Pag age1 a ge g e1
IN THE NEWS
T’s that time of the year: Boney M is driving us mad and everything in every store has just gone up with between 25% and 50%. The shops are busy, you don’t know what to buy your relatives and you are secretly working on a drinking habit to make that family Christmas more bearable.
Happily you can sneak off into a quiet nook away from moth-ball smelling geriatrics and awkward silences to read our December edition, which is chock-full of great reads, interviews, reviews and news. For those enjoying a long December holiday page ahead for our events section… loads of good shows happen over the festive season for bona fide music lovers to enjoy.
Interview: Taxi Violence
Into The Unknown
Kill It With Fire
Homegrown: Red Huxley
In addition to Lemmy we’ll be chatting to one of my all-time favourite local metal acts Mind Assault. To give you an idea, I first reviewed this band about eight years ago, so handing them over to our metal-minded features writer Tristan Snijders is super exciting.
Of course we had an 8th Note respondent at Lady Gaga’s JHB show – so those who missed out can catch all the details in our review.
Topic: 10 songs that probably inspire terrorism 8th Notes From the Underground: Mind Assault
This month is a big one for us – we interview Lemmy from Motörhead. This is our legendary first year in print and we thought we needed a true legend to end the year off with. Who better than husky-voiced rock hero Lemmy Kilmister representing his awesome band Motörhead?
This month our homegrown crop produces local rockers Taxi Violence and Red Huxley, both of these bands are no strangers to the MK charts and sport a growing local following. What a whopper! We’d like to thank all our loyal readers for making our first year so fantastic, we have enjoyed enormous support and success in the last seven months.
Column Long Live the Independents
All Roads led to FNB
We’d like to wish you all the very best festive season and a safe and prosperous New Year. Thanks for reading folks and keep rocking!
26 Features: Contributors:
Rudi’s Guide to a Better Recording
Design & Layout: Editorial Assistants:
Tristan Snijders Yolande Erasmus Rudi Massyn gideon ramabula Reinhardt Massyn Charmaine Palm Michelle Clacher Robert John
Write to us on firstname.lastname@example.org with your thoughts and comments to stand a chance to win one of this month’s great CD giveaways, including, amongst others, a SIGNED copy of last month’s cover stars Die Heuwels Fantasties’ Alles Wat Mal Is!
www.8thnotemusicmag.com email@example.com Tel : 011-021-5506 Page1
WEH! Christmas comes early with 8th Note favourite Jack Parow having just released a special edition of his awesome album Eksie Ou. The release includes six brand-spanking-new tracks, a particularly dangerous drinking game and a killer 12-page comic book. Parow fans are also in for a treat in January 2013 when his signature caps will finally be available for purchase. Just remember, if you don’t pick up these goodies you’re simply proving that you’re not cooler than anyone.
USTIN Bieber will be performing in South Africa after all. As is the trend lately, Bieber will be performing in Cape Town on the 8th of May and in Johannesburg on the 12th of May. Tickets will go on sale on the 10th of December for the JHB show and on the 11th for the CPT show. Ticket prices range between R315 and R700. God help us all.
ANITY has prevailed... or perhaps not. K-Pop savant PSY has ousted gurgling Canadian infant Justin Bieber from the top spot on YouTube for most views of a single video. PSY’s ‘Gangnam Style’ has had over 900 million views, flying past Bieber’s ‘Baby’ by nearly 100 million plays. Not only that, but the Korean’s hit already claimed the title of ‘Most-Liked’ YouTube video in September and ‘Gangnam Style’ is likely to hit the mark of 1 billion views sometime in the near future. Thank God Los Del Rio’s ‘Macarena’ hit the mainstream before YouTube was around.
ANISH heavy-metal legends King Diamond have signed a threealbum worldwide record deal with Metal Blade Records. The Grammynominated band seems genuinely excited about the whole affair and front man King Diamond says: ‘This is gonna be awesome! Another perfect piece of the puzzle. We have the full backup of Metal Blade, and there’s an understanding between us that goes much, much deeper than before. Our new business setup will noticeably benefit the fans in so many ways. You must have already noticed some of all the cool new stuff that is happening.’
OSS Jack will be working with producer and songwriter Pete “Boxsta” Martin. Ross Jack has flown to London in order to work on a few tracks with this renowned producer. This incredible development in Ross Jack’s career comes barely a month after the release of his much celebrated EP and three months since the release of his incredible first single Seven45 which enjoyed massive radio airplay countrywide, peaking at number three on the 5FM Top 40 chart.
HER’s hotly anticipated new album bum (due for release in March 2013) has been be een preempted by her single ‘Women’ss World’. W This dance number has had over er 300 000 YouTube views since its release e on o the 21st of November this year. The new album will be her first since 2001’ss Living L Proof. This sixty-six year old diva describes es her new album as ‘eclectic’ and promises loads of dance, dan nce, but ‘not the same kind of dance’. Word around un nd the campfire is that Lady Gaga and Pink have had ha ad a hand in song writing for this new album.
HAKIRA is in the midst of a 100 million dollar lawsuit filed against her by ex-boyfriend Antonio de la Rúa. Antonio de la Rúa claims his love and marketing skills coupled with Shakira’s talents helped shape the Latin diva’s success. Their relationship ended in 2010 and less than a year later Shakira instructed her attorneys to terminate Antonio de la Rúa. Amongst other things, the suit claims that Antonio de la Rúa spent six years building ‘the Shakira brand’.
ANCE James has released his brand new offering For Tears to Come this month. For Tears to Come was recorded with producer Dennis East and includes songs in both English and Afrikaans. The album also features two bonus tracks. ORBES has released their list of music’s top twenty five earners for the year 2012. I’ll not list all of them here but surprisingly enough Dr Dre, Roger Waters and Elton John top that list. Dr Dre’s record-breaking headphone sales is what he has to thank for all his extra cash this year. Beyonce clocks in at the 18th spot, out-earning hubby Jay Z who is number 20 on the list.
IG Concerts has announced that American thrash metal veterans Metallica will be returning to South Africa in 2013. The multi-platinum award-winning quartet will be performing a mere two shows - on the 24th of April at FNB Stadium, JHB and on the 27th of April at Cape Town Stadium. The shows are brought to you by 5FM’s Power Nite of Rock and MK. Tickets are available through Computicket with prices ranging between R295 and R900.
N the least revelatory revelation of the year, former Libertines front man Pete Doherty announced that he had had a secret, drugaddled love affair with the now-extinct jazzy crooner Amy Winehouse. Doherty, long accused of having introduced Winehouse to the clutches of alcohol and drugs, has penned a song in memory of the love of his life. The track ‘Flags From The Old Regime’ is set to appear on Doherty’s next album... hooray? To quote a line from the film Walk Hard: ‘The wrong kid died’.
ATY Perry has been all over the news lately and in a bid to transform herself she be reprising her role as the voice of Smurfette in The Smurfs 2, opposite Christina Ricci as Smurfette’s nemesis. Perry is Billboard’s Woman of the Year. BDULLAH Ibrahim and his band Ekaya is coming to Gauteng to play the Linder Auditorium on the 7th of December and ZK Matthews Hall on the 8th of December. Tickets are R250 and are available through Computicket.
NOOP Lion, the new alias of the perpetually stoned Snoop Dogg, has unveiled two new tracks. Snoop felt the need to change his name and musical direction after experiencing some sort of spiritual epiphany in the Caribbean earlier this year. Sporting a new name, reggae-inspired music and a faux Jamaican accent Snoop really is taking the seriousness of his ganja smoking to new heights. Check out ‘Here Comes The King’ and ‘La, La, La’ online for a somewhat more mellow, and surprisingly not terrible, Snoop Dogg-Lion.
Don’t forget us, We are Motörhead and we play rock ‘n’ roll!
M Tristan Snijders
OTÖRHEAD is an unwavering institution. Since the band’s formation in 1975 Motörhead has given the world the finger and stuck to its guns like no band before or after. It is because of this that the band and founding member Lemmy Kilmister have earned the respect of musicians and rock fans o the world over. th
All Photography by Robert John
Motörhead has inspired, and Mot to inspire, will continue c generations of musicians to gener produce music from the heart produc without faltering, in the pursuit of musical honesty and integrity. If heard Motörhead, you’ve never n been living in some you’ve either e bizarre rock isolation sort of biz chamber or o you just don’t know you’ve heard hea them and you should probably be b ashamed. Love the band Motörhead has always or hate it, M been a sonic soni tour de force and demands res respect for not having given in to industry trends, even after having been crowned the worst band in the world by NME back in the late 70s – yes that’s right, righ NME was as clueless then as it is n now.
