The Lucky Wonders
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The Lucky Wonders


Band Folk Pop


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"A Whisper Away - feature article"

Emma Royle and The Lucky Wonders take Lucy on another run around the country... - Rhythms Magazine

"Triple album review"

"...a refreshing musical oasis, in a world that often seems rushed, complex and impersonal." - Rhythms Magazine

"This outstanding CD is a breath of fresh air"

JOHN ANDREWARTHA Hobart Mercury, June 5, 2010

This delicate blend of delightful melodies and stories about love, hard times and happiness is sure to appeal to those seeking an album that is quintessential to what many people seek or experience. The CD covers a lot of ground and provides genuine optimism. The Byron Bay outfit recorded the album with help from Ben Franz (The Waifs), Anthony Lycenko (Pete Murray and The Beautiful Girls) and Dave Sanders (Acre), so it is no surprise Thirteen O’Clock is as good as it is. The opening track, Home, is a gentle, gorgeous affair, as is the mysterious Nullarbor and the enticing Please Don’t Break Me Down. This outstanding CD is a breath of fresh air and a must for those seeking respite from the garbage that bombards the airwaves. - Hobart Mercury, June 5, 2010

"'Anyway' single review"

The Lucky Wonders - Anyway (Independently released Australian import CD single, Pop)
How can any band sound so sincere and pure...? Hard to believe, but the folks in Australia's The Lucky Wonders make music that really is genuine and sincere. We were blown away by these ladies' last full-length release (and so were a lot of other folks)...and now they're following it up with this juicy little single. Only two songs presented here ("Anyway" and "Think About Leaving")...but they're both superb cuts that are more than worth multiple spins. This sure whets our appetites for more. Only seven plus minutes in length...this little teaser disc most surely is intended to satiate listeners until the next full-length can be recorded and released. We can't wait... - babysue

"The Lucky Wonders music feature"

The Lucky Wonders are one of those bands that slightly slip between categorisation ; calling them ‘roots’ makes it sound like they have a djambi player, which thankfully they don’t, ‘folk’ would make them sound too traditional and ‘indie’ would just be incorrect. They are fun though, and crucial to sucking punters into their melodic maw, they do feature ukulele and a sweat voiced girl singing in an Australian accent. “It’s feel good but it’s not vacuous,” singer and one half of the band, Jessie Vintila says by way of summing up their sound. “It’s not folk pop, its different folk, but I don’t want to put the indie word in there just to have to give it substance.”

The Lucky Wonders have come from seemingly nowhere, having only formed last year, they released their debut album Thirteen O’Clock in March, which pulled down some notable radio air. Now they are back already with a new double a-side, Anyway and Thing about Leaving.

Hailing from Byron Bay, the core of the band consists of Jessie and Emma Royle. They are the song-writing team, with bass and drums roped in for recording and tours. “Emma and I just sort of ended up having to put together music for a puppet show in the Adelaide Fringe Festival,” Jessie says of the birth of the ‘Wonders.

“I had the gig and she came through at the last minute after some others pulled out. So we collaborated on this music for the puppet show, and it came very easily, which I had never found that before with anyone else while song writing.

“I find co-writing quite awkward and have leant to avoid it,” she adds. “But with Emma it flowed really well, so it naturally kept happening; we played a few shows amongst friends and set up a few gigs, and we just had this huge response.

“People were just coming and demanding albums at the end of the shows, so we thought we may as well just go and make one then.”

And so here we are. Thirteen O’Clock is a lovely Waifs-sounding disc, bouncing and trundling through a number of standout tracks, So You’ve Never could be a lost track from Frente’s Marvin The Album, with sing-a-long ‘ba-ba-da’s’. The new singles follow along in the same up-beat folk frivolity. “They represent the really happy and relaxed style of what we do,” Jessie confesses.

“The album is a real journey, with balanced light and shade, whereas these two songs are both really happy. I will listen to them for pleasure, which is quite unusual when you have just made something. To put it on voluntary and want to hear it. I put Thing About Leaving on to relax me, especially the harmonies, with Emma, Ben Franz and I, we just came up with the harmony out side the recording studio, having an idyllic little sing-a-long out in the country and just put them down for the song. You can feel that in the song I think, it is really relaxed.”

Jessie’s musical story is almost stereotypically Bryon Bay, her mother was a folk singer and she was at gigs as a toddler, hanging around, grabbing microphones and wanting attention already, even singing German nursery rhymes at her mum’s market gig. But it is the songwriting dynamic between Jessie and Emma that keeps The Lucky Wonders fresh.

