N O W AVA I L A B L E O N I PA D • W E D N E S D AY 4 A P R I L 2 012 ~ I S S U E 1218 ~ F R E E
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BEST COMEDY MELBOURNE FRINGE
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INPRESS • 3
THE BANDS THE INDUSTRY THE LOCALS THE ENCORES THE DJS THE GIGS THE PRODUCERS THE CLUBS THE REMIXES THE ARTISTS THE FESTIVALS THE GROUPIES THE ALBUMS THE TOURS THE FANS
LAUNCHING THIS THURSDAY 4 • INPRESS
INPRESS • 5
6 • INPRESS
WEDNESDAY 4TH APRIL
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TEN IN ONE 5:30pm THE HOLLANDS + PENNY LARKINS WITH CARL PANNUZZO AND NICOLETTE FORTE 8pm $8 SATURDAY 7TH
YEO 6pm THE BELLASTRADES + PHOEBE SPINKS + KEITH DIMECH 8pm $8 SUNDAY 8TH
Open...MON - THU...from 4pm ‘til late FRI...from 2pm ‘til late SAT - SUN...from 12pm ‘til late
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8 • INPRESS
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INPRESS • 9
W E D N E S D AY 4 A P R I L 2 0 1 2
Melbourne International Comedy Festival acts all week - Jon Bennett, Travis Nash, Sean Ryan & Craig McLeod, Alistair Bates, Dain Hedgpeth & Damian Smith - see Loop website Thurs 5. 10pm - Skip & Swing Dubstep, Glitch Hop, Liquid Drum & Bass & Future Garage ft. Dysphemic & Ms Eliza, J.Nitrous, Monkee, Proximity Effect, Aaron Static & MC Elf Tranzporter. Visuals by Vdmo Kstati. 2am burgers by Mat Beyer Sat 7. 10pm - Pickled Beats Mr. Nice & Dj Ego party jams aided by NZ superstar Dj Penfold AV hip-hop set Sun 8. Easter Melting Pot 9-11pm Mondo Loco w jungle exotica to Thai, Indian, Persian & Pakistani funk 11- late Jani Ho w minimal techno, jazz and electronica
BEARHUG INPRESS 14 The Front Line brings you the hottest industry news 14 This week’s best and worst in Backlash/Frontlash 16 Foreword Line brings you all the latest tour announcements 18 Claudia O’Doherty needs some IT help 20 Yacht Club DJs put to the Taste Test 22 Alabama 3 is the sound of the London riots 24 Trombone Shorty is a big fan of electric guitar 26 Bearhug came to Pavement late 26 There’s a lot going on outside Sneaky Sound System 26 New Found Glory have gone back to their roots 27 Six out of seven ain’t bad for The Specials 28 Sublime With Rome are surrounded by controversy 28 Road trippin’ in the US changed Gin Wigmore’s life 28 Ziggy Marley’s two loves are family and weed 28 Jess Harlen has crafted a little album that could 28 Dweezil Zappa is his father’s son 28 Hiatus Kaiyote will take you to another world 30 On The Record rates new releases from DZ Deathrays and Orbital
FRONT ROW 32 32 32 33
This Week In Arts plans your upcoming schedule British comedian Tim Key continues being a slut Dingo & Wolf howl the night away at MICF Cultural Cringe explores the food-related options at MICF 33 Justin Hamilton might just be hanging up his festival gloves
Tess McKenna & the Shapiros
She’s back! Tess McKenna and the magnificent Shapiros return for an afternoon of stellar electric folk/ rock & blues with pitch-perfect harmonies. 5pm
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SATURDAY 7 April
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Matt Walker & Broderick Smith
DESIGN & LAYOUT
Two long-time players team up for a night of original blues and roots. Expect harmonicas and all manner of guitars. 9pm
EASTER SUNDAY SUNDAY 8 April
10 • INPRESS
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NO MUSIC TODAY Happy Easter from the Union!
109 UNION ST, BRUNSWICK
BACK TO INPRESS 37 Gig Of The Week gets superstitious with Ron S Peno 41 LIVE:Reviews freaks out with Wooden Shjips 44 Sarah Petchell will Wake The Dead with her punk and hardcore talk 44 Andrew Haug takes us to the dark side in The Racket 44 Dan Condon blues and roots in Roots Down 44 Life in the Big Apple with New York Conversation 46 Pop culture therapy with The Breakdown 46 Hip hop news with Intelligible Flow 46 The freshest in urban news with OG Flavas 46 Funky shit with The Get Down 47 Fill your dance card with our Club Guide 48 If you haven’t appeared in Fred Negro’s Pub, your mother probably still speaks to you 48 Jeff Jenkins gets down and local in Howzat! 49 Our Gig Guide fills your diary for the weekend 52 Gear and studio reviews in BTL 54 Find your new band and just about everything else in our classy Classifieds
There’s still a huge amount of Melbourne International Comedy Festival passes up for grabs, including for shows by The Bedroom Philosopher. We also have copies of the new Iron Maiden DVD to win. Get clicking!
SATURDAY 7 April
33 Musical M i l comedy d duo d S Smartt C Casuall hhave goodd reasons for regional touring 34 Xavier Toby looks humorously at Australia’s drinking culture 34 Comedian Kate McLennan moves back in with her folks 34 Mia Hansen-Løve talks up her third film, Goodbye First Love 34 Film Carew weighs in on This Must Be The Place and more
THE UNION HOTEL
Senior Contributors Jeff Jenkins Overseas Contributors Tom Hawking (US), James McGalliard (UK), Sasha Perera (UK). Writers Nick Argyriou, The Boomeister, Atticus Bastow, Steve Bell, Alice Body, Luke Carter, Dan Condon, Anthony Carew, Chris Chinchilla, Rebecca Cook, Kendal Coombs, Adam Curley, Cyclone, Guy Davis, Liza Dezfouli, Lizzie Dynon, Guido Farnell, Sam Fell, Bob Baker Fish, Robert Gascoigne, Warwick Goodman, Cameron Grace, Andrew Haug, Andy Hazel, Kate Kingsmill, Michael Magnusson, Baz McAlister, Samson McDougall, Tony McMahon, Count Monbulge, Luke Monks, Fred Negro, Mark Neilsen,
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INPRESS • 11
VALE JIMMY LITTLE
National Treasure and pioneering indigenous musician Jimmy Little has died, aged 75. James ‘Jimmy’ Oswald, born on 1937, died during his sleep at his home in Dubbo on Monday. He had survived many years of kidney and heart ailments and outlived his wife Marjorie Rose Little, who passed away in July 2011.
INDUSTRY NEWS WITH SCOTT FITZSIMONS email@example.com
THE GRATES CLAIM WEET-BIX STOLE SONG
areas through the Jimmy Little Foundation. ARIA tweeted on Monday, “Everyone here at ARIA is so saddened to hear Jimmy Little has passed away. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time. RIP.”
The Grates may be considering legal action against WeetBix parent company Sanitarium over the use of a song. The Brisbane band’s song Aw Yeah features a number of similarities with a New Zealand television commercial for Weet-Bix, which premiered in 2010. In a tweet from the band, which has since been removed, they posted, “They asked us if they could record a version of this song for the ad. We said no. Can’t believe they did it anyway, jerks.” The band has not yet made an official comment on the matter.
The news was confirmed by the ‘authorised’ Jimmy Little Appreciation Group on Facebook. He is survived by daughter Frances Claire PetersLittle and grandson James Henry Little.
SOUTHERN BLUES FEST MOVE ‘DIDN’T WORK’
Little’s track Royal Telephone (1963) was the first song by an indigenous performer to top the pop music charts. For his contribution to music, he received a number of accolades including National Living Treasure, Order Of Australia, ARIA Hall of Fame and APRA’s Ted Albert award. Despite a kidney transplant in 2004, Little only retired from the music industry last year. Even after that he endeavoured to improve the living conditions of indigenous Australians living in rural
FANS GRIEVE AFTER SHORT STACK SPLIT
Much loved pop rock outfit Short Stack officially announced their split last week, prompting an outpouring of emotion from their dedicated fanbase. The charttopping band emerged from Sydney’s MySpace-driven pop punk scene of the last decade with a heavy reliance on social media interaction. The band’s frontman Shaun Diviney posted on his personal page, “As you may be aware, Stack is no more. To everyone who has supported the band in any way, I cannot thank you enough.” He added that he is starting a new project, which will see him travel to America for a writing trip.
ANNOUNCING THE INAUGURAL AMID POWER 50
The next edition of the Australasian Music Industry Directory [AMID] will profile the 50 most important people in Australian music today. The Directory (published by Street Press Australia, publishers of this magazine) features contact details and listings for all aspects of the music industry and is now expanding its editorial content. The next issue will see the inaugural AMID Power 50, a breakdown of the 50 people who most shape the Australian music industry today. The list will feature the top 50 powerbrokers from a variety of music industry fields: artists, management, media, booking agents, promoters, major and indie label personnel, publicity and promotions, awards and music body leaders, pub and club operators and maybe even some influential hangers-on. The Power 50 of 2012 has been put together via industry consultation and criteria that includes public profile, economic impact and career accomplishment, amongst others. Purchase of the new AMID will come bundled with the iPad and print editions, while it will also be available in newsagencies. Submissions for AMID listings are now open by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, while pre-orders are available at themusic.com.au/store.
INDUSTRY MEMBERS SCORE GOVERNMENT GRANTS
The 15 recipients of grants through the Generate program for music industry entrepreneurs were announced in Sydney last week by Federal Minister for the arts Simon Crean. The program offers grants of up to $30,000 for business models involving Australian music, as well as mentoring and business development knowledge. The Australian Government is providing the funding and partnering with APRA|AMCOS and the Australian Music Industry Network for the program. The exact financial contributions for each recipient will be announced May. The 15 successful applicants are: Stephen Green – SGC Media, Fred (Feleti) Leone – Impossible Odds Records, Rosco Stewart – Synch My Track, Julia Wilson – Rice is Nice, Tim Byrne – KISS FM, Ajax McKerral – Nuttify, Jen Cloher – I Manage My Music, Nick Wallberg – Tram Sessions Inc, Tom Armstrong – Infusion, Claire Collins – Bossy Music, Craig May – Create Control, Glenn Dickie – Stage Mothers, Jai Al-Attas – ZAPPP, Larry Heath – AU Review and Marshall Cullen – Soundslikecafe.
EMI AIMS A&R ARM AT DANCE MUSIC
EMI Music have announced an international A&R and marketing network “dedicated to dance music”. Dubbed the EMI Dance Network, it aims to consolidate specialists in the genre from around the world to find, develop and market dance and electronic releases. The Network “will be completely focused on delivering results for artists in every major market, supporting them across all revenue streams through an efficient and globally integrated approach to this important genre”. Bart Cools, EMI Music’s Executive Vice President for marketing in Europe, will oversee the new structure. “There is so much great talent in dance and electronic music in this country,” said EMI’s Australasian Chairman, Mark Poston. “A core part of our A&R strategy is that EMI is a major force in dance music here – just as it is globally.”
HIGH COURT RULES AGAINST PPCA IN ‘1%’ CASE
The high court ruled against the PPCA’s challenge to the ’1% cap’, which they argue is undervaluing music, last week. The ongoing dispute between the PPCA [Phonographic Performance Company Of Australia] and commercial radio centres around a ‘cap’ that dictates the amount a broadcaster pays for a license to broadcast copyrighted material. This cap keeps the amount paid by radio to one percent of the broadcaster’s gross income. The PPCA have vowed to continue the fight against the “controversial” cap, writing in a statement, “The court ruled on a narrow constitutional point, but did not address the issue of whether the ‘cap’ is fair or just. We can see no good reason why commercial radio operators deserve ongoing protection from government – allowing them to avoid paying a fair rate for the music that is so essential to their business,” said PPCA’s CEO Dan Rosen. Commercial Radio Australia’s CEO, Joan Warner, told Your Daily SPA, “The commercial radio industry is very pleased with today’s decision.” Rosen said their next move would be to appeal to Members Of Parliament to change the Act which, Rosen said there is no “economic, social or moral justification for”.
AUSTRALIA LEADS DIGITAL GROWTH
Australia has become the sixth biggest music market in the world – and dubbed the global leader in digital growth – in the annual report from the IFPI [International Federation of the Phonographic Industry], which provides an overview of global music trends. Globally, digital track and album sales grew 19 percent to 3.7 billion tracks, with Australia’s 60 percent growth leading the way. The growth almost mirrors ARIA’s wholesale figures for 2011, released earlier this year, which differ slightly from the IFPI figures. Digital revenue grew eight percent in 2011 while physical revenue dropped 8.7 percent, the latter an improvement on 2010’s 13.8 percent drop. Performance rights grew 4.9 percent and synching was up 5.7 percent, boosting the industry. Overall, revenue dropped by three percent to $US16.6 billion – a slowing of the music “slump”. The United States are once again the world’s biggest music market, steady at $US4.37 billion in revenues. Japan is second with $US4.09 billion – a 7 percent drop. Further down the list, Australia’s $US475 million in revenue means it has jumped Canada for sixth place, with their $US434 million.
The Great Southern Blues Festival will return to its original home next year after moving to Batemans Bay proved unsuccessful. Last year’s event was cancelled and threw serious doubt over the festival’s future entirely. But an announcement last week indicated that the event will return to its original home of Narooma in October 2013. Former promoter Michael Chugg will be pulling out of his management role of the festival, handing the reins entirely to festival founder Neil Mumme. Chugg said, “Despite best intentions to grow this fabulous festival by moving away from Narooma, it was met with much resistance from loyal punters.” Mumme agreed that the move had failed. “For a variety of reasons the move away from Narooma in 2010 never worked,” he said. “Moving forward, we’re not concentrating on what went wrong, but rather working to get the festival up and away for 2013.”
JET ANNOUNCE THEIR SPLIT
Confirming what the industry long expected, Jet announced their split last week, ending their successful but polarising stint. The band offered the following statement via their Facebook: “After many successful years of writing, recording and touring we wish to announce our discontinuation as a group. From the many pubs, theatres, stadiums and festivals all across the world it was the fans that made our amazing story possible and we wish to thank them all. Thank you, and goodnight.” The Melbourne ‘dirty denim’ four-piece shot to fame on the back of their debut album, Get Born, inescapable leading into the Christmas period of 2003, which was certified platinum eight times. Led by the single Are You Gonna Be My Girl?, the subsequent releases for Rollover DJ, Cold Hard Bitch, Look What You’ve Done and Get Me Out Of Here ensured it had a strong shelf life into 2004. Their third album, Shaka Rock, could only manage a gold certification, which seemed miles away from their stratospheric original success. In recent years the band has only been semi-active, turning up to award ceremonies sporadically with members indulging in new projects.
RADIO WATCHDOG CONDEMNS KYLE SANDILANDS
The fall-out from offensive comments made by Kyle Sandilands towards a female journalist (he called her a “fat slag” and made comments about her breasts and appearance) continues as the Australian Communications And Media Authority [ACMA] found that 2Day FM committed one breach on the morning the comments
ABC INKS GURRUMUL BOOK DEAL
Your Daily SPA revealed last week that ABC Books have signed a deal with Skinnyfish Music for the story behind the music and life of Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu. The deal with ABC Books – an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers Australia – will see the publisher have world rights for a book, ebook and app. Robert Hillman will be the official biographer for the book, which hopes to illuminate the creative forces behind Gurrumul. Michael Hohnen, Creative Director of Skinnyfish Music and spokesman/ musician for Gurrumul, said, “Gurrumul is as excited about the book as we are and understands that it will compliment his music and be an important addition to bringing two cultures closer together.” The book is scheduled for publication in May 2013.
IMC have added three bands to their roster, Adelaide hip hop collective Full Totes Odds, Perth’s Split Seconds and Sydney’s Underlights. Fuse have signed on to be the distributors of World Music Network and their flagship series, Music Rough Guides. They also announced they’re now the distributors of independent Dutch labels Kindred Spirits and Rush Hour Recordings. Ex-Spice Girl Mel B has signed a global deal with EMI, the label she signed with originally in 1994.
RECORD STORE DAY ROAD TRIP
In celebration of Record Store Day in 2012, Saturday 21 April, Inertia is searching for Sydney’s biggest music fans. Fifteen lucky fans will enjoy Record Store Day in style, with winners invited to bring a friend and travel in a special bus to Sydney’s finest indie music stores. On the journey, fans will be treated to free exclusives and the opportunity to hear some new albums ahead of release. With plenty of time to explore each of the stores, the day will end with drinks and pizza to debrief on the day that was. For the chance to be part of this Record Store Day experience, head to Inertia’s Facebook and answer: What’s your favourite indie music store and why?
Top marks to whoever booked Cardinal George Pell and atheist Richard Dawkins on the Easter edition of Q&A. We’re cancelling next Easter now, we’re so sure of a Dawkins victory.
At last, a pollie talking sense on drugs. Bob Carr has called for “de facto decriminalisation” of some drugs. Must have realised we’re much easier to control when we’re off our tits…
ALL THE RAGE
Apologies in advance if Inpress doesn’t make it out next week – we’ve just seen Rage are looking for a programmer for a four-month gig in Sydney. Talk about dream job…
TAKEN FOR GRANTED
Proof us music-loving types still have a lot of work to do convincing the powers-that-be our industry’s an important one: classical label Melba last year received $750,000 in government funds… and released three CDs. Imagine what your local indie label/manager/booker/etc could do that with…
music 12 • INPRESS
were made, 22 November 2011. The judgement found that his comments were “deeply derogatory and offensive”. As a result, ACMA intends to slap a condition on 2Day FM, which will prohibit them broadcasting material that “offends generally-accepted standards of decency, demeans or is likely to demean women or girls, places undue emphasis on gender, uses overt sexual references in relation to a woman’s physical characteristics, and/or condones or incites violence against women”. Southern Cross, who continue to back Sandilands publicly, issued a statement that they were determined to appeal the condition, when/if it were applied. They said the station “regrets the comments made by Mr Sandilands and has apologised both publicly and privately to the journalist.” They also pointed to the fact that Sandilands had offered an open letter to the media addressing the issue and that they’d “positively re-set The Kyle & Jackie O Show in 2012, implementing rigorous, comprehensive and unprecedented new systems and processes to ensure against issues of this nature in the future.”
Very sad to hear of the passing this week of Jimmy Little and Chocolate Starfish’s Zoran Romic. They will be greatly missed. Not so upset at the passing of Short Stack, who split this week. They won’t be missed at all.
Anyone catch the hour-long McDonalds ad that screened on Channel 7 the other night? We’re hanging out for next week’s doco on Macca’s rivals – everyone knows the propaganda is better at Hungry Jack’s.
INPRESS • 13
FOREWORD LINE THE BEAT GOES ON
WEDNESDAY 4 APRIL
MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FEST
POLITICALLY INCORRECT CHRIS WAINHOUSE CHRIS FRANKLIN STEADY EDDY + MORE ENTRY $30 DOOR, $25 CONCESSION/GROUP, 7.45PM
THURSDAY 5 APRIL
MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FEST
POLITICALLY INCORRECT ENTRY $30 DOOR, $25 CONCESSION, 6PM EP LAUNCH
JOHN PATRICK & THE KEEPERS MIGHTY SUN BAND
THE PAPER STREET SOAP COMPANY ENTRY $12 DOOR, $10 PRESALE THRU MOSHTIX, 9PM $2.50 POTS, $5 VODKAS!
FRIDAY 6 APRIL
Australia’s most notorious hardcore band Deez Nuts have announced local supports for their upcoming tour, as well as adding an extra all-ages show at Karova Lounge this Sunday. National supports will be Phantoms and The Bride (not appearing for Ballarat shows). Guests for the Karova show are Ennui Breathes Malice, Nicholas Cage Fighter, Rise From Ruin, Like Royalty and A Call To Arms. Hallower and Brooklyn will join the line-up at allages EV’s Youth Centre (Croydon) show on Thursday 12, Trainwreck and Earth Caller at the Friday 13 Espy show, Nicholas Cage Fighter and Good Will Hunting at the Saturday 14 Karova Lounge show, and Delaware Wolves and Outlines at the Tuesday 17 Musicman Megastore (Bendigo) all-ages show.
POLITICALLY INCORRECT ENTRY $30 DOOR, $25 CONCESSION, 6PM SONS OF THE IONIAN SEA SWIDGEN SUNDAY 8 APRIL
MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FEST
SCOTDRAKULA COMFORT ZONES KEVIN CK LO DJ TALKSHOW BOY & GEEZUS FREE ENTRY, 8PM $10 JUGS!
TUESDAY 10 APRIL
UNDER THE LIGHTS
Sydney band Underlights have just digitally released their self-titled EP. Underlights have slowly but surely been making a name for themselves in the local Sydney scene, supporting the likes of The Jezabels and You Am I. Their sound is a guitar inspired melting pot of folk, blues and pop, blending Beatlesesque psychedelia with contemporary indie rock. In support of their new EP, they’re playing shows at Beav’s Bar (Geelong) this Thursday, the Northcote Social Club this Friday, Karova Lounge (with Yacht Club DJs and Hunting Grounds) this Saturday and Caravan Music Club this Sunday (afternoon set).
EL MOTH & THE TURBO RADS SKIPPYS BRAIN
SCOTDRAKULA (MON IN APR) EL MOTH (TUES IN APR) THE ALLEYS (12 APR) BELLUSIRA – SINGLE + FILM CLIP LAUNCH (13 APR) BUTTIFEST (14 APR) ENNIS TOLA – SINGLE LAUNCH (19 APR) AGILITY – SINGLE LAUNCH (21 APR) KIM BOEKBINDER (USA) (11, 18, 25 APR) MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL PRESENTS: ONE POLITICALLY INCORRECT EVENING (12, 13, 14, 15 APR) SECRETIVE GEORGE – FINAL SHOW (26 APR) REAL HOT BITCHES 80S DANCE PARTY - FUNDRAISER (28 APR) MURDER BY DEATH (USA) (17 MAY) SELLING FAST
Following the announcement of New Edition’s reformation, the Australian tour dates for Bell Biv DeVoe and Ginuwine have been rescheduled to August to allow the trio, who make up one-half of New Edition, to partake in the reunion tour. All tickets to the original May dates will be valid for the August performances, including the Melbourne show at Trak Lounge Bar on Friday 10 August, and a second show at Trak has been scheduled for Tuesday 14 due to demand. Ticket holders unable to attend the new dates may obtain a refund from point of purchase.
JAZZ IT UP
Now in its seventh year, Stonnington Jazz presents the best of Australian jazz. For ten days in venues across Stonnington from Thursday 17 to Sunday 27 May, music lovers will have the chance to experience the most superb jazz music this country has to offer. This year’s program will feature more than 40 performances, with concerts at the Malvern Town Hall, Chapel Off Chapel and a range of other venues. Tickets can be purchased at chapeloffchapel.com.au and the full program can be found on stonningtonjazz.com.au.
HITTIN’ THE TOWNS
After 30 years and more than 5,000 live shows played to 25 million people across 50 countries, legendary Australian band INXS have announced a tour of the heart and soul of Australia’s coastal and regional centres. Performing with Ciaran Gribbin, they’ll be playing at Geelong’s Costa Hall on Saturday 9 June and the Horsham Town Hall on Sunday 10.
Boy & Bear’s largest tour to date is selling out around the country, with two Melbourne performances (Sunday 20 May under-18s at the Hi-Fi and Friday 18 May at the Forum) being sold out. There are still limited tickets left for the Wednesday 16 May Forum show and the Sunday 19 May Deakin’s Costa Hall (Geelong) show. The Remember The Mexican National Tour has also gone from big to huge with The Jungle Giants and Tin Sparrow now throwing their hats in the ring.
MUSIC, MIRTH & MAYHEM
Fourteen years of Music, Mirth & Mayhem and this Festival highlight is back for one night only at the Hi-Fi on Monday 16 April. It features the best local and international comedians sharing the stage with greats of Australian music, all performing for The Mirabel Foundation, an organisation that cares for over 1,000 children who have been orphaned or abandoned due to parental drug abuse. The line-up includes Judith Lucy, Dave Hughes, Greg Fleet, Lawrence Mooney, Rebecca Barnard, Francesca Martinez, Anthony De Masi, Dave Larkin, Anyone for Tennis? and more.
MONDAY $8 BURGERS TILL 8PM TUE - SUN 4-7PM HAPPY HOUR
Gin Wigmore 05/04 Mimi Velevska 05/05 THURSDAY 5TH APRIL
SATURDAY 21ST APRIL
Eaten By Dogs
Adam Christou (SYN)
Happy Hour 4-7pm
FRIDAY 6TH APRIL
FRIDAY 13TH APRIL
MONDAY 16TH APRIL
SUNDAY 22ND APRIL
Kikuyu Happy Hour 4-7pm
Oscar Vincente Slorach-Thorn Happy Hour 4 – 7pm
Better Than The Wizards LA Pocock
Yeo Happy Hour 4-7pm
MONDAY 9TH APRIL
SATURDAY 14TH APRIL
THURSDAY 19TH APRIL
MONDAY 23RD APRIL
ASPS, Interzone, High Tea Adam Christou (SYN)
Private Life LA Pocock
THURSDAY 12TH APRIL
SUNDAY 15TH APRIL
FRIDAY 20TH APRIL
TUESDAY 24TH APRIL
Ainsle Wills Adam Christou (SYN)
Sleep Decade Happy Hour 4- 7pm
And The Mirrors, The Pretty Littles Happy Hour 4 – 7pm
The McQueens Pete Keen (Sugar Mountain)
14 • INPRESS
On Sale At Moshtix:
MATT KELLY (SOLO) ENTRY BY DONATION, 9PM $10 JUGS!
COMING UP - TIX AVAILABLE THRU MOSHTIX:
Over the next few days, Lucky Coq and Bimbo Deluxe want you to party like you just don’t care which side of the Yarra you live on. Best Of Both Sides aims to eliminate the north/south divide with a series of performances from more than 50 artists over the Easter holiday. Things kicked off on Monday and will run until Sunday 8 April. It includes free transport between venues in the Boags bus as well as the ever famous $4 pizzas. Expect jam-packed days of live music, awesome giveaways and food and drink specials. Melbourne will witness history once again as social perimeters are blurred and music lovers join forces to party the Easter holiday away. Acts set to appear include Boogs, Spacey Space, Gorge, KiNK, The Psyde Projects, Haul Music, Flargrant and more. For full line-up details hit up bestofbothsides.com.au.
SYSTEM OF VENUS MOTH BATTLE AXE HOWLERS ENTRY $8, 9PM
MONDAY 9 APRIL
THE BEST OF BOTH SIDES
This July, the Underground Legion Tour hits the east of Australia for four shows. This year will feature old-school metal warriors Goatwhore on their first headlining shows in Australia. Joining them will be Impiety, Singapore’s black/death metal legends, plus Tasmania’s dark and extreme force, Ruins. Special guest opening acts will be announced soon. For a thunderous evening of hard and heavy music, head to the Corner Hotel on Saturday 7 July.
MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FEST
ENTRY $8, 9PM
LOVE, EVELYN MARKETS FREE ENTRY, 12PM
THE SINGLE MEN’S DRINKING CLUB YOUNG MAVERICK
After 30 years of creating some of the finest ska and reggae pop the world has even heard, Dave Wakeling and The English Beat will finally make it to Australia in August. Fuelled by the anger of punk and the English winter of discontent, The English Beat, alongside contemporaries such as The Specials and Madness, were at the forefront of the British Ska movement. Known in the UK as simply The Beat, for the rest of the world a name clash with a US band also called The Beat meant they settled on The English Beat. Too excited by the music to wait, the Australian record company jumped the gun and dubbed the band The British Beat. Catch them at the Corner Hotel on Thursday 30 August. Fifteen VIP packages for the Melbourne show are available to puchase for $147+BF – it includes VIP entry at the venue, a meet and greet with the band, exclusive tour poster and items signed.
SATURDAY 7 APRIL
POLITICALLY INCORRECT ENTRY $30 DOOR, $25 CONCESSION, 6PM
NEWS FROM THE FRONT
Koin Op Karaoke Hayden Calnin
No Art EP Launch
Celadore Single Launch, Jimmy
Cold Hiker Happy Hour 4-7pm
WHIPPED CREAM CHARGERS (RECORD LAUNCH)
W MESA COSA + GUESTS
“ FREE IN THE FRONT BAR “
JIMMY STEWART 8PM
THE STEVENS (RECORD LAUNCH)
W HARMONY AND BOOMGATES
FRANKIE WANTS OUT (EP LAUNCH)
W THE FUNK BUDDIES AND THAT GOLD STREET SOUND
W THE DUB CAPTAINS AND ECHO DRAMA
W TWISTED EFFECTION ( WA ) MEET ME IN COGNITO AND CRUEL TO BE KIND
MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL AND CURTIN COMEDY PRESENTS... ADAM KNOX + LADY BONER SHOWS
- MARCH 29TH, 30TH & 31ST APRIL 2ND, 3RD, 5TH, 6TH, 7TH, 9TH, 10TH, 12TH, 13TH, 14TH, 16TH, 17TH, 19, 20TH & 21ST
100% PHAT, FLAGRANT (LIVE VJ), M-PHAZES, AGENT 86, AYNA, JESSE I, LADY BANTON SATURDAY 7TH
SUCK MUSIC, BOOGS VS SPACEY SPACE, SILVERSIX, NICK COLEMAN, HEY SAM
BEST OF BOTH SIDES PRESENTS
PBS & BOSSMAN, BOSSMAN AV, POLAT, EDO, BOY GO YOKO, MONICA HANNS, DJ P.KING, EDD FISHER
M DIVISION, VIVA LA’MOUR, HOMETRAVEL (LIVE), MESARTHIM (LIVE), NHJ TICKLED PINK TEA PARTY, GORGE (GER), DANNI B, ANRI, SAMSARA, KATIE DROVER, VOLTA, AMY MATILDA, ATONIX
ANDREW O’NEIL ‘ THE OTHER ALTERNATIVE ‘ - APRIL 14TH
BOBS COOL DOWN
SAM MCEWIN, LUKE BOWDITCH, ADAM ASKEW TUESDAY 10TH
MATT RADOVICH, ANDRAS FOX
“COQ ROQ” GUPSTAR, KING OF THE NORTH BLABE RUNNER, JOYBOT
BOBS FESTIVAL ELECTRIC OWL
BOBS FESTIVAL, FESTIVAL THE PSYDE PROJECTS DOWN
D’FRO, MR MOONSHINE, THE PSYDE PROJECTS(LIVE), ILL RESPONSE, VISUAL BY FORM
SOUTH SIDE HUSTLE UP
J’NETT, JUNJI MASAYAMA & DISCO HARRY, ADAM ASKEW, BOOSHANK
“SOUTH SIDE HUSSLE”
REMEDY, TAHL, DARIUS, CHILD(LIVE) MUSKA, BOBS FESTIVAL, MIXED MESSAGES
- MARCH 29TH APRIL 5TH, 12TH & 19TH
POP UP PLAYGROUND + LATE NIGHT LETTERS AND NUMBERS SHOWS
KODIAK KID, JEAN-PAUL TOM EVANS, JANE & BEN DAFFY
MTC, LOUIS MCCOY(KNEE DEEP), JON BETA (EBB&FLO) CAINE SINCLAIRE VS ACE STOJEVSKI (REVIVAL), SAFARI(FREQUENT FLYER), SAM MCEWIN (MTC), TEXT BOOK MUSIC(LIVE), JAY READING(MTC), MIKE BUHL (THE LIKES OF YOU), HAUL MUSIC(LIVE), DEEN BENSON(OVERNOISE), MATT RADOVICH(MTC)
MONDAY: PALE ALE FISH AND HAND CUT CHIPS $13 TUESDAY: KANGAROO FILLET W MASH, VEG & RED WINE JUS $14 WEDNESDAY CHICKEN SCHNITZEL AND HAND CUT CHIPS $13 THURSDAY: 280G GRAIN FED ANGUS PORTERHOUSE STEAK $14 FRIDAY: CHICKEN OR EGGPLANT PARMA $14/$13 SATURDAY: CURTIN BURGER AND HAND CUT CHIPS $14
GOLDEN FLEECE, MR GEORGE, INKSWEL, ENNIO STYLES(STYLIN’ RRR)
“STRUGGLE” TIGER FUNK “LIVE”, DAMON “COSMIC PIZZAS” NHJ PLUS GUEST
TRADING HOURS MON - WED 3PM - LATE THURS & FRI 11:30AM - LATE SATURDAY 4PM - LATE LATE KITCHEN HOURS THURS & FRI 12:00PM - 2:30PM & 5PM - 9:30PM SATURDAY 6PM - 9:30PM
BOBS FESTIVAL CHAMELEON UP
ANRI, BRAD DANIELS, STEVE WARD, KINK, JAMIE STEVENS, VISUAL BY BLUE MD, INPRESS • 15
NEWS FROM THE FRONT
THE GOOD LIGHT
Dappled Cities have announced the release of their first new single in over three years. Run With The Wind has the potential to become their most loved track to date, and predicates how special the upcoming fourth studio album will be for Dappled Cities. To coincide with the release of the single, Dappled Cities will host a launch party at the Northcote Social Club on Friday 4 May. Tickets on sale now.
THEY LIKE SHORT SONGS
DON’T FENCE ME IN
Woody Guthrie was a dustbowl refugee whose guitar bore the words, “this machine kills fascists”. In that spirit, These Machines Cut Razor Wire is an annual music fundraiser for the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre, Australia’s largest asylum seeker advocacy, aid and health organisation. With 12 acts including Jeff Lang, The Melbourne Mass Gospel Choir (80 voices), The Stetson Family, Bell St Delays (Tracy McNeil, Luke Sinclair and Matt Green), Fraser A Gorman, Uncle Bill (led by Gerry Hale), The Cartridge Family (led by Sarah Carroll), Nigel Wearne & The Cast Iron Promises, The Jed Rowe Band, Alex Hallahan & The Woodland Hunters, Kate Walker, Tully Sumner and Les Thomas, anyone that loves live music and supports justice for asylum seekers won’t want to miss it. Music starts 4pm Sunday 15 April at Thornbury Theatre. Entry is $20 for adults with kids free. All proceeds go to the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre. For more info and to book tickets head to thesemachinescutrazorwire.org.
MEETING IN THE MIDDLE
Ben Wells & The Middle Names have toured extensively in the past year, clocking up more than 10,000 kilometres, and supporting acts such as Art Vs Science, San Cisco, Little Red and more. They were also selected by triple j Unearthed to perform at the Marion Bay leg of the 2011 Falls Festival. They will now be touring the East Coast of Australia along with Kate Martin. You can catch them at the Toff In Town on Wednesday 9 May and Pure Pop Records (playing an acoustic set) on Friday 11.
FREE THE BOY
Boy In A Box are bringing their glistening pop-rock anthems to the front bar of the Espy for a free Good Friday show. Hailing from NSW, Tobias “Tij” Priddle’s move to Melbourne saw him expand on a musical obsession that had gripped him since high school – the clattering hooks of the UK punk era and the everyman stance of Americana, as well as elements of early soul and grainy FM pop – to inform the heart of Boy In A Box.
Silverstein return to our shores this June to debut tracks off 2011’s critically acclaimed long player Rescue and the aptly titled Short Songs to their Australian fans. Australian audiences were given their first taste of Silverstein in 2005 with a whirlwind tour of five cities in as many days. Silverstein maintained the demanding pace, returning several times to continue building on their loyal Aussie fanbase with unwavering live performances in between American and European tour and festival dates. Their 2006 Australian tour sold out, proving Silverstein had well and truly become a crowd favourite. They play Bang on Saturday 9 June and the Pelly Bar (Frankston) on Sunday 10.
After a killer 2011 playing alongside some of the biggest international and Australian acts around, Brisbane live electronic band Pigeon are hitting the road again this coming April/May with their Cataclysm Tour. The boys from Pigeon have spent the last few months working on new material in the studio and are now ready to road test their new tunes in front of an audience. They play Thursday 3 May at Laundry Bar, Friday 4 at Revolver Upstairs, and Saturday 5 at the Espy in the front bar.
In a career spanning over 45 years, the legendary English singer, storyteller, songwriter and guitar virtuoso Ralph McTell has amassed an impressive back catalogue of over 350 songs, including the evergreen Ivor Novello Award-winning Streets Of London, which has been covered by a diverse collection of 200 artists from around the world. And who can forget From Clare To Here, Factory Girl, The Ferryman, Eight Frames A Second, Nanna’s Song, Would I Lie To You and so many more? McTell will be making his final farewell tour of Australia during April and May. This will be the last chance audiences will have to see the revered artist perform here live. The tour will showcase material from his latest album Somewhere Down The Road and, from the Bob Dylan birthday tribute, Don’t Think Twice It’s Alright, along with some old favourites. He plays Thursday 10 May at the Cube (Frankston) and Friday 11 May at the Corner Hotel.
The Peep Tempel’s recent launch for their selftitled debut album at the Northcote Social Club saw a near sell-out crowd’s frenzy threaten to snap the floorboards while the band ripped through their grime-flecked-yet-razor sharp set. Already one of the surest bets for the best kind of furious anger in Melbourne’s live scene, The Peep Tempel are bringing their adrenaline-fuelled brand of rock to the hallowed Tote stage on Friday 13 April. Joining The Peep Tempel are Mesa Cosa, The Jackals and The Kremlings. Tickets are $12 and will be available on the door.
A second Corner Hotel show for Melbourne’s own Husky will take place on Sunday 6 May as tickets to the band’s first show have sold out. Husky have recently caused a stir in the international community, making history as the first Aussie band to sign to renowned Seattle label Sub Pop. The band are now gearing up to release their acclaimed debut album Forever So in Europe in May, and in the US and Canada in July. In February, Husky toured Germany with European duo Boy, performing to more than 20,000 people across 15 shows. They quickly struck a chord with fans, with their Husky EP propelling into the Top 30 on the German iTunes chart. In March, they performed across New York City and LA, and celebrated their signing to Sub Pop by opening the label’s official showcase at SXSW in Austin.
Seventeen-piece behemoth The Public Opinion Afro Orchestra are on board and playing live at the next instalment of the Scatter Scatter Tropical Disco. Over the past few months DJ Manchild and The Public Opinion Sound System have gotten Melbourne warmed up to the tropical disco sounds of Scatter Scatter with a series of sweaty, percussion-driven, dancefloorburning parties. Guests such as Jumps, Chris Gill and Saca La Mois DJ! (Cumbia Cosmonauts) joined forces with them to bring nothing but the heaviest Afro-funk, the deepest Island disco, the fieriest Colombian salsa and the most mind-bending Cumbia. Catch them at Twotwotwo Warehouse on Saturday 14 April.
Word on the street is that all tickets to sideshows for The Sonics and The 184.108.40.206’s have been snapped up, so the only chance left to see these legends of garage rock is at Dig It Up!, the Hoodoo Gurus-organised knees-up that will feature the aforementioned bands (the Gurus will be playing their debut, Stoneage Romeos, in full). Other acts on the bill include Redd Kross, The Fleshtones, Died Pretty, Royal Headache, Hard-Ons and more.
