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IN THE NEWS
FEATURES Interview: aKING
Retrospective: Led Zeppelin
Into The Unknown
Kill It With Fire
Homegrown: Goodnight Wembley!
Topic: Hit and Miss
8th Notes From the Underground: Enslaved
But that’s a tale for another ale and the time has come to talk you through the fifth edition of our brand-new little publication. Ladies and gentlemen, our feature presentation: this month we talk to more of your favourite rock stars as we interview aKING and Goodnight Wembley! This month’s topic will deal with those onceoff heroes; our most notable one-hit wonders. Our retrospective looks at the history of Led Zeppelin and the legendary music these guys have made – widely regarded as the holy grail of rock ‘n roll. Metal lovers can page ahead for our interview with awesome Norwegian Viking metallers Enslaved and read all about their new album in an epic interview. This month we add two new short regular features; in the form of Kill it with Fire and Into the Unknown. As always we have all the latest news, reviews and events you need to know about. Happy reading folks and keep rocking,
Column Riots aren’t for Pussies!
CTOBER is upon us and we won’t be throwing out any old clichés about ‘Rocktober’ or anything as contrived as that. We are rocking though and while this edition is being printed 8th Note’s editorial staff will be packing up our flags, branding and stray magazines and heading off to Clover Aardklop to go and represent! We’ll include full reviews and suave pictures for you in our November edition.
Rudi’s Guide to a Better Recording
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Tristan Snijders Yolandé Erasmus Rudi Massyn gideon ramabula Reinhardt Massyn Charmaine Palm Michelle Clacher
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ANY people don’t like KISS and there are plenty of reasons why. Ageing rocker Gene Simmons recently told AFP that musicians nowadays aren’t stars and: ‘they look like garbage collectors. They look worse than the audience that comes to see them.’ Simmons probably made these strong statements in a last-ditch bid to secure sales for KISS’s collector’s item KISS Monster Book, which is filled to the brim with loathsome trivia and pictures for die-hard fans. Apart from insulting the very people that are meant to buy their quaint little money spinner of a book, they went on to insult just about everyone else by concluding that Lady Gaga is the only real star in music today. They are also heading to studio to record their glamrock throwback music using analogue equipment but no one at 8th Note cares enough to find out more about that. KISS was recently dropped from performing at the Michael Jackson Tribute concert after Gene Simmons said, regarding the molestation charges, ‘that there was no smoke without fire’. He went on to say that there was ‘no doubt in [his] mind that [Jackson] molested those kids’.
WEDISH House Mafia is set to release their second compilation album Until Now on the 22nd of October. This album is the follow-up project of the double-gold selling mix Until One and will feature a collection of original tracks, remixes, exclusive collaborations, club favourites and solo productions.
DAM Lambert will be heading to SA for his very first SA tour. He is scheduled to perform in Cape Town (Grand Arena) and in Johannesburg (Cocal Cola Dome). This show is presented by 94.7 Highveld Stereo, 94.5 KFM and Mnet. Tickets went on sale on the 14th of September. Adam is hailed as the very first American Idols finalist to tour the world in support of a debut album the year immediately after his season on Idols.
ADY Gaga never fails to make our headlines with fresh news. She hasn’t failed us this month either as she recently lit up a joint on stage in Amsterdam, telling fans that marijuana helped her to drink less and that it’s been ‘a totally spiritual experience’ for her in the creation of her music. She also jibed that she’d like to see weed legalised in the US. I’m willing to bet that’s a fairly popular opinion.
MI is in a spot of bother and undergoing a £1.2 billion takeover by the Universal Music Group. The European Commission ruled late September that EMI has to sell off most of its smaller record labels. In the face of this new development Coldplay, Pink Floyd and Kylie Minogue are set to be dropped from EMI. Acts signed to Parlophone and Chrysalis will likewise find themselves without a parent label. These acts include David Guetta, Cliff Richard, Duran Duran, Tina Turner and the Gorillaz (signed to Parlophone). On the Chrysalis side, Moby and Depeche Mode will suffer the same fate. EMI will be keeping The Beatles, however, which is no surprise. According to Universal these sales will amount to about 30% of EMI’s global revenues. EMI’s music publishing division has already been sold to Sony for £1.4bn.
NDY Williams, famous for singing ‘Moon River’ in his smooth voice has tragically died after a year-long battle with bladder cancer. Andy was 84 years old. This great artist was born in 1927 and started his illustrious singing career at the young age of 8-years-old in the Williams Brothers Quartet alongside his three brothers, Bob, Dick and Don. His accolades included a hit television series that started in 1962, The Andy Williams Show, 18 gold and three platinum records and five Grammy nominations. Andy is survived by his wife, Debbie, and his three children, Robert, Noelle and Christian.
AMES Franco has found a new way to creep into the innocent lives of unsuspecting citizens as he released his first album MotorCity under the name Daddy late last month. Having listened to the music video and the song ‘Love in the Old Days’, I’d like to warn our readers that the tune features a lot of talking-style vocals (because James can’t sing) over some throwback 70s pop rock. Also, don’t watch the video if you refrain from the sort of mind-altering substances that make the mundane seem extraordinary.
HE Beach Boys are three members lighter as Brian Wilson, Al Jardine and David Marks have been fired after the remaining two shows of their current tour in London by Mike Love who owns the rights to the band’s name. Brian Wilson, the band member and writer of most of the well-loved Beach Boys hits told CNN recently that he couldn’t understand the decision. Mike cited financial reasons.
HE Parlotones are leaving South African soil in favour of living in the States, early next year. The decision follows an ever-increasing demand for these SA rockers to appear abroad as recent months have seen them travelling to the States five times in one year.
HAKIRA is expecting her first child with footballer boyfriend Gerard. The couple first met in 2010, this is their first child. Father-to-be, Spanish soccer star Gerard Pique, is ten years younger that the ‘Hips Don’t Lie’ starlet who is aged 35. Shakira has decided to cut down on her work load in the coming weeks. Shakira told her fans, via her website, that: ‘As some of you may know, Gerard and I are very happy awaiting the arrival of our first baby!
HE new James Bond film, Skyfall, will be boasting the talents of Adele who has recorded the theme song for this movie. The last Bond film, Quantum of Solace, was intended to sport an Amy Winehouse track but at the time, this deceased UK singer was not deemed fit to perform.
ED ZEPPELIN will be releasing their 2007 Celebration Day reunion tour as a concert film on the 13th of October this year. It was the band’s first headlining show in 27 years.
IL Wayne is suing Quincy Jones for blah blah blah. It has to do with Lil Wayne’s music being used in the movie The Carter, a film about Lil Wayne. Lil Wayne went on to claim the film is a ‘scandalous portrayal’ even though he participated in the filming of this motion picture.
RIME Circle has released their newest single ‘Time Kills Us All’ late in September. Says Ross Learmoth: “’Time Kills Us All’ is the first song that we wrote on the new album, so we felt that it was fitting that it became the first single. This has been a long time coming and our fans will get a sneak peak of the blood, sweat and tears of the past year and a half.” This track is off their new album, set for release late in October.
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KING is one of those four-piece bands peopled entirely by reluctant rock stars, who have set fire to stages across South Africa. Their hard work, undeniable talent and thought-provoking lyrics have paid off in spades in terms of garnering them a loyal multi-cultural and multi-generational following – and they just keep getting bigger and better. Of course it helps that these rockers have introduced themselves to music-lovers in a stylish way through the medium of excellent music videos, television advertisements and radio. No one has to wonder who aKING is, and that really is part of the magic. aKING hails from Cape Town and is Laudo Liebenberg (lead vocals and lead guitar), Andrew Davenport (rhythm guitar and backing vocals), Hennie van Halen (bass guitar) and
Jaco ‘Snakehead’ Venter (drums). Their brand of melodic, alternative, slightly-pop-but-mostly rock has been distilled over the last four years and has produced three immaculate mustown albums and one interesting and easylistening threetrack EP. These projects were complemented last month by the special edition release of The Red Blooded Years.
Lyrics have always been important to everyone in aKING. It is something that gets discussed at length before the final songs go to the public.
As proof positive of the band’s excellence and the ease of listening produced by their unique sound they have amassed eight award nominations in the four years that they have been active.
These seasoned performers have headlined at all major South African music festivals. Fans from across the country have lapped up their smooth rock at events such as Oppikoppi, KKNK and many more. The highlight, no doubt, was hitting Coke Zero Fest in 2009 alongside huge international acts such as Oasis, Snow Patrol, Bullet for my Valentine, Panic at the Disco and The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus. The band’s debut effort Dutch Courage was released in 2008 and quickly reached gold
status in terms of album sales. Three singles off this formidable debut album became hit singles, play listed on both national and campus radio stations. The music video for their track, ‘Safe as Houses’ subsequently
received heavy rotation on MK and a few other DSTV channels, after which it unsurprisingly reached the number one spot on MK’s Top 10 chart. In The Twilight is a collaboration project that was embarked on drawing upon the talents of the Cape Town-based choir company Ghetto Vibrations, Khayelitsha United Mambaso and the Thokozani Brothers. The product of this effort was a three-song EP which is downloadable from rhythmonline. The band then hit the studio again and in July 2010 they produced a full-length follow-up album in the form of Against All Odds. This
11-track album marked an impressive progress in the band’s style. It was produced by Theo Crous and is as varied as it is excellent. This album contains ‘Face-brick Constellations’ – a track also featured recently on the VANFOKKINGTASTIES compilation album along with other songs well-loved and worn out from listening by some of South Africa’s brightest stars. Their next album The Red Blooded Years was released in March 2011. This album introduced a fresh mix of sounds while still remaining true to the band’s own identity. The influence of the newest addition to the band, Andrew Davenport, shone through.
This year’s release, the special edition of The Red Blooded Years sports two new tracks, a remix of ‘All in the Wind’ and all the music videos. Eager to know more about this new edition we asked the band a little bit more about this project. Says Snakehead: ‘We had to do a reprint of the album and thought it would be a good idea to put some bonus content on the disc and call it a special edition. We included two new tracks, a remix by Johnny de Ridder and all the videos we’ve done for the album so far. We also changed the cover artwork. It’s a really neat little package, we think.’
We agree; all music lovers and aKING fans alike can expect the steady rock ‘n roll sound from their debut album alongside a masterful experimentation with different production techniques. The band has commented that they are ‘eager to get back to energetic rock roots but at the same time experiment with different production techniques’. These songs will prepare the growing audience of aKING fans for what is to come from their fourth fulllength album. In light of the recently released special edition version of The Red Blooded Years and a new album on the cards for 2013 we decided to surreptitiously reach into our press contacts and try to extract an interview with this great band. The reason is fairly simple; in the blinding light of all these achievements, the band’s undisputable talent and the simple fact that 8th Note Music Magazine loves rock ‘n roll, we were privileged to chat to Jaco ‘Snakehead’ Venter and ask him a bit more about aKING. Where did aKING start, from what seed was this band sown? Laudo, our lead singer, had been making music under the name aKING for a while when he started jamming with Hennie, his housemate at the time. I was playing drums in Fokofpolisiekar and broke my arm on tour. Just before it was time for me to join Fokof again I decided to jam with Laudo and Hennie to get my arm back in shape. These sessions were a lot of fun and it was decided that I would hook up with aKING and record an album when Fokof took a break at the end of 2006. As time went by and the writing process started for the first album, Dutch Courage, Hunter joined the gang. In 2010 when Hunter got too busy with other projects and his label, Supra Familias, he got replaced by Andrew Davenport. And the rest is history. How exactly did the band decide on the name aKING?
Photography by Wayne Habig
Laudo decided on the name King (because there was already a Prince and Queen) but subsequently learned of a Swedish folk band called King. So, instead of changing the name to The King (and avoiding any confusion with Elvis) he decided on A King - and later changed it to a one word name aKING. From where do you guys draw your inspiration? Which other artists have influenced your music?
Photography by Wayne Habig
length before the final songs go to the public. You guys have played a formidable number of live shows in the band’s history. How do you guys feel about touring and performing live?
Touring and playing live is something we really enjoy even if there is a ‘dud’ show every once in a while.
With the way album sales are going in general it is really important to play live if you want to make a living from making music - unless there’s something we’re missing. Touring and playing live is something we really enjoy even if there is a ‘dud’ show every once in a while.
Anyone who makes good music in any genre but most notably Thin Lizzy, AC/DC, Foo Fighters and more recently Phoenix, Billy Joel and a million other artists. Your music is marked by profound lyrics, which are always deep and meaningful. As a band you engage listeners by making them think about the lyrics, tell us more about this… Lyrics have always been important to everyone in aKING. It is something that gets discussed at
For this edition of The Red Blooded Years you said you want to experiment with different production techniques – how has this new release of the album achieved that? We recorded the new tracks with a different engineer and also self-produced them.
anyway. We’ll be playing Mosselbay, George and P.E. The East Coast has always been some of our most fun tours so we’re really looking forward to it. What are some of the highlights of the band’s career so far? Shooting a video in Buenos Aires, Symphonic Rocks, all the tours we’ve embarked on nationally and through Southern Africa and each album have all been highlights. How is the much-anticipated fourth album, set for release in 2013, coming along? It is going slower than we would like but it’s coming nonetheless.
You have your East Coast Tour coming up; tell us a little bit more about this tour…
What can fans expect from this album?
We don’t know if it can really be called a tour because it only has three dates but we do
Everything aKING is and was - but just a lot more refined. ■ Photography by Adriaan Louw
Rock ‘n Roll
O series of retrospective features – where we have been taking a look as some of the great bands of past decades – could be complete without the inclusion of musical legends and still idols to many: Led Zeppelin. Led Zeppelin is one of those rare bands that, although having disbanded decades ago, still manages to speak to young music fans today. As many of today’s bands tend to incorporate elements of rock from bygone eras, a number of young fans are delving into the depths of music history in search of the bands that inspired their favourites.
Led Zeppelin was founded in 1968 as The New Yardbirds after guitarist Jimmy Page’s previous band, The Yardbirds, had disbanded but was still committed to several tour dates across Scandinavia. Page was determined to find new members to fill out the band and settled on vocalist Robert Plant, bassist/keyboardist John Paul Jones and drummer John Bonham to complete the tour. Within weeks of completing its Scandinavian tour, the band was in the recording studio, laying down tracks based on new songs from the tour’s live set. Soon after completing the first album, Page was issued with a ‘cease and desist’ letter, forcing him to change the band’s name – The New Yardbirds was only meant to have been used on the recent Scandinavian tour. The band decided on a new name and Led Zeppelin was truly born. Soon after the change of name, the band’s manager Peter Grant secured the up-andcoming British blues-rockers a record deal with Atlantic Records, who hadn’t even heard their music and signed them based on a recommendation. As if $200 000 in advances wasn’t enough, the band was given total artistic freedom and had control of when albums would be released and which songs would be released as singles – a set of conditions that most modern artists would trade their souls for. The newly-signed band hit the road and, whilst on tour in the United States, January 1969 saw the release of Led Zeppelin I. Although it was essentially a mix of dirty, shuffling blues and psychedelic rock, there was something a bit edgier, a bit heavier than other bands of the time, but nothing that would entirely change the world of rock music… yet. It did, however, peak at number 10 on the US Billboard chart and number 6 on the UK Albums chart. After four US and four UK tours, the band recorded and released Led Zeppelin II, which was also released in 1969. Zeppelin’s second album was the game-changer, hitting number one across the world and selling over 10
million albums in the US alone – achieving the extremely rare accolade of obtaining a Diamond album certification. The album introduced a truly heavy side to Zeppelin and rock, in general, with ‘Whole Lotta Love’ – one of the first, what could be considered heavy metal, songs bringing a riff-heavy approach to rock music. The band also, for the first time, displayed particularly strong folk influences upon which they would build as time went on. A year later, Zeppelin released Led Zeppelin III, yet another multiplatinum chart-topping album, which showcased the band’s abilities and versatility moving even further into the realm of folk-inspired rock. The immortal ‘Immigrant Song’ with its driving riff opened the album with a suitable punch to the gut and was the lead single off the album. The band members however had never been particularly keen on the idea of releasing songs out of context as singles, as they viewed each of their albums as an indivisible whole, insisting that each album should to be listened to in its entirety. Zeppelin’s fourth album, which was untitled but is commonly referred to as Led Zeppelin IV or The Fourth Album, hit the shelves in late 1971 and is the band’s best-selling album to date, having sold somewhere in the vicinity of 30 million copies. The album also helped to reinforce Zeppelin’s position as one of the world’s biggest bands, if not the biggest band, of the early 70s. Guitarists’ favourite, and the bane of most music shop owners, ‘Stairway to Heaven’ appeared on the album and has since with unsurprising regularity featured at the pinnacle of ‘greatest ever rock songs’ lists across the world’s music publications. It was around this time that all sorts of stories of Zeppelin’s excesses and wild antics started emerging, further
adding to the band’s superstar status – but more on that later. In 1973 Zeppelin released Houses of the Holy; it demonstrated more advanced production techniques and layering and a more
Zeppelin was one of those rare bands that had been a solid unit from the start of its career and the passing of the supremely talented John Bonham was a death knell for the band.
Led Zeppelin is one of those select few bands that has garnered such a following, and even more impressively an increasingly young following, that the name will forever be engrained in the hearts of rock fans. Bonham died in his sleep from asphyxiating on his own vomit. experimental style. Though it has never quite achieved the status of the first four albums, it sold phenomenally well and showed a more composed, thought-out version of the band. It was the last Zeppelin album released through Atlantic Records. Two years later, Zeppelin’s massive Physical Graffiti double album was released on the band’s own label, Swan Song. The album proved to be yet another critical and commercial success for the band. Physical Graffiti, clocking in at a length of over 80 minutes, saw the band at a creative and expressive peak and encompassed the whole Zeppelin sound – almost like a compendium covering the band’s sound and spirit over the years. Unfortunately Physical Graffiti was to be the last of the great Zeppelin albums and 1976’s Presence and 1979’s In Through the Out Door, though still achieving multiplatinum status in the US, could simply not compare, commercially or critically, to the band’s earlier outputs. In 1980, following rehearsals and excessive alcohol consumption (apparently over 40 shots of vodka in a matter of hours), drummer John
Zeppelin was one of those rare bands that had been a solid unit from the start of its career and the passing of the supremely talented John Bonham was a death knell for the band. The remaining members cancelled their upcoming tour and announced the end of one of the greatest bands of all time in 1980. In 1982, Swan Song released Coda comprising of various outtakes and unreleased tracks from the band’s career; it was the band’s final studio-album release. The remaining three, Jimmy Page, Robert Plant and John Paul Jones all went on to pursue solo projects and have engaged in various collaborations over the years. The remaining members have reunited but a few times since its breakup, with Jason Bonham taking over his father’s drumming duties, the most recent of which was a 2007 reunion for the Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert in London, paying tribute to the late Atlantic Records founder. Let’s go back a few years to the early 70s, though, when Led Zeppelin was the mightiest and seemingly most raucous band on the planet. While there was indeed the ‘red snapper/shark incident’, which involved some sort of fish, the band’s manager and a willing woman; an incident where John Bonham drove a motorbike through the Continental Hyatt House hotel, also known as the Riot House; and a bit of fun where the band completely wrecked a room in the Tokyo Hilton hotel, the antics of the band were greatly exaggerated. Many will tell you, it always helps to have to have some sort of mythos behind a rock band. Zeppelin, apart from the women and partying, was a band made for the road. The band’s sets would not uncommonly last for a matter of hours, with meandering improvisational passages that could last for anything up to an hour. By today’s
standards many people may think that sounds horribly boring but crowds at the time lapped it up like nothing before and Zeppelin consistently sold out huge stadium shows, breaking attendance records left, right and centre. Even sitting at home watching a Zeppelin show is truly inspiring and one can’t help think that the end of bands such as this marked a sad day in rock history. As recently as 2007, with the band’s reunion concert, Zeppelin set the record for the highest ticket demand ever for a single concert – there were over 20 million online requests for tickets. That’s right, 20 million ticket requests… that’s a third of the UK’s entire population. Led Zeppelin is one of those select few bands that has garnered such a following, and even more impressively an increasingly young following, that the name will forever be engrained in the hearts of rock fans. Not only has the band released some of the most important and influential rock music in history, Zeppelin has done what no other band we’ve covered in our retrospective features has; that is, being a true musical tour de force decades after the end of its existence. ■ Our top three Led Zeppelin albums:
1. L ed Zeppelin II, 1969. 2. Led Zeppelin III, 1970. 3. Led Zeppelin IV, 1971.
208 Talks of Angels
N a brand new section of our magazine we’re looking at the obscure. Basically, we’re taking a look at lesser-known genres of music or artists who blend various genres of music to create something entirely new.
This month we’re having a gander at a particularly innovative group by the rather strange name, 208 Talks of Angels. The band consists of Anthony Fadeyev (guitars, vocals, programming), Vilena Karlinka (vocals) and Vladimir Romanchenko (bass, sampling) and is based in Ishevsk, Russian Federation. The band formed in 2006 with Anthony spearheading the operation. According to Anthony, the meaning of the name 208 Talks of Angels has not been fully disclosed yet and all will be revealed in time but says, ‘the word angel has no religious implication, but is just the translation of the Greek ‘aggelos’ which means herald or messenger’ – clearly the band intends on bringing something new to the world.
Surprisingly enough, the band does bring something new to the table with bassist Vladimir saying, ‘people hear ethnic music, metal, classical, ambient, techno – we have never tried to confine ourselves to a genre, we just create music we love’. I wasn’t too optimistic when the band contacted me to check out a few tunes, but I was pleasantly surprised by the maturity displayed through the
music and a competent level of musicianship backed up by some really excellent, well-conceived compositions. The bleak industrial city of Ishevsk isn’t exactly a location illuminated by culture and art, but that’s perhaps one of the reasons why the music seems so heartfelt – you really have to love music to try to make a living out of it there. That said, the band’s approach has been met quite positively at home, affording 208 Talks of Angels the chance to play their original music in a sold-out concert hall alongside 70 professional musicians of the Udmurt National Symphony Orchestra. Anthony says: ‘After the show we shivered and shook for hours, it was unforgettable!’ Recently the band received an invitation to perform with the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine so things are definitely looking up for these young Russians who are doing something quite different and commendable. The band is continually
releasing new material on the Internet so do yourself a favour, ignore the occasionally humorous use of English, and check out 208 Talks of Angels at the following locations: http://soundcloud.com/208talksofangels http://www.youtube.com/user/208talksofangels http://www.208talksofangels.com ■
VERY now and then 8th Note will review a YouTube video of an aspiring young (or old) hopeful and attempt to review their online videos fairly.
This month we look at the talents of the beautiful Jan Terri. If you YouTube the video for her song ‘Losing You’ chances are the first hit will be the one lovingly labelled ‘Worst music video ever’.
Jan Terri (born Janice Spagnolia) does not have the X-Factor or a very good stage name. I can only assume that this song is Jan Terri’s lament to a bucket of KFC. She looks like one of those women murderers on the Crime Channel. I am fairly sure that if she ever read all the comments posted on YouTube by the poor unsuspecting web surfers who watched
and commented, we’d see this video as an intro to Snapped; a television programme that showcases female murderers and discusses what pushed them over the edge. But look, that’s all cosmetic and we’re not that superficial – hell, we even love Keith Richards. So let’s talk about the music: Jan is apparently tone deaf, the music video is also incredibly bad. The video smacks of a hand-held camera even by the low standards of the 90s. Around two minutes into this video Jan sports some COPS-inspired eyewear and we see her speeding away on the back of a motorcycle. She also rides in style as she is chauffeured in a really shitty looking limo. She probably organised the limo through her day job as a limo driver; a job she held between 1988 and 2002 despite her degree in communications, arts and entertainment management. Well she did get herself signed to JT Records. You’d be forgiven for thinking that JT is short for Jan Terri – but, happily, that’s not the case. All of this aside, this video has gained what can only be explained as a cult following after its rise to infamy. Various incarnations of her web offering have enjoyed over 700 000 views on YouTube, which is no mean feat. Clearly
Jan Terri has managed to get her music heard. Well done Jan! It doesn’t end there though; in December 2011 Jan released her new single ‘Excuse My Christmas’. Jan, now a little old lady, appears in a mostly animated music video where she clearly displays the same old Jan Terri dance moves that she has been ‘perfecting’ since the 90s. I have lovingly dubbed this the Jan Terri hallmark waddle. Jan obviously loves Christmas. This is not the first Christmas music video released through JT Records. In 1994 Jan released ‘Rock ‘n Roll Santa’ – probably the creepiest music video I have ever seen. Ever Thanks for the music Jan, may the musty old claptrap in which you archive your discography burn to the ground. ■
EVENT DETAILS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE
October 2nd Celtic Women. Grand Arena at Grand West Casino, CPT. 20h00. R375 – R735. Idols Finale. Mosaiek Teatro, JHB. 19h30. R20 – R40. Steve Hofmeyr Haloda. Theatre of Marcellus at Emperor’s Palace. 19h00. R200.
Crimson Chrysalis Album Launch. Atterbury Theatre in Pretoria. 20h00. R110. Grand Master Flash. Czar Restaurant and Bar, DBN. 21h00. R100 – R120.
October 5th Example + DJ Wire Summer Tour. The Wave House, Gateway, DBN. 18h00. R215 – R375.
Heineken Symphonic Rocks. Carnival City, Big Top Arena. 20h00. R225 – R250.
MTN Classic Soiree. Apollo Room, Summer Place in Johannesburg. 18h00. R350 – R385.
Beethoven Septet. Brooklyn Theatre, PTA. 20h00. R75 – R120.
October 4th Example + DJ Wire Summer Tour. Grand Arena, Grand West, CPT. 18h30. R215 – R375. Page12
Kemus: Benjamin Fourie. Endler Hall in Stellenbosch. 20h00. R99.
Rose Garden, Loch Logan in Bloemfontein. 12h00. R280.
Macufe Indoor Jazz. The Dome, Old Greys Sports Club in Bloemfontein. 19h00. R200.
October 12th Macufe Divas Festival. The Dome, Old Greys Sports Club in Bloemfontein. 19h00. R200.
October 13th Macufe Main Music Festival.
Daniele Pascal: One Night in Paris. Richard’s Supper Stage, CPT. 19h00. R80 – R120.
October 19th Andrew Young and Band. Vodacom Ampitheatre, PE. 20h00. R150.
October 20th Good Deeds Music Charity Festival. Mittah Seperepere Convention Centre in Kimberley.10h00. R160 – R190.
Joseph Clark. Clarens Main Tent, FS. 16h30. R130.
Laurika Rauch. Aula Theatre in Pretoria. 15h00. R 110 – R130.
October 27th The Campbells: Platinum Treffers. Carousel, Cheyenne Saloon. 21h00. R50. Lion and Son O Lion Tour. Bassline, JHB. 21h00. R50 – R200.
Grand Arena, Grandwest
Kerk Auditorium Welgemoed, CPT. 20h00. R95.
Casino, CPT. 19h00. R100 – R150.
Lize Beekman: Genade. Centurion Theatre. 20h00. R130.
November 18th The Guitar Speaks. Baxter Concert Hall, CPT. 20h15. R60 – R90.
Elvis Blue. Rhebokskloof Theatre On The Lake in Paarl. 19h00. R180.
Bay Reggae Fest. Vodacom Ampitheatre, PE. 19h00. R120.
Crazy Diamond – A Tribute to Pink Floyd. Atterbury Theatre in Pretoria. 20h00. R140 – R220.
Choral Symphony. Sand Du Plessis Theatre, Bloemfontein. 19h30. R120 – R420.
Best of Broadway II. Linder Auditorium, JHB. 15h00. R85 – R200. Cape Town Music Experience. Cape Town Ostrich Ranch. 10h00. R160 – R400.
October 29th Flight of Birds. Atterbury Theatre in Pretoria. 20h00. R120 – R180.
November 13th Adam Lambert. Grand Arena, Grand West CPT. 20h00. R340 – R490.
Lady’s Morning with Nianell. Imperani Gastehuis in Ficksburg. 10h30. R180.
November 30th Lady Gaga ‘Born This Way Ball’. Soccer City Complex,JHB. 19h00. R315 – R715.
December 3rd Lady Gaga ‘Born This Way Ball’. Cape Town Stadium, CPT. 19h00. R315 – R715.
Adam Lambert. Coca Cola Dome, JHB. 20h00. R315 – R515.
October 31st 80s Rewind Festival. Grand Arena at Grand West Casino, CPT. 19h00. R325 – R480.
November 17th Alexander Gilman Violin Recital. Baxter Concert Hall, CPT. 20h00. R125.
November 3rd Cape Town Music Awards.
Con Spirito Philharmonic. NG Page13
Photography by Christelle Duvenage
R Tristan Snijders
ARELY does a South African band appear out of nowhere, rocking the radio and airwaves (or rather satellite broadcasts) within a mere matter of months… then again, Goodnight Wembley! isn’t exactly your average band. You see, the rocking Cape Town-based band is a bit of a minisupergroup, comprising members of bands like Taxi Violence and 7th Son and approached this promising new project with a respectable level of professionalism and strategy.
The ten-armed retro-rock machine, consisting of George van der Spuy (vocals), Nic Gaud (guitar, vocals), Alex Krause (guitar), Gideon de Kock (bass) and Jean Labuschagne (drums), has amazingly already made a dent in the South African music scene after launching with just one single ‘Time Machine’ in late June 2012 – the Goodnight Wembley! blitzkrieg had begun. Within weeks of launching the band, ‘Time Machine’ was being played nationwide on radio stations from Kovsies FM to 5fm and the single’s accompanying video was burning up the MK Top 10 music video charts like a nitrous oxide-powered Ford Escort. By mid-September, Goodnight Wembley! had powered to the top of the MK chart, cruising
A taste of things to come…
past artists such as Jack Parow and Zebra & Giraffe, proving that there is still hope and support for good old rock music in SA. There are many local and international bands trying their hands at invoking the spirits of the 70s rock gods whilst adding a twist of modernity to their music and, while so many of them fail, the lads from Goodnight Wembley! get the updated retro-rock sound just right. With an already impressive performance log behind them and a reputation as an electrically energetic live band, not to mention being one the Converse ‘Get Out Of The Garage’ competition finalists, Goodnight Wembley! has done a good job of leaving little to chance. All this said, the band still has a lot to prove
after having set the bar quite high with ‘Time Machine’ but two of the most important hurdles have already been crossed – getting the band’s name out there and leaving fans wanting more. Considering the band’s upcoming single ‘The Chase’ is due out soon and its debut album is in the works, Goodnight Wembley! seems set to continue its rise to the pinnacle of the South African rock scene. It was purely on the strength of ‘Time Machine’ that I decided to get in touch with the members and find out a bit more about this exciting band, still in its infancy. Nic Gaud was good enough to wrench himself away from band and work duties and answer a few of our questions. Tell us a bit more about the origins of Goodnight Wembley!... George and I had been talking about starting a new project together for a while. Then in January this year George recruited Jean and Alex after hearing them rehearse at Kill City Blues Studios with their other band Dead Lucky, as well as Gideon from Yes Sir! Mister Machine on bass. We started jamming shortly afterwards and the rest as they say is history. How did the band’s name come about? It was something that came about originally almost in jest, joking around George would sometimes end a Taxi Violence show saying ‘Goodnight Wembley’. We liked the tonguein-cheek manner of it all and the many connotations to the name and so it stuck.
Photography by Baden Moir
You’re an incredibly young band – how did
you guys manage to land a radio single and get a music video down in such a short period of time? When we started the band we had a very clear idea of how we wanted to launch this new project, taking into account everything we had learned through Taxi Violence and 7th Son and applying it to Goodnight Wembley!, drawing up a full 12-month strategy that included recording and shooting videos for the first two singles before we launched the band. We released ‘Time Machine’ along with the video and a full PR campaign behind it which definitely helped in the song being picked up so quickly by TV and radio. Your ‘Time Machine’ video rocketed up to the top of the MK video charts. What does it feel like having achieved that within a matter of months? Ja, we’re obviously very happy and extremely stoked that the reception has been so amazing. It’s great and has really inspired us. Hopefully we’ll be able to keep the momentum going with the release of our second single ‘The Chase’ which will come out in a few weeks. To people who have never heard Goodnight Wembley!, how would you describe your music?
grunge movement as well and this comes through quite a bit in our music too. What’s coming up for Goodnight Wembley! in the next few months?
We would love to take up a few opportunities that have come our way to possibly do a few shows overseas next year but for now the focus is purely on our local scene and building as big a platform as we can.
Along with the release of our second single we will be hitting the festival scene with Rocking the Daisies and Synergy Live. November will see us in studio to record the rest of our debut album which is set to drop early next year. December we will be touring the East Coast playing a host of venues along the way up to WildKei Fest. Then there are New Year shows, RAMfest and Up The Creek early next year, so there’s lots going on. Do you guys have any particular goals for the near future? For now we just want to complete all our launch plans for the debut album and tour the band as much as possible. We would love to take up a few opportunities that have come
our way to possibly do a few shows overseas next year but for now the focus is purely on our local scene and building as big a platform as we can. Are there any other up-and-coming local bands you guys are into? There are loads of great new bands in the SA rock scene but to name a few off the top of my head: Woodstock Mafia, The Mystics, Red Huxley, The Dollfins, Beast, Stoker, Black Dog, Parking Ponies and SexLife. Thanks for taking the time to answer our questions. Hope to catch you guys on the road sometime soon! Cool, it’s a pleasure. See you then! ■
It’s essentially a retro-rock band drawing inspiration from three different decades – namely the 70s era, a splash of 90s grunge with a touch of contemporary commercial elements to it. Something like that. You guys have a new single coming out sometime soon. When can we expect it to hit SA’s radio waves and what can those eager to hear some new material expect? Ja, the second single is called ‘The Chase’ and will also be made available for free download from our facebook page in the next few weeks. It’s slightly more upbeat than ‘Time Machine’ but is totally inline with the Goodnight Wembley! sound, with driving guitar riffs, big drums and a strong catchy chorus.
I guess there has always been a trend of things moving in circles with regards to music. Personally for us, the sound just came naturally as we all grew up listening to those bands through our parents. We definitely were inspired heavily in the 90s by the Seattle
Photography by Christelle Duvenage
There has been a somewhat recent revival of retro, 70s-inspired rock. Why do you think today’s fans and bands are being drawn to the rocking tunes of yesteryear?
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Shakespearean actor on stage mimicking the death of Richard II, ‘Strawberry Lips’ and all. That’s right ‘horse dancers’ I am raising a suspicious eyebrow at all of you, and that ‘Gangnam Style’ blearing from your cell phones… It is worth mentioning that there have been some incredible songs produced by one-hit wonders, songs that we’ll still proudly play because they haven’t dated. These are songs that will never go out of fashion because there will always be some aspect of the tune that keeps our feet tapping. My research has found that there are literally hundreds of noteworthy one-hit wonders – songs that deserve to be on a list just like ours. There has been an absolute rash of these oneoff heroes and we can’t exclude any decade from wearing the pockmark of a one-hit wonder here and there. We at 8th Note have picked 15 one-hit wonders that managed to sear into our brains that we can’t shake off, even with a giant shudder. It is worth mentioning though that even though some of these songs are tragic there are still some absolutely timeless tunes on this list. Just so you guys know, I’ll not even be delving the depths by discussing Right Said Fred, Venga Boys or Indecent Obsession – there is only so much a person can take.
N the past few decades the music world has coughed up, in equal parts, some delightful and some contemptible one-hit wonders. Hundreds of musicians seem to have achieved that anomalous state of having one really popular song gleaming like a diamond in a heap of other rubbish. This popularity is debateable; browsing through literally hundreds of one-hit offerings I start to wonder whether some of these songs reach such fame through being terrible. Everyone has a favourite song by erm, what’s their name again? That song, by that band, whatever happened to them? Here is what happened; they had one good song and a bunch of other songs that no one cares about. It’s sad but it’s not nearly as rare as one would think. That song that was huge in the 90s, or a couple of years back or whenever is now so battle-worn, so over-played that we cringe when we hear it and we shudder to think that
we entertained ourselves by singing along or hoping that it gets played again. It is funny how our culture works: in one instant there is a brand new sound that you simply have to have heard and absolutely need to get your mitts on, and in the next instant everyone finds that same song so ill-conceived, so tragically bad that they would jump through hoops of fire to avoid being ‘one of those people that enjoys listening to that sort of thing’. The same people who are dancing to Vanilla Ice today, and emphatically echoing MC Hammer when he says ‘you can’t touch this!’ are ashamed of singles like these on their CD shelf, cellphone or iTunes library the very next month. It is funny in that dark comedy sort of way… That specific way that tells us that the only funny part is how desperately tragic it is that flames can burn so fiercely only to suffocate and die dramatically a few weeks later. You can almost see them die too, like a
15. Wheatus – ‘Teenage Dirtbag’. You shouldn’t have mentioned Iron Maiden, Wheatus. That has dropped you to the last spot on a list of debutants that never made it beyond a season. It was a crucial mistake. Other than that I think your one song that made it sports a high-pitched whine that churns my insides. Please remain in that place where you are; away from me and easy to ignore. I’m not even going to research this song, that’s how little I care about it. I had to listen to Iron Maiden just to wash that song out of my ears. 14. Aqua – ‘Barbie Girl’. This revolting song was released in 1997. It was voted as one of VH1’s ‘Most Awesomely Bad Songs…Ever’. It’s bad, but it isn’t awesome. While I
realise that this was not the only hit Aqua might have achieved in dark and lonely European countries, it was the only song to feature on the Billboard Hot 100. 13. Billy Ray Cyrus – ‘Achy Breaky Heart’. Ouch, I can literally see scores of middle-aged South Africans trying to square dance in school halls and at weddings to this incredibly irksome ‘country’ song. Look I know Billy Ray Cyrus may have had other hit songs, it’s just I wish he’d rather not have made this one. Originally entitled ‘Don’t Tell My Heart’, Billy changed the name for his rendition of the track that featured on his 1992 album Some Gave All. It remains his most popular song to date. 12. Chumbawamba – ‘Tubthumping’. This British act had other, highly political incredibly yawn-worthy, offerings that they labelled ‘anarchopunk’. They only really had ‘Tubthumping’ as a hit though. They have aligned themselves with every cause, from animal rights to ‘the class struggle’ but it has not helped them sell any albums or become notable musicians outside of this one single. This song was released in 1997. 11. Dexy’s Midnight Runners – ‘Come on Eileen’. This tune was released in 1982, and there is both a single and an album version of the track. For the two or three joyless souls seriously wondering how’d they’d tell the two versions apart: the original single version starts with a quaint little Celtic fiddle solo. This was the band’s second hit single in the UK though they have achieved nothing of consequence since then. This is an excellent tune and unsurprisingly a favourite at every truly boozy wedding I have ever attended. 10. Afroman – ‘Because I Got High’. This charmingly honest little song was nominated for a Grammy. It was released in 2001 and is one of those songs we have the Internet to thank for; as it rose to fame after being heavily circulated on the web. The music video was directed by Kevin Smith.
9. Rednex – ‘Cotton Eye Joe’. Rednex is a Swedish technofolk-bluegrass band, apparently. They released their version of ‘Cotton Eye Joe’ in 1994. ‘Cotton Eye Joe’ is an American song that predates the American Civil War, but some Swedes brought it to the world. Strange isn’t it? I am not even ashamed to admit that I liked this song as a kid, who wouldn’t? 8. Los Del Rio – ‘Macarena’. Oh dear! This song originally appeared in 1994 but only became an international hit between 1995 and 1996. So popular was the tune that there have been various mixes and remixes – there was even a special Christmas edition. There are six incarnations of the song that can be credited to Los Del Rio, but the Bayside Boys remix is the one most people caught like the plague resulting in the song’s 14-week tenure on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 Singles chart. 7. Vanilla Ice – ‘Ice Ice Baby’. This song is credited as being the song to diversify hip hop by introducing it to a wider audience. This 1990-hit was written by Robert Van Winkle (popularly known as Vanilla Ice) when he was 16 years old. Your ears do not deceive you if you think you recognise a part of the tune as something else. The song samples the bassline of ‘Under Pressure’ – whose writers/composers didn’t initially receive royalties or song-writing credits. 6. Snow – ‘Informer’. Snow, wait for it, is a Canadian reggae musician. Yes! And for fear of being assaulted I’ll get right to business: It was released in 1992, it features and was produced by MC Shan. Informer is off Snow’s debut album 12 Inches of Snow. The song became a hit the year after he went to prison, in fact, the music video is meant to recall his time in prison, in Canada, how quaint. I actually enjoy this song; it’s one of those disturbing anthems of my youth. 5. Baha Men – ‘Who Let the Dogs Out?’. The hit single from the Bahaman band the Baha Men earned them international popularity that was about as great as it
was brief. Their remake of this song saw them on the charts in 2000. This remake earned the band numerous awards including a Grammy, as unlikely as that seems to us today. 4. The Weather Girls – ‘It’s Raining Men’. This song earned the girl group real popularity in 1982. The song was popularised again in 1997 when it was covered by Martha Wash, of original The Weather Girls fame, alongside RuPaul. Gerri Halliwell also tried her hand at covering this track, but who cares about Ginger anyway? 3. Lipps Inc – ‘Funky Town’. Welcome to the disco! It wasn’t going to be very long until we hit the Technicolor waste water of this subgenre of music. This track was released in 1980 where it quickly soared to the number one spot on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. This was Lipps Inc’s only real hit, and it’s a song that still resonates with music lovers to this day. 2. Carl Douglas – ‘Kung Fu Fighting’. This disco homage to kung fu films was released in 1974. I am sure Jamaican-born Carl Douglas both loves and hates this only hit he ever had, as it simultaneously made him famous and overshadowed every other attempt he ever made at producing another hit song. At the time this song was released the world was still in the grips of what is colloquially referred to as the ‘chop-socky film’ craze. Fortunately for Carl Douglas, this song has never really dated as it has been widely used in popular media and is to this day not out of place on any film score. 1. Nena – ‘99 Luftballons’. This awesome track, king of the movie soundtracks, hero of the 80s, was released in 1983 on the band’s self-titled album. This protest song envisions what would happen if 99 red balloons ever crossed the Berlin Wall in to the Soviet Sector. In the song, this ultimately triggers a nuclear war. I bet that no one other than die-hard Nena fans knew that this upbeat song dealt with such a serious topic. ■
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All Enslaved Photography by Christian Misje
As Monuments to the Gods are the Rites of Great Men
E Tristan Snijders
NSLAVED is a truly multidimensional musical phenomenon defying the ear and mind yet somehow seeming perfectly comfortable within its own ever-evolving being. Looking back at the band’s humble origins amongst the Norwegian black metal bands of the genre’s second wave, it never seemed certain that the band would undergo such a colossal, outward metamorphosis. A mere year into the band’s existence, however, Enslaved was already one of the most intense bands of the movement, both in terms of its musical ferocity but also in a near-inexplicable way. There has been something intangible at the heart of Enslaved’s music since 1992’s Yggdrasill demo that resonates with some sort of atavistic emotional core when one becomes fully immersed in the music – you know that feeling? Some would say it’s just the release of endorphins as a reaction to listening to music but this is something else. This stirs something decidedly primal, something hidden and forgotten in today’s cookie-cutter world – the music peers into your long-lost animist soul and binds you to the cosmos in a way that almost no music can. This, my friends, is what you call art; a creation so imperceptibly far beyond the sum of its parts that it becomes an entity unto itself. Merely taking a peak at Enslaved’s recent surface you could say it’s black/Viking metal that meets 70s progressive rock, in a surprisingly effective and natural manner,
with thoughtfully crafted lyrics and concepts – multidimensional indeed. The band hasn’t done badly for itself either, having picked up four Spellemannprisen (Norwegian Grammies) for its last four albums and garnering a growing audience across the globe. Enslaved currently consists of Grutle Kjellson (vocals, bass), Ivar Bjørnson (guitars, keyboards), Cato Bekkevold (drums), Herbrand Larsen (guitars, keyboards, vocals) and Arve Isdal (guitars) and released RIITIIR, the band’s 12th studio album, at the end of September. What’s that you say? Three guys playing guitar and two on the keyboard? When you hear the otherworldly power Enslaved brings through its albums, you understand why this is a good thing. RIITIIR is bound to hit the top of most metal magazines’ ‘Best of 2012’ lists and is more than likely to earn the band yet another Spellemannprise, so I thought I’d take a chance to get a few words from the guys. Grutle and Ivar, who started Enslaved at 13 and 17 years old, respectively, were more than happy to allocate some time to my questions and here follows a truly monumental, insightful interview from the two bearded visionaries. You guys were basically kids when you formed Enslaved. Tell us a bit more about how the band got started… Ivar: Grutle and I were playing in a band called Phobia; a death metal band in Haugesund, Norway. During the course of 90-91 I guess we grew somewhat tired of doing that, and decided
to break out and start a new outfit – that ended up being Enslaved. I called on my childhood friend Trym Torson to join us, and the rest is history. Or actually, we are still going strong, so perhaps it isn’t history quite yet! Quorthon of Bathory is unquestionably the father of what one may call Viking metal. Were you at all inspired by Bathory when you formed the band and the historical/mythological concept behind it? What inspired you to start Enslaved and take the band in the direction you did initially? Grutle: I think all the extreme metal emerging from Scandinavia in the early 90s was hugely inspired by Bathory one way or the other. Personally I was more into the music than the lyrics, and that goes for all the albums. Bathory were definitely among the metal bands that inspired us, along with Mayhem, Celtic Frost, Master´s Hammer and bands from the German 80s thrash scene. Lyrically we were and are still inspired by early Norse philosophy, mysticism and mythology. Enslaved has been a very prolific band in terms of recordings over the years. How do you keep such a constant stream of inspiration going and how does the song-writing process generally work? Ivar: One thing is to never allow yourself to waste inspiration. No matter how I choose to perceive the concept of ‘musical inspiration’: subconscious streams, logic, metaphysical and occult phenomena – I choose to never question it: when music comes knocking on the brain-
door, I set aside time and space in my life to create music and songs from those ideas. It doesn’t matter when, where or how: ‘the source’ knows that I am loyal beyond convenience and laziness and pays me back with an everlasting supply. There are certain thoughts, premonitions that come up usually a month or two before the songwriting starts. When the time is right it is about facilitation; to set myself in a setting where I can write without too much ‘day-to-day‘ disturbances like phones or emails. After I have written the basic song foundation – always with a minimum of guitars and programmed drums, sometimes with more expressed ideas through including bass lines, keyboards and even the odd vocal snippet – I take the demos to the guys. The next phase is about the two singers making their vocal arrangements for the song; this is the one phase where my original arrangements are modified before going into recording – though more and more seldomly this happens: I would attribute this to both my songwriting being done with a better understanding of vocals over the years, and the singers‘ abilities to lay vocals onto the underlying visions. The year 2000 marked quite a musical change in Enslaved’s history. With Mardraum: Beyond the Within, the band’s sound took on a lot of progressive elements and paved the way for what your music would sound like from then on. It was quite a shock for some people at the time, going from Blodhemn to Mardraum – how did the transition feel to you? What prompted you to shift further away from your black/Viking metal roots and become a more progressive band? Ivar: It felt very natural and liberating! We were prepared for people being shocked, but it didn’t matter at that point. I think we felt that we had gone down a dead-end street with Blodhemn
– don’t get me wrong, it is a great album – but there was nowhere to go for Enslaved from that album. So instead of ‘giving up’ and keeping on with our ‘one-trick-almost-black-metal’ we chose rebirth. And it felt like the right and brave choice. We were really happy with the album, and we got a great positive surprise when so many people outside the band also really got into the album. It was the ultimate proof for us that going with your heart can never be wrong. All this I am talking about is with regards to the music, I wouldn’t say we took any such dramatic directional change with the lyrics – well, they became more personal, psychologically and mystically orientated, and shifted from mythology to runes – but the essence remained the same. Perhaps that’s what enabled us to keep focus through such profound musical change? I guess the internalisation of the lyrics also happened in the image – there would be no more ‘costumes’ and swords after Blodhemn… but again, the essence remained the same. Last year you released the Thorn EP which displayed a marked change from your other recent releases – it has a more atmospheric black metal sound than a progressive one. What inspired this more direct and strippeddown approach?
matured a lot in that part of your songwriting? Ivar: Thanks! I would say that it is a process of maturing, yes. In the beginning the challenge was to find a way to integrate these kinds of influences naturally – so it didn’t sound like we stopped and started some kind of cover song or anything. Then I think we mastered it pretty well, ‘Ground’ from Vertebrae being perhaps the most blatant Pink Floyd worship so far in our career – and now we have perhaps reached a phase where we are transforming the inspiration before performing the music. The influences are still there, but they were part of the mental process before the songwriting, so direct traces are much harder to locate. I think this goes for all our ‘progressive’ parts…
Ivar: It was a really old idea that was finally realised in 2011 – you know, we have felt part of the ‘underground culture’ ever since our early-90s days of tape trading and single collection before the Internet took over people’s lives. Sometime in the mid-2000s I One thing is to never allow agreed with Jorn yourself to waste inspiration. from Soulseller No matter how I choose that one day to perceive the concept (when there was enough time for of ‘musical it) we should do a inspiration’: subconscious limited EP streams, logic, metaphysical together to and occult phenomena – I celebrate the origins of choose to never question it… Enslaved and what Soulseller is Your highly anticipated upcoming album still doing. I really admire these guys who keep RIITIIR has just been released through Nuclear the vinyl presses going – they work their asses Blast Records. Could you tell us a bit about the off during the day to get enough money to album title and the inspiration behind the press these gems for the collectors. So I would concept? say that the music is a direct reflection of this ethos. This is also a part of Enslaved’s musical universe! It sounds to me like Enslaved has more recently started moving away from that very significant Pink Floyd influence that has been quite prevalent in your music and really crafted your own sound for your softer ‘progressive’ parts. Do you feel that’s the case and you’ve
Grutle: The title is a little construction of Ivar and me, and it is a made-up word meaning something like ’The Rites of Man’ in English. The lyrics are loosely tied together in a concept that deals with the common/mutual instincts humanity shared when it came to approaching life in the pre-monotheistic ages. We look at
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the similarities you can find in very different cultures and mythologies all around the world. People from very different places geographically, with no communication with each other whatsoever, seemed to share almost exactly the same gods representing the same forces, just under different names. So, it is fair to say that we shared an ancient, common methaphysical platform of some sort. We share the same irrational fear, and the same attachment to something more divine than humanity itself. So the lyrics are about how mankind has always reached out in search of a deeper understanding. Your last four albums had quite similar cover art motifs, but the cover artwork for RIITIIR is quite different. What’s the particular meaning behind the cover and why did you choose that idea over any others there may have been? Grutle: The cover art is Truls Espedal’s (the artist) visualisation of the things I mentioned roughly to you in my previous answer. We have used him ever since Monumension and he´s becoming very skilled in his way of transforming Ivar’s, and my, ideas into works of art! I will leave the rest to the listeners... The biggest difference this time is perhaps the use of different colours, but this is Truls Espedal’s artistic freedom and not specific ideas from me or Ivar. I think it is very refreshing and different, yet it is very easy to point out who did it! Sort of a ’red line’ just like in our music. It changes, but it´s easy to spot that it is Enslaved. How is RIITIIR musically different to your previous album Axioma Ethica Odini? What was the writing and recording process like? Ivar: The songwriting was more intense this time – when I talked about the inspiration coming at any time, I was not kidding. And I
think I managed to fight my way into closed space every time to make sure the ideas became flesh, so to speak. This intensity was brought forward by me, Grutle and Cato rehearsing extensively with the basic structures of the songs long before we entered the studio. And finally the energy was carried into the recording – we recorded these three instruments (me, guitars; Grutle, bass; Cato, drums) live in the studio before the rest was added on top of that. The enthusiasm in studio was also hitting a high mark for us: at times we would work in parallel in no less than three studios – an advantage of having two studios among the band members – to find time to try out the ideas. This again led to a more critical pre-mix and mix phase than we have been used to: this time, due to extreme work from some band members and an eager co-producer, we found the time to try out so many different solutions that the pre-mix and mixing sessions could focus on cutting away and selecting the very best. It is definitely a lesson I am taking with me; approaching mixing with a slightly more minimalist attitude than the recording itself is definitely a good way to let things develop. Enslaved has been around for more than 20 years now. What, to you, has changed most significantly in the band and in the greater world of music since you started? Grutle: Well, when we started in 1991 it was still very underground and there were no such things as facebook and myspace. In fact there wasn’t even really the Internet. There were letters and underground fanzines, and that was about it. That is definitely the biggest difference between then and now. It was hard to be recognized as a band, but we worked hard for it, and I strongly cherish that time. The underground was a stronghold back then, and will of course never exist in such a way ever again. But, on the other hand, I’m not so sure that I would go back either…haha. Things are far more professional nowadays, and in many way it’s easier to be in a band. I guess technology has its pros and cons.
