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N O W AVA I L A B L E O N I PA D • W E D N E S DAY 2 6 S E P T E M B E R 2 012 • I S S U E 12 4 3 • F R E E

OUR GUIDE TO THE MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL

ISSUE#1

SETH SENTRY

ANIMAL COLLECTIVE

HIGH ON FIRE

TIM AND ERIC

INSIDE

PETER COMBE PILLOWTALK ALLO DARLIN' COLLARBONES

INSIDE

www.themusic.com.au au


YOUR TIME, STARTS NOW. So make the most of it with a Bachelor of Creative Arts from Deakin University. It’s your time to find your visual style, focus your career with world-class equipment and create something truly unique with a photography, film and television, or animation and motion capture degree. It all starts now, so what in the world are you waiting for? Apply for Deakin by 28 September by visiting deakin.edu.au/art-ed/creative CRICOS Provider Code: 00113B

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WEDNESDAY 26TH SEPTEMBER

PLAY LIKE A GIRL

10PM.

THURSDAY 27TH SEPTEMBER

THE GALLANT TREES, CARLY FERN

8:00PM

FRIDAY 28TH SEPTEMBER

GODDESS GROOVES EMMA WALL, JESSIE LLOYD, ALISON FERRIER, AND RUTH KATERELOS 8:00PM $15/12 Saturday 29th September

FRILLY KNICKERS JAZZ BAND

4:00PM $15

SATURDAY 29TH SEPTEMBER

GABRIEL LYNCH, SIMON PHILLIPS, TOM TUENA

8:00PM $10

SUNDAY 30TH SEPTEMBER

MELTING POT

2:00PM $8

SUNDAY 30TH SEPTEMBER

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BURLESQUE AT THE WES ADELAIDE EVERHEART, PIXIE ELIXIR, THE CUNNING 8:00PM $20 CLARISSA + MORE

FRI...from 2pm ‘til late SAT - SUN...from 12pm ‘til late

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TUESDAY

OPEN MIC NIGHT

Spring Special NEW 2 SPRING MENU 8 • INPRESS

for 1 meals weekdays before 6pm and all day Mondays $12 Jugs of Cider till 6pm. OPEN FOR LUNCH FROM MIDDAY

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ISSUE 1243

W E D N E S D AY 2 6 S E P T E M B E R 2 0 1 2

Wed 26, Thu 27 & Mon 1 - Fringe Festival Choose Your Own Comedy Fri 28. 10pm - Skip & Swing The Dirty Gypsy - Zayler - Buck Rogers - ctoafn - BennyBitTripp - Aaron Static DnB, Dubstep, Glitch & Liquid Visuals by Alt Esc Del Sat 29. 10pm - Unstable Sounds HEDONIX, AUTONOMECH, ISH'MIA, AZRIN, MEGAPIXEL & SHANTARAAM. bringing psychedelica and progressive Visual Picasso's KYOGEN & NINJA. Mon 1. 6:30pm - Process emerging architects address new concepts in contemporary architecture October topic - Glassmasters Tue 2. 7pm - Pleasure Forum Australia Oct gathering - Women, Sex & Orgasm with Mista Samsam, Clemintine Ford, Maureen Matthews & Hyperballad

EVERMORE INPRESS 12 14 16 18 19 20 21 22 22 24 24 26 28 28 28 28

Tour announcements in Foreword Line Moves and shakes with Industry News Thesatisfaction spread positive vibes Seth Sentry returns after three years Animal Collective juggle family with studio time The Winter People don’t resort to the computer TZU see dead people High On Fire talk stolen guitars and rehab Evermore discuss their Reg Grundies Gary Clark Jr is more than just a singer/guitarist Fear Factory love Australia Peter Combe takes the Taste Test Allo Darlin’ are back in town Prepare for the horror of Ulcerate PillowTalk are beloved by hipsters The Vaudeville Smash are stretching beyond their yacht rock love 30 Weddings, Parties, Anything are off the bench 30 Collarbones are long-distance collaborators 32 On The Record rates new releases from Muse and Battlesnake

FRONT ROW 35 Check out what’s happening This Week In Arts 35 Tim & Eric are breaking comedic convention 35 Marcel Dorney chats about Elbow Room’s two Fringe Fest shows

SATURDAY 29 SEPTEMBER

No music today.

Swampy Delta blues from this lovable, long-time trio. 5pm

THE UNION HOTEL

BRUNSWICK 109 UNION ST, BRUNSWICK UHBBOOKINGS@YAHOO.COM.AU

9388 2235

10 • INPRESS

BACK TO INPRESS 39 Muso, your new monthly supplement dedicated to gear, reviews and studio 71 Our guide to the Melbourne Fringe Festival 89 Gig Of The Week heads to Castlemaine 89 Live:Reviews is Madden for Good Charlotte 92 Sarah Petchell will Wake The Dead with her punk and hardcore talk 92 Heavy shit with Adamantium Wolf 92 Dan Condon blues and roots in Roots Down 92 Other music with Fragmented Frequencies 93 The freshest in urban news with OG Flavas 93 Pop culture therapy with The Breakdown 93 Hip hop with Intelligible Flow 93 Fresh currents with Dance Moves 94 The best Live gigs of the week 98 If you haven’t appeared in Fred Negro’s Pub, your mother probably still speaks to you 98 Jeff Jenkins gets down and local in Howzat! 100 Our Gig Guide fills your diary for the weekend 103 Who’s playing where in our Venue Guide 105 Find your new band in our classy Classifieds 106 Gear and studio reviews in BTL

Inpress profiles a huge amount of Melbourne Fringe Festival shows in Front Row this week, and we’ve got our mitts on a ridiculous number of tickets to Fringe shows to throw your way. We’ve also scored some passes to Glass Towers’ upcoming Evelyn gig.

CREDITS EDITORIAL

Group Managing Editor Andrew Mast Editor Shane O’Donohue music@inpress.com.au Assistant Editor Bryget Chrisfield Editorial Assistant Samson McDougall Arts Coordinator Cassandra Fumi frontrow@inpress.com.au Staff Writer Michael Smith

SUNDAY 30 SEPTEMBER

Collard, Greens & Gravy

36 Opal O lV Vapour, Rudy R d Sparks S k andd Hello H ll My Name reviewed 36 Five minutes with artist Donna Sadler 37 Backstage Hollywood with Trailer Trash 37 On The Road’s director Walter Salles 37 Russell Brand is an outsider on the inside

GIVEAWAYS GALORE!

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GRAND FINAL

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themusic.com.au

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INTERNS

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INPRESS • 11


FOREWORD LINE

NEWS FROM THE FRONT

INPRESS PRESENTS

MAGGOTS AWAY

Barry Gibb will return to Australian shores in February as he launches his Mythology tour. With a career that has spanned more than five decades, Barry Gibb stands as one of the most prolific singersongwriter-producers of the modern era, and as the eldest brother and creative leader of the Bee Gees, was integral in one of the most successful vocal groups in rock and roll history. Gibb and band will play Tuesday 12 February at Rod Laver Arena. Tickets are on sale Friday 5 October via livenation.com.au.

Maggot Fest is back! Now into it’s third year of rowdy, loudy and crowdy punk rock, the party is going into overdrive. This year’s line-up includes Useless Eaters (USA), The Raw Nerves (NZ), Deaf Wish, Kitchen’s Floor, Whores, Straightjacket Nation, Nun, White Walls, Leather Towel, Old Mate, Ghastly Spats, Family, Low Life, Soma Coma, Austmuteants, Constant Mongrel, Taco Leg, The Stevens and tons more. The shows happen on Friday 2 and Saturday 3 November at the Gasometer and Sunday 4 at Wooly Bully (afternoon) and the Town Hall Hotel (evening). Multi and single day passes are on sale now through Oztix.

WEDNESDAY 26 SEPTEMBER

RESIDENCY – FINAL NIGHT

CLEVER AUSTIN KIRKIS DEMIAN DJ JACKSON MILES ENTRY $7, 9PM

THURSDAY 27 SEPTEMBER

EP LAUNCH

BIG WINTER BROKEN SPLENDOR MELISSA MAIN BAND POLO CLUB DJS

ENTRY $10, $15 WITH EP, 8.30PM $2.50 POTS, $5 VODKAS!

FRIDAY 28 SEPTEMBER

KING PARROT DECIMATUS

ESPY HIP HOP NIGHT

RIDE THE WAKE

Byron Bay’s In Hearts Wake are set to embark on a tour in support of their blistering UNFD debut Divination. Joining them are Sydneysiders Sienna Skies and Shinto Katana, along with Hallower. The Divination tour touches down Saturday 20 October at Bang and Sunday 21 at OLP (Ringwood, all ages).

GET A DOSE

Archie Roach has sung of suffering, pain and injustice in a manner more effective than most. But in the aftermath of a horrible 2010 he has turned to joy and hope and the idea of lifting himself and others up through song. Roach’s latest album Into The Bloodstream will be released in October and he’ll follow it up with a run of shows accompanied by his star-studded 13-piece ensemble. He plays as part of the Australasian Worldwide Music Expo on Thursday 15 November at the Arts Centre Playhouse.

ABRASION RED SKY BURIAL BURNING IN WHITE

Ben Harper

BLUESFEST FIRST ANNOUNCEMENT

Bluesfest has presented its first artist announcement for the Easter 2013 (Thursday 28 March – Monday 1 April) event held at the Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm. The line-up thus far includes Ben Harper & Band, Santana, Iggy & The Stooges (on their final tour), Chris Isaak, Wilco, Bonnie Raitt, Derek Trucks & Susan Tedeschi, Glen Hansard & The Frames, Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls, Playing For Change and lots more. Keep your eyes on bluesfest.com.au for further announcements, information and tickets.

SUNDAY 30 SEPTEMBER

GRANSTON DISPLAY THE SUNSLEEPERS

IN THE FAMILY

ENTRY $15, 8PM

SATURDAY 29 SEPTEMBER

GRAND FINAL AT THE EV!!

ZOOPHYTE

SINGLE LAUNCH PANDORUM THE HIDING THE VENDETTAS

ENTRY $10, 8.30PM

MATINEE SHOW

CERES FAHRENHEIT 45 (ACOUSTIC) ENTRY $5, 1:30PM

SHOWCASE SERIES III

PANCHROMATIC PURPLE TUSKS COHORIS WOMEN MILLINGTON PHANTOM 309 JANE LN UNNECESSARY TENSION BURNHAM BEACHES DROP BUNNY

ENTRY $7 DOOR, $5 PRESALE THRU MOSHTIX, 7PM

MONDAY 1 OCTOBER

RESIDENCY – OPENING NIGHT

FRANCOLIN THE OCEAN PARTY THE CLITS

$2 ENTRY, 8.30PM $10 JUGS!

Redcoats have announced the release of their debut self-titled album on Friday 19 October. They’re taking it on the road and will please play Thursday 8 November at Karova Lounge (Ballarat), Friday 9 at the Bended Elbow (Geelong), Saturday 10 at Ding Dong Lounge, Thursday 15 at Star Bar (Bendigo) and Friday 16 at Whalers Hotel (Warrnambool).

Jeff The Brotherhood’s new LP Hypnotic Nights, featuring Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys behind the production desk, is an album that uniquely blends elements of indie, punk, garage and psychedelic rock. The first single, Sixpack, is a fuzzed-out, sun-drenched singalong driven by reverb-heavy riffs and propulsive drumbeats. Songs like Leave Me Out and Dark Energy venture into new musical territory for Jeff The Brotherhood. They’re heading our way for Big Day Out and will also play Wednesday 23 January at the Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine) and Thursday 24 at the Corner Hotel.

GAY PEEPS

JURASSIC WARRIORS

IN THE RED CORNER

Gay Paris are a dirty fucking rock band from Sydney, and come November they’ll be doing dirty fucking rock band things all over the country to promote the first single The Demarcation Of Joseph Hollybone from their forthcoming sophomore album. They play Friday 30 November at the Tote and Saturday 1 December at the Nash (Geelong). Both shows feature special guests The Peep Tempel.

Mantra is fast becoming one of Australia’s most eminent hip hop artists and is bringing his conscious style to the Espy on Friday 12 October. Mantra will be joined by Dylan Joel, Remi and Flagrant for a night of free local hip hop.

DELUXE SAMPOLOGY

Following the release of his debut album Doomsday Deluxe in June, and a highly successful Super Visual Apocalypse tour across numerous sold-out shows this year (including a highlight performance at Splendour In The Grass), Sampology announces the release of the second single from the album, Around The Globe (featuring Serocee), and a 14-date Australia and New Zealand DJ tour. He plays Can’t Say on Friday 19 October at Vault 8.

CHAPTER MUSIC TURNS 20

Beginning as a cassette label in Perth in 1992, Chapter Music has spread its wings over the last two decades, relocating to Melbourne in 1995 and becoming one of the nation’s most enduring and respected independent labels. 20 Big Ones is a lavish 20-song double vinyl album featuring unreleased tracks by current Chapter artists and rare from-the-vault tracks from early Chapter artists. Strictly a limited-edition vinyl-only release, 20 Big Ones wlll be available at the Chapter birthday party on Saturday 17 November at the North Melbourne Town Hall, which features Crayon Fields, Twerps, Beaches, Clag, Pikelet, Laura Jean, Primitive Calculators, Bum Creek, Standish/ Carlyon, Jonny Telafone, New Estate and more.

INPRESS PRESENTS

GIBB’S MYTHOLOGY

Velociraptor released their mini-LP The World Warriors at some point in the last week or so. Once this happened, the game changed. On a quest to find a band of bros to take on tour with them – ones with a mutual love of club bangers/dancefloor anthems – they found Sydney’s very own Palms. They’ll bring it to the Tote on Friday 19 October.

BACK OFF!

LA punk-rock supergroup OFF! have had busy year off the back of their critically acclaimed self-titled debut album. Summer 2013 will see them bring their explosive old-school rock show to the national Big Day Out, and it’s been announced they’ll also headline sideshows. They’ll play Wednesday 23 January at the Corner Hotel.

PANTHER DREEMS

Slam-dunk Sydney shred-rock trio Step-Panther are stoked to unleash brand-new single Maybe Later, which was recorded during sessions in Berlin earlier this year with producer Simon Berkfinger (ex-Philadelphia Grand Jury) and mixed by Wade Keighran (from Wolf & Cub). Step-Panther will launch the single on a national tour throughout October with support on all shows from Adelaide’s Bad Dreems. They’ll play Friday 12 October at the Workers Club.

COLLISION COURSE

Following on from their two blistering sold-out shows at the Corner Hotel in August, Melbourne three-piece Children Collide are playing a very special show at the Espy on Friday 28 December before heading down to Pyramid Rock Festival to welcome in 2013. Tickets are $25+BF available via espy.com.au and all Oztix outlets.

TUESDAY 2 OCTOBER

RESIDENCY – OPENING NIGHT

HOWARD DEMIAN SUNK JUNK SEA LEGS

ENTRY $2, 8PM $10 JUGS!

COMING UP TIX AVAILABLE THRU MOSHTIX: FRANCOLIN (MONDAYS IN OCTOBER) HOWARD (TUESDAYS IN OCTOBER CAMP A LOW HUM SHOWCASE (OCT 3) JERICCO - SINGLE LAUNCH (5 OCT) MOROCCAN KINGS – EP LAUNCH (OCT 6) GLASS TOWERS – SINGLE LAUNCH (OCT 12) NE OBLIVISCARIS (OCT 13) GHOST ORCHID – BAND LAUNCH (OCT 19) WE ROB BANKS – SINGERS FINAL SHOW (OCT 20)

FACEBOOK.COM/PAGES/THE-WORKERS-CLUB TWITTER.COM/THEWORKERSCLUB Wed 26 Sept

Wed 3 Oct

(ALBUM LAUNCH)

(SINGLE LAUNCH)

JAREK

SKIPPY’S BRAIN OH DEANNA Thu 27 Sept

CHICKS WHO LOVE GUNS (EP LAUNCH)

Sun 7 Oct

TIGERTOWN

Thu 4 Oct

STICKY FINGERS

Sun 14 Oct

BEC LAUGHTON (BRIS)

Wed 10 Oct

Wed 17 Oct

Fri 26 Oct

SAT 3 NOV

(7” SINGLE LAUNCH)

(SINGLE LAUNCH)

(TRIPLE TREAT TOUR)

(SINGLE LAUNCH)

DAVID O’CONNOR AMANITA

ISAACDE HEER

Fri 5 Oct

Thu 11 Oct

Thu 18 Oct

DIRTY BALLROOM

(EP TOUR)

ALI BARTER

(EP LAUNCH)

HEY GERONIMO

Sat 6 Oct

ROYAL PARADE FOX ROAD

(SINGLE LAUNCH)

THE ENGAGEMENT (SINGLE LAUNCH) Sun 30 Sept (matinee show) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’

PATRICK JAMES (SINGLE LAUNCH)

VANCE JOY

MAXI

HARTS THAT GOLD STREET BAND

THE GRISWOLDS

Sat 29 Sept

THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS Sun 7 Oct (matinee show) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’

THE EASTERN (NZ)

Wed 31 Oct ‘I OH YOU & CONVERSE PRES’

HAT FITZ & CARA ROBINSON

Fri 28 Sept

LUCY’S CROWN

Sun 21 Oct (matinee show) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’

MARK LOWNDES

CENTRE & THE SOUTH TINY LITTLE HOUSES

DARK ARTS THE RED LIGHTS

CALADONIA DJ DANGER

12 • INPRESS

THE ARCHETYPAL

THEWORKERSCLUB.COM.AU

Fri 12 Oct

Fri 19 Oct

(SYD) (EP LAUNCH)

THE PREATURES (SYD)

Sat 13 Oct

Sat 20 Oct

(SINGLE LAUNCH)

(TWO SETS)

STEP-PANTHER BAD DREEMS BORED NOTHING

ESTHER HOLT THE PRETTY LITTLES LISA SALVO

themusic.com.au

LLOYD SPIEGEL ALISTER TURILL

HALLOWEEN HOUSE OF HELL’ FEAT. VIOLENT SOHO

(ALBUM LAUNCH)

THEM SWOOPS

ARGENTINA TOKYO DENMARK SWEDEN

ELIZABETH ROSE

Sat 27 Oct

EVERY MONDAY! LA NIGHTS $10 PINT & BURRITO BEFORE 8PM BREAKING & ENTERING DJS DJ FLETCH (24 SEP) WOODY MCDONALD DJ FLETCH (1 OCT)

Sun 28 Oct ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’

TIMBER & STEEL SUNDAY LUNCH SPECIALS

TIN SPARROW (SYD)

JACK CARTY

JACKSON MCLAREN PINKY BEECROFT (SOLO) Sun 28 Oct (matinee show) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’

TRAICOS

(ALBUM LAUNCH)

ANNA SMYRK & THE APPETITES

$14 STEAK $14 STEAK W/ CHIPS AND SALAD $14 CHICKEN PARMA W/ CHIPS AND SALAD $14 VEGETARIAN LASAGNE W/ CHIPS AND SALAD $7 PINT BULMERS


INPRESS • 13


FOREWORD LINE

NEWS FROM THE FRONT

INPRESS PRESENTS

LEADERS OF THE PACK

BIG FREEDIA’S DATE CHANGE

Due to “unavoidable circumstances”, there will be some changes to Big Freedia’s Australian Tour schedule and the Tote show date has changed to Wednesday 17 October. All tickets for Big Freedia’s Saturday 20 performance remain valid for the re-scheduled show, no change or contact is required. Alternatively, ticket holders are entitled to a full refund including booking fee by contacting info@ oztix.com.au. All Melbourne refund requests must be submitted before 9am on Thursday 11 October.

As multiple Jägermeister Independent Music Award nominees this year, Chet Faker (aka Nick Murphy) and Joe Sukit of Royal Headache reflect on the year that was with Bryget Chrisfield.

GOBBLEDYGOOK

Australian electro-pop four-piece Strange Talk return to the scene with a brand new single Cast Away. To launch the single, the band have announced long awaited club shows in Sydney and Melbourne. Catch them on Friday 23 November at Ding Dong with special guests Movement.

GYPSY & THE CAT TOUR

Chet Faker How did you finance your nominated album/EP? Nick Murphy (aka Chet Faker): Because I did it all myself it didn’t cost as much money. I didn’t have to pay for studio time or a mixer or an engineer or session musos or gear or anything… It just cost me in time. Joe Sukit (Royal Headache, bassist): The LP didn’t really cost us that much to make, can’t remember how much we actually spent all up but it was probably around $1,500 or something – just saved up the money [we earned] from shows we’d played. Please describe for us the recording experience. JS: We drove down to Melbourne to record with a friend in a rehearsal space he recommended, set up our gear and basically just played for a day. That was it, pretty much; all of the instrumentals were done live in one day. We ate some Chinese food from across the street and listened to Internal Rot practise beneath us. What’s been a highlight in your artistic life within this past year? NM: There’s not so much one specific stand-out, but just meeting other musicians that I respect and look up to and actually having a conversation with them about music and having them understand what you’re saying and listening and learning from them. Even just being in America and having someone saying, “Hey, man, love your music.” That’s just like, “Woah!” JS: None of my life feels very artistic, so there aren’t too many highlights.

Royal Headache How about something that’s been a drag? NM: Probably touring… I’m mildly obsessed with songwriting, like, actually recording a finished piece: an actual song. So touring was really hard for me, because I’m always writing music so to be away from my studio and travelling around… I felt kind of anxious. JS: Biggest drag would be getting denied working visas for our second tour of the US because we were deemed to not have enough “international appeal”, after we spent a good chunk of the year organising/financing everything ourselves in between working full-time jobs. That was a shitty time.

It wasn’t too long ago that Perth’s Make Them Suffer released their debut album Neverbloom. Now they are set to take it on the road for an armful of shows to showcase tracks from the album and their previously released EP Lord Of Woe. Joining Make Them Suffer all the way from Chicago are Oceano along with Saviour and Boris The Blade. They play Sunday 25 November at Invasion Fest (Ringwood) and Monday 26 at the Eastern Station Hotel (Ballarat).

KIA ORA KORA

It’s been four years since Kora launched their self-titled debut album that connected the dots between funk, rock, reggae, metal, hip hop and electronic rhythms. Now this five-strong collective have discovered a whole new constellation of future-shocked funk, soul and R&B and they’re bringing it to Australia. Their new album, Light Years, will be released in October through Remote Control and in celebration they’ll play Saturday 24 November at the Hi-Fi.

RIVERBOATS LINE-UP

After last summer’s inaugural Riverboats Music Festival proved a huge success, it returns in February with a unique and memorable weekend of Australian music, locally sourced food and wine, and a gorgeous setting on the Murray River. The 2013 line-up includes Pete Murray, Clare Bowditch, Archie Roach, James Reyne, Tim Rogers, Joe Camilleri & The Black Sorrows, Mia Dyson, Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes, Gossling, The Bombay Royale, Cash Savage & The Last Drinks, Better Than The Wizards and Talisa Jobe. It takes place the weekend of 15 to 17 February and all details can be found at riverboatsmusic.com.

NEWTON FAULKNER SHOWS

On the back of a successful but all-too-brief recent Australian tour, Newton Faulkner will make a prompt return to Australia. Following the release of Write It On Your Skin, his third studio album, demand has been high for the English singer-songwriter with sold-out shows in Sydney and Melbourne. The good news is, he’s back for Bluesfest and will play headline shows on Thursday 11 April at the Prince and Sunday 14 at Caravan Music Club (Oakleigh).

WHAT: Jägermeister Independent Music Awards WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday 16 October, Revolt Art Space, Kensington

PRESENTED BY 14 • INPRESS

DOWN THE LANE

Jordie Lane will officially release his new single Fool For Love on Monday 8 October. To celebrate, he’ll be offering fans a free exclusive download for one week from Monday 1 October at jordielane.com. Jordie and band will also hit the road on a 15-date national tour and play Friday 9 November at Barwon Heads Bowling Club, Saturday 17 at the Loft (Warrnambool), Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 at Queenscliff Music Festival, Thursday 29 and Friday 30 at Northcote Social Club, Saturday 1 December at Baby Black Café (Bacchus Marsh) and Sunday 2 again at Northcote Social Club (matinee).

After an 18-month absence from the stage in Australia, Cosmic Psychos are proud to announce a very special show at the Tote on Friday 2 November. After the raging success of the recent crowd-funding campaign for the Psychos documentary Blokes You Trust, the Tote show will also be an opportunity for fans to be immortalised in rock history as the entire gig will be filmed and released as a bonus disc with the film. Support on the night will be from the Dukes Of Deliciousness, featuring none other than the son of late Cosmic Psychos guitarist Robbie Rocket.

FOUR’S COMPANY

Steve Balbi, Matthew Barber (Canada), Nicholas Roy and Asa Broomhall will all take the stage for intimate evenings in November, sharing tales about their craft and the influences behind their work. Of course, their musical gifts will also be on display throughout the night. They’ll perform on Thursday 8 November at the Workers Club, Friday 9 at Spirit Bar & Lounge (Traralgon) and Saturday 10 at Baby Black Cafe (Bacchus Marsh).

NEW VENUE’S STONES TRIBUTE

IN MIND

What does being an independent artist mean to you? NM: Releasing through an independent label, an Australian one, for my first release was something that I was definitely gonna do because I did have nibbles from all sorts of places but I just wasn’t interested in going straight there – there’s no rush, you know? And I’ve still got a lot of growing to do in my own music. What would you consider to be some of the benefits and limitations you’ve encountered through releasing independently? JS: I would say the major benefits are we don’t owe anyone money for anything we do or have done as a band. We’re still together as a band because we decide when we want to write or record or tour and who we play with etc.

INPRESS PRESENTS

In a short space of time Melbourne’s Gypsy & The Cat have infiltrated the Australian musical landscape, their debut album Gilgamesh making an impact and building a strong supporter base. Its successor, the duo’s new album The Late Blue, will be released in October and followed by national tour dates. They’ll play Friday 26 October at the Palace Theatre.

BLOKES YOU TRUST

TRAICOS TOUR

The Yarraville Club is opening its doors as a new 600-capacity music venue beginning with the 40th anniversary of the release of The Rolling Stones’ classic 1972 LP Exile On Main Street on Saturday 3 November featuring a special get-together of some local musicians performing Exile track-for-track. Ashley Naylor and band will open with a mood-setting set too. The all-star band will be joined by vocalists The Wolfgramm Sisters, Ash Naylor, Spencer P Jones, Dave Larkin, Matt Sonic, Pat Carmody, Nick Barker and more. Head to cherryrock.com.au for all the details and ticketing info.

Sydney-based singer-songwriter Catherine Traicos offers up a beguiling blend of alt.country, blues, roots and folk, delivered by one of the most distinctive and beautiful voices in the contemporary Australian landscape. Traicos will be playing some special shows in celebration of her new album In Another Life, including Sunday 28 October at the Workers Club.

THE HAY WAY

I Love Hate You is the third studio album from oneman blues explosion Claude Hay. The follow-up to his acclaimed 2010 LP Deep Fried Satisfied, I Love Hate You is a harder-edged and more variable outing than any of Hay’s previous efforts. In upcoming shows he plays Saturday 3 November at the Blues Train, Sunday 4 at the Workers Club, Saturday 10 at the Bendigo Blues Fest, Saturday 1 December again at the Blues Train and Sunday 2 at the Westernport Hotel (San Remo).

AUSTIN CITY LIMITS BDO COMP

Red Hot Chili Peppers are heading to Texas next month for Austin City Limits. The legendary rockers are sharing the bill with a handful of other acts coming down under for Big Day Out 2013 including Band Of Horses, Childish Gambino, Delta Spirit, Gary Clark Jr and Alabama Shakes. A trip for two to the sold-out festival is up for grabs by buying a BDO souvenir ticket at select General Pants Co stores and entering the draw. The comp closes Tuesday 4 October, details at bigdayout.com.

HUNGER BUSTERS

Brisbane four-piece Hungry Kids Of Hungary may have been quiet of late, but in reality the last two years have proved to be remarkable not only across international waters, but also with writing and recording their second album, You’re A Shadow, due for release in March 2013. In the meantime, the band have announced the delivery of a brand new single, Sharp Shooter, and a tour to celebrate. They’ll play Monday 5 November (cup eve) at the Northcote Social Club.

MANNIX-SAINT DOUBLE

It has been a massive 18 months for Melbourne’s Crooked Saint. He has independently released two EP’s and a double a-side, all to critical acclaim, triple j, commercial and widespread national community and ABC airplay. As a young yet experienced and maturing artist, Ashleigh Mannix’s boundless sound floats somewhere in the realm of folk, rockabilly and blues fusion. Catch Crooked Saint and Ashleigh Mannix together on Thursday 11 October at the Spirit Bar & Lounge (Traralgon), Friday 12 at the Western Port Hotel and Saturday 13 at Baby Black Café (Bacchus Marsh); and catch Crooked Saint alone on Thursday 15 November at the Empress, Friday 16 at the Bended Elbow (Geelong) and Saturday 17 at Pure Pop Records.

Just when you though it couldn’t get any bigger, Soundwave have made their third announcement. The new entries are: Killswitch Engage, The Vandals, Orange Goblin, The Sword, Chelsea Grin, The Chariot, Sharks, Northlane, O’brother, Dr.Acula and Milestones. The Melbourne event on Friday 1 March is sadly sold out.

ASTRONOMY

BUILDER’S HANDS

Stargazers are in for a rare celestial convergence as three of Australia’s brightest stars – Suzannah Espie, Liz Stringer and Chris Altmann – take to the road for a special tour to launch Espie’s new Sea Of Lights album. They converge on Friday 2 November at Basement Discs (early) and the Caravan Music Club (Oakleigh, late), Saturday 3 at Thornbury Theatre, Sunday 4 at the Old Hepburn Hotel (Hepburn Springs) and Thursday 15 at the Red Room (Ararat).

JOE MOORE TO THE WICK

The opportunity to take his music to a new audience is one Joe Moore is grasping with both hands. The Australia’s Got Talent finalist – until recently a regular busker at Sydney’s Pitt St Mall – is doing one show only in Melbourne, at the Wick in Brunswick on Saturday 6 October.

themusic.com.au

Killswitch Engage

MORE SOUNDWAVE

Canberra exports Hands Like Houses have had an absolute whirlwind year, kicking off 2012 by announcing the signing to acclaimed US indie Rise Records to release their debut album Ground Dweller in January. Make sure you don’t miss Hands Like Houses on their homecoming tour. They’ll play Friday 30 November at Beaconsfield Community Complex (all ages), Saturday 1 December at Bang and Sunday 2 at Musicman Megastore (Bendigo, all ages).

OVER & ABOVE

Above & Beyond are returning to reconnect with their Australian fanbase. The only dance act in history to win the Essential Mix Of The Year twice, Above & Beyond’s pedigree is unquestionable. Featuring support from Andrew Bayer and Norin & Rad they will play Saturday 2 February at Hisense Arena.


NEWS FROM THE FRONT

FOREWORD LINE

BADD AS THE ‘90S

With ‘90s nostalgia at an all-time high, the annual Made In The ‘90s concert series brings together some of the R&B genre’s most recognisable hit makers. This time around Color Me Badd, Soul For Real, Shai and Jon B will bless the stage with their catalogues of hit songs on Sunday 2 December at Alumbra.

NATURAL INSTINCT

Founding Puro Instinct members Piper and Skylar Kaplan began playing together in the summer of ‘08 with no experience and no idea what they were getting themselves into. After a year or so, they put together a proper band to begin crafting their ethereal pop confections. In their, thus far, short career Puro Instinct have had the privilege of collaborating with pop guru Ariel Pink on the breakthrough track Stilyagi, receiving rave reviews worldwide. They’re heading our way and will perform as part of Melbourne Festival on Friday 26 October on the Bermuda Float boat party and also play Sunday 28 at the Toff In Town.

SLICE OF DOBBYN

Dave Dobbyn recently celebrated a 30-year milestone in a career that has seen him amass multi-platinum sales across seven studio albums and live projects. It has been 20 years since last toured in Australia and now he is bringing his acclaimed Greatest Hits show and his five-piece band across the ditch. They will play a Corner Hotel show on Wednesday 14 November.

OH SO PRETTY

For the last 45 years The Pretty Things have been pissing people off. They started harmlessly enough and they could have conformed to the suburban, white boy, proto-R&B ethic – but they didn’t. They weren’t middle-class, they were real working-class with genuine street savvy. They’ve set their sights on Australia for a tour this December and will play Tuesday 4 at the Corner Hotel and Thursday 13 and Friday 14 at the Caravan Music Club (Oakleigh).

Few high-profile artists will have a schedule that’s not bulging – after all, they didn’t get where they are by sitting around in a deckchair all day sipping daiquiris. But there’s busy, and then there’s Mike Patton. Mondo Cane is unlike any of Mike Patton’s previous projects. First, Mondo Cane is an Italian language project. Second, it finds the singer paying homage to other songwriters. Aside from their Harvest appearances, Mike Patton’s Mondo Cane will be performing one headlining show only and it’s at the Regent Theatre on Monday 12 November.

GREGORY PAGE AT CARAVAN

Songwriter and crooner Gregory Page weaves a magical dream-world with his extraordinary tales of love and optimistic melancholy – teetering between tradition and progress, history and fantasy. He returns to our shores with his Big Band Orchestra to launch album Shine Shine Shine. They play Friday 16 November at the Caravan Music Club.

WAGONS INSTORE

With his first solo set, Expecting Company?, due for release the same day, Henry Wagons has announced a free instore performance at Polyester Records this Friday. It kicks off at 6pm and first in will most certainly be best dressed.

At the heart of Blkout’s sophomore full-length Point Of No Return, the five musicians have ventured into new territory as they embrace the struggles of modern middle-class youth. Originally an outlet for the band to pay homage to New York greats like Cro-mags and Breakdown, the range of influences this band share have seeped onto this release with diverse instrumentalisation favoured over the traditional hardcore fanfare. They hit the Gasometer on Saturday 27 October and Collingwood Masonic Centre on Sunday 28.

OCEANICS TO THE CITY

Dead Can Dance’s music awakens and arouses the senses when placed on the live stage. Across their performances they exhibit their mastering of a wide range of both modern and traditional instruments including keys, synthesisers, Chinese dulcimers and a variety of gourd instruments. Their just-announced theatre performance is set to be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for those lucky enough to attend. It happens on Wednesday 6 February at the Palais Theatre. Frontier Members pre-sale is available from noon this Thursday. General public tickets are on sale from 9am Monday.

Their most realised work to date, Gold Coast four-piece Oceanics are proud to announce the release of their new single The City and are heading out on East Coast tour to celebrate. Snipping at the heels of the spiky end of Brit-pop, Oceanics bring big hollow guitars and clean, jangling tones to the ears of the uninitiated. They launch The City on Friday 12 October at the Grace Darling with The Salvadors and The Red Lights.

GLOBAL TREATS

Argentina, Tokyo Denmark Sweden and Them Swoops have joined forces for a tri-state tour

INPRESS PRESENTS

BAD LUCK BLUES

New Zealand’s Delaney Davidson is part wandering minstrel, part travelling salesman. One hand holds a small brown suitcase, his trade, his ghost orchestra; the other holds his guitar. One foot is firmly in the blues-trash corner of the ring, the other on the road. That road leads to us soon enough as Davidson peddles his latest album, Bad Luck Man, in Melbourne this November accompanied by fellow New Zealander and songsmith Marlon Williams. They’ll play Thursday 22 November at the Public Bar, Friday 23 at the Spotted Mallard and Saturday 24 at Old Bar.

JENKINS’ CROOKED HEART

Charles Jenkins is coming your way, playing gigs across Australia – sometimes with his trusty miracle band The Zhivagos, sometimes as a duo or trio and sometimes as the lone troubadour – to launch his latest album Love Your Crooked Neighbour With Your Crooked Heart. He plays Sunday 21 October at Northcote Social Club (two sets).

Ahead of the biggest day on the Aussie Rules calendar, Andrew Catterall, the AFL’s general manager of strategy and marketing, tells Inpress why the League and local music are a perfect fit.

MONDO CANE SIDESHOW

OUT AND OUT

DAY OF THE DEAD

GAME ON

Them Swoops along the East Coast this October. The second ever Triple Treat tour follows on from the original, which featured Millions, Nantes and Northeast Party House in February and March this year. The show rolls into town on Friday 26 October at the Workers Club.

INFIGHTING

The Civil Wars have taken their folk/country tunes on the road across the United States, Europe and the United Kingdom in recent months. Their latest tour is set to be a treat for all, as The Civil Wars perform their beautiful masterpieces in some architecturally stunning buildings. They play Tuesday 12 March at St Michael’s Church. Frontier Members pre-sale will be available from 2pm on Wednesday 3 October and general public tickets are on sale from 9am on Friday 5.

Andrew Catterall Why opt for all Australian acts this year, when traditionally you’ve gone for an international drawcard? Over the last two years we have been encouraging the connection between Australia’s game and Australian music. For 2012, AC/DC’s Long Way To The Top has been our soundtrack all year; Australian music has been prominent at all our major events; and we put on 14 Live At The Footy gigs across the season with an entirely Australian line-up. So it was a natural extension for us to partner with Australian music again on our biggest day, Grand Final day. Michael Gudinski is known for his support of Australian acts – has he been pushing for this? We have been working with Michael for a number of years in relation to Grand Final day, and this year Frontier Events were also heavily involved in Live At The Footy. Michael has a terrific passion for Australian music and AFL, and sees the potential for these two cultural icons to work together. Has the AFL got the value you’d hoped for out of the live music programs this year? We’ve had great feedback on Long Way To The Top. Australian music was central to our themed rounds strategy and was very successful – we celebrated 20 years of Goanna’s Solid Rock for indigenous round, and worked with Public Opinion Afro Orchestra for multicultural round. Our fans have loved the fusion of Tim Rogers and Long Way To The Top in our This Is Greatness finals campaign. We are really proud of how much we have been able to achieve with Live At The Footy over the past two years, and have had a terrific response from our younger audience. We have also had a terrific response from the Australian music industry which is really pleasing and encouraging. It was important to us that we work with the music industry – artists, labels, publishers, booking agents, managers, etc – in a credible and authentic way and hopefully this sets us up for the future. Is it something you’ll continue in 2013 and, if so, will you do anything differently? Yes, I’m confident that working with Australian Music in an authentic way will continue to be central to our marketing and events strategy in 2013, especially as we continue to build ‘Australia’s game’. The Grand Final day ‘Premiership Party’ is a new concept – what do you want to achieve with it? Grand Final day is the best day of the year, and it’s really important to us and the clubs that we give as many footy fans as possible the chance to be part of it. The real strength of the Premiership Party is giving fans that haven’t been lucky enough to get a Grand Final ticket the opportunity to celebrate with their team inside the MCG on the day. It’s also the perfect way to end a season-long music program with The Temper Trap and Paul Kelly giving a free concert on the MCG from 6pm to 8pm. We’re hoping that the Premiership Party will build over the next few years to become one of the really iconic parts of the day. Tim Rogers is back involved with the advertising campaign again – is this an ongoing partnership? Tim is an icon of the music scene and a true footy fan; he is a passionate North Melbourne man. We really respect his emerging acting career – he provided the voiceover and score for our 2011 finals campaign and his to-camera performances in the 2012 campaign are first class. It’s important to us to build lasting relationships. Tim has built some solid friendships in here, and won a lot of regard, and I hope we will find ways to keep working together beyond 2012.

PRESENTED BY

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INPRESS • 15


Seattle duo Theesatisfaction might sport afro-futurist sensibilities and a black power wardrobe, but the vibe they’re spreading is all-inclusive. “Our music is more of a vibration than a cultural thing, or a gender-based thing, or a sexuality-based thing… I think it’s bigger than that,” Stasia Irons and Catherine Harris-White tell Anthony Carew.

REST OF THE FEST

Theesatisfaction are one of a carefullycurated handful of acts in the country to play at the 2012 Melbourne Festival, which has a small but interesting musical program. The duo will play alongside Big Freedia, the genderqueer queen of New Orleans bounce, at a party thrown by local dyke-driven dance night Grouse. Other playing the Melbourne Festival include…

GOOD VIBRATIONS T

heesatisfaction are routinely called some iteration of ‘futuristic soul’. The pair are from Seattle; they’re usually delieneated as ‘rapper’ Stasia Irons and ‘singer’ Catherine Harris-White, though it’s far more complicated than that, given both collaborate on the music, and aren’t stuck with the stock roles of spitting verses/singing hooks, and often aren’t either exactly singing or spitting. They draw from that Black Power Mixtape era, cribbing from ’70s soul and, in the case of HarrisWhite, wearing an afro so wide it’d make Angela Davis smile. But they’re also children of the digital age, and draw just as much from ’80s pop, early-’90s new jack swing, late-’90s neo-soul, and all manner of genre-shredding new-millennial sounds; putting them amongst a specific class of casually-experimental afro-futurist sistas – Ursula Rucker, Erykah Badu, Georgia Anne Muldrow – both alive to the past and open to the future. “Sometimes people say that it reminds them of back in the day, but I think that’s more about them – about people in general – than our music,” says Irons. “A lot of people say it sounds like the ’70s, but just as many people say it sounds futuristic.” The duo’s love of soul music dates

back to their childhoods, growing up in the Seattle area in households filled with records. “Our parents grew up on soul music, and they were playing it in their households, and then when we were kids they played it for us,” says Irons. “It connects us to our ancestors, our family members.”

Harris-White grew up a born performer – acting on stage from a young age, singing in choirs from her adolescence on, writing songs, eventually going to the University Of Washington to study music. Irons went to study theatre, and first encountered HarrisWhite from the crowd, watching her sing at open-mic performances. A huge crush grew, and eventually the pair met. They started playing in a “hang out” band, a huge six-piece crew of little ambition, and fell in love. Theesatisfaction grew out of their relationship; a budding union birthing a budding project, which grew out of their newfound domestic relationship. “When we first started, it was just music for us

There’s more to this story

on the iPad

to jam out to at home,” Irons recalls. “Then, we started playing it for our family and our friends and they enjoyed it. But that just made it more fun – that other people liked it! – and it still is fun. It’s always been fun. It’s us in our element.” When Harris-White was asked to present a musical performance for a school recital, Theesatisfaction made their live debut. “It was pretty soon, after we’d made like our first four songs, that we had to perform a 15-minute set at this recital,” she says. “I remember it being so nerve-wracking, having to just be like, ‘Alright, let’s try this out’. It felt so different being up there, just two of us. We want from this bigger band, with so many people on stage, so many vocalists, to just being me and Stasia. It was a totally different dynamic.” Though being on stage as a duo took some getting used to – “it was really intense,” Irons laughs, “like, ‘Oh, you’re just looking at us!’” – but at home, recording themselves, things flowed naturally; and they were soon turning out an array of ‘mixtapes’ via Bandcamp, introducing a project in equal parts profound and playful; tuneful yet happily experimental; and one forged in their own image, not hewing to the stereotypes of genre. “I don’t think we ever said, ‘We want to be outside of what everyone else is doing’, we were just inside our own world,” Harris-White offers. “It was just fun,

writing these songs together. Then we played that show, and then we got asked to do more shows, and it just went from there. We liked the feeling of performing music as much as creating music, so, I think it’s just something that’s fun for us.”

They called their project Theesatisfaction (stylised, by them, as THEESatisfaction, thereby annoying subeditors everywhere), because they saw the project as a way of finding greater satisfaction in their lives, with their joy in making music the first step. The second step? Ditching their shitty McJobs. “We decided to quit our jobs two years ago,” Irons recalls. “We were working at Costco. We were cart-pushers and cashiers. It was one of those things that didn’t mean anything to us; if we needed it, we had it. A lot of people would’ve kept that around, just in case, but we realised that we didn’t have to do it, that we didn’t have to do anything that we didn’t want to do. Sure, maybe we’d be broke for a while, but we could do other things with our life and feel better about ourselves. So, we just decided to quit.” The pair slowly grew a fervent local following around Seattle, but had their breakout

beyond that in 2011, when they appeared on Shabazz Palaces’ wildly-acclaimed Black Up LP. From there Theesatisfaction were signed by Sub Pop, and headed into the studio – “a real studio, like, the nicest studio we’ve ever seen” – to record their debut album. Though well aware that “this thing was going to be out on another level” – especially given their record label, the grunge-era kingpins turned ultimate brand of indie quality – but didn’t want to let any sense of expectations crowd their loose, sometimes silly creativity. “The way we make music is just trying to have fun, to just do things that feel good to us, that has the right vibe,” says Irons. “When you add worries from other people, that alters the way your music sounds. We wanted to be as free as possible, and give ourselves to our music completely without worrying about other people’s worries.”

The resulting LP, AwE NaturalE, was released early in 2012, and its first single, Queens, served as introduction – and entreaty – into Theesatisfaction’s soundworld. “Leave your face at the door/ turn off your swag/and check your bag,” Irons says, on its opening; and the song is a simple, heartfelt shrine

to the liberation of the dancefloor; a shrine to freedom dressed in hypnotic robo-funk grooves. It’s one of the most straightforward jams on the album, which can be as complex as the cultural survey Earthseeds – a portrait of political tumult and changing social values told in abstracted poetry – and as wacky as Crash, an incidental piano lament whose lyrics are binary-code; this seemingly an ode sung by a hung computer. “I feel like all of our projects have different stories to them,” says Harris-White. “All of our songs are different stories. Within each verse, Stasia and I are trying to create a different experience; to put you in a different place, a different situation, to put you somewhere that you’re not used to; and when you’re there, then we can sit you down and tell you a story.” Do Theesatisfaction, with the afro-futurist sensibilities and black power wardrobe, consider themselves as storytellers, upholders of a black tradition? “I definitely feel like we’re continuing this black tradition of storytelling,” Harris-White says. “We’re trying to continue on this legacy, within our families, and within a greater ancestry. I don’t think it’s conscious that we do that, I think it’s just within us. There’s a natural aspect to it; it just flows out.”

Yet, their afro-futurism couldn’t be more wide-open. Theesatisfaction are doing anything but preaching to the converted; their positivity party is all-inclusive, open to any comers. “Our music is more of a vibration than a cultural thing, or a gender-based thing, or a sexuality-based thing,” says Harris-White. “I think it’s bigger than that. Our message that we try to express, it’s deep within our souls, what we’re speaking on. If someone does connect with our music, it’s like an energy-based connection.” And what is Theesatisfaction’s ‘message’? “It’s a matter of self-awareness,” Harris-White offers. “To love yourself, to be yourself, to do things that are good for yourself, to better yourself in a positive fashion. You can take care of yourself and love yourself and achieving your own goals without hurting someone else or bringing someone else down. Our music is about that; about spreading this good, loving energy out there, and just like a chill vibe. There’s so much stress in the world; everything is so hectic, we’re all going through our own craziness. So, we’re all about trying to think the most positive thoughts you can in a negative world.” WHO: Theesatisfaction WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 18 October, Melbourne Festival, Hi-Fi

ANTONY & THE JOHNSONS The warbling transgender troubadour returns to Australia to perform his LP Swanlights as a singular work, with visual projections based on the vast reams of associated artwork, and a 44-piece orchestra as backing. The album is a song-cycle beginning Antony’s recent artistic obsession with chronicling this dying planet and the patriarchal pollution of the essentially feminine cycles of nature. BILLY BRAGG The longtime provocateur and raconteur brings his fascist-slaying guitar and croaky vocal back to Australia for three shows; one a soloshow celebration of his sprawling career, another a tribute to Bragg hero – and all-time American folk music icon – Woody Guthrie, and the third a combination of the previous two shows. LEE RANALDO AND THURSTON MOORE Though they’re not touring together, it’s hardly coincidental that the longtime Sonic Youth bandmates were booked alongside each other. Following their band going on hiatus after more than 30 years of constant touring and recording, each put out a solo record on Matador; and will be drawing from it at their solo shows, with Ranaldo moving away from his usual avant-gardist noise-guitar scapes towards songform, and Moore in an acoustic mode that contrasts with his suitablySonic-Youthy (and not touring) new band, Chelsea Light Moving. PURO INSTINCT The very blonde Los Angeleno sisters – siblings Piper and Skylar Kapan, the latter of whom is still only 17 – make music that runs a love of Fleetwood Mac and yacht-rock through a smeared, lo-fi filter used as Ariel Pinkesque commentary on cultural nostalgia; inspired by bootleg cassettes of early-’80s Eastern Bloc rock. Anthony Carew


Performs a greatest hits set followed by The Blue Album from start to finish

with Special Guests

cloud control & ball park music

Wednesday 16 January Sidney Myer Music Bowl ON SALE NOW ticketmaster.com.au | 136 100

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INPRESS • 17


SLOW BURNS & EXPLOSIONS Seth Sentry released his breakthrough single The Waitress Song back in 2009. Matt O’Neill corners the Melbourne MC to find out why it’s taken three years to deliver debut album This Was Tomorrow.

E

ven today, Seth Sentry’s The Waitress Song stands up to scrutiny. Conceived as something of a throwaway novelty when recorded for Sentry’s debut EP The Waiter Minute, it swiftly gained momentum upon release and has since gone on to become the most downloaded track on triple j Unearthed. Three years later, it’s still a remarkably clever and crafted piece of music. “I was definitely surprised when that took off the way it did,” Sentry says candidly. “You know, we weren’t even going to include that song on that EP in the first place. [Producer] Matik didn’t even like it when I first showed it to him and it’s just a weird song. It’s all a bit silly – and, really, a bit stalker-ish, when you think about it. Still, people seemed to really connect with it. A lot of stalkers out there, apparently.”

