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Best Forgotten Australian Music 2000-2004 Part 1

Updated on September 30, 2018
Charlie Hunter profile image

Born in Melbourne, Australia, Charlie is an avid music fan whose music collection and taste spans a wide range of genres.

Music is a primal need. Even as music tastes change, some music never leaves you. From punk, electronica, hip hip, pop and indie rock - this is the top list of great, underrated or forgotten tunes from Australia in the early 2000s. Rediscover Aussie cult classics and enjoy them again.

I hope you enjoy reminiscing about these tunes. Send this page to your friends and vote for your favourite at the end.

Best Forgotten Australian Music 2000-2004 Part 1

1. Deloris — "The Unbroke Part of It"

2. The Hot Lies — "One For The Memories"

3. Machine Translations — "She Wears a Mask"

4. Downsyde — "To Tha Stumps" (Ft. Drapht)

5. Another Race — "Jumpin"

6. Klinger — "Ben Lee"

7. Something With Numbers — "What I Believe"

8. Two Up ‎— "Why Do I Try So Hard?" (Reluctant Funk Mix)

9. H-Block 101 ‎— "Group Dynamics"

10. Genshen — "Nothing Quite Like This"

1. Deloris — "The Unbroke Part of It"

Album: Fake Our Deaths

Release Year: 2004

It is hard to describe what makes this song so excellent. The title alone might invoke an emotional response in some people before you even listen to it. You could describe it as a masterpiece of progressive, seamless, surf-rock/pop. I would be happy for this song to be played at my funeral. Markus Teague’s lyrics are warming and beautiful. Forget having a chorus, this track doesn’t need one.

Unbroke never really received the plaudits it deserves. It is hard to believe the song only received brief radio exposure.

As you're approaching your destination on the way to the beach, all you need to do is put this tune on in the car. It is a necessary life experience.

Available as a FREE high quality download on Bandcamp.

2. The Hot Lies — "One For The Memories"

Album: Streets Become Hallways

Release Year: 2004

The Hot Lies had a small degree of commercial success with their 2007 album Ringing In The Sane, but longtime fans will agree that their earliest work is their best. Some would be familiar with their Heart Attacks and Callous Acts EP, although less would have the 5-track debut in their CD collection. Taken from the EP Streets Become Hallways (2004), One For The Memories is arguably the tightest track in the Hot Lies discography.

3. Machine Translations — "She Wears a Mask"

Album: Happy

Release Year: 2002

Australia produced some excellent indie music in the early 2000s, and Machine Translations (aka. Greg Walker) made a solid contribution. She’s Wears a Mask is a clinical piece of easy-listening, chilled out, soft indie rock. This was recognised by its entry at number 95 in Triple J’s Hottest 100 in 2002. At the time of writing, Walker is still releasing music under the guise of Machine Translations, although Mask’ remains the highpoint.

4. Downsyde — "To Tha Stumps" (Ft. Drapht)

Album: When the Dust Settles

Release Year: 2004

The Syllabolix crew were making great music long before Drapht went mainstream. To The Stumps features one of Drapht’s best verses and, in my opinion, is Downsyde’s best song. Despite never being released as a single, this is the stand-out tune from the 2004 release When The Dust Settles. If you want to get your hands on the 12” version in mint/near-mint condition, you will need to fork out around $500 AUD.

5. Another Race — "Jumpin"

Single: Jumpin'

Release Year: 2001

Avid Triple J listeners will remember Another Race’s track Jumpin’ hitting the radio in 2001. It wasn’t too long after this that the popularity of so-called Nu-Metal declined globally, along with Another Race. It is a shame that Another Race never made it big... because they rock. Another Race CD’s still fetch good money on second-hand markets, a testament to their quality. Check out Jumpin’ to see the energy and skill of Another Race on display.

6. Klinger — "Ben Lee"

Single: Ben Lee / Sayonara Anyway

Release Year: 2000

Klinger were Melbourne’s princes of indie pop-rock in the early 2000s, combining basic chords, infectious keys, quirky lyrics and lets not forget, the trademark stop-start phenomenon. This song may come across as simple or silly to avant garde music fans, but make no mistake - this is a fine pop tune.

Was Ben Birchall (Klinger frontman) really jealous of Ben Lee, or was he just taking the piss? I must admit, Cigarettes Will Kill You by Ben Lee the artist is a decent track, but who really likes Ben Lee? The same dudes who drink coffee at the footy (wankers). I’d rather Klinger all day.

7. Something With Numbers — "What I Believe"

EP: The Barnicles & Stripes EP

Release Year: 2002

The early works of pop punk bands can often sound amateurish, poorly recorded and void of the genre’s signature catchiness. Blink 182 and Green Day are good examples. Something With Numbers coveted first release however, The Barnicles & Stripes EP, is high quality pop punk rock. Jake Grigg delivers sharp and snappy vocals all throughout the record.

There are several great songs on this release, making it difficult to pick just one. What I Believe is marginally my favourite, although We Can Succeed and the title track Barnicles And Stripes would also be worthy choices.

8. Two Up ‎— "Why Do I Try So Hard?" (Reluctant Funk Mix)

Album: Tastes Like Chicken

Release Year: 2002

It was a song about wannabe gangsta’s hanging out at Westfield Parramatta that took Triple J by storm in 2002, rocketing to the top of the Net 50 show. However, this was the pinnacle for the satirical duo Two Up (aka. 2UP). After releasing a full-length album in 2004, Two Up disappeared from the map… probably after most people realised that their style was rather lame. Worth a look for the nostalgia, but not if you genuinely like hip hop.

9. H-Block 101 ‎— "Group Dynamics"

Single: Group Dynamics

Release Year: 2001

They are stalwarts of Australian punk rock, they are the band that punk bands love… they are H-Block 101, and they delivered an Aussie punk classic in 2001. With a ripping guitar solo, harmonica cameo, and the traditional ‘f**k the system’ themed lyrics, Group Dynamics is a real uplifter.

10. Genshen — "Nothing Quite Like This"

Album: Someplace Else

Release Year: 2002

Nothing Quite Like This was on high rotation on Triple J radio back in November 2002, yet unfortunately never made the Hottest 100.

Still, the song was considered catchy enough to appear on Pepsi Live. The frontman Quentin had the look of someone with the potential to fill festival grounds; a Kram (Spiderbait) or Win Butler (Arcade Fire) type character. However, it wasn’t to be for Genshen… and the indie rockers into faded into obscurity in 2003. Is there really Nothing Quite Like This song? You be the judge.

What is your favourite song from this list?

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