“We come from slightly different musical backgrounds,” Jessie says of her band mate. “I’ve been brought up on a lot of folk and blues and Emma is more if an indie-pop Triple J-type. So we have become really compatible, we both bring something to the table and we really like how it combines, it becomes something of its own.

“It’s got its own character, the stuff we do together,” she surmises. “If one of us has a whole lot of a song coming out, we won’t bother to finish it because we would rather have the other person inject their flavor into it. The whole thing is quite seamless and we quite often can’t remember who did what in the end.
“We don’t sit down and say ‘we want a song about this’,” Jessie adds, “some experience or emotions are bubbling away and they just come out in a song from one of us and the other will jump in and help out. There is one rule of thumb, which is if it is really bleak, then it’s not finished.

“We all go through hard times but if you can’t shed a bit of light then it’s not something we are interested in putting out there.”

The new LUCKY WONDERS double A-side Anyway is out now and they are in town playing at Wesley Anne with Hello Satellites this Saturday October 9, and a Sunday arvo session the next day at The Bendigo Hotel, from 3.30pm with The Stillsons. - Beat Magazine

"Like a warming homemade recipe you want to share"

Like a warming homemade recipe you want to share with your closest friends and family, The Lucky Wonders’ debut album Thirteen O’clock is music for sharing.
Singer songwriter duo Jessie Vintila and Emma Royle are set to warm your hearts with their gentle, melodic harmonies and folk-pop arrangements peppered with bright ukulele, glockenspiel and harmonica.

Recorded in their hometown of Byron Bay over a series of early mornings, Thirteen O’clock becomes indicative of those curiously creative, still and silent hours.

Brimming with tales of isolation and love, Thirteen O’clock is ultimately resolved to hopefulness and embracing the journey despite its twists and turns.

Lyrically however, the album is not really bringing anything new to the table. Quaint, familiar rhymes appear such as those in ‘Under the Night’ – “We are connected and will always be / one people, one planet / one destiny.”

Yet the sense of optimism is so strong and the tunes are so uplifting, that you want to turn it up and dance around the kitchen (preferably with sun streaming through the windows).

For such a disorienting hour, Thirteen O’clock is a finely balanced album. Opening with the tender acoustic track ‘Home,’ before moving into a Waifs-esque ‘Nullarbor’ with a rocking chorus, The Lucky Wonders are content to traverse genres of folk, pop, rock and country, creating a musical patchwork quilt – a comforting keepsake for all kinds of weather.

The album’s single ‘Happy Pill,’ reaching No. 1 on Triple J’s Unearthed Roots chart, is like a storm with its distinctive thunderclap beat and shimmering, lightening-like cymbals.

For an entirely different flavour, try ‘Emotional’ – an irresistibly soul searching standout.

Written by Vintila, this track is furnished with vocal hooks, slide guitar and unapologetic honesty: “I have lost interest in the world / you assume I want to make it in / I’m trying to find myself in places / that I don’t have to fake it in.”

As the clock strikes thirteen, Vintila and Royle prove themselves to be valid up-and-coming contributors to the ever-growing Australian singer-songwriter scene. And it's nothing to do with luck, but a whole heap of talent.
Anneliese Milk- -

"You have to hear"

The Lucky Wonders are songwriting duo Jessie Vinitia and Emma Royle, along with Brent Calcutt on bass and Anastassijah Scales on drums. From Byron Bay, they have recently released their debut album, ‘Thirteen O’Clock’.

It is unashamedly emotional folky pop music, but that’s exactly why you have to love it.

“I have no apologies for all the tears I cry. I get emotional at the most inappropriate times, maybe that’s because I believe emotions are appropriate all the time. All the time” sing Jessie and Emma on Emotional, and this sentiment echoes throughout the album.

In many ways ‘Thirteen O’Clock’ is the antithesis to the typical indie folk record about how love is horrible and has destroyed the singer/songwriters’ life and etc etc etc. This record by comparison is about the redeeming quality of love: “Well it’s true that love can break you, show you hurt like you’ve never known before… but did you know that love can set you free, take you to heights where you can truly fly. That’s why we live before we die” (So You’ve Never).

At times it can border on cliched, but most of the time it just simply works.

And besides, Happy Pill is one of the most instantly likeable songs I’ve heard in a while, and there’s a good reason it’s all over the airwaves. That hook of “Your heart is not the box of pandora” gets me every single time, and the chorus is very elegant indeed. It’s the perfect lead single and incapsulates everything that is good about this Byron Bay outfit.