A warm, gentle, slightly silly song chronicling Sentry’s idle crush on the waitress of a particularly unimpressive local diner, The Waitress Song is an almost stunning showcase of the Melbourne MC’s innate lyricism and personality. Atop a lush and bleary instrumental backdrop, Sentry’s almost-sung flow dances cleverly around the narrative – a knack for detail helping to paint a comprehensive portrait of the MC’s chosen subject matter. “Everything I do is quite conceptual. It’s one of the reasons it takes me so long to write songs,” Sentry says of his approach. “When I hear a beat and stuff, I see a little movie in my head and I just try and fit words to that movie – but, because I’ve got such a specific picture and sound in my head, it can take me quite a while to capture it. I’m trying to get to a specific kind of point. “You know, I’m not very loose or freeform with my flow. When I listen to my songs, I don’t hear flow, really. I hear something that I tried very hard to get to... You know, I like hearing dudes just rap and take listeners on a journey and you don’t know where they’re going to end up,” the MC muses. “But that’s not really how I play. I usually have a very specific idea and I’m trying to sum everything up in a song – beginning, middle and end, you know?” This could explain why Sentry’s taken three years to actually capitalise on the success of his breakthrough single. The MC has hardly been idle in the years since Waitress‘ release – collaborating with Horrorshow and 360, touring the country and dropping the occasional follow-up single – but it’s nevertheless taken him three years to significantly expand his body of work beyond that initial EP with debut album This Was Tomorrow. “Well, when we did the EP, that was going to be the album, at first. When things took off for The Waitress Song, we decided to just put out an EP instead – so, really, it’s taken closer to four years. And, really, laziness was a massive part of that. Don’t get me wrong – when I say it took me four years to write the album, it wasn’t because I was labouring in my room for four years making it. “That would be awesome if that’s what actually happened – but that’s definitely not the way things ran,” the MC laughs, a little embarrassed. “It was also simply a case of the EP doing so well. We could tour off the back of that EP, which was a bit stupid, but we just kept getting gigs out of it and that was too awesome to ignore. Really, though, laziness was a big part of it. It feels good to be motivated and working again.” Sentry’s style is something else. He’s representative of a newer breed of Australian hip hop. Stepping away from the harsher and more direct approach Australian hip hop has been known for over the past decade, Sentry’s style is more in line with the hyper-melodic eclecticism of acts like 360, Illy and other rising stars. His flow is almost as sung as it is spoken – his beats unstintingly gorgeous. “Well, I never actually set out to do anything different,” the MC counters. “I mean, I like traditional hip hop. I’m coming at this as a massive rap fan. Have been forever. I’m just not trying to emulate my favourite rapper – because that’s not me. I always find it weird when I hear dudes who clearly sound like their favourite rappers. I mean, the reason you like most rappers is because they don’t sound like anyone else. “I’ve never really thought about it, to be honest. I just hear a beat and the flow and the tone of my voice is just the first thing that comes to me,” he says casually. “We’re definitely in a place in Australian hip hop, though, where sub-genres are kind of starting to form. It’s just evolution, though. It’s all rad music. I don’t see any reason to get particularly caught up in it.” What separates Sentry from his contemporaries is his categorical lack of ambition. Where peers like 360 or Illy chase their crowds and respond to their detractors with equally vitriolic commitment, Sentry seems perpetually easy-going. One actually suspects that This Was Tomorrow took so long to eventuate largely because Sentry didn’t feel any overwhelming need to deliver it. “At first, I felt a little bit of pressure from The Waitress Song. I had to make a conscious decision to just let that go, though. You’ll just do your head in thinking about stuff like that; ‘Oh, I’ve got to write the next hit, I’ve got to deliver the next EP‘,” Sentry muses. “You’re just going to get nothing done. You know, it’s a curse you see a lot of bands deal with – just trying to live up to something for their entire career. “You know, man, I just want to hold that album. That’s all I want,” the MC says bluntly. “I just enjoy rapping, man. Anything that happens beyond me simply being allowed to do what I love doing is a bonus for me. I have got no plans for world domination. I’m not really too interested in blowing up or getting famous or any shit like that. If that does happen, it’ll be solely as a by-product of me doing what I love. It’s not a priority. “Really, everything is shocking to me. The fact that people rock up to my gigs and sing my lyrics is just shocking to me,” he laughs. “Really, I just want a copy of the album to give to my mum and I want a copy of the album to sit in my bedroom. Anything beyond that will be just a bonus, really.” WHO: Seth Sentry WHAT: This Was Tomorrow (High Scope/Inertia) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September, Karova Lounge, Ballarat; Saturday 29, The Corner Hotel

18 • INPRESS

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HERTZ SO GOOD Three years ago, psychedelic prodigies Animal Collective released one of the indie world’s most celebrated records of the first decade of this millennium. So, naturally, they set out to make ninth LP Centipede Hz in exactly the same way, since why would you fix what ain’t broken, right? Well, no, actually; wrong, Brian Weitz, aka Geologist, tells Mitch Knox.

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hen Animal Collective released Merriweather Post Pavilion in 2009, the game changed irreversibly for the experimental/psychedelic outfit from Baltimore. They had been plugging along contentedly since 1999, noticed but not especially notable, and then suddenly everyone was all over their balls about their indisputable genius and otherworldly brilliance. So it stands to reason they’d want to replicate that success with their follow-up album, the recently released Centipede Hz. Except, multi-instrumentalist Brian Weitz says, that wasn’t their goal at all. Primarily, their goal was just to see each other. You see, in recent years, Animal Collective has become a less “in-the-flesh” kind of band, at least in terms of how they work when not on tour together. The members all live in different areas; some have families of their own. So although the process that fuelled Merriweather...’s conception was a successful one, it wasn’t the path Animal Collective wished to follow for Centipede Hz, the group’s ninth full-length album. After all, these days the rockstar life is less wild nights and hazy days, and more making sure the kids are good to get to school before hitting the studio.

and it’s propulsive, it’s heavy. So it was kind of an epic goal, initially, to make a live-sounding, more minimal record. But I think we’re just incapable of that. If there’s a space somewhere in the song, somewhere in the rhythm, especially when the four of us all play together, somebody’s gonna take it up, y’know?” WHO: Animal Collective WHAT: Centipede Hz WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 23 January, Palace; Saturday 26, Big Day Out, Flemington Racecourse

“Especially for this record, we wanted to write the songs together,” Weitz says. “I feel like we’d gotten in a pretty good groove over the years, especially on a record like Merriweather Post Pavilion, with actually communicating musically by email, sending each other ideas and demos, but I think that process had gotten a little stale for us. So being in the same place this time took a lot of planning because some of us have families, so if we’re gonna uproot ourselves for a few months, we need to bring them with us, we need to think about schools for the kids, day care, where we’re going to live… Yeah, it takes a lot of work.” The creation of Centipede Hz was subject to shake-ups not only of the residential variety: long-time member Deakin (Joshua Dibb) returned to the fold following an absence that saw him miss the recording of Merriweather; Panda Bear (Noah Lennox) made his return to sit-down drums; and Weitz himself dabbles with live keys. “It was pretty good,” Weitz says with slight hesitation when asked how the modified studio set-up impacted on proceedings. “I mean, every record feels different just because we’re in different places in our lives. It was probably, like, the hardest I’ve ever worked on a record. Not in a bad way; in a good way. But just since we sort of had this window of time to get together and write in person with each other was very much like this workshop vibe going where we could get together for six hours or so every day and improvise, or people would go off into different rooms and work on their parts. It was good. It was great. Good times all around. “I think we didn’t want to make… Merriweather had sort of an ambient quality; more of like a heady, mellow quality that I think can come from when you write using headphones a lot,” he continues. “So people are emailing ideas back and forth a lot and people are working on headphones… You tend to make something that doesn’t really interact with the air. And we wanted to make something a bit more visceral this time, a bit more energetic, and a bit more live-sounding. And to do that you need to be in the same room, and you need the volume of amplifiers and drums right next to you. That influences that parts that you’re writing. So we thought it would work closely with the kind of sound that we wanted to go for.” With all these changes, it must have been hard to put out of their minds the highly praised Merriweather…’s lingering shadow. In doing so much differently, the sense of risk – that maybe this could all backfire – must have been felt. Apparently not, according to Weitz. “I don’t think the praise for it was hanging in the back of our minds,” he says. “I mean, you can’t really ignore it – we knew we were going to get asked the question in interviews, and I’m sure every interviewer’s going to mention what we did before – but I think for us Merriweather… was a great experience for us, even just creatively, writing the songs, recording the songs, and it was something that to us was really kind of special. So in a good way, that was kind of hanging in the back of our minds.“ Even if their previous release hadn’t been so well received, Weitz says, its shadow would still have been cast over the studio for better or worse. “When you’re making music, you’re always trying to do better than last time,” he says. “So just in terms of how we felt about our own music, or for me personally, I wanted to make sure I did a better job than I did on the last one, and that I grew a little bit. In that way, in a positive way, it is in the back of your mind.” With the record now released and the fruits of Animal Collective’s centralised labour starting to show in Centipede…’s largely positive reception, Australian fans will still have to wait until early next year, when the quartet are in the country for Big Day Out and associated side shows, to engage with it and the band in the flesh. It’s a complex record, and a challenging listen, and one can only imagine how its layers and densely woven soundscapes will play out in the live arena. But, while you wait for that chance and have to make do with the album alone, you can sit back and take solace in the fact that, even in failure, there can still be great success, as Weitz admits. “Initially when we started writing, we set out to make a record that was really heavy but also really minimal, records like Silver Apples’,” he explains. “Like, there isn’t much going on on those records, but there’s enough to keep you interested

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IN THE MOOD When he pulled Winter People together, Dylan Baskind only really knew he wanted a band. Now that band has given birth to a hauntingly beautiful album. Michael Smith finds out how they got there.

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hen I was younger, actually before I even wrote songs, I was into electronic music, and I just made these very vast arrangements of just everything I could imagine,” Winter People singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and visual artist Dylan Baskind explains the genesis of his musical journey, “and then I put that aside totally and went to this absolute singer-songwriter type of world, and then there was a point, a few years ago, where I was, like, ‘Okay, well how am I going to make these two ways of approaching music and songs come together?’ And there were a huge number of failures but I suppose through all those years of failing I got a grasp of how to take something from a guitar or something that’s very much a seedling and grow that without losing sight of the intention of the song.”

And then he found two violinists who could sing, and a rhythm section that could also sing, that allowed him to recreate those vast soundscapes and arrangements without having to resort to the computer and electronics. Enter the six-piece Winter People, and with them, he’s been able to translate those ideas and grow those seedlings into a remarkable debut album, A Year At Sea. “It’s come up a lot, but I’ve been quite militant about not resorting to the computer. I hope that’s not dogmatic, but I do feel that there is just something about watching a live band, when there is something recorded, that I just find takes away from what you’re seeing. I want to know that everything that’s being played is the product of what people are doing in the moment. Sometimes [the computer] does actually limit your capabilities. “Luckily, when the band got started, I’d made an album by myself that was fully orchestrated, so it wasn’t like we all got in a room and we had nothing to work from; we had a kind of architecture to build on and to work out what everyone’s role was going to be and where people’s strengths were going to lie. And the good thing about starting the band, for me I just wanted to have a band – there was no more ambition beyond that – so there was a lot of time, months and months and months, which you don’t get once you actually play your first show. We had a long sort of incubation/gestation period where we had these songs to work from already, we had orchestrations that existed, from that previous album, so we could learn to play as a unit.” What these six musicians learned to do together stretches from pastoral a cappella harmonies to sweeping string arrangements, warm acoustic sounds to vast orchestral soundscapes. The first hint of the possibilities inherent in their music came in the form of a debut EP, the single from which, Gallons, garnered plenty of radio love. But there was one more element needed – the right producer – and that came in the form of American producer, Peter Katis, whose CV includes working on records by Interpol, The National and Frightened Rabbit. “I’m a technical/audio person – I did all the mixing for our first EP – but the primary thing I listen to is the song, and very much the lyrics; that tends to be what I focus on first. And this was the only, the tracks that Peter Katis produced, the first time in my life I’d ever said that, despite and independent of the songs, I enjoy the way they just sound. I knew the way things sounded added to what was the songs, and they help to keep that in the best format possible, but I’d never just said to myself, like, despite everything else, the actual sound of this really appeals to me. “So in my dream box, well I love this guy’s work and I was always trawling the Internet trying to find his little posts on audio forums to see how he did parallel compression et cetera. Anyway, our manager, when we talked to him about the record, was, like, ‘Well, who would ideally want to do some mixing?’ And I said this guy Peter Katis but we’re not going to worry about that because it’s not going to happen, it’s fine. But I thought to myself – I don’t know if this was a large helping of ego – but I felt he just listened, you’d get some kind of response, and to me, had I got a response from Peter Katis that said, ‘How ya doin’, really like it, I’m too busy, good luck,’ I probably would have been really happy. “But I wrote him this letter – my thinking was that if I expressed to him what the band was about and what I feel what his aesthetic sonically is about, and why I felt there was a resonance there, in middle case scenario, he would at least listen to the music. So I thought I’ll send him this letter, it’s likely that he will listen. So I did and sent it off and didn’t hear from him for many months, and then we just got this message saying, ‘Hey, really like what you’re doing, let’s see if we can work together.’ Which to me was a huge validation I guess. Unfortunately his schedule, the project he was working kind of went over time so he could only do these two tracks; I love what he did, and nothing about the process disappointed me.” So the tracks Gallons and Wishingbone, both of which have been released as singles, got the Katis mixing touch. The band then sent the rest of the tracks to various other mixing engineers with middling results until the tracks they sent to Rich Costey, whose credits include The Shins and Bloc Party among many, came back. “Again, I was just surprised and delighted that the guy had even had time to write an email to say, ‘This is good.’ He had just one week, so I went to LA to try and do that with him and it was also amazing and a kind of serendipitous happening.” As for those all-important lyrics, you have to wonder what was inspiring songs about Slaughterhouse Girls at the top of the world to The Antidote, again a very broad canvas to match the sounds. “I guess for me, the thing that defines a song is mood. The music that appeals to me, as songs and literally as music – I love a lot of classical music – and the thing I love about particular types of music is they embody this very particular mood. So to me, I guess when I sit down to write a song, I know I’ve got a song when I’ve got some words and a mood. And whatever it takes, and that’s why I feel I’m not discriminatory in my sounds because the thing for me is the mood and what’s going to be a true evocation of the mood.” WHO: Winter People WHAT: A Year At Sea (HUB The Label/Inertia) WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 29 September, The Toff; Sunday 30, PurePop Records; Saturday 10 & Sunday 11 November, Harvest @ Werribee Park

20 • INPRESS

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FAVOURITE HAUNTS Back together after a four-year break, TZU have crafted a “really different� concept album inspired by convicts and haunted pubs, Joel Ma (Joelistics) and Pip Norman (Countbounce) tell Kate Kingsmill.

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hen TZU announced they were going on hiatus four years ago, it was easy to suspect that it might have been the end of the band altogether.

“I think we all thought that,� says Joel Ma (aka MC Joelistics). “It was never really explicitly discussed but it was the general vibe. It’s sort of like being married and then going, ‘Let’s just be friends for a while’. Which doesn’t usually work out well, but in our case it did!� There were no big issues or bad feelings, just that after eight years playing together and touring together, “We got to a point where we needed to focus on other things in our lives,� Ma continues. “The break was just a chance to catch up on all this other external life maintenance stuff.� And so, after two years of doing all of that life stuff, like having babies, travelling the world, making solo albums and producing music for other artists, the four members of TZU – Ma, Pip Norman (aka Countbounce), Shahab Tariq (aka Paso Bionic) and Corey McGregor (aka Yeroc) – started hanging out again. “It was this really soft approach to getting together and hanging out,� says Ma. “That was the basis of a really good friendship between four guys who went, ‘Let’s get together again.’ And what do we usually do when we get together? Well, we generally play music. So it wasn’t a case of consciously going, ‘Let’s write a new record’. There was no grand plan, we just decided to take two weeks to hang out and write music in the studio, and not have any other stuff going on.“ “And not have any outcomes for it either,� adds Norman. “It wasn’t like, ‘This has to produce a record’. It was just, ‘Let’s just write and if that works we’ll see where to go from there’.� “And if felt really good,� concludes Ma. And so, ten years after they started out busking on Brunswick Street, the four members of TZU were making music together again. Lyrically, the band steered steered purposefully away from the personal stories that they had come to be associated with. They have described Millions Of Moments as a concept album, although the concept is more of a broad narrative that holds the album together. The idea of a time-travelling spirit who inhabits various characters through time and space emerged from the band’s desire to tell other people’s stories. “We didn’t stick to it like a burning compass in our mind’s eye but I remember saying to Joel, ‘I don’t want to write about my life. I don’t want to be in the first person,’� says Norman. “And that’s often what’s associated with hip hop is that you’re representing yourself, it’s very first person and it’s very real. And I was very excited about narrative, and other people’s lives and made-up lives and lives from different eras and that was definitely something that we set out to do.�

Are they still a hip hop band? “I reckon it’s got elements of hip hop,� says Ma. But more to the point, he says, “This is us, this is what these four people made and this is where we are. And let’s start a conversation. Undoubtedly there’ll be strong opinions, but fuck, it’s good. It’s a good thing to do. So let’s keep it TZU. That’s what it is.� WHO: TZU WHAT: Millions Of Moments (Liberation) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September 28, Pelican Bar, Frankston; Saturday 29, Ferntree Gully Hotel; Monday 5 November, Hi-Fi; Friday 23 November, Queenscliff Music Festival

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Our world Top 100 university team is coming to talk to you on 1 October. What would you like to achieve?

Ma recalls with enthusiasm, “I totally remember you saying, ‘Let’s write convict stories as well’. We even swapped some books and shared like a bunch of stories and source material to draw from. And I just went, ‘Yeah, I love this idea of storywriting’.â€? In particular, Ma found that there are some spots on Earth where ghosts just seem to linger, leaving an imprint of energy, like a photonegative, on a place. And so ghost stories, colonial history and stories of haunted pubs were woven into the fabric of the record. “All those old folk songs are really dark and awesome stories and really great little dramas and scenarios. We were excited about working with that stuff,â€? Ma says. In TZU’s downtime, Ma released a solo album (Voyager), continued to write poetry and short stories and recently spent two months working on another musical project in Berlin, a place that he reckons is definitely haunted. “There are heaps of ghosts in Berlin. The cafĂŠ where I used to drink coffee, the façade of the building looks really nice, and then in the courtyard there’s all these bullet holes in the wall. That whole history is right there, and it’s hard to fathom that sometimes.â€? Beautiful, the latest single from Millions Of Moments, is a colonial ghost story because, says Norman, “Once that banjo line came up, it was clear that it was going to be a ghost story. What else could you write over that banjo line?â€? “I remember when we were writing that song, lyrically, “ Ma adds. “There was a pub that we played at near Wollongong and it had the most haunted vibe that I’d ever come across. And they had a story about how they’d had a mining accident years and years ago, in the early 20th century, and suddenly this small town had all these dead bodies on its hands and they’d filled up the morgue and they had to store some of the bodies in the basement of the pub. It’s brutal and amazing and gothic and scary, and the pub itself felt really like that to me as well. And so when we sat down to write that song, that was one of the stories I kept referring to. Every pub in every small town has some story that is going to keep you guessing. “ Sonically, the album is based around synthesisers and samplers and sees the band delving further into the ‘80s future-electro sounds that they began exploring on Computer Love four years ago. Indeed at one point, the new music was so different to the old TZU material that the band even considered releasing it under a different name. “It was going to instrumental, it was going to be no lyrics at all and we were going to name it something else,“ says Norman. “Because we are totally aware that it’s really different,â€? adds Ma. “If you were to listen to Position Correction and then listen to Millions Of Moments, there’s a progression that you can really follow, but this is clearly the furthest step away.â€? The difference in the sound has posed its challenges for the band in putting together their live set for the Millions Of Moments tour. “We’ve been talking about how we’ll try to incorporate the old stuff into our new set. Or how we will try and incorporate the new stuff into our old set. And it is going to be a bit tricky but it’s still all us and still all our own music, so how hard can it be?â€? asks Norman.

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INPRESS • 21


SURROUNDED BY THIEVES Oakland power trio High On Fire are this month set to undertake their first ever Australian headlining tour. Mark Hebblewhite catches up with frontman Matt Pike to discuss stolen guitars, rehab and the art of creating ear-splitting rock’n’roll.

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ay back in 2002, when he unleashed High On Fire’s breakthrough sophomore platter Surrounded By Thieves, little did Matt Pike know that he was accurately predicting his own future. Fast forward to 2012 and Pike finds out that his prized Les Paul guitar has been pilfered from a Santa Rosa recording studio. To say he’s slightly miffed is an understatement.

shows we played in Melbourne, we’ve usually only ever had 30 minutes or so to play because we’ve been out there as part of a festival or supporting other bands. Even if you get warmed up before the show, when you only have a short time it doesn’t really let you hit your stride. We play better as our shows go on, so to finally have the chance to play a full headlining tour for you guys is something that we’re really looking forward to.”

“No way anyone could mistake that guitar for their own,” he spits. “It’s got my pickups on it and PIKE is written on the case in large white letters! It’s got a lot of sentimental value to me and I want it back – so if anyone knows anything, please get in contact!” Through his anger Pike is still able to see the lighter side of life, though. “One thing that is funny is that just before the guitar went missing I got it into my head that I needed a second guitar – a backup. So off I went and bought a new Les Paul – lucky I did, I guess.”

Now that the band has six albums under its belt, what can we expect in the way of set lists? “Funny you should ask about that, because me and Jeff (Matz, bass) were working on the set-list just before you called,” offers Pike. “We’re not exactly sure what we’re going to do yet, but since this is pretty much our first headlining tour, we’ll probably just do a mix of everything with a little bit extra from the new record. To tell you the truth, the set list for Australia is extra important for us because we’re planning on doing a live record pretty soon. So we have to start getting prepared for that and the best way to do it will be to work out the set when we come down and see you guys.”

Other than his guitar going missing, life ahas improved for Pike ever since he made the difficult decision to enter rehab for a severe alcohol addiction. Despite having to forego a prized spot on the Rockstar Energy Mayhem Festival, Pike believes it’s the best decision he made in years. “It got to the point where I’d been in tour/party mode for so long that it’s a real trip to your psyche when you stop for a minute and take stock of your life,” he explains. “I realized that I’d basically drank my liver into submission. My playing was starting to be affected a bit, but most of all I felt awful all the time – to the point where I was hospitalized for a few days. It got so bad that I knew that if I kept drinking I was going to die. I realized that I wouldn’t be much use to anyone dead, except maybe selling a bunch of swag, so I did the obvious thing and checked myself in. Since I’ve got out I’ve been feeling great and looking forward to getting back on the road and playing some gigs.” Thank god for rehab: Australia finally gets to see a fully-blown High On Fire tour. Not to mention one where there’s little chance that Pike will keel over mid-set. “Every time we’ve been to Australia we’ve had a great time,” says Pike. “Thing is, apart from a couple of

Pike’s newfound sobriety is not the only reason that High On Fire is at the top of their game. Their recent release, De Vermis Mysteriis, has been hailed as the band’s finest release, and one that has quieted down dissident voices unhappy with the relatively ‘sterile’ sounding Snakes For The Divine. “We couldn’t have been happier with the new record,” says an enthusiastic Pike. “Oddly it was a real struggle to make because of the personal circumstances of the band with addiction and things like that. At one point I wanted to scrap everything we’d done because I didn’t think it was any good. Thank god I didn’t. Basically, we were in a really dark place that at the same time was a really spiritual place.I think that flows on through the record and contributes to it being one of the best things we’ve ever done as a band.” So we can explain the album’s concept of Jesus having a twin who died at birth to give him life, and then himself became a time traveler, as the result of, er, excess spirituality? “That’s one way to put it,”

laughs Pike. “People always ask how I came up with the concept for the album and I struggle to answer them. What can I say really: I was doing a lot of thinking, a lot of my own reading and I was in a really weird place – and out of that we got the album.” Choice of producer has always loomed large over High On Fire albums. Billy Anderson (Surrounded By Thieves) and Steve Albini (Blessed Black Wings) got the nod from fans while Greg Fidelmen (Snakes For The Divine) was the subject of wild disagreements among the faithful. Does Pike think that Kurt Ballou’s handling of De Vermis Mysteriis has contributed to the positive reception on the album? “Look, I’ve enjoyed working with all the producers we’ve used over the years,” says Pike in an uncharacteristically diplomatic manner. “Each of them has brought their own unique take on our sound. As far as Kurt goes, there’s no doubt he did a fantastic job with this record, especially getting it to sound as heavy as it does.”

While some artists are loathe to talk about past projects, Pike is still happy to chat about his ‘old’ band, the legendary Sleep, whose influence and stature continues to grow even now. “It’s fantastic that people are still interested in the band,” he enthuses. “Sleep has turned into the ultimate ‘collectable’ band – there’s so much stuff for fans to pick up and enjoy. I think it’s great. Recently we did some reunions and they were fun because it gave a lot of people who never got to see us the first time a chance to check out the tunes live. If only Sleep were as big then as we are now,” he laughs. WHO: High On Fire WHAT: De Vermis Mysteriis (E1/Shock) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September, the Gershwin Room

A LITTLE MORE It’s been a long wait between albums for Evermore fans, but the band’s fourth full-length is almost within reach. Vocalist/guitarist Jon Hume chats to Daniel Cribb about his underwear and the joys of finally being an independent band.

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ince the release of Evermore’s third full-length in ’09, Truth Of The World: Welcome To The Show, the three Hume brothers that construct Evermore – Jon, Dann and Peter – have collectively celebrated 11 birthdays. A lot has changed during that time and while the brothers have been quite busy with other commitments unrelated to Evermore, the time apart has allowed each member to refine their individual sound and bring something new to the table. When Evermore frontman Jon Hume answers his phone, he’s headed out to celebrate Dann’s 25th birthday. While pre-party anticipation creeps into his voice, a bigger celebration is just around the corner. Follow The Sun, the fourth offering from the Hume brothers, is finally ready for release and the boys are gearing up to hit the road. Since the Truth Of The World... touring cycle died down, they’ve somewhat disappeared into the background. With the brothers engulfed in other projects, Evermore could have quite easily stayed dormant for years, or even disbanded, but other forces were at work, ensuring no such thing eventuated. “We could have easily gone, ‘Oh, we’ve done this thing, we’ve had this band ten years and let’s just go do something else now’, but it really didn’t feel like we’ve said all that we needed to say. And musically there’s such good chemistry between the three of us that it’s not something that we could walk away from. There’s just so much good music, we can’t just walk off and do something else,” Hume explains. “If we all made [separate] music it would just be different and it’s hard to put your finger on exactly why, but I guess just being brothers and making music together since we were kids, there’s a certain chemistry in the whole writing process that I don’t fully understand, but it works and we really enjoy it and it just felt really good, after a little bit of time working on other stuff, to get back to Evermore and make a record.” Part of the reason they went underground for so long was because they were building their own 22 • INPRESS

studio in the countryside of Victoria. With their own studio in place they were able to break free from the constraints of a major labels and be completely independent – something Hume emphasises was a goal from the beginning. “We could sit down and make whatever record we wanted to make, whereas our previous three were all on Warner Music. I guess there was always a bit of pressure to work with other producers, which was a good experience, but because Dann and I are producers, there was already plenty of ideas in the mix. We didn’t really need someone else to find our direction,” he says. “I think now, more than ever, you’re kind of in control of your own destiny as a musician and I think it felt right to us to actually put our own album out there.” Although they’ve been out of the mainstream spotlight, fans still had opportunities to connect with the band and keep up to date with the progress of the album and individual songs as the band released demos and live recordings as they went along. “[Warner] actually did stop us from doing that previously, which seems silly to me. I don’t know what their policy on that is now, but back when we were making our previous albums, they had some sort of policy where they didn’t want anything to go out until it went through them.”

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on the iPad

And now they return with their a new single, which didn’t need to go through any big label ears first. “Our new single, Follow The Sun, we recorded a live demo of it for YouTube probably nine months ago; the chorus has got completely different lyrics and the song is called All The Way. Our songs always go on journeys, so I think it’s interesting for our friends who hear a song from the start and hear it go through three different phases of different ideas making their way into the song, and so this time around we gave our fans a listen earlier on to the album. I think people dig it, being

a part of the process and understanding how much time we put into the different aspects of the songs. “Songs like It’s Too Late, once they’ve been out for years and we’ve played them so many different times, we sometimes forget exactly how the recording goes because of the slow evolution of the way we play it live. Sometimes I find myself going ‘Oh, whoops, I’ve actually changed a lyric’,” he laughs. “That’s just part of the creative process, really.” With the freedom to release their music whenever, wherever and however they wish, they’ve put together an EP of album b-sides that will be sold exclusively on tour. While it sounds like a unique idea for tour/ album merch, that’s just the tip of the Evermore merch iceberg. “The album’s called Follow The Sun, so we were like, ‘What’s something that would be cool to have Follow The Sun written on?’ and sunglasses was the first thing we thought of. I kind of think we just felt like there’s only so many times that people want a band t-shirt, so we’re not doing any t-shirts, we’re just doing any creative thing we can think of,” he explains. Their 2004 debut album Dreams saw Evermore pillowcases sold at shows and around the time of 2006’s Real Life Evermore underwear surfaced – not

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exactly sure what the connection is there, but they were popular all the same. “We’ve actually still got a massive box of Evermore underwear in my garage,” he laughs. “They were really popular, but somehow a box got left behind at some point and it’s still sitting there. They were very popular, but it always felt slightly weird, to be honest, when people are asking you to sign their Evermore underwear and I’m just like, ‘This is just strange’, so I think we’ll probably give the Evermore underwear a miss from now on… Occasionally someone still brings [a pillowcase] to a show to get it signed and I’m like, ‘Argh, I wish I had one of these myself’.” A box full of unsold underwear will have to suffice as a consolation prize. “I kind of wish we made boxer shorts, but we didn’t,” he shares. The conversation then directs itself to the topic of disposable underwear, and it’s clear that things need to wrap up quickly. “That’d be handy on tour, actually!” WHO: Evermore WHAT: Follow The Sun (Universal) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 27 September, The Toff


THE NEW ALBUM OUT NOW

INPRESS • 23


GOLDEN GIFT Never heard of Gary Clark Jr? Well, you should have. Kristy Wandmaker learns from the man himself just what has made him such an enamoured face of music.

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eet Gary Clark Jr. No, not that guy from accounts. Gary Clark Jr, the man being hailed as the second coming of Jimi Hendrix. The man awarded the Golden Corndog award for performing in more major North American music festivals in 2012 than any other musician on the planet. The man who will soon release his debut album Blak And Blu for your listening pleasure. Still not sure who the heck I’m talking about? Take a seat and let me tell you more about him. At the age of seventeen, the Mayor of Austin, Texas, one of the greatest music cities in the world, proclaimed an entire day in his honour. For this to happen at such a young age, there must be something special about him. There is. He is one of very few people who can realistically claim to be a prodigy. A prodigy both from birth and as a result of his parents’ influence. “I grew up listening early on Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, The Temptations,” he begins. “All soul records. I remember just kinda relaxing and putting them on and dancing around and singing a bit, just having a good time. Those are my earliest memories of music, that’s what got me into it.” Having a good time is what it’s all about for Clark Jr. There’s no aspect to music that he doesn’t enjoy. “I love playing, writing, listening, learning, all of it,” he enthuses. “I’ve been playing the trumpet a little bit. Trying to get into that and figure it out. [I’m] still very much in training. It’s painful actually.” Clark Jr seems to thrive on variety, constantly trying new instruments, new cities and new music. “At the moment I’m listening to hip hop artist Odyssey. I’ve been listening to Otis Redding, Little Dragon, Nina Simone, Skip James, it’s all over the place.” Rather like the man himself. Generally you’ll find the musician on the road, travelling from festival to festival. “I’m fortunate enough to be invited to all those festivals and I have a great time doing it,” Clark Jr says. “Every one of them is different with a great energy. I don’t know how I wound up with the Corndog though. I’ve heard [Big Day Out is] great, I cannot wait.” His impatience is expressed in words

alone, with a southern drawl that is most animated when talking about his debut album Blak And Blu, featuring Clark Jr on guitar, vocals and trumpet, drummer J.J. Johnson, keyboardist Zac Rae, and producer Mike Elizondo on bass on many of the tracks. Working with other artists is second nature for Clark Jr. He’s even been known to share a stage with an Australian or two. “I got to play some shows with Kara Grainger (Australian singer-songwriter, ex-Pap Lips), I caught her sitting at a blues jam.” Sitting around a blues jam in Austin can spark things like that. Things like collaborating with Alicia Keys or The Roots. “I’ve played with the Roots a couple of times. They’re great guys you know, good to hang with, but they’re strong musically as well. I got to collaborate with Alicia Keys a bit, that was really good.” It’s really no surprise then that festivals are clamouring to add him to their bill on the back of the release of Blak And Blu, a long-awaited debut for the now-28 year-old. “I’m excited. I’m a bit nervous as the day gets closer just because it’s something very close to me that I’ve been working on for a long time. It’s an open, honest expression of what I’ve wanted to do musically. Overall I’m excited. I’m just ready for it to be out already. [I played it for] my friends here in Austin. There were a couple of surprises, but they were digging it, and I was loving them when they weren’t digging it, it was cool.” From the opening line of the album you get the feeling Clark Jr knows exactly what he is doing, and is confident in his abilities with the track Ain’t Messing Around beginning with “I don’t believe in competition/Ain’t nobody else like me around”. The title track ventures into a modern version of the soul records of his parents’ collection. “I’m most proud of Blak And Blu and Next Door Neighbour Blues. They’re very different, but I’m equally passionate about them just for what they are.” Another album highlight is the cover If You Love Me Like You Say/Third Stone From The Sun, with Clark Jr taking ownership of the iconic Hendrix riff. The comparisons to Hendrix are primarily for his

musicianship, but the feeling and blues simplicity of his songwriting also nod to the great one, as does his methods of creation. “I don’t really have a process,” Clarke Jr mulls. “Sometimes I wish I did, it would make it a lot easier. There’s a bunch of scattered thoughts going on in my brain that I’ll sit down and play on my guitar or play drums or play whatever instrument. Just play around and kind of experiment with things and start throwing them around. Sometimes things that I think are ok come out of it and sometimes it doesn’t work so well. It’s just part of the whole process.” Thankfully producer and collaborator extraordinaire Mike Elizondo was able to get that process on tape. Elizondo seems a perfect match for Clark Jr, having worked with artists as diverse as Dr. Dre, Mastadon, Fiona Apple and Regina Spektor. “We were talking about who would be good to work with and his name came up. I checked him out and we got in a room together and started talking about music and our influences and we have a lot in common.”

Oh, and he can act. Clark Jr starred in the 2007 movie Honeydripper alongside superstar Danny Glover. He plays the saviour of a failing blues club and gets to share his amazing guitar talents. “I loved doing it, but I’m loving playing music, so this is my main focus. I wouldn’t mind doing it again if the opportunity came up.” That’s Gary Clark Jr for you. Prodigy, mutli instrumentalist, actor, and completely unburdened by it all. He seems accepting of his path, to somehow understand and accept that he has a gift that others want him to share, and he’s more than happy to do so. “I’m a music lover, and love to play music.” WHO: Gary Clark Jr WHAT: Black And Blu (Warner) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 27 September, The Tote; Big Day Out, Saturday 26 January, Flemington Racecourse; Tuesday 22 January, The Corner Hotel

INDUSTRIALISM Pioneering metal gods Fear Factory are returning to Australia to promote their return to form album, The Industrialist. Mark Hebblewhite sat down with vocalist Burton C. Bell to discuss concept albums and intra-band conflict.

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ustralia has been really good to us and we’re forever thankful to you guys for the way you helped us out over the years,” enthuses Fear Factory frontman Burton C. Bell. “From day one when we released Soul Of A New Machine, way back in the early 1990s, Australia gave us a level of support that was unmatched – radio play, album sales, you name it.” Did the band realise what they had unleashed with Soul Of A New Machine, especially the way the album would be embraced warmly by industrial enthusiasts, metal traditionalists and death metal fiends alike? “No, we had no idea that it would go on to have such a life of its own. We didn’t sit down with some grand master plan. Basically me and Dino [Cazares, guitar] sat down to create the music we wanted to hear and it all snowballed from there. Because we had crossover appeal – death metal people, thrashers, the industrial crowd – all of them supported us. It meant that we were able to tour with a huge range of bands and that helped us grow. “We’ve found over the years that Fear Factory fans stay Fear Factory fans for life. They keep coming to the shows, keep buying the records, and some of the older ones even bring their kids to see us as well. It’s humbling to have that devotion in our fans and every time we put on a show we make sure that we give back that same devotion.” Fear Factory’s continuing longevity has been helped by their latest LP, The Industrialist, which has been rightly hailed as a return to form and the ‘classic’ Fear Factory sound after a number of years of turmoil (both stylistic and literal) and confusion for the band (more on that soon). “We’re really proud of that record,” says Bell. “It came out exactly the way we planned. We went into the studio with a really defined focus and came out having achieved what we want to achieve.” Apart from a distinct uptick in the quality of the songwriting and its sleek yet massive sound, The Industrialist is also notable for being a fully-blown concept 24 • INPRESS

record that tells the story of a morphing megalithic automaton who eventually turns into a cataclysmic threat to mankind. Thing is, do concept heavy albums still work in this day and age? And more importantly why did Fear Factory choose to record one at this stage in their career? “It represented a real challenge for us in a creative sense. We wanted to meld a concept together in both a lyrical and sonic sense to create one overriding theme,” explains Bell. “Ambition, and rising to a challenge is something that I think is missing in a lot of today’s music where artists are content to play it safe most of the time. As music fans we all need something to be excited about again. “We believed that there were enough people who enjoyed having a story in their music and enjoyed the ability of their favourite artists to create such a story. But even if you don’t like that approach - just focus on the music itself - the songs work individually as well. Whatever way you look at it everyone wins!” Bell is so enthused about the new album that he concedes it is possible that sometime in the future the band will decide to play the whole thing live and in sequence. But for the Fear Factory’s upcoming Australian tour a more traditional set is planned. “We give you guys three or four songs from the new album alongside a dose of stuff from Soul…., Obsolete, Demanufacture – you know, pretty much all our records. It will be a really balanced set that will hopefully cater for everyone.” Although Fear Factory are back on track the turmoil in their recent past lives on in the memories of the band’s legions of fans. This turmoil is of course the huge falling out that occurred between members that, at one stage, got so complex no one could figure out what the hell was going on. The simplest way to explain it all is to that in the fallout the band split into two diametrically opposed camps that stopped playing music and just snarled at each other via the press. On the one hand Burton C. Bell and Dino Cazares – the current core of Fear Factory who themselves were at loggerheads as late as 2008. On the other side, Raymond Herrera

[drums] and Christian Olde Wolbers [bass/guitar], who in 2009 found themselves ousted and were none too pleased with it. So where does everything stand now? “Dino and I are Fear Factory; it’s that simple,” states Bell. “We have a drummer, Mike Heller, and bass player, Matt Devries, on tour with us and we’d like to keep them for as long as possible. Both of them are amazing musicians, and the fact that Matt was actually a guitar player has brought a whole new depth to our sound. It’s what Fear Factory always needed – a guitarist playing bass,” he laughs. “It’s meant that this band is tighter than it’s been for a long, long time.” And dare we ask about the status of Raymond Herrera and Christian Olde Wolbers? Do Bell and Dino have anything to do with them anymore? Is there any chance of a reconciliation? “We don’t have any relationship with them at all,” spits Bell. “People talk about the band having a reconciliation but they don’t want to reconcile with us – so fuck ‘em. I can’t put it any more simply than that.” And to those fans who clamour for the ‘classic’ Fear Factory lineup, which would have to include the

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aforementioned gentlemen? “This whole idea of that lineup being some kind of ‘classic’ lineup doesn’t really sit well with me,” offers Bell. “I mean we had five different bass players before we had Christian so what lineup are they actually talking about? Besides, as I said earlier the band is stronger now than it has ever been – Dino and myself are writing the best material of our career and the band as a unit is absolutely unstoppable. Why people would want us to go back to a situation that just wouldn’t work is beyond me. Fear Factory will never be some nostalgia act content to live on past glories – that’s just not how we do things. People should come to the shows and then they’ll see that Fear Factory in 2012 is continuing to push the envelope of what this band is capable of.” WHO: Fear Factory WHAT: The Industrialist (Riot/Sony) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September, The HiFi


“Ben Drew’s move from sharp-suited soul boy to gritty narrator of inner-city deprivation is a bold one – and a good one.”

8/10 - NME

INPRESS • 25


TASTE TEST: PETER COMBE THE FIRST ALBUM I BOUGHT WITH MY OWN MONEY

It was probably a Peter, Paul & Mary album. I adored it. It was when I really fell in love with Peter, Paul & Mary as a folk group. But my parents bought me two albums when I was about 11 or 12 by a group called The Springfields, and they were famous for producing Dusty Springfield, but also Tom Springfield, who was a very good songwriter.

THE ALBUM I’M LOVING RIGHT NOW

I’m loving [Katie Noonan’s band] Elixir. I heard Katie at the National Folk Festival in Canberra back in April, and I hadn’t done the folk festival before, so I thought she was just extraordinarily brilliant. Her voice is like an angel.

MY FAVOURITE COMEDOWN ALBUM

I love Bob Dylan’s Time And Theft, which came out about six years ago, but I haven’t heard the new one, Tempest, yet. I’m a bit of a Bob Dylan fan. He’s had the weird kind of voice his whole life; it’s now a bit weirder and lower, but in his own funny way he still sings quite well. I actually like him as a singer. Traditional wisdom is that Bob Dylan can’t sing and Bob Dylan always sings out of tune… there’s no logic to this, but for some reason I quite like them. I think he’s a good singer.

THE MOST SURPRISING RECORD IN MY COLLECTION

There’s one by the Comedian Harmonists. They were a group of singers who became really famous in Germany in the Second World War; my parents introduced me to them. They raved about them! Two of the group were Jews, and they left Germany because they had a premonition of what was going on… and they just sang these gorgeous harmonies. There’s a film about them, called Comedian Harmonists. It’s a really interesting film. Now, probably almost no one would probably even know who they are but they had this guy who played an almost Chico Marx piano style; it’s quite unique, but very light touch, but he also had this amazingly light tenor voice, it was just gorgeous. Together they sang these light, fluffy fourpart harmony songs and they were gorgeous. I think they were quite uplifting to the war effort. I think people would be very surprised to find that one.

THE FIRST GIG I EVER ATTENDED

I would have been 11 or 12 years old. It might have been a Roy Orbison concert, and it was actually quite good!

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I’ve got a lot of respect for him. He’s got an amazing voice. It’s utterly unique. That’s the one that springs to mind… I would have been about 12, and I think I went by myself. And it’s quite funny actually, the lady who’s my wife, Carol, she went with my best friend. And that was before we became boyfriend and girlfriend. I think he thought he was on to a good thing there, but I knew it was never going to happen between him and her.

Kylie, with George Martin about two metres away just having a cup of tea by himself! So I went over and had this long conversation with him where we spoke about how he arranged the song A Day In The Life, which is the last song on Sgt Pepper’s… He explained how he did it, this ascension through all the scales with all the instruments. It was marvellous. He is a charming man. This is the guy known as the fifth Beatle.

THE COOLEST PERSON I’VE EVER MET

THE BIGGEST CELEBRITY CRUSH I’VE EVER HAD

That’s dead easy: Sir George Martin, the Beatles producer. It is one of the greatest moments of my life. Well, in 1989, I won an ARIA for Newspaper Mama – it was my second ARIA – and it was the year that Kylie Minogue broke as a major Australian phenomenon. And there was a winners’ room, so everyone went back there and Kylie hadn’t won anything, but was standing around. The journalists were like bees to honey, going to her and talking to her. But the same evening George Martin had been the keynote speaker – and this is the guy who wrote the string arrangement for Yesterday, discovered The Beatles, who produced all their albums… a fairly significant figure, you’d have to say. And I was sitting in this winners’ room talking to no one in particular while everyone was swanning around

There’d be lots of them! Lots of gorgeous girls… I used to love a young Alison Steadman. She’s not a household name, but she was in the BBC’s production of Pride And Prejudice, she was the lovely Mrs Bennet. I had a crush on her about 20 years before that. But what I can say categorically is that I find British girls much sexier than American girls, generally.

IF I COULD HANG OUT IN ANY TIME AND PLACE IN HISTORY

I might have hung out in Dublin in 1442, to hear the inaugural performance of Handel’s Messiah; that would have been pretty special I think. And to see the King rise to his feet and start that great tradition of rising for the chorus. I’m also really interested in the Second

IF I WASN’T MAKING MUSIC

I wouldn’t have minded being the world’s next Roger Federer! I’m a huge fan of tennis, and growing up as a young boy you just didn’t get coached the way people do now. I ended up being quite good in an amateur sense, but I would have liked to have real coaching and become really good at it. I’m a huge Roger Federer fan though. To me, he’s the closest thing to a tennis artist we’ve ever seen. Interview by Izzy Tolhurst WHO: Peter Combe WHAT: Quirky Berserky (The Turkey From Turkey) (MGM) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 4 October, Northcote Social Club

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b r ed

bourbon premix. Pick up the new American Honey premix at your local Dan Murphy’s store

26 • INPRESS

World War period. It would have been interesting to hang out, well, maybe not hang out but to be in Berlin to witness the rise of Nazism, and see how that happened. How an incredibly civilised country could become uncivilised in a relatively short period of time.

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INPRESS • 27


NORTHERN BELLE

UPPING THE UGLY Kiwi extreme metal kings Ulcerate are ready to sign off on their critically acclaimed third record and start work on the follow-up. Drummer Jamie Saint Merat prewarns Benny Doyle to get ready for the horror.

Rockhampton-raised Elizabeth Morris, leader of London tweepopsters Allo Darlin’, will play her first show in her country of birth, writes Anthony Carew.

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ince leaving Brisbane “two weeks after graduating” from the University Of Queensland, Elizabeth Morris has never come back. Well, not on stage, anyway. The leader of London twee-pop outfit Allo Darlin’ has returned to her hometown of Rockhampton (where she “grew up in a butcher’s shop”, in a town where the Brashs was the only record store) only every few years since moving to London nearly a decade ago, but never performed. Until, finally, after two albums and a run of singles from Allo Darlin’, she’ll have her musical ‘homecoming’, playing to crowds she never played to in the first place. “I have no idea what to expect: how many people will come to the shows, what the fans will be like, what Australian audiences will be like; I’ve only ever been in one, I’ve never played in front of one,” she says. Morris was inspired to migrate via a devotion to Queensland’s greatest indie-pop exports. “The Go-Betweens were one of my favourite bands, and I knew they moved to London,” Morris recounts. “I was inspired by the fact that they were this band from Brisbane who had gone on to be not just adored, but internationally adored. There was something very specific about them being from where I was from; there’s something in their music that’s always reminded me of home, even when I was still living at home. When I moved to the other side of the world, those feelings obviously intensified.” After finding a job at a sound post-production facility in Soho, Morris roped co-workers into an “after-work band”, The Darlings, and Allo Darlin’ grew from them. The band showcase Morris’s anecdotal songwriting and ukulele strums – a Lucksmithian sound pitched for a very specific indie-dance-night, Sarah Records-loving set. “I really loved The Go-Betweens and Belle & Sebastian, that classic indie-pop sound was what we were going for in the beginning,” Morris admits, without a hint of reservation. “And, once we got to know each other more as musicians, we started to develop our own sound. But, when you’re playing indie-pop like this, those big

bands are always there; I think every review of us ever has mentioned The Smiths and Belle & Sebastian.” Though there was a vague idea for their sound, Allo Darlin’’s early days progressed with a kind of casual happenstance. “We never even had a plan, or even really had to ask for gigs,” Morris recounts. “We played one show and, after that, people were always asking us to play the next one. We’d get asked to play a show in Berlin and it’d seem like a good idea, so off we’d go, but we were just happy to see what would turn up. Allo Darlin’’s first, self-titled record was “very hastily made” at the urging of London twee institution Fortuna Pop! – “we’d only been a band of four people for a couple of months at that time,” explains Morris – but caught the ears of the right people; including a 7.9 from Pitchfork that handed the band an American audience. “Diving headfirst” into being a full-time entity, they toured North America and Europe with results of varying disaster, and made a more polished second LP, Europe. “The songs,” Morris offers, of the album, “were very much motivated by the fact that my visa was running out, and I didn’t know if I was going to be able to stay. So, I was feeling very nostalgic, wondering what I’d take back home to Australia if I had to leave Europe.” Morris never had to leave, and now she gets to come back home; this time, with band by her side and stages to tread on. “By coming home and playing these shows, it feels like the end of something, or the closing of something,” says Morris. “It’s something I’ve been dreaming about since the very beginning of the band.” WHO: Allo Darlin’

Doyle wound up in SF, where he’s long been active in the dance music underground, DJing and, with friends, promoting the infamous [Kontrol] parties, which ended in June after seven years. In the ‘90s SF became the epicentre of the West Coast house movement, which peaked with the emergence of Naked Music (remember Miguel Migs?). “I wasn’t totally into it, but there were definitely some songs I would DJ out from that crew,” Doyle recollects. [Kontrol] pre-empted the swing to (minimal) techno. PillowTalk fell together in SF’s Lower Haight district. “We had all been in the same circle of friends and we would always hang out at afterparties and go to events together – and we would always end up jamming somewhere or playing records at someone’s house.” Doyle and Tello met Williams through his brother, the siblings sharing a duplex. They’d jam around the baby grand piano in the Williams’ kitchen. Soon, the three were in a studio – and a band crystallised. “We all bring different elements,” Doyle says. “Mikey’s a really, really, really awesome engineer. He drives 28 • INPRESS

Forming in 2000, the Auckland group was originally known as Bloodwreath, however, it wasn’t until 2003 that they first started doing the rounds under their current moniker. Behind a trio of dense and confronting albums, Ulcerate built a loyal fanbase, delivering the sort of mind-bending death metal that in the past has predominantly been associated with the Scandinavians. “Yeah we get a little bit of that,” he says, “particularly because there’s only really a handful of death/black/ grind acts from NZ that are known internationally.” But although the strength of their earlier work is undeniable, it was last year’s The Destroyers... that really put the band on the global metal map. With a return to the guttural growls of their first EPs, the amalgamation of mood and might The Destroyers... brought won Ulcerate new fans from all parts of the world and earned the band praise from tastemakers such as Decibel Magazine and Pitchfork. Saint Merat admits that he was surprised by the critical plaudits dished out towards The Destroyers....

accolades the Kiwis received, it’s surprising to hear that neither Saint Merat nor the band are feeling any pressure with this, their Relapse Records debut. “We know how we want things to sound, and for the most part we even agree with some of the minor criticism of The Destroyers... in terms of the more ambient side of things,” he concedes. “It sounds clichéd of course, but I think the three of us just want to make the best Ulcerate record we can at any given time, and that is really all that we need to be satisfied. If people respond positively then that’s a huge bonus, but first and foremost we have to create a group of songs that we stand behind 100%.” Australian fans along the East Coast are being spoilt with the band’s last run of shows before they immerse themselves in the studio to record the as-yet-untitled fourth album. Saint Merat says the songs are still taking shape, but the trio are getting more excited every time they plug in. “We’re about halfway through at the moment,” he informs, “four songs down, close to 35 minutes of music. Just starting to pre-produce the shells of songs we’ve got, working out all the finer details at a counterpoint level between the instruments, [and] doing a ton of rearranging and reworking as we go, as we’ve always done. But the more we’re playing things the better they’re feeling for sure. I’m really fucking proud of what we’ve been able to do with our music, but there’s still a lot of room to move so to speak and, if anything, we’re a lot hungrier these days than we’ve ever been.” WHO: Ulcerate WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September, Bendigo Hotel

BEST. NIGHT. EVER.

He could very easily have been an Aussie, but Sammy Doyle ended up in San Francisco, where he now leads the hipster-adored post-disco crew PillowTalk. Cyclne charts their rise.

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Saint Merat is on the line from his native New Zealand, discussing Ulcerate’s forthcoming slice of punishment. With a new label behind them and an increased global profile, it’s a record that is shaping up to be a defining body of work for the band.

“You always have zero objectivity upon completing an album,” he says, “so for it to be received as well as it was is completely humbling.” Considering the

WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 4 October, Tote

PARK LIFE

he San Francisco post-disco band PillowTalk have hipsters swirling around them even before they’ve dropped an album, their first single, Love Makes Parks, out on the cult Detroit label Visionquest in late 2010. This November the trio – Sammy Doyle (vocals), Ryan Williams (keys, guitar) and Michael Tello (keys, effects and beats) – will transport their California cool to Melbourne Music Week. They’ll play the opening night at the mystery flagship pop-up venue Where?House. “To be honest, I don’t know much about the music scene in Australia, but I’m really excited to go,” says Doyle. “My family was gonna move us all down to Newcastle from Anchorage, Alaska in 1984, so I was going to grow up in Australia. They went down there for a few months, getting visas and a house, and they brought back tonnes of pictures. I was really excited to live there. [But] it never happened. So I’ve always had this childhood fascination with visiting and going there one day.”

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he goal with this next album is to pull away from the more ambient/atmospheric side of things we were working with on [The Destroyers Of All] and push further into the ugly/violent territory. There will of course be the atmosphere, but this time around we’re working incredibly hard on getting across a different voice altogether. I think we’re all really excited with the material we have so far, a lot of it just sounds totally horrific and fucked, in the best way possible.”

