Austra (band)

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Katie Stelmanis performing at the Bloor/Gladstone Library in Toronto on November 20, 2009
Background information
Origin Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Genres Synthpop, dark wave, new wave, dream pop, indietronica
Years active 2009–present
Labels One Big Silence, Paper Bag, Domino
Members Katie Stelmanis
Maya Postepski
Dorian Wolf

Austra is a Canadian electronic music band from Toronto, Ontario, formed in 2009.[1] The band consists of Katie Stelmanis (vocals, keyboards), her former Galaxy bandmate Maya Postepski (drums) and former Spiral Beach bassist Dorian Wolf.[2] They played a number of early shows under the name Private Life before learning that another band was already using the name; they subsequently named the band after Stelmanis' middle name Austra, which is also the name of the goddess of light in Latvian mythology.[3] Austra used to include twin backing singers Sari and Romy Lightman of Tasseomancy. Keyboardist Ryan Wonsiak of Ze and the Boyfriends makes up the quartet.[2]

Austra's debut album Feel It Break was released on May 17, 2011 by Paper Bag Records.[4] On July 6, 2011, the album was shortlisted for the 2011 Polaris Music Prize,[5] but lost out to Arcade Fire's The Suburbs.[6] Feel It Break was included on several year-end critics' lists; notably, both the Toronto Star and New York named it the best album of 2011, with the former calling it "an outright stunner".[7][8] Stereogum named Austra a Band to Watch on March 14, 2011.[9]

Their second album Olympia was released on June 18, 2013,[10] from which the first single Home was released on March 7, 2013.[11]


Studio albums[edit]


  • Habitat (2014)

Remix albums[edit]

  • Sparkle (2011)


  • "Beat and the Pulse" (2010)
  • "Lose It" (2011)
  • "Spellwork" (2011)
  • "Home" (2013)
  • "Painful Like" (2013)
  • "Forgive Me" (2013)
  • "Hurt Me Now" (2014)
  • "Habitat" (2014)


  1. ^ Morris, Gina (May 17, 2011). "REVIEW // Austra 'Feel It Break'". Hive Magazine. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  2. ^ a b Ritchie, Kevin (May 19, 2011). "Austra". Now. Now Communications. Retrieved July 23, 2011. 
  3. ^ Fader, Lainna (November 3, 2011). "Austra Turn People On With an Electric Feel". OC Weekly. Village Voice Media. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  4. ^ Dina (May 17, 2011). "Austra's 'Feel It Break' Out Today!". Paper Bag Records. Retrieved December 20, 2011. 
  5. ^ "Arcade Fire, Ron Sexsmith shortlisted for Polaris Prize". CBC News. July 6, 2011. Retrieved July 27, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Arcade Fire win 2011 Polaris Music Prize". NME. IPC Media. September 20, 2011. Retrieved January 4, 2012. 
  7. ^ Rayner, Ben (December 28, 2011). "Rayner: Albums that really rocked in 2011". Toronto Star. Star Media Group. Retrieved January 29, 2012. 
  8. ^ Abebe, Nitsuh (December 4, 2011). "The Year in Pop". New York. New York Media LLC. Retrieved January 29, 2012. 
  9. ^ Brandon (March 14, 2011). "Band To Watch: Austra". Stereogum. Retrieved February 15, 2012. 
  10. ^ "iTunes - Music - Olympia (Bonus Track Version) by Austra". Apple. Retrieved 10 May 2013. 
  11. ^ "iTunes - Music - Home - Single by Austra". Apple. Retrieved 10 May 2013. 

External links[edit]