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Guest Selector: Anika Luna's 19 in '21

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The Hoist host Anika Luna takes control with five killer tracks from Aussie artists who have either turned 19 or were 19 in 2021… just like her!

Anika’s new summer program Takeback tastemaker dives into her notorious monthly Spotify playlists, described as a “chaotic explosion of music, sounds, and inspiration”. If you haven’t yet come across Anika and want a better idea of her music credentials, tonight’s Guest Selector playlist is just one of 181 public playlists to her name. Click the button above to hear Anika break down her selections in her own words, or read on below: you can stream every song at the end of the article.

Champ Ruby – “She Said”

Champ Ruby are a Melbourne 4-piece made up of school mates Julian Lauretta, Daniel Williamson, Will Trigila and Damian Mangone, all of whom graduated high school in the height of the pandemic and turned 19 in 2021. Anika spoke to the band for The Hoist back in August, and says the indie-rock group have built an engaged young fanbase behind them. “They bring all their personality to the band, which is what I love,” she says, “and it’s made for a really strong identity.”

Why “She Said”? “As soon as it kicks in, you instantly fall in love with it,” Anika says, “because of the tempo, because of the tune, because of how addictive it is.” For Anika, “She Said” became one of those tracks she put on loop in 2021, and is a fitting opening track to her Guest Selector playlist!

Ruel – “Face To Face”

Since his first commercial release on M-Phazes’ “Golden Years” at just 15, the now-19-year-old Ruel has developed an extensive discography, including three EPs, sixteen lead singles and several awards, including the ARIA Award for Breakthrough Artist – Release in 2018. Anika says she was there from the early days at the Northcote Social Club, but at first thought she was “too cool” to declare herself a fan. Fortunately, she has done a complete 180: “I love watching his character development,” she says. “Over the years he’s come out of his shell, he’s gotten a bit more coordinated [and] his dance moves are absolutely thriving.”

“Face To Face is, without a doubt, my favourite Ruel song,” she tells us, marking a significant milestone in his career where Ruel would take control over his sound. Keenly awaiting his debut album in 2022.

Tulliah – “Okay”

Tulliah is yet another artist who Anika interviewed on The Hoist this year, and it’s unsurprising that the 19-year-olds connected. Coming out of high school, Anika says, is where you find your tribe and begin to appreciate the world is a bigger place. It’s this bigger world that Tulliah reflects in her debut EP, Fre$h Hugs, from which “Okay”—a track about supporting your friends when they need it most—is taken.

“She just ooozes love and warmth inside and out,” Anika says, “and you can really feel that kind of sincerity in her music as well.” Most recently, Tulliah performed live at Chapel off Chapel with what Anika describes as “the most beautiful performance” she has ever seen: “You could hear a pin drop.”

Matilda Pearl – “Linger”

A dance floor tune that is a “massive serotonin boost”, “Linger” is clearly inspired by the likes of Madonna and Kylie Minogue, with high praise for Matilda Pearl’s immaculate vocals. Anika first heard the track live at the intimate Wrangler Studios, prior the track dropping in May 2021. The verdict for the unknown electro-pop tune? “Banger alert,” Anika tell us.

And yes, Anika also spoke to Matilda Pearl for The Hoist in 2021.

Budjerah feat. MAY-A – “Talk”

It is perhaps a rarity for someone in the radio industry to be so self-aware, but in Anika’s own words, “if we can take anything away from this episode, it’s how much I like to talk!” Two icons of the local scene collaborate on “Talk”—19-year-old Coodjinburra man Budjerah and 20-year-old MAY-A, who was 19 in 2021— stressing the importance of communication. Both artists are rising stars within the Australian music industry, with Budjerah taking home both an ARIA and a NIMA this year, with MAY-A dropping her debut EP Don’t Kiss Ur Friends in August.

Catch Anika Luna on Takeback tastemaker each afternoon from 4-6pm on SYN, all this week until 31 December!


Anika Luna

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