Party boys Vaudeville Smash are ready to party with the arrival of their new single. Brendan Telford asks Marc Lucchesi about getting back to the future. the computer. Ryan’s a really, really talented keyboard player – and a guitarist. Then I’ve been a vocalist and a DJ for so long – and I grew up in choir. I’m really good at hearing chords and writing melodies… Then me and Mikey tend to work on the beats and the drums. Mikey’s really talented at putting together drums.” PillowTalk debuted on Visionquest (the label of Seth Troxler’s crew), following with music on Italy’s Life And Death and New York’s Wolf + Lamb. Doyle speculates that the outfit might yet start “something new” in SF’s scene, their influences encompassing classic soul, R&B, disco, house, techno and even psychedelia. And PillowTalk are plotting an album. “We have a black-out period in December,” the frontman says. “We’re gonna be in Portland, Oregon, at a friend’s studio here and we’re just gonna buckle down. We have a bunch of material that we have either written down or saved – lyrics, we’ve got melodies on our iPhones, we’re always recording ideas… So we have enough material to sit down and put together an album – and that’s our plan, to knock one out here in December.” Fans may hear album tracks in their show out here, he affirms. “There are two or three songs we’ve been putting in our set that are possibly gonna be on the album. We have a lot of stuff to choose from. We’re gonna kinda feel it out and see what direction we wanna go in. But we have been trying out some new ideas.” In the meantime, PillowTalk have been collaborating. They cut The Outcast with DJ Tennis for Kompakt and Real Love with the Wolf + Lamb bosses. They’ve also remixed a Crazy P record. “The whole intro is like psychedelic rock,” Doyle enthuses, “it’s like guitars and it sounds like Pink Floyd!” WHO: PillowTalk WHEN & WHERE: Friday 16 November, Melbourne Music Week, Where?House

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elbourne good time boys Vaudeville Smash have written it into their mission statement that every show they play is a party with an inherent ‘80s hangover. It isn’t often that a frontman like Marc Lucchesi can get away with a sax solo without either taking the piss or having the piss taken. Being footloose and fancy free, they have been able to corner a unique market, a throwback into a decade of decadent fun while steeping it all in irreverence and jovial excess. Now they are preparing to release new single Best Night onto the world, Lucchesi admits that its genesis comes from the idea of any wild night – although one in particular springs to mind. “The little chant that’s in the chorus [‘This is the best night of my life’], we used to sing that song whenever we were out getting plastered. It was a little mantra, so we would do it on tour a lot, but when Nick (Lam, guitarist) came to me with the crux of the song, we had a totally different chorus. It didn’t work so we threw this chant into the chorus, which made us pick one night that we could pinpoint as being the best night of our lives. And I remembered this time about a year or two ago when I was in Lagos (Portugal) with a bunch of friends, and we’d had too much to drink and a lot of other stuff, and a lot of crazy things happened on the beach there that have been loosely thrown into the lyrics.” Best Night serves as the perfect encapsulation of Vaudeville Smash’s musical aesthetic – a crazy menagerie of sounds that sees soul shimmying up alongside some loose funk, with a collective espousal of Hall & Oates, Kenny Loggins and Michael McDonald thrusting their hips in the background. While the band has embraced their love of the “godfathers” of yacht rock in the past, Lucchesi admits that it is time to take that adulation to the next level with other masters joining the fray. “Those guys are big influences, especially Mick McDonald,” Lucchesi advocates. “But I think

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that this time we wanted to go all out and have a crack at bringing a Prince-like vibe. Or moreso [Michael] Jackson. We are still retaining elements of our other stuff, but this is more of a dance track than anything else. That funk edge – ever since we were teenagers we have been listening to early [James] Brown and those sorts of bands, so it was about time that that all comes out.” The songwriting process has developed remarkably over the years as the quartet become more assured of their direction, most obvious with the immediacy and confidence that Best Night exudes. “When we started out we would look at our live show and try to see what was missing, then sit down and write a song around filling that space,” Lucchesi admits. “We would have too many ballads or medium level songs and needed something to ramp things up. Best Night did come out of a similar idea, in that we wanted to write a song that would really pump people up, but also pump us up too. And this song was one of those moments where I was showing Nick some of my songs, then he played a demo he had recorded at home with melodies and such and you just know that you have hit on something. We always test songs out in front of an audience before deciding what to do with it though. And Best Night is the perfect introduction to this new phase of the band.” WHO: Vaudeville Smash WHEN & WHERE: Saturday September 29, Northcote Social Club


INPRESS • 29


PLAYING ON

DEATH AND FRIVOLITY

A show for a crowd of “bemused” detainees in Maribyrnong is the unconventional warm-up for Weddings, Parties, Anything’s annual Grand Final-eve reformation show. Brendan Hitchens tackles frontman Mick Thomas.

W

eddings, Parties, Anything are an institution, as much a part of the Melbourne fabric and the final week of September as the sporting code that has made the month famous. It’s no surprise then that the seminal band’s frontman and St Kilda fanatic Mick Thomas has artistically aligned the two. “When the Weddings broke up in 1998 it was a proper split up and wasn’t a calculated thing. We stayed away for ten years,” he says on reflection. “When we came back in 2008 to do a tour, it felt really good and the crowds were really strong. It left us with that lingering question, ‘What should we do now?’ So we just thought one show a year would be a good thing to do.“ That one, official show a year has since become a staple of the musical calendar, with their AFL Grand Final-eve show now in its fourth consecutive year. “I wanted one night and thought Grand Final eve was as good a night as any in Melbourne,” says Thomas. “It’s a night where people are out and about, the town is full of people and it’s probably the easiest night to get people from interstate to Melbourne.” The annual celebration is a reunion for band and fans alike and sees the group returning to their element, the live setting. Recorded in their final year, Weddings, Parties, Anything released They Were Better Live – a live recording of their triumphant Christmas Eve show at the Central Club in Richmond – in 1999. Tongue-in-cheek in title, Thomas admits there was a hint of truth to the label. “I think we got around to making some okay records. It was always the way we were considered, a live band that couldn’t quite get it happening in the studio.” Initially active for 14 years, they weren’t without lineup changes (Thomas is the one consistent member across all versions of the band). Ironically, the reunion shows have featured their most consistent line-ups to date. “We copped some criticism towards the end that it was a bit of a supergroup and that everyone in the band had played in a well known band,” he says

30 • INPRESS

With their two members based in different cities, Collarbones have been able to use technology to record two highly-regarded albums, but surely it must make live gigs a challenge. Not so, as Travis Cook tells Sky Kirkham.

(the current WPA line-up features past members of Paul Kelly & The Coloured Girls, The Black Sorrows, The Badloves and Huxton Creepers). “There were 14 people through Weddings and they all brought their own identity, but the final line-up was our longest. From ‘95 to ‘98 we had the same line-up and, subsequent to that, all the reformations have been that same line-up.” Testament to their name, the Grand Final-eve gig is one of only two shows they play each year. As a warm-up for the main event, they perform at the Maribyrnong Immigration Detention Centre to a room of refugees; it’s a stark contrast to the full house of adoring fans they perform to later in the week. “It’s a total closed shop, no one’s allowed in or out either,” jokes Thomas. “We play for a bunch of bemused detainees. It’s pretty weird, but that’s the other side of the band’s persona; we can go and do things that we are concerned about.” A test for the band to win over an unfamiliar and often unaccommodating audience, Thomas admits it has made him a better musician and performer. “The principles are the same, you strap on your instrument and try and play it the best you can. It’s good for us to have a hit-out and experience an inverse level of regard for what we do.” With a “big back catalogue” that consists of “seven bona fide albums and any amount of bootleg collections of bits and pieces”, Thomas says the show will be a celebratory, best-of set. “When you get all those songs that were released between, say, ‘83 and ‘97, when you get a certain group of people playing with a certain energy and attack and a certain audience, that’s what defines the Weddings.” WHO: Weddings, Parties, Anything WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September, Palace

“I

think we’re pretty lucky with the type of music that we make and that we work well together automatically, basically,” Cook says. “And the fact that I sort of control most of the music aspects live and [Marcus Whale] is definitely the vocalist these days, it isn’t all that difficult. And it’s getting easier the more we tour and see each other in person. Basically our touring is our rehearsal. “I’m wary of making it either too difficult for me to have fun playing, or too difficult for people to be entertained by it, so it isn’t that drastically different,” Cook mentions of playing live. “I play with the elements of the song live and fuck it up a little bit, alter it slightly and play drums over the top of parts of the song. I don’t want to make it too easy on myself; I’ve got to not be bored, but not be too overwhelmed with things that I can’t have fun, so it’s a bit of balance there.” From seeing previous shows, it looks like Collarbones have the ‘fun’ part of the show down pat, but it’s something they’ve had to work on. “We’ve forced ourselves to make it enjoyable,” Cook continues. “To begin with, in live performances, we were a bit more reserved; Marcus wasn’t much of a frontman. We kind of hid behind laptops and didn’t do much. But we’ve slowly gotten more confidence and made it more of a party atmosphere and I think slowly maybe our music will become more ‘party’ to accommodate the vibe that we want to have at live shows, where we try to make it as fun as possible.”

The first album, Iconography, was critically acclaimed, but hasn’t quite seen the band cross over into mainstream success. The new album looks set to repeat the critical attention, and Cook is hopeful that it will attract new listeners into the fold as well. “At the moment the reception is still in the critical side of things definitely, but hopefully this album

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connects with people a bit more. I think the lyrics are a bit more direct, so maybe there’s a bit more of an emotional pull to it that might get people more interested. The first one was a bit more abstract, so I wouldn’t expect that to be commercially successful. We don’t have any expectations, but we’ll go with whatever happens. I think we’re both willing to make it a priority in our lives at least” Die Young, their new release, is a very modern mixture of R&B and electronica – similar to some of Oscar + Martin or How To Dress Well’s work. “Well Marcus has basically spent the whole year listening to a lot of R&B and I suppose emulates them now,” Cook explains. “And I do as well. But the majority of my personal influences have come from mainstream dance music this time and rave music and trance even. Which you probably can’t really hear, apart from the first track Hypothermia. And so [Die Young] is sort of like a collision of poppy vocals with everything else in the world. I think there’s been a slight change in mentality maybe. We’ve always liked R&B, but now a certain sub-section of the community won’t look down on us as much if we admit to it.” Collarbones even collaborated internationally with Die Young, working with Paris-based Michael Salerno to create a film to accompany the album. “It’s sort of a nice, but also pretentious thing to have a film alongside your album, but it’s pretty fun,” Cook concludes. WHO: Collarbones WHAT: Die Young (Two Bright Lake/Remote Control) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September, Liberty Social


SINGLED OUT WITH BRYGET CHRISFIELD

ON THE RECORD

DIVINE FITS Would That Not Be Nice Merge Records

Martha

Broken Stone/Inertia There’s something a tad Julee Cruise about the atmospherics in this song and then lyrical content becomes the focus, amplifying any such murderous similarities: “He strangled me inside the bedroom.” Simple keyboard chords provide the skeleton here and there’s some ghostly whistling throughout. B-side Six Six Six features a vocal contribution from Geoffrey O’Connor and Biddy Connor’s strings are a welcome addition to any arrangement. There’s something lethargic about the overall tone that makes one wish for a comfy couch to sink into.

ATOMS FOR PEACE Default

XL Recordings Atoms For Peace contains Thom Yorke, Flea and Nigel Godrich. That’s one helluva collab! Default teams syncopated skitter beats with sustained organ chords that amplify and diminish, vibrating through your headphones to make you feel the right kind of woozy. Yorke’s crystalline pipes resonate, infusing fragility and poignancy into the most clichéd of lyrics: “I made my bed/I’ll lie in it” – isn’t that Hole? Random sounds such as a boxing round start bell startle through the drone like aural Pop Rocks. Sonic art. Bring on the album (slated for 2013).

BATTLESNAKE

PIAS/Liberator

Flaming Snake Records

On their second album, Songs Of Patience, British soul rockers Alberta Cross go for a polished sound focusing on succinct riffs and guitar hooks, whilst still strongly emphasising frontman Petter Ericson Stakee’s eerie vocal melodies. The album opens with current single Magnolia, a bass-driven exploration of euphoria, built upon a singular acoustic guitar, with musical layers building the intensity as the song progresses. Lay Down cruises ever so gently and is a sparse-sounding track, with minimal instrumentation being used as the focus is put back onto the song’s barest essentials.

With electric bass, drums and Wurlitzer, Melbourne three-piece Battlesnake make improvised rock music, heavily reliant on emotion and energy.

Songs Of Patience

Your Life Is On Fire

D

VD

VD

MELODIE NELSON

LIVE

ALBERTA CROSS

D

This bassline slays. And it’s so pleasing to note its majesty has been left to breathe and dominate as other instruments curtsey beneath rather than highjack the arrangement with contrasting melodies. Sneaky double maracas and güiro complete the back-line party. Would That Not Be Nice? It would be far better than nice. Make that plurry marvellous! Remember back at school when you said you loved something and someone would bafflingly quip, “Well why don’t you marry it then?” I would be honoured to walk down the aisle with this bassline. This supergroup features Spoon’s Britt Daniel, New Bomb Turks drummer Sam Brown and Dan Boeckner (Wolf Parade/Handsome Furs). “I do.”

And whilst sonically this album is leaps and bounds on its predecessor Broken Side Of Time, the tracks have a similar energy and there are some upbeat rock-inspired numbers – Wasteland and Money For The Weekend are both catchy and present the band’s edgier sound. And there are some Bob Dylan moments with the country-tinged acoustic guitar-based Life Without Warning, and emotionally-drenched Bonfire solely comprised of an acoustic guitar with a splattering of vocal harmonies and piano for good measure. However, it is becoming more and more evident that bands are putting their most creative and catchiest number at the end of the album, and Wait, complete with Smiths-era bass line and a determined and fragile vocal delivery, closes what is a diverse album. Alberta Cross have further added to their mystique, which they successfully developed on their first album. Having the confidence to not dress Songs Of Patience as a rock record complete with dirty guitars, is a testament to the band’s determination to explore new depths and sound textures. The overall result is simply eargasmic. James Dawson

Interestingly the trio, two of whom also play in local pop duo The Leafs, haven’t elected to provide one long 30-odd minute journey of a piece like they tend to do live, instead they appear to have culled together a series of interesting moments from much longer jams, slammed them up against each other and we’re left with eight pieces of diverse, high energy sounds. Live there’s something almost hyperactive about the drumming of Michael Pulsford, and this album is the first time the band have been able to really capture it on a recording. He is the barometer of the group, often picking them up and dragging them headlong into more frantic territory, particularly during highly inappropriate moments, which only adds to the joy and humour. Yet there are also moments of quiet contemplation, and this is where Gus Kemp’s evocative and tasteful Wurlitzer really stands up, a gentle run of notes creating a whole new world. And it’s his interplay with bassist Adam Smith, who himself only needs to offer a few notes or a simple gesture, that provides the emotional connection to Battlesnake. Live this band are near mystical, whipping crowds up into a frenzy as they chase the snake, effortlessly conjuring up new sonic textures and structures. Your Life Is On Fire feels similarly raw and unhinged, yet similar to a film soundtrack with repeated motifs that reference each other. This is the key to Battlensake: their enthusiasm and energy brings the party, yet their uncompromising technique and diverse structures means you won’t hate yourself in the morning. Bob Baker Fish

COLLARBONES Die Young

Two Bright Lakes/Remote Control Travis Cook and Marcus Whale must hold an intrinsic connection to the human mind and what makes it move. How else do they create soundscapes so captivating and aligned with the emotions of dayto-day existence? Collarbones’ second record Die Young is a stirring listen cover to cover, the album housing mysterious sounds that feel somewhat spooky without ever coming across as scary or intimidating. Like a positive drone, opener Hypothermia takes the vocals of Ivan Vizintin and wraps them around a hissing drum beat that gives an edge to the otherwise dreamlike sounds bouncing within the song. Vizintin’s tone recalls British 2-step of the Millennium turn, while the record’s other main vocalist, Melbourne musician Oscar Vicente Slorach-Thorn – he of textured pop duo Oscar + Martin – lays a bit more syrup down on tracks like Cocooned and One Day, the latter juxtaposing his voice against a pulsing, low key synth line to glorious effect. Strong song foundations allow Collarbones to be as creative as they please on the top section of the songs, a balance that works fluidly across the whole record. Missing is another real standout, with the sparse drumming and glitchy synths making you feel like you’re floating through orbit. Teenage Dream, meanwhile, could have slotted nicely on last year’s SBTRKT record, with the atmospherics holding that same echoed goodness that the British producer employed to devastating effect with his self-titled debut. If you feel like walking the streets alone late at night, then Die Young houses the jams for you. For a couple of young blokes from Melbourne, these are some seriously accomplished tunes right here. Set your heads to nod. Benny Doyle

CITY CALM DOWN Pleasure & Consequence I Oh You

This one is new New Romantic. Jack Bourke‘s deep baritone (Jack Ladder meets David Sylvian and their timbres coexist happily ever after) is offset by jovial brass blasts and galloping synths. I hope the singer has long dark locks with dyed blonde streak, like a young, flamboyant Dave Vanian (The Damned). This song’s combined elements make for a wonderfully thought-provoking listening experience that washes over while you dive into the memory bank and retrieve a collage of dancefloor highlights and meaningful (for one night only) party pashes. Get your sidestep on, people. And then Pleasure & Consequence fades out and reality returns. Ugh! Press play. Not ready to let go of such remembrances quite yet.

THE EVENING CAST Factory

Independent CD player’s eject button temporarily on the fritz, I view Factory’s accompanying music video on YouTube. These days it’s all about first impressions: “Who the fuck dressed frontman, Joel Cooper, in two different outfits, both of which succeed in making him look like a complete tool?” There are Alpine-esque, layered, breathy female BVs that elevate Factory and Cooper’s voice is a touch Ben Gibbard – but those heinous smocks! They’re burnt into my retinas now and it’s impossible to listen impartially. Sack the stylist.

MUSE

BAND OF HORSES

Warner

Columbia/Sony

Frontman Matthew Bellamy stated that recording this, Muse’s sixth studio album, was a bit like being in three different bands. Certainly the taster provided by the first two singles backed this up, with the bombastic pomp and operatic fervour of Survival followed by the mellow electro pop departure of Madness. Muse have always pulled other styles and genres into their rock core but for parts of the The 2nd Law they have taken this to extreme levels.

Over their last couple of albums – but maybe more through some truly standout songs such as Is There A Ghost, and the glorious Laredo – Band Of Horses have become one of those bands you almost wanted to keep to yourself, worrying success might mess with the pure joy and craft of their music.

The 2nd Law

There are still some familiar moments, such as the album opener Supremacy which sees grungy guitars initially calmed down by cinematic strings and Bellamy’s haunting vocal before all combining to create the kind of epic sound they relish. Album highlight and sure to be live favourite Follow Me is based around a poppy chorus with a strong electronic undercurrent while Big Freeze, with its heavy dance rock beat, impassioned vocal and massive chorus, sounds purpose built for stadium shows. The more unexpected moments see Muse veer into almost Bee Gees territory with the disco funk of Panic Station, while some dubstep drifts in on Unsustainable. In another departure, bassist Chris Wolstenholme writes and takes lead vocals on a couple of tracks for the first time. Both have a personal theme (his battle with alcohol) with Save Me contrasting monotone instrumentation and delivery with a passionate plea, and Liquid State providing the heaviest rock out of the album. Despite the eclectic range of music the album flows surprisingly well with a sense of excitement about where each track is going to go. This is their most diverse release to date as they continue to push rock boundaries. It’s also their most rewarding listen. Paul Smith

32 •INPRESS

Mirage Rock

But Mirage Rock is likely the album where we’ll have to share them. The album’s previewing single, Knock Knock, is the calling card of them about to kick the door down rather than just waiting for an invitation, main Horse, Ben Bridwell, perhaps finally having the confidence to believe some of the praise he’s garnered. What makes it so right this time around? The music is still that alt.country-flecked Southern racket, well-thought and well-played. It’s perhaps a little more approachable, certainly more consistent. There are still some darker moments – the almost Appalachian Everything’s Gonna Be Undone or the love song with perhaps something else going on underneath in Long Vows – but overall it’s a Band Of Horses not ashamed of being a pop band as well. But that’s a pop band like R.E.M. were a pop band, although you can almost hear the backlash from old fans revving up on internet forums even now. Production by true veteran Glyn Johns adds further sheen, but it can swing (A Little Biblical) or get a bit sentimental (Slow Cruel Hands Of Time) as necessary. Or go to the album-centring Dumpster World to have them go from Sam Beam-style reflections before breaking out something louder in the midst of it and yet remaining true to the song. It’s just further proof of what an utterly assured record this is. Ross Clelland

themusic.com.au

CHARLES JENKINS & THE ZHIVAGOS

Love Your Crooked Neighbour With Your Crooked Heart Silver Stamp/Fuse Each of Charles Jenkins’ splendid solo albums have come with a slightly different flavour, although all retain the former Ice Cream Hands leader’s unquestionable pop sense. Various shades of guitar music – to The Blue Atlas’s string-driven works, before turning it back up a bit for Walk This Ocean – he keeps delivering quality work. Now another turn: Love Your Crooked etc etc could be his ‘roots and folk’ album – in parts. There are occasional wheezes of brass and rattles of piano stumbling up the stairs from The Band’s basement. Other moments you’re being told probably not all-together true yarns by that guy who bummed a ride as far as Goulburn but is somehow still in the passenger seat as you hit Albury. Or maybe just a grinning singalong in your loungeroom. That last one well-illustrated by the swing of Pray My Darling Daughter, where she’s gently chided against involvement with most creative types. We’ll discuss our respective views of journalists and folksingers at some later stage, Chuck. At other points it’s more reflective. Rich Rich Country adds some Billy Bragg humanist politics as the boats bob in the swell. The Dictator With No Moustache even more philosophical, heading towards being something of a secular hymn, with the inevitable kicker of ‘We’re all gonna die’ towards the end. Or the faux gospel but real feeling of Went To The Chapel. There’s most always an Australian accent – Gun Trouble listing the narrator’s small crimes across those Victorian country towns with bent roadsign names like Ouyen and Merbein. Listen and let Sir Charles converse with you, for he does it very well. Ross Clelland


BEN FOLDS FIVE

CIRCLE

MINUS THE BEAR

THE GASLAMP KILLER

ImaVeePee/Sony

Monday Records

Dangerbird

Brainfeeder/Inertia

To say that the new tracks from this trio that teased fans on last year’s The Best Imitation Of Myself: A Retrospectivie showed promise is an understatement – the string-laden Stumblin’ Home Winter Blues in particular had a beautiful high-chin fragility – and the promise has been fulfilled on album number four.

Sydney band Circle’s debut studio album The Middle has been a while in the making – the band formed in 2005. According to their press release, this album proves “they’re a well-rounded bunch”, and beyond using cheap entendres to encapsulate their musical accomplishment and completeness, The Middle definitely does lift on the group’s previous EPs and releases.

Many fans were probably hoping that Seattle-based indie rockers Minus The Bear had moved on from 2010’s forgettable Omni, the cheesed-up, synthed-out tribute to the sort of sheeny sleazeball music you’d expect to hear at every club in Miami in, like, 1984. Unfortunately, the quintet has continued further down the disco ball-lit rabbit hole with Infinity Overhead.

The album is composed of clever lyrics and song titles; in sum, it’s a well-refined cluster of warm songs – a fine summer soundtrack. The 11 tracks that made the cut – apparently whittled down from 18 – are unique and representative of the band’s diversity, but keep an appealing common thread that never distances listeners. Sometimes, however, it sounds as if the running theme is that the synth-heavy tunes are best suited to a mid-1980s Napoleon Dynamite-esque dancefloor, but on further inspection it’s far more likely to be Bec Shave’s beautiful harmonies and Radi Safi’s familiar-but-fresh vocals that provide continuity.

The band’s fifth album kicks off with the truly grating Steel And Blood, whereby frontman Jake Snider instantly loses all previously amassed points for being a suave bastard by coming across like a lounge singer trying desperately to incite some kind of carnal reaction from a pool of disinterested soccer mums. He audibly lacks the passion that used to permeate his vocals and the whole thing spends its life laughing at the very concept of subtlety against the backdrop of straight-up 4/4 soft dance rock.

Breakthrough is The Gaslamp Killer’s debut album, and after more than ten years of cutting mixtapes, producing beats for numerous hip hop projects and being a key player in LA’s seminal Low End Theory group, it seems William Bensussen’s got a lot on his mind. It’s a formidable collection of challenging work that, at its core, is an experimental hip hop record filtered through a psychological horror film lens.

The Sound Of The Life Of The Mind

As is the pleasure of just about any release with Folds’ touch on it, his comfort in the studio shines through. There are small flourishes and embellishments, near-negligible when picked apart, that make the songs, and would only occur to those who are so at home, so accomplished and in their element in a recording environment. The return of the Ben Folds Five’s enviable harmonies could not have been any stronger – Michael Praytor, Five Years Later is melancholy pop genius, and the coral vocal arrangements that lead into the juvenile joy of Draw A Crowd are brief but beautiful. On Draw A Crowd, Folds sings “I only wanted to be Stevie Wonder, but I got to settle for this vanilla thunder”, and resigned as the statement may sound, he’s in fine form here – and once again paired with Robert Sledge and Darren Jessee, the trio are as playfully talented and impressively inventive as ever in their odd realm of piano pop. The 13-year gap between albums is forgotten with the fuzzed-out bass-driven Erase Me, and any further remnants of ill-feeling towards the band for taking so damn long are washed away with the light raindrop of keys that anchors Hold That Thought. Dave Drayton

The Middle

Infinity Overhead

Fashion Me A Drum is punchy from beginning to end, and already getting deserved airtime. Hold, featuring such lines as “…repeating that you give a fuck” are sung in such an angelic pitch as to make the whole arrangement irresistibly ironic. Half Race Girls’ politically incorrect title is forgotten after hearing its addictive chorus and potent closing riffs. The Middle ends satisfyingly with the upbeat Brothers, as well as some lamentation for its conclusion. Let’s hope it isn’t another seven years until they come full circle with a second studio gem. Izzy Tolhurst

The record’s not entirely without moments of strength – the wailing breakdown in Lies And Eyes, highlights Diamond Lightning and Zeros, and parts of Heaven Is A Ghost Town and Empty Party Rooms all throw back in various ways to the excellent Planet of Ice (2007) and earlier, but not enough. Two (relatively speaking) strong songs and a few encouraging passages is nowhere near what a band such as Minus The Bear should be delivering and, while their willingness to speak with a more pop-focused/less technical sensibility should be admired because it’s brave, it should also be mocked openly because it kind of sucks balls. Mitch Knox

Breakthrough

Thunderous basslines lumber through dark forests of bent and twisted synths and coarse, gravelly textures crunch under foot. Heavy thumps echo throughout and a palpable sense of unease and dread permeates the strange wilderness Bensussen creates. Those expecting the gutpunching dancefloor bass music Gaslamp made his name with will be disappointed. This is not an approachable album, and does not engage the feet so much as your intuitive intellect. There are so many sounds on here that it’s too complex to fully unravel. It forces you to feel your way through the tonal shifts and nightmare imagery the sound cues suggest, groping in the dark for a familiar element to guide you through the darkness. There are some accessible passages incorporating some impressively crushing basslines and even some smoky Middle Eastern influences (Nissim), but these are sporadic and don’t alleviate the David Lynch-level weirdness. Bensussen is passionate about this release, so it appears the intention to present a cohesive body of work was certainly there. The execution however represents a mind too feverish to earn anything other than horrified fascination. Matt MacMaster

themusic.com.au

INPRESS • 33


Force Majeure & Sydney Theatre Company

NEVER DID ME ANY HARM featuring Catherine McClements

THE HIT OF THE 2012 SYDNEY FESTIVAL The MTC Theatre, Sumner Tue 9 – Sat 13 Oct Sponsored by

Supported by

Lucy Guerin Inc.

WEATHER

A POWERFUL NEW DANCE WORK INSPIRED BY THE VISUAL, EMOTIONAL AND PHYSICAL IMPACT OF THE ELEMENTS The Malthouse, Merlyn Theatre Wed 17 – Sun 21 Oct

TICKETS FROM $25 BOOK NOW – Ticketmaster 136 100

melbournefestival.com.au


FRONTROW@INPRESS.COM.AU

THIS WEEK IN

ARTS

Dr Brown

WEDNESDAY 26 Dreams Of A Life – Carol Morley’s new film about the British press who in 2006 reported on a woman discovered in a north London council flat three years after she had died. It asks the question, how can someone just get lost in the world where we are seemingly bombarded with surveillance and technological connectivity? ACMI, 6.45pm.

THURSDAY 27 Lucky Prawn Launch – “When you bite into a Prawn, there’s no hiding from the fact that the shit-shoot might still be lingering. When engaging a Lucky Prawn this is simply not the case.” This is one of the ideas from Melbourne-based artistic cooperative, where subscribers pay $75 for a prawn shell. In a prawn shell, you get limitededition artist goods, printed matter and everyday functional objects. Launch party, Conduit Art Space, 7pm.

FRIDAY 28 Choir Girl – from Melbourne independent theatre darlings Attic Erratic, a new show written and performed by Sarah Collins and directed by Celeste Cody about a girl who joins a choir after being dropped from her last one. And the one before that. And the one before that. Part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival, opening night, Lithuanian Club, to Saturday 13 October. Melbourne Fringe Opening Night – kicking off another Fringe Club season, a selection of Fringe artists will take to the stage to launch the 30th Melbourne Fringe Festival. Fringe Club, North Melbourne Town Hall. The festival runs to Sunday 14 October.

SATURDAY 29 The Persistence Of Vision – a solo exhibition from photo-media Tasmanian artist Paul Snell, whose projections have featured in Pulse Projection Streets Alive Festival. Snell’s art is a fusion of technology and artistic practice and the symbiosis of this relationship. Closing today, Colour Factory Gallery.

Choir Girl

Body Obscure Object – an experimental performance work inspired by expanded cinema and avant-garde theatre. Created by choreographer Shian Law (2011 winner of Melbourne Fringe Best Dance), designer Matthew Adey and video artist James Wright. Exploring the polarities of the spectacular and the intimate. Part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival, Meat Market B, to Friday 5 October.

SUNDAY 30 Artland – a group exhibition of site-specific art installations which will reimagine RMIT Brunswick into a sculpture park. Featuring the work of 15 student artists across the spectrums of sculpture, installation and ephemeral art. Part of Moreland City Council’s MoreArt public art show and the Melbourne Fringe Festival Opening event, RMIT Brunswick Campus, 2pm.

MONDAY 1 Public Art: Models Of Possibility – a conversation about shifts reflected in approaches to art in the public realm? a panel discussion about large-scale public artworks. BMW Edge, Federation Square, 6pm

TUESDAY 2 Dr Brown: Befrdfgth – If you have not seen Dr Brown, you need to. Straight from taking home the Barry Award (Best Show) at this year Melbourne International Comedy Festival and the Foster’s Edinburgh Fringe Comedy Award, the good doctor is back. Prepare yourself for a hug (‘cause you’ll get one). Part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival opening night, Tuxedo Cat, to Saturday 6 October.

AWESOME IS AS AWESOME DOES

Those masters of madcap mayhem Tim & Eric are heading down under, so Tim Heidecker ushers Steve Bell into their surreal world of breaking comedic convention and avoiding AIDS threats from Internet tools.

The history of comedy is littered with famous duos – think Laurel & Hardy, Abbott & Costello, Cheech & Chong – closer to home, even couplings like Roy & HG or Hamish & Andy seem forever joined at the hip – but never has there been a comedic twosome as brilliantly twisted and surreal as Tim & Eric. Their first visit to Australia is an exciting prospect for fans, although anyone who’s seen their TV show will be wondering just how the hell they re planning planni on pulling this off. they’re “Eric and I ac actually started a long time ago doin doing live stuff,” the affable Heidecker exp explains. “We used to do little multi-media multiPowerPoint presentation kind k of shows before we had the TV show, so in a little way it’s like ggoing back to that. We both used to play in bands, so we have a strong connection to playing live. We do ta take certain characters from the show show, but it’s much more of a pep rally-slash-rock rallyshow than a replication replica of the TV show. There’s a lot oof singing and dancing and us in leot leotards sweating – it feels like you went down to see your friends’ talent t show in the basement, although alt probably not as good as th that. It’s also a way for us to say ‘hi’ to our fans and see them afterwa afterwards – it becomes like a little bit of a high school reunion for lunatics that th like our show.” Given the inherent inhe weirdness of their humour, it’s fair to assume that they attract an array of interesting characters to their gigs, but for Heidecker it’s all pretty par for the course. “I’ve got to say, our audience is generally super-friendly and funny

LOOKING FORWARD, LOOKING BACK

Theatre company ompany Elbow Room tackle existentiall questions and don’t mind if they sometimes confuse audiences along the way, co-founder Marcel Dorney tells Simon Eales. Marcel Dorney, Emily Tomlins and Tim Wotherspoon formed the Elbow Room theatre company after making the move from Brisbane to Melbourne in 2007. Following the outrageous success of their rumination on human destination, After All This, at the 2011 Melbourne Fringe, the group return to this year’s Fringe with two shows: Rule Of Three and As We Mean To Go On. Rule Of Three is, “science fiction, which is sort of about ideas rather than special effects, which works because we’re in a theatre,” Dorney

says, in the middle of Elbow Room’s season at the current Brisbane Festival. “We love British science fiction from the 1970s, like Dr Who, but, like, Seven, as well. Those guys had no money and no sets, so the stories were great, and the acting was really good and the writing was really good.” Their other show is cosmic in a different sense. As We Mean To Go On is part of the group’s existentially themed trilogy, Now More Than Ever, which also includes After All This, Dorney explains. “After All This is

concerned with what happens after ‘the end’, and how we think about that. Go On, the th t As A We W Mean M TTo G O on th other hand, is about origins. About how we imagine what the moment was when we became what we are. “Obviously that’s a really shadowy thing. When people talk about the past they talk about darkness and shadow, because there is all this history that stretches back and back and back, and it’s up to every human group to pick their time where they say, ‘At this point, we turned into us. Before that, we were something else’. So, the show’s about how and why groups pick that, and how we want to be and live, and how that changes.” Dorney apologises for these concepts being difficult to translate from the stage. But it’s clear that Elbow Room is intent on resisting any kind of conceited performance rhetoric.

and cool, in kind of an artsy, nerdy way rather than a motorcycle-riding, leather jacket kinda way,” he laughs. The caustic chemistry between Heidecker and Wareheim is integral to their appeal, so is it a case of them having the same sense of humour or complementing each other by bringing in different things to the table? “I think it’s a little bit of both. At the core there’s a lot of things that we both find very funny and have a sort of secret language about, but then we’re two very different people and that creates some diversity too. We’re lucky that for many years now we’ve shared a sensibility that makes working easy, because there’s not a whole lot of debate and argument, it’s usually, ‘I agree, let’s do that’, which makes it easy. “Right now we have no plans [to break up the partnership] – we’ve studied famous duos enough to know how to avoid the classic break-up. We’re still very close and there’s plenty of ideas that we have together that feel like they’ll still be fun to do together. I think in general comedy’s a young man’s game, and I think that it would be silly for us to be doing this when we’re 40 or 50, but then maybe when we’re 60 or 70 it will be funny again – there will be some dark period when we’re separated and then we’ll do a band reunion.” WHAT: Tim & Eric WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 29 September to Sunday 30, Forum Theatre

“We’re not trying to look at a particular style, or a particular genre. What we’re trying to do is look at this particular situation, up-front. We and be honest and up people really have found that peopl their attention respond to having the drawn to the fact that the whole performance is weird. situation of performan And that’s why it’s wonderful.” w presence is a key So the audience’s pre show’s fabric component to the sho and meaning, Dorney continues. audience to not “It’s okay for the audi happening at all times. know what’s happeni sometimes It’s fine for them to so period of time go for an extended pe thinking, ‘I don’t really know what’s still interested’. happening, but I’m sti part.” And that’s the hard pa A theme of fascination and inquiry, audience and mutual to the audienc performers, seems integral to Elbow Room’s approach. “The prejudices that we have are often due to not having paid attention, or not having asked the right question. You could read all the information in the world, but if you’re not looking at it in the right way, it’ll make no sense. “We just want to change the quality and focus of people’s attention so that they go, ‘Wow, I’ve never actually thought about that in that way before’.” WHAT: Rule Of Three and As We Mean To Go On, part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Saturday 13 October, Fringe Hub, the Warehouse

INPRESS • 35


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REVIEWS

C U LT U R A L

OPAL VAPOUR DANCE A body lies on a dais onstage, shrouded in textured cloths. A musician enters with a tambourine and slowly sings the body to life. Dancer and choreographer, Jade Dewi Tyas-Tunggal, has made an exquisite work that references traditional Javanese court-dance, Wayang Kulit shadow puppet theatre, as well as trancepossession rituals. With a musical accompaniment of eerie beauty, utilizing Ria Soemardjo voice as the instrument. Opal Vapour is an ethereal and accessible dance work presented by two enormous talents. Vocalist, musician and composer Ria Soemardjo (also responsible for textiles and costumes) brings a unique set of gifts to this piece and lighting designer Paula van Beek’s

RUDY SPARKS FILM It’s been six years since directors Jonathan Dayton and Valerie Faris debuted their quirky comedy, Little Miss Sunshine. Their second feature, Ruby Sparks, with a sharply witty and poignant script by Zoe Kazan, is another scrappy human comedy that admirably stays more quirky than cheesy. Calvin (Paul Dano) is a young novelist who achieved exceptional success early in his career but is now struggling with his writing… and everything else

36 • INPRESS

Running until Saturday 6 October, Malthouse Tower Theatre

Tess Ingram In cinemas now

Nicola Gunn’s strange, oddly touching one-woman show is a true interactive theatre experience, but without being obnoxious. It’s ostensibly presented as a community workshop about social change – one of those buzzword-laden self-actualising seminars so beloved by grant boards. Gunn is the workshop’s creator and leader, and she is astounding. Full of puff and bluster one minute, the next she’ll reveal more fragility and tenderness than it seems possible to bear. It’s not possible to sit back and simply watch her, as she demands that her audience participates fully in what she’s offering, which, in the end, is so much more than a mere community workshop. What is it all about? Well, it’s open – very open – to interpretation. It

There’s a distinct possibility that being menaced by a shark would be more rewarding and entertaining than watching Bait 3D. I’m serious. If you avoided being devoured, a shark attack could give you an adrenalin rush unlike any other, a renewed lust for life and a heck of a great dinner-party story. In comparison, all Bait 3D can offer is 90 minutes worth of doldrums. It’s a soggy slog of a movie, one that’s utterly lacking in thrills, chills, laughs or life of any description, really. What sounds like a recipe for some good cheesy B-movie fun – a tidal wave floods a small coastal town, leaving a group of people (including an armed robber!) stranded in a submerged supermarket with a predatory great white shark prowling the aisles – is pretty much botched by director Kimble Rendell and a cast unable to inject any vitality into their one-note characters.

Liza Dezfouli

in his life. Thanks to his shrink, he makes a breakthrough and creates a character named Ruby (Zoe Kazan), who turns up in his kitchen making scrambled eggs as a living, breathing person. Ruby Sparks could have easily been a predictable rom-com but Kazan’s clever script presents a welcome feminine critique of the male author god complex. Ruby Sparks features amazing character arcs, laugh-out-loud moments and some very dark scenes, making it an intelligent must-see.

HELLO MY NAME IS THEATRE

BAIT 3D FILM

silhouettes are stronge among the visual elements. Including a nod to the traditional Tibetan Sand Mandalas practice producing effects of mesmerising loveliness. Symbolism and ritual inform this work. The dancer is a strong muscular presence, her body and personal vocabulary often in curious contrast with the more ethereal aesthetic of the work. Jade Dewi Tyas Tunggal appears big and strong on stage, with an earthy, almost androgynous quality even, whereas in ‘real life’ she’s tiny. The work is sure footed (all puns intended); this layered, textured journey of the cycle of death and rebirth is unusual and quite, quite lovely.

Scratch that, there is one exception: character actor Dan Wyllie takes as many bites out of the scenery as his aquatic co-stars do, and his unashamedly hammy overacting, while ridiculous, is an enjoyable contrast to the blandness surrounding him. Otherwise, it’s simply a case of marking time while you guess which character will end up suffering the great Australian bite next. And here’s the thing; it’s most likely going to be the characters you think it will be. That’s how predictable, pedestrian and unimaginative this misbegotten monster movie is. So here’s my advice: Steven Spielberg’s 1975 classic Jaws has just been released on Blu-ray. The picture and sound quality are great and there are some terrific behind-the-scenes docos. And even though it’s nearly 40 years old, there’s more style and substance in any given frame of Jaws than there is in the entirety of Bait 3D. Guy Davis In cinemas now

could be a deconstruction of our local sense of community, or an examination of the hollowness of social change. It could be a critique of the neediness of performers and what they demand of an audience. However, whatever you think Hello My Name Is was supposed to be, chances are your reaction says more about you than it does about what you saw. That’s the innate, awkward genius of this production: it reaches into the hearts of those involved with it and touches something you may not want to acknowledge, or even knew was there. Enter with an open mind, and you’ll leave buzzing with questions and theories not only about the production, but about human interaction on a grander scale. Aleksia Barron Part of the Melbourne Fringe Festival, until Saturday 29 September, Theatreworks

CRINGE

WITH REBECCA COOK It’s a long story but I have a spare room the size of Tasmania and recently I’ve been trying to think of different ways to make money from it. Rent it out to a yoga instructor? Masseuse? Start producing lemon butter? Rehearsal space? Which led me naturally to: Fringe Festival venue? Ah! A couple of years ago it was quite the done thing to perform your Fringe Festival show in a house – your own preferably for authenticity. Shows like Aardvark, The Shitt Family Puppet Show, which was performed in a backyard in Glenlyon Rd Brunswick, even won awards in the 2007 Festival. But I have three problems, one, obviously Fringe is about to start; two, I live in the deep dark suburbs, not a semi-industrial inner northern street across from a ‘relaxation centre’; and three, I think perhaps home-style performance has gone out of fashion. Fringe has always been about quirky, hard to find venues – I’ve climbed through holes in fences, wandered down lanes strewn with garbage and sat in rooms that were possibly once toilets. Over the years we’ve seen shows in hotel rooms, lifts, trams, train stations and laundrettes, but I wonder if random locations often have more to do with cost than a genuine desire to perform in a nonperformance space. Anyone who has ever performed in the upstairs room of a busy bar or restaurant will attest to the less than desirable performance aspects – there’s really nothing like competing with the noise of a 21st to add a special

poignancy to your emotional climax. This Fringe there’s no shortage of unusual venues. Certain Men is a multimedia performance taking place at a business called Tools & Electrical Imports; A Grim Era, puppetry has somehow managed to obtain an abandoned quilt factory; piano solo Mindfulness will be going with the flow at the Melbourne Buddhist Centre; and installation The truth And Other Tiny Stories is happening in a Uniting Church car park. There was even a guy who was going to perform at his workplace, a skateboard shop, but he seems to have dropped in, ooops, I mean ‘out’ – perhaps his boss got word of it. And then amongst the Hub venues, I spied it – Sylvia Plath In The Domestic Sublime, a poetryinfused piano performance in a forlorn Footscray cottage – 35 Hotham. Sure, ‘forlorn’ makes it sound like no one lives there, but perhaps all isn’t lost. And while Footscray is now on the hipster radar, it is a little suburban too. Maybe I could pitch it as an ‘ironic comment on suburban Australia’ to some arty types. To be honest I’m not really sure what that means, but that’s gotta get the discussion going, doesn’t it? I can also offer an almost pristine soundscape, ample non-metred parking and a nearby off-lead dog park. If I get no takers, I might hit up the International Arts Fest – in 2012 they’ve got a show on a boat, in a jumping castle and inside a giant foam maze. In comparison, a suburban house will seem terribly subversive.

ART S TA R T E R

Five minutes with

DONNA SADLER Who/what inspired you artistically? I have always had a keen interest in making arts and crafts since I was a kid. The desire to make art and music extended into my later life when I started to read more about pop culture references. I have always loved to travel and the places I’ve been and people I have met along the way have continued to inspire me to create. What do you love about illustration as a medium? Illustration is such a broad medium, it encompasses everything from drawing and painting to digital work and printmaking and can be 2D and 3D so the sky is the limit with your creativity. Who is your favourite artist? Too many to choose from but taking a few old and a few new I would have to list Andrew

Holder, Lizzy Stewart, Sarah McNeil, Eduardo Recife, Kurt Schwitters and Andy Warhol. If you could live in an art decade in history when would it be? It may be a cliché, but I would have loved to be around when pop art was happening in the ‘50s and ‘60s. A lot of my influences in art and culture spring from this era in New York and London. Was it strange the first time you called yourself an artist? Nope. It’s just a way of life. If you weren’t an artist what would you be doing? Being an artist… That’s all I ever have done and can do, but that extends to a lot of creative things so music and visual arts come under the same banner for me. WHAT: Illustre 2012 WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday 30 October to Sunday 18 November, Chapel Off Chapel


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TRAILER

TRASH

WITH GUY DAVIS Life would be a lot simpler if I was the kind of chap who dealt in absolutes but unfortunately I must leave that luxurious way of non-thinking to certain politicians, certain op-ed columnists and other such fuckheads. You see, the wonderful world we live in is full of variety, and if you want to make the most of that variety you have to take things on a case-by-case basis. What works in one situation may not be appropriate for another, you know? Forgive this lapse into shallow philosophy, and please rest assured that we will be discussing a Planet Of The Apes movie soon enough. You see, I got to thinking about the comforting stability of continuity versus the tangy spice of variety the other day when it was announced that filmmaker Rupert Wyatt, whose assured and artful direction of last year’s surprise hit, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, played a big part in its critical and commercial success, was likely exiting the planned sequel, Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes. It’s believed that Wyatt felt he’d be unable to properly make Dawn in the time allotted before its scheduled release date in the US summer of 2014, and he’s not the first filmmaker to leave a project due to such constraints. Gary Ross reportedly declined to direct the Hunger Games sequel, Catching Fire, for similar reasons (I Am Legend’s Francis Lawrence took the gig instead); Matthew Vaughn refused to direct X-Men: The Last Stand when he wasn’t allowed sufficient prep time, subjecting us to Brett Ratner’s version as a result. (No, Matthew, X-Men: First Class, as good as it was, doesn’t make up for that!) Having recently rewatched Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes, and finding myself extremely impressed by the straightforward style and intelligence all involved brought to what could have easily been a pedestrian cash-in, I was slightly bummed by Wyatt’s departure. He’d established a world and its

characters and seemed set to further develop and explore both. But then I got to thinking about film franchises and characters I liked, and how while some of them benefitted from one person or one team overseeing them from movie to movie, some were invigorated by an injection of new blood. Sure, I’ll always be glad that Christopher Nolan was given the opportunity to complete his Dark Knight trilogy on his terms (and I’m equally glad he’s calling it a day after three films; it’s good for both Nolan and Batman to see other people) but the Alien series, for example, was kept vital by the addition of an interesting new director with each new instalment. (Yes, Alien Resurrection is a bit of a dud... But I’m always a little heartened that the maker of Amelie, rather than some anonymous action-movie hack, got to present his take on everyone’s favourite acid-blooded xenomorph.) Which brings us to Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes. If Wyatt’s truly out, 20th Century Fox – a studio renowned for inserting blandly competent shooters into the later entries of their big-ticket franchises – may want to keep Rise’s momentum going by signing some fair-to-middling director who may mimic Wyatt’s approach. John Moore, currently wrapping A Good Day To Die Hard, is a name I’ve heard mentioned a couple of times. Look, I know it’s show business, and I know Fox wants to maintain the integrity of its bottom line by replicating what made Rise such a success, but wouldn’t it be great if the execs decided to give someone a little more distinctive a shot at putting their own mark on the Apes series? Personally I’d be keen to see Matt Reeves (Cloverfield, Let Me In) take it on. Alternatively, how about Scott Frank? He’s best known as a screenwriter (the classic Out of Sight) but his sole directorial effort, The Lookout, is a really solid piece of work. And one project he was developing for a while was a movie called Caesar... Which was eventually transformed and refashioned into, you guessed it, Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes.

BRAND’S LAND

In a sea of chaos and disjointed Hollywood reality, oddly Russell Brand manages to stay grounded. Guy Davis finds out what it’s like to be an outsider on the inside. Stand-up comedian and all-purpose Renaissance man Russell Brand has undergone a fair few changes in the past few years. Hollywood embraced him a bit. His marriage to pop star Katy Perry raised his public

profile somewhat; their subsequent split could be said to have raised it even more. But Brand’s quicksilver wit and yearning for a deeper, more meaningful understanding of life remain the same.

Brazilian filmmaker Walter Salles tells Anthony Carew he tried running from On The Road with little success. It’s like familiar 18-year-olds’ rite-ofpassage: reading On The Road. And so it went for Brazilian filmmaker Walter Salles, on whom Jack Kerouac’s beat generation landmark left a “profound impression”, given how it contradicted with life under a military rule in 1974 Brazil. “What it talked about was the exact reverse angle of what we were living,” he recalls. “I was immediately taken by those characters, who were seeking different forms of freedom. I’d never seen a narrative where sex and drugs could be tools to expand our understanding of the world.” Yet, even as he became a filmmaker, “the book was so emblematic to

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me that the idea of adapting it for screen never occurred to me.” Then in 2004, American Zoetrope, Francis Ford Coppola’s studio, approached Salles aboutdoing just that, the company having optioned the book in 1979, and had been searching since for someone to adapt it. Salles had just come off making The Motorcycles Diaries, a rousing road-movie tracing Ernest Guevara’s coming-of-age trip across the South American continent on his way to becoming Ché. The link makes sense, these twin bildungsroman travelogues both being about iconic symbols of 20th century counter-culture. “They’re

Brand is returning to Australia towards the end of the year for a nationwide comedy tour titled I Am A Walrus, and speaking to him from Los Angeles he admits that many recent events in his life have provided him with fascinating material. “Living in the world of celebrity, I’ve got an interesting insight – it’s such an aspirational aspect of contemporary life, innit, that world,” he says. “And when you’re part of it, you think ‘Well, this is mostly silly.’ It’s 99% silliness, and that provides me with really interesting stuff.”

embarrassing things happen and funny things happen and sexy things happen and stupid things happen. I want to create an atmosphere where it’s the opposite of what people feel when they read magazines that tell them they’re not thin enough or sexy enough or their hair’s not good enough. I want people to feel that everything is good, everything is perfect, everything is how it ought to be. And the stuff that isn’t? We can change that. I want an atmosphere of controlled mayhem, sexiness and chaos, hope and humour.”

The title of his new show was inspired by his performance of The Beatles’ I Am The Walrus at the closing ceremony of the London Olympics. “There’s tens of thousands y p of peop people in the stadium, a billion people watching worldwide, and none oof them know my trousers are being hheld together by Sellotape and corners of that tape is stabbing the cor me in tthe testicles,” laughs Brand.

Brand admits, though, that he’s not out to impart the meaning of life to his audience (“Oh, yeah, there’s gonna be dick jokes,” he adds). “How can I be truthful to myself? How can I make sure my stand-up comedy is true to my principles? I can be on a radio show with a very laddish atmosphere and I’ll join in and make jokes about women and ejaculation and I recognise that’s what I need to do but the challenge is being authentic as a comedian or an artist or a human being while accepting the confinements and requirements of your job. I mean, I’ve got to be funny if I’m there – I’m a comedian, for fuck’s sake – but I want to be truthful, and the things I’m encountering on my spiritual journey... well, you have to learn a lot about it before you can convey it. And I’m still very much on the foothills, gazing at the summit of enlightenment.”

