Angela Allan's blog covering music and mayhem. She's also the founder and editor of Soot Magazine.

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