Ian Fraser Kilmister, mor more commonly known kno as Lemmy, for formed Motörhead after afte having been kicked ki out of the pioneering spacespac rock band Hawkwind. Hawkwind was on o tour in North America Am and Lemmy, trying tryin to
catch up with the rest of the band after having been essentially abandoned in Michigan, was arrested and jailed for possession of amphetamines causing the band to cancel a few shows and straining the drugged-out members’ relationships even further. You see, Lemmy was a bit of a speed freak – not in terms of physics, but rather drugs – and this caused his ejection from the band. The understandably annoyed Lemmy then decided to form his own band where the only one who could do the firing would be him. The name of his band was intended to be Bastard but management thought it probably wouldn’t be the best name for a band looking to make a living and name for itself. The final track Lemmy had written for Hawkwind was titled Motörhead, which refers to users of speed, and the particularly apt name was chosen for his new band. The idea behind Motörhead was to bring something new to the rock ‘n’ roll table. Motörhead took the abrasiveness of heavy metal, the unrelenting speed of punk, the rolling, accessible sensibilities of good old rock ‘n’ roll, crushed it under a collapsing wall of sound and created the most extreme, in-your-face music anyone had heard at the time. The sound Lemmy had crafted with Motörhead inspired everyone from punks to rockers and formed the basis of what was to become thrash metal, shaping the future of heavy metal. The band’s music has been
I always said I’d love to pl ay in South Africa – it would be really great.
classified as heavy metal, speed metal and hard rock, but at the end of the day it’s rock ‘n’ roll for (figurative) speed freaks by (literal) speed freaks. In 1977, Motörhead released its debut selftitled album with Lemmy on bass and vocals, ‘Fast’ Eddie Clarke on guitar and Phil ‘Philthy Animal’ Taylor on drums. This trio is generally considered as being the classic Motörhead line up as some of the band’s best material, or at least many fans’ favourite songs, was produced during this period. In 1979 the band released its breakthrough albums, Overkill and Bomber, which had a huge influence on upcoming metal and punk bands. Two years later, in late 1980, Motörhead released what is widely considered as being one of the greatest heavy metal albums ever recorded, Ace of Spades. The album featured the song ‘Ace of Spades’ which has become a true metal anthem, redefining what could be done with rock music, marrying speed and brutality with catchy hooks and an infectious melody. No Sleep ‘til Hammersmith, the band’s first live album was released a year later and it rocketed up to the peak of the UK Albums Chart, giving Motörhead its first number one album – a monumental achievement for such a gritty, uncompromising band. In 1982, the exceptional Iron Fist was released. The album was the swansong of the ‘classic’ Motörhead line up as Clarke left the band to start up a project of his own. Clarke was replaced by Brian ‘Robbo’ Robertson and Another Perfect Day, the band’s sixth studio album, was released in 1983. The new line up proved to be a very temporary one as Robertson refused to play the ‘classic’ Motörhead tracks live and was, as a result, asked to leave the band. It was decided that a two-guitarist
approach was the way to go and Phil Campbell and Würzel were hired. Soon after the new members’ arrival drummer Campbell left the band, leaving Lemmy as the only original member of Motörhead. Pete Gill replaced Campbell and in 1984 No Remorse, a compilation album of older material as well as brand new songs, was released. In 1986 Motörhead released the crushing Orgasmatron but soon after Gill would leave the band and was replaced by former drummer Taylor. Rock ‘N’ Roll was released in 1987 but received a rather tepid response, charting in the lowest position of all Motörhead’s Top 40 albums. Label
politics led to the band’s ninth studio album, 1916, only being released in 1991. The long delay in recording and release did however pay off as the album was nominated for a 1992 Grammy Award (losing out to Metallica’s breakthrough self-titled album). Clearly Motörhead was back into the full swing of things and the following year saw the release of March ör Die but the departure of drummer Taylor, who was fired after failing to learn his drum tracks during recording. Mickey Dee, the former drummer of King Diamond, was asked to join the band and 1993 saw the releases of Bastards, Motörhead’s 11th studio album. Two years later Sacrifice was released and Lemmy described it in the liner notes as ‘a very good album’. He also stated, ‘put it in your system and your girlfriend’s clothes fall off.’ I agree that it’s a good album but don’t think the latter statement is quite true unless I’m doing something wrong. After Sacrifice was released, guitarist Würzel left the band. Lemmy, Phil Campbell and Mickey Dee remained, and the trio continues on as Motörhead to this very day. Lemmy’s sharp and often sarcastic wit had always been present throughout the band’s lyrics and Overnight Sensation (clearly poking fun at the band’s own history) was released in 1996. Two years later Snake Bite Love was released and getting back into one hell of a groove the band released, in chronological order, We Are Motörhead, Hammered, Inferno, Kiss of Death, Motörizer and The Wörld Is Yours all two years apart while maintaining that quintessential Motörhead sound. As you can tell, Motörhead’s story isn’t one of those typical ‘where are they now’ tales about a once-famous band now relegated to playing in tiny pub venues simply to eke out a living. Lemmy and crew are still going strong and maintaining the band’s initial ideology and vision of ‘fuck everyone else, we’re staying true to ourselves and the band’. I would sincerely love to dedicate an entire piece to the living legend Lemmy himself but I fear I may not do the man or his legacy justice. Motörhead is one of the few bands that managed to shape modern rock music and are still going strong much to the appreciation of punk, rock and metal fans the world over. If you’re curious to find out more about the man behind the band you could do little better than to get a hold of the stunning 2010 documentary film Lemmy – a very insightful voyage into the life and views of Mr Kilmister. I was, however, extremely fortunate to get a hold of Lemmy through his publicist and get some questions through to the humble, friendly, mutton-chop clad Motörhead front man.
Motörhead still hits the road regularly these days and you’re quite busy in Europe at the end of this year. Does touring get easier the more you do it? What are the things you miss most on the road? Funny enough, I don’t miss anything on the road. I’m a road rat... I miss more things being home than being on the road. Which is your favourite Motörhead album, and why? I have no idea, I don’t have a favourite. This is a hard question for an artist because you write the songs for an album and at that point in time they are your favourite. In the end the best album is the one the fans like most. Motörhead is, in my opinion, a band that is always going to resonate with rockers. What do you think makes your music so timeless? We never changed, we always stayed true to ourselves and to Motörhead. You’re very much into your books and history. Are you reading anything interesting at the moment?
No! Smoking, drinking, waiting... If you could sum up your motto in life in a few words, what would it be? Born to lose, live to win.
We didn’t copy anyone else, that’s just the way we were from the beginning. I always liked the music fast and loud… punk, rock ‘n’ roll... fast... loud... go!
Motörhead was far more extreme and harder er than any other band in the mid 70s… there e was Black Sabbath who was heavy, but as slow as molasses. How did Motörhead’s heavy hyper-speed rock ’n’ roll sound come ome about? We didn’t copy anyone else, that’ss just the way we were from the beginning. I always liked the music fast and loud… punk, nk, rock ‘n’ roll... fast... loud... go!
I always read. I just finished 11.22.63 by Stephen King.
You’ve had a 37-year history playing ng in Motörhead. Is there any particular moment, or series of moments, that you are most proud of?
On the topic of history, you’ve got a huge militaria collection. What’s the attraction to militaria for you?
Surviving, every day... that the fans still stil t l love and support us and that we managed d to to survive 37 years – isn’t that something? ng g?
I like the uniforms – that’s how it started and then fans gave me all kinds of things and before I realised I had a collection of everything.
Are you ever going to be too old for rock’n’roll?
I recently came across an endeavour you guys are directly involved with – Motörheadphönes. What prompted you to get involved with Anders Nicklasson? After the wines, Bastards Lager and Vödka our merchandising guy approached us to think about it. We checked it out, had some changes made and now the headphönes are on the go. What’s your favourite drink? Still bourbon and Coke? Yes. Is there any band you’ve been listening to a lot recently? I mostly listen to older stuff but also Skunk Anansie and Carrie Underwood. I don’t know precisely why the Monsters of Rock tour in South Africa was canned back in 2001 but is there any chance Motörhead may hit up our shores in the near future if our organisers pull finger?
I don’t think so. Rock ‘n’ roll itself has been old for a long time. I did a show with Jerry erry Lee Lewis two years ago and he was 75 then... You and Motörhead are living legends who will never be forgotten and have inspired ed countless fans and musicians across generations yet you’ve remained so humble mble and true to yourselves. Thank you very much for sparing some of your time to chat to us, this has been an absolute privilege! Hey man, thank you for supporting us, for or still wanting to see us and welcoming us wherever we go. That means a lot to us and is much more than other bands can look back at after all those years. ■ Our top three Motörhead albums:
1. Ace of Spades, 1980 2. Overkill, 1979 3. Bomber, 1979
Yes, I would love to. I always said I’d love to play in South Africa – it would be really great. Do you have any backstage pre-show rituals?
Vigilante Justice The boys from the Cape will be giving us a brand new full-length album in 2013 and with anticipation growing, 8th Note decides to have a word with Louis Nel about the band...
