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Sparkadia Live 2012.jpg
Background information
OriginSydney, New South Wales, Australia
GenresAlternative pop rock
Years active2004 (2004)–present
LabelsBoundary/Inertia, Ivy League, Ark Recordings
Associated acts
Past members
  • David Hall
  • Josephine Ayling
  • Nick Rabone
  • Tiffany Preece
  • Adam Foreman

Sparkadia is a band that formed in Sydney in 2004 and were originally known as 'The Spark'. The brainchild of Alexander Burnett (vocals, guitar) and Dave Hall (drums), the band became a reality with the addition of Nick Rabone (bass) and Josephine Ayling (keyboards, guitar, vocals) in 2006. In 2008 Ayling was replaced by Tiffany Preece on guitars and vocals. By 2009 the group had become Burnett's solo project. Sparkadia has issued two studio albums, Postcards (31 May 2008) and The Great Impression (18 March 2011).

Band history[edit]

Sparkadia formed as a duo in 2004 in Sydney by Alexander Burnett on lead vocals and David Hall on drums.[1][2] They first came into prominence in Australia with their debut EP titled Things Behind the Sun. The EP was released by Australian indie label, Boundary Sounds on 20 February 2007; with the lead single "Morning Light" being the No. 1 most downloaded track off Australian national broadcasters Triple J's website with 32,000 downloads in a month. This was followed by extensive Australian touring and led to signing with UK indie label Ark Recordings.[2]

On 17 February 2007 Sparkadia issued a five track extended play, Things Behind the Sun, on Boundary Sounds through Inertia Records,[3] which peaked in the ARIA Singles Chart top 100 for four weeks in March–April.[4] It was followed by a single, "Too Much to Do" (May 2008), which reached No. 11 on the ARIA Hitseekers Singles Chart.[5]

Their first studio album, Postcards, was released on 31 May 2008 and reached number 23 in the ARIA Albums Chart.[6] For the album the line-up were Ayling, Burnett, Hall and Rabone. Soon after Ayling was replaced by Tiffany Preece on guitars and vocals.[1][7] However, by 2009 Sparkadia had become Burnett's solo project;[8] according to Burnett: Hall had "moved onto other things", Preece had left to have a baby, and Rabone went to India.

In March 2011, Burnett was the featured cover star for Sydney music magazine The Drum, with the tagline "Sparkadia I'll Do It Myself". The feature photo shoot was conducted by award winning music photographer Daniel Boud.[9][10]

In September 2010 Sparkadia issued the next single, "Talking Like I'm Falling Down the Stairs", which peaked in the top 100.[11] Another single, "China", was issued in March 2011.[8] Burnett, as Sparkadia, had moved to London to work on the second album in mid-January 2010.[12] The Great Impression was issued on 18 March 2011, which reached number 8 on the ARIA Albums Chart.[6] On 20 March it was the week's "feature album" on national youth radio Triple J.[13]

Their cover of "This Boy's in Love" by The Presets for Triple J’s ‘ Like a Version Volume 5’ of 2009 and subsequently appeared in their ‘Best of’ anthology released in 2013. [14][15]

In late 2012, 'Space & Time', off their debut record was featured on the Sears campaign, Connecting Flights.

As of 2016, Alexander Burnett is working on the third Sparkadia album.[16]


  • Alexander Burnett – lead vocals, guitar, keyboards (2004–present)
  • David Hall – drums (2004–2009)
  • Josephine Ayling – guitar, keyboards, vocals (2006–2008)
  • Nick Rabone – bass guitar (2006–2009)
  • Tiffany Preece – guitars, vocals (2008–2009)


Studio albums[edit]

Extended plays[edit]

  • Things Behind the Sun (17 February 2007) AUS: No. 83[4]


Tour history[edit]

The band toured across Australia, UK and Europe throughout the 2000s, with pockets of fan bases in Britain and Germany outside Australia. They have performed with many diverse artists such as:

In 2007, Sparkadia supported Elbow on their tour of Australia following the release of the Things Behind the Sun EP. This was followed by a tour of the UK that included supporting Irish band The Thrills, whom they were to support again the following year on their Australian tour.[18][19][20]

In 2008, Sparkadia toured with Jimmy Eat World on their European tour.[21][22] [23][24] This was followed by shows with Vampire Weekend,[25] as well as their own headline shows across the UK and Europe.

Festivals appearances at that time include Glastonbury, T in the Park, V Festival and Oxegen Festival.[26][27] Returning to Australia, Sparkadia supported Faker on the band's Are You Magnetic? tour across Australia,[28] before heading out on their own headline tour.[29] The band played Australia's New Year's Eve festival Pyramid Rock in 2008 and 2011.[30]

In 2009, Sparkadia toured Australia as part of the Big Day Out,[31] before embarking on a string of sold-out shows across Australia before amicably parting ways as a four piece.

