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[CONTENTS]

[Canberra’s Entertainment Guide]

#495JUL/AUG

Please put on your 3D glasses now Mail: PO Box 713 Civic Square, ACT 2608

VERA BLUE

Publisher Radar Media Pty Ltd.

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General Manager Allan Sko T: (02) 6257 4360 E: advertising@bmamag.com Editor Andrew Nardi E: editorial@bmamag.com Accounts Manager Ashish Doshi T: (02) 6247 4816 E: accounts@bmamag.com Sub-Editor Hayden Fritzlaff Graphic Designer Andrew Nardi Film Editor Emma Robinson

GRINSPOON

p. 22

MAJOR LEAGUES

p. 24

KLP

p. 27

WET LIPS

p. 31

Entertainment Guide Editor Nicola Sheville Social Media Manager Sharona Lin Columnists Cody Atkinson, Dan Bigna, Noni Doll, Leanne Duck, Cara Lennon, Sharona Lin, Josh Nixon, Peter O’Rourke, Alice Worley Contributors (This Issue) Rebecca Adams, Angela Christian-Wilkes, Travis Cragg, Lucy Croke, Isaac Dugdale, Isabella Dunne, Jeremy Edwards, Belinda Healy, Sam Ingham, Pat Johnson, Greg Kimball, Joshua Martin, Rory McCartney, Jarrod McGrath, Chenoeh Miller, Andrew Myers, Keren Nicholson, Patrick Ogisi, Matt Parnell, Zoe Pleasants, Judy Schulz, Samuel Townsend, Kashmira Mohamed Zagor NEXT ISSUE #496 OUT Wednesday August 16 EDITORIAL DEADLINE Friday August 4 ADVERTISING DEADLINE Friday August 11 ABN 76 097 301 730 BMA Magazine is independently owned and published. Opinions expressed in BMA Magazine are not necessarily ES those of the editor, 199 T publisher or staff.

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1984

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LITERATURE IN REVIEW ALBUM REVIEWS FILM REVIEWS THE WORD ON GIGS ENTERTAINMENT GUIDE

TOM GLEESON

p. 38

BAJO

p. 50 p. 51 p. 57 p. 66 p. 68 p. 74 @bmamag


FROM THE BOSSMAN [5-POINT PLAN FOR APPROACHING FAMOUS PEOPLE] BY ALLAN SKO [ALLAN@BMAMAG.COM]

I won’t lie. Running a magazine is not without its trials, tribulations, 3am night sweats and heart confabulations. But it gives you a blessed opportunity to meet some of your heroes. “Celebrities”, for want of a better term. When we think of fans interacting with famous people, we tend to picture the great unwashed wigging out to the likes of The Beatles; screaming, shouting, hurling of underwear and underarm hair and in general – to use the medical term – “losing their shit”.

are Keanu Reeves); in short, just don’t be a twat. 2. Introduce who you are, and set a time parameter To whit – “Hello! Bill Hicks! My name is Allan, I’m a big fan of your work. I know you’re busy, so I’ll only take 20 seconds of your valuable time…” Right there, you have removed anonymity, and made them know you’re not a crazed fan that will corner them for minutes on end and make them frantically search for an exit. 3. Make a General Comment

This is the very last thing to do if you want your brief seconds with a beloved person to be memorable. If you behave this way, you will blend into the wash of mass madness that sends people like J. D. Salinger, David Bowie and Keanu Reeves into retreat.

As mentioned before; “I’ve been a big fan of yours for 12 years.”

But worry not, my fine fanatics! For I am here to deliver the Allan Sko Pro Guide For Interacting With A Famous Person. Trust me … I’m a professional.

“Your line? ‘Don’t worry, don’t be afraid, ever … Because This Is Just A Ride?’ That’s become a Life Philosophy for me. So thank you for that.”

Picture this. You’re in a cafe, rubbing the sleep out of your eyes and trying to forget – or perhaps remember – what you did last night. And then, like a scene from a movie you saw them in, your favourite Famous Person wanders in and sits down by themselves in the corner. This is your chance; your chance to interact. It ain’t happening again. So what do you do?

This shows you actually ARE a fan by being specific; showing thanks for the person’s art will put a skip in their step.

1. Keep Calm and Don’t Carry On (Don’t Be An Emotional Twat)

5. If you DO End Up Losing Your Shit, Don’t Worry … YOU JUST MET KEANU FUCKING REEVES, BITCHES!!!

Famous People have to put up with being approached all the time. So be mindful, and respectful of this when you first approach. You may be excited, but don’t scream at them; don’t point out who they are (they’re perfectly aware that they

EDITOR’S BLAB [PROUD, EXHAUSTED CANBERRA] WITH ANDREW NARDI [EDITORIAL@BMAMAG.COM]

Boy, am I exhausted. I’m not sure what it is, but everyone I’ve spoken to lately seems to be flatout overworked, not sleeping well and just in good need of a break. Hopefully you can look through this mag and find something to go to and keep your mind off the stressors weighing you down. I did manage to set aside some hours amidst this magazine deadline and a huge week putting together our new website (bmamag.com, check it out, hopefully it’ll be done by the time you read this), to check out the Cable Ties gig at The Phoenix on Saturday July 8, supported by the equally awesome Slagatha Christie and Moaning Lisa. It was a wild and fun reminder of

the reason we work so hard to get this mag out every month – the music and arts scenes in Canberra are just really special. Actually, I don’t think there’s enough love for local bands in these mags and that’s something we can hopefully work to rectify in the future. For now we’re just going to keep slugging away at the challenges ahead of us. BMA has made a lot of progress in the last few months, and I can say quite modestly that I’m very proud of the direction its going. After all, BMA is just a reflection of the rich community that we have here in Canberra, all of whom work so hard to make quality content for each other. When you think about it, it’s no wonder we’re all so exhausted!

This is a simple compliment. Even Famous People like compliments. This will buy you at least another 10 seconds. 4. Zero In On A Specific Comment

And there you are. You’ve just had a great interaction with someone you admire; you haven’t taken too much of their time; and you affirmed for them the reason they got into whatever crazy discipline they got into in the first place.

ALLAN SKO (ADDITIONAL MATERIAL BY LOUISE FARLEIGH)

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YOU PISSED ME OFF! [ENTRIES CONTAIN ORIGINAL SPELLINGS] SEE YOUR HATE SPREAD TO THOUSANDS. EMAIL EDITORIAL@BMAMAG.COM.

Folks, it’s no good sitting up my arse on Northbourne ave, flashing your lights and honking, making ridiculous attempts to squeeze past me, because I’m not going to go any faster. And I’ll tell you why. Northbourne Avenue is a construction zone at the moment. Yup, suddenly, overnight, (at least 6 months ago now), when all those bollards and strange signs went up, Northbourne became somebody’s place of work. So it’s no good cursing and complaining and pulling faces, it’s been that way for a while. If this has taken you by surprise

this morning you probably aren’t the most observant of people and shouldn’t be driving that fast anyway. If you have noticed before, they why, in the course of 6 months, have you not adjusted your daily commute? Leave home 5 mins earlier or take a different route. Don’t curse me for failing to break the law and possibly kill some poor barstard who just wants to do his job. You arrogant, impatient dick, You Pissed Me Off……………

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[TIDBITS]

UPCOMING GIGS

Pendulum / DJ Set / Wed Jul 26 / Academy It really isn’t every day that Aussie drum and bass legends Pendulum come to Canberra. Hailing from Perth, Pendulum hold formative roots ranging from drum and bass, breakbeat, even hardcore metal and punk. Their comparative talents proved unstoppable in the mid-

to-late 00’s, with big singles like ‘Witchcraft’, ‘Propane Nightmares’ and of course, ‘Slam’. If you claim to love dance music even a little bit, this will not be one to miss. There’s still some tickets left so get in quick! [8pm / $53 + bf via Moshtix]

Foley! / Album Tour / Friday August 4 / The Phoenix The posi-wizards from Foley! are back with a brand new album, Hey, Don’t Worry About It. The band has been gaining momentum since their 24-minute debut Ascot Vale, which was highly praised amongst the Australian folk-punk community. Pairing painfully honest lyrics with punk

rock attitude, Foley!’s live shows have quickly become something to take notice of. With broken strings and blown out vocal chords, the energy emitted by the trio is truly captivating. Support from Helena Pop and Capes. [8pm / $13.30 via Oztix]

My Friend The Chocolate Cake / Album Tour / Saturday August 12 / The Street Theatre The songwriting genius of David Bridie combined with the glorious strings of Helen Mountfort’s cello and Hope Csutoros’ violin are high in the curious collision of elements that have made My Friend The Chocolate Cake a big concert draw, triple ARIA winners and a vivid presence on countless PAGE 14

film and TV soundtracks for more than two and a half decades. On the verge of releasing their longawaited eighth studio album The Revival Meeting, MFTCC will play in Canberra to birth this multidimensional mural of modern Australia. [8pm / $49 + bf via thestreet.org.au]

live@thePolo / Gig / Sat Jul 29 / Polish Club A substantial refit is scheduled for the Polish Club auditorium so bands can play on the main stage. This includes a new lighting rig and a redesigned PA system. The stage itself is large! To launch the refit, some of the best bands in Canberra will play to what will most likely be a full house night.

The bands on show include indie rock band Waterford, dark guitar pop band Oranges, electronic dance duo Mondecreen, upbeat pop rock band Betty Alto and a little band you might know called Slow Turismo. Yeah, this won’t be a small deal. [8pm / $20 + bf via Moshtix]

Sam Buckingham / Album Tour / Monday August 7 / The Front Sam Buckingham’s long awaited new album The Water is a compelling collection of songs that confront fear, convey heartache and celebrate adventure, desire and devotion. Buckingham is both a seasoned performer and an exciting emerging talent in Australia’s

singer/songwriter scene. The Water speaks true to the core of her reputation as an authentic and prolific songwriter, each song rich with intricate storytelling and her timeless, enduring voice. Support from Kent Eastwood and The Burley Griffin. [6:30pm / Entry by donation]

Guitarra / Concert Tour / Wed Aug 23 / Southern Cross Club Guitarra is a guitar quartet and celebration of the guitar by some of the great players and interpreters of this humble instrument. From the internationally acclaimed Paco Pena (playing Flamenco), to Australia’s own Grigoryan Brothers playing classical, to

Jim Pennell (blues) and Phil Manning (jazz), each will showcase how the guitar can be played in such different ways. The concert features these world class musicians playing individual sets with the finale being an incredible eclectic combo. [8pm / $83.25 + bf via Ticketek] @bmamag


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LOCALITY

OUT OF THE DEEP BY KEREN NICHOLSON PHOTO BY GEORGIA GINNIVAN

Since moving to the big smoke, Canberra’s very own JULIA JOHNSON has been quietly whittling away at a new sound which was released last month. Johnson’s first solo single ‘Melissa’ pays tribute to childhood memories and warped rumours, and is a whole new sonic world where voices, saxes and synths collide with antique folk instruments. Best known for the near decadelong venture Julia & the Deep Sea Sirens, the Triple J Unearthed Songwriting award-winner packed up the old band, finding her new writing didn’t fit with the Deep Sea Sirens. “I knew I wanted to keep going. I wasn’t the seventeen-year-old sneaking in to pubs to play gigs anymore. The Deep Sea Sirens was a chapter I was incredibly proud of, but I was growing out of those songs,” she says. Johnson’s latest offering is bold, experimental and contains some mature pop. Now working with acclaimed Sydney producer and songwriter Sarah Belkner, her new layered sound has been solidified. “When Sarah took the production helm, the songs opened out in front of me. Working with Sarah has had a huge impact on me creatively. She has incredible vision and helped me to shape ‘Melissa’, taking the song from hazy sketches and descriptions, crafting it in to a realm which I couldn’t have taken it to on my own.” Since moving from Canberra, Johnson has spent the past few years between Berlin, the Hawkesbury and Sydney, where she is currently based.

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“I needed to get out of my comfort zone. The new songs are coming from a different place, and it has taken a long time to build the new palette I’m now making music from. Writing all new material has been liberating and fun, but, also quite uncomfortable because new territory is not as easy to navigate.” This time around, instead of chronologically building songs from the guitar up, Johnson hummed her captured tunes into her phone and hit the studio with an autoharp. With Scandinavian folk and British plainsong influencing her melodies, you can see why Sarah Belkner couldn’t say no when a demo of ‘Melissa’ showed up. “I feel more free to explore those delicious blurry areas where folk and electronic music meet in the studio, and on stage to take the songs to slightly experimental places. Lyrically, I’ve become more fascinated with imagery, trying to give more space to the listener to interpret. They’re new songs, still finding their life and breath on stage. I’m reveling in that fresh feeling, where each night the songs will feel different and unwieldy.” Johnson will be taking ‘Melissa’ and her suite of new songs on the road in a series of solo performances including Canberra this winter. Catch JULIA JOHNSON at Smith’s Alternative on Saturday July 22 from 9:30pm, supported by BONNIESONGS (SYD/IRE) and THE BURLEY GRIFFIN. Tickets $10/$15 through smithsalternative.com.

[THE WORD ON LOCAL MUSIC] WITH NONI DOLL [NONIJDOLL@GMAIL.COM / @NONIDOLL]

I’m going to start with the event that you should probably already have tickets to if you’re interested in going – Sound and Fury: Cold Winter, Hot Party. It returns to the Nishi Gallery in Acton after a sold-out spectacular at the National Film and Sound Archive earlier this year. If you like music, theatre, dance, spoken word and other glorious sights and sounds, you’re going to kick yourself if you miss this one – this is the kind of event folks rave about for months afterwards. It’s on Saturday July 15 from 8pm, and tickets (if there are any left) are selling for $20 + bf via Eventbrite. There’s a special semihomecoming at Smith’s Alternative on Friday July 14 when Parliamentary Square perform a set of improvised jazz from 7pm. The band is made up of Canberrans past and present, with a focus on exploring the realms of contemporary jazz as well as reinterpreting bluenote classics. Entry is $15, but if you’re a Canberra Musicians Club member, you can get in for $10. The Canberra scene often loses great artists to the lure of the major metropolitan centres, but thankfully the capital has a way of bringing them back for the occasional visit. On that note, Julia Johnson will be returning to our fair city to perform at Smith’s Alternative on Saturday July 22 from 9pm. She’ll be launching her new single, ‘Melissa’, and will be supported by Bonniesongs and Evan Buckley. If you want to pop in, it’ll set you back $15.

launching the live@thePolo video team, aiming to capture events for later reference and enjoyment. To kick it all off is a night of local musical brilliance, featuring Waterford, Oranges, Betty Alto, Slow Turismo and Mondecreen. Indie rock, dark pop, upbeat tunes, electronic dance: whatever you dig, it’s somewhere in this line-up. It’s on Saturday July 29 from 8pm, and tickets are $20 + bf via Moshtix. The Bootlegs Sessions at The Phoenix over the next few weeks look like they’re going to make any Tuesday hangovers you suffer as a result totally worth it. On Monday July 17, Rumblr, Neon Highways, Neon Violence, and The Guitar Cases will be joined by Suburban Haze from Newcastle, providing a night of rock that spans across a range of styles. On Monday July 24, An Inconvenient Groove, Moosk, The Wumpaz and Alec Randles step up to the Phoenix stage, with the month being rounded out by Massive Sherlock, Okinawa Girls, Kaminski For Mayor and James Steinbeck on Monday July 31. As always with The Bootlegs, they all start at 8pm, they all have free entry, and all will be accepting donations so that the bands get some moolah for enriching your Monday night. Finally, if you’re not catching Moaning Lisa and Teen Jesus & The Jean Teasers when they support Wet Lips at The Phoenix on Saturday July 29 from 9pm, you’re an absolute fool, especially since it’ll only cost you $10.

The Polish Club is one of Canberra’s most beloved venues, and there is a lot happening there at the moment, with a substantial refit to install a new lighting rig, a redesigned PA system, and finally open up the main stage for performances! They’re also @bmamag


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@bmamag


VERA BLUE CREATING

WITH

Celia Pavey, known professionally as VERA BLUE, is a Sydney-based singersongwriter whose folk beginnings have been morphed by her electro-pop evolution. After coming third in The Voice, Pavey released her debut LP This Music under her own name in 2013, followed by the EP Bodies in 2014. In 2016 she delivered the EP Fingertips under the new moniker, Vera Blue. Pavey is now embarking on the Mended Tour, named after the single from Perennial, the first long player to wear the Vera Blue banner. With Pavey on the move overseas, BMA ran a Q&A to learn more about the artist and her album. The PR says the album marks the start of a new musical and personal journey for you. What did they mean by that?

am and I truly believe it inspired and will continue to inspire the beginning of new musical and personal journeys.

I see this record as more of a healing process or a personal development and discovery piece. Perennial acknowledges vulnerability and the fact that feelings, memories and emotions can last a very long time, if not forever. I feel like I could talk forever on what this album means to me, but I am ready for the songs to speak for themselves and to have them connect to the listener and their story in their own special way. The production was an extension of the emotions, with the sounds all having purpose to each song differently reflecting the emotion. This album has taught me so much about myself and that it

Stylistically, what are the differences between Perennial and Fingertips? Even though Fingertips and Perennial are similar in many ways, I suppose the most obvious difference is the production on the album was taken to the next level in terms of electronica. I worked with a similar writing collective (Andy Mak, Thom Mak) and producer (Andy Mak) for both releases with Perennial written immediately after the Fingertips EP, so the album is an extension of the EP. The special thing about the Vera Blue music is that we are always creating based on emotion and experimenting with no fear.

It is okay to be vulnerable and to take pride in wearing my heart on my sleeve is okay to be vulnerable and to take pride in wearing my heart on my sleeve. That is just who I

Perennial is the start of a new emotional journey, coming out of the relationship I was in during

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NO

FEAR

BY RORY MCCARTNEY

the creation of Fingertips. The writing on Fingertips is much more metaphorical with hidden meanings, yet Perennial is much more upfront and even more honest than the EP. We also added new people to the creative process when working on the album, Jackson Barclay as engineer and Adam Anders who we worked with in the US. I think this had a positive effect on the sounds and how some of the songs were structured too. The album is arranged into three chapters, tracing the timeline of your personal development. Is this a concept record with a strong consistent theme running through it? I suppose so. To be completely honest I feel sometimes that I am still living this record, meaning I am going through everything that happened, the moments, memories and feelings. Coming to the end of creating this album, Andy my producer said, “we really could’ve written this album forever.” I believe this is true because the chapters represent different phases and changes we go through as emotional beings and that these phases are perennial throughout our lives. Vulnerability, strength and reminiscence will constantly come and go forever. This isn’t a bad thing though, just the way life goes. What are the three chapters? The three chapters represent the different phases over the duration of writing Perennial. When Andy, Thom and I first began writing this record I was going through a period of heartbreak, freshly coming out of a longterm relationship. As the months passed and the songs continued to be written, there was a shift in my personal growth. I overcame the heartbreak and became more aware of my surroundings, meeting new people and

developing new feelings. Feelings of strength, empowerment and just new interests that were happening in my life other than love. This phase was very exciting and really showed my transformation as a woman and an artist. In the final few months towards the end of writing Perennial I found new relationships and also found myself looking back and reminiscing on past relationships, and fell naturally back into my vulnerable state. Perennial was structured into three chapters later, each very different. The chapters were structured by my cowriter and close friend Thom, who saw the changes and phases of the person I was and developed into over the duration of writing the album – beginning, middle and end. I think this is unique and it is something I may not have seen myself. Why was the ‘Mended’ name chosen for your latest tour? Is this a message that you were hurting before but you are better and stronger now? ‘Mended’ was the most recent single so we thought it worked well as a tour title. ‘Mended’ isn’t about the fact that I’ve mended, it’s more the realisation that time has passed and we’d both moved on, but constantly feeling like there were words left unsaid and that the time of repair was coming close. Songs like ‘Private’ and ‘Mended’ are real heart-onyour-sleeve songs. Do you find writing such songs painful or therapeutic? I think when Thom and I are in the moment writing a song, we talk a lot about something real and honest. I guess sometimes it tends to be quite draining if it’s a song about heartbreak as I am reliving memories and emotions from the near or distant past. PAGE 19


Once the song is written though there is a real sense of relief, because we’ve created a song of feelings that I may have been bottling up for quite some time. It’s a bit of both, music to me is very therapeutic. You have done a lot of collaborative songwriting on your releases. How do you find the collaborative experience and what comes first; theme idea, music or lyrics? It really depends how we are feeling on the day as to how the creative process starts. Most of the time a song is inspired by how I am feeling and what is going on in my life at the time. Thom and I will always start on an acoustic instrument, so a guitar or piano. We write as though we are writing a folk song then we build the production around the emotion and message of the song. Andy is incredible at creating sounds and vibes that go really well with the mood of the song, whether it be emotional or a little more lighthearted. I really adore the collaborative experience, we have so much fun together. How did recording the album go, split between LA and Sydney, and why was there a split? Was it hard to retain focus in the sessions with such a big geographical break, presumably in time too? It honestly didn’t bother us at all. We were all together, whether we were working at The Grove studios on the Central Coast, at Forbes Street Studios in Sydney or in LA at Adam Anders’ home studio. These were all new adventures for us as a collective and if anything, the different locations truly inspired us and the sound of the record in so many ways. The Grove studios is a very calming environment whereas the city has this real sense of electricity and energy, which is where we did most of our greatest electronic work too. Just being in another country enhanced everything musically for us and working so closely with Adam in his own home really gave us grounding and safety, and we PAGE 20

didn’t hold back. We experienced everything together and loved spending time together. It was split into different locations because, depending on where we were all working at the time, we wanted to take the opportunity to meet up and continue the writing and creative process for the album. We didn’t really have big breaks at all, only when I was touring or if the boys were away. What is your favourite single from the new album and why? I guess it’s hard to pick a favourite single because the way I feel about the songs is constantly changing, in a good way. One of my favourite singles to release was ‘Private’. This song opens the second chapter and at the time I was feeling so many different things having moved on from heartbreak, so every time I hear it I feel excitement – and the production is so interesting, I hear something different nearly every time. Andy spent some time

and the festival was so great. I just remember the feeling of performing on that stage looking out to a sea of smiling people. My band and I had so much fun and had an incredible show. One of my closest high school friends lives in Canberra, so any excuse to hang out with her and have her watching side of stage is so awesome for me. Are you likely to perform any songs from when you were writing under your own name? It wouldn’t make sense for touring as Vera Blue to perform songs written before. They are different. I love the songs I’ve written previously to Vera Blue, and there’s no saying that I will never do a tour under my real name in the future too. Vera Blue is my focus right now and it is keeping me creatively very busy. There is no closing the door on my past releases and on starting new projects. There are so many possibilities in the music world which is why I love being part of it so much.

What we created on that day blew mind and made me feel so excited. So, we continued to work together and Andy introduced his younger brother Thom to me to cowrite the EP we were working on. The sound was so different for this new project so eventually I thought it deserved its own project name. The name change really came from change in the direction of the music. I wasn’t trying to hide either, it all just made sense, felt right and fell into place so perfectly. I am so proud of this project. I see the Vera Blue project as not just being myself, but Andy and Thom too. We are a collective, and I represent Vera Blue as the artist and performer, and as the person the music is written about. I look back on The Voice experience and it was such a positive stepping stone to where I am as an artist now. VERA BLUE, supported by THANDI PHOENIX, plays at Academy on Friday July 28, doors at 8PM. Tickets $43 + bf through Moshtix.

Vulnerability, strength and reminiscence will constantly come and go forever. This isn’t a bad thing though, just the way life goes experimenting with so many cool sounds including some simple vocal takes of me singing, “I just wanna”, manipulating them to create grunge and angst to suit the energy of the song. The vision he had for this song and how he brought it to life blew my mind and I had never heard anything like it. This was so exciting for us. Previous tours have been sold out and you must have been very pleased with the crowd response? How did your Canberra visit for Spilt Milk go last year? I am so, so over the moon about my previous tours. It’s so special to be able to perform music that I feel so passionately about to sold-out crowds. Spilt Milk has been my favourite festival to play my own set so far. The setup

Lastly, why did you make the change between your own name and Vera Blue? Was it to mark the switch between your career up to The Voice and what followed? When I met Andy and Australian singersongwriter Gosling on a writing session with them back in December 2013, I brought to them a chorus I’d written for a folk song called ‘Fingertips’. I told Andy I’d discovered and fallen in love with electronic music and music that blended the two genres like alt-J and wanted to completely branch out and experiment with sounds.

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RELIVING THE GRINNERS GUIDE 20 YEARS ON BY JARROD MCGRATH It might make some feel old but it’s damn exciting to have GRINSPOON back on the touring circuit. The group have announced a tour celebrating the 20th anniversary since the release of their debut album, Guide to Better Living. The announcement has created somewhat of a frenzy with the majority of shows selling out within hours of tickets being released. “You’ve always gotta be a little conservative when you haven’t been out in a long time,” says guitarist Pat Davern. “We weren’t sure how much love there was out there actually for Guide to Better Living.” Davern is somewhat modest about the positive tickets sales. “It looks like the tour could keep going on longer than we expected.” Additional dates for Sydney, Brisbane and Newcastle have already been added. It’s important to appreciate just how big an impact Grinspoon made with their debut. The album went double-platinum off the back of singles including ‘Pedestrian’, ‘Just Ace’, ‘Repeat’ and ‘DCx3’. The last two broke into Triple J’s Hottest 100, cementing the band as an Australian rock mainstay early on in their career. Grinspoon went on to rack up a record seven Big Day Out appearances and performed at the NRL Grand Final and Commonwealth Games. When you add it all up, it’s not hard to see why Guide To Better Living is pricking up ears two decades later on nostalgic value.

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Accompanying the tour will be the release of a deluxe edition of the album that will include additional tracks and a live disc recorded at iconic New York club, CBGB. “There’s a new track

PHOTO BY HUGO SHARP

The upcoming shows will see the group perform the album in its entirety, followed by a set of songs from the rest of their career. “We’re gonna have to relearn a lot of them to be honest. There’s definitely songs on the album that we’ve never played live, or like we may have played right back when we first started.” Like asking a parent who their favourite child is, I quiz Davern on whether Guide to Better Living is his favourite Grinspoon album. “I haven’t listened to it for years. I really like Easy, I like New Detention too. It’s in my top three. Ah yeah, I really like Thrills… as well. It’s in my top four.”

We’re gonna have to relearn a lot of them to be honest. There’s definitely songs on the album that we’ve never played live from the Guide To Better Living sessions in 1997 that was never put on the album,” says Davern. “I don’t know why. It’s called ‘Green Grass Meadow’. Maybe it’s the title that stopped it. “We used to play CBGB’s quite a bit. At one point Universal brought a recording truck down, I think it was the first time we played there when we first hit New York. When we went scouring for stuff to put on the deluxe edition, that turned up and it actually sounds really good. We were young and the band was on fire.” Davern later cites CBGB as one his favourite venues. “I probably took it a little for granted when I was there.”

I ask Davern whether the band are contemplating the release of new material in the future. “There’s definitely a possibility,” he says. “I’ve got a recording studio up where I live in Byron Bay. I’ve invited Phil to come down in the next kind of month or so to do some writing with me so who knows what will happen. We haven’t done that for a long time, it’s been five years since we wrote a record. He reckons he’s got something, I’ve got something, so we’ll probably just knock out a couple of songs and see what it’s like and if we think that it’s worthy we’ll see what happens.”

Grinspoon were one of the first Triple J Unearthed bands back in the day before there was the website and uploading options. Their entry was via a cassette submission. “When we started it was integral,” says Davern. “It was just the rollout of Triple J nationwide. It opened up opportunities for us to be able to tour to places where people wouldn’t have heard of us otherwise. It got us recognised by other bands who took us on the road with them.” The intensive tour schedule that’s seen the band rack up well over 1,000 career shows isn’t so farflung from the reality Grinspoon experiences on tour these days. “We’re not doing six nights a week anymore,” says Davern, wary that things will be a little bit different this time around. “We’re doing three or four this tour because it’s a long show”. Never ones to take things too easy, the band have still packed their tour with 27 dates, including stops in regional centres like Albury, Wagga Wagga and Lismore, their hometown. The key to making it work? “We’ll be in nicer hotels, man.” Having followed the band since their Unearthed days I also had to confirm a late ‘90s memory I have of Davern performing in a wheelchair. “I think that was Homebake in Sydney in 1997,” he says. “Or beginning of 1998. I’ve actually tried to find that online, but it’s never been posted.” Don’t miss GRINSPOON when they hit UC Refectory on Saturday September 16 from 8pm. Tickets are $68.35 via Oztix.