AXI Violence is a Cape Town-based rock outfit that was born in 2004. This is a band that goes it alone and walks the path far less taken; having a decidedly non-conformist attitude to music by meting out their own brand of rock reckoning. The band is George van der Spuy (vocals), Rian Zietsman (guitar), Jason Ling (bass) and Louis Nel (drums). The music is what happens when you take blues, rock and retro and send it Large Hadron Collider-style into the mainstream. In other words it’s taking rock music to a greater audience and informing the musical palette of the masses for the better. The thing about good old-fashioned rock bands is that they don’t date. Unlike the electro, screamo, emo nightmare soundscapes of contemporary radio this is a sound that will never stop being relevant, simply because it has been relevant for decades. This is the rare achievement of a rock band that does not over-commit by throwing too many ingredients into one pot. What you see, here, truly is what you get. Most importantly, it is obvious that what you see is a product the band
cares about and passionately pursues despite industry trends. In summary, you won’t see this band limping through genres and sub-genres or going to any sort of elephant graveyard of music such as dubstep. Which is refreshing. The band has raked in an impressive number of accolades including MK and SAMA nominations, a Media24 award for Best Live Act of 2007, headlining the Nokia Summer Tour, performing alongside international acts at My Coke Fest 2007 and many other career makers. The band is also no stranger to radio waves or MK’s Top 10 chart. To date the band has released four recordings of which three were full-length albums. Next year will see the release of the band’s fourth full-length project, originally intended to be an EP. With that in mind we decided that it was high time to chat to the guys from Taxi Violence about their band, their brand and their upcoming album. Tell us a bit more about how everything got started back in 2004 with Taxi Violence... Rian, myself and Loedi started playing in a band in the 90s, back in high school. We got back together again in 2004 and decided to reform a band that was inspired by Queens Of The Stone Age. We approached George and invited him to a jam. He said yes, and the rest in history. In 2005 the band won the RBF Studios Emerging Sounds Competition, arguably the country’s biggest ‘battle of the bands’ competition at the time, yet you turned down the prize – a record deal with one of SA’s bigger labels. Why was that? We went over the contract so many times, and
All Portrait Photography by Lisa Stayt
Photography by Deborah Rossouw
at the end, we couldn’t give the label what they wanted, and vice versa. Your original bassist, Loedi, left the band in 2008. What exactly happened there, and how did you get to know his replacement, Jason Ling? Loedi had to make a big career move by relocating to Johannesburg. At the time, all of us had roots in Cape Town and couldn’t make the same move. I had been chatting to Ling at the time, and watching him play in a band called Zenith. I invited him to one of our many auditions and he just completely nailed it. It was a no-brainer. Your music tends to shuffle a bit between different rocking vibes. If you had to call your type of music something, what would it be? That’s a very good question. I tend to steer clear of sub-genres and stuff like that. What’s emoscreamo-core anyway? I’d just call our music rock ‘n’ roll. The retro influences in the band’s music are quite prominent – what retro bands are some of your favourites and most influential in terms of the band? The most influential would probably be Led Zep and Hendrix. And The Stones from time to time. Taxi Violence has produced a hell of a lot of music videos for a South African band. What’s the appeal of making music videos for you guys?
It’s fun. And also meeting and working with new people is always a bonus. It’s also a great advert for a band.
I tend to steer clear of subgenres and stuff like that. What’s emo-screamocore anyway? I’d just call our music
Earlier this year you released a pretty, erm well, racy music video for ‘Unholy’, featuring Tanit Phoenix. How on earth did you persuade your label 2 Feet Music/ Sheer to go with the idea of nudity in your video?
rock ‘n’ roll.
Our label lets us pretty much do what we want. We’re rather lucky. For close to a decade, a huge number of great bands have been coming out of the Cape. Naturally, there are good bands from all over South Africa, but why do you think CT essentially eclipses the rest of the country by putting out great bands in great quantities? I have no idea. It must be in the water… or the mountain. You just released your latest single ‘Paint the Streets’, something of a rock boogie shuffle. What’s the inspiration behind the song? Will it be appearing on TV’s upcoming 2013 album? It will definitely be on the new album. I think we just wanted to write a fun summer anthem. Yeah, so that cat’s out the bag – you guys are working on an album due for release next year. From what I’ve heard you were planning on releasing an EP but things went particularly well in studio and the EP has morphed into an album. What’s the story behind that and how are things progressing at the moment?
We’re a band that LOVES playing live. And when shows are cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances, or by the cops, we get REALLY bummed.
Ja, we recorded five tunes that were supposed to be on the EP. But the writing process is going so well at the moment, that we decided to rather go back to the studio early next year and record some more tunes. A full album is way cooler than an EP. What should we be expecting from your upcoming album? Probably a sound that’s a very fair reflection of what we sound like on stage. And also a nice mix of straight-up AC/DC-inspired rock ‘n roll, and some more progressive stuff. Having played overseas and being nominated for several big awards, what have been some of the real highlights for the band? There are so many! I think just being in a band and still having fun after eight years is a highlight. What’s the worst thing that’s happened to you guys on stage and/or on the road? We’re a band that LOVES playing live. And when shows are cancelled due to unforeseen circumstances, or by the cops, we get REALLY bummed. Thanks for your time. Hope to catch TV up in Gauteng sometime soon! No worries. We’ll be up there for a big NYE bash at Arcade Empire. ■
deserves to be heard, Russia’s Yat-Kha. If you have had any exposure to Russian folk music and haven’t committed suicide yet as a result of hearing it (I would attribute the high suicide rate of Russia solely to the depressive nature of traditional Russian music) you may already have stopped reading. For those still with us, Yat-Kha fortunately does not conform to the usual Russian folk formula as the founding member comes from the Tuva Republic, a subject of the Russian Federation, in Siberia. The south of Tuva borders on Mongolia and Tuvan people share many cultural similarities with Mongolians. Now with the anthropological study done, let’s take a look at the music shall we?
Yat-Kha (named after a type of Central Asian zither) is a band that describes itself as playing ethno-rock music, a term that’s quite accurate. Band leader Albert Kuvezin started Yat-Kha officially in 1992 and has, along with HuunHuur-Tu, brought the art of Mongolian or Tuvan throat singing to a much wider audience. Tuvan throat singing is a type of overtone singing and is quite a complex affair. Overtone singing is a type of singing where several pitches can be vocalised simultaneously making for some particularly interesting sounds that leave one questioning how the human voice is capable of creating such utterances. There are various styles or methods of Tuvan throat singing which all sound remarkably different.
ORLD music is generally a genre that should be scoffed at, or at least its classification. It’s the equivalent of your Fifty Shades of Grey; something that all yuppies and pseudo-intellectuals need to acquire and ostensibly appreciate, even without any level of comprehension, in order to feel in touch with the latest gyrations of convenient world culture. If you’re unsure as to what world music may be, it’s basically folk or traditional music from parts of the world beyond Europe and the former colonies. European colonists largely took over the world itself but at least world music belongs to their former subjects – not all that PC and a bit of a crappy trade if you ask me. My issues with the term ‘world music’ aside I’m here to introduce a band that really
Anyway, Yat-Kha employs the various Tuvan vocalisations to great effect. The band’s music often brings a rock approach to traditional music, making use of distorted guitar and
rock rhythms alongside throat singing and the various traditional Tuvan instruments. A mixture of folk music and rock has never sounded this good and otherworldly, in my opinion, and it makes for a particularly accessible and listenable experience. It’s always fascinating to hear folk music from various parts of the world but often these artists’ music and worldwide exposure come across as a bit of a novelty. The difference with Yat-Kha is that well-thought-out rock music generally forms the basis of the band’s compositions and well, they’re pretty well conceived and could stand alone as solid rock tunes without the Tuvan-folk slant. All I can say in conclusion is that any fan of rock, or folk music from lesser-known parts of the world, would do extremely well to check out Yat-Kha, a should-be-but-isn’t niche band that has been a personal favourite of mine for many years. ■
EGULAR readers will recall last month’s Kill it with Fire, where I made mention of the fact that living in a country that has a dying man’s grip on controlling substances can make for some interesting opinions on music. Here is another sterling example of a music video from a country where marijuana is almost legal. I think this music video makes a strong case for keeping the ban on the legal trade of this substance, regardless of the health benefits. Where do I begin? This video portrays Rinus singing about his friend Romana (strongly featured in this music video) and himself riding on his scooter. If you look carefully you’ll see that both Rinus and Romana are a) on drugs or b) have recently toppled off that scooter at a substantial speed
of at least 40kph and sustained serious cranial injuries when they collided with a wall or a large tree. As a result of the above two possibilities Rinus and Romana would not look out of place at a home for individuals with special needs and I have a pet theory that Rinus busted Romana out the very day they shot this video as he needed someone with sexy dance moves to compliment his...erm, singing. While the scooter is featured throughout, and is probably the most sexually attractive aspect of this video, they never actually get on and ride it. Perhaps it is a loan scooter. Perhaps Rinus dreams of one day owning a scooter and this is a not-so-subtle hint to his friend that Christmas is coming. Romana’s real name is Deborah and she is Rinus’s love interest in real life. Sadly, according to Rinus’s website, they haven’t the money to marry so they are living together in some sort of mentally disabled sin. Deborah is deeply invested in the character of Romana, going to lengths to make sure her portrayal of this apparent love goddess is done with much body hugging dance moves and a couple of risqué tongue flicks. In horses, we’d describe an animal shuffling around like that and sticking his tongue out or gaping as nervous and mouthy, or mentally unsound.
confused. This really is a prime case of internet-based mind abuse. Someone should tell American authorities that there are other sorts of predators online too. At precisely one minute and 17 seconds into this video shit gets real. Deborah channels the character of Romana in a way that burns the eyes.
Let us count down some of the key seconds to disaster:
I’d like to draw your attention to another music video by the same artist entitled ‘Verliefd op het meisje van de olliebollenkraam’. The hilarious thing about this song is that Rinus gives us a terrible translation of this title, which in English simply reads ‘In love with the girl from the doughnut stall’ and instead translates it into ‘In love with the girl of donuts maternity’ [sic]. Later on in the lyrics of that same song, the translation error results in a rather unfortunate drop of the f-bomb.