“And my m mate Mick, who drives around when I’m in England, me aro thought I was singing a song called though ‘I Am a Walrus’. It’s only a small difference but ‘I Am The Walrus’ differen implies some psychedelic messiah the mind of John Lennon, while from th ‘I Am a Walrus’ is just, you know, a walrus. So you could be on top of a bus at the Olympics, singing a Beatles song, but what is your life really defined by? If you don’t have a relationship with truth, what is it? So broadly the show is about what it’s like to be famous, what it’s like to experience those things, but how really it’s just part of being a human being. Different things happen but

THE LONG ROAD

WHO: Russell Brand WHEN & WHERE: Friday 7 December, Rod Laver Arena

like Michael McClure, Diane Di Prima and Amiri Baraka, and travelled the text’s journeys three times over. After returning to his native Brazil to make 2008’s Linhe De Passe, Salles finally set out to adapt Kerouac’s “jazz and bebop-influenced” writing, where improvisation and intuition create abstract, expressive rhythms in text. “It has this freeform quality that is very difficult to translate to screen,” Salles admits. “It is anything but a traditional narrative, with these arcs that are very identifiable.”

The film finds Sam Riley and Garrett Hedlund as the leads, with the supporting cast filled with an array of notable names: Kristen both about the transitions from Stewart, Amy Adams, Kirsten Dunst, youth to adulthood, and all of the Elisabeth Moss, Steve Buscemi pain and discoveries and exhilaration t It bbecame andd Vi Viggo M Mortensen. that comes with,” Salles explains. a sizeable production — a $25mil “They’re also about the initial steps budget — due to its two huge of what would eventually become a logistical hurdles: this a late-’40s/ cultural or socio-political revolution. early-’50s period piece that is They’re about that moment before about journeying into the American the eruption, about what’s boiling frontier, a frontier which, in the under the surface, about to explode.” 2010s, no longer exists. “There’s been a homogenisation of the Yet, when approached about making geography, and that obliges you to On The Road, Salles initially baulked. He was fresh, as pointed out, from the go further,” Salles says. “If you just stick to the highways, you drive “insanity” of The Motorycle Diaries’ for a thousand miles just to find 30,000km journey, which went from the exact same food chains and 20 degree temperatures in Patagonia Wal-Marts that you saw when you to 47 in the Peruvian Amazon, and left. You have to take the backroads unsure of tackling a text that meant so much to him. So, instead, he made and go further into the hinterlands, the documentary Searching For On The to find places that haven’t been Road, a simultaneous study of the book touched by the brands yet.” and its possible adaptation, which Opening nationally Thursday featured interviews with beat-era poets 27 September


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THE NEW VOICE OF THE LOCAL MUSICIAN COMMUNITY

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he sky is falling right? This is no time to launch a new music publishing venture surely? Yet here it is ... Muso, our new monthly supplement and a brand new voice for our local musicians and the music gear industry. Why the heck not we say! The figures back us up in saying that the live music scene is alive and kicking. The Government told us that in he last year, 5.2 million people went to see a live band and that doesn’t even include major concerts. Plus a recent survey we conducted showed that well over half of our readers are musicians, and at least twenty percent are in working bands. Seems like the perfect time to ignite a new publishing spark for musos and the music trade. So what the hell is Muso? It’s a regular, up to date information source for working musicians and musicians-to-be. It’s in print, it’s on iPad and you’ll find all of the content ... the stories and reviews on themusic.com.au You’ll also get a weekly fix of Muso over a page or two in between the monthly supplements. In Muso, you’ll read interviews with artists in their working element, in rehearsal, on stage and in the studio. You’ll learn about the gear they use and how they use it in their creative pursuits. There will be advice and news. Our experienced team of musician writers will road test the latest gear and give their honest opinion. In this launch issue, we sat down members of Redcoats, The Amity Affliction and Expatriate to chat about the creation of their albums, we visited Oh Mercy as they rehearsed for their Deep Heat tour which kicked off this week, we snuck into a recording session with British India as they laid down some tracks for their next album which they won’t be releasing until 2013, Saskwatch documented their Edinburgh trip in a tour diary for us, Richard Clapton told us about how he records his guitar parts, Tim Rogers and Catherine Britt sat down together to talk albums and tours, The Rubens’ Sam Margin road tested the new Roland Fender G5 VG Strat and kicks off another 4 pages of gear tests. There’s a heap more to read inside. Grab a drink, have a look around and tell us what you think! We hope Muso becomes your regular haunt. Oh yeah, the publisher told me I should say Muso is awesome! For any road test, gear coverage requests or editorial pleas, demands and desires, email greg@streetpress.com.au GREG PHILLIPS

Muso Editor

CREDITS Muso. Issue 1 - September 2012 Ph: 03 9421 4499 Fax: 03 9421 1011 584 Nicholson St Nth Fitzroy 3068 Website: www.themusic.com.au Editor and Advertising: Greg Phillips greg@streetpress.com.au Distribution enquiries: Distribution@streetpress.com.au Layout & design: Matt Davis iPad edition: Dave Harvey Contributors: Reza Nasseri, Shannon Bourne, Baz Bardoe, Michael Smith, Elyce Phillips, Ajay Bawden, Paul Matcott, Mark Owen. Photographer: Kane Hibberd Published by Street Press Australia PTY LTD Printed by: Rural Press

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ABBEY ROAD TO ZIGGY STARDUST Abbey Road to Ziggy Stardust, is a must-read memoir of recording engineer/ producer ken Scott, who shaped the sounds loved by generations. Grammy®nominated producer/engineer Ken Scott is one of the five main engineers to have worked with The Beatles. With no holds barred, Abbey Road to Ziggy Stardust chronicles his amazing career with intimate memories of working with The Fab Four and many other iconic recording artists in music history, including David Bowie, Elton John, Pink Floyd, the Rolling Stones, and more. Seminal albums that Scott has collaborated on include Magical Mystery Tour and The White Album by the Beatles, and David Bowie’s Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders From Mars, and many other groundbreaking releases. Poised to satisfy the most ardent fans and industry insiders alike, Abbey Road to Ziggy Stardust is peppered with provocative and humorous anecdotes, and studio shoptalk, and never-beforeseen photographs. Available at all good bookstores.

THE BIG GIG: BIG-PICTURE THINKING FOR SUCCESS DV MARK TRIPLE 6 This new 2012 release of the popular three-channel Triple 6 head adds new features to the DV Mark top-of-the-line tube head. Like the previous version, it offers three completely independent channels and 120 watts of pure tube tone from two massive KT88 tubes. DV have added “hi-gain” switches on channels 2 and 3 that allow you to toggle the amp between Bad Boy 120 tonality and the more aggressive Triple 6 gain levels. They’ve also added MIDI ports to the already multi-function footswitch! The footswitch that is included with all DV Mark three channel heads (Bad Boy 120 and Triple 6) switches channels, activates the Solo function (fixed boost), and controls the FX loop... Plus it automatically memorizes the configurations you choose and stores them in memory until the next power-on. And in the new release they’ve added MIDI ports for greater switching options. The Triple 6 has a built-in system that automatically biases AND matches the output tubes (if the tubes are within 20%)! No more trips to your service tech for biasing! Our unique patent pending Advanced Tube Control System allows you to hook up to the optional DV Controller to collect cool and useful information such as power amp voltages, bias current, tube life and more! www.cmcmusic.com.au

ROLAND’S INTEGRA-7 – SUPERNATURAL SOUND MODULE Roland’s next generation sound module with the latest sounds and ambience technology. From composers to live performers, the INTEGRA-7 vast collection of premium sounds covers all music genres. In addition to the Behavior Modeling technology that enables expressive SuperNATURAL Acoustic and SuperNATURAL Synth sounds, it contains all of the sounds from the 12 SRX expansion board libraries that are widely used by professionals. Brand-new ambience effects are onboard such as newly-developed reverb and the new Motional Surround that lets you take the 16 parts, plus one more external sound source, and place them 360 degrees around the listener – resulting in an expansive sound with a lot of depth. www.rolandcorp.com.au

www.alfred.com

SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS MUSICAL Who doesn’t love SpongeBob Squarepants? In late September, you will be able to buy your very own SpongBob Electric Guitar kits, Drum Outfit, Percussion Pack, Acoustic or sized Classic Guitars, Percussion items and a whole host of other SB branded musical instruments. Electric Guitar kits featured in 7/8th, ¾ and full sizes come complete with inbuilt microamp or amplifier, leads, strap, carry bag, picks, plus a tuition DVD. www.musicmerch. com.au

DP90S/90 – DIGITAL PIANO Compact and contemporary DP series pianos are renewed by latest Roland’s high-end keyboards, refined sounds and new finish variations, while maintaining their sleek, modern-furniture-like design. Now equipped with flagship PHAIII Ivory Feel keyboard (DP90S) or Ivory Feel-S keyboard (DP0) to deliver authentic and comfortable playability of a grand piano as same as the traditional cabinet models such as the LX-15 or HP500 series. www.rolandcorp.com.au

MININOVA SYNTH FOR OCTOBER Set for release in October, MiniNova is a compact, super-cool studio and live synth with the same sound engine as the; UltraNova. It comes with 256 onboard sounds that you can tweak with five knobs, or totally warp with eight ‘animate’ buttons. It has up to 18 voices with as many as 5 synth effects on each sound. MiniNova also has an onboard VocalTune effect as well as a classic vocoder so you can recreate iconic vocal sounds from hip hop, urban and electronic music. MiniNova is the latest in the ‘nova’ range of synths dating back to the legendary Supernova series. It has the same incredibly powerful sound engine and synth effects as the UltraNova which means it is capable of creating dirty-fat bass synth sounds, soaring leads, lush pads and vintage synth sounds. All this in a 37 mini-key form with a USB port and MIDI i/o so you can hook it up to your laptop and control your music software. www.innovativemusic.com.au

Internationally renowned drummer Zoro transports his experiences from the stage onto the page in an intriguing read titled The Big Gig: Big-Picture Thinking for Success. The Big Gig is a comprehensive method for musos who want to break into the highly competitive music industry. Every chapter in the 440page book includes a video interview with Zoro, accessible via QR code (traditional web URLs are also provided). Zoro has toured and recorded with Lenny Kravitz, Bobby Brown, Vanessa Paradis, and many others. Available at all good bookstores. www.alfred.com

VOX STOMPLAB MULTI-FX PEDALS The new VOX series StompLab MultiEffects pedals pack powerful sounds into compact units featuring roadworthy metal housing and quick and easy sound selection. The series includes the StompLab 1G with dedicated guitar amp and effects modeling, and the StompLab 1B with dedicated bass amp and effects modeling. The StompLab 2G and 2B also contain an expression pedal that can be used to control wah and volume, as well as the parameters of each effect. The user-friendly top panel offers 100 preset programs (plus room for 20 user programs). All programs are named with a musical style, such as rock, blues, or metal, allowing players of all levels to easily locate the perfect sound. Effect types include amp, drive, cabinet, modulation, delay and reverb (plus noise reduction); eight effects can be used simultaneously. All StompLab pedals have a built-in chromatic tuner with a three-LED indicator that makes tuning easy. A mute function allows silent tuning. Headphones can also be connected. In addition, there’s battery operation. au.yamaha.com

DV MARK FRANK GAMBALE COMBO 112 Australian born, international guitar hero Frank Gambale’s power, character and virtuosity are immediately recognizable. DV Mark have developed this 12” signature combo to suit Frank’s exacting needs. After spending a few hours working with him, designers understood and appreciated his concept. Frank wants to make sure that the power amp is powerful enough to provide clean amplification at high volumes, without contributing to the distortion. Any distortion should come from a tube preamp that is applied to the drive channel only. This way he can control the amount of drive with his guitar’s volume pot or with a volume pedal. Specs include: Preamp: solid state (clean) / tube (drive), Power amp: solid state Power: 80W @ 16ohms / 250W @ 4ohms, Controls: Clean: gain / low / mid / high / level; Drive: gain / low / mid / high / level, Reverb: spring (Accutronics), Speaker: 12” DV Mark custom neodymium, Weight (kg/lbs): 11,7 kg / 25.79 lbs www.cmcmusic.com.au

GIBSON FIREBIRD X Despite Gibson being an iconic brand with a long and esteemed history in music, they’ve also been innovators and futurists, especially over the last few years with their robotics. Gibson now adds the Firebird model to their list of futuristic products. The guitar is made to be comfortable and amazingly easy to play. It features a lightweight body made from hand-sorted swamp ash, with a rock maple neck and curly maple fingerboard. This construction not only makes it refreshingly light, but it also allows the guitar to achieve exceptional sustain and tonal range. Firebird X is capable of very resonant and acousticlike voicing. The guitar is a bit more than six pounds in total weight. Special resonant chambers not only decrease total weight, but also allow acoustic-like tones and increased overall sustain. The guitar is louder than a typical solid body with substantial tone from lowest bass note to highest treble note. The fingerboard is curly maple. The headstock has a classic Gibson dove wing shape, and a Firebird-style truss rod cover. The look has a very classic fine furniture look with marquetry, elegant curves and smooth rounds. It is very appealing to a guitar player and non-guitar player alike. The neck has a thin “C” shaped profile with a smooth, non-stick satin finish. The neck joint is smoothly blended from neck to body with just a slight roundness, allowing maximum access to high register strings. The lower cut away cuts deeper, affording exceptional access to the high register. The fingerboard has low-profile frets and a highly polished curly maple surface. The Firebird X product uses three mini-humbuckers and a vastly improved hexaphonic piezo bridge pickup with an improved low noise, high dynamic-range preamplifier, making this a fully active guitar. The pickups are based on traditional Firebird designs, but have been significantly improved to provide more tonal range and to match the studio-grade preamplifier section. The result is that the signal dynamic analog dynamic range exceeds the specification of the high-end electronics. This guitar continues on a tradition of having electronic tuners, and a fourth generation of supporting hardware and software. What this means is that the guitar can change tunings even more quickly and accurately, with an even simpler way to get to multiple tunings. The tuners can be used manually and have been enhanced to be more robust with a better feel when used manually. www.gibsonami.com

WALDEN ‘NATURA’ D550 + HARDCASE Walden’s best selling entry dreadnought features quarter-sawn solid spruce top, mahogany back/ sides, and tasteful detailing; all complete in a quality hardcase for a limited time. Sound character isn’t something you expect from an inexpensive guitar, but the D550 has it by the bucket full. Anyone looking at dropping $700-$800 on a new acoustic would be wise to test a D550 first. $499 RRP. www.waldenguitars.com


The fall of Allans Billy Hyde Bil Hydes.. What at does it all mean It would be remiss of us not to acknowledge the recent voluntary liquidation of the Allans + Billy Hydes retail group and it’s mother company AMG and ask what it means to the industry. By Greg Phillips.

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he combination of a rise in online shopping and the poor state of the world’s economy has left Australia’s retail sector struggling to make a buck. The musical instrument industry is not immune to the conditions and that was made evident when receivers were appointed to the Australian Music Group on August 23rd. AMG encompasses Allans + Billy Hydes retail outlets as well as Musiclink and Intermusic, distributors of such high profile brands as Korg, Ampeg, Line 6, ENGL, Jet City, DW and many others (Some of those brands have already gone to other wholesalers). AMG’s voluntary administration has ramifications for the whole industry, the wholesalers who have stock sitting their stores, as well as the people who have lost or will lose

recently joined the hunt for the musician’s dollar and Con Gallin’s Musician’s Pro Shop network is always growing. The time is perfect for those chains to ramp up their activity. “We have hundreds of thousands of transactions per week. If one percent of those bought a musical instrument, it will grow the market significantly,” JB’s Nick Kanaris told us earlier in the year. “This is adding another category for the amount of traffic we have coming through. We added computers a few years ago. If you go back to the start of JB, we didn’t even have TVs. We have 165 stores nationally, all potentially could have musical instruments in them. Currently we offer keyboards in around 40 stores. That will expand into guitars and other areas. We’ll have close to 80 stores with musical instruments soon.”

their jobs. For many, it’s the day job which supports their music making activities at night. On one hand the liquidation of Allans+ Billy Hydes stores provides the chance to pick up a bargain as they sell off gear, on the other hand if you were the holder of a gift voucher with the chain, things aren’t so rosy. However, despite the retail arm of the music industry suffering a major setback, the live music scene remains reasonably bouyant. Gigging and the merch table seem to be the only real way to pay the way for a musician. What this means at the most basic level is that there are many working musicians who still need gear and accessories. They need to get it from somewhere and it’s up to those still in the retail game to step up, get clever, promote and attract musicians to their stores or online services. The conditions provide a great opportunity for independent music stores in particular … but they best get out there campaigning aggressively now as there are other retail chains with a whiff of that opportunity too. The JB Hi Fi chain has been quietly introducing musical instruments to their inventory for a couple of years now, the Harvey Norman chain has more

Harvey Norman, the newest player to the music game introduced instruments and accessories to their stock in January this year via their Big Buys stores. Their Big Buys store

FOR MUSICIANS SEEKING NEW GEAR, THERE’S GOING TO BE SOME VERY COMPETITIVE DEALS OUT THERE IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS AND LEADING UP TO CHRISTMAS. ”

through to the intermediate player. We’ll cater to the parents buying gear for their kids or the player going from their first guitar to their second.” Mark Gale, Marketing manager of Perth based retailers Kosmic Sound certainly isn’t spruiking the AMG downfall as an opportunity to benefit from. Australia’s musical instrument industry a close knit community and everyone knows somebody suffering from the situation. Rather Gale suggests that the indies should always be on their toes being active irrespective of what the opposition is doing. “Independent stores always have the advantage of being able to manoeuvre relatively quickly under changing market conditions and adjust their business models to suit customer expectations,” he said. “Unfortunately, AMG, given their private equity backing, were primarily profit focused rather than customer focused and consequently their buying and management decisions were poor. As Australia’s largest independent music store, Kosmic will continue to focus on providing the right products at great prices and with a level of service that has seen us get to where we are after more than 40 years in business.We are also tightly integrating our online and offline business to provide a seamless customer experience and meet the rapid growth that we are experience nationally. We now ship from both the east and west coasts with free delivery over $50 and with the option to pay for express shipping.” Ron from Ron Leigh’s Music Factory in Brighton, Victoria suggests that in tough economic times, independent retailers like himself need to look to their strengths. “Are they good at retailing or repairs or teaching? Establish what your strengths are and focus on that,” he said. Leigh sees his advantage as the great customer relationships he has built through his personable teaching methods.

idea was originally an online only project. “We’re expanding as we go,” said Michael PalamaraCategory Manager-Music of the music range. “We’ve got entry level guitars and ukuleles, electric pianos, print music, music technology, accessories and we’ll branch into band gear as we grow.”

A recent phenomenon he’s not fond of however, is witnessing people coming into the store, taking photos of gear with their iPhones, knowing that they will then take that photo back to their computer and search for the best online price for the product. Spare a thought for the local retailer before you pull that act of rudeness.

Palamara claims that the Billy Hydes factor has not really altered their tactics as they had planned to grow the instrument market anyway. “It just means we may do it in a larger way than originally planned,” he said. “We want to be a serious one stop shop with everything for the beginner

For musicians seeking new gear, there’s going to be some very competitive deals out there in the next few weeks and leading up to Christmas. Get yourself into a store and check it out. Muso would also like to wish all of the hard working, music loving AMG staff well in finding new employment.

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RECORDING 2o12 STYLE

Apart from the fact that all three bands have landed or landing excellent albums this year, they really have nothing much else in common… or do they? Conveniently, Neil Wilkinson from Redcoats, Ben King from Expatriate and Ahren Stringer from The Amity Affliction are sitting around a table in front of me. Why don’t I ask them? Pics by Kane Hibberd.

Muso: All three albums are excellent modern day music productions with so much in them. Did you all have specific sonic goals for the albums prior or was it a matter of recording the bunch of songs you had at the time? Neil: Yeah I suppose so. I think a lot of it came into context in the studio. The goal for us was to portray our live sound as honestly as possible.

REDCOATS EXPATRIATE THE AMITY AFFLICTION

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elbourne based rockers Redcoats created a wave of curiosity with their 2011 EP release and will follow up with an up-sized, retro-tinged, progadelic self- titled album in mid October. Five years after they released their debut album, 80s-flavoured, 2012-valid electro-pop outfit Expatriate have finally released their second record, Hyper/Hearts and have been recently road testing it live in Melbourne, Sydney and Indonesia. The Amity Affliction have just released an album too. It’s a massive sounding metal-core record called ‘Chasing Ghosts’, complete with much-talked about album art which has gone straight to the top of the album charts.

We weren’t trying to build sounds which would be more than the stage sound, so it was an honesty thing more than a sonic thing. Ben: We were the opposite of that. We wanted a record that was very textured and layered. A couple of us in the band

are well into the production world and do stuff outside of music. We wanted to get a great band energy in the studio and then take that away, which we did ... 4 weeks in the studio, then took it to our home set up and kind of went up our own arse in a way! (laughs all round). We were taking guitar sounds and putting them through weird filters in Ableton or whatever else and just getting a bit more adventurous than we did on the first album.

Was it difficult to know when the new album was finished?

Ben: It was really hard, terrible at certain points. It was like, when is this going to end? When is life going to resume? It’s still rewarding because you have control over what you are doing. You can take something right to the end and see if it is worth keeping or not, you have that time.

What about Amity, Ahren?

Ahren: I guess we just wanted to do something that was on a par with our peers. We made all the demos as good as we could possibly make them. Troy, our guitarist is into all of that stuff as well and we tried to polish it as much as possible before we went into the studio. It was like, OK, now we’ve got to better this and it all worked out well.

How important was the choice of studio?

Ahren: We wanted the guy who did out previous album but he wasn’t available so we had to get someone else. We didn’t really know who he was but Roadrunner said you can do it with this guy (Michael Baskette), he’s free. We didn’t really know who he was or what he’d done.

He’d worked with Incubus?

Ahren: Yeah. He hadn’t done much stuff like us and when it came to mixing, he kind of blew it. It was all recorded on an analogue desk, which kind of got lost in what we wanted. It was all too warm so we got another guy to mix it. But combined, both of them created a pretty good sound.

Ben, Expatriate recorded in Berlin where some classic rock albums were produced. Can a town ever influence a recording?

Ben: It’s obviously steeped in a lineage of great artists who have gone there and made great records but it is also full of really crap bands and shit art! There are so many people living there and it is cheap. I mean you could fart and have an exhibition! It’s inspiring there but it’s like, everyone is doing this. We actually made half of the record in Wales. We had intended to make the whole record there but the truth is that we didn’t come out with something that we wanted. We thought it wasn’t good enough. We’re quite skilled at bedroom studios and we have a bit of gear, so we took it all back to Berlin and put the cream on top of the cake kind of thing.

And where did Redcoats record?

Neil: We recorded in Byron Bay at 301.

Ben: What’s that like?

Neil: It’s great, very comfortable… relaxing. You can live on site which is great. We were there for three and a half weeks. You had been all together somewhere with the writing too? Neil: Yeah we had been writing it over the last year at a house near Daylesford (Victoria). There’s a house on a bunch of land and there is no one around. There’s a deaf farmer in a dairy just over the hill and that’s it. We’d set up in the kitchen and do most of it there. Did a week of pre-production at Bakehouse in Melbourne and then went up to Byron and did it all mostly live. The producer Redcoats used, David Schiffman has worked with Nine Inch Nails. How did you find his style of production? Neil: Great. He is all about getting the most sincere sound throughout the whole record. It just sounds so much like us ... really quite straight up. The sound of the guitar amps, it’s just there. It’s not really effected or anything. Our EP was more ‘produced’ in a sense with effects on vocals and snare drum, reverbs and swirling shit. This is a lot more dry but the sounds are really honest.

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With Redcoats and also Expatriate. there’s an element of retro in your music. I can hear 80s, Simple Minds-era music in Expatriate and the ghosts of 70s rock in Redcoats. Is there ever a discussion about how far you go with the homage to old school sounds? Is there a line you have to draw in the sand? Ben: We don’t have a discussion about it. I guess it’s just the way things evolve when the writing process

takes place and also the choice of sounds and instruments. Yeah, we love that era of music but also a lot of other genres too. I guess because I write the music and I gravitate to that way of music, it’s how I want to say it. Luckily we are pretty much all on the same page so with Damien’s keyboard sounds for instance, there’s never any of that, ‘no you can’t do that’ type of thing.

Was it the same for Redcoats?

Neil: Yeah, it’s never really intentional. It’s just what we have grown up listening to and letting in. It’s a combination of all those influences, a subliminal thing.

Both Redcoats and Amity’s bass mixes are interesting on your albums, it’s not overpowering, it’s mixed back. Was there much discussion about where bass would sit in the mix?

Ahren: Yeah it just makes it sound heavier I feel. Based on all metal-core records, it’s pretty hard to find. It takes away from the entirety a bit and makes it a bit too wide, where as you want it hard hitting. In certain parts it’s there fairly prominent though.

And that’s similar with your band Neil?

Neil: Yeah it moves around more on this record than other stuff we’ve done, where it comes in and out and moves around a bit. It accentuates different parts and pulls back in other parts to sit with drums or when the guitars go up with the vocals but there are moments where it’s really in there.

With the mixing process, there’s a lot of good work which is often resigned to the background. Is that a bummer sometimes for a musician?

Ahren: A little bit. It’s like, why would I waste so much time making this perfect when you can barely hear it. You can just turn up the kick drum and it will make the sound like it is perfectly in time anyway. Ben: It’s interesting when you hand a piece of work over to a mixer and then they hand it back. That exchange takes place and sometimes you think, why did you do that? Ahren: Everything louder than everything else and you can’t hear anything! Ben: Something that can be so obvious to you, it’s striking that it’s not to someone else but that’s the exchange that happens and you might compromise. Sometimes they’ll come back with something amazing. Ahren: And other times it can be like, how can you not see that? (laughs)

Neil: Yeah they play really well together and it is something I have done. I see no reason to change. It sounds great

Pedals?

Neil: Not a lot. I use a couple of fuzz pedals. In the studio I just use what I do live but obviously with more time to pull up sounds between takes. It’s pretty straight forward. A lot of it is just overdriven amp tones. For the heavier sounds, I’ll just put a fuzz pedal in. Not really a lot of trickery on the album really. There’s a few really nice Leslie tracks which is great to just slip under stuff. Just a lot of hot valves and dying fuzz pedals.

Ben, is the gear you used in the studio pretty much what you use on stage?

Ben: Pretty much but we borrowed some gear

Ben: Definitely. To be honest we really had a lot of toing and froing on this record. There were like 4 or 5 mixes of songs going on.

Because there is such a gap between albums, was it difficult to know which way to go musically this time?

Ben: Yeah I do. I have a solo thing that is happening at the moment called Lakes of Light, it’s a lot more pop ... very much a work in progress. It’s not pop in a Top 40 way but colourful, positive, pop music.

What about you Neil?

Neil: I do some acoustic shows but it’s not really a ‘thing’. It’s just a bunch of songs which aren’t rock songs. If someone asks me to play after a gig at dinner for fifty bucks, I’ll be there!

Let’s talk about the gear you guys play.

Neil: My main stage rig is a Fender Jazzmaster. I used to play a Jaguar, since High school ... just that guitar shape, it became my guitar. I stepped up to a Jazzmaster a year or so ago. I use an Orange amp, a Retro 50 head which is beautiful.

A lot of guitarists are doing that now, playing Fenders through Orange amps.

Ben: I did last night and it sounded really good.

Neil: Yeah, we don’t use any samples or clicks or anything live. We have done in rehearsal leading up to the album ... a click just for the first half of a song or even just listening to it before the intro so you can shift a bit.

Ben: I definitely agree with that. Particularly for us because we made that first EP in-house. Damian had a studio in Sydney where we rehearsed, wrote and recorded on a 001 Pro Tools thing. We took our time and

Ahren, I read that you have an electro side project?

Do you guys have side projects?

Ahren: Just to make it perfectly in time. Even when our keyboard player was in the band we still had exactly the same backing track with all the keys because he couldn’t play it in the time. God knows how he lasted so long.

Ahren: It’s huge! You’ve got to write three times as many songs. It’s hard.

Ben: It was and we had so many songs. The thing is, when we write together in a room, it is very different to when I bring songs to the band. We end up writing really cool, spacey dub music. It’s another side of the band which happens when we get in a room, we’re not thinking, just playing. We had it set up so that we could record everything and multi track demos. So we had a huge amount of material and then through a process of elimination, we got it down. Yeah it was quite nerve-racking. We put that first record out in 2007, then put it out in Europe in 2009 and toured it, so it was nerve-racking to go back in and do something new. We were really gagging for it obviously because it had been so long in between.

Ahren: It was with our ex-keyboard player, who we are not on good terms with at all. That’s the reason. Otherwise I may have been into but I’d much rather just focus on one band.

Ben: Same with us… just to fill it out.

How much of a culture shock is it going from your first recording experience, an EP compared to your first album?

But you’d all have final say anyway wouldn’t you?

Ben: What happened to it?

Ahren: Ryan our drummer will have in-ears with a click and the track playing.

And Redcoats are much more straight forward than that?

FOR US IT IS BETTERING THE LAST ALBUM. THAT’S THE MAIN GOAL.TO WRITE BETTER SONGS BUT STILL NOT CHANGE DRASTICALLY. STAY TRUE TO THE FANS RATHER THAN PLEASE YOURSELF.”

Ahren: Oh no, not anymore. I did for a bit. It was a pop thing which was pretty funny. I always used to muck around in Garageband and stuff.

Is there an element of triggering with Amity on stage?

from friends over there. My main instrument is a late seventies Tele. It’s just a beautiful sounding thing. I like a really clean tone that has body to it and the Tele seems to give it to me without being muddy or scratchy in the top end, through a Vox AC30 or Fender Bassman. I’ll drive it through a Tube Screamer or something like that but mainly I use Boss pedals. I haven’t gone down that path of buying obscure gear. Neil: It’s a can of worms!

And you like to keep the guitars clean because of the keyboards, Ben?

Ben: Damian who plays the keys but also guitar… he tends to play all the colourful, weirder stuff and he has quite an arsenal of pedals which he shares around with people. My role is just to keep it solid and keep the bed there, which sounds simple but it is hard to get it just right. The clean full bodied thing with a bit of break up is … I’m still on that journey!

Ahren, what’s your rig?

Ahren: Just a MusicMan. I used a five string in the studio. I played a bunch of guitar as well. I used Troy’s Maton and a couple of Les Pauls he had there. I play my bass through an Ampeg classic and an 8x10 Ampeg cab with a SansAmp.

built it up, mixed it ourselves and luckily our record label let us put it out. Then when it came to making the album, we went into studio world and that was a bit of a shock… actually being in a room which is built for making records.

Neil, this is probably fresher for you because you’ve just finished the album?

Neil: Yeah our album isn’t even out yet. It’s just a lot bigger project with a lot more people and songs involved. Which is great, we loved doing it. Ben: See I suck at doing vocals in a studio. I have to work twice as hard in a proper studio as opposed to being in a bedroom. I guess instead of putting money into heaps of pedals, I have set myself up with a decent home recording set up. I tend to do my own vocals in a walk in wardrobe, which I have made into a vocal booth. I am far more relaxed and get far better results that way.

Because there is so much production in your albums, how difficult will it be playing these tracks live?

Ahren: Well it is easy with the backing track! Honestly, with the backing track, all of the keys we don’t have to worry about. There is nothing that strange on the record that we can’t pull off live. It’s just guitar, bass, drums and singing. As long as we don’t get too drunk, we keep in key. Ben: Definitely very hard for us as a result of doing all of that stuff we did in Berlin and all the samples, layers of things. We run Ableton live, our drummer plays off a click to that. There’s not a lot of backing track stuff but there’s enough. We have pulled stuff out so it doesn’t sound too weird but he’s also triggering a few things to keep that live element ... we just wanted to replicate it live. Luckily our drummer survived death by click! He got through that whole stage of rejecting the click and thanks to him we can put on a show.

What about Redcoats getting the album down live, I guess it’s easier for you guys?

Neil: It’s not really an issue because we kind of worked backwards in that respect, taking what we do live and trying to capture it in the studio, with the exception of instead of kicking in a new pedal, you just set up a new tone. Consciously as well, we didn’t really want to go out and put all this shit on a track that makes the song and think, yeah that’s great, but then hang on, how are we going to do that live. Ben: It’s weird, I went to see a band a couple of weeks ago, and I swear it just sounded like a CD and I think he was even miming. It was their single, it’s on Triple J and I swear he was miming this single. It was an indie electronic band who will remain nameless but it was weird. It’s like, why? You can all play! Maybe it’s an insecurity thing maybe?

You’re all musicians and you love to play music but because you’re in professional bands you have to worry about other stuff like interviews ... and cover art. I wonder how much discussion there is about album art. I know Amity Affliction have copped a bit of flack about your cover (picturing a guy hanging himself). How much discussion was there Ahren about that cover? Ahren: It was only really between me and Joel. We sort out all the merch and stuff and he’s an artist and came up with that. I thought, yep good idea and that was it.

And Expatriate?

Ben: Damian our keyboardist came up with the art for this one. We take a lot of pride and put a lot of effort into the art. We went through so many different ideas to get this one where we got it to. It was a shit fight actually. I found all these photos of amazing natural formations and I had this whole thing in my head how it all made sense with the music. I was just kind of wafty crap! Then I’d engaged these people with the photos and they totally dicked me around for two months with licences and fees and had to scrap it right on deadline. Art is super important …videos.

Redcoats have completed the cover art?

Neil: Yes we have reached a conclusion. We work with artists who we know so they understand our vibe and we understand how they work. it can be hard though because obviously it is a representation of what is inside the record. Film clips are a shit fight. It’s a brain strain because it is such a big thing. So many people are going to see it on the internet. Ahren: So many people talk shit about it. That’s what YouTube is for… talking shit!

What are you most proud of with the album? Neil: That’s a hard one. Probably the structuring of the songs and how we have moved along as writers. We are really proud of that. The songs we had for this record compared to the songs we had for the EP, it’s a real progression for us as writers… and as players too because we have been playing for a lot longer now.

What about you Ben?

Ben: Probably just getting it done, to put it simply. Having five years between records it was a relief to get it finished. Once something is completed you can then focus on something else, the next batch of writing .. which we already are. It’s not a very interesting answer but it’s the most honest answer I can give… just finishing it.

Ahren?

Ahren: Probably just what people might take away from it, the message through the lyrics. We get messages from kids saying we saved their life all the time, it is amazing. www.redcoatsmusic.com www.theamityaffliction.net www.expatriateband.com

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On paper, they might seem an unlikely pairing but as labelmates, indie rock icon and You Am I frontman Tim Rogers and country artist Catherine Britt, are currently touring together showcasing their new albums. Michael Smith sat in as they chatted about their guitars and the sounds that are inspiring them right now.

guitar lessons off Bill Chambers at the moment, once a week – but I cannot discipline myself to get better. When I first picked up the guitar, I swear, I never got lessons or anything and I probably should have… I probably should have got singing lessons and all that sort of stuff but I didn’t – hated being told what to do – and I was just so obsessed

THERE’S MORE TO THIS STORY ON THE IPAD

T

hey might have been rocking hard late last year when they toured with Cold Chisel on that band’s biggest and most successful Australian tour ever, but right now their sometimes mercurial and always deftly witty singer, songwriter and guitarist, frontman Tim Rogers seems to be feeling You Am I are slipping into what he’s described as “a middle-aged men’s club”. So he’s taking the opportunity once again to step out and explore other musical and artistic avenues.

Accidental Tourists: Tim Rogers And Cathrine Britt friend Catherine Britt, featured on her new ABC Country album, Always Never Enough, it seemed obvious the pair should hit the road together to showcase their respective albums. Recorded at Cedar Creek Studios in Austin, Texas, with a crack team of American country musicians and coproduced with her Australian mentor and guitar teacher Bill Chambers, Always Never Enough is Britt’s fifth album. Born in Newcastle, NSW, she released her debut EP, In The Pines, produced by Chambers, in 1999, when she was still only 14, and spent six years living and working in Nashville.

Catherine: So Tim, what sort of guitar are you playing on this tour?

But that first guitar wasn’t anything special. It was just… a piece of shit and then I got a Maton that was a piece of shit [laughs]. I like Matons, don’t get me wrong, the right kind of Matons, but my favourite guitar I’ve ever had is the

Gibson. And I’ve had heaps of different guitars but there’s something really cool about that one. I’ve got a really good Emmylou Gibson – I’ve two but one’s really good – they’re like a mini version of the J200. Gibson in America sponsor me over there.

Tim: Well, at the moment I’m playing a Godin [5th Avenue], a Canadian brand. It’s got no tone at all and it’s just all about rhythm, and finding the sweet spots in the chords is almost a challenge. And that’s why I play. You know, that black guitar I play. I think I just got sick of hearing white guys with dreadlocks in bars singing April Sun In Cuba with these really bright guitars. I wanted to get a guitar sound like – who was the original guitarist with Muddy Waters? [ Jimmy Rogers]. No Jimmy Reed, I wanted to get a sound like Jimmy Reed. And Catherine, the hundredth reason I love you is because you turn up to a show, you plug in, you get your voice to some kind of level, and you set and forget. You’re the kind of person and the kind of singer who could play someone’s bar mitzvah. So tell us about your guitar, that fabulous blonde Gibson J200.

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I used to play till my fingers bled, I would not put the guitar down, and all I did was watch Bill play at gigs. I’d go out to gigs and watch where his fingers would be on the guitar or how he would play the rhythm or how the singing would go and I’d sit there in the front row and watch. And that’s how I learnt to play guitar.

Tim: As much as I absolutely adore Angus’ playing [in AC/DC], I look straight at Malcolm. Regards rhythm players, I guess through time Keith [Richard, The Rolling Stones] is the big one, Malcolm, Lazy Lester and Slim Harpo and Jimmy Reed… Just in this particular year of just listening to a lot of R&B and soul, Slim Harpo has been really impressing me, because he’s mostly unaccompanied and his rhythm playing is unique. In other years it’s been the guitar player in [‘80s US punk band] Minor Threat [Lyle Preslar], because I used to listen a lot

THAT BLACK GUITAR I PLAY. I JUST GOT SICK OF HEARING WHITE GUYS WITH DREADLOCKS IN BARS SINGING APRIL SUN IN CUBA.”

The early morning call to sit on the couch in The Drum Media office in Sydney for a chat together caught Rogers feeling just a little seedy from a 4am finish at a gig in Newcastle just six hours earlier, but Britt, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed managed to discover quite a bit about her collaborator.

Tim: I’m loving your rhythm at the moment, loving your guitar playing. When we play in the band together, you’re really strong.

Catherine: I just want to be a rhythm guitar player in Tim Rogers’ band – that’s what I think. There’s nothing better than a strong rhythm guitar player, and it’s really hard actually to be a really good rhythm guitar player. I reckon it’s harder than being a good guitar player.

I JUST LITERALLY MADE IT UP AND LOOKED AT WHERE PEOPLE’S FINGERS WERE ON A GUITAR AND WENT, “I GUESS THAT’S A CHORD.” I JUST PLAY FROM MY HEART.”

There have been excursions into theatre, scoring the Marion Potts production of Lorca’s Blood Wedding and performing Sydney’s Griffin Theatre production of The Story Of Mary MacLane By Herself, but right now it’s his second solo album, Rogers Sings Rogerstein, recorded at Yikesville Studios in Melbourne with producer Shane O’Mara, that’s got him back out on the road. Signed to new ABC Music imprint FOUR | FOUR, and having cowritten a song, Troubled Man, with Australian country artist and good

Catherine: It’s from an ex-lover. It’s great – my good memory from that relationship is getting the guitar. I left this person while they were on tour because it wasn’t working out and I took the guitar, and it’s been my favourite guitar ever since. I don’t know, there’s something – once again it’s not the best guitar in the world and I’m definitely not the best guitar player in the world but I just think that no one plays like me [chuckles].

the moment. I play a cleaner sound; I just try and play dirtier, and be dirtier.

Catherine: I’ve never played rhythm guitar on a record. I’ve always had a hired gun or whatever, somebody that plays a lot better than me, but on this new album, being co-producer, my first thing was I’m playing rhythm guitar on this

fucking record. I don’t care if I’m not the best guitar player in the world, I wrote these songs with me and my guitar, so if you want to make a Catherine Britt record, it’s me and my guitar – that’s the first step. And, you know, it’s not perfect,

but it’s me, and I think that’s the most important thing about guitar playing – everybody’s got their totally unique thing. Everybody plays rhythm differently. Some of my favourite guitar playing is not the best guitar playing – it’s unique. Emmylou Harris, for instance, is a great rhythm guitar player – she’s really good [chuckles], just as far as really steady rhythm guitar playing goes, you know? Tim: So what was your first guitar? Catherine: My parents bought me a really crappy nylon-string guitar, but I was obsessed. I get

Tim: I got a nylonstring as well. Mum bought me a guitar when I was 13 for ‘doin’ ma chores’. Gut strings, you’ve got to work with them. They’re not easy. Willie Nelson. He still plays gut string, yeah? His rhythm guitar playing is incredible. Oft and mistakenly overlooked instrument. I think I actually devolved into playing electric. I don’t go through when I’m playing with this band at

of hardcore punk. This year’s more… I don’t know why, it’s probably just tones for me. I’m trying to slow my playing to sound like Jimmy Reed. Catherine: All my favourite artists and stuff learnt from old black blues players, so I think a lot of my influences are very Southern blues playing. Not that I can play anything like that, but I want to, one day. I’ve got so much to learn when it comes to guitar playing. I just literally made it up and just looked at where people’s fingers were on a guitar and went, “I guess that’s a chord,” and I don’t really know what I’m doing. I just play from my heart. That’s all. www.timrogers.com.au www.catherinebritt.com


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REHEARSING WITH

Oh Mercy

Muso’s Greg Phillips gets an armchair view of Oh Mercy rehearsing their brand new album Deep Heat ahead of an extensive national tour which began this week.

W

ord to the wise! If you’re looking to find the same Great Barrier Grief-style Alexander Gow, writer, performer of sensitive, personal, breezy pop songs on the band’s brand new record Deep Heat, forget it. Step away from the car and put your hands in the air… Alexander’s gone dancin’! Yes indeed, with Oh Mercy’s new album, recorded in Portland, Oregon, under the production command of Burke Reid, the band has gone retro, tapping into ‘70s blaxsploitation grooves and glam rock pizzaz. Rehearsals are in early stages, with the band merely trying to work out how to interpret the newly recorded tunes for their upcoming shows. Gow played all of the keyboard parts in the studio and today at an inner city Melbourne rehearsal room, is discussing the licks with Annabel Grigg, who’ll be playing those parts on tour. The Nord keyboard is misbehaving and they can’t quite nail the flute solo on the title track Deep Heat. “We’re just trying to get the Nord to do what the piano and lots of other keyboards did in the studio after a hell of a lot of manipulation,” explains the frontman. When Gow and producer Reid were exploring pedal sounds and distorting, fuzzing and phasing every sound that had a heartbeat, they weren’t

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necessarily thinking about the implications of playing these sounds live. “Some people think it’s a really important thing to only record things they are going to be able to reproduce live,” says Gow. “Albums I love, by people like Scott Walker, they weren’t thinking about how they were going to play an album in a pub when they were writing.” What Gow did know was that the album needed to be fun to play live, it needed to be groove based, with stripped back instrumentation, focussing on drums, bass and vocals… then coloured by whatever weird and wonderful sounds they could conjure. “If we’re going to go to a pub in Wollongong and play to people after being in a car for ten hours, you’re going to want to hope that the songs are fun to play. Touring definitely has shaped the way I write. I think all of these songs will hold up, even on the brink of exhaustion and all of that kind of stuff. This album is one that we can all really enjoy playing. It was kind of exhausting emotionally with the last album because it was so honest and biographical. It’s hard to get up and sing every night, all these really earnest songs, especially when you’ve got shitty foldback and been in the van for ten hours. I think this one is going to be a bit of party.”

Deep Heat is a completely different beast to Oh Mercy’s previous recordings and that will be reflected in the shows too. Significantly, Gow will not play guitar on this tour. “There’s very little guitar on the album,” he stresses. “So we only needed one guitar and I’ve gladly popped that down. I enjoy playing the guitar and I have my own naive style, but I don’t think it’s a big loss! It’s good because I have been able to lend Eliza and Annabel all of my guitar pedals to mess with their sounds. Eliza has never owned a guitar pedal prior to four weeks ago. You might have noticed here today, we’re really working on Eliza and Annabel’s sounds with the stomp boxes. It’s new territory for them and new territory for me to try to manipulate keyboard sounds and purposely we are reamping the keyboards as opposed to putting it through the PA. Eliza has her delays and octaves and phasers and all of that kind of stuff happening. It’s a completely different soundscape to past records.” The other consequence of Gow being guitarless on stage is that he now has to give more consideration to his stagecraft. “It’s weird,” he said while contemplating the issue. “I’m hoping I’ll just figure it out, once I throw myself into the deep end. But yeah, I’m definitely thinking

about that. What do you do with your hands? I don’t know! I don’t want to be the guy with the tambourine either.” In addition to introducing a cache of new pedals to the band’s live arsenal, the other main change for Oh Mercy is the inclusion of a software package to help produce some of the album sounds. “We’re using a program called Mainstage to reproduce some of the weird percussion stuff we recorded. We have spent the last four rehearsals trying to get our heads around that program. We’ve got the laptop and the interface underneath it and it takes four stereo tracks - eight in total - out the back of the interface straight into the PA. We’ve never used backing tracks before. I felt it was really important to have the percussion stuff in the live shows because it adds to that sense of joy and groove, the things that make people want to move. Otherwise we’d have to bring another four people on the road with us. I draw the line at having the guitar or anything like that through a backing track. I don’t mind when other people do it, I just wouldn’t personally. So yeah, trying to get our heads around Mainstage and there are lots of sax solos and flute solos and we’ve been trying to work out how to reproduce those.” All of the members in Oh Mercy

OH MERCY’S DEEP HEAT TOUR PEDAL COLLECTION ELIZA (BASS)

• Line 6 Echo Park • Ibanez Phaser

• Boss CE-2 Chorus • Boss ODB-3

Bass Overdrive

• Electro Harmonix

Octave Multiplexer

• Boss TU-2 Tuner

CLIFF (GUITAR) • Line 6 DL4

Delay Modeler

• T-Rex Squeezer • Ibanez TS9

Tube Screamer

• Ibanez FC10 Fat

Cat Distortion

• Seymour Duncan

Pickup Booster

• Ross Phaser

• Boss CE-2 Chorus • Morley Wah

• Boss TU-2 Tuner • Annabel (Keys)

• Line 6 Echo Park

• Electro Harmonix

EH4800

• Small Stone

Phase Shifter

• Boss TR-2 Tremolo • Boss BD-2

Blues Driver

seem to be relishing the opportunity to step outside of their comfort zones for this tour. “Eliza who has never owned a pedal has gone to using about eight on her board now and it’s the same type of thing with Annabel,” says Gow. “It’s not a subtle difference either. Annabel previously only used the piano sound straight into a di and into the PA, which gives you a very crisp sound. This time we are going completely opposite in that we are running it through an amplifier and stomp boxes and stuff like that.” While Deep Heat was always going to have an element of experimentation, Gow and Reid had some specific ideas from the outset as to how this album should sound, even down to the drum mix. “With every song, we packed down the mics after we had recorded and moved the drums to a different part of the house and re-mic’d them again, so as not to have the same sound twice,” he explains. “There are certain things I dislike about the drums and we avoided those things. On the other side of the coin, Burke had a lot of fun making the drums sound they way he wanted. We were referencing a lot of that late-’70s glam stuff so the snare is more of a thud and it’s not a big aggressive stadium kind of rock and roll sound. It’s more of a tight, punchy, ‘70s disco-inspired sound. There are no cymbals on the record because I hate cymbals and so does Rohan, the band’s drummer. There’s a hi-hat and that’s a wonderful instrument but I can’t stand hearing rides and crashes and stuff.” Hearing the band run through the title track Deep Heat, it’s obvious Oh Mercy’s shows are going to be a joyous groovefest. While most of the tracks on the album will get a run, many of the older tunes will also get a new sonic paint job. “Step one is just employing the attitude of the album to the older songs, which is no rhythm guitar or piano playing, which only leaves the groove makers, the bass and the drums. We’ll dumb it right down to bass and drums, then we’ll see what we can set up with bass and keyboards through the guitar pedals and see how interesting we can make it,” Gow says of the plan for Oh Mercy live. Cliff, fill-in guitarist for Simon Okely, who is on a six month sabbatical, is giving the new tracks a more voluminous shape in rehearsals too. In the studio Gow played all of the guitars but wants a different sonic result for the tour. “Guitar tones are probably a different thing altogether from the recording to live. I am all for di-ing guitars in the studio and making it the thinnest, weirdest sound you can get. We used the Roland Jazz Chorus a lot on the record but sometimes they don’t cut it live so you have to reinterpret your sounds a bit for the stage.” The Deep Heat national tour kicked off this week. www.ohmercy.com.au


RECORDING

T

he facility has been the scene of so many famous Australian recordings and has also guested Kanye West, The Mars Volta, The Prodigy, Lady Gaga and Jay-Z. This very day, Jebediah’s Kev Mitchell is in the room next door doing some work on a new Bob Evans album. I ran into him coming out of the bathroom.

WITH

British India

The British India guys are recording a track this afternoon with the working title of We Don’t Need Anyone, it’s a hard drivin’, rockin’ piece… the ‘shouty’ track as singer Declan Melia later describes it. At the moment Melia is laying down a rhythm guitar part. He’s asked by engineer Callum to rotate on his heels in an attempt to find a sweet spot where there’s no guitar buzz coming from his Strat. Anyone not involved directly in a take seems to be on a laptop checking emails and social media sites. Will, the bass player alerts the band to a handy fact that a member of some obscure band had been jailed for stealing golf balls from a forest. The band is maybe halfway through recording album number four. It’s difficult to tell exactly where they are at as a record company is now involved and for the first time, they’re not completely in control of the decision making process. A release seems likely in early 2013. “Since we signed to Liberation things are different,” explains Declan. “It used to be… you go into the studio on this date, you’ll be in there three weeks, and then you’ll have an album. Those days are pretty much gone in as much as that we write for a bit, record for a bit, until we eventually have an album. It’s difficult to know where you are at because things have a tendency to be half done, never quite finished off. When they approached us they were really adamant that they be hands on. They were really worried, and probably rightly so, that we would be really closed off. I think to outsiders, that’s the way we seem. They’ve definitely dictated the kind of songs they would prefer. There are lots of songs and the ones they have chosen will probably be the ones which will be on the record. They’ll have the ultimate choice. We’re not really up for debating them on that. We think it’s a case of they know best. They’ll decide what the people hear, but I mean, it doesn’t effect the writing of the songs. All the songs get written and all the songs get recorded but then it’s them who get to select the final tracks.” Despite becoming more adventurous in the studio and feeling more comfortable with the recording process, Melia still views British India as a punk band which doesn’t think too much about direction or growth. “We’re not that interested in growing that much,” the frontman states of the album they are currently working on. “British India is self aware enough to know that one of our great qualities is naivity. We wouldn’t want to give that up by growing. We’ll never be a band with particular finesse, nor do we want to be.” While that may be the conscious intention, unconsciously there is some serious musical maturity going on deep inside Melbourne’s Sing Sing studios. Glenn Goldsmith, who has been manager and the band’s producer for the last six years, agrees. “I just think the guys have developed as songwriters every year. It has just progressed and I think over time, you get a little more adventurous, not tied to what British India is supposed to be but it still comes down to good songs.” With Melia’s rhythm part done on today’s track, guitarist Nic Wilson is now using an original Roland Space Echo to lay down the lead riff to the song. Producer Glenn Goldsmith suggests he needs to bend one note just a little more to achieve the desired result. The demo had been made using a digital delay and Glenn urges Wilson to revert to the demo pedal. However majority rules and they go for the authenticity of the Roland Space Echo unit. The democracy shown is impressive. “We’re completely

Melbourne’s Sing Sing recording studios resides down a narrow street behind the glitz of a row of Chapel Street’s fashion retail outlets. The studio itself is such a rabbit warren, featuring oddly shaped corridors, nooks, cubicles, large rooms and small. British India are in the Neve Room.

democratic in that if it ever came down a decision and there was deadlock, everyone would get a vote each but it is more a case of who is most adamant. It’s kind of who cares the most,” says Melia. The Sing Sing studio vibe is contributing to the feel-good nature of the recording too as Melias attests. “With Thieves and Guillotines (the band’s first two albums), we were in Harry [Vanda]’s studio and it was kind of like, you couldn’t have your feet on the table. Here, it is like, is anyone sober enough to do a bass take? It’s been a lot of fun.” The production on the band’s last album Avalanche was more pronounced than on the first two and that fatter, layered sound ethos seems to have carried

on with the new album. “It’s the sound we are preferring. The stuff we are listening to at the moment is mostly like that,” admits Melia. “The reason that happened on Avalanche as well was that it was the first time we felt comfortable in the studio, finding our feet whereas previously we had no idea what we were doing. Now we have found all these new tricks we can exploit and as long as we find that exciting, we’ll be into layering tracks and stuff.” It seems to be the tracks most un-British India which the guys are really enjoying working on. Melia is particularly keen on two. “There’s one called Crystals which sonically is pretty interesting. It’s one of the songs which is really layered. I wouldn’t consider it a rock song. It’s really drum heavy.