September 2012 welcomes the arrival of a defining name of ‘80s British punk rock: Subhumans. This will be the band’s first ever Australasian tour and features the 1981 line-up of Dick, Trotsky, Bruce and Phil that recorded their debut EP Demolition War and classic albums such as The Day The Country Died and were an integral part of the UK anarcho-punk scene. Since reforming in 1998 Subhumans have released a live album for the infamous Fat Wreck Chords, a new set of studio tracks called Internal Riot on the band’s own Bluurg label, as well playing to packed venues throughout the world, including headlining festivals such as Rebellion. They play Saturday 15 September at the Bendigo Hotel. 16 • INPRESS
TOURING THE OUTLANDS
Buzz band of the moment Deep Sea Arcade will be hitting the road this June in support of their newest release, Outlands. The record has gained much attention across the nation. The Deep Sea Arcade: Outlands Album Tour will see The Cairos and Woe & Flutter joining as supporting acts. See what all the fuss is about and dance to their ‘60s-infused indie rock tunes at Phoenix Public House on Friday 8 June and Ballarat’s Karova Lounge on Saturday 9.
NEWS FROM THE FRONT
All three shows for Karnivool’s Melodias Frescas tour in Melbourne have now completely sold out thanks to Victorian fans and their enthusiasm for the band. There are still some tickets available for their Geelong show at the Bended Elbow on Sunday 8 July. You’d be advised to be quick. Tickets available through OzTix.
KIDS JUST WANNA HAVE FUN
A SIXY EVENING
New Zealand-based Six60 blend soul, rock, dubstep and drum’n’bass. After touring for several years, building up a solid fan base and scoring prime festival slots, they’re set to embark on their fourth Australian tour and release their debut album on Friday 20 April. Check them out at the Hi-Fi on Friday 27 April.
Los Chicos are back in Melbourne! This ten-legged party machine from Spain are going to make you dance. They play the Tote tonight (Wednesday) with The Meanies, La Bastard and Thee Mighty Childish; and Yah Yah‘s tomorrow with Midnight Woolf, The Bowers and Johnny Casino. They’ve also been added to the sold-out Boogie festival, held in Tallarook this Easter weekend.
This will be the audio-visual event of the decade as Amon Tobin brings his ISAM Live spectacular to the Palace Theatre on Tuesday 5 June. The internet lit up as a teaser for Amon Tobin’s new live show, ISAM Live, debuted. The Brazilian-born sonic master from Ninja Tune, who cut his teeth on early drum’n’bass records has gone on to be recognised as one of the most advanced sound engineers in contemporary electronic music, was preparing something extra special that had never been achieved before. With the teams of V Squared Labs, Alex Lazarus, Vita Motus, Leviathan and Ninja Tune, he has completely thrown the rulebook out the window as to what can be achieved with the standard projection format.
Bubbling up for years before last year’s XXX (released on A-Trak’s Fool’s Gold label), Danny Brown caught much of the hip hop world’s attention with his LP The Hybrid but had previously appeared on records with as diverse a bunch of characters as fellow Motor City bad man Guilty Simpson and G Unit’s Tony Yayo. He was also recently spotted on Paul White’s album and a collaborative effort with producer/MC Black Milk. MED triumphantly returned in 2011 with his second LP Classic, flanked by the single Where I’m From with Aloe Blacc. Both are appearing in Sydney as part of Vivid Live 2012 and will play a double banger on Thursday 24 May at the Prince Bandroom.
Isaac, Taylor and Zac Hanson are household names in Australia. After a seven-year absence, Hanson are back with a brand new album and tour that is sure to capture the attention and imagination of a nation that has always embraced the band as their own. Fifteen years ago, their out-of-the-blue, soul-inspired brand of American pop-rock‘n’roll was introduced to the world. Unaffected by charts or fads, they’ve spent more than a decade building a community of fans connected to one another and fuelled by the energy and craftsmanship of three brothers and their music, earning praise for their songwriting, musicianship and dynamic live performances. See them at the Palace Theatre on Friday 14 September.
Fresh off the back of his opening slots for Matt Corby’s sold-out Corner Hotel shows in Melbourne, Hayden Calnin has announced he will be playing his own residency shows at the Workers Club throughout the month of April before embarking on an East Coast tour opening for Gossling on her Intentional Living tour. At only 22, self-produced singer/ songwriter Hayden Calnin has begun to build a following for himself after garnering the attention of Triple J and its listeners with comparisons to international acts such as Bon Iver and James Blake. You can catch him at the Workers Club residency on Sundays in April and with Gossling on Sunday 5 May at the Thornbury Theatre.
BLOW YOUR EYEBALLS OUT
IN FROM THE COLD THINKING LIKE A FAKER
Melbourne jazz/soul/electronic artist Chet Faker has sold out his Thinking In Textures launch at the Toff on Saturday 21 April in a matter of days. A second Toff show has been announced for Sunday 22. Special guest for both shows is I’lls. Hailing from the tightknit disco and house music scene in Melbourne and taking elements from an acoustic past, Chet Faker has carved out a unique style that fuses personal stories of love and loss with an electronica soul that reaches far beyond his homeland.
FOLLOW THE TRAIL
The Maple Trail, the solo project of Sydneybased musician Aiden Roberts, launches his stunning new album, Cable Mount Warning, at the Gasometer on Tuesday 24 April (Anzac Day eve).
TRAVELLING FOR MYLES
Canada’s David Myles is set to return to Australian shores in May for an extensive run of live shows to further showcase his stunning album, Into The Sun. He will be hitting the road with local duo Camille & Stuie, who are also celebrating the release of their fourth album Big Days & Little Years. Catch them when they play Wesley Anne on Friday 8 June and the Caravan Music Club on Saturday 9.
Aussie rockers Cold Chisel release their first album in 14 years this Friday and CinemaLive are celebrating with an exclusive live concert event screening of the band’s Sydney show via satellite to cinema screens right around Australia on 18 April. Fans can see the performance as it happens in glorious HD with Dolby 5.1 sound as the band play tracks from their new album, No Plans, as well as their classic hits. No Plans features 13 new songs recorded in 2010 and 2011, including the final recordings of late drummer Steve Prestwich, who passed away last year. Fans will have the opportunity to purchase the album in an exclusive bundle with their cinema ticket. Cold Chisel live in concert will be screened via satellite in all states and territories on Wednesday 18 April. Tickets are $39.50 and include a copy of No Plans. For details of participating cinemas near you, and to purchase tickets, visit cinemalive.com.
MARK MY WORDS
For those attending Mark Lanegan Band’s Melbourne show at the Forum on Thursday 26 April, you are in for a treat. Joining the band will be Australian rock legend Ron S Peno and his band, The Superstitions, and opening for the evening will be Melbourne indie rock quartet Howl At The Moon.
Lanie Lane has now sold out two shows at the Corner Hotel in Melbourne on her upcoming Bangity Bang tour. A new show has now been added – the extra Corner Hotel show will happen on Monday 28 May. Tickets are on sale now.
NEARLY HERE HAPPY SHE’S BACK
Van She are back! And indeed back with a cosmic-tropo band, as they invite you to enjoy their sophomore record, Idea Of Happiness, which is set to drop this July via Modular. The album was recorded, engineered and produced by the band themselves in Kings Cross, Sydney, and later mixed in Los Angeles with Tony Hoffer, the perfect man for the job, with a resume that includes work with Beck, Air, Phoenix and M83. And to celebrate, they’ll be taking their new single on tour with dates all across Australia. They’ll be hitting the Toff In Town on Tuesday 24 April. The album will be out on Friday 6 July.
Mark Snarski teamed up with Mick Harvey to form the project The Nearly Brothers. In February 2009, their debut album You Can’t Hide From Your Yesterdays was recorded, featuring Martin Casey on bass and Mark Dawson on drums. The album oozes with class befit from a wonderful gestation and a great cast. Now, the first live shows for this unique collaboration have been confirmed. See The Nearly Brothers live at Pure Pop Records (stripped-back set) this Saturday, the Northcote Social Club this Sunday and at the Caravan Music Club on Friday 13 April.
INPRESS • 17
CLAUDIA O’DOHERTY TELLS DAVE DRAYTON WHY SHE’S RETURNING TO THE MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL FOR HER THIRD CONSECUTIVE YEAR IN ORDER TO QUIT COMEDY. COVER AND FEATURE PHOTO BY CYBELE MALINOWSKI.
he first time I saw Claudia O’Doherty she was performing her show What Is Soil Erosion? as part of the Imperial Panda festival in Sydney. In the unflattering light of the charmingly dingy Goodgod Small Club she stood on a knee-high stage, dressed head to toe in beige corduroy, and began her presentation. I had no idea what to expect, I was there on word of mouth, her reputation for comedy preceding her. There was a very, very sore-looking cold sore above her lip that was hard to miss. Like, really hard to miss. And so it was with relief that I heard her acknowledge its presence – and with disbelief that I saw her pluck it off and eat it. The gist of the performance was a failed television pitch for a show of the same name and while it was ‘Claudia O’Doherty’ on stage, there was doubt that the real Claudia would have thought this a realistic pitch for television. That’s the fun of O’Doherty’s comedy – she casts herself in the worst (and most hilarious) light possible. She doesn’t take herself seriously at all, and has a disarming ramshackle cuteness in conversation that belies her intelligence and carefully-crafted comedy, or idiocy, as it were. “I think what I do is ‘high concept idiocy’,” O’Doherty explains. “Which pretty much involves me trying to be as stupid as possible. I don’t know where it really fits in, because some people say it’s character comedy, some people say it’s got bits of stand-up in it and some people say, ‘She’s just crazy…’ I’m just trying to be funny. I don’t know, who knows? Who knows?!” The reason all this needs to be said is because at times it’s hard to know how much Claudia one is getting, and how much ‘Claudia’ one is getting – Claudia the failed millennial illusionist, Claudia the sole survivor of the destroyed Aquaplex – it’s never too distressing, however, as whatever the balance is, the results are hilarious. Today’s Claudia is a little on edge, in the midst of preparation for The Telescope, her new show at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. “I am currently quite stressed out because I don’t know how to use a Microsoft Dell and my entire show runs off a Mac and it’s broken and I’m trying to put it on a Dell and I do not know how to use a Dell,” she says at breakneck speed. “Nobody in the entire world knows how to answer these questions I have! It’s making me feel very sad and angry. I’ve got a Keynote presentation which is my entire show, and I’ve transferred it into PowerPoint because that’s what works on Microsoft and I’ve opened it in Microsoft and it says file cannot be found!” Courting disaster she may be, but as O’Doherty explains, there’s really no one to blame except herself. Her technically addled routine is part of an ongoing attempt to work weird and wonderful props into her shows that has so far seen the 18 • INPRESS
inclusion of hand-crafted deep sea dioramas – a charming addition to her break-out solo production Monsters Of The Deep 3D – and lasers, kind of, in What Is Soil Erosion?.
laughter. Please join Claudia O’Doherty for her first foray into confronting, upsetting theatre. Everyone is changed once they look into The Telescope. This show will not be funny.”
“Every year you just try to make a better show than you’ve ever made before and one that you find funny,” she says. “And of course you put pressure on yourself to make it good. When I’m just writing a show I’m thinking about what kinds of ‘funny’ I’m capable of and how I can be funny and what I find amusing. And I also try do something that I haven’t done before and see if I can do specific things. I’ve been incorporating a lot more video stuff into what I do – I’m trying to think of exciting ways to have video
“The Telescope is going to really shake you up, it’s a very intense show,” confirms O’Doherty, doing her best to appear serious.
There’s more to this story
on the iPad
in shows that’s not just someone playing a video and standing there while people watch it – just figuring out if there are ways to interact with the video that make it heighten the comedy rather than just be a reason for you to not have to do something for a while, you know? “Sometimes when you see videos in shows it just seems like an opportunity for a break for the person doing the show. And I think videos are often really good but in this show I’m trying to put videos in but not make it an excuse for me to stop ‘doing’ the show – pretty much making it as difficult as possible,” she concludes, with another comically defeatist reference to her current computer struggles. Difficult as it seems, the results speak for themselves; Monsters Of The Deep 3D earned O’Doherty the Best Comedy and Brisbane Comedy Festival awards at the 2009 Melbourne Fringe Festival (the latter is awarded by the BCF, with the prize being a spot on their 2010 programme) and the Best Newcomer gong at the 2010 MICF, and the overwhelming response to What Is Soil Erosion? saw O’Doherty take the show on the road, playing at Edinburgh Festival Fringe and select London shows as well as a week-long run at Sydney’s Belvoir St Theatre. With The Telescope now ready to hit stages– bar a few a technical set backs – O’Doherty already has plans to take it to Edinburgh Fringe and some London venues later this year with the assistance of UK-based production company The Invisible Dot, who have worked with the likes of Tim Key, Ben Target, Daniel Kitson, and David O’Doherty (no relation). So with everything coming up trumps for the comedian, it seems odd that The Telescope, apparently, marks her leave of comedy. The show description reads: “No more jokes. No more
“I just thought it would be a funny blurb, my mum was very confused by it, she was like, ‘It says no jokes!’” comes the incredulous impersonation. “‘Why would it say that?’ What?!’ But I guess I find that kind of thing amusing. But, I mean, then the quotes that come after it all say that it will be funny. So, hopefully, if you can get past that brain teaser of a blurb, it’s pretty much an indication that I will say things that aren’t true and hopefully they’ll be funny things,” offers O’Doherty. If the aforementioned awards and accolades weren’t enough to convince you of her left-of-centre talent, the quotes O’Doherty mentions – the Guardian proclaiming her to be “Wickedly funny… stunning and bizarre”, the Sydney Morning Herald describing her work as “Intricately devised hilarity” – should be. But it does add further confusion to the driving force behind The Telescope O’Doherty’s supposed retirement from the laughter game. “Pretty much I’ve just decided that I want to quit comedy so I will be doing a very confronting, upsetting show in the Comedy Festival. The idea is a very serious show – if I tried to do one, which I’m not really capable of, so it’s just a very ridiculous show with a ridiculous amount of technical stuff happening and mechanical things in the set and a lot of video and all of that sort of stuff,” O’Doherty explains. And just like that we’re back to computers. Her laptop was working fine during the limited run of previews she did for The Telescope in Sydney recently, and by all accounts, they were a success, but there’s just no telling where her self-inflicted technological troubles will take her next. Perhaps, she reasons, at the absolute worst, it will result in her not being held responsible for false advertising. “The Sydney shows were good, it was fun! It’s always terrifying doing your first previews because you’re like, ‘This might be a disaster, this might not be a comedy at all and I could have made a terrible mistake here!’ But it was very nice to do it in front of people and have people laugh and realise what you want to do to make it super excellent. So that’s what I’m trying to do now – make it ‘super excellent’ – as well as trying to understand Microsoft, which is horrible. If this PowerPoint doesn’t work I will not have any video in the show and it will be a lot shorter than it was in Sydney!
“And at least if that’s what happens, and it is a disaster, at least I didn’t do any false advertising, so that’s fine.” Not content to give up just yet, and revelling in the knowledge that her wonderfully awkward photograph will be gracing the cover of this magazine, O’Doherty has a few final requests and suggestions that just may save The Telescope from being as horribly unfunny as she has promised. “Why don’t you just write ‘Claudia O’Doherty needs some help, um, with some Apple versus Microsoft, err, stuff…’ And I need you to print the story today. Right now.” WHO: Claudia O’Doherty WHAT: The Telescope WHEN & WHERE: Until Sunday 22 April (excludes Monday), Regent Room, Melbourne Town Hall
A JILL OF ALL TRADES By now you’re well aware that Claudia O’Doherty is uniquely strange and hilarious breed of comedian. But did you know her talents extend beyond that? A quick glance at the resume reveals stints on radio – co-hosting the graveyard shift at Triple R and providing the laughs with sketch group Pig Island (an ensemble that includes fellow comedians/actors Nick Coyle and Charlie Garber) at Sydney’s FBi Radio – and some impressive scribing. O’Doherty has penned two books alongside David O’Doherty and Mike Ahern, 100 Facts About Pandas and 100 Facts About Sharks, and has also teamed up with Arena Theatre Company as part of Arts Centre Melbourne’s New Music Theatre Series, otherwise known as Carnegie 18, to write stage adaptations of Hilaire Belloc’s Cautionary Tales For Children, a gig that will see her travelling to Washington, USA, for further development on the production next month. Oh, she can also fit her entire fist in her mouth. It’s not on the resume per se, but, you know, it’s still an achievement worthy of mention. “I can fit my whole fist in my mouth, I can’t remember how I discovered it… I think I just saw someone doing it on television or in a movie and I thought I’d give that a whack, ’cause I’m a go-getter,” O’Doherty explains. “And turns out I can totally do it. It is just a party trick, but luckily I’m also capable of taking my fist out of my mouth, because a friend of mine once stuck her fist in her mouth when she was quite drunk and it got stuck in there and then she started vomiting while her first was jammed in her mouth and it was not pretty! It was just coming out the sides.”
WEDNESDAY 4 APRIL
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MONDAY 9 APRIL
SUBLIME WITH ROME
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THURSDAY 12 APRIL
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WEDNESDAY 25TH APRIL
DIG IT UP! THE HOODOO GURUS
– CELEBRATING 30 YEARS OF RECORDED HISTORY PERFORMING STONEAGE ROMEOS + MORE. ALSO THE SONICS (USA), DIED PRETTY, REDD KROSS (USA), THE 220.127.116.11’S (JAPAN), THE FLESHTONES (USA), HARD-ONS, THE LOVETONES + MORE TO FOLLOW. TICKETEK.COM.AU, PH 132849 & OUTLETS ALSO AT OZTIX OUTLETS POLYESTER CITY & FITZROY, GREVILLE, ESPY, NATIONAL HOTEL, OZTIX.COM.AU, PH 1300 762 545
FRIDAY 4TH MAY
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TUESDAY 8TH MAY
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FRIDAY 25TH MAY
THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT
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TUESDAY 5TH JUNE
AMON TOBIN ISAM
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FRIDAY 14TH SEPTEMBER
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THURSDAY 20TH SEPT
EIFFEL 65 & N-TRANCE
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TASTE TEST: GUY CHAPPELL-LAWRENCE THE FIRST ALBUM I BOUGHT WITH MY OWN MONEY
The first album I bought with my own money was when I was 11 and it was From The Muddy Banks Of Wishkah by Nirvana. It was one of their live albums. I also bought Smash by The Offspring at the same time. I remember my drum teacher being like, “Man, you have to get these two albums, they’ll blow your mind” and they did and turned me on to rock music as opposed to just what my parents listened to.
THE ALBUM I’M LOVING RIGHT NOW Nostalgia by Frank Ocean is pretty awesome. He has released it for free on his website and it’s sort of gone viral on the net now. It’s a mixtape and has everything from Jay-Z to Kayne. I really like R&B from the early ‘90s and I think he is sort of doing that in a cool way. I’m all about making R&B cool again.
MY FAVOURITE PARTY ALBUM
Smash by The Offspring is probably one of them. I think Astro Creep by White Zombie is also really good. We party to these albums before we play, when we’re in the car to and from gigs… usually to keep people awake because they are falling asleep in the back seat.
MY FAVOURITE COMEDOWN ALBUM I looked at the albums I have listened to most on my iTunes and Moon Safari by Air has had an absolute blasting over the past ten years since it came out. And lately I’ve been listening to Le Voyage Dans La Lune: A Trip To The Moon; Air re-scored a movie that came out in 1901 and it’s just been released. It’s absolutely amazing. So they are probably the two best comedown albums I can think of.
THE FIRST GIG I EVER ATTENDED
think it was when we were playing in Melbourne at the Prince with Hunting Grounds, who we’re touring with again at the moment. At the Christmas show at the Prince, a girl was on stage dancing up against the drummer; she was really just pushing him around and he was like, ‘I’m not gonna take this’, so lightly pushed back. There were lots and lots of people on stage so he couldn’t really see what was going on. She turned around, lifted up her dress, pulled down her underwear and pissed all over his leg on stage. That was certainly pretty weird.
BIGGEST NON-MUSICAL INFLUENCES
I am a huge fan of Quentin Tarantino. I was thinking the other night though, that I have seen so many good Cameron Crowe films but I don’t think he gets quite the props he deserves, so him too. I am a huge movie buff. I like Tarantino’s fresh take on the genres and the way he melds bits of music and odd visuals together. Pulp Fiction or Kill Bill 1 are my favourites, I guess like everyone else.
THE COOLEST PERSON I’VE EVER MET A dude I met at my cousin’s 21st, his name was Corey and he was a brand awareness agent for Nike. He could seriously talk the leg off a chair and everything he said was fantastically interesting. He worked for Nike going to nightclubs and nice restaurants to start conversations with people and introducing Nike into the conversation. He would leave shoes for people in their size and do sneaky things like that and that was his job. Immediately after meeting him, I desperately wanted some Nikes and literally ran out of the party to buy some; I bought some vintage, ‘80s style remake high tops.
BIGGEST CELEBRITY CRUSH I’VE HAD
I went to the Big Day Out with my dad when I was about 13 or 14 and saw Marilyn Manson and Korn – that was pretty amazing at the time. I think dad was trying to get on board, but I was a big [Manson] fan back then. I had all his t-shirts and what-not.
I’ve never sort of been star-struck by anyone I’ve met but I did feel a little bit of a boner when I met Karen O from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs at Falls in Tasmania a few years ago. She just never stops moving and is always dancing around, doing handstands. She is super manic, drop dead gorgeous and makes amazing music.
WEIRDEST GIG EXPERIENCE I’VE HAD
THE MOST SURPRISING RECORD IN MY COLLECTION
Oh, I don’t… it’s hard to think of just one… I
Yacht Club DJs: Guy Chappell-Lawrence (right) and Gareth Harrison (left) and
Chumbawamba. I don’t even know how I ended up with it. I think I got it as a present. I’m going to say I got it as a present.
IF I COULD HANG OUT IN ANY TIME AND PLACE IN HISTORY
It would be a toss-up between New York in the ‘70s to go to Studio 54 or Paris in the ’20s. After seeing Midnight In Paris, It reminded me of all the great art that came out of that period. I actually did six months of an art degree and was going to be painter before I became a DJ. I would basically love to hang out with Picasso and Hemingway.
I recently dusted off Tubthumping by
IF I WASN’T MAKING MUSIC...
I’d probably be working at KFC or Taco Bell or a combination of KFC and Taco Bell. Before I was DJ I was teaching drums, so I’d probably be doing that. Interview by Cassandra Fumi WHO: Yacht Club DJs WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 April, Prince Bandroom; Friday 6, Bended Elbow, Geelong; Saturday 7 and Sunday 8, Karova Lounge, Ballarat
2012 Australian Tour Edition of
SIMONE FELICE Former Felice Brothers and Duke & the King singer/songwriter – now solo singer/songwriter – presents his debut solo album. “This album is the one I’ve had buried away, somewhere in my weird heart.” - S I M O N E F E L I C E ‘Simone Felice has the poetic gifts and fearless aesthetic to rank among the all-time greats, from Cohen to Cave’ - THE TELEGRAPH
“The most promising purveyors of new-school country folk… so authentically vintage.” ROLLING STONE “Dawes are an incredible young band. Their singer, Taylor Goldsmith, is a brilliant songwriter… He and his brother Grifﬁn have one of those great familial harmony blends.” JACKSON BROWNE “Dawes are a really important band for us...amazing. It (‘Nothing Is Wrong’) is the future of rock ‘n’ roll and some of the best new musicianship in the world, in our humble opinion.” MARCUS MUMFORD (MUMFORD & SONS)
ON TOUR IN APRIL April 3rd s The Enmore Theatre, Syd With My Morning Jacket April 4th s Palace Theatre, Melb With My Morning Jacket April 5th s Meeniyan Town Hall, Meeniyan With Justin Townes Earle April 6th s Boogie Festival, Tallarook, Vic April 7th & 9th s East Coast Blues And Roots Festival April 11th s Toff In Town, Melb (Headline Show, With Special Guest) TICKETS AVAILABLE AT LOVEPOLICE.COM.AU/TOURS
SPECIAL 2-CD EDITION also includes DAWES’ acclaimed debut ‘NORTH HILLS’. OUT NOW
www.facebook.com/SimoneFeliceMusic s www.warnermusic.com.au 20 • INPRESS
INPRESS • 21
POLITICAL PARTY BEST KNOWN AS THE BAND BEHIND THE SOPRANOS’ THEME TUNE, ALABAMA 3 FUSE GENRES AS DIVERSE AS BLUES AND DUBSTEP. A COLLECTIVE THAT CAN SWELL TO 30 MEMBERS, THEY OPENED TO THE DOOR OF THEIR STUDIO TO RIOTING LONDONERS, WRITES NIC TOUPEE, TALKING TO VOCALIST ROB SPRAGG.
he fusion of rave, blues, country, folk and rock is a brave one and one not often attempted. In the mid- to late-’90s we had a handful of novelty-band attempts, resulting in tracks such as the painfully of-its-time Cotton-Eyed Joe and the slightly more bearable Swamp Thing by The Grid. However, only one band to have successfully managed the balance comes to mind and that band is Alabama 3. A ropey collective of producers, DJs, clubbers, artists and free-thinking drop-ins, Alabama 3 cite that their success is partially due to their lack of structure and lack of rules. Added to that, band members have genuine talent and a passion for not only a wide range of musical styles but eclecticism itself – this is what they believe is at the heart of their longevity and continued popularity. Having
formed the band with Jake Black at, allegedly, an acid-house party in suburban London in the early ‘90s, founding member and vocalist Rob Spragg – aka Larry Love – explains the ethos of Alabama 3. That is, when he’s not distracted by the group of young dubstep musicians he’s currently sharing a studio room with. “We have always mixed blues and techno together,” Spragg explains in a broad and somewhat party-ravaged rasping London accent. “We have played at Cambridge Folk Festival and then a club night straight afterwards – we were born and bred to be eclectic. Also, really, blues is the root of all music, so there’s no reason not to put it all together.” Alabama 3 not only play the alchemist with diverse musical styles (which may or may not be related to blues music, as per Spragg’s claim), but they’re also not afraid of dishing up a little politics with their dance music. The most recent Alabama 3 album, last year’s Shoplifting For Jesus, is no exception, taking pot shots at government, apathy and even social media in the song Facebook.con. With the recent UK riots and the rise of the Occupy and Anonymous movements, Spragg and co. have had a cornucopia of inspiration for political and social observation. And being London lads, it has all been happening on their proverbial – and perhaps literal – doorstep. “If you can’t disturb people, there’s no point to rock’n’roll,” Spragg suggests, sporting a cheeky smirk. “We recorded this album all the way through the riots in London. You know, a few people were, shall we say, ‘liberating’ trainers now and then, but a lot of people were just caught in the middle of the riots. We had quite a few kids coming off the streets, out of the riots, and into our studio.” The band didn’t turf the kids out – they put them straight into the studio to lay down some vocals. “We’d get them rapping sixteen bars or so, each. Anyone off the street who wanted to come in and sing on our album, we’d grab them and include what they had to say. We believe in the power of communities,” he adds passionately. “That ethic is based on our politics; we’re very inclusive, and that belief in community gives us the capacity for some bloody good rock’n’roll.” Community isn’t just something that Alabama 3 support, it’s who they are as a band. “We started as a soundsystem posse twenty years ago,” Spragg recalls. “I used to do soundsystem techno DJ sets and that developed into something uniting blues and techno. I’ve always worked in a big posse and there can be twenty or thirty people around at any one time inputting to things. We can break ourselves down to Delta blues or build up to techno or dubstep because we have people in the Alabama 3 community who can play that.” Given the seemingly shambolic and evolving nature of Alabama 3, it seems almost miraculous that they’re still together. “We stay together because no one else will employ us and I ain’t digging no ditches,” Spragg laughs. “Alabama 3 members come and go. To quote a famous song, you can check out of Alabama 3 any time you like, but you can never leave. There’s a revolving door policy with the band and we encourage a wide variety of ‘extracurricular pursuits’.” Those extracurricular pursuits guarantee that any Alabama 3 recording session never falls short of skills and talent, even if it also injects a little schizophrenia to their musical identity. “We’re kind of… amusing ourselves in the songwriting process. What you might ultimately hear on our records is, say, a dubstep track. At the start it might have been a ballad and vice versa. We try to surround ourselves with bright young gunslingers – we help them, developing their sound, but it also suits our own agendas.”
WED 13 JUNE St Michael’s Church
Spragg’s own input to the songwriting process often seems to involve extreme sleeplessness. “I’ll be up for three days at a time, and come up with daft lyrics.” Recently, they’ve been busy preparing for their Australian tour and playing benefit shows for the Occupy Movement. “I did a DJ slot at St Paul’s and we’re very much at home in that kind of environment. Wherever there’s resistance, Alabama 3 want to hang.” When it is gently pointed out to him that there isn’t a massive resistance movement in Australia, he reveals that he has already reached into the heart of Australian rebel culture. “Last time we were in Australia, we were hanging out with Chopper Read. He’s a good friend of Alabama 3’s. Australia, God bless it, the land of sunshine… but you have issues that need to be addressed, politically.”
Cnr of Collins Street & Russell Street, Melbourne
Read is by no means the first countercultural anti-hero they’ve been acquainted with: Nick Reynolds, a member of Alabama 3, is the son of one of those responsible for the Great Train Robbery. That familiarity with the slightly ‘below-board’ may have contributed to their confidence when tracking down Chopper Read and asking to take a plaster cast mask for his own future death mask. “We hunted down Chopper, because we wanted to meet him and take a mould of his face. But he was really good, really obliging and nice. I was proud to meet him.”
Tickets on sale now from www.ticketek.com.au
Lisa Mitchell New single
WHO: Alabama 3 heavenlysounds.com.au facebook.com/LisaMitchellMusic
OUT NOW 22 • INPRESS
WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 and Friday 6 April, Bluesfest, Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, Byron Bay; Sunday 8, Prince Bandroom
INPRESS • 23
SUPAFUNKROCKIN’ THE ‘HOOD FRESH OUT OF NEW ORLEANS, TROMBONE SHORTY & ORLEANS AVENUE ARE BREATHING NEW LIFE INTO THE MUSIC OF THEIR OLD ‘HOOD, AS MICHAEL SMITH DISCOVERS FROM THE MAN HIMSELF.
I’M ALSO A BIG FAN OF ELECTRIC GUITAR – NINE INCH NAILS AND LENNY KRAVITZ, PRINCE AND ALL THOSE PEOPLE.”
CHANNEL [V], NOVA & STREET PRESS AUSTRALIA PRESENT
f you’ve ever caught the extraordinary television series Tremé, based on life in the real Sixth Ward neighbourhood in New Orleans post-Hurricane Katrina (it’s made by the guys responsible for The Wire), you’ll have seen multi-instrumentalist Troy “Trombone Shorty” Andrews play himself in the occasional episode. It’s perfect casting since Andrews grew up in the neighbourhood and is steeped in the whole brass band ethos that has made it famous, courtesy of bands such as the Dirty Dozen Brass Band and the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, both of whom have visited Australia. Trombone Shorty, as a precocious four-year-old, started learning trumpet and drums, and was playing in his first band at just six. Though Andrews’ music with his band Orleans Avenue is very contemporary – “supafunkrock”, as he himself describes it – it was important to include an element of that brass band history in their latest album, For True. “Oh yeah,” Andrews explains on the line from his home in New Orleans. “Playin’ with Rebirth [Brass Band, who also feature in Tremé]… I grew up listenin’ to them, I played a bunch of shows with them and I just wanted to invite them on some music that we were doin’. So basically what I was doin’ on that track, Buckjump, along with 5th Ward Weebie, who is a legendary New Orleans sound trapper, which is a sub genre of hip hop in New Orleans that’s been goin’ on for about 20-plus years… I just wanted to see what two different New Orleans strong points of music would sound like with the new sound that we’re creatin’, put all three styles on one track like a gumbo and see what happens.” It all starts in and around New Orleans and the Mississippi Delta, a mix of blues, gospel and jazz – so even the supafunkrock of Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue comes from that same gumbo. “I discovered the funk when I was a kid. I grew up around Cyril Neville and the Neville Brothers and my grandfather Jessie Hill, he was an R&B singer back in the day – he was workin’ with Dr John and Allen Toussaint and all those guys – so I’ve been discovering the funk maybe before anything else. I mean, brass bands are considered to be funky in New Orleans. The Rebirth Brass Band and Dirty Dozen are the ones that changed the sound of New Orleans brass bands and we consider Rebirth to be a funk band,
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THE ASTON SHUFFLE & AIRWOLF
so I was always listenin’ to their music and gettin’ their stuff. My mum was a big fan of James Brown, so the funk has always been around me.
“But I’m also a big fan of electric guitar – Nine Inch Nails and Lenny Kravitz, Prince and all those people – so [supafunkrock] just happened. I don’t when it happened, but it just happened. We’ve been en route to creatin’ this sound for a while and it just developed into that. I have no idea.” There are a few other well known names contributing to For True – the previous album, 2010’s Backatown, their first for a major though actually their third, was exclusively just the band – among them the aforementioned early mentor Lenny Kravitz, who “discovered” Andrews back in 2005 and took him on tour; Kid Rock; bluesman Warren Haynes; and English guitar hero Jeff Beck. “I’ve been knowing Lenny for years now and we’ve been playin’ together and collaboratin’ for a while. He lives in New Orleans sometimes – he has a house here – and he happened to be in town and he invited me to dinner and I told him we were goin’ to the studio and he just invited himself and all of his friends over to the studio to check out something. He wasn’t even planning to play, but I was just letting him hear some music and he jumped on the bass and played and we collaborated and did some things.”
THIS AY SUNDHT! NIG
One of the highlights of making the new album was the chance to co-write a tune, Encore, with the legendary Lamont Dozier. He was part of a songwriting team with brothers Brian and Edward Holland that composed and produced for artists such as Martha & The Vandellas, The Supremes, The Four Tops and Marvin Gaye, among many others. “Oh my God, it was a dream come true!” Andrews admits. “You know, he’s a legendary writer and he’s wrote so many number one hits, it was just an honour to be able to collaborate with one of the greatest writers and musicians of all time. A lady from Universal in the United States has been working with his grandson or someone like that and we had a tune and she just reached out to him and he liked it and he wrote some things to it and he sent it back to us.”
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SUNDAY 8TH APRIL NEW ALBUM FEATURING WE LOVE, BIG AND REALLY WANT TO SEE YOU AGAIN OUT NOW.
24 • INPRESS
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As it happens, Dozier and a couple of members of Orleans Avenue helped cover the one aspect of his songwriting Andrews feels isn’t his strong point. “I was always writin’ brass bands tunes – it was very easy to do that – and as time went by I was able to develop more writing skills as I got into more different types of music, you know. So it’s always been there – probably [at the] beginning of junior high school I was always trying to write some things and I just kept it going. I’m not good at writing lyrics. I can write a good chorus or hook or whatever you wanna call it, but I haven’t really developed writing any good lyrics myself, that’s why, on these records for a while, I’m just trying to get in the studio with great lyricists so I can pick up some things and learn from that. “I used to listen to music but I’d never really listen to the words. So as I started to write more and sing it a bit more, I had to backtrack and learn to listen to words and stories. So it’s something that’s in development.” VIC
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WHO: Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue WHAT: For True (Verve/Universal) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 and Friday 6 April, Bluesfest, Byron Bay; Saturday 7, Corner Hotel
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INPRESS â€˘ 25
SINGLE FILE A 2009 COMPILATION RELEASED BY SYDNEY LABEL SPUNK PRESCIENTLY PREDICTED A NEW CHARGE OF AUSSIE ACTS, WITH INDIE ROCKERS BEARHUG THE LATEST TO MAKE THEIR MARK, WRITES DOUG WALLEN.