Fifty seven seconds into this video Romana proceeds to pick her nose and then look
Shame on you The Netherlands, shame on you indeed. ■
HE thing about being an independent publication is that we can’t be strong-armed or intimidated. We can call it like we see it every single time. The news belongs to everyone and the media is a watchdog that upholds the interests of the general public. So when the Linkin Park tragedy unfolded we were shocked and outraged alongside most people in South Africa. We were still in the office when the news filtered through on Twitter and we were left wondering why on earth big media didn’t pursue this to the very end. I also wondered why Big Concerts passed the buck. I read all the ‘heartfelt’ condolences on their Facebook page and I noticed an alarming trend of alienating Lucozade as a sponsor while fingering the City for the approval of the structure. Loads of fans also commented that the wind was freakishly strong and made a case that no one could have known how bad the weather would be. Now, this seems sensible if we ignore the common sense aspect of the whole set-up. Frankly I lived in the Cape
for four years and experienced the freakish weather and strong winds on a daily basis. Then of course there is the fact that regularly updated weather reports are available online all day to all South Africans. Couldn’t have known? Bite me. This is an incredibly weakwilled defence for a tragedy that caused serious injury to some and took the life of a young woman. We were told we could contact the City. So I did. Of course I did, it’s my job. I asked if we could see copies of the safety approval for the structure as we were told it was approved and whether or not the City or concert organisers kept the histrionic Cape weather in mind, or bothered to look at a weather report. I easily found a weather report (one of those 14-day things) that reported incredibly strong winds. Eye-witnesses reported that the structure was not tied down and acted like a sail in the wind. Surely this would catch the eye of an on-theball show organiser? I don’t frankly care that the incident happened outside the stadium, the word ‘organiser’ when used in the context ‘show organiser’ should be the key that unlocks accountability. The devil is really in the details and the detail here is as simple as
the English language. I never heard anything back from the City. I am not surprised. I make no bones about the fact that I feel the organiser should be held accountable. And it alarms me that Big Concerts can go about their business as usual and bury the whole fiasco in press releases and condolences. Yes things do go wrong, but generally someone is liable. This is one of the very few times that I regret the fact that South Africa hasn’t cottoned on to the American trend of thirdparty lawsuits. A member of my staff, when asking for highresolution images for his Lady Gaga column/ review was told to send our December edition through as they were told (by me) that there would be something negative in it about Big Concerts. Luckily I am wearing leaden soles in my shoes today to assist me in the epic task of not shaking in my boots. This column is a call for accountability and a call for MORE independent media in our country. This is my most poignant thought for 2012: that we may have the freedom to say what we think and mean it. ■
EVENT DETAILS ARE SUBJECT TO CHANGE
Shreya Ghoshal Live in SA. Emperors Palace Centre Court, Johannesburg. 20h00. R150 – R1500.
Ilse Mazzone Sings Barbra Streisand. Atterbury Theatre, Pretoria. 20h00. R150.
Fokofpolisiekar: Let The Good Times Roll. Atterbury Theatre, Pretoria. 20h00. R120.
Crazy 80s Strictly PartyTime. Hemingways, East London, Eastern Cape. 20h00. R250.
The Parlotones at the Mzansi Fela Festival. SA State Theatre, Pretoria. 20h00. R180 – R350. League of Legends. Starlite Hotel and Night Club, Verulam, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. 20h30. R200 – R995. Heart FM CT’s Beat Party. Funky Buddha. Paarl, Western Cape. 21h00. R80. One Foot in The Groove featuring AtJazz. Slide Show, Cape Town, Western Cape. 21h00. R80 – R120. Old Mutual Music in the Gardens Carols by Candlelight. Botanical Gardens, Pretoria. 18h00. R50.
MTN Classic Soiree. Sandton Sun Hotel, Maroela Room, Johannesburg. 18h00. R 350 – 385. South African Sopranos. Oude Libertas Amphitheatre, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. 18h00. R120. Summer Explosion Picnic. Vergenoegd Wine Estate, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. 11h00. R150 – R300.
MTN Joyous 17 Live Recording. Rhema Auditorium, Randburg, Johannesburg. 19h30. R200 – R300.
The Parlotones Farewell Tour. Sun City Superbowl, Sun City, North West. 19h00. R230. The Caledon Oes Fees. The Caledon Casino, Hotel And Spa, Caledon, Western Cape. 10h00. R100. Infinity Summer Edition. Cube Night Club, Umhlanga Rocks, KwazuluNatal. 18h00. R150 – R350.
Keeping It Country + White X-mas. The Stage Theatre, Cape Town, Western Cape. 19h00. R50. Battle Of The Bands. S A State Theatre, Rendezvous, Pretoria. 17h00. R60.
The ABBA Show. Silverstar Centre, Johannesburg. 20h00. R190. DJ’s Night. Old Cappellos at the State Theatre, Pretoria. 22h00. R100.
Foam Party. Jolly Dolphin, Jeffreys Bay, Eastern Cape. 20h00. R50. 702 Lounge Launch. Club 702, Cape Town, Western Cape. 19h00. R1000. Shreya Ghoshal Live in SA. ICC Durban Arena, KwaZulu-Natal. 19h00. R120 – R1000. Steve Hofmeyr. The Venue, Hemingways, East London, Eastern Cape. 19h00. R100. Mafikeng Jazz Festival. Lotlamoreng Dam, Mafikeng, North West. 16h00. R160. Arno Carstens Unplugged. Bravo Bush Pub, Tulbagh, Western Cape. 16h00. R150.
Jakkals En Leeu Giggel En Brul. Carousel, Cheyenne Saloon, Pretoria. 21h00. R50. GoodLuck. Jolly Dolphin, Jeffreys Bay, Eastern Cape. 20h30. R80. Christmas With Jonathan Butler. Durban Christian Centre Jesus Dome, Durban, KwaZulu-Natal. 18h30. R150.
The Summer Experience. The River Club, Observatory, Cape Town, Western Cape. 15h00. R150 – R250. The Neck Breaker Meets Black Coffee. Rivito Lapa, Kimberley, Northern Cape. 15h00. R80 – R250.
Snotkop. Jolly Dolphin, Jeffreys Bay, Eastern Cape. 20h30. R70.
WBHS Jonny Cooper Sunset Concert. John Baxter Amphitheatre, Cape Town, Western Cape. 17h30. R50.
Bravo! Fees. Garden Route Casino, Pinnacle Point, Mossel Bay, Western Cape. 17h30. R60. Aviva Pelham In Concert. Baxter Theatre, Cape Town, Western Cape. 10h30. R30.
Cosmo Beach Party. Moyo Beach Bar + Pier, Ushaka, Durban, KwaZuluNatal. 13h00. R150.
Big 2 Town Music Festival. Laerskool Gansbaai Sportveld, Gansbaai, Western Cape. 09h00. R120.
NYE Party Featuring DJ Fresh. Wild Waters, Boksburg, Johannesburg. 17h00. R161 – R262. Van Coke Cartel Beach Party. Jolly Dolphin, Jeffreys Bay, Eastern Cape. 20h30. R180. 5FM The Ruins New Years Party. The Ruins, St. Francis Bay, Eastern Cape. 18h30.
Frank Sinatra And Friends. Oude Libertas Amphitheatre, Stellenbosch, Western Cape. 20h15. R140 – R160.
Bok Van Blerk. Jolly Dolphin, Jeffreys Bay, Eastern Cape. 20h30. R90. Theuns Jordaan Met Anton L’Amour. Strand Stadsall, Cape Town, Western Cape. 20h00. R80. Prime Circle. Vodacom Amphitheatre, Port Elizabeth, Eastern Cape. 19h00. R140.
PP age15 age15
NLESS you live in Cape Town or happen to consistently keep tabs on the MK Top 10 music video chart you’ve probably never heard of Red Huxley, and that’s a bit of a pity. Fortunately the boisterous Capetonian rockers have a vision and a hell of a lot of ambition so their status as a relatively unknown young band is bound to change. My first encounter with the band was through hopping between DSTV’s 20-odd watchable channels. Between the prehistoric aliens who inspired ancient peoples to build spectacular cities and monuments and taught them their ABC’s and 123’s, EVP recordings intended to pick up the modern English musings of malicious, rapist ghosts and caravans full of garish, self-tanned bronze gypsies spoiling for a wedding-day fight, I came across Red Huxley’s debut music video ‘My Own Way’. South Africa, and the world in general, has been undergoing a bit of a shift in terms of rock music; that is, a move towards retrostyled rock largely inspired by the great bands of the 70s. Young bands, intent on emulating their idols, have been popping up everywhere, but few actually manage to bring something new to the table. Red Huxley is one of those few bands that wears its influences on its sleeve with pride but also brings a unique approach to retro rock music. The trio consisting
Going their own way of Dylan Jones (guitar, vocals), Matthew Pullen (bass) and Murray Stephenson (drums) generally take a mid-paced to uptempo approach; twangy 60s and punchy 70s rock lay the musical foundation and to complement that, you’ll find elements of gungy blues and modern rock. In the end, this musical alliance amounts to some solid, groovy rock ‘n’ roll – something South Africa could do with a lot more of and it would seem that we at 8th Note are fortunately not the only ones who think so. Red Huxley won the 2009 Loerie Awards Battle of the Bands as well as the 2010
Rock Premier League providing the perfect springboard for a band that was barely a few months old at the time. The band’s infectious and energetic, yet almost understated, tunes are bound to propel Red Huxley to far greater heights in the local scene and deservedly so. Having been suitably impressed by the band’s music video and the ideas expressed on Red Huxley’s debut EP, I decided it was time to grab my party hat, down a few cold ones, bow at the altar of rock ‘n’ roll and get in contact with the Red Huxley crew.