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DUCHOVNY AND WORLD CONQUERING BY JARROD MCGRATH It’s taken five years since their formation, but MAJOR LEAGUES have finally delivered their debut album Good Love. After two EPs, the garage pop group have developed a following who have eagerly awaited this. What took so long? “Um, ummm, I don’t know,” says singer Anna Davidson. “I guess we’d finished it by like October, November last year and then, yeah, a lot of personal stuff came up and then by the end of the year it wasn’t an ideal time to release it so our manager just kinda told us to push it back until, well, now.” Davidson explains the delay and we discuss how this means the group are now able to head out on their headline tour to support the album. Given the time between releases and Good Love being a debut album, I thought that some of the songs may have been written over a long period. “The oldest song on there is probably like six years old,” says Davidson. “But most of them are pretty new. We did a lot of demos, like 25 or something, and we ended up ditching a lot of the old songs.” The album sees the band continuing its sunny pop with a hint of angst. Their sunny sound makes sense to me given Brisbane is their hometown. Davidson sees it as an influence as well. “Yeah for sure, Brisbane is pretty humid and sticky,” she says. “But I lived in Melbourne for a while and I guess writing songs in the cold influenced it a little bit.” PAGE 24

Another nice touch on the album is a voice introduction at the end of the first song, ‘Swimming Out’, that welcomes the listener to the album. “That’s Jared from The Creases,” says Davidson. “Yeah, he came and did some like, backing vocals and a bit of keyboard and when he did that I was like, ‘we have to keep it in’. It’s not on the vinyl but I’m really glad it’s on the digital.” The group are also known for their DIY approach to merchandise and film clips. Davidson cites “90s type stuff” as a motivator for this, adding that her bandmates bring their artistic skills to the table. “Jaimee and Vlardy are both artists,” she says. “So it’s good to utilise what we have and I enjoy making merch. Like, it’s fun and it’s a little bit more special than getting a bunch of shirts printed.” It’s a philosophy Major Leagues have stuck to since their first days as a band – using what they have and working with their friends. “Vana and I met at uni,” says Davidson. “Jamiee I met just through like the music scene. Like my first band played with her first band and then she knew Jake through a friend of a friend and we were like, ‘want to come on tour’, and he was like ‘when?’

and we were like ‘tomorrow’. That’s how it happened.” Since then, the band has gone on to garner all sorts of praise for singles like ‘Endless Drain’ and ‘Silver Tides’. The latter was even featured on the Infinity Radio playlist, curated by members of The National. Good Love, produced by the uberprolific Jonathan Boulet, follows on from the 2016 Dream States EP and embraces the warm, lo-fi garage pop that the band has become synonymous with. With the album out now and the tour booked, I wondered about future aspirations. “I really want to go on an overseas tour,” says Davidson. “Since we started the band we’ve really wanted to do that and it just hasn’t happened yet, because of money mostly and also ‘cos we’ve had two EPs out. But I think to really make it worthwhile going overseas you need an album to get overseas labels interested and stuff. So now we have that, we don’t really have an excuse not to go.” August sees Major Leagues playing some of their biggest headline shows to date. The nine-date tour weaves its way up and down the east coast, hitting capital cities as well as regional centres like Ballarat and Toowoomba.

else they have on their bucket list to possibly support. “Yeah, maybe twice,” says Davidson. “We’re looking forward to Adelaide cos we’ve never played there and we’re also playing my hometown Toowoomba, so my family will come. Ah actually, David Duchovny is coming over here, we’re gonna try and get the support for that which would be pretty wild.” I ask Davisdon who, X-Files actors aside, she’s been most excited to play with. It’s a long and growing list that includes the likes of Beach Fossils, The Preatures and Wild Nothing. “That San Cisco tour was really fun,” she says. “But probably the best bands we’ve played with, or my favourites, are Alvvays and Beach Fossils and Girlpool – Girlpool were super nice. In terms of who I’d like to play with that would be like a big list. My alltime favourites are like Stephen Malkmus and Kim Deal.” Get along to this gig before Duchovny maybe has his way with them. MAJOR LEAGUES play Transit Bar on Friday August 25 from 8pm, supported by MOANING LISA and TEEN JESUS AND THE JEAN TEASERS. Tickets through Moshtix.

Having first seen the group supporting San Cisco at ANU a couple of years ago, I wanted to know how many other times I may have missed them here, and who @bmamag


FROM TUT TUT WITH LOVE

FRESH FIELDS FOR GEORGIA AND PHIA

BY RORY MCCARTNEY

GEORGIA FIELDS creates indie pop of a rare, haunting beauty, most recently in her 2016 LP Astral Debris. PHIA spins bright webs ranging from electro pop to sparkling tunes based around the kalimba (thumb piano). Both from Melbourne, the ladies have joined talents to stage a combined show. BMA spoke to Fields (while her daughter Kandra chattered in the background) in advance of the Canberra leg of the tour, named ‘Sea & Sky’ in reference to Fields’ album and Phia’s long player The Ocean of Everything. The collaboration between the duo happened by chance, when they met at an open mic night in Paris. As Fields explained, “It was quite an interesting accident, or

Fields and Phia are a natural fit to play together, with both artists on stage, accompanying each other for the show. “We thought, ‘let’s go to the next level and actually play on all of our songs’. We are both focused on pop and melody, although Phia has a different palette to me, very much based around her kalimba and loop pedals, which is an amazing signature sound. I love Phia’s album The Ocean of Everything and knew all the songs already, so it was pretty easy.” For this tour, Fields will be playing guitar, instead of her usual digital piano, although she will also employ a Casio keyboard. There is some reworking of material too, with a little reimagining of some songs, including Field’s track ‘Moon’ which will be quite different to

It was quite an interesting accident, or serendipitous encounter serendipitous encounter. Phia had relocated to Berlin, was visiting a friend in Paris and decided to check out an open mic night. I was on a working holiday and thought I would go too, on my night off. The stars aligned and we met there.” Some four years later they reunited in Melbourne to do a show together, followed by Phia collaborating with Fields on a song (all arranged by email as Phia had by then returned to Europe). “After our albums came out in 2016 we thought it would be a great idea to do a tour together, sharing the workload as well as the stage. It’s been so much fun working together, with our being equal partners in the presentation of the show.”

the album version. “Phia will be bringing her loop pedal but, as I’m supporting her, we’re moving some of her songs away from the loop and playing them in a more traditional way; something different for both of us.” The results of this pair creating harmonies together should be delicious, and there may also be audience participation for some backing vocals. GEORGIA FIELDS and PHIA, supported by Melanie Horsnell, play at Smith’s Alternative on Thursday July 13, doors at 9:30pm. Tickets $10/$15 through smithsalternative.com.

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BY NONI DOLL When Josh Gluck of HELLO TUT TUT calls in for our interview, he lets slip that being a touring band in winter can have its perks, namely gigs on the Gold Coast in June. “It’s probably about three times warmer than Melbourne at the moment. It feels like early autumn,” he says, spiking the envy of anybody who’s felt below-zero temperatures in the last month.

And when they played The Phoenix earlier this year, at a Monday night Bootlegs no less, they were blown away by how much Canberran audiences reciprocated that feeling. It took them completely by surprise. “Firstly, we hadn’t played in Canberra before. We weren’t sure what kind of reception we were going to get. It was a very quiet CBD; we didn’t know where the people actually came from. But

[Canberra Civic] was a very quiet CBD; we didn’t know where the people actually came from Hello Tut Tut have been together less than two years, but they’ve shot forward at an incredible rate. It near boggles the mind, but Gluck has his theories as to why it’s come together so well, so fast. “I think it partly comes down to all of us having been in bands before and having learned from a lot of our mistakes, and now having the chance to come together and play music and do things we love,” Gluck reflects. “I think it’s also to do with the way we’ve been received. There’s been a lot of enthusiasm around a lot of the shows we’ve been performing, so that’s been really wonderful.” When you see them play, however, it’s easy to see why audiences love them so much. The joyous abandon that takes over the dance floor as they play their modern Eastern European-style originals and traditional covers is infectious, and it all starts with the attitude on stage. “We [just] really love to get people dancing and for people to really enjoy themselves when they see us,” Gluck says.

once we stepped into that room, it was so warm and so receptive, and everyone was just so stoked and happy to listen to our music and dance to our music, and it was a packed-out crowd, it was a sell-out show. We just felt such a warm welcome,” Gluck remembers. He says a return was inevitable. “Yeah, it stuck with us, and we’re so stoked to be going back and playing on a Saturday. Also, the connections we made: we met a lot of interesting people … We’re really looking forward to coming back down and hanging out again.” Just think: if they managed to get the Phoenix heaving on a Monday night debut, this time is going to be nuts. HELLO TUT TUT perform at The Phoenix on Saturday July 15 from 9pm. Entry is $10 at the door, with support spots from EAST ROW RABBLE and GUYY & THE FOX.

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DANCE THE DROP [THE WORD ON DANCE MUSIC] WITH PETER ‘KAZUKI’ O’ROURKE

SMILING EAR TO EAR

BY PETER O’ROURKE

Aussie producer and musician Shaun Clifford is always looking to find the sweet spot between electronic, glitchy bass music, and live funk and soul. A festival favourite, CHESHIRE has just finished a new album, and will be making a trip down to Canberra to headline his first club show in our city as part of the Equinox night at Academy. Known for his bass-heavy, dancefloor friendly tunes, the producer says his latest work has a positive message of selfempowerment and finding happiness in change. Clifford says this album in particular features plenty of collaborations with other artists and producers, adding to the live feel of the album by including saxophone, guitar and bass. “So yeah, the main vocalists on the album are my friends Sarah and Anya along with Loana Swift who lives in the US but we have collaborated via internet,” Clifford said. “They all have amazing voices and with the lyrics it gives the album much more dimension in terms of a message that I wanted to portray throughout. That message being this sort of subtle empowerment that any change is a good change and that there are always others in the same boat, without being too cheesy about it.” The producer describes the new work as having that “old Cheshire type funky sample vibe”, but a bit more musically mature, with the music becoming more “songlike” – rather than a repetitive dance music style. According to Clifford, the process in this album has really focused on those live recordings, instead of taking a sample based view as he might have in the past. PAGE 26

“This album has been much more based around me recording in a riff – say bass, electric guitar and beat – then building it around that. I’ve found doing it this way keeps my workflow fast which means I don’t get stuck musically around the same repetitive 4-8 bars – which is very easy to do as a producer. “I grew up playing piano and a bit of guitar but have been learning the sax for over a year now, so I have started incorporating that into my music as well,” he adds. What about musical influences that we can expect to hear? “That’s a big list!” Clifford laughs. “I mean in electronic music there’s Tipper, Opiuo, Griz, Gramatik. Also Squarepusher and Aphex Twin back in the day.” Only last weekend, Cheshire played a show in Sydney as part of the Regrowth Festival fundraiser, premiering the new material and was very happy with the feedback. “I was stoked with the reactions actually, very well received! So much fun sitting on so much new material, and dropping it all for the first time on people.” So what can we expect from a Canberra show? “Last time in Canberra was actually Dragon Dreaming last year which I always love – I guess we can call that Canberra – but in terms of the city, this will be a first for me. If you like funky soul bass music I reckon I’ll see you all on the 14th!” CHESHIRE joins EQUINOX at Academy on Friday July 14 from 9pm. Tickets $11.50 through Moshtix.

[CONTACT@KAZUKI.COM.AU]

In a few weeks I’ll be heading to The State Theatre in Sydney to watch an orchestra perform a concert of some of my favourite music. Yet this won’t be a recital of symphonic melodies you might here on ABC classic FM, but more something from an essential mix circa 2002. Ministry of Sound has produced a one-off show with an orchestral production of classic club tunes, including ones from Moby, Fatboy Slim and even Australian acts like Bag Raiders. Dance music remixed as a ‘serious’ art form. (Not that it wasn’t serious for us ravers anyway…) This is part of a wider cycle that has been really interesting to watch, with the genre becoming cemented not as an outsider form of music, or even just a popular form of music, but something that is part of established high culture. Last summer for example, two of techno’s original innovators Jeff Mills and Derrick May performed their pieces with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra at the Sidney Myer Music Bowl. Tracks written thirty years ago performed in the dingy clubs and illegal warehouses in gritty neighbours of Detroit, played in a venue and with an orchestra that wouldn’t have felt out of place with some Beethoven. Even legendary Berlin techno club Berghain has successfully lobbied for a lower tax rate due to their commitment to arts and culture. Just recently, long time electronic rave group Underworld performed at a concert in the main hall at the Sydney Opera House, with expensive tickets and allocated seating, and drink prices to match. While the audience danced in their seats, some even twirling glowsticks, the fact that a flag-bearer of the rave scene played more than twenty years’ worth of trance anthems in Australia’s most celebrated venue was not

lost on them. Similarly, trance megastars Above & Beyond have performed an acoustic show there in recent months. While these performances are different to the traditional club, it really proves the musical integrity of dance music, and shows a growing acceptance that it’s just as valid as any serious musical movement in our history. A few gigs worth checking out this month. First up on Thursday July 13 Muzzled Headz present ‘half-step’ pioneer AMIT from the UK for some serious Drum & Bass action at Kyte. Friday July 14 sees Equinox throw another party at Academy with glitchhop legend Cheshire for his album launch. Expect a range of cool support acts, including Soul Jazz doing a DnB Candy Bar takeover. Mad Hatters theme for this one, if you feel like dressing up! Also that evening, CBR House Social present DJ Normal 4 (GER) at Kyte for some house and techno action. Friday July 21 sees melodic techno favourite Made in Paris return to Mr Wolf and a range of every genre out there at Reload for 1-UP, while Academy has Pendulum with a DJ set on Wednesday July 26. Nice Up! Vol. 3 takes place at La De Da on Friday July 28 for some reggae, dancehall and world beats, while KLP is at Mr Wolf for her Mix Match Tour. Headz are Rolling present Dauntless and Lockjaw at La De Da on Saturday. Saturday August 5 is something pretty special, my crew Department of Late Nights is hosting a bit of a rave at a new pop-up venue at the ANU with Late Night Study featuring David Bangma (SYD) and some locals along with the DoLN crew! Tickets $10 before 11pm. While we’re at it, Dragon Dreaming Festival tickets are on sale now for the summer. Secure your spot and plan that costume! @bmamag


festivals such as Spilt Milk for having male dominated line-ups I was interested to hear about the workshop experience. I wanted to know if she felt a responsibility to other young women aspiring to be DJs, to advise them on how to break into the industry in order to help them achieve their dreams. “That experience was so much fun, it was really good to see so many people down there and to see women that had never DJed

kind of fell in to being known as a DJ, I came to learn that DJing and hosting has just been a means of broadening her horizons and keeping her options open as she advises most artists should do. “I definitely think if you want to have a long career as a performer you’ve got to change and develop, even if you’re a massive artist or in a big band as it’s eventually going to end and you’ll have to figure out what you are going to do next. That’s what I’ve been

As long as I don’t have to get a day job then I’ll be sweet

MIX MATCH ‘TIL YOU MAKE IT

BY LUCY CROKE

Kristy Lee Peters, more commonly known as KLP wants to set the record straight. First and foremost, she is a passionate singer, songwriter and producer above being a Triple J radio host or a DJ. Yes, her skillset has immensely progressed and broadened through discovering these other talents, but music and performing is where her heart and soul is. Most people know KLP as the chick that runs Triple J House Party on Saturday nights, and assume that through this love of music she found her passion for DJing. In fact, Peters was formally ‘discovered’ when she won a Triple J Unearthed Field Day competition in 2014 for her own music. Prior to this she was performing from the young age of 13, starting out in a pop group that was signed to Sony. Since

then Peters has only moved up in the industry and has cemented herself in the Australian music scene as not only an artist to watch, but a voice for young musicians nationwide. So really, we have it all backwards. On Peters’ last trip to Canberra she conducted a DJ workshop for young women at Mr Wolf Nightclub. Considering she had previously spoken out against

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before giving it a go and asking questions and feeling really inspired,” Peters says. “I think anyone getting together like that and talking to each other openly is such a powerful thing. I feel a little bit of a responsibility to help anyone, be it man or woman. I guess if you do have any kind of platform and you feel like you have a voice then you have to make the decision to either be the type of artist that will use your voice or stay quiet, so I definitely try and speak up whenever I can.” KLP is currently making noise whilst touring the country on her Mix Match tour in the wake of her new single, ‘Changes’, released early June. When discussing with her the highs and lows of touring and being a performer I got some insight into the inspiration behind the new hit single. “Sometimes the hardest things are the things that are out of your control. I really struggle at times to deal with that,” she reflects. “I guess that’s what the song ‘Changes’ was about. It was an experience I was having and I love being in control of everything and being able to push to get what I want … sometimes that just doesn’t happen and you have to be okay with it and kind of put your hands up and go, ‘alright, I can’t deal with this one, I just have to let it go.’ That’s probably the hardest thing.” KLP has constantly been changing, developing and advancing not just as an artist but as an all-round entertainer. When talking about her experience mixing for Triple J and how she

doing since I was 13, in that pop group, to then writing music with duos, to then doing my own thing, to now DJing and being on the radio, so I’ll just keep doing that and winging it. As long as I don’t have to get a day job then I’ll be sweet.” Peters really has done it all, from wedding singing to singing in a nine-piece brass band to now working for Australia’s leading radio station for independent music. While she says the experience has been amazing and referred to it as a “dream job”, it has also been frustrating for her. “They all just think I’m a DJ that’s suddenly decided to do music and it’s like, ‘no man I got the job on Triple J from my music’. That’s how that relationship came about, from the fact that I was a producer and I was a singer and I was doing all that, so it kind of is a bit of a strange one trying to re-educate people on your history and what you do but it’s okay, everything’s a nice challenge.” Whilst Peters’ roots are in singing I think we can expect to see lots of things to come from her over the next few years. The rollercoaster ride of being a performer, she says, is something you get better with over time and the art is in adapting. “The more you do anything the easier it gets and the better you get at kind of doing that, so hopefully by the time I’m 50 I’ll be a genius at it all.” Watch KLP mix it up on her Mix Match tour on Friday July 28 at Mr Wolf from 10pm. Supported by MIA SØRLIE, GENIE and INDIGO. Tickets at the door.

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METALISE

[THE WORD ON METAL] WITH JOSH NIXON

AN AUDIENCE WITH KING

BY JOSH NIXON

KING are a relatively new band on the Australian metal circuit, but one that comes with a deep pool of experience from some of Australia’s most beloved and storied extreme metal bands. The core of the band were well acquainted with one another prior to forming in 2015. Dave Healy, a storied drummer from bands Psycroptic and Ruins, also played with King vocalist Tony Forde in Blood Duster for a number of years. Tony also sang in King guitarist and main songwriter Dave Hill’s outfit The Day Everything Became Nothing. Together, and on their own, they have travelled Australia and the globe several times over. The line-up began writing together with a shared love of Scandinavian black metal which they have blended with their own varied flavours of death and grind influences. The metal they forged is a unique take on a modern melodic black metal and was poured into their 2016 debut album Reclaim The Darkness. Speaking with Dave Hill, things seem to have gone very well indeed. “We have received a lot of positive reviews in the metal media both here and abroad and the feedback from the metal community on social media has also been great. The album was nominated for Best Heavy Album 2016 for The Age Music Victoria Awards as well, so this past ten months since the release has been extremely rewarding.” The album also got King signed to Norway’s Indie Recordings label that includes Carpathian Forest, Satyricon and Kvelertak to name a few and has seen the band take a professional approach plainly apparent in their video and live presentation. That approach PAGE 28

has been taken behind the scenes too. “We’ve taken a more professional approach with touring and the logistics involved,” says Hill. “Rather than playing shows randomly here and there, we’ve spent more time and effort planning ahead, arranging tours specifically timed to coincide with released dates and label’s PR plans, etcetera. It’s been great to have Direct Touring behind most of our shows so far, keeping everything super organised.” With the album out for nearly a year, the band have seized on the momentum to keep things moving along. “Our vision for King is absolute, there will be no veering from the path of our existing sound apart from striving to better our debut. We’ve made significant progress towards the writing of a second album, the inspiration has been there for us, so we’ve forged ahead. We’ve recorded demos of new material, will begin preproduction in the coming months. We have no firm timetable at this stage, we’re hoping for a 2018 release but that also depends on what Indie Recordings has planned for next year.” The band’s line-up is completed by bassist Cam Roberts who also plays lead guitar with touring mates Blackhelm. With the band building toward a global assault in the near future, you need to get along to their first Canberra show at the Basement on the 19th of August. KING hit The Basement on Saturday August 19 from 8pm, supported by BLACKHELM, SOMNIUM NOX, CLARET ASH and BLACK MOUNTAIN. Tickets $20 on the door.

[DOOMTILDEATH@HOTMAIL.COM]

Soundworks announced a couple of weeks back the extreme metal tour of the year under the moniker Campaign for Musical Destruction. Featuring grind pioneers Napalm Death, metal’s most brutal vatos Brujeria, and grind supergroup Lock Up, along with Aussie stoner doomsters Black Rheno, the seven-show tour leaves one wondering how Shane Embury is going to handle all that work and remember 50 odd songs a night being the bassist for three of the four bands. They’re not stopping in here unfortunately, but you could catch them at the Factory on Wednesday October 11. However, if you have the dollars or the will to take on the 13-hour drive, the Adelaide show is pretty special. The New Dead Metalfest is in Adelaide on Saturday October 7 at Fowler’s Live. Along with the above-mentioned bands, the reformed classic Melbourne death metal legends Abremalin, along with Truth Corroded, Orpheus Omega, In Malice’s Wake, Earth Rot, Alkira, Miazma, Blunt Shovel, Hybrid Nightmares, Voros and Hidden Intent complete the bill. That’s $70 for the festival, but it is all ages. Great tour. Slower and closer to home, Law of the Tongue come out of hibernation, ironically during the middle of winter, at the Basement in Belco on Friday July 14. BØG from Melbourne are on an album launch tour and bring WRØNG and Panic Burst into the tent to round out the bill.

new tunes, a renewed vigour and the new album Dear Desolation in the can for an August 18 release and The Death Sentence tour ahead of them. It’s on at the Basement with Alpha Wolf, Deadlights and freshly minted UNFD, WA band Cursed Earth. It’s been a pretty solid year for new music. I’m currently spinning Elder’s Reflections of a Floating World a whole lot and loving the slightly grittier production over 2015’s Lore. The guitar playing is stunning as ever, particularly on track two, ‘The Falling Veil’ which brings me all the feels at about 1:34 into the track. Sus it. Locals Mental Cavity finished tracking their full-length album in Melbourne in June and it shouldn’t be too long til you get to hear the results. They’ve recorded once again with Matt Deslandes, who has been busy this autumn/winter, also recording the new High Tension record with ex-Canberra frontwoman extraordinaire Karina Utomo firing her formidable vocal chops up for another attack. You can read my chat with King elsewhere in the issue, but the rest of the bill is a stomper with Blackhelm, Somnium Nox, Claret Ash and Black Mountain rounding out Saturday August 19’s show at The Basement. Deez Nutz bring the party to the Basement on Tuesday August 22, with Void of Vision, Dregg and Beerwolf.

Wednesday August 2 sees the return of Thy Art Is Murder, fresh from confirming that Shannon Noll was never in the running after CJ McMahon left the band in an amusing article on Music Feeds. Fortunately CJ is back in the saddle now along with some @bmamag


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PAGE 29


PUNK & DISORDERLY [THE WORD ON PUNK] WITH ALICE WORLEY [ALICE.WORLEY@OUTLOOK.COM]

Hello punk brethren, did you all follow my gig guide to a T last month? Of course you did. Carb on Carb, holy crap, you two can do no wrong. And thank you so much for bringing Prizegiving with you across the Tasman Sea, they were so much fun to watch. For the love of god, bring them again! We all fell for them so hard, so please don’t break our hearts by keeping them in New Zealand for too long. Skinpin’s last Australian show! What a sad and beautiful affair, playing at Crossroads with Sketch Method, Fight Milk and Needledick. Can I just talk about Needledick for a minute? The

Fugazi-esque quartet are such a great band to watch. They lose themselves in their sets so completely; Duncan making fierce love to his guitar as Jasper rubs his shiny head so seductively and necks himself with the cord of his microphone. They blessed us with a couple of new numbers as well, thanks boys! But Skinpin, you guys rock and on behalf of your Canberra fam, we wish you all the best in Europe. I went for a little over half an hour to the Punk ‘N’ Rock show at the Basement but I just wasn’t vibing it. It was probably just me being overworked and exhausted, but all the patrons were a little too

much at that gig. I rolled my eyes as one guy punched another guy square in the balls for a giggle, and as some random decided to aggressively flip me off I just said to myself, “I can’t get drunk enough to enjoy this”, and made my way home. The Hard Aches played a soldout show at Transit Bar with Muncie Girls, The Football Club and our own Moaning Lisa. As I walked in the get my stamp, I noticed several hardcore Hard Aches fans that were standing by the windows to watch in the freezing cold as they were unable to acquire tickets. It was a banger of a show and the positive energy from the crowd was infectious. Mere Women kicked off their Big Skies tour at Transit Bar on the 22nd and oh my goodness I was blown away. Bought an EP, a shirt, a lapel pin, and stole a poster off the wall. I am in love with this band. I hope that if you saw them you too had previously read the article about them in the last issue because it gave me a supremely deep understanding

and appreciation for the songs I was being enraptured by. A couple of bands I’m keeping my eye on right this month are Dalmacia and Slagatha Christie. Dalmacia are so good that their Backstreet Boys cover actually had me singing along rather that throwing up. They seem to be booking lots of gigs so there are plenty of opportunities for you to catch them. Slagatha Christie are just one of the most fun-loving bands I’ve ever watched. At the Bootlegs on the 19th, Kate played her Spongebob guitar with only four strings and, okay, it did sound pretty terrible, but she still managed to rock it and show us a great time because she just has such a great attitude. Their merch is also a collection of some of the most punk shirts ever; DIY as hell and I love it (I’m wearing one right now).

The Punk Gig Guide Fri July 14 Law of the Tongue, BØG, WRØNG, Panic Burst @ The Basement Fri July 21 Dalmacia, h.,Video Breezy @ LoBrow Gallery & Bar Tue July 25 Reactions ‘March of Dissolution’ Tour w/ Sleep Talk, Ill Natured, Autumn @ The Basement Sat July 29 Wet Lips Album Launch w/ Moaning Lisa, Teen Jesus and the Jean Teasers @ The Phoenix Sun July 30 YOCH! Bangers tour w/ dave, Creo, Slagatha Christie @ Maclaey Farm Fri Aug 4 Foley! ‘Hey Don’t Worry About The Tour’ w/ Helena Pop, Capes @ The Phoenix Fri Aug 11 Neon Highways, Parrots with Piercings, HYG @ The Front Gallery and Café

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[Slagatha Christie @ The Phoenix, Saturday June 17, photo by Alice Worley] @bmamag


LIPPING OFF

BMA BAND

PROFILE [LOCAL ACTS TO WATCH]

BY ANGELA CHRISTIAN-WILKES PHOTO BY GEORGIA GINNIVAN

When I chat to WET LIPS, we’re days from the release of their first album. “Maybe it’s nice to have a record of songs we wrote when we were 19 and not crushed by capitalism and the patriarchy,” singer and guitarist Grace Kindellan laughs. Jokes aside, Wet Lips is an autobiography of a band who have a lot to say and don’t care how loud they must be for you to hear it. “It’s really nice to have this record of songs we have played with our friends and to our friends. I feel like it really reflects the bit loose vibe of Wet Lips.” “Bit loose” is an apt description for the punk trio. Kindellan and bassist Jenny McKechnie teamed up in 2012, later joined by the now-departed Mohini Hillyer. Georgia Maggie now rocks it on the kit. Witnessing, as McKenchie puts it, “men stalking about the stage thinking they’re God’s gift” evoked a realisation that they could do it and they could do it better. “We needed that confidence because people laughed at us, essentially, and dismissed us. It was also

and brilliant glory at gigs. “The songs on this record are really interrelated with our experiences of starting out as a band,” Kindellan says. “We would have a really terrible experience at a gig and it would make us so angry that we would have to write a song about it, and we would then play that song at another gig where we would have a terrible experience and got so angry about it.” “It’s a strange situation,” Maggie notes. “You start off all excited and happy and ‘yeah, we can do this too!’ and then as you go on it’s like, ‘ah fuck, what have I gotten myself into.’ It’s changed from just wanting to have fun to wanting to change the whole scene.” Doing just that, Wet Lips immersed themselves in an inclusive Melbourne music community, playing countless gigs in backyards and packed bars. Along the way, they organised a festival of their own, Wetfest, and have even inspired their supporters – such as band Chelsea Bleach – to coin a genre, “wetwave.”

We would have a really terrible experience at a gig and it would make us so angry we would have to write a song about it a survival strategy. It was like saying, ‘fuck those people, we’re just as good, we’re better, we deserve respect. All we have to get through this gig is each other and if we start doubting ourselves we’re going to give up.’ We would never have gotten through those first few years if we were like, ‘oh no, we fucked that up.’”

Kindellan is optimistic, and she has every reason to be. “Hopefully now, there’s enough of a community of women and gender non-conforming and trans people who are in bands so all the fresh enthusiastic 19-year-olds can see [them] … and know that they can start bands.”