It’s a weird mix, lots of acoustics and strings… keyboard strings, some sort of organ anyway. Another one is called Major Label Trash which is an interesting song. Production wise, we listened to a lot of Notorious BIG, hip hop and pop music, just that kind of slammed sound but also... I hate to use this word because people will just run with it, but it’s kind of funky in a way or it’s got a good groove and this weird kinda computer game riff. It’s a weird beast and I think it will surprise people. Bass player Will Drummond is also happy to leave the band’s comfort zone. “Crystals, I really enjoy,” he says. “It’s five minutes or something and unlike anything we’ve ever done before. It’s piano based and has really heavy drums but it’s like a ballad.

I hardly did anything on that. I played bass but it is just there for texture more than melody lines.” Matt O’Gorman is delighted with the drum sounds the engineers have captured on the album too. “It’s probably the best drum sound we’ve ever had,” he enthuses. “Aaron and Callum have done a great job capturing that really roomy sound. They use about four room mics, two on the hats, two on the snare, one on each tom. I think also what is happening is that the more I record, I am getting more comfortable in the studio and feeling more confident with playing. Especially playing to click tracks… when I first started playing, it was something I couldn’t get my head around. I was so nervous and would play something straight just to keep everyone happy and not take too much time.” O’Gorman is playing a Yamaha kit in the studio, not his own but he’s used to that, even on the road the band don’t carry their own backline, they use the support band’s gear. “I haven’t used my own drum kit in about two and a half years,” he laughs. For Melia, gear is not a big consideration. “We never feel a particular affinity for gear,” he said.

We’ve never been a big gear band. As far as guitar sounds go with this, there is still a lot to do. I’m just using my Fender, straight into the amp, no pedals, find a good tone and go. My guitar in all our recordings is never at the forefront, it’s really just wash, all gravy my guitar sound. I’ve never been a proficient player but it was a case of Nick being so lead orientated, we needed something to fill to complete the three corners of the square. My guitar could be anything, it could be keyboard pads.” British India hope to release their yet to be titled album in early 2013. www.britishindia. com.au

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TOURING WITH

Saskwatch Prior to unleashing their debut album Leave it All Behind on us, Melbourne based nine-piece soul outfit Saskwatch took their Stax-laden licks to Edinburgh, to see if they could get those renown funky Scots to bust out a jig or two. The band were kind enough to document their trip in a tour diary for us.

First Show Late ‘N’ Live - Edinburgh Fringe Festival Rolling into Edinburgh Airport after 36 hours of traveling, no sleep, and more than a couple of beverages; we’re all in high spirits. It’s been a huge year for Saskwatch, and everyone can’t wait to hit up sunny (wait...) Edinburgh. Piling nine people (along with appropriate luggage, instruments and our manager Bernadette) into three taxis, we head off to find our accommodation, only to end up at the wrong address, on the wrong side of town, due to various accent misinterpretations. Ah well, mood is still high when we arrive at our luxurious apartment in Lothian Rd, Leith. With everyone’s internal body clock already out of sync, we decide to hit the town. Visits to more than a few of Edinburgh’s late night joints result in the inevitable: Sam Boon serenading the natives with his spellbinding version of Gerry Rafferty’s Baker Street on his Alto Saxophone well after sunrise. Bed. Show Day. For our first week in Edinburgh, we’re playing the historic Late ‘N’ Live slot night after night. Late ‘N’ Live, now in

[16]

it’s 26th year at the Edinburgh Festival is the most notorious of all late night comedy at the Fringe. Involving two hours of comedy from 1-3am (a mix of world famed and up-and-coming comedians), followed by two hours straight of music (us) from 3-5am. It has been a proving ground for comedians worldwide since inception, and the crowd is a notoriously brutal one, devouring comedians whole, and completely derailing even the most experienced ones. But it has also been a measuring stick for bands as well, most notably in Australia for our own Cat Empire (who slayed Late ‘N’ Live for three successive years in the early 2000’s). So understandably we’re all feeling a little nervous watching some comedy, and preparing for the show. It’s also somewhat of a new experience (despite the musician’s late night stereotype) to be playing a show at 3am. Apart from playing Melbourne’s Pony 2am slot once, I’ve never really encountered any show as late as this. After seeing an unnamed comedian slaughtered mid-set at the hands of “Eddie” in the front row, who after stealing the microphone from the comedian and rallying the crowd to chant “Eddie, Eddie” - he saluted his victory and the comedy was over; we were on. Playing a surprisingly supportive audience, we went over quite well. Highlights including George from Cheers being in the audience, Nic emptying a prop fire extinguisher on band members, a rider of Fosters and actually making it through the painstaking two-hour set. One down, Six to go...

Album Release Day Friday August 17. Album release day. After a hectic week of playing at Late ‘N’ Live, sleeping patterns are fractured at best, but luckily the shows have been building night to night, gradually gaining momentum despite the insanely late hour. The festival is in full swing, with literally thousands of shows, be it comedy, theatre or music, on around the clock - and adding to it, it’s our album release day...Vibe is up. Recorded live to tape at Woodstock Studios in Melbourne with good friend Cam Trewin earlier in 2012, our first record Leave It All Behind’has been nearly three years in the making; beginning from loose busking sessions outside of Melbourne’s iconic Flinders St Station gradually forging our own material over countless shows in the last few years. So naturally we’re excited to be finally putting it out!

To celebrate, we head to the park for a party in the rare Edinburgh sun, put on by our new friend Simon. Downing a few Red Stripes in the sunshine and listening an eclectic mix of Tropicalia, Salsa and Cumbia from an amazing customized golf cart/DJ booth, all is good in the world.

Back to work Inspired by our recent shows with Hypnotic Brass Ensemble and in an attempt to woo some would-be punters down to the shows, we’ve go back to our old ways,

have a quick line check earlier in the day, and as soon as the comedy concludes, we’re thrust into our first number. Production-wise it isn’t ideal, but aided by some great venue staff, it’s a great attitude and camaraderie that happens to make the best show possible. The show that night is solid, the long two hour set is a really good chance to road test new material as well as thrash out a couple of old favourites - finding out what is good and what isn’t. The night (morning) ending in the now ritual wait for Tesco’s to open at 6am for an early breakfast and bedtime.

Back at The Spiegeltent Halfway through our little UK jaunt, we switch our attention to

Spiegeltents, literally “Mirror Tent” is a spectacularly glamourous and decorative venue, steeped in a long tradition of cabaret and music. For me, it is simply one of my favourite venues to play in the world. So understandably, everyone is in high spirits about returning to the tent. As we play the first couple of shows (this time in the more body-clock friendly time of 5pm) fortunately the crowds continue to grow day to day. With 10 minute changeovers, shuffling the acts in and out, the camaraderie of the staff and performers and as well as the other Australian acts over here as well (Flap, Mikelangelo), the atmosphere really is a supportive and positive experience.

at various club nights and other festival shows. Most days we have been doing two or three shows with the occasional rest day thrown in. We’ve played a few shows for the BBC compound set up at the festival, on top of the Spiegel shows, stripped back acoustic shows and busking. Probably the highlight for me though has been the opportunity to play a handful of shows at some of Edinburgh’s music clubs. I’ve always heard so much about the UK’s vibrant soul/funk club nights, but it was great to actually be involved, and in a couple of cases, play shows very similar to those we have been doing at various venues back home. One such night was the ‘Favela’ night at The Bongo Club where our new friend Francis brought us in for his night. Despite a false start where Tom (our bass player) broke a string to a crowd of 300, didn’t have a spare, and rushed off to get a replacement...we restarted 10 minutes later and it literally brought the house down. For me it was such a great event, as I couldn’t believe we’d come halfway across the world and could experience shows like that in a totally foreign place. Edinburgh, what a city.

End of the tour After a whirlwind three weeks and a grueling but rewarding 20+ shows in Edinburgh, it was time to move down to London for the final show of the tour. But not before struggling to climb Arthur’s Seat just

HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDING GEORGE FROM CHEERS BEING IN THE AUDIENCE, NIC EMPTYING A PROP FIRE EXTINGUISHER ON BAND MEMBERS, A RIDER OF FOSTERS AND ACTUALLY MAKING IT THROUGH THE PAINSTAKING 2-HOUR SET.” and busk on the street with the four horn players and drum-kit, playing stripped down instrumental numbers to passers by. It’s been really amazing the difference it makes, with people coming up and saying hello, buying a CD and then ultimately coming down to one (or most) shows. Late ‘N’ Live’s large comedy programme means that in preparation for each show that night we only

playing another week of shows, this time at The Famous Spiegeltent. Built in Belgium in 1920, the tent is one of a series made in the early 20th century and used as traveling venue for places that didn’t have major halls. The tent is actually the reason we are in Edinburgh in the first place. We played at the venue in Melbourne during their last season, and were invited over to the Fringe as a result. For those newcomers, The

Apart from a few technical glitches (reverb units that don’t work, broken pedals and trumpets), the shows start off virtually without a hitch and it’s hard not to feel comfortable playing night in, night out in such an amazing space.

Club Shows + More As the festival has gone on, we’ve received more and more offers for shows

on the outskirts of the city, and then going to see Paul and Dan Kelly play as a part of the festival. The intimate show in Queens Hall was really special, with incredible interpretations of Paul’s songs and Dan’s great guitar work - very inspiring to see half way across the world. The following Spiegeltent afterparty was terrific was well. But on to London via train. Our show was at Bedroom Bar in hipster central Shoreditch, East London. A really nice place, it was great to see the bar packed with friends and friends of friends over here coming down to see the show which was another highlight on a tour full of them. Huge thanks to everyone that helped us out in the UK: David and The Famous Spiegeltent, Late ‘N’ Live, Francis, Simon and everyone we forgot! We’ll be back next year for sure. Sweet times! www.saskwatch.com.au


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the slide sound he had six months ago.”

Richard Clapton has never been your regular guitar gymnast but his tasteful tones and subtle use of effects has contributed to the quality of his legendary songs. Greg Phillips spoke to Clapton about his use of effects and the ideas behind his wonderful new album Harlequin Nights.

T

he carnivalesque title of Richard Clapton’s new album and the joyous melody of the opening track Sunny Side Up disguise the much darker and broader subject matter of the majority of the album… his recent, ‘difficult’ divorce! It’s been eight long years since Clapton’s last album Diamond Mine and the reasons for the delay are laid bare in the lyrics of the new record. “It was a fairly miserable divorce, so I just turned the album into a catharsis,” says Clapton. “That’s kind of what I like about the album because it is very real. I think it is

Richard Clapton - New Tunes & Tones good when a songwriter writes an album just for themselves. I wasn’t thinking if I was going to have a hit with it or how many copies I was going to sell.” Richard Clapton is one those rare artists who couldn’t make a dud album if he tried, and Harlequin Night is no exception; it’s a gem. Apart from displaying his usual top-shelf songwriting skills, the guitar tones are well thought out, refined and apt for each and every tune. However these were achieved not through a collection of hot vintage stomp boxes but 2012 style, using AmpliTube in Pro Tools. AmpliTube is a guitar amp and effects modelling software package produced by IK Multimedia out of Modena, Italy and Clapton and his guitar-totin’ offsider Danny Spencer used it extensively on the album.

Eric Wareheim and his comedy partner Tim Heidecker are best known for their Adult Swim show ‘Tim & Eric Awesome Show, Great Job!’ The show, with its bizarre musical interludes is unlike anything else on television and now comes to Australia live. Wareheim chats to Elyce Phillips.

A

lthough Eric Wareheim is renowned for his technological wizardry, creating bright and frenetic music videos, his musical beginnings were decidedly lo-fi. When asked what he listened to when he was growing up, Wareheim spins a story about his early listening experiences, informing us that they were purely of a live nature.

“AmpliTube has moved ahead in leaps and bounds during the course of this album and the quality of it is so good,” says Clapton. “Frankly, Danny and I did try guitars at Alberts studios a couple of times but unfortunately, I think the art of recording guitars has been lost

to an extent. I don’t want to sound overly critical of young engineers coming up but… for example, when we did The Great Escape, I know that Mark Opitz and Ian Moss got eleven Marshalls in before they were happy. The Marshalls were moved, not only all

over the studio but different rooms, different mics. In those days we used to take a long time getting those sounds. For Danny and I, AmpliTube... well it’s making us seasick there are so many presets and now we have a full library of our own edits. I’ll save a file like ‘Danny’s Skankytown’, which is great because in the old days if you wanted to come back to something, you’d have to go through the whole process of trying to get that sound you had two weeks before. I love this aspect of modern recording technology. You switch on Tools, and there’s everything exactly as you left it. You get AmpliTube up and there’s ‘Danny’s Skankytown’,

Pushed further about his use of effects over the years and what he might use in his shows this year, much like the album substance, Clapton is brutally honest. “I don’t use many effects,” he states. “I went through a phase a few years ago where I used a SPX500 and I got sick of it after a while. It was the late ‘80s and thought it was great because I had all of the presets. I got sick of that and went through a TC Chorus pedal and I am endorsed by Laney which gives you nice compression in everything anyway. So for a long time I was just using the TC Chorus with the Laney amp. Recently I started getting into using the Keeley compressor, they’re awesome compressors, really transparent. It gives you a little sparkle up the top and nice colouring but Danny is a real guitar player, whereas I am a songwriter guitar player. I’m sure Danny will be a lot more fastidious about his sounds than I will be. I’m trying to conduct a show and it’s hard for me, I don’t want to

These days, his musical tastes are a little more modern and his listening habits more technologically advanced.

“And I didn’t grow up with record players or tape players. I wasn’t exposed to any outside music. So it was pretty much just, like, hardcore African tribal stuff. Mainly just didgeridoos, drums. Home-made drums. Stuff like that.”

“For records, you know, I buy either vinyl or I download,” says Wareheim. “I love the artwork on vinyl and that’s sort of a lost thing… I have a pretty good collection. I moved a couple times and lost huge portions of it, but I kept all the records that have some sentimental value to them and the important ones.”

Apparently, it wasn’t until Wareheim went to Temple University and met Tim Heidecker, that his musical horizons were broadened. “It’s like I had an awakening when I left for college. I met Tim Heidecker. He started showing me all the greats… like Kenny Loggins, Santana. He really opened me up to a lot of classical rock.”

“I mean, as you can see from the videos, there’s almost zero band involvement.

[18]

www.richardclapton.com

“I think it’s a little bit like Stockholm Syndrome. If you’re kidnapped you essentially start to love the person that kidnapped you. And the thing with the didgeridoo, I was forced to play it, but then I started to love it, and I continue to love it to this day.

“I would say my favourite thing right now is the new Beach House record. I’m doing a song called Wishes that’s on that record, and I’m shooting that this month.” Eric has worked with bands such as MGMT, Depeche Mode and The Bird And The Bee, creating some spectacular and wildly original music videos.

The convenience of modern day digital recording technology has opened up a brand new world of possibilities for Clapton. The eleven tracks on Harlequin Nights were culled from twenty three. “If I wanted to, and there was demand for it, I could probably do a whole new album,” he says of his options. Longtime fans will be hoping Harlequin Nights is only the beginning of a new recording era for Richard Clapton.

Wareheim. “Actually, my parents have been teaching me the different ways to play didgeridoo. I’ve been playing since I was a young child, so I’m a master. So, it’s going to be great to come down to Australia. I think in Melbourne, we just added a second show, and that’s just going to be me playing the didgeridoo. Two and a half hours before we even start the show, so get ready for a really long show.

Tim & Eric’s Awesome Greatness “When I was a young boy, my parents… I grew up on a weird kind of… commune? I wouldn’t say it was a hippy commune, but it was more like a bizarre group of eccentric people, and they forced me to play as part of this big band. [The music] was mainly, like, tribal. Sort of African tribal stuff. That’s what my parents were doing,” recalls Wareheim.

get distracted trying to get the exact same sounds on the album but Danny is a lot more free on stage to do things and he has a pretty impressive pedal board. Some of his sounds that I really like are the pure ones, like [on album the tracks] Blowing Smoke Up At The Moon and Vapour Trails. It may not sound like it but we went to a hell of a lot of trouble to get those sounds. I know they are plain straight guitar sounds. What I have experienced working with INXS and Ian Moss… the sound is so critical for a guitar player.”

They pretty much come to me and they know my work, so they ask me to write something for them and I write something – whatever I feel about the music, and that’s what we do. I sort of pick

bands that allow me to do that. I don’t work with bands that have a big idea. Although, this Beach House one was co-written with Victoria, the singer from Beach House, so that’s going to be a new thing for me. Which… she’s so brilliant that I wanted to collaborate with her. However, the live music experience has always remained as a part of Wareheim’s listening habits. During his college days, he became a part of the Philadelphia punk scene, playing in bands such as

Twelve Tone System and The Science Of. And yet, despite his punk roots, Eric told us that his preferred instrument is something a little closer to home. “I play didgeridoo. That’s all I play,” says

“My favourite piece is this thing called Good Morning, Young Boy. That is something that I learned to play to my little brother when he wakes up. It’s kind of a sensual piece, but it’s also supposed to be for brotherly love, and I would wake him up every morning with my didgeridoo and he’d rise and greet me with a smile.” www.timanderic.com


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[19] (Receivers and Managers Appointed) (Administrators Appointed)


Muso’s Greg Phillips chats to Sharaya’s Shay Liza, about the band’s rockin’ debut album.

Muso’s Greg Phillips speaks with Tristan Bouillaut about his new project Dead In A Second.

G

rowing up as a member of an infamous religious cult is not the ideal way to spend your youth, but it’s a hell of bio story for a lead singer of a rock band. Fortunately for Shay Liza, frontwoman for Melbourne rockers Sharaya, she and her family escaped the clutches of the American sect now know as The Family and relocated to Australia, where she’s been able to pursue her love of music and use those life experiences in a positive way. “I went through hard times in my late teens, early twenties trying to come to terms with the different lifestyle

I

n late 2011, during downtime from his day job as guitarist for the band Thousand Needles In Red, Tristan Bouillaut had a vision for a new music project. It was as DIY a musical project as you could possibly get. “I had a real vision for how I wanted the business side of things to run, the music side obviously and also the DIY mentality,” he states of his intentions. “I don’t think it’s particularly necessary

epics, perfect fodder for FM radio and that’s exactly where the band has been acquiring some extensive airplay of late. Shay was in the studio when she heard her own music over the airwaves for the first time. “It’s a really special moment when you hear it on radio for the first time because you know there are loads of other people listening. It kind of gives you fulfilment for all those years of work. It’s hard

Alive And Well these days with the tools we have to outsource a lot of the creative work, even down to the graphic design. I wanted us to do everything in-house, not to have total control, it’s not about that… it’s so that we don’t have to wait or rely on anyone.” Fast forward to June this year and Triztan’s, or Trizo as he’s more commonly known, was in Melbourne launching Maretimo, the debut EP for his new outfit Dead In A Second. Not only had Triz written all of the songs and played all of the instruments, he produced, engineered and mixed as well, all from home, only bringing in friend Rick Hammond to sing and rap. What Triz didn’t know about production during his Maretimo journey, he studied up on using YouTube clips and Google searches. A soundproof vocal booth was created in his spare room using mattresses in a whatever-it-takes mind set. “I had my guide guitars on the demo... From the click track, you start building the drums and the bass and get the foundations down. Then I like to add guitars and production before the vocals are put down. So all the instrumentation first and all the production, then the vocals and you can just delete what you don’t need from there.” Trizo’s talent has not gone unnoticed by the gear companies and he’s been blessed with many

R E W PO 50 N IO T I ED

endorsement deals, all of which he honoured in the production of the EP. “I used a Faith 12 string, a Faith 6 steel string, a nylon which was great to have some body behind certain notes. For electrics I used mainly PRS, a couple of Gibsons, a 335. There were a few guitars. I know it’s hard to tell. When you go that little bit heavier, it’s hard to distinguish between them. I used the TC Electronic’s Nova System for my compression and delay. I didn’t use a great deal of clean guitar. The reverb from the Nova System is insane. Everyone knows TC’s reverb comes from years and years of research.”

Working on the EP from home was in one way a blessing, but as time marched on it also became a curse not knowing when to actually call it quits. “It was horrible. I have learned a lot from it though. It was hard because you wake up at four in the morning and you think, I have a record I am working on in the next room. Living and working in the same place is ridiculous.” Tristan’s attention now turns to taking his music to the stage, which will happen around November this year. Find Dead In A Second On Facebook

Road To Rock and understanding the world that we live in from being so cloistered,” Shay recalls. “Now I wouldn’t change a thing because I have this great respect for life and something to draw from when I write. A lot of the album is based on those experiences.” Shay has since immersed herself in the Melbourne music community and couldn’t be happier, splitting her time between duo bar gigs and her new band Sharaya. Initially the songs which now appear on the Sharaya album The Road To … were being prepared with a solo project of some sort in mind. As musicians were brought in by producer Ricki Rae to lay some parts down for the songs, they organically just morphed into a band. Sharaya now features Rae as drummer, hot shot guitarist Simon Hosford, Adam Surace on bass and Nik Pringadi on keyboards. The album is a collection of brooding, atmospheric, rock

OUT NOW!

to describe,” she recalls fondly of the moment. The Road To … reeks of an album that has benefitted by a lot of time, thought and effort put into its production. Sharaya now look forward to a summer full of gigs, writing for album number two, and keeping one eye open to international market possibilities.

Drums recorded mainly through a vintage Neve Broadcast console. Kick and Snares recorded through Focusrite ISA 115s. For micing the drums, I used D12 on the kick and SM57 on snare top, a AKG C414 on the snare bottom and on the toms varied condenser mics. For overheads, I used U47s and room mics, new Red Valve microphones. Bass Guitars were recorded straight into Vintec X81 and then re-amped later using an M88. For Guitar, used 3 guitar amps, through a Voodoo labs amp switcher with an array of 57s and 421s, through Neve 1073’s and Vintec X81’s All Keyboards recorded straight into the Neve 1073.

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[19]


Advice WITH

CATHERINE HARIDY

At what point does an artist need a manager? Why would you? Where do you find one anyway? Greg Phillips asks Catherine Haridy, she is one!

L

ong story short … Catherine Haridy began her route to artist management via this very magazine company writing for Inpress, while at the same time broadcasting on 3RRR and later doing great A&R for major record labels. Currently Cath manages Eskimo Joe, Jebediah, Adalita, and Bob Evans among a host of other talented local artists and producers. She runs a label, chairs the Association of Artist Managers, is an APRA Ambassador, board member at the Community Broadcasting Foundation, heads the Australian Music Grants Advisory and by the time this sentence finishes, Cath has probably allocated herself yet another role. The adage is so true, if you want something done, give it to a busy person! Think back to the famous music managers of the past; Zeppelin’s Peter Grant, Presley’s Colonel Tom Parker, The Beatles Brian Epstein… dodgey, ruthless bastards who were as much about themselves as their artists. Turns out the best kind of manager today is one who simply loves your music, has their shit together and has the artist’s best interests at heart. Catherine Haridy is as surprised as anyone that she fell into artist management. However on reflection, it all adds up. Working in A&R, she was basically an internal manger anyway, “managing expectations, enthusing people, working on strategies,” she says. But what the hell is a manager and what do they really do? Haridy narrows the modern day artist

more creative than ever before. Haridy herself, has been known to think outside the box when it comes to negotiating deals for her artists. One project Catherine is most proud of is the Basement Birds (a band which consists of Josh Pyke, Kav from Eskimo Joe, Kev from Jebediah and Steve Parkin) in which she managed to negotiate a deal freeing each member from the constraints of their label contracts in order to proceed with the project independently. What was most interesting however was the release method Haridy negotiated. “We did a deal direct with iTunes and released it in a way that no one else had in this country,” she says of the pioneering move. “ The guys financed it themselves, made back their money and a little bit more and had a fun time doing it and that’s all you can hope for.”

manager’s role down to four key areas. “Communication, creative and business and then there are a whole lot of peripheral things around that dealing with everyday enquiries and also managing my own business within that.” But if you’re a cocky young band just starting out and think your music is the best thing since the last thing, don’t assume managers, media and even the public are going to naturally gravitate toward you. You first need to establish a reason why a manager would want to take you on or why the media would want to talk about you or why the public would be keen to see you play. What would attract Catherine Haridy to signing a new act? “The songs to begin with,” she tells. “Are they strong songs? Is there something in the music that you feel passionate about that you feel you could work with in terms of a bigger career?” One of the hazards of being over enthusiastic about your music is that you can sometimes introduce it to the wider world too soon. First impressions are

Management WHEN, WHY AND HOW? long lasting and you want to ensure that you give yourself the best shot possible right from the beginning. Catherine agrees: “I think if you are going to step out into a public forum in a recorded sense, then you want to make sure the recording is a good recording, sufficiently mixed and mastered and that it is potentially radio playable. You want to make sure you have a plan for what you’re going to do with your music.”

In the digital age of music, the rule book is still being written. Management practices which worked in the past may not be applicable today and both artists and managers need to be

OK, so your band has got the great songs down, they’re recorded well and you’ve been playing some gigs and accumulating a fanbase via social network sites. You’re at the stage where you need management, but where do you begin to look? Haridy believes your managerial needs may well be found within. “I think a lot of new bands feel they need to secure one of the top 20 percent of managers in the country when in actual fact, those managers are so busy that they generally don’t have time to pick up anything else. My advice would be if they want to find a manager, they should look within their community and isolate a person who is passionate about their music and loves what they do, has initiative, is a good communicator and bring that person onboard to start with them from the very beginning and have them grow into their role as manager as the artist grows.” Haridy has her hands full planning a path for releases by Bob Evans, Tiger Town, Eskimo Joe and The Chemists, recordings which will emerge in the coming months into next year and is both intrigued and excited about the future of the Australian music scene. “It still excites me,” she says, “I don’t think it will ever not excite me.” www.catherineharidy.com.au

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Roland Fender G5 VG Stratocaster

REVIEWER: THE RUBENS’ SAM MARGIN INFO: WWW.ROLANDCORP.COM.AU

T

he Rubens play a style of rock which is one part timeless guitar swagger and another part modern day production groove. The Roland Corporation, the innovative company responsible for many of the world’s most iconic keyboards has teamed with Fender guitars to release The G5, VG Stratocaster, merging a classic guitar model with futuristic technology to create a versatile guitar for the times. It made sense to put one of these units into the hands of The Rubens lead vocalist and guitarist Samuel Margin to get his opinion on the meeting of these two worlds. “When I was first asked to road test and review a bit of music equipment I was quite worried. I’d never been asked my opinion on anything like that before and wasn’t sure I could pull it off. When it was suggested that I review The Fender Roland G-5 guitar I was even more unnerved. It wasn’t as simple as reviewing a pedal like I’d hoped, but proved to be much more interesting! I had the chance to play a Line 6 JTV69US while I was in America and found it had many faults. It’s quite convenient for me to have something to compare the G-5 to, and quite convenient for the G-5 to have such a weak competitor... in my opinion. Basically, Roland has taken its COSM guitar modelling technology and integrated it into a Mexican Stratocaster. This seems like a great idea in theory, but just because two things are successful on their own, doesn’t mean combining them will result in something equally successful. I’ve always been skeptical of these kinds of instruments, mainly because I feel like they are destroying the romanticism surrounding the guitar. The idea that you can now buy one guitar that can do the work of six is extremely practical, but not traditionally ‘Rock and Roll’. The first thing you will notice about this guitar when you pick it up is the high build quality. Mexican Strats can be a little bit hit and miss sometimes, but this guitar actually feels like an American Standard Stratocaster. This is really important to me especially if I was to be performing on stage with this thing. The fact that it looks

and feels like a normal Strat helps distract you from the mutant it contains and I’m sure its subtlety will be a great selling point (though the blue LED does constantly remind you that there’s something fishy going on).

Back In The Day SEQUENTIAL CIRCUITS

Let’s take a look at the spec sheet and see what this beast consists of. The guitar features an alder body, c-shape maple neck and rosewood fingerboard. It has a vintage-style synchronised tremolo and three single coil pickups. Controls include a Mode knob which will gets you a modeled Strat, modeled tele, modeled humbucking, modeled acoustic guitar and there’s a non-modeling mode. The Tuning knob offers normal tuning, drop D, Open G, D modal, Baritone and 12 string guitar. Pretty

- PROPHET 5

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rom Tears For Fears and Abba to our own INXS and Icehouse, there was a time when the Prophet 5 roamed the earth and left a huge sonic footprint before suffering the fate of all dinosaurs. Melbourne Music Centre’s Brad Coates reports: In the beginning of 1978, Dave Smith, John Bowen and Barb Smith squeezed into a tiny exhibition booth at Anaheim’s Disneyland Hotel and together they formed the newly established Sequential Circuits Company. Little did anyone at the time know, they were about to change the keyboard player’s world forever with their main display item for the winter NAMM show - the Prophet 5. Described at the time as “5 Minimoogs in one box”, (somewhat incorrectly), the Prophet 5 literally stole the show as the first commercially available and viable Polyphonic Synthesizer. In actual fact the Yamaha CS80 really deserved the title and was also being demonstrated at the same show. What really created the PRO V’s success was its’ ability to play five notes at once and store all parameters for each patch in memory banks - 40 in all, a thing unheard of in 1978.

SPECS • Alder Body

• C-Shape Maple Neck

Three successive models were produced during SCI’s lifetime - designated Rev. 1, 2 & 3, (short for software revision).The Rev. 1, although extremely sought after as the earliest version, lacked the later version’s tape-dumping abilities and all-important ‘tune’ button, and whilst being the most unreliable, due to the SSM chips (Solid State Music) the Rev. 1 was also arguably the dirtiest and fattest sounding. However, only the later Rev. 2’s and 3’s are able to be MIDIretrofitted. These were the days when musicians actually PLAYED their synths, so sequencing a Prophet in those days was somewhat of a secondary concern, although the company did produce its own dedicated digital poly sequencer (non-MIDI) for the prophet , which was also included in the Prophet-10 (essentially two Pro-5’s with the sequencer onboard).

• Rosewood

Fingerboard

• Single Coil type x3,

Divided type x1 P/U

• Vintage Style

Synchronized Tremolo

• Fingerboard

Radius: 9.5” • Scale Length: 25.5” (64.8cm) • Number of Frets: 22 • Fret Size: Medium Jumbo

CONTROLS

• MODE knob: 5 types • Normal

(non-modeling)

• Modeled Stratocaster • Modeled Telecaster • Modeled

Humbucking Pickups

• Modeled

Acoustic guitar

• TUNING knob:

Normal tuning, Drop D, Open G, D Modal, Baritone, 12-string guitar • TONE Control knob, VOLUME knob, 5-Way switch • Connector • Guitar Jack (1/4” phone type)

POWER SUPPLY • Alkaline battery

(AA, LR6) x 4, or Rechargeable Ni-MH battery (AA, HR6) x 4 • Expected battery life under continuous use Alkaline battery: 6 hours. Rechargeable Ni-MH battery: 9 hours

GUEST TEST

THE RUBENS’ SAM MARGIN

impressive! There’s also a tone control knob, volume knob and five-way switch. I am easily confused by technology, and I’m a terrible decision maker. I should have been completely daunted by such a guitar, but I wasn’t. I could’ve very easily become frustrated with the complexity of the different models but the truth is, I was just having way too much fun playing it to find it draining. I slowly tried different settings and through trial and error, became pretty at ease with the system quite quickly. I must admit I did begin to favour a few settings, particularly the Telecaster. It is actually phenomenal how much it sounds like you’re playing a Tele. The baritone guitar was equally as impressive. And there was absolutely no latency issues! This guitar could really be used in a wide range of settings. For guitarists in cover bands

its surely going to become a must-have! They could go from Hendrix to Jack Johnson with the flick of a switch. Actually, the acoustic guitar is really great too with the tone knob becoming a reverb knob when you choose this setting, another fantastic feature obviously great for using live. Although I can imagine most purist producers and engineers would turn their nose up at the idea of using the G-5 in the studio, more open minded types would benefit from having this guitar as their general studio ‘work horse’. Especially because although you have an amazing array of technology at your disposal, it can all be turned off and be used as a “classic” Strat. It could also be an inspirational writing tool thanks to the tuning options. Being able to flick a switch and change from open tuning to drop-D and so on definitely helps when trying to get inspired and come up with a tune!

Looking back at this review its seems as though it has been a good one. I guess I like the G-5. I didn’t really expect to but Fender and Roland have really covered all the bases on the this one and left me no choice. I think the reason for its success is its relative simplicity. If I had to find something negative to say I’d only be able to find something as trivial as the fact that it doesn’t come with a hard case. If they are hoping for this guitar to be taken as seriously as the price tag suggests, (around $1500) they could throw in a Fender Hard-case. If I’m going to be completely honest, and I am, I wouldn’t buy one of these guitars because I don’t need one. In saying that, there are countless musicians out there whose lives will be made so much easier by this amazing mash-up of technologies and because of that, I think Fender and Roland have produced something special in the G-5.”

Although many think of the Prophet of a strictly analogue machine, in reality the Prophet was actually an analogue/digital hybrid, as were most of the polys that followed. The basic features were: five voices with two oscillators per voice; A 24db per Octave Four pole resonant low-pass filter; two ADSR Envelope Generators, one each for Filter and Amplifier, White Noise Generator (actually easily the worst-sounding noise on any synth ever! - but useful as a modulation source.), Pitch and Modulation wheels, (like Minimoogs) assignable to either Oscillator’s Pitch, Pulse Width of 2nd Oscillator, or Filter. Also a whopping 40 userprogrammable memories (1978 remember!), AND...the part that generated all the really complex waveshapes - the poly-mod section, which defined the Prophet “flavour” more than any other single sound-shaping element. The keyboard was a five octave PrattReid note on/note off affair with no Touch Response. Selling in Australia in ’79 for around $5,000 -$6,000, the Prophet came in several thousand dollars cheaper than Yamaha’s CS80, and virtually single-handedly destroyed the Solina/ARP’s String Machine market. Unfortunately, Sequential Circuits was doomed to become yet another synthmanufacturer casualty, and their R&D and other concerns were taken over by Yamaha in the late ‘80s. One of the last great synths they made was the Vector-Synthesis Prophet from which certain design elements were ‘pinched’ for the now-classic Korg Wavestation, and other TG series Yamaha synths. www.melbournemusiccentre.com.au

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Ashton Acoustic D59SCEQ NCM

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ut of the box, it looks clean functional and all in one piece, which is always a great start. To test this instrument out, I played it in a writing session at my studio with a client. I played on and off for a threehour period as we wrote, discussed and tried different ideas for the tune we were writing. First port of call for any session is tuning and I’m glad to report that once the instrument was at pitch, it held its tune quite well. Sealed machine heads with a nice ratio made this part a breeze. Can it be tuned ? Yes. Does it hold tune? Yes indeed! The neck was rather thin for an acoustic. It reminded me of similar premium American guitar brand. It was easy to play, the action was good low but without rattling like a snake. Is it nice to play? It sure is. The spruce top is solid wood and sang nicely when the instrument was played, bright but not tinny or brittle. The frets were well finished and felt really nice under hand. The fingerboard wasn’t the best I’ve

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ever felt but it was nothing to complain about either. As for sounding good… it does that too.

First up the Crossfire Dual-Injection After-Burner, a twin Overdrive and Distortion pedal, comprised of two circuits housed in the one unit that is able to change the order of signal flow either from distortion to overdrive or vice versa. The overdrive section features ‘Tone’, ‘Drive’ and ‘Level’ knobs, while the distortion section features ‘Tone’, Dist.’ and ‘Level’. I was keen to test the distortion first with a clean tone and a humbucker. I set the distortion to emulate a dirty rhythm sound and used the overdrive to add more gain and level for a saturated lead tone, thereby turning a single channel amp into a three channel amp (sort of ). The distortion on its own produced an aggressive crunch similar to a DS-1 (Boss), but with a harsher, filthier top end making it good for grunge. Cranking the level and keeping the tone behind 11 o’clock produced the most desirable sounds, as the tone is very sensitive and sounds brittle and thin when cranked. Going from distortion to overdrive produced a usable mid-heavy solo tone with the level cranked, the tone at 4 (o’clock) and the drive at 9. The overdrive on its own produced nice vintage break-up, with a light smooth drive, characteristic of a DOD-style OD. Going from overdrive to distortion resulted in a considerable loss of volume, but heralded in the best lead tone that was saturated and sculpted, ideal for recording.

What it lacks is depth of tone that you can only get from an all solid guitar which would be twothree times the price of this unit, so it really is a case of horses for courses. Typically in this segment of the market for solid top guitars you consistently get thin brittle tones and a glossy finish to make it look attractive. This features a natural matte finish and is well constructed, no barbs on the fret ends, nice fingerboard and I didn’t tire as I played up the neck. As for the electronics… the built-in tuner was quite handy and both accurate and sensitive, with four-band EQ on the preamp consisting of bass, middle, treble and presence plus a volume control. All were responsive enough to manipulate the sound out of the pickup with a decent amount of range cut and boost. I found it quite easy to tailor the tone to what I wanted to hear from the small PA I tested it with. The knobs were a little small and fiddly but it was no big deal to adjust the controls. Overall I found the Ashton D59SCEQ NCM a great value for money workhorse and an instrument I’d recommend for any beginner or intermediate player.

Next up, the TRM-507 Tremolo, a simple, versatile ‘Trem.’ pedal that sounds pretty darn good. The winner here (besides the price) is the ability to go from a soft sine wave to a jagged square wave by tweaking the ‘Wave’ knob, which is where two knob tremolos fail. This is a very musical trem and I liked how it sounded both in the effects loop, and in front of the preamp. Three knobs do the damage, where ‘Rate’

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Tech 21 Boost Series Pedals

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REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.NATIONALMUSIC.COM.AU

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The Tech 21 Boost Overdrive was first under the microscope. I used this pedal with my Les Paul and Marshall Plexi to get a beefier tone out of my amp. The overdrive consists of controls for ‘Level’, ‘Tone’ ‘Drive’ and ‘Sparkle’. All the usual suspects are here except for the addition of the ‘Sparkle’, which “Adds upper harmonics for an open, snappy sound”. The overdrive did a very convincing ‘TS808’ emulation, a great ‘Top Booster’ for ‘70s drive, and good Blues overdrive when dialed in with cleaner tone. Overall I thought this pedal sounded great for older ‘70s and ‘80s hard rock/ metal tones, and using the boost on its own sounded the best with my Marshall for getting the exact kind of tone I was after.

The Boost Distortion has hints of that iconic modern Tech 21 distortion heard all over the world on some great albums (Nevermind…). It was easy to a get a thick clear distortion that emulated a modern high-gain amp, and is perfect for turning a good clean amp into a monster. This time the ‘Sag’ effect “Adds an expressive tube-like response to every pick stroke”, and did a good job of sounding like a worn in tube amp when digging into the strings, adding that tube feel even with solid state amps.

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I must say overall I am really impressed with this instrument. Without knowing the price initially, I estimated around $499 and I was spot on. If I had to give it a mark, I would rate this guitar 7 out of 10. I was very impressed with its playability, tone and quality of hardware and construction and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to any beginner or intermediate player.

I took the same approach with the Boost Fuzz pedal and plugged into a driven amp, and what could be better than a Strat into a vintage Marshall for that Hendrix sound? The combination of a driven amp plus fuzz results in magic. Again, this pedal sees the same format of ‘Level’, ‘Tone’ and ‘Drive’, but the inclusion of ‘Sag’ adds an extra dimension “Allowing notes to bloom and sing at your command, for a dynamic, organic performance.” A wide array of tones was available from Hendrix, to Weezer. This pedal did a killer job of emulating those vintage Germanium fuzz pedals guitarists drool over.

Finally, a pedal for bass, the Boost Fuzz Bass was my favourite, as it did a number of different things really well. I plugged this pedal direct into my mixing desk as I was after that insane fuzz bass you hear on Nine Inch Nails recordings and on some electronic recordings and it delivered with unexpectedly good results. This time the secret ingredient was the “+ Clean” knob which dialed back in a clean signal making it possible to blend fuzz and clean together generating a massive doubled sound when distorted guitars are in the mix. There is so much drive on tap that it is possible to go from warm, spongy drive to insane globs of mush that would be perfect for heavier styles such as stoner rock, death metal and industrial music. Dialing back the ‘Level’, ‘Tone’ and ‘Drive’, and boosting the ‘+ Clean’ adds a bass boost to your overall tone, while turning the ‘Tone’ up keeping the ‘Drive’ midway was cool for ‘Sabbath-like’ rumble. This new line of Tech 21 pedals is great and will appeal to musicians searching for a certain sound, whilst still having the flexibility produce a variety of different tones.

REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.JADEAUSTRALIA.COM.AU

one are the days where stomp boxes cost an arm and a leg with loads of budget brands surfacing which produce similar results to the big guys. Add Crossfire to this list, a company providing simple, solid tone, in a sturdy housing that’s wallet friendly. I was given a whole bunch of pedals to try out, but today I’ll be looking at my three faves, the CF-DO2 Overdrive and Distortion, TRM-507 Tremolo and DLY-303 Delay.

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Pulling an Ashton acoustic out at a gig may not traditionally be a status symbol and by no means is this the greatest acoustic I’ve ever strummed, but make no mistake, this is a fine workhorse, probably best suited for beginner to intermediate players. However if Ashton continue to produce this sort of quality instrument, I think some of the other manufacture’s in this market should be worried. The back and sides are made of mahogany, adding stability and strength to the instrument, the wood-grain on this one is quite pretty to look at.

ech 21 are one of the the effects heavyweights, born in NYC, USA by Andrew Barta’s vision of the Sansamp. His legacy lives on through other killer pedals like the new ‘Boost’ series featuring a form of drive coupled with up to 21dB of clean, switchable boost.

Crossfire Pedals

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REVIEWER: AJAY BAWDEN INFO: WWW.ASHTONMUSIC.COM

The Crossfire pedals are cool; they all have solid housings and switches and are perfect for expanding your pedal board on a budget. Each effect has its limitations, but they do what they do very well and may provide you with exactly what you’re after.

Posse

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Last but not least, the DLY-303 Delay, a wonderful analogue delay that’s warm and clear, and capable of producing short to medium delay times. Again the simple threeknob format for ‘Rate’, ‘Repeat’ and ‘Level’. I’d definitely say this pedal was the finest of the lot because it sounds so warm and rich, and is amazing for its price. Here you get the sound of a true analogue delay, perfect for retro slapback and clean short stabs of rhythm. The ‘Rate’ isn’t capable of ridiculously long times like some digital delay pedals but is set to allow for a bit more ‘throw’ for leads, or perfect that Foo Fighters ‘Rope’ sound if put in front of some tube breakup.

REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.TRC.COM.AU

very now and then an item comes along which revolutionises the way we make music. In-ear monitoring is now an accepted format even amongst artists playing smaller gigs, but the problem is that it’s sometimes too complicated to get a decent mix or you may feel isolated because you’re not hearing the room properly. What if you could quickly set up your own independent monitor mix, fine-tune it throughout the show, and even blend in some of that essential room sound? Well this is exactly what you can do with the POSSE, a personal in-ear monitoring system that includes, a Floor Box, Belt Box, and Stand Box that allows you to blend vocal, instrument, room, and aux inputs so you get a full, natural mix directly in-ears.

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controls the speed of the cycle and ‘Depth’ likewise controls the intensity of the effect.

First up the Posse isn’t limited to one sort of musician or one musical format, it can be tweaked and setup for just about any situation for singers, guitarists and beyond. The inbuilt room mics and an included condenser mic make it especially handy for horn players or acoustic musicians that don’t have pickups and require clear signal to be fed to front of house. An easy to use onboard guitar tuner located on the stand box will also keep your axes in tune all night while being highly visible in the dark. I set the Posse up in my studio with a mic and acoustic guitar and also sent some backing tracks out of my studio speakers to replicate the sound of a live band on a small scale. Jumping on the website (posseaudio.com) made setup especially easy for me, as it had a number different configurations and uses for different musical scenarios. I attached the floor box to the stand box, screwed the stand box onto my mic stand, plugged my vocal mic in, and finally hooked up the belt box to the floor box and was ready to go. I gave my acoustic a quick tune with the on-board tuner,

which was fast and accurate and hit play on my backing tracks. Setting up a mix was fast and easy and could be done on the fly, and it was possible to go really loud without any discernable distortion. The quality of tone was nothing short of stunning, and the real winner here was the ability to blend room sounds using the inbuilt stereo room mics allowing me hear the backing tracks clearly, my guitar and vocals, as well as traffic from the main road and even the birds chirping outside. Unplugging the direct line and using the Posse’s condenser mic yielded even better tonal results for my acoustic for that classic close miked sound we all love, so I’d definitely encourage using the mic (or a blend) if you’re able to stay clear of feedback at a show. Sure you can buy inear monitors, but then you have to buy a belt pack and transmitter and even then you still might be relying on someone else for your mix. So why rely on your sound-guy when you can have your own Posse (pun intended)?


YAMAHA MSR SERIES. ACTIVE SPEAKERS.

yamahabackstage.com.au

*The prices set out in this advertisement are recommended retail prices (RRP) only and there is no obligation for Yamaha dealers to comply with this recommendation. Errors and omissions excepted.

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5

Mark Electronic Drum Set

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ith the market for electronic drum sets running hot, it is no surprise to see a new entrant here in Australia. Mark Drums originate in Italy, and are wholly designed by the company that brought us the Mark Bass amps. I spent a weekend recently putting the Mark drums to the test, and my responses were all positive. The kit itself is lightweight, with strong components that make for a very easy set up. Not all electronic kits are easy to configure to one’s normal playing set up, but the Mark drums were particularly easy to work with. The connecting leads all use network cable connectors, and with the sounds themselves processed within each pad, the rack has many points of connection, not just one for each pad, so there are lots more set up possibilities here. The cabling is very user, with virtually no ‘spaghetti’ wiring often found with electronic kits, another big plus in a performance situation. The pads all have mesh heads, and can be tuned to suit one’s own preferences in relation to head tension.

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I found the pads very responsive and their size made them easy to play. They are very durable, with solid rims, and I could quickly get the whole kit to ‘feel’ like my normal acoustic set up. The kit comes with a hi-hat attachment for use with your normal hi-hat pedal, and the bass drum trigger likewise works with your own pedal. I found both of these very good, with the hi-hat being able to track almost all of my ‘normal’ movements on this instrument. There are player specific calibrations that you can set for the hi-hat and for the snare drum to immediately get the kit feeling like your own in terms of playability.

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In terms of the electronics the Mark drums are aimed at the quality end of the market: 24 preset kits with over 205 different single voices, all of which can be used to create your own user kits. The samples used are first rate and sound excellent! There is a 16 level velocity control function as well that makes for a very ‘playable’ kit, adaptable to any musical style. The controller interface is also very user friendly, with all functions easily accessed. I could quickly build my own user kit, create loops in real time to play along with, and even found time to explore the velocity settings – with just a short tweak, I could get the snare drum following my every nuance, including flams, drags, and buzzes (one of the best closed roll sounds I have produced on an electronic kit!).

The unit’s purpose is to play music from your iPod, computer, or smart phone. Operating the FOXL is easy enough, you turn it on and either connect to your audio source via the 3.5mm stereo mini jack (lead provided) or for those with Bluetooth/ wireless capabilities, via your smart phone. The folks at FOXL claim that the point of difference between this unit

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ecently I had my hands on the Timberidge Mini Series-4 guitar, which I thought had a unique voice and built with quality, appeal and charm, so it was nice to get my hands on the full-bodied Timberidge (TR1SBP) and see how it stacked up. This particular model was a stock, Series 1 Dreadnaught guitar, and like all Timberidge guitars is designed in Australia and built in China making it an extremely affordable option.

Strung with a set of D’addario EXP Long Life Strings this guitar sounded bold and brilliant, with a tight bass response and a lot of presence. The tone and action made it a fingerpickers delight, and like the last Timberidge I reviewed, this guitar has more of a mid-heavy lead voice as opposed to softer, boomier acoustics with different body shapes and materials utilised. I loved what I refer to as the ‘string path’, the journey the string takes from its mounting in the bridge to the tuning post (as it’s something I evaluate more closely these days). The attention to detail and choice of materials was very good along the string path, with the X-brace under the top and a solid mounting into bridge and body being responsible for a strong attack, while the TUSQ nut, saddle and Grover machine heads kept this guitar perfectly in tune at all times.

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REVIEWER: GREG PHILLIPS INFO: WWW.FOXL.COM.AU

The uses for this unit are staggering, I think it covers just about all bases when it comes to audio, you can chuck some batteries in it and take it away to the coast and record some demos with your acoustic, plug in your electric guitar or keys and make some “full sounding” demos by using the on-board drum machine, or use it to multi-mic a full drum kit, or link two units together and capture the full band. You can even use the unit live and add sequencing while your drummer jams along with an independent click track appearing only in his headphones. The Zoom R24 can record up to 8 mono inputs simultaneously, playback up to 24 mono tracks at 44.1/48kHz, 16/24 Bits. It comes with a 2G SDHC card (which can be upgraded to up to 32G), PSU, a handy little 4G flash drive, and a copy of Cubase LE 6 to top it off. There are two in-built condenser mics that sound great, another six phantom powered (+24 or 48V) channels and a Hi-Z input for direct input of electric guitars and basses (that can utilise inbuilt amp modelling). The unit also has a drum machine that’s not limited to preset patterns, so you can make your own beats by tapping them in with the drum pads. You can even sample, loop and edit like any modern DAW.

But does it work as well without the leads? I went into my smartphone preferences and configured the settings to talk to the FOXL. My Bluetooth connection took all of 20 seconds to sort. While the unit does feature a volume control, it makes more sense to set it where you want and control volume from your audio source. Once I had the sound pumping out wirelessly, I took the phone for a stroll to check the unit’s range. Despite walking behind walls a room away, the unit kept in touch with my phone.

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The TR1-SBP is great value for money, and is diverse enough to make it very appealing to acoustic guitarists wanting to buy their first gigging acoustic, or musicians in need of another guitar to add more colour to their sonic palette.

REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.DYNAMICMUSIC.COM.AU

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Another cool thing is it’s piezo pickup, which I wouldn’t have known about had I not read the specs. You can plug a guitar lead into the input jack located at the strap pin just like most acoustic/ electrics; however, there is no onboard preamp that immediately identifies this feature. Don’t despair, because with a bit of gain into an acoustic amp or PA you’re rewarded with great tones. I actually like the fact that it has no onboard preamp, because being a sound guy I’ve had to compensate for some really poor tones and EQ coming straight from the guitar. I’m sure you’d get a great live tone if you invest in a feedback buster and threw a headstock tuner on this guitar because the stock tone coming out of the piezo is excellent.

Zoom R24 Review

he quality of home recording is so high these days it’s possible to make killer recordings right at home. Back in the day I started out with a old 4-track cassette recorder, then moved onto a digital multi-track unit after finally arriving at the PC and Mac based platforms. The great thing about the Zoom R24 is that it appeals to both the computer gurus and ‘all-in-oners’ because it functions as both an audio interface/ controller for computer-based Digital Audio Workstations, as well as a sole multi-track recorder.

and other mini speaker systems is that it packs an inordinate amount of punch for its size and can do it wirelessly. The sound is driven by two patented dual voice coil 25mm linear Magnetic Drive Twoofers (tweeters that also woof apparently). The BassBattery is both a re-chargeable lithium ion battery, and a Flatmagic acoustic bass radiator.

The sturdy construction means you can place it on a flat surface and it’s not going to fall over. If like me, you don’t have a set of speakers attached to your computer, then this little beast will be a godsend. Alternatively if you need to take your music with you, you can wear the FOXL on your belt, around your wrist or if you can bear it beating through your chest, around your neck too. The user guide suggests that a fully charged unit should have a battery life of 12 hours. At around $239 bucks for the Bluetooth model, the FOXL system is an affordable and versatile space saving sound system option.

REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.JADEAUSTRALIA.COM.AU

Out of its case, this guitar looked good, with a nice selection of materials and hardware used in its construction. On closer inspection, the frets were nicely rounded and dressed evenly with the setup department doing a good job ensuring no fret-buzz was apparent at the medium action it arrived in.

The more creative functions in the controller include Player Immersion, which allows you to adjust the sound of the kit from a listening perspective – you can choose to hear the kit from the audience perspective (out front) or from a player’s perspective (behind the kit) or mix them together to get the live sound you really want. There is a Layering function that allows you to add a second sample to the main one (eg adding a hand clap to a snare sample) and there is a Kaleidoscope Function that allows you to combine sample sound variations to create ‘continuous moving’ sounds. There is a loop function as well and on-board effects. I have used a number of electronic kits over the years teaching in schools, and some recording work too, and the Mark drums stand up as one of the best such kits I have played.

I connected the unit to my computer initially using the stereo mini jack route and called up iTunes. My first impression is that something is not right… and I don’t mean that in a negative way… I mean it’s not right that such low end boom and mid clarity is emanating from this Violet Crumble (they still make those don’t they?) sized piece of metal. It’s truly amazing and the louder you turn up the volume, the better the sound gets. OK, it’s not the kind of sound you’re going to get from your regular floor bound stereo system speakers but comparatively, the unit size per output ratio for this FOXL unit is off the map. Developed by Dr. Godehard Guenther, a physicist and former NASA engineer, the acoustics achieved are quite incredible.

Timberidge TR1SBP

This guitar is simple in design, built with a solid spruce top, mahogany back and sides, rosewood fingerboard and bridge, TUSQ nut and saddle, and a lovely abalone inlay around the soundhole. The maple binding on the neck and body provides an elegant look, a slick gloss coating gives a vintage vibe, and a flamed pattern on the back of the neck adds depth and character. Six diecast Grover tuners with satin black buttons hold it this instrument perfectly in tune, a pre-installed piezo pickup and input allows you to go electric, and the guitar comes with a choice of three selfadhesive pickguards in clear, black and tortoiseshell.

FOXL Personal Audiophile Loudspeaker

’m not a fan of earphones! Not only do I dislike the tactility of buds in my ears, I also crave the bleed of surrounding life in my sonic mix. So when I was offered FOXL’s Personal Audiophile Loudspeaker unit to review, I was keen to hear some new state of the art mini speaker technology, particularly because I didn’t need to stick it in my ears. When I first viewed the size of the unit (143 x 55 x 35mm), my expectations were lowered… it would have to defy physics to give the kind of sound I’ve become accustomed to. It’s around the size of a chocolate bar, the way they used to make them anyway.

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REVIEWER: PAUL MATCOTT INFO: WWW.CMCMUSIC.COM.AU

Out of the box I decided to make a quick demo to sample the quality of this unit and test its features. I pulled out an acoustic guitar and recorded two tracks with the inbuilt mics, with no compression or EQ added. Later, I recorded a vocal track by using a nice insert

preset that gave quite an impressive, slick vocal tone and added some reverb and delay on playback. The inbuilt mics sound great, true studio quality, even on the vocal track. Next up I make a bigger sounding demo with electric guitars, a bass, programmed drums and vocals. The on-board drum sounds were pretty simplistic and having to learn how to use the sequencer involved having to read the manual, but the good thing is that you can use the sample pads to play any sample so I imported some serious drum sounds by downloading free sounds off the net. The amp sims were not to bad either, especially after a little EQ, so the final product sounded slick and professional, especially after using insert effect chains, EQ and the two sends of reverb and delay to gel everything together. The Zoom R24 is a brilliant unit with a ton of features and uses. It’s perfect for beginners to seasoned professionals, especially if you need to record multiple inputs at any given time (drummers should definitely take note!).


Enrol Gig Compose Collaborate Record Launch Tour Get signed What will your creative future look like?

Start OCT 2012

Degrees and Diplomas in Music, Audio Engineering, Entertainment Business Management, 3D Animation, Game Design and Film and Television Production. Launch your creative journey through collaboration, education and training at JMC Academy.

Your creative future starts today. Visit jmcacademy.edu.au or call on 1300 410 311. facebook.com/jmcacademy

twitter.com/jmcacademy [29]


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Behringer P16 I & M

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he Behringer Powerplay 16 provides a new method for personal monitoring that sends audio to an input module (P16-I), converts the signal to 24-bit data, then runs it down a Cat-5 cable into a personal mixer (P16-M). Each input module can feed six mixers or distributors which feed (up to) a further eight mixers (like a computer router) which are even bus powered through the Cat-5 cable. Initially audio is fed to the P16-I either through 2x8 blocks of ADAT, 16 mono audio channels (¼” TRS), or a combination of the two (eight ADAT/ eight TRS). If using an analogue desk 16 high-headroom TRS inputs make for clean, loud signal with less than one millisecond latency experienced in conversion. Each channel has four gain switches to ensure level consistency, with top-notch 24-bit A/D converters providing clear sound up to 75m from the source. The P16-I also accepts 44.1 or 48K sample rates through various digital sources.

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If I was mixing at a typical pub gig using 16 direct outs, I’d set up something like this for a four- to fivepiece band: Kick, Snare, Rack (tom) 1, Rack 2, Floor, for my drum channels (1-5). Bass DI, Guitar L, Guitar R, for my instruments (6-8). Vocal L, Centre, Right, Drum Vocals, for all the vocal mics (9-12). Stage Left and Right (which will only be fed to the monitor mix for room ambience) and a stereo reverb send to “wet” drums, and aid vocals (13-16). In this scenario the input module would live in a rack at front of house, Cat-5 cables would run to the stage with the multi-core, with each member having their own mixer (P16-M). Then I’d soundcheck each input, allowing all the members to set up their own private mix with different volume, panning and EQ, while at the same time tweaking my own front of house mix. After the band finishes soundcheck, all the settings can be saved and stored on the P16-M; it’s possible to save different mixes for different bands and even different songs.

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The first guitar that took my eye was the lovely AX3 Guitar, based on Eddie Van Halen’s signature Axis model and finished in a gorgeous transparent blue flame top. With a 25.5” scale, featuring a solid hardwood body, maple neck and fingerboard in a smooth satin finish for firebreathing shred. Two body-mounted zebra humbuckers provide a wide range of tones, with a five-way selector splitting the pickups into single coils at positions 2 and 4. Other features include an easy to use truss rod adjuster, fivebolt neck attachment, superb cutaway and a killer ‘dive-only’ trem with a small recessed handle allowing use without a whammy bar.

The Lionheart is a made-inthe-UK, twin channel, 50watt singled-ended Class A amplifier. It’s loaded with five EL34 tubes in parallel. Some of the features include: footswitch controlled reverb, a Hi and Lo input, effects loop, as well as band pass EQ in the form of a Tone knob, and a Dynamic knob; which is basically presence.

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REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.CMCMUSIC.COM.AU

Plugged in the AX3 fell nothing short of a guitar three times its price, sounding thick and full, funky and ‘quacky’ or richly saturated for searing solos. The winning factors on this guitar are the “hardwood” body, which sounds, responds and weighs like mahogany, two killer pickups (and their body mounting) and superb tuning stability.

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In comparison to the AX3, the Silo 3 sounded completely different, much thinner and lighter in tone, making it better matched to warmer, darker sounding valve amps like certain Fender and Mesa combos. The signal was also much cleaner than the AX3 (even with the humbucker) so it was easy to achieve super-clean, chorused chimes that dominated ‘80s ballads, if that’s your thing.

Sterling has undoubtedly achieved its goals with the new S.U.B. series. Low prices, high quality, great looks and killer tones.

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the most impressive thing about this amp is its dynamic ability, even with full gain it never becomes over saturated - the way the amp would open up the harder I hit my strings, for me, is a sign of a great amp; I never felt like the amp was in control. The only thing I wish this amp had that it didn’t was greater control over each channel. The single EQ control for both channels really frustrates me on any amp, and this was no different. I also found the clean a little too clinical at times, and wished that I was able to have control of the gain and could introduce a little break up. Laney have really outdone themselves in producing an amp that is versatile, well made and sounds great. And for the price, buying a Chinese made ‘British’ style amp seems crazy. Unless you are looking to buy an amp made in the UK ten years ago, this is the closest thing you will find to true classic vintage tone in a modern amp.

Walden G570CETB Acoustic electric guitar REVIEWER: AJAY BAWDEN INFO: WWW.MUSICMERCH.COM.AU

K, let’s break this Walden model number down to the basics. G equals guitar, 570 is the model number, CE refers to cutaway electric and TB stands for tobacco burst. Opening the case, it’s looking good. The tobacco burst, matte finish visual presents well. Nothing broken… bonus! It even comes with a few accessories such as 9V battery, truss rod/neck adjustment tool (don’t use this if you’re a newbie to guitars…leave it to the guys at the shop) and even a black walden T-shirt. A nice little touch of value.

Next was the Silo 3, (showing shades of influence from the John Petrucci model) with a single bridge humbucker and two single coils providing the tones. This particular guitar was finished in white with a black pickguard for a cool, classy white tuxedo look. There was a discernable difference in body weight and tone compared to the AX3, which leads me to believe the body is made of alder, ash or basswood.

Not only an excellent looking bass, but sounding fantastic the pickup presents strong, clean, high output tones, perfect for direct recording and DI’d tones, as well as lots of versatility with the onboard preamp, from smooth jazz, funky slap to thick midrange rock, and the absence of a neck or middle pickup makes popping, slapping, and picking easier as well.

The first thing you will notice about the amp is that it looks great, and that’s all the counts right? But does it sound great? Having only ever played a Laney 15w practice amp when I was 15 I was interested to see how they sounded, and how they would, if they could, produce a great ‘British’ amp sound. From my first slightly out of tune chord I was already digging the amp. With the amp on the dirty channel and all the settings at 12 o’clock, this amp already was warm, the break up was great, and the tone was spot on. The amp handled everything I threw at it, from a jazzy, only slightly overdriven tone, through to a full gain monster, this amp could do it all, and did it in style. The clean is bright and shimmery, the reverb is a great example of a spring reverb, and the gain is thick, warm and full of depth. For me

Behringer’s P16 Powerplay monitoring system is a bold step into the future, great for band and especially relevant to churches, school and ensembles that require multiple monitor mixes.

Finally, the S.U.B. Ray 4 bass, modeled after one the greatest basses in existence, the Music Man Stingray. Much like the real deal, this bass had the iconic Stingray pickguard, single humbucker (with active preamp), and three aside/one aside headstock. Again, even though this bass was born offshore, it had the look, feel and in some respects tone of the classic American Stingray. A couple of things make this bass really appealing, for one it’s probably the only bass in its price range with quality active electronics, solid quality woods and a sturdy six-bolt neck joint.

REVIEWER: MARK OWEN INFO: WWW.AUSTRALISMUSIC.COM.AU

n the last few years there has been a trend in favour of vintage style amps. The shift has been away from brands like Mesa, Peavey, Line 6, Engl and Krank; back to the the old stalwards... Fender, Orange, Vox and Hiwatt. This hasn’t been isolated to just amps, with guitars following the same trend… ESPs being replaced with Fenders and Schechters with Gibson. This period of change has caused a few brands to go under the radar; one of these brands is Laney, and after playing a Lionheart, I don’t really understand why.

So what are the advantages of having your own mixedr for your headphones? The biggest is you’ll have complete control of your own stereo mix to aiding your performance to another level, also having no sound coming out of the wedges results in a cleaner front of house mix, and finally you save money on not having to buy a belt-pack/transmitter, or even wedges or amps. I tested the Powerplay system with various instruments at home. I sent a stereo mix from my computer to channels one and two, plugged in an acoustic guitar in channel three and a vocal mic in channel four. All sounded loud and clear and it was enjoyable playing along with a stereo mix.

Laney L50H Lionheart

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The interface sends signal to the P16-M, a small lightweight mixer feeding either headphones, inears, or powered foldback. Each mixer has 16 mono channels that can be linked, grouped; EQ’d and panned at individual volumes, as well as a master bus with its own output, EQ and limiter. The EQ features a fixed bass and treble with sweepable mid cut/ boost for massive tone sculpting capability.

Sterling S.U.B. AX3 Guitar

t was great to get my hands on the new S.U.B. series of Sterling guitars by Music Man. The S.U.B. series of guitars and basses are comprised of both US and “International” models aiming at high quality and serious value for money. Today I’ll be reviewing three Indonesian models: the Sterling S.U.B. AX-3, Silo-3 guitars, and the Ray-4 bass.

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REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.KOSMICSOUND.COM.AU

This Grand Auditorium shaped guitar is designed in the USA and made in China… what isn’t these days? Sealed machine heads with a black plastic trim/binding, plastic nut bridge and string pins. This is a solid top guitar made of western red cedar with mahogany back and sides. The fingerboard is solid rosewood and it features two ring inlay rosettes. Now let’s give it a strum and see what happens. Great… it’s in tune and nothing broke. First port of call… tuning. Let’s put this into DADGAD Dsus4 tuning and see if it holds. I played Zeppelin’s Kashmir for a few minutes and then decided to tune it back to standard EADGBE and retest the stability of the tuning. It held up fine and I found the sealed machine heads to be pretty good accurate. They’re not big-branded, so don’t expect Gotoh or Grover quality, but none the less they do the job as well as one would hope.

As for tone… well this guy is bright and brittle. I have a heavy right hand (I’m right handed) and a percussive style when it come to playing, so the shimmer really stood out to me. I also tried some softer finger picked tunes to test its versatility. There was a slight buzz coming from the frets so I decide to check the position of the neck. This one is really straight, a bit too straight and an adjustment of the truss rod solved all of that. Overall this is about right for a young or beginner player. A more mature player may not get enough from the tone. The electronics worked fine, the pickup good and E.Q. (bass, middle, treble) responsive enough to do what needed to be done. Option includes Venetian cutaway style with B-band T35 EQ.


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or many years the name Casio has conjured up images of products perhaps most diplomatically described as being aimed at the more entry level of the market. So I was more than pleasantly surprised when I was confronted by the XW-P1 and the XW-G1. The latter is more ‘DJ’ oriented and I will talk about it another time, but the XW-P1 is very definitely a player’s synth, aimed squarely at performers who want a huge range of features on a budget. Firstly the expected price falls below a thousand dollars, which is fantastic value. The look is extremely ‘pro’ and as soon as it fires up the sound quality is apparent. It is by anyone’s standards a good sounding synth, with a vast array of sounds. There’s four basic ways it can be used. In solo synth mode there are 100 presets representing some great vintage analogue sounds; then there’s ‘hex’ setting which allows the layering of six tones; there’s fifty drawbar organ presents in organ mode and the nine sliders on the control

Casio XW synth

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REVIEWER: BAZ BARDOE INFO: WWW.SHRIRO.COM.AU

surface are used in this mode to replicate the adjustments of drawbars; and then there’s a mode which has some 420 PCM melody and drum presets. The XW-P1 has a total of 311 internal synth waves based upon vintage analogue synthesiser sounds, and a total of 2.158 PCM waves. Sounds can be built up by layering waves and they can of course also be used as a basis for individual sound creation, with the sliders allowing the adjustment of various parameters. Featuring six oscillator blocks, the scope for sound creation seems endless. There are 100 preset effects which are fully editable, and space to store 100 of the edited ‘user’ effects you can create yourself. The main intention of this unit is to provide a versatile tool for the live performer and to that end Casio have packed in some pretty cool features. In the ‘performance’ function the keyboard can be divided into four zones, with different sounds in each. There is a phrase sequencer which allows you to record musical phrases for playback, and there is a step sequencer for generating entire tunes. In fact it really has everything you could need to create and perform your own music. Then there’s little features like the non slip area at the top right where you can put an iPod or some other device, and the fact that you can run external devices through it. It’s fairly light but has a durable feel/appearance. It can be run off battery power - good for busking! The control surface seems to me to be fairly intuitively laid out and features such as the sliders are multi functional, which means you still have a very tactile approach to sound control. Despite all the features it’s easy to navigate, and all seems pretty logical. The bottom line is that it looks great, it is competitively priced, and the sounds are very good. There are synths that sound better and do more, but in this price range the XW-P1 offers a complete solution for any serious performer. If you want to get out there, play and you are on a budget, the XW-P1 will not let you down. When product guru Paul Noble started belting out ‘Jump’ at EnTech, followed by plenty of other iconic keyboard sounds and riffs, there was literally cheers of approval. The sounds are BIG and Casio have delivered a lot of bang for your bucks with this one.

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Larrivee OM-05

REVIEWER: SHANNON BOURNE INFO: WWW.PROMUSICAUSTRALIA.COM

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have long heard of the Larrivee brand and the high standard of instrument they produce. Unofortunately I had never been able to get my hands on one, but now that I have, they’re not getting it back! This guitar is of all solid wood construction featuring mahogany back, neck and sides; a Sitka Spruce top with spruce bracing; a beautiful African Ebony fingerboard and bridge and features an LR Baggs “iBeam” pickup system. You also get symmetrical parabolic X-bracing, hand fit dovetail neck joint, Abalone Rosette, Pearl Logo w/ Sterling Silver Border, Chrome Tuners (18:1 Ratio), ivoroid fretboard binding, Larrivee custom beveled pickguard, TUSQ nut, compensated TUSQ saddle, and Microdot fretboard markers.

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The first thing that strikes me apart from the beauty of this guitar is how great the neck feels. The neck has a matte finish which makes it feel “fast”. It’s a little thing but something a seasoned player would notice and appreciate. Next thing that struck me was the TONE! It is so well balanced with just the right amount of bass, mids and treble. This guitar excels at fingerpicking with the notes ringing loud and clear across the room! There is a mid range “brashness” that enables this guitar to really cut. When it comes to strumming, more of that mid range things becomes evident, whilst not a big, luxurious type of sound, probably due to the body size, it has a nasty dirty “hill country” type of thing that I really love. I think you could probably get a little more bottom end “bloom” by raising the action slightly, but straight out of the case this one feels and sounds fantastic.

Upon plugging this baby in I was impressed by the amount of tonal adjustment you can get. The “iBeam” features a powerful three-band EQ, phase switch and notch filter for taming nasty feedback and a blend knob that allows you to blend between two different pickups! I personally found that having about 75% “element” pickup and the remainder “iBeam” gave the plugged in sound the right amount of direct signal with just a little bit of air around the sound. This instrument is incredibly stable both tuning and tone wise. It looks elegant and not overdone and at around $2,500 is well worth the investment. The craftsmanship is faultless and it is set up impeccably. As I say…they are going to have a hard time getting this guitar back out of my hands…its feels like the kind of instrument that you should be inspired to write with and perform on. Now…where to hide this thing?

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THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL

Melbourne Fringe Festival 2012 here are a few weeks every year when the weather warms up and our collective sense of possibility expands. It may be just a little and it may be just for a while, but being involved, getting amongst it – that has permanent effects. We wouldn’t be anywhere else.” – Marcel Dorney, co-founder of performance company Elbow Room.

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Melbourne Fringe is a chance to experience the thrill of vertigo and to stumble across something you didn’t even know was out there. As Fringe legend Telia Nevile puts it, “Fringe is a time to experiment, both for performers and for audiences. It’s a time to take risks, push perceptions and give new things a try. The supportive Fringe community – artists, staff, volunteers and intrepid show-goers – not only make this risk-taking possible, they make it invigorating, inspiring and endlessly rewarding.” Fringe veteran The Bedroom Philosopher says that for audiences, Fringe is an excellent opportunity to taste-test what the artistic community has to offer. “It’s never been more important to surround yourself with weirdness and silliness. Seeing a live show

talent and inspiring a broad community of audiences.” This sentiment is echoed by Danny Delahunty, of Attic Erratic. “Fringe supports, promotes and provides a reputable framework for the extraordinarily broad range of independent art in Melbourne.” Cult Fringe figure Dr Brown (whose show Befrdfgth this year won the Fosters Edinburgh Comedy Award and Melbourne Comedy Festival’s Barry Award) attests his success to his ability to develop work with Fringe audiences around the world. Fringe for him is not just a place to perform, it is an integral part of his medium – an extension of his work itself: “The fringe is an important platform to DEVELOP as an artist. It is not a platform to present a product – or at least does not have to be if the performer does not want it to be… fringe festivals can be conducive to developing the performer as an artist and not coerce him or her into having a product or knowing what it is. As artists we need the time and space to discover what we have to give and fringes offer exactly this.” The Melbourne Fringe provides a chance for artists and audiences to come together and engage in culturally and creatively diverse experiences. We are so lucky to live in a vibrant city with a thriving arts scene – whether you are a performer or a punter, get amongst it and make the most of the 2012 Melbourne Fringe! Steph Brotchie Creative Producer Steph is one half of Slow Clap, whose show Truth will be performed as part of the comedy program at this year’s Melbourne Fringe.

Telia Nevile

Dr Brown

Tommy Bradson

Welcome to the Inpress Fringe Guide. I have spent the last five years touring shows to arts festivals around the world and can honestly say that Melbourne Fringe is my favourite fortnight on the festival calendar, hands down. It is world-class, not only thanks to the calibre of work on offer, but because of the support it gives its artists and the opportunities it provides for the community to engage with artistic practice in all of its forms. The Melbourne Fringe Festival is an explosion of ideas. The work on display is independent, passionate, diverse and real. It is fresh and imperfect and interesting. It is not always right. It celebrates passion over precision and belief over budget. It is some of the most important work being made.

is like taking your imagination on a date. Even if it’s shit you can talk about it with yourself afterwards.” For performers like cabaret artist Tommy Bradson, the Fringe is “a safe place to play dangerously”, a vital opportunity to develop, to watch and to meet.

“The fringe gives unpaid professional artists a sense of purpose for three months (or two years, depending on how long their development process is). And this is important.” – Nicola Gunn

According to producer Bek Berger, “Fringe allows the underground, the edgy, the bold, the new and the risk-taking creators of art in Melbourne make the work they want to make in a nationally recognised festival. The Melbourne Fringe is essential in fostering

Nicola Gunn INPRESS • 71


72 • INPRESS


2012 MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL 26 SEP – 14 OCT CELEBRATING 30 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE AND ART Tickets on sale now at melbournefringe.com.au

Browse the program, buy tickets and keep updated at melbournefringe.com.au

INPRESS • 73


THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL

A Matter Of…

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elbourne-based comedian Bobby Macumber has been travelling the world working with children, and she’s got a few stories about them to tell. The sort-of teacher and coach speaks to Aleksia Barron about her show Miss Interpret. Bobby Macumber is a natural, both on the stage and in the classroom. “In high school, I used the classroom as my stage and the students as my audience, and the teacher was just the heckler who kept interrupting my show,” she recalls. Today, she’s still doing great work in the classroom as a teacher, while moonlighting as a comedian. Her teaching experiences have inspired her new show Miss Interpret, which will debut at the 2012 Melbourne Fringe Festival. While she’s not, strictly speaking, accredited as a teacher, Macumber’s work as a cricket coach has seen her working at primary schools with children all over the world. For the last ten years, she’s worked at several Melbourne schools and done various international stints, ranging from Fiji to Samoa to Japan.

Naturally, she’s encountered some interesting children in her travels, and it’s these interactions that led her to write Miss Interpret. “I’m kind of just talking about all of the funny experiences that I’ve had with kids, because they’re just so honest and raw and hilarious, really,” she explains. “I’ve been told a lot of things, things that

adults have probably thought but haven’t said to my face, so I have a bit of a joke about that.” Children, Macumber explains, aren’t afraid to speak their minds. “Kids have told me that my bum’s getting bigger, that I’ve got stuff in my teeth that’s been there all day, little things like that. When I was in Samoa, I had a boy come up to me and ask

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Sam Hobson chats with the beatpoet cabaret-author-performer alter ego of the long-lost David

in front of the class, why do I have whiskers, because I’m not a man? It was a little bit embarrassing, but that’s just kids for you.” Macumber saw these sorts of interactions as part of her job, but when she shared the stories, the reactions convinced her that she might be mining comedy gold. “It’s kind of shocking to hear so many honest truths from the kids, but when I was telling my housemates and family the stories, they were just cracking up,” she explains. Since then, she’s turned her attentions to getting Miss

that need to be made. I am the real thing, like ice in the tropics and the romance of skin cancer. Skin is restrictive. People are just flesh puppets to hide some words away in. Look to the person to your left, the one with the small chin and the hungry eyes. They have a beast inside them that is running the show. I came before this interview. While David was tapping these plastic keys.” I felt like I’d found my own House Of Leaves. Intent on talking in shadowy figures, Stavanger ran my ensuing questions through a similar churn of twisted madness. But I was still interested in getting to the heart of Ghostboy: where had he come from?

Stavanger, Ghostboy, about his new show We chatted via email, Ghostboy and I. One enigma to another. My questions were perfunctory, unassuming, and perhaps a little uptight, and his responses were wild, tangential, and bug-eyed. Like a lost letter from the Zodiac killer, or a tape of found footage, what you’re about to read is an artefact; a mysterious, unearthed document. “David is a persona,” Ghostboy begins. “He just makes the deals 74 • INPRESS

Unlike some performers who don’t put in the effort and preparation, instead hoping to wing it, Macumber thinks her performances through. Even before she stepped up on stage as a comedian, she did her

Belong To Me

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hen enn storyteller story st orytel or e lerr comic c Sarah Collins joined forces with emerging theatre group Attic Erratic the result was a very creepy choir. Frustrated chorister Paul Ransom tries to find out what makes the Choir Girl tick. When Sarah Collins strides on stage to play the ‘lead’ in Choir Girl she will be continuing a fine family tradition of group singing. “My grandmother was in a choir for 65 years,” she announces. However, as Collins soon reveals, the dark underbelly of the choir scene ultimately threatened to kill off the family’s commitment. “This new director took over and she didn’t like the way he did things, so she quit. Anyway, she got all these bitchy comments about it. It was like bullying the elderly.”

The Ex Files hostboy’s show, We Love You! (As Much As Everybody Else Does), is an exercise in naming and shaming, his alter ego David Stavanger tells Sam Hobson.

Interpret ready for the Fringe stage. Macumber understands the value of preparation, and she’s been testing the material around the comedy traps for the last few weeks. “There’s no better rehearsal than going out and doing [new material] to a crowd,” she explains. “A lot of the stuff that I think it funny might not get perceived as well as I think it is.”

“Ghostboy is a Girl Guide disguised as a satanic priest,” Ghostboy leers. “All Brownies, and how to sacrifice the things you love to get to some lower place. Ghostboy is a show. He is also the interval and the matinee; the failed liver and the tortured goat. He is the BBQ no-one comes to and later everyone claims they were there, best sausages yet.” This was like having a conversation with Cronenberg. With Stavanger’s new show We Love You! coming up, I figured could perhaps shed some light onto the performance function of Ghostboy. I tried. “[The show’s] words. Music. More words,” he lists, revelling in his persona. “[There’s] dark comedy. Improvised silence. Cabaret-noir

research by checking out comedy clubs and clocking the standard. She had no great aspirations at first. “I thought I’d give it a go,” she says. “[It] went all right the first couple of times, so I’ve stuck with it.” Now, however, comedy has evolved into a bona fide passion for Macumber, and she hopes to be performing at many Fringe Festivals to come. “I love to make people laugh,” she says happily. WHAT: Miss Interpret WHEN &WHERE: Tuesday 9 October to Sunday 14, Portland Hotel

side trails. The occasional audience. Tim Ferguson [from the Doug Anthony All-Stars] recently told me, ‘Get rid of the beat poetry or you will die poor’. I will prove him right.” But not all oil-soaked metaphors and dark, howling corners, Ghostboy’s show is actually a lot about something very messy; something very human. “[The show] came about as I was winding up some of the bigger sprawling shows with Ghostboy With Golden Virtues. I was dating Sir Lady Grantham at the time, and our break-up had a profound effect on him. He kept following me round, so I decided: ‘Let’s do a loose narrative arc around dark love and where it won’t get you.’ It is really my chance to name and shame my ex while discussing related threads such as mouths, dentistry and Joe Cocker.” As to how comfortably We Love You! sits upon the grander throne of Ghostboy’s work, Stavanger’s no less cryptic, or dense.

As a storytelling solo performer and comic, Collins has made herself a name nationally as one of the “top ten next big things”, but for this year’s Melbourne Fringe she is going back to her chorister roots for inspiration. Choir Girl features Collins and a fourteen member, all-girl choir on a dark comic journey into the heart of the song and the need for belonging. To illustrate the idea, she recounts, “I was in this choir in Brisbane and there was this really small woman there, I thought maybe she had an eating disorder; but anyway I used to drive her home after and she lived in this big rambling mansion all by herself. I’d watch her go inside and see

the lights come on and I was kinda fascinated. So yeah, the show is partly based on her.” Her character in the show is clearly looking for some kind of community to belong to and in the choir scene she finds something worth striving for. “Love basically,” Collins says. “She has this thing for the accompanist; but she’s pretty deluded and so in her head it becomes this incredible unrequited obsession.” Although normally a solo artist, Collins has teamed up with Green Room nominee theatre company Attic Erratic to help bring Choir Girl to fruition. Cue award-winning director Celeste Cody has helped to give the fourteen strong choir a stronger symbolic presence. “Just like the choir in Greek tragedy or comedy they sometimes support her and sometimes oppose her, so in that way they are like the voices in her [Sarah’s] head,” she explains. According to Cody there is an unmistakably psychological drama unfolding throughout the show, one in which the main character unfurls an inner world of abiding loneliness. “It’s definitely more like dark comedy than anything else,” she notes. “Even the songs sorta signify states of mind; y’know, when she’s being real but also when she’s being delusional.” Sarah Collins colours the point in, “It’s Hitchcockian. Y’know, it’s

Instant Musicals

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h Fr hen FFringe i e fave ing Spontaneous Broadway hits the Hub again this year, that ball will be your court. As musical director John Thorn tells Paul Ransom, it all begins with a bucket of dreams (and a Twitter feed). Imagine a song called He Punched A Wall Beside Me or even It Might Lead To Bestiality. Well, dream no more, because one of Melbourne Fringe’s best-loved songwriting institutions is returning to the stage for its 12th consecutive year of impromptu musical invention. However, when the actor/composer team of Russell Fletcher and John Thorn dust off their improv skills and bring Spontaneous Broadway back to life this year, they will not only be committing to turning audience song title suggestions into tuneful reality, but opening the floodgates

“Well y’know, it is an audience participation show. This just makes it even cooler.” Fans of Spontaneous Broadway need not worry, though, because the now-legendary ‘bucket of dreams’ will return; and from said bucket, hand-scrawled suggestions will still be drawn. “We’ve generally got about three or four minutes to sit on stage in front of the audience and look through the bucket, and now the Twitter feed, and one by one we get up, do the pitch, improvise the name of a new musical, say where it’s set, where the song will fit in and off we go.” The question here, of course, is just how much Thorn, Fletcher and their guest collaborators work off a template. “We’ve been having workshops lately; y’know, going through a few fundamentals,” Thorn reveals. “But there’s no set formula. We don’t prepare

“Ghostboy With Golden Virtues was definitely a combination of myself falling out of love with the world, with my heart trying to act as chaperone. My solo spoken word is my head and feet playing bingo, and David himself is just an armpit who cries when the lights go out.” WHAT: Volume 4 With Ghostboy And Sir Lady Grantham WHEN & WHERE: Friday 12 October and Saturday 13, Hares And Hyenas

of social media. In 2012, you can send your fantasy song ideas via Twitter; meaning you can keep your phones on during the show. As musical director and onstage virtuoso John Thorn says,

anything before we go on stage. Everyone walks on really blank.” Spontaneous Broadway does have a formula, though. The first half involves the composition of four or five songs and the conception of

got that creepy feel to it. Even when it’s funny you might sorta think, ‘Should I really be laughing at that?’” Driven along by Collins’ signature storytelling style and punctuated with a catalogue of hit tunes, (including Britney’s Baby, One More Time), Choir Girl merges stand-up, group singing and psycho-drama into one self-deluded concert. At its heart it also says something about choirs and their unexpected re-emergence. “People like them because it’s community,” Collins concludes. “Y’know, we don’t really have that much anymore. There used to be church but I barely know anyone who goes to church now. So y’know, choirs are a really good way to create some kinda belonging.”

WHAT: Choir Girl WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Saturday 13 October, The Ballroom, Lithuanian Club

the musical that each of the songs will appear in. The audience then vote on which show they would like to see ‘produced’ and in the second half the cast return to create a brand new, one-off musical. It’s not hard to see how such offthe-cuff inventiveness could engage an auditorium. “As far as all the shows I’ve ever done – and I’ve done a lot of shows – this is the one that has the biggest buzz in terms of the crowd,” Thorn declares. “They realise that it’s a one of a kind and that no one else is ever gonna see it and they love that it’s being made up on the spot.” Likewise, it’s easy to envisage things getting out of control onstage. “In Perth about three years ago, we did this kinda late night, adult version and someone chose the title Now Show Me On The Dolly Where The Bad Man Touched You. Anyway, it was done as a duet between two guys and it was the only time onstage where I’ve been keeled over with laughter.” For the 2012 version, Thorn and Fletcher have lined up a tempting buffet of guest stars, including Tripod’s Scott Edgar, Keating creator Casey Bennetto and Kiwi comic Cal Wilson. “We’re also really rapt to have Brent Hill coming in,” Thorn waxes about the Helpmann Award-nominated Rock Of Ages star. “He’s amazing. I doubt if we’ll ever get him back again.” That said, the impromptu songsmiths behind Spontaneous Broadway can probably bank on Fringe crowds coming back for yet another season of bizarrely titled hits. WHAT: Spontaneous Broadway WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Sunday 7 October, Main Theatre, Lithuanian Club


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THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL

Party Time

E

xploring ng the h fa ffaçade çad a e oof social media personalities, Renae Shadler explains to Sarah Braybrooke how her alter-ego, Polly Wolly, presents a bit of all of us in Polly’s Party.

“It’s my party and it’s in less than a month!” Polly Wolly, the hostess of Polly’s Party, is VERY excited about her series of shows in Melbourne. Her Twitter feed and Facebook page are a countdown to the New York girl’s trip to Australia. Fun, outrageous, and just a bit crackers, Polly is a huge fan of Lady Gaga, reality television and social media. This is a woman who has made a shrine for her iPad. Polly’s prolific online presence is actually the creation of performer Renae Shadler, who explains; “Polly’s Party is my one-woman show, and it’s based around the character of Polly Wolly. She’s an online character who I started a year ago by launching her Facebook page. Now she’s got over 750 friends, which is really great, given that she doesn’t actually exist.” Observing how Twitter, Facebook and YouTube are changing the

P

through social media. So as to say, ‘I’m cool, I’ve got lots of friends, I’m posting every day, everything’s fine, I’m having a great time!’ I was interested in that mask, and in what happens when that comes off.” It turns out that behind Polly is another character. “Polly is an online alter-ego for the protagonist of the show, which is Paula.” By contrast, Shadler says, “Paula would describe herself as ordinary. She’s quite hard on herself… she’s just an Australian girl, managing a shoe store, and Polly Wolly is her outlet.” Fresh back from stints performing in France, Italy and the UK – including an internship with the Theatre Du Soleil – Shadler, who graduated from VCA in 2010, has been living and breathing the character of Polly Wolly since last year, when she was conceived for the show Cy*Bent*ity.

Audience members have a choice as to how they experience the show. “Previously it was very much just the ‘inside’ audience, very interactive, and some people – especially older people – could be a bit intimidated. So now people can also come and sit outside the party and watch,” she says. On each Saturday of the play’s three-week season you can also purchase online streaming tickets, and watch from the voyeuristic comfort of your own computer screen. There’s one final twist for guests. “The show is highly improvised,” she continues, “because it’s based on the audience’s Facebook profiles. So before they come to the party I research them online.” Some people are thrown when Polly confronts them with information they’ve made public online, but she’s is undeterred. Lapsing into her creation’s New York drawl, Shadler deadpans, “But if it’s on Facebook, you must want to talk about it!”. WHAT: Polly’s Party WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 26 September to Saturday 29, Brunswick Art Space

Sex, Lies and Comedy

M

att Klein shares, bares and brings back the light in his new show, Sugarcoat, as Liza Dezfouli discovers.

my old self was playful, nonconfrontational... This new show’s the polar opposite of that, a total 180-turn in terms of material.”

Matt Klein has a story to tell – one about depression, isolation and sex addiction, believe it or not. Sugarcoat will make you laugh and, quite possibly, cry. “It’s a personal story with funny things in it,” Klein, who, in a former life was known as stand-up comic Foxy Klein, explains on the phone from Perth. “The content doesn’t lend itself to comedy; it’s about deep issues, dark material. Help, I’m being attacked by a magpie!” Safely indoors, Klein goes on to share how he has turned the dark night of his soul into a funny show, which he will bring to Melbourne for his first appearance in Fringe. “I analysed it from every possible angle. It covers a lot of stories, and a lot of people. It’s basically a true story that runs over a long time.”

Did Klein really have a sex addiction or was he just enjoying a lifestyle that seems par for the course in the world of the young male stand-up? “When it’s destroying relationships, affecting everyone – friendships – it’s beyond a compulsion you can’t resist,” he answers. “It was dominating every thought, every action; it overshadowed everything. It destroyed friendships; it destroyed an important relationship.” He says no one around him knew how troubled he was during that time. “I wasn’t sharing anything. I just had a reputation as a guy about town. People just thought I was a douchebag. I didn’t recognise that I had a sex addiction.”

Klein, in the midst of writing another show while he was living and performing in Los Angeles, had what he called an ‘epiphany’, and ditched that show, caught a plane back to Australia to reinvent himself and has now written a new show about the truth of his life. “Before, my personal comedy was crazy, physical stuff,” he says. “I talked about nothing, just everyday things. I’d talk about getting drunk on a Friday night;

The story of his relationship break-up is already ‘public knowledge’ due to the fact that Klein’s ex, herself a performer, made a story out of it. As you do. Any mutual rancour is long gone. “She’s talented and funny,” Klein notes. “She deserves her success.” Klein has done a lot of personal work since the period of time covered by Sugarcoat. So is he ‘cured’, so to speak? “I recognise my patterns,” he says. “I still get down, but

Like, So Mainstream

iinky ink nkky B Beecroft eee rof eec r t is the ex-lead singer for Machine Gun Fellatio, the current lead singer of The White Russians, a writer and an anecdotalist. Recently, he has also been sick. He talks to Giuliano Ferla. “I’ve been really sick.” Beecroft says. “I got an autoimmune disorder and it’s basically eating up my body… What the problem is, in a nutshell, is that I can’t use

my hands very well, and I can’t use my legs very well.” This leaves Beecroft’s musical career on uncertain ground, but all’s not lost, “It’s very difficult for me to play an instrument. I can play for a couple of minutes and then my hands seize up. But then I thought, well, 76 • INPRESS

way that people interact, Polly is Shadler’s evocation of the Pollyanna complex; the need to exude optimism and positivity at any cost. “I thought about how people tend to project that now, which is

Despite spending months creating Polly, Shadler doesn’t see too many similarities between herself and the character, although she admits, “I am an artist, so I analyse everything. I find that with my Facebook page, if I post something and it gets comments, or somebody misreads it, I really over-analyse that. I think that very much has channelled into Polly.”

maybe I could do a show where I don’t actually play anything.” And so he thought to Melbourne Fringe, and to the stories that he can tell, and to what he admits has been “a pretty fucking mental life”. He devised a new show, Mainstream Freak, which will debut at Fringe Festival. Beecroft explains his approach; “People have been saying for a long time I should do a show where I talk, tell some stories, do some stuff… I [thought], well, what if you just treat it like the audience are a bunch of people who’ve come over to your house and you’re going to play a few tunes and have a bit of a chat?” And he likes a chat. And he has raconteur skills. He even admits that people have come to his gigs, not for the songs, but for his banter in between. Mainstream Freak will be his first show to incorporate more banter, more storytelling and less music. “I’m going to take a piano along and I think what I’m going to do is take a spinning wheel, and I’m going to write some subject headings on it and spin the fucking wheel and if it lands on ‘Song’ then I’ll do a song. If it lands on ‘1997’ then I’ll talk about 1997.” And the title, Mainstream Freak? “I’ll be totally honest, I just had to name the show something to fill out the paperwork. Somebody once called me that and it always stuck in my head. It was some hater

in the street who said ‘You’re a fucking mainstream freak!’ I felt immediately insulted, delighted and complimented all at once. It felt like a metaphor for my whole life.” And the timing is right for Pinky Beecroft. “I’ve had a lot of really heavy shit happen in the last twelve years and I thought for my own sake I should try and piece some of it together and explore it, possibly with the help of… you know… people that I don’t know,” he laughs. Not that the show will be some kind of group therapy session. Beecroft instead thinks of great American monologist, Spalding Gray, for inspiration. “The first time I saw [Spalding Gray’s] Monster In A Box, I thought that’s what I want to be. If I could one day do something like that I would die happy. That’s exactly what I’m aiming for, and I figure I’ve got to start somewhere… If anybody thinks [Mainstream Freak is] funny, great, but I think these shows are less about being funny than kinda trying to find the common experience.” WHAT: Pinky Beecroft: Mainstream Freak WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 6 October to Saturday 13, Meeting Room, North Melbourne Town Hall

F

Whip Out Your Exhibits

ringe’s freakiest museum flings open its surrealist doors at the Darebin Music Feast; but co-conspirator Mark Atterby tells Paul Ransom that the Animated Museum Of Experimental Stupidity is much more than a dress-up party for absurdists. Not sure when you last went to a museum, but it’s unlikely that your guide on that occasion was a whip-wielding dominatrix. More the pity, you groan. Thankfully, you

now can pack the lettuce and cream and head off to the surreal institution that is The Animated Museum Of Experimental Stupidity for a bizarre and absurdist journey into… stuff. As one of ten twisted minds behind Animated Museum, Mark Atterby tries vainly to encapsulate the strange, multi-arts brew that he’s part of. “We just came up with a theme for a show that allows us to fit together all the things we do,” he begins. The exhibits in the museum include the ever vivacious Meg Dunn (as the aforementioned dominatrix), performance poet Steve Smart, cabaret queen Amy Bodassian

and comedian Eddy Burger. The mixtape mish-mash runs the gamut, from aardvarks to sock puppets, with a little orchestral punk rock wrapped around it.

nowhere near as much as I used to. I have strategies; my behaviour has definitely been curbed.” Has developing this show been healing or cathartic in any sense for him? “No, not really,” he answers. “If I want to do a show, I might as well do it about that. I thought my story might be interesting.” The feedback from the couple of trial shows so far has been positive, he says. His Fringe show is a run-up to next year’s comedy festival.

Putting Sugarcoat together feels very much like starting again for Klein. “It’s extremely hard. I’ve never done anything like this. I’ve found myself being nervous again! I never used to get nervous; that left years ago. If you get up and tell a joke, that’s one thing. But baring your soul – I’m terrified!” WHAT: Sugarcoat WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 26 September to Sunday 7 October, Gertrude’s Brown Couch

bars and venues opening up, and I think a lot of people have basically moved out of Collingwood and Fitzroy and are now living around Northcote and Thornbury, so there’s a far bigger demand for it. Most nights during last year’s festival Bar Nancy was just packed.”

Everywhere you look the s-word (surrealism) bobs up. “It’s really a framing device,” Atterby admits. “People are doing their own pieces but backed by music. It’s a very loose structure. So, as an example there’s Eddy Burger, who does a lot of spoken

The issue for Atterby and crew, therefore, is more subtle than simply pulling a crowd. Museum’s celebrated breadth is also its core challenge; namely, how to be more than a bunch of bits. “What you have to do beforehand is to select what you want in it and also to hand pick the performers,” Atterby says. “Once you have an idea of the type of performance and the structure you want you just leave it to the people involved. It’s really sorta like the original idea behind cabaret or revue; so even if some people don’t like certain bits it’s not gonna last that long.”

word performance, but also Gilbert & Sullivan. He does this very comic but also very out-there performance.”

While the immediate concentration is on the upcoming Fringe season, Mark Atterby is allowing the possibility of taking the Animated Museum Of Experimental Stupidity (and other such strange concepts) to the wider world. “Well, we’ll see how the first night goes,” he jokes modestly, before adding, “We have been asked to do similar things at other places so, yeah y’know, it would be nice. We should consider doing it, I s’pose.” Understatements aside, there is a refreshingly kinky soul to it all. “Why we like this theme so much is that it gives us a chance to dress up.” Enough said.

The Museum collective have already enjoyed some success with their previous film noir-themed show, so much so that the bods behind Darebin Music Feast invited them back to Northcote’s Bar Nancy this year. Indeed, the Darebin event itself reflects some of the Museum’s taste for conscious eclecticism, with more than 180 culturally and musically diverse events across three Fringe weeks.For Atterby, the Feast and Museum are a verygood match. “The whole area around here is picking up. There are so many new

WHAT: The Animated Museum of Experimental Stupidity, part of the Darebin Music Feast WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 26 September and Wednesday 3 October, Bar Nancy


Medea How far would you go for love? What sacrifices would you make? And what happens when it all turns sour? A contemporary Australian adaptation of the Euripidies classic. Presented By: The New B. Theatre Room: Theatre Dates: 26th- 30thSeptember Time:8:00pm, Sunday 6:00pm Tickets: Full $23, Conc. $18

Activating the dead White Pelvis The Unstoppable, Unsung Story of Shaky M

Aphrodite’s Bordello .