Stick it out and if it’s real, honest and good people will take notice!
All Photography by Paul Cocks
How did everyone in the band get started with playing music? We all got started out of our own interest and love for music. Matthew and Dylan both dabbled in some recorder at a young age and can still play a mean ‘Greensleeves’, although they realized Metallica covers on guitar were the way to go. Murray was more of a late starter and learned to play by jamming in his bedroom with some friends.
When exactly did the band form and really get into the swing of things? Murray’s bedroom jam sessions started to pick up and turned into a more focused band. As things grew so members came and went and our current sound and line up evolved together in late 2009 into the creature it is today. What do you think are some of the biggest challenges a relatively young band like RH faces in SA? To stay true to what it is you really want. Because it’s so small there aren’t a lot of avenues for every type of weird and wonderful band sound, so it’s very easy to slip into the common trends or follow a set pattern to try and make it quickly. Stick it out and if it’s real, honest and good people will take notice! There’s been quite a big retro rock revival the world over and particularly in SA recently (something we at 8th Note are particularly happy about). What do you think inspired this shift in the direction of rock in general and what, or who, inspired you guys to play the sort of music you do? We are also loving the rock scene in SA right now. We think the shift toward more rock music is because it’s such a real, honest and powerful style of music, that it will always stand out from the plastic on radio. Also in SA it’s awesome that international bands are now coming down here more frequently and playing. If you told us two years ago we would be seeing bands like Kings of Leon, Black Rebel Motor Cycle Club, Eagles of Death Metal, Band of Skulls, etc in SA we wouldn’t have believed it. All our parents listened to these styles of rock music
while we were growing up and it just stuck with us and we realised we wanted to create our own take on it.
I understand you’ve quit your day jobs to focus on the band, so what do you guys enjoy doing outside of making music?
How does the band come up with the core ideas of a song? Is there something of a usual formula that works for RH?
Well not all of us, Matt is still holding down a day job as an Art Director at Ogilvy but we hope one day he will take the plunge with the other two of us! Meanwhile Murray and Dylan are barmen to pay the rent but other than that we dig getting outside, going for a surf, climbing a mountain, going partying and we also dabble in some home beer brewing.
The majority of our songs come from us just simply jamming together and finding parts that fit and the more we jam it the more it evolves and grows into the songs they are now. Lyrically, Dylan usually comes up with the melodies while we jam and then adds the words in his own time. Is there a particular message you try to spread through your music? We definitely don’t preach but I guess the ideas we put across are good times, party hard, live hard, don’t be a dick, chill out, drink some beer, drink some whiskey, do cool stuff always, and the sky’s the limit. In September you guys released your first music video, which is doing very well on the MK Top 10 chart. What was it like working on your first music video; did the final product end up as you had first envisioned it? We had no idea what went into making a video like that and it turned out to be one of the best experiences we have had so far in this band: spending a really cold weekend out in the Karoo with an awesome cast and crew and coming out with a video that we are really proud of.
So who’s the big party monster in RH and what other South African bands do you dig partying with most? I think Red Huxley as a group stands out as the biggest party monster! Like a tripod (or three drunks) we would fall over without one of our legs. We’ve had some really good parties in the past with Taxi Violence, The Plastics and Fox Comet. What’s on the cards for RH in 2013? We are going to release a song and video at the beginning of the year with a tour to follow that. Then we also have some big ideas for next year that we can’t talk about just yet in case we jinx it. But we want to start expanding our audience to the whole of SA and onto the world! ■
PP age17 age17
S Yolande Erasmus
O there you are, a modern terrorist, planning a coup d’état, a bombing or writing your ideology-laden propaganda and you’ve the
radio on. Perhaps your motives are not immediately threatening, perhaps you are planning an end-of-year function for your local terrorist cell and you’ve a mobile DJ over so you need to pin down a playlist. What sort of music would you listen to? Assuming that your iPod is in fact an iPod and not a detonation device cleverly disguised as an iPod, what would feature on your ‘mostplayed’ list? and ending with ‘Living Next Door to Alice’ I
money for the future or bomb something.
I think I can make an educated guess. I am
can list at least a hundred songs in between
Either way I’d like to think that the high art
not a terrorist but I know about terrorism
that you are likely to hear at an Afrikaner
of music inspires all of us in all of our deeds.
from reading and watching the news and
wedding hosted in a school hall in the East
Therefore to make the world a safer place
various Die Hard films and also I write for
of Johannesburg. Why should terrorism be
for our children, to save the rhinos and to
a music magazine – so obviously I have a
prevent coups d’état I thought I should put
keen intuition about which songs are best
my intuition to good use and suggest (as
suited for which situations. This intuition is
We all have songs that just inspire us. Some
a public service of course) songs that we
very much the music journalist’s party trick.
songs inspire us to write, bake three-tier
should cease to play immediately in the
For example, starting with ‘Come on Eileen’
cakes, design eco-friendly gadgets, invest
interest of world peace. How do I know that
Page18 age ge18 18 8
the elimination of these songs will bring
you want your actions to one day lead to a
events that thankfully didn’t happen because
about a peaceful tomorrow? The answer is
blockbuster film starring Don Cheadle, then
this song did not yet exist. The gibberish of
inspired by that terrible Kevin Costner film
spin this well-worn croon non-stop for weeks
the chorus may or may not be some sort of
called Field of Dreams that I watched as
at a time.
signal to all those who feel that the world is
a child. In the film Costner’s dead relative
going to pieces.
keeps emphasising ‘if you build it, they will
7. Celine Dion
come’, similarly I have a theory that ‘if you
– ‘My Heart Will
3. U2 –
play it, they will bomb’.
Go On’. Near, far,
wherever you are
As every second really does count here, I’ll
if you are starting
given us many
immediately get onto those top ten songs
to hate democracy
for discography managers at radio stations
to delete off their systems immediately. If
because of this
the IRA and
anyone can get the word out to Yoko Ono
song. If you feel your love for equality sinking
that the editorial staff at 8th Note deserve one
then you’ve probably heard this song far too
bombings on civilians and Bono. This song
of those peace prizes she’s haemorrhaging
many times. Switch it off and throw the CD in
has to be the worst act of terror that Ireland
at celebs lately, I’d be much obliged.
the bin. It’s the humanitarian thing to do.
has ever inflicted on the rest of the world. If you need a reason to hate Western
10. Air Supply
6. Kenny G –
civilisation then U2’s ‘Discothèque’ is a
– ‘I’m all out
‘Forever in Love’.
good place to start. It’s the music version of
of Love’. This
Kenny G plays
cat sick in a tumble dryer.
to the Cold War
with his various
no time. I think
‘Hooked on a
we should ban
or a flute only
this song and that mention should be made
– no vocals. The reason is simple, if he
of its enormity in the Geneva Convention
incorporated vocals into his strangely
about this music
alongside pangas and poison gas. I think
distracting, brain washing, elevator music
video is that it
the fact that you can squeeze the words
we’d see sections of the skyline crumble
gives you the
‘might as well topple a government’
instantly. Avoid this, unless you are plotting
impression that The Hoff is hooked on far
between ‘I’m all out of love’ and ‘I’m so lost
more than a feeling. It also seems as if he
without you’ is proof positive that I am right
is high on something a little more illegal
on the money here. Listeners beware.
5. Chris de Burgh
than ‘believing’. I would say he is hooked
– ‘Lady in Red’.
on/ high on the sort of substance that lead
9. Bryan Adams
You are a mad
the police to incorporate K9 units at airport
security. Be careful of anyone listening to
in the deep
this at an airport, and avoid leaving your
South and you
him readers. He
have made the
knows not what
he does. But don’t
to kick-start a zombie apocalypse, which
deny him the pain
you know will work because you’ve tested
he puts us through. If you are shopping for a
it on your high-school sweetheart when she
reason to strap a bomb to yourself, buy this
was wearing that slutty red dress. She’s
track on iTunes. But I won’t forgive you.
also probably your cousin. The only reason ‘you hardly know that beauty by your side’
8. Michael Bolton
is because you’ve had to drug her to get her
– ‘Said I Loved
out of the house. Avoid unless you want to
You...But I Lied’.
Well he admits
Chicago – ‘You’re the Inspiration’.
to being a liar.
4. Las Ketchup
– ‘Aserejé’. This
Oef! I think that anything by
would be the
if you can lie
I asked my fellow features writer if he thinks
you can steal. Perhaps he’ll be putting his
to the ‘Chilean
that this song should make the list he said:
ruffled armpit hairstyle to the test by starting
Missile Crisis –
‘Ah, yes Chicago, the worst band in the world
a campaign that could or could not lead to
when shit gets
right? Like a shitty version of Toto.’ I think
the senseless genocide of his neighbours. If
real’ version of
that about sums it up. ■
Chicago is disheartening to the
point of causing a humanitarian crisis. When
OUTH Africa’s metal scene, much like its music scene in general, has always been a bit of a dormant beast in international terms even though the country has produced a number of bands of the highest calibre. There is unfortunately, as a result, a tendency for these bands to seem like fly-by-night operations that lure us in for a few brief moments of excellence and then disappear into the ether at the drop of a hat. Fortunately there are those with some staying power, one of which happens to be Mind Assault.