This fury has since been compressed into fiery rock songs, released in all their brash

Rock-dogs, don’t miss out on WET LIPS inaugural Canberra show. They play the Phoenix on Saturday July 29. Tickets on the door.

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LITTLE LUNCH Group members:

What makes you laugh?

Mel (drums), Shaun (guitar, vocals), Bryna (bass, vocals)

I never laugh – Shaun

Where did your band name come from? Peter K told us we couldn’t use the name Big Lunch, also complements our primary school inspired lyrics.

Mates, Elon Musk – Mel Shaun’s other band, Bad Bags – Bryna What pisses you off? Lack of sound girls. What about the Canberra scene would you change?

Describe your sound. Your typical garage rock 3-piece white people sound – high concept, low talent.

More female audio engineers, also would like more beach for beach parties.

Who are your influences, musical or otherwise?

What are your upcoming gigs?

Hunx And His Punx, Peach Kelli Pop, Beat Happening – Bryna

None currently planned, we are writing new songs and recording.

Jonathan Richman and Modern Lovers – Mel

Contact info:

the

Florence – Shaun What’s the most memorable experience you’ve had while performing?

facebook.com/tinylunch & you can find our tape on cinnamonrecords.bandcamp.com.

That one time Mel wore an Akubra to a show. And playing with Gooch Palms at The Phoenix was excellent. Of what are you proudest so far? Our tape! Released by the lovely Cinnamon Records. What are your plans for the future? More tapes! New songs!

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PLANET OF SOUND Planet of Sound is our column celebrating the wide history of music. In this month’s entry, Dan Bigna reviews the final ANU Bar gig and considers how Australian proto-punk band Radio Birdman could have rounded out the bill. Despite the ‘controversy’ surrounding the line-up for the final ANU Bar show on Saturday June 17, I attended anyway and soaked up the grungy vibe for one last time. This was accentuated when I entered the toilets and noticed a puddle of brown water on the floor, and remembered how my knees once got wet from something similar while my head was in the bowl from too many beers the night before a major exam – so many memories. The music was okay and it was fitting that a few bands acknowledged all the people who over the years worked tirelessly to put on shows at the ANU including promoter Pete Spicer and bar manager Tony Kirk – these dudes presided over a golden age when a mouthwatering array of bands hit the ANU stage on a regular basis. The standout act at this show was hip-hop artist Citizen Kay who integrated colourful wordplay with well-placed funk samples and live drums – a reminder that good quality local talent is out there and worthy of recognition, particularly as we are talking about small Canberra fish in a big cultural sea. Citizen Kay performed a great set that made for one of my rare encounters with hip-hop at the ANU. Another of note being the fantastic line-up of Public Enemy and Ice-T when all punters were waved through with metal detectors as if to enforce concerns that a gang war could break out on the muddy shores of Sullivans Creek at any moment. The fact that I was still fired up from having seen Australian punk rock originators Radio Birdman perform a highly energised set at the Enmore Theatre in Sydney PAGE 32

the night before, drove the need to consume ever more of the One Fifty Lashes pale ale on offer at the ANU while I also recalled having seen Birdman perform twice before in Canberra. On both occasions the band let loose with hardwired rock ‘n’ roll that was a

Younger shortly after he mentioned that it was unlikely he would return to Canberra because the audience size was pitiful and I agreed with him. But when I learnt New Christs would be touring in support of the first rate 2014 album Incantations I hoped Younger’s disdain had lessened and contacted both his management and the Transit Bar in the hope of facilitating a Canberra show, but little came of it. On reflection, how fantastic it would have been if Radio Birdman or New Christs had headlined the final ANU show if only because Birdman and co had inspired so many acts gracing the ANU stage over the years and they would have seen this prestigious venue out in style.

How fantastic it would have been if Radio Birdman or New Christs had headlined the final ANU show if only because Birdman and co had inspired so many acts gracing the ANU stage over the years joy to behold. The band’s second visit was timed to promote the criminally underrated 2006 ‘comeback’ album Zeno Beach that got the juices flowing just like those early days at the Oxford Funhouse when Birdman’s mission was to introduce combustible Detroit styled hard rock into a music scene more interested in Olivia Newton John and Daryl Braithwaite’s chest hair. A few years after that second Birdman show at the ANU vocalist Rob Younger returned and turned out a highly charged performance with side project New Christs to a miserable turnout of about 20 people. When I interviewed

But knowing this would never happen I instead travelled to Sydney and witnessed Radio Birdman play a blistering set at the Enmore Theatre with fellow long road travellers Died Pretty and Kim Salmon as supports. There has been a renewal of interest in Birdman in recent years and the band can now quite easily fill the Enmore. The audience was a mix of old timers adorned in t-shirts first worn at the Oxford Funhouse in 1977 and curious younger fans wanting to see what all the fuss is about – and those of us somewhere in between. Some felt the need to record the show on mobile phones including one seemingly

enthused fan near the front who was positioned quite close to me and kept blocking my view with her phone. I forgave her though because she kept turning to look at me with a flick of her hair that smelt of coconut oil and moved in synch with me and the sound to suggest she found the whole thing as interesting as I did. The band opened with a heated cover of the 13th Floor Elevators classic ‘You’re Gonna Miss Me,’ and once that essential link with first rate 60s garage rock had been established, Birdman ripped through a stack of nuggets from the early years, played hard and fast. The few tunes from ‘comeback’ album Zeno Beach were bafflingly less well received as these songs were as good as anything else the band had recorded and the girl with the coconut scented hair by now leaning quite heavily into me didn’t complain when I yelled out for more from that superb album. This show was the white heat of the greatest punk rock and I’ve now got the t-shirt to prove it. Birdman could have seen the ANU Bar out on a high – maybe next time. DAN BIGNA

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to enter the gritty, unpredictable world of X. “We were trying to be a rock ‘n’ roll band,” guitarist/vocalist Steve Lucas tells me. “We kept finding other ways to do things and we were a very do-it-yourself kind of band. We just made it up as we went along. In those days we had such a violent crowd at shows, and because of that we were banned from so many places we had to go out and do it the oldschool way, hiring out venues ourselves because no pub would take the risk. We’d established that an X gig could be like World War Three, so we definitely didn’t fit the mould.”

STUMBLING INTO MUSIC HISTORY

BY DAN BIGNA

Tough-as-nails rock ‘n’ roll band X formed in Sydney 40 years ago, a major milestone by any standard and an excellent motivation for the group to grunge up the Transit Bar this month. The focus will be on the early years – with a limited edition compilation documenting this period also released – when the songs were played hard and fast, and any punter wanting something different knew where they could stick it. Described by renowned music writer Clinton Walker as ‘eternal outsiders,’ the group gave no ground to the mainstream in its relentless quest to bring high octane rock ‘n’ roll to the masses. The classic first album X-Aspirations was recorded in one frantic burst at Trafalgar Studio in late 1979 and the primal feel of short and sweet nuggets like ‘Suck Suck’ and ‘I Don’t Wanna Go Out’ reveal a band that played it like they lived it – with raw authenticity setting a benchmark. The band’s ‘outsider’ status was partly a product of circumstance as the

road to superstardom becomes harder when beer fuelled crowds at gigs feel the need to tear apart the venue and each other. But there was also a commitment to doing things the X way and an alignment with the punk ethos was the inevitable consequence. I first came to the band through Mark of Cain’s suitably heavy cover of ‘Degenerate Boy’ on the soundtrack to quintessentially working class Australian film Idiot Box. I immediately wanted to know more about a band that could write something so confrontational and funny in equal measures, and so decided

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them to play side two first [of X-Aspirations] because I thought that was the most melodic side opening with ‘Delinquent Cars’,” Lucas says. “That was the saving grace for me ‘cause when I look back on it, it’s amazing. It’s avant-garde; it’s got a jazz swing feel, stuff that I would never come close to duplicating.” But like many bands in the unforgiving Australian music scene, X cut its teeth playing pubs and sometimes there was a real chance they might not make it out alive. “Sometimes we’d walk on stage and the crowd would charge the front and we were like, ‘fuck, we’d better get

By the time we’d finished, and they’d say, ‘we never want to see you again,’ then they’d count the till and go, ‘can you come back next week?’ X bassist Ian Rilen had already done the hard yards in Rose Tattoo and written the sleazy blues hit ‘Bad Boy for Love’ – establishing the right kind of outlaw credentials then and there. Hooking up with fellow songwriter Steve Lucas was like a match made in heaven and from there a loyal following from likeminded street-wise travellers grew. “We were part of a scene but it was our scene,” Lucas says. “X had this huge, very loyal following and it was very intense. We never really had a plan. Anyone who tried to manage us would go insane after three months and record companies avoided us like the plague. But we had this notorious vibe that made us think outside the box. The more I read about the history of music the more I realise we intuitively stumbled into it.” That ‘stumbling into it’ was part of the charm and a big influence on all those tentative songwriters out there who thrust themselves on stage when it became clear that three chords, throbbing bass and driving beat can result in a good song with the hard edges proudly on display. Then there was the matter of distributing the records and hoping a label or record store would come on board.

out of here.’ I got my front teeth knocked out when the crowd came forward with so much force. There was that aspect, which was a bit scary. But that was the thing with X. We had one of the most drunken audiences that ever walked this planet. We’d play a bar and it would be totally destroyed by the time we’d finished, and they’d say, ‘we never want to see you again.’ Then they’d count the till and go, ‘can you come back next week?’” Although I’m expecting the Transit to emerge unscathed from the forthcoming gig, the band’s essential punk ethos has remained unchanged. When Lucas sardonically asserts, “so cut your hair, wash your face, keep your image clean,” on ‘Suck, Suck’ we are reminded that satisfaction is there for the taking when giving the mainstream a bit of push and shove. “We really did push the whole ethos of doing it yourself, maintaining control, ownership and stuff like that,” Lucas says. “And I think that the more time rolls on, the more mythical this way of doing things will become – an important part of Australian musical history.” X bring the X-Citations Tour to Transit Bar on Saturday July 22 supported by YOUNG DOCTEURS and KILL DIRTY YOUTH. Tickets $44 through Moshtix.

“We’d walk into the indie shops with a box of albums and I’d get PAGE 33


RECORDING REMOTELY

GONE TO LOOK FOR AMERICA

BY ANDREW MYERS

For almost fifty years the multiplatinum, Grammy-winning soft rockers AMERICA have been cruising the airwaves and cacti-ridden highways with their harmony-laden tracks including ‘Ventura Highway’, ‘You Can Do Magic’ and the infamous ‘A Horse With No Name’. The duo return to Australia for another euphoric tour down the memory lane of classic rock.

but when someone is “checking their email” constantly, then it becomes a problem. America’s last album of original material was 2015’s Lost & Found and not much has slowed them down since then – the duo smash through around one hundred shows a year, Beckley became married and spends his divided time between houses in Venice, California and Sydney.

The trio was formed in 1970 by Gerry Beckley, Dewey Bunnel and Dan Peek (the latter departed the band in 1977 and rediscovered Christianity). America’s rise to fame is almost dizzying thinking about it – they met at high school as their fathers served in the American Air Force, formed in 1970 and signed with Warner in 1971 with their highly successful debut album in tow not long after, featuring the singles ‘A Horse With No Name’ and ‘I Need You’.

When asked about how a band has survived since 1970 Beckley was very humbled and bashful about the effort, spotlight and, as he put it, the “good fortune and a lot of enjoyment” that has come America’s way. Even after all these decades Beckley said he still loves playing the popular songs, namely ‘A Horse With No Name’ as it was the song that “set us on the course, and we finish every show with the song,” (proof that not every musician hates their most popular tracks!)

I spoke to the multi-talented lead vocalist Gerry Beckley on a crisp, breezy Tuesday morning, a scene set far from the band’s signature California sun-soaked lyrical themes that weave through a large amount of their songs. I had to let out a few fanboy moments (it isn’t every day you get to converse with a musician you’ve admired and listened to since you were eleven or twelve years old). Beckley was looking forward to the upcoming tour and seeing the sights and sounds of Australia, we even briefly spoke about the National Gallery. I asked Beckley about the time lapse of crowds since their heyday in the ‘70s and ‘80s to now, and he agreed that audiences on their phones was becoming a noticeable feature more and more. He stressed that he didn’t mind the odd photo PAGE 34

And lastly, I asked Beckley where he finds the time to play and create music after such a long and prosperous career. His response was honest and a little dry, “I’ve been playing music since I was three years old. I don’t really have any plans to stop. It’s a gift to come down to your beautiful country.” To talk to America was an honour and to witness them live will be the same, if not a little nostalgic for simpler days and summer nights. AMERICA plays at Royal Theatre, National Convention Centre at on Thursday August 3 from 7pm. With special guest RUSSELL MORRIS. Tickets from $99.90 + bf through ticketek.com.

BY ZOE PLEASANTS Local songwriter and guitarist Guy Lilleyman has recently opened AMBERLY STUDIOS on his family’s farm in Kambah. Lilleyman, who is one half of guitar/violin duo Guyy and the Fox, built the studio, and now runs it, with his brother, Adam. Lilleyman became interested in recording studios when Guyy and the Fox wanted to record their first album. Before that he says, “I couldn’t have cared less about mics and stuff like that, I just wanted to make good music.” But his attitude changed when he came to appreciate the enormous amount of creativity involved in being a producer and recording and mixing a record. Lilleyman first got into music in 2011 after going to the National Folk Festival. “Something clicked in me … I really got it for the first time. I saw Jeff Lang, one notable performance, and I was just like, ‘man, I want to do that’. I had never written a song before that.” Shortly after the festival, he left his day job, bought a Combie and a 12-string guitar, and set

The location of the studio turns out to be a great asset. “Because we’re out in a remote location, we don’t have to worry about sound coming in,” explains Lilleyman. “What a lot of recording studios have a problem with is they are like an aniconic chamber [that deadens sound], and so when you play something you’ve then got to liven it up again with effects and things like that,” he says. Lilleyman calls Amberly a natural recording studio because, “we haven’t tried to kill the sound as much as try to control the sounds that are a bit rouge I guess.” Not to mention that a musician can step outside into a beautiful landscape or walk down to the Murrumbidgee River when taking a break during a recording session. Most of Lilleyman’s experience to date has been in recording acoustic instruments, “at the moment we tend to be encountering a lot of singersongwriters or small trios, usually without a drummer, but we’ve recently discovered that

We haven’t tried to kill the sound as much as try to control the sounds that are a bit rouge out to be a musician. Given this story, it is less surprising that when Lilleyman and his brother got the idea to build a recording studio, they set about building it themselves. “We took to doing plastering for the first time and doing floors, we built all the acoustic treatment,” he says. Once the studio was finished Lilleyman and Amelia Gibson used it to record the Guyy and Fox album.

drums sound pretty incredible in here.” But Amberley Studios is open to working with a wide range of musicians and also has the facilities to record live videos. Get in touch with Lilleyman to discuss how Amberly Studios can help you with your next recording project. For more information on AMBERLY STUDIOS, visit amberlystudios.com.au. Contact Guyy at Guyy@guyy.com.au.

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AIN’T NO COUNTRY LIKE THE COUNTRY

BY JUDY SCHULZ

ADAM HARVEY and BECCY COLE are two of the finest singers of Australian country music and they’re heading to Canberra’s Southern Cross Club on Friday August 4, with The Great Country Songbook Volume II Tour.

title but with Adam’s and my own humour we manage to bounce off each other and have a lot of fun with it and somehow we just pull it off.”

Cole, also a huge Dolly Parton fan having met her three times, is looking forward to entertaining the audience along with Harvey, singing classics like ‘Islands In The Stream’, originally performed by Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers. It’s not the first time they’ve sung the song together, but it’s the first time they’ve recorded it. Cole said, “I like our version and I think it’s kinda cool.” I asked her what the main difference is with this tour compared to other tours she and Harvey have performed in the past. Cole replied, “Instead of being challenged to sing each other’s songs and having to create our own individual comedy

act, we get to share the spotlight together singing beautiful classics and we’re able to bounce off each other with the humour and have a ball doing it.” The Great Country Songbook Volume II Tour brings together two of Australia’s most engaging entertainers onstage for two unforgettable hours as they bring you their versions of the greats, delivered with high energy and a few laughs in true Adam Harvey and Beccy Cole style. This is one show you won’t want to miss! ADAM HARVEY and BECCY COLE bring The Great Country Songbook Vol. II Tour to Canberra Southern Cross Club on Friday August 4 from 8pm. Tickets from $28 + bf through ticketek.com.

This album and tour follows the original 2013 release of The Great Country Songbook album and tour, by Harvey and his good friend and multi-award-winning artist, Troy Cassar-Daley. Harvey and Cole have proven to be a hit with live audiences having toured the country nationally nine times since they first teamed up almost 20 years ago. Joining forces once more, Canberra fans will see there is something very compelling with these two vibrant performers. The Great Country Songbook Volume II Tour will see them performing classic country music duets from the album that the pair have handpicked. Together they have brought back some of the most famous country combinations of all time; classic duets recorded by Johnny Cash and June Carter, George Jones and Tammy Wynette, Conway Twitty and Loretta Lynn and Kenny Rogers and his many duet partners, including Dolly Parton of course! Audiences can look forward to ‘Jackson’, ‘Don’t Fall In Love With A Dreamer’, ‘It Ain’t Me Babe’, ‘If I Needed You’, ‘Anyone Who Isn’t Me Tonight’ and Harvey and Cole’s personal favourite ‘You’re The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly’. When asking Cole why ‘You’re The Reason Our Kids Are Ugly’, was a favourite she replied, “I love it, it’s a terrible country song facebook.com/bmamagazine

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[Theatre]

Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

THE HERO WE DESERVE

BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING YOU BY SHARONA LIN BY AUTHOR There are few books that seem as eerily prescient today as George Orwell’s 1984. First published in 1949, the setting is a dystopia in which a totalitarian government brainwashes its citizens, inventing imaginary foes, flooding people with propaganda and twisting language. Donald Trump and “alternative facts” are more or less unavoidable subjects when I talk to Tom Conroy, who plays protagonist Comrade 6079 – Winston Smith. Conroy first read the book a few years ago. “I have a very long list of classic books that I feel like I should have read but I haven’t,” he confesses. “I was really struck then by the brutal speculative world that Orwell created there. When I got asked to audition for it, I was both excited and nervous about the prospect of diving into that world.” Inevitably, world events like Trump’s election and Brexit came up when rehearsing the play. “It was too relevant to not talk about,” Says Conroy. 1984 is troublingly relevant today, even more so than when this production was staged in the UK in 2013. “There are huge world events that have happened since then that have radically changed the global landscape, that the creators of the play couldn’t possibly have seen. So in a way it’s actually more relevant now than when it was first staged.” The inevitable example is the Trump administration. “It’s so PAGE 36

easy to find parallels with the world of 1984,” Conroy says. “Alternative facts, doublethink – they seem so closely linked. The idea of fake news, of curtailing freedom of the press and freedom of speech, and dissenting thought really.” And beyond that, reactions against globalisation like Brexit have highlighted the British peoples’ fear of the outside world, and their desire for the state to become more and more isolated in the world. Even closer to home, the aspect of mass surveillance that exists within the story parallels real life. This is conveyed by using eight live cameras on stage throughout the show – sometimes hidden, sometimes shown. “That sort of enables us to theatricalise the idea of surveillance in the book but speaks to how heavily we are surveilled by the state at all times.” For the protection of citizens, yes, but this surveillance does curtail individual freedoms as well. And the fact that Australia has some of the most

PHOTO BY SHANE REID

prohibitive metadata laws in the world only adds to the play’s pertinence today. The show is faithful to the themes and ideas of the book, but unlike most adaptations of the book, creators Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan were interested in the sizeable appendix at the back of the book. It is often overlooked in adaptations (“probably because it is quite dry and academic,” Conroy says), but frames the protagonist’s story by referencing the story and world beyond that character. “Through the appendix you find out that the party did fall, that the totalitarian regime was overthrown eventually, and their attempt to remodel and dismantle what they term ‘newspeak’ failed,” Conroy summarises. “And because of that, they set up a framing device for this play that bookends the play. The play begins with a book group sitting around talking about a very famous book – and it’s not made clear whether it’s Orwell’s book or Winston Smith’s book – and talking about ambiguities that lie within the text.” Conroy has approached the character with the idea that he is an enemy of the state, and knows that his actions will lead to his murder, but still feels that he has a responsibility to act. The idea of your responsibility for the greater benefit of society being larger than your fear of your own personal safety, he says, is key to the character. “I think it’s interesting in terms of the

different perspectives and how someone’s actions can be read either as an act of heroism or as an act of sedition.” Of course, the Party would call him a traitor. The idea of an oppressive government psychologically manipulating citizens in order to control memory, truth and reality altogether is perhaps one of the most disturbing elements of both the book and the play. “As in the book, there’s a strong sense of Winston questioning the reality around him,” Conroy says. “There’s the sense of the whole idea of memory and what people are allowed to remember, and the way that the Party is able to change the past and therefore has control over the future is very important to the book and I think that sort of underpins the structure of the play. And so through that they are able to bring that internal landscape and dreamlike qualities throughout the book into the play.” Simultaneously, there is a sense of “immediacy and nowness.” “This production is one which is so visceral and exciting, especially for younger audiences. It’s a production which is loud and bright, and it draws on various horror tropes in bringing the story to life, and it sort of plays out like a thriller really. It’s exhilarating and terrifying at the same time.” 1984 runs at Canberra Theatre Centre from Tue–Sat July 25–29. Tickets from $65 +bf through canberratheatrecentre.com.

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Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

WE’RE GONNA NEED A BIGGER THEATRE

BY ZOE PLEASANTS After twenty years on the comedy scene, TOM GLEESON’s star continues to rise. He’s done stand-up, commercial radio, TV and written a book, but after a long-running joke on Charlie Pickering’s show, he finally got his own TV show, Hard Quiz, which is now into its second season. In his latest stand-up show, Cheer Up, Gleeson applies his dry, satirical wit to stories from his own life and to the political sphere in which we find ourselves. Gleeson first performed Cheer Up in Canberra at the beginning of the year. “This is the show I’ve been touring around Australia, and the very first show of this tour I did in Canberra at the Uni Pub,” he tells me. He is returning to Canberra in August to perform a more polished version. “The show had only just started [then], so Canberra is lucky enough to benefit from a show I’ve toured around the whole nation. The show’s pretty – what’s the word – sharp. It’s had all the corners knocked off it.” While it is always pleasing to hear you’re getting to see the best, it is hard to imagine Gleeson’s comedy is ever anything but sharp. Indeed, it was the sharpness of comedy that drew Gleeson to it in the first place. He appreciates the binary nature of measuring comedy success: people either laugh or they don’t. “When something gets a laugh, remember it, say it again. When something doesn’t get a laugh, never say it again. That’s pretty much all you have to do,” he advises me. This attitude seems to contradict Gleeson’s PAGE 38

comedy style which he describes as sarcastic and cynical. “An easy way to predict the way I’m going to go on most things, as a general rule is, if everybody loves something, I just don’t because I’m very suspicious of mass popularity. When everybody is really into something I think there’s got to be something wrong with this! And if everybody hates something, I think, can it be that bad? Surely it’s got an upside.”

different tastes [in comedy] but if you’re too niche you’re only going to have three idiots laughing in a crowd of a thousand and that’s not exactly success, is it?” he says.

argy-bargy with people in the audience, it’s always an idea or something that they’ve shared. Usually it’s an exchange we’ve all had fun with and no one walks away feeling bad.”

While Gleeson is sarcastic and cynical, he is not offensive. His ability to go right up to, but stay the right side of the metaphoric line is what makes his comedy so enjoyable. When I ask him about this he says telling people what he thinks to their face is disarming. “If I make fun of someone I’m usually making eye-contact with them, which is disarming. [When] people say things behind people’s backs, or in the print, people get upset but when you say it to their face, they’re like ‘is that the worst you’ve got?’”

I suggest to Gleeson that perhaps what the world needs is more of his style of direct communication about ideas. He responds to this by reflecting on the same-sex marriage debate. “We’re in a weird situation where you get people who are anti same-sex marriage saying, ‘can you please stop bullying us’. I suspect gay people for a long time have been bullied, for thousands of years in fact. Now we’ve got people who are conservative saying, ‘oh well, stop bullying us for our point of view’. I think sometimes people deserve a bit of bullying!”

Gleeson also makes fun of behaviours and ideas rather than people, and he engages with whoever he’s interacting with as an equal. “In all the years I’ve done Hard Chat you can

We’ve got [conservatives] saying, ‘stop bullying us for our point of view’. I think sometimes people deserve a bit of bullying! He’s always been this way. “It’s not put on, even when I was a kid growing up my mum used to say, it was never good enough for her to tell me to go do something, I always had to know why I was going to do it. I still feel like that.” Although he prefers to take the path less travelled, Gleeson is cognisant of the need to take as many audience members along with him. “I know there are many

probably count on one hand if I’ve ever made fun of someone’s physical appearance and then, it’s probably because I have the same shortcoming in common with them,” he says. “In general, I always go for people’s ideas. Ideas are things people have made up themselves, and also if they believe them, I think they can be challenged. That’s the fun bit. Even when I get into a bit of

You can revel in Gleeson’s directness at his shows at the Canberra Theatre. The original show quickly sold out, so now Gleeson is doing a second show on the same night. “Maybe I should have just done a bigger theatre, maybe that would have been more convenient for everyone involved,” says Gleeson. You can also enjoy him on the ABC when he returns to host Hard Quiz this August. Catch TOM GLEESON in Cheer Up at Canberra Theatre Centre on Saturday August 19 at 7pm (sold-out) and 8:45pm. Tickets $42 + bf through canberratheatrecentre.com.au.

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[Comedy]

LOLCOL GARY’S HANKIES WITH SOPHIE RUTZOU Recently I met a Rather Nice Chap on Tinder. Which NEVER happens. He’s FAR too normal and decent to be on that app. Not only does he remain fully clothed in all his pics, but he doesn’t even flip the bird at the camera or use a prop as a makeshift penis. Because he’ll probably read this, I shall call him Gary. Gary is completely normal in every way. Well, almost. You see, not long ago, Gary admitted to me something deeply personal about himself, and I have to say, I was shocked. Stunned. You see, despite all of Gary’s redeeming qualities, Gary has a shameful secret. One I fear he instantly regretted telling me. Because I can’t say I reacted well. And who can blame me? It’s DISGUSTING. Gary irons his hankies. Let me repeat that. Gary – a grown man – IRONS. HIS. HANKIES. Where do I even begin with that admission? The fact that he’s ironing something that clearly does not need ironing? The fact that a 30-something man still uses a handkerchief? Or the fact that he refers to them as “hankies”? No, Gary. No. But this revelation got me thinking. And I realised that my own family is not immune to such bizarre ironing behaviours. Once, I went to stay with my mother and she apologised for not having had time to iron the guest pillowcases. Which is no excuse to force a guest to sleep in such a state of dishevelment. I must say, I was dismayed at her revolting excuse for a guest bedroom, at the expectation that I, her only child, was going to be perfectly comfortable laying my head down at the end of the day onto a wrinkled pillowcase. THE SHAME.

Being raised in a large Catholic family, shame is something we do quite well. One of my 25 cousins was horrified when I told her about the pillowcase debacle. “Ironing pillowcases?!”, she exclaimed. “And my husband gives me grief for ironing teatowels!” People in glass houses, cuz. I was recently reminding my mother of her pillowcase ironing habits and she said seriously, “Sophie, being able to iron one’s bedsheets is one of the luxuries of retirement.” WTAF? Seriously? I was born to a woman who not only irons everything in sight, but IT’S AN ENJOYABLE WAY TO SPEND AN EVENING FOR HER. I like to imagine that if I was part of a generation where retirement was even an option at some point, I would spend my time, I dunno, lying on a beach somewhere exotic with my much younger boyfriend. Or drinking margaritas with my friends in a bar in Rome. Or just gossiping about Agnes from book club over coffee because her husband hasn’t even been dead for six months and she’s already flirting with Reg, the HUSSY. Ironing the bedsheets would be low on my list of fun retirement activities. I have also heard of a woman who used to iron Chux wipes. I can only imagine she died of an ironing related injury. Excessive steam inhalation, perhaps. Or overexposure to starch. So Gary. It turns out you’re not actually that odd after all. There are others. But don’t go adding “hankie ironing extraodinaire” into your Tinder bio. Or do! Maybe pics of men ironing on Tinder will be the next “man holding a fish”.