Shaky M has waited twenty-th ree to be rescued. Now she’s decid years, three months and sixteen days own story, and make the ultim ed to become her own hero, tell her ate mixed tape. Combining physical theatre, clowning elements of and world of a woman held capti puppetry, Shaky M plunges us into the ve by her own body and her imaginative quest to set herself free. Devised By: Rowena Hutson Directed By: Xanthe Beesley Room: Studio Dates: 2nd-14th October Time: 8:30pm, Sun 6:30pm (60min) Tickets: Full $23, Conc. $18, Prev. $18

Eresos, on the island of In a temple in the town of odite, Greek goddess Lesbos, worshippers of Aphr procreation, stand and of love, beauty, pleasure ed service’. But in ready to perform their ‘sacr t happens when the wha , men out with town a n in the world find essio tradies of the oldest prof tele? themselves without clien d By: Directed and Choreographe Elizabeth Dawson Starring: Rapskallion 2nd-14th October Room: Ballroom - Dates: (60min) Time: 7:30pm, Sun 6:30pm Tickets: Full $18, Conc. $13, $15 +: Tues: $12, Group 6ppl

The mutilated body of a young male prostitute has been discovered in a City Hotel. The authorities have rounded up a selection of the City’s high profile sex-workers to assist in establishing a profile of the killer before he strikes again. Who is systematically killing off the street sex workers in this city’s darkest corners – a serial killer in Melbourne? Or is it just that Parliament are sitting again? Presented By: Verve Studios Directed by Peta Hanrahan Room: The Dock Dates: 2nd-13th October Time: 8:00pm, Sunday 7:00pm Tickets: Full $18, Conc. $13, Tues: $13

Elixir

back with his new show Mentalist Robert Haley is s have changed. This Elixir. This time the table dible. time you get to do the incre travelling Elixir is a During the show, Robert ms, magical cures and salesman dispensing drea uing Elixir suitcase. superpowers from his intrig ert Haley Rob By: ed orm Perf and Written Directed By: Elanor Bishop Room: Theatre Dates: 9nd-14th October (60min) Time: 6:30pm, Sun 4:30pm Tuesday $20, Tickets: Full $27, Conc. $20, Group 4 + $20

gives lbourne to LA s flight from Me llers’ A tumultuous ion of five different trave llis way to the co with class, claustrophobia, - Air paths. Dealing ferences and homophobia the dif t on al ion rat gene s to commen t AO11 mean ulence, Oceania Fligh lling Melbournians. Turb rages ve ve tra be of c oholi alc mindset ny -ti ny and tee the toilet queues mour, this play explores . hu g relationships aplenty, with these fledglin of e tur na t transien k ac ve-d ted by: Lexi Lo Written & Direc Room: Theatre October Dates: 2nd-7th nday 6:30pm 8 Su Time: 8:00pm, 3, Conc. $18, Group 5+: $1 Tickets: Full $2

e an Cursarranged x ä H e h T ut and re hcraft cally re-c itc

W ental, radi m Häxan: An experimthe silent 1922 fil Curse meddles version of e Ages. The Häxan of witches and through th rly cinema scenes bizarre new ea stunning lk from history with k comedy with a ac cunning fo to an absurdist bl erging Melbourne in es itl d by em n Giosuè ve subt ei nc Co . icia e biting edge t, designer & mus accompanying liv , visual artis premieres with an ore of atmospheric it , sc lo al hi in oc ig Pr ce of an or performan d electronica. lo se sue Prochi rock-infu ed By: Gio d Perform Created an: Christian Prochilo 13th October Performer Dock - Dates: 4thpm e Room: Th 0pm, Sunday 9:00 : Time: 11:0 ll: $ 18 Concession Fu s: 10 Ticket ups 4 +: $ $ 13 Gro

Spark

Puppet Pala

ver

Celebrate pupp et absurdity. Stimu diversity, perversity and niest collection late your senses with the fun Immerse yours of dolly wagglers in Melbo urne. elf in bizarre an ment. Witness im ate d en tertai ma imaginings. Le nipulation beyond your wi nave the children ldest wallow in the unbridled pleas at home and Palaver. Injectin ure of Pure Pu ppet eyeballs since g puppetry directly into yo ur 2004. And the re’s a band. Presented By: Pu Room:Ballroom ppet Vision Dates: 27th Se ptember- 13th Time: 10:30pm October Tickets: Full $2 3, Conc. $18

Confessions Grindr Addicof A t

Felix has a da te. been over a ye So why is he freaking out? ar It’s and he can’t he since Felix has been on a date lp but wonder: actually do on a date that do ‘What does a guy esn’t involve se Join Felix as he x? love and the od shares his secrets about se ’ x, d fetish or two. Created and Pe rformed by: Ga Room: Studio vin Roach Dates: 2nd-6th Oc Time: 10:00pm tober Tickets Full Pr ice $ 18 Groups 6 : $ 23 Concession: +: $ 15

ns

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Music Livingcase , Living Show, part musical pderfiffeormrenatnkcine domofesohfothw.e

er s eatre a very Part th howcase is ve put togeth electronica, he a S p Music erformers h B, funked-u ul hip-hop. T ll p & lf g u Youn t, cruising R op, and so etimes so fu p freshes delic, tell-all uthentic; som a e. psyche they tell are u wince. ll of lov s y e e ri ak o piringly – fu sto m y e s th of hurt undingly – in o Yet res e ctober : Theatrnd 28th of O m &6:00pm m o o R p a 0 th :0 7 3 2 y Dates: 0pm, Frida e Event :0 Time:6 : This Is a Fre Tickets

The Deer Joh

Fresh off two sel l Fringe, The Deer out seasons at the Adelaide light-hearted mu Johns bring their brand of sical storytelling Come space ho to Melbourne. pp see life through ing through the 70s as we the eyes of a you Jonathan. Jonath ng boy named growing up in an an reminds us what it was like hair was out of era when disco was king, che st control and the world was covere in crazy wallpa per d ‘A magical nosta . lgic journey’ - Fes tival Freak Created and Pe rfo Room: Ballroom rmed by: The Deer Johns Dates: 28th-30 th September Time: 9:00pm, Su Tickets: Full $1 nday 8:00pm 8, Conc. $15, Gro up 6 + $15

A breathtaking evolution in improvisation. Jason Geary, Rik Brown and Karl McConnell take to the stage each night to tell one single narrative using nothing but each other for inspiration. 3 Minds. 1 Story. No Gimmicks. ‘fluid, funny, absurd...not like anything else you’ll see at this festival.’ - Herald Sun Presented By: Spark Room: Theatre Dates: 4th-6th & 11th-13th October Time: 10:45pm, Tickets: Full $20, Conc. $15,Preview: $12 Group 6 + $12

¼ Pounding

Word/Play Impro Melbourne Theatre’s mission is to push boundaries and break expectations of what improvised theatre can be. Word/Play achieves this by unifying two very different creative energies—the written word from a singular voice and the creative energy of the collective minds of Impro Melbourne. A special guest author joins Impro Melbourne each night with a book of original works, which inspire improvised scenes and stories from the actors. Presented by: Impro Melbourne Room: Ballroom Dates: 2nd-13th October Time: 9:00pm Tickets Full Price: $ 23 Concession: $ 18 Preview: $ 15 Tuesday: $ 15 Groups 6 +: $ 15

Quiet. Lean in an thing special. d listen and I’ll show you so Th me winter, in the fre is story is set in the snow, in the A haunting. A ezing Arctic darkness. Romance. A req A lesson from uiem. A love so an ng is wintering alo unqualified alchemist. Trapp . ne er darkness, six mo in the Arctic, six months of nth s of bit ter lonely night. companions are His frozen seabed, dead, his sweetheart rests on he that screaming is completely alone. So wh a ? o is Created and Pe rformed by Tip Room: Studio Ra t Th eatre - Dates: 9th-14 th October Time: 7:00pm, Su Tickets Full Pri nday 5:00pm ce: $20 Concession: $1 5 Groups 4 +: $ 15

May and Alia Do Pirates! (of Penzance) It’s the chance they’ve been waiting for. The rest of the cast are held up in traffic, doubled over with food poisoning or have been eaten by the orchestra zombies, and now there is no other option. May and Alia are going to have to perform the whole ofPirates of Penzance by themselves! Performed By: May Jasp er and Alia Vryens Room: Ballroom Dates: 26th-30th Septem ber Time: 7.30pm, Sat 2.00 pm and 7.30pm, Sun 6.30pm (60min) Tickets: Full $23, Conc. $18, Group 6 + $18

tery Of Dysednness and Ma n and I’ll show you soinmthe-e

in and liste the snow, Quiet. Lean l. This story is set in ss. ne ia thing spec e freezing Arctic dark . A love song. m winter, in th A Romance. A requie emist. Trapper g. ch al tin ed un ifi ha al A unqu an m x months of si fro A lesson the Arctic, nely night. His g alone in is winterin x months of bitter lo eart rests on a si darkness, are dead, his sweeth one. So who is s al companion , he is completely ed ab se n ze fro g? in that scream t Theatre ed by Tip Ra tober d Perform Oc Created an io - Dates: 9th-14th Room: Stud , Sunday 5:00pm pm Time: 7:00 Price: $20 Tickets Full : $15 Groups 4 +: $ 15 Concession

INPRESS • 77


A new South Australian play… about cuttlefish

THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL

‘a play of understated brilliance’ Glam Adelaide

For The Love Of It

I

t’s ’s always alway al w s hard wa hard a for young up-and-comers to find a place in the industry, but the Decibels Records Artist Showcase helps bridge that gap, as recent signee Dominique Brown tells Jan Wisniewski.

Written by Emily Steel Directed by Nescha Jelk Sep 28–30, Oct 2–5 6.45pm (5.45pm Sun) $23/$18 ($10 Tue)

Fringe Hub Meeting Room North Melbourne Town Hall

sepiatheplay.com melbournefringe.com.au 03 9660 9666

TRICHOTOMY WITH

STRING QUARTET Jazz trio Trichotomy (previously Misinterprotato) present a special Melbourne premiere for the Fringe. Part of their 2012 collaborations project, this show features new work for piano/bass/drums and string quartet.

Drawing on elements from jazz & classical worlds, expect intensely dynamic & rhythmic music with stunning improvisations. Sean Foran - Piano, John Parker - Drums,

trichotomymusic.com

Pat Marchisella - Bass, Sarah Curro - Violin, Cameron Hill - Violin, Leah Zweck-Bain - Viola, Daniel Curro - Cello 8.30pm (2hr30min) Full Price: $ 25 - Concession: $ 15

VOLUME 4 WITH GHOSTBOY AND SIR LADY GRANTHAM Sarah Curro presents, once again, her solo amplified violin show Volume. New music, costume, film clips and instruments. This year joined by the astounding Ghostboy and Sir Lady Grantham show We Love You. An exquisite combination of dark comedy, neo-cabaret, spoken weird, and theatre of the provocateur.

A deliciously naughty experience. Artists Sarah Curro, David Stavanger and Richard Grantham 9.00pm (2hr30min) Full Price: $ 25 - Concession: $ 15 volumeconcert.com.au

“Everything else comes and goes, but music is loyal. It is the best friend that doesn’t ditch you at a party.” It is not unusual for 19-year-olds such as Dominique Brown to hold music in such high esteem, yet few are fortunate enough to have the opportunity to inspire and comfort others with their own writing and performance. After signing to Decibel Records earlier this year, her and fellow signees Mansion, Alaska will launch their newly-recorded EPs as part of the Darebin Music Feast during the Melbourne Fringe Festival. Brown’s close relationship with music has not always been so harmonious. She began piano lessons early under the tutelage of her grandmother, but the formal structure of the AMEB examinations didn’t sit well with the roaming mind of a seven-year-old. Her reluctance to practise her scales was supplanted with a keen interest in listening to the radio. A few years later, performance re-entered Brown’s life. “It wasn’t until I was cast in the lead role of the year-seven production that my parents began to take me seriously and I started singing lessons,” she explains. Eventually this led to a return of the piano, on which she

A

Now at NMIT, studying a Bachelor of Music Industry, Dominique’s songwriting has been refined and may soon reach those outside of her immediate family. On a friend’s suggestion, she applied to take part in the second year of the Decibels Records program, an initiative from the Darebin City Council that provides the opportunity for young artists to pursue a career in the music industry.

When you ever think the Melbourne independent performance art industry is up against it, think of Revolt. The multi-spaced performance supervenue and production company, based in Flemington’s Younghusband Factory since 2010, have over 200 individual performances lined up for the 2012 Melbourne Fringe Festival. For Co-founder Ryan Hodge, their “ultra-diverse” program, featuring puppetry, dance, cabaret and more, slots into a perpetual timetable of artistic innovation.

“We’re just knuckling down at the moment to get all the stages up and ready to go,” Hodge says. “We’re running, essentially, four Fringe-promoted venues, and then we’ve got our main room space and then we’ve got gallery installations, visual installations and projection/ multimedia stuff.” To date, they’ve staged over 2,000 shows, and haven’t even been running two years. That’s pushing a big gear. Winning the Fringe’s Best Venue award in 2011 was nice recognition,

For now Brown is excited to showcase her songs live alongside Mansion, Alaska with a full band that includes Tim Coghill. “Outside of uni performances, I haven’t had the chance to play my songs live, and now with the full band I can try to impress my friends and family.”

Brown’s raw talent obviously impressed. “I actually auditioned with the four songs that are on the EP, and I was lucky enough to be chosen.” Since her signing she has received mentorship and funding to professionally record and promote her own EP. “If I hadn’t had this opportunity, I would be writing songs at uni, but doing relatively nothing in comparison to this.” Though the young singersongwriter still felt some of the pressures of releasing an EP, she is relieved she had the support she did. “I’d be a nutcase by now, having to do the jobs of ten people,” she says. Though the Decibels team, including Jimi Maroudas and Greg Arnold, were

Viva La Revolucion

rtitist rtist stt and nd Revolt R oolt Re Rev ollt A Artt S Space co-founder Ryann H Hodge co-founde d r Rya de R od talks Simon Eales through throwing performance art into as many spaces as possible, all at the same time.

78 • INPRESS

started to write her own material, inspired by a performance of Death Cab For Cutie’s Transatlanticism by Matt Corby during his stint on Australian Idol. “I moved from playing simple songs to writing simple songs with similar progressions.”

heavily involved in the recording process, Brown maintained creative control over her powerful yet acutely sensitive songs. “I was able to get Tim Coghill, the drummer in Matt Corby’s band, to play on the EP… and a friend of mine, Tom Hutchens, sings the male part for our duet on You’re Killing Me.”

but doesn’t change much for Hodge, or the multitude of artists involved. “I feel like a lot of cities will throw a Fringe festival and go, ‘cool, we’ve supported independent theatre, that’s enough for this year’, same [with the] Comedy Festival… our whole business model is to be constant with it.” Revolt is about giving broad technical, spatial, and structural support, year-round, to independent performance artists. “We built a plan to make sure that we can facilitate ticketing, core marketing, all tech… We’ll go through budgets with people, we’ll make sure it’s viable, we’ll

make sure they’re recycling sets and not going out to Bunnings and buying stuff. We haven’t charged for that. It’s more like, ‘ok, you need it, so we’ll help you out’. It’s the money side of things that kind of squashes ideas and also just wastes time. “I suppose there are a couple of other organisations that are similar to [Revolt], but they’re more like an art-based approach. You’re talking about the Tetris Studio guys up in Brunswick

WHAT: Decibels Records Artist Showcase, part of Darebin Music Feast WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September, Northcote Town Hall

and Substation out west. They’ve all got the same initiative, but not the live production focus.” For Hodge, many other potential live art venues, like bars and clubs, are driven by the bottom line and end up killing off the ventures they intend to support. “They just care about numbers and booze,” he argues, “and that has destroyed Brisbane and Sydney in the last 15 years. It’s ridiculous. They never actually take a moment to go, ‘oh, hang on, maybe we’re not occupying people’s imaginations enough’. What you’ve gotta do is nurture what everyone needs and give it in over-abundance. Oh man, I could go on. We’re very passionate.” This year’s Fringe is an important cog for Revolt, but it’s not the whole machine. Its other projects and artists will tap away as usual. One is a puppeteer prop-maker who is Artistic Director of zombie shooting game, Patient Zero, and another is “the most incredible armourer,” who has worked previously on Lord Of The Rings. “And they’re two guys I found in a pub having a beer,” Hodge says. Like they’ll do during Fringe, Revolt are working overtime towards a shift in mentality and a 24-hour, arts-supportive city. “There’s no point in [artists] doing 250% and the person running the whole ship’s doing fuck-all. You’ve gotta surround yourself with really passionate people. We’re all for Fringe, but we do it all year round. It’s a neverending learning cycle. People’s ideas are just mindblowing.” WHAT: Revolt Art Space, Kensington WHEN & WHERE: Head to www.revoltproductions.com for a full list of shows


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INPRESS • 79


THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL

Pigzilla

A

p g and pig and a goat an ggoat in a boat: act torss G eraint Hill H and Sam actors Geraint MacDonald bring a true story of animal experiments of a different kind to life in Pig 311, a Fringe comedy like no other, as they explain to Liza Dezfouli. Let’s step back in time to 1945, when the US were testing nuclear bombs in the South Pacific. In the hold of a Japanese warship are two animals, a pig and a goat. They are there as guinea

pigs – excuse the pun – standing in for human beings, part of an experiment measuring the impact on of an atomic explosion on bodies. Pig 311, a two-hander by Bill Dodson and directed by his sister Judith, tells the story from the animals’ perspectives. “It’s based on a true story,” says performer Geraint Hill. “Two animals, 311 and 315, did survive the bomb blast.” History aside, the personalities of Pig and Goat are what drives the play. “Pig’s c servative; Liberal, in th con conservative; the

Australian sense of the word,” says Hill, who hails from the UK. “He’s a chap in a bowler hat, thinks he knows everything but doesn’t know as much as he thinks; it’s his chink in the armour, his bravado that makes him appealing.” “Goat comes across as stupid,” adds MacDonald. “He is articulate, he’s a smart goat and does know things, but he isn’t a natural leader; he’s an easygoing guy. Even when there are high stakes, he’ll be fine. Nothing gets him down,

not even an atomic bomb.” Pig 311 is Hill and MacDonald’s first show after graduating from the University of Ballarat, and to say they’re enjoying themselves is understatement. Both actors are thrumming with enthusiasm for the play. “We’re having so much fun doing it,” MacDonald says. “We’ve been working on it a long time and it still feels very fresh to perform.”

T

Fresh home from perhaps the greatest of all Fringe Festivals – Edinburgh – director, performer, and playwright Zoey Dawson is a bit sandy. But that’s from the beach she’s just been shooting a short film at, not Edinburgh. Yes, Dawson’s a busy lass, currently focusing on her play, The Unspoken Word Is Joe, which will feature at Melbourne’s Fringe Festival next month. Eager to write a play on her own, the work began about her ex-boyfriend, then, frustrated 80 • INPRESS

It’s hard to imagine anything less funny than the results of a nuclear explosion. How are the characters affected? “Goat is fine; he’s not affected,” says MacDonald. “Nothing gets him down. Pig, not so much. There are consequences.” But the two do survive, so you can say the play has a happy ending of sorts. “It’s important to keep it in context,” Hill notes. “We want to entertain people. It is a comedy.” “It’s interesting and entertaining,” adds MacDonald. It’ll be a blast. WHAT: Pig 311 WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday 25 September to Sunday 30, Sketch & Tulip

The interplay between the two creates the comedy, say the actors. The fact that the characters are farm animals

Note To Self he Unspoken Uns nspok pokken e Word W d Is Wor Joe began life as a play about Zoey Dawson’s ex-boyfriend, but ended up becoming about Dawson herself, the director tells Izzy Tolhurst.

is beside the point.” Pig is confronted by someone he thinks is inferior,” observes Hill. “We’re really two guys having a conversation, surrounded by fear and xenophobia, going off on weird tangents.” Both performers are revelling in the fact that Bill Dodson, a navy man himself, has been generous in allowing them to run wild with his script. “There’s a fair bit of ad-libbing,” explains Hill. The script, as well as being extremely funny, is also informative. “A lot of it is educational,” he continues. “There’s a lot of information; it’s factual but it needs to be.” “It’s really well-written,” notes MacDonald. “The characters are always bouncing off each other. I find it really hard not to laugh at you,” he says to Hill. “Laugh with you.”

that he was all she could write about, the play is now exclusively about Dawson. It’s an inflated, energetic autobiography where Dawson questions why artists desire to put themselves at the “centre of these big dramatisations”.

However, if she were given the world’s talent pool to pick from, Dawson said it’d be Dolly Parton. “I see her as pretty freakishly similar to myself.” But with no sign of the southern starlet at this year’s Fringe, Dawson is more than happy to place the reins in the capable hands of Shiels, who is currently starring in MTC’s production, Top Girls. “My mum saw the trailer, with Nikki dressed up in a blonde wig, and said that she had to look twice because she thought it was me! So she must be doing a pretty good job!”

And Joe’s not even her ex’s name. Rather, “it’s a line from a play called Angels In America by Tony Kushner, and it’s the stage directions that I love… there’s a line towards the end of the play where one of the characters says a line but doesn’t finish her sentence, and the stage direction is just: ‘the unspoken word is Joe’.”

And Dawson is no stranger to the Melbourne Fringe Festival, saying, “I was part of the Fringe last year and I’m really excited about this year… you just feel like such a community. It’s beautiful, you’re just living and breathing theatre for a few weeks.”

One can only imagine how painstaking the process of selecting the actor to play yourself could be, but Dawson recalls knowing early on who was just right. “My number one choice was Nikki Shiels – and she said yes! So that was really great. I didn’t know her well at that point but we did a play together at the

I

zzy T Tolhurst lh t catches t h up with wildlife expert-slash-comedian Darren Lever to find out what Man Vs Wildlife is all about. Darren Lever probably has the best job title ever: he’s a wildlife presenter-slash-actor-slashcomedian – frankly, it seems a more appropriate title would be all-’round-cool-guy, but that might not fit on his designated staff badge. Regardless, Lever is bringing his performance Man Vs Wildlife to this year’s Fringe Festival, and he honestly doesn’t know what to expect. “I don’t even know why I’m doing it anymore! Who takes live animals on stage anyway?!” he jests. But there’s a good reason he’s doing it, and amongst more serious ones, there’s the fact that nobody’s done it before. “Once you reach a certain age you stop getting amazed by these creatures – well, some of us do, anyway – but I wanted to bring that amazement back with adults, and get them thinking about a conservation message through the incredible wildlife we have,” he continues. “I thought the best way to do that would be through humour. ” The show will feature crocodiles, pythons, goannas and frogs amongst other things. “The python I’m using is actually an endangered species,” he says. So was the breed of crocodile featured in Lever’s show, though “it’s a survivor” of government-implemented habitat p tection and a successfu pro protection successful

Another of Dawson’s plays, The Most Excellent And Lamentable Tragedy Of Romeo And Juliet, challenges social values and the moral stigmatisation of women by exploring the idea of Juliet as the protagonist. Asked whether we’re in for more ethical reckoning, Dawson says, “It’s possible that it could have really challenging moral undertones, but it’s also possible that it could be really stupid and messy, and completely devoid of all meaning. It’ll be one or the other.” WHAT: The Unspoken Word Is Joe WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 4 October to Sunday 14, La Mama Theatre

breeding program. “Now it’s gone the other way and there’s too many of them,” he laughs. “But that’s what happens when you protect the ultimate predator, they kind of TAKE OVER THE WORLD!!” The performance assumes an interesting name choice too, as it was Darren and his colleagues who supplied the python for the Melbourne leg of Bear Grylls’ Australian stage show. “I got to work with him when he was in Melbourne,” Lever recalls. “And risk assessment made us analyse the worst possible scenarios, and the worst possible scenario was that the snake strangles and kills Bear Grylls – and we thought, yes, that is the worst possible thing that could happen here.”

A

nthonyy Noake nnthony N ake No akk and annd Iris Gaillard tell Liza Dezfouli how with Banana Republic they’re changing the world, starting in the home. “It’s like a failed social experiment,” says Anthony Noake, about his new comedy show for Fringe, Banana Republic. A shared house turns into a commune while an unemployed slacker becomes an Internet entrepreneur and invests the household’s kitty are just two examples of the oddball happenings in the show.

“A group of friends are getting their head around what goes on in the world,”explains Noake. “I didn’t want to write a play using issues in the objective way, but all that discussion about world issues plays out through the characters’ interactions, through the living and the telling.” Are there any issues that Noake feels particularly passionate about? “I haven’t made it about one issue,” he says. “There are a lot of little things that play out – things like plastics, pollution, wastes going into the ocean – there are passing

Comedy’s covered too, with Lever “just falling into that”, and after falling, proceeding to the state finals of triple j’s RAW Comedy competition. “So I’m the funniest New South Welshman in Victoria!” he says. Following the Fringe Festival, Lever intends on “sleeping for about three weeks”, but also had some important parting words. “I do actually encourage people who have a fear of snakes to come along too. Because there’s only one snake, so they can close their eyes for five minutes. Not only that, but it can be a great way for people to get over their fear… Don’t be put off, they’ve been given a bad name for the past few thousand years, that’s all.”

But the list of animal-related disasters is thankfully limited for Lever. “The worst thing I’ve had happen was that a python went down my shirt, and came out my shirt and basically ripped my sleeve. Because they’re that strong…” But with the animal handling covered, Lever also has extensive theatrical training, with a long history at Melbourne’s La Mama Theatre. “The experience that really transformed me was probably playing Richard III in an outdoor production. It was a weird adaptation of Richard III where I basically spoke for two-thirds of the play! Because, you know, Richard III doesn’t have enough

Bending The Rules

start of the year; we’ve since become very good friends.”

Has she been honest in her depiction? “No. But it was very deliberate!” she says. “I’ve taken the approach of exaggerating a lot of qualities about myself.”

“But the play is a strange format. It’s a hyper-realistic version of a slightly unrealistic version of myself. It explores what the autobiographical impulse is in artists, and is less about the ex-boyfriend himself.”

Snakes Alive

lines as it is, so the director decided that I should say all the stage directions as well. Oh, and I was on stage for the entire play.”

references in the play to these things. Comedy is a great way to approach these issues. Make them funny.” What made him set the play in a shared house situation? “Early on, I decided that. The household experiences a mini-Global Financial Crisis. It was always part of the premise. A shared house is a common, identifiable space that as a launch pad to look at these issues. ” “The show is fantastically funny,” comments director Iris Gaillard. “A brilliant comedy. It’s rare to have

a political comedy with a good background, with good content and form.” Gaillard describes Noake’s writing as “very performative”. The two discovered in rehearsal that Banana Republic contained elements of a sitcom, and so decided to bring that element into the work, staging the play as TV, thereby adding another layer of laughs and another level of audience experience. The audience gets to be, well, a live audience, with all which that entails. “It’s an efficient way to do it,” says Gaillard. “Banana

WHAT: Man Vs Wildlife WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday 2 October to Saturday 13, Broken Mirror Productions

Republic crosses between two genres. The audience is not in front of a finished product, they are part of the recording. The TV set is completely part of the show.” Audiences are subjected to different expectations when part of a live sitcom show. “I found that out when I was part of a sitcom audience. The audience is completely part of the show. The show needs you. Theatre audiences are not expected to have the same reactions.” How does Gaillard indicate which type of audience engagement she wants? “I don’t explain much,” she says.” I let the people live the experience. As a device I have a voice-over that leads you into the experience.” Noake works as a stage and construction manager, which puts him in good stead with this show and its logistical demands. There’s a lot to pull together. “It’s a big production, with the sound design, the camera, the actors’ work,” notes Gaillard. “I have to direct the actors, the camera, the sounds.” Her biggest challenge, she reckons, at one week away from opening night, is waiting on audience reactions. So is there any hope for the world? “There is in a way,” says Noake. “The fact that we have desire to do something about these issues; there is expressed desire to do something. Where there’s desire, there’s hope.” WHAT: Banana Republic WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 26 September to Sunday 7 October, The Owl And The Pussycat


INPRESS • 81


THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL disillusionment using sideshow stunts, comedy and strip tease.

One O ne Night Nigh N ight Stand

Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I am a tattooed adventurer, a reality hacker, motorcycle rider, father and a circus daredevil. I write and produce my own work, and have been doing so for five years now. This is my first solo show, but I also founded and performed with the notorious sideshow troupe Caravan Of Doom. My aim as Captain Ruin is to make work that confronts and discusses ideas - that contributes to making the world more interesting and possibly improving it. Not everyone has the skills, the confidence, or the opportunity to stand up in front of people and speak their mind, so I’ve always thought that when you are on stage you are in a privileged position and you’d better be doing something worthwhile with it.

Describe your Fringe show. A dark work of circus with a social conscience that reflects upon anger, freedom, frustration and

What inspired your Fringe show? In 2011 while travelling through Turkey I got in a brawl with some people that didn’t like the way that my friends and I looked. Poofters, punks and fluoro anarchists vs. local yobbos. Someone was

Silent S ilent Dinner Parties

and work across the fields of performance, installation, social aesthetics, photography and video. I have exhibited and performed internationally. I work collaboratively with visual artists, sound artists, musicians, dancers, actors and DJs. The Silent Dinner Parties are my

Name and Role: Mitch Jones – creator and performer

Name and Role: Honi Ryan creative director of hedonnics Describe your Fringe show. There is no audience, only participants at a three-course meal where there is no talking, reading, writing, music or technology. Silent giggles abound! Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I am an interdisciplinary artist based in the Blue Mountains,

Sepia Se S epia

ongoing solo practice and have been performed in eight countries over the past six years and have had booked out runs at the Adelaide and Sydney Fringe Festivals. They are, quite simply, my favourite thing to do, each one offering a unique blend of people, places, experiences, and are always great fun. They propel us into the moment and offer a chance for us to connect in real space amidst a mediated world. So join us

hair out. Wife returns. Funny sad new play from Adelaide, about cuttlefish and not. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I’m the playwright. I’m from Wales but I live over here now. The producer, director, designer and actors are South Australian. We first worked together on Sepia for Adelaide Fringe 2012 and won the Tour Ready award, so we get to work together again to bring the show to Melbourne.

stabbed and I subsequently spent six weeks in prison waiting to appear in court. I had a lot of time to think inside, and with One Night Stand I have tried to replicate that environment onstage - where the character is dragging out all the dark things inside him and trying to find meaning in his situation.

Pants P ants Down Dow D own Circus

What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The sheer volume of work being produced in Melbourne excites me. The opportunity to see so much, and to catch up with old friends is always a welcome part of Fringe. And I’m really excited to be debuting One Night Stand in my home town - it’s my way of saying thank you to everyone that helped me while I was in prison. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? I will definitely be seeing Carousel by One Trick Pony which moved me to tears when it previewed last year. Burl-Esky at Disco Beans is going to be hilarious. And A Grim Era by Smallpox Theatre was the best show that I saw in Adelaide earlier this year, and is not to be missed! WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 6 October to Sunday 13, The Ballroom, Lithuanian Club

for an evening of unique experiential dining and become a part of a social sculpture that will muster silently side splitting behaviour. How did you find your artistic calling? It found me, without a word. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? I love Melbourne, so it feels like I’m bringing the project home. I have had a private SDP in Melbourne before but this is the first time they have been offered to the public down there, which is exciting. After returning from mounting the Silent Dinners in New York in August this year, I’m keen to see how Melbourne, Australia’s cultural capital, rivals New Yorkers for joining in and pushing the boundaries. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? Kenzie Larson’s Friend Ship. WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 4 October to Saturday 6, Private Houses around Melbourne

What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? I want to see I Wish You A Boat (good title) and Show Me Yours, I’ll Show You Mine (because I’m a perv). WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Friday 5 October, Meeting Room, North Melbourne Town Hall

Describe your Fringe show. Pants Down Circus is a show greater than the sum of its parts, showcasing some of the biggest circus acts possib si le by b a four person company. possible

Hey H ey B Big i Spender! S pend An A Evening with Shirley

Name and Role: Emily Steel – playwright Describe your Fringe show. Man wears wetsuit for a whole week (stinky). Son tears 82 • INPRESS

What inspired your Fringe show? The four of us have been working along side each other for five years and take shared joy in circus shows that keep their audiences excited and amazed from start to finish. We like upbeat shows that aim, not to confuse, but to delight their audiences by inviting them into a world

Shirley Bassey was born, not long after, in a small Croatian village, another Shirley was born. That Shirley was… Shirley Basić! Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I have been performing for quite a few years doing comedy, cabaret, and revues. I am a classically-trained opera singer but I’m now back to my first love; impersonation.

where anything is possible. We are a company of optimists. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The Melbourne Fringe will be the hometown debut of this show. Having charmed audiences around the country, we are excited to finally be performing in front of a home crowd. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? We are very excited to see Dos Or Duo Deux and Lives I’ve Seen, both on at the Melbourne Meat Market. WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 6 October to Saturday 13, Meat Market

would try to impersonate them, copying their voices and actions. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The range of different acts and exciting fresh new performers and shows! What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? I’m looking forward to seeing Spontaneous Broadway. It’s great because you can see it again and again and it’s always different! WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 4 October and Thursday 11 October, Bennetts Lane

Name and Role: Mary Vidovich – performer Tell us about your show. This is a Shirley Bassey tribute show with a Balkan twist! Not many people know this, but when

How did you find your artistic calling? Growing up I loved singing around the house. I always mimicked people and annoyed them because I

Charles Purcell. It’s one of those funny/serious shows.

Show S how M Me Yours, Your You urs I’ll Show You Mine

Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I make theatre. In other shows I have created this year I made the audience get naked and yell at me. But not in the same show. That really would be going too far. Does the sarcasm read in that last sentence? I’m from Sydney. There’s probably cultural mores that I’m roughshodding all over. Sorry. How did you find your artistic calling? I don’t think you find something like that. Most of the time I think it’s forced upon you by bitter year three music teachers. You know the type. They listen to 26 recorders playing at the same time at nine o’clock in the morning. That’s gotta do weird shit to your personality. I haven’t even showered by then.

How did you find your artistic calling? It was in the fridge, next to my car keys (I’m lying. I don’t have a car). What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? Showing Sepia to a new audience. Taking a show to Melbourne for the first time. Getting to meet new people and see new work. Also our accommodation has a pool.

Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? This show is the result of the amalgamation of two circus companies, The Circus Firemen and The Trick Ponies. By pooling our skills we have been able to create a show that includes more than eight world class circus acts. All four performers strongly believe that entertainment is the most important factor of any circus show. Of course every show should have a message, theme or story but we believe that above all else it should be enjoyable to watch. Pants Down Circus combines circus as an entertainment medium with the beauty of circus as an art form.

Describe your Fringe show. Our show is a scripted interview between myself and a male sex worker, portrayed by

What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? There’s a lot to be excited about. I hope a show flaunts the restrictions in

the Lithuanian Club and includes some praise for the former Soviet Union. I think theatre is all about breaking the rules, and that one’s so specific. It’s crying out for it. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? Anything with Dr Brown in it. And the show in Dan Giovannoni’s lounge room. It’s a great lounge room, it’s lined with wood. You should go and check it out. WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Saturday 13 October, Rehearsal Room, North Melbourne Town Hall


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INPRESS • 83


THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

Trichotomy T richotto o

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? Trichotomy are a Brisbane-based jazz trio of piano, bass and drums. We formed in 1999 and were originally known as the group Misinterprotato. The trio have released five acclaimed albums and toured widely around Australia, the UK, China, Japan. This year, after releasing some albums in Europe as Trichotomy, we made the switch in Australia to that name. Dynamic with captivating melodies and a distinct non-traditionalist approach defines the sound of the trio, a group that is constantly pushing the possibilities of modern jazz for piano trio.

involved and present our work for String Quartet. It’s also our only Melbourne show for the year. WHEN & WHERE: Sunday 30 September, Bennetts Lane

What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? It’s our first Melbourne Fringe! Super exciting to be Describe your Fringe show. Jazz trio Trichotomy collaborate with String Quartet and present the Victorian premiere of new work for this combined ensemble.

So S o Fukin Fukin Native N i our realities through artistic media since we were young children. I’ve always known I was passionate about culture and exchange.

Name and Role: Léuli Eshraghi – curator. Describe your Fringe show in 25 words or less. An aesthetic battlefield where artists bear witness to pejorative speech, ironic hipster fashion and derivative treatment, So Fukin Native continues multiple critical reclamations of cultural trajectories.

AThe GMauigidc eantod PhiloUnsophyhaofppiSunnesnys Leueunnigig

Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? Pauline Vetuna and I (Léuli Eshraghi) are

curators and artists who are blessed to be part of a dynamic Pasifik arts community across Australia and Oceania more generally, but particularly here in the lands and waters of the Kulin Nation. How did you find your artistic calling? Histories, genealogies, poetry, song, painting, drawing, weaving, dancing, our body memory as peoples of the Ocean of Islands is deep, and some of us seem to always be expressing

Name and Role: Dan Nixon - creator/director.

The T he Super Sup Normal Norm N orm mal Life Of Aiden Allcock

TIM SPENCER PRESENTS

Show Me Yours, I'll Show You Mine A scripted conversation with a male sex worker portrayed by Charles Purcell.

“..Intelligent, provocative work, ****” - Time Out, Sydney FRINGE HUB Rehearsal Room, North Melbourne Town Hall 28-30 Sep, 2-7, 9-13 Oct 9pm (8pm Sundays) GRAPHICS BY VANESSA HUGHES

84 • INPRESS

www.timspencer.com.au #showyours @timothy_spencer

Describe your Fringe show. The Super Normal Life Of Aiden Allcock is the cheeky feel-good mini-musical about wearing your heart on your sleeve and your undies on the outside. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? My Name is Dan Nixon and I am the creator/director of The Super Normal Life Of Aiden Allcock. This show is all about friendship and as such I have gathered together many talented friends including an animator, film composer, film maker and a selection of great performers to create something that is fun, unique and exciting.

What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The breadth and audacity of independent arts practice across our generous city is always a drawcard during the festival. Keeping my mind and heart exploding with new discoveries and small victories through different works is great too. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? 1938: An Opera, Costumes For The Ark, MoreArt, ONE, and Opal Vapour. WHEN & WHERE: Opening night Thursday 27 September to Sunday 13 October, Black Dot Gallery

What inspired your Fringe show? We are amused and inspired by the likes of Dr Horrible and The Flight Of The Conchords. I was really keen to write something that captures the hopes and dreams we have as kids, but I wanted to do it in a way that would appeal to all ages. Basically the show is inspired by superheroes, life in the suburbs and a love of adventure. It explores themes of friendship and spandex. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The way the city springs to life with creativity as well as the way in which Melbourne’s diversity is expressed through the huge variety of shows on offer. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? PIG 311 as well as the many shows on at the Portland Hotel. WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 29 September to Sunday 14 October, Portland Hotel


THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL

A burlesque cabaret exploration into the dark areas of sexuality and the fetishes that lie within. Enter Jessamae’s world, find your fetish.

Jessamae J essam Stt J S James am Is Tied Up

Name and Role: Jessamae St James – writer and performer Describe your Fringe Frin show. Erotic Ero t tales ttales andd melancholy me mel jazz.

The T he Shore Sho

Name and Role: Eileen McInnes – filmmaker. Describe your Fringe show. The Shore is a depiction of the interconnectedness of Australian society and the beach, expressing a need to preserve and protect our shorelines. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I am a Masters journalism and international relations student at Monash University. I love the outdoors, which is reflected in my concern about environmental issues. The Shore has been put together by many journalism students and composition students from Monash University, all with a creative flair and passion for the environment and preserving its natural beauty. What inspired your Fringe show? The Fringe show started as a collaboration between Windspiel and the music students at Monash University. Once the university learned about Windspiel’s interest in environmental issues, the silent journalism films were included. Wilsons Promontory specifically

A Guide Gu G uide To Unhappiness

Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I am a Melbourne-based burlesque and cabaret artist. My cabaret, Jessamae St James Is Tied Up, focuses on sexual fetishes, and the people who experience them. Combining song and text, it examines the psychological elements of paraphilias, (sexual arousal from objects or situations that do not fit the norm) and the repercussions they can cause in everyday life. As a burlesque performer, I have appeared at the Australian Burlesque Festival, the Sydney Tattoo & Body Art Expo, as a headline performer for the Lorne Festival Of Performing Arts, and internationally at Chaz Royal’s NYE Burlesque Ball in London. How did you find your artistic calling? I knew that I wanted to be a performer from a pretty young age. I studied music theatre at VCA in 2008. Then, with a focus on creating my own work, embarked on a

inspired my Fringe show. Hiking through there as a young adult, I have been mesmerised by the beaches as they are seemingly untouched by civilisation. Many beaches in Melbourne have felt the effects of overuse, and natural and man-made erosion. Scientists have shown that climate change exacerbates erosion, in turn damaging our shorelines. Being so lucky as to have spent time in Wilsons Promontory, I was inspired to share what beauty can come from protecting our shores. The music from the composition students (particularly Adrian Tosello) also gave me a lot of inspiration for the final product. The music is hauntingly real. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? I am just excited to see all the talent and creativity Melbourne has to offer in this Fringe Festival. I am always open to new experiences and ideas, that is most exciting part of a fringe festival: you never know what to expect. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? You don’t get to see many interpretative dance shows in Melbourne, so the one that has stood out to me this Fringe is Ellipsis. Name and Role: Holly Caldwell – composer Describe your Fringe show. The Shore contains music and visuals, as one of the collaborating composers, my piece Saturnine Expressions reflects upon the ever-changing natural composition of the shore. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? We have combined sound and moving

Describe your Fringe show. It’s an enchanting and true existential journey deep into the mind of a hapless magician and philosopher trying to make sense of the world. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I’m a magician and philosopher and musician. Sara Retallick is a musician and Jono Burns is an actor. Anne Browning is a director. Sara and I have better dress sense because we are musicians.

mission to learn about a whole range of performance mediums, where I ultimately found burlesque. I was lucky enough, in 2010, to be chosen by FReeZACentral to be mentored by Deborah Conway, with a focus on songwriting. I’ve now returned to VCA to study a Bachelor of Fine Arts Contemporary Music (jazz/improvisation). What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? This will be the premiere of my new show, and I’m looking forward to sharing it with an audience. I’m very lucky to be working with an extremely talented four-piece band who capture the mood of the show perfectly. To have the opportunity to perform in a show where I find the subject matter so fascinating is exciting within itself. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? There are so many that I want to see this festival. A few that come to mind are The Butcher Shop Revue at The Butterfly Club, Atrocity at Bohemia Cabaret Club, and DasSHOKU SHAKE at 45 Downstairs. WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 26 September to Thursday 11 October, Bohemia Cabaret Club

image in an effort to document the current state of the world’s shorelines. Composers have also been developing their pieces via correspondence with duo Windspiel who have been rehearsing the pieces in their homeland of Germany. What inspired your Fringe show? At the very beginning of this project, duo Windspiel asked the students, “What comes to mind when you think of the shore?” I thought the shore as the fringe of land at the edge of a large body of water encompasses a wide range of imagery: shore by a river, lake or ocean; as the mediator of land and water; as untouched beauty; or as an entity destroyed by both Mother Nature and human activity. That’s what came to mind. I could not help but be immersed in the visualisation of two intensely contradicting images: one of beauty, the other of destruction. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? Every year it’s bigger and better, whether the projects are in their early or final stages it’s just so exciting to see what has been inspiring people to create. The buzz is incredible! What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? That’s a difficult question, there are so many! However, there is one in particular that I think will be hilariously good – May & Alia Do Pirates! (Of Penzance), a “musket-blast of G&S fun” for all! WHEN & WHERE: Friday 5 October and Saturday 6, The Butterfly Club

How did you find your artistic calling? I had no choice. My parents put a gun to my head. Life is a lot easier when you have your parents to blame for everything. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? Looking forward to the vitality and exuberance that is usually lacking in my life. What other shows are you looking forward to this Fringe? Dr Brown’s Befrdfgth amongst others. WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 6 October to Saturday 13, The Loft, Lithuanian Club INPRESS • 85


THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

She S he Throws ow Dirt

Name and Role: Matthew Adey - theatre-maker and designer Describe your Fringe show. She Throws Dirt is inspired from an

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL exploration of the saying ‘those who throw dirt on others, will eventually lose their ground’. A performance piece driven by slow moving tableau vivants, expansive sound-scapes and bold lighting, She Throws Dirt draws on themes of spirituality and body politics and is created by the newly formed collective, Preaching To The Perverted. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? Preaching To The Perverted is an independent Melbourne-based company which combines dance and performance art with live experimental sound and lighting. Artistically driven by a core creative team Matthew Adey (light and performance designer), Dallas McGuinness (choreographer/performance

Name and Role: Dosh Luckwell – artist

Booth

Describe your Fringe show. The Sex Poetry Booth offers casual, no-strings-attached sex poetry at this year’s Fringe Club! Using the latest in psycho-sexual testing our sex-text expert Dosh Luckwell carefully crafts Sex Poems inspired by YOU. Can you briefly tell us about yourself?: Dosh Luckwell is a recent Perth export with a penchant for wearing ‘balloon cock’ dresses and lathering himself in milk. Dosh is responsible for Sex Poems, a marrying of erotic spoken word with dirty electro-discosurf-rock music; and for Mr Femme Fatale, a gender-

Rocks that premiered in May 2012 at Chapel Off Chapel.

On O n The Th he e

Name and Role: Matt Denton – performer

Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? This is Vertical Shadows’ 4th year and 7th production. I started the company in 2009 as an outlet for my own creative use. The opportunity to be creative and have your visions realised is truly an extraordinary thing to witness.

artist), Robert D Jordan (sound designer). PTTP is dedicated to creating new and innovative contemporary works, which endeavour to break boundaries and challenge current trends of creativity, design, choreography, artistry and innovation. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The most exciting thing about the Melbourne Fringe is that it’s a time for artists to come together and explore new ideas no matter how great or small, to think big and create works that are challenging, artistic and progressive. The Fringe Hub Meat Market season is definitely a promising one to be apart in. WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Friday 5 October, ArtsHouse Meat Market

The Th he Well We

the piece by the performers until it’s hard to know which is which anymore.

Name and Role: Robert Reid - writer/director Describe your Fringe show. Whirling chaos in a snow globe end of the world. The audience is guided around the space and through

What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? Mediocrity has no place on the periphery. Fringe is where rebellion catwalks. WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Saturday 13 October, North Melbourne Town Hall

together and unite. It’s exciting knowing when you go to see a show that night you will be surrounded with people from all walks of the arts industry. This is our first show with the fringe and so far it’s been a great venture.

The Th T he Deer D Johns Are Growing Up

Describe your Fringe show. A Japanese-Australian Butoh cabaret extravaganza! Butoh punkess Yumi Umiumare meets electrified Theatre Gumbo and ignites her infamous Butoh cabaret with a psychedelic, lost-intranslation, emo shake-up. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? Yumi is the only Japanese Butoh dancer in Australia. Her versatile, distinctive style of physical theatre has been seen in numerous dance, theatre and film productions and festivals throughout the world. She collaborates with comedy assault troupe, Theatre GUMBO and talented local artists including

86 • INPRESS

Describe your Fringe show. A light-hearted musical comedy about a boy growing up in the 1970s, using iconic songs from the era. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? The Deer Johns started in Adelaide in late 2010, born through Andrew O’Callaghan, Jesse Cotton and Chris Marshall’s shared love of playing music and being silly. This passion has seen us play two consecutive sell-out seasons at the Adelaide Fringe,

Name and Role: Sam Aldham – performer

Knock K noc Off

WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 10 October to Saturday 13, Chapel Off Chapel

Describe your Fringe show. Set on a building site; KNOCK OFF combines teeterboard, ladder, manipulation, aerial rope, partner acrobatics, stunt work and a healthy dose of quintessential Aussie humour. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? Three High Acrobatics was formed in 2011 with members Sam Aldham, Chris Carlos and Taka Seki; all students of NICA (National Institute of Circus Arts). With a broad range of skills, we aim to devise full shows for festivals and touring, single acts and cabaret performances. We look

Describe your Fringe show. This is the season return for the critically acclaimed On The

DasSHOKU D asSH

Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I’ve been working with the students out at Monash University for the last couple of years and have seen so many talented and exciting young performers there. The guys in The Well are some of the most

What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? There’s some really great work in this years Fringe. Slow Clap and No Show are must see companies, Nicola Gunn’s new work shouldn’t be missed either and the show we’re sharing the space at La Mama with, Walking Mark Rothko by Adam J A Cass is also really worth checking out. WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 26 September to Sunday 30, La Mama Theatre

bender revenge play that won him the title of Best Emerging Artist at the 2012 Fringe World Awards.

What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The Fringe is a great place for all different art forms to come

Name and Role: Yumi Umiumare – creator and performer

interesting and engaging artists I’ve worked with in a long time.

Willow J (burlesque!), Helen Smith (Butoh group Space Between), Harrison Hall (contemporary dance), actor/drumaturg Matt Crosby, composer Dan West, stage designer Ellen Strasser, costume designer Kiki Ando and lighting designer Tom Willis. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? My first Butoh cabaret was performed at Melbourne Fringe, 1999 and I met Theatre Gumbo the year after. We both received Fringe awards. Melbourne Fringe is our nexus – it’s exciting to return where our meeting began to create a brand new Fringe Butoh/cabaret! WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 27 September to Sunday 7 October, Fortyfivedownstairs

Name and Role: Gareth Hart – choreographer and performer

Ellipsis E llip psi siis

Describe your Fringe show. An intimate choreography experienced through wireless headphones, exploring the body existing between thoughts, time and light. Delicate, intricate and immersive: dance as you perhaps have never seen/heard/felt it. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I am a maker of things that challenge, a thinker of thoughts that confuse. I have a rigorous approach to improvisation and choreography, one that tries to undo my understanding of what I have done before, whilst existing within the bank of knowledge my body stores. In my spare time I am the Co-Artistic Director of Crack

blending our wit with our musical dexterity to provide audiences with a dose of pure entertainment. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? Melbourne Fringe excites us because we will be taking our show to a totally new audience. WHEN & WHERE: Friday 28 September to Sunday 30, Revolt Ballroom

to create exciting, humorous and high skilled circus performances that entertain and amaze. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? The opportunity to show our unique Aussie style of circus to a wider audience. We also look forward to being able to see an array of new and exciting shows, and meeting new people who share our passion for performing. WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday 2 October to Saturday 6, Gasworks Theatre

Theatre festival, forging exciting opportunities for young and emerging artists to be bold, present exciting new work and develop their practice beyond what they thought possible. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe? Work that challenges what was once known, artists taking huge, bold risks and the surprise of being the only person in the audience at a show that completely blows you away. WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 6 October to Saturday 13, Meeting Room, North Melbourne Town Hall


POLLY’S PARTY 26-29 SEPTEMBER Polly's Party will take you on a thrill ride through the digital stratosphere that is social media, youtube channels and the queen of the digital realm Lady Gaga.

@ BRUNSWICK ARTS SPACE, 2a Little Breese St www.erinvothproductions.com T s is Thi s an an alll age es,, ful ully ly sup u erv ervise is d, ise d dru ug, g alcoho ohol and oho n smo moke ke e free e even event. t No o passou assou uts. ts F r more For more re inf info o cont cont o act on ac Da Dareb rebin reb in n Cit City y Coun ou cil ((03) 3 847 8470 0 8001 80011 orr ch check eck k out ou www www.mu .m m sicfeast. st com om.au .au u

AUSTRALIA’S FAVOURITE IMPROV MUSICAL COMEDY

CAL WILSON, EMILY TAHENY, RIK BROWN, ANDREW McCLELLAND GILLIAN COSGRIFF, RUSSELL FLETCHER, JOHN THORN and more!! 28-30 Sept, 2-7 Oct @7.30PM (Sun 6.30) FRINGE HUB-LITHUANIAN CLUB Bookings: 9660 9666 or melbournefringe.com.au tix $28/22

INPRESS • 87


THE INPRESS GUIDE TO THE

MELBOURNE FRINGE FESTIVAL Name and Role : Dr Jerm. Bizoo Zine creator and trouble maker

Bizoo-Ka! i

Describe your Fringe show. Bizoo-KA! is a night of bands (Frowning Clouds, The Gooch Palms, Dead Shades and Brendan Black from the Stabs), a discussion panel and interactive artwork that celebrates the launch of Bizoo: The Best, The Worst & The Trash That Never Made It. Can you tell us briefly about yourself/your company? I grew up in Toowoomba and was bored shitless. Bands would occasionally come to town but you had to

So You Spent All Your Coin On Beer But Still Want To See Fringe Shows! Inpress Giveaways Are Here WEDNESDAY 26 SEP Matthew Klein in Sugarcoat – Gertrude’s Brown Couch, 9pm (one double pass)

Walking Mark Rothko – La Mama Theatre, 6.30pm (one double pass)

THURSDAY 27 SEP PIG 311 – Sketch and Tulip Café, 9pm (one double pass)

FRIDAY 28 SEP Spontaneous Broadway: Jubilee – Main Theatre, Lithuanian Club, 7.30pm (two double passes)

Banana Republic – The Owl and the Pussycat, 7pm (one double pass)

SATURDAY 29 SEPT The Super Normal Life of Aiden Allcock – Portland Hotel, 8pm (one double pass)

SUNDAY 30 SEP The Super Normal Life of Aiden Allcock – Portland Hotel, 8pm (one double pass) Tommy Bradson: The Men My Mother Loved – The Ballroom, Lithuanian Club, 9.15pm (two double pass)

be ‘in the know’. Local media had little to no interest in covering alternative music culture. Not one to sit around and whinge, I started my own media outlet – Bizoo – that would feature a gig guide, review local and touring bands. What excites you about Melbourne Fringe ? Well it’s the start of a two month regional tour though Victoria delivering workshops and launching the best of book. We’re aiming to showcase what can be achieved in small regional towns with little or no money. WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 6 October, The Old Bar

Two Weeks Of Free Late Night Entertainment One of the most buzzing places during any arts festival is the club. This year with Fringe turning 30 it’s certainly isn’t slowing down. With 14 nights of free post-show entertainment and celebration, this year’s Fringe Club program gives back the love that you’ve been giving to the Independent Arts. Every night of the festival (except Mondays) at the Fringe Club, North Melbourne Town Hall.

Happy 30th Birthday Fringe

DasSHOKU SHAKE – Fortyfivedownstairs, 5.30pm (one double pass)

TUESDAY 2 OCT Knock Off – Gasworks Theatre, 7.30pm (two double passes)

WEDNESDAY 3 OCT Jessamae St. James Is Tied Up – Bohemia Cabaret Club, 9pm (one double pass)

Walking Mark Rothko

The Biography of a Battler – La Mama Theatre, 6.30pm (one double pass)

TUESDAY 9 OCT Miss Interpret – Portland Hotel, 8pm (one double pass) Enter at facebook.com/inpressmag For DAILY fringe reviews during the festival head to themusic.com.au

DasSHOKU SHAKE

Tommy Bradson

BANDS THE INDUSTRY THE LOCALS THE BLOG RES THE DJS THE GIGS THE PRODUCERS THE REMIXES THE ARTISTS THE FESTIVALS THE GRO LBUMS THE TOURS THEMUSIC.COM.AU THE FA THE INDUSTRY THE LOCALS THE BLOGS THE E S THE GIGS THE PRODUCERS THE CLUBS THE TISTS THE FESTIVALS THE GROUPIES THE ALBU THE FANS THE BANDS THE INDUSTRY THE LOC S THE ENCORES THE DJS THE GIGS THE PROD LUBS THE REMIXES THE ARTISTS THE FESTIVA PIES THE ALBUMS THE TOURS THE FANS THE 88 • INPRESS


GIG OF THE WEEK

STEPHEN MALKMUS & THE JICKS TUESDAY, BRIDGE HOTEL

Stephen Malkmus is no stranger to regional Victoria, dragging a re-formed Pavement out to the Meredith Music Festival in 2010 for one of their first live shows back together (they were frickin’ rad, by the way). It’s with his post-Pavement outfit The Jicks that Malkmus heads to Castlemaine on Tuesday to play the Bridge Hotel, a pub-turned-music-venue that’s hosted some fine acts since deciding to stage regular gigs a few months back (Mick Harvey, Pony Face, King Gizzard, etc). The Jicks haven’t been here since 2009, and Malkmus is promising to play some brand new, unrecorded tunes, as well as a decent selection from their back catalogue, including their most recent album, the Beck-produced Mirror Traffic.