So You’ve Never features a gorgeous backing ukelele, and you can just imagine it being sung around a campfire somewhere in Australia. It’s not trying to reinvent music, and neither are The Lucky Wonders, but they have the folk pop formula just right, and there’s just that little extra bit of special thrown in there as well.

Just when you think the album is getting a bit formulaic, there will be a such a poignant moment that it just makes you sit back and think ‘wow’, with the case in point being the aforementioned Emotional, which features the unforgettable lyrics of “I have lost interest in a world you assume I want to make it in. I’m trying to find myself in places I don’t want to fake it in”.

‘Thirteen O’Clock’ is an uplifting and life-affirming record, and there is absolutely no reason at all not to like it. It flirts with cliches (see “One people, one planet, one destiny” of Under The Night), but there’s something really endearing about an album this unashamedly emotional and real.
- And Pluck Your Strings

"This is a stunning album which takes music back to its roots"

A couple of weeks ago I was wowed by So You’ve Never by The Lucky Wonders. Now that I’ve got the band’s debut album Thirteen O’Clock in my hand I’m thrilled to hear the song was no flash in the pan.

This is a stunning album which takes music back to its roots. In a world of over-processed synthesised sounds the simplicity of The Lucky Wonders music really stands out. It’s simple, but effective, rooted in beautiful harmonies and acoustic orchestration.

I love that this disc feels uniquely Australian. We can hear the accents of vocalists Emma Royle and Jessie Vintila coming through, and even if you’ve never seen the Nullabor you’re taken there in the track of the same name.

The delicate opener “Home” is another standout, while “Emotional” provides one of the most poignant moments on the disc. The stripped back closer “Rather Be Lovin You” is rollicking good fun.

I can imagine much of Thirteen O’Clock being played around a campfire. It’s just so intimate and organic, with songs you know would sound just as perfect in the live arena as they do on the disc. It’s amazing to think this album is only the start of The Lucky Wonders’ story. With such maturity in their first release, this Byron Bay band definitely has a big future ahead.

"Stunning debut album"

Songwriting duo Jessie Vintila and Emma Royle have released a stunning debut
album with tracks ranging right across the broad 'roots' genre. Song styles
vary from the country tones of 'Nothing to Fear', to the blues-jazz combo of
'Rather Be Lovin You', to the folksy 'Closing In'. Whether by accident or
design, themes follow the classic three part romantic movie format. First
they're about getting high on love, then love going bad, then back to the
triumph of love in the finale. It's a very emotional journey, with a mix of
the good and the bad, just like real life. 'Happy Pill', about the downside
of chemical release, and the anguished 'Please Don't Break Me Down' are
particularly powerful.

Jessie's vocals are the highlight of this CD, with tones that really lift
the heart. She sounds achingly beautiful in 'Emotional' and in 'So You've
Never' her sweet voice brings to mind Frente's frontwoman Angie Hart.
Melodies are beguiling in their simplicity and, combined with the crystal
vocals and some nerve tingling harmonies, they make a winning package.
The pair from Byron Bay are touring with their two compatriots and will be
at The Front on Sunday 18 April. The band puts their wallets behind strong
personal eco beliefs, with part-proceeds from CD sales going to
environmental projects. So Thirteen O'Clock could help sweeten your day,
whilst helping save some endangered critters at the same time. Four stars.
Rory McCartney BMA

"The Lucky Wonders really have a winner on their hands"

Wonderfully light, breezy, melodic soft pop. The folks in The Lucky Wonders really have a winner on their hands here. The band is comprised of Jessie Vintila, Emma Royle, Brent Calcutt, and Anastassijah Scales. More than any other artist that comes to mind, the tunes on this album remind us in many ways of the late great Kirsty MacColl. The songs are centered around gently strummed acoustic guitars...and the vocals are just out-of-this-world. The band is touring heavily to promote this album. Our guess is that by year's end the folks in Lucky Wonders will end up being on a great many "best of 2010" lists. We're blown away by Thirteen O'Clock...and we would be willing to bet that you will be too. Captivating cuts include "Home," "Happy Pill," "Emotional," "Nothing To Fear," and "Rather Be Lovin You." TOP PICK.
- Babysue


Debut single Happy Pill with B side Emotional (both from Thirteen O'Clock) released November 2009, received Triple J airplay and hit No. 1 on Triple J's Unearthed Roots chart, and stayed in Top 25 for 7 weeks.
Debut album Thirteen O'Clock released April 2010:
3.Happy Pill
4.Under the Night
5.So You've Never
7.Closing In
8.Please Don't Break Me Down
9.Make it Beautiful
10.Nothing to Fear
12.Rather Be Lovin You
Engineered: Anthony Lycenko, Co-produced: Emma Royle, Jessie Vintila and Anthony Lycenko, Mastered: Michael Worthington.