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MY BOSS THE ONE-EYED PENIS WITH GREG KIMBALL [@GREGKIMBALL]

Have you ever dreamt of telling your boss exactly what you thought them, but have never had the opportunity (or the kahunas)? I’ve lived that dream. And it actually wasn’t that fun. A long time ago I had a farewell lunch for a close colleague and friend of mine; it was a long and boozy Friday afternoon affair. Later, back at the office, my friend was cleaning out his desk when the boss (who was part of the reason he was leaving) walked past and made a nasty joke to him in that way that only the boss can, where he laughs like he’s sharing a joke with you but he’s actually just made you out to be a dick. Then the boss laughed really loudly to indicate that everyone else should laugh, like a villain and his cronies in a bad movie. “Ha ha ha ha,” everyone said, not really meaning it. My friend didn’t laugh and looked quite hurt. So I decided to cheer him up with a little in-joke between us – what’s the harm, right? I composed an email to him, the subject line read:

received a strange email from me that said: “Don’t worry mate, just say: at least I’m not a bald, one-eyed penis like you…” I don’t know how I didn’t wee myself. In fact I may have. Let’s say I did. As it turns out, in my post-lunch haze, I had accidentally written my boss’s name in the ‘To’ field and sent it directly to him. I fumbled through a story that someone must have hacked into my email account while we were at lunch, which he bought, somehow. I walked back out to the floor with my head swimming like I was going to vomit, all the while thinking about the career suicide I’d just committed. As I passed my mate’s desk he says to me: “I never got your email.” GREG KIMBALL is a stand-up comedian and host and producer of Bunker Comedy. You can follow him on Twitter @GregKimball or on Facebook, Greg Kimball – standup comedian.

“Don’t worry mate, just say: at least I’m not a bald, one-eyed penis like you [boss’s name].” I should point out at this point that the boss was bald and had also lost an eye in an accident – the penis bit was pure comedy. I shot off the email feeling mighty pleased with myself and I motioned to my mate that he should read his email and we could giggle like school kids at our desks. Not long after I got called into the boss’s office and he said he PAGE 39


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[Comedy]

Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

IN REVIEW

THE PARENTS ARE ALL RIGHT BY ZOE PLEASANTS There is a lot of advice out there for parents, and most of it can have the effect of making them feel worse about themselves as they discover yet another way that they are failing their kids. Not so the parenting advice dispensed by Chris Radburn. Father of three, Radburn created the web-series THE PARENTS to provide some comic relief about the relentless torture of being a parent. Radburn writes, and performs in, the series with Katie Burch (mother of two) and onetime local, Sean Woodland (father of two). And now the three of them are coming to Canberra to present an evening of stand-up. “[Parents] all think what we say,” says Radburn. “We’re just being honest about how hard it is!”

we’re sort of saying, you know what, it’s actually hard and let’s have a laugh about it, otherwise you can drive yourself crazy.” The stand-up show will feature Radburn, Burch and Woodland doing half an hour of stand-up each. And while the show has a ready-made audience Radburn is quick to point out there will be jokes about other topics. But for the target audience, watching an evening of stand-up will be cheaper, probably more effective and definitely more enjoyable than going to therapy. Radburn, Burch and Woodland are hoping to turn their webseries into a TV show. “We’re writing a pilot and then we’re going to shoot [it] and hopefully

It’s okay to, you know, when [your kids] wake up, give them an iPad so you can have another hour of sleep The episodes in the webseries are short, thirty second sketches. “They’re not too long because, let’s face it, not too many people have a much of an attention span and especially parents, they don’t have much time before one of the kids is whinging about something,” says Radburn. Each sketch exposes the myth of perfect parenting and normalises behaviours most parents probably resort to. “It’s okay to, you know, when [your kids] wake up, give them an iPad so you can have another hour of sleep. It’s okay to do that stuff. It’s not the end of the world if you give them pizza every night for a week, they’re still going to survive. I think there’s that thing out there that people think you’ve got to be this perfect parent and PAGE 42

get it on TV,” says Radburn. “It will be a cross between The Office and Modern Family – sort of a mockumentary that follows three families and how they’re coping with living in society today.” In the meantime, the stand-up version of The Parents will be touring around the country with Canberra being the first stop. The show played recently at the Sydney Comedy Festival and it was well received. “Parents liked it, so that’s good,” says Radburn. So, book a babysitter, they may be in high demand that night, and enjoy some well-earned comic relief. THE PARENTS will be on at Ginninderra Labor Club, Saturday July 22 and check out the web-series at The Parents Facebook page.

MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL ROADSHOW CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE SAT JUN 24 The Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow (MICFR) is not only a tongue twister, but it had my body contorted from laughter until I resembled a human pretzel. The jokes ranged from politically relevant observational humour to a darker variation which had audience members chortling at the blatant disregard for political correctness – which is always a positive. Hosted by the adorable Cal Wilson, she regaled us with tales of annoying her husband of 14 years by ritualistically locking him out of the house and revealed her universally shared distaste for US president Donald Trump by tying in one of his famous quotations with an anecdote related to cat cafés. After her introductory set, Dane Simpson followed. A majority of his material was based on observing the antics of his family with many cracks about his Indigenous background, which the audience approved of. Simpson is also a disc jockey by trade, as he revealed he was invited to DJ for the Winter Warehouse Rave in Canberra a few years ago. The organiser, however, failed to acquire him a ticket and thus he had to pose as a backup dancer for The Potbellies to gain entry. His selfdeprecating humour was also appreciated as he acknowledged that he did, in fact, look like he’d

eaten Craig David. It’s legitimate, Google him. Once again utilising his Indigenous roots, Simpson brought out an amusingly shaped didgeridoo and entertained the audience with musically based humour. The dark soul of Daniel Connell then tag-teamed onto the stage. Connell identified as a “tall sad skyscraper of the nigh”, explaining that he becomes the designated handbag minder when on the town clubbing. He revealed his comical distaste for the youth of today by reflecting on a personal victimisation story relating to shrapnel being glued to the pavement and his imaginary revenge tactics. Sam Taunton started off weak in my opinion, but built up an engaging tale which revolved around fantasies of pursuing a romantic fling from his visitations to the local coin laundry. Taunton then confessed he would never fuck someone who couldn’t afford a washing machine, ironically being himself. My personal favourite of the evening was the crude and brash Damien Power. His relatable opinions and expressions of wanting to beat Malcolm Turnbull to death and hang him off a lamppost appealed to my anarchist nature. Along with minimising the gap between the dumbest and smartest humanoids of society. Overall, the eclectic mix of comedians gelled fantastically and complemented each other’s individual styles of storytelling. LEANNE DUCK

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Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

[Food & Drink]

FOOD JUNKY

[THE WORD ON LOCAL FOOD & DRINK] WITH SHARONA LIN [SHARONA@POPCULTURE-Y.COM]

Guys, how great are noodles? The run of sub-zero evenings we’ve had has made leaving the warmth of home daunting, but noodles are the clear solution to the perennial problem of how to beat Canberra’s winter hibernation. There’s nothing quite as satisfying as a hot bowl of noodles on a cold evening, and the great thing is that there are so many varieties – there’s something for everyone.

I made it to Ramentic early on a Saturday night and managed to get a seat in the tiny restaurant, which doesn’t hold more than a few dozen patrons. The kitchen keeps it simple, with only four ramen options available (including one vegetarian option). The standard ramen bowl, the Ramentic, was everything I wanted it to be, and each element of the dish was hot, savoury and satisfying. It’s on the expensive side at $18 a bowl, and if you want to add an egg, you end up paying over $20 which is not ideal. Still, despite the frosty temperatures (three degrees, “feels like” -100 degrees), there was a good queue eager to try Canberra’s newest ramen offering by 6pm – if you don’t want to wait in line, get in early.

looking for a bowl of pho. Can Tho in Belconnen is one of my favourites for value and tastiness (sometimes the regular-sized bowl defeats me, so I have not yet ordered a large bowl). Pho Hub (also in Belconnen), iPho (Civic) and Pho Phu Quoc (Dickson) all also do excellent Vietnamese noodle soups at good prices.

As for laksa, which seems tailormade for wintery evenings, you’d be hard-pressed to go past Asian Noodle House in Dickson, or the one in Civic if you’re lazy. Looking for more reasons to get out of the house during the dead of winter? Whiskey is almost as good as noodles, and Molly is a good place to get your whiskey. Their next tasting event features Ardbeg, an award-winning single malt from the Isle of Islay. 5:30pm, Thursday July 27. Tickets are $50 or $35 if you’re a Molly Cabinet Member. Bookings are essential via Molly. Hopefully The National Press Club’s Wine & Food Spectacular is spectacular enough for you, with over 20 stalls showcasing excellent food and wine on Friday July 14, 5:30–8pm, $35 for nonmembers or $25 for members. The day after, Mercure Canberra is hosting Truffles, Wine and Jazz, inspired by Tarago Truffles. Yes, it’s pretty much what it sounds like: truffle food stalls, wine tastings and some live jazz. Add a bit of fanciness to your weekend – it’s free, Saturday July 15, 4:30–6:30pm.

While there is a distinct lack of ramen available in Canberra, it’s a different story if you’re facebook.com/bmamagazine

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[Theatre]

Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

50 FIRST LOVE STORIES BY SHARONA LIN Only a few days into rehearsals, Lexi Sekuless and Kristian Jenkins act like they’ve known each other for years. The pair joke, tease and chat like best friends, a dynamic that will serve them well in their show CONSTELLATIONS. When I sit down with Sekuless and Jenkins at The Street Theatre, neither one of them have done their “homework.” Constellations is a romantic comedy about a quantum physicist and a beekeeper who fall in love across 50 universes. 50 universes means 50 Mariannes and 50 Rolands, and the two actors need to work out a backstory and given circumstances for all of them. I steal a glance at Jenkins’ homework – all I can say is that acting seems difficult. The two are both relatively new in theatre – Sekuless studied a Bachelor of Acting in London’s Central School of Speech and Drama, but took a break just to see if she really wanted to pursue acting. True to Canberra, she worked in politics, but: “I

Lighting Constellations Economics and Chinese studies doesn’t seem like a straightforward pathway into lighting design, but that is exactly how Owen Horton became a professional lighting designer: “I studied economics and Chinese at ANU,” he says, “and worked with the ANU theatre society.” Constellations is Horton’s first Street Theatre show on the main stage.

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got sick of being the weird one, the one who would burst into song.” Anyway, the duplicity of politics wasn’t for her. “The duplicity of theatre instead,” Jenkins quips. The part came to her without an audition: “I was actually auditioning for other things this year, and Caroline (Stacey, director) waited ages to call me and I thought I hadn’t gotten it. And she called and said that I wasn’t right for a few other things but that she hadn’t told me she was doing Constellations, did I know it? And she just offered me the part.” Jenkins has had plenty of film, television and theatre experience (including a stint as Macbeth in his hometown of Cardiff, Wales, and on ABC’s new miniseries The Easybeats). Constellations Horton isn’t unaware of the fact that lighting doesn’t always garner a lot of attention. “Lighting is a creative layer, like the costumes,” he says. “I go to the theatre a lot and I’m guilty of not always noticing the costumes. The design behind them is always integrated, and very careful choices. So it’s sometimes about creating something that people don’t really notice, and they won’t be able to recall the lighting. But it really is part of immersing the audience in the piece.”

is his Canberra debut, and like Sekuless, he didn’t audition for it. Someone else had been cast as Roland but had to pull out. “So Caroline went around Canberra asking people if they knew anyone who was right for the part and my name came up. Somehow or other, people had heard of me, even though I’ve been living under a rock. Just must be my natural charisma.” “Oh, don’t,” Sekuless says. (He still doesn’t know who recommended him.) The show is highly technical, with so many different universes to keep track of. Sekuless explains: “there are these key life events – the first time they meet, their first date, their second date, you have these little packages of universes.” Neither Jenkins nor Sekuless are convinced that the show will go off without a hitch, without one or both of them mixing up universes and confusing the audience (beyond the normal level of confusion.) “It is challenging,” Jenkins says. “It’s the most challenging thing I’ve done in the theatre by far from a technical point of The Street Theatre is a natural fit for Horton, with its focus on developing artists in their early careers, and he is eager to tackle the challenge of Constellations. “What you don’t want is for people to be able to go to other places in their mind and drift out,” Horton says, given audiences don’t always have long attention spans. “So by helping to immerse people in that world as much as possible, I think that’s very important. And not to be

view. You have to repeat lines over and over again (in different universes), it has the potential to be extremely confusing.” Hence the homework they’re doing, and the solid four weeks of full time rehearsal ahead of opening. “You actually fast track learning about someone,” Sekuless says of working in a cast of two. But simultaneously, “this week I’ve been quite overwhelmed with the fact that it’s just the two of us,” she admits. “I’ll look after you,” Jenkins says, gently mocking, and the pair launch into what seems to be a well-trodden to and fro: “the joking is not really looking after me!” Sekuless retorts. “I am a paragon of masculine leadership,” Jenkins intones seriously. They both burst into laughter. CONSTELLATIONS is showing at The Street Theatre from Fri-Sat July 1429. Tickets from $35 + bf through patronbase.com/StreetTheatre.

too aggressive. Lighting isn’t a standalone performance here – it’s not the Schools Spectacular or a rock show.” In fact, Constellations “is a bit more scary” than a rock show. There’s nowhere to hide, and no dazzling lights to distract the audience. “In this show, there is so much discussion and so much subtlety.”

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[Film]

SMØRREBRØD AND CINEMA BY SHARONA LIN Eighteen years ago, Elysia Zeccola wondered why there was no Italian Film Festival, and founded one. In 2014, she wondered why there was no SCANDINAVIAN FILM FESTIVAL, and four years later, the Scandinavian Film Festival is once again making its way around Australia with 20 films from five countries – Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.

wonderful films coming from Scandinavia and they weren’t getting screened here.” While Zeccola isn’t Scandinavian, she assures me that she is a cinephile and a film buff. There’s no better time for the Scandinavian Film Festival, with a surge of great Scandinavian television – particularly Nordic noir – available on our screens. “Nordic noir is really popular

“I’ve been around the world and I’ve seen so many great Scandinavian films – I wondered why there was no Scandinavian Film Festival,” she says. “Because there are so many

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here,” Elysia says, naming it as a key factor in why people might decide to come along to the festival. “Opening year, we had 20,000 visitors, last year, we had 30,000.”

(“not to sound preachy”): “it’s about diversity and experiencing other cultures. Watching what happens in other parts of the world is an amazing way to experience different things.”

But while some might come for the noir, they stay for the humour. “Scandi humour is very deadpan, which I think appeals to Australian audiences,” Zeccola says. “Characters are really welldrawn, and it comes down to the quality of story and acting. It’s about story, and you get really drawn in to a film. Compared to American films, European films don’t have all the bells and whistles and explosions, they are much more refreshing. There is more space, and more realism.”

If you’re still on the fence, Zeccola recommends the opening night film, which is “always great.” The Other Side of Hope, directed by Aki Kaurismäki, is “droll, melancholic and melodramatic,” but at its heart, optimistic. It is also topical: in Helsinki, Wikström invests in an unprofitable restaurant – meanwhile, a Syrian refugee, Khaled, has been refused asylum and is living in the storage space of said restaurant. A bonus to attending opening night is the sparkling elderflower cocktails on arrival, and an afterparty with Scandi tunes and smørrebrød.

Zeccola is passionate about bringing cinema from around the world to Australia. While it may be easier to stay at home and watch Australian television, she says

European films don’t have all the bells and whistles and explosions, they are much more refreshing

“We’re trying to create experiences, and to bring people together. That experience can’t be duplicated at home.” The SCANDINAVIAN FILM FESTIVAL runs Tue July 18–Wed August 2 at Palace Electric. Tickets from $15 through scandinavianfilmfestival.com.

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Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

IN REVIEW

ORB

CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE THU–SAT MAY 25–27 A long time ago I read a line in a book that I can’t recall. It referred to the “rhizome of humankind”. Do you know that word? I didn’t. It’s a gardening term. It’s Japanese. It means root-system – ‘The root-system of humankind’. I love that. It makes me think that humanity may have a root system that through all its tangles, connects us all. Music and dance tap in to that place. And I love it when show makers and music makers tap in to that universal connection. Dance, combined with wicked good sound is the most direct route. This edition of Power Pussies was a sell-out and Rebelle Velveteen started the night with a sassy feather fan dance, in her favourite colours of purple she stripped behind her fans, sat on a patrons lap and introduced emcee, cabaret singer and producer and performer Sophie DeLightful (Melb) who sung a slow jazzy version of ‘Let Me Entertain You’. Sophie stripped in a flirty style, out of her pink boas while Rebelle concealed her with her fans. Sophie thanked the crowd and acknowledged the males in attendance too. Rainbow performed her well known ‘Cheap Wine’ tassel twirl routine. Wearing long gloves, she stripped them off revealing tassels attached to her triceps. With gorgeous facial expressions she was funny and coy as she then stripped to also reveal tassels on her buttocks (assels) and while tasselling in frenzy she poured wine all over herself. It was hilarious. After another sultry song by Sophie, Liberte LaFemme (Syd) performed a sensual contemporary routine, covered in PAGE 46

Lights up on eight dancers for part one of Orb entitled ‘New Moon’ and choreographed by Cheng Tsung-Lung. In his program note Tsung-Lung says: “I often have a feeling deep in my heart, difficult to express in words. I hope to convey this feeling through dance, through the myth and the moon.” The movement of two of the dancers reminds me of wild animals running free, and of flickering flames under a full moon. At times convulsing, stomping feet and shaking manes of big hair. Another spins like a jewellery box doll for so metal chains sealed by a padlock, she offered patrons keys to unlock her. Once unlocked she crouched over fabric canvas, pouring red paint on her torso and spreading it all over. She then printed her body onto the canvas. Then, pouring a large amount of white paint over herself, she smeared the white over the red to cover her print completely in the shape of a cross. The crowd absolutely loved it. After an intermission, Sophie returned to do an entire set of reading poetry from her diary, themed on being misunderstood (people have already made up their minds about you), and how the curl at the end of her lip makes you think that she wants you, but you should think twice about the outcome of words. After two more songs, Sophie sung with keyboard player Michael Chalk; and then Sophie performed another humorous song that included two very willing male patrons in compromised positions. The cast then came out singing ‘Happy Birthday’ to Rebelle, and presenting her with a vagina-

long that I forget she’s there, and marvel at her duration some time later. Another pair prance like flamingos wrapping themselves around each other. Others make shapes like Balinese puppets. At times the dancers seem separate and unaware of each other and then suddenly they come together with flow and joy. The mixed tempos are exquisite as each individual or duo takes alternative focus. I feel like I’ve been invited in to a dream, a celebration, a ritual. My favourite thing about ‘New Moon’ is the costume design by Fan Huai-Chih – a beautiful palate of silver, black, red, white, gold. Long flowing skirts, big bold stripes and lots of skin. It mixes beautifully with Damien Cooper’s lighting design that creates deep shadows over the dancers glistening bodies. After interval is ‘Ocho’, which is an exploration of the significance of the number eight – power, ego and the infinite. Eight dancers are revealed inside a glass box. One by one they exit the box to perform a solo piece while the others look on. It seems there are stories and relationships shaped cake. She blew out birthday candles attached to

happening inside the glass box. We don’t need to know what they are but they seem to reveal some strong personalities and passionate dynamics. Albeit one dancer leaves the box and she stands alone in fluorescence, lit like a Bill Henson photograph. It’s an exquisite theatre moment before she opens the sliding door and dances on the stage. The light coming through cracks in the walls reminds me of the stripes from the piece before. Rafael Bonachela has painted the show beautifully. It’s a generous gesture for a choreographer to allow the space to celebrate the uniqueness of individual dancers as he has chosen to do with the solos. The highlight is the finale though as the dancers, wearing their training gear, walk slowly toward the seeming sunlight that pours through imagined cracks in the walls, to the spiritual strains of song man Rrawun Maymuru – a very impressive choice from composer Nick Wales, and perhaps a comment on the rhizome of humanity. CHENOEH MILLER

as Yzma from The Emperor’s She stripped out

IN REVIEW New Groove.

POWER PUSSIES #3 POLIT BAR FRI JUN 23

PHOTO BY STEVE MORRIS

Liberte’s breasts to thunderous crowd applause. Artemis Seven then performed wearing a burnt gold taffeta outfit. She bodypopped and strutted all over the available space, morphing into her twerking style that she is well known for as she stripped. With beautiful arm and hand placement and her intense, focussed stare she is spellbinding to watch. She made many new fans at this show.

of her black dress to a purple sequinned dress, then stripped to straddle a giant blow-up poison bottle and the performance ended with a big confetti explosion. With amazing facial expressions she represented the character perfectly.

The finale by Hannie Raegan (Syd) was quirky and hilarious, miming to ‘I Want To Be Evil’

SAM INGHAM

Thank you Sophie for giving us a fun, flirty, sassy, sensual and very feminine show. The crowd and I had a great time.

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[Reviews] Billed as ‘An Illusion & Dance Spectacular’, Eclipse was a bit like Mandrake the Magician meets Riverdance. It was a family friendly show, with lots of children in attendance. Little eyes lit up as the curtain leapt up to surging synths, revealing dancing spotlights and a sinisterlooking metal table. Dancers in sparkling outfits heralded the arrival, in a cloud of stage smoke, of the star of the show Anthony Street. Street has a distinguished background in Irish dancing and Eclipse combined his twin passions of dancing and illusion. It was a real family show for Street too, with his mum on wardrobe, uncle providing transport and nanna selling the merch. Sometimes the dancing was casual window-dressing for Street’s tricks, but at other times it was the feature event, and then it shone. The Irish moves were provided by the Celtic Illusion dancers. The soundtrack, created with the involvement of Angela Little, swept the dancers along, with the music well mated to the

dance moves. The furious rap of tap shoes against the hard floor, with dancers all perfectly synchronised, was impressive. There was even a ‘dancing box’ hanging in the air. The action amped up in the second half, with some more contemporary dance moves, courtesy of Daniel Ryan and Alfie Scalia’s ‘Ignite the Dark’ jazz dancers A highlight was the Roaring ‘20s sequence, with sparkling flapper outfits taking on a life of their own, enhancing the dancers’ movements. Celtic themes continued with some spectacular high kicks and a notable solo spot by Street, dancing to a bodhran (Irish frame drum). The standard of the illusions was not so spectacular, but would have impressed the littlies watching. Street’s repertoire covered a conventional range of items, including rope tricks, the lady in the box of swords and the levitating lady (with the obligatory pass of a ring along the length of her body). Sudden appearances

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IN REVIEW ECLIPSE

CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE FRI JUL 7

PHOTO BY MARK TURNER

or disappearances, or instant costume changes in the wink of an eye, were frequent tricks. (Some punters were seen doing their own version of these during the interval.) An impressive item was the ‘prediction’. Punters, selected by chance by a large ball bounced about in the audience, provided random words which were subsequently revealed to be written on paper in a locked box. How does he do it?! There were circus style acts too, including a lady on the suspended ring, (demonstrating

feats of strength and balance) and a blue leotard-clad woman making daring moves while entwined in hanging red drapes. A sudden miscalculation in the wrapping around her legs etc. could spell disaster! Overall, the illusions were executed with flair and polish and these, combined with the great dancing, the atmospheric sound track and the many changes of dazzling costumes, made for good entertainment. RORY MCCARTNEY

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Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

Amandeep Kaur [ARTIST PROFILE]

Describe your artmaking practice. Currently I am creating digital photomontages using photographs I have taken over the years and simultaneously also creating sculptural forms from old light fixtures. Both methods of working are very different, but I enjoy the process of each practice. I am interested in ideas of how identity of the self is influenced by spatial environments, transmigration and connection to multiple places. I love using ‘old’ materials, whether its photographs or light

fixtures, to make art because they already have the multiple layers of history embedded within them. When, how and why did you get into it? After my cousin’s untimely death a few years ago, I reflected on the value of photographs and how they hold time almost ‘still’ in that moment where someone is alive but in reality, is not. I initially started working with a photograph I had of him as a way of dealing with the grief. When I started my master’s studies last year, I came across

Immigrating Bricolage’, which inspired me immensely and I began to use photographs to create digital narratives. I began experimenting initially as a way of exploring other ways to generate art from my vast digital memory. Initially it was challenging moving from sculpture into digital works, but eventually I have come to love this process that allows me to combine my love for photography and storytelling into one.

transformation that happens due to transmigration. In what ways do migrant women negotiate between their ethnic and host cultural environments? The work is derivative of my own experiences and I am constantly asking questions through my artmaking process. I see art as a way of communicating ideas but also a point to generate discussions around topics that concern individuals on a daily basis.

What ideas do you explore through your art?

Who/what influences you as an artist?

The themes I explore are often women centric and speak of the displacement, dislocation, renegotiation and

Too many people have influenced me and I have curiosity of too many things. Of what are you proudest so far? I am finally learning to become a lot more decisive and that is something I am very proud of right now. What are your plans for the future? Embrace the life of a starving artist and just going for it. I have put off being an artist for too long, for the fear of not having the financial security, but now I have come to realise that I wouldn’t live through life any other way. So, the plan for the future is to just go for it! What about the local scene would you change? I would like to create social interactions between people who are socially isolated and also remove stigmas around mental illness. What are your upcoming exhibitions? I am currently exhibiting at M16 Artspace. The exhibition is called Liminal Landscapes and it is my first solo show. After this I hope to go to Switzerland and spend three months travelling. Then in November I will be part of the Grad Show at ANU, where I will be showing the work I did during my Master of Visual Arts. Contact info: www.amardeepshergill.com

[Amandeep Kaur, Untitled (Liminal Mindscapes), 2016, digital print on paper, 841 x 1189 mm] Tatiana Tavares’ ‘Carnival Land: PAGE 48

@bmamag


[Canberra Artists]

Keith Bailey [ARTIST PROFILE]

Describe your art making practice. I work with oil and acrylic paint, brushing, layering, spraying, scraping ‘building’ works on canvas and paper. Most of my practice is abstract, but also incorporates some symbolism as narrative and parody. When, how and why did you get into it? Following retirement from a public service career I immersed myself in my true passions – art, photography, travel and voluntary community education. As a volunteer guide at the National Gallery of Australia I share my passions for art with the broader community. I have the privilege of exploring, gaining knowledge and talking about one of the greatest art collections in Australia. What ideas do you explore through your art? My ideas grow from my passions for travel and photography and my background in geography, landscape design and developing and implementing environmental programs. My artwork responds

to regional and global social and environmental issues and events. Much of my painting is colour emphatic referencing fauvism and modernism, impressionism and abstract expressionism. I tend to incorporate elements of structural design as emphasis and counterpoint to free-flowing form. I’m continually exploring the tensions between chaos and order, and abstraction and literalism. Who/what influences you as an artist? I’m particularly interested in commenting on global warming, climate change, landscape change, habitat and vulnerable species loss due to human impact. Through my guiding work at the NGA I have the opportunity to learn about, understand and discuss the widely diverse art genres, techniques, backgrounds and influences that are part of the art spectrum. Of what are you proudest so far? My current exhibition, Skating on Thin Ice at M16 Artspace, is my first to bring together photography and painting. This exhibition

draws on my trip to Antarctica, the most extraordinary landscape and environment I have so far experienced. What are your plans for the future? I continually develop ideas for painting and expressing my responses to experiences and issues of potential impact to the planet and its environment and inhabitants. I plan to continue expressing my ideas through paint on canvas and paper, while developing an interest in other media such as printmaking. What about the local scene would you change? As an emerging artist I find the Canberra scene extraordinarily supportive and encouraging. This is in no small way due to venues with a community focus such as M16 Artspace. The people at M16 are wonderfully professional and helpful and the organisation, which essentially runs on the ‘smell of an oily paintbrush’, hosts and manages a diverse program of exhibitions and community access activities. Even though the Artspace manages to attract sponsors and is innovative at sourcing limited funding, my only suggestion for change to

the local scene would be for venues with a community focus to have increased continuing and reliable funding. What are your upcoming exhibitions? My current exhibition is titled Skating on Thin Ice and is on at M16 Artspace from Thursday July 6 to Sunday July 23. The works reference the fragility of the Antarctic environment and potential impacts of massive ice melt due to global warming not only on the species that live there, but also on the lives and environments of people living thousands of kilometres distant. Following this exhibition I’m developing a series of oil on canvas paintings on the theme of ‘Loss’ to be shown at M16 in March 2018. These works have arisen from a journey to Sabah, Borneo, where the orangutan habitat is under extreme pressure from ever-increasing destruction of natural forest for the production of palm oil. I’m also keen to explore the threats to the Great Barrier Reef in a work I’m calling ‘Great Barrier Grief’. Contact: keithbailey5@gmail.com 0438 884 909

[Keith Bailey, Emperors on Ice, 2017, oil on canvas, 77 x 52 cm] facebook.com/bmamagazine

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Exhibitionist | Arts in the ACT

[Pop Culture]

ON TO THE NEXT GAME

BY ANDREW NARDI Of all the Australian media personalities with a knack for video games and pop culture, few are as regarded and widely adored as Steven ‘BAJO’ O’Donnell. Bajo was the host of ABC’s ten-year-old TV show about video games, Good Game, before it was cancelled in January of 2017 – much to the dismay of Aussie gamers and long-time fans, myself included. But Bajo remains as one of the faces of Good Game’s children’s program, called Spawn Point, and along with co-hosts Rad and Goose, will be attending Canberra’s staple pop culture convention, the annual GAMMA.CON, to celebrate all things geeky with the capital’s gamers and cosplayers. I haven’t exactly caught Bajo at the best time, however. “I’m moving actually, today. I’m moving because I want NBN. I’ve become a bit of a Twitch streamer lately and I think if I’m serious about it, I just need to have a higher upload [speed] so I can make it look better. I didn’t realise how much breaking a lease would cost but that’s alright!” Since Good Game ended, Bajo has turned to Twitch – an internet platform with which people livestream themselves playing video games – so Aussie gamers can keep up with the mature games that he used to play and talk about on TV. He says that connecting with viewers in realtime has really revolutionised the way he interacts with the Australian video games community; it’s like running his own TV show. “The few times I’ve been able to interact with fans of PAGE 50

Good Game and viewers has been at conventions and Twitter,” he explains. “But [Twitch] is a direct link, there’s no one in between. It’s really intimate and personal, but it’s also really easy to get a gauge of what you’re doing and how it’s working. If [viewers] like or don’t like something, they tell you straight away … it’s very reactive, and it’s exciting. I get a lot of energy out of doing live stuff in terms of trying to make things as crazy as possible.” With Good Game’s cancellation and his former co-hosts Hex and Nichboy leaving the show to host screenPLAY on 7mate, one would think 2017 has been difficult for Bajo. But as well as livestreaming on Twitch, he’s actually been busier than ever. “I’m still working full time for the ABC on Spawn Point, and I’ve been doing Whovians [a Doctor Who talk show] as well,” he tells me. “So I don’t know what the future holds, I certainly love it at the ABC and I love Spawn Point, and you would have to drag me away, you would have to – what’s the word I’m trying to find – sorry I’m going to sit down and stop moving around and breathing heavily in your ear,” he laughs, still caught up in moving. “You would have to pry my cold, dead hands

away from Spawn Point. I will never leave until they basically ask me to leave!” It’s no secret that video games are a booming industry in Australia, and their steady popularity has helped pop culture conventions like Gamma.Con pick up speed. What used to be a hobby on the fringe has passed into the mainstream, but is it fair to say that Australia is becoming geekier overall? What’s the cultural function of conventions in Australia? “Conventions feel like a safe space, I think. There’s still times when I talk about video games around people who don’t play games … people who have no idea what a game like Uncharted 4, or The Last of Us, or Skyrim, even – or emotional journeys, like Journey, Telltale games, and all these games doing such unique and interesting things with emotions and pushing the medium – are doing. They just have no idea, and I feel sorry for them, I don’t even know what those people do! Do they just stare at walls? What do they even do with their time?! “When I go to conventions, like, ‘these are my people’, that’s how I feel! Y’know, when I was a kid, there was one girl I knew in my school who played games, and even out of all of my friends, maybe ten percent played video games … you won’t find someone 14-years-old today who doesn’t play some sort of video game. Everybody does now.” I find it fascinating how Australian gamers regard Bajo with celebrity status; I have to ask him about the kinds of experiences he’s had

meeting his fans at conventions. “When we first started doing conventions, kids would come up to me and – especially when we started Spawn Point, our kid’s show – they bring us artwork and they’re so excited about the games that they’re playing. They really come out of their shells. So you see kids who are seemingly quite shy, but when you get them talking about games, they open right up, and you see parents light up too, because they’re looking at their kid coming out of their shell in this moment and that’s always so beautiful to see. “And when Good Game ended, we had floods of messages for weeks – beautiful, beautiful messages. What the show did for a lot of people, which I only really discovered this year, was it connected people. Much like conventions, it got people to come out of their shell and talk about things they love and also see that it’s okay to truly nerd out and love these kinds of things,” Bajo says. “There’s a lot of parents out there with autistic children and video games are the only way they can connect with them. And so by watching our show and just by getting involved with games, it’s really opened up relationships and connections that just did not exist before, and that just brings legit tears to my eyes.” BAJO, RAD and GOOSE are appearing at GAMMA.CON at the AIS Arena on Sat–Sun Aug 5–6. Go and check out video games, indie games, tabletop games, cosplayers, vendors and artists, panels and workshops. More info at gammacon.org.au.

@bmamag


LITERATURE IN REVIEW WITH CARA LENNON All These Wonders Catherine Burns [Serpent’s Tail; 2017]

SCIENCE MEETS STREET ART BY SHARONA LIN I must admit that I’ve never had a head for science, having dropped it in high school as soon as I could. That’s not to say I don’t care about science – I just can’t make sense of a lot of it. And judging from the vast followings of science communicators like Bill Nye and Neil DeGrasse Tyson, there are plenty of people in my boat: not avid readers of scientific journals, but interested in learning about science. As a graduate of ANU’s Master of Science Outreach, Lee Constable has a professional interest in educating the public about science in an engaging, educational way. Lee is the founder of CO-LAB, an event which pairs scientists with street artists, resulting in a work inspired by the scientist’s work. Co-Lab had its origins as a uni assignment. “We had to do an assessment which was based around trialing an event which would be appropriate for something like National Science Week,” Constable explains. Mixing science and art is nothing new, but generally these collaborations are “more exhibition style”. Constable’s interest in street art led her to the idea of having artists not just represent science, “but getting them to collaborate one-on-one with a young scientist and learn about their work and their discoveries.” The artists then develop a concept and paint a wall inspired by that work. The first Co-Lab took place in 2015, on a fence at the Westside shipping container village (RIP), coinciding with Floriade. “A lot of people were coming through, and it was really exciting.”

students and five street artists, with a small grant from ANU to cover the cost of the paint. The next year, the ANU National Science Week committee contacted Constable: “They asked if I’d like to do it again in a different location, and they had a seed grant that I could use. Then after that, it spurred on me to do it a third time, but this time I’ve got a grant from National Science Week, which is really exciting. It’s on as part of National Science Week in Kingston, and we’ve got twice the number of scientists and street artists on board.” Lee specifically seeks out local, early career scientists: “I wanted to give the scientists themselves a really positive experience of communicating their work to non-experts and collaborating with an artist to do so.” CoLab gives exposure to working scientists she says. “I guess that was part of the motivation, the opportunity that this would give early career scientists.” Whenever you come to CoLab, you’ll be able to watch the artworks form, read about the science behind them and the scientist themselves, and even speak to the people involved. This year the topics include earth and environmental science, evolution, health and medicine. “I guess my hope is that this will personalise science for people, and give people a sense of ownership over it – it’s putting local scientists into the public sphere.” Catch CO-LAB at the Old Bus Depot in Kingston on Saturday August 12 from 11am. Entry is free, more info at scienceweek.net.

That first event featured five PhD facebook.com/bmamagazine

“When I was fifteen years old, I lived for a while in a mausoleum ... I was desperately in love with a girl who was dead, and with a man who was living but psychotic.” It’s crazy how much suspense can be packed into the literary equivalent of a mate’s tall tale. The Moth, a not-forprofit founded by George Dawes Green, has sought out and curated tales from the extremes of human experience. They are harrowing, hilarious or deeply sad; but whatever notes they hit it’s with wrecking ball force. It’s a collection of transcribed … performances, I guess, although they’re not your regular theatre, not quite an interview, or a live reading either. It’s storytelling stripped back to viscera and bone. One person, one microphone, one true story. And they’re addictive as fuck. Some of the contributors are known personalities – Magda Szubanski, Louis C. K., John Turturro. Others are merely incredibly interesting. Like the journalist who lived undercover in North Korea as an evangelical Christian. Or the NASA astronomer who spent a decade of her career tracking the New Horizons spacecraft, only to have its onboard computer crash three days before it finally reached its destination of Pluto. Or the hotel manager who was hustled by the FBI into luring an oldschool gangster out of his rooms. In all fifty anecdotes there’s not one yawner. I was powerhoovering these stories in with the kind of brainless enthusiasm most of us bring to jamming two thirds of the popcorn up our faces before the trailers have ended.

There’s literally (yes LITERALLY) nothing to dislike about this book, or anyone I wouldn’t recommend it to. All These Wonders uses the directness, brevity and familiarity of a friendly conversation to navigate the reader across rocky emotional terrain, perilous more often than not. Although the rapport between storyteller and audience is somewhat diminished by freezing a live performance in written word, the stories retain their energy and authenticity. Even the smallest crises and triumphs are compelling because they’re real, the people are real and they’re brave. The full spectrum of human ingenuity, fear and resilience is on display. It’s the sort of reading that makes you question what really constitutes a normal person, and how normal the people around you really are. You may find yourself looking at friends and strangers alike wondering for the first time what is untold or what potential’s untapped under the skin. Or you may be looking in the mirror, for that matter.

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POLITICALLY INCOHERENT WITH DONNIE DANKO

Politically Incoherent is our column all about parties, drugs, sex, general misconduct and counterculture. This month’s entry is What’s The Deal With Candyflipping?

Done in the appropriate fashion, a candyflip unlocks all the profound sensations associated with LSD, coupled with the fervour for life, self-assuredness, and connectedness of MDMA. It can be a truly delightful encounter, but according to many faceless forum posters it is difficult to do correctly, and requires a lot of careful preparation and foresight, even more than acid does all by its lonesome. Personally, I didn’t follow any walkthrough, so I made an absolute pig’s abortion out of the methodology. However, due to the calibre of company it has been my best psychedelics experience to date which just goes to show that your friendship dynamics make all the difference. The story begins with an innocent gallivant to the pub accompanied by my drug-taking associate, Caroline. Don’t pretend that Neil Diamond hasn’t commandeered your internal monologue right now. I was visiting my hometown at the time and so the setting was a regional pub surrounded by wholesome slack-jawed yokels. We sat around fraternising for perhaps 40 minutes before our focus diverted from alcohol consumption to MDMA. Caroline had some disco biscuits leftover from a previous jamboree. We nibbled on them and waited around for the capsules to take effect. However, being of the millennial persuasion and inclined to favour instant gratification, we desired a more rapid escalation. We informed our drinking companions that we were returning home to drop acid in a brazen fashion and left them to their own devices. Since the pair of us were staying with our respective parents at the time, this limited our scope of venues PAGE 56

to engage in candyflipping. It was around three o’clock in the morning when we reached our destination, being my parent’s humble abode. It seemed like a perfectly logical course of action at the time because they were sound asleep at the opposite end of the house. In retrospect, it was very much ill-advised. After allowing the tabs to dissolve underneath our tongues for 20 minutes and an additional 40-minute waiting game, the combined drugs began to manifest. As this wasn’t our first rodeo, I had grown more comfortable with the idea of dropping acid and I found the MDMA reaction offset the paranoia typically associated with psychedelics. We sat unflinchingly in front of YouTube for an unknown span of time watching a fedora wearing lad bopping around to electro swing, eyes locked with the screen and giggling uncontrollably. Somehow it became the most mesmerising occurrence in existence. Another difference I found was my level of confidence in operating technology, even when peaking. We peaked so hard, that everyone in Philadelphia felt it. Ahem. We documented our experience on various social media platforms, but there weren’t many individuals awake at the time to view our shenanigans.

Electro swing was followed by Baroness, Open and the ethereal stylings of Florence. At this point, Caroline started to feel uneasy about the atmosphere created by the change. She stated her suspicions that we had travelled back through time, but I was able to keep her grounded with logical crooning. We ventured into the backyard for an intermission durry, but I managed to break off the stick used to adjust the blinds and so it became an instrument of entertainment. We regarded it as a cosmic sceptre. The pallidfaced concrete beneath our feet somehow felt squelchy in texture, despite being rock solid. My favourite moment was perhaps looking up at the night sky and drinking in the constellations with our corneas. Due to the kaleidoscope effect, everything was swirling and it was the most pulchritudinous sight to behold. After prancing around outside like a couple of commonplace dryads, we returned to the warmth of the loungeroom where the resident canine sat. I was surprised we didn’t end up rolling around in the mud proclaiming to be lizard royalty. The dog regarded us quizzically as we sought the texture of its fur like a couple of autistic children, but ultimately, we retired to my bedroom to create as much distance between our drug addled antics and the unconscious elderberries as possible. We had been locked into the candyflipping state for several hours and it was starting to grow tiresome. We began listening to Devin Townsend followed by Between the Buried and Me and laid down for a time. This is when the sensation of astral projection started to kick in, along with crazy visuals on the ceiling.

For the bitter end of our trip, we embarked on an Angus and Julia Stone playlist which made everything feel quite surreal and sombre, but in a pleasant way. Despite lying there with our eyes closed, neither of us had actually slept. It was impossible with the electrodes buzzing in our craniums. At 7:30am, I slithered into the bathroom to examine my hugely dilated pupils. The other two occupants of the house had started to rustle into existence and I became cornered in the bathroom. Both my baby boomer parents come from a somewhat conservative and religious upbringing and to my knowledge, neither have experimented with substances aside from the atypical vices of alcohol and cigarettes. My father wished me a good morning and reminded me to pay the car insurance. Here I was still wearing the same clothes from the night before and resembling a dishevelled homeless man. I tried not to look at him directly in the peepers as I was still facing the mirror and thanked him for the aide-mémoire. He exited stage left without further questions and I breathed a sigh of relief. My mother then emerged from the shadowy pits. She told me they were going to church, my eyes remained downcast and I nodded. After these encounters, I retreated to the depths of my drug den. Caroline eventually left and there I remained, still unable to slip into the arms of Morpheus despite how ludicrously tired I was. I remained bedridden for the rest of the day with a trifecta hangover. I couldn’t really identify a come down period as such, it was mainly allowing my body to recover. In the end, my parents never did question what happened that night and remained entirely oblivious. @bmamag


[ALBUM REVIEWS]

ALBUM IN

FOCUS

SZA CTRL [RCA]

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Ctrl’s been a long-time coming. SZA, who dropped debut project See.SZA.Run in late 2012, gained real traction in 2013, when she signed to Top Dawg Entertainment, which was followed up by her debut label release, Z, in early 2014. Since she put out Z though, there wasn’t much happening – label complications meant that her album wasn’t released when she wanted it, which eventually led to the artist tweeting “I actually quit. Punch can release my album if he ever feels like it” in 2016. Following this, and a switch to RCA Records in April, the album dropped in June.

with a guy, knowing that there are other girls in similar relationships – “your man is my man is your man, heard he’s her man, too”. This is a topic often addressed in mainstream, male-led R&B songs, where it seems almost commonplace for a singer to have several women at the same time. With ‘Weekend’, SZA confronts the idea and flips the narrative, accepting it for what it is and regaining control over how she would be represented. Continuing the album’s theme of regaining control is ‘Doves in the Wind’, with Kendrick Lamar. In her own words, the song is “dedicated to vaginas”, and deals with the things that men will do for sex. In calling in Kendrick Lamar for the feature, she gave herself the opportunity to show this from both a male and female perspective, which Kendrick delivers on. In an almost submissive verse where he uses the word “pussy” 20 times, Kendrick details, in the same literal vein as the rest of the album, what people will do for pussy. The result is a powerful track that helps to assert the tone of the album from as early as the third track. One of the most innately remarkable things about the album is SZA’s openness about sexuality and her insecurities where this is concerned. Despite R&B’s reputation for being a genre for ‘sexy’ songs, this discussion is dominated by male performers, singing about the women they want to sleep with. For much of Ctrl, SZA flips this monopoly on its head, creating what is, at times, a confrontingly unfamiliar narrative. This is highlighted by tracks like ‘Pretty Little Birds’, with former labelmate Isaiah Rashad, and ‘Garden’.

Politics aside, the album is outstanding. SZA’s lyrics are open and unapologetic, expressing with astounding honesty what it’s like to be her. SZA’s voice is earcatching, almost commanding in nature, dragging the listener’s attention away from the lush pop backings and highlighting the lyrical nuances of each song.

SZA’s Ctrl is, at its core, an album that knows exactly what it’s trying to say. The mastering draws more attention to her voice than previous releases, and shows that it is in no way attempting to disguise the message it’s attempting to send to listeners. On every track, SZA’s voice rings through bright and clear, with not a hint of shame or apology.

Speaking on the album in a recent radio interview, SZA explained why the album is titled Ctrl: “I’ve lacked control my whole life and I think I’ve craved it my whole life. I couldn’t really arrive at it and now, I’m not really looking to arrive at it anymore … But if you focus on the way you feel in the now and what you do with the now, I feel like it leads to having true control in the future.” In this way, SZA speaks on how giving up control gave her the control she wanted.

MATT PARNELL

One of the most immediately impressive tracks off the album, ‘Weekend’ deals with the concept of being a girl in a relationship

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LOCAL MUSIC PHENO DRAGON YEAR [ELECTRIC EAR]

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Pheno (a.k.a. Jess Green) skilfully evades categorisation on her debut EP, showing off a depth of songwriting and expression that begs to be explored further. Pheno’s afrobeat and art pop influences are peppered through opener ‘There Are Voices out There’, which floats in with manipulated vocals on loop before drums bring the song to earth à la tUnE-yArDs’ ‘Bizness’. Standout track, ‘A Little Thing,’ is built around a lone, chugging guitar, like a restrained ‘Your Best American Girl’ or a less malicious ‘To Bring You My Love’. But comparisons to Mitski and PJ Harvey come from their shared love of the blank canvas, and Pheno’s stark arrangement here is just that – something that absorbs the themes of motherhood and connection that bind the record together. Green’s voice is the expressive force – sometimes screaming, sometimes a whisper – but it can be lost amid the pristine production elsewhere on Dragon Year. That’s not a slight on those songs. “Another tiny little spark began to make itself a human,” sings Pheno on the title track which brims with warped, St. Vincent pop charm. So too ‘Shadow in the Water’ shows the off-kilter arranging style of Ainslie Wills, or Feist’s Metals. Closer ‘Slingshot’ disintegrates into a tangle of fuzzy guitars before being spat back out into palm-muted pop strut. Even if only for a few moments, it shows the immense, unhinged potential Pheno has for experimentation. Dragon Year has its safe moments but there are moments of fear and surprise too, not unlike the lyrical themes Pheno addresses throughout. Trained in jazz and having her finger in various musical pies over the years, Dragon Year sees Jess Green throwing shade at anyone who tries to put her in a box. HAYDEN FRITZLAFF

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[ALBUM REVIEWS]

LOCAL MUSIC GENESIS OWUSU CARDRIVE EP

PHOENIX TI AMO

[INDEPENDENT RELEASE]

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Genesis Owusu’s sound reverberates throughout each track – the throaty, deep voice, the swagger-infused flow and menacing, jazzy beats give each track a distinctive flavour. Additionally, the polished sound and confidence with which each tune is presented gives the sound an experienced feeling that belies the age of the artist. Each beat on the tape compliments the sound exceptionally, contributing to the album’s vibe by providing a sound that contains the same mood and thinly veiled aggression in the lyrics and delivery. The best beat on the album, for this, is ‘Goondocks…’ – the beat shows this alluded-to menace, before the beat switch completely rips open the tune and changes the entire experience. The confidence is nothing new – the swagger’s always been there, from debut track ‘Ansah Brothers’, where he rapped “twice your favourite rapper’s talent, only half of his age” as a 15-year-old. Since then, he’s developed his sound alongside his brother and fellow local rapper Citizen Kay, most recently dropping collaborative tape Polaroid in 2015. However, on ‘Blue Pills’, he raps “finally getting recognition without brother CK”, showing that he’s looking to move in his own direction and get his name out there under his own steam, and with this release he’s made the perfect move to start doing that. MATT PARNELL PAGE 58

[GLASSNOTE]

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If you’re Canberran, which you probably are if you’re reading this, then you probably already know all about 19-year-old Kofi Ansah, stage name Genesis Owusu. This seven-track EP consists of three interludes and four tracks, one of which is completely fresh. The other three, ‘Goondocks/Cbr Zoo (Sabertooth)’, ‘Void’, and ‘Drive Slow’ are staples of the Genesis Owusu live set. The new track, ‘Blue Pills’, is exactly in the vein of the others. For these reasons, Cardrive EP will satisfy an already existing fanbase and is perfect for new listeners.

VINCE STAPLES BIG FISH THEORY

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[DEF JAM RECORDINGS]

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Making a follow-up to 2013’s Bankrupt! (easily in the top 50 albums of the decade for me) was never going to be an easy task. What has resulted is a cangiante mural of reanimated zombie disco from a bygone era combined with a contrast of emotions in response to the numerous terror incidents that have occurred in France since then. There’s ascending disco octaves, Fela Kuti influences and even multiple languages over the course of a single song like Manu Chao (so cultured!). Phoenix has described what has coalesced before us after three years locked in La Gaîté Lyrique in Paris as a sexy neon pink caboodle that is “also a record about our European, Latin roots, a fantasised version of Italy”. And it shows. Not just through the infusion of the Italian language, but through the way the synthesised sounds come across which has that cosmopolitan, continental type of chic to it. Listen to ‘Spacer Woman’ or something by Giorgio Moroder and you’ll get what kind of chic I mean. It’s quite distinctive. The disco influences I referred to earlier are most prominent on the track ‘Tuttifrutti’, which I guess stands alongside opening track ‘J-Boy’ and also ‘Ti-Amo’ as the proud frigates of the album. When I say that, I mean they’re my favourites, which is neat, because they’re the first three songs. ‘Fleur de Lys’ towards the end isn’t too bad either and definitely fulfils the role of the rigadoon boogie tune. The clout and gravitas in Phoenix’s sound however, has come from a merging of alternative rock and synth pop. New new wave? New wave revival? Whatever it is, Phoenix have taken an interesting turn on the boulevard of sound with Ti Amo. PATRICK OGISI

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This isn’t a Vince Staples album in the vein of the other Vince Staples albums. He’s a man who’s become known for his very traditional style, with classic booming beats and clear lyricism, with a familiar, conventional flow that emphasises where it ends. This much has been obvious on each of his three previous solo records, in addition to his collaborative EP with Mac Miller. Big Fish… is not at all those albums. Much of Vince Staples’ music is tied to his beats. On previous albums, he has formed a formidable partnership with Chicago-based producer No I.D., who is a man with a very clear sonic signature, which is something that can be affiliated with Vince Staples’ previous releases. On Big Fish Theory, however, Vince Staples worked heavily with Zack Sekoff, creating an entirely different sound. Sekoff is almost at the other end of the spectrum to No I.D., and this is abundantly obvious from the album’s opening track. Staples’ rapping hasn’t changed, much. He’s still got his signature flow and vocal cadence, which acts to place emphasis on certain words. The key difference is that this is a more socially aware album. As implied in the title, the big fish theory is one that insinuates that a fish can only grow as large as its environment will let it, which Staples uses allegorically for the ability of African Americans to succeed in modern day America. In this way, it shouldn’t be compared to his previous releases, but more to contemporaries such as Logic, Joey Bada$$ and Ab-Soul. The key difference in this release is the beats – gripping, Yeezus-esque industrial sounds that seize the listener’s ear. The album delivers a familiar message in a frenetic manner, and is ultimately very successful in conveying its intended message. And while not innately listenable, it is important. MATT PARNELL @bmamag


FLEET FOXES CRACK-UP

[NONESUCH RECORDS]

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Fleet Foxes’ third studio album, and first in five years, picks up where 2011’s Helplessness Blues left off. Arguably most impressive is the group’s use of vocals – on certain tracks, the voice is used as more of a percussive instrument. On these tracks, particularly at the start of the album, the vocals seem to be more used for the sake of what it adds to the wall of sound, rather than any inherent lyrical content. The album is a short and sweet 11 tracks, and is an album that uses its time well. Fleet Foxes, being as they are a five-piece, have a very diverse range of instrumentation. This range is used well to harmonise and create quite unique songs that are similar enough that each song could be any other song, but different enough to be able to be found apart from one another. One of the most engaging parts of the album is how immediately re-listenable it is. It’s an album that is perfectly suitable for an engaged conscious listen, or just to have playing in the background. Some of the standout tracks, as much as they could be, is the sequence between ‘Third of May/ Ōdaigahara’ and ‘If You Need to, Keep Time on Me’. On these tracks, the vocal quality of the lead singer shines through, and emits vibes that are simultaneously pleasant and mildly uneasy. The album, at times, suffers from what may be complacency – the band has found a comfortable groove, and they stick with it for most of the album. Towards the last few tracks, the group seems to take a few risks, most notably with a song that borders on acapella. With the recent seasonal change, Crack-Up really fits the Autumnal vibe, and couldn’t have been released at a better time for those in the southern hemisphere. MATT PARNELL

THE DRUMS ABYSMAL THOUGHTS [ANTI]

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For the fourth Drums record, frontman (and now only remaining member of the original lineup) Jonathan Pierce jumped ship from New York to LA and teamed up with engineer Jonathan Schenke. The results of the move and some big life changes is an enjoyable yet emotional guitar-pop album. Abysmal Thoughts is dense yet pleasantly less chaotic than its predecessor Encylopaedia. Jangling guitars, washes of vocals, retro synth overtones and surf-rock rhythms are all intricately layered. Opening track ‘Mirror’ is an immediate start, warming up to a sonic richness that defines the best moments of the record. Songs of heartbreak and loneliness mesh with more optimistic stories such as the sunnier ‘I’ll Fight For Your Life’ and the punchy ‘Your Tenderness’. There is the same simplistic frankness that made their debut record so special, and something I have been searching for with that same potency since. Abysmal Thoughts comes close. The tempo is upbeat, at points even straight up groovy, all whilst tapping into Pierce’s signature self-deprecation and vulnerability. ‘Head of the Horse’ is a dreamy retreat, balancing out the pace and ensuring things don’t get lost in the sauce. Another take on the slow-build is ‘If All We Share’. However, the deliberate tweeness doesn’t translate, making it a low point. The title track atones. It is a fastpaced circular track laced with interesting knocks and clangs and a full-bodied guitar backbone. The lyrics, whilst simple, convey the reigning pathos of the record with conviction. Whilst not a huge divergence from their past, there is still plenty of gorgeous noise and an abundance of feelings to get lost in here. Give yourself time to explore Abysmal Thoughts. ANGELA CHRISTIAN-WILKES

ALT-J RELAXER

[INFECTIOUS MUSIC]

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Strong singles, clever musicianship and an awkward, unsuccessful attempt at genre change saturates alt-J’s third studio album RELAXER, resulting in a fairly confusing, yet still endearing creation. For half a decade alt-J has crept along that fine line that many independent bands who suddenly boom must walk: maintaining musical integrity or selling out to appease the masses. RELAXER feels like the physical embodiment of this conflict, with elements that highlight the quirky talents of its creators, and others that feel heavily dressed up and forced. Preceding the album’s release, listeners were drip-fed three tracks, ‘3WW, ‘In Cold Blood’ and ‘Adeline,’ each different, catchy and clever. Since the whole record launched, these three tracks remain the strongest, and are almost the only ones worthy of attention. The rest of the album seems highly uncertain of itself, with messy, somewhat unfinished songs. The band should be congratulated for their consistent ability to use a variety of instruments in innovative ways; synths, horns and the ever-warping vocals of Joe Newman meld together comfortably on multiple tracks. Every so often this melding turns to muddling, creating unnecessary chaos as if to mask an ultimately poorly constructed song to begin with. As for style, it seems we have caught alt-J in the midst of an identity crisis. Fans and critics alike are growing tired of incoherent lyricism, presumably employed to enhance mystique, and compositions that are difficult to differentiate between. The band seems aware of this, and RELAXER shows their attempt at a do-over, ‘attempt’ being the operative word. Still, there is something charming about this music. It is accessible, and at some moments hits the spot. KASHMIRA MOHAMED ZAGOR

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BEACH FOSSILS SOMERSAULT

[BAYONET RECORDS / SECRETLY PUBLISHING]

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Beach Fossils were part of the indie lo-fi saturation pioneered by Real Estate in the early 2010s, where Mac Demarco’s “chill dude” schtick is the only true survivor. In 2017 however, Beach Fossils have emerged a different beast. After traversing post-punk on middling 2013 effort Clash The Truth, the band returns totally refreshed, letting Abbey Roadera Beatles, cloud rap and shoegaze coalesce in this 11-track collection. What is most impressive of the album is its fluency; every single one of its stylistic detours feels like a natural manifestation of lead singer-songwriter Dustin Payseur’s tender reflections. This is particularly surprising in the theoretically jarring cloud rap track ‘Rise’, appearing seamlessly as a coda to the preceding ‘May 1st’. Payseur’s lyrical palette refers largely to what I call the “would-a, could-a, should-a” of interpersonal relations. It’s not an overly quotable album, but the word’s beauty lies within their poignant simplicity, and the manner in which they lend themselves to Payseur’s distinct vocal stylings. The album’s opening tracks are potentially the pop trifecta of the year. ‘This Year’ is a buoyed ode to realistic self-reflection while ‘Tangerine’, swoons with its flanger guitarstring pirouette, featuring a deftly placed Rachel Goswell of Slowdive. ‘Saint Ivy’ is a bouncy slice of chamber pop, fit with a deliberate homage to George Harrison’s guitar tone on the expansive solo. The second side of the LP has a seasonal duality; woozy strings soundtrack humid summer haze, while songs like ‘Sugar’ evoke the introspective ambiance of winter. Beach Fossils can no longer can be dismissed with the lo-fi byline, as Somersault is a complex and assertive slice of heavenly pop. JOSH MARTIN

BAND OF FREQUENCIES MEN OF WOOD & FOAM [LOW PRESSURE PRODUCTIONS]

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Queenslanders Band of Frequencies occupy an unusual niche in music, devoting themselves to creating sound tracks for surfing flicks. Working on the musical collective model, participants include Ash Grunwald and Terepai Richmond (of The Whitlams). Men of Wood & Foam is their sixth effort since the band’s formation in 2005. The CD was made in a rush over just three days, with the musical equivalent of brainstorming and sometimes using only one take for a track. Surf music conjures up images of super-fast, twanging guitars or Beach Boys ballads. This CD is much more than that, covering a broad scope of ocean inspired sounds ranging from the ‘50s to ‘70s. While a soundtrack, you do not need to watch the film to appreciate the music. While almost all instrumental, a range of surf-tainted genres is covered. The opening title track, with nostalgic reference to FJ Holdens and rock and roll, comes closest to recalling the sound of surf songs like those from Richard Clapton. A couple of other tracks provide the classical surf sound, with very fast spikey guitars. ‘Bikini Bop’, with its keyboard blizzard, is a dance track if you like to do the twist. ‘Road Trippin’’ comes across all funky, while ‘Shutter Speed’ takes the jazz route, with guitar and keyboard highlights. ‘Psychedelic Valley’ lives up to its name with a mix of long, heavy passages and lighter, variegated musings. ‘The Power Blues’ delivers the goods with lazy, spaced-out guitar and conspiratorial keys, while the closer wraps up the show with atmospheric, pacific tones. Whether your favourite image of surf music is gentle swells, raging breakers or seaside sunsets, Men of Wood & Foam has got it covered. RORY MCCARTNEY

GRINSPOON GUIDE TO BETTER LIVING: DELUXE EDITION [UNIVERSAL MUSIC]

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Inaugural Triple J Unearthed winners, Grinspoon released their debut album Guide To Better Living in September ’97. The album was instantly lauded and reached #11 on the ARIA Albums Chart and by the end of the year had achieved platinum sales. Grinspoon became festival stalwarts in the late ‘90s and early ‘00s, playing regularly at Falls Festival, Big Day Out and Homebake amongst others. I remember one year at Homebake they weren’t on the bill and there where t-shirts circulating with “Where the fuck are Grinspoon?” emblazoned on them. At a time dominated by bands like Silverchair, The Living End and The Superjesus, Grinspoon unleashed the true definition of ‘short-fastloud’ with their average song length well under three minutes. The Grinspoon formula seems to be very effective: pack songs full of heavy AF riffs, fat bass lines and the grooviest of drums into the shortest timeframe possible without leaving anything out. They do this with near perfect accuracy. The deluxe edition includes all 16 original tracks as well as a live recording from a Grinspoon performance at the legendary CBGB in late ’97. There’s a bonus disk including a previously unreleased track, a mellow track by Grinners’ standards, called ‘Green Grass Meadow’. There are some fantastic remixes as well, although I had higher hopes for the Groove Terminator version of ‘Champion’ which sounds eerily like something from the Spawn soundtrack. There’s a heap of rare B-sides, live tracks, and a performance from the Falls Festival in 1997. Instead of reading about it, go listen to it! Grinspoon are currently on a 26-date national tour of Australia, playing GTBL in full and being supported nationally by Hockey Dad. JEREMY EDWARDS

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@bmamag


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DAVID BOWIE CRACKED ACTOR (LIVE LOS ANGELES ‘74) [PARLOPHONE]

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If there was one band or artist I would sell any number of my organs to see live it would have to be David Bowie. Especially during his Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars or Young Americans eras.

SCREAMING TREES DUST – 2017 DELUXE EDITION

Luckily we have this album to commemorate such a passage of time. This live record is another posthumous release from the musical chameleon and labyrinth-dwelling Bowie. Cracked Actor (Live Los Angeles ‘74) was recorded in between the Diamond Dogs tour and the Philly Dogs tour, with Hunky Dory, Ziggy Stardust, and Aladdin Sane under his belt already and Diamond Dogs (heavily influenced by George Orwell’s 1984 novel) hot off the press that year. This era was not only Bowie’s height of creativity and success but also personally his lowest, battling a cocaine addiction that rendered him skeletal and paranoid, making the Bow’ deliver some of his most outlandish recorded interviews to date.

This first-class reissue has appeared on the independent Cherry Red label HNE, which might seem odd given that Dust first appeared in 1996 on major label Epic. But this kinda makes sense for a group from the Pacific Northwest that should rightly have attained superstar status alongside the likes of Nirvana and Pearl Jam but never presented themselves as an easy sell.

This album has a fantastic setlist ranging from Bowie’s most popular (‘Aladdin Sane’ and ‘The Jean Genie’) to the most underrated (‘Time’ and ‘John, I’m Only Dancing (Again)’). We open with the funky ‘1984’ setting the scene for the remainder of this audio performance. The crooning and soul of ‘Moonage Daydream’ is superb to hear live. The tinkling piano of ‘Changes’ transports your psyche to a dimly lit back alley club before bashing into the bopping ‘Suffragette City’. We are treated to a cover of Eddie Floyd’s ‘Knock On Wood’. The ethereal live staple of ‘Space Oddity’ is greeted with a thundering applause. You can almost feel the warmth of all the lighters held high in the room during that performance – literally the best five minutes of the whole album. As the album comes to a close all I can think is, god damn, where is my time machine! ANDREW MYERS

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[CHERRY RED/HNE RECORDINGS]

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It is also surprising this final album from the band has been given the deluxe treatment ahead of the 1992 major label breakthrough album Sweet Oblivion – a raw, passionate hard rock outing that has epic melody lines merging with vocalist Mark Lanegan’s emotionally ragged holler. That album represented the high point of the ‘grunge’ explosion with influences that looked further afield than the Sex Pistols and US hardcore to embrace vintage garage punk and classic 1970s hard rock but without any retro vibe overwhelming the contemporary feel of the songs. Dust, which appeared four years later, was the outcome of a further burst of top notch songwriting from the band and hit the shelves when the grunge hype machine had been played out by major record labels staking claims on watered down imitators of heavy guitar rock. Not that this should have bothered Screaming Trees, as their music transcended popular trends and tapped into a far more resilient and authentic rock ‘n’ roll tradition while also touching on the menace and risk-taking cemented in the music of The Doors and The Stooges. Dust was the band’s seventh album and had endured a difficult

birth; early sessions had been scrapped and according to the liner notes from Matt Reynolds, that unfortunately read like an absurdly gushing media release. The band then took on producer George Drakoulias who beefed up the sound and encouraged the group to conjure ‘swing and groove’. The results expanded on the raw rock ‘n’ roll expression of Sweet Oblivion with greater production values and the addition of eastern themed instrumentation such as the sitar on incendiary album opener ‘Halo of Ashes’. The hard thrust of this song makes for an explosive musical beginning that introduces themes of suffering and redemption running through the songs. Mark Lanegan’s voice carries the sorrow and resignation of a life hard lived and when he sings a line like “I’ve been a long, long time away/with one foot in the grave,” you know he means it. Other songs on the album that go into troubles with the female such as ‘Look at You’ and ‘Sworn and Broken’ flash on the pain in Lanegan’s voice, accentuated by soaring and highly detailed arrangements. The playing is tight and hard throughout, the production invests the sound with power and precision, and the voice does the rest. By the time we get to closing track ‘Gospel Plow’ with its mournful opening lines, “If you want to get to heaven let me tell you how/keep your hand on the gospel plow,” we have well and truly entered New Testament territory and the crunching guitar riff that forms the centrepiece of this song accentuates the ‘hard rains are gonna fall’ feel of the album in its entirety. This is songwriting at its most evocative and the listening experience is compelling as a consequence. This reissue is also a rare instance where the added disc of bonus tracks deserves repeat listens. A number of worthy Dust single B-sides are included along with live versions of classic Sweet Oblivion songs ‘Dollar Bill’ and ‘Butterfly’ and potent covers of John Lennon’s cynical ‘Working Class Hero’ and Australian hard rock band Buffalo’s epic ‘Freedom’. The entire package highlights the intense creativity of a band that followed no trend other than what it set for itself. There is so much crap out there it can be daunting for music fans seeking art that resonates with his or her experience. This album amply fulfils that desire. DAN BIGNA

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PEAKING LIGHTS THE FIFTH STATE OF CONSCIOUSNESS [TWO FLOWERS]

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The Fifth State of Consciousness is the latest offering from husband and wife duo Peaking Lights who have somehow found time to write, record, tour and raise their children over the course of the past three years since their last album, 2014’s effervescent Cosmic Logic. In fact, they’re on record as saying that during the recording of that album, one of them was in the studio, while the other one had to stay home to stop their kids from burning the house down and repeatedly calling 976 numbers. One could say that’d be as challenging as showing up to the studio to record with a second-hand needle in the arm. It’s not always like that though, as their kids have featured both as guest vocalists and actors in their music videos. They’re videos that I would implore you to watch, especially the video for ‘Breakdown’ which seems to be an indictment on these rapid velocity times we live in. A sentient phone plays the role of pantomime villain in the clip. I will admit I only know of this group due to a late-night Rage binge after coming home late at night, but discovering them was one of those cosmically aligned happy accidents. The leitmotif of Peaking Lights’ neopsychedelic style can be described as something that sashays across the airwaves in a manner most scherzoso, like a sultry harem of flamboyant peahens wearing fruit hats as singer Indra Dunis lets out a kind of hypnotic drone in perfect timing with their movements. It’s as if she’s in a constant state of deep meditation and the uttering of her ensnaring mantras PAGE 62

is what gives the songs on this volume merit. Neo-psychedelic is perhaps a little bit too simplistic a description as there’s a myriad of influences that have coalesced here. Reggae, dub, electro, they all appear interchangeably from song to song. Imagine Bob Marley or Augustus Pablo flicking switches from behind a Soundcraft Series Two mixer. That’s the best I can describe it. ‘Everytime I See The Light’, probably the leading centurion in command of the record, is definitely on the poppier side of tracks they’ve released. I say that like it’s a bad thing, but it’s not. When niche groups try this sort of thing, you get a wacky result; ones that you can hum along to, doobie in hand. ‘Love Can Move Mountains’ is an anachronistic ditty that, instrumentally at least, wouldn’t sound out of place as the introduction to a cop drama from the mid ‘80s with the fluffy synths filigreed elegantly across the soundscape and creates a vivid vista of glimmering fuchsia hills and lime green waterfalls being illuminated by a blazing carnation in the sky. ‘Coyote Ghost Melodies’ rounds out the podium places of tracks to feel the squiggling of my novelty-sized green highlighter. This funky little loop fest gives me the visualisation of the buck wild victory sequence that happened when you won solitaire on the older Windows operating systems, slowed down and goggled through a negative filter. But just picking songs to bombast about would be naïve of me as The Fifth State of Consciousness has been written to be indulged as a whole. Such a consummate offering is up there as a candidate for best in show for this year in my eyes. The skilful way in which such eclectic ingredients have been combined is too much to overlook. This one is something special. An intricate mosaic of bliss painted amongst the background ambience of traffic congestion and forceful sneezing. It’s quite long, clocking in at about 80 minutes, but it’s something more than capable of capturing your attention with its chthonic tentacles. PATRICK OGISI

RAISED BY EAGLES I MUST BE SOMEWHERE [ABC MUSIC]

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Melbourne band Raised By Eagles is bursting with creativity. The country quartet has released three long players since 2013, with the latest being I Must Be Somewhere, and achieved two wins at The Age Music Victoria Awards along the way. The band scores well in both musicianship and songwriting skills. While just a guitar, bass and drum outfit, with no keyboard and nothing fancier than a lap steel, Raised By Eagles has crafted some beautiful tunes with intricate, catchy guitar work. Opener ‘Shape & Line’ starts with a soulful whine and a feeling of depth, with lots of spaces between the notes, before guitarists Luke Sinclair and Nick O’Mara let slip the halters and give their axes a free run. It, together with the similarly rocked-up ‘Night Wheels’, with its prominent reverb features, are album highlights. Elsewhere, tracks take a quieter line. In ‘Every Night’, and feature track ‘Gold Rush Blues’, the words carry more weight, due to their being used with economy. The title track also uses the principal of ‘less is more’, as it flows with a casual gentleness, floating by with the high twang of the lap steel, and only gaining strength towards its close, speeding its departure. ‘Heartbreaker’ ends with a surprising softness, leaving the story in midair, and there is a similar cleverness in ‘Everyday, Everyday’, with words left hanging, as though to continue the thread of the song beyond its natural close. Overall, there is strength in the simplicity of the lyrics, choosing just enough of the right words to get the message across. There are lots of little snapshots in the words too; easily relatable, which come together in jigsaw fashion, with a certain poetry of their own. RORY MCCARTNEY

@bmamag


LOCAL MUSIC ILLLUMAN8 DIVERSITY

[OMTAP RECORDS]

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(SANDY) ALEX G ROCKET [DOMINO]

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Illuman8’s latest psytrance EP Diversity shows a deep understanding of sound production, musical theory and control of dancefloor energies, weaving a compelling narrative through pounding percussion and lush soundscapes. Carefully selected vocal samples tell interesting stories throughout the EP, captivating the listener while percussive elements weave and shift. Canberra’s Illuman8 give his multi-instrumental skills a work out, with guitar riffs and soulful piano lines that reflect his years of experience as a musician. In Diversity, tension rises and falls, and there is enough quality and depth in the sound production to reward multiple playthroughs. ‘Bio’ is the standout track, with deliciously organic drum fills and an engaging story about connecting with nature that encourages the listener to reflect on past experiences through a new lens. The beautiful piano part adds a jazzy feeling and stands out from the rest of the alien and unfamiliar synthesized sounds in the song. ‘ReApply’ feels like a weak point by comparison – Matrix samples have been done to death and ‘ReApply’ fails to approach the story in an exciting way. It is still a powerful prime-time dancefloor tool, with high octane bass wobbles contrasting with sleek Rhodes keys.

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Multi-instrumentalist and singer-songwriter Alex Giannascoli-now known as (Sandy) Alex G, is a true champion of the DIY online music marketplace, with Rocket being his eighth record and second with label Domino. Rocket unfolds restlessly under a banner of Neo-Americana; bleeding contemporary avant-garde noise and jazz fusion through a strong reverence of traditional folk and roots form. This provides the naturally fluctuating smooth and rough musical backdrop to a lyrical lens applied to Alex’s American Home™: singing about American people and American problems, whilst retaining a Bob Dylan-esque ambiguity to his storytelling. Vocals range from an almost hymnal tone to vivid timbres that are appropriately restrained, conveying the songwriter’s distinct character effortlessly. Particular details of stories are often left untapped, allowing their narrative to breathe in expansive folk structures; it’s often uncertain whether Alex is rebuking lovers, friends or part of himself. ‘Bobby’ is a Cash & Carter style duet within such turmoil, while ‘Proud’ is a sweet-sounding highlight of passive reproach.

‘Empathy’, is a far more emotionally powerful song, with a chill-inducing breakdown. Vocal stutters and shifts flow alongside dreamy pads, creating a beautiful soundscape. ‘Metaverse’, a more playful track, has an incredible change of pace about five and a half minutes in, where Illuman8’s percussion is brought to the center stage and dominates the low end in a hugely satisfying way.

The storytelling and writhing fiddle of the folksy tunes is interjected by esoteric poetry to drudge up yearnful meaning in the instrumental haze. ‘Witch’ is an ethereal and twisted nursery rhyme concerning a “dirty old pig’s” failure to live up to his words. This vein of darkness is further explored to wilder and lesser effect on the bizarro industrial deathhop of ‘Brick’ and the awkward Frank Ocean aping of ‘Sportstar’.

Staying true to the genre’s form and sonic characteristics, Illuman8 has produced a mature, complex and danceable EP. Have a good listen to these tracks – it’ll make it all the more enjoyable when you hear them get played in the bush.

This delirious and offbeat experimentation littered throughout is never quite dull, however it’s the moments of emotive artisanal pop and the marriage of traditional singer-songwriter tropes to Alex’s consummate approach that truly make Rocket such a worthwhile listen.

ISAAC DUGDALE

JOSH MARTIN

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BUSBY MAROU POSTCARDS FROM THE SHELL HOUSE [WARNER MUSIC]

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Duo Thomas Busby and Jeremy Marou combined their names and talents to form Busby Marou in about 2008, releasing the EP The Blue Road, followed by two albums. Their third LP Postcards from the Shell House sees a continuation of their folky vibe. The duo combines simple, mainly acoustic tunes with words that come from the heart. It is good to see some Australiana in their songs, with references to national place names and phrases tuned to the way Australians speak. There is a sentimental aspect to opener ‘Best Part of Me’, with its sharp, slapping percussion and the blunt notes of a ukulele. The lyrics paint simple, credible pictures. Sounding a little like a Josh Pyke song, ‘Getaway Car’ employs heavier drum strikes and a burbling bass, with vocal harmonies to light its way. Strong on local colour, with references to the Coral Coast and red desert, ‘Paint This Land’ ropes in a banjo and harmonica, with a didgeridoo buzz towards its end. Unusually, it is from the middle of the album onwards that the best tracks appear. Highlight ‘Full Moon’ delivers one of the best melodies in the disk, borne aloft by drums and spiced up with little ah-whoo vocal hooks. There is an alluring plucked tune and a warm sunset tone to ‘Every Day in Between’, boosted by strings to add a special touch. ‘Living in a Town’ reflects on the decline of rural communities when the ore runs out, while the addition of the husky voice of Natalie Dunn gives ‘Sleep On It’ a soulful hue. Postcards from the Shell House delivers easy to listen to tunes and lyrics with the common touch. RORY MCCARTNEY

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SINGLES IN

FOCUS WITH CODY ATKINSON

TERRY ‘TAKE ME TO THE CITY’ [

]

A slightly laconic guitar line – wait, can a guitar be laconic? Let’s say yes for the purpose of this – guides this little gem from Terry. An ode to other people talking about having a night out, and their obsession with it, this track actually wants to make you see the four-piece play it live. Which I guess is a touch meta, but only a touch.

SHOEB AHMAD “MASK-ED” [

]

The line between honesty and vulnerability, and one capturing the tide from the other, is very narrow. On “mask-ed” Ahmad grabs hold of their own sense of both on this emotionally raw track. With lush instrumentation, Ahmad is given scope to explore identity through well thought lyricism, and produces one of the better local tracks of the year to date.

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WET LIPS ‘SHAME’

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There’s something immediately grabbing about ‘Shame’; the descending fuzzstricken riff, the tight backbeat. But the trio only build from there while keeping it fast and loud, practically begging the listener to bang their head with the beat. Yeah, Wet Lips are pretty new, but if they keep this up you’ll be hearing their name everywhere.

NIALL HORAN ‘SLOW HANDS’ [

]

The chorus of this song contains the line, “like sweat dripping down our dirty laundry”, inferring he wore filthy clothes out of the house. This begs the question: why is this multi-millionaire wearing dirty gear out in public? Does he not know how to wash his own bloody clothing, or work out how to pay someone to do it for him? THAT’S THE PROBLEM WITH THIS GENERATION, DAMN ENTITLEMENT AND FILTH. This song is pretty clichéd fake-funk BTW.

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ALL TIME LOW LAST YOUNG RENEGADE [FUELED BY RAMEN]

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“Please turn on some bad music”, said no one ever. All Time Low’s new album, Last Young Renegade, was released in mid-February this year and let’s just say I think the four poppunk cuties have now matured into men. They have been around for some time now swooning the ladies (and men) with their fun and catchy tunes and yep, they are still going and delivering the hits.All Time Low began working on their next album shortly after the release of Future Hearts in April 2015. After “reflecting and soul-searching”, according to vocalist/guitarist Alex Gaskarth, the band had time to come back to the studio with no deadline to bring something new to their fans. Last Young Renegade has more of a soft rock, mature sound compared to their previous albums, which was pure punk-pop-rock. They still somehow managed to keep the songs catchy, however. The boys, or should I say ‘men’, showed a different side in this album that I have never heard before. Some songs have a slight, soft dance beat to them (like their leading single ‘Dirty Laundry’), whilst others embrace a new writing style. They even have a surprise collaboration with indie pop sister duo Tegan and Sara. There is nothing worse than when a band you like releases a new album, you get all excited, then when you hear it, it sounds exactly like their previous album. This was not the case for Last Young Renegade. So if you love All Time Low and want to hear a fresh new sound then get this album. From the vocal harmonies to the band solos you will be left feeling good, with some super catchy tunes stuck in your head. REBECCA ADAMS

THE COLORIST & EMILIANA TORRINI THE COLORIST & EMILIANA TORRINI [ROUGH TRADE / REMOTE CONTROL]

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Probably best known for her 2009 hit ‘Jungle Drum’, Emiliana Torrini is a former member of Icelandic electro band GusGus and has released four LPs in her own right. She stopped performing with a band in 2014 and restricted her gigs to unusual projects such as living room shows, playing with gypsies in Spain and an experimental jazz outfit in Berlin. Her latest project, in conjunction with Belgian outfit The Colorist Orchestra, has been to reinterpret her previous material and add twoALBU new songs written with the orchestra’s founders. The results are very impressive, taking Torrini’s haunting songs and elevating them to new levels. Songs mainly stay true to the general sound of Torrini’s originals, but the otherworldly music dresses them up with aurora-like shades. The instruments, including percussion which chirps insect-like, and violins which scurry about as though they were mice, are not just played, they have taken on an animalistic life of their own. There is an elfin quality to Torrini’s singing, with lyrics flowing with a fluid motion in opener ‘Caterpillar’. The seductive mood of her songwriting comes across strongly in ‘Blood Red’, a song carved up by the cello as keys and percussion cut through with icicle chills. ‘Speed of Dark’ is a highlight, with its insistent buzzing rhythm, as Torrini sings through a cloud of metallic tinkles. The new songs come across well, especially the dappled tune and swooning strings of ‘When We Dance’. In the other original track ‘Nightfall’, she sounds like her fellow countrywoman Björk. There is an amazing, luminous clarity to this live recording, which makes the beauty of Torrini’s voice even more captivating. RORY MCCARTNEY

@bmamag


OR’S EDIT ICE CHO GLIDER PILOTS TALK FREE

[INDEPENDENT RELEASE]

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Welcome to the sleepy world of siblings Benjamin and Samantha Hope. Their vista is like a cloudy sky, full of cotton wool with a few gaps through which occasional bright stars are briefly visible. The indie electropop duo from Cairns previously released two EPs, with Talk Free being their debut long player. The album follows the general approach of their EP Some Where out There, but the guitars have lost prominence, facing a greater challenge from a thicker electro soup. Talk Free presents a more rarefied synth atmosphere, in partnership with the wispy vocals of Samantha Hope which can make lyric interpretation challenging. For an electro band, Glider Pilots take a minimalist approach, allowing lots of space between elements in preference to a wall of sound intensity. Leading songs are slow and chilled, with the tracks showing more life mid-disk, with the best material saved for the tail end. Opener ‘Improvise’ sets the early pace with its gentle electro trickle and sleepy vocals. A heavier bass line thumps in mid-song, as the band builds a torte of synth layers. ‘Hardwired’ is delivered duet style, as the pair ride a fuzzy synth horse with an easy swing to its canter. The highlights come in the last four tracks, which exhibit more vitality. ‘Throw Me in the Deep End’ exhibits needle sharp keys and shimmering synths, while ‘Mild Blood’ comes with a bolder vocal delivery and a stronger, catchy melody. Song themes involve cloudy philosophising and exploration of the deeper self. Concrete images are avoided, with the band’s core vibe best summed up in a quote from the track ‘Coexist’: “In a remote indistinct reverie.” This is an album for the navel-gazers. RORY MCCARTNEY

[HABIT]

[4AD]

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Soft, potent, visceral. Party is a quiet and soothing exploration of Aldous Harding’s observations, worries and confessions. Party feels like the older sibling to her selftitled debut album (2014); more complex and brooding. With this record she commands a greater lyrical maturity, and composes in a smooth, considered manner. This may be in part due to the decision to employ John Parish as co-producer, who has worked extensively with artists of a similar caliber. As a musician, Harding is versatile and demonstrates her multi-faceted abilities with ease. Her tracks, mainly acoustic, are sustained by harmonies and other vocal manipulations. Every now and then a drum machine provides a soft beat, or a woodwind instrument peeps through, adding layers and textures to each piece. Nothing about her composition feels forced or fake. Vocally, Harding is reminiscent of Nico and unmatched in the current pop-folk world. Drawing further parallels between Björk and Harding is apt; the New Zealander captivates the listener with her abstract crooning, whilst the control and flexibility of her voice places her above other up-and-coming rivals. Each track is cleverly considered and intoxicating; ‘The World Is Looking For You’ and ‘What If Birds Aren’t Singing They’re Screaming’ are standouts amongst many that tell stories and provoke thought. “I was as happy as I will ever be,” muses Harding on titular track ‘Party’. Lyrically the singer-songwriter reveals little, allowing for listeners to indulge in their own interpretations. ‘Swell Does The Skull,’ features trembling vocals from Perfume Genius, and is a fitting melancholic finale. Party is a raw record, within which Harding puts to music something intimate and perceptive about human nature. It is an artistic endeavor that feels completely earnest, one that compliments, criticises and ultimately embraces the volatility of life. KASHMIRA MOHAMED ZAGOR

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BORNEO ALERT!

