THE STANLEY SPECIAL You wanted it you got it! Here it is the mind blowing evilest fucking drink in the world... the Stanley Special! We say drink with caution and drink responsibly! Don’t do it if you’re not 18! We say that because it;s the law bitches! Enjoy!
We didn’t sell any advertising again... The guy who will be doing that shit doesn’t start until next year and we just can’t be assed! It’s a real shit job...
30MLS GIN 30MLS VODKA 30MLS MIDORI EQUAL PARTS SODA, LEMON SQUASH,LEMONDE ONE DROP OF RASPBERRY CORDIAL GARNISH WITH ONE BADLY CUT SLICE OF LEMON SERVE IN 285 HANDLED POT GLASS CAUTION: HAVE SOMEONE OPEN YOUR FRONT DOOR FOR YOU ITS EASIER THAN A BROKEN FUCKING WINDOW
In this issue of
Bad Vision We Speak to Bad Vision drummer and eater of all things vinyl Matt Radford!
The Frowning Clouds
The Frowning Clouds Zac Olson
Smith St Blues We have a whinge! Because we’re sooky la-la’s
The XMAS LIST Shit we want...
Clowns Read this!
Our friend and lighting designer tells us why we’re happy we don’t have his job! Rock & Roll Magazine is published by Rock & Roll Magazine Pty Ltd PO BOX 5034 Burnley VIC 3121 “Thank You, Thank You, All Square Now?”: Minnie “the Myna” Bird (Merry Xmas), Roger & Georgia Murphy, Boxer, Meeshy the Office Cat (you weirdo), the KKKitchen Crew,Toothless Jack (What next Nurse Jacky?) Taylor & Bogan Robot Lighting, the Morrows, Eddie & Gav @Game Deficiency, Pudgey (PR EXTRODIANRE), all the bands that agreed to be interviewed, the Farrell family, MeetWagon (prepare to MEAT), Sandra/MadDog Extra Special Thanks PR Companies (Not the lovely ladies at Deathproof... You girls are the best in the world... If anyone has PR needs see Deathproof! They’re awesome... The rest suck!) & The Fish & Chip shop down the road... Fuck you! Why do you make shit burgers now?
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FRONT OF HOUSE NEWS & ABUSE
Roll Your Own Street Party Have you ever smoke Port Royal? We did long ago... They were fucking dreadful! Seriously ‘smoking for ox’ would be better than smoking those fucking things. Thank fuck the Port Royal Street Party is going to be a whole lot better! It will all be taking place down on Port Melbourne’s Fennell St on Saturday the 18th of January 2014 and will
The Cherry Awards The best rock & roll bar in the world will be hosting the
A long lost Johnny Cash album?
first ever ‘Cherry Awards’ on Wednesday December 18th....
Please tell me more!
Some of the awards include:
That’s right ladies and gentlemen next year the one
Best Monday Cherry Jam Act, Best Tuesday Act, Best Wednesday Act, Best Thursday
and only and very dead Johnny Cash will be releasing a brand new album entitled Out Among
SOUL Act, Best Friday Arvo Act, Best Friday Act, Best Saturday Act, Best Sunday Blues Act, Best
Sunday Act, Best International, the Mermaid award nominated by Jamie 'Mermaid' Robertson and the crowning glory Cherry
be one hell of an afternoon.
Bar Act of 2013!
The Cosmic Psychos, the
Entry is free (there will even be a free keg of Carlton
Meanies, the Murlocs, Harmony, Straight Arrows, Batpiss, Bit’s of Shit, Ausmuteants and the Spinning Rooms will be hitting the one stage (so you get to see al the bands!)! And if the bands aren’t enough you’ll even be able to get your hairs cuts by the fine folks at Uncle Rocco’s Barber Shop! Tix are only $50! Bargain! Www.portroyalstparty.com.au
More Cash Please
Draught, some party pies and sausage rolls!) and in typical Cherry fashion the awards will be awarded in 2 ten minute blocks... What will be happening in between those 2 blocks? A shit load of rock & roll of course! With Palace of the King and a secret headliner appearing under the moniker “Ladybird” there to play some rock down at AC/DC Lane! Be there or be square!
Recorded in various sessions with infamous producer Billy Sherrill between 1981 and 1984. Billy Sherrill, if you don’t know him, is indirectly responsible for the shit country pop sound commonly referred to as countrypolitan... So how will this come out? God knows but we wouldn’t mind finding out for ourselves. A lot of the album has been re -recorded with Johnny Cash’s long time bandmate Marty Stuart and also features a few unheard June Carter-Johnny Cash duets. Interesting right? Out Amongst The Stars will be released on March 25th 2014.
FRONT OF HOUSE NEWS & ABUSE
Easter Will Give You The Blues What are you doing on the Easter long weekend? How about spending a shit load of money for some shitty accommodation in Byron Bay and seeing some awesome bands? Sounds good? Of course it does.... The Byron Bay Bluesfest have announced even more bands to join the already burgeoning bill... and they are: Jeff Beck, KC & The Sunshine Band, Government Mule, WAR, Seun Kuti & Egypt 80, Sly & Robbie and The TAXI Gang feat. Bitty Mclean, Jason Isbell, Chali 2na, Kate Miller-Heidke, Seth Lakeman who will be joining John Mayer, John Butler Trio, Dave Matthews Band, Erykah Badu, Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros, Iron & Wine, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Devendra Banhart, Morcheeba, Gary Clark Jr., KT Tunstall, Allen Stone, Valerie June, Nikki Hill, Doobie Brothers, Aaron Neville, Gregg Allman, Boz Scaggs, India.Arie, Suzanne Vega, Steve Earle & The Dukes, Dr John & The Nite Trippers, Jamaican Legends Feat. Ernest Ranglin, Sly & Robbie, Bitty McLean, Jimmie Vaughan, The Wailers, Ozomatli, CW Stoneking, Larry Graham & Graham Central Station, Grandmothers of Invention, The Magic Band, Robben Ford, The Paladins, Music Maker Foundation Feat. Pat Wilder, Cool John Ferguson, and Little Freddie King, Jack Johnson, Elvis Costello & The Imposters, Passenger, Grace Potter and the Nocturnals, Kasey Chambers, Clairy Browne & The Banginâ€™ Rackettes, Trixie Whitley, The Soul Rebels, RocKwiz Live, Buddy Guy, Jake Bugg, The James Cotton Blues Band, Booker T. Jones, Charlie Musselwhite, Eric Bibb, Beth Hart, North Mississippi Allstars, Devon Allman, Walter Trout, Candye Kane Band feat. Laura Chavez, Saidah Baba Talibah... And what does that all mean? Thereâ€™s no such thing as the Easter Bunny kids! Now you can sing the blues...
FRONT OF HOUSE NEWS & ABUSE
The Smith Street Tour
Those nice kids, the Street Smith Street Band, have announced a brand spanking new tour
Due to absolutely no demand at all Australia’s least popular music media will be
expanding to a bi-weekly release in the new year!
After a hectic year releasing a new EP, Don’t Fuck With Our Dreams, and playing Falls,
According to Rock & Roll Magazine editor,
Meredith and the Big Day Out they will be getting around the place with Philly punk rockers the Menzingers.
Shane Hilton, the horrible collection of words will be “continuing it’s sub par, fucking awful, never finished high school writing on
Also along for the ride will be the very exciting Perth band Grim Fandango!
bands that probably deserve a lot better”.
Friday, 14th March, The Zoo, Brisbane, Saturday,
The new expansion will also see a widening of the content currently covered including
15th March, Corner Hotel, Melbourne, Wednesday, 19th March , Prince Of Wales, Bunbury, Thursday, 20th March, HQ, Perth (All Ages), Friday, 21st March, Rosemount Hotel, Perth,
instrument reviews, a monthly fashion victim spread (for the ladies and poseurs), more EP & single reviews, more international features, an updated & expanded local content section
Saturday, 22nd March, Uni Bar, Adelaide, Sunday, 23rd March, Karova Lounge, Ballarat, Wednesday, 26th March, Brisbane Hotel, Hobart,
The new Rock & Roll Magazine will be launched on January 16th 2014.
Thursday, 27th March, The Pav, Launceston, Friday, 28th March, The Small Ballroom, Newcastle, Saturday, 29th March, Annandale Hotel, Sydney (All Ages), Saturday, 29th March, Annandale Hotel, Sydney (18+), Sunday, 30th March, Transit Bar, Canberra. You can get your tickets from all the usual haunts.... The Smith Street Band will also be playing
and a few other surprises.
If you want to get in on it (bands that is) email email@example.com and give us the pitch! Other than that not much will be changing. The writing will continue to be shitty, our in -house model Jacky-Boy will still be popping up everywhere, there will be awesome bands and a shitload of Rock & Roll!
the Push Over Festival...
And it’s all free!
Isn’t that nice!
What more do you want?
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Bad Vision are a band that I was always going to like... Why? I don’t know. I just do. It’s that perfect kind of garage rock that I just go ape shit over. We caught up with Bad Vision drummer and the future face of Xylophagia Anonymous Matt Radford (the most rock & roll name we’ve heard in a long time) to shoot the shit and talk about their new album...
teeth marks in it apologies... curiosity got the better of me! The artwork is done by our singer Jerome Rush who is pretty damn handy with a pencil, he actually does all our art be it for gig posters, covers, t-shirts etc. He even screen prints our merch which makes him a pretty damn good asset. And you guys took care of all the music? Yep we sure did. Tell us about the album...
We actually recorded the album in October last year, we smashed out 14 tracks with our friend Straight off the bat... you guys have you're debut Brooke at his Captain B studios and then got being released in the US of A as a cassette tape! Mikey Young to work his genius and do the Firstly, can we get our hands on it here in Australia? And secondly, where the fuck can we buy a tape deck? mixing and mastering. Ours went out in hard rubbish about 10 years ago... You must be pretty happy with the result? We do, the awesome folk at Dirty Pillows approached us about the idea and we were all stoked on it and pretty much jumped at the chance. You can purchase the cassette at our bandcamp page but if your one of those folk that have moved with the times and threw out the ghetto blaster the parents bought you in ‘88 then you'll be pleased to know that this cassette is future savvy and comes with a download code. But I highly recommend tracking down a tape deck cause that shit rules. We can get the LP in hot pink as well so we're pretty happy... The artworks rad as shit! Who took care of all that? The hot pink vinyl is a sexy bit of wax. It also looks like bubble gum that I kinda wanna eat so if you find your pink vinyl has some
We're stoked with the result, seeing the fruits of our labour on wax is such a great feeling. Nice to have the first one out of the way? It is. We've been sitting on this recording for a while now waiting to release it. We did a 7" inch single at the start of the year to get the ball rolling, but shortly after the launch for that our guitarist Josh went O/S for almost 6 months so that slowed down the process a bit. It's a huge relief to have it out so now we can focus on writing new material for our next release. The album is a solid effort. Did you have those songs kicking around for a while? Thanks, yeah all but maybe one or two tracks have been around since the bands existence. These were the first swag of songs we wrote as
Article: Strawb G Hetti Interview: Strawb G Hetti & Shane Hilton
Bad Vision so needless to say were pretty eager to move on to new material.
How has the tour in support of the album been going?
We haven't really done a tour to be honest, we played 3 shows in Brisbane a few weeks back. That was a interesting little trip but very It's a bit of both really, our guitarist Krystal fun, it was great to catch up and play with our good mates in SixftHick who just bring the usually writes the skeleton of a song and ruckus every time they play. then we jam it out and add our collective ideas etcetera. You played Bone Soup Carpark Fiesta thing with Personal &the Pizzas, the Subsonics and a shitload of How did Bad Vision get together? other bands. How was that? Did you get pizza? Krystal and I just starting jamming in our That was a super fun gig. If it weren't for an garage in the old place we lived in. We epic sized hangover from watching Personal initially wanted to be just a two piece but and the Pizzas the night before I think it neither of us were that keen to sing and I'm would been a lot more fun. Due to my hangover sure I could never do it justice. We then I kinda snoozed on the Pizza and missed out, recruited Jerome on vocals and thought a but I made up for it by eating Pizza for the second guitarist was needed. After placing an next 3 nights. ad on Melband we jammed with a couple of guys that didn't seem to work, until Josh came in to Any plans to get back overseas in the future? the save the day with his riffage. And now We do actually, we're currently working on we're all stuck with each other... plans to get back over to Europe in September Is there anyone who takes care of the song writing or is it more of a group effort?
What about yourself? Whereabouts did you grow up? I grew up in a town called Sunbury it's kinda the last suburban-ish town on the way to Bendigo before hitting the country. It's funny people always thought Sunbury was this small country town that was miles from anything. When did you start playing music? I started playing drums when I was still in high school, I was about 14. I found myself playing in my first band at 16 and have been broke ever since! What did you grow up listening too? I grew up listening to old classic stuff like Hendrix, The Doors, AC/DC courtesy of my Mum and then when I was 14-15 punk slapped me right in the face and demanded my attention which I gave with great enthusiasm. It started with Black Flag, Minor Threat, Bad Brains, The Meanies, Hard Ons and then just exploded to all the different shit I'm into now. And what are you listening to at the moment? I have what you could call musical ADD, I listen to a shit tonne of bands spanning across about a thousand genres. Bands I'm currently listening to a lot of lately are Brainbombs, Condominium, Spectres, The Estranged, Iceage, Di채t, The Shrine, Midnight and Slayer! You've been playing a fair few gigs lately. Played with anyone worth checking out? We've been extremely lucky to have shared the stage with some kick arse bands, Batpiss, Bits of Shit, Kremlings, Mesa Cosa, Digger and the Pussycats are all AWESOME!
next year. Last time we went was in April of this year and I think it's pretty safe to say that it exceeded all of our expectations. The hospitality that Europeans show touring bands is amazing, pretty much all of our shows we were fed and given a place to crash courtesy of the venue. Not to mention the copious amounts of free booze, they really treat bands well over there. I can't wait to get back. You guys have got a bit going on here as well. You've got a film clip coming out? What can we expect? Yeah we filmed our first clip about a week or so ago, our good friend Fiz was kind enough to lend her expertise and film wizardry for it as well as a kick arse crew. I guess you should probably expect the unexpected... or not, there's no script there's just us playing all squished up in a dark room. Sweaty business indeed. And you guys are still going to be playing over the summer months? Most definitely, summer shows are totally our vibe. In January we're pretty stoked to be playing with two of my favourites in Earthless and The Shrine at the Hi Fi bar. So I'm pretty bloody excited that I get to share the stage with Mario Rubalcaba, lets hope my fan boy ways don't get too awkward . Bad Visions self titled debut album is available now through Every Night Is A Saturday Night www.everynightisasaturdaynight.com
The Frowning Clouds Article: Strawb G Hetti
There’s something happening down Geelong way. While there’s always been stuff happening down in the second city of late there seems to be a tonne of bands coming out of there that are shaking things up. One of those bands is the Frowning Clouds. Playing a bastardised version of psychedelic rock with overtones of garage, surf and real r’n’b the Frowning Clouds are a band that will have radio’s across the country transmitting a sound that just doesn’t seem to fit in the digital area. Rock & Roll Magazine caught up with one of our favourite guitarists and Frowning Cloud Zac Olson... Geelong? What's happening with all that surfypsychedelic-drenched in reverb music coming out from down that way? I don’t know. I guess it’s kind of coming out everywhere from all over the place. I’m not sure what it is… I guess it’s seeing other peoples bands and just the equipment and the gear that we’re using. We played for years without guitar pedals or anything and didn’t know anything about them. Then I got a string reverb pedal and we just kind of abuse that. It’s just all over the place at the moment.
gigging from then until now and I’m 22 so it’s been a while. It’s pretty full on but I’d prefer to be spending my time doing this rather than just working a shitty job or whatever. The music’s a bit of a light at the end of a dreary week? Yeah, when you have a record that your proud of or you play a gig that you’re stoked with it’s worth it. You guys are all from Geelong? I’m actually from New Zealand and the bass players from somewhere up in NSW but the rest are from down this way. How is it down that way? Well, there’s not much of scene anymore. There’s a lot of bands but it’s really died out after the Nash closed. Everyone was going to the Nash of a weekend and there was always a band playing but now everyone’s either moved to Melbourne or there’s nowhere for them to play. It’s thinned out a lot. There’s nowhere to play. I have no intention of leaving any time soon. I’m happy here. It’s just so much cheaper here and if you do have to go to Melbourne it is only an hour in the car or on a train. There’s still a bit happening around there though… you guys just played Queenscliff… how was that?
Do you think it’s got something to do with what everyone grew up listening too?
It was great. We played two sets which is something we haven’t done in a while. We played half an hour then had a break and played for Yeah, I think it’s just what we listen to as another half an hour which was fun. It was well. When we first started we got right into Pink Floyd and especially Barrett’s Pink Floyd weird but it was good. We were on at 11 in the morning which was hard. We got up at 10:30 and really early on. We always really wanted to make music like that but we were nowhere near shoved some food in our faces and went down good enough on our instruments or in terms of and played. song writing to be able to do that. So I guess And the new album? It was made Triple R’s album of it’s got a lot to do with that. the week. You must be pretty happy? What did you grow up listening too? When I was growing up my Dad was playing in bands so there was always guitars and stuff lying around and he’s favourite band was Megadeath. So, I literally grew up listening to that. All that sort of stuff… early Metallica and that. I sort of was on that until I was 8 and I saw the Sex Pistols on TV and asked my Mum to buy me a Sex Pistols CD and just went from there. I got into all the punk stuff. Then I found the Kinks and was right into the 60’s but yeah… everything. I like a whole lot of stuff. When did you start playing music?
Yeah, it was surprising. I didn’t expect anything like that so it was good. It’s nice to get some recognition for our labouring because it took us a long time to get that second album out finally. We had sort of recorded a couple of albums of stuff a few years ago and we really liked it. But it just took such a long time. But with this one we were finally happy with the line up we had so we quickly wrote a whole heap of new songs and ended up doing 20 songs so we could whittle it down to 14. All our previously releases have come out and we’ve been a bit “Oh… no!” but with this one we’re really proud of it. We’re happy. It’s a good thing.
My first band was the Frowning Clouds and I How does it compare to the first album? was about 14 when we started practicing and stuff. I was about 15 when we played our first I think it’s just totally different. With the gig. It was pretty young. We’ve been pretty much first one I think we were pretty young. I was
16 or 17. I think at the time we were unaware that we might have had a shtick… we had this trashy, out of tune kind of thing and we didn’t spend as much time on it as we would of liked to. We rushed it. It’s hard to word but I think we were just rushed. We were kind of naïve. We didn’t even like the first album before it came out. It had front cover on it that we hated and all that sort of stuff. We’d prefer to just forget about it. When we toured it we weren’t even playing the songs off the album. We were doing a whole bunch of other songs. So this is kind of debut? I guess… we were just stuck in a rut with the first one. How was the recording? In typical Frowning Clouds fashion everything just kind of went wrong. We’d booked out a studio that we’d recorded a song for the Nugget compilation in that had all these pianos and old organs and stuff in it. We really liked it so we booked the studio and got a guy, Tim Dunne, who we had recorded with a few times before and we flew him down to record it. The day he got here we went and picked him up from the airport and went to the studio and there was another band loading in. It turned out they’d double booked us and because the other band was loading in so they came out on top. So we had this guy that we’d flown down from Sydney but no studio to record in. Everyone got on the phone just to try and find a place because they’re was a certain desk that Tim wanted to use. There was just one studio that had this thing he wanted and luckily it was free. So we got in there and managed to squeeze out all the songs in four days and he took them all up to his place to mix. It took a while to get through the mixing process because he’s very particular with that sort of stuff but his got a really good ear. You got a big guitar sound out of it?
you can get this crazy sound out of it. We put the space echo before my EQ pedal and it sounds like this big massive sound was being squeezed out of this little hole. What about live? I’ve got a bit of a limit to only have 3 pedals on stage. I still like to play with no pedals sometimes. I like it to be raw. If you listen to Pink Floyd Live at the BBC and it’s got all the Barrett stuff on it without any of the studio tricks. It’s just this big fuzzy guitar and it sounds awesome. It’s real heavy and it’s got me going back to trying to sound psychedelic without using any effects. You guys kind of make music that people could dance to as well… does that happen much? I think a lot of people at our earlier shows did come along to dance and stuff. We did kind of make music that you could do that too but it’s not something that I want to have to do live up too at every gig. The customer is always right but sometimes I just don’t want to play the slower songs. It’s just relative to where we’re playing I suppose. You can make the slower songs sound a lot bigger on a bigger stage. You guys are playing Boogie Fest next year as well? We’re really pumped for that. We played one of the first ones on the first albums tour and we wanted to get back there so bad but we didn’t have any releases that would grant us a spot at a festival so we’re so happy that we’re on it again next year. We were going to play it this year and they said we’d playing but we didn’t hear anything back so we thought we didn’t get it but then we saw on the website that we were on for this one and they hadn’t even told us so it was just “Oh, awesome”. It was a nice surprise. I’m very excited to get back and play. Have you got anything planned between now and Boogie Fest?
It was a bit late to organise a tour for the album so we will do a proper album tour early next year and we’re playing the Adelaide and Sydney Sunnyboys shows as well. We were just excited that they asked us to do it so we said yes at the drop of a hat. I saw them at What about your backline? Meredith last year and they were just so good. Well, it’s kind of weird with this album because They’re just so energetic. Sometimes you see an I used a Marshall for the whole album. I never old reformed band and they kind of sound old and tired but they don’t. It’s great. used them but it worked and it sounds really good. I used a space echo pedal as well. Not the old sort but a digital version of it put into a Whereabouts is available now pedal that you can carry around with you. through There’s a certain order that you’re meant to Anti-Fade Records put pedals in apparently but we sort of realised if you put them in the wrong order Yeah, we used to use old hollow bodies but lately we’ve gone to the solid bodies. I use an old 60’s Burns 12 string on every single song on the album. I think it was made in London in 1960 something. They just sound better.
now we know who bought the second album
Ok, so this is a true story.
Now, none of you would know what I look like but I’m not the prettiest motherfucker out After we launched our little rag last month we there. I’m big. I’m hairy. I’m covered in tattoos decided it would be a good idea to do some (proper Johnny Dollars) and I don’t dress advertising. nicely at all. It makes sense. I’m all old jeans, shearers singlet and a cut Why would we want to do this and not let off denim jacket that hasn’t been washed in people know that it’s out there to read? years that has a One Direction badge on it I wear for my nieces. It kind of defeats the whole point of doing something like this. I look pretty fucking scary. Probably smell a lot worse. But how were we going to advertise? The flip side of that is that I’m a fucking We’ve got fuck all money. really nice guy. Too nice sometimes. It’s not like we can take out an advertisement Anyway, here comes this woman. on the television or anything like that. “You can’t put that up, it’s illegal, rah, rah, About the only thing we could afford to do was rah!”” to print up some posters and do an old fashioned poster run. She was pure aggression. She actually got in front of my face and pointed. It’s a tried and tested way of doing advertising on the cheap. It’s what loads of She was fucking shrieking like a lunatic. people do. Well, ok then I thought let’s see where this So that’s what we did. ends up. We got the posters printed up, got some sticky People were already stopping to watch this tape and marched around town for days putting woman scream and fucking harangue me. up posters. Calmly I pointed out the fact that the pole in It’s was fun. question “wasn’t even attached to her fucking building” I got a souvlaki and we even stopped into a couple of watering holes for a nice cold What she didn’t understand was that if she had beverage or 3 to keep hydrated. of just asked me with some manners not to put it up in front of her shop I would have just Over all it was a shit load of fun. said “Sure, no problems” Except for one little run in we had. Just like I did for the 3 other shop owners While we were down on Smith Street in previously who had asked me not too. Collingwood putting up a poster on a street But no. She wanted to make a bigger point. light there came a shriek from inside one of the shops. “It’s all illegal. You’re not allowed to put posters up. I’m a member of the traders Like a bullock to gate this woman came flying association and you’re not allowed to do it. out of the shop just fucking screaming. The police have been pulling down posters and
BLUES Article: Shane Hilton
telling people not to do it. We’re trying to clean the street up.”
farce to come up and ask for a poster to take home with them.
Now, just keep in mind that she was still screaming at a ridiculous level.
They were super nice people and got just as much of a laugh as I did. I’m sure it made there Sunday.
“Pull down the poster”
I got a couple of subscribers and a few “Good At this stage I thought “No, fuck you” and I on you buddy” comments and continued about my told her something to that effect (exactly that merry way putting up posters.. as I recall). Marvellous really. So, what does she do? Now, a few things started to bug me about this She rips down the poster and starts ripping it little run in. up and get this! She say’s “All you’re doing is creating litter!” The first was the behaviour of someone who is apparently a member of, what I imagine is, the Ha! Smith Street Traders Association. What the I’m pretty quick so I pointed out “Listen lady fuck? it wasn’t litter until you ripped the cunt of a Is that the way they want their members thing down. What’s the name of your shop?” behaving like out on the street? “Are you threatening me? Is that a threat?” If they’re trying to clean up the street maybe “No, I just want to know so I remember not to start with eradicating all the smack that gets fucking shop there” sold around there and the petty theft and begging? “It’s a threat. You’re threatening me. I’m calling the police” I don’t know it’s just a thought. I’m not a thinker. By this stage I realised that this woman was completely unhinged. There was something The second was that she had valid point. It is completely fucking nuts about her. illegal. Sure, everyone still does it but you’re not meant too. All these people were watching and just shaking their heads at the behaviour of this So what did I do? woman. I went back to her shop. She must of realised that as well and wanted I went in there, straight up to the husband, to make out that I was this big, scary guy that told him who I was, what had happened and was threatening to burn down her shop and explained my thought’s about it. kill her fucking poodle. I gave him my card and asked that the lady So I told her “Lady, call them. You can use my email and talk to me about it. phone. The only threatening behaviour has come from you. The only act of violence was Sure she was rude, threatening and completely when you pulled the poster down. Everyone’s fucking off her rocker but she had a valid seen and heard it” point. Well, that fucked her.
A point that’s wrong but still valid.
She started to walk back into her shop and then to save some face she turned around and said “Would you like to speak to my husband about it”
Now, I’m not going to name the shop that I had the run in with.
That’s right... the threat of the husband. I started laughing and said “Sure, send him out. I don’t think he would say fuck all because he would have to know that you’re fucking nuts” Did the husband come out? Of course not. The only thing she did was embarrass herself and get the people who were watching this
It wouldn’t be right of me. They’re hardworking small business people and the husband was an ok guy. Quite friendly in fact. He told me worked in the music industry which kind of surprised me considering the nature of the argument. I don’t want to pay them out because of a fucking poster. Shit, they probably have it hard enough being in a bricks and mortar business. But just as she wanted to make a bigger point in a public forum so do I.
Although, not that I’m going out on a limb here, I think it’s safe to say that my point is going to hold some weight and be articulate and well thought out.
Let’s be honest, bands very rarely make a profit. The overwhelming majority would manage to keep a balance of absolute zero.. a lot of them would be in the red.
You see, the music is where the action is.
Now, notice that I wrote they don’t make a profit. They might make a lot of money but they don’t make a profit.
Sure, there might be other things that draw people to a place like Collingwood but when it boils down to bare bones it’s the music that creates those environments. If it wasn’t for the venues in and around that area. The shops, like that ladies, would not be there. So let me get the cultural and emotional arguments out of the way.
I would say a lot of bands make a fair bit of money. It’s just that they’re paying out pretty much what they’re bringing in. Local bands are an important part of the economy. They contribute to a whole heap of things. Shall we go through a few of them?
When I was a kid we used to come down to Melbourne once every couple of years.
Why not? It will only be the final nail in the coffin of that ladies shitty argument.
I loved it.
It all starts with the poster.
It was those trips that guaranteed I ended up in this town as soon as I possibly could.
Any band that’s going to have a gig is going to advertise. It’s necessary. You want people there.
Even at the age of 8 I can remember the vibrancy and energy of the place. And what's the only thing I can really remember?
The posters and graffiti. I would stop to look at the posters and think to myself “Who created this? They’re aliens! I want to be an alien just like these weird people putting up all these posters”
Well, so they can hear your music and give you money. The money is very important because you have to pay for the posters that advertised the gig. See what we’re getting at?
There was just so much happening.
There’s a few people that have a job because a band went and bought posters to put up around town.
I wanted to be a part of it.
The flow on effect from that is fucking huge.
I wanted to be one of those guys putting up the posters.
There’s the printers, the companies that supply the paper and ink, the couriers and all those people in those companies that benefit from it (secretaries, sales individuals, mail boys etc).
I couldn’t go into the gigs or watch any of the bands but I’ll tell you what! I could look at the fucking posters and just imagine it! That’s just the act of purchasing the posters. Those posters are a tradition.
Now, the band has the posters... What do they do?
They’ve been getting put up, not just in Australia, but in every single hub of creativity around the world for fucking decades.
Well, a good thing is to go to wherever it is your playing and drop some off.
It’s a part of a culture. Would we deny any other group of people the right to practice a part of their culture? Of course not. There would be outrage. Those posters being put up on poles everywhere are part of the fabric that makes the music community so fucking great. They’re artistic, colourful, informative and most of all they’re a way bands can get people to watch them. Now, this is where some hard facts come into play.
There’s a publicist/booker at most venues that put posters up in and around the venue. Another job... But that’s not enough... You better put some up around town so that even more people come to the show! Why? Well, you want to make some money so you can go in and record an album... Oh no! There’s more jobs! Fuck, there’s so many jobs that come from this little act that we can’t really be bothered listing them all.
There’s the engineers, the studios, the hire companies, the people making the records, the people selling the albums, the record companies, the cd duplicators, the printers (again... greedy bastards) and a fucking shit load more that we can’t even think of. You see this snowball effect? It’s amazing. We’ve not even taken into consideration the venues themselves and the myriad of people, suppliers and companies they employ.
chinwag with me. Go right ahead! I love being a pain in the balls and I could be a very big pain in your balls when it comes to posters and you fucking hypocrites (How far away is the local election? It couldn’t be too long... I’ve still got all those pretty stickers on the telephone pole at the front of my house) And to that lady, I understand your point but you’re wrong.
It’s a fucking pole. It’s primary function is pretty basic. For the most part it’s a long cyndrical bit of metal holding up a light and The people who go to gigs usually eat and drink not much else. somewhere as well! Why can’t people utilise it for something Fuck, now we have chefs! positive? The effect of that little poster is unbelievable. They make people want to go to Smith Street and These people have to spend the money they earn maybe, just maybe spend some money at your somewhere. establishment. It’s fucking logical. It’s basic economics. If I were you I would take some friendly advice. And we want to let someone like this unhinged Be polite. You’re in sales. It just makes sense. fascist deny bands the opportunity to do that? Be careful about who you approach and go off What fucking shit. on all half cocked. It wasn’t until I gave my What a real kick in the balls. card to your husband that he even realised just how annoying I could make your life. If that’s what she wants. I’ll see her down at Centrelink because she’s going to go bust. Maybe you should have looked at the poster? Her shop is one of those shops that profits from What would have you done if it was a poster for the fringe benefits of the poster. marriage equality? Not only that but she trades on the culture that these little bands create. Bands are a fucking employment machine. Why the fuck would she want to fuck with that eco-system? And who for that matter let’s her get her little pet hate put into law? That’s the biggest travesty. These bands create the culture that makes all these fucking idiots want to live and work and have shops in places where the music is and local councils want to spit in there faces because some fucking lunatic wants to “clean up the street” Well, fuck you! I’m going to jump up and down and make noise just like this woman did and I’m going to get my own way. Why? Because our side is right. We actively contribute and care about the community. We can also see the bigger picture.
Just because a person looks a certain way doesn’t mean that they’re beneath you. If anything I think I’ve proven that I’m a better person than you. I gave you an opportunity to put your viewpoint forward which you chose not to do. It may have something to do with the fact that you realised you were wrong or it was the fear of putting your name and livelihood on the line to reinforce such a stupid argument. I don’t know. And lastly, you and I should never have had that argument. You and local government should support the people (particularly the bands) that make these places such vibrant places not treat them with contempt. They give you, and a lot of other people, an income. I’m also sorry for the way you come out in this article but they are the facts. I’m sure that you are a nice person underneath all that bluster. And to everyone else... It’s time that these stupid little laws got thrown the fuck out of the book.
We have to respect the people that contribute so So, if anyone, particularly the City of Yarra, much for so little. would like to send me a fine and have a bit of a Not treat them like criminals.
It’s a Thursday night and the Kremlings have taken the Bendigo Hotel hostage. They are a fucking awesome sight to behold. Behind the kit, drummer Taylor Stirrat is beating the piss out of the drums with his towering frame and straight back. His eyes are locked onto the fingers of bassist’s David Kent as the two provide the backbone to the Geelong five pieces sludge punk assault. The two guitarists Josh Holland and Jesse Putland each command a side of the stage whilst blasting out some of the dirtiest punk rock guitar you’re likely to hear this side of Detroit circa 1971. And then there’s the guy centre stage with the microphone in his hand.
He’s dressed in a delightful matching grey Rocky Balboa tracksuit with a red flannelette shirt. Tracksuit pants that over the night will go between being half way down his legs, revealing bright blue hi cut bikini briefs, to somewhere approximately around his neck. Before he takes the stage he starts to stretch. Once the band kicks in it’s like watching a rubber band snap. He howls and screams into the microphone wrapped around his neck like a man going through electro-shock therapy. It’s the type of performance that assures you that no matter how many shit bands come and go there will always be bands like the Kremlings out there fighting the good fight. The boys from Batpiss were telling us that you guys have been kicking them in the balls a fair bit… What the fuck?
There’s few performers getting around like Andre Merino who can put on a performance like this pent up ball of punk rock energy.
Jesse: I didn’t kick them in the balls…
His performances are fucking scary.
Andre: They’re kicking us in the balls.
Article: Shane Hilton
Josh: You’re a ball kicker.
Jesse: I think it’s a bit of a mutual love with those boys. If it was a perfect world we’d all be known as the Batlings.
David: And we got to see how many idiots like douche bags.
Andre: Or the Pisslings.
Taylor: I don’t know they were fucking terrible.
You guys got much planned for the summer months?
Andre: Our friends were playing with them the night before and they were just being dicks to them. You know “Get these ugly people out of the back stage” and shit like that.
Andre: Touring. Jesse: Yeah, some interstate gigs and see where that leads. Andre: We have to get out of Victoria. We’ve just been playing too much in Geelong and Melbourne. Well, not too much in Geelong nowadays but we have to get out. Jesse: We’re getting more and more exposure around Melbourne but we wouldn’t mind getting out and playing a bit more around the traps. Is there much interest from around the place to get you guys playing somewhere else? Jesse: Occasionally, but we’ve just got organise ourselves a bit better. Pull our finger out of our arse and do it. Andre: We’re pretty lazy. Have the Kremlings got a history? Jesse: There’s some mixed stories going around…
What’s the name of his band?
Jesse: We were walking into the band room when they were doing sound check and their security told us “Ok, no-one make eye contact with Bam. Just keep walking”. We weren’t allowed to look at the guy while he was sound checking. Andre: They were sound checking the one GG Alan song for 45 minutes. I shit you not… I’m probably under exaggerating. It was fucked. Jesse: Jello was good. All: It was awesome. Jesse: The band was good. They were right on. Josh: The Useless Children were good too… Fuck it was just all good. Guantanamo was just as good as the Dead Kennedys and their originals were just as fucking good!
Josh: Pretty much, me and Andre wanted to start a band, Jesse wanted to start a band and we had mutual friend that got us together. Then Taylor joined. We’ve gone through a few bass players…
Taylor: Batpiss were good that night. They were the highlight.
Andre: Fucking bass players…
Josh: No, the Useless Children played.
Josh: Before we ended up getting the good guy. The good bass player. The most handsome looking one anyway.
Taylor: Didn’t Batpiss play before them?
Jesse: We couldn’t remember how we got together until they were getting interviewed on the radio and they had no idea. There was this one chick that I used to live with that said they wanted to start a band with me and then she said to them that I wanted to start a band with them. She just kind of matched us up.
Taylor: I swear that Batpiss played.
Josh: Batpiss? Taylor: They played that night didn’t they?
Jesse: That was us.
Josh: No. Taylor: Are you sure? Andre: Batpiss didn’t play the Jello gig. David: What the fuck were you on?
Andre: We all started a band without knowing it Taylor: Oh fuck… I’m thinking of a different gig! Batpiss would’ve been good on whatever night basically. that was anyway. Jesse: It was all based on a lie. What was Jello like? This year must stand out a fair bit though… Was the Jesse: A real nice guy. highlight playing with Jello or Bam? Josh: He’s the same as he is on the Taylor: Not fucking Bam! documentaries. Andre: No, it was Bam! Andre: He had a bit of a red eye. Something had Jesse: Bam was an eye opener. happened to him. He’d been hit or something. Andre: I reckon it was fun as because we got Jesse: He went for a jog around the block away with everything. I had a blast. before the show. He goes jogging.
Andre: To get the blood flowing before the gig.
that 60’s garage sound?
Jesse: We’ve kind of stolen it off him now. We usually go for a jog before a gig.
Andre: Oh yeah! FFC (Flowers For Cops)
Andre: We got a bit puffed out last time we did it though.
David: The Underhanded.
Jesse: Yeah, we went for a bit of a sprint the last time we played the Tote. We only ran 50 meters and we were fucked! It was bad idea. We were trying to get pumped for the gig but we just made it fucking worse.
Jesse: There’s this group of guys that start bands every year and they’re fucking awesome but they just never stick at it.
Andre: We ran way too fast. We should have just run around the car. What about the Vulture Race EP? You must be pretty happy with it? Andre: Yeah… very happy with it. With the way it sounds. Mikey Young recorded it. Mikey did that as well? He gets around doesn’t he? Jesse: He’s a good man. He does a good job. Any plans for a bit more recording?
Taylor: Goon Bag Colostomy
Andre: Storm Tide. They’re fucking really good.
How is it playing down there now with Nash still gone? Andre: It’s different. People have been trying to do different stuff. Pan Studios tried to do a live thing but surrounding buildings were complaining. Jesse: It’s the same as down here in Melbourne. Just noise complaints. We had 2 or 3 gigs there that were really good but then the neighbours complained and shut everything down. It would have been perfect. But basically it’s just the Barwon Club now… it’s just that nobody wants to go to the Barwon Club.
Andre: We were in the midst of an album happening. We started off doing stuff for that. Andre: There’s stilljock’s there. People just want to fight you. It’s still happening. You guys are all from Geelong? Jesse: It could still be a long way off. You know money… things like that. Just to press LP vinyls and stuff like that… It costs us a fuck load. You guys are on Anti Fade as well? Andre: They’re doing an awesome job with us. Plus they’ve got 12 other bands with stuff happening as well. They support all of them too.
Andre: Yeah… David: I’m from Ballarat… Have you moved down to Geelong? David: I tried. Sort of… not really… sort of! What’s Geelong like? Andre: It’s great. It’s got everything you need. It’s going a bit under but who cares?
David: They’re all sick bands as well.
Jesse: Fords closing and jobs are going but I You guys a bit different to most of the other Anti Fade don’t know. People are saying it’s a bit like bands though? the Detroit of Australia. Andre: Yeah, but we’re all close mates because we’re all from the same town and shit. It’s a family thing.
Josh: They call it Geetroit.
Jesse: We’ve found being on that label that we get reviews of the EP and some of them have said that we’re just another 70’s garage band out of Geelong. They haven’t even listened to the EP.
(Detroit Rock City starts playing over the sound system)
Josh: We got called psychedelic something in some review. Jesse: Yeah, it was psych-garage. Josh: They obviously didn’t fucking listen to it. Jesse: We’re on Anti Fade, we’re from Geelong so were fucking wearing turtle necks I suppose. Is there a fair bit happening down there other than
Andre: Is this Detroit Rock City playing? Jesse: Especially in the 90’s or the early 90’s anyway. Some of the bands that came out of Geelong were fucking great. Bored! and the Dirty Lovelies. Fuck, some of those bands are my favourite bands of all time. I’d put them up there in my Top 10. What did you grow up listening too? Jesse: I’m a massive Bored! fan. They’re probably my favourite band. Them or the Powder Monkeys. MC5 or the Stooges. Josh: All my brothers were punk/ speed metal head dudes so I grew up listening to the Misfits, the Ramones and it kind of just went
from there. David: The same. Andre: Anything Stooges or Iggy Pop. Danzig, Misfits, New York Dolls, Johnny Thunders. What about the Kremlings live? What would people get if they came and saw you guys live? Jesse: We don’t like to toot our own horn… You have too…
Jesse: Not as much arse as our last bass player but he can work on that. Our last bass player had a massive arse. The rest of him was really skinny but his arse… Andre: He couldn’t go down slides. He once went down this slippery dip in a playground. He went down casually and just stopped because his arse was too big. For ages I was hanging shit on him about it. He finally told us why he thought everyone thought he had a big arse…
Andre: We’re more pure at heart and have inner Jesse: He said it was his pockets. beauty. An inner beauty that is more pure. Everyone else is skeezy and scummy… that’s why. Andre: Yeah, he said it was because he had big pockets. We’re the only pure ones ever. (complete outbreak of laughter) Taylor: Yeah, put that. Print it. It sounds good. Andre: That’s how I see it. Well, to finish up I thought… (Enter stage left… random punk rock chick) RPRC: You guys were rad at River Rocks. Andre: Thanks. RPRC: I left… Actually I don’t know how I left but I missed King Parrot because I got home early. Andre: You missed out.
What do you love about making music? Love in italics as well… Andre: I don’t know… Playing live… Jesse: Atmosphere Andre: …Energy… I don’t know when you see a live band you can just really feel it! Jesse: You get to do what you want really... It’s a form of expression. Andre: We’re not trying to sound corny or any shit like that. Taylor: (sarcastically) It’s a good way to work out the problems from our lives.
RPRC: It’s alright I’ve seen King Parrot like 20 Jesse: Yeah, we’re all really depressed. It stops times and I was kind of messy at the end… I saw us from slitting our wrists. you guys so that’s all that matters. If you could travel back in time and show one of your musical heroes your stuff who would it be and why? Andre: Thank you! Ok I thought to finish off we’d do the Rock & Roll Magazine rip off of the Beat 60 Seconds… Andre: What’s that? They ask five or six questions that take up about an inches print space… It’s pretty boring but you guys are funny fellows. Andre: Oh, ok!
Josh: We already gave Jello our CD. Jesse: Fred Sonic Smith. He’d probably fucking hate us! This questions a shit question so we’ll skip that… What have you got to sell CD wise? Andre: EP 1 and EP 2 When’s the gig? And with who?
Define your genre in 5 words or less?
Jesse: Ahhh… Fuck… Punk… Rock… Sludge… I can’t think of five!
Yeah, why not…
Josh: What do I have to answer as well…? What were his? Sludge, Punk, Messy.
Jesse: In about 2 hours.
Andre: The gig is on tonight.
Anything else you want to add?
Josh: Yeah, sloppy, noise. That’s about it.
Jesse: Come see our gigs.
David: I didn’t hear what he said. Sexy?
Andre: Yeah that’ll do. Come see us play.
Andre: World Music. Taylor: Shit? Terrible? Sexy Bass player! What do you think people would say you sound like?
The Kremlings Vulture Race EP is available through
Andre: That bass player is good.
Well, fuck me if it isn’t XMAS already! We really don’t give a shit about XMAS but we like getting stuff. Who doesn’t? Fuck giving. We just want Santa to bring us lot’s and lots of shit! So we’ve decided to take the great leap all music publications must take and make our very first list. Probably our last as well. The difference with our list is that we just want shit. We don’t really care about making judgements and ranking bands or any shit like that. Who really cares about that? If you’ve got a loved one that’s into all things rock & roll you might find some things here to put under the tree for them. And Santa! We’ve been really good. We promise. Now, bring us lot’s of shit or I’ll go to church and make XMAS all about that hipster wannabe Mexican guy who owns a taco truck. Hey Zeus, isn’t it?
1. The Cosmic Psychos HOORAY FUCK: Live At The Tote This comes on Beer & Piss coloured vinyl! The great thing about it is that once we got it we would never have to leave the house ever again... We could literally be at a Cosmic Psychos gig all day every day... 2. Kurt Cobain Mustang Apparently these are being discontinued so that fat fuck in the red suit better pick one up quick. Of course Kurt Cobain would never have paid $1599 for one but still... this things got balls. It’s got an angle single coiled pick up front and a Seymour Duncan JB humbucking bridge pick up that just kicks arse. We really want one. They make noise. 3. Time Wounds All Heels on vinyl for the first time! It’s the Powder Monkeys. Enough said. 4. King of the Hill Box Set It was between Hank & Kenny Powers. Hank won... but only just. We must be the only people in the world
LIST Article: Strawb G Hetti
that still watch this religiously. Our dream is to walk into Kmart and see a box set. We’d steal it right away.
We don’t none of that fancy fucking Gentlemen Jack or small batch bullshit (although the hangover is much smoother). Just give us a plain old 1L bottle, two 5. TAMA VT62S Ltd Edition Silverstar Drum Kit litres of diet coke (helps knock the Ok Santa, as well as the drum kit we’d like hangover as well) and we will be happy some understanding neighbours that won’t little vegemite's... mind us pounding away on these 10. Cigarettes.... motherfuckers at 4am until our ears bled or we passed out from sheer exhaustion. Are we allowed to write that? We didn’t say Thanks man. a brand... Fuck it! We smoke! We like them! We know it’s killing us but that’s ok 6. A Radio Birdman Tour because we live in the inner city and if It’s been a while since the Birdman fell we do get cancer the odds are it’s from all apart again but we know that Santa is a the fucks driving their fucking cars proud card carrying member of the Radio everywhere so fuck you! Birdman fan club so you never know! If we get a bottle of Jack Daniels from Do it, Santa! Do it! Santa Claus we’re going to need at least 3 packs of tobacco! It’s the way we work. 7. A years worth of Jimmy Grants Souvlaki Usually, we hate souvlaki with chips in 11. Socks & Jocks them (we eat a lot of souvlaki) but this Don’t pretend you don’t want them... If you souvlaki is just plain fucking awesome. didn’t get them you’d be pissed off that Apparently, this place is owned by the you have to go and buy them. bald fellow from MasterChef and he tried to make souvlaki trendy and cool. 12. Tickets to the Port Royal Street Festival The thing is souvlaki already was. It There’s a little rule in the Rock & Roll doesn’t need any help. Magazine office that we try to follow. Obviously, he’s never been to Hollywood That rule is never attend a gig that costs Palace at 4 o’clock in the morning drunk more than $50. as a skunk and covered in garlic sauce. It’s a fucking hard rule to follow and of But let’s get one thing straight. course sometimes rules are made to be This is the best souvlaki we’ve ever had. broken. But guess what? No shit. Just go there on a Sunday This little beauty is only $50! afternoon because none of the dicks are The perfect gift to get for yourself and a there. loved one! 8. A personalised guitar strap from Blacklisted Belts There’s this guy in Melbourne who makes personalised leather guitar straps. They’re awesome. A buddy of ours got one and he had the dude put a knuckle duster and all sorts of shit on it. It is as rad as all fuck. Don’t despair if you’re not in Melbourne because you can order them from www.blacklistedbelts.com He even does wallets, belts and shit like that. Real cool shit!
13. A ticket to the Future Of The Left Show at the Corner Hotel... No, I really want this. Someone buy it for me because I’m broke. That’s a hint. 14. The protection of all live music venues in Australia put into law so no cunts can fuck with them with petty bullshit! And give the industry some money as well you fucks so we can do something for the kids! Come on Santa! Is this such a big ask? Of course it isn’t! Do it or I will stab you in your fictional made up throat with a teaspoon you fat prick!
9. A bottle of Jack Daniels This could be the only thing on the list and if we got it we would be as happy as a No-one has paid or even asked to be in this... Except for the pig in shit. cigarette thing... They gave us a shitload of cash! Aren’t they nice!
Image courtesy of CLOWNS (Copyright Dean Smith Photography)
Article: Shane Hilton
Clowns are a fucking good band.
It’s a buzz that they’ve worked hard for.
A really fucking good band.
If there’s one thing you learn from sitting
If you haven’t heard Clowns don’t worry because odds are you will soon enough. It almost seems inevitable that this band is going to be even more successful than what they already are. They’re on that precarious precipice of being one of those bands people like to say they were listening too before anyone else was. Your best bet is to forget about the pissing contest and start listening to them now! For us they’re one of the best bands in Australia. And we’re not the only ones thinking that. The Melbourne quartet have been making waves across the country following the release of their debut album I’m Not Right and a self booked twenty+ date tour that saw them play everything from sold out clubs to radio
down and talking to them it’s that hard work really does pay off. Not only does every member study, work and play in a punk rock band that kicks arse full time but they also manage every aspect of the Clowns machine with DIY or die attitude. Not only that but all four of them are some of the nicest, most humble lads you’re likely to come across. If they’re even aware of the chatter around the traps about them they certainly don’t acknowledge it. That’s not the Clowns way. For them it’s all about the music, a few beers and playing with your mates. Rock & Roll Magazine sat down with Stevie (vocals), Jake (drums), Joe (guitar) and James (the Hern, bass) and found out about our new favourite band!
station car parks and even peoples houses.
How’s the tour going?
They’re just that kind of band. If there’s a
power point and at least one person there to
Stevie: Tip Top
watch... they’re going to play. And play they do!
Jake: It’s going awesome.
James: When we booked the tour it was pretty When their debut long player found it’s way to fucking big… a lot of dates and we thought Rock & Roll Magazine every single one of us “Shit, how are we going to get through all realised these guys are destined for bigger things.
I’m Not Right is one of the best albums we’ve heard in a long time. A direct quote from our
these?” but it’s actually been a breeze. Stevie: We fully expected to lose our minds but I think we’re doing alright.
review last month reads “If I’m Not Right isn’t
Jake: And our money! We’re all broke now.
the most right thing we’ve listened to in a
Stevie: Yeah, we thought we’d lose that.
long time than we’ll suck whatever reproductive organ you’ve got” We say that with all sincerity as well.
It’s cost a bit? James: Yeah, but we’ve made it all back. It was sort of “What have we got ourselves into
I’m Not Right is a world class album that’s a
buying all these plane tickets” but we’ve got
ferocious explosion of heavy handed punk
most of it back now so its happy days.
rock dripping with energy, intensity and attitude. It’s an album that’s created a shitload of ‘buzz’ as well. And if any band is worthy of ‘that buzz’ than Clowns are that band.
Doing what all good bands do and breaking even? Stevie: Yeah, we hope so. Has there been much of rock & roll action on the tour? We heard about a gig in Wollongong… James: You heard about that? That was funny… Stevie: Wollongong was really good. We were
meant to be playing out in a carport but when we rocked up to the gig it was 5 in the
What’s the deal with the water park though? That’s a cunt of a place to play…
afternoon and we looked around and there were Stevie: When we were touring Indonesia they hundreds of flats so someone was going to call don’t have venues. They have people that scout the cops. Of the hundred odd people around
there someone just was going to call them. So the first band started playing and the cops rocked up and gave the standard “Oh, you’re
locations. So little kids will go and asks old mate if they can put a punk show on in the garage or the car park or the water park itself. So we played in some real weird venues
playing too loud. You’ve got to stop playing”.
over there. The water park was by no means the So we thought “Oh shit! What do we do?” We found weirdest. some dude who lived in the house and said “Hey Jake: I think the ice cream shop was the most can we use your bedroom?” surprising and awesome. You know the back of James: There were like forty of fifty dudes who an ice cream store and we had 300 kids come stormed through this dudes house scouting
and it was fucking crazy. It was just insane. locations. It was like “Oh the kitchens alright It was this tiny little town that none of us but this bedroom might be a bit bigger and had ever heard of and it just blew us away. this guys bedroom has less stuff that we have
to move out”. So we ended going into this dudes bedroom and getting all his clothes and bed and just jamming into the hallway. Stevie: By the end of it the door was broken and the fan was fucked. Was it just a random gig? Jake: It was actually meant to be in a venue but it was double booked and then it got moved
James: We just turned it on that day. We played on a footpath in Kuala Lumpar one time. It’s hard to imagine a gig on a footpath was what it was. Stevie: It was some bizarre shit. James: It was the craziest trip of my life. Insane is the only way to put it. Jake: We’ll be back there eventually. It was just
to a backyard and then a house…
so much fun.
Joe: And then a carport and then to a bedroom.
There’s a big push to open up South East Asia to Australian bands…
Jake: I think there was a couple of bands that were meant to play after us that got shut down. The cops were real dicks.
Stevie: The thing about South East Asia is that the scene is huge. There’s no doubt that bands can go over there and play big shows but the
James: They ended up getting this letter the
conversion rate to dollars. For an Australian
next day from the neighbours saying “Cheers
band to go over there they don’t make that
for all the noise last night. Karma will come
much money. You make a lot of fans but you
back and bite you in the arse” It was all typed don’t make money. Whenever I hear industry out. people talking about it I think “You should do Joe: We loved it.
it because it’s going to be sick” but in a
You guys have played in some odd places… we got an old press release of yours saying that you’d played in water parks and flea markets and those sorts of places…
do it. You could do it and charge a whole heap
James: The water parks thing is true but the flea market thing is kind of funny because it’s a Chinese whispers things that’s kind of gone wrong. It’s on 30 or so media website saying “Clowns play in flea markets!” I don’t remember it happening but it might have happened.
business sense they’re probably not going to for the ticket but no one would go because they can’t afford it. James: You’ve got to think that when they do it they have to hire a location, hire all the gear including guitars and drums and then they charge 2 or 5 cents Australian at the door. You’ve got hope that the guys putting it on aren’t losing money let alone you making money.
Image courtesy of CLOWNS (Copyright Matt Warrell Photography www.mattwarrell.com)
It’s more of a love thing?
Stevie: At one stage at the big open windows at
Stevie: Yeah. When we were over there we didn’t
the Public Bar I was standing there trying to
the guys who were organising it all and they
scarves and shit just ran down Victoria St and
pay for accommodation or food or anything. All figure something out on the door and 4 or 5 dudes with hoodies over their faces and the money that was being made was going to just did everything for us.
jumped through the window and ran straight
James: I went 2 weeks over there and I didn’t
get kicked out. I never saw anyone get kicked
even open my wallet.
into the band room… I’m pretty sure they didn’t out. It was like that moment in time I was just
It’s a bit of a throwback to the old “You can sleep on my floor” days…
so proud. It was great. I think if you do that
Stevie: Yeah, exactly.
James: People kept telling us we should get a
But you guys have been playing some big shows on this tour?
bigger venue because it was sold out but I
James: There the ones you work towards. It’s
Joe: Yeah, we wouldn’t have changed a thing.
always an achievement when you pack out a
Jake: Some family and stuff didn’t get in but
pub or bar or any space at all. Jake: I think our Melbourne show for the release of the album was probably one of the shows I will remember. It was a 170 capacity venue with 250 people crammed in there. Joe: I think our fans put more money through
than you deserve to get in.
think it was perfect as it was.
they can see us anytime. Stevie: I think if we had of done a bigger venue I don’t’ think people would’ve been in such a scurry to get in if you know what I mean? James: There’s no sense of excitement.
the bar than ever before.
Stevie: Everyone that was there was for all the
Jake: There were people that dived through the
good crowd which is one of the things we want
windows to get in. James: They were jumping through windows and drawing fake stamps just so they could get in.
bands. Every band playing that night had a to promote. James: And we got paid motherfucker.
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Joe: That was nice too. You guys don’t use a booking agency either… how the fuck did you organise such a big tour? Jake: So much stress.
be concerned about trying to get a lot of money at shows so they could end up booking the bigger venues because they would pay more but since we’re doing it we can be like “Fuck it! Let’s play a house show”
James: All of us do it ourselves and we call on Jake: The thing is those shows are always the a lot of favours from interstate mates. We play best as well. The Wollongong house was one of in DIY punk band so we do a lot of networking but with this one we definitely did it all guns blazing and got anyone and everyone from everywhere and anywhere to pull some strings to help us out this time which we’re
the best shows on the tour. It’s just crazy and so much fun. Joe: Yeah, and we never made a cent but who cares?
really thankful for. It took a while and took
That’s what it’s about?
a bit of head banging against a desk to do it
Joe: It’s about rock & roll mate!
but we got there. Joe: I think there’s a sense of pride you get from just booking everything. A sense of
Is there a manager in the band? Jake: We all pull our weight.
control as well because once you put it in
James: We all have our role. Me and Jake do a
someone else’s hands you don’t always know
lot of the booking. Steve does a lot of the
what’s going to happen but if you’re booking
record label stuff. Joe does a lot of the
your own shows you have that control.
internet stuff but at the same time we all
James: We knew which shows were going to be
pitch in with everything.
big, which shows were going to be quiet and
Stevie: If there’s too much record label shit
which were going to be sold out.
going on we’ll divvy it up but it’s
Joe: Picking the bands we’re going to play with is a big one as well. Stevie: If we had a booking agent as well they’d
progressively getting more and more out of control but I feel like we’ve still got it under control. Have you had any phone calls from any festivals yet?
James: We’ve had the little festivals which we’d
James: Me and Jake got the DIY tattoo when we
probably prefer to do anyway. We did
were in South East Asia. That’s how serious we
BloodRockFest in Perth, we did RiverFest in
kind of take it.
Moruya up near Batemans Bay which was awesome. That was insane. It was crazy.
Stevie: Even if we got a manager I think that we would still control pretty much everything.
Stevie: We haven’t got a phone call from AJ
It would be more like having someone working
for us rather than an industry top dog
Joe: You’ve got to respond to his tweets! James: We should tweet… we could get our foot in the door!
telling us “You guys have got to do this and you shouldn’t have played that bedroom!” Jake: The main thing we realised about six months ago when we had some offers coming in
Are the big festivals something you want to do?
from people wanting to help was that half the
Stevie: It would be cool to do but at the moment
fun of this band is booking the tours and all
I’m just pretty sweet on counting our blessings that. Even though it’s stressful but when get on how we’re going. It’s the kind of thing that something awesome you realise that it was all when you’re a kid you aspire to do but at the
us. It’s a self satisfaction thing. We all feel
moment we’re just having a ball playing the
so involved in the band there’s no-one saying
smaller stuff and playing peoples houses.
“Oh you should be doing this”
Maybe one day we will play the Big Day Out or
Joe: The main thing is that you learn by doing.
something. James: We played bigger stage shows with the barrier and all that and you play and it’s
Stevie: These are probably skills that one day we can use to piss younger bands off.
real exciting but then you play a gig like our James: A lot of our mate’s bands are even record launch in front of 250 people and they asking us for advice. That’s DIY itself sharing don’t compare. The energy we get from those
the knowledge and wisdom with other people.
smaller shows just blows the bigger shows
Stevie: That’s how we learnt it. From other
right out of the fucking water.
Jake: You know there is a time and a place for
Joe: It’s one of those great experiences as well.
bigger things to happen to us and when it does The more you do the more stories you’ve got to we’ll just take it as it comes. tell. You like it DIY?
Do you have an approach to the live shows?
Jake: 100 percent rock & roll man!
You guys are all Melbourne boys?
Stevie: Maybe not 100 percent but we aim for 95
James: Bayside area.
and hopefully get there sometimes.
Joe: I’m a bit more north… Heidelberg.
Jake: Always aim for 100. It doesn’t mean you get Jake: We’re all Sandringham/Beaumaris boys. there… none of us are dead yet! What was it like around there? James: 100 percent means death. James: It was good. I liked it but when you turn Stevie: For us we don’t have an approach. We just 18 you kind of realise that it’s big city. You get on stage and start playing. Whatever
don’t realise it’s a big city when you’ve been
happens… happens man! Sometimes we’ll play a
living in Beaumaris all your life.
gig and there will be hundreds of people there and nothing will happen. Other times we play in front of five people and there’s broken glass and blood everywhere. It’s a case by case situation. But as far as it’s going to go is as far as we’re going to take it. James: It’s just plug in, have a beer and let what’s going to happen happen. Jake: Just party. You have high energy music… do you always get a high energy response? Or do you get the Melbourne gaze from 10 metres away from the stage with the arms folded and shit like that? James: I wouldn’t say we get high energy all the time but most of the time we do. Joe: Every city’s different. Melbourne’s stuck up. Sydney’s stuck up. The best places we play in are places like Wollongong and Newcastle or Tassie! Bands love Tassie! Jake: You go to a good punk show at the
Stevie: It’s the Bayside bubble. Everyone from there only associates with each other. It seems a bit culturally distant even though it’s only 25 minutes away. James: If a mate had a party and he only lived 10 minutes away I’d be like “Fuck you live ages away” Stevie: Even if we’re playing in Collingwood it’s hard to get our friends from high school to a gig at the Tote. But I suppose if we play a gig at the Espy all our friends from this side of the river wouldn’t get down there so it’s kind of weird. James: The first time I came to the Tote I was 17 and I came with a mate to see the Hard Ons and I was scared. I looked up Wellington St and then looked up Johnston St and thought “Shit! Where the fuck am I?” You guys are still all over that way? Jake: For the time being. Or at least while our
parents will have us. They’ve started giving me Brisbane Hotel in Hobart and Gibbo just runs a the hints to get out. mad joint. You’ve got to go down there. It’s as Stevie: I’m on my last foot as well but for the cool as. time being as lame as it is live with your What about outside of music? Do you all work? Uni? parents I still feel that I’m pretty young and Stevie: I’d like to say that we’re all rock stars
it’s a good way we can save our cash to buy
that do nothing but…
plane tickets so we can keep touring.
James: We all still live with our parents and
James: If I was to pay rent, study and play in
shit! It’s real cool…
a band I’d be fucked. It’s impossible to do.
Stevie: We all just live normal lives. We all
What are you studying?
work and go to uni and do all that.
Jake: I’m doing event management.
You have to pay for it...
Stevie: I just finished a music industry thing
Stevie: Exactly. We don’t want to create this
image that all we’re all just these fucking
James: I’m doing commerce.
crazy young punks that just tour and party.
Joe: I’m studying political science.
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and H Block.
Stevie: Yeah, you can expect some Bad Religion-
Joe: That’s pretty cool.
esqe lyrics on our next record since Joe’s joined the band. Jake: Joe’s nickname is “Google” because he knows everything. Stevie: You can ask him anything and he will have the fucking answer. He’s just too fucking
Stevie: Yeah, it’s probably the most punk thing his ever done. Jake: The first gig I went to was Motley Crue and Motorhead. I was 13. Joe: Mine was Kiss or an all ages Bodyjar show.
smart for other people.
How did you all meet up?
Joe: I know… Everyone else is just beneath me.
James: Through school and through friends of
What did you all grow up listening too? Stevie: AC/DC all around I think.
friends. Jake: We played in shitty high school bands
and we decided that when we finished high Jake: Some terrible music to start with. A lot of school we’d ditch those bands and try and pop punk like Blink 182 when I was really start a good one. young.
Stevie: And then we started another shitty band
How young's young?
that progressively turned into an alright
Jake: I was like 9 but listening to the power
band and now we’re sitting here right now.
rock bands like AC/DC and Guns’n’Roses was
Joe: I just jumped onto this one.
what got me into music. Joe: For my 8th birthday my dad got me AC/DC Live and Kiss’s Greatest Hits and that was just Dad telling me that “This is rock and roll… I just want to make sure” Stevie: The first gig I went to was when I was 8 and Dad took me to see the Offspring, 28 Days
Is there a story to it? James: We just wanted free beers and something to do. Jake: We took a gap year to play music. None of us went to uni the first year we just started playing shows.
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Stevie: There’s no endless saga and this
spent maybe a month and we were ready for
awesome climatic ending. We just wanted to
play music. We’d known each other for years and that’s what we did. We started a band.
Stevie: We’d booked gigs and we’d only rehearsed twice so it was like “Fuck, someone’s got to
So no big discussion about what you were going to do?
write a song”. I guess that is how we got
James: It was going to be punk.
James: Not that we were gig ready by the time
Stevie: At the time we didn’t really care. I don’t
we had the gigs.
think we were really thinking about going
Whereabouts did you play your first gig?
this far. We were more about starting a band so we could go to gigs and drink free beer. Where did you come from Joe?
everything going so fast.
Jake: The Grace Darling James: And our second gig was down at the
basement at the Espy. The Grace Darling was a Joe: I was a fan of the band. They were mates of bit of last minute rehearsal in a pub. The mine. They were playing rock and roll. They Espy gig was the one we told our mates to come were playing punk.
Jake: Joe is our third guitarist and he’s here
Jake: The Espy was kind of home for a long
What were the first few rehearsals like?
James: We did a 2 month residency there. We
James: Steve used to have this thing where he
kind of got fazed out of there after a while.
would write a song from start to finish. Full
Stevie: They really liked us at the start. They
lyrics, drums, guitar, bass and he would go here it is and we would play it so we never had any of those awkward rehearsals. The ball was rolling from day one. Not a lot of bands can do that. They spend a year in the rehearsal room before they have a full set. We
were always happy to throw us on a gig and let us play. James: St Kilda changed as well. It’s not the thriving live music promenade that it was 20 years age.
Stevie: Unless you’re going to the Espy you’re
Stevie: Let’s just say there was an incident with
not really going there for a gig… it’s more of
someone and there was something about being
a nightclub thing now. It’s just not where punk unfaithful and we just wrote a song about it bands can play now.
because we thought it was funny.
James: It’s all yuppies and restaurants. The
James: There was a girl involved.
only thing that hasn’t changed are the hookers and the trannys. You built a fan base though?
Stevie: It doesn’t leave much to the imagination but we just wrote a song about it and called it “Rat” because Ballarat is a bit like a second
James: We are just constantly doing stuff. Since home for us. this band started, and it’s something I’m pretty Jake: We’re pretty close with the people up at proud of, is that we’ve never not had gig the Korova Lounge and they look after us coming up ever. We booked our first gig and whenever we’re up there. then we had the next one, the next one, the next one and the next one. If we’ve ever got to
Joe: Plus my Mum lives up there.
a stage we’re it looks like we’ve got nothing
James: She always gives us toast and coffee.
coming up we’ve always went “Right, let’s get
Stevie: Writing a song about the place just
something happening!” For a band that were 18 year old shit cunts from Beaumaris to constantly have gig’s is pretty cool. Jake: We’ve been doing this for close to four years now and nothing’s changed. We’re still booking shows all the time. We love it.
seemed like a natural thing and it was all inspired because this person did something really dumb. Did getting Joe on guitar change the direction of the band? James: Not really because we had most of the
Stevie: The only thing that’s really changed is
album written before he joined the band. I
that we’re better rehearsed, we’ve got more
suppose in actual direction but not sound
recordings and people come to the shows now.
wise… yes we’ve been able to tour a lot more.
Would you put an estimate on how many gigs you’ve played so far?
We’ve been able to focus a lot more.
Joe: It would have to be pushing 200.
but having a guitarist who is in for the long
James: We might have knocked out 200…
Stevie: We were already heading in a direction run just let us press the gas pedal and just go a lot faster in the direction we were already
Stevie: This year we’ve done about 60.
James: The goal for this year was to play more
Jake: I think things have tightened up a lot
interstate shows than Melbourne shows. Right
more as well since Joe has been around. The
now we’re sitting on about 40 percent Melbourne line up that we have now just feels really and 60 percent out of state. comfortable. We’re all dickheads and car trips Stevie: We’re getting there.
can be hell…
Jake: We’ve done 3 headline tours this year. So
James: But we’re friendly dickheads. We all
we’ve had a lot of road time this year. Next
have a line and we know when we’re about to
year hopefully we get to cross waters. That’s
cross it so we don’t.
the plan for next year.
Jake: No, we push it!
You got a song from one of your sojourns up in Ballarat didn’t you?
Stevie: Sometimes we do just shits and giggles.
James: Yeah… yeah! Joe: There’s a story behind that. Jake: You can tell it Stevie…
What about you Joe… Was it hard to come into this? Joe: I sort of went from a couple of other bands and not really doing too much. They were a band I was a fan of and I heard they were looking for a guitarist so I just volunteered
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my services. Jake: It was actually here at the Tote that you stuck your hand up. Joe: Yeah, it was your hundredth show. I’d
James: I think the album is 12 tracks and Steve writes the majority. I write a few and Joe does a couple. Joe: Steve does pretty much all the lyrics.
spoken to them before and I just kind of said
Jake: I think when these guys bring in a new
“Yeah, I play guitar”
song they will show us how it goes and we
James: If you watch the video for the old version of ‘Eat a Gun’ at the end of the video there’s a dude in the crowd who shouts out “Yeah! One more song! Do it!” and it was him. Stevie: It was a bit prophetic. Joe: I’ve done many more songs.
will play it how it goes but then everyone in the band has their own opinions on it. It’s just a general rule to play it the way it was written and then pick at it. Stevie: Sometimes we will write a song and play it and that the song done. Other times we will sit on it for month until we think “Now, this is
Is there a song writing process?
a song we can play”
Joe: It’s pretty independent I think. Normally,
James: Sometimes we just write a song and…
one of us had pretty much completely written
Stevie: We ditch it straight away.
the song and we will bring it in. Stevie: We will bring it in and the rest band will say “No, no! This part sucks. Change it. This chorus is now the intro”
James: That’s songs start to finish with lyrics and we just scrap them. I’ve forgotten how many songs we’ve done that to but it’s more than 30 or 40.
James: Songs are pretty much 85 percent written Do you rehearse much? and then the rest of us do the other 15 James: When we’re not touring. When we tour we percent. don’t because we play so much. But when we’re Joe: They usually don’t sound that different writing we do a lot. from when they first come in.
So what about the lyrics? They kind of go gross out funny to just really pissed off…
Stevie: Sometimes… I’m not going to sit there and
Stevie: I don’t know man. In the last few weeks
my mouth. I might be trying to make a point
me about them before. But for this record
kind of cool. I’m trying to make a point
say that it’s just the shit that’s come out of
since the album was released people talk to me but I think that it’s cool that people might be about the lyrics and no one has ever spoken to listening to it and actually getting it. It’s people keep coming up to me saying “Oh this
sometimes or sometimes I’m trying to be ironic
line is really funny” or “This line really
or funny or whatever. I don’t sit there and
means something” and most of them are lines
think about every single thing though.
whereas I’ve thought “Man, I wasn’t thinking
What’s Eat a Gun about?
about anything when I wrote them”. A lot of the time it’s me sitting there with a thesaurus and rhyme zone on the computer figuring out something that sounds cool and people are listening to them and thinking “Oh, this guy
Stevie: It’s about a guy that wanted to manage us for a while. I don’t like to give too much away about the lyrics… I like to leave it for interpretation.
must be really smart”.
Is the mix on the album different to the first single?
Joe: How many books have you put out?
James: It is.
Stevie: Here’s a bit of truth for you… I’ve never
Stevie: The whole thing was remixed. The same
actually finished a book from cover to cover.
takes but different mixes.
Didn’t you go to uni?
What was it like working with Lindsay Gravina for the album?
Stevie: Yeah but movies and shit like that. James: But you’ve got the dyslexia thing. Stevie: Yeah, I’ve got a mild form of dyslexia but I’ve always been interested in extending my vocabulary. It’s something that’s always interested me. If someone ever says a word to me that I don’t understand I will always look it up in the dictionary and try and understand it intently and then use it. I
James: It was great. Jake: He’s a great dude. He’s a quirky dude. Considering he is the first producer that we’ve ever worked with he was quite hard on us and we weren’t really prepared for it but thank fuck he was hard on us because the album came out exactly how we wanted it to come out. If we fucked up he’d be like “Get back in there”
think that’s one thing that’s come through in
He did get a good album out of you.
the lyrics because a lot of people have said
Jake: Oh yeah! He fucking worked us to the bone.
that the vocabulary used in the songs are not usually used in a lot of other punk music. It’s not “Fuck this, Fuck that” Joe: “Oi! Oi! Oi!” Stevie: But there you go I’ve never finished a book in my life and I’m a university degree holder. Don’t give up kids! You can do anything you put your mind too. If you can finish school and not ever finish a book you are smart. James: Did you pass English? Stevie: Yeah. I didn’t do very well but it doesn’t matter now. So there’s no bigger point you’re trying to make with the songs?
Stevie: He definitely put us out of our comfort zone a lot because he knew we could get it to sound better. We were only 19 and we’d never recorded at such a professional studio. It was a weird experience but It really kicked us into gear as well. He just had such great advice about what direction we should go in and all sorts of stuff, just all these things that are really helpful and that a 19 year old kid in a band should be hearing. Jake: I would say there’s even a slight chance that we might not have even released and album if it wasn’t for him. Originally we were just going to do another EP on a ten inch and he was like “Why would you even waste your time? You’re at the stage where you have to
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release an album” and we were like “Shit maybe am right now, the dude was insisting on us you’re right”. And here we are. Thank him for
using programmed drums. He was like “Don’t
that... old mate Lindsay.
record live drums”
What was it like in the studio?
James: “It’s 2010 man you have to do it like
James: It was crazy We knew it was legit thing
because before that we’d only ever recorded in
Stevie: He wanted us using pre amps and all
our mates bedrooms and with dudes doing first
that whereas Lindsay was like “Yep, I know
year uni and they would have a studio for an
what to do with you guys” He’s such a guru.
hour we’re we could bash some shit out. I remember being in there and really important people would be in the front room. Joe: People like Thirsty Merc. James: And we’d be cranking the cricket on the TV and throwing shit around and the guy from Thirsty Merc would come in and be like “Can
What kind of backline did you use in the studio Joe? Joe: A Marshall JCM 2000 and we had a few guitars on it. James: A Gibson SG standard, a Gretsch… What kind of Gretsch was it? Jake: A semi acoustic hollow body. I don’t know
you boys keep it down please?” Just shit like
James: It was orange.
Joe: I’ve got to take a slash man.
What was that played on?
James: You can put that in the magazine if you Jake: You’ve Got the Curse. It’s got a lot of the want… The studio was great. It’s real treble guitar bits and it worked really well. untouched. It looks fresh out of 1972. Even the Stevie: It’s on Sheep In Black as well. mixing desk… man he’s done some great records James: We had an Ibanez Destroyer for a bit. I on that. Stevie: Lindsay knew what we were trying to do when we went in there as well. When we did our first EP, which we shall never speak of but I
used my P Bass with a Big Muff pedal and a Laney. Joe: There was also a Schechter and a
Danelectro. I think You’ve got The Curse has
Jake: No, we would have done it ourselves but
about five different guitars on it.
having a record label is a bit like having a
James: There’s also a tambourine in Eat A Gun but I can’t hear it.
bank essentially. We were prepared to do it ourselves but we would be in a lot more debt
and wouldn’t have been able to do the same Stevie: There was an imitation Explorer as well. sort of tour that we’re doing now. I think the That’s on there in places. We were just picking way Poison City cam about was that we were and choosing from all our guitars.
just dudes that went and shopped there a lot.
James: But it’s mostly an SG and the Gretsch.
We just got to know Andy and he was just
Jake: They just complimented each other really well. Joe: That’s AC/DC. Did it take long to record?
interested to know what we were up to in conversation and one thing led to another and it came really naturally. It’s not like we pitched it or anything like that. He was just like “How about we do this?”
James: Tracking was over six separate days and Stevie: It wasn’t like out of the movies or anything like that. It just sort of happened. It we got the mixing done in two or three days. That was done over a year though. We got in
was just perfect for us. It was what we needed.
there and did a couple of singles. Then we did
James: If we were going to go with a label,
a couple of more and then we thought “Why
which we were always unsure about because
don’t we bash out a few more songs and do an
we’d done a lot self releases ourselves, they
would be the ones we do it with because you
Jake: It was just the way it had to be done. It
can get involved with all the stuff that
was cost effective. James: I think the next time we do a full length though we will get in there and do it all in one go. That line from Rowdy Roddy at the start was that the attitude you had in recording the album?
Poison City are doing like Weekender Fest and some of the tours he does. Has it been a bit odd with the response you’re getting from people? Jake: It’s been great. James: Putting the album out was an
Joe: It was just a movie we liked.
achievement in itself.
James: We always planned on opening the album
Stevie: I haven’t read one bad review. I’m almost
with some sort of sound bit. Something funny… I’m big fan of records with little clips of TV shows and movies or just a funny line so we were always going to be doing that. When we were writing for the album I always had it in
“Come on! Give us a bad review!” I want to read a bad review. It’s a bit surreal and we don’t want to sound arrogant but a lot of people have said “This is a great album” and that kind of thing. For us it’s just a bit “Wow… we’re
the back of my mind that we could use that
glad that you like it”
line from Rowdy Roddy because a lot of the songs from this album revolve around the
Do you think that it’s an album that could break commercially?
theme of that movie and not only did we use
Stevie: I don’t like to think into that sort of
that line at the start but we used it in a noise track. Even in the artwork we got the artist to put a couple of little references in there as well. It’s no way at all a concept album and I would hope that no one would ever think of it like that but it’s an album that was inspired by something else. Were Poison City Records on board before you recorded it or did you take it to them?
shit. We’ll just write music that we really like and we’ve got fans now that will buy it so we don’t need a song for the radio or anything like that so we can play Splendour In The Grass or whatever. Once again it would be cool to do but it’s not high on the priority list. We just want to write music that we like, release records through a record label that we like and if enough people like that sort of stuff
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will just fall into place. If it doesn’t we’ve
just here’s a song lets record it. People are
stayed true to ourselves.
just like “This is a great song”. I remember
Jake: Whatever happens will happen basically.
writing the lyrics in my room and not knowing what to write about and just thinking
Have you listened back to it yet?
“I’ll write a song about how my life’s going
James: Once. I got the LP and spun it once then
nowhere” and it’s a bit of a synonymous thing
put it straight on the shelf.
with people in the music industry.
Jake: Occasionally if someone wants to hear it.
James: It was bound to happen. The song you
To be honest I think we’re all over it a little
care about least is the song you like the most.
bit. We’ve heard it hundreds of times but I’m
Jake: We gave the album to Andy from Poison
still happy to hear it played. Is there anything on the album that you think “Man, we nailed that!”?
City and he just gave his opinion on the tracks and he was just like “Sheep In Black is one of the strongest tracks. You have to
Stevie: I think my favourite bit on the album is release that.” We were like “Really? You reckon?” But it has grown on me. the solo on Grave Junkie. I don’t know why. James: The heavy riff on Oh Fuck My Face was a What would you say if you had to give a band review of the album? standout. Stevie: That’s a tough question to ask a guy in Jake: The best parts on the album that I the band. personally think are good are the songs that Jake: To be honest because we recorded and we we wrote 2 weeks before the album was recorded. Song’s like Oh Fuck My Face and Sheep heard it from start to finish we listen to it and pick out the most minor things that we In Black are 2 songs that I enjoy to play and people tend to like a bit more. There songs we
don’t like in it. If I ever had one main point I
wrote 2 weeks before the recording.
had to put in a review it would be “Spend more
Who wrote Sheep In Black? Stevie: That was me. It’s a funny one because that song was kind of almost filler. It was
time on it” because there’s a few things in there where it’s “Oh, I wish I had of changed that!”. It’s just a personal thing.
Image courtesy of CLOWNS (Copyright Matt Warrell Photography www.mattwarrell.com)
Stevie: I think I’d just say “Punk band tries
So you guys have got a bit of a buzz with album…
their best to record an album!” And we did try.
Stevie: Apparently so.
I thought we did the best that we could do. And you guys a have just signed a Japanese distribution deal with Bridge Sounds?
A lot of bands kind of look back at this time and say that this is the best time to be in a band. Is that the case?
James: Yeah, it’s going to be a separate release.
Stevie: It’s fucking awesome.
It’s got different artwork. We got the artwork back today and it’s not red but blue. Stevie: It’s just got Bridge Sounds on it instead of Poison City and it’s got some Japanese on it. Jake: Yeah, Tim Robbins rules. Put that in there. James: That’ll be out in Japan in the next couple of weeks. Any plans to get over there? Jake: Oh yeah. James: For sure. Stevie: It all depends. James: There’s no plan at the moment but there’s desires. Jake: The crazy thing with Japan is that you have to be invited. You can’t really just go. A DIY band just won’t get into venues. Stevie: I think you have to be really lucky as well but if we were asked we’d go.
Jake: We’re just lost for words. This tours been crazy. Stevie: It’s cool to be considered one of those bands. A band that got the record label and released an album kind of thing. Jake: It’s a dream come true. Have you started thinking about the future? Stevie: I’m a bit “Shit, we better write another album!”... And we’ll keep touring. Things aren’t coming to a grinding halt. That’s for sure!
Clowns debut album I’m Not Right is available now at all good record stores and iTunes (buy it)
TURNING SOUND INTO LIGHT
Article: Strawb G Hetti
Taylor Hyslop is just one of those people, You know the ones we’re talking about! They’re the type of person that it’s just a pleasure to know. He’s witty, intelligent, super talented and one of the nicest people you’re ever likely to come across. Not only does he play some mean guitar (and bass) but he also moonlights in the real world as one really fucking talented lighting designer. He is also a great friend of Rock & Roll Magazine. In fact the odds are if you read anything that may even be considered close to being considered intelligent in this rag... it’s more than likely that it’s come from Tales. So we decided we’d find out what exactly goes into being a lighting designer and a fucking rad dude.
picked up a lot of skills from him. I started doing lighting gigs just to get free tickets to the shows more than anything else. After that, I met a few of the crew from the Corner Hotel and a lot of the promoters bringing bands in and didn’t have anyone operating lights so I put my hand up and before I knew it I was practically the in-house lighting engineer at the Corner Hotel. All the bands, management and contacts I made there started booking me for tours and onwards and upwards it went.
What the fucks going on Tales? Not a lot at the moment. I’m just about to head off with the Bamboos to do a few shows around the country. I just finished up with the Paper Kites which was a pretty successful little tour with a great bunch of guys. But apart from that it’s an exciting time to be alive with all the summer festivals coming up.
Is that a bit of a dream? It would be. I guess they’re all getting a bit long in the tooth now but Iron Maiden still put on a pretty energetic live show. Metallica are Metallica and I got to see Rush last year in concert which is pretty good because they’ve never come to Australia. I quite enjoyed seeing Rush.
Are you doing any of the festivals? I believe it’s called South Bound over in Western Australia... I’m doing that. Then all the Falls Festivals... Lorne, Marion Bay and I think, maybe, Byron Bay as well.
There’s a story behind the Rush concert isn’t there? I was in Detroit of all places. I had just set up for a show with Gotye and the tour manager comes up just after doors open and says “Give me your two way and come with me” I thought I’d been sacked but instead he put me in a big car and sent me off to the Rush concert.
Have you done the Falls Festivals before? What’s that trip in between them like? In the past when I’ve done them it’s just been between Lorne and Marion Bay. It’s always been a little bit of nightmare. You get one show finished, jump straight on a bus, get the hell out of there to the next one. There’s no chance of celebrating New Years. So you’re pretty sober for them? Yeah, you try to have a bit of a drink on the bus on the way to the airport or whatever but the celebration isn’t usually until it’s all over. How did you get into doing lighting design? I was living in a share house and a fella moved in who said “Hey, I do lighting design! Do you want to come and work for me?” So I did. It was Jeremy from Team Switch. He did all the rave parties Every Picture Tells A Story, Earthcore and all that sort of stuff. He worked all the dance clubs back in the early 90’s when the rave scene was a big thing and the light shows were a big part of it.. So I
You started out lighting the raves but you’re a complete metal head... What did young Tales listen too? I like Rush, Iron Maiden & Metallica. I’ve managed to see them all but I’ve never worked with any of them.
A good night out? It was a band I’d been listening to my whole life and had never seen so it was a good night. The light show was lovely. You’ve worked for a fair few bands... Can you even remember any of them? I always hate this question because every year I work with heaps and heaps of bands and I always get a mental block when it comes time to list them. I’ve worked with everyone from the Misfits to the Meanies and Jimmy Barnes to Rodriguez. Any highlights? Umm... I like Me First & the Gimme Gimme’s. They’re always fun. A tour I did a few years ago with a German metal band called Arch Enemy was pretty cool Travelling the world with Gotye would be a highlight.
How was that? It was not what I anticipated at all. Growing up dreaming of travelling the world with rock bands and all that. Getting out there and actually doing it was a lot more hard work and a lot less fun and adventure than I thought it would be.
We had to put half the gear back in the truck.
What about the smaller rock shows say at the Tote... Is it just important to have a lighting designer in there? It is just as important but you can go to a show at the Tote and just have all the lights turned on white at the start of the night. No-one has to touch the desk for the night and you can still have a great show. We take it Wally isn’t a coke hoovering, groupie fucking, out of control rock star? A good light show would be subtle so you don’t No. Not even close. even notice the changes. It’s quite amazing how dedicated, serious and If someone was to go into a place like that task minded they all were. Everything was and have a great sense of rhythm and focus very precise, organised and structured. the lights on the performers rather than just There wasn’t a lot of free time because there pointing them in random directions with was a tight schedule and everyone knew that random gels... you can do something great. there was a lot at stake. So it wasn’t a game. It’s the old 12 channel dimmer rack situation. It was very, very serious job for the couple of It’s up to you what you do with those sources years that it went on for. of light. You can be creative and move them around, put The Gotye tour was a big operation. What went into them on the roof, on the floor, pair a few up, doing that? plug some into blinders and rays. The video side of the lighting was crucial on A lot of bands will just have their mates the Gotye tour. There was animated hi-def video girlfriend flash the buttons on the lighting for almost every track that the band would desk and think it’s a great show. There’s play live. different levels to it I suppose. There was this complicated system set up with the Ableton Live music software that the band Is there a philosophy you have when it comes to doing a light show? was using on stage so there were several different keyboards and stations all hooked Turn sound into light maybe? into each other that was triggering the video I guess the important thing is to make sure playback component. that all your sources of light are pointed at For the first half of the tour I was operating something that needs to be lit rather than the lights live after I had already set up the just making nice shapes in the air. video to run. For the second half all the You need to really observe the band. lights were set to a time code that was also Even if you don’t know the music you know coming from the Ableton software so there will be something coming up when you everything was pre-programmed and running see the drummer put both his hands in the air like clock work. that millisecond before a big strike. That was the precise, organised structured That’s when you know to hit the crowd blinders show we were doing. even if you’ve never heard the song before. I guess a good philosophy would be point all What about when you went into the smaller venues on the lights in the right direction and pay that tour? attention to what you’re doing. The smaller shows were as equally important Aside from that a basic rule of thumb is red, but a lot harder with having to use less blue, red, blue, flash, flash, flash! lights. For the proper shows, you know the big ones, we There’s a lot of different things you can exploit with were travelling with a couple of semi-trailers different gels, lights and projectors. You were telling us that you were using weather balloons for the Paper full of lights and equipment, a couple of Kites tour... What's the story there? buses full of people. It was huge. I got a whole bunch of weather balloons from When we got to the smaller shows trying to an American army disposal site. They were 2 recreate what we would normally do for a meters in diameter so they were quite huge. bigger show was a bit of a trauma. And then I got a little air compressor and Trying to figure out what to sacrifice and travelled around the country blowing up these what we had to keep. weather balloons and instead of using a We went into the House of Blues in Las Vegas and installed pretty much the whole lighting screen to project an video onto I mapped the video projection onto the shape of the weather rig before we realised that we had no room balloon so everything had a bit of depth and left for the band.
texture. A couple of times they popped, a couple of times they slowly deflated throughout the show but most of the time they were a great success. It was something different. It’s about giving a laser beam light show at a glow stick budget. Being a little bit creative with the tools you have at hand and trying to do something that other people might not have tried. You have to realise that people in Australia go out and see a lot of bands at the same venues week after week after week. If you make that venue look a little bit different just for that night people that have been there all the time go “Whoa! I’m going to remember that show!” It’s about making an impact. Even if you do only have the 12 cans you’re able to put the right colours in them and point them in the right direction to make it look special.
system so that’s pretty handy. Lot’s of little things like that. Basically though, it’s been the same as it has been for many years. Light goes on, light goes off. You’ve got a button to make that happen and if you make it happen in time to the music you’ve done a good job. So it’s still important to give it the old fashioned? Exactly. Even though there’s all this new technological advances it’s not making the job easier. It’s just making it different. What about the colours? Is there any rhyme or reason to them?
I have my own little theories that I try not to give away to anyone. Basically it’s about making use of what you’ve got. Not many people are using generic fixtures anymore where you have to use a gel. Everything is either LED or an intelligent light with a colour wheel within the machine that you can scroll It’s important to use a bit of innovation? through from the desk. Yeah, you can do something cheap and If you do have to use lighting gels you pick 2 impressive. Sometimes you can spend millions warm colours and 2 cool colours and then of dollars and have people yawn at it. alternate between them until you’ve got some cool colours to go to if you’ve got a soft The technology is out of this world nowadays. What ballad or something like that. You’ve got a kind of things are you using now compared to when cool colour and a warm colour as contrast for you started out? a more up tempo tune. And then you’ve got 2 Time Code is a big one. In the past every warm colours to alternate between in a more lighting cue was operated live with the press rock number. of a button and through the 80’s there were A few open whites is always good for flashes different media control systems that not many as well but that’s the basic theory that I people used. Now, a lot of performers will be would use. generally be playing to a backing track which Remember the colour wheel in high school art? can be sent as a time code signal to a It’s always good to pick colours from opposite lighting desk where everything is pre sides of the wheel just for that contrast. programmed and the lighting operator is there just to supervise. Whereas in the past you When you plan out a show what do you do? would be operating every cue live. I listen to the music a lot. Whether the band Audio just over the ten years has gone digital sends me an album or whether I have to get on and lost the analogue aspect of it but you tube to have a listen to them. lighting desks have always been digital so Generally, knowing how songs are structured we’ve always been scrolling though menus and and being able to recognise a song title on a using touch screens. All the audio boys are set list and being able to set up for that song just getting on to it now but it’s always been a during a show. That’s pretty important. part of the lighting world. Familiarity with the material is first and LED lighting fixture have come a long way. foremost. They used to be these big, ugly bars of dots Getting a stage plot showing where all the and now they’re moving heads with zoom and performers are going to be situated on stage. all sorts of wonderful features. They’re a lot It’s really important so you know if you’re lighter than all the fixtures I was using in going to have enough fixtures to light the old days as well so one person can set up everyone on stage the right way. a pretty complex lighting rig without having Light in front and light from behind. They to use cranes and cherry pickers and hoists call that key light. That’s always in the back and winches. of your mind. So there’s lots of innovation. Then there’s the whole logistics side of it. Wi-Fi is pretty interesting as well. I can walk Where are you going to hire everything? The around on stage with an app on my phone and size of a venue? How are you going to focus all my moving heads just over the Wi-Fi
transport everything? Most tours around Australia will hire fixtures in the various states rather than tour an entire rig around the country. It just keeps the costs down. Especially if you’re going over to Perth. But once all that’s done. It’s all about sitting down on a 3D visualiser and trying to program a whole bunch of cues that suit the music. that’s the setup.
important but after that it’s back out the front before the crowd arrives so you can set up an opening look. Then you oversee the lighting for the support acts and then hit the go button for when the headliner comes on. After that when everyone else is back celebrating and drinking you get back up do everything in reverse, put it in the truck, get back in the bus and head off to the next town.
Is there anything else people wouldn’t realise lighting designers do? You spend a lot of time up in the air... Yeah there’s a lot of time you spend elevated. The higher up the food chain you get the less climbing you have to do but there’s always a time when you have to get up that ladder. You can’t really do it if you’re afraid of heights but a healthy fear of lights keeps you safe. That’s how I justify my shaking knees when I’m 20 feet in the air anyway.
It’s a bigger job than just pressing some buttons? Yeah, it’s generally first man on site last man off. It’s a pretty hectic day but it’s broken up by a bit of creativity in the middle so that’s the saving grace.
Would you recommend it as a career? If you get started early certainly but you don’t want to be doing it when you’ve settled down with a wife and kids. You want to be doing when your young and have lots of stamina because it’s a lot of back What’s the typical day for a lighting designer on the breaking effort involved. The older you get day of a gig? the harder it gets. First one on site generally. It’s a great way to see the world, your friends Measure out the stage, plot all your points for think you’re cool and you get to see a lot of your chain motors, liase with whatever riggers free rock shows but just don’t be expecting to you have, get all the motors to the points in spend much time at home with your loved ones. the roof, get power to all of them. Once the motors are powered and at working We know you’re a fucking amazing musician yourself so you can’t bullshit us or be coy about this...Do you height off the floor you lay out all your ever pull the guitar or bass out and freak out the trusses and then rig all the trusses to the musicians your working with? motors, add all your power looms and data Ha! Yeah, I often get on a guitar or something looms, add al your fixtures to that rig, and have a bit of play but there’s certain elevate that up to a trim height... Which is professional boundaries. You have to remember where you’ve designed the rig to be suspended that you’re part of the crew and not the band. in the air. Then you set up the video screen doing all the It just depends on the act that you’re working with. Some of them don’t mind sitting around in same things with the rigging points. And you have to do your projectors as well but they’re a lounge room and let you show them up. usually at the other end of the room somewhere but often has to be flown on chain motors. Once all that’s done you power everything up and work out what’s been put up wrong, what’s been put up backwards, what hasn’t been plugged in. Generally just trouble shoot everything. Once everything is up and going you trim your positions. Every time you put one up it’s always going to be slightly different because you have different rigging points, different crews, mistakes get made, even changes get made. When you get behind the desk before the show you want to make sure that when you hit centre vocal that all those lights point at centre vocal. Then a trip to catering... Catering is pretty
You’re a fucking funny fucker aren’t you... Of course I am. And your companies called BoganRobotLightning? Is that because robots are the coolest things ever? Yeah... It just all kind of made sense because what I do is program robots to shoot beams of light at people to make them look and feel good. I thought the robot aspect of it was cool because I grew up with Star Wars and loved robots. Now, I look at one on my lighting rigs and they’re covered in a whole heap of robots that shoot beams of light! I really dig that. And you’re a bogan! Yeah and because I’m a bogan! Thanks Tales... No Problems... Make me sound funny ok!
Ok, so this is the reviews section.
The place we’re we review things that
We encourage you to go out and check
we like and sometimes, maybe, dislike.
out all the music even if we don’t give
We like a whole heap of shit so you
it a “positive” review.
never know just what you might come
Only you can decide if you like
something or not.
The important thing to remember is
If you like it buy the album!
that this is just one view point and opinion of each album and that’s a
Seriously, buy it!
Don’t be a cheap cunt.
If you’re in a band and you want to
Well, we’ll be honest. We’re not always right. Every human is flawed and what one person might dislike another person might just fucking love, This is just a guide. A simple review. It’s not a definite be all & end all of
find out how to get reviewed email firstname.lastname@example.org If you just hear a band we should review let us know! We don’t mind. We’re always willing to listen to music. It’s what we do. So remember, handle with care, judge for yourself and buy the fucking music.
Leeches Lords of Dullsville (2013) Review: Shane Hilton
Ok, so it’s probably going to take longer for Cracked & Broken teems with the kind of you to read this review than it is to listen energy that you would expect from a band to this album. I can assure you it’s going to take me a lot longer to write the fucking thing. These cats don’t fuck around. It’s all business. And business is good may we add. This is 10 punk rock burners thrown together to pierce a hole in your eardrums. If anyone has ever decided to mainline a can of Red Bull before playing some rock & roll music then this is what it would probably sound like.
that nods it’s head in terms of influence to the thrash and hard-core bands of the late 80’s. Guitarist and vocalist Benny J Ward doesn’t so much as sing but bellow roughly in time with the rest of the band. He’s definitely not singing from the heart... more like spitting from the pit of his stomach. And what the fuck is he carrying on about? We don’t know but whatever it is he certainly doesn’t sound very happy about it.
There’s no wankery or stupid production techniques on show here.
The important thing to remember with Lords of Dullsville is that it’s an album made to played loud.
It’s all meat and potatoes.
Fuck the iPod!
Hailing from Perth, Leeches are a straight up old fashioned punk rock band that don’t do things by halves and probably do it a whole lot quicker.
What you need are some big assed speakers that send vibrations through the floor and into the top of your head.
If you’re expecting anything more than you really should be looking elsewhere. But why would you want anything more? Leroy Sonics manic drumming is vicious. You would hate to be this cunts snare drum. It would be horrible.
All in all it’s a rip snorter of an album. If it’s an indication of just what they might do live we should all keep your eyes peeled for when they head over this way. No doubt it will be an absolute blast.
Look this album isn’t going to change the world or rocket up any charts. It doesn’t have to. It doesn’t mean that your not going His all out assault makes the whole album sound like a vicious kick in the head. Short, to have a good time listening to it either. fast, furious and if placed in the right Go, buy it and turn it up loud! spot it’s liable to knock you the fuck out.
Bad Vision Bad Vision (2013) Review: Shane Hilton
I’ve got an entire rib cage dedicated to my tattooed again because it fucking hurts. love of Mission of Burma. Getting that tattoo This album really is that good. was the most painful experience of my life. And we’re not just saying that. We mean it. Fuck it was painful. Opener Dirty Blood has just enough melody This, for those not playing at home, is in to carry a hook without having the whole comparison to once, as a 5 year old, having a thing turn into schlock pop that could be pitchfork dropped from the top of a full used in an ad for Volkswagen or cider. hay shed and having one of the tines pierce It’s a fine line that Bad Vision negotiate my foot like it was tub of margarine that’s through out the entire album without been left out in the sun at a BBQ all day. managing to lose any of the raw edge that There was about a centimetre of the tine makes this so listenable. sticking out of the sole of my little A lot of that edge Bad Vision do have is due gumboots. to guitarist Krystal Maynard. I don’t know if you’ve ever used a gill hook Her thin, wiry, clean tone gives the album a on a carp and then had it pull free from your grip... but if you have you will know that the gill hook will usually slowly, and almost comically, sway around in the air as the fish closes in on it’s inevitable death. Replace the image of that fish with a small child... I can assure you while the fish may not be screaming out aloud the child fucking is! I was screaming like a banshee. The pain was unbelievable. Eventually my father (who had thrown the fucking pitchfork not realising I was there) made his way down the hay stack, placed his foot atop mine and pulled the fucking thing out. That’s when the real pain started.
sense of space that gives plenty of room for Bad Visions big, almost Joy Division like, bass lines. The biggest strength of the album is the overall quality of the songs. There’s hardly a weak point on it. Some of the standout’s would include Photocopy, Hurricane (that song could go just for the first 10 seconds and we would of still said it was one of the standouts) and Visions. But you could literally pick any of the 14 tracks out of a hat and say they were standouts.
So what has that got to do with the Bad Vision album?
If they can follow up even close to being as good as this then I would say that my ribs are fucked...
Well, I don’t want to get my fucking ribs
The Spasms We Better Operate (2013) Review: Strawb G Hetti
Ok, so this album was released all the way back in July or something but we only just got our grubby little hands on it this week. Look, we’re not an endless supply of knowledge on bands and what they’re releasing or what's cool, hip and happening. Fuck, we didn’t even know who the Spasms were. We just saw the album thought “Oh, this looks interesting” and decided we’d buy it.
up for it. Sounding like Eric Burdon being molested by Screaming Jay Hawkins at a Black Keys concert... but in a good way... the Spasms manage to make music that, while not being all that original, still manages to stand on it’s own two feet. The overdriven bass dominates proceedings like a thumb over a garden hose.
It barely leaves room for the drums and guitar to squeeze there way through the This is a nice little slice of subdued garage speakers. ‘ rock that just kind of clutters along like Nerves is a song that you’re going to like a those shitty trams they use along route 78 whole lot. We don’t know why. We just liked it! (fuck ye old timey bullshit... give me air conditioning and some seating I’m not going The Spasms don't really give a fuck about to stick to thanks). what they’re playing either. They’re a band Lucky we did.
The Spasms, as far as we know anyway, are from Melbourne. That’s about all we know.
that just play what feels right. And it sounds right as well.
We’re not even that sure on that information If anything the Spasms prove just how strong is accurate but the one thing we are pretty the Melbourne and Australian music scene sure of is the fact that this is a nice little really is. album. We can pick up a random album in a random It’s one repetitive vocal hook after another. record store and have it be a joy to listen too! If you listen to Good Little Tiger and don’t walk away asking yourself “Who’s a good little tiger?” then there’s a pretty good chance that any cognitive function that you once had is probably damaged beyond repair. There’s not much to the lyrics. You could probably write them on the back of a postage stamp and still have room to doodle a picture of a cock or something and that’s ok because the music more than makes
Fuck that’s not bad. Just like the No 78 tram we might bitch about it, try to put it down and make unfair comparisons but if it wasn’t there we’d get nowhere at all. We say buy it, have a BBQ and get dunk in the sun. Marvellous.
The Bennies Rainbows In Space (2013) Review: Strawb G Hetti
Do you know what? I reckon someone in the Bennies smokes a shit load of weed.... Is it because they sometimes play vicious punk rock ska? Is it because they called this album Rainbows In Space? Is it because they sing an awful lot about it?
absentmindedly put a completely different record on (see Sky High). While that sometimes that can make for a difficult listen. You can be guaranteed that if this is put on at a house party the whole place will be fucking going off. It makes you want to pogo! Fuck, I haven’t pogoed since I was about 13 and
Is it because they have songs called Ice Cold Beers and Juicy Juicy Buds, Let’s Go Get Stoned, License To Chill, Highrider and Sky High?
awkward but I reckon if I had a drink every time they made a reference to weed I’d be bouncing up and down by the start of the third song and on my arse buy the end of the fourth!
Is it because there’s a bonus track that constantly has the sound of someone smoking a bong through the entire thing?
And that would be a shit situation because I wouldn’t make it to the awesomeness that is
Fuck, I don’t know.
Frankston Girls, whist being a pretty easy group of people to take the piss out of, is a
I suppose it could be any of those things. To tell you the truth the subject matter could be about fucking sticky tape and this would still be a fucking awesome record!
fucking beautiful mix of hard core and ska that’s a departure, in terms of sound, even for a band like the Bennies who have that little memory problem.
For a band that obviously smoke a lot of the That’s probably the best thing about this old Magilla Gorrila they sure can play some album. The Bennies aren’t afraid to do fucking high energy music that swears something completely unexpected. absolutely no allegiance to any genre of music. Even the packaging throws you for six... Not My theory is that they can’t quite remember only does it come with an insert that explains what kind of music they actually play so they each of the songs (not a lyric sheet but a just go with what feels good. fucking explanation) but it also tells you that it was recorded in one room with one mic and no Most of the time they kind of get the feeling that it should be loud and fast.
Sometimes it’s reggae.
Fucking stoners... They never cease to amaze me!
Sometimes it’s ska.
So we say get it.
Sometimes it’s something so completely left
It’s high energy, feel good music at it’s best.
field that you think that you’ve
Sunnyboys Our Best Of (2013) Review: Shane Hilton
I’ll be honest I’ve never sat down and watched the doco on Jeremy Oxley and the Sunnyboys. Why? Well, I’ve been listening to the Sunnyboys religiously since I was 11 years old. I fucking love them but you know what they say about meeting your heroes and each
Richard Burgman for those not in the know was the guitarist for the Sunnyboys. When I found out that, indeed, a very talented musician had scrapped out of the heartland of the ugg boot, I was interested in listening to just what the fuck he had done.
member of this band is something of a hero to me..
I got a copy of the first album and never looked back.
I grew up in a small country town just outside of Wagga Wagga and the only people that were ever talked about in terms of being a “hero” or being something to aspire to were those people that had left the ’City of Good Sports’ and went on to play sport at a national level.
As soon as Love to Rule kicks this album off you know that these guys were, and are, something pretty fucking special.
Think Michael Slater, Cameron Mooney, Wayne Carey, Paul Kelly, Geoff Lawson, Steve Elkington, the Mortimer brothers, Mark Taylor, Peter Sterling and the Daniher’s. Fuck, even Dame Edna Everidge was born in Wagga... but they don’t talk about that because they really are backward assed country bumpkins and you know... some fag mincing around pretending they’re a fucking woman! Needs the fucking shit kicked out of him. That’s what he needs. As far as music... well, Sam Moran the infamous replacement Wiggle is from there! Can you think of anyone else of any significance in the music industry? I can. Richard Burgman.
The fact that you can’t define them in terms of just what kind of music they play is testament to just how good they were. If there was a sound that defined music in Australia in the 80’s than this is it. INXS couldn’t of done anything of the calibre of Happy Man. Of course, Alone With You makes an appearance. How could the Sunnyboys release something called “Our Best” and not have that song on there? The strength of Jeremy Oxley's song writing is second to none. The performances are second to none. The recordings are second to none. All in all this is exactly what it’s called. This is an album every single songwriter out there in the big wide world should sit down and listen to. If not for a lesson in writing a tune than just for the sheer pleasure of it.
The Frowning Clouds Whereabouts (2013) Review: Strawb G Hetti
understanding the laid back intensity of it.
When this kicked off we thought “Holy shit!
Have a listen to Into The Ground and try not
It’s Nirvana’s Territorial Pissings!”
to picture a montage of dirt being thrown over the top body wrapped in garbage bags The drum roll at the start of this album will and duct tape in a shallow grave. put hairs on your chin. We thought it was going to be a maniacal punk album that just fucking blasted from go to whoa. We were as confused as fuck.
It might just be us but that’s the contrast we get from Whereabouts. For such light, sunny music the overall feel of the album is dark
and twisted. But then the laid back intensity (we know it’s And we haven’t even tried playing it an oxymoron but if you get the album you will backwards.... know what we mean) that we were expecting breezed it’s way through the speakers and we
Propellers' is a song that displays just how
just grooved away.
good of a job this band does reimagining that classic 60’s London sound with the benefit of
But believe us, those 3 seconds at the start of the album had us jumping out of our skin. The Frowning Clouds are a strange beast. They don’t play psychedelic, they don’t play surf, they don’t play rhythm and blues. I can’t fucking figure out what they play.
hindsight about what came after it. Of course the comparisons to Syd Barrett and early Pink Floyd are blatant and easy to make. That being the case we would like to point out that an obvious reference point for this
I know they play something because I can hear album can be found in Syd Barrett and early Pink Floyd. it but other than that I can’t put my finger on it.
See what we did there?
There’s something that’s just unsettling about it.
For us the real delight about this record is all that pretty guitar. We could listen to it
for days. Usually jangly guitars accompany happy music... shit that makes you want to go and buy It’s not that it’s all about the guitars. It’s an ice cream on a hot summer day and eat it just that they sound so damned good. while lying on some cooling grass. If you’re a guitar nut you’re going to love it. Not this album. In all this is a damned fine record that was If I was a serial killer this would be my well worth the couple of years wait. soundtrack! It would be what I cruised too. We’re guessing that your getting close to
I Killed The Prom Queen Beloved (2013) Review: Strawb G Hetti
I’ve seen I Killed the Prom Queen play dozens and dozens of times. I’ve never ever bothered to buy any of their albums because, frankly, I didn’t see the need. Let’s be honest these, types of band’s are built
Prom Queen can throw out on record. I Killed The Prom Queen have seemed to have found a line up that’s sticking (if you don’t know the history of I Killed The Prom Queen we’re not going to try and explain it here...
for playing live and not the recording studio. the whatever-cores musical family tree looks Live they fucking kick arse. But in the studio... Yeah, you know what we’re saying! Sometimes these metalcore/hardcore/whatevercore albums just plain suck balls. I Killed The Prom Queen have managed to avoid that little trap with their first release in 6 years. That’s not to say that the album is all fucking roses, sunshine and kisses from puppy dogs. The only real problem we have with this album are the fucking keyboards. Why, oh why are all these bands doing the keyboard thing? Keyboards have their place but do you know what! In 15 years every band (and every band is doing it) are going to look back and think “Oh that was really fucking dumb... What were we thinking?” We don’t know if they think it is adding depth to the sound or what but all it’s doing is killing the overall dynamics of the music. But that’s about it. From now on it will be all positive.
like a fucking stump). There’s more intricacy in new drummer Shane O’Briens drumming than there is in a lot of other bands entire albums. The same can be said for the rest of Beloved. One thing that I Killed The Prom Queen don’t skimp on is the effort they put into their song writing. One verse from I Killed The Prom Queen probably has more dynamic changes in it than any other song you’ve heard in the last twelve months. Whilst, a lot of bands look down on technical competency and take pride in not being able to play their instrument I Killed The Prom Queen take full advantage of being able to do just that. It’s something that no-one should dismiss so easily. Overall, Beloved is the end result of decades of heavy metal heritage, from the earliest thrash right through to avant-garde symphonic outros, all wrapped up in 11 tracks. The most exciting thing is that we all know that there will be a tour.
Well, wouldn’t that be a nice night out?
Over all this is a cracking release if only
I suppose it would.
for the sheer musicianship that I Killed The
Crisis Alert Urban Decay (2013) Review: Strawb G Hetti
Sometimes brevity, like this album, is a good thing.
Major Tom And The Atoms
Heroes, Villains, BOOM, BOOM, BOOM!
Live At The Cellar Door
Ok, so I guess it isn’t much of a stretch for us
to point out the fact that we weren't fans of Little Red. They weren’t our cup of Bonox in the slightest. So, before you go off going all cocked “Oh, why compare his old band to what he does now?”...
What can you say about him that hasn’t already been said before? Not much really... so how about we talk about the album?
How about you shut your mouth and read the
Neil Young Live At The Cellar Door is a
rest of the review first?
collection of recordings from six solo
Firstly there is no comparison. We like listening to this album. This album has a certain sparkle. Using the word sparkle to describe what is
performances at Washington DC’s The Cellar Door between November 30th and December 2nd way back in 1970. And when we say solo we mean solo.
essentially a blues rock album is pretty
It’s just Neil, a guitar, a piano and an awfully
fucking strange but believe us it fits.
polite audience that don’t make much noise at
Major Tom and the Atoms is a fucking corker. With lines such as:
Life in a band looks very grand But when the show is over you’re left with your hand
all. It’s a potent mix that hits and misses. The piano rendition of Cinnamon Girl was something that completely divided the Rock & Roll Magazine office.
Major Tom and the Atoms will at the very least One argument was that it was shit. leave you with a smile on your face.
The other argument, thinking that it a bit
But don’t think that it’s all blues and talk
alright, was that it showcased the simplicity
about pork & beans and boom, boom, boom!
and beauty of the song without having to be
revolutionary in terms of the amazing sound that the song has when played with Crazy
And lot’s of it.
Somehow it seems to work.
Who won that argument?
You don’t even realise that all of sudden the
No-one because we’re all stubborn bastards.
entire direction of the album has taken such a dramatic shift. Not a bad little effort.
If anything this album will cause a lot of those arguments.
Muse Live At Rome Olympic Stadium (2013) Review: Strawb G Hetti
If you’re a Muse fan odds are that you’ve already There were a lot of “originals”. bought this album, jerked off a couple of times Now, Muse must have something going on or else and laid down for a nap. they wouldn’t have had 60 000 people crammed It’s probably a pretty good fucking bet that you wouldn’t be reading Rock & Roll Magazine either so this whole review will probably be wasted on you. Muse have one of those fan bases where, in their
into a stadium to see them play. But what is it? Is it for people that like their music to be safe?
minds, there is no other band in the world but
Is it just for uni students who want to be into
music and shit like that because that’s what uni students do?
Muse are the be all and end all of music. They’re a band also widely recognised as one of the best live acts in the world.
What is it that we’re missing with this band? Look, we don’t have to sell this record.
Do you know how we know that?
The fact is that’s it’s going to sell millions of
It said so in the press release.
copies without any of our help. Plus you guys wouldn’t fucking buy it anyway.
This gig, at Rome’s Olympic Stadium, was played in front of a capacity crowd of 60 000 fans.
What we want to do is find the root cause of
That’s a lot of spicy meatballs. Was that racist? Maybe. We didn’t mean to be. Sorry, Italian people. We really enjoy your food but what’s with you all going to see Muse? Muse are a band that we’re at odds with. We appreciate their talent, their musicianship and their ability to get people to listen to music but fuck...
Muse’s popularity. And I think we nailed it. Muse take all of popular music history and condense it all into one band playing in front of 60 000 people screaming a lyric-less chant. They’re the ultimate cover band. They play Kiss, Europe, Michael Jackson, Nirvana, Pink Floyd, Queen, Barry Manilow, U2 and even a little bit of Enya just for shits and giggles.
Please remember that we’re trying to be as nice There’s even a little bit of John Barry’s as possible but we just find Muse to be as boring Midnight Cowboy theme in there. as bat shit. How can you not be popular if you do that? In fact bat shit could be a tad more So, should you buy this album? entertaining. The most exciting thing about this album was when we thought they might be covering Suicide Blonde. They weren’t it was an “original”.
Probably not. I’d probably buy the DVD so I could watch the fireworks...
Things Were Better In ‘77 the Albums That You Should Have listened to In High School But Didn’t Because You Weren’t That Cool... while back with a whole heap of live shit and
Mudhoney SuperFuzz BigMuff
demos. So what one are we going to review? Who the fuck really cares! It’s all good. If you’ve never listened to Mudhoney than you might as well start at the beginning with
Ok, so almost everyone has a copy of this album in their record collection and if they
Superfuzz Bigmuff Deluxe Edition because it’s got everything on it.
don’t they usually pretend they do because it’s Touch Me I’m Sick is just one of those songs cooler than actually having to admit that the that people will listen to forever and know only reason they’ve ever heard of Mudhoney is
that when it was recorded it was like winning
because they were right into Nirvana when
the fucking lottery. It doesn’t fuck happen
they we’re a kid (What’s with that odd denial?
that much or to that many people.
Nirvana are fucking grand who gives a fuck if Of course there’s also one of the meanest some 15 year old girl is running around in one covers of all time in the form of the Dicks of their t-shirts).
“Hate the Police”.
This is a fucking awesome album.
In fact anything that has a musician playing
Well, firstly, for self corrections sake, it
on it is more than likely going to be a pretty
wasn’t even an album.
fucking good song.
This little beauty was originally an EP with
Mark Arm, Steve Turner, Matt Lukin and Dan
just the six songs on it (Need, Chain That Door,
Peters! It’s like a fucking super group without
Mudride, No One Has, If I Think, In 'n' Out of
the annoying presence of former bands (ok
Green River but who gives a shit... it’s not like
It wasn’t until 1990 that it was combined with
they’ve ever been played on the radio)
their second EP 1989’s Boiled Beef & Rotting
Plus, those awesome people at Handsome Tours
Teeth (Hate the Police, Touch Me I'm Sick, Sweet
have organised a few gigs for them when
Young Thing Ain't Sweet No More, Got It (Keep It
they’re out here in January so why not pull
Outta My Face), Burn It Clean) and was renamed
out your dusty old copy of whatever Superfuzz
Superfuzz Bigmuff Plus Early Singles.
Bigmuff you’ve got and give it a couple of
Just to confuse things a little more Touch Me
I’m Sick was originally their debut single,
You should probably get a couple of tickets to
with Sweet Young Thing Ain’t Sweet No More as
the Mudhoney show as well (they’ll be playing
the B side, well before the original Superfuzz
the Big Day Out as well if it the real shows
Bigmuff EP came out... It means fuck all but we
sell out and you just want to see them).
just wanted to impress you with how much we
Sadly, it will of course be without Matt Lukin
know about Mudhoney.
who left the band way back in 2001 and was
And just to throw even more spanners in the
replaced by Aussie Guy Maddison.
work Sub Pop released a Deluxe Edition a
Sliding In & Out Of Grace... Ha! Perfect!
Action Packed: The Best of the Rounder Years
Ok, so Nelson Mandela is dead. He was 95. It was going to happen. In honour of Mr Mandela we thought “Hey, why don’t we write a little about Graceland?” since it feature’s so many African, particularly apartheid era South African, musicians on one of our favourite records. If anything it just proves what a wonderful thing music is. Graceland does something that, if you really think about it, completely fucks your mind. It combines the music of black South Africans, living under some shitty backwards system of oppression, with the music of the United States Deep South, you know the place where the enslavement of so many Africans and African Americans was worth fighting a civil war over, and is named after the home of a white guy that took black music and helped turn it into what we now refer to as “popular’’ music. Just to fuck things even more the township jive played by the South African musician was directly influenced by the music of the Deep South which never would of existed if it hadn’t of been for the enslavement of so many Africans in the United States. Fucking twisted right! But for all that shittyness at least one good thing came out of it in the form of this album.
Jonathan Richman is the guy who wrote Roadrunner, She Cracked, Pablo Picasso and is the musician that’s always popping up in the Farrelly brothers movies. We just picked this album because we enjoy it so much. Fuck I don’t know if it’s even in print anymore but if it is get it. Why do we love it so much? Well, it’s just so fucking offensive but in such a charming way that you just can’t help but love the dude. I Was Dancing In A Lesbian Bar is a song that manages to offend absolutely everyone but lesbians (they will still punch you if you sing it to them though... stupidity is a valuable learning tool). Plus the use of laissez faire in this song is just tremendous. She Doesn’t Laugh At My Jokes, When I Say Wife, The Girl Stands Up To Me Now, Since She Started To Ride and just about every single other song are brilliant to play in front of a loved one just so you can get a slap up the side of the head (You’ll probably get laid as well... that’s just the way he manages to make such offense sound so fucking nice) One of our favourites to drunkenly sing on the bus between Collingwood and St Kilda is You’re Crazy For Taking The Bus but you could probably use it on absolutely any form of public transport.
The sound of this album is something that is almost otherworldly. It really is an amazing recording and one of those things you have to listen to at least once before you die.
Planes, trains, automobiles. Take your pick.
To top things off Paul Simon took a fucking big risk to go to South Africa to record this album. It wasn’t exactly something you did but he did it. He didn’t give a flying fuck about the international boycott because he knew going there at least he could try to make a difference.
Plus when we were writing this review we did a quick search and you can buy it on the iTunes so if its not at your local record store, get on there and buy the cunt.
So instead of getting on Facebook and talking about what a great man Nelson Mandela was how about you put this on your iPod and go and do something fucking worthwhile?
If you’re expecting laugh out loud funny you’re going to be very disappointed.
And Betty when you call... you can call me Al!
Overall, we can’t recommend this album enough. We love it. You’ll love it too.
Remember though... This isn’t a comedy album! It’s the furthest thing from it.
It’s the most awesome rock & roll... Plus it’s got the real Party In The USA on it! Brilliant.
by Strawb G Hetti
Ha! We actually had to get a lawyer to look at this one! If we get the ok we will put the original article up... If not the little git will have to re-write something and we will change it later on! Ah, bless his hate filled heart!