Received airplay on Radio National, Australia wide regional ABCs, community and commercial radio, and was Feature Album of the Week on Northcoast ABC.
Thirteen O'Clock distributed by Vitamin Records (physical and digital).

Single Anyway with B side Thing About Leaving released Sept 2010. Both received regional ABC and community radio airplay and selected as "Song of The Day" on
Anyway distributed by Vitamin (digital).
Engineered: Anthony Lycenko, Co-produced: Emma Royle, Jessie Vintila and Anthony Lycenko, Mastered: Michael Worthington.



“Top 10 albums and Top 3 gigs of 2010”
Sue Barrett – Rhythms
“Really impressed. They killed it. The Lucky Wonders really know what they're doing”
Dan Condon – Time Off
"Their energy and essence comes through in quality songwriting and poignant, emotional delivery. Great harmonies." Rusty Thorpe – Bluesfest

Byron Bay based folk/indie pop four piece The Lucky Wonders have made a huge entrance onto the Australian music scene in the short time since they formed, with a trail of rave reviews left in the wake of their album Thirteen O’Clock, and mammoth touring efforts. Songwriters Emma Royle and WAMI Award winner Jessie Vintila first came together to create live music for puppet show Puppets Break Out, playing an eleven show season in the 2009 Adelaide Fringe Festival. The collaboration was such a success they were inspired to pursue it head-on, and formed the core of The Lucky Wonders.

Within a few months the duo had enlisted the help of ARIA nominee Anthony Lycenko (Pete Murray, Xavier Rudd, The Beautiful Girls), Ben Franz (The Waifs, Tim Rogers) on bass and lap steel, and Dave Sanders (Rodriguez) on drums. Co-producing with Lycenko at Byron Bay’s Rocking Horse and 301, they created the twelve tracks compiling Thirteen O’Clock, which was to meet overwhelming critical acclaim.

In October 2009 they formed a four piece band, with Jessie on lead vocals, guitar and ukulele, Emma on guitar, ukulele and backing vocals, Anastassijah Scales on drums, and currently Sam Parker on bass.

Happy Pill, the first single released from Thirteen O’Clock in November 2009, received Triple J airplay and hit No. 1 on Unearthed Roots. Catchy, powerful and haunting, Happy Pill stayed in the Unearthed Top 25 for an impressive seven weeks.

When The Lucky Wonders independently released Thirteen O’Clock in March 2010 and embarked on a mammoth forty date national tour, the praise began to roll in. So too did the airplay, with rotation on Radio National, regional ABCs, community, country and commercial radio. ABC North Coast featured The Lucky Wonders as Artist of the Week. They were interviewed in countless publications, including full page features in Rhythms, LOTL, Cherrie and street press Australia wide. They signed a distribution deal with Vitamin Records, who successfully pitched the album to JB Hifi Stores around Australia.

The band found a warm reception for their beautifully crafted songs and warm, quirky, irreverent banter all over Australia, venturing to far flung reaches of WA and the Top End. They opened for Paul Greene, Sal Kimber and The Rollin Wheel, and Skipping Girl Vinegar, and played some premier venues around the country such as The Vanguard, Lizottes, Heritage Hotel, The Soundlounge, The Powerhouse, The Troubadour, and Settlers Tavern in WA.

On arriving home to Byron Bay, The Lucky Wonders returned to the studio to record follow up singles Anyway, inspired by Emma’s leap of faith in selling her flat to fund The Lucky Wonders, and Thing About Leaving, a country-esque sigh of homecoming contentment. They released the tracks as a double A-side, welcomed by fans and critics alike. “We were blown away by The Lucky Wonders’ last full-length release…and now they're following it up with this…both superb cuts” Babysue. Anyway saw them in the Semi-finals in the International Song Competition.

On their second national tour, they headlined shows with WAMI Song of the Year winners Rachel and Henry Climb a Hill, Saritah, Melanie Horsnell, The Stillsons (featuring Ben Franz) and Hello Satellites (of Triple J hit Building a Wall). They were featured at Adelaide’s 2010 Feast Festival with a show described as ‘stunning’ by Feast’s director, Kerry Ireland, and Illawarra Folk Festival in 2011. “This band definitely has a big future ahead” Sound of Oz.

“…a stunning debut album with tracks ranging right across the broad roots genre.…a winning package. FOUR STARS” BMA
“…outstanding…a breath of fresh air. FOUR STARS” Hob