FRONTLASH KICKING GOALS

Massive congratulations to goal umpire and former Inpress scribe Chelsea Roffey, who becomes the first woman to umpire an AFL Grand Final. Go Swannies!

NO BLUES! The first line-up for Bluesfest 2013 is apparently only the tip of the iceberg, and they’ve already announced such luminaries as Wilco and Iggy & The Stooges, among many more fine names. Bring that shit on!

JOIN THE CLUB Stoked to hear Cherry Bar’s James Young is behind rejuvenated live music The Yarraville Club out west. Festivities kick off with an Exile On Main Street party on 3 November.

BACKLASH Good Charlotte pic by Andrew Briscoe

Good Charlotte pic by Andrew Briscoe

GOOD CHARLOTTE STRANGERS FESTIVAL HALL: 20/09/12

After a quick frisk and bag search, door staff advise us that filming with smart phones is strictly prohibited this evening. As soon as we take our balcony seats and gaze down at the heaving masses in GA, we wonder how venue security plan on enforcing this ban. There’s a life-size cardboard stand-up of a dude wearing Uggs, shorts and sunnies (only) placed downstage right. When a real-life carbon copy of

this cardboard effigy wanders over, moves this out of his way and takes up a position as part of support band Strangers, it’s all a bit, “What the?” Moustachioed guitarist Mark Barnes resembles a Howzat! The Kerry Packer Story cast member, but could definitely introduce a few sit-ups into his exercise régime. Towering frontman Ben Britton has awesome stage presence and is fully committed to engaging the crowd. This band’s triple-axe attack rumbles through the venue and Britton closes out Closer To Nowhere with an impressive vocal solo. After his tambourine is thrown to the crowd, Britton announces he’ll need to grab it back later and then Barnes’s cardboard replica is launched from the stage for a crowd-surf. Britton’s voice tires somewhat by the last couple of tracks, but this is certainly an admirable opening effort by Sydney’s Strangers. An old-school banner reading “GC” in ye olde font is lowered to dress the stage’s back wall for our headliners. We’re left looking at this for quite some time. Advertised kick-off is 9pm, but it’s another 20 minutes before we clap eyes on Good Charlotte. Commencing their set with The Anthem, the Madden twins bounce around the stage looking more identical than ever. The rest of the band are suitably decked out to present their pop-punk perfection. And then there’s bassist Paul Thomas, who looks more guitar tech than muso. Many recording camera phones break up skyward punching/clapping hands – good luck policing that no filming rule! Girls & Boys is an early highlight, then in comes Misery to cement

the band’s status as hit-making machines. After admitting he feels “motherfucking awesome”, frontman Joel Madden immediately apologises to his mum who he explains is in the house. Her twin boys sure love readjusting the caps on their heads to experiment with the directions in which their peaks protrude. Keep Your Hands Off My Girl quite simply detonates – a true masterpiece. Benji Madden is cheeky as ever and jokes, “I wanna fool around with your entire country.” “This is for everyone whose birthday it is not.” Joel expertly segues into Like It’s Her Birthday. Benji admits he wrote Sex On The Radio about a Melbourne girl (musician?) he fell in love with who went on to break his heart. The Madden banter is always quality, but song-inspiration explanation of the night goes to Last Night, which Joel tells us the pair wrote in Sydney. The story goes that Benji had a wild night in Melbourne and wound up having to borrow a random lady’s cell phone to call his bro (who was in Sydney) while standing at a bus stop wrapped in a curtain. The band had a gig to play in Sydney in three hours’ time and somehow it all came together: Benji made it from Melbourne to Sydney and they didn’t have to cancel the show. Now that’s one for the Lifestyles Of The Rich And Famous archives. There’s only one downer section and that’s when Benji plays a couple of songs acoustically. Emotionless is first. Many glance at their watches and Benji senses the lull shortly after commencing his second stripped-back offering.

themusic.com.au

PRIZE TIT

Channel surfing the other night we heard some 6pm news douche call the AFL best and fairest count ‘the Brownlows’. What a fuckwits.

FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS We don’t know what we find more outrageous – people are actually sooking that their new iPhones are scratched or that some knobend has actually invented the term ‘scuffgate’ to describe the whole thing.

BROWN-LOW So a few weeks after Charlotte Dawson cries foul over cyber bullying, she sledges WAGs’ Brownlow fashions via a show called Fox Footy Fashion Police? We’re the first to call a shit frock a shit frock, but Dawson’s gonna struggle to take the high moral ground next time someone tells her to jump off a bridge on Twitter. He stops. “By the way, if you need to get another beer – go for it! It won’t hurt my feelings.” After this “toilet break”, all Good Charlotte members return to the stage for a cranking rendition of Little Things and, to their credit, the hall’s energy level is immediately restored. I Just Wanna Live (didn’t realise this corker was GC!) follows I Don’t Wanna Be In Love (Dance Floor Anthem) and this band prove why they’ve owned their decade-plus career and ain’t going anywhere anytime soon. It’s only their second show this year, but you wouldn’t know it. Good Charlotte heart Australia and the mutual admiration society is reciprocated tenfold. Bryget Chrisfield INPRESS • 89


Regular John are threadbare, kinetic and explorative. Their performance is sans bravado or wank and they play hard, however shy the crowd. They are furiously good. Bonnie Neville

SHERIFF, THE RECHORDS CHERRY BAR: 22/09/12

The sun has been high in the sky all day, the air bursting with summer. With the Hawks winning their game and the city full of people out for a good time, there’s one bar that is pulling more than just a post-footy crowd. AC/DC Lane has punters lining up to get into Cherry Bar and it’s no wonder given the musical feast on offer inside. Local lads The ReChords are on song, their 1950sinspired rock and/or roll proving a hit with the growing crowd. The three-piece channel Roy Orbison and Elvis Presley and the crowd laps it up. Even without a drummer, the band inspire their fair share of boogying down the front and provide a great soundtrack to Saturday night in Melbourne town. Another trio that have been doing the rounds in recent years, Sheriff, are on next, and kick off their set with a bang, their new song Pick Yourself Up taking the energy of the venue and turning it up to 11. The band are in fine form this evening, their incessant gigging around town paying off in spades with an awesome stage presence and live show.

Earth pic by Jesse Booher

EARTH, BONNIE MERCER, MARGINS

Having shared a stage with Monster Magnet and Motörhead, one would imagine Regular John have to be furiously good at making a racket to get down, rock out and tour alongside said heavyweights.

Margins make excellent use of the spaces between notes. They sit in a semi-circle, utilising visual cues as roadmarkers through their spiralling instrumental works. Every squeak of feedback or pick grind is used – nothing wasted. The bass acts as the driving force, simple lines repeated to the point where they change before your ears, as if dissecting every note to be reassembled in reverse. They breathe life into every note they play, the crisp guitar work flies above the bass and drums, which lock into grooves deep enough to get lost in.

While bands Low Tide and Whipped Cream Chargers do a stellar job on support duties, the crowd appears calm, collected and in need of a violent shake down. Four intriguing individuals take to the art deco stage, their aesthetic borrowing from the ‘70s through to the ‘90s. Together they look natural: a mess of curls, black leather boots, paisley, tight jeans and a quiff. Honourable mention goes to the drummer’s wife beater and vintage cap. Lead vocalist Ryan Adamson finds his way to a mic centre stage beside a promising rack cradling guitars, keys and pedals aplenty. All necessary weapons for any average Joe wanting to pump out a psychedelic haze of audio fodder to sate stoners, dreamers and teens nostalgic for a musical genre that was revolutionary before they were born.

CORNER HOTEL: 16/09/12

Bonnie Mercer walks onto the stage armed with nothing but a guitar (and you’d have to say a fuckload of pedals) and proceeds to test the limits of the possible sum of these parts. The ‘song’ she conjures is 30 minutes of pulsing devastation. In parts it sounds more like a road crew laying asphalt than what many would consider ‘music’ but, as Margins did before her, Mercer brings life to the sound she’s creating – it becomes a living, growing, breathing entity. Earth front up to overwhelming applause, which frontman Dylan Carlson waves off in a delightfully shy fashion. He begins by telling us not to worry if we caught their Toff show earlier in the week, as tonight they’ll be doing things differently. They not so much launch as tip-toe into first number Multiplicity Of Doors off their recent album Angels Of Darkness, Demons Of Light II, which sets the scene for a slow-burning evening of more drone than doom. The opening stanza works well, a cluster of dudes in front of us slow-bang heads to the minimal arrangements. A “Shut the fuck up” rings out of the quiet between songs as Carlson visibly cringes but for the most part the crowd stand in revered silence, navigating the sonic paths Earth are creating. It’s an introspective experience, which through numbers like The Bees Made Honey In The Lion’s Skull off the 2008 album of the same name and the dynamic Ouroboros Is Broken is gripping, hypnotic. Where the thing falls down, and especially given the intensity of the opening acts, is in the sameness of some of the material on offer through the mid part of the set. Still, you’ve got to respect the dedication to their obscure cavity in the musical plain. If only they’d allow themselves to break away from the leash from time to time – but then they most likely wouldn’t matter. Samson McDougall

REGULAR JOHN

TOFF IN TOWN: 22/09/12 Sydney’s purveyors of stoner-psych rock Regular John are at the Toff to release their sophomore album Strange Flowers to a sparse yet noisehungry Melbourne crowd. This band must be legit. 90 • INPRESS

A rainbow strap hoists a guitar upon his slight frame and Adamson makes a succinct introduction, stating their band name “Regular John”, before they launch into the steady sweet grind of Strange Flower followed by Sky Burial. Michael Hutchence incarnate/bassist/ vocalist Caleb Gorman is a southpaw, caressing and then thrashing his guitar with his left hand, whilst drumming with his right foot in symbiosis. Adamson swaps guitars, saddling into one of baby blue hue. New songs are unveiled like a snake shedding wellworn skin for slick, unblemished scales. Material from their latest album proves to be the well-crafted armour upon Regular John’s vulnerable meat as they work their way deeper into the set. Adamson thanks the supporting bands and the audience for “putting down the bong” or whatever it is they fancy, to check them out. He announces their current single Slume, which they play with a sleepy sensuality while ample guitars give it guts. After he begins to introduce a song from their debut album The Peaceful Atom Is A Bomb, Adamson admits he is confused, despite having written the setlist himself. “How do you explain that?” a voice asks. “Law of averages,” quips Gorman. They move onto San Isidore before Adamson explains it’s now time for fun. And that it is. The guitarist immediately sinks into the gyrating bluesy riff of Fractals. The drummer provides a fierce, steady heartbeat and the crowd inches closer. Adamson’s vocals are begging, dripping with conviction and reverb. People, we’ve reached climax. Hooks and a definitive sound are hard to grasp, though it’s The Mars Volta-esque trip that turns people on about bands such as Regular John. You’ll desire to see where they lead you, ride their wave beside them and smoke whatever the hell it is they’ve been smoking. Adamson finishes crooning Letters In Braille whispering the mantra, “It’s Insaaane”. Winding up, Gorman takes over vocals here and there, the guitarist bashes on some keys tucked over to the side of stage while the drummer keeps up doing what he does best. Adamson declares a “sexy” song to finish the intimate, ignited set.

Off the back of their self-titled release launch on this very stage earlier in the year, Sheriff are going from strength to strength, and even though Cherry Bar isn’t bursting at the seams like it was on that night, it could be argued that the set they throw down tonight is as good as any. Since joining the band about six months ago, drummer Callum Routledge has made the kit his own, and singer Jimi Coelli gives his all ensuring that no one will leave with their hearing intact tonight. The set is chock-a-block, a two-piece horn section accompanying on a few numbers, and The ReChords double bassist Tyron Shaw even joins the party on highlight You’re Not Too Cool (So Baby Dance With Me). Guitarist Tom Watson is running around all over the venue, his riffs and vocals screaming from every corner of the room. The set finishes with singles What You Want and Simon Young. By the time midnight rolls around, this Saturday night is one to remember. Dylan Stewart

SONS OF LEE MARVIN, THE YARD APES THE RETREAT: 15/09/12

The Yard Apes sit somewhere between Link Wray and The Butthole Surfers and they quickly let the handbrake off on their punkabilly truck, letting it gather speed and roll dangerously through their set. Brett Dunbar belts his orange Gretsch while his brother Gregg (excitable and occasionally nude) can’t wipe the smile off his face. This is a mean trio and they ready the crowd for the riot that’s to follow.

as Lyngcoln – like an age-old barbarian – head-butts the tom drum and then punches at it repeatedly, not succeeding in breaking the drum yet successfully breaking his own hand. We haven’t seen carnage like this since Rockin’ Rocky Rockwell’s mock Elvis impersonation on The Lawrence Welk Show. Blown minds, smashed instruments and broken bones? Now that’s rock‘n’roll. Esther Rivers

HANSON

PALACE: 18/09/12 If Hanson came to Australia in 1997, it’s questionable whether or not tonight’s crowd would have coped. The Hanson brothers weren’t just an Avril Lavigne-style, tie-wearing tween fad; these were the boys we had raunchy dreams about that we wouldn’t dare share. Walking into the Palace, we note the crowd is predominately female. Only two males, not counting venue staff, are spotted on the way to the bathroom. Tonight is the second of two sold-out shows at this venue (the ‘90s are definitely back). When the boys take to the stage, the crowd bursts like a taut balloon into the highest piercing scream heard, ever. It’s incredible! Boy band pandemonium is a reality and we’re in the eye of the storm. Loving it. Isaac, Taylor and Zac Hanson are now 31, 29 and 26 respectively. Taylor Hanson thrusts into his keyboard in tight, figure-hugging jeans, oozing the same charisma as his 12-year-old self. His voice is pitch-perfect during Where’s The Love off their 1997 hit album Middle Of Nowhere. Taylor is a showman: he’s jumping around energetically and flirting with the uncontrollable crowd. Zac Hanson habitually whips his hair back revealing those trademark dimples. Isaac Hanson puts on some sunglasses mid-chorus, for no apparent reason. The brothers now collectively have eight children and are noticeably sexed-up onstage. In the second segment, the trio is up front (closer – excellent). The Hanson brothers, sharing a mic, sing an a cappella song they used to sing on a street corner in their hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma. They then “slow it down”, as Taylor instructs, leaving youngest brother Zac alone onstage. He confidently launches into ballad Use Me Up off 2010 record Shout It Out. Zac also sings lead vocals while playing drums, covering The Beatles classic Oh! Darling. MMMBop sees us rejoice with arms in the air, this poptastic track is exactly the same as the recording done some 16 years ago. The encore song is a cover of Taylor Swift’s current chart hit We Are Never Ever Getting Back Together. It’s a healthy dose of cheese, but we are washing it down with the night’s drink of choice: Smirnoff Black Ice. Nostalgic smiles are contagious and worn by all. Upon leaving, this reviewer finds herself asking a question also pondered by her surly, ten-year-old self back in the day: What does MMMBop mean? Cassandra Fumi

Sons Of Lee Marvin are fucking mental. In the best possible way. The Retreat is packed largely with rockers awaiting the debut of album number three. Disguised in a wrestling mask, the MC steps onto the stage and lets loose a roaring introduction, instilling a niggling feeling that shit is about to kick off. The band fly hot and heavy into the first few tracks and the energy is palpable as the crowd respond, particularly one crazy dancer who is flinging his sweat on anybody coming within a five-metre radius. “We’d like to invite the best looking guy on this stage tonight to play a few songs,” says guitarist Stu Manchu. It’s a debatable comment since guitarist Corin Spencer looks pretty dapper in his black ensemble. Mandolin player Lee French steps up to assist with a couple of the album’s low-key country tunes. The mood shifts, but energy levels rise once more as tracks Flesh Is The Future and Already Got The Rock make us take heed. The crowd are moving, whistling, cheering and grooving and the vibe rebounds as the performance builds with each new song. We move from the wild showmanship of frontman Mick Beard toward the back line, where the stellar combination of the band’s drumming duo are getting looser than cheese in a Hot Pocket. Drummer Pugs Lyngcoln is bending forward and screaming his backing vocals into the mic as he pounds away, and something about (second drummer) Gavin Smith’s face spells mischief. Their last song, a cover of Dead Moon’s Dead Moon Night, makes all hell break loose. Beard is face first with his guitar on the floor, Manchu runs wild with his guitar in the air and Spencer holds fort up the front as a cymbal suddenly flies through the air. Beard catches it (we think with his forehead) and bashes at it with the neck of his bass. The drums are in pieces, Smith launching his snare over the stage just

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Hanson pic by Jay Hynes


the party mood I Exist take it to another level. Perth band Extortion close the night. For a headline act they play the shortest set, though probably the most songs. “Let’s play something really fast with indecipherable lyrics,” jokes singer Rohan Harrison midset, as the band break into a one-minute blast-beat track.

CORNER HOTEL: 15/09/12 Hugo Costin-Neilsen, who performs under the name Toy Boats, seems nervous and awkward onstage. He shouldn’t be, he has songs that are as good as any in his genre: City & Colour, Bright Eyes, Rocky Votolato et al. Backed by a full band and playing electric guitar tonight, his sound hints to the new wave stylings of The Cure with a teenage infatuation with ‘90s emo. Once Costin-Neilsen has a few more live shows under his belt, Toy Boats may soon become the brightest Byron Bay band on the Resist label.

A Death In The Family pic by Brendan Hitchens

POISON CITY WEEKENDER THE TOTE: 14/09/12

White Walls are pure ‘90s, sonically and aesthetically: Dr Martens, denim jackets, eyebrow piercings and eyecovering hair. Musically, it’s shoegazer grunge: My Bloody Valentine’s Loveless meets Smashing Pumpkins’ Siamese Dream. Bass-less and, for the majority, without melody, there’s enough interplay between guitars – tone shifts, pedal boards and odd tunings – to make it interesting. Next up and in keeping with the ‘90s theme are Sydney band Chinese Burns Unit, playing pop punk in the vein of Hard-Ons and The Meanies. They race through 16 songs in 25 minutes, including their entire 7”. Featuring members of Lawnsmell and Frenzal Rhomb, the band has a sense of humour and punctuates each song with an amusing and at times irreverent anecdote. It’s their first time in Melbourne and they are instant crowd favourites. From Western Australia, Grim Fandago is the least abrasive band on the line-up and they shine. Singer Tom Ware has a penchant for crafting intelligent lyricism

into catchy pop music. The harmonies are tight, the chords crisp and the sound instantly likeable. The beer garden soon empties for Tasmanian band Luca Brasi as the capacity crowd muscle inside to see what that little island down south has to offer. The front rows seem split two ways: those who have crossed Bass Strait for the event and the Melbourne locals fully aware of what the hype is all about. Vocalist Tyler Richardson’s lyrics are simple but genuine and the crowd matches him word for word, as if the band’s album Extended Family was written purposely for them. The addition of a third guitarist in April has fleshed out the band’s style and emphasised the melodic facet of their sound, which is evident on new single and crowd favourite Viva Tassie Cabrones. Canberra’s I Exist are over the top in every way, from song titles including Black Unicorn, Return To Cosmos and Immortal Mare, to the fact they have seven people onstage, including four guitarists. Frontman Jake Willougby is full of energy, stage diving, hanging from timber beams and bouncing back and forth on the crammed stage. Closing with Turbonegro’s I Got Erection, if Luca Brasi set

Dressed in RM Williams and a white Bonds top, Hoodlum Shouts singer Sam Leyshon takes to the main stage, playing the role of Australian storyteller. He shares vivid poetry about his country’s history and at one point even plays the didgeridoo. Their sound is sparse when necessary, accentuating the lyricism as the guitar drops out, but full at other times, filling out the room with menacing post-punk. Closing with the spoken word-driven Hoodlum Settlers, it’s an unconventional way to culminate their set, but testament to their approach to music. After eight years together, A Death In The Family use their performance at Weekender, the festival run by bass player Andrew Hayden, as their final show. Playing a best-of set, littered with tracks from each of their two full-lengths and EPs, it’s faultless. For the final two songs, they are joined onstage by original guitarist/singer Sarah Hardiman, fresh from a stint in the UK. The dynamic created between male and female vocals is impassioned and juxtaposes the gruff with the melodious, a trademark that made their early recordings so urgent. Having toured the UK, Europe and America, playing far-reaching destinations such as Finland, Czech Republic and Slovakia and opening for Against Me! and The Gaslight Anthem before each band broke, tonight’s show is undoubtedly their best; sombre but gratifying and going out on top. Headlining tonight’s event are New York band Rival Schools. On paper, they are perfect for the festival: a supergroup made up of members from Gorilla Biscuits, Quicksand and Youth Of Today and the makers of

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seminal 2001 post-hardcore record United By Fate. The band’s nostalgic take on their debut album injects joy into the crowd, but songs from its follow-up, written some ten years later, fall significantly flat.

THE REVERENCE: 16/09/12 The final instalment of Poison City Weekender heads out west to the Reverence, a hotel taken over by the Arthouse family and today unveiling its brand new second bandroom. Early in the afternoon, Sydney band Milhouse take to the stage to thrill the crowd. Sounding like The Lucksmiths meets Descendents, their sharp and witty lyricism is matched with remarkable pop sensibilities. Like so many of the bands over the course of this weekend, it’s the biggest crowd they’ve ever played to. Closing with TL;DR from their Everything’s Coming Up EP, if the audience don’t know the words after the first verse, they soon do after the second. Somewhere between heart-warming and heart-breaking, 23-year-old Jen Buxton’s music is an outpouring of emotion. Full of pain and articulated so eloquently in her lyricism, she casually fingerpicks through countryinspired folk music. “It’s much too late for sympathy/ Self-loathing gives me energy,” she sings on new song Anhedonia. Throwing in covers by Mississippi songwriter Cory Branan, Jawbreaker, and a duet with Jaime Hay (for John Prine and Iris DeMent’s In Spite Of Our Faces), her set is eclectic and inspired. The standout of this festival. The Smith Street Band return to conclude their tour and the weekend-long festival run by their label. With a solid three weeks to digest Sunshine And Technology, their acclaimed new release, the crowd scarily knows every lyric, every lead guitar line and every drum breakdown. Opening with the pertinent Young Drunk, it’s chaos from the first riff. Frontman Wil Wagner cops a mic stand to the face, but doesn’t break stride, joking with the crowd surfer, “You owe me a tooth”. Jaime Hay joins them on stage mid-set. They team up to cover Making The Nouveau Riche by Blueline Medic. It’s a symbolic moment and in many ways signifies the dawning of a new era of Melbourne, and perhaps even Australian, punk rock. They close with South East Facing Wall, which Wagner prefaces as “the last song we play in Australia for a few months”. It’s seen as an invitation from the crowd, as both band and audience leave nothing behind. Brendan Hitchens

INPRESS • 91


ROOTS DOWN

ADAMANTIUM WOLF

WAKE THE DEAD

BLUES ‘N’ ROOTS WITH DAN CONDON ROOTS@DRUMMEDIA.COM.AU

THE HEAVY SHIT WITH LOCHLAN WATT

HARDCORE AND PUNK WITH SARAH PETCHELL

Gold Coast pop-punks Skyway have decided to call it a day after four years and five releases. They’ll be playing a final tour with Built On Secrets, and releasing a new digital EP before they go out in style at Bang on Saturday 13 October and Lilydale Showgrounds on Sunday 14 (all-ages). The band’s explanation is simple: “We’re still as good mates as we were when we got into this, it’s just that life is taking us all in different directions at this time.”

Wilco “There’s not much blues on there,” Bluesfest director Peter Noble said, grinning widely, when I met him in a Brisbane Japanese restaurant two weeks ago. By this stage I knew the first Bluesfest announcement was on its way and this little tidbit of information only furthered my curiosity as to who would be on the bill. When the first announcement was finally revealed to me, a couple of things in particular stuck out; it seems a fearless kind of announcement to me. Noble and his crew seem confident leading with punks such as Dropkick Murphys, Frank Turner and the mighty Iggy & The Stooges; all perfect fits for the Bluesfest but not necessarily the kind of bands we’re used to seeing on the first announcement. Likewise, they seem confident to once again lead their announcement with Ben Harper, an artist whose Bluesfest shows have become the thing of legend and has made that festival his own countless times over the past 16 years. No doubt the addition of Santana and Steve Miller Band – both playing Bluesfest for the first time – are big drawcards for the more mature punter, while the return of the Tedeschi Trucks Band brings the real rich guitar blues onto the bill; meaning that, all in all, it’s a pretty nicely rounded line-up. My top three picks from the first announcement are outlined below: Ask anyone who knows and they’ll happily tell you that Wilco are one of the world’s best live bands right now. Yes, their records are always vital, but in the live environment they offer something that is just completely mind boggling and utterly amazing. Tight, loose, musical, noisy, loud, intricate, brash… just see them. For Christ’s sake just see them. Their latest record The Whole Love was one of last year’s truly fine records and we can’t wait to see them performing songs from it in the live environment. They dominated Bluesfest a number of years ago and they’re gonna do it again. What can be said about Iggy & The Stooges that hasn’t already been preached a hundred times over? One of the original punk rock bands, with a couple of the most enduring, well loved rock’n’roll records of all time, this is an act that you need to see before it’s too late. And it’s going to be too late soon, as this is going to be the last ever tour of Australia that Iggy & The Stooges embark on. The past two visits have both been absolutely incredible – we’re not just saying that – and we have no reason to believe that it will be any different this time around; shame on anyone who misses this inimitable rock band for the last time. The last time the great Bonnie Raitt played Bluesfest she closed the Crossroads Stage in scintillating form; as far as blues singers and guitarists go, she has to be one of the best that’s ever been around. Her Slipstream record of earlier this year was very good indeed and we just know she’s going to have a band packed with some of the world’s best players when she makes her return to Bluesfest in 2013. There are another three big announcements to come (I’m guessing there’ll be a smaller one with the locals as well, but don’t quote me on that) and I think the next one is just a couple of weeks off. You may have noticed a lack of Australian acts on the first announcement; expect that to all change very soon! And I am assured that, yes, there will be more blues. The full line-up as it stands following the first announcement is as follows: Ben Harper, Santana, Iggy & The Stooges, Chris Isaak, Bonnie Raitt, Wilco, Dropkick Murphys, Steve Miller Band, Glen Hansard with The Frames, Tedeschi Trucks Band, William Elliott Whitmore, Newton Faulkner, Frank Turner & The Sleeping Souls, Grace Potter, Playing For Change and Ben Caplan. 92 • INPRESS

Defeater Don’t forget about US touring duo Defeater and Blacklisted hitting town this week. The forward-thinking hardcore groups will play this Thursday at the Corner Hotel with Vultures and at TLC Bayswater on Friday 28 (all-ages) with Free World.

Melbourne death-gore-slammers Whoretopsy have confirmed the details for their new EP release, Isn’t She Lovely. It’s going to be made available in mid-October, with a bloodstained lyric video for the first single Seminal Torture currently viewable on YouTube. Brisbane pop punk guys Sunsets have been at work in the studio putting together a new EP titled Make It Happen. They plan to release it sometime in either October or November, and you can check out the first single Elsewhere Bound on YouTube.

American deathcore dudes Oceano are headed down to Australia for the first time – and they’ll be playing direct support to Perth group and recent Roadrunner Records Australia debutants Make Them Suffer. Making sure the bill is supermassive, Saviour, also from Perth, and Melbourne’s Boris The Blade will round it out. You can catch them at Invasion Fest in Ringwood on Sunday 25 November (all-ages) and at the Eastern Station Hotel in Ballarat on Monday 26 November.

Some dedicated folk have put together a book on the 20-year history of iconic Melbourne punk/metal/hardcore venue The Arthouse. Entitled Home Is Where The Arty Is, you can pre-order the hardcover, full-colour book for $65 from thearthousebook.bigcartel.com.

Sydney/Brisbane deathcore group Thy Art Is Murder recently released the first single from their debut album, Hate. You can check out or pick up the ridiculously crushing Reign Of Darkness over on YouTube or iTunes. Hate is due out on 19 October, and if you pre-order it now through JB Hi-Fi you’ll also receive a limited edition Thy Art Is Murder bumbag for you to hide your stash in.

Supports have all been confirmed for the upcoming Russian Circles tour with Eagle Twin. This Friday 28 September at the Corner Hotel they’ll be joined by Agonhymn and The Broderick, while HWCT and Clagg support at the Northcote Social Club on Tuesday 2 October, with I Exist, Clagg, Hydromedusa, Sleepmakeswaves, among he names opening up the rest of the tour.

FRAGMENTED FREQUENCIES OTHER MUSIC FROM THE OTHER SIDE WITH BOB BAKER FISH sabers bouncing around madly, and a relentless beat chugging along under John Williams’ triumphant score. To get the sounds of R2D2, Bongiovi toiled for eight hours on now-ancient synths, but the efforts were worth it. It’s totally nuts.

Meco On 25 May, 1977 a young man watched Star Wars on its opening day. He’d never seen anything like it. Over that weekend he watched it four more times, even purchasing the soundtrack. For Domenico Monardo, already a sucker for science fiction, there was something special about this film, something magical. Yet when he got home and played John Williams’ now-famous symphonic score, something was wrong: the sound effects were missing. “I wanted to hear the spaceships, R2D2, the light sabers, the creatures’ sounds,” he would later tell interviewers. Monardo, or Meco as he liked to be known, wasn’t your typical acne-scarred, geeky, living-at-home Star Wars fanatic. An accomplished trombonist, while still at school in the ‘50s he’d formed a jazz trio with future legends Ron Carter and Chuck Mangione. Since the mid-’60s he’d been a session musician and in the ‘70s started a production company with Tony Bongiovi (the second cousin of Jon Bon Jovi and producer of Jimi Hendrix, The Ramones, Talking Heads, etc) and Harold Wheeler. Disco Corporation Of America (or DCA) worked with numerous artists including Neil Diamond, but they really cemented their reputation with the burgeoning popularity of disco – most notably arranging and co-producing Gloria Gaynor’s classic Never Can Say Goodbye album. So it was clear to Meco what John Williams’ score needed: the sweat and the swagger of disco. Star Wars And Other Galactic Funk by Meco is a deep, funky, disco monster with laser beams and light

The record was huge; Bongiovi would use his first royalty check to build the legendary Power Station recording studios. And Meco? Well, he kept going, a disco Midas transforming everything he could find into disco. John Williams copped the brunt of it, Meco not only funking up the remaining Star Wars trilogy, but also Superman and Close Encounters Of The Third Kind. “Meco took things another step by bringing Star Wars to a vast audience who otherwise would not have heard it in its original symphonic setting,” offered John Williams in the liner notes of Meco’s Superman & Other Galactic Heroes, being careful not to give his take on the quality of the music. Meco’s crowning glory, aside from co-producing Kenny G’s first album and giving a young Jon Bon Jovi his first professional vocal on R2D2 – We Wish You A Merry Christmas, is 1978’s Meco Plays The Wizard Of Oz. It’s a darker, slightly schitzo disco take, perhaps more menacing due to the strange vocals over the typically symphonic score and relentless disco shuffle. Ding-Dong! The Witch Is Dead is particularly terrifying, with a shrieking witch and sped-up munchkins. You don’t know whether to dance or hide whimpering in the corner. In 1985 with dwindling sales and increasingly tokenistic albums, Meco left the music business behind to become – wait for it – a real estate broker in San Antonio. Yet as recent as 2008, at the age of 69, he was promising more Star Wars soundtracks and collaborations with Diana Ross and Britney Spears. Not only have these not eventuated, but Meco himself has disappeared again, so it’s possible that he’s ultimately decided his talents lie best with selling houses, or John Williams has finally had him taken out.

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BLKOUT Last week I mentioned that 2012 is the year in which Miles Away will be celebrating their 10th anniversary as a band, and to celebrate they will be playing a pretty massive local festival in Melbourne this December. Well, the festival is now sold out but the tour has now been extended, under the name of the Make It A Decade Tour, and will see Miles Away teaming up with American hardcore act Cruel Hand and fellow Perth band The Others. Tickets will be limited so be sure to mark these dates on the calendar in celebration of the milestone that Miles Away have reached, because like most Miles Away tours, it’s not likely that these tickets will last long. You can catch the tour when it hits the Bendigo Hotel for an 18+ show on Friday 30 November. Tickets are on sale now. Earlier this year, around the time of Hardcore 2012, it was announced that Resist Records would be releasing the second album from Perth hardcore act BLKOUT. The album is called Point Of No Return and it’s out now. It’s an interesting album in all aspects – from the somewhat experimental music to the lyrics dealing with the struggles of the modern, middle-class youth – and it’s definitely something worth checking out in a live setting. Fans will get that chance this October when the band head back to the East Coast for a run of shows. You can catch them on Saturday 27 October at the Gasometer with Negative Reinforcement, Starvation, Sumeru and Reincarnation. Then there is an all-ages show on Sunday 28 October at Collingwood Masonic Centre again with Negative Reinforcement, Starvation, Sumeru, Right Mind and Free World. One of the most impressive acts at this year’s Poison City Weekender was Tasmania’s Lincoln Le Fevre. The recent signing to the Poison City roster really proved his mettle, and now with a new album coming out via the label we can expect big things from this guy. The album, his second, is to be called Resonation, and will be released 12 October, unleashing on the world his brand of music that is a little bit punk, a little bit country, a little bit rock’n’roll and a whole lot of heart. It makes it hard to hold the fact he’s from Tassie against him… Anyway, to coincide with the album’s release, Lincoln has added a whole bunch of tour dates to his schedule. You can catch him on Saturday 10 November at the Reverence Hotel in Footscray. If you get the chance, I recommended checking Lincoln and his band out as the experience is something else. Let’s stop for a second to talk about Melbourne hardcore band Hit List. In their heyday, the band were like no other band in the Australian hardcore scene, and since then no one else has come close to filling the void of tough, straight-up hardcore. Fast forward to 2012, Hit List are back playing shows and to celebrate Midnight Funeral Records is releasing their self-titled album on vinyl. So if you head on over to the Midnight Funeral store, you can place your pre-orders (with an expected end of October delivery date) for the record in either red or black vinyl. At the moment, the only announced show for the re-formed band is in Melbourne this November and the line-up is killer. You’ve got Hit List teaming up with Sydney’s Vigilante, Iron Mind and Outright for an 18+ show at the Reverence Hotel on Saturday 10 November. Tickets will be $15 on the door. Just a reminder to everyone that the Defeater and Blacklisted tour that I’ve been talking about non-stop since it got announced starts this week. Personally, I am SUPER excited to see Blacklisted again, and think it will be especially interesting to see them play the songs off No One Deserves To Be Here More Than Me live (screw the haters, I think that album is great!). Anyway, depending on your age, you can catch the dual line-up on Thursday 27 September at the Corner Hotel for an 18+ show or on Friday 28 at TLC in Bayswater for an all-ages show with Free World. Tickets to both shows are still available so grab them and head along to either show because they are going to be some of the coolest shows this year.


DANCE MOVES

OG FLAVAS

INTELLIGIBLE FLOW

NEW CURRENTS WITH TIM FINNEY

URBAN AND R&B NEWS BY CYCLONE

HIP HOP NEWS & COMMENTARY WITH ALEKSIA BARRON

Slaughterhouse

Miguel I don’t mean to be churlish, but the hosannas greeting Frank Ocean’s recent album Channel Orange strike an odd chord for me. Massive respect to the dude personally – and there are parts of the new album that are very endearing – but it’s hard not to conclude that a lot of people’s love of Ocean (leaving aside the biographical details) is born of a desire for a version of r’n’b which embraces both the gleaming modernism and unabashed emotionalism of its commercial manifestations and the idiosyncratic impulses of a more individualist, “underground” artist. Channel Orange kinda does this, but hesitantly, half-heartedly, in a series of sketches that could have done with more workshopping. Or maybe the problem is that when it comes to this idea of ecumenical r’n’b, my heart already belongs to Miguel. Miguel’s 2010 debut All I Want Is You demonstrated signs of greatness, its three singles (the title track, Sure Thing and Quickie) charting an increasingly unpredictable course of misty, swooning soul. In 2012, Miguel’s switched his game up, dribbling out new material in a succession of short EPs that reveal how his aesthetic is expanding all the time. As fine as they were, his earlier singles couldn’t prepare listeners for Adorn (the lead track off February’s Art Dealer Chic Vol. 1 EP), an irresistibly sweet, open-hearted love song in the vein of Marvin Gaye’s Sexual Healing; all fuzzy, warm synth chords and soaring promises of devotion (at the time of writing, a re-released Adorn is #1 on Billboard’s r’n’b/hip hop chart and #35 on the Hot 100, making it Miguel’s biggest hit to date). Since then, Miguel has seemed to unleash new and unanticipated lines of attack at every turn. Arch N Point (from Art Dealer Chic Vol. 2), with its chugging guitar and iconic portrayal of sexual irresistibility, brings to mind both early Lenny Kravitz or Terence Trent D’Arby, Miguel’s cool, chauvinist condescension achieving a distanced kind of charm. …All, with its 4X4 beat, percolating synth-bass and yearning chorus, cleaves closer to mainstream r’n’b norms, but in a skewed and distorted manner, like an Usher tune produced by the Human League circa 1979. The irresistible stop-start electro-funk of Party Life (from Art Dealer Chic Vol. 3) is an out ’n’ out homage to early ‘80s Prince. Like Ocean, it’s this sense in which Miguel’s music seems to sit comfortably within both mainstream and oppositional notions of r’n’b that marks him out amongst a crowded field, but he draws his links between r’n’b’s commercial and experimental arms (The-Dream and Ne-Yo on the one hand and such disparate types as D’Angelo and Meshell Ndegeocello on the other) with an unselfconscious effortlessness that makes Ocean appear tentative and unfocused. Miguel’s second album Kaleidoscope Dream (featuring both Adorn and Arch ‘n’ Point) is due out in October, but the dude seems addicted to the slow-drip approach, pre-releasing album tracks that serve to expand his range still further. Do You… and Kaleidoscope Dream offer tugs of war between pillowy hazes of overlapping vocal echoes and rumbling bass-driven funk-rock. The Thrill is cheerful new wave playing from the next room; its clipped and fuzzed out guitar a heart-warming counterpoint to Arch N Point. Don’t Look Back and Use Me are overblown power ballads, Miguel’s stirring multi-tracked choruses swooping across endless layers of groaning synthesisers, churning guitar and distorted beats. Use Me is particularly startling and marvellous, a masochistic plea for sexual domination that comes on both seductive and melancholy, Miguel capturing (without even seeming to try) the lurking sense of self-annihilation underlying his desire for dehumanising sex. You could wait for the whole album, I guess, but the songs already available demand your attention. Maybe put Channel Orange down for now. I’m just saying, you could do better.

Eminem loves his supergroups. He’s long been involved in D12. Then he had the compact Bad Meets Evil with fellow Detroiter Royce Da 5’9”. Last year they presented the ‘EP’ Hell: The Sequel. And Eminem has signed Slaughterhouse – its members Royce, Joe Budden, Joell Ortiz and Crooked I – to his Shady Records. Welcome To Our House is their first major label effort and reached No. 2 in the US. You may already know the Slaughterhousers. Not coincidentally, all have had label woes. They’re underdogs. Royce is, of course, ‘Bad’ to Eminem’s ‘Evil’. He premiered with the promising Rock City in the early 2000s, DJ Premier helming the sweet-ass Boom. Budden, a Jersey City native, broke out with 2003’s self-titled album (home to Just Blaze’s Pump It Up) on Def Jam before going indie. Brooklyn’s Ortiz was at one stage with Dr Dre’s slow-moving Aftermath Entertainment. He’s lately aligned himself with Shady. Crooked, from Long Beach, is an ex-Death Row affiliate. Naturally, Slaughterhouse are all about the hardcore. In fact, hardcore rap is virtually extinct in the hedonistic electro-hop era. 50 Cent, due to unleash Street King Immortal in November, has become a gangsta parody. Others have kinda wussed out. Snoop Dogg has (again) renamed himself – this time choosing Snoop Lion. The OG, who believes he’s the reincarnation of the peace-lovin’ Bob Marley, is prepping a reggae album, Reincarnated (duh!), with Major Lazer. Dre has apparently semi-retired, his Detox yet to materialise. The NWA co-founder cameos on Rick Ross’ Jake One-guided 3 Kings alongside Jay-Z (off God Forgives, I Don’t), and produced Fiddy’s New Day, but doesn’t contribute here, Eminem connection or no. And so Slaughterhouse are repping hardcore’s old(er) guard. Welcome To... is a glorified posse album. Camaraderie is the key theme, Slaughterhouse paying homage

to hip hop on StreetRunner’s radio-friendly My Life, with Cee-Lo Green. (It samples Corona’s ‘90s Italohouse The Rhythm Of The Night!) Welcome To... is also a big-sounding record that taps into hip hop’s prevailing nostalgia for epic ‘90s joints. Busta Rhymes (Budden’s ally on Fire and since sometime foe) booms on Hit-Boy’s fierce Coffin, which references his classic Woo Hah!! Got You All In Check. Slaughterhouse rap over beats supplied by Eminem and his old colleagues, among them Mr Porter (AKA D12’s Kon Artis), who shares his appreciation of grungy Detroit beats. Porter participated in Slaughterhouse’s debut. Wannabe hype man Swizz Beatz joins the fold on Porter’s amped up yet goofy party song Throw It Away. Brit producer Alex Da Kid, responsible for Eminem’s crossover hit Love The Way You Lie with Rihanna, has two records. His Our House blends a similar alt.rock ballad ethos to Love... with Portisheadstyle trip hop. Guest Eminem dominates the sombre track with a hook by Skylar Grey, co-writer of Love... Alex and Grey are also on board for Rescue Me, which reveals a slight Boys Noize electro-hop pull. But Slaughterhouse have reached out to hot relative newcomers, too. Drake’s homie T-Minus chips in with Throw That (Eminem again gatecrashing), ol’ skool electro, and the even better underground techno Frat House (plus there’s rock guitar!). The Canadian may specialise in illwave, but he customises his beats for the grimy Slaughterhouse. AraabMuzik creates the eerie, surrealist, synthy horrorcore Hammer Dance, the first single earlier this year (oh, the hammer is a gun). Get Up is funky ‘90s boom-bap, courtesy of No ID (Common). Slaughterhouse let down their collective guards for the personal Goodbye. If Welcome To... falters, it’s because it’s overcrowded. What’s more, lyrical prowess aside, Slaughterhouse are a little unfocussed. At times they come across as clowns like D12, but then they offer party tracks, ‘keep it real’ hip hop missives, and the odd bit of horrorcore. Nevertheless, the ultimate question is: can Slaughterhouse fend off new ‘bad’ rappers on the block, Odd Future?

THE BREAKDOWN POP CULTURE THERAPY WITH ADAM CURLEY

Sarah Mary Chadwick During his keynote interview at Brisbane’s BIGSOUND conference this month, Ben Lee described his induction into the US lo-fi scene of the mid ‘90s. It came about by happenstance, he told; his naivety in recording sessions with his teen band Noise Addict produced what he called in the interview “bad recordings”. Those recordings saw Noise Addict accepted into the fold of bands producing technologically primitive recordings as an aesthetic and perhaps political choice. It was a lucky break, Lee told the audience. Of course there was a little more to it than that. The lo-fi aesthetic of Noise Addict did perfectly suit the earnest teenage musings of its singer and his foal-like vocals. The delivery matched the material and the industry personnel around the band, including Sonic Youth’s Thurston Moore who signed them to his Ecstatic Peace! label, and could see the potential in that. Considering the commercial rebirth of lo-fi over the past few years as well as the number of burgeoning smallprint labels in Australia turning out home-recorded records, it’s worth continuing the conversation about what justifies slacking off on recording techniques, or indeed working two fold to produce a primitive tone, when making an album. That is to say that in all arts practice, the artist should be able to give reasons for their choice of medium. Those reasons should extend beyond monetary limitations, too. After all, if you’re broke and want to dress well, you go and find a free or cheap suit. Plenty of start-up bands attempt big-studio sounds on a budget, though the argument could also be made (by people forced to listen to these recordings) that they shouldn’t. Melbourne-based noise troubadour Sarah Mary Chadwick has been working with lo-fi recording for

a decade, most of that with her former band Batrider. That band often used lo-fi techniques to create mood and to juxtapose unadorned and repetitive musical phrasings and breakneck rhythms, making for albums that got easily under your skin and then poisoned you from the inside. The band’s final album, last year’s Pile Of Lies (Two Bright Lakes/Inertia), built walls of peaking guitars and hid Chadwick’s usually caterwauling voice behind them; it was an exercise in using recording as a songwriting element, and as an assault weapon. Chadwick’s recently released debut solo album, Eating For Two (out through Bedroom Suck Records), plays an opposing game. It’s stark, leaving Chadwick and her at turns delicate and jarring guitar playing to do almost all the work. There are layers in places, some backing guitar tracks and harmonies that create the effect of ghostly pleadings echoing Chadwick’s brutal appraisals of a past relationship. A halo of reverb over much of the album also aids in the overwhelming sense of loneliness Chadwick creates. If it were to be matched against another recent recording, that would have to be Adalita’s 2011 self-titled album, which also dealt in ghostly balladry. But Adalita’s album, with the help of the late Dean Turner, set the Magic Dirt frontwoman’s stream-of-consciousness punk poetry in a soft, if minimal, landscape, enhancing the dreamlike state of the songs. Eating For Two is wide awake, and while there’s immense beauty to be found, it isn’t soft in the slightest. It isn’t a troubled dream. It’s a purpling, seeping sore. Chadwick’s confessions are both uncomfortable and painfully relatable. “I knew I would break us and I even knew how”, she sings in a hushed tone and broad New Zealand accent amidst sparse strumming on Perfect For You. On Don’t Try At All, an accordion wheezes like a slow anxiety attack as Chadwick’s vocals layer up and she repeats the title phrase. The album’s finale, I Could Have Lived Without You, is its most gutting, a rasping list of things Chadwick could have done rather than be in a relationship. Through this, the lo-fi recording feels essential. It’s the crumbling walls of this emotional prison. It’s the unclean air that keeps the album alive and threatens to leave.

themusic.com.au

Hilltop Hoods Okay, everyone stand up and give the Hilltop Hoods a round of applause. They have won the music video game forever with their amazing new clip for Rattling The Keys To The Kingdom. It does seem only fitting that the best track off their latest album Drinking From The Sun should also have the best video accompaniment, and boy, have they nailed it. The clip is basically four minutes and eight seconds of celebration of Australian hip hop culture, featuring artists from all over the country. It’s an incredible cross-section – there’s the pioneers such as Def Wish Cast, the newcomers such as Mr Grevis, and people who peddle very different styles of hip hop, like Seth Sentry and Horrorshow. Special mention should be made of the brains behind the cameras: Selina Myles and Adfu. If you’re yet to lay eyes on the clip, you need to watch it – and if you’ve already seen it, you probably need to watch it again. See the clip and learn all about the story behind it at rattlingthekeys.com. It’s been a while between drinks, but Sydney lads Spit Syndicate are back with a new single, Beauty In The Bricks. The track, produced by Horrorshow’s Adit, was available for streaming on the duo’s Soundcloud last week (you can still hear a snippet of it at soundcloud.com/spitsyndicate), and has been getting some love on triple j, so if you haven’t heard it yet, try requesting it. It’ll be available for purchase via iTunes on Friday 5 October, so if you haven’t heard this cruisy, clever track yet, you shouldn’t have too long to wait. The boys are heading out on tour to celebrate the new single, and will swing by the Laundry Bar on Saturday 27 October, supported by Dylan Joel and Jackie Onassis. Tickets are now on sale from spitsyndicate.oztix.com.au. The symbiotic relationship between duo Death Starrs and the all-powerful Hilltop Hoods continues to grow. Death Starrs (consisting of MC Syntax and producer Mules) won the triple j Hilltop Hoods remix competition a few months back with their killer track Novocaine. Now they’ve dropped something new – Immortal, which features production from none other than Suffa. The track is excellent – Syntax has continued to up his game as an MC, and he spins some excellent rhymes over the flawless production. The chorus, with its rising chord progression and free-flowing percussion, is brilliant. It’s currently sitting pretty on the triple j Unearthed chart, so give it a spin at triplejunearthed.com. Speaking of remixes, there are some brilliant remixes of the grimy Sky’High track Reign available for free download now. Reign, a track that positively emanated a UK grime vibe, was one of the standouts from her debut album Forever Sky’High, released earlier this year. Now, it’s been given the grime remix treatment in both Australia and the UK. Smash Brothers, our local champions of the art form, have done one remix, and the UK’s Double S and D-Flowz have contributed a second interpretation. It’s good stuff, so add it to your music collection today by downloading from soundcloud.com/foreverskyhigh. Local lad Seth Sentry is to be congratulated: his debut LP This Was Tomorrow has debuted at number six on the ARIA charts. It’s a brilliant result, not least because it means he did better than Carly Rae Jepsen, and that means that there is hope for the world yet. He’s currently touring the new record, and this weekend is Melbourne’s opportunity to sample the new wares in a live setting. Sentry hits the Corner Hotel on Saturday 29 September, and will be supported by the marvellous Grey Ghost (aka Jeremedy). It’s set to be a night of intriguing, thought-provoking hip hop, so don’t miss it if that’s your thing. Tickets are available from cornerhotel.com. INPRESS • 93


HAVE YOU HEARD?

TAKE A LOOK

Honing their live performance skills by touring with acts such as Tumbleweed, Kaleidoscope have turned into a live force that cannot be ignored, leaving audiences shocked and asking for more. Kaleidoscope have found time to record some new tracks, which will become a vinyl release later in the year. With the excitement of a new release as well as the experience learned from touring with big name acts, Sunday at Yah Yah’s promises to be a night that will live up to expectations. Support comes from Carta Extremis and Riff Fist.

MATES WITH CAKE BROOZER PLAY THE TOTE THIS FRIDAY 28 SEPTEMBER. How did you get together? Retch Bile, bass/vocals: Through a local knitting circle. Have you recorded anything or do you prefer to tool around in your bedroom? We’ve recorded a few demos in the past, but more recently is our album 12.04.12, which is due out at the end of this month. Can you sum up your band’s sound in four words? Tough, technical, sludge, rock. If you could support any band in the world, who would it be and why? Mastodon, they seem like cool dudes, with Ghost. That would be fun. If a higher power smites your house and you can only save one record from the fire, what would it be? I’d save 12.04.12, because I’m on it. Do you have a lucky item of clothing you wear for gigs and what is it? Blue Bonds singlet.

The ReChords Don’t Know Much. Well, that’s the name of their new single, so they at least know how to make music. It is to be launched at the Northcote Social Club on Friday 12 October. The band will also be launching their first music video on the night so get along to help teach them a thing or two. The Ska Vendors will be up first to get bodies moving.

EXPANSIVE PERCEPTIONS

After being chosen by triple j to play Groovin’ The Moo 2012 the mad men of Grand Perceptor return with a new single to be launched at the Grace Darling Hotel with their usual wild rock style this Saturday. Support comes from local rockers The Pretty Littles and Grand Prismatic. The doors open at 9pm with $10 entry. A CD and some special merchandise are included in the entry cost.

So your team didn’t make it to the Grand Final? Well get down to Yah Yah’s to drink the pain away. Bugdust, Dukes Of Deliciousness, Cold Harbour and Rocket Queen will help you forget about all the money you lost gambling by giving you a night of free rock’n’roll. Get along to Yah Yah’s to party like you just found Ben Cousins’ stash. Doors 5pm, bands start at 9pm, free entry.

94 • INPRESS

THE ANNUAL FACE THE MUSIC INDUSTRY CONