Hip hop legends and indie rock heroes make for a momentous month at Melbourne Recital in June

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Hip hop legends and indie rock heroes make for a momentous month at Melbourne Recital in June

Elefant Traks
Credit: Dominique Berns-Blackwell
Words by Staff Writer

With world-class pianists, indie-rock favourites and hip-hop icons, it’s impossible not to love the things happening at Melbourne Recital Centre next month.

Melbourne Recital Centre’s June lineup ticks every box, offering something special for everyone.

We always look forward to the Melbourne Recital Centre programming release each month because it’s basically culture handed to you on a silver platter. You’ll see stuff you know and stuff you don’t, all of which has been curated and vetted by the Recital team to ensure it’s pure gold.

The June playlist lives up to this by being eclectic, and well, awesome. Get the rundown of everything on offer, and good luck picking which ones to commit your pocket money to…they are all doozeys.

Keep up with the latest music news, features, festivals, interviews and reviews here.

Yeol Eum Son

  • When: Tuesday, June 4th 
  • Where: Elisabeth Murdoch Hall
  • Tickets here

The month kicks off with South Korean pianist Yeol Eum Son at Melbourne Recital Centre, and if you are lucky enough to catch her debut in 2022, you’ll know why her return is a big deal.

Known for her poetic elegance and bold dramatic flair, Yeol Eum captivates audiences with her breathtaking dexterity and expressive nuance. From Bizet to Beethoven, she fearlessly explores 19th-century masterpieces, pushing artistic boundaries with each note.

In her only Australian recital, Yeol Eum takes a journey through Beethoven’s monumental “Hammerklavier” Sonata, Op.106. This rarely performed piece will be followed by a post-concert talk with Yeol Eum Son and Melbourne Recital Centre’s Marshall McGuire to deep-dive into her artistry and career. This is a special way to get things going in June!

Good Morning

  • When: Thursday, June 6th 
  • Where: Elisabeth Murdoch Hall
  • Tickets here

Get ready for a rare hometown treat as OG Melbourne (but now residents of London) indie-janglers, Good Morning celebrate their album Seventh, which they have been showing off with some relentless touring worldwide. Its expansive, ambitious sound is reminiscent of what may happen if Dick Diver, Liz Phair, and Brian Wilson teamed up to soundtrack a black-and-white musical about navigating your thirties.

It’s an evening of acoustic bliss and nostalgic vibes as part of RISING. Catch the band before they jet off to basically everywhere but here.

Bhairavi Raman & Nanthesh Sivarajah

  • When: Friday, Junel 14th 
  • Where: Primrose Potter Salon
  • Tickets here

When Bhairavi Raman and Nanthesh Sivarajah come together, they blow minds. It’s as simple as that. Their fusion of tradition, technical prowess, and fearless creativity moves musically from traditional Carnatic melodies to experimental Carnatic-inspired compositions. Bhairavi’s masterful violin skills and Nanthesh’s innovative percussion techniques redefine what it means to blend cultures and create art.

There is no better setting for this than the intimate Primrose Potter Salon, and this will be an evening of broken boundaries and uncharted musical territories. Put this near, if not at, the top of your list.

Elefant Traks 25th Anniversary – The Finale

  • When: Saturday, June 15th, 3pm & 7pm 
  • Where: Elisabeth Murdoch Hall
  • Tickets here

This one is most certainly bittersweet. A legendary farewell for the iconic indie hip-hop label Elefant Traks, which celebrates 25 years of music. With a lineup featuring The Herd, Hermitude, Horrorshow, and more, it’s the best possible way to send off a crew that have done so much for Australian music.

From humble beginnings as a mixtape for a friend, Elefant Traks grew into a powerhouse, releasing over 1300 songs and shaping Aussie music culture. Now, they’re saying goodbye by bringing their biggest hits to Melbourne for one last hurrah across two shows.

This gala-style show will feature live bands, visuals, and some next-level production. It’s your chance to be part of history and bid farewell to one of Australia’s most influential music labels. A cultural moment, if you will!

Melbourne Guitar Quartet – Trigram

  • When: Saturday, June 15th 
  • Where: Primrose Potter Salon
  • Tickets here

Are you ready to be very impressed? Awe-struck even? The Melbourne Guitar Quartet present Trigram in June, and they are known for their innovative guitar arrangements presented via a skilled ensemble that makes everyone think maybe guitar playing at a ridiculous level is easy? They make it look easy?

It’s not at all easy, and the way they deliver a rich repertoire of contemporary Australian works and reimagined arrangements, interweaving lines like a sewing needle, is actually insane. This is the world premiere of Sanghoon Lee’s Trigram, inspired by Korean temple music, and you will not see anything else like it this year.

SARAY Iluminado – Bruised River

  • When: Tuesday, June 18th 
  • Where: Primrose Potter Salon
  • Tickets here

Be transported on a cultural odyssey with SARAY Iluminado’s Bruised River, a combination of ancient Balkan melodies with contemporary Australian flair, a mesmerising blend that caps off the month nicely.

Specialising in Bosnian Sevdah and Sephardic Jewish music, SARAY Iluminado merges music and theatre, ensuring tradition meets innovation. Bruised River pays homage to the significance of rivers in Balkan and Sephardic music, interwoven with original compositions by Nela Trifkovic.

With spoken word performances inspired by literary classics like The Bridge on the Drina and Death and the Dervish, this concert is a stirring celebration of culture, music, and poetry where ancient melodies and contemporary creativity collide.

Special mention: An Evening With Marlon Williams

We’re adding this one, but if you don’t already have tickets, you are out of luck as it’s completely sold out. Marlon Williams, one of New Zealand’s most iconic voices, drops by as part of his first solo tour in Australia in a decade.

Drawing from folk and country traditions, Williams has been likened to legends like Leonard Cohen, Roy Orbison, and Elvis. But what sets him apart is his ability to transcend genres. He’s also toured with Bruce Springsteen, which is probably worth a mention. Anyway, kudos to those who were smart enough to grab their tickets early.

Melbourne Recital Centre’s June program runs from June 1 to 28. For the full program, head here.