Metal from the Dark Continent
Mind Assault formed in Somerset West in the Western Cape in 2004 and has been one of the country’s most consistent metal bands of the 2000s. The band’s current line up, which has been stable since 2007, consists of Jacques Fourie (vocals), Patrick Davidson (rhythm guitar), Francois Pretorius (lead guitar), Donovan Tose (bass) and Andries Smit (drums). The five-piece band plays a type of metal that could probably be most appropriately described as melodic death metal, though there are hints of thrash and old school death metal sprinkled throughout the band’s material. Lyrically the band is a socially conscious machine that tackles a variety of topics from social injustice and conflict to personal issues. The band’s lyricist Jacques is actually one of the better metal lyricists out there and approaches his topics with some eloquence. What I find to be a really effective touch is that some songs’ lyrics are written in Afrikaans, which tends to add a lot of punch and a real guttural edge to the vocal delivery. The Afrikaans lyrics are definitely not added for novelty value as they happen to be some of the band’s best and most well-presented lyrics. To date, Mind Assault has released two EPs, 2005’s Social Engineering and 2011’s Metal Rites, a 2008 full-length album, Stigma, and, particularly rare for a South African metal band, a DVD entitled Fok Voort En Suip Baie released in 2007. If you have any interest in South African metal both the band’s DVD, which chronicles a rather crazy time on the road and a great show at RAMfest 2007, and the 2011 EP Metal Rites, where the band’s
song writing, performance and production quality have never been better, are worth checking out. At this point in time Mind Assault should probably be considered South Africa’s premier melodic-death-metal band and the band has been particularly prolific in terms of live performances in recent times, although we haven’t seen as much of them in Johannesburg as us northern metalheads would like. Mind Assault
has shared the stage with British grind/death metal legends Carcass and has headlined a number of South Africa’s biggest alternative music festivals. Being curious as to what the band is up to at this point in time and what we can expect
The music we make is the only musical common ground we actually share and that seems to work for us, because everybody feels they are exploring something fresh all the time.
from them in the near future, I decided to get in contact with rhythm guitarist Patrick Davidson, who was more than happy to provide us with the ins and outs of being in one of South Africa’s most consistent and hard-working metal bands and Mind Assault’s plans for the future. Mind Assault has been around since 2004 – a long time for a South African metal band. How did you guys all get together in the beginning? All of us original members grew up in the Somerset West/Strand area, which is about 60km outside Cape Town. We’re mostly from quite different backgrounds, so we only met in the years following school at the local rock-’n’-roll pub where sometimes they would let us listen to metal. Because there were so few metalheads in that area at the time, we naturally grew to become friends and especially when we realised which guys played instruments. Where did the journey into metal begin for the band’s members? It would seem that for most of us, and even though we never knew each other at the time, the true passion for metal grew out of learning to play an instrument. Everybody talks of sharing tapes at school and listening to bands like Sepultura and Machine Head, but also stuff like Nirvana, Soundgarden, Bob Marley... whatever, even some really crappy pop and techno. Basically, whatever was popular at the time. But in learning to play instruments, we fast realised which music excited us most and started gathering more and more music around us which could satisfy that appetite. Other music became less interesting and metal became the staple diet. Andries is a few years behind the rest of us, but even he shares a similar story, just with different bands that were popular during his school years.
South African metal bands tend to be around for a few years and splinter off into other projects or genres. What are some of the biggest challenges pertaining to local metal bands in particular and why do you think Mind Assault has managed to stay together for a relatively long time?
Stellitius out of Cape Town. Both are highly underrated in our local scene, but we believe that this is only because neither has released significant material yet.
Staying power – or the lack thereof – is probably the biggest setback for the development of the genre in South Africa. It is sad to say, but we believe that most bands who come and go are not really original and that is why they don’t survive. But all of us start that way, so we’re not criticising. However, most bands, even the greats like Metallica, start off with playing covers or emulating the style of their own heroes, and slowly develop that sound which is their own. It takes years! But many bands in the South African context don’t give themselves a fighting chance. Bands group up, usually because of very specific common interests in a sub-genre, and hold onto a vision of following the footsteps of their heroes. When things are not working out for them in two or three years’ time, maybe because that subgenre which brought them together is not that popular any more or whatever, they go off in different directions.
We work! Our view on metal is that some guys enjoy playing golf in their spare time, or scuba diving, or flying remote-control model planes and so forth. All of these are expensive pastimes. So is metal. When we go on tour, we do so because we can afford it. If we don’t, it’s because we can’t. We don’t see a tour as any different to a boys-weekend going on a golf trip, except that we are a lot more interested in headbanging than in golf. Sure, the band brings in a little trickle of cash here and there but whatever comes in from band activity goes back into band activity.
We feel that the reason Mind Assault has had ‘staying power’ is because we were drawn together by a very broad common interest rather than specific sub-genres. In fact, there are so few metal bands that every single member of Mind Assault agrees are really fantastic, that in more than eight years we still only count about two. Because of the scarcity of musicians in our area, we were drawn together and forced into friendship circles of very different people. This sounds a bit back-to-front, but there you have it. Everybody in this band has to compromise; no dictators. The music we make is the only musical common ground we actually share and that seems to work for us, because everybody feels they are exploring something fresh all the time. Have you been impressed with any upcoming local metal bands?
We all know metal doesn’t pay, so what do you guys do to cover the bills?
What are some of the best memories you have from being on the road? This question is actually too expansive to answer properly. We’ll write a book someday! You see and do a lot of mental shit in eight years. The short answer would have to be: the awesome people we’ve met along the way and the mischief we’ve gotten up to with them. What’s the worst thing, or worst series of events, that you’ve had to deal with on the road or on stage? These could fill a chapter in the book! Let’s keep it simple and go back to the first tour we ever did... and Jacques’ car kept on dying if you used any electrical component of it; you know, things like headlights and indicators. Important things! But the shows had to happen and the risks had to be taken. Half the band almost got wiped out on that tour. What’s your opinion on all these metalcore/ deathcore bands popping up these days? Do you think they misrepresent metal to the mainstream or are at least doing some good by turning younger kids onto heavier music?
Definitely! But then we can’t speak collectively and point out just one or two, because again every one of us will argue about the others’ opinions. If you are looking for a name-drop though, there are two bands that come to mind that we all agree are excellent bands because they’ve worked many years to get that way – so maybe up-and-coming is not the right place to categorise them – but we’re all very fond of Infanteria and
PP age21 age21
Well, we see this band’s sound as like a ‘potjiekos’ of metal. A lot of different stuff chucked in with a lekker sauce... We feel that some of these bands are actually pretty good performers with a lot of talent. Of course, we are also old school in our sensibilities which makes us not always sympathetic to the genre, we admit. Nonetheless, as we said in that earlier bit about bands with staying power, it seems that a lot of these sorts of bands you described don’t have it. This makes us believe that most are more about riding a trend towards a dream than they are about good old-fashioned metal values. There are some from that side of the metal spectrum who may yet prove us wrong. We’re not suggesting that being wrong is a bad thing either but the proof is in the pudding, so they say, and everybody could use a taste of humble pie from time to time. What international metal bands would you love to see on our shores and open for? Going back to that question we answered where we said there are only two bands that all the members of Mind Assault agree are really fantastic, it’ll probably be safest just to say those two. To keep the peace we’ll stick to alphabetical order with Amon Amarth and Mors Principium Est. Your last recording, the Metal Rites EP, was an extreme step up in terms of production. Did you guys learn a lot about production from your previous recordings; to what do you ascribe this marked improvement in recording quality? We took it slow! We had run through a few other recording processes before that and each time we were not entirely satisfied with the results. For Metal Rites we actually wanted to record another full-length album but decided to rather invest those resources into trying a completely different approach so we could learn and prepare for a full-length later. Instead of booking out a studio and working to a clock, we booked out the engineer on a touch-and-go basis. Nobody can afford to take long periods of time off of work, so it became a matter of putting in an hour here, two hours there, maybe a Saturday afternoon wherever, and so forth. Once the songs were tracked to as near-perfection as we were likely to get, we packed them off to the USA for mixing and mastering. Mind Assault has its own take on melodic death metal that sounds quite unique. A
particular issue I have with a lot of local bands is that they can’t seem to move away from emulating their idols. What bands inspired your music in the beginning and how did the band eventually discover its own sound?