After such a long time working with Ivar, does it still feel fresh working on music together? Grutle: We’ve been working together for so long, actually our whole adult life, so we really don’t know anything else! Personally I would find it very strange not to be in this band. It’s kind of what I’ve always done and what I always will do. We admire each other’s skills and we have deep respect for one another. We are good at different things you know, making things a lot easier. We do not step on each other’s toes all the time, because we have different roles. Which have been some of your favourite bands to play alongside? Ivar: We’ve had so many awesome times on the road, we’re lucky to have shared bills and stages with a lot of bands and personalities. Supporting Opeth was a big thing for us, in 2009 in North America; both in terms of reaching out to a larger audience and hanging out with such fantastic people and musicians. I also immensely enjoyed touring with Junius and Alcest last year, also in North America – bands with a slightly different perspective on music, scene and lyrics than Enslaved; but we hit it off immensely well – a chilled, professional and musically fantastic package to travel with. Most bands are cool to tour with, usually as long as they’re not has beens who were bigger in the 80s and 90s and hate new bands coming up, or snotty Norwegians who make too much money from their day jobs back home and can’t adapt to taking messages on the road. What’s coming up for Enslaved after the release of RIITIIR? Ivar: There’s going to be a Norwegian tour, some festival appearances including the Barge to Hell cruise in December, then we’re going to start touring the world seriously throughout the first half of 2013 before the festival season. I can’t go into detail right now (it will come), but geographically it will be the most extensive world tour we’ve ever done! What’s your average day like? What do you do in your spare time? Grutle: I like to go fishing when I have some time off, but that is not average I’m afraid. So, it’s generally get up, eat breakfast (or lunch) and go to work (gig, sound-check, interviews or ‘day job’ stuff if I’m not on tour). A couple (or a case) of beers is also nice, if I don’t have to be very sober to perform my duties. ■
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Riots aren’t for pussies!
USSY Riot has been all over the news: liberals are shouting SET FREE the three incarcerated members of the approximately 12-member strong group and Yoko Ono has given them a peace prize…. There seems to be absolutely no doubt that these long-suffering self-proclaimed ‘protest artists’ should be set free. Only I do have doubts, quite a few in fact. Pussy Riot started in August 2011 and they orchestrated their first public performance in November 2011. To me, personally, the motivations behind the group are a bit obtuse, but they cite reasons for their illconceived hard-listening amateur punk as being part of ‘a global anti-capitalist movement, anarchy, feminism and autonomy’. Apparently they have a disdain for Putin, restrictions placed on legal abortions and further describe their act as ‘dissident art’ aimed at a corporate political system. I can’t agree with these women because under the guise of ‘feminism’ they are fighting the ‘capitalist model of art as a commodity’ – which means that while very many well-intentioned superstars have poured saccharine sweet support all over this group of women and their efforts they have basically rejected the support, purposefully distancing themselves from ‘Western artists’. They even rejected an invitation to perform alongside Björk and Madonna, because this is all too capitalist you see – this business of selling tickets. They have gone as far as to say that they’ll only perform at illegal shows.
Which brings me neatly back to my original point, I cannot agree with them because they do not agree with me – a woman, selling art, in Africa. How capitalist of me, in an emerging economy in the third world, to be selling art. Should I starve or rely on the government to take care of me? Oh no wait, governments are evil. I guess I should marry rich then, no hang on that wouldn’t be feminist. Ah well, at least I’ll always have music – only I can’t buy any music because that would be to support musicians and the capitalists who fund them. Sorry Madonna, Peter Gabriel, Paul McCartney, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sting, Pete Townsend etc – while you guys have worked to support Pussy Riot, they don’t support you. How extraordinary that these women have managed to scrape a living by sticking it to the capitalist pigs. How do they buy their brightly coloured knit wear? Perhaps some agrarian romantic in us envisions these Russian women, tending their own livestock, shearing their own sheep and then knitting their own balaclavas only to stain them with dyes that they have produced from crushing stones. It would be nice to think that they don’t work, ever, and that they live the feminism and anarchy that they preach – but probably they don’t. How do they defend women’s rights in tiny skirts and tights even in freezing weather? How do they protest the leadership and reelection of Putin by disrupting a sermon for seasoned church-goers? I thought the idea is that everyone had the right to believe what they want (and practice those beliefs) in an equal and healthy society? My mind rattles with these contradictions. I say this knowing that Russia has its issues
(along with China and Iran etc), but there are countries where blasphemy can be punished to the full extent of the law. Recently an 11-yearold Pakistani girl had to be saved from being stoned to death for accidentally burning what she couldn’t grasp to be pages of the Quran. Protest that, as soon as possible. In Pakistan execution is par for the course when it comes to acting in any way blasphemous. In Russia, not so much. In Ireland, blaspheming could make you liable to pay as much as a €25 000 fine. Once again, in Russia that’s not the case. Hell, even in New Zealand citizens face up to one year imprisonment for publishing anything that can be considered blasphemous libel. In Russia, the law is considering a bill that’s fairly clear: do not desecrate religious images or places. People do not want to see their shit destroyed and that seems fair enough to me. Pussy Riot’s no-doubt terrible performance in Russia’s Cathedral of Christ the Saviour largely received a hostile response in Russia. Not just by men and capitalists either. So now they are in jail, and the topic is so hot it’ll burn your lips as you speak about it to your equally swag and super hip friends and you all sit on twitter with your favourite celebrities commiserating the fate of the these young warriors. Everyone, after all, deserves free speech. What governments cannot allow is vandalism and civil disobedience, because this brings down the general tone of a place and potentially the property value for the hard-working citizens in a country – after all, the fundamentals of lawmaking tell us that every right is followed by an obligation. Pussy Riot deserves free speech
too and they have a right to be annoyed – but they are obliged not to be annoyed at the expense of everyone else. It is so easy for emotional intellectuals to hearken back to a time where Russian intellectuals were exiled and imprisoned under the sharp whip of a terrible regime. But to compare Pussy Riot to Dostoyevsky seems blasphemous to me… I’m all for protest art and peaceful protest. I enjoy the fact that governments can be challenged by citizens and that art could be used as a vehicle of much-needed change. In South Africa, in a dark past under the leadership of the Nats loads of artists performed protest art and many were exiled. They fought for a clear and well-defined cause. Everyone could agree with this cause. But how do illegal performances of bad punk spread the message that women need feminism and governments need to be sober and fair? I do not believe it does. I would also, never, blaspheme against the wonderful people of this country who put their incredible talents to good use by comparing them to Pussy Riot either. We should be very careful about dressing ideology up as art and punting it for free or otherwise, because as many anarchists as nationalists roam this earth and anyone can
make music. I’m willing to make a rather hard statement here, I’m willing to say that Pussy Riot has scantily-clad their terrible music in ideology to validate it, to legitimate their Sid Vicious obsessions – to get people to care about it at all. I’ll agree with the whole world on one point though: Maria Alekhina, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Ekaterina Samutsevich must be set free, and the whole extended pre-trial incarceration and subsequent jail time is a punishment that doesn’t fit the crime. They have no business in prison and bad punk should only be a minor criminal offence, perhaps worthy of a fine. They should be set free and promptly ignored so that the everyman can go to church, much-loved national monuments and where ever the hell they’d like without rabid, scantily-clad
women retching bad music at them and setting off fire extinguishers. I’ve no doubt that in the future a dreary drama will be made edifying these women and celebrating them as heroes. This movie will feature the self-same ‘westerners’ that Pussy Riot would like to distance themselves from and you’ll probably have to buy a ticket to watch the film at a cinema. I wouldn’t begrudge these girls the royalties they make, because as a woman in the third world I realise that everyone has to make a living. ■
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…ING Ingquisition – 2012 Reviewed by:Tristan Snijders Rating: 8.5/10
APE Town’s …ING is the most politically incorrect, in-yourface metal band in South Africa. The quartet plays a pretty intense form of metal with a touch of technicality and more attitude than even the most hardened punk – it’s actually more like punching a punk in the face with a knuckleduster: that’s the level of attitude I’m talking about.