NOT FOR THE FAINT-HEARTED SYDNEY ELECTRO-SOUL-POPPERS SNEAKY SOUND SYSTEM ARE CELEBRATING ALBUM NUMBER THREE AND ANGUS MCDONALD TELLS CYCLONE, WHILE THEY’RE AS PUMPED AS EVER, THERE’S A LOT GOING ON OUTSIDE THE GROUP AS WELL.
ack in early 2009, the prolific Sydney label Spunk released a compilation featuring young bands from all over Australia. Even if the Spunk Singles Club wasn’t the ongoing series once planned (but ruled out for costliness), it still provided a reliable vision of bands that are now a considerable presence. Super Wild Horses, Seekae and The Middle East (RIP) were all included, as were today’s Spunk signees such as Emma Russack (then Lola Flash) and Leader Cheetah. Another band featured were Bearhug, a Sydney fivepiece that only had demos to their name at the time. They went on to release the EPs Cartoon Island and To Anything, the latter through Spunk in late 2010. Bearhug have stuck with the label for their long-time-coming debut album, Bill, Dance, Shiner. They’ve come a long way since that promising compilation track Snow Leopard, without losing the lackadaisical indie rock sound that falls on the charming side of sloppiness. “We were still working some stuff out,” recalls singer-guitarist Ryan Phelan, whose mumbled vocals aren’t far off from his speaking voice. “We were finding our feet, so to speak.” The band formed in 2008, thanks to a few members that had gone to high school together. “We didn’t really know each other that well,” he adds, “but we started talking about having a jam session or whatever. We just got other people in the band from there.” Co-produced by Tim Whitten, who was Philadelphia Grand Jury’s sound guy when Bearhug toured with them, Bill, Dance, Shiner came from what Phelan calls “a solid seven months” of writing at their rehearsal space. Despite its oddball title, there’s not much of a story behind it. “Kind of and kind of not,” Phelan demurs. “It’s just three words. Everyone in the band thinks of it differently.” The album itself, meanwhile, divides between sleepy, shambling guitar jams (Cinema West, the sevenminute Cold Stream) and crunchy rock anthems (opener Over The Hill, the Broken Social Scene-ish Be Fine). Some songs even combine the two sides (Shiner, When I Shake, Cherry Red) for an unlikely catharsis. All of them have a decided slacker streak, while the single Angeline is uncharacteristically sprightly next to the lethargic drawl elsewhere. “We definitely wanted to colour them up as much as we could,” notes Phelan of the album’s sneaky variety. There’s no overstating the influence of 1990s indie rock on Bearhug, and the band have already been lucky enough to support heroes such as Built To Spill and the aforementioned Broken Social Scene (who came a bit later). Certain stretches of Bill, Dance, Shiner could double for Dinosaur Jr’s sun-dazed classic Green Mind, and the guitars nod to the tangled sound of many a bygone indie act. Speaking of, Home opens like early Pavement; Pavement even had a song of the same name. “I was actually really late to come onto Pavement,” shares Phelan. “After the Singles Club, we were playing a little club and a guy at the show said we sounded like them. After that I listened to Pavement and [now] I really, really love them.” Still, there’s more to Bearhug than just archetypal North American indie rock. “There are some bands we all love,” he continues, “but everyone branches off a little bit. Our drummer is obsessed with the Stones and Van Morrison and all this older music. There are definitely bands we agree on, and you can hear it through the music. [But] we tried to not make a really straight-up indie rock album.” At the same time, just look at the vehicle-filled, foundfootage video clip for Angeline and try not to think “lo-fi.” “It was just for fun,” says Phelan. “A friend just knocked it up in a couple of hours. It’s pretty ridiculous. I’m not a huge fan of proper video clips, [but] I think it does fit the song. It’s a bit tongue in cheek.” WHO: Bearhug WHAT: Bill, Dance, Shiner (Spunk) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 6 April, Workers Club 26 • INPRESS
as Sneaky Sound System’s From Here To Anywhere 2011’s most underrated album? With its euphoric, melodic and soulful house songs (yes, songs), From Here To Anywhere would seem to provide a magic remedy to all of that monotonous trancey electro in the charts. Angus McDonald, preparing for Sneaky’s upcoming tour, is philosophical about its comparatively modest crossover fortunes (it did get to #11). “There’s so much stuff out there, isn’t there?” he sighs. “People have such short attention spans.” McDonald and charismatic singer and songwriting partner Connie Mitchell are plugging the album’s third single, Really Want To See You Again. They’ve shot another filmclip, albeit one less controversial than the one for cheeky first single, We Love. “It’s our ode to an early ‘90s dance video.” And the Sydney combo’s shows are going off. They’ve appeared at Mardi Gras and, oddly, the Australian Open Of Surfing. “We’ve got such a loyal, great fun fanbase out there,” McDonald extols. “You feel it when you’re out there playing live, that’s for sure.” It could all be worse. “Look at every guy in a rock band – think about them for a second,” he quips. “At least we get played on the radio and we get to keep touring relentlessly and get to play in clubs and all that kinda thing. Go and try to find a rock song on the radio!” Sneaky may yet be ahead of their time. As with their labelmates Azari & III, who’ve remixed Really Want To See You Again, they’re reformulating ‘80s techno and ‘90s dance just as classic (deep) house is making a resurgence in the underground. “I think you’ve just gotta be a little bit patient and stick to your guns and not keep chasing every trend, because if you do that you can go around in circles. We’ve got our own thing going on – and we certainly have no shortage of shows. Sure, we’re probably not selling multi-platinum albums like we used to do, but who is?” Sneaky Sound System has its origins in Sydney’s longstanding house club Sneaky Sundays. McDonald, a DJ, and MC Daimon Downey formed the group with Mitchell,
who they stumbled upon strumming a guitar in Hyde Park. The rock chick had fronted the ‘90s outfit Primary. In 2006 Sneaky presented an eponymous debut, led by I Love It, on their own label, a runaway hit, striking double-platinum – that won ARIAs. Sneaky consolidated with the charttopping 2 – home to Kansas City – a couple of years later. But Downey, chiefly involved in Sneaky’s live show, began to drift away. He’s now a visual artist in Bondi. “[We] don’t see him as much as we used to,” McDonald admits. Sneaky released From Here To Anywhere internationally last October. This year the duo, who’ve long joined elite European festivals like Glastonbury, will be touring solidly abroad on it – whetting American appetites with gigs during the Miami Winter Music Conference. Sneaky do have connections. McDonald met Kanye West on his first Australian tour – and Mitchell has lain down vocals for him, most famously on Flashing Lights. Sneaky supported the Chicago MC at his recent Big Day Out sideshows, McDonald wondering why ‘Ye didn’t think to have Mitchell guest with him on stage. “Look, where do you start with that guy?” McDonald asks laconically. “He’s a tripper. He’s just done his second fashion collection in Paris – I mean, he kinda cares about Kanye… He thinks about himself and what he wants. He’s got an incredibly busy schedule, he’s trying to conquer the world – fashion, music, you name it. So I don’t know. I think at their shows here when they were doing BDO they dropped one of our tracks and gave it a big shout-out, so there’s
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some love there. But whether he sits there and listens to the album from start to finish is another question.” Mitchell has had other overtures from MCs – not always welcome. Obie Trice invited her to the US, purportedly for a collab. “He just wanted her as his love interest,” McDonald rues. “In the end she went, ‘You know what? Maybe not.’” Both Sneaky members have diversified, even teaming with Dutch trance superstar Tiësto for I Will Be Here – something, McDonald admits, they initially “resisted”. Mitchell has hinted at a solo project. McDonald might potentially pursue production work (he nearly wrote material for Kylie). In fact, it was “always part of the plan” for Sneaky to moonlight, McDonald says. “Once we did this record, we felt like we both wanted to do some other things. But, at this stage of the game, we’ll keep doing it together. There’s a very natural draw between the two of us – we enjoy working together, we bounce off each other very well, we know how each
other works… But I also think it’s very important for us to separate and go and do our own thing for a little bit, just to explore other ways of doing things and get inspired to do things a little bit different to Sneaky – because, unwittingly, we’ve developed such a unique sound. So I guess it’d be good to go and do something different. [Mitchell has] been working on a bunch of stuff and I have been, too – so who knows how that’s gonna turn out? And then, on the other side, we’re doing a whole bunch of collaborations with lots of big dance people, just to see where that goes.” Sneaky have cut two songs with cred Brit DJ Riton. Erick Morillo is sitting on a tune finished at his “mate” Craig David’s home studio in London. As for future Sneaky albums? “The reason we called the album From Here To Anywhere is that we don’t want it to be a bookend. We want to continue, just keep going. We wanna keep putting out singles – and singles beyond this – but there’s no plans to release albums in the immediate future. We wanna focus on our own stuff and then be putting out one-off things – ‘cause I just don’t think the market or the people or the kids or the clubs or anyone really gives too much of a stuff about albums these days [laughs].” Sneaky unveil a ‘mischievous’ new show this tour, promising to dip into their entire catalogue. “We’re really excited about it. We’ve got some dancers and all sorts of special things coming along with us this time. It’s gonna be a pretty bangin’, in-your-face hourand-a-bit of power. It’s not for the faint-hearted.” WHO: Sneaky Sound System WHAT: From Here To Anywhere (Modular/Universal) WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 7 April, The Hi-Fi
PIXIE DUST MUSIC AS POP/PUNK RETURNS TO THE TOP OF THE PILE, DAVE DRAYTON TALKS TO A MAN WHO’S NEVER LEFT IT, NEW FOUND GLORY GUITARIST STEVE KLEIN.
n 1999 a young Floridian five-piece took the burgeoning pop/punk scene by storm with their debut album, Nothing Gold Can Stay, a collection of upbeat shamelessly poppy songs about girls and teenage concerns. Contrary to the pessimistic message embedded in the album’s title, New Found Glory have stuck around and for their latest album, Radiosurgery, their seventh, they returned to their formative years for inspiration. An extensive tour in 2010 to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the release of their self-titled second album, just before the writing for Radiosurgery began, no doubt helped fuel things. “For this record more than any other record I think we wanted to go back to the roots of our band, you know?” guitarist and lyricist Steve Klein confirms. “We wanted to re-realise what brought us into this; the music. We wanted to go back and listen to old Green Day records and old Rancid and The Ramones and stuff like that. “Before the scene was saturated with pop/punk bands there were a bunch of good bands that were putting out really good music that kind of shaped the way this genre went. So we wanted to go back to that day – that time – and listen to those records and have them inspire us to write new songs.” With cameos as their mosh-friendly alter egos, International Superheroes Of Hardcore, their day-job band soon developed a crunchier, riff-driven sound that has been reassessed as they looked back for this record. “I feel like a lot of other records – [2004’s] Catalyst especially and even Not Without A Fight  – were very guitar riff orientated, very riff driven. Every record that we do is different and with this record we wanted to make it more vocal driven and have the melodies of the vocals be the catchy part. Still have the catchy guitars and stuff, but make it more subtle and pay more attention to making the songs more anthemic.” The return to the earlier, some would say more innocent, days of pop/punk by the band proved a success, with Radiosurgery delivering 11 tracks of non-stop hook-laden saccharine-sweet pop/punk and, like their debut, once
again cemented their place in the top echelons of the genre, which was – and remains – in the midst of a global revival. “I think there are definitely bands that we feel like are trying to keep pop/punk alive, you know?” says Klein, before recalling the exhaustive two-month tour of the States the band completed last year. “That was the whole purpose of our Pop Punk’s Not Dead Tour that we did in the States with The Wonder Years and Man Overboard and just tonnes of bands that we feel like are the new generation of pop/ punk bands that are keeping it alive and are actually doing it for the right reasons and not just because it’s a fad and because it’s the cool thing to do. Because that’s not why we got into it. We got into it because we love the music and we have fun and we want to be energetic live. “There’s a good, nice resurgence of pop/punk but I think the real bands are the bands that stay around. And the bands that are in it for the right reasons are the bands that stay around and the people who are in it for whatever, they die out after a little while.” . On the subject of New Found Glory’s successful longevity, Klein is at his most open – equal parts baffled, humbled and just plain stoked. “We’ve been lucky, I feel like every record that we do, every tour that we do we gain new fans and younger fans and I don’t know how we do it,” Klein says, genuine disbelief in his voice and the most earnest he has sounded all interview, before breaking into self-deprecating laughter. “We put pixie dust in our music or something; I don’t know. But it’s really awesome and we’re very grateful that all the generations we’ve been through – and we’ve been through a lot of generations of kids and fans have come and gone and people have grown up with our band and people are becoming fans now. So it’s cool and it’s a good feeling that our music has transcended and we’re still relevant after all this time and still – I feel – we still have more to give, which is exciting.” Just as the band returned to their roots musically, lyrically Radiosurgery – like those early albums – is thematically driven by relationships, familial and personal experiences. “Every record for us is kind of like a diary, it captures a time period. With this record Ian [Grushka, bass] just went through a really bad divorce and obviously if one of your best friends is going through a tough time, it’s going to affect you and affect the way you write. He came and stayed with me for a couple of weeks after it happened and just talking to him and going through things with him can affect you. “Every record we do is about either things that we go through or things our friends go through. I think that’s why
people are so drawn to our band, because our music is so relatable. Our songs are real, you know? So with this record especially – and Ian going through a bad break up – it affected this record. I wouldn’t say all the songs are about that in particular, but every record that we do is about things that we all go through collectively.” As the genre they’ve dominated for so long once again gathers new disciples, the question must be asked, is pop/
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punk a dirty word? “To us pop/punk was never a dirty word. People always called us a pop/punk band and we were like, ‘Oh, okay, cool.’ I think when fads come and go, people ride the wave and they’re the people who say those things. We never really pay attention; we just write the music that we enjoy without caring what anybody says or worrying about anybody judging. It got us this far! We’re trying to be a band, we’re trying to make relevant music and put on the best live show we can.” The band will be doing just that shortly, premiering Radiosurgery tracks live for Australian audiences and from what Klein says, we should be seeing them again sooner rather than later. “This record is still kind of new for us. We only just did our first tour of the States for it, so we’ve done one tour in the States and one tour in England and we’re about to do our first tour off this record in Australia, so we’re going to try and go to everywhere twice or three times for the next year or so.” WHO: New Found Glory WHEN & WHERE: Sunday 8 April, Festival Hall
SPECIAL DELIVERY WHEN THE SPECIALS REFORMED IN 2009 FOR A WORLD TOUR TO MARK THE SKA BAND’S 30TH ANNIVERSARY, BASSIST HORACE PANTER TELLS BRYGET CHRISFIELD THE ABSENCE OF ORIGINAL MEMBER, JERRY DAMMERS, WAS GLARINGLY OBVIOUS: “WE KNEW HE WASN’T ONSTAGE, THAT’S WHY WE WERE HAVING SO MUCH FUN.”
h, God, they’ve made me listen to jazz funk for five minutes, it sent me to sleep,” The Specials bassist Horace Panter whines down the line from “the attic, which is kind of where I live, in my house in Coventry in England. Ask me some questions, wake me up!” he demands in a schoolmasterly fashion. So, what have you been up to over the last couple of days? “I visited my mother and decorated one of the walls in her living room and then… what did I do?” Panter ponders. “I went down to London today and visited Terry Hall [vocals] and John Bradbury [drummer] and it was the first time I’d met up with them this year. We were talking about what we’ll be doing over the summer, which involves a trip to the Antipodes I understand.” This scribe was fortunate enough to catch the band at Splendour In The Grass when they hit our shores for the very first time as part of their 30th Anniversary tour in 2009. After admitting that The Specials’ set was so earth-shattering that this scribe left the festival site straight afterwards, knowing that no band could possibly top them, Panter responds, “Right, yeah, that was our first show in Australia if I remember right. Bonkers hotel. Anyway, go on, ask me proper questions because you’ve only got fifteen minutes.”
his mum’s wall. “I just painted it white.” No murals then? “No, no,” he laughs. “I’ve got back into painting again and I painted this really nice picture of a scarecrow and my mum really likes it. So I got a print of it for her and we put it on the wall, but in order to put it up on the wall we had to take down some other stuff and, when you take down paintings, if there’s a mark on the wall it’s like – so, okay, in order to do this I’m gonna have to paint the wall. You want to do one small thing and it ends up being a project. So I shall probably go there again next week and think, ‘Damn. Oh, the cornice looks really faded,’ you know? I’ll end up just redecorating the whole house.”
Alrighty, then! The list of female backing vocalists used on The Specials’ first two studio albums makes for an interesting read. Did you guys realise the fine array of talent you were tapping into at the time? “Well, um, yeah, I think we did a show with The Pretenders, and Elvis Costello, who produced the first Specials album [Specials], I think he brought [Chrissie Hynde] in for reasons that were perhaps a little carnal. But she definitely does sing on the record. And we first met Go-Go’s [who feature on second album, More Specials] when we were in Los Angeles in 1980 – they supported us on this horrendous, four-night run at the Whisky A Go Go and then they later came over and played with us in England. So we kind of knew them and we wanted this sort of strange, girl chorus and they were in town, as they say. It was pretty serendipitous, I think.” In between these two longplayers, the band released their Too Much Too Young EP (under the moniker, The Special AKA). It reached #1 on the UK Singles Chart despite a lack of radio play due to the title track’s supposedly contentious lyrical content, which promotes contraception as a means of avoiding teen pregnancy. Were there times when band meetings were called to discuss whether the messages that were being conveyed through song were too risqué or, alternatively, not boundary-pushing enough? “No, no,” Panter insists, “because the doors had been blown off by punk rock and it was kinda of like, ‘Okay!’ You know? You wrote songs that had a message in their lyrics anyway – you had to almost [laughs]… It’s funny ‘cause I don’t know if we were that aware that we were making a grand socio-political statement. I think that was the sort of thing that political commentators and music journalists stuck on afterwards. It made perfect sense to write songs with the lyrical content we [chose]. I mean, some of us were a lot more political, with a capital ‘P’, than others, but I think we were all aware of injustice and, you know, all the disenfranchised youth and racism and that kind of stuff.” On whether The Specials were aware that the music they were composing during early rehearsals was important, Panter considers, “We knew it was really good – what, you mean back in 1970?” Affirmative. “I think it was an awful lot of fun, because it was exciting and it was a lot easier to pick up girls being in a pop group than it would be normally. So that was kind of interesting. But then I think, beginning of 1979, we did some recording and made this single [Gangsters] and then things started to happen and it was like, ‘Wow! Yes, this is what we all had an idea that it might be like only [success happened] a little faster.’ Yes, it was fabulous. I dunno, when I was twelve and I saw The Searchers on TV I thought, ‘Gosh, I want to be that,’ and so it was kind of a fulfilment if you like.” This current, reformed era of The Specials is sans founding member Jerry [Dammers, keyboard player/primary songwriter]. When asked whether there were times shortly after the band reformed where Panter found himself looking around the stage in search of his former bandmate, the bass player quips, “No, no, we knew he wasn’t onstage, that’s why we were having so much fun.” He then immediately backpedals: “No, that was a nasty thing to say. No, we all had this big meeting – all seven of us – when we decided that it would be a really good idea to [reform] and Jerry was very demonstrative that he wanted it to be exactly the way it was way back then. And I then remembered why it was that I left in the first place and it was a real shame, because if we’d have just met and gone, ‘Hi, how are you?’ You know, ‘How’s the family? How’s it going? Shall we play some music?’ It would’ve been fine. But it wasn’t. And honestly, there isn’t a day goes by where I don’t think, ‘Jerry. Damn. What a shame.’ But it is the way it’s worked out, you know, six out of seven ain’t bad.” Now that Panter seems willing to travel the interview path less trodden, it’s time to return to the subject of how he decorated WHO: The Specials WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 April, Palace Theatre; Friday 6, Bluesfest, Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, Byron Bay
INPRESS • 27
WHAT WE ARE SKA-PUNKERS SUBLIME WITH ROME WILL BE GRACING AUSTRALIA WITH THEIR PRESENCE FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER THIS APRIL. BASSIST AND LAST ORIGINAL MEMBER, ERIC WILSON, GIVES DANIEL CRIBB AN INSIGHT INTO THE SUBLIME STORY.
A HECTIC GIN WIGMORE SQUEEZES IN TIME FOR A CHAT WITH CHRIS YATES IN BETWEEN SHOOTING VIDEOS, RIDING HORSES AND PREPARING TO GIVE AUSTRALIAN AUDIENCES A GLIMPSE AT HER NEW ALBUM GRAVEL & WINE.
ell, the horses and video clip go hand in hand. Wigmore has spent the day riding bareback in the Village Roadshow movie lot on the Gold Coast filming the promo for If Only, the second single lifted from her second album.
ew bands have such an interesting back-story as Sublime With Rome – and even less have overcome the same amount of hurdles to prevail victorious. Forming in 1988 under the name Sublime, the three-piece ska-punk band from California reached succuss in only a few short years before having their dreams torn apart with the band put on indefinite hiatus by the sudden and untimely death of vocalist/ guitarist Brad Nowell in 1996 due to a drug overdose. Years passed until one day in 2009 Sublime bassist Eric Wilson, who at that stage was playing drums, found himself collaborating with 21-year-old “whiz kid” Rome Ramirez, an encounter that would jumpstart the dormant story of Sublime. “I was doing some songs with him [Rome] for his album,” Wilson begins. “He wanted to do a cover of a Sublime song and it sounded really good. Our manager Mike Brown had a band recording at the same studio and heard what we were doing. He had a chat to me and said, ‘Why don’t you put Sublime back together with Rome?’” he explains. “We called Bud [Gaugh, drums] and went up to Nevada and jammed with him and it started going. Rome is super, super talented and we were really fortunate to meet him. Even without us I’m sure he’d be doing really well right now.” But the reunion wasn’t that simple. A string of legal complications left the new line-up unable to perform or record anything under the name Sublime. Adding Ramirez’s name to their title left them free of hitches and able to tour and record. A lot had changed during the band’s break, but Wilson stands strong on his belief that Sublime With Rome is still Sublime. “There is all sorts of controversy about the new Sublime, so I thought naming the new album Yours Truly would be good because it’s what we are; Sublime. It’s very unfortunate that Brad passed away but, just like other bands, we’re going on. So it’s Yours Truly, Sublime,” Wilson says.
At the end of last year, Gaugh decided to part ways with Sublime With Rome to spend more time with his family, leaving Wilson the last man standing. “In a sense, yeah, I’m the only original member of Sublime, but Rome is an original member of Sublime With Rome,” Wilson laughs. “Of course I wish Bud was still playing with us, but I’ve got to deal with it... He has a son. I have a son too, but he’s 11. He just had a daughter too. He just wants to be home and able to raise them. Gaugh’s departure makes room for a drumming heavyweight. World-renowned super-drummer Josh Freese (The Vandals, Guns N’ Roses, A Perfect Circle, Nine Inch Nails) is taking his place and will be making an appearance with the band in Australia this April after only a handful of shows with the band in March. “We haven’t played since [Gaugh left]. We’ve just taken a little bit of time off. I’ve always wanted to jam with Josh Freese. I’ve known him for years. This is a step in the right direction, I can’t wait. We’ve got practice in a couple of weeks. “I’m totally excited to get to Australia. I’ve never been there before,” he enthuses. “I’m looking forward to playing to all those fans down there that have been listening to us for all these years and haven’t seen us or heard us live.” WHO: Sublime With Rome WHAT: Yours Truly (Warner) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 6 April, Bluesfest, Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, Byron Bay; Monday 9, Palace Theatre
“With Daniel, he’s 21 and he’s tryin’ to get into music and I was just saying, ‘Just come and do something with us on this new album,’ see if I can just give him a helping hand in what he’s doing, you know? Changes was actually written by me and Linda Perry, a producer/ songwriter – she works with Christina Aguilera and Alicia Keyes – so we did that together sometime before and then when I did it for the record, my idea was that I needed something else to add to it and so Daniel come and did that little DJ rap thing in it.” As with pretty much anything with the name Marley attached to it, Wild And Free is as much about addressing issues as it is the music. “I definitely wanted to address the issue of hemp and marijuana, so that was like the template that I started with. I wanted that to be the message that was out front. The environment and the Earth, I mean this is where we get a lot of our inspiration from, nature. It seem like we keep on harping on issues like this, it seems 28 • INPRESS
“Prior to the record, I spent about two months driving around the south all by myself, finding stories, exploring and going to Graceland and learning about Elvis and going to Stax Records and Sun Studios...” she says in one breath, clearly still relishing the experience. “It was wicked and a totally life-changing trip. Clarksdale [Mississippi, the birthplace of blues where Robert Johnson sold his soul to the devil] was out of this world. It was just so amazing. To find myself drinking moonshine in a juke joint was just insane.”
“What I wanted was something not too polished – a bit gritty,” she explains. “Maybe a little bit unfinished, like it hasn’t had the last layer of varnish. I wanted a really tough record and hopefully I’ve achieved that. Butch is very much a no-bullshit kinda dude. Having his mind working on the record was really crucial. I had Butch’s whole band The Black Widows playing on the record, who are also from the south. It has this great familiarity with all the players because they all know each other so well, they’ve got a real grassroots and hillbilly style, so it was very professional but with a lounge room kind of vibe. We had a really nice friendship throughout the recording as well which I think really comes across on the record. All the banter and bullshit and fun we had – It’s like anything. If you like you can have a beer with somebody after a day’s work, then you’re winning!” WHO: Gin Wigmore WHAT: Gravel & Wine (Universal) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 April, Workers Club
SINGER JESS HARLEN HAS RELEASED HER SECOND ALBUM PARK YARD SLANG, AND DESPITE SOME SETBACKS, IT’S TRULY THE LITTLE ALBUM THAT COULD. SHE SPEAKS TO ALEKSIA BARRON.
“Welcome To The World was written before [Abraham] was born and I was thinkin’ about bringin’ a new child into the world,” Marley explains, on the line from California – he splits his time between there, Florida and Jamaica. “That’s what I thought about sayin’ to him when he came that day – welcome to the world; I can give you love but I cannot promise that world is gonna be the greatest place you’ve ever been to, you know?
Maintaining her calm would be a hard feat for Wigmore at the moment, horses or not. She’s just returned to her native New Zealand after a stint abroad recording the follow up to her massive debut, Holy Smoke. The album’s success both in her homeland and abroad has given her the opportunity to do some exciting things for her follow up. She headed to the deep south of the USA to get down to the roots and try and soak up the atmosphere of a musical legacy which has informed her work so much. Her overwhelming excitement when recanting these stories is parallel to her enthusiasm about her new record, and really just her life in general as it stands at the moment.
For her debut, Wigmore found herself going from her bedroom to recording in the Capitol Records Studio in a heartbeat, and she confesses that it was a big leap and there were times when she didn’t really know what was going on. For Gravel & Wine she’s taken a different approach, enlisting the help of an industry producer who himself has a firm grasp on American music and its history. Butch Walker has helped write and record songs for everyone from Avril Lavigne to Weezer, and Ginmore says his contributions to the album had a massive impact.
PARK YARD POZIBLITIES
ZIGGY MARLEY’S LATEST ALBUM CELEBRATES THE TWO GREAT LOVES OF HIS LIFE – FAMILY AND GANJA, HE TELLS MICHAEL SMITH. five-time Grammy Award-winning musician, actor, activist, humanitarian – David “Ziggy” Marley, the eldest son of the late reggae pioneer Bob, certainly wears a lot of hats (he’s also released a comic book, the self-explanatory Marijuanaman). It suggests that the usual soporific effects of vast intakes of the devil’s weed haven’t manifested for him. Perhaps it’s genetic. Ziggy Marley is still very much a champion of the music his father brought to the international stage. And his latest and fourth solo album, Wild And Free, champions both the weed and the importance of the family. After all, there’s a song, Roads Less Travelled, about his father on there, another co-written with his own eldest son, Daniel, plus another welcoming his youngest son, Abraham Selassie Robert Nesta Marley, now 14 months, into the world.
“It’s been touch and go trying to get the horse to do what I want,” she says wearily but still full of enthusiasm. “Like trying to squeeze a diamond into a square shaped box. I’m in awe of horses, slightly fearful but in love with them at the same time. It feels like they could switch at any moment. It’s quite frightening, but great at the same time. I was trying to do a performance, singing, while also trying to look relaxed and calm.”
ess Harlen has been busy. The Melbourne-based singer has just released Park Yard Slang, the followup to her 2010 debut solo album Neon Heartache. Once again, she reunited with much-lauded producer Plutonic Lab (of Muph & Plutonic) to put the album together – however, it wasn’t exactly smooth sailing.
that even though governments and organisations, they talk about it too, but to me, it’s just talk – it’s not real because if it was real, hemp would be legal. This is why the focus of the album is a plant, because the plant can save the planet. The plant, it has an industrial use and so if people, if governments round the world were serious about the green – the so-called green revolution – instead of just using it as a marketing ploy as a way to placate the people, then this plant would be on the forefront of that because we can do so much with it. So this is why I know it’s hypocrisy within the system.” Marley, like his siblings, was always going to have a hard time making his mark in the music world considering the enormity, both musically and mythically, of the legacy lefty by his father. “I think I’ve found my sound and my voice and hopefully I’ll continue to grow and to fine tune, you know, myself as a human being and my music – and that will be continually be evident on the music that I bring out in the future, that there is always a continual growth and never a stagnant state; it’s always growing and going forward,” Marley admits. “But I’m happy where I am, touring – playing music live for people is I think the best representation of the music and where people can really get to know who I am and my music, it really reflects well on stage, even more than it does on a CD.” WHO: Ziggy Marley WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 and Saturday 7 April, Bluesfest, Byron Bay; Monday 9, Corner Hotel
The genre-bending Park Yard Slang is a testament to Harlen’s willingness to experiment with musical styles and sounds, and she credits a large part of that development to a change in her songwriting process. “Neon Heartache was a really organic album where I’d written the songs acoustically on guitar, and then took them to a production level,” she says, explaining her songwriting technique for her debut record. “In that process, [Plutonic and I] discovered other ways that we wrote well together, like the track I Go – that was an in-studio collaboration.” Harlen enjoyed the collaborative aspect of this process, and decided to integrate it further when writing tracks for Park Yard Slang. “We decided to do the second album, which we started immediately, in a similar vein, which is why it’s a little bit more beat-based.” It was certainly a departure from the more acoustic writing style Harlen employed on Neon Heartache. “Some days we would just start with a particular tempo – we would listen to another track, get a feel and a tempo and lay down some kind of rhythm, and then we’d work melodically and harmonically on them,” explains Harlen. “It was pretty relaxed. We were never afraid to crack open a couple of beers to help things along.” She still takes credit for every lyric penned on Park Yard Slang though – that’s all her. “That’s all my silly brain spilling things out, trying to catch them on the way out so it doesn’t make too much of a mess,” she laughs. For all that effort, though, there were times when Harlen was all but convinced that Park Yard Slang would never be completed, much less released. Scheduling conflicts between herself and Plutonic Lab meant that what should have only been days of work on the album took far, far longer. “We found it hard completing the album,” she admits. “It got to the stage where there were just some finishing touches
needed to complete it, but we were never on the same page at the same time, and that just stretched out for months.” Even when the work was completed, there was a final hurdle standing between Park Yard Slang and its release. “It was ready to be mastered but I didn’t have the $1400 to pay for it, so that put another delay on things,” says Harlen. She was about $1000 short. With few options left, she turned to her fan base, and put up a pozible.com project, asking for the money to complete the mastering of the album. “I thought maybe somebody might be willing to help out,” she says, acknowledging that she was at the point of desperation. What amazed Harlen was that everyone came through. “It just went nuts,” she says. “We ended up raising four and a half grand in seven days.” From the outset, it became clear that Harlen’s fans were willing to pull together to get her over the line. “The first donation was $10,” she recalls. “I’d posted the link on Facebook and I really didn’t think we were going to make it, you know what I mean?” However, within a couple of minutes, $10 had been donated – by a stranger. “I went and had a look and I didn’t even know this person. It wasn’t a friend or a housemate or my mum. It was a total random supporter. They believed in this!” From there, the love just kept on flowing. “Within an hour we were up to $700. In that moment, I cried. I’d been feeling pretty down so that totally lifted my spirits. Having that belief in your music is the most affirming thing.” To Harlen, it’s a powerful validation of her music, and an extra source of her pride in Park Yard Slang. WHO: Jess Harlen WHAT: Park Yard Slang (Obese)
IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER SKY’S THE LIMIT ZAPPA PLAYS ZAPPA ARE NO ORDINARY COVER BAND; AFTER ALL THEY ARE FRONTED BY FRANK’S SON DWEEZIL. ON THE EVE OF YET ANOTHER TOUR, ZAPPA JNR TELLS PAUL RANSOM THAT IT’S MUCH MORE THAN NOSTALGIA.
HIATUS KAIYOTE HAVE LOFTY AMBITIONS FOR THEIR MUSIC – THEY WANT TO TAKE YOU TO ANOTHER WORLD, WRITES NIC TOUPEE.
iatus Kaiyote are a band around which mystery wraps itself, shroud-like. From the obscurity of their name – not publically explained – to the intense complexity of the compositions, and of course the oblique and epic esotericism of lead singer Nai Palm’s lyrics, Hiatus Kaiyote are a band you may never fully understand – but that doesn’t seem to be the point. As bassist Paul Bender and drummer Perrin Moss explain, understanding isn’t everything…
laying Frank’s music is like training for the Olympics,” says Dweezil Zappa from his home in LA.
And he should know; because not only is he the son of the legendarily idiosyncratic Frank Zappa, but also an accomplished guitarist in his own right. Guided by family friend Steve Vai as a child, Dweezil Zappa first played on stage with his father at age 12. Various solo projects and a short-lived stint as an MTV VJ followed, (there was even time for a cooking show with long-time girlfriend Lisa Loeb), before Zappa Plays Zappa formed in 2006. Since then Dweezil has been touring his father’s music around the globe, mining Frank’s not inconsiderable back catalogue and getting his fingers around some notoriously technical compositions. “There’s music that Frank made 40 years ago that still sounds like it’s from the future,” Dweezil concludes with a wry laugh.
“Clarity isn’t always what we want,” Moss offers.
of musical achievement to be in an orchestra.” Dweezil Zappa is unapologetically proud of the work he’s doing, not simply as a torch bearer for his father’s massive musical legacy but as an artist in his own right. Apart from the sheer logistics and “not exactly inexpensive” exercise of touring an eight-piece band (and four crew) around the world, ZPZ is all about fine musical detail and loving recreation rather than reinterpretation. “You wouldn’t have an orchestra playing a piece by Bach or Beethoven and then suddenly deciding to hire a rapper to modernise it. You’re not gonna have some guy come out and go, ‘Yeah, yeah, Beethoven, one, two, one, two’.”
Born Ian Donald Calvin Euclid Zappa (after the hospital refused to register the name Dweezil) it’s perhaps easy to see how Dweezil may have found himself forever in the shadow of his famous father. Zappa Plays Zappa has clearly transcended those concerns. “There’s an obvious emotional connection for me,” Zappa declares. “I consider it a way for me to have a continued relationship with my dad; but it’s not only me that can feel this stuff. The audience feel it too; they get very emotional. I mean, that’s the thing about music, it attaches itself to the fabric of your life and your memory.” Here then is the other obvious question: To what extent is ZPZ just a cover band with a more than usually intimate connection to the original? It’s obviously something that Zappa has had to contend with before. “Y’know, it’s pretty easy to generalise and say that it’s a tribute act or a cover band because technically it could be considered as such,” he concedes. “But it’s more analogous to an orchestra. Technically an orchestra is a cover band and yet it’s considered the highest level
Having learnt more than 200 songs since 2006, ZPZ have risen to the challenge of Zappa purists, even delving into obscure B-sides and unreleased rarities. For this year’s tour they have decided to focus on material from Frank’s early albums, particularly his 1966 debut Freak Out and 1968’s We’re Only In It For The Money. Casting a son’s eye over Frank Zappa’s career, Dweezil is pretty clear about his father’s legacy. “I view his music as being misunderstood and misrepresented for larger audiences. The casual listener is mostly familiar with things like Don’t Eat The Yellow Snow and Valley Girl; and if they think that’s what Frank’s music is about because that’s what got accidentally played on the radio, then they have a pretty poor indication of the majority of his music. So the challenge with ZPZ has been to re-educate the audience.” WHO: Zappa Plays Zappa WHEN & WHERE: Friday 6 April, Palace
“I don’t always want to know what everything means. I like to be confused by music,” concurs Bender. Both Perrin and Bender embrace the mystery around the band – in fact, they have had firsthand experience of strange goings-on and brushes with fate. Even their first meetings with Nai Palm have an air of the uncanny about them. “Me and Perrin met Nai independent of each other,” Bender begins. “I saw her at Gertrude’s Brown Couch playing solo. It was one of her first ever gigs, but straight away I was amazed by her voice and songs. I knew it was the kind of music I wanted to be involved in – complex yet beautiful and logical. Then I didn’t see her for another year or so, but bumped into her out. I wanted to assemble a band for her, and I had a lot of contacts with amazing musicians, people who have the passion to play that kind of stuff. But the final line-up ended up happening on its own anyway,” he laughs. “I found Nai at a cafe,” Perrin explains, in an uncannily similar lost-and-found tale. ”I was by myself having coffee and she was sitting on a box playing guitar. I listened to her and was amazed by her voice and her songs. I felt like I wanted to work with her; at the time I was with another band doing percussion, but I was telling everyone about this girl. I didn’t hear any more about her for a long time, then randomly ran into Bender and Dave rehearsing for the band. They were playing really complex songs I still struggle with now,” he laughs. “I started jamming along with them and they asked me to come back and rehearse. It all started from there.”
Palm is the band’s chief lyricist, while Perrin and Bender provide the majority of the production and arrangements. Producing the new Hiatus Kaiyote EP, Tawk Tomahawk, was a learning experience for the band. “We have been developing new processes in recording stuff,” Bender explains. “On this EP we’ve written interlude tracks, then added our own things to them. Sometimes we’ve put a beat together and then we get Nai in and she writes crazy vocal stuff over it. Each song is a different experiment, and we’re not masters of recording, but we’ve got our own ideas about what to record, and how it should sound. There’s a lot of guessing, A lot of intuitive placement of mics and stuff,” Bender confesses. “Because of this, our songs all sound very different to each other, which is cool in a way. We were quite experimental, but maybe next time I’d like to try for a more cohesive statement.” Why both Perrin and Bender love being in Hiatus Kaiyote is one thing devoid of mystery: it’s because they love a challenge. “I love it because without a doubt it stretches us to our full potential,” Perrin says. “It’s really involved but not showy for the sake of being showy. And we’re all trying to push for something a bit… mind expanding.” “Ultimately I think music is a form of magic,” Bender offers. “Hopefully, at its best, it can take you on a journey. I want to create the kind of music that can take you to another world.” WHO: Hiatus Kaiyote WHAT: Tawk Tomahawk (Independent) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 April, Northcote Social Club
Australian Tour SYDNEY
With support from THE RUMJACKS
With support from CASH SAVAGE & THE LAST DRINKS
The Manning Bar
The Prince Bandroom
29 Fitzroy St, St Kilda
Saturday 7th April 2012
Sunday 8th April 2012
(02) 9563 6000 Tickets available from www.manningbar.com
(03) 9536 1168 Tickets available from www.princebandroom.com.au
INPRESS • 29
SINGLED OUT WITH BRYGET CHRISFIELD
ON THE RECORD
Please Forgive My Heart XL Recordings
Need Your Love Liberation Music
Need Your Love’s artwork is same same but different from Gloss Drop by Battles. The weight of pressure on The Temper Trap’s collective shoulders after the success, both critically and commercially, of their debut Conditions is enough to see them pop out in the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean (thanks freemaptools.com/tunnel-to-other-side-ofthe-earth.htm). Dougy Mandagi proves he’s still incapable of hitting a bum note and the driving drum pattern here calls to mind a marching band. There’s also some atmospheric, U2-ish keys filtering through the arrangement and bass synths echoing the beat serve up an intensified pulsation. Fans certainly won’t turn their noses up at this one.
Go Right Ahead
I Oh You/Liberation
It makes sense that a Melbourne outfit in thrall of Bollywood excess, both musically and visually, would pit their debut longplayer as the soundtrack to a fantastical Bollywood romp. Over the past few years this mysterious, masked nine-piece (plus singers) have been honing their sense of the dramatic, of the exotic and the majestically kitsch around town. We’re talking surf guitar melding into jazz, exotica and rockabilly, with searing synth injections and of course the more traditional sitar, mandolin and tabla. Live they’re a party machine who play up the more fun and kitsch elements of their sound, yet this recording adds extra depth where you can ignore the theatrics and hone in on the musicality, the strange genre mashes and wacky compositional decisions.
From the initial wonky descending synths of opener Enter The Joker’s Lair, Miike Snow present music that triggers an emotional response. Just like their mythical mascot the jackalope, this outfit’s sound transports listeners somewhere they never knew existed. Field drums during The Wave add anthemic urgency, a recurring motif throughout this release, but an undercurrent of fragility in Andrew Wyatt’s vocal means you dance with tears in your eyes (Happy To You seems an incongruous album title choice). Poetic lyrics are always worth your ears (“I used to lie and think in clouds deciding which were queens and which were doves/And lines I throw myself are thin, are shower-curtain thin”). Words chosen often offer a surprising contrast from lush instrumentation that introduces xylophone to French horn, while autoharp and strings play out in the distance.
It’s only taken a couple of years for Brisbane’s DZ Deathrays to go from devastating house parties to hot property across the western world. Performing live as a two piece, it’s been so far necessary for the group to publicise the fact they are not playing along with a backing track – it seems like so much more is going on than just a couple of dudes on guitars and drums.
You Me Bullets Love
Happy To You
THE TEMPER TRAP
THE BOMBAY ROYALE
Dear Mr Womack, your syrupy vocal is so filled with emotion that you are immediately granted forgiveness. Always. Even for the vilest act imaginable. Producers Damon Albarn and Richard Russell allow Womack’s voice to take its place centrestage, under a blinding spotlight, where it rightfully belongs. The arrangement is stripped back with various beats, instrumentation and sampled sounds constructing a complex-but-never-clustered nest. All these lovingly selected parts are then eliminated, one by one, until we’re left with gentle strumming to soothe heavy hearts come song’s end. Please Forgive My Heart demonstrates just what happens when three masters cooperate for the best possible result. Must we wait until June to hear the full Womack longplayer?
With a three-piece string section, big beautiful brass, and those ultra funky basslines, if you close your eyes you’re knee deep in curried funk, thanks in the main to vocalists Parvyn Kaur Singh and Shourov Bhattacharya, who both sing in Hindi. Their interplay in particular provides much of the narrative to the music. That said, the opening track, Monkey Fight Snake, an instrumental, is an epic that initially sounds like garage rock until these descending horns blast the tune apart, opening up room for the tabla. Just when you think you have the tune worked out it moves into very strange mariachi/Morricone territory. Increasingly there’s something of a faux world music scene happening in Melbourne, though few do it with as much exuberance and inventiveness as The Bombay Royale.