Well, we see this band’s sound as like a ‘potjiekos’ of metal. A lot of different stuff chucked in with a lekker sauce – each member’s personal influences and subgenres being the meat, potatoes, carrots etc – and the ‘sauce’ being what happens when we are in the band room. Members enjoy different influences across such a wide spectrum, so it’s really hard to pin-point those chief influences. Most of us grew up as 90s teens though, so we can’t deny a strong thrash residual as well, although more melodic and death sounds come through stronger in our music. Our own sound developed probably quite early because of that.To be honest, we’re not even sure what bands people might compare us to either, because we’ve heard so many conflicting opinions on that over the years. MK Ondergrond is doing some pretty cool work by bringing the Wacken Open Air 2013 Metal Battle to SA. Are you guys planning on entering? We’ve not considered it too closely yet. It’s an exciting prospect, yes, but we’ve become a little reluctant to enter contests over the years. We’ve been down the competitive
road before and we’ve never come out particularly happy people at the end of it – even if we fared well. Victory is bittersweet when it challenges loyalties and friendships, and we’ve never been in a contest that hasn’t measured some degree of that result. Maybe we’d like to keep it about fun and let the younger guys slug it out. Let’s see. What’s on the cards for 2013? We’re aiming to get back into recording mode in a big way. With as limited time available as what a bunch of 30-plus adults have available, we’ve been very distracted by gig opportunities since the release of Metal Rites in 2011. Although we’ve come some way with pre-production for the next full-length during 2012, the process got seriously derailed by another bout of gigs since mid-year. We’re entering the new year with a clean slate and a clear goal which, ironically, will be aided by one of our members moving to Namibia in pursuit of a great career opportunity. This keeps us out of the gigging circuit and, with technology as it is in this day and age, should keep us firmly rooted in the writing and recording process. We are not removing ourselves completely from the live arena, but we’ll have a much reduced presence on the SA metal calendar; yet hopefully a much increased presence in your playlist! Thanks for your time, hope we can catch you in JHB sometime soon! You definitely will! We’re scheduled to appear at RAMfest 2013 in Joburg on Saturday 16 March. This will be Mind Assault’s first festival appearance in Gauteng since Thornfest in 2011, so we’re thrilled. At this time we’re considering to not plan any other gigs or tours until we have a new album to show off. ■
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OVEMBER the 30th was almost like Christmas day in the city of Johannesburg. The joyful laughter of people, the excitement, Twitter and Facebook ravings, everyone (well most of us) excited to see Lady Gaga perform in South Africa for the very first time.
If there is one thing people thrive on it’s controversy and Lady Gaga has more than enough of that. The ‘Born This Way Ball’, Lady Gaga’s current world tour, was commissioned by Big Concerts early in June of this year to be presented at the FNB Stadium in Johannesburg on the 30th of November, and the 3rd of December for Cape Town. This announcement was welcomed by all die-hard Lady Gaga fans, and open-minded show goers. But, what would the world be without people trying to force their opinions off on you? From various church groups branding her the Bride of Satan, to people expecting an early apocalypse especially for South Africa once her feet touched South-African soil. The one specific protestor that succeeded well in giving me hours of enjoyable laughs, is a so-called Pastor/ Councillor, namely Leoni Venter. As a Christian myself, believing in the ground rules of Christianity, it’s really upsetting coming upon something like this, which is clearly an uneducated and uninformed statement. Leoni presented a thirty minute, not-so-well-planned documentary for teenagers and parents on ‘what Lady Gaga is busy with’, and ‘how you should not get involved with it’. Leoni started off introducing us to the meatcovered-dress, all the various signs of Satanism that can be identified with Lady Gaga, and then went on to tell us how innocent little Hello Kitty is also now dubbed a Japanese-Hate-Cult. The uninformed statements of Leoni became quite apparent when she used a mock-up of a zombie Hello Kitty in her presentation with the subtitle, ‘Hello Kitty wants to eat your brains’, presenting that as the real Hello Kitty, and the dangers this can hold for your child. Poor old Lady Gaga accidentally wore the same ribbon in her hair as Hello Kitty and was dragged into this whole Hello-Kitty-Hate-Cult by Leoni. Leoni rambled on about how precise the show tickets’ release date was planned for the 21st of June when the Summer Solstice was happening to how exactly the show date was planned for the 30th of November (which was apparently exactly three days after full moon)
and the 3rd of December for Cape Town which will be exactly three days before the next full moon. Well, if that is the case, big ups to Big Concerts and the Live Nation for planning this tour so precisely that it fits perfectly into all these satanic and celestial happenings. It’s clear that according to Leoni, we are not planning shows anymore in accordance with logistics and availability, but the high powers of the satanic underground. With all this being said and with everyone trying to boycott her show, the 30th of November came and luckily no protestor (or demon) was in sight of the FNB Stadium for miles! The first guest appearance was by Lady Starlight, which never the less was a bit unorthodox. Not really much was said and all we really saw from Lady Starlight was a few eccentric dances. This blunt performance was followed up by super-sensational band, The Darkness. This I personally enjoyed and found myself singing to ‘I Believe in a Thing Called Love’. If I didn’t really know better, I would have said that this was a concert specially for The Darkness and not just an opening act. About 40 minutes passed since The Darkness was on stage, when suddenly the whole stadium went dark, and behind the curtaindraped stage appeared a six-story medieval
castle. The gates of the castle opened and Lady Gaga appeared sitting on a mechanical horse alongside her whole war-entourage and then she launched into a performance of ‘Highway Unicorn’. The show was highly controversial and definitely not for the faint-hearted, featuring Lady Gaga giving birth to her dancers, a scene of oral sex being performed on her, to her sitting on a meat-covered couch and wearing her famous meat dress. I especially liked the scene where she was mounted to a robotic platform that roamed the stage. The message of the show was simple and clear. It doesn’t matter what your religion, colour and beliefs are, as long as you are willing to fight for what you believe and be proud of who you are. All her hits from her current album, Born this Way, and the famous hits from The Fame and The Fame Monster like ‘Alejandro’, ‘Pokerface’, ‘Just Dance’ and ‘Bad Romance’ were performed. Ten out of ten to Lady Gaga and her crew for an excellent entertaining two hours featuring costumes, lighting, scene changes and special effects. The only downside is that I am still waiting for all the demons and occult rituals to manifest as propagated by the Leonis of the world. ■
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Owl City The Midsummer Station – 2012 Reviewed by:Reinhardt Massyn Rating: 6/10
DAM Young, or rather Owl City, embraced the music market in 2012 with a brand new album. This is his second album after Ocean Eyes, which featured the smash hit ‘Fireflies’. His previous album All Things Bright and Beautiful is not even worth mentioning. The Midsummer Station was released on August the 17th 2012. The two singles featured prior to release were ’Shooting Star’ and ‘Good Time’ featuring Carly Rae Jepsen. Sadly, ‘Shooting Star’ was never really featured on radio stations as it was overshadowed by ‘Good Time’ following the success of Carly’s ‘Call Me Maybe’. Luckily, ‘Good Time’ is one of those songs that just makes your feet itch and involuntarily makes you grab a bottle of tequila. Lyrics, ughm? What lyrics? Carly dropping her phone into the pool and drawing money at the ATM? Luckily for us, we only need good programmed drums, a catchy synth line and a massive amount of double-tracked vocals to get onto radio. The Midsummer Station only reached around 143 000 units sold in the US. Not a success if you compare it to some of the products in the music market over there. The difference is crystal clear if you compare Adam’s impressive 143 000 units sold with an alientype brand like Adele topping ten million units in Adam’s home country. If you like the idea of trance particles being fused with pop music, then Owl City is the man for the job. I personally only enjoyed the track titled ‘Embers’. One of the few with an actual message and well-presented lyrics not featuring some synth programmer trying to impress. If you are basing your idea of purchasing this album on the success of ‘Fireflies’, you need to re-think. This album is surely only for the die-hard Owl City fan out there. ■
Maroon 5 Overexposed – 2012 Reviewed by:Gideon Ramabula Rating: 7/10
HE band has produced hits such as ‘She will be Loved’ (Songs About Jane), ‘Wake Up Call’ (It Won’t Be Soon Before Long) and several other chart-topping songs over the years. With each passing year the band’s style of music changes, in the beginning the change was subtle, but with the band’s latest work that change comes through strongly and the band has added an upbeat tempo to their music. This album has a commercial feel that works for the band because the band has kept that ‘love’ vibe; this is made clear to the listener by songs such as ‘Pay Phone’, ‘The Man Who Never Lied’ and ‘Love Somebody’ to name a few. The lyrics in most of the songs are positive with a beat that makes it possible for fans to dance along, then there are songs such as ‘Fortune Teller’ and ‘Sad’ that remind fans that the band hasn’t lost its flare and smoothness as songs such as these two take you back in time. Many fans will appreciate the fact that the album mixes what we expect from the old Maroon 5 with their new sound. There are a few downsides to this album. There is a constant beat that is heard throughout, the layout of the songs is a bit confusing because there is a happy clappie vibe but then after two songs it changes to a sad vibe which is then followed by a relaxed vibe. There is a mixture of emotion, which makes it hard to listen to the album without wanting to skip songs; this might be the downfall of this album. With that said, Maroon 5 has pulled it off and their new sound and feel has worked. The band has met the demand for goodquality music that fans can appreciate; the album has something for everyone from young to old. If you are looking for an album that takes you on a musical journey that highlights the band’s musical career and gives you a taste of everything the band has done over the years, with a modern touch, this is the album for you or for someone else during this festive season.■
KISS Monster – 2012 Reviewed by: Yolande Erasmus Rating: 5/10
ISS’s latest offering, Monster, was released in October of this year. Having had a psychotic ex with an unnatural affinity for KISS I have had the misfortune of about three years’ worth of KISS and miscellaneous goth metal chronically buzzing in the background, but the less said about that the better. I have therefore had a long and sordid history with this band, and I am sure they’d like it that way. During the 70s and 80s KISS gave us superb party rock with a dirty over-the-top glam feel to it. The band comprises image and music, a two-prong approach to a market that also loved polka dots, shoulder pads, muscle cars, leather with studs, huge hair and loads of makeup. It’s called ‘glam’ for a reason after all... I like the album, not for cultural or intellectual reasons or a demonstration of musical prowess. That would be giving credit where it isn’t due. Now complete idiots may disagree with me on this one, but Gene Simmons isn’t KISS. This may blow some minds but KISS is a whole band consisting of four individuals. Therefore, nonKISS pundits may think the face on the cover is that of Ace Frehley, or Spaceman, but that is in fact an imposter. Lead guitarist of bygone years, who helped build the sound and style of this band, is actually markedly absent. Can we have the KISS of bygone years without the original Spaceman? You can analogue recording all you want but, to me, it just isn’t the same. I do find the analogue recording bit quite interesting. Possibly because I like the bleed of old recordings but probably more because I understand what a marketing gimmick it is for the album. Analogue shmanalogue – most consumers don’t care how you record it as long as it sounds good. I certainly don’t care either. So there we are, an album sans the original Spaceman and with ancient recording technology... To me it doesn’t make for a great start. Until you hear the album. From ‘Hell or Hallelujah’ through to ‘Last Chance’ you get that quintessential glam-rock party vibe. People who are stuck in the 80s will love this album. We can’t really compare it with anything in the market right now because while it isn’t an antique from the point of view of being new, it certainly has a vintage feel. This album is the woolly Mammoth of 2012. All-in-all not bad.■
Testament Dark roots of earth – 2012 Reviewed By: Yolande Erasmus Rating: 6/10
FIND the new Testament album a little infuriating. This band’s vocals are a common complaint amongst metal heads and this album is no exception. The music throughout this album is truly inspired and 100% metal but the vocals dull the performance of the musicians and leave the product a little vapid.