After travelling around the US and Europe, Alexander Burnett finished working on the second album in London with Mark Tieku (Florence and the Machine); playing multiple instruments on the recording. The album came out in out early 2011, with the first single off the album "Talking Like I'm Falling Down Stairs" released in September 2010, coinciding with Little Red's Midnight Remember tour, which Sparkadia supported.[32]

2011 onwards: Alexander Burnett solo career[edit]

Following Sparkadia's The Great Impression and Mary tours of 2011,[33] Burnett joined the Nick Cave Straight To You concert series organised by Triple J.[34] He performed on many of the songs on the tour including his own rendition of The Boys Next Door’s "Shivers", and the duet "Where the Wild Roses Grow" with Lanie Lane. The subsequent live recording/DVD went on to win an ARIA in the 2012 awards.[35]

From December 2012, Burnett has largely working as a songwriter. He has collaborated and co-written tracks for various artists including DJ Snake, Alison Wonderland, Kaiser Chiefs, Digitalism, George Maple, Flight Facilities, Elizabeth Rose, Dan Sultan, Thelma Plum, Tieks, LDRU, Rationale and more.[36][37][38][39][40]

Burnett currently writes and records in East London.[41]

Antony & Cleopatra[edit]

Full article & discography at Antony & Cleopatra.

Burnett also has a deep house project called Antony & Cleopatra, which is based in London. It is a duo with Anita Blay (AKA CocknBullKid), who met in London in 2014 during a pop writing session.


Their debut single as lead artists, "Sirens", was released in 2015, and an album is soon to follow.[42][43] Another single was released afterwards entitled "Take Me". The duo got together again to form their third single and first single of 2016, entitled "Love Is A Lonely Dancer", which was debuted on SoundCloud.

In 2017 they released the singles "Dust" and "Twitch" both achieving Australian radio success.

In November 2018, the duo released their 6 track EP "Hurt Like Hell" to strong reviews:

  • "Title-track "Hotter Than Hell" packs a punch with its twisting synth stabs and looping vocals, while songs like "Hard Feelings" pulse with a thick house bounce and 8-bit twists which together, straddle on that fine line between both forward-thinking and nostalgic - something that is super, super hard to pull off, but something that Antony & Cleopatra do so with ease."
    - Pile Rats[44]
  • "Hurt Like Hell is like escaping into a dark basement club with pumping beats echoing off the red-lit walls for twenty minutes. Antony & Cleopatra create danceable tunes with new twists and turns making their electronic project standout, and unlike other artists, this Duo does not get lost in wide seas and endless possibilities of electronically produced music. Recognising that it is not about who can layer the most beats, they pick the most interesting tunes out of the broad spectrum and arrange them carefully to an intelligent EP, and a ready-made playlist for any good party." 4/5 stars
    - The AU Review[45]
  • "The “Hurt Like Hell” EP is a strong offering from the London duo, keeping the tradition of UK house music alive while adding a fresh modern take on production."
    - The Kollection[46]
  • "From its warped melodies, rubber mallet beats, and swirling, psychedelic, electronic notes, 'Hurt Like Hell' is instantly recognisable as an addictive hit."
    - Air It[47]


The duo's first Australian tour was part of the 2017 Alison Wonderland's 'Scarehouse Project' alongside other acts such as Lunice, Lido, ASAP Ferg and Saatchi.

The next year they went on to play Australia's largest winter music festival Splendour In The Grass in July 2018.[48] [49]

Additional Work[edit]

The duo have also provided vocals on:[50][51][52][53]

  • Lancelot - Givin’ It Up (feat. Antony & Cleopatra) (2014)
  • Lancelot - Make Ends Meet (feat. Antony & Cleopatra) (2015)
  • Sammy Bananas - Money/Time (feat. Antony & Cleopatra) (2015)
  • Beni - Protect (feat. Antony & Cleopatra) (2016)
  • Moonboots - Never Get to You (feat. Antony & Cleopatra) (2017)
  • Motez (producer) - The Future (feat. Antony & Cleopatra) (2017)
  • Jaded, Black Caviar, Antony & Cleopatra - Slippin' (2019)