ALDOUS HARDING PARTY [

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Sydney five-piece Borneo has gone through a series of identity crises, having used and discarded such monikers as Charlie Charles & The Cherry Pickers, The Willy Bums, Milky Sanchez and Tubby John. Self-described in style as discopunk or rainbowrock, the band’s overall vibe is funk and it has now overcome its internal confusion and lunched the debut EP Alert! Earlier material such as ‘Jesse’ captured Borneo’s wild, arty sense of rhythm with a brash playfulness that gave its songs a special character. Past song themes (e.g. in ‘Eating Animals’) have followed a free flowing path, in keeping with the band’s musical sensibilities. Throughout the band’s evolution, influenced by its lineup changes, the band’s commitment to rhythm has triumphed over all. In the new EP, the super hyper ‘Hold Me in the River’ opens with a yell. Its party band feeling is promoted by frantic guitars, antique keyboard highlights and an alien wailing in the bridge. Very wordy, the quirky lyrics gush forth, leading to a singalong chorus. The funky ‘Boyfriend’ looks at family relationships from a new angle, as mum’s love interest is told he is unwelcome with “Don’t touch my mum in my house!” It struts along with pumpedup guitar hooks, inter-weaved tunes and a power chorus. The title track launches with a prolonged buzz, and features fuzzy echoing backing vocals, a strong bass chassis and held keyboard chord dress-ups. It demands “Are you the spaghetti or are you the can?” in the manner of Talking Heads’ ‘Once in a Lifetime’. The eccentric ‘Holidays’ examines seaside vacations with a semi-narrative vocal approach. Pimped with a strong synth warble and an eerie electro whine, its chant of “Holidays, holidays!” beckons sun worshippers onwards. RORY MCCARTNEY

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[FILM REVIEWS]

THE WORD ON

FILMS with Emma Robinson I think we all need to take a moment to recognise how fantastic Joel Edgerton is. In every role I see him in I feel like he is running circles around the others saying, ‘okay guys, this is how to act.’ Admittedly, I wasn’t blown away by his latest film but I will say he was the best thing in it. QUOTE OF THE ISSUE ‘IF YOU’RE LYING TO ME, I WILL KILL YOU.’ JOEL EDGERTON (PAUL), IT COMES AT NIGHT

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Turgid paranoia trumping the best of intentions is the central theme of director Trey Edward Shults’ creepy dystopian film It Comes At Night. Paul (Joel Edgerton) carefully guards his home and family from an unseen and unexplained threat that terrorises the planet. When another man (Christopher Abbott), desperate for food and refuge for himself and his family turns up, Paul is guarded but eventually opens his home to these refugees of the new world order. Despite both families having no intention to deceive the other, paranoia becomes rife (as it often does when resources are at a premium) and the fragile stability within the house is threatened by both outside forces outside and rampant mistrust inside. Viewers wanting a monster film will leave the theatre disappointed. This is not a John Carpenter esque movie wherein the characters are stalked by an unseen monster and the focus is on figuring out what kind of creature is lurking out there. This movie is a study in what human beings are capable of when pushed to their limits. Get between a person and their last litre of water and the gentlest of souls will becomes bloodthirsty. Personally, I would have enjoyed a little more focus on the monster (or whatever it was), or at least, to have known more about what kind of film I was walking into. Nevertheless, it’s creepy, slightly gross enjoyment. EMMA ROBINSON

A MONSTER CALLS [

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A Monster Calls is the engrossing tale of Connor (newcomer McDougall), a young British boy who is enduring a confusing time of his childhood. His mother (Jones) is dying, he is being bullied at school, and his grandmother (Weaver) is placing pressure on him to accept the inevitability of his mother’s death. Help to guide Connor through this period comes from an unusual and unexpected source: an old yew tree in a cemetery visible from his window. As voiced by Neeson (and what a voice it is), the tree is there to tell Connor three stories. In exchange, Connor must tell the tree a story of his own. As a tale to help children deal with emotional issues, A Monster Calls rates up there with Inside Out. Where the Pixar classic dealt with anxiety and depression, this film expertly and compassionately guides us through grief and anger. You can’t help but be caught up with young McDougall’s audacious performance, along with the supporting performances – Jones will break your heart, Weaver has a significant scene towards the end showing the reasons behind her motivations, and Neeson is a terrific, soothing storyteller. Whilst very young children will be scared at some of the scenes in A Monster Calls, it’s a magnificent tale for parents and their older children to sit through together. On top of that, it’s a compelling, cathartic and thrilling movie for all audiences. TRAVIS CRAGG

HOUNDS OF LOVE ]

[ [CW: Rape]

This is not a good time, in fact, it’s an exercise in endurance. Set in 1987’s sweltering Perth, the film is centred around a couple, Vicki and John (Emma Booth and Stephen Curry) who routinely capture, imprison, rape and murder teenage girls (so, laughs aplenty). Evelyn White (Ashleigh Cummings) sneaks away one night to escape her parents’ disintegrating marriage, only to be ensnared in Vicki and John’s perverted quagmire. What entails is an incredibly stylised and abrasive game of cat and mouse between Evelyn and Vicki. The script is largely measured and realistic, the cinematography is, at times, stunning, and the performances are magnetic. Ben Young’s name will probably be abuzz in Hollywood, along with Emma Booth for her inspired turn as Vicki. I was reminded of Justin Kurzel’s Snowtown (2011), an incredibly disturbing and depressing film about the infamous Snowtown murders. That film burrowed into my mind due to its heavy immersion in and exploration of a world mired in poverty and violence. Viewers are left with sickening questions about masculinity, class and sexuality, all pertaining to a realworld story, and real issues in our society. The fact that Hounds of Love is the product of fiction is puzzling. There is this assumption, due to the contextualisation of the story, the gritty kitchen-sink setting, that it is true. It is not. PAT JOHNSON

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@bmamag


LADY MACBETH [

Ever wondered what Lady Macbeth was like before she wedded (not so) worthy Thane Macbeth? I have… Katherine (Florence Pugh in the titular role) is a young woman who has been married off to a much older man. Despite being a person of means and status Katherine is subjected to the whims of the men around her and finds herself dissatisfied with her abusive marriage (funnily enough). It is 1865 and self-actualization for women is almost impossible to come by. What’s a woman to do? Well, start a passionate affair with another man and when that goes tits up take control with power, manipulation and straight up lies. Katherine, along with other notable characters of this era, is compelling to watch because she refuses to live as she has been told to and employs creative and sometimes lethal strategies to get what she wants. Unquestionably she is a morally corrupt figure, however no more so than the men in positions of power around her. It’s difficult not to feel a kind of disgusted admiration for her absolute refusal to take any shit and additionally, have much sympathy (barring one or two exceptions) for the men who inflict their agendas on her. This film is a slow burn however the climax makes the two hours spent in the theatre completely worth it. A fantastic period piece that lingers well after the house lights have come up. EMMA ROBINSON

MONSIEUR CHOCOLAT

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Monsieur Chocolat is a period showbiz drama that tells the story of Rafeel Padilla, a former Cuban slave who is discovered by George Footit, an English clown down on his luck and fighting for employment. Seeing the potential of a straight man-funny man double act, Footit creates “Footit and Chocolat”, and crowds react with enthusiasm. There are tensions, however, underlying the mega-successful partnership, and eventually individual egos and ambition threaten to thwart the duo. Simply titled Chocolat in its native France (but no doubt undergoing a name change to avoid confusion with that god awful 2000 Lasse Hallström film that just won’t leave the memory … but I bitterly digress), Monsieur Chocolat ticks all the boxes to appeal to those who love a standard biopic. It’s an interesting story (the history of which is not well known in Australia), visually fetching and comedically entertaining (even though one feels uncomfortable whilst laughing at some of the more racially charged performances of Footit and Chocolat). The message is one that middle-class Canberran folk can tut-tut at (safe in the knowledge that they’d never be that discriminatory). The main criticism I have is that it is a little too long (once the duo inevitably break up, the narrative loses momentum and feels like it is depicting scenes out of necessity rather then artistic value), but overall, this smallrelease arthouse film is worth checking out. TRAVIS CRAGG

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[THE WORD ON GIGS]

BAY CITY ROLLERS SOUTHERN CROSS CLUB THU JUN 29 PHOTO BY JUDY SCHULZ

teeny bop act and some 40 years later Rollermania is still alive and well with Canberra fans relishing the moment, still embracing and displaying devotion to their idols. Singing songs such as ‘Bye Bye Baby’, ‘Saturday Night’, ‘I Only Want To Be With You’, ‘Love Me Like I Love You’, ‘Rock and Roll Love Letter’, ‘Give a Little Love’ and ‘Shang-ALang’ as well as highlights from the new album The Lost Songs, and a classic cover of John Paul Young’s ‘Yesterday’s Hero’, Canberra fans weren’t disappointed.

Rollermania swept through the Southern Cross Club on Thursday June 29 with three generations of tartan-donned Bay City Rollers fans coming together to embrace on a trip down memory lane. The 1970s pop band’s lead singer during their successful period, Les Mckeown, brought down under his band – Phil Hendriks, Scott McGowan, Dan

Guest and Si Roller – playing all the old favourites from the golden era to a packed house of hundreds of loyal screaming fans. Former band member Derek Longmuir started the Bay City Rollers with his brother, Alan, and – after teaming up with McKeown and guitarists Stuart ‘Woody’ Wood and Eric Faulkner – the Bay City

Rollers achieved international fame with a string of hits. Back in the 1970s the Bay City Rollers were Scotland’s greatest pop band and tartan teen sensations and were as big as The Beatles. Australia witnessed firsthand the Rollermania craze when they toured the country in 1975. Back then they were the most screamed-at

Compared to the frantic, guitar heavy assaults that were to come later in the night, Petre Out’s solo acoustic guitar pop tunes marked a pretty severe departure from the form guide. Petre’s set saw a sort of Candle Records meets folk punk approach; confessional tales of his life and others, with some deft wordplay setting it apart. Petre’s stuff grows on you after a while, endearingly so. Goulburn is renowned for several things – big sheep, pissing exRaiders, having two ‘u’s in the name of the town – but heavy garage rock isn’t one of them. But Marlon Bando, relatively fresh onto the Canberra scene, play furious, loud, San Francisco style garage rock that takes no prisoners, and might change the first sentence above. The songs are short, the energy boundless, the riffs plentiful. The sort of stuff that will wake you up on a cold Saturday night. Agency come at aggression from a different angle, one that’s a little more measured, and had a little time to develop. If Marlon Bando do bursts of fury, PAGE 68

Grandmothers, daughters and their daughters along with many husbands attended the energetic and thrilling show decked out in distinctive tartan clothing ranging from skirts and cuffed pants to caps and scarves. Many fans brought along memorabilia in the anticipation of meeting Les McKeown, hoping to scoop an autograph. McKeown and his band brought the house down, taking fans back in time by delivering an unforgettable show reminding fans of their teenager years and the Rollers’ musical highlights of the ‘70s. JUDY SCHULZ PHOTO BY MEGAN LEAHY

HOODLUM SHOUTS LOBROW GALLERY & BAR SAT JUN 24 Agency are a slow burn, with the underlying basslines lasting for days. The four-piece has evolved into having three different yet complementary voices up front, each providing something different to the band’s sound. Even though they now live in Melbourne, Hoodlum Shouts are

still Canberra music royalty, and the full venue was more than willing to welcome them back into the local fold. Few Australian bands pack as much intensity into their sets as the Shouts, and about a decade on from their first shows they remain as vital a band as ever. Great live bands

make you feel emotion about the songs being played, and at times the quartet created cohesive chaos that cut like lemon juice on an open wound – but in a good way. On the strength of the night’s performance, they can’t come to town soon enough again. CODY ATKINSON @bmamag


The latest edition to the DragonForce clan would be lead vocalist, three times removed, Marc Hudson. When I say ‘latest’, I mean since 2011. You could tell the culture shock had infected his brain when he riled up the crowd by announcing, “I’m gonna say something Australian. How’re you going, you bunch of c*nts?” He gets some lamington points for trying. DragonForce are a power metal band who have been loitering on the scene since 1999. They have unleashed seven studio albums and toured this continent on a myriad of occasions. In 2017 they were here to fling around their latest discography, Reaching into Infinity. Herman Li is the founding guitarist, principle song writer and central driving force of the band, but Hudson has also enhanced their sound by saluting to traditional metal with his deafening tones. They invaded the dank and dingy venue of The Basement with their power metal prowess and continued to charge up the already electrified atmosphere. Their support act was none other than Immorium. Founded in 2007, the local melodic death metal outfit

belted out some tunes from their debut album Universum. They seem to favour words ending in ‘um’. The theoretician within me resonated with their lyrics, which explore philosophical ideologies with just a dash of conspiracy. Immorium are a quality act and their warm-up antics were a thrashing success.

DRAGONFORCE THE BASEMENT THU JUN 22

DragonForce emerged around 10pm as the stage transformed into a foggy red-light district. There was a penetrative energy in their showmanship, and they didn’t take themselves too seriously. Herman performed cunnilingus on his guitar and it was a wholesome viewing experience for all. Frédéric Leclercq on bass and Gee Anzalone on drums, were impossibly energetic and carried the band impeccably throughout the performance. The new material was received extremely well by the crowd members. ‘Curse of the Darkness’, the opener ‘Ashes of the Dawn’, and the impressive ‘The Edge of the World’ were the most memorable and well executed songs of the evening. LEANNE DUCK

PHOTO BY RICKY LLOYD

The first leg of the launch tour of Mere Women’s new album Big Skies kicked off with Little Lunch’s simple melodies, clean instrumentation and straight to the point lyrics in bite-sized songs that fit together like a puzzle and felt just as satisfying.

MERE WOMEN TRANSIT BAR THU JUN 22

Wives’ perfect post-punk discordance was simultaneously nostalgic and refreshing, with enchanting guitar riffs, powerful vocals, and an effortless grace from Gus McGrath as he floated around a keyboard, creating unnerving layers of sound with the perfect amount of laser sound effects.

PHOTO BY MEGAN LEAHY

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Mere Women commanded the stage they stood on, with frontwoman Amy Wilson passionately dancing behind her keys and fuelling the performance. Her urgent vocals reflect the requirement for strength and invulnerability in her experience, while perfectly articulating her intimate thoughts. Repeated lines succeed in hammering home themes of isolation and a rare insight into

the female experience, while tying together jarring rhythms and distorted synth and guitar. The addition of bass to the former trio reveals a consistent throughline; guiding you through a heavy, almost claustrophobic soundscape to a truly Artaudian catharsis. This release is felt most in the performance of ‘Curse’; a startling palate cleanser of internal monologue accompanied by simple, but purposeful piano. The title track of the album is … harrowing. Opening with a guitar riff that feels like running through a forest in a horror film, with a sharp drum rhythm layered on top like branches reaching out to pierce skin and break your fall. This ultimately builds to the startling lines, “You better get a dog, girl/You better lock your doors”. ISABELLA DUNNE

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[THE WORD ON GIGS]

How to celebrate and succinctly sum up decades of Canberra music history? It’s tricky to plan and control it, but it took care of itself. The acts showcased the future and history of Canberra music, exposing the great, and varied, scene we have. Highlights for the future included Jack Biilmann & The Bronze Whalers; the three-piece expanded on Biilmann’s solo shows with a more Americana/ blues sound early in the day. Having previously enjoyed Mondecreen playing to a tiny crowd at Transit, it was great to experience them in a larger venue and bounce along with a few others. The brightest star for our future though is Citizen Kay. His performance had the energy and aggression of some of the heavier acts on the bill, and he’s grown in confidence since I last saw him supporting Illy. With his passion, conviction, energy and gratitude for being on the bill he garnered a few new fans from the (predominantly) nostalgic crowd. For said nostalgists the event belonged to Tonk and Liquid. They drew large crowds and ANU Bar’s Finale show caused quite a stir with the lack of representation in their line-up. Well, with every action there is a reaction, and that was what this gig was. h. Oh my god. This set put me in a strange, dystopian landscape of dreaminess. The kind of music that you lie down on your bed and

showcased the rockier side of our scene. Sitting superbly on the fence between history and future (hopefully) were Penguin and Super Best Friends. Seeing in dusk, Penguin perfectly combined musical genres, talent and banter to entertain us, and addressed the elephant in the room with their comment, “we thought we’d have to cross a picket line to get in here tonight.” Whilst there was nothing ‘formal’ to celebrate the history of this venue (I wanted old posters, historical timelines and each act covering a previous international artist that’s played here), it was the conversations amongst the crowd that celebrated the history as we discussed our favourite acts and memories of the place over our lifetimes.

ANU BAR FINALE ANU BAR SAT JUN 17

As Casual Projects gave us the final ever song at ANU (and Gary called everyone out from the pool tables and bar) I danced and stared up and around this building as if I was at a wake for a loved one. Farewell my beloved ANU Bar. JARROD MCGRATH

cry to, not because it’s sad, but because it’s beautiful. Gave me those Portishead: Dummy feels. Maxine Kauter Band (SYD) came to the rescue as Earache had to unfortunately pull out of this gig due to clashing schedules. Maxine, I would have absolutely loved to have seen your ‘Beauty And The Bastard/Washed Up

PHOTO BY MATT SANDFORD

On A Star’ Disney covers set. It sounds amazing. Sleeping Døgs are becoming much more comfortable on the stage and their vocals are finally starting to be heard over the guitar and drums. And you have to give props to Maya for learning that bass in such a short time. Snaps to you, girl. PHOTO BY ALICE WORLEY

THE LAST EXPOSURE THE PHOENIX SAT JUN 17 PAGE 70

Slagatha Christie are so much fun to watch. Punky, vulgar rock chicks that clearly love what they do and don’t give a shit if you aren’t vibing it. That Taylor Swift cover was everything, and I love you. And at around midnight we finally came to The Last Exposure (SYD). I am still riding the crest of the wave of feels that engulfed the pub. Chelsea’s vocals are absolutely phenomenal. Some of those high notes left me with my jaw on the floor. She was actually giving me flashbacks to when I saw Lady Gaga five years ago. Yes, I’m serious. And Hayley, you just shredded those guitar solos. And shout out to the drummer for wearing a Moaning Lisa shirt, we felt the Canberra love. The whole band was just tight as; so much beautiful hair being flicked about, and I have been listening to ‘Echo’ and ‘Human’ on repeat on Spotify since the gig. They will return in September, I highly recommend you all catch them. Actually, you have no choice. You’re all going. That’s final. ALICE WORLEY @bmamag


Canberra group The Lowlands played a tight set, highlighted by the sweet and confident voice of Ella Hunt. Their clever lyrics and folksy songs with an Aussie twang were reminiscent of Courtney Barnett.

BETH ORTON

CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE FRI JUN 16

As she usually tends to, Beth Orton exuded awkwardness and quirkiness, but it only seemed to make the crowd love her more. She tried her hand at an Australian accent, and likened Parliament House to a large, walking alien, causing endearing laughter to ripple through the crowd. The setup on stage was simple but effective. Guitarist and backing vocalist Greg McMurray was sweet and unassuming. Talented drummer Alex Thomas, who has collaborated with the likes of Air and Jarvis Cocker, had a cheeky rapport with Orton. She started with a smattering of songs from her album Kidsticks, released in 2016. The sound was different to anything she has done before, but it was refreshing. In her early days, Orton was known for her folktronica, and this was perhaps a revisit. ‘Wave’ took advantage of Orton’s synthesiser playing skills. ‘1973’ was a Canberra is lucky to have a great range of artists that are vocally diverse and this acoustic show didn’t let down the crowd of around 90 that attended. Presented by Stu Tyrrell, 40 people attended early to catch the opening set by Georgia Davis. Davis has an astoundingly beautiful singing voice that fits her alternative folk style perfectly. Her songs about real life circumstances are quirky and fun, turning into songs full of dark humour and a twisted morbidity. My favourite songs of hers on the night were ‘Stalker Love Song’ and ‘Death is Cheaper than Divorce’. Playing both guitar and ukulele, she was a real pleasure to listen too. Jonathan Devoy (solo) is a wellknown artist who has spent over ten years on stage in bands. With just an acoustic guitar you can find him performing several times a year in Canberra. His voice is raw, husky, gritty and full of passion. Opening his set with an original love song, he then launched into covers that included ‘Call Me’, Nine Inch

PHOTO BY DAVE MCCARTHY

gorgeous, uplifting pop tune with cute synths. With her cute, middle-class English accent, using words like “drumbleberries”, Orton took the audience back to her roots, and played acoustic versions of the songs she is very well known for, like ‘She Cries Your Name’ and ‘Central Reservation’. Her

signature croakiness and falsetto filled the theatre beautifully. ‘Call Me the Breeze’ utilised the three performers’ voices to create beautiful harmonies in stereo. The synth-pop, disco and electro, coupled with her trademark more fragile and gentle sounds made it a varied, entertaining and pleasantly surprising

performance. It seemed Orton was surprised about the Canberra audience, too, ending her show with the comment: “Canberra, you’ve been great. Who knew?” Hopefully more performers will be enticed to play in the capital – it is easy to see the punters are hungry for more. BELINDA HEALY

Nails’ ‘Piggy (Nothing Can Stop Me Now)’ and ‘…Baby One More Time’ (Brittany Spears). The highlight for me was the crowd intently watching him set up his loop pedal before singing his newest cover ‘Human’ (Rag’n’Bone Man), which we really enjoyed hearing. Canberra locals Tundrel took to the stage as a trio, with singer Jason Hore backed by just an acoustic and a bass guitar. They performed original songs from The Tundrel Tomes Vol 1. It was something really special to hear Hore’s powerful voice so clearly and acoustically, as when he sings you can feel he is transported to somewhere else. His long, soaring vocals have the ability to enchant, hitting you with waves of emotion and leaving the majority of the room standing mesmerised. They sung two covers: ‘Hurt’ (NIN) and a slower version of ‘Through the Glass’ (Stone Sour) which was absolutely beautiful.

to promote his debut EP Celtic Roots. His alternative acoustic folk style has a stomp rock feel that fringes on acoustic metal. Vocally he sounds like old school metal. The EP features an original track ‘The Saint of Kings Cross’ and four traditional English/Celtic arrangements covered in his personal style as well as an acoustic version of ‘Number of the Beast’ (Iron Maiden). Very professional on stage, he played fast to fit in all of the songs from the EP.

Stu Tyrrell is a Sydney-based folk artist who is touring

Silentia are well known in the local scene and play acoustic

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BRUTALCOUSTIC THE BASEMENT FRI JUN 16

PHOTO BY SAM INGHAM

covers of mainstream metal and rock songs. Never using a setlist, every show is different. Regrettably I couldn’t stay for their whole set but it was awesome hearing them cover songs by Whitesnake and their cover of ‘Mama, I’m Coming Home’ (Ozzy Osbourne) received a huge round of applause by the crowd. They play regularly at The Basement so check the Facebook page for upcoming events. SAM INGHAM

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[THE WORD ON GIGS]

BLISS N ESO ANU BAR FRI JUN 16

PHOTO BY MATT SANDFORD

Tonight was more fitting of an ANU Bar farewell for me (both as a previous student, and regular attendee of gigs there). The lineup outside for the sold-out show reminded me of other times I’ve lined up for sold-out hip hop shows such as Black Eyed Peas. The new rule of not being able to carry drinks into the stage area

did however remind me that it’s not the 90s anymore. Dylan Joel drew a dedicated crowd still as fans enjoyed his smooth sounds and he had chants and claps happening early. His cover of ‘You’ve Got a Friend in Me’ and an injection of ‘Scrubs’ within another song were highlights.

APIA GOOD TIMES TOUR CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE SUN JUN 11

Our amazing headliners hit us hard with strobes and deep penetrating bass as they entered the stage and I could feel that old ANU veranda and roof vibrating (remembering my times as a poor student where I sat outside for a few gigs). With two backing vocalists, keys/ guitar, drums and DJ Izm, this is As per last year’s tour, the evening kicked off with a candid and fun short film showing all the artists interacting and generally having a ‘good time’. I think it’s something the older audience appreciate but the cynical side of me does notice the marketing aspect to it. Deborah Conway had a strong conviction to her performance that gave her good stage presence. She played predominantly newer songs with some good banter in between, but then left us hanging for her hits. Then Joe Camilleri hit the stage with the Bull sisters and band. They livened the night up by giving us ‘Harley and Rose’ three songs in, and then later had us standing for closers ‘Never Let Me Go’ and ‘Chained to the Wheel’. With his great guitar work and sax solo I realised how rockabilly the group are and drew comparisons to The Living End and Stray Cats.

PHOTO BY MARK TURNER

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one hell of a live show let alone Bliss N Eso’s exceptional MCing. The set was jam-packed with bangers ensuring we worked as hard as the band and making it useless to try and list ‘highlights’. ‘Tear the Roof Off’ was appropriate given the room’s imminent destruction. Heavy clouds of herbal were also appropriate as security struggled to make it into the mosh to identify the funsters and quickly gave up (ensuring the clouds continued throughout the night). As I physically looked back at the crowd stretching all the way to the back steps, I looked back on all the amazing musical moments I’ve had at this place, and as ‘Act Your Age’ played (remember the Bluejuice farewell show?), I dropped a tear. Bliss N Eso matched my passion with chants of gratitude and appreciation for music, friends, family, fans, hip hop and Australia, and ‘Moments’, towards the end of the night, summed it all up. JARROD MCGRATH

too much) comedic stories and puns, at one point exclaiming that, “we’ll maybe get two songs tonight at this rate”. ‘Overkill’ was the highlight. Mental As Anything hit the stage and gave us fun through their music, opening with ‘Too Many Times’ and ‘Live It Up’ and then the hits just kept a’coming. Greedy had a thermos next to his keyboard and continually filled his cup with steaming liquid throughout the set, sometimes spilling it. Finally, all the artists joined the stage for the communal closing jam where we finally got Conway’s ‘Only the Beginning’ and a great version of ‘Friday On My Mind’. JARROD MCGRATH

Colin Hay appeared to want to say “fuck” heaps and be the rebel tonight. He played solo and enjoyed sharing a lot of (maybe @bmamag


Sarah Blasko appeared before the audience like a phantom, her silhouette cutting the outline of a modern-day explorer, cloaked in a ruffle-sleeved dress and shining silver buttons. As the welcoming crowd hushed their applause Blasko took to the microphone and opened with a haunting a cappella version of ‘Down on Love’. Stripped bare of its usual piano production Blasko’s vocal, with nowhere to hide, soared powerfully, proving that The Soloist can indeed do it alone. Wedged between the grand piano and a keyboard Blasko marched through her set list, sampling her impressive back catalogue. Bathed in fuzzy yellow light the consummate performer poured through synth-laden versions of ‘Beyond’ and ‘I Wanna Be Your Man’. Blasko howled from her position at the piano before slipping seamlessly into hypnotic movements, her arms stretched forward, reaching for invisible things.

On the opposite side of the stage Blasko laughed warmly at the ‘stations’ of her musical journey. With an acoustic guitar slung around her shoulders she performed ‘Woman By The Well’, momentarily faltering toward the end of the track, which only added further layers of charm and intimacy to this unique performance: “still, I want you around / ‘cause I’m more lost than found.”

SARAH BLASKO THE PLAYHOUSE THU JUN 8

‘Is My Baby Yours’ followed and Blasko stumbled again, tripping over chords during the song’s crescendo, “I’ll just recommence from that pivotal moment in the song!” she joked. Blasko finished on a high with crowd favourite ‘We Won’t Run’ before returning for a threesong encore that included Cold Chisel’s ‘Flame Trees’ and the beloved ‘Perfect Now’ from her 2004 debut. SAMUEL TOWNSEND

PHOTO BY BRYANT EVANS

On Thursday night, after a couple of public transport mishaps and a long, sub-zero wander through the grounds of ANU, the last strains of Boat Show’s set guide me to ANU Bar. San Cisco’s show here is one of the last at this stalwart of a Canberra venue, and locals are determined not to let it go out without a bang – the show has sold out and the gig-goers look ready to party. Unsurprisingly, the place is already absolutely packed out for Thelma Plum – she’s supporting San Cisco, but is, of course, easily a main act in her own right. She blazes through her set, the only problem being that it feels like it goes by far too quickly. Additionally, sometimes her interactions with the crowd (she speaks quickly and quietly) get lost in the noise of the particularly boisterous crowd. Still, she manages to catch their attention when she’s playing, especially with a fiery rendition of ‘Around Here’. Waiting for San Cisco, the people around me get even more rowdy

SAN CISCO ANU BAR THU JUN 1

PHOTO BY SOPHIA DOLFERUS

– a couple of people start a shortlived chant for the band to take the stage, a group of Hahn’s Super Dry-clutching guys shove forward, ultimately defeated by the physics of crowd density and a few women determined not to lose their hard-won positions. Once the band kicks off with ‘Did

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You Get What You Came For’, all seems forgiven and the crowd is set to dance all night. Balancing their setlist well between old and new, San Cisco power their way through classics like ‘Fred Astaire’ as well as new tracks like ‘The Kids Are Cool’. The audience loves every minute of it,

and ultimately the band performs not one, not two, but three encore songs, finally finishing with ‘Run’. A great send-off for a great venue. SHARONA LIN

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[ENTERTAINMENT GUIDE] WEDNESDAY JULY 12 ART EXHIBITIONS Imagine If...

KARAOKE Piss Weak Karaoke Free. 9pm.

THE PHOENIX

Exhibition presented by the National Centre for Australian Children’s Literature and The Children’s Book Council of Australia. 10am–2pm.

LIVE MUSIC

My Country: Ngathu Bubu

Traces Thursday

TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

THE BASEMENT

CLIVE PRICE SUITE

Exhibition by emerging Indigenous artist Kayannie Denigan. Free. 10am–6pm.

The Chandelier Show

The Chandelier Show promises to excite the senses and prompt genuine house-improvement envy! Come and see what our contemporary glass artists can do with a free design brief. 10am–4pm. CANBERRA GLASSWORKS

Veils, An Exploration of Landscape and Memory

Exhibition by emerging Indigenous artist Karen Lee. Free. 10am–6pm. TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

The Meeting Place

Featuring emerging Canberra artists, Tamsin McLure, Colin White and Rebecca Worth, these artists look for spirituality in the environment through their chosen medium. Opens at 6pm. Until Sunday July 30. ANCA GALLERY

LIVE MUSIC Leah Senior and Charm of Finches

A sublime evening of excellent folk tunes and stunning sibling harmonies from Melbourne. $15/$10 CMC members. 7pm.

Matt Dent

Awesome Aussie roots music. THE DICKSON TRADIES

More info at thebasementcanberra. com.au.

The Pratt/Price Collective

A night of original latin/groove jazz, anchored in guitar and vibraphone. $15/$10 CMC members. 7pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Chicago Charles & Danger Dave Free. 9pm.

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

Georgia Fields & Phia

With Melanie Horsnell. Luscious harmonies, world-class song-craft, and impromptu audience participation. $15/$10 CMC members. 9pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

ON THE TOWN Polit Bar Turns Four

Come along and help us celebrate. Free glass of bubbles when you share a cheesy joke.

Diversity is one of Canberra’s most experienced and entertaining musical outfits. 8:30pm. HIPPO CO

Smith’s Varietal #83

A selection of local Canberra talent that will blow your mind. This week’s MC: Rob Shiells. $10. 9pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

ON THE TOWN Hump Day Fun

(Anti)Trivia, Karaoke & Tarot. A bit of this ‘n’ that ‘n’ whatever it takes to make you smile over the hump. With Kiki la Bouche.

ART EXHIBITIONS Asialink Artists in Residence: Ayano Yoshizumi

Japanese artist Ayano Yoshizumi is working from a dedicated studio in the Engine Room and in the Hotshop during her 6 week Asialink Reciprocal Residency. CANBERRA GLASSWORKS

Hard Cover

Free. 10:30pm.