‘Rise Up’ is the opening effort on Dark Roots of Earth and musically it’s flawless. The music grabs you immediately for being well composed, which means it’s excellently paced ballsy music. Then the vocalist starts singing and instantly the music goes from being spectacular head-banging metal to just some music, really. The next track ‘Native Blood’ is an improvement but the title track ‘Dark Roots of Earth’ is really disappointing. For me personally it is a bit...soft. It isn’t quite what I expect from thrash metal. The music is superb but the vocals consistently let me down. I really enjoyed the old-school sound that opened the track ‘True American Hate’ and once again, from a composition point of view the music is paced and played brilliantly. Surprisingly the vocals on this track are better than what I’d heard on the album so far. One thing that did reach out and slap me in the face was the guitar solos on this album; Alex Skolnick plays a frightfully good guitar. This makes the album even more infuriating, because it is such awesome metal but it fails to impress on the back of a lacklustre vocal performance.
HOODED MENACE Effigies of Evil – 2012 Reviewed Reviewe d by: Tristan Snijders Rating: 8/10
RE you feeling sad, lonely or depressed? Do you like your metal full of menace, doom and horror? Do you pine for bands like Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride and Amorphis to return to their glory days and produce some quality death/doom metal with a strong melodic sense? Well, you’re in luck, unless you answered ‘yes’ to the first question... for those problems I’d suggest seeking professional help; for everything else there’s Hooded Menace. Hooded Menace’s latest album Effigies of Evil very much follows in the same vein as the band’s earlier material, but I feel it’s a slight step up for the Finnish doomsters. What you’ll find here is mostly slower to mid-paced, old-school death metal with a strong leaning towards doom metal. That’s not to say it’s boring as the band is constantly changing up its tempos, creating a creepy, dynamic album sure to appeal to those who enjoy a slower take on extreme metal. There’s a great mix of pulverising heavy guitar riffs and melodic lead work; the two are bound perfectly within a menacing atmosphere that feels as crushing as a bear hug. There are riffs and leads aplenty and everything seems to blend together like a perfectly lethal combination of hydrogen, carbon and ammonia – deadly but impressive. The bass does its support job well, though there is little flair or flash to the approach taken and the drums also play a good supportive role, sometimes having a really great accentuating and cadent flow to them – all very clever stuff.
Getting deeper into this album, ‘Man Kills Mankind’ is another goodie; the guitars and drums open up this track so hugely but once again the vocals do not put paid to the promise of the grand opening. Other than that this track is again well paced and groovy and certainly worth a listen if you are happy to ignore the insipid vocals.
The vocals are a real highlight for me. Musical mastermind and vocalist, Lasse Pyykkö, delivers a potent performance, maintaining a very deep, guttural growl throughout. They’re not the most unique vocals you’ll hear but they are absolutely perfect in the context of the band’s music. If there’s one minor complaint to be had it’s that the musical theme, whilst indeed dynamic, does remain completely consistent throughout the album and some may find that a bit tedious.
I think this album will be a hit with lovers of old-school pseudo-metal; particularly those who enjoy Pantera and Megadeth. For me as a whole the album is fairly good, with some incredibly impressive instrumentation but I wouldn’t be able to sit through it more than once without giving up on metal and/or life.■
Overall, Effigies of Evil and Hooded Menace’s music in general caters to a very specific group of metal fans but hopefully the quality of the compositions will win over fans across the metal spectrum. Needless to say, old-school death/ doom-metal maniacs need to pick this one up, this is horrific old-school Finnish metal at its finest. ■
OFERMOD Thaumiel – 2012 Reviewed By: Tristan Snijders Rating: 9/10
FERMOD was born in the depths of the Scandinavian black-metal underground of the 90s. After taking intermittent forced breaks owing to the principle member’s illegal activities and repeated incarceration, the Swedish band is back... and what a return to beastly form this is! Ofermod released its great ‘comeback’ album, Tiamtü, which marked a bit of a change in direction from the orthodox black metal displayed on its 1998 single Mystérion Tés Anomias, in 2008. The result being a particularly fine, if somewhat one dimensional, black metal album with strong death metal tendencies. I enjoyed Tiamtü a fair bit, but Thaumiel completely blows it out of the water. What we find here is a rather accessible (at least to those who enjoy proper black and death metal) monument of blackened death metal with great variation, effectively simple song structures, disembowelling riffs, superb vocals and an atmosphere that would oppress even the most tyrannical of despots. Much of Thaumiel rumbles and grinds along at a midpaced tempo, like on Tiamtü, and this is a good thing! The atmosphere is utterly indomitable and as dark as the void, providing the listener with an emotionally intense aural experience. The other half, or actually majority, of the material is much more uptempo, in a manner quite typical to black and death metal, but the band largely manages to maintain the atmospheric intensity when kicking the tempo up a notch – and that’s no mean feat. The vocals on Thaumiel are also one of the standout parts. Vocalist JK’s visceral, grim growls and rasps enhance the atmosphere considerably and this man has to be one of my favourite vocalists in extreme metal at the moment – he sounds quite similar to a cross between Attila Csihar (Mayhem) and Mortuus (Marduk). Now and then some clean vocals make an appearance and they are executed with varying degrees of success. The production on the album really couldn’t have been better – everything is audible, lying perfectly in the mix, yet there is a tangible depth to it and it doesn’t sound overproduced or sterile. The musicianship is flawless and tight and the song writing absolutely phenomenal. There really is little to criticise on this album. For any black metal or atmospheric death metal fanatics, this is required listening. Pop on your headphones and fall into the abyss that is Thaumiel.■
Rudi’s guide to a better recording Product Prod uc t Type: Sof twa t ware re Prod uc t Nam Product Name: e : Steinberg Cubase 7 R ating: atin g : 9/10 9 / 10 UBASE 7 was released worldwide on the 5th of December 2012. At face value it seems that it has a lot in common with previous versions, and that not much has changed in the area of new, exciting and funky tools. It would seem that the biggest improvement of the new version can clearly be seen in the new mixer called Mix Console.
But, for the hardcore daily Cubase 7 user the improvements will come as a breath of fresh air. The new Mix Console drastically improves workflow and will reduce time spent searching and mixing your tracks. Down to the nitty-gritty; changes to the mixer now include a full scalable windowed view. Features like Quick Link, which allows you to change all properties on the selected tracks; for example, add EQ on one track and all tracks selected will receive the same settings when Quick Link is enabled. Another useful add-on is the Channel Zones option that acts like a filter; one can select which tracks you want or don’t want to view on the mixer and quickly find the desired tracks when working with large and bulky projects. A nice one for the guys who liked Logic, Cubase now offers you image referencing on your tracks for easy viewing pleasure. To boot, the new channel-strip rack is quite powerful and enables you to quickly process a track with basic features like gate, compression, EQ, maximizer, etc. Another new feature that I really enjoy is the Chord Assistance. This track is created in your project and allows you to add the chords into the project. Cubase uses the information supplied to generate harmonies via VariAudio and can trigger virtual instruments. The options available on the chord track are really impressive and extensive allowing you to make changes such as voicings for certain instruments as well as complexity of
chords. Lastly, for those who lack inspiration, the programme can also advise you on what chords to use. For the first time you receive an extensive number of tutorial videos available for your perusal so you won’t be left in the dark and will have a quick reference available if required. Cubase has always kept the reputation for being an exceptional product but I honestly believe now that there is no better DAW available on the market. Cubase 7 is a complete package with high quality plug-ins and instruments allowing you a complete and extensive system right out of the box. In the German market Cubase 7 retails for €599. The upgrade from 6.5 to 7 was
€125 which works out to about R1400. After everything that’s been said and considering how exceptional this piece of software is and how it will enhance your production skills, I really hope that the local distributor in South Africa will get their prices in line with retail prices for Cubase throughout the rest of the world, as the upgrade from your local distributor for Cubase 7 can be in the range of R2000. Regardless, get this... you need it! ■