Over the years the band has covered almost any and every controversial topic you can think of and this album isn’t all that different. Ingquisition is brimful of sociopolitical commentary, largely focused on South African issues, and the lyrics are mostly quite well thought out and a lot of the vocal refrains are pretty damned catchy to boot. The lyrics cover topics including the Mayan apocalypse, everyone’s favourite comrade Uncle Julius and Moses Sithole, the infamous ABC Killer. It definitely feels like the guys have taken their time working out the compositions and the result is a pretty fine album. The music can’t be perfectly pigeonholed into one of the many subgenres of metal, combining the overarching thrash metal structure with an overdose of death metal, making for a particularly effective headbanging cocktail. The vocals mostly consist of a gruff shout at times reminding one of Tom G. Warrior of Celtic Frost/Triptykon fame, only better. It’s a great thing that the vocals are audible because as I mentioned a lot of the lyrics are definitely worth paying attention to. I don’t want to wax lyrical about this album because that’s not what …ING is about. …ING is about bringing you awesome metal intent on giving you whiplash and so far the band hasn’t failed to deliver. It’s a real pity the band can’t get around the country more regularly because an …ING live show is something to behold. Meanwhile, everyone outside the Cape needs to get their hands on this and experience a killer slab of exceptional South African metal. ■
Emeli Sandé Our Version of Events – 2012 Reviewed by:Reinhardt Massyn Rating: 4/10
HE fact that Emeli Sandé’s first name is Adele is pure coincidence, but it’s clear that she shares vocal capabilities with the legendary ‘Rolling in the Deep’ singer – Adele. Emeli’s debut album Our Version of Events was released in February this year. The single from her album ‘Next To Me’ has experienced tremendous airplay, reached number one on the UK charts, and was also crowned the highest selling single in the UK, so far, of 2012. The success of the single, ‘Next To Me’ can be explained. A catchy tune, decent lyrics and a female voice of note are all present – the perfect recipe for a massive single. This particular single inspired me to get hold of the whole album. After I purchased it, three tracks into the album it was clear that the quality of ‘Next To Me’ is not prevalent throughout the whole album. This can also be ‘blamed’ on the various producers used. Craze & Hoax produced ‘Next To Me’ and not one of the other tracks; coincidence? Maybe, maybe not… I’ll leave that for you to decide.
A heavy, sad-faced emo sound is repeated almost throughout the rest of the album. Not inspiring, or easy on the ear. In my opinion, don’t waste R150 on buying the whole album. If you feel positive about and enjoy ‘Next To Me’, rather spend $0.99 for the single on iTunes, or seek other digital methods if you must – you know what I mean. ■
Marilyn Manson Born Villain – 2012 Reviewed by:Gideon Ramabula Rating: 5/10 orn Villain is shock-rocker Marilyn Manson’s eighth fulllength studio album. The album comprises 13 tracks, with a bonus cover of Carly Simon’s ‘You’re So Vain’ which features Johnny Depp. This latest offering appeals
to that more goth vein in Manson fans; the deep dark vibe perfectly suits the artist and everything associated with him. Overall the album is far darker and more theatrical. Opinions on Marilyn Manson tend to be divided at best – some perceive the music a bit on the darker side while millions of fans love the theatrical nature of the artist and the music he produces. This album will be overshadowed by those opinions as well as a basic comparison between this album and others from the past. The music has changed over the years and this album is a testament to that change. The music is packed with energy but lacks that important connection that has been constant in previous albums, listening to the old Marilyn and the new Marilyn; there is a huge drift, the music has lost some edge though retains the passion that fans expect from him. This album has the habit of becoming slightly monotonous here and it certainly won’t convert non-Manson fans. It can be a bit of a let-down. Manson claimed that the album is more ‘death metal’ – and it is obvious that this is the direction he was trying to go with his vocals. But to me, it lacks that powerful impact that most of Marilyn Manson’s albums have had over the years, it’s as if he is trying to scream the words over the instruments and one can hardly hear anything that is being said – and not in a death metal way either. This gives the listener no option but to go online and search for the lyrics, in an attempt to make some sort of connection to the songs on the album. Also, it has to be said, I hated the cover song. I generally look forward to Manson covers but this one has failed me miserably. That said, if you are looking for pseudometal that you can go wild to, this album is perfect for you. Many Manson fans consider this new, fresh take to be very appealing, but I really believe the old adage ‘leaving well enough alone’ applies to Born Villain. ■
Rudi’s guide to a better recording
Product Type: Electric Guitar Product Name: Fender Stratocaster Rating: 11/10
O far we’ve looked at a few handy pieces of equipment that make your recording process easier or simply sound better. This month, however, I’m taking a look at one of my favourite instruments of all time – the mighty Fender Stratocaster. When most people think of an electric guitar your typical Strat shape comes to mind, and for good reason. Fender Stratocasters have, since appearing in the 1950s, been a favoured guitar among guitarists across the world. From originals like Buddy Holly and pioneers like Jimi Hendrix to legends like Stevie Ray Vaughan and modern shred masters like Yngwie Malmsteen and Eric Johnson, pretty much everyone has used Fender’s flagship guitar.
genuine Fender specifications. The advantage of these cheapies is that they’re almost fully upgradeable and if you don’t have the cash to pick up a more high-end Strat, you can always upgrade the pickups for a fraction of the price. The Mexican-built Standard Strat, however, is just a very good guitar, with the build quality and sound being very similar to the much more expensive American models. It’s definitely value for money for such a great guitar! The Mexican manufacturers aren’t contracted out to build these babies but are official Fender staff trained by Fender, so you know you’re getting a quality instrument. The American-built Strats are absolutely supreme guitars with unbeatable build quality and sound. The other big advantage of the US models over the Mexican models is the fact that they are generally an investment, growing in value as the years go by. The Deluxe models generally feature a humbucker or noiseless pickups at the bridge and the Custom models, specially handcrafted by Fender’s master luthiers, are the guitars that dreams are made of.
There are some good reasons for this. Obviously a lot of the guitar greats have had their Strat models customised to very specific preferences, but your standard Fender Strat is a sublime guitar without any changes. There are a few standard variations, but mainly you’ll find Squier Stratocasters, Mexicanbuilt Standard Stratocasters, American
What I really like about Strats is that lovely smooth maple neck, that really makes fingering up and down the fretboard a dream and it’s simply an extremely comfortable and intuitive guitar, even if the neck isn’t the fastest. The body is typically carved from ash or alder and always looks good when a bit of wood shines through the finish.
Standard Stratocasters and the feather in Fender’s cap, the Deluxe model.
From a sound point of view, Strats can’t match something like a Les Paul in terms of sustain or that deep humbucking crunch but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Strats are famously versatile guitars, able to give you most sounds you want, and its single-coil pickups cut through a mix with definite ease.
Each guitar caters to different budgets. A Squier Strat is ideal for the beginner who’s looking to spend just enough to get a decent entry-level guitar at a good price. They are indeed manufactured in China and the pickups and electronics are no match for Fender Strats. You’re not getting an ultra-cheap knockoff, but a guitar built to
I simply can’t recommend Fender Stratocasters highly enough. There are so many reasons why you need to own one. As for me, it really is one of my favourite guitars and I can’t see myself getting rid of mine anytime soon. ■
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FOR our fresh-look October issue we interview more of SA’s favourite rock stars; aKING and Goodnight Wembley!. Metal fans can page ahead for...