Bavarian #1 (Say You Will), with its irresistible whistling refrain, military drumming and galloping piano, opens previously cordoned-off doors in your imagination. It’s fitting that the trio include a song named Archipelago – such a deliciously evocative word. So much more than a band, Miike Snow is a collective of sonic artists who compose intelligently structured dance music that levitates above the quagmire of ‘Guetta-featuring [insert latest paparazzi-courting celeb]’ shite. Prepare for your mind to be blown. Bryget Chrisfield
Bob Baker Fish
DAMN TERRAN Rebels
Independent “Where’s the rebels gone?” Damn Terran is comprised of them. This is a sinister stop/ start thrash séance with an inspired wonky breakdown that channels The Prodigy. Ali Edmonds’ vocals alternate between insouciant and downright demonic. If guilty feet have got no rhythm, as George Michael reckons, then the guilt-ridden should steer clear of the d-floor when this song’s spinning on the jukebox. Play this at high volume in a graveyard and see what materialises. “Worry about your future.” End track.
THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS
I Won’t Stay Too Long Independent Listening to this track is comparable to what I imagine it’s like for youngsters to hear The Beatles for the first time these days: jaunty drumming, chirpy guitar melodies and haughty vocals about loving and leaving ‘em. There’s also a throwaway apology that suggests such behaviour has become this narrator’s chosen sport: “Just one last kiss and I will be gone/What we did was meaningless but I still had fun.” Amusing, frivolous and promiscuous, if this track were a uni student it would definitely have crabs.
It’s about the only thing they do subtly however. Most of the tracks explode in a frenzy of punk rock excitement with punchy drums smashing through highlights and holding back to create space where needed. On tracks like Dollar Chills and Debt Death, the drums become the pivotal instrument, creating much more than just a beat for the guitars. When the tunes are a bit more chilled out, it’s usually via the dark disco found on Play Dead Until You’re Dead, which sounds more like French electro maniacs Justice than a punk band. The songs are simple and not over-thought, it’s the atmosphere and excitement of making live music that these guys are revelling in – and they’re doing it brilliantly.
THE MARS VOLTA
Portland’s Matthew Ward released a slew of amazing albums under his own name before hooking up a few years ago with one-time indie film it girl, Zooey Deschanel, to make a couple of much less compelling albums under the band name She & Him. While they may not have compared to the understated purity of his own records, it’s obviously opened his appeal up to a larger audience and it’s hard to fault him for it.
The Mars Volta have never made easy listening records. They create dense, sonically surprising albums that are untethered to genre, living in their own confusing, lyrically ambiguous world. It’s been three years since the lackluster Octahedron, and it seems time and rumination have done vocalist Cedric Bixler-Zavala and guitarist Omar Rodriguez-Lopez well. Noctourniquet is vast, constantly revealing new intricacies with each listen, and for the first time, keeps the track lengths to an of average five minutes, bar the annihilating sound orgasm of The Malkin Jewel. Zavala has even gotten the pining love song down pat with Lapochka, as he asks repeatedly, “How long must I wait/’Til the mountains of Everest turn blue?”
Orbital are dance music’s original not-quite-superstars, a duo whose seven studio albums between 1991 and 2004 arguably constitute a finer body of work than Underworld, The Chemical Brothers, et al. By the time of 2004’s The Blue Album, the law of diminishing returns had set in, so for the Hartnoll brothers to not only unexpectedly emerge eight years later with Wonky but also recapture some of the magic of their mid‘90s glory days is a very pleasant surprise indeed.
A Wasteland Companion
He’s well back on track with A Wasteland Companion. Despite it featuring a massive cast of indie who’s who type people, it still comes across with the same authenticity as his previous solo records. The extended cast becomes apparent by the third track, Me And My Shadow, which smuggles in a chorus of singers for some “oohs” and “ahhs”, and bursts into a surprising guitar wail as a breakdown. Deschanel makes an unwelcome and annoyingly loud appearance on the chorus of the bar room piano romp, Sweetheart, confirming it’s not just indie snobbery causing the dismay at this pairing. The tracks with stripped back instrumentation always shine more of a light on Ward’s warble and distinct guitar style, plus it gives you a better chance to experience the song itself. There’s A Key and the album’s opener, Clean Slate, give real insights. Watch The Show is darker than usual and drenched in effects, which add more weight to the track’s more experimental nature. The album was recorded in a bunch of different studios all over the world, and there is a very satisfying variety of sounds due to this fact. An ambitious record, not his best, but with enough gems to make it worthwhile. Chris Yates
While the energy and frenetic power of their live shows has obviously proven a little difficult to catch on record, their performance still shines through on their debut album. The guitars sound like a whole bunch of different instruments at once, with a myriad of effects creating more layers of sound than should really be possible. On Teenage Kickstarts, the simple guitar line sounds like not one, but several synthesisers all at once. It could be heavy handed and cheesy if not for the subtle approach they have displayed.
Universal If you dare so much as even open your mouth to take a breath while contemplating saying a single negative word about this band, I will chase you down and wash your ears out. Go Right Ahead starts off with sporadic handclaps and a robotic “Go right ahead” intro vocal before Howlin’ Pelle Almquist’s trademark yowl. There’s brass that sounds like an elephant being strangled on this one and the devastatingly suave Swedish maestros continue to add extra ammunition to the arsenal of reasons why they remain untouchable in this genre. You can sing along immediately and the chorus melody evokes a sped-up riff from ELO’s Don’t Bring Me Down. Gotta love the back-announcer’s nightmare courtesy of a teaser false-finish also. If you don’t understand them you’re not in their league.
Bixler-Zavala’s voice is full of passion and ferocity, whether screeching on the earworm chorus of Dyslexicon or drowned underwater on In Absentia. Musically the band are treading their own turf, that bizarre world of hot and cold, where in one song the voices may go from whispers to hollers and Rodriguez-Lopez leaps from the background to bring his shape-shifting guitar work to the forefront. All the while Bixler-Zavala sings of who-knows-what, frankly no one ever really pays attention to the lyrics that seem to spew from him as if possessed. It’s his ability to evoke an array of feelings with the mere tone of his voice that draws the listener in time and time again, like on the thrilling Molochwalker.
Wonky feels not so much like a collection of songs as an event, One Big Moment easing into focus like a rising sun as spoken word mutterings shift left and right – and then comes the drop, with Orbital’s melodic quirkiness updated but fully intact. This is dancefloor magic for the discerning gurner, from the straight-forward 4/4 beauty of Straight Sun, to the self-explanatory bomb Stringy Acid, to the Zola Jesus-featuring anthem New France. Long time listeners may note the complex drum programming of earlier efforts is largely abandoned, but the panoramic Orbital synth sounds are as majestic as ever. And even the cursory nods to the present, such as the dubstep-influenced Distractions and Beelzedub and the portamento house of the title track, sound like the Hartnolls acknowledging dance music’s current status quo rather than following it.
Noctourniquet isn’t the record that’s going to convert non-believers, but for Mars Volta fans it has the guts and heart to keep their mosh pits messy for a while to come.
Attaching a bonus disc of classic tracks recorded live on 2010’s tour of our parts (including a 19-minute take of Impact) is a sure sign Orbital and their minders have confidence in Wonky. And so they should – it’s no Orbital 2 or In Sides, but easily their most cohesive full-length since 1999’s The Middle Of Nowhere.
From Barnesy’s opening guttural scream – “I’m standin’ in the sun/Smokin’ a cigarette/Noooo plans” – launching both album and title track in no uncertain terms, to the poignant sound of the late Steve Prestwich singing and drumming his only and, sadly, final contribution to the band’s legacy, this is undeniably classic Cold Chisel – no doubt about it.
Odd Future had to happen. Rappers are getting old! Jay-Z and Dr Dre are well into their 40s, Eminem gets there this year and Kanye is well on his way. It makes sense that kids are having trouble relating to these guys, they barely even speak the same language. So the Odd Future dudes are there to fill a gap, and they’re pushing boundaries into things that make people uncomfortable, by revisiting the same graphic, controversial lyrical areas that have pissed people off since NWA and 2 Live Crew. Let’s leave that discussion for another time and focus on this record, the first proper album from the whole crew.
Mick Thomas has been at the forefront of Australian songwriting for nearly three decades now – firstly for seminal folk-rockers Weddings, Parties, Anything and then his more genteel The Sure Thing – but The Last Of The Tourists is his first solo album proper, and it continues the quality of his long-term output with complete panache.
All the elements are there: Don Walker’s stomping boogie piano counterpointing his more lyrical, limpid lines; Ian Moss solos scattered one minute, sinewy and lithe the next; that unmistakable bludgeoning Barnes voice matched by the world-weary romance of Moss and Phil Small holding it all down; locked in by former Divinyls drummer Charley Drayton. Together they’re an undeniable force of nature. Are they adding anything new to the legacy in this, their first new collection of songs in 14 years? The answer has to be the old ‘time will tell’. You’re unlikely to hear anything much from No Plans on the radio any time soon, but there are certainly moments when a new song – HQ454 Monroe – sounds a little too much like an old song. There are hints, naturally, at post-Chisel influences here and there, as in the gospel/R&B approach to Dead And Laid To Rest, with some snaky, incendiary guitar work from Moss. What has always set Chisel apart is the fact that for all the rock angst inherent in Barnes’ delivery, they, or more specifically Don Walker, always wrote grown-up songs. Michael Smith
The OF Tape Vol. 2
ALEKS & THE RAMPS
The Last Of The Tourists
So...it’s a patchy, mismatched affair – this is no 36 Chambers, but there’s still some extraordinary shit going on. Disappointments first: Frank Ocean is barely on this thing, other than his bizarre verse on the album’s obvious stand-out Snow White (where Hodgy Beats also proves his serious potential) and his even weirder solo track White. The singer’s reduced presence suggests his own trajectory will be different than the rest of the group.
Thomas decamped to Portland to record the album at the behest of producer Darren Hanlon and took with him only perennial sidekick Mark “Squeezebox Wally” Wallace, picking up other contributors on the fly. Despite the locale it’s a typically Australian record from Thomas, his insight still brilliantly sharp and intact, dissecting the minutiae of Australian life and what makes us tick with the dexterity of a surgeon. The album never mires, but there’s a definite theme of passing time and cyclical change throughout (The Clamorous Warbler, Bottle Bin, Star-O and The Last Of The Tourists) while All The Roads and Gallipoli Rosemary are modern Aussie classics. Musically it’s relatively standard Thomas fare – classy, accomplished and understated, but still slightly rough around the edges – although the title track sounds like it’s straight from the Jonathan Richman songbook.
If you’re approaching your endurance threshold of the nation’s obsession with ultra clean, bright-eyed indie rock, you’re in luck: Melbourne art-pop quintet Aleks & The Ramps and their third full-length effort FACTS are here to save the day. Admittedly, the opening strains of Crocodile still carry a sparklingly fresh quality, all jangles and jive, but it’s not long before the first point of distinction enters the fray – this being the sublime croon of frontman Aleks Bryant. In a world of highpitched man-boy vocalists, it’s refreshing to hear a vocalist who predominantly occupies lower registers.
It’s not a genre-defining record, but has enough moments to compel you to believe the hype.
Thomas might be reflecting here on getting older, but aging suits both the timbre of his voice and the timeless nature of his distinctly Aussie narratives. One of our best ever musos at the top of his game, may there be many more footy seasons to come.
The ambling strut and slide guitar of In The Snow transition seamlessly into the banjo-laced swagger of Icy Faces and something else becomes evident – these guys are not here to play the same song ten times over. Although common elements permeate the record, fundamental feelings keep morphing – airy pseudo-funk (No Epiphanies), down-tempo balladry (Friends With The Night) and upbeat pop (Pray Tell), among other idiosyncratic stylistic staples. Standout track Bummer highlights two particular areas in which this album shines – firstly, it’s a headphone listen. A tonne of work has gone into mixing and production, and the song’s channel-hopping chorus “ohhs” are a prime example of how much attention to detail has been paid not just here but throughout the record. Secondly, you’ll note that Bryant is a fantastic lyricist: sophisticated, self-deprecating, super-quirky. Which is really kind of a nice summation of the album.
Tyler and Left Brain handle nearly all of the production, and it’s outstanding. Minimal, old-school and extremely accomplished, it shows their grasp on hip hop’s past and presents a compelling argument for its (odd) future. When Domo Genesis says, “This beat is fucking perfect!” on Doms, he’s not lying. The beats are the strength and the real reason why this shit’s blowing up.
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INPRESS • 31
THIS WEEK IN
WEDNESDAY 4 Owl Know How – Cat Rabbit and Isobel Knowles launch their debut children’s book, published by Thames & Hudson. To celebrate the release a launch party is being held with a special exhibition of the sets used to create the illustrations in the book. No Vacancy, 6pm. The Shining – directed by Stanley Kubrick, based on the novel by Stephen King, featuring everything you could want from a horror story: creepy premonitions, horrifying visions, and a very, very scary Jack Nicholson. Shadow Electric open-air cinema, Abbotsford, 8pm.
THURSDAY 5 The Big Lebowski – written and directed by Joel and Ethan Coen, about an unemployed slacker and avid bowler. This film concludes the 2011-2012 season of Shadow Electric open-air cinema at the Abbotsford Convent. Ticket price includes endless White Russians during screening and an open bar afterwards (Hello!). Shadow Electric open-air cinema, Abbotsford, 8pm
FRIDAY 6 East End Cabaret – Bernadette Byrne and Victor Victoria amuse and arouse with intimate stories, satirically subverted classics, and original, darkly comic songs. Featuring an accordion, musical saw, and an irresistible penchant for the risqué, direct from the UK. Red Bennies, 11pm.
SATURDAY 7 Hannah Gadsby: Mary. Contrary – comedian Hannah Gadsby takes audience members on an historical art journey of the many faces of everyone’s favourite virgin. Don’t miss this chance to see Hannah in her fourth annual illustrated talk at the NGV and hear her personal insights on the world of art. Part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. NGV International, 4.30pm.
SUNDAY 8 Labyrinth – directed by Jim Henson, starring a young Jennifer Connelly and a delightful/terrifying David Bowie in tights. An action-packed, fantastical, musical, comedic adventure. Astor Theatre, 2pm. Lipstick & Dynamite: The First Ladies Of Wrestling – directed by Ruth Leitman, a documentary which explores the hidden world of women’s pro wrestling in the ’40s and ’50s. From its roots in fleapit halls, smoke-filled carny sideshows and rip-off promoters, women’s wrestling exploded onto the scene, often taking top billing over their muscle-bound male counterparts. ACMI, 5.15pm. Rat – written by Chris Summers and directed by Petra Kalive; a play about
32 • INPRESS
Jill, who goes missing, and Zach, who needs to find her. But how do you find someone when you’re becoming just another rat? A comic exploration of power, Rat asks us to consider who and what we are and what other people want us to be? Closing night, 7:30pm. La Mama Theatre.
MONDAY 9 Meow Meow – Australia’s cabaret darling has rescheduled her shows at the Spiegeltent. A post-post-modern cabaret, Meow has a unique brand of kamikaze cabaret and performance art exotica. Closing night, 9pm. The Famous Spiegeltent. We Australians.org – a Melbournebased artist initiative that explores new ways of representing contemporary Australia, supporting innovative art that emerges from diverse cultural traditions. Dario Vacirca’s social art experiment, Trunk Opera, runs between the glass walls of the Fracture Gallery, involving performance, film, and sculpture. No Vacancy Gallery until 28 April.
TUESDAY 10 The Histrionic – directed by Daniel Schlusserv, written by Thomas Bernhard. ‘Hell hath no fury like an actor ignored.’ What happens when a talent that knows no bounds is dropped into a tiny hamlet? A satire on art, celebrity, and the cult of personality. This actor’s ego has outgrown reality itself. Stars Bille Brown and Barry Otto. Opening night, 6:30pm. Merlyn Theatre, the Malthouse until 5 May.
ONGOING Melbourne International Comedy Festival – hundreds of comedians performing in hundreds of shows for pretty much the entire month of April. Various venues at various locations until 22 April. Head to comedyfestival.com. au for details. Red – written by James Logan, directed by Alkinos Tsilimidos, a Melbourne premiere performance about abstract expressionist artist Mark Rothko, set in his Manhattan studio in the late 1950 where he is madly painting a set of murals commissioned for the new Four Seasons restaurant. Starring Colin Friels as Mark Rothko and André de Vanny as his assistant Ken. Sumner Theatre, MTC until 5 May. Simon Munnery’s La Concepta – a ‘pop-up’ restaurant originally devised for the 2011 Edinburgh Fringe. Transported in two large trunks, La Concepta will pop up in different outdoor spots across Melbourne, offering patrons a zerocalorie, interactive and intimate dining experience. Conceived and hand-built by the ever-unpredictable UK comedian Simon Munnery. Haute cuisine without the shame of eating. Part of Melbourne International Comedy Festival until 22 April.
TIM KEY RETURNS TO MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL WITH HIS NEW SHOW, MASTERSLUT. THE BRIT TALKS TO NICK JARVIS ABOUT HIS PERSONAL TAKE ON COMEDY. Tim Key is the master of the unnecessary detail and the non sequitur; his poems are veritable koans of the banal. Foolish behaviour, awkward exchanges, gluttonous bankers, and Deal Or No Deal – these are the subjects in his poet’s palette. To give you an idea, here’s an excerpt from his poem for the Guardian last year about Edinburgh during the Fringe: “The wretched comedian slumped against a poster of his own show on Nicholson Street (which comes off the Royal Mile). In one hand – a flyerer. In the other – a kebab and a member of his venue staff. Our hero’s arse slid down his grim portrait, Peeling off favourable quotes which had been stuck on that afternoon.” “That scaven image is because I have a sordid, grimy relationship with the Edinburgh festival,” Key says. “I’ve been covered in rain and kebab for about ten years now and slot back into that horrifying lifestyle each August. Melbourne’s much healthier. When I remember Melbourne I mainly remember sitting on some battered sofa in one of your bohemian cafés on Brunswick Street. Thoughtful, healthy, and optimistic.” Boho café dwelling isn’t all Key likes to do in Melbourne either – he’s also
(incongruously) a massive fan of AFL. “I saw a couple of games last time I was there and loved it,” he says. “I also watched an unhealthy amount in my hotel room. I started to know who the key players were. It was a disaster.” Key works with Camden-based company The Invisible Dot, the team that’s produced the more recent shows by Alex Horne, David O’Doherty, Simon Amstell, and Mark Watson, so you have an idea of what to expect: intelligent and wry humour, pathos, brilliant storytelling, and very few actual, proper, punchline jokes. He started out in the early noughties with Stefan Golaszewski, Tom Basden, and Lloyd Woolf as fourman sketch troupe Cowards, who formed after meeting (like so many great comedy collaborations) at Cambridge Footlights (although Key was not an actual Cambridge student). Cowards’ crowning glory was undoubtedly their brilliant threepart sketch series for BBC Four in 2010 (if you haven’t seen it, track it down on YouTube). Will there be any more episodes in the offing? “We really wanted to do more and were gutted to leave it at three. There’s talk of marching in again after Melbourne,” he says. “The truth is they should have let us make another three at the time. We were really proud of those shows and were getting better at what we did. Given three more episodes we
A HOWLIN’ GOOD TIME
DINGO AND WOLF ARE WINNING AT LIFE AS THEY TAKE ON THE MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL. THE DUO SPEAK TO CASSANDRA FUMI. Laura Dunemann and Eleanor Webster chat about their comedy festival personas Dingo and Wolf (respectively) as if they’re all old mates. Visions of a warped, less posh Sex And The City foursome come to mind. “We are also not afraid to look ugly,” Webster says. “[Or] get into the dirty stuff,” Dunemann adds. The two met at uni, creating the characters through the Monash Law Revue. “The year the Dingo and Wolf characters came out of the revue, we were the only girls,” says Dunemann. “It was almost like they were trying to fill the female quota.” Performing Arts graduates, the duo chose to focus on comedy. “I think something we have both found with comedy, [is] that it’s allowed us to be proactive as opposed to sitting
around waiting for an agent to call,” says Webster. “We can make our own work. I think that’s the best advice that’s ever been given; if there’s a role you want you have to go out and create it yourself.” “I like to take the advice of Stephen Fry,” Dunemann adds, “which is that the way to have any kind of longevity as a comedian is by being a writer.” The premise of their show, Winning At Life, is that Dingo and Wolf are delivering a motivational workshop. Dunemann says “it’s stand-up, but we perform characters.” The duo performed as Wolf and Dingo at last year’s MICF as part of the Raw Comedy competition. In Winning At Life, “Dingo really gets her own back; it’s a bit more even. In the past Wolf was almost too dominant and therefore mean.”
would have revolutionised television sketch comedy.” Televisual regrets aside, Key’s stand-up career is more than flourishing, with current show Masterslut collecting five-star reviews and gushing praise. Key says the show hasn’t changed since it debuted at Edinburgh last year, “except there’s maybe one extra witty comment I make about dinner parties.” It involves a bath – but Key doesn’t want to talk about that too much (for fear of spoiling the surprise) – although he will reveal that
Masterslut has “comedy, poetry, talking, and a bath in it. The bath is full of hot water and bubbles. There is a constant threat that someone will climb into the bath. There is also a black and white film about a man who gets muddled in a supermarket. Come!” WHO: Tim Key WHAT: Masterslut WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 12 April to Sunday 15, Tuesday 17 to Sunday 22, Arts Centre Melbourne, Fairfax Studio as part of MICF
The show is directed by Dave Callan, who “acted as a great mentor figure for us,” says Dunemann. “We cover sex a lot, as well as boys, relationships, and body image. All those superficial things. “The thing that we like to remember when we think about their back stories is how much they need each other. They are real losers and loners and don’t really cope in the world on their own.” “We don’t ever want the audience
to wonder, ‘Why are they even friends if they fight so much?” adds Webster. “But there’s real friendship there, even if they have been thrown together by necessity.” WHO: Dingo and Wolf WHAT: Winning At Life WHEN & WHERE: Tonight, Thursday, Tuesday 10 April to Saturday 14, Tuesday 17 to Saturday 21, Three Degrees as part of MICF
C U LT U R A L
WITH REBECCA COOK Like a gastronomic Houdini, New Zealand performance artist Audrey Baldwin ate her way out of a toffee cocoon about a week ago during the Dunedin Festival. It took Baldwin more than two and a half hours to lick her way through one of the 4mm thick walls. Emerging nude (perhaps she was combining her work with a full body wax) from the cocoon, she reportedly and not surprisingly expressed the desire for a shower. The performance was not just a chance for Baldwin to eat enough sugar to put herself in a diabetic coma, it was apparently a comment on our ‘sugar-rush society’. Cringe is now contemplating a show for this year’s Fringe Festival where she builds herself a prison out of mint slice biscuits each morning and spends the day eating not just her way out of her cell but the entire prison complex. Although maybe, and I think it’s a very big maybe, there’s a very slight chance that that performance wouldn’t be as pleasurable as it sounds. I only suspect this after watching Martynka Wawrzyniak’s 2010 performance Chocolate, where the New Yorker is slowly covered in chocolate as it is dibbled down on her from above. While this sounds like a delightful reversal of the Augustus Gloop fall into the chocolate river, in practice the video recording of the live performance looks more like being waterboarded with Milo. Local burlesque legend Moira Finucane at least made her food fetish fun. Her famous Dairy
Queen sketch involves throwing four litres of milk over herself in what Finucane has described as “creating a monster, a rock’n’roll monster”. The performance is also meant to evoke the typical horror movie scene – but with milk instead of blood. Food doesn’t just combine well with performance art, it has, from time to time, been a hit for comedians as well. Although most comedians have (sensibly) remained fully clothed while combining the two elements. For example, a couple of years back Josh Earl discovered the power of cake when he briefly mentioned the Australian Women’s Weekly Children’s Birthday Cake Book during a show. The audience’s reaction was such that he came back with a whole show about the cake book the year after (Josh Earl vs Australian Women’s Weekly Children’s Birthday Cake Book). Irish comedian Maeve Higgins and Sydney performer Claudia O’Doherty took it one step further in their 2008 Comedy Fest show Ha Ha Yum as they made chocolate crackles on stage during the show and handed them to audience members at the end. The closest thing I could find in this year’s Fest is Benn Bennett’s Tropical Hotdog Night, which seems to be exactly as it sounds, “dine on hot dogs in a tropical paradise” at the Festival Club, which unfortunately happened on 3 April. If you didn’t get there, check out some of the other late-night Festival Club gems such as So You Think You Can Slapstick (10 April) and The Cardigans (17 April).
FAREWELL TO THE FUNNYMAN
MIXING BUSINESS WITH PLEASURE
The Goodbye Guy is all about grief, says Justin Hamilton. About frustration. About the battle to maintain artistic integrity. “The premise is about me working for a comedy website, and my alter-ego Jason Harrington from [my shows] The Killing Joke and Goodbye Ruby Tuesday has bought it, and become my nemesis through trying to make it into something I’m not interested in being a part of,” Hamilton explains. Chatting to Hammo about the show, it’s definitely a case of ‘write what you know’. Recently the comedian has been kicking goals in new areas. His podcasts Can You Take This Photo Please? and The Shelfcast (with Adam Richard, which spun off from the show they host periodically at The Toff) have found an audience. He’s also been making some headway in bashing out a manuscript – but every year, at a certain time, muscle memory kicks in and he feels he has to start writing a show for the festival, leaving no time for other pursuits. “Writing a festival show is so obsessive – it has to be if you want to get it right,” he says. “And I honestly don’t know what I get out of a festival any more. I’ve learnt all the lessons I can learn, and you can’t make a living from it. So it feels like now is the right time to take on new challenges. So this’ll be the last show for the foreseeable future. “I’m not saying I won’t write shows,” Hammo clarifies, “but I doubt I’ll do them in the festival. I’ll do them on my own terms. I might spend 18 months playing around with writing one, and then when I do decide to perform I’ll pick the venue I want, and only do as many shows as I want to do, and take it on the road when I feel like it. That feels a lot more interesting to me.” Around the end of 2010, Hamilton spent a few months in Los Angeles, and says the lessons he learnt from seeing how things are done there spurred him on to break out of his comfort zone. “There’s a lot of fear in Australian artists,” he muses. “We like to talk about new things, but to actually do it, we have such a small market [that] we’re afraid. Like the ABC
Half-brothers Nick and Ben Mattick (AKA Roger David and Fletcher Jones) are on their way to joining the great pantheon of antipodean comedians who successfully mix music with comedy – from Tim Minchin and Flight Of The Conchords to Tripod and Axis of Awesome – and they’re stamping the genre with their own dry, silly style. Their launch pad was placing as finalists in the 2008 Raw Comedy competition, which led to a series of full-length shows at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival – 2009’s Art vs Smart Casual, 2010’s Same Mother, Different Fathers, 2011’s The Story of Captain Entrée, and now 2012’s Broken Dreams – but it was familial banter that got them started in the first place, Nick Mattick (the one with the beard) says. “We’re brothers so we’ve always joked around, and when we saw a comedy gala on TV we both wanted to be in it. Ben’s the guitar player so he comes up with the music and we both write the gags, and then during the performances we play around with it a bit and improvise, and then take the good stuff and cut away the chaff. After doing that a few times we have something pretty good.” The Smart Casual style veers solidly towards the silly – songs about Stephen Hawking and Jennifer Hawkins having a son called Hawk Hawkings, cautionary tales about leaving your kids with Britney Spears or Eric Clapton (harsh, but fair), and pleas for Ellen DeGeneres to stop dancing. “We try to stay away from anything smart,” Mattick says, “and focus mainly on each other’s flaws. The sort of comedy acts we like are, for instance, this guy from England called Tom Basden who’s really good, and aside from music, Ricky Gervais, Stewart Lee, The Mighty Boosh, and
THE GOODBYE GUY ISN’T JUST A SHOW TITLE, IT’S A MISSION STATEMENT FOR COMEDIAN JUSTIN HAMILTON, WHO TELLS BAZ MCALISTER THIS SHOW MIGHT BE HIS COMEDY FESTIVAL FAREWELL – AT LEAST FOR THE TIME BEING.
GUIDE TO THE
MELBOURNE INTERNATIONAL COMEDY FESTIVAL DOESN’T STOP HERE!
show Outland – it was good, but they really dropped the ball on marketing it. If something doesn’t fit into a natural category, rather than try to work out how to think outside the box, people just go, ‘Ah, um ... oh, too hard’ and walk away from it. Why work with those people? Find your own way.” And indeed Hamilton has, transforming himself through grit and boldness into an artist actively chasing that frisson of fear. “I’m up for a roll of the dice,” he says. “If I wanted a safe life, I’d get a 9 to 5 job. Definitely I’d feel comfortable heading off to do a novel for a while. I just want to be in control of things, and if they fail, they fail because of me. I could write a book and not make any money from it, and at least I’ll have a pile of Christmas presents to give away. You can’t do that with posters and flyers for a comedy show. I’ve tried. Won’t make that mistake again.” WHO: Justin Hamilton WHAT: The Goodbye Guy WHEN & WHERE: Until 21 April (excludes Monday), Victoria Hotel – Acacia Room as part of MICF
“THERE ARE A LOT OF DRUNK OLDER WOMEN IN REGIONAL AUSTRALIA THAT WANT THEIR TITS SIGNED.” NICK JARVIS TALKS TO THE WELL-GROOMED NICK MATTICK OF THE AUSTRALIAN COMEDY SCENE’S BEST DRESSED, SMART CASUAL. Sam Simmons.” It’s a game plan that’s seen them tour the length of the country with the MICF Roadshow, taking their comedy stylings as far as Magnetic Island, and collecting many fans along the way. “The people in northern Queensland were great,” Mattick says. “They were heaps less dumb and less racist than the rest of the country gives them credit for... Also, there are a lot of drunk older women in regional Australia that want their tits signed.” For a duo named Smart Casual, their stage costume for the past four years of two check shirts, two pairs of jeans, and one pair of Wayfarers has veered more towards the casual than the smart, but Mattick assures me that’s all about to change in 2012. “We’ve matured and gone out and got ourselves some suits from Kelly Country. Why would you hire a suit for $100 when you can buy one brand new from Kelly Country for $99?” Sage advice for fans of polyester – but it’s not just the duo’s attire which has evolved over the last year. Their new show is also a step forward, and sees the duo put aside their broken dreams and “corporate whoring” to move to Poland with nothing but a beard and a guitar to try and ‘make it’. “Our current show has a narrative running through it,” Mattick says. “We sing, dance and fight on stage for 50 minutes and it’s all very silly. We also open the show with a burlesque dance involving snap pants, so there’s something there for everyone.” WHO: Smart Casual WHAT: Broken Dreams WHEN & WHERE: Until 22 April (excludes Monday), Arthur’s Bar as part of MICF
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EXCESSIVE LAUGHS XAVIER TOBY RUNS STUART EVANS THROUGH THE MAKING OF HIS DINNER PARTY COMEDY SHOW, BINGE THINKING. Is evolution going backwards? Are we ignorant, arrogant, and insular? Are we so self-obsessed that we have lost sight of who we actually are? Do we even care? Tough questions that require debate and discussion, and comedian Xavier Toby is just the man for the challenge. “Binge Thinking is based on general views within Australian society as I talk about climate change, gay marriage and other issues,” he explains. You are probably thinking that these are strange topics to spruik, particularly as at first glance they don’t necessarily appear to provide Toby with much
comic fodder. The adage of not talking about money, religion, and politics at a dinner party is largely well known. However, Toby’s show Binge Thinking challenges that belief. Clearly, the Melburnian is a brave man. “Yes, I do ask about the things you’re not supposed to talk about,” he says. The show details a fictional dinner party with him narrating and acting as a range of characters using bottles of alcohol to represent various couples – couples based on today’s society. He has a VB longneck to represent the tradesman, a bottle of red and white wine masquerades as the upper-class couple, while a bottle of Frangelico acts as a lawyer. “I’ve gone for the stereotypes,” laughs Toby. “At one point I ask about the carbon tax when I then hold up the cask wine, which represents the bogans, who reply by asking about the cardboard tax.” During the dinner party he finds himself either frustrated with their insular views on society and the environment, or uninterested with talk of babies. The theme of his jokes is frequently friends’ ignorance with a few other bits and pieces thrown in. Not that everyone shares his opinions. “I prefer to do a show with people who don’t agree with my views,” Toby explains. “At
LABYRINTH RETURNS TO THE BIG SCREEN Good news, you guys! Jim Henson’s Labyrinth is returning to the big screen in a theatrical standard presentation for the first time in almost 20 years, and for the very first time in Australia. A beloved fantasy favourite that has stood the test of time, Labyrinth has been absent from cinema screens for many years after distributors junked all their 35mm prints. Whether you’re a child of the ’80s, a first-time viewer, or a David Bowie devotee you won’t want to miss out on this one. Labyrinth screens exclusively at Astor Theatre Sunday 8 April to Sunday 15.
ACMI TAKES ON SONS OF ANARCHY This May ACMI’s Live In The Studio television appreciation night shifts gears with news from the set of cult hit Sons Of Anarchy on the eve of its fifth season. Join academic Dr Esther Milne, cultural commentator Clementine Ford, and Green Guide editor Andrew Murfett, who will offer some insider information after visiting the set of Sons Of Anarchy in 2011 – they explore the bad boys and girls of SAMCRO, and look back at one of the most talked about series on the box. Sons of Anarchy: Not So Easy Riders will be held at ACMI Studio 1 on Thursday 31 May, 7pm.
one point I ask the audience to discuss gay marriage and I ask for a round of applause for those who support it.” His comedic skills have taken him to the UK whereby he focused more on traditional joke telling. However, not satisfied with merely telling jokes, he wanted to explore issues-based comedy – or comedy that makes people think. “The show is based on facts from society and the broader landscape. I took a break from what I would call popcorn comedy and telling jokes as I wanted to focus on this style of comedy, issues-based comedy, as there are things I want to say.” He commenced work on Binge Thinking
THE INCREDIBLE JOURNEY
KATE MCLENNAN MOVED BACK IN WITH HER FOLKS, AND FOUND THEM TO BE A SOURCE OF COMEDY GEMS. SHE SPEAKS TO ALEKSIA BARRON ABOUT HER NEW SHOW, HOMEWARD BOUND. They may say that you can’t go home again, but try telling that to Kate McLennan. The award-winning performer is taking on MICF with her show Homeward Bound, which chronicles the somewhat trying (but very funny) past 12 months of her life. The inspiration for the show came thick and fast when McLennan moved back in with her parents a year ago. “I’d moved home to Mum and Dad’s in Geelong after a break-up,” she explains, “and they just seemed to provide me with a lot of material – like the day after I’d moved in, I was miserable and broken-hearted so Mum and my sister took me to a bridal expo to distract me. That stuff just writes itself.” McLennan was running a regular comedy night, The Wrong Night, and would regale her audience with monthly updates of her post-break-up living situation progress. “I’d get up there and give the audience an update on my recovery. Lots of references to cutting my fringe, watching The Golden Girls, and Yah Yahs shenanigans,” she says. However,
ROLLING STONES PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBIT AT COLOUR FACTORY Backstage Pass, a Rolling Stones retrospect by E.H.B. “Chip” Monck will exhibit at Colour Factory, Fitzroy from this Friday to Saturday 28 April.
CHUNKY MOVE CHOREOGRAPHIC WORKSHOP SERIES CALLING FOR ENTRANTS Registrations are now open for Chunky Move’s 2012 choreographic workshop series, presented by Melbourne choreographer and performer Brooke Stamp. The series of six workshops is open to all levels of experience and welcomes anyone with a desire to develop their understanding and practice of choreography in a supportive and professional environment. Workshops begin Thursday 26 April and continue to Thursday 31 May. Visit chunkymove.com.au for registration details.
WITH ANTHONY CAREW Paolo Sorrentino’s past three pictures – the hyper-minimal existential thriller The Consequences Of Love; the seething, misanthropic comedy The Family Friend; and the oddball biopicas-puzzle Il Divo – have been quite the impressive cinematic run; a mixture of saturated style, dynamic camera movement, impossibly droll humour, bizarre screenwriting choices, and inspired musical interludes. This Must Be The Place finds the idiosyncratic Italian making the somewhat obligatory English-language/American debut. Sean Penn headlines, playing – like some poor-man’s Johnny Depp – a Robert Smith-esque washed-up goth-rocker from the ’80s roadtrippin’ through middle America, encountering a cast of oddballs as he goes. But it’s anything but some cutesy, fishout-of-water comedy pushing twee sentimentality. In fact, it’s not much 34 • INPRESS
cute at all; after early scenes seem tinged with Wes Anderson-ish whimsy, the picture progresses with ever more darkness and disturbance, and perversion aplenty; scene after scene growing stranger, more singular, more interesting. Penn’s tracking down a 95-year-old ex-SS officer, but, needless to say, Sorrentino isn’t interested in the cheap, all-American pay-offs of holocaust movies; instead positing that nothing can ever be ‘put right’, that there’s no simple narrative for grieving, for overcoming, for ‘moving on’. Here, loss piles up everywhere, with both tragedy and banality; and Sorrentino’s ever-elastic camera turns, pivots, peers, leers into the astonishing oddness and beauty of the everyday. He looks at America – its swathes of Wild West, its ersatz truckstops and motels – with the wide-open eyes of a foreigner, and hones in on the details – of both character and interior – most strange, most poignant, most fucked-up; the
after the 2011 Melbourne International Comedy Festival and has gradually tested and tweaked the concept. If tackling such a sticky range of subjects makes some nervous, Toby is not one of them. “It’s a privilege to be able to speak to an audience and I’m not really nervous, it’s more excitement and exhilaration,” he says. “You can use humour to get people onside regardless of the topic.” WHO: Xavier Toby WHAT: Binge Thinking WHEN & WHERE: Thursday to Saturday 21 March (excludes Wednesday), The Irish Times as part of MICF
silliness of the surface – Penn in pancake and backcombed hair – merely masking a quietly radical worldview of an auteur disinterested in the usual platitudes and normal pop song placements, pursuing his own truth in a world that never feels quite right. In Penn’s utterly adolescent directorial effort Into The Wild, the smirking hero ends up in Slab City, an off-the-grid trailer park where the counter-cultural unwashed commune far from, like, the rules of The Man, man. In romantic Hollywood cinema, it’s a place you can nail Kristen Stewart and chillax with some chill bros; in reality, it’s a festering fuckhole full of paranoid sociopaths with guns, and other variations of human scum. Of course, that’s not exactly how Alma Har’el depicts it, even if her documentary is unafraid of that. Her Bombay Beach, too, has a tinge of romance: a washed-out look, a Beirut/ Bob Dylan soundtrack, a sunkissed view of outsider Americans treasuring their humanity – their freedom – in a post-apocalyptic wasteland. Bombay Beach is a potent symbol of modern America: a 20th century ruin
despite realising that there was potential to put together an entire show around the situation, McLennan was hesitant. “I was really worried that talking about a break-up on stage every night would make me feel miserable, particularly when I felt like I’d moved on,” she says. “In the end I cut out a lot of the break-up material, I really only address it for a couple of moments at the beginning because the show has evolved into something else.” The show became more focussed on McLennan’s family dynamic. “My family are lovely and we’re very close, but we’re not without our faults,” she says. “My mum and sister are very similar, whereas I take after Dad – we both like a drop of the amber liquid, have a preoccupation with death and a healthy dose of anxiety.” She couldn’t resist exploiting the latter trait for comedic gold: “I talk about my dad’s health battles in the show, but I also talk about how he’s managed to milk it for all it’s worth. Like when he had prostate cancer he shaved his head – he wasn’t losing his hair but he really wanted to make sure people knew that he was ill.” Still, McLennan’s dad loves that she’s using their family life as comedic fodder: “In a way me telling these stories is a bit like keeping a family history – it’s my way of documenting all the stuff that’s happened to us and I think they like that.”
FOR THE LOVE OF LANGUAGE
FRENCH FILMMAKER MIA HANSEN-LØVE IS PREPARING TO SEE THE RELEASE OF HER THIRD FILM IN SIX YEARS, GOODBYE FIRST LOVE. SHE SPEAKS TO ANTHONY CAREW ABOUT HER SINGULAR VISION. Mia Hansen-Løve never went to film-school. The 31-year-old filmmaker – already three features into an impressive career – doesn’t think it’s remarkable in and of itself, but being an artistic ‘outsider’ is something she identifies with. Hansen-Løve came to filmmaking via the influence of her love interest, the film critic-turned-auteur Olivier Assayas; making her debut with 2007’s All Is Forgiven after no time in an academy. This would be a meaningless biographical footnote if not for the fact that Hansen-Løve’s pictures move with an unconventional screenwriting rhythm that no one would ever teach, but is only her own. “I try not to think at all about how a story ‘should’ be told. I’ve always had a strong belief in the importance of thinking on your own,” says HansenLøve. “When I write, I try to find a way in the structure of all my films that reflects my own way of seeing things and my own experiences, not the established rules of scriptwriting... I have troubles with the way some young filmmakers write scripts; they just feel so conventional to me. Sometimes even in films I like very much. There’s something in the way that they write where I can tell they’re trying to apply the rules that they’ve been told about the efficiencies of scriptwriting.” Her latest oddly-moving picture, Goodbye First Love, chronicles a young love affair over a period of years; intense teenage infatuation unfolding into a portrait of two kids turning into adults. It’s about “love and the impossibility of turning a page”, “the passing of time”, “[love] that starts so very young and doesn’t ever really go away”, and “how you become who
you are”. The filmmaker talks about taking inspiration from ’60s acid-folkies The Incredible String Band, specifically their jam First Girl I Loved. It’s telling, because music plays a key part in Hansen-Løve’s particular aesthetic. “I don’t work with composers, so I feel very free with my choices of music,” she offers. “I enjoy trying to find music that is both pertinent and to-the-point of the film, but also unexpected, and will give it a new colour. I enjoy creating my own language with the use of music. I love to not use music for a long stretch of the film – 20 minutes, 25 minutes – and then put in one song, one really important song that you will really listen to because it comes after this silence.” Her idiosyncratic use of pop song was never more unexpected that at the end of her masterful Father Of My Children – a radically bissected drama inspired by the life of the late producer Humbert Balsan – when Hansen-Løve flogged the musical dead horse of Doris Day’s Que Sera Sera without irony. “I feel very sincere about music; I try not to care about what other people think, I try to just be honest to my own sensibility,” she offers. “My mother used to sing that to me is a child, because of Hitchock’s [The Man Who Knew Too Much]. So I’ve always loved that song; Que Sera Sera has always moved me. I knew that some people would be shocked by the use of the song, like it was a bad selection, but it was so perfect for that ending: it’s a mother singing to her children about life going on.” WHAT: Goodbye First Love WHERE & WHEN: Screening in cinemas from Thursday 5 April
down her chosen cinematic path, authoring another melancholy swim through the passing of time; years rushing forward, change rippling out in their wake; a sad girl seemingly floating and drowning at once, caught in tides beautiful above but unforgiving underneath. As its title suggests, Hansen-Løve’s latest is a portrait of young love; beginning with a pair of teenaged Parisian paramours in the throes of infatuation. But the boy is off to travel South America, and their union is broken; as is the heart of young Camille (played by rising French starlet Lola Créton). From
there, she soldiers painfully onwards; living a life of unconvincing conviction, undermined by bad decisions. Her first love is always there, in her heart and memory, but sometimes in the flesh; and it’s both a strength to draw from and a debilitating sickness. As is her way, Hansen-Løve’s screenplay creeps forward slowly, at odd intervals, with unusual rhythms, and plenty of lingering silences. It’s filled with both sweet longing and awkward unease, and its main character is both charming and unendingly frustrating; a little-girllost playing – and failing – at being a woman.
WHO: Kate McLennan WHAT: Homeward Bound WHEN & WHERE: Until 22 April abandoned to the dust, left to decay and rot, just three hours outside of Los Angeles; extreme poverty a stone’s throw away from the most lavish, ungracious wealth. The Well Digger’s Daughter finds Daniel Auteuil making a good oldfashioned frock movie, by remaking an old-fashioned WWII tale of tragic love and family honour and marrying off your daughter. Fans of a good hat will likely be swept up in the romance of the piece; which involves a headstrong eldest-daughter falling for a rich kid on a motorbike, then having sad fate and the scourge of war derail true love’s righteous path. The picture has a pleasingly dirty tinge – this is no immaculately-styled frock movie, but an earnest one; the French countryside a place of toil and hardship, not afternoon teas and manicured hedges – but it has an air of self-conscious old-fashionedness that’ll play best for old people. Goodbye First Love finds Mia HansenLøve – the blossoming auteur behind All Is Forgiven and the quietly-brilliant The Father Of My Children – continuing
THIS MUST BE THE PLACE
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t FAMOUS LAST TWEETS – YOUR FINAL WORDS IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS t JESUS ON FILM t BOUNCING WITH BIG FREEDIA t SANTA CAT SUGGESTS – STOCKING FILLER FOR YOUR PETS t ON THE GROUND AT RED BULL MUSIC ACADEMY IN MADRID t XMAS GIFT GUIDE
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TOUR GUIDE THIS WEEK
GIG OF THE WEEK
INTERNATIONAL MY MORNING JACKET: April 4 Palace THE POGUES: April 4 Festival Hall YANN TIERSEN: April 4 Melbourne Recital Centre KENNY WAYNE SHEPHERD: April 4 Corner JOHN COOPER CLARKE: April 4 Northcote Social Club VUSI MAHLASELA: April 5 Melbourne Recital Centre COSMIC GATE: April 5 Festival Hall ZAPPA PLAYS ZAPPA: April 6 Palace Theatre EFREN RAMIREZ: April 6 Espy BASS DRUM OF DEATH: April 6 Liberty Social Club TROMBONE SHORTY & ORLEANS AVENUE: April 7 Corner THE EASTERN: April 7 Alexandra Hotel STIMMING: April 7 Donkey Wheel House NEW FOUND GLORY, TAKING BACK SUNDAY: April 8 Festival Hall ALABAMA 3: April 8 Prince THE FABULOUS THUNDERBIRDS, CANNED HEAT: April 8 Corner MARTIN BUTTRICH: April 8 Brown Alley BOY 8-BIT: April 8 Revolver SETH LAKEMAN: April 8, 9 Bennetts Lane GEORGE MICHAEL: April 9 Rod Laver Arena SUBLIME WITH ROME: April 9 Palace ZIGGY MARLEY: April 9 Corner DAVID BROMBERG: April 10 Toff SEAL: April 10, 12 Palais SEASTICK STEVE: April 10 Corner SETH LAKEMAN: Sunday 8 and Monday 9 April, Bennetts Lane
RON S PENO & THE SUPERSTITIONS FRIDAY, REGAL BALLROOM
Ron S Peno & The Superstitions’ 2011 album Future Universe was lauded as Peno’s best work since Died Pretty’s Doughboy Hollow and accordingly he’s decided to bring the thing out on vinyl. To celebrate the release, Peno and band will play a sweet gig at the Regal Ballroom, joined on the night by Sailor Days. The release is limited to a pressing of just 300 and given the CD has sold out of its fourth run, they won’t last. There’s tickets available at Polyester, Thornbury Records and via webtickets.com.au. Get along, grab the vinyl and catch Peno strut his inimitable stuff.
PRESENTS BEST OF BOTH SIDES: Until April 8, Bimbo Deluxe and Lucky Coq KENNY WAYNE SHEPHERD, JOANNE SHAW TAYLOR: April 4 Corner Hotel KEB MO: April 5 Corner Hotel TROMBONE SHORTY & ORLEANS AVENUE: April 7 Corner Hotel FABULOUS THUNDERBIRDS, CANNED HEAT: April 8 Corner Hotel SNEAKY SOUND SYSTEM, THE ASTON SHUFFLE: April 8 Palace ALABAMA 3: April 8 Prince Bandroom ZIGGY MARLEY: April 9 Corner Hotel DAVID BROMBERG: April 10 Toff In Town MACEO PARKER: April 11, 12 Corner Hotel LAST DINOSAURS: April 17 Phoenix Public House; 18 National Hotel (Geelong); 19 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 20 Northcote Social Club BLEEDING KNEES CLUB: April 19 National Hotel (Geelong); 20 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 21 Northcote Social Club PASSENGER: April 20 Corner Hotel BIG SCARY: April 24 Corner Hotel DIG IT UP! FEAT HOODOO GURUS, THE SONICS, THE FLESHTONES: April 25 Palace JAY & SILENT BOB: Thursday 26 April Palais BLUEJUICE: April 26 Eureka Hotel (Geelong); 27 Pier Liver (Frankston); 28 Hi-Fi (U18 arvo, 18+ evening) BIC RUNGA: May 1, Wellers, Kangaroo Ground; 2 Geelong Performing Arts Centre; 4 Athenaeum Theatre ANDREW WK: May 2 Pier Live (Frankston); 4 Corner Hotel MOUNT KIMBIE: May 3 Hi-Fi PIGEON: May 3 Laundry; 4 Revolver 5 Espy GROOVIN’ THE MOO: May 5 Prince Of Wales Showground (Bendigo) GOSSLING: May 5 Thornbury Theatre FU MANCHU: May 6 Hi-Fi sdfsdfsdfdsf
WOODEN SHJIPS PIC BY JESSE BOOHER
a fair crack. They occupy the stage in a three-toone formation with guitarist Erik ‘Ripley’ Johnson rockin’ off on his own stage right. Their tunes meld through expanding psychotropic ruts and flows; at times reminiscent of the psychier moments of New Zealand’s The Clean or The Bats, but at others bordering on mantric meditative chants. It’s an immersive sensory experience and to avoid getting lost in the wash the band kindly provide signposts in the form of brief pauses between numbers and revisiting familiar hooks after extended periods of instrumental freak-outs.
THE GO SET: April 4 Espy GIN WIGMORE: April 5 Workers Club TOM MILEK: April 5 Toff BIG STRONG BRUTE: April 5 Empress UNDERLIGHTS: April 5 Beav’s Bar (Geelong); 6 Northcote Social Club; 7 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 8 Caravan Music Club YACHT CLUB DJs: April 5 Prince Bandroom; 6 Bended Elbow; 7, 8 Karova Lounge BEARHUG: April 6 Workers Club BOY IN A BOX: April 6 Espy JOELISTICS: April 7 Espy EMMY BRYCE, KATE VIGO: April 7 Palais Hepburn Springs THE NEARLY BROTHERS: April 7 Pure Pop Records; 8 Northcote Social Club; SNEAKY SOUND SYSTEM: April 8 Palace DEEZ NUTS: April 8 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) (AA) VAN SHE TECHNOLOGIC: April 9 Espy
UPCOMING INTERNATIONAL MACEO PARKER: April 11, 12 Corner THE RUBENS: April 11, 12 Northcote Social Club JAMES VINCENT MCMORROW: April 12 Toff SEAL: April 10, 12 Palais THE WEDDING PRESENT: April 14 Northcote Social Club AMON AMARTH: April 16 Billboard ONE DIRECTION: April 16 Hisense LOU BARLOW: April 17, 18 Northcote Social Club HENRY ROLLINS: April 18-20 National Theatre THE FEELERS: April 19 Northcote Social Club JIM BRUER: April 20, 22 Capitol Theatre AUGUST BURNS RED: April 21 Billboard THE 18.104.22.168’S: April 24 Tote CAIRO KNIFE FIGHT: April 26 Workers Club MARK LANEGAN BAND: April 26 Forum
WOODEN SHJIPS CORNER HOTEL 28/03/12
Thankfully the Wooden Shjips show isn’t nearly as crowded as the Steve Earle performances at the same venue later in the week, but the room is still pretty rammed post-support slots from the excellent Forces and psych wonder women Beaches. Wooden Shjips lock straight into the groove of latest album West’s opening number Black Smoke Rise and we’re transported. There’s flashing geometric shapes in black and white on three screens and the be-flannelled audience (we count around ten within arm’s reach) settle into the wash of noise. The sound quality is remarkably good, bordering on flawless, though in spots there’s a weird pulsing effect causing the sound to shift in waves ranging from loud to really fucking loud. On their last visit, Wooden Shjips scored a pretty unanimous Golden Plains boot during a memorable sundrenched afternoon set. It was always going to be impossible to top, but the San Franciscan four-piece give it
Bassist Dusty Jermier is the glue that holds this thing together. Through the continual wigging and noodling of Johnson’s free-form guitar stylings, the bass remains tightly wedged into a dirty ditch of a groove. Intensity builds as the band traverse much of the West material before they begin delving into the older songs. But it’s here, later in the set, that they really hit form and the final quarter of the body performance renders the room a forest of gently swaying, closed-eyed space cadets drifting in a haze of guitar-induced bliss. Chirping birdsong twitters over a silenced audience to announce the arrival of the grinding pulse of behemoth Death’s Not Your Friend, from the career-defining collection of rare singles Wooden Shjips Vol II, and the introspective swaying intensifies somewhat. Main-set closer is one for the trainspotters – the too-WoodenShjips-to-be-Wooden-Shjips song Buddy, originally penned by New Zealand one-hit-wonders Snapper. The encore is a one-song affair but it’s the one song conspicuously lacking thus far, the Wooden Shjips Vol II-opening Loose Lips, and it catches our eyeballs on fire, rounding out a set worthy of banking right alongside their Golden Plains appearance as one of the best psychedelic music experiences of the last five years. As much about ‘songs’ as it is about ‘shapes’ or ‘strata’ of sound, the Wooden Shjips live performance exists very much in at least three dimensions. If you close your eyes and let the music consume you, you can come out the other end all the richer for it. Samson McDougall
INPRESS • 37
STEVE EARLE PIC BY LOU LOU NUTT
TOUR GUIDE FABULOUS THUNDERBIRDS: Sunday 8 April Corner Hotel
DMX: April 27 Trak SIX60: April 27 Hi-Fi THE SONICS: April 27 Caravan Music Club THE EXPLOITED: April 28 Corner ANDREW WK: May 2 Pier Live; 4 Corner Hotel CITY & COLOUR: May 2, 3 Palais Theatre MOUNT KIMBIE: May 3 Hi-Fi ORBITAL: May 4 Palace Theatre DIGITALISM: May 4 Forum DEVILDRIVER, DARKEST HOUR: May 6 Billboard FRANK TURNER: May 6 Espy THE DARKNESS: May 8 Palace WAVVES: May 9 Corner RALPH MCTELL: May 10 the Cube; May 11 Corner THE MOUNTAIN GOATS: May 10 Corner ATMOSPHERE, EVIDENCE: May 10 Hi-Fi MORGAN PAGE: May 10 Alumbra KIM CHURCHILL: May 11 Baha Tacos (Rye); 12 Northcote Social Club DEUS: May 12 Corner Hotel MUTEMATH: May 14, 17 Corner PUBLIC ENEMY: May 15 Palace KAISER CHIEFS: May 16 Palace THE MACCABEES: May 16 Hi-Fi MURDER BY DEATH: May 17 Evelyn; 18 National Hotel NICKI MINAJ: May 18 Hisense Arena THE BRIAN JONESTOWN MASSACRE: May 19 Forum NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK, BACKSTREET BOYS: May 19 Rod Laver FLORENCE & THE MACHINE: May 20 Rod Laver S CLUB 7, BIG BROVAS: May 23 Palace Theatre BARRY ADAMSON: May 23 Corner DANNY BROWN, MED: May 24 Prince MICKEY AVALON: May 25 Espy SHOWTEK: May 25 Chasers NATURALLY 7: May 26 Palais Theatre ANTI-FLAG: May 27 Hi-Fi MY BRIGHTEST DIAMOND: May 28 Northcote Social Club YOUNG GUNS: May 30 Hi-Fi RAY LUGO: June 1 Scatter Scatter LIGHT ASYLUM: June 1 Phoenix Public House; 2 Toff SIMPLE PLAN: June 2 Festival Hall ZOLA JESUS: June 3 Toff AMON TOBIN: June 5 Palace REEF: June 8 Billboard DAVID MYLES: June 8 Wesley Anne; 9 Caravan Music Club SILVERSTEIN: June 9 Bang; 10 Pelly Bar (Frankston) MARK KOZELEK: June 9 Toff, 11 Phoenix Public House LADY GAGA: June 27, 28, 30, July 1 Rod Laver MELISSA ETHERIDGE: July 15 Plenary THE BLACK SEEDS: July 15 Corner BELL BIV DEVOE, GINUWINE: August 10, 14 Trak Live Lounge HANSON: September 14 Palace SUBHUMANS: September 15 Bendigo Hotel RADIOHEAD: November 16, 17 Rod Laver Arena
NATIONAL TOM MILEK: April 12 Beav’s Bar (Geelong); May 25 Cornish Arms DEEZ NUTS: April 12 EV’s Youth Centre (Croydon) (AA); 13 Espy; 14 Karova Lounge; 15 Musicman Megastore (Bendigo) (AA) CHILDREN COLLIDE: April 13 Corner THE NEARLY BROTHERS: April 13 Caravan Music Club VEIL OF MAYA: April 13 Phoenix Youth Centre ZOOPHYTE: April 13 Prince Bandroom RÜFÜS: April 13 Phoenix Public House THE MEDICS: April 13 Northcote Social Club BALL PARK MUSIC: April 13 Karova Lounge; 14, 15 (U18), 16, 29 Corner SUPER BEST FRIENDS: April 13 Brunswick Hotel; 14 Pony THE PEEP TEMPEL: April 13 Tote THE EASTERN: April 13 Baha Tacos (Rye); 14 Old Bar; 15 Post Office Hotel (Coburg); 24 John Curtin THE GOOD SHIP: April 14 Grace Darling FAKER: April 14 Espy PUBLIC OPINION AFRO ORCHESTRA: April 14 38 • INPRESS
Twotwotwo BAG RAIDERS: April 14, Bottom End HAYDEN CALNIN: April 15, 22 Workers Club MY DISCO: April 14,15 Toff JAM XPRESS: April 14 La Di Da; 19 Room 680; May 10 HomeHouse (Geelong); 18 Prince Bandroom; 26 Billboard LAST DINOSAURS: April 17 Phoenix Public House; April 20, May 2 Northcote Social Club HOODLUM SHOUTS: April 18 Old Bar; May 5 Gasometer N’FA: April 19 Grace Darling HUSKY: April 19, May 6 Corner; April 20 Barwon Club TWISTED AFFECTION: April 19 Bendigo Hotel; 20 Royal Melbourne Hotel; 21 John Curtin Hotel; 22 National Hotel (Geelong); 24 Newmarket Hotel (Bendigo) BLEEDING KNEES CLUB: April 19 National Hotel; 20 Karova Lounge; 21 Northcote Social Club THE SIDETRACKED FIASCO: April 20 Brunswick Hotel KISSCHASY: April 20 Inferno (Traralgon); 24 Ferntree Gully Hotel THE HERD, THUNDAMENTALS: April 21 Corner BLEEDING KNEES CLUB: April 21 Northcote Social Club TIN SPARROW: April 21 Grace Darling CHET FAKER: April 21, 22 Toff IOWA: April 21 Phoenix Public House POND: April 22 Northcote Social Club BIG SCARY: April 24, 25 Corner JOHN BUTLER: April 24, 25 Hi-Fi THE FUNKOARS: April 24 Espy; May 10 Wheelers Hill Hotel; 11 Pier Live STONEFIELD: April 24, 25 Northcote Social Club HOODOO GURUS: April 25 Palace DZ DEATHRAYS: April 25 National Hotel; 26 Karova Lounge; 27 Tote EMMY BRICE, KATE VIGO: April 26 Thornbury Theatre AN HORSE: April 27 Corner BLUEJUICE: April 28 Hi-Fi (U18) SAN CISCO: May 1, 2 Corner JOHN WATERS, STEWART D’ARRIETTA: May 2-6 Chapel Off Chapel THE GETAWAY PLAN: May 3 Corner PIGEON: May 3 Laundry Bar; 4 Revolver Upstairs; 5 the Espy AYA LARKIN: May 4 Wesley Anne THE TOOT TOOT TOOTS: May 4 Hi-Fi DAPPLED CITIES: May 4 Northcote Social Club LANIE LANE: May 4 Karova Lounge; 25 May Meeniyan Town Hall; 26 May Corner Hotel CHANCE WATERS: May 5 First Floor GOSSLING: May 5 Thornbury Theatre EMILY BARKER: May 5 Pure Pop Records; 6 Wesley Anne WE ALL WANT TO: May 5 Empress; 6 Pure Pop Records, Kew RSL KIMBRA: May 9 Palais Theatre (AA) CALLING ALL CARS: May 10 Kay Street (Traralgon); 11 Hi-Fi JOSH PYKE: May 11 Forum MICK THOMAS: May 11 Regal Ballroom CATCALL: May 12 Toff BOY & BEAR: May 16, 18 Forum; 19 Deakin’s Costa Hall (Geelong); 20 Hi-Fi (U18) DEAD LETTER CIRCUS: May 17 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 18 Hi-Fi TIM FREEDMAN: May 17 Beav’s Bar (Geelong); 19 Spirit Bar & Lounge (Traralgon); August 10, 11 Bennetts Lane THE BUTTERFLY EFFECT: May 18 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 19 Inferno (Traralgon); 20 Pier Live (Frankston); 25 Palace Theatre AUSTRALIAN POPS ORCHESTRA, TODD MCKENNEY, JOHN FOREMAN: May 18, 19 Palms At Crown LEADER CHEETAH: May 19 Northcote Social Club TUMBLEWEED: May 25, 26 Tote LANIE LANE: May 26, 27, 28 Corner Hotel THE TEMPER TRAP: May 29, 30 Forum TZU: June 1 Corner; 2 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) THE JEZABELS: June 1 Festival Hall THE MISSION IN MOTION: June 2 Tote DEF FX, INSURGE: June 2 Corner MATT CORBY: June 6 Forum THE HARD-ONS: June 7 National Hotel; 8 Karova Lounge (Geelong); 9 Tote BONJAH: June 8 Corner LISA MITCHELL: June 13 St Michael’s Church 360: June 14, 15, 17 (U18) Hi-Fi KARNIVOOL: July 5, 6, 7 Hi-Fi; 8 Bended Elbow (Geelong) TINA ARENA: July 28, 29, August 5 Hamer Hall
FESTIVALS BLUESFEST: April 5-9 Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm BOOGIE: April 6-8 Tallarook SUPAFEST: April 21 Melbourne Showgrounds CHERRYROCK012: April 29 Cherry Bar GROOVIN’ THE MOO: May 5 Prince of Wales Showground
STEVE EARLE, JESS RIBEIRO
MOSH BEN ARI
It’s a full Corner Hotel tonight – even the front bar is packed with Tigers fans undergoing the traditional Round One disappointment. Meanwhile, in the bandroom Jess Ribeiro is in duo mode and battles sound issues to showcase a set of mellow originals that merit more than polite indifference. But there’s only one man the crowd have come to hear and that’s just as well, because there’s no one else onstage with him.
“Blah blah, threw up there, so-and-so ‘hooked up’ down that alleyway.” Amongst trivial yet relevant pre-gig banter, recognisably long dreadlocks can be seen up ahead. The dreadlocks belong to Israel’s singer/songwriter Mosh Ben Ari. He softly chats, hands loosely resting in the pockets of a three-piece suit. It’s the sleepy end of Acland Street and he is due on stage in 15 minutes; we reduce our pace.
CORNER HOTEL 29/03/12
On reflection, this intimate solo show is a fitting way for Steve Earle to present his new album I’ll Never Get Out Of This World Alive. Earle may have bested heroin – and been rewarded with remarkable, sustained vitality over the last two decades – but he is clearly feeling his own mortality. He recently moved from Nashville to Greenwich Village to ensure he retains a community of fellow artists well into his later years. So far so gloomy, you might think. But staring death in the face gives Earle an undeniable power, which at times borders on the holy. This is a man who lives his values and tonight he shares them not just through music, but also the meandering introductions that flesh out the philosophy behind his songs. Early in the piece he introduces his bazouki (which he later swaps for a guitar and then a banjo) as an “immigrant instrument”, one that washed up on the shores of Ireland to be reclaimed by a new musical tradition. “Immigration is our past,” he declares, “it’s our present – and if we have a fucking future it’s our future as well.” Before playing Jerusalem, Earle talks of his unshakeable belief in a peaceful future in the Middle East and around the world. When he says, “I am a recovering heroin addict and I cannot afford to believe in a lost cause or a hopeless case,” it’s hard not to be swept up in the moment. Not everyone is feeling the love, though – there’s a core of drunk revellers wanting a more toe-tapping set. As early as the spine-tingling a cappella intro to second number Gulf Of Mexico, a lone voice responds to shooshers by hollering, “I don’t want to be in church!” It’s an oddly apt complaint, but the majority are clearly rapt to be in the house of Earle tonight. Even new numbers God Is God and Every Part Of Me are greeted with reverence, while Copperhead Road and Devil’s Right Hand close the set on a note of jubilation. Troubador, preacher, activist and prodigal son: Steve Earle stands in all these traditions, and his voice is as vital as ever. Sebastian Prowse
PRINCE BANDROOM 27/03/12
The last time Ari was in Australia was in 2003, as the lead singer of Sheva. This is the first time he has toured as a solo artist, even though he has released four albums under this guise. It’s obvious the dressed-up crowd has felt this nine-year absence. Ari is heard before he is seen. Covered in darkness, the throng is silent. The guitar begins. Once the stage is fully lit, we observe Ari’s eyes are firmly closed. Lovers in front have their arms wrapped around each other and the majority of crowd members have opted to clutch iPhones rather than beers – they are a snaphappy bunch. On stage Ari is accompanied by three musicians, although ordinarily he performs with a 12-piece ensemble. “We are small people on stage,” he says shyly, “so let’s see what can happen”. He appears introverted, rarely looking at the audience and often turning his head to wipe a long dreadlock off his face. His band, too, is made up of a mismatch of characters; the drummer plays violently and seems to be channelling Led Zeppelin’s John Bonham. He reaches a crescendo when his cymbal is bashed so hard that a stagehand has to come up and fix it (much to the drummer’s delight). The bassist laughs and interacts easily with the crowd, while the bongo player seems to be struggling with the vocal mix with one finger permanently in his ear, coupled with a pained expression. Perhaps his thick beanie is muffling the sound (the beanie may be in response to the air-con, which is definitely on). Ari sings in Hebrew, which the majority of these punters also speak. Each song is coupled with a faint echo from this captivated audience. Two girls break apart from the crowd to dance as space is needed for their fluid routine, which would be more aptly performed barefoot at a music festival. There’s a concern that the Prince Bandroom is the wrong venue choice, however Ari’s unique groovy sound demonstrates what music is capable of: you certainly don’t need to understand a love song to know it’s a love song. Ari’s performance, above all else, proves this. Language has become irrelevant. Cassandra Fumi
JACK LADDER & FRIENDS GRACE DARLING 29/03/12
As we climb the stairs, a solo figure is strumming gently in front of the gold Lurex curtain that curves around the stage’s back wall. There’s no audience chatter. The circle of fear is of massive circumference and so it’s hard to find a nook. Our support act introduces himself as “Jon” and advises he’s playing a selection of tunes from his vast career catalogue. There are a few chuckles before he assures us this is in fact true. Turns out it’s Jonathan Michell from Mum Smokes, The Ancients and Breaking The Law so he ain’t lying. Michell’s trying out various songs tonight, mainly instrumentals, which he warns may turn out catastrophic. He performs with little conviction, but the worst of his sins is cutting each song off way too abruptly. Making the most of this unusually balmy evening and taking a quick breather outside the venue means Jack Ladder is already onstage when we scale the steps once more. The joint is rammed and so this scribe is left with no choice but to penetrate the circle of fear. Ladder has a powerful presence and he’s lovingly recreating Morrissey’s debut solo single Suedehead. Usually covers of favourite songs grate, but Ladder’s natural sense of pathos and quietly captivating persona make this rendition exceptional. The reverent hush in the room confirms unanimous appreciation. “Thanks so much for coming out tonight. It’s unexpected,” he commends in that impossibly deep baritone. “Last night was cancelled due to poor attendance.” Cold Feet is so beautiful it’s paralysing. If experienced live while bravely standing next to an ex you’re not yet over, prepare to blink away tears for the entire song’s duration: “Like a sand crab in a glass pit/My world has changed/ And the things I needed yesterday/I don’t need in the same way.” While undoubtedly contributing to the overall haunting atmosphere of the song, lyrical phrases that float by largely unnoticed in the recorded version – overwhelmed by Kirin J Callinan’s wistfully distorted guitar tones – rise to the surface with Ladder in solo mode. He points out a picture of Callinan that hangs behind the bandroom bar, observing, “It’s almost as if he never left my place from dinner last night”. Ladder activates a drum machine for Position Vacant, which initiates a snarling tempo that evokes a rabid Rottweiler lurching against its chain. Ladder expertly controls this song’s finish, choosing the best possible moment to kill the beat while allowing his guitar to peter out gradually. And what a beautiful instrument he’s chosen to play tonight: white on white and polished to perfection. We get “the John Mellencamp version” of Dumb Love this evening and Ladder tells us this song also went through a Depeche Mode stage. Once again with the extraordinary lyrics: “I’m a match already struck” is simply sublime. And who else could incorporate the fact that cows have more than one stomach into song? (3 Stomachs/No Weekend). Ladder bags out Jetstar since his box of merch is lost in transit and so the many in attendance are unable to purchase souvenirs. “How much for the shirt you’re wearing?” a rowdy punter yells out. Ladder replies in trademark deadpan fashion: “It’s not for sale. It’s 100% silk.” He then pauses. “How much you got?” which cracks up the crowd. Ladder explains he wishes to play a softer version of You Won’t Be Forgotten (When You Leave) “because the girls like it”. Making a Jesus & Mary Chain song his own to finish, Ladder excels on every level tonight: endearing banter and an expert display of his songwriting/performing prowess. Artists such as Ladder should not be roughing it. Bryget Chrisfield
ROYAL BATHS, BEACHES, NEW WAR, LOWTIDE
organised chaos. Royal Baths show they know how to use loud/quiet dynamics – their verses simmer away while the band let loose on choruses before singer/guitarist Jeremy Cox unleashes a killer solo on the bridge (in addition to blistering guitar work throughout the rest of the songs). Cox even pulls out a slide for a couple of songs in the middle of their set and this is where Royal Baths’ sound really becomes unique. A more blues-leaning side takes over while Royal Baths retain their loose playing style without ever becoming a retread of the traditional blues sound. Black Sheep is a set highlight, shuffling along sinisterly as Cox and guitarist Jigmae Baer trade coolly detached lines. Unfortunately, the looseness of Royal Baths causes the set to trail off a bit and sees the last song false-starting three times. The final song finishes abruptly and, before we know it, the band are switching off and unplugging equipment. It’s a bit of a disappointing end to an otherwise great show that demonstrates why there’s hype around Royal Baths. Josh Ramselaar
ST VINCENT; FIRE! SANTA ROSA, FIRE!; MINI-BIKES HI-FI 14/03/12
A cool Wednesday evening out in Melbourne town and the Hi-Fi is abuzz with the indie kids ready to ingest some tunes. First up is local talent Mini-Bikes. With their jangly, happy-go-lucky hooks and polished girl/ boy vocals, they easily get the sparse crowd interested, especially with their current track Kill To Feel. Lead singer Marcel Borrack’s Elvis Costello vocals mixed with the band’s Dirty Projectors-meets-Dogs Die In Hot Cars feel makes for a very pleasant support indeed. Next up, Adelaide stalwarts Fire! Santa Rosa, Fire! strut their new groove and quickly blister their way to newer, more atmospheric sounds, occasionally bursting out in guitar solo sonic style but then reining it in with lead singer Caitlin Duff’s impressive range. New tunes Little Cowboys, Bad Hombres and Panther Shrine are standouts and bring a calypso feel to the room as fans and newbies alike can’t help but find their feet a-tapping. With the place now firmly packed-out, eager eyes and ears are greeted by the rockin’ sexy silhouette of Annie Clark, better known as St Vincent. Starting with the precision of Surgeon beckoning us to help find someone to cut her open, she then proceeds to show off her guitar skills, working the array of pedals to finish an ethereal, head boppin’ opener. Refusing to mess about, Clark proceeds to move through both her old and new material. Current single Cheerleader brings new fans to attention while Marrow, Actor Out Of Work and Save Me From What I Want ignite the fires of the ‘old’ fans that relish the first full band showing of Clark down under. Some odd finger pointing that could be misconstrued as dance moves indicate Clark’s struggling to get the levels just right and when she hits a slight bump in the road during Dilettante, twice forgetting the lyrics in the first verse, she looks like she’s losing her cool a bit. But this pause in the show is welcomed as it allows for some banter with the crowd and gives us a look into the laidback personality behind the tough exterior. She quickly gets back on track with more guitar shredding, angsty fist pumping and angelic vocals with the occasional growl. The crowd is impressed with the soft/sweet, hard/harsh mix of Strange Mercy, Year Of The Tiger and Your Lips Are Red before everybody trudges out exhausted and with mid-week indie-pop fixes thoroughly satiated.
Local four-piece Lowtide kick off proceedings tonight. They’re indebted to shoegaze bands such as My Bloody Valentine, although their songs have a bit more conventional structure to them. The guitarist builds a wall of fuzzy noise throughout most songs while the two bassists lock into a groove that gets most crowd members’ heads nodding.
New War are next and start their set with a slow, loungestyle song based on a simple bassline, soft drums and occasional keyboard stabs while frontman Chris Pugmire delivers lyrics drenched in vocal effects. The rest of their set features a more powerful and driving sound, where the songs are carried by the rhythm section and the keys provide atmospherics and a riff every now and then to make up for the lack of guitarist. It’s an interesting and unique style and they perform excellently. Next up are Beaches with their guitar-driven, nearinstrumental songs that blend shoegaze and psychedelic sounds. Their three-guitar attack results in the loudest performance of the night and provides a great display of how versatile a guitar can be. One song has the three guitarists playing different styles cohesively and to great effect – one heads off a wah pedal trip, one plays a twangy surf-rock solo and the other bathes the song in distortion. Royal Baths’ set begins without warning as their setting up and tuning segues into their opening song. The song oozes out, starting with a simple guitar line and gradually getting added to by the other members until it builds to
ADAM ANT PIC BY LOU LOU NUTT
WORKERS CLUB 31/03/12 There are a lot of beer drinkers with matching tattoos, mulling around the entrance to the Workers bandroom. Upon entering, a welcoming party headed by Black Fox’s lead singer Dane Robertson’s mum, dad and sister are armed with temporary tattoos for the Day In Lieu/Monarch single launch. Tattoo or not tattoo? Minimal contemplation occurs and we are now sporting pirate tatts. The lights drop and a line of girls appear at the front of the stage. They begin to dance immediately, creating a wall at the front of the stage that cushions Robertson. He oozes confidence that begins with his husky vocals and solidifies in his dance moves. Robertson appears to be emulating a young Mick Jagger with his risqué dance moves. He could easily be the lovechild of The Black Keys’ Dan Auerbach (vocally) and Jagger (physically). The minute there is an instrumental, Robertson tosses the mic over his shoulder (like a handbag) and struts (like he’s walking down Rodeo Drive). Some of the moves are questionable, but Robertson executes them with such confidence and commitment that the crowd accepts all of them, even the spin on the ground that occurs mid-chorus during She Said. The whole set
sounds crisp, much to the delight of the throng’s ears. Every instrument is at the right level and the only thing at a higher level is Robertson’s dance moves, which don’t make a sound. Robertson says, “Thank you all from the bottom of our hearts. We’ve been working on this album for more than a year,” and then admits to having a cold (but you certainly can’t tell). Black Fox are confident tonight and rightfully so. Day In Lieu starts with the evocative lyrics: “Move with the beat of your broken heart.” And the crowd sure does. Monarch explodes on the Workers stage. A female saxophonist gets up and plays with the boys. This injection of jazz comes at the end part of the song and really complements the rock mix. Robertson is cutting loose as he spits out the lyrics like venom, in a strangely sexy way. “Will my eyes kill me tonight,” spurs on the shivers and is stuck on repeat for a while. After some pre-gig listening, it’s clear that Black Fox are a band that are better experienced live as each song is elevated. Just as we were getting into it, it finishes. It’s obvious the crowd are keen to hear more. What do they say? Always leave in the middle of a party? Well, Black Fox leave too early. Ah well, guess we’ll have to wait ‘til their debut album Line Of Sight is released. Cassandra Fumi
MOTHER & SON, THE BONNIWELLS, MESA COSA GRACE DARLING 30/03/12
By nine o’clock the hordes of hipsters descend on the downstairs bar, packing out this buzzing Smith Street haunt. The upstairs band room stands in stark contrast with a candlelit, grungy decadence in dire need of shaking up. Thankfully, opening act Mesa Cosa do just that, whipping the now-multiplying crowd into a frenzy. The six-piece, garage-rock act howl manically and bounce around the stage, performing a sort of crazed, Mexican-rock show with a dark, bluesy vibe. They’re refreshingly erratic and addictive, with the set ending all too quickly. Unfortunately, main support The Bonniwells pale in comparison. Each song is sharp and punchy yet, riddled with sound issues and a lack of banter, the band stand emotionless without so much as a smirk. The now-packed room scream and whistle all sorts as Bodie, one half of Sydney duo Mother & Son, climbs onto the stage. The drummer Matt sits in silence as Bodie opens with an epic guitar solo from Mosquito, piercing each note amid speckles of camera flashes. Crowd members shout “Yeow!” and stamp on the floor in excitement, a reaction that leads to a beaming Bodie humbly thanking the audience and the supports before saying, “We forgot the lyrics to this song, so we just rang Matt’s girlfriend to get them,” to which he bangs out the loud Werewolves. Bodie’s course vocal range never misses a note. In saying that, the absence of vocals on Mosquito, Dengue Fever and Surfswing doesn’t detract from the set in the slightest. The jiving Dead Yellow Moon sends the crowd into rapturous stupor, with a moshpit now forming at the front of the stage. The spaghetti western-esque Hanging Tree sees the pokey moshpit momentarily turn into a springing cluster. After one verse of their hasty new song (called “unnamed”), they stop playing. Bodie remarks, “That’s all we’ve written of that one!” drawing laughter from the crowd. Their next song is spawned from a time on Smith Street, having run away to the echoes of a man yelling, “Fuck you dogs!” Jumping into the rowdy crowd, Bodie kills it with yet another solo, this time lying on the ground while everyone crowds around taking photos. Despite losing a guitar string, they mask the glitch in Johnny Boy, continuing to sound thunderous with just two instruments before finishing the set. “Man, those guys! Far out,” a sweaty punter is overheard saying. Couldn’t have put it better myself. Madeleine O’Gorman
ADAM ANT & THE GOOD, THE MAD & THE LOVELY POSSE PALACE 30/03/12
It’s been more than 30 years since The Dandy Highwayman last swashbuckled past our coast guards and lively conversation throughout the venue reveals many Antpeople discussing why they missed out last time: too young to afford a ticket, unable to find a willing chaperone or grounded on the night would be right up there as top results in the Family Feud survey. There’s warpaint on upturned faces ogling Adam Ant & The Good, The Mad & The Lovely Posse’s logo backdrop and excitement spills over when the houselights are dimmed and squeals punctuate the darkness. A front row, wannabe brigand sports a DIY-trimmed, massive-brimmed felt hat with plume. Sadly, this feather has been stapled on (poorly) and sways annoyingly in our faces throughout the evening. The Posse kick off proceedings, but it’s not until we spy their pirate/peacock band leader that tears are witnessed in the front stalls. Rock’n’roll dreams can come true. Is Adam Ant (aka Stuart Goddard) really sporting a mask, backwards on his head? His spectacles and Napoleon hat already battle for noggin supremacy. Then we clock the ace of spades card embossed with his own image (circa Prince Charming, of course), which is tucked beneath a rosette on the upturned brim. His entire ensemble is decorated with gold brocade ahoy! And socks are definitely in place down those dandy pants. It’s just as we’d hoped. Except we didn’t expect that, given he’s wearing his glasses, Goddard’d headbutt the mic quite so early on in the set. Instantaneously we all Stand & Deliver enthusiastic singalongs that do well to drown out the impressive double drumming on display. This live percussive backbone is impossible to ignore and the female drummer, Yola Radowicz, has a distinctly punk edge with her platinumblonde fauxhawk. She shines even while sharing a stage with one of the most outlandish figures in music history. Goddard stomps one foot on a wedge monitor speaker and surveys the horizon, shielding his eyes with one hand, salute-style. Early material such as Cartrouble and Catholic Day – which Goddard introduces thus, “[insert smokin’ hot geezer accent] This is a song that got me in a bit of trouble in England” – are mixed in with smash hits and the frontman is in fine voice. At one point in the show he rips open his own shirt to cheekily reveal one mega-toned pec that defies many years spent on the high seas (he’s 57). When cacophonous stick clicks signal the intro for the first song that ever complelled this scribe to dance around solo in a living room, it’s all over. Joining in on Ant Music’s “Er-erer-er-er-er-er-er”s is enough to make one hyperventilate. That twisted guitar solo adds further fuel for our gyrations. Goody Two Shoes sees our mutineer revisit dance moves from his heyday and a hitch-kick misses its mark, resulting in Goddard returning to a safer alternative: the aerobics-style alternate knees-up. All Antpeople get involved in the call-andresponses during Kings Of The Wild Frontier: “Antmusic is the banner!”/“Yeah-eah-eah.” Goddard’s vocal is ultra-fine during the touching Wonderful. A silence wedge toward the end of Desperate But Not Serious is filled when überfans continue to sing through it, unprompted. There are a few occasions of, “How does this next one go again?” when Goddard relies on his Posse, but what’s particularly noteworthy is the completeness of the experience. The saucy, goth-minx backing vocalist Georgie Girl (aka Georgina Baillie) has several costume changes, transforming through male fantasy stereotypes including a ‘50s pin-up girl in Hawaiian-print frock and bespectacled, conservative librarian before emerging in lace underwear, stockings and suspenders come the encore. Many participate in the simple, armpit-airing Prince Charming actions and it’s clear Goddard’s reign ain’t over yet. A couple of T-Rex covers – Get It On and Twentieth Century Boy – provide a nod to his roots while keeping us dancing. We may have moved into the 21st century, but Goddard’s catalogue of rabblerousing tunes stand the test of time. There’s a new album ready to drop entitled (take a deep breath), Adam Ant Is The Blueblack Hussar In Marrying The Gunner’s Daughter. And we say, Vive Le Rock. Bryget Chrisfield INPRESS • 39
RELEASE YOUR INNER ANIMAUX
Tonight (Wednesday) at the Toff, Miami Horror frontman Josh Moriarty’s new project All The Colours will play songs from their yet to be titled debut album, which is currently in the recording process. These shows are in support of their debut single Love Like This. Their music features lots of vocal harmonies, tight grooves, tasteful solos and vintage tones. Special guests are Gosteleradio and I/O. Entry’s $10 and doors open from 7.30pm.
Hyper-prolific charmer Lehmann B Smith (Kes Band) has teamed up with Patinka Cha Cha’s Natasha Rose for Split, a two-albums-in-one tape release, filled with love songs and submerged reverb chamber pop sensuality. This Saturday at the Toff, Smith and Rose will hit the stage for a very special Easter weekend night of music and celebration with special guest Laura Jean performing solo on autoharp for the first time ever. Not to mention, if you are one of the first 50 payers, you get a copy of the tape (and download), so you can see what all the fuss is about.
Cutters Records has announced the arrival of Ben Browning (Cut Copy bassist) as the shiniest, newest addition to their stable of artists. Browning reveals his own talent for penning perfect crystalline pop with his EP, Lover Motion, featuring five tracks laden with classic melody and ethereal synthesizer tones. To celebrate his solo release, Browning plays a show at the Toff this Sunday with special guests Geoffrey O’Connor, Cut Copy DJs, Knightlife, Francis Chang and DJ Shags.
TUESDAY BRINGS BROMBERG
He’s played with everyone, he’s toured everywhere, he can lead a raucous big band or hold an audience silent with a solo acoustic blues show, and he is playing at the Toff this Tuesday. David Bromberg picked up a guitar at 13 and has since become a first-call “hired gun” guitarist for recording sessions, intimately playing on hundreds of records by the highest calibre of artists. Come and hear wood, wire and flesh speak as one of the great multiinstrumentalists and genuine session players performs around Australia for the first time.
MUSIC FOR YOUR MIND
In the first collaboration between Melbourne label Finn Audio and the Melbourne Techno Collective, Mind Music will be a night dedicated to dancefloor rhythms that sound just as good at the bar as they do on the floor. Performing on Friday 13 April from 10pm at Loop will be Finn Audio’s Jani Ho, the Techno Collective’s Sam McEwin and Matt Radovich, and special guest Dean Benson, who has been recruited specifically for the evening because of his unbridled ability to rock the house. Entry is free. . TOM SHOWTIME
In 2012 alone, Animaux have reinforced their status as one of Australia’s hottest up-and-coming bands. They’ve launched their latest single Song For Grace, which was immediately placed on high rotation on Triple J Unearthed, completed a successful residency at the Evelyn, played at St Kilda Festival, Push Over, Moomba, Warrandyte Festival and more. This Monday sees the first show of Animaux’s Monday night residency at the Worker’s Club, with special guests The McQueens. Doors are at 8pm and entry’s $8.
Without Words is the first single to be lifted from Eliza Hull’s forthcoming EP, Dawn. With a delivery that mirrors the dizzying realities of the love it details, Without Words is a formidable introduction to the EP’s hypnotic aura, blending subtle electronic stylings, heartfelt lyricism and Hull’s dynamic vocal delivery to create a deeply emotive and moving track. Eliza Hull will be launching Dawn at the Toff with Sophie Koh on Thursday 31 May.
To celebrate the release of their new 7” single Rebels, Damn Terran will be doing what they do best, taking the madness to their fans on various stages around the country this April. The band will be playing a packed show at their local hangout the Old Bar with friends Scul Hazzards, Chicks With Guns and Bodies on Saturday 28 April. Tickets available at the door.
SKIP ALONG TO THIS
MAYQUEEN IN MAY
Off the back of a successful performance at the 2012 Fuse Festival, Adelaide rockers Mayqueen will be heading back into the studio to finish work on their sophomore EP, set for release early Spring 2012. In the meantime, they are set to release a new single, Rudely Beautiful, and celebrate with some launch shows, including one at the Vineyard on Saturday 5 May with special guests The Vendettas.
GHOSTS IN THE LAUNDRY
40 • INPRESS
TONS OF FUN
WHIP IT GOOD
Whipped Cream Chargers are set to launch their debut album, Whip It Out, on vinyl. With the help of friends Mikey Young (Eddie Current Suppression Ring), Dave Ackerman (Dead Farmers) and Jaie Gonzalez (Danimals) in the booth, Whip It Out reverberates with ‘50s surf rock and garage punk attitude. Mad mexi-punks Mesa Cosa will tear apart the stage like a tequila-fuelled cock fight in support with the mind-expanding instrumentation of India Bharti. It all goes down at the Curtin this Saturday.
The Stevens will be launching their soon-to-bemonster debut EP at the Curtin on Friday 13 April with an all new line-up. Fuzzed-out guitar, dancing bass, upbeat drums and undeniable vocal hooks combine to make one of Melbourne’s best garage pop bands. Harmony, after releasing one of 2011’s best albums, are fresh off a shoe-raisingly good set at Golden Plains and are not to be missed. Rounding out the bill is Boomgates for one of their first shows of 2012.
San Salvador have forged a unique niche in Australia’s reggae/dub scene, with the seven-piece creating a traditional sound with a progressive edge. They bring their strong bass and drum grooves, soaring horns and delay-soaked melodies to the Curtin with the aptly titled The Dub Captains and experimental dub musicians Echo Drama on Friday 20 April.
After an extended hiatus while they pursued weekly events, frolicked with Victoria’s Secret models, partied too much and suffered multiple delusions, legendary monthly jam Late Night Hype returns for a one-off event at the Lounge this Thursday 5 April, once again bringing you the best hands-in-the-air hip hop jams to get your arse shaking and your hips swaying. Having played host to internationals such as Roc Raida and Total Eclipse, as well as hosting the often imitated Old Skool Cool parties with live graffiti, breaking and classic ‘80s hip hop movies, Late Night Hype built a reputation as THE monthly hip hop jam for those that wanted to get down to the best DJs in town. Good Friday Eve LNH residents M-Phazes, DJ Flagrant and Agent 86 return, alongside newcomers DJ Ayna and man of the moment Tom Showtime, dropping the best in hip hop, funk, soul, bootlegs and nu-funk from 10pm ‘til the early hours of the morning. Entry is $10/$15
This Thursday at Loop from 10pm is Skip & Swing: a night of dubstep, glitch hop, liquid drum’n’bass and future garage, featuring Dysphemic & Ms Eliza, J.Nitrous, Monkee, Proximity Effect, Aaron Static and MC Elf Tranzporter. Visuals by Vdmo Kstati. There’ll also be a 2am visit by Mat Beyer (as seen on Masterchef) to cure the munchies and keep you partying all night. Free entry.
Mondo Loco’s vinyl sets stretch and warp between Turkish and Middle-Eastern psychedelic rock, Anatolian funk to the fuzziest sounds from around the globe. Jani Ho’s unique sound finds its roots in minimal techno, jazz and electronica. Loop is showcasing these two different, talented artists this Sunday in an Easter Melting Pot from 9pm, with free entry.
In support of Grey Ghost’s brand new film clip for Black Ghost Gold Chain, he’s playing a few shows. As well as his performances as part of the Apollo Bay Music Festival on Friday 20 and Saturday 21 April, he will play Laundry Bar on Tuesday 24 April. According to Grey Ghost, the film clip is an ode to Nirvana, Beastie Boys, skating, the ‘90s and colourful dancing ghosts.
WE DUB THIS AWESOME
BELIEVE THE HYPE
Put A Ton On It at the Lounge is where it’s at! Simply pull back the BPMs, throw in a good amount of reggaeton, add heaps of spiced rum, and finally remember to Put A Ton On It! Then add Australia’s premier selectors in the field and you’ll end up going tropo-loco-in-the-coco… Featuring selectors Raf Chavez, Paz, Lewis Cancut, Ego vs Mr Nice, Ms Butt, Mat Cant and ‘Ton’derson. This Friday 6 April, entry is $10.
SONIC STONER SATURDAY
To celebrate the re-release of their magnificent collaboration Soon Will Be Tomorrow, Bad Seed Conway Savage and Falling Joy Suzie Higgie will be doing a performance in the Pure Pop Courtyard on Sunday 29 April. The $20 entry fee will also get you a copy of the CD.
Launching their new single Foreign Land, Agility are setting themselves for a big night of rock’n’roll bliss at the Evelyn. Supporting Agility and their blend of psychedelic grunge pop are Melbourne’s finest in The Pretty Littles, Wandering Spirit and Field Trip. It’s all happening on Saturday 21 April.
HE’S A KEEPER
Melbourne sextet John Patrick & The Keepers will finally debut their long-awaited EP In Memory of Pa in the comfy confines of the Evelyn Hotel to kick off the Easter holiday tomorrow (Thursday). In support will be The Mighty Sun Band and The Paper Street Soap Company.
Reaching for timeless songs and sounds is Melbourne band Undercolours. Having recently supported The Naked And Famous and scoring a spot on the Parklife bill, Undercolours are quickly emerging as a new force in the Australian rock scene. Their Sunday residency at the Evelyn starts this weeks with support from Young Maverick.
VAMPIRE AND FRIENDS
OFF TO MARKET
As the market and flea stalls pack up, the People’s Market container area comes alive every Saturday. This Saturday will be a special ‘unearthed’ compilation of artists that will make up Peachy Live at the People’s Market & Flea from 4pm-9pm. The line-up consists of Celadore, Eloji, The Wellingtons, Bittersweet Kicks and The McQueens. The Thousand Pound Bend mixologists will be looking after the bar, while resident food vendors will take care of your grumbling tummies. Entry’s $5.
As A Rival return to Melbourne to unleash an arsenal of riffs and melodies after a small stint in Europe. The hard rock trio’s solid guitar-driven melodies and infectious hooks delivered with a powerful live performance will demand attention. Joining them at Pony this Thursday to help celebrate their return are fellow Melbourne cohorts, the explosive and experimental On Sierra, and garage blues/rock trio The Jail Bird Jokers.
The Ghost Hotel present their debut album Maiden Hill, eleven tracks for lovers of country-tinged rock’n’roll, with equal doses of Americana and Australiana influences. The Perth-based five-piece play a mixture of rough and ready guitar noise, acoustic twang and pop sensibility, and have supported the likes of Powderfinger, Cold Chisel, Crowded House, Elbow, Okkervil River, Gomez and You Am I. Catch them at the Retreat on Saturday 14 April.
SAVAGE AND SUZIE
Brace yourself for what is to be an undisputed colossal night of riff-worshipping madness at the Evelyn Hotel this Saturday. Five of Melbourne’s finest heavy and hard stoner rock acts – Sons Of The Ionian Sea, Swidgen, System Of Venus, Moth and Battle Axe Howlers – shall be joining forces to unleash a plethora of low-end, groove laden, riff-driven tunes
RETREAT FROM GHOST HOTEL
ScotDrakula continue their March and April Monday residency at The Evelyn. ScotDrakula and their crazy friends, including Comfort Zones, Kevin CK Lo, DJ Talkshow Boy and Gezus will be there every Monday from 8pm.
As they near the completion of their first 7” single, hotly tipped locals The Great Outdoors will play for free at Bar Open tonight (Wednesday). Kicking off the evening the boys from Footy will play in a new project, Stream 1. Afterwards, Mole House will play some new tunes.
GO WITH THE FLO
Special guest for Loop’s ebb&flo night on Saturday 14 April is none other than Mike Callander, head honcho of Haul Music and one of Melbourne’s leading DJs and producers. Resident DJs Nikko, Jon Beta and Lister Cooray will also be spinning tunes. Doors are from 10pm and entry’s free.
Tomorrow (Thursday) at Bar Open come the pioneers of the Melbourne underground Aztek sound - Nahuatl Soundsystem (live) and Sonidero Esperanza (DJ set). Expect an über dancing experience, with their original urban styles infused by a tropical spice. Galambo will be performing his techno, merging Andino and Cumbia styles with live electronica.
IF YOU REALLY LOVE HILLMAN
If You Really Love Someone is the single from the new album Driftwood Smoke by local singersongwriter Don Hillman. The song deals with the pain of love, loss and regret. Many of the songs on Driftwood Smoke are inspired by surfing and living on the coast. In support of the new single, Hillman and his band play at St Andrews Hotel this Sunday from 3pm. Free entry.
Enter the middle of the week; for some it’s the beginning of the weekend, for others it’s a break from study, for those of us who are travelling, it probably has no real significance (unless you’re wanting to party with the hot Europeans from the hostel… because any day is simply another day when you’re travelling). Humpday Animals at the Lounge is your mid-week stomping ground, featuring DJs Danny Silver, Manchild and Mu-Gen. Free entry.
THE BELLS ARE ALIVE
The Federation Bells is an installation of 39 computer-controlled harmonic bells, originally created in 2001 to mark the centenary of federation. On Friday 13 April from 10pm, the bells will be re-launched in an eerie late night event. Two of Melbourne’s most progressive musical outfits, A Dead Forest Index and Forces, are creating new musical works for the re-invigorated Federation Bells, to be triggered live alongside voice, guitars, drums and loops. The Federation Bells can be found on the Middle Terrace of Birrarung Marr, between Federation Square, the Yarra River and the MCG. Afterwards, there’ll be an official after-party at the Liberty Social.
Make your Good Friday amazing with a double smash of fat ass grooves from The Dub Captains and Keshie. With a minimum of seven musicians on stage at any given time during the sets, this large collective will be living it up at Bar Open from 10pm. Keshie will be opening the night with some Afro-inflicted funk and soaring harmonies.
The sound of West African funk administered directly to the soul by the Afrobiotics can only be experienced this Saturday at Bar Open. This is the good medicine that will get your butt into shakin’ action. The dosage kicks off at 10pm for free.
Madre Monte are a Bar Open favourite. They are invited back to the venue to share some of the colourful sounds of Colombia on Easter Sunday. Madre Monte are a nine-piece Latin/Reggae band that infuse deep reggae grooves with different autochthonous and indigenous rhythms from Latin America.
Tonight (Wednesday) Matt Sonic & The High Times continue their residency at Cherry Bar. The psych rockers were invited to play Big Day Out, Boogie and Meredith last year. They will be supported by The Uptown Aces and entry is free.
PICK ME UP
Audio Caffeine is brought to you by the Go Live music performance group run at Prahran Mission. They will be performing tonight at Revolver. This music group was born out of a desire for Prahran Mission participants to hone their live music performance skills. The gig kicks off at 5.30pm with poetry and readings by the writing group, with music commencing at 6pm. Entry is by gold coin donation to Prahran Mission.
DEATH OF COOL
Plague Doctor know the true meaning of the blues, Wolfy & The Bat Cubs are a psychedelic rock and roll five-piece band with their roots planted firmly in the ‘60s, and Horatio Crane forge sweet, surreal, psychedelic folk, punk and pop. They all play this Friday at Yah Yah’s for free.
Let Weekender be your personal Jesus this Easter and hop into a mega holiday weekend indie party. It will be indie pop mash-up madness, with a sprinkle of party anthems. DJs Steve Wide and Greg Wright, plus live on stage are High Fangs. It’s at Yah Yah’s this Saturday from 9pm.
THAT’S A RAPSKALLION
JOIN THE CLUB
Three great bands this Easter Sunday at Yah Yah’s. Topping the bill is Waco Social Club, a haven for several talented misfits from the wrong side of the tracks. Next up is Rattlin’ Bones Blackwood, a one-man-band playing rhythm’n’blues, boogie, rockabilly and vintage rock’n’roll. Kicking it off is Buck Creek, which is banjo player/vocalist Brayden Ryan and guitarist Andrei Eremin.
Rapskallion will be celebrating the release of their brand spanking new album Vagabond King at the Corner on Thursday 26 April. The album is a marauding musical celebration of the exploits of a buccaneering crow, back alley felines, a bad-ass femme fatale, and the vagabond king himself, set to a soundtrack reminiscent of a Halloween knees-up at a south sea pirate haven.
Cool Death presents a night of unutterable blasphemy upstairs at the Gasometer this Saturday. Death metal practitioners Black Jesus headline, supported by Australia’s premiere beatdown band Rort, scumbag punks Soma Coma and the ripping hardcore punk of Kicked In.
The mod-rocking indie popsters Johnny Rock & The Limits are hitting the road again this March and April to launch their new single Been Away Blues. They bring their tour to Melbourne for one show only at Revolver Upstairs this Saturday, which is sure to go off with supports from The Corsairs and Red Leader. Doors open at 9pm.
LAY DOWN THE LAW
Richard Lawson is releasing his second solo, electronic-psychedelic album and bringing some good friends in Terry Serio and Emma Swift & The Mighty Ash to Melbourne. They play Lyrebird Lounge on Saturday 7 April, Pure Pop Records Sunday 8 April to launch his In Your Face set, and at the Espy Front Bar on Tuesday 10 April
Two very interesting bands come to Revolver tomorrow (Thursday): Sweet Teeth and Doc Holliday Takes The Shotgun. Both have delivered a series of debaucherous misadventures across the East Coast of Australia, unleashing their debut EPs to the masses. Doors open at 8pm and entry will cost $10.
SYN’s Genre Night Gigs series is back in 2012, and in conjunction with Revolver is celebrating the dance genre. Dance Night will showcase some of Melbourne’s freshest emerging DJs and producers, with a line-up comprising of Snuf.au, Tomderson, Jay Cams and Milo. It kicks off this Friday with doors opening at 8pm and entry $10.
EYEM at Lounge features residents Boogs and Who, and will host Melbourne’s top purveyors of club music, showcasing both local and international DJs playing the most upfront club music. This Saturday’s special guests are Naise, Same-O and David Bass from the eminent bass crew Too Much. Expect nothing but excellent house music all night long. And remember, clubbing happens in the EYEM. Entry is $10 from 11pm.
This Saturday at the Gasometer comes Divorced, who have exploded back onto the scene with their busted out punk noise. That of course can only be a good thing. Tonight they lob into the Gaso with the strongest of their ‘welcome back’ lineups, which includes Eastlink and Old Mate.
To mark the release of The Ocean Party’s debut LP, The Sun Rolled Off The Hills, the band will launch it at the Gasometer on Friday. The album is ten tracks of understated guitar pop, recorded at home by the band, mixed by Jack Farley and mastered by Casey Rice. It makes for a warm, textured listen. Joining them will be friends Machine, Full Ugly and Cool Drinks. Doors open at 8.30pm with $10 entry.
This Good Friday catch the Melburnian answer to Primus, Gretchen Lewis, at Cherry Bar. They will be supported by Citrus Jam and China Vagina with DJ Dan Watt pumping through to 5am. The entry charge is $13 from 8pm to 11.30pm, then $10 afterwards.
It’s time to launch a new Thursday night at Revolver, Heartbreaker. Starting tomorrow the bandroom is on lockdown from midnight until 5am weekly and will feature a mashup of hip-hop, anthems, classic R&B and bangers from DJs 1928, Weapon X, A-Style, Indian Summer DJs and other weekly guests.
The Order Of Melbourne provides a mid week escape every Wednesday. Get lost in deep, dark, minimal dubstep and drum’n’bass from resident DJs Carmex and Baddums. Free entry, drink specials, and the rooftop bar is open until 11pm to sit outside and enjoy the sounds in the night air.
Tomorrow (Thursday) at the Gasometer, Melbourne punks Edison headline. They will have support from the stoner rock jams of Grim Rhythm, the heavy hardcore of Urns and the atmospheric black metal of Soil And Ash.
After a day of rest this Friday, head upstairs at the Gasometer Hotel to kick off the long weekend with some rockin’ tunes. The night will feature Lunaire and their dreamy mix of effects pedals, the lush instrumental sounds of The Nest Itself, vincent’s distorted guitar sounds layered with delay, and a hard-hitting, acrobatic headline set from experimental rockers A Lonely Crowd.
SHERIFF – SHERIFF How many releases do you have now? Thomas James Watson, guitar: This self-titled EP is our debut. We put out the single What You Want last year (check out its raucous video clip on YouTube) to give people a taste of the EP but now that the whole lot is bundled up and ready to go, it will be our first major release. How long did it take to write/record? We didn’t write specifically for it but chose six of our existing songs from a repertoire that we had being gigging for two to three years prior to recording. This way the songs had time to mature and become what they are today rather than the songs improving after the recording process and the band thinking, “Shit, really wish we had have recorded that part.” We spent almost a solid week in the studio recording it. What was inspiring you during the making of the EP? One slab of Melbourne Bitter per day. What’s your favourite song on it? All six of them. There’s no point putting a song to tape if you’re half-hearted about it! We’ll like the EP if we like… Led Zeppelin, Black Sabbath, QOTSA, smokin’ guitar riffs, good times, dancing, yelling, hoedowns, high fives and rock’n’roll. Will you be launching it? Yes siree! We will be launching it at Cherry Bar this Saturday 7 April! Get down there early because we are joined by two killer supports, Jackals and Sun God Replica. It’s gonna be a hoot! For more info: facebook.com/wearesheriff
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INPRESS • 41
Easter Sunday is a time for chocolate, but don’t forget the music. Skyscraper Stan & The Commission Flats and The Guilts come together for a gig at Old Bar kicking off at 8pm.
The Old Bar never rests. They have organised a cracking line-up for Easter Monday. Peter Spark of Antarctica plays support to the country and blues roots of Eaten By Dogs. It is a free show starting at 10pm.
Amidst a sexed-up generation where you’re either in an indie rock band or standing next to someone who is, where gaining exposure in the music industry is relative to standing in a room full of screaming punk rockers vying for your individual attention, and discotheques prevail over lo-fi bedroom recordings, Tom Milek has edged slyly in and around each intrusive niche, gathering ideas and inspiration to create his own, unique sound. His music features weeping melodies carried off by mournful string arrangements, chilling piano lines and heartbreaking lyrics reminiscent of captivating songwriters such as Ryan Adams, Damien Rice, Whitley and Oh Mercy. He plays the Toff In Town this Thursday 5 April, Beavs Bar in Geelong on Thursday 12 April, the Loft in Warnambool on Saturday 21 April and the Cornish Arms on Friday 25 May.
The great Straightjacket Nation bring the ruckus and with the younger, but by no means less intense, Soma Coma turn the Gasometer back room into a seething pit of punk hardness this Easter Sunday. Imagine a punk version of Thunderdome. Entry is free.
Local bar prop Joel Morrison is having another exhibition at the Old Bar on Tuesday 10 April. Come witness sights that will make you mock all artists as monkeys with wet sponges for brains. Music will be better than the art. Pugsley Buzzard and Guy Kable playing some damn good blues. It starts at 7pm and is free.
What inspired your DJ name? I once had really dry lips and consequently became addicted to lip balm.
A NORTHSIDER AT HEART, DANNI B LEADS THE CHARGE AT BEST OF BOTH SIDES’ TICKLED PINK TEA PARTY, WRITES CASSANDRA FUMI.
In a nutshell, describe what you play. Deep, heavy dubstep infused with future beats/hip hop.
What made you start DJing? Seeing others play out mammoth tunes on massive sound systems. What’s the weirdest thing you’ve seen in a nightclub? Once when I was setting up I saw a dead goldfish in one of the previous DJ’s empty glasses. The most idiotic request you’ve had as a DJ? Request for Rihanna while playing drum’n’bass.
FREE STREET BAND
With a swag of new material ready to road test ahead of album number two, The Smith Street Band have announced a series of intimate shows at Melbourne’s Old Bar. They’ll be playing every Wednesday during April, joined by a host of great local and interstate supports. Entry is free for the first three nights and a lazy $5 will get you in the door for the fourth and final Anzac Day spectacular.
GRONG OR WRIGHT
42 • INPRESS
Borg played Rainbow Serpent (2010, 2011) and has been going for the past seven years as a punter. On reflection she says, “This year it was pretty much the highlight of my career in terms of enjoyment that I have gotten out of a set. I played the Sunset Stage and the sound system was just insane. I was really crapping myself beforehand, but once I got up there and played a couple of tracks I just loved it. I find the crowds at Rainbow are really free, you just can’t beat the Rainbow Serpent vibe in my opinion.”
What track turns you on right now? Anything from Black Box Recordings and Deep Medi.
The Old Bar gives us a Damned Good Friday. The Swingin’ Nutsacks and Bits Of Shit are set to whip the audience into a frenzy before Spain’s favourite exports, Los Chicos, make it a night to remember.
Rough Church are a band from LA (except for their drummer who is from New Zealand) and they will be touring Australia for the first time this month. Popolice will support in what will be one of his last shows before he takes a winter break. Also playing will be Giants Under The Sun. Head to Revolver tonight. Entry’s $10.
This Saturday at the Old Bar comes an epic gig. Doors open at 8.30pm and it finishes late. The bands include School Girl Report, Bodies, Paul Kidney Experience with Grong Grong headlining. DJ Von Onion spins through the night.
Breaking Hart Benton has a uniquely modern indie/folk sound with undeniably strong Celtic/ Americana influences and an equally strong focus on melodic, lyrically rich songwriting. Australian themes and observations sit comfortably beside old time murder ballads and traditional tunes. They are supporting Noriana Kennedy at the Penny Black this Sunday, hosting the Nude Folk Event at Grumpy’s Green on Monday and playing with Roesy at Bertha Brown on Thursday 12 April.
B TO A TEA
CARMEX PLAYS THE ORDER OF MELBOURNE EVERY WEDNESDAY.
TOO DAMN GOOD
Relax at Lounge on Tuesday nights in April for a lazy evening of movie watching. They’ll be presenting a handful of classic flicks sure to ignite memories and feelings from your younger years (provided you’re not an octogenarian of course!) for your viewing pleasure. Best part is there will be popcorn! Yay!
“We definitely have a cheekier edge. I think girls have more fun behind the decks than a lot of guys do,” says Danielle Borg, aka DJ Danni B. “ I would never say that girl DJs are better than guy DJs though.” The aptly named Tickled Pink Tea Party is an all-female DJ line-up playing as part of Bimbo/Lucky Coq’s Easter party, Best Of Both Sides. “I think I have surrounded myself with the best female talent of the moment and we have this awesome international, Gorge, who is joining us from Berlin,” says Borg. “Everyone has a different style; some of the girls are deeper and others have a more bouncy vibe. I think it will just be a fun night, with people looking for a good time.” “I’m just such a music lover,” exclaims Borg, who admits to “collecting vinyl way before I was behind the decks. If there were albums or EPs released that I wanted, I needed to have it in every format possible.” In terms of musical influences, “David Bowie is just number one for me. I think he is just one of the greatest musicians to ever live and I am utterly obsessed with him. In terms of dance/ electronic music I think the person who influenced me to get off my butt and actually do something was Magda. She is an amazing Polish DJ and producer. I saw a clip of her playing and was like, ‘Wow, I wanna do that.’”
Playing a festival such as Best Of Both Sides – which aims to bridge Melbourne’s north/ south divide – can’t help but evoke competing emotions. When asked to pick a side of the Yarra, Borg says, “To be honest I’m a northsider at heart. I used to live in Northcote and I’m real foodie and the food and coffee is just better on the north. I also like the energy of Brunswick Street, Fitzroy and High Street, Northcote; I think the whole vibe of the north just suits me better.” However, she says the Best Of Both Sides festival “is really exciting because even though I am not much of a southsider I do enjoy venturing over to Lucky Coq during the festival to check things out. This festival, one of my must-sees is KiNK on Saturday at Lucky Coq; he is another international who has never been here,” shares Borg. The TPTP takes place this Thursday, so “it’s the start of a long weekend and which everybody loves,” says Borg. She admits to “absolutely loving a good dress up. I love wearing things that are crazy and wish I could do it more.” The outfit is not planned for Thursday but is under consideration. Borg will be sure to tuck into the Agnello Pizza (the lamb one) come Thursday at Bimbo, which she says is “hands down the best”. Borg, who is leaving for Berlin soon, through endearing chuckles says, “Really I just love progressive house and trance. I am a ‘prog’ girl from way back.” WHO: Danni B WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 April, Best Of Both Sides, Bimbo Deluxe
SCOTT AND CHARLENE’S TWINS
Peak Twins and Scott & Charlene’s Wedding play a rare show for the release of their split 12”. School of Radiant Living will be supporting. It is this Friday at the Tote and is the only Melbourne show for Scott & Charlene’s Wedding in 2012 so be sure not to miss it.
STEPPING OUT FROM BEHIND THE DRUM KIT TO RECORD HIS DEBUT SOLO ALBUM HAD ITS SHARE OF TERRIFYING MOMENTS, JOHNNY GIBSON TELLS NIC TOUPEE.
Ships Piano are thrilled to be back at the Tote for a Saturday residency through April in the front bar. They will be road testing new songs for their debut album every Saturday in April from 5pm. Supported each week by a fine selection of local bands.
want to play with me?’ He was playing guitar, and another friend and I were trying to work out who would play bass or drums. I ended up playing the drums. And it went from there.”
FIGHT, FIGHT, FIGHT
Going from guitar to drums and back again has been easier for Gibson than it has for many, but he admits songwriting has taken far longer to master.
Cairo Knife Fight, New Zealand’s electrifying power rock duo, will soon be in Australia for three very special shows after adding their unique sound to this year’s 2012 SXSW Festival in Austin, TX. With a sound replete with metal riffs and prog-rock expansiveness, Cairo Knife Fight’s new four-track EP Cairo Knife Fight II will be released this Friday. Catch them at the Workers Club on Thursday 26 and at Cherry Rock Festival on Sunday 29 April.
“I always enjoyed writing music, but it took a long time to write enough music for an album. I’ve been writing these songs slowly over the last two or three years. Once I had 15 or 16 songs written that I was happy with, I figured it would be a waste not to record them.” A look at Gibson’s lyric sheet finds solid country themes such as love, love gone wrong and post break-up blues. Gibson humbly admits he is more an apprentice than a master of the lyrical arts, but is willing to put some heart into it.
“I played guitar when I was younger, but one day my guitar and stuff got stolen – so I took up the drums because there was a drum kit around I could use,” he explains. “I love music, and I’m happy to play whatever instrument as long as I can make a half decent effort of it.” Gibson’s foray into the percussive arts was given a helping hand by an offer too good to refuse. “After my guitar got stolen, a friend of mine came over and said, ‘I’ve got some riffs, do you
Last year at the Tote it was the thrashin’ of the Christ, but this year it’s heavier, faster and nastier: Easter Slaughter Day Grind. Bands on the bill are grinding thrash attack Xenos, d-beat grinders Goon Soaked Rag, Wölfe, European tour lords Nowyourfucked and the ever brutal Odiusembowel. This Saturday at 8.30pm.
Link McLennan’s Amazing Jukebox hits the Tote next Tuesday, playing some of his favourites from artists such as The Jesus & Mary Chain, The Who, Echo & The Bunnymen, John Lee Hooker, The Cramps, The Beatles, Wreckless Eric, Elvis Costello and more. He will also throw in a couple of his own originals. So come and hear two sets of his guitar, vocals and hatbox snaredrum madness.
“I’m trying to tell stories in a way…” he tentatively offers, his voice drifting away in what is either a pensive moment of reflection, or a flash back to the rehearsal room and the convivial atmosphere (and beer) within. “I think I’ve got a lot of work to do to master the lyrical craft, but I enjoy the challenge. Some of my songs are made-up stories, some of them are about love gone bad, woe-is-me stuff.”
Luring Johnny Gibson, Tasmanian-born drummer for numerous Melbourne bands including The Swedish Magazines and The Currency, out of the rehearsal studio and into the interview room, we find him a slightly distracted character. And no wonder: awaiting his return to the Soundpark Studio rehearsal room in Northcote are his support band, all eager to crack on with fine-tuning for this Thursday – the release of Gibson’s first solo album, Endless Search For Gold. Not only is it Gibson’s first transition from the backline to front of stage in a long time, but it sees his great unveiling as songwriter, singer and guitarist. Guitarist? Seems like it’s Melbourne’s alt.country scene’s worst kept secret that Gibson’s early musical efforts were as a picker not a kicker.
Popular Favourites present Soma Coma, Kid’s Of Zoo, Beat Disease, Batpiss and for the very first time, Sex Tape, plus record and zine stalls at the Tote Hotel tomorrow (Thursday). After releasing Brat Farrar’s debut album on cassette and plans for Bits Of Shit and Batpiss tapes as well as a fanzine, Popular Favourites have finally gotten around to putting on a launch party.
A little more probing reveals that – both as a lyricist and as first-time solo singer – he did feel some self-consciousness and nervousness in the studio. “I do feel a little self-conscious, sure, singing about myself – but it’s therapeutic I guess. It was terrifying going in the studio to do the vocals for the record, but I’m happy about how it has come out. I’ve done a lot of backing vocals so it was daunting, but I wasn’t totally freaking out.”
Indie-folk outfit Tin Sparrow will release their new EP Fair & Verdant Woods on Friday 13 April. Their launch show at the Grace Darling on Saturday 21 April has already sold out but there are still tickets for the Sunday 22 show with support from Buckley Ward.
Enjoy the Lounge’s new soundtrack to your $10 Monday night parma as DJ Kiti takes you all on a journey of musical explorations in all things rock’n’roll at Hello Kiti. You’ll hear everything from ‘60s garage and indie, to post punk and synth pop, to new wave and new romantic. Old or new, Kiti will leave no tune uncovered.
The proof, perhaps, in his one-man pudding will be the live show this Thursday night, where Gibson will show off his rehearsal-primed chops and dulcet tones. He’s understandably daunted, but is hoping that everyone (including himself) will have a good time.
The boys in Storming Vegas play every gig hard, fast and full of energy. Playing to their own style of hard pub rock, the band will have you banging your head or moshing like mad to tunes that have the heart of pure rock’n’roll. Storming Vegas are cranking their Marshalls up to 11 and bringing down the roof! They’ll be joined on Easter Saturday at Pony by the mighty Angry Mules and hard-rockers Carta Extremis.
“I’ll be playing guitar and singing live, and I want it to be fun,” Gibson says hopefully. “I don’t want it to be all stressful, although I know beforehand I’ll be stressed, nervous and freaking out. I want it to go well and I want to play well and do the songs justice, but I’ll be trying to have fun with it as well.”
After gaining plenty of attention at this year’s Golden Plains Festival, one of the premier soul acts in Australia, Saskwatch, continue their April residency at the Cherry Bar tomorrow (Thursday). The night starts at 8pm with Vince Peach and Pierre Baroni pushing it on through to 5am. It will cost $10.
WHO: Johnny Gibson WHAT: Endless Search For Gold (Independent) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 5 April, Old Bar
Cold Harbour are pleased to be returning to the Lyrebird Lounge tomorrow (Thursday). They’ll be playing selections from their back catalogue and showcasing some new numbers destined for the studio later in the year. First up are the Gatherers, followed by Cold Harbour, and rounding out the night, the fantastic Pony Girl And The Outsiders.
PAST PRESENT & FUTURE INDIE ROCK HITS Djs Clefb & Knackered Converse Free Entry from 9 Happy Hour(s) 9- 11pm
SO MANY PARMAS!
$12 POT AND PARMA 6-9PM
Mains from $9
TUESDAY TRIVIA FROM 730PM Tens of dollars worth of crap to be won! Jug giveaways all night!
GOOD FRIDAY EVE JESUS STOLE MY GIRLFRIEND!
INDIE, GARAGE, ROCK & POP Free Entry 9 -3 Happy Hour(s) 9- 11pm
Black Night Crash DJs $6 Pints, $6 Vodkas, $4 Wet Pussys 8pm12am - Free Entry themusic.com.au
Opening Hours Tues-Thurs 4pm-late Fri-Sat 4pm-3am, Sun 4pm-late
Easter Trading Hours Tues-Thurs 4pm-late Good Friday 4-11pm Saturday 4pm-3am Easter Sunday CLOSED
firstname.lastname@example.org www.rochestercastlehotel.com.au facebook.com/rochestercastlehotel INPRESS • 43
WAKE THE DEAD
BLUES ‘N’ ROOTS WITH DAN CONDON ROOTSDOWN@INPRESS.COM.AU
METAL, HEAVY ROCK AND DARK ALTERNATIVE WITH ANDREW HAUG
HARDCORE AND PUNK WITH SARAH PETCHELL
so I can send these three tracks off to Fredrik Reinedahl, and then on to Scott Reeder.” A short time later, Reeder added the following comment: “I can’t fucking wait to get it. I have a sweet new bass and I’m pissed – ready to unleash.”
STONE SOUR CANDI STATON I spoke with the wonderful Candi Staton a few weeks ago, though in the meantime she’s gone and cancelled her Melbourne show that was set to be happening at the Corner Hotel next Friday night. She’ll still be here for Bluesfest, so if you’re making the trek I strongly recommend you get along and see her as she will no doubt be working her way through her many hits in the soul, gospel, country, blues, disco and R&B genres. While she’s traversed plenty of genre ground, it was as a soul singer that Staton began her musical career and how she has been honoured with last year’s release of Evidence: The Complete Fame Records Masters, 48 tracks she recorded with the masterful Rick Hall in the legendary Fame Studios in Muscle Shoals, Alabama between 1969 and 1974. “I love it, 48 songs I did at Muscle Shoals,” 72-year-old Staton beams. “I’m doing four more! I’m in the studio with Rick Hall [who happens to be 80] right now; I’m going up next week to put my final vocal on it. Since we put everything out I thought we’d do some new stuff!” Fame Studios produced so many classic songs during that time and Staton confirms just how special it was to be a part of. “It taught me so much in the genre of soul music,” she begins. “Rick Hall is a taskmaster when it comes down to getting the best out of you. He is going to keep going and going, he’s like the little bunny that never stops; the little battery bunny! He just keeps going until he gets what he wants. I’m going through that same thing right now with him. “He pulls it out of you, you’re gonna feel some emotion because he’s not gonna stop until he gets a feeling; and that’s what the whole thing is about – Muscle Shoals and Rick Hall is a feeling. You’re gonna feel something by the time he finishes with that record.
Stone Sour have entered Sound Farm Studios, Iowa with producer David Bottrill (Tool) to begin recording their fourth album. “This album will be another progression for the band,” states Stone Sour guitarist Josh Rand. “Musically, we have always challenged one another to push things to our limits, and this record is no exception.” Rand also shares some details about the album’s lyrical and storytelling narrative, saying, “Lyrically, the album follows one character to that complex moment in his life, when he finally has to decide which path to take. It’s a spiritual and moral power play for control of what this man will be for the rest of his life. Each song will tell the story from different sides of the character’s personality, with the listener ultimately deciding how the story ends.” Former vocalist from The Haunted singer Peter Dolving has resumed work on his much-anticipated O project, which also features Jesper Liveröd (Nasum) and Scott Reeder (Kyuss). The group has been collaborating on material, on and off, for the past several years with producer Fredrik Reinedahl (Opeth). In a new posting on his Facebook page, Dolving writes, “I have finished recording basic guitar tracks on a song called Pigshit & Vomit for the O project. I can’t wait to get vocals laid down
“Not really, I was just trying to get out of the studio,” she laughs. “I hadn’t thought anything about those songs for years, I was just so glad to be finished with those sessions. but now that I look back on it in retrospect I’m glad we did it that way because I think that’s the correct way that music is supposed be treated, you’re supposed to treat it with respect and honour and that’s what we do. When I curl a note, when I do certain things with my voice and when I feel it in my spirit, in my stomach, I know you’re gonna feel it too. I think that’s why it has been around so long.” Staton is a renowned gospel singer but one who has injected less than traditional musical elements and styles into songs of worship. She says this hasn’t always been met positively. “Oh, they called me all kinds of names,” she says. “They said I was the devil’s music, that I had backslidden, I’d gone from the church and a lot of things. I had to be true to myself, I had to know who I am and know what they were saying about me wasn’t true, so it didn’t really bother me too much. I continue to do what I do. So long as I’m not condemned in my spirit I’m fine.” Candi Staton plays Bluesfest in Byron Bay on Friday 6, Sunday 8 and Monday 9 April. 44 • INPRESS
Animals As Leaders have lost their drummer Navene Koperweis, who has decided to leave the group. Koperweis says, “Tosin and Javier are the two most generous, caring and understanding individuals I’ve ever met and I look forward to a lifetime of friendship with the both of them. Over the past decade I have done nothing but music. Recording, writing, playing, practicing, touring and producing. It’s taken me beyond what I could have dreamt of as a kid when I started. My new goals extend beyond the drum kit and I’m the type of person who will constantly chase new dreams. You’ll be seeing a lot more of me soon.” Bassist Robbie Crane has officially quit Ratt, the band he had played with since 1997. Crane states about his decision to leave Ratt, “I’ve been playing in Lynch Mob since October of 2010. It’s a thing that I’ve always loved doing, and I love playing with the band. As of recently, I’ve moved on from Ratt – I definitely quit Ratt – and I let them all know that. But you know what?! It’s not because of Lynch Mob. I’d been with Ratt for 15 years and it was time to move on. I love being in Lynch Mob and this is where my heart’s at.”
NY CONVERSATION TALES FROM THE BIG APPLE WITH TOM HAWKING make up if you tried: it’s Liturgy playing in some sort of abandoned building in Brooklyn. The exact location will be revealed later (via Twitter, naturally), but for now there’s only this vaguely disconcerting advice: “Enter at own risk. Bring own flashlight.”
“I think that’s why it’s lasted so many years, those songs, because he captures that feeling and every time you hear that song it’s gonna draw something from you, you’re gonna relate in some kind of way and I think that’s why so many people love his music.” At the time Staton didn’t feel like she, or any other Fame artist for that matter, was making music that was going to live on for so long.
Austrian blackened death metal outfit Belphegor have commenced the rehearsal sessions in Abtenau, Austria for their upcoming album recordings. Commented guitarist/vocalist Helmuth Lehner: “All good so far. We just finished the second rehearsing session. Currently we’re working on nine sound-collages, added a lot new arrangements, elements and structures. Serpenth, Marthyn and me shredded our asses off in these 11 days. There will be three more ‘til we enter the studio by end of May 2012 and start to tracking drums. The titles on the setlist are working titles. Hell awaits!”
Back in the early 2000s, there was a track called One Night In New York City by a producer called The Horrorist. The song catalogued a young ingenue coming into NYC from New Jersey to hit the town for the night, falling in with the wrong crowd, and ending up having rampaging drug-fuelled sex with a really cute guy from NYU. Occasionally, a night comes along that makes you feel like a character in said song – not, we hasten to add, because it ends in an ecstasy-driven sex romp (more’s the pity), but because there are insanely strange nights that really don’t seem to happen anywhere else, for better or worse. Like last Friday night, for instance. It starts at the sort of free party that only happens in NYC: a thoroughly absurd launch do for some sort of social network. The party is in some giant Soho loft space that apparently doubles as the office for said network – there are beanbags, two table tennis tables, much Apple hardware and a silly man printing t-shirts. We’re not sure what VC firm is funding this lunacy, but the party apparently cost $1m to stage. From there it’s off to see Grimes, who despite her status as the most buzzworthy of buzzbands is pretty much the least interesting aspect of the evening. It’s not that she’s bad, it’s more that she’s sick and only plays for 40 minutes, breaking out precisely seven songs and then disappearing with no encore. The whole thing leaves, and so we decide to head for our final destination, which again you couldn’t really
We hop on the L train and get off at Bedford Ave, the global epicentre of hipsterdom. Only, something’s wrong. As we get off the train, there are cops everywhere, herding everyone toward the eastern end of the platform. There are exits at both ends, and most of the crowd wants to go west toward Bedford Ave, but the cops aren’t letting anyone pass. And they look really, really freaked out. Which means that whatever’s happened, it’s bad. One cop catches NY Conversation’s eye, and steps in front of us. “Man, you don’t want to look.” We piece together the story from several whitefaced witnesses. Two people started fighting on the platform – some people say that one tried to steal the other’s phone – and somehow, both fell onto the tracks. The guy who started the fight made it back up. The other guy didn’t. And the train came. And now he’s there, wedged into the two-inch gap between train and platform. Virtually cut in half. Dying. The whole thing makes everything that’s gone before seem both frivolous and futile, but still, we check Twitter for the location of the disused building. It turns out to be the remains of defunct venue Monster Island Basement. It’s a terrible idea, and by the time we arrive, the cops have already shut the whole thing down. But the checking-Twitter idea also reveals what the city thinks of the situation at Bedford Ave, and it’s a pretty depressing picture. “Fuck you L train.” “Two idiots in a fight.” “No L train FML.” Three hours later, we hear the guy has died. The next morning, photofit posters go up all along the L train. The other participant in the fight is wanted for murder. As far as we know, he hasn’t been caught. [Ed’s note: a man was arrested last week.] It’s just one night in New York City.
SILVERSTEIN Adelaide’s Night Hag are set to release their brand new 7” next month. Titled Confidence Man, it is due to be released through Brisbane’s Monolith Records. This is a band that has embodied the DIY spirit since day one, and over a couple of extremely productive years have released quite a few records and undertaken an extensive tour of South East Asia. Confidence Man continues their musical tradition, with the four-track release following on from their 2011 debut, Gilded Age. If you haven’t heard the frenetic metallic hardcore that is Night Hag, I recommend checking them out especially as they are set to hit a town near you soon. Namely, at the Gasometer Hotel on Friday 4 May, where they will play with locals Palisades, Urns and Old Skin. Canada’s Silverstein are touring Australia again this June for a run of shows that appear to be 18+ for the most part. The Canucks are heading out to one of their favourite countries on the back of their most recent album Rescue (out now through Hopeless Records), and will be joined as they trek around the country by Gold Coast pop punk act Skyway. You can catch the tour on Saturday 9 June, when Silverstein and Skyway play an 18+ show at Bang or on Sunday 10 June when the tour hits the Pelly Bar in Frankston for another 18+ show. Tickets for Bang are only available on the door, but check out the tour event page on Facebook for ticketing information. Tickets go on sale Monday 9 April Since the announcement that Toy Boats would be the newest addition to the Resist Records roster way back in around October last year, there has been quite a bit of anticipation for the Byron Bay singer/songwriter’s debut EP, Diamond Teeth. With the EP out on 13 April, Toy Boats will be performing a small run of acoustic, instore appearances and a whole bunch of excellent record stores all around the country. So as well as a free show, if you purchase the EP at one of the instore shows, you will also receive a limited, hand-numbered, screen-printed Toy Boats poster. You can catch the acoustic performance at Poison City Records on Sunday 29 April from 4pm. Last week I started talking about Record Store Day and some of the local releases that will be coming out on the day. The entire list of special edition releases for the day has been made available as a downloadable PDF or in a list on the Record Store Day website. There are quite a few releases that I’m excited for, including Anberlin’s first two albums, Never Take Friendship Personal and Blueprints For The Black Market, which are getting the vinyl treatment, Cursive’s Burst And Bloom on marbled vinyl, and the Mariachi El Bronx/The Bronx split 12” on splatter vinyl. I know that my local record store will be taking wishlist orders real soon for what their customers want them to get in, so head to your local record store and ask them what they can do for you, and stay tuned for more special on-the-day events and promotions. Terror have been cropping up a bit in hardcore news circles, and this week is no exception with the news that fans can get ready for a whole batch of new material. The band announced that they will be releasing a new album before the end of the year called Live By The Code. Reaper Records will be handling the release duties, which is a massive coup as there is as yet no word whether Century Media will be co-handling the release duties as they did with 2010’s Keepers Of The Faith.
W N E N IO IT D E
Order your copy of AMID now!
ORD ER NOW
VISIT WWW.THEMUSIC.COM.AU/STORE INPRESS • 45
POP CULTURE THERAPY WITH ADAM CURLEY
URBAN AND R&B NEWS BY CYCLONE
HIP HOP NEWS AND COMMENTARY WITH ALEKSIA BARRON
ODD FUTURE JET In what would have come as a surprise to many, last week Melbourne band Jet announced their “discontinuation” as a band. The surprise wasn’t the split but that the band still actively considered itself a unit: for all purposes, their 2010 support of Powderfinger on that group’s ‘farewell tour’ acted also as a big-stage hurrah before their own disappearance, the tour appearing as a final wave to noughties rock’n’roll with The Vines in the second support slot. With rhythm section Chris Cester and Mark Wilson releasing an EP last year under the guise of Damndogs, it was pretty clear Jet’s members were moving on. In truth, however, by the advent of Jet’s 2009 album, Shaka Rock, the “Aus rock revival” to which they and The Vines will be indefinitely attached was discussed in the past tense. Since that time, too, melodic rock’n’roll has neither been a thing of intensity nor much interest to middle Australia. While pockets of garage and punk-related genres have thrived via the work of small venues and independent labels (and, of course, the bands and audiences), attempts to ‘break’ rock bands by major labels and managers have lacked inspiration. None have succeeded to meet the expectations labels and managers had of establishing “the next Grinspoon”: a band who could tour regional areas and cities, becoming a unifying cultural product awarded that elusive prize of being able to make a career out of touring. This happened enough times for that phrase – “the next Grinspoon” – to become both a common expectation and an ‘industry-insider’ joke circa 2007-2010. What has happened since that time is a complex web of developments – both inside and outside the commercial aspects of being a band – that has led to the dissolving of that expectation. It no longer seems a given that ‘Australian rock’n’roll’ the way it’s been known (or the way it’s been publicised) will find a saviour, a leader, a workingclass hero or any other cultural protagonists described by rock’n’roll buzzwords. And that’s a very good thing. Because what’s happened is that Australian music is no longer defined by the stereotype from which the Aus-rock frontman (not woman) is almost always drawn: the antiintellectual, hyper-‘masculine’ and hyper-sexual male. It might be easy to see that Australian music is having unprecedented success in the United States outside of that long-established rock identity, with Gotye in the Billboard chart and Kimbra the talk of media following SXSW, and even to take the view that Australia is on the verge of an international pop explosion. However, it’s also too hard to ignore the ongoing disintegration of any kind of musical ‘monoculture’ and the current models of career bands, decreasingly based around or reliant on ‘waves’ or genres. There’s no doubting Jet and The Vines opened doors to foreign markets for other Australian acts, but even in their heyday there was a cringe element to their fame: is rock’n’roll all the world thinks we can do? Moreover, at home it’s become our own shame that the music industry has treated regional areas with contempt, presuming audiences would bite the next pub-rock band with a catchy hook, discounting for years their taste for other musics such as hip hop and dance genres. The possibility of a popular rock-related band remains, but it has nothing to do with what’s come before or assumptions about ‘mainstream audiences’. It has everything, however, to do with the creation of something Australia – and the rest of the world – hasn’t yet heard. 46 • INPRESS
If some media types initially dismissed Odd Future as a flash-in-the-pan, then they couldn’t have been more wrong. Tyler, The Creator’s motley crew of skater punks are, like the Wu-Tang Clan before them, representing a scene within a scene – or the alternative to the alternative. And they’re just getting started. Sure, their shows are shambolic, but OF keep surprising. Syd Tha Kyd, OF’s openly lesbian engineer, DJ and singer, lately presented a very lo-fi yet promising album with Matt Martians (The Jet Age Of Tomorrow) as The Internet. Purple Naked Ladies is experimental neo-soul with songs such as Cocaine (featuring Left Brain). Think: Erykah Badu bonding with Shabazz Palaces. Now OF themselves are back with the de facto ‘album’ The OF Tape Vol 2 – the lead single Rella, trancey-but-not-trance hip hop with Hodgy Beats, Domo Genesis and Tyler, accompanied by an outlandish video. Indeed, Madonna might learn from these homeboys. Forget about wearing hotpants and dubious drug references – morphing into a centaur is way more attention-grabbing. Bonkers! TOFTV2, the sequel to 2008’s The Odd Future Tape, has the same subliminal feel – and minimalist ethos – as Tyler’s Goblin. Fans will be familiar with Mike G’s vaguely dubby Forest Green. The mixtape’s current single, NY (Ned Flander), courtesy of Hodgy
and Tyler, sounds like an early Wu joint with its sinister Shaolin keys. OF soulster Frank Ocean – who bailed on the Future Music Festival, citing, in part, studio commitments – is all over TOFTV2 with collabs like Tyler’s cruisy Analog 2. This is OF’s counterpart to RZA’s blunted soul – and comparable to N*E*R*D at their most cult. TOFTV2’s weirdest track? It’s gotta be Hodgy’s grungy Snow White, again with Ocean. (Left Brain produced it.) Nevertheless, the album’s pinnacle is Ocean’s ultra spare – and solo – White. Imagine an illwave Stevie Wonder… There’s also a worthy song from The Internet, the psychedelic Ya Know. TOFTV2 ends with the aimless (well, it is ten minutes long!) OF posse-cut Oldie. Even the mysteriously banished Earl Sweatshirt raps. And the post-horrorcore collective haven’t toned down their more contentious aspects on TOFTV2. MellowHype’s Real Bitch with Taco is shamelessly misogynist – and, frankly, dumb. Incidentally, the dude on TOFTV2’s cover is Lucas Vercetti, Tyler’s bestie. He runs OF’s merch store, Golf Wang. Lots of hot urban music will air in April – and beyond. By time you read this, Nicki Minaj’s sophomore, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded, will finally be out. The first single Roman In Moscow faltered, but things have turned around for the flamboyant femcee with the Euro-pop Starships, produced by Lady GaGa cohort RedOne. Alas, Ms Minaj has roped in the thoroughly disagreeable Chris Brown for the followup, Right By My Side. That really is cray, cray, girlfriend. Tinie Tempah producer Labrinth is set to debut with Electronic Earth. He’s signed to Simon Cowell’s Syco Records, also home to that impressive retro soulstress Rebecca Ferguson. And, come May, London soulboy Plan B will return to his dark hip hop roots with iLL Manors. The dubsteppy title-track (and single) is the MC’s response to the UK riots – and a critique of David Cameron’s divided Britain. Paul Epworth produced the song, which samples innovative German hip hopper Peter Fox’s Alles Neu. The album ties in with a film Plan B, a budding actor, wrote and directed himself.
THE GET DOWN FUNKY SHIT WITH OBLIVEUS
ALL GOOD FUNK ALLIANCE Have you ever had a case of absolute head nodding that causes you to shake uncontrollably due to the fact that some absolute funky shit The Neville Brothers should have written is blaring from your speakers? Been there and done that, I say. I realise a question like this might cause some to ponder what the hell I’m on about, so do yourselves a favour and find Sammy Sax on Soundcloud and try the previously mentioned ‘head nod’ and you’ll understand. His latest bomb, while missing the seasonal boat, is called Summer Legs and has the essential dancefloor ingredients of upbeat funk, horny horns and bad-in-a-good-way ‘80s vocals that make you think of all the ‘60s soul stars that attempted comebacks 20 years after their expiry dates. I love it and so should you, so head over to your little internet gizmo and find him quick like. Upbeat in a completely different way is the latest track I was sent from the nice lads at Breakbeat Paradise Recordings and it comes from someone who seems to have dropped off the planet in the past year. Yeah, anyone that knows this label knows that I’m talking about Badboe. His latest jam, One Of These Days, is something I needed right now and is completely on the reggae, dancefloor tip I love so much. Trust me, you’ll skank the night away in no time to this and it’s something any self-respecting breaks/nu-fun DJ should not be without. By the way,
I’m officially taking the ‘k’ off the ‘nu-funk’ genre description because, let’s be honest, nu-funk (or nufunk for those that can’t be bothered using correct grammar) is a lame name. As if we’d call the new music Lil Jon makes ‘nu-crunk’ or the new NOFX album, ‘nu-punk’. It’s just breaks, folks, albeit slightly slower in tempo from what we used to play ten years ago. But it’s still breaks. Nu-funk makes me think of the fat dude with the earring, sleeveless jean jackets and Wesley Snipes fro (a la White Men Can’t Jump) from the previously mentioned Neville Brothers and this image has no place in dance music… actually, this image has no place in our society. Let’s stop the madness and send ‘nu-funk’ into the trashbin next to happy hardcore, trip hop and new jack swing. Actually, I like new jack swing… but I digress. All Good Funk Alliance, no strangers to swinging beats (you gotta love my segue ways), dropped a new EP on Fort Knox Recordings last month and it’s fatter than a line-up at the Crown Sunday buffet. Title track Rhythm & FX is eerily reminiscent of the Drumattic Twins and takes you on an electro-ish journey before heading into some Cumbia drum action over and under some slick Casio keyboard sounding synths. I got a new haircut, bought some tight jeans and slapped on a flannel just to look cool enough to listen to this in my own home so I have no idea how any of you might pull it off in a nightclub, but give it a go. All jokes aside, any AGFA fan will love this and if you have no idea who they are – shame! Now I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’ve gotten completely sick of all the edits and mash-ups that are currently flooding our clubbing landscape. That said, every once in a while a mash-up comes along that just works. Case in point is the latest off Gamm Digital, DJ Will – Rock Edits Volume 2. He crafts Moses Dillard’s Got To Find A Way into some sleazy soul bizness and makes you forget Ripple’s A Funky Song was never written with Pete Rock. Absolutely worth its weight in gold, so get onto it now. With that, I’m out for another month. Producers, send me your action.
JUSTICE & KAOS In the immortal words of Family Guy’s Quagmire, “Giggity, giggity.” Over the next few weeks, we’ll be positively drowning in live music here in ol’ Melbourne town, so it seems like a good time to run down what’s coming up. The beauty of the Easter long weekend is this: four days off means plenty of time for obligatory family commitments and seeing great gigs. Whether you’re north or south of the river, get along to the Best Of Both Sides week-long extravaganza (until 8 April) at Fitzroy’s Bimbo Deluxe and Windsor’s Lucky Coq. The line-up is huge, and features the likes of M-Phazes, DJ Flagrant and The Psyde Projects. More info is available at bestofbothsides. com.au. The Psyde Projects will also be nipping down to the Espy on Saturday 7 April to support Joelistics, who’s putting on a free show that will no doubt be as delicious as any Easter egg. Justice & Kaos will be putting on an Easter showcase at the Laundry Bar on Friday 13 April. Even better news – they’ll be putting on an underage show, as well as an 18+ version. It hasn’t been easy for them – I caught up with Kaos to ask about the trials of putting on a show for minors. His take? “We seemed to constantly be getting hit up from fans wanting it, so we found a venue that would allow us to hold the over-age show, and as a condition of that, hold the under-age show.” He’s the first to admit it wasn’t easy: “There were a few obstacles. It’s really difficult to organise.” However, in light of the ARIA-nominated duo’s ardent fans, the Laundry stepped up to the plate. “We’d finally got to that point where we could make it a condition – fortunately, over the last year and a half, we’d built our fan base to the point where we could do that.” It’s great to see artists like Justice & Kaos working hard to give younger fans access to live hip hop, and equally good to see venues like the Laundry allowing the gigs to go ahead. The underage show will take place from 1pm to 5pm, and the 18+ show kicks off at 9pm. We’re getting a visit from 1200 Techniques MC N’fa Jones, who got back in the mix last year when he appeared on Drapht’s single Bali Party. Jones has been cropping up in some odd places lately, such as playing to the block party crowd at the L’Oereal Melbourne Fashion Festival, but he’ll be putting on a show at the Grace Darling on Thursday 19 April in support of his new EP Babylondon. The Herd are coming back to the Corner on Saturday 21 April, almost exactly a year after they last graced this venue with their presence. They’re always a pleasure to watch on stage – their boundless energy is infectious, and it’s almost impossible to have a bad time at one of their shows. Even better, they’ll have NSW’s Thundamentals in tow, who are fast becoming one of my favourite live acts, period. We’ve got another Raise The Roof at the Espy to prepare for as well – these mammoth seaside gigs seem to be coming thick and fast. There’s no denying this massive line-up though – the Golden Era squad will be in force, with Funkoars, Vents and Briggs all on the bill, as well as Lowrider, Def Wish Cast and DJ Flagrant’s always-fun video show. The show’s taking place on Tuesday 24 April, the eve of the Anzac Day public holiday, and is pretty much guaranteed to be off the hook. It’ll be particularly good to have Vents back in town, whose smart, fierce raps and tight live show never fail to impress.
CLUB GUIDE WED 04 Carmex, Baddums: Order Of Melbourne Coq Roq Party: King Of The North, Gupstar, Blaberunner, Joybot Lucky Coq Halfways: Workshop Inner City Trash: Lounge Loaded Wednesdays: Revolver Upstairs Lost and Found: Spidey, Gupstar & Dan, Shaky Memorial: Revolver Upstairs Lounge Wednesdays: Matty Raovich, PCP, Adelle: Lounge NHJ, Home Travel, Mesarthim, Viva La’ Mour: Bimbo Deluxe Wednesday Night Special: Post Percy: New Guernica Wednesdays @ Co: Petar Tolich, Scotty E: Co. Nightclub Whisky Wednesday: Strange Wolf
THU 05 3181 Thursdays: Hans DC, Nikki Sarafian, Jake Judd, Sam Gudge, Sean Rault, Jesse Young, John Doe: Revolver Upstairs
Animals Dancing: Rick Wilhite: Mercat Basement Beataucue: New Guernica Child, Muska, Darius Bassiray, Tahl, Remedy: Lucky Coq Upstairs Cosmic Gate: Festival Hall Do Drop In: Kiti, Lady Noir, DJ Foo: Carlton Club First Stop Thursdays: Urban Bar Freakout: Laundry Gorge, Danni B, Amy Matilda, Samsara, Atonix, Anri Katie Drover, Volta: Bimbo Deluxe Heartbreaker Opening: 1928, Indian Summer DJs, Weapon X, A-Style: Revolver Bandroom Inner City Sounds: Workshop Jane & Ben Daffy, Tom Evans, Jean-Paul, Kodiak Kid: Lucky Coq Downstairs Lounge Thursdays: Citizen.com, Ghetto Filth: Lounge Love Story: 1928: The Toff Midnight Express: The Toff Carriage Room New Guernica Thursdays: Post Percy, Awesome Wales: New Guernica Noizy Neighbours: Room 680
Plastic: Next, Bang, La Di Da Rabbit Rave: Kris Baha, DManual: Bottom End Safari Thursdays: Pretty Please Shake Some Action: Street Party, Samaritan, Polyavalanche: OneSixOne Skip & Swing: Dysphemic & Ms Eliza, J Nitrous, M.O.N.K.E.E., Aaron Static, Proximity Effect, Elf Tranzporter: Loop Soul in the Basement: Cherry Bar Switch: Polyfonik: EVE The Factory: G-Money & Sammy Prosser: Trak Trinity Thursdays: La Di Da Unlucky: Seven Nightclub Wah Wah Thursdays: Wah Wah Lounge
FRI 06 393 Fridays: First Floor 393 Bass Cartel: Workshop Bass Station: 3D Block Party Fridays: Marrakech Breakfast Club: Anthony Pappa: New Guernica
Circologo: Stacey Pullen, M.A.N.D.Y, Tania Vulcano, Clive Henry: Billboard Cosmology: Sleep D, Joey Booyeah: Loop Daniel Kandi: Royal Melbourne Hotel Destination: La Di Da Fake Tits: Tramp Freeplay Fridays: Amber Lounge Good Friday: Haul Music, Textbook Music, Dean Benson, Safari, Cain Sinclair, Ace Stojevski, Louis McCoy, Jon Beta, Matt Radovich, Sam McEwin, Jay Reaing, Mike Buhl: Lucky Coq Good Friday Boat Party: The Freestylers: Victoria Star Boat Party After Party: Marten Horger, Beatsmack, What Now?: La Di Da Good Friday Funk: M-Phazes, Flagrant, Agent 86, Ayna, Jesse I, Lady Banton: Bimbo Deluxe Indecent Fridays: Syn Bar Jesus Party: Otologic: Bottom End Lounge Friday: Citizen. com, DJ Who, Tahl, Dave Pham: Lounge Midnight Massacre: New Guernica
OneSixOne Fridays: OneSixOne One+One: Ash-Lee, Teepee: Somewhere Outrageous Fridays: Wah Wah Lounge PopRocks: Dr Phil Smith: Toff Revolver And Suckmusic Good Friday Special: Revolver Upstairs Roxy Fridays: The Roxy SYN Dance Night: Revolver Upstairs WOW Fridays: Neverland
SAT 07 All City Bass: Brown Alley Alumbra Saturdays: Alumbra Audioporn: Dr. Zok, James Ware, China Hoops, Rowie: OneSixOne Boogs, Spacey Space, Nick Coleman, Silversix, Hey Sam: Bimbo Deluxe Bottom End Saturday Night: Jake Judd, Nikki Sarafian, Otologic, Spacey Space: Bottom End Budgie Collective Launch: Kodiak Kid, J-Slyde, Square Eyes, TeeCee, B Young, Paul Dubz: Carlton Hotel
Equalise: Word Bar Forbidden Saturdays: Amber Lounge Freakzone: The Workshop House De Frost: The Toff Interactive Noise, Audio Unit, Tech Aid, Simon Murphy: Royal Melbourne Hotel KiNK, Jamie Stevens, Steve Ward, Anri, Brad Daniels: Lucky Coq Upstairs Laundry Saturdays: Laundry Lounge Saturdays:, Darren Coburn, Luke McD, Boogs, DJ Who: Lounge Majik Saturdays: Room680 Manik: Brown Alley Mashouse Saturdays: 577 Lt Collins Pash: The Roxy Playground: Seven Nightclub Poison Apple: La Di Da Saturdays at First Floor: First Floor 393 Strut Saturdays: Trak Survivor: Bottom End TFU Saturdays: Two Floors Up The Psyde Projects, D’ Fro, Moonshine, iLL Response, Mikey Dubwise: Lucky Coq Downstairs Under Suspicion: Brown Alley
Unstable Sounds: Loop Wah Wah Saturdays: Wah Wah Lounge Why Not?: Pretty Please
SUN 08 4AM Sunday Mornings: Wah Wah Lounge Bossman AV, Boy Go Yoko Polat, Edo: Bimbo Deluxe Electric Owl: Moodymann, Marti Buttrich, Roman Flugel. tINI: Brown Alley Fresh, Messy NC: Brown Alley Golden Fleece, Mr. George, Inskwel, Ennio Styles: Lucky Coq Downstairs Genesis: Egorythmia, MUTe, Tom Cosm, Organikismness: Revolt Artspace Get Wet: Word Bar Guilty Pleasure Sundays: Pretty Please JíNett, Junji Masayama & Disco Harry, Adam Askew, Booshank: Lucky Coq Upstairss North Pollard, Sophia Sin, M.A.F.I.A, Mzrizk: New Guernica PBS Wrap Party: Monica Hanns, P. King, Edd Fisher: Bimbo Deluxe Arvo Revolver Sundays: Boy 8-Bit: Revolver Upstairs
Soul Be In It: Workshop Spit Roast Sundays: Cushion Summer Series: Nick Curly: Revolver Upstairs The Sunday Set: AndyBlack, Haggis: The Toff
MON 09 Gear Shift: Horse Bazaar Hair Of The Dog: Revolver Upstairs IBimbo: Bimbo Deluxe Kool Aid: Laundry Monday Struggle: Lucky Coq
TUES 10 All That Tuesday: Berlin Bar Bimbo Tuesday: Bimbo Deluxe Cosmic Pizza: Lucky Coq Choose Tuesdays: Post Percy: New Guernica Fourplay Tuesdays: Cushion MSG Tuesdays: Laundry Oasis: Tramp Space Hopper: Match
SE V EN SE AS TO UR
T H E G R ACE DA RL I N G A P R I L 14 , 2 012 RAPSK ALLION ~ T I CK E TS O N SA L E N OW ~
T H E G R A C E DA R L I N G H OT E L .C O M . A U
W W W. T H E G O O D S H I P. C O M . A U themusic.com.au
INPRESS • 47
HOWZAT! LOCAL MUSIC NEWS BY JEFF JENKINS
JOHN PATRICK & THE KEEPERS
JOHN PATRICK MAKES A KEEPER
Who knows when and where your big break will occur. For Melbourne singer/songwriter John Patrick it happened while he was tour managing American band The Flatlanders, featuring the legendary Joe Ely, Butch Hancock and Jimmie Dale Gilmore. By the time they got to Ballina, John and the band had bonded. They had a quiet drink in a hotel room, and John played a tune when they passed a guitar around. “Fantastic song,” Butch Hancock said, “who wrote that?” “I did,” John replied. “Wow,” drummer Pat Manske said, “we should look at making a record.” Not long after, John was flying to Austin to record with Pat and Flatlanders guitarist Robbie Gjersoe. And the song that John played that night, Short Stout Woman, became the opening track on John Patrick & The Keepers’ debut EP, In Memory Of Pa (available now on iTunes), which they’re launching at the Evelyn on Thursday. 48 • INPRESS
“It was all a little bit surreal,” John says. “Really humbling and a bit embarrassing, with all these amazing musicians putting their touch on my songs.” As well as Pat and Robbie, the EP features bass player Glenn Fukunaga, who has played with Dylan and The Dixie Chicks. John’s wild ride didn’t end there. Robbie gave a CD to his good friends The Greencards, the Grammy-nominated, Nashvillebased bluegrass band featuring two Aussies, Kym Warner and Carol Young. They were about to start recording their fifth album, The Brick Album, and they got in touch with Robbie: “Can we use these songs?” Suddenly, John had two songs – Naked On The River and Here Lies John – on a top ten album on the US Bluegrass chart. Are the royalties rolling in? “I wish,” John laughs. “I did get a cheque in December for $11. Hopefully that’s the tip of the iceberg. But seriously, I was just so happy to have a band like The Greencards cover a couple of my songs, and hopefully it will lead to other opportunities.” John’s EP has also attracted the attention of David Bowie’s manager, David Whitehead, who said: “He has a curious, fragile voice that you think is going to break at any time.” It helps make In Memory Of Pa stand out in the crowded marketplace. As for the title, the EP is dedicated to John’s grandfather, who died last December. “The CD is a tribute to him and his 91 years of life.” Pa got to hear the EP, “but he was engulfed by Alzheimer’s, so I’m not sure what it meant. But it’s nice that grandma got to play it for him and say, ‘This record is for you.’”
Howzat! would regularly have lunch with Zoran Romic and his best buddy and business partner, Darren Danielson. After Chocolate Starfish, Zoz and Darren focused on music management, forming the FUR Group. We’d talk footy (Zoz was a Hawthorn fan), music matters and reminisce a little about the old days. I valued their honesty and insight – these were managers who knew what it was like to be in a big band. Early last year when I was thinking, ‘I haven’t seen Zoz and Darren for a while’, I got an email: “It’s time for one of our lunches, we also need to tell you about the Starfish reunion.” Darren sent me a link to Starfish performing Head at the 1994 Australian Music Awards, which was one of Zoran’s favourite moments. “How could we not put the band back together?” Darren said. “I want to see Zoz in the leather pants again!” When Zoz appeared at our lunch, I pointed to his bald head and said, “Have you done that as a tribute to your old singer [Adam Thompson, who shaved his head during the Starfish days]?” “No,” he replied, “I’ve had cancer.” It was a horrible moment, but Zoz had a knack for being able to put people at ease. “Not to worry, mate,” he smiled, “you weren’t to know. Hopefully I’ll be okay.” Zoran’s private battle became public when he was unable to do the planned reunion shows. Instead, his mates organised a benefit – One Night In October – A Concert For Zoz. It was a remarkable night. A full house, and Zoz got to do one more Starfish gig. Afterwards, he was exhausted, but you could tell he was happy. Sadly, Zoz died last Saturday. He is survived by his wife, Linda, and their two daughters. The pain would be lessened if I could find a bad word to say about Zoran, but I can’t. As Noise11’s Paul Cashmere said, “Zoran will be remembered by
all who knew him as one of the nicest guys in the business.” Starfish’s biggest hit, Mountain – which Zoran co-wrote – includes the line, “I am for now, you are forever.” That’s how I feel about Zoz.
Timomatic scores his second hit. Boys Like You 360 & GOSSLING (number 11) Into The Flame EP MATT CORBY (13) If Looks Could Kill TIMOMATIC (16, debut) Set It Off TIMOMATIC (22) Music Won’t Break Your Heart STAN WALKER (35, debut) I Love It HILLTOP HOODS & SIA (36) 100% No Modern Talking EP KNIFE PARTY (37) Madonna knocks off Hilltop Hoods. Drinking From The Sun HILLTOP HOODS (number three) Falling & Flying 360 (11) Vows KIMBRA (21) Making Mirrors GOTYE (32) Moonfire BOY & BEAR (37) Gold Watch HOODOO GURUS (39)
Nova Scotia JOHN PATRICK & THE KEEPERS Good Clean Fun JAMES REYNE The Preacher JULITHA RYAN Crocodile ALEKS & THE RAMPS Mountain CHOCOLATE STARFISH
WED 04 All The Colours, Gosteleradio, I/O The Toff In Town Audio Caffeine Revolver Upstairs Bopstretch Uptown Jazz Café Cassawarrior, Dd, Ricka E55 Dan Rolls Duo, Apes, The Scarecrows, Mojo Jacket Esplanade Front Bar Dave Havea Veludo Dead Albatross, The Tall Stories, The Asthmatics Wesley Anne DJ Petar Tolich, Stand & Deliver Co. Nightclub Earth Wind & Fire Palais Theatre Erik Ivan Paker, Curtis Why, Matt Glass Band Gertrude’s Brown Couch Greg Arnold, Tim & Pete Kent St Gustavo Moreno Edinburgh Castle Front Bar Hoodrapz Workshop Hotel Wrecking City Traders, Disrupture, White Veins, Syndrome, Dave Browne Benefi t Bendigo Hotel Iced Earth, Lord Billboard Jeremy Woolhouse, Lachlan Davidson Baker St Studios Jimi Hocking Clifton Hill Hotel John Cooper Clarke, Johnny Green, John McCullagh Northcote Social Club Julien Wilson Quartet 303 Bar Kenny Wayne Shepard Corner Hotel Kings of the North, DJ Gupstar, Bladerunner, Joybot Lucky Coq Leticia Maher, Hetty Kate The Drunken Poet Lincoln MacKinnon The Standard Hotel Los Chicos, The Meanies, LA Bastard, Thee Mighty Childish The Tote Manchild, Mu-Gen, Danny Silver Lounge Bar Matt Sonic and The High Times, Uptown Aces Cherry Bar Mild Sparrow, Flying Saucer Terror Horse Bazaar My Morning Jacket, Dawes Palace Theatre NHJ, Home Travel, Mesarthim, Viva La’Mour Bimbo Deluxe Paul Williamson Bennetts Lane Shelley Short, Alysia Manceau The Retreat Hotel - Brunswick Smith St Band, Foxtrot, Japan For The Old Bar Streetons Fortyfive Downstairs
Stutter, Cast Iron, Chained Lizard, Defying The Norm, Wide of the Mark, Pariah, Fretbuzz Musicland (Fawkner) The Great Outdoors, Mole House, Stream 4 Bar Open The Pogues, Barons Of Tang Festival Hall Tom Vincent Trio Paris Cat Jazz Club Tony Bennett Regent Theatre Whitaker, The Tea Leaves, Breaking Heart Benton Empress Hotel
THU 05 Agent 86, M-Phazes, DJ Flagrant, Tom Showtime, DJ Ayna Lounge Bar Apache Medicine Man, Sons of Abraham, Uncle Chunk, Mondegreen The Prague As a Rival, On Sierra, The Jail Bird Jokers, Strangers From Now On Pony Big Strong Brute, Great Earthquake, Mountain Static Empress Hotel Blue King Brown, Bonjah, Tijuana Cartel, School of Dub, Savona Sound System, Direct Influence, Jess Harlen, Ms Butt Esplanade (Whole Venue) Blue Times Blue, BGB, Long Yard Blues Musicland (Fawkner) Bogan Nation, The Dukes of Deliciousness, The Superguns, Voodoocain Brunswick Hotel Conductors, James Kane, Negative Magick, Nu Balance, Post Percy New Guernica Cosmic Gate Festival Hall Cyclone Warning Bluestone Lounge Dinosaurs Exist, The Sun Sleepers Penny Black Dysphemic, Ms Eliza, J Nitrous, Monkee, Proximity Effect Loop Edison, Grim Rhythm, Urns, Soil and Ash Gasometer Hotel Flounder, The Neighbourhood Youth, Number Station, The Run Run, We The People, Glass Mirrors, Smoking Toddlers, Wednesday The Rat, Oscar & Martin DJ Set Laundry Futuras 303 Bar Gin Wigmore Workers Club Gorge, Danni B, Amy Matilda Samsara, Atonix, Anri Katie Drover, Volta Bimbo Deluxe Hiatus Kaiyote, Kilbot Kindergarden, Oscar & Martin Northcote Social Club Island Jamboree, Bob Log, Messed Up LuWOW Jane & Ben Daffy, Tom Evans, Jean Paul, Kodiak Kid, Child (Live), Muska, Darius Bassiray, Tahl, Remedy Lucky Coq
Jimmy Daniel, Conrad & The Band Wesley Anne JMQ, Garth Ploog The Commune Joe Creighton Caravan Music Club John Patrick & The Keepers, Mighty Sun, The Paper Street Soap Company Evelyn Hotel Johnny Gibson & The Dirty Dozen, The Bell St Delays, Tim Scanlan The Old Bar Josh Seymour Labour In Vain Keb Mo Corner Hotel Lenna-Maree Moxey & The Rodger Clark Quartet Dizzy’s Jazz Club Lincoln Mckinnon The Standard Hotel Los Chicos, Chromenips, Midnight Woolf, Johnny Casino, The Bowers Yah Yah’s Low Key Thornbury Local Matt Dean, Matty Grant, Phill Ross Billboard Matt Glass Edinburgh Castle Front Bar Nikkos, Joe Sofo, Kitty Kat Co. Nightclub Noriana Kennedy Trio Lomond Hotel PCS The Great Britain Hotel Phil Lyddy Trio Wesley Anne, Arvo Show Pony Girl & The Outsiders, Cold Harbour, The Gatherers, Rock Lyrebird Lounge Pugsley Buzzard Rainbow Hotel Road Ratz, Clowns, Dirty Chapters, Working Horse Irons Bendigo Hotel Ruth Rogers-Wright Thornbury Theatre Ryan Nico & the Overlanders, Ali E The Retreat Hotel - Brunswick Sammy Owen Blues Band Horse Bazaar Saskwatch Cherry Bar Soma Coma, Batpiss, Beat Disease, Kids Of Zoo The Tote Sweet Teeth, Doc Holiday Takes The Shotgun, Dark Arts, Humans Revolver Upstairs Tango Rubino Cruzao Arepa Bar The Ancients, Lower Plenty, Moon Dice Grace Darling Hotel The Daniel Gassin Trio Bennetts Lane The Putbacks Uptown Jazz Café The ReChords Post Office Hotel The Specials Palace Theatre Tim Braun 29th Apartment Tom Milek, Francolin, Hayden Calnin The Toff In Town Tropical Space Lab, Nahuatl Sound System, Sonidero Esperanza, Galambo Bar Open
Vandalism Inflation Whodafunkit Red Bennies Yacht Club DJs, Hunting Grounds Prince Bandroom
FRI 06 Anthony Callea Trak Lounge Bar Atomik, Dean T, Johnny M, Phil Ross Fusion Nighclub Bearhug Workers Club Bellusira Pier Live Blackmolls Pure Pop Courtyard Dead River Deeps, The Ivory Elephant The Retreat Hotel - Brunswick DK, Magic, MC Perplex Sub Lounge Duchesz, Paz, Ooh Ee First Floor Gretchen Lewis, China Vagina, Citrus Jam Cherry Bar Haul Music (Live), Textbook Music, Dean Benson, Safari, Cain Sinclair, Ace Stojevski, Lou-is McCoy, Jon Beta, Matt Radovich Lucky Coq High Society Rainbow Hotel Hobbs Angel Of Death, Blackened, Desecrator, Harlott, Malakyte, Nothing Sacred Bendigo Hotel Holliava, Mercury White, Fortnight Jumbo, Aubrey Grove Ruby’s Lounge I’lls’, Albatross, Electric Sea Spider, Flash Forest Laundry John Course, Arlen De Silva, Brad Sassman, Funky Colin McMillan, Prequel, Greg Sara, Mental Response OneSixOne John Rousvam, Ping Tuteri Idgaff Bar and Venue Lime Cordiale, Yeo, Hot English, Granton Display Esplanade Basement Los Chicos, Bits of Shit, The Swingin’ Nutsacks The Old Bar M- Phazes, Flagrant, Agent 86, Ayna, Jessi I, Lady Banton Bimbo Deluxe Marcus Knight, DJ Xander James Temperance Hotel Masks Edinburgh Castle Front Bar Peak Twins, Scott & Charlene’s Wedding The Tote Pedro, Tranter, Smoking Toddlers Esplanade Gershwin Room Plague Doctor, Wolfy & The Batcubs, Horatio Crane Yah Yah’s Ricky Muscat & Rockefeller Veludo Ron S Peno & The Superstitions, Sailor Days, Oliver Mann Regal Ballroom Running on Reality Miss Libertine Science Test Tago Mago
Snuf.au, Jay Carns, Milo Tornderson Revolver Upstairs Steve Magnusson Trio Uptown Jazz Café Stevie Mink, Katt Niall, Magoo, Sneddon, Tiesbeau Commercial Hotel Sweet Teeth, Humans, Udays Tiger, Doc Holiday Takes The Shotgun, Rattlin’ Bones Blackwood Tania Vulcano, Stacy Pullen, M.A.N.D.Y., Clive Henry Billboard Teknia, The Space Keys, Vendetta Barwon Club The Dub Captains, Keshie Bar Open The Hollands, Penny Larkins Wesley Anne The Monday Project, Ivagabondi, Wiley Red Fox, Penelope Swales 303 Bar The Ocean Party, Full Ugly, Machine, Cool Drinks, A Lonely Crowd, Vincent, The Nest Itself, Lunaire Gasometer Hotel The Ten In One Wesley Anne, Arvo Show The Wild Comforts Edinburgh Castle (Dining Room) Underlights, Demon Parade, Mary Of the Moon Northcote Social Club Uptown Groove The Order Of Melbourne Victor Pender Cape Café Vimm, Messed Up, The Sunsleepers, Carp Brunswick Hotel Wombat Inferno Thornbury Local Yacht Club DJ’s, Hunting Grounds Bended Elbow, Geelong Yvette Johannson, The Joe Ruberto Bennetts Lane Zappa Plays Zappa Palace Theatre
SAT 07 37 Degree Star, Remission Theory, Lane Chaser, Private Radio Ruby’s Lounge Austin Band Baha Tacos Benny Btwo, Brooklyn Queenz, Nice Guy Eddie, Nick Arcade, Perplex Laundry Between The Wars Empress Hotel Billy Hoyle, Duchesz, MZ Rizk, Wasabi First Floor Boogs v Spacey Space, Nick Coleman, Silversix, Hey Sam Bimbo Deluxe Broderick Smith, Matt Walker Union Hotel Brunswick Cannonball Bennetts Lane Chico Flash, Lo Fi Operatics The Prague Chris Wilson The Drunken Poet Clampdown Rochester Castle Hotel Craterface, Risk and Reason, Sewercide Bendigo Hotel
Cupcakes, David Bass, Matt Cant, Jumbo, Ms Butt, Same-O Revolver (upstairs) Darren Coburn, Luke McD, Nick Coleman Lounge Bar Divorced, Eastlink, Old Mate, Black Jesus, Rort, Soma Coma, Kicked In Gasometer Hotel Docter Sloth, The Unicycle King, The Testicular Bebop Revue Edinburgh Castle Edd Fisher, Knave Knixx Red Bennies Einstein Au Go Go Musicland Emmy Bryce, Kate Vigo, Brendan Maclean The Palais, Hepburn Springs Finlo White, Joe Sofo Co. Nightclub Frazer Adnam, Scott McMahon, Jamie Vlahos, Mr Magoo, Ziggy Billboard Grong Grong, The Paul Kidney Experience, Bodies, School Girl Report The Old Bar Hed Kandi, Dean T, Johnny M, Nova, Tate Strauss Fusion Nighclub Inedia, Dear Stalker, Charm, The General Brunswick Hotel Jacket Off Veludo Jacket Off Velvet Lounge Joelistics, Candice Monique, You and Your Music, Phil Para Band Esplanade Front Bar Johnny Rock & The Limits, Cosairs, DJ Wowlace, Red Leader Revolver Upstairs Keshie Tony Starr’s Kitten Club KiNK (Bulgaria), Jamie Stevens, Anri, Steve Ward, Brad Daniels, The Psyde, D’Fro, Moonshine, iLLResponce Lucky Coq Lehmann B. Smith, Natasha Rose, Laura Jean The Toff In Town Marcus Knight, DJ Xander James Temperance Hotel Mark Snarski, The Nearly Brothers Pure Pop Records Max Hay, Warren Howden Thornbury Local Michelle Parsons Thornbury Theatre Mistaken Identity Paris Cat Jazz Club Natalie Carolan Edinburgh Castle Front Bar Odiusembowel, NowYou’reFucked, Wolfe, Goon Soaked Rag, Xenos The Tote Paul Williamson Uptown Jazz Café Phil Para Esplanade Gershwin Room Plum Crazy, DJ Dozza Bended Elbow, Geelong SHERIFF, Sun God Replica, Jackals Cherry Bar Ships Piano The Tote, Front Bar
Sir Jolly Goodshow, Tzolkin, The Fog, Barefoot Deadleys Esplanade Basement Solid Julie Rainbow Hotel Sons Of Ionian Sea, Swidgen, System of Venus, Moth, Battle Axe Howlers Evelyn Hotel Spencer P Jones, The Escape Committee, The Patron Saints Tago Mago Steve Punch, Jon Montes, Syme Tollens BluAfterGlow Steve Sakkas, Rex & Chapo, Interpulse, Decoy, Wavemotion, Zozan-Thelic, Andycan, Menno, Dom Hogan My Aeon Storming Vegas, Angry Mules, Carta Extremis, Fathoms, Sideshow, Treats Pony Suingue Brazuca Dizzy’s Jazz Club Sunshine Sisters The Famous Spiegeltent Terry Serio, Emma Swift Lyrebird Lounge Tess McKenna & the Shapiros Union Hotel Brunswick, Arvo The Afrobiotics Bar Open The Bellastrades, Phoebe Spinks, Keith Dimech Wesley Anne The Nearly Brothers, Tyson Slithers, The Phat Chicks Pure Pop Courtyard The Playbook, My Favourite Accident Bang The Savages, DJ Sye Saxon, 60s Frat Party LuWow The Vanguards, The Scientest, Precious Jules, Sly Grog The Retreat Hotel Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue Corner Hotel Voodoo Economic, Lady Danger Victoria Hotel Weekender Yah Yah’s Whipped Cream Chargers, Mesa Cosa, India Bhati John Curtin Hotel Winterplan, Brightly 303 Bar Wolfy and the Batcubs Penny Black Yacht Club DJs, Hunting Grounds Karova Lounge, Ballarat Yeo Wesley Anne, Arvo Show
SUN 08 Alabama 3, Cash Savage & The Last Drinks Prince Bandroom Alex Lashlie, Jack Donne Great Britain Hotel Andrew Higgs The Drunken Poet Andrew McDonald, Strathmore, G-Pop Bendigo Hotel Ben Browning, Geoffrey O’Connor, Cut Copy DJs, Knightlife, Francis Chang The Toff In Town
Bonnie Anderson Band, Rob Farnham The Retreat Hotel Callum G’ Froerer Quartet Uptown Jazz Café Chris Wilson Rainbow Hotel Daryl Braithwaite, Phil Ceberano, Dale Ryder Band, Bad Boys Batucada Esplanade Front Bar Dead Meadow, Pink Mountaintops, Matt Sonic & The High Times Cherry Bar Don Hillman’s Secret Beach St Andrews Hotel Fabulous Thunderbirds, Canned Heat Corner Hotel George Hysteric, Rohan Bell Towers The Carlton Golden Fleece, Mr George, Inkswel, Ennio Styles, J’Nett, Junji & Harry, Adam Askew, Booshank Lucky Coq Hazel Grove, Circus Therapy, Hessian, Morning After, Black River Rebellion Brunswick Hotel Jack Donne, Alex Lashlie The Great Britain Hotel Jimi Hocking’s Blues Machine Wheelers Hill Hotel John Course Berwick Springs Hotel Jose Nieto Cruzao Arepa Bar Jules Sheldon, Tom Benjamin Tago Mago Kate Mulqueen, TJ Quinton Bar Nancy Lily and King The Drunken Poet Lowriders Mentone Hotel Madre Monte Bar Open Mama’s Rejects, Daniel Gavin, Degrees Of Separation, Marble Orchard Idgaff Bar and Venue Mondo Loco, Jani Ho Loop Monica Hanns, DJ P. King, Edd Fisher, Bossman, Boy Go Yoko, Polat, Edo Bimbo Deluxe Moonee Valley Drifters, Marty Kelly, Aubury Maher Lomond Hotel New Found Glory, Taking Back Sunday, The Maine Festival Hall Noriana Kennedy Trio, Breaking Heart Benton Penny Black Open Decks Thornbury Local Pat Robertson Town Hall Hotel Phil Para Duo, Phil Manning Bay Hotel Phill Manning The Bay Mordialloc Seth Lakeman, Carus Thompson Bennetts Lane Simon Wright Band, Lotek, D’Fro Veludo
INPRESS • 49
Skyscraper Stan, DJ Treble Kicker The Old Bar Sneaky Sound System Palace Theatre Staffan Songs, Tim Haines Thornbury Theatre Straight Jacket Nation, Soma Coma Gasometer Hotel Sunset Blush, Sarah Eida, Rouge Fonce, Eva McGowan, Sleeplever 303 Bar Take Your Own, Public Liability, Question, The Last Design, Little Foot, Mr Sharp Pony Terry Serio, Emma Swift Pure Pop Records The Bona Fide Travellers Victoria Hotel The Hellhounds, Elephant Esplanade Basement The Jokers, Strine Singers Edinburgh Castle Front Bar The Large Number 12s, Emma Swift, Terry Serio, Richard Lawson Pure Pop Courtyard The Leslie Avril Band The Standard Hotel The Nearly Brothers, Rob Snarski Northcote Social Club The ReChords The Gem
The ReChords The Gem Hotel The Vasco Era, Money For Rope, The Pretty Littles, Mary Of the Moon Esplanade Gershwin Room True Radical Miracle, High Tea, Forteen Nights at Sea, Faspeedelay The Tote Undercolours, Young Mavericks Evelyn Hotel Underlights Caravan Music Club Voodoo Economic, Lady Danger Victoria Hotel, Brunswick Yacht Club DJâ€™s, Hunting Grounds Karova Lounge, Ballarat
MON 09 Animaux, The Mcqueens Workers Club Breaking Heart Benton, Jenny Biddle, TJ Quinton Grumpyâ€™s Green Dave Evans The Famous Spiegeltent Eaten By Dogs, Pete Spark The Old Bar Green House McKillops Hilarious Cherry Bar
Lady Noir, Kiti Bimbo Deluxe Marc Hannaford Trio 303 Bar Ms Butt, Mu-Gen, MZ Risk, Street Poetics Laundry Scotdrakula, Comfort Zones Evelyn Hotel Seth Lakeman, Carus Thompson Bennetts Lane Sublime with Rome Palace Theatre The Bonafide Travellers Victoria Hotel, Brunswick The Rubens, Sures, The Pretty Littles Northcote Social Club Van She, Canyons, Mu Gen Esplanade Front Bar Velvet Archers, Planet Jumper Veludo Ziggy Marley, The Dub Captains Corner Hotel
TUE 10 Adam Askew Bimbo Deluxe Alex & Eve Veludo Big Seal and the Slipper Few, Joe Forrester, Samuel Banks, India Flynn 303 Bar Date Brothers, Daniel Weltlinger Paris Cat Jazz Club
David Bromberg Quartet The Toff In Town Emma Swift, Jon Schofield, Suzy Connolly, Josh Durno, Genevieve Chadwick, Richard Lawson, The Twoks Esplanade Front Bar Jimmy Stewart, Clinkerfield, Miserable Little Bastards John Curtin Hotel Maestro of Ceremonies Dizzyâ€™s Jazz Club Nashua Leeâ€™s Rabid Hawk Bennetts Lane Never Cheer Before You Know Whos Winning Revolver Upstairs Olivia Chindamo Quartet, Resonance, Undercoat Gertrudeâ€™s Brown Couch Patron Saints Cherry Bar Peter Ewing Labour In Vain Seal Palais Theatre Seasick Steve Corner Hotel The Rubens, Sures, Them Swoops Northcote Social Club
BAHA TACOS Saturday Austin Band
BANG Saturday The Playbook, My Favourite Accident
BAR OPEN Wednesday The Great Outdoors, Mole House, Stream 4 Thursday Tropical Space Lab, Nahuatl Sound System, Sonidero Esperanza, Galambo Friday The Dub Captains, Keshie Saturday The Afrobiotics Sunday Madre Monte
BENDED ELBOW, GEELONG Friday Yacht Club DJs, Hunting Grounds Saturday Plum Crazy, DJ Dozza
BILLBOARD Wednesday Iced Earth, Lord Thursday Matt Dean, Matty Grant, Phill Ross Friday Tania Vulcano, Stacy Pullen, M.A.N.D.Y., Clive Henry Saturday Frazer Adnam, Scott McMahon, Jamie Vlahos, Mr Magoo, Ziggy
BIMBO DELUXE Wednesday NHJ, Home Travel, Mesarthim, Viva Laâ€™Mour Thursday Gorge, Danni B, Amy Matilda Samsara, Atonix, Anri Katie Drover, Volta Friday M- Phazes, Flagrant, Agent 86, Ayna, Jessi I, Lady Banton Saturday Boogs v Spacey Space, Nick Coleman, Silversix, Hey Sam Sunday Monica Hanns, DJ P. King, Edd Fisher, Bossman, Boy Go Yoko, Polat, Edo Monday Lady Noir, Kiti Tuesday Adam Askew
Order your copy of AMID now! W NE ION IT ED
Thursday Bogan Nation, The Dukes of Deliciousness, The Superguns, Voodoocain Friday Vimm, Messed Up, The Sunsleepers, Carp Saturday Inedia, Dear Stalker, Charm, The General Sunday Hazel Grove, Circus Therapy, Hessian, Morning After, Black River Rebellion
ORD ER NOW
50 â€˘ INPRESS
Wednesday Kenny Wayne Shepard Thursday Keb Mo Saturday Trombone Shorty & Orleans Avenue
VENUE GUIDE Sunday Fabulous Thunderbirds, Canned Heat Monday Ziggy Marley Tuesday Seasick Steve
EMPRESS HOTEL Wednesday Whitaker, The Tea Leaves, Breaking Heart Benton Thursday Big Strong Brute, Great Earthquake, Mountain Static Saturday Between The Wars
ESPLANADE (WHOLE VENUE) Thursday Blue King Brown, Bonjah, Tijuana Cartel, School of Dub, Savona Sound System, Direct Influence, Jess Harlen, Ms Butt
ESPLANADE BASEMENT Friday Lime Cordiale, Yeo, Hot English, Granton Display Saturday Sir Jolly Goodshow, Tzolkin, The Fog, Barefoot Deadleys Sunday The Hellhounds, Elephant
ESPLANADE GERSHWIN ROOM Friday Pedro, Tranter, Smoking Toddlers Saturday Phil Para Sunday The Vasco Era, Money For Rope, The Pretty Littles, Mary Of the Moon
EVELYN HOTEL Thursday John Patrick & The Keepers, Mighty Sun, The Paper Street Soap Company Friday Raw Comedy Saturday Sons Of Ionian Sea, Swidgen, System of Venus, Moth, Battle Axe Howlers Sunday Undercolours, Young Mavericks Monday Scotdrakula, Comfort Zones
GRACE DARLING HOTEL Thursday The Ancients, Lower Plenty, Moon Dice
JOHN CURTIN HOTEL Saturday Whipped Cream Chargers, Mesa Cosa, India Bhati Tuesday Jimmy Stewart, Clinkerfield, Miserable Little Bastards
LOOP Thursday Dysphemic, Ms Eliza, J Nitrous, Monkee, Proximity Effect Sunday Mondo Loco, Jani Ho
LOUNGE BAR Wednesday Manchild, Mu-Gen, Danny Silver Thursday Agent 86, M-Phazes, DJ Flagrant, Tom Showtime, DJ Ayna Saturday Darren Coburn, Luke McD, Nick Coleman
Wednesday Kings of the North, DJ Gupstar, Bladerunner, Joybot Thursday Jane & Ben Daffy, Tom Evans, Jean Paul, Kodiak Kid, Child (Live), Muska, Darius Bassiray, Tahl, Remedy Friday Haul Music (Live), Textbook Music, Dean Benson, Safari, Cain Sinclair, Ace Stojevski, Lou-is McCoy, Jon Beta, Matt Radovich Saturday KiNK (Bulgaria), Jamie Stevens, Anri, Steve Ward, Brad Daniels, The Psyde, Dâ€™Fro, Moonshine, iLLResponce Sunday Golden Fleece, Mr George, Inkswel, Ennio Styles, Jâ€™Nett, Junji & Harry, Adam Askew, Booshank
NORTHCOTE SOCIAL CLUB Wednesday John Cooper Clarke, Johnny Green, John McCullagh Thursday Hiatus Kaiyote, Kilbot Kindergarden, Oscar & Martin Friday Underlights, Demon Parade, Mary Of the Moon Sunday The Nearly Brothers, Rob Snarski Monday The Rubens, Sures, The Pretty Littles Tuesday The Rubens, Sures, Them Swoops
PONY Thursday As a Rival, On Sierra, The Jail Bird Jokers, Strangers From Now On Friday Sweet Teeth, Humans, Udays Tiger, Doc Holiday Takes The Shotgun, Rattlinâ€™ Bones Blackwood Saturday Storming Vegas, Angry Mules, Carta Extremis, Fathoms, Sideshow, Treats Sunday Take Your Own, Public Liability, Question, The Last Design, Little Foot, Mr Sharp
PRINCE BANDROOM Thursday Yacht Club DJs, Hunting Grounds Sunday Alabama 3, Cash Savage & The Last Drinks
THE DRUNKEN POET Wednesday Leticia Maher, Hetty Kate Saturday Chris Wilson Sunday Andrew Higgs
THE DRUNKEN POET, ARVO SHOW Sunday Lily and King
THE OLD BAR Wednesday Smith St Band, Foxtrot, Japan For Thursday Johnny Gibson & The Dirty Dozen, The Bell St Delays, Tim Scanlan Friday Los Chicos, Bits of Shit, The Swinginâ€™ Nutsacks Saturday Grong Grong, The Paul Kidney Experience, Bodies, School Girl Report
Sunday Skyscraper Stan, DJ Treble Kicker Monday Eaten By Dogs, Pete Spark
THE STANDARD HOTEL Wednesday Lincoln MacKinnon Thursday Lincoln Mckinnon Sunday The Leslie Avril Band
THE TOFF IN TOWN Wednesday All The Colours, Gosteleradio, I/O Thursday Tom Milek, Francolin, Hayden Calnin Saturday Lehmann B. Smith, Natasha Rose, Laura Jean Sunday Ben Browning, Geoffrey Oâ€™Connor, Cut Copy DJs, Knightlife, Francis Chang Tuesday David Bromberg Quartet
THE TOTE Wednesday Los Chicos, The Meanies, LA Bastard, Thee Mighty Childish Thursday Soma Coma, Batpiss, Beat Disease, Kids Of Zoo Friday Peak Twins, Scott & Charleneâ€™s Wedding Saturday Odiusembowel, NowYouâ€™reFucked, Wolfe, Goon Soaked Rag, Xenos Sunday True Radical Miracle, High Tea, Forteen Nights at Sea, Faspeedelay
UNION HOTEL BRUNSWICK Saturday Broderick Smith, Matt Walker
WESLEY ANNE Wednesday Dead Albatross, The Tall Stories, The Asthmatics Thursday Jimmy Daniel, Conrad & The Band Friday The Hollands, Penny Larkins Saturday The Bellastrades, Phoebe Spinks, Keith Dimech
WORKERS CLUB Thursday Gin Wigmore Friday Bearhug Monday Animaux, The Mcqueens
WORKSHOP Wednesday Hoodrapz
YAH YAHâ€™S Thursday Los Chicos, Chromenips, Midnight Woolf, Johnny Casino, The Bowers Friday Plague Doctor, Wolfy and the Batcubs, Horatio Crane Saturday Weekender
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VIMM WITH GUESTS MESSED UP, THE SUNSLEEPERS, CARP SATURDAY THE 7TH OF APRIL - 9PM
INEDIA WITH GUESTS DEAR STALKER, CHARM, THE GENERAL 5PM
HOLLANDS WITH GUEST PAUL POMPHREY, ATLUK SUNDAY THE 8TH OF APRIL - 7PM
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INPRESS â€¢ 51
BEHIND THE LINES UP TO HIS OLD TRICKS
BROUGHT TO YOU BY
WITH MICHAEL SMITH
ALLANS PRO TOOLS CLINICS
Hosted by Avid Australia and presented by Drew Parsons (Audio Applications Specialists, AVID), Allans Music + Billy Hyde is giving you the chance to get better acquainted with Pro Tools 10 software with two free clinics, 6pm Monday 16 April at the Whitehorse Rd, Blackburn store and 6.30pm Tuesday 17 April at the Bourke St, Melbourne store. Get the inside on everything you need to compose, record, edit and mix high-quality audio with. Whether you’re a seasoned pro or just getting started in audio recording, Parsons and Pro Tools 10 will show you how to get the best sounding mixes possible, quickly and easily. As always, space is limited so it’s worth logging your interest by RSVPing.
NEIL’S NOT IMPRESSED
Neil Young recently gave the whole MP3 generation of music delivery a serve on MTV News: “I’m finding that I have a little bit of trouble with the quality of the sound of music today. I don’t like it. It just makes me angry. Not the quality of the music, but we’re in the 21st century and we have the worst sound that we’ve ever had. It’s worse than a 78 [rpm record]. Where are our geniuses? What happened? If you’re an artist and you created something and you knew the master was 100 percent great, but the consumer got five percent, would you be feeling good? I like to point that out to artists. That’s why people listen to music differently today. It’s all about the bottom and the beat driving everything, and that’s because in the resolution of the music, there’s nothing else you can really hear. The warmth and the depth at the high end is gone.” Due for release June 1, the new album, Americana, from Neil Young & Crazy Horse, was recorded and engineered at Audio Casa Blanca studio by John Hanlon, who co-produced the album with Young and Mark Humphreys.
John Lydon took this year’s model of Public Image Ltd out to Steve Winwood’s barn studio in the English Cotswolds to record their new album, This Is PiL, pretty much live and improvised. But, Lydon assures, it’s not “some horrible jazz album”. Louisiana singer/songwriter Dylan LeBlanc recorded half of his new album, Cast The Same Old Shadow, at FAME Studios in Muscle Shoals, then finished it in New Orleans. Frankfurt-based thrash metal band Tankard are currently in a studio in Buchen/Odenwald co-producing their next album with Michael Mainx (Onkelz, der W, Disbelief, D-A-D).
HOBO BLUESMAN SEASICK STEVE TOOK A FEW MOMENTS TO TELL DAN CONDON ABOUT THE PROCESS BEHIND GETTING THE SONGS TOGETHER AND ON TAPE FOR HIS FIFTH STUDIO ALBUM YOU CAN’T TEACH AN OLD DOG NEW TRICKS, A DIY AFFAIR WITH JUST A LITTLE HELP FROM SOME FAMOUS STRANGERS.
t’s hard to imagine an artist more casual about the creative process than Seasick Steve, and his no-fuss approach has remained the same throughout his career. “I didn’t never have no game plan,” he laughs when asked how he had intended approaching making a new record. “People have been telling me that it’s different and maybe I hear that now, through other people. I did the record the same, me and this guy Dan [Magnusson], who plays the drums, we just go and sit around and try a song and if it sounds pretty good we put it on the tape recorder, just cut it really quick like that, you know? There’s not a lot of fooling around or thinking about it too much. The main thing we got to figure out is how to stop each song, me and him just go crazy and we don’t know how to end the song, that’s the big challenge for the ones with drums anyway. Then he leaves and I sit around and do these kind of more quieter ones...” There’s a very slight step away from the grimy hobo blues of his past records, a firmer embrace of country music in a balladeering sense. Once again, Steve says he just did what seemed right. “I don’t know which ones make it sound different. I didn’t have no record company when I made this record, I got away from the Warner Brothers or Atlantic or whatever it was. So I was just kinda sitting around and I didn’t have anyone calling me or anything, it was pretty easygoing.”
Marvin Caesar and Curt Knoppel originally created Aphex Systems in 1975, where both men were responsible for inventing the hugely successful Aural Exciter. In 2011, the company was bought by DWV Entertainment, had its name shortened to Aphex and relocated to Burbank, California.
Playing everything himself, Sydney-born, Gold Coastbased blues rocker Mark Easton recorded, produced and mixed his new album Grind at his Plastic Donut Studios, with Rob McMullan then mastering it.
First, we’ll be having a look at the new Aphex Punch Factory, a studio quality optical compressor for guitar and bass that houses expensive rack-mounted circuitry in a stomp box.
The debut EP, Homemade Lemonade, by eight-piece Brisbane band StormChasers, was recorded in their home studio by the band’s members, mixed by longtime friend and upcoming sound engineer Brendan Cox, a graduate of the Griffith Music Conservatorium in Brisbane, and mastered by Peet Gardner. Dave Hammer (The Jezabels, Chicks Who Love Guns) recorded and produced the debut EP, The Dreaming, by Newcastle five-piece 1929Indian. Melbourne four-piece Howl At The Moon tracked their debut album Squalls over five days at Soundpark Studios with engineer/producer Myles Mumford, with Steven Schram then mixing the album, which was mastered by Jack The Bear. Sydney four-piece Tin Sparrow recorded their forthcoming, as yet untitled EP over four days with producer Liam Judson (Belles Will Ring, Cloud Control). NSW four-piece The Rubens are currently in NYC working on their debut album with producer David Kahne (Paul McCartney, Regina Spektor, The Strokes). Halfway Homebuoy are currently doing preproduction for their debut album at Damien Gerard Sound Studios in Sydney’s Balmain with Russell Pilling engineering and co-producing the sessions with the band. 52 • INPRESS
“It’s about as relaxed as it gets because I make it in my house! When I get tired, I go and take a nap. But we sit around and have a couple bottles of wine and just take it easy.” As someone who has done his fair share of music production and audio engineering in the past, he was more than confident setting up a home studio with plenty of beautiful vintage gear – including an old Neve console and a 2” Studer tape machine – and taking care of business himself. “I think it’s real important,” he says of the specific equipment he used on the record. “It’s not just the sound, but it’s just how everything is so mechanical, big knobs and everything. I need to be able to feel what I’m doing. “I don’t know how people do stuff on a computer. I guess I could learn someday but I probably won’t. But I know it sounds good and that’s how we’ve always done everything, so I just can’t imagine no other way. These things, man, the reason they sound good is because they sound good. Then the computer things they copy them. They tell me you can get a lot of this old equipment but it’s on a computer now.” But there’s no begrudging of modern technology here; Seasick Steve absolutely understands why it is so prevalent. “There’s not much [vintage gear] around anymore and people don’t want to use tape because it’s cumbersome. All these people who learnt how to record in the past 15, 20 years, they learnt how to do all this digital stuff. I know they’re very clever at it, but for me it’s a little late in the game to start something new.” When asked if he could see himself going into a more traditional recording studio, Steve says the closest he’ll come will be taking a trip to a friend’s house. “I don’t see it, not for my own records, because I’ve got my own equipment and I like being at home. Although I just went and recorded a couple of songs with Jack White out in Nashville. He has a studio
at his home too and it felt pretty nice being there. We recorded two songs there, that was good.” One thing Steve definitely wanted on certain parts of this record was a bit more lower end. Obvious choice of instrument in this instance is a bass guitar. But who do you get to play it? “I was sitting around thinking, ‘Maybe we should get a bass on one of these songs.’ That’s how it started. But I don’t know no bass players. Dan was like ‘Man, what about the guy who was in Led Zeppelin? How do we go about doing that?’” Getting John Paul Jones to play on your record seems a lofty goal, but sure enough it turned out the legendary bassist was a fan and was more than happy to lay down some tracks. “Sure enough by hook or crook I left a message with someone who called him and asked if he wanted to play and he said, ‘Yep,’” Steve says, adding nonchalantly, “He sure is good, boy. Whoo-ee!” You Can’t Teach An Old Dog New Tricks is out now through PIAS/Liberator. Seasick Steve is playing Bluesfest on Saturday 7 and Sunday 8 April and the Corner on Tuesday 10.
APHEX PUNCH FACTORY
Look Around The Corner, the first full collaborative album for producer/musician Quantic, aka Will Holland, and singer/songwriter Alice Russell, was recorded at Quantic’s Sonido del Valle studio in his adopted home city of Cali, Colombia.
Living in Berlin for the past few years, former Sydneysider TJ Eckleberg returned home briefly last year to record a new album, West & Lime, at Megaphon in St Peters with engineer Shane Fahey, himself producing with a little assistance from Fahey and Tom Kazas (The Moffs), while William Bowden mastered the record at his King Willy Sound facility in Balmain.
Easygoing is actually a laughable term when explaining how Seasick Steve made this record.
The Aphex Punch Factory is a great pedal that improves tone and helps your guitar or bass really shine in a mix, as well as out-performing standard stomp box compressors I’ve tried in the past. This pedal has all the glory of an expensive rack-mounted studio compressor housed in a portable little box.
For more information: www.galacticmusic.com.au
So what is a compressor you ask? More specifically, what is an optical compressor? A compressor is an effect that limits the dynamic range of a signal or reduces the difference between loud and soft so you get a more even sound. An optical compressor translates an audio signal to light source (LED light) and utilises a photocell to read the amount of light signal. This means that an optical compressor will automatically adjust to your playing style. The Punch Factory features a very basic control layout consisting of input, ratio and output. There is a standard guitar input and output jack as well as an XLR output that could harness phantom power from a mixing desk, perfect for live gigs. I tested the Punch Factory with an acoustic guitar and an electric bass going from a desk to a powered speaker. First I used it with my acoustic, then EQ’d a decent tone (pedal bypassed) and strummed for a bit. I tested the pedal with a low ratio (amount of compression) and used the input and output to match the bypass level to listen out for any inconsistencies in tone. I was pleased that the Punch Factory sounded almost exactly the same but a touch brighter. Increasing the input level and ratio squashed the signal, even further enhancing sustain and harmonics but at the same time inducing a little bit of feedback, so you need to be careful not to drive it too hard at gigs. Next up was my bass guitar. Now any bass player or sound engineer knows how dynamic a bass can be, so compression is our friend here, and for me I use lots to ensure there’s a nice warm rumble constantly in the mix. Again, I started off the same way, EQ’ing a direct tone and later adding compression. The Punch Factory sounded even better with the bass and I ran the input and drove the compression so hard the walls were shaking (I can’t wait to try this pedal at a gig)!
AER POCKET TOOLS
AER POCKET TOOLS
AER describe themselves as the ‘Acoustic People’, a company dedicated to providing musicians with the finest quality acoustic reproduction tools since 1992 and now aiming to dazzle once again with their new range of Pocket Tools. The three Pocket Tools examined were the Dual Para EQ, Colourizer and Dual Mix, and each unit was tested going into a self-powered speaker. The first pedal, the Dual Para EQ, houses two independent parametric equalisers, each with level, bandwidth and frequency controls. There are also two frequency-range knobs on each EQ that places the range between either 90Hz to 1.6kHz, or 680Hz to 11kHz. I started by bypassing the pedal and getting the best acoustic tone I could, then played for a bit before I turned the unit on. This made an already good tone sound fantastic. Both equalisers were very smooth and it was evident that only the finest components had been sourced in constructing this unit. You could go from a tight scoop to a wide scoop by increasing the bandwidth, and a wide crossover between frequency ranges one and two made for a very ‘musical’ application. Up next was the Colourizer, an acoustic or mic preamp that employs an enhancer and equaliser in the signal chain. The preamp adds a fuller tone, the enhancer brings out harmonics, and the EQ either cuts or boosts frequencies. There’s also an XLR output on the back and a unique 24V phantom power switch capable of powering condenser mics. I tested the Colourizer with a Shure Beta 58 microphone and a Line 6 acoustic guitar. First off, my voice sounded notably thicker just by plugging into the preamp. Switching on the enhancer and leaving the controls flat added a hint of sparkle, and turning up the tone balance and intensity
APHEX PUNCH FACTORY added more crisp detail, and I used the Equalizer to add in more low mids for extra punch. The results on the acoustic were just as pleasing. The enhancer really helped the strings cut when playing fingerstyle and the equaliser sounded great by adding some tight bass at around 90Hz. The last unit, the Dual Mix, was by far the best of the lot. First, you can plug either a mic or line input into channel one or two, set the gain and high or low EQ. There’s also an EFX processor that adds two types of reverb, a delay and a doubling effect over both channels. The real corker however, is the AUX in, which takes in an RCA or minijack (1/8”) input and adds it into the mix with a separate control. Finally, a real world solution for musicians bringing backing tracks to gigs without a whole bundle of DIs onstage or requiring the sound guy to provide house music. The AER Pocket Tools really are a bunch of problemsolving tools, and the Dual Mix has so many applications outside the realm of live acoustic performance almost any musician could benefit from one. For more information: www.promusicaustralia.com Reza Nasseri
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54 • INPRESS
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Published on Apr 3, 2012
Melbourne is one of the few true rock’n’roll capitols of the world. And Inpress magazine is the voice of this great rock’n’roll city. For ov...