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

THE PHOENIX

THEATRE

ON THE TOWN

Constellations

Musical Theatre Confessions #4 Songs & Secrets: An evening of unsurpassed local vocal talent, humanity and great fistfuls of laughter. POLIT BAR

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm. THE STREET THEATRE

SUNDAY JULY 16

THEATRE

ART EXHIBITIONS

Constellations

Asialink Artists in Residence: Ayano Yoshizumi

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm. THE STREET THEATRE

SOMETHING DIFFERENT Musical Theatre Confessions #4 An evening of unsurpassed local vocal talent, humanity and great fistfuls of laughter. $15 + bf at Eventbrite. $20 at the door. 8pm. POLIT BAR

SATURDAY JULY 15

Japanese artist Ayano Yoshizumi is working from a dedicated studio in the Engine Room and in the Hotshop during her 6 week Asialink Reciprocal Residency. CANBERRA GLASSWORKS

The Meeting Place

Featuring emerging Canberra artists, Tamsin McLure, Colin White and Rebecca Worth, these artists look for spirituality in the environment through their chosen medium. Until Sunday July 30. 12pm–5pm. ANCA GALLERY

Irish Jam Session

Smith’s Scribblers

Lunchtime life drawing. $15/$10 conc. 12:30pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

FRIDAY JULY 14 ART EXHIBITIONS Life Force

Tamsin McLure, Colin White, Rebecca Worth. Free. 12pm–5pm. ANCA GALLERY

DANCE The Verbatim Project

Canberra Youth Theatre presents an honest new work performed by 13–16 year olds and members of Canberra Dance Theatre’s over-65 years’ GOLD troupe.

The story of an aging cabaret star and her alcoholic delusional pianist and occasional lover. 7pm. POLIT BAR

The Verbatim Project

Canberra Youth Theatre presents an honest new work performed by 13–16 year olds and members of Canberra Dance Theatre’s over-65 years’ GOLD troupe. THE COURTYARD STUDIO

LIVE MUSIC 80’s Night

Tribute to 80’s Classics, 9 bands covering 10 acts across two stages. Tickets at Moshtix. THE BASEMENT

Andromeda Is Coming

THE COURTYARD STUDIO

THE BASEMENT

Slay Bells In July

Multiple metal bands on the main stage. THE BASEMENT

Parliamentary Square

Improvised tunes from a group of current and former Canberrans. $15/$10 CMC members. 7pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Christina Crofts Band

Blues/rock of a high standard … Lucinda Williams meets Rory Gallagher! 8pm. Free Entry. 8pm. HARMONIE GERMAN CLUB

Finn

Classic rhythm and blues. Free. 8pm.

Traditional Irish musicians in the pub from late afternoon. Free. KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

Canberra Blues Society Jam: Killwater

Blues Rock – heavy and sweet with a whole lotta love. $5/$3. 2pm. HARMONIE GERMAN CLUB

Charlie Marshall & the Curious Minds A unique fusion of music, science, philosophy and politics. With special guest Evan Buckley. $10. 2pm. Also Tommy Balogh Exhibition opening at 6pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Michael Fix

This remarkable performer creates an incredible musical experience. Support from Alec Randles. $15/$10 CMC members. 6:30pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

THEATRE Constellations

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm.

With BOG, WRONG & Panic Burst. Info at thebasementcanberra.com.au.

CHISHOLM TAVERN

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With Bad Bags & DJ Professor. $10/$5. 9pm.

THE PHOENIX

LIVE MUSIC

Law of the Tongue

THURSDAY JULY 13

The King Hits

With East Row Rabble & Guyy & The Fox. $10/$5. 9pm.

The D’vine Hour

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

THE PHOENIX

HARMONIE GERMAN CLUB

Hello Tut Tut

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

LIVE MUSIC

Canberra Celebrity Dungeon Crawling! 7pm.

Blues, rock and much more with weekly gigs. For more information visit harmonieclub.com.au. 8pm.

DANCE

POLIT BAR

Roll For Intelligence

Friday Night Live

POLIT BAR

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Lyn Dale and Diversity Band

JUL 12 – JUL 17

THE STREET THEATRE

Andromeda is Coming (Charles Martin and Alexander Hunter) are a Canberra-based duo working with viola da gamba, percussion, field recordings and live electronics. Martin and Hunter combine these treated acoustic sounds and homemade iPad apps with projected visuals to create immersive performance environments. Will also feature Water’s Edge, a new composition by Ben Drury. 7pm. $15 on the door. GORMAN ARTS CENTRE

Vanishing Shapes

“Eccentric” folk, featuring flute, clarinet, viola, guitar and double bass. $15/$10 CMC members. 7pm.

MONDAY JULY 17 ART EXHIBITIONS Imagine If...

Exhibition presented by the National Centre for Australian Children’s Literature and The Children’s Book Council of Australia. 10am–2pm. CLIVE PRICE SUITE

My Country: Ngathu Bubu

Exhibition by emerging Indigenous artist Kayannie Denigan. Free. 10am–6pm. TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

@bmamag


[ENTERTAINMENT GUIDE] MONDAY JULY 17 ART EXHIBITIONS Veils, An Exploration of Landscape and Memory

The Chandelier Show

The Chandelier Show promises to excite the senses and prompt genuine house-improvement envy! Come and see what our contemporary glass artists can do with a free design brief. 10am–4pm.

JUL 17 – JUL 23 KARAOKE

Tori Forsyth

Free. 9pm.

Moody, intelligent, yet catchy altcountry. Support from Dana Hassall. $10/$7 CMC members. 9pm.

LIVE MUSIC

THEATRE

Piss Weak Karaoke THE PHOENIX

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Exhibition by emerging Indigenous artist Karen Lee. Free. 10am–6pm.

CANBERRA GLASSWORKS

Life Force

Sarah McLeod

Constellations

LIVE MUSIC

ANCA GALLERY

TRANSIT BAR

THE STREET THEATRE

TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

Lunchulele

Doctor Procter’s Monday lunchtime ukulele singalong for absolute beginners. 12pm. Free. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Rumblr Presents The Bootleg Sessions

With Rumblr, Neon Highways, Suburban Haze, Neon Violence & The Guitar Cases. Free. 8pm. THE PHOENIX

The Ganesayers

This week’s open band rehearsal features eclectic, individual folk. Free. 9pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

TUESDAY JULY 18 FILM Volvo Scandinavian Film Festival

Featuring 20 films from the Nordic region. More information at scandinavianfilmfestival.com. PALACE ELECTRIC

Tamsin McLure, Colin White, Rebecca Worth. Free. 12pm–5pm.

Tickets available at sarahmcleod.oztix. com.au. 6pm.

The Meeting Place

Dana Hassall Duo

Featuring emerging Canberra artists, Tamsin McLure, Colin White and Rebecca Worth, these artists look for spirituality in the environment through their chosen medium. Until Sunday July 30. 12pm–5pm.

Free. 9pm.

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

ANCA GALLERY

A Portrait of Shojo: the Poetic Ambience of Japanese Girlhood National Library of Australia Fellow, Dr Masafumi Monden, explores femininity in books, manga, anime and fashion. 5:15pm. NATIONAL LIBRARY OF AUSTRALIA

Local talent performing new stuff for a friendly audience. $5. 7pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

ON THE TOWN Draw Life

A relaxed chance to let loose your creative urge. Bring paper, pencils & creative urge – we provide the model. Check website to see who’s featured this time. POLIT BAR

Lunch Time Sing Fling

Lunchtime Singing Session for the Shy and Vocally Challenged. 12pm. $10.

ART EXHIBITIONS Asialink Artists in Residence: Ayano Yoshizumi

Japanese artist Ayano Yoshizumi is working from a dedicated studio in the Engine Room and in the Hotshop during her 6 week Asialink Reciprocal Residency. CANBERRA GLASSWORKS

Smith’s Scribblers

‘68

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

THE BASEMENT

Lunchtime life drawing. $15/$10 conc. 12:30pm.

FRIDAY JULY 21 LIVE MUSIC

A Breach of Silence

With Grenadiers and Simple Stone. 8pm. $34.70 at Oztix.

Folk Metal Night: Saralisse vs Beast Impalor 4

With Stone Soverign, Loom of Time and Fenrir. 7pm. $15. THE BASEMENT

Den

With New Age Group, Lower Body. 8pm. $10 on the door.

THE PHOENIX

40th Anniversary Tour. 8pm. $40 + bf at Moshtix.

THEATRE

Julia Johnson

Constellations

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.g.au. 7:30pm. THE STREET THEATRE

THURSDAY JULY 20 ART EXHIBITIONS New Exhibitions

Let Me Imagine You by Andrew Tension, Community Honour by Fiona Amundsen and All Killer by Jess Taylor. Until August 13. 12pm–4pm. PHOTOACCESS

COMEDY

Stand Up Comedy With Canberra’s Funniest

X

TRANSIT BAR

Their latest album Secrets was produced by Fredrik Nordstrom (Bring Me the Horizon, Arch Enemy, In Flames) and mixed by Henrik Udd at Studio Fredman in Sweden. It’s out worldwide via Eclipse Records, having debuting at #2 on the iTunes Metal Chart. With special guests Maris King, Kitten Hurricane, Lycanthrope, Na Maza. 8pm. $16.67 via Eventbrite. THE BASEMENT

Matt Dent

Info at the Hellenic Club. 6pm. HELLENIC CLUB OF CANBERRA

My Dad & I

More info at georgeharcourt.com. GEORGE HARCOURT INN

The Wumpaz

The Space Between

As seen at the 2016 Lavazza Italian Film Festival. PALACE ELECTRIC

facebook.com/bmamagazine

Free. 10:30pm.

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

COMEDY The Parents

Two hours of hilarious stand up comedy about the relentless torture of being a parent. Tickets at laborclub.com. au. 8pm. GINNINDERA LABOR CLUB

SUNDAY JULY 23

Asialink Artists in Residence: Ayano Yoshizumi

5pm/10pm. Free.

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

Friday Night Live

FILM

4th Degree

ART EXHIBITIONS

HARMONIE GERMAN CLUB

POLIT BAR

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Live Music/Heuristic

THE BASEMENT

8pm. Free.

Headliner Ian McCarthy, originally a Canberra boy, Melbourne has been his home for the past few months where he has been honing his powers of observation, aiming to eat at least twice per day, and making the rent (to varying success). Ian will be supported by very funny locals Frances McNair, Maddy Weeks, and Dave Graham. MC Anthony Tomic. $7. 8pm.

A Canberra favourite returns with a new synth-folk single, ‘Melissa’. Support from Bonniesongs & Evan Buckley. $15/$10 CMC members..

‘Math-hop’ soul jazz fusion. 8pm.

Ali Penney & The Money Makers

Waving the Red Flag: Chinese Posters 1949-1976

WEDNESDAY JULY 19

LIVE MUSIC

THE PHOENIX

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

NATIONAL LIBRARY OF AUSTRALIA

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm.

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

See the colourful propaganda posters that promoted the vision of a prosperous world led by a communist China. 10am–5pm daily.

SATURDAY JULY 22

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

BAD!SLAM!NO!BISCUIT!

LIVE MUSIC Bang!! Beng!! Bing!! Bong!! Bung!!

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm.

Blues, rock and much more with weekly gigs. For more information visit harmonieclub.com.au. 8pm. HARMONIE GERMAN CLUB

The Hoodoo Gurus & You Am I The Hoodoo Gurus and You Am I have been sharing stages for the last 25 years from New York to Nambucca Heads, boast 19 studio albums between them and love playing rock and roll. 8pm. Tickets at canberratheatrecentre.com.au. CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

Japanese artist Ayano Yoshizumi is working from a dedicated studio in the Engine Room and in the Hotshop during her 6 week Asialink Reciprocal Residency. CANBERRA GLASSWORKS

Life Force

Tamsin McLure, Colin White, Rebecca Worth. Free. 12pm–5pm. ANCA GALLERY

The Meeting Place

Featuring emerging Canberra artists, Tamsin McLure, Colin White and Rebecca Worth, these artists look for spirituality in the environment through their chosen medium. Until Sunday July 30. 12pm–5pm. ANCA GALLERY

Joseph Liddy & The Skeleton Horse

LIVE MUSIC

THE PHOENIX

Traditional Irish musicians in the pub from late afternoon. Free.

With The Good Boys. $10/$5. 9pm.

Irish Jam Session

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

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[ENTERTAINMENT GUIDE] SUNDAY JULY 23 LIVE MUSIC Geoff Achison & Justin Yap Band

LIVE MUSIC Reactions

With Sleep Talk, Ill Natured and Autumn. 7:30 PM. $14.30 via Oztix.

Australia’s living legend, Geoff Achison teams up with young gun, Justin Yapp to bring you a 1 of a kind guitar driving blues explosion. $22/$15. 3pm.

Matt Dent

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

WALT & BURLEY

The open jam where we party like it’s 1899. Bluegrass, folk and more. Free. 7pm.

Awesome Aussie roots music. 3pm.

Endrey’s Musical Singalong Hour

Pick your favourite show tune, join the chorus or shine in the spotlight. $10. 7pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

TALKS Border Crossings

How does the writer dream and survive across multiple languages, cultures and genres? Join Merlinda Bobis and Subhash Jaireth in this conversation about the gift-and-scourge of a multiple and layered creative practice. $10. 3pm.

Constellations

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm. THE STREET THEATRE

THE BASEMENT

ON THE TOWN

HARMONIE GERMAN CLUB

JUL 23 – JUL 28

Lunch Time Sling Fling

Lunchtime Singing Session for the Shy and Vocally Challenged. 12pm. $10.

Old Timey Tuesday

THURSDAY JULY 27 DANCE This Poisoned Sea

Creative young people from in and around Canberra will form the Quantum Leap ensemble. $32 + bf at canberratheatrecentre.com.au. 7pm. THE PLAYHOUSE

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

KARAOKE

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

Piss Weak Karaoke

Recent Work Reading #2

THE PHOENIX

Free. 9pm.

Poetry performed in a way that brings something new and ephemeral to the written word. Free. 6pm.

LIVE MUSIC

THEATRE

World-class jazz musicians heat up a Winter’s night! Join the Jazz Faculty for the best jazz in C-town. Cash bar. $10/$15/$20. 7pm.

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

1984

Jazz Faculty Concert

ANU SCHOOL OF MUSIC

Dos Locos Free. 9pm.

MUSE CANBERRA

Canberra Obscura: Metropolis

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

Escape the weight of a long winter and immerse yourself in an art playground. With drinks to warm you and food to fill you, Canberra Obscura: Metropolis is a night of enthralling performance and emphatic beats, experimentation and the unexpected. Featuring music from Moaning Lisa, Coolio Desgracias (DJ Set), Australian Dance Party’s CO.LAB and food by Mr Papa and Canberra Magic Kitchen, and beer by Pact Beer Co. $15 early bird, $20 presale via agac.com.au or $25 at the door.. 7pm. AINSLIE ARTS CENTRE

Trapped Under Ice

With Darkhorse, The Culture and local guests. 8pm. $15 THE BASEMENT

Vera Blue

‘Mended’ tour. Support from Thandi Phoenix. 8pm. Tickets $43 + bf via Moshtix.

THEATRE

ON THE TOWN

ACADEMY

Constellations

Sorry Mum, I’m Going Out

Blues, rock and much more with weekly gigs. For more information visit harmonieclub.com.au. 8pm.

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 4pm. THE STREET THEATRE

MONDAY JULY 24 ART EXHIBITIONS Imagine If...

Exhibition presented by the National Centre for Australian Children’s Literature and The Children’s Book Council of Australia. 10am–2pm. CLIVE PRICE SUITE

My Country: Ngathu Bubu

Exhibition by emerging Indigenous artist Kayannie Denigan. Free. 10am–6pm.

Set in a world where an invasive government keeps a malevolently watchful eye on its citizens, this radical and much-lauded staging explores surveillance, identity and why Orwell’s vision of the future is as relevant now as ever. 7:30pm. Tickets from canberratheatrecentre.com.au. CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

TRIVIA ANU Film Group Presents Movia Trivia. 6:30pm. THE PHOENIX

TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

Veils, An Exploration of Landscape and Memory

Exhibition by emerging Indigenous artist Karen Lee. Free. 10am–6pm. TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

WEDNESDAY JULY 26 ART EXHIBITIONS

Dance and raise funds for Muscular Dystrophy. 8pm. Entry by donation. THE BASEMENT

HARMONIE GERMAN CLUB

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

Featuring CHIBCHA. $10/$5. 9pm.

Smith’s Scribblers

Lunchtime life drawing. $15/$10 conc. 12:30pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

THEATRE 1984

7:30pm. Tickets from canberratheatrecentre.com.au. CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

Constellations

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm. THE STREET THEATRE

FRIDAY JULY 28

Life Force

LIVE MUSIC

Tamsin McLure, Colin White, Rebecca Worth. Free. 12pm–5pm. ANCA GALLERY

DANCE

Lunchulele

The Meeting Place

This Poisoned Sea

Doctor Procter’s Monday lunchtime ukulele singalong for absolute beginners. 12pm. Free. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

The Bootleg Sessions

With An Inconvenient Groove, Moosk, The Wumpaz & Alec Randles. Free. 8pm. THE PHOENIX

TUESDAY JULY 25 ART EXHIBITIONS New Exhibitions

Let Me Imagine You by Andrew Tension, Community Honour by Fiona Amundsen and All Killer by Jess Taylor. Until August 13. 12pm–4pm. PHOTOACCESS

Featuring emerging Canberra artists, Tamsin McLure, Colin White and Rebecca Worth, these artists look for spirituality in the environment through their chosen medium. Until Sunday July 30. 12pm–5pm.

Creative young people from in and around Canberra will form the Quantum Leap ensemble. $32 + bf at canberratheatrecentre.com.au. 7pm. THE PLAYHOUSE

ANCA GALLERY

LIVE MUSIC

TALKS

Special K / Oscar

The Future of the Arts in Tuggeranong

Public consultations facilitated by Nigel Featherstone. Free. Refreshments provided. 2pm and 7pm. TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

THEATRE

Friday Night Live

5pm/10pm. Free.

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

Friday Fiesta THE PHOENIX

KLP

With Mia Sørlie, Genie, Indigo. 10pm. MR WOLF

THEATRE 1984

7:30pm. Tickets from canberratheatrecentre.com.au. CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

Constellations

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm. THE STREET THEATRE

SOMETHING DIFFERENT Waving the Red Flag: Chinese Posters 1949-1976

See the colourful propaganda posters that promoted the vision of a prosperous world led by a communist China. 10am–5pm daily. NATIONAL LIBRARY OF AUSTRALIA

The BadBoys

The BadBoys are back for Christmas in July and they’re bringing their naughty list to The Woden Tradies for one unmissable night on Friday 28 July 2017! The BadBoys promise an incredible night of giggles and crowd interaction; perfect for Hens parties, birthdays, or just a fun night out! Doors open at 7pm and tickets are on sale now for just $35 each. Call 02 6285 1995 to book! THE WODEN TRADIES

1984

7:30pm. Tickets from canberratheatrecentre.com.au. CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

PAGE 76

@bmamag


[ENTERTAINMENT GUIDE] SATURDAY JULY 29 ART EXHIBITIONS The Chandelier Show

The Chandelier Show promises to excite the senses and prompt genuine houseimprovement envy! Come and see what our contemporary glass artists can do with a free design brief. 10am–4pm. CANBERRA GLASSWORKS

DANCE

LIVE MUSIC Irish Jam Session

Traditional Irish musicians in the pub from late afternoon. Free. KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

Queen: It’s a Kinda Magic

The show recreates Queen’s 1986 World Tour concert and features the band’s greatest hits performed live, along with a few obscure tracks that die-hard fans will truly appreciate. 8pm. $69 + bf via Ticketek. NATIONAL CONVENTION CENTRE

This Poisoned Sea

Creative young people from in and around Canberra will form the Quantum Leap ensemble. $32 + bf at canberratheatrecentre.com.au. 7pm. THE PLAYHOUSE

LIVE MUSIC Mason

TALKS

MUSE CANBERRA

Bob Graham - For The Creative and Curious

Ever wanted to create picture books or simply interested in the process? Find out some tricks and tips from a master of the trade. 2:30pm. MUSE CANBERRA

THEATRE 1984

7:30pm. Tickets from canberratheatrecentre.com.au. CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

Constellations

By Nick Payne. Tickets start at $45 + bf at thestreet.org.au. 7:30pm.

ART EXHIBITIONS Life Force

Tamsin McLure, Colin White, Rebecca Worth. Free. 12pm–5pm. ANCA GALLERY

The Meeting Place

Featuring emerging Canberra artists, Tamsin McLure, Colin White and Rebecca Worth, these artists look for spirituality in the environment through their chosen medium. Until Sunday July 30. 12pm–5pm.

With Morgy.

THE PHOENIX

WEDNESDAY AUGUST 2

THE PHOENIX

LIVE MUSIC Thy Art Is Murder

ROYAL THEATRE

With Hydromedusa & New Age Group. $10. 8pm. THE PHOENIX

Chicago Charles & Danger Dave Free. 9pm.

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

From the brutal battlegrounds of Afghanistan, to the western Sydney suburbs and the halls of power in Canberra, The List is the debut novel and page-turning thriller from journalist Michael Brissenden. In conversation with Karen Middleton. $10. 3pm. MUSE CANBERRA

ART EXHIBITIONS Imagine If...

Exhibition presented by the National Centre for Australian Children’s Literature and The Children’s Book Council of Australia. 10am–2pm. CLIVE PRICE SUITE

LIVE MUSIC Lunchulele

CANBERRA THEATRE CENTRE

THEATRE

Smith’s Scribblers

Approaching the 40th anniversary of the first Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras, the respective experiences of gay men growing up then and now are profound. Trevar Alan Chilver’s poignant script brings these differences to life like never before. 7:30pm. $38 + bf via canberratheatrecentre.com.au.

Lunchtime life drawing. $15/$10 conc. 12:30pm. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

THEATRE 78 Reasons to Stay the Night 7:30pm. $38 + bf via canberratheatrecentre.com.au. THE COURTYARD STUDIO

FRIDAY AUGUST 4

TALKS Author talk with Rusty Young: Colombiano Rusty Young interviewed members of the Special Forces, and terrorist organisations. The result was Colombiano. $20. 6pm. NATIONAL LIBRARY OF AUSTRALIA

THURSDAY AUGUST 3 ART EXHIBITIONS Conspectus

CIT Presents The Bootleg Sessions

Empire Global Art Award

With Massive Sherlock, Okinawa Girls, Kaminski For Mayor & James Steinbeck. Free. 8pm.

SOMETHING DIFFERENT

THE COURTYARD STUDIO

Doctor Procter’s Monday lunchtime ukulele singalong for absolute beginners. 12pm. Free. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Bangarra presents a new contemporary dance work inspired by true events. Bennelong highlights the extraordinary curiosity and diplomacy that led an Aboriginal community to survive a clash of cultures. 7:30pm. Tickets at canberratheatrecentre.com.au.

With Alpha Wolf, Cursed Earth & Deadlights. 8pm. $29.60 via Oztix.

78 Reasons to Stay the Night

Paintings and poems by Brian Hincksman. THE FRONT GALLERY & CAFÉ

Exhibition opening and announcement of $4,000 Empire Global Art Award.

THEATRE Canberra Unscripted

Alchemists Improvisation, BnC Theatre, Chrysalis Theatre and Lightbulb Improv, have joined forces to create a new experience for Canberra theatregoers: a weekend festival featuring five new shows spanning comedy, music, crime and Shakespeare … with zombies. 7pm. Tickets at thestreet.org.au. THE STREET THEATRE

LIVE MUSIC Foley!

Hey, Don’t Worry About The Tour. With Helena Pop and Capes. 8pm. $13.30 via Oztix. THE PHOENIX

TUGGERANONG ARTS CENTRE

THE PHOENIX

THE STREET THEATRE

SUNDAY JULY 30

Lecherous Gaze

Orange Is The New Black Trivia

THE BASEMENT

MONDAY JULY 31

Take a look into the magical, whimsical world of this iconic Australian creator with readings and illustration demos. Ages 4+, $10 per child. 1pm.

TRIVIA

Free entry. 8pm.

Michael Brissenden: The List

TALKS Bob Graham - For The Kids

With Russell Morris. 8pm. Tickets from $99.90 + bf at ticketek.com.au..

Bennelong

Live Band

ST JOHN THE BAPTIST CHURCH

SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

Jumpcuts: Local Independent Short Film Night

THE PHOENIX

$20/$25. 5pm.

America

WALT & BURLEY

With Moaning Lisa and Teen Jesus & The Jean Teasers. $10/$5. 9pm.

Colombian Independence Day Fiesta!

LIVE MUSIC

THEATRE

Wet Lips

ON THE TOWN

The open jam where we party like it’s 1899. Bluegrass, folk and more. Free. 7pm.

FILM

Awesome Aussie roots music. 3pm.

THE BASEMENT

KING O’MALLEY’S IRISH PUB

Old Timey Tuesday

Matt Dent

With guests Harlott. 7pm. $20.

Free. 10:30pm.

JUL 29 – AUG 4

TUESDAY AUGUST 1 ART EXHIBITIONS New Exhibitions

Let Me Imagine You by Andrew Tension, Community Honour by Fiona Amundsen and All Killer by Jess Taylor. Until August 13. 12pm–4pm. PHOTOACCESS

Listings are a free community service. Email editorial@bmamag.com to have your events appear each issue.

For up-to-date listings, visit bmamag.com/entertainment-guide.

ON THE TOWN Lunch Time Sling Fling

Lunchtime Singing Session for the Shy and Vocally Challenged. 12pm. $10. SMITH’S ALTERNATIVE

ANCA GALLERY

facebook.com/bmamagazine

NEXT ISSUE: #495

OUT AUGUST 16 PAGE 77


FIRST CONTACT Aaron Peacey 0410381306 band.afternoon.shift@ gmail.com.au Adam Hole 0421023226 Afternoon Shift 0402055314 Amphibian Sound PA Clare 0410308288 Annie & The Armadillos Annie (02) 61611078/ 0422076313

Cole Bennetts Photography 0415982662 Danny V Danny 0413502428 Dawn Theory Nathan 0402845132 Danny 0413502428 Dorothy Jane Band, The Dorothy Jane 0411065189 dorothy-jane@dorothyjane.com Drumassault Dan 0406 375 997

Johnny Roadkill Paulie 0408287672 paulie_mcmillan@live.com.au Kayo Marbilus facebook.com/kayomarbilus1 Kurt’s Metalworx (PA) 0417025792 Los Chavos Latin/ska/reggae Rafa 0406647296 Andy 0401572150

Rock Doctor Industries musical amplification/sound reinforcement/public address/ hi-fi/DJ equipment rockdoctorindustries@gmail.com 0432 675 934 Rug, The Jol 0417273041 Sewer Sideshow Huck 0419630721 Simone & The Soothsayers Singing teacher Simone 62304828

Feldons, The 0407 213 701

Merloc - Recording Studio, Watson. Sam King: 0430484363. sam@merlocrecords.com

Fire on the Hill Aaron 0410381306 Lachlan 0400038388

Missing Zero Hadrian 0424721907 hadrian.brand@live.com.au

Fourth Degree Vic 0408477020 Gareth Dailey DJ/Electronica Gareth 0414215885

Morning After, The Covers band Anthony 0402500843

Groovalicious Corporate/ weddings/private functions 0448995158

Mornings Jordan 0439907853

Strange Hour Events Dan 0411112075

Birds Love Fighting Gangbusters/DIY shows-bookings@ birdslovefighting.com

Obsessions 0450 960 750 obsessions@grapevine.com.au

Super Best Friends Greg greg@gunfever.com.au

Guy The Sound Guy Live & Studio Sound Engineer 0400585369 guy@guythesoundguy.com

Painted Hearts, The Peter (02) 62486027

System Addict Jamie 0418398556

Polka Pigs Ian (02) 62315974

Black Label Photography Kingsley 0438351007 blacklabelphotography.net

Haunted Attics band@hauntedatticsmusic.com

Rafe Morris 0416322763

Tegan Northwood (Singing Teacher) 0410 769 144

Aria Stone sax/flute/lute/ harmonica, singer-songwriter Aria 0411803343 Australian Songwriters Association Keiran (02) 62310433 Back to the Eighties Ty Emerson 0418 544 014 Backbeat Drivers Steve 0422733974 backbeatdrivers.com

Bridge Between, The Cam 0431550005 Chris Harland Blues Band, The Chris 0418 490 649 chrisharlandbluesband @gmail.com

PAGE 78

In The Flesh Scott 0410475703 Itchy Triggers Alex 0414838480 Jenn Pacor Singer-songwriter avail. for originals/covers 0405618630

Redletter Ben 0421414472 Redsun Rehearsal Studio Ralph 0404178996/ (02) 61621527

Sorgonian Twins, The Mark 0428650549 Soundcity Rehearsal Studio Andrew 0401588884 STonKA Jamie 0422764482 stonka2615@gmail.com

Top Shelf Colin 0408631514 Undersided, The Baz 0408468041 Zoopagoo zoopagoo@gmail.com

@bmamag


facebook.com/bmamagazine

PAGE 79


PAGE 80

@bmamag

BMA Magazine 495 - 12 July 2017  

Canberra's Entertainment Guide

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