  1. ^ a b True, Chris. "Sparkadia Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  2. ^ "Alex Burnett's Sparkadia in top ten for first time". The Daily Telegraph. 28 March 2011. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  3. ^ "Releases :: Things Behind the Sun". Australian Music Online. Australia Council for the Arts. Archived from the original on 22 November 2007. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  4. ^ a b "Week Commencing 2nd April 2007" (PDF). The ARIA Report. Australian Recording Industry Association (891): 8. 2 April 2007. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 March 2007. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  5. ^ "Week Commencing 26 May 2008" (PDF). The ARIA Report. Australian Recording Industry Association (952): 21. 26 May 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on 20 June 2008. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  6. ^ a b c d Hung, Steffen. "Discography Sparkadia". Australian Charts Portal. Hung Medien (Steffen Hung). Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  7. ^ "Sparkadia - Official Bio". Sparkadia Official Website. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  8. ^ a b c "Week Commencing 28 March 2011" (PDF). The ARIA Report. Australian Recording Industry Association (1100): 2, 45, 8, 11, 14, 16, 21. 28 March 2011. Archived from the original (PDF) on 30 May 2011. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  9. ^ "Daniel Boud - About". Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  10. ^ "Sparkadia Drum Cover". Archived from the original on 13 May 2011. Retrieved 12 March 2019. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  11. ^ "Week Commencing 20 September 2010" (PDF). The ARIA Report. Australian Recording Industry Association (1073): 2. 20 September 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 11 October 2010. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  12. ^ Feeney, Katherine (6 March 2009). "Sparkadia shine". Brisbane Times. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  13. ^ "Sparkadia The Great Impression". Triple J. Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). 20 March 2011. Retrieved 21 April 2015.
  14. ^ "Sparkadia - "This Boy's In Love" (triple j / jTV Like A Version)". Triple J. Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC). 14 April 2010.
  15. ^ "This Boy's In Love". Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  16. ^ "About Sparkadia". Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  17. ^ "Week Commencing 18 October 2010" (PDF). The ARIA Report. Australian Recording Industry Association (1077): 2, 4, 16, 21. 18 October 2010. Archived from the original (PDF) on 21 November 2010. Retrieved 30 April 2015.
  18. ^ "The Thrills @ Amplifier, 10/06/08". Faster Louder. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  19. ^ "The Thrills, Sparkadia @ The Zoo, Brisbane (04/06/2008)". Faster Louder. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  20. ^ "The Thrills & Sparkadia @ Settlers Tavern, Margaret River". Faster Louder. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  21. ^ "Jimmy Eat World Live at The Refectory on Friday, 22nd February 2008". Leeds Music Scene. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  22. ^ "Jimmy Eat World + Sparkadia".
  24. ^ "739 JIMMY EAT WORLD, Sparkadia, Southampton Guildhall".
  25. ^ "Vampire Weekend, Sparkadia @ Audio, Brighton".
  26. ^ "Oxegen 2008".
  27. ^ "Band of the Day".
  28. ^ "Faker, Sparkadia @ HQ". Faster Louder. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  29. ^ "Sparkadia 'Too Much to Do' Tour".
  30. ^ "Sparkadia - Pyramid Rock 2011". Naomi Rahim.
  31. ^ "Big Day Out: Young, MMJ, TVOTR". JamBase. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  32. ^ "Little Red to tour with Sparkadia". triple j.
  33. ^ "Sparkadia announce Mary tour for September". triple j. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  34. ^ "Straight To You - triple j's Tribute To Nick Cave". triple j. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  35. ^ 2012 ARIA "ARIA Award Winners 2012". ARIA. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  36. ^ Apter, Liam (2 December 2014). "Interview: Alex Burnett (Sparkadia)". Pilerats Magazine. Retrieved 1 May 2015.
  37. ^ "Alexander Burnett songwriting credits". Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  38. ^ "Xander Burnett Biography". Retrieved 20 August 2016.
  39. ^ "Alison Wonderland Announces Debut Album 'Run'". Falcona. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  40. ^ "Antony & Cleopatra". Mushroom Music. Retrieved 28 November 2018.
  41. ^ "Blue May Producer XXVII". Twitter. Retrieved 2 September 2016.
  42. ^ "Get To Know: Antony & Cleopatra". HUNGER TV. Retrieved 6 July 2015.
  43. ^ "Antony & Cleopatra 'Sirens' - Purple Sneakers". Purple Sneakers. Retrieved 6 July 2015.
  44. ^ "EP Walkthrough: Antony & Cleopatra on their debut EP, Hurt Like Hell"". Retrieved 1 December 2018.
  45. ^ "Album of the Week: Antony & Cleopatra – Hurt Like Hell (2018 EP)"". Retrieved 28 November 2018.
  46. ^ "Antony & Cleopatra – Hurt Like Hell EP"". Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  47. ^ "Antony & Cleopatra - Hurt Like Hell"". Retrieved 4 December 2018.
  48. ^ "Bands In Town gig history". Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  49. ^ "Get to Know: Antony & Cleopatra". Retrieved 12 March 2019.
  51. ^ "Beni: "Protect" (feat. Antony & Cleopatra) «  La.Ga.Sta". Retrieved 6 July 2015.
  52. ^ "Money Time feat. Antony & Cleopatra - FOOL'S GOLD". Retrieved 6 July 2015.
  53. ^ "JADED unveils new single 'Slippin' with Black Caviar and Anthony & Cleopatra"". Retrieved 8 March 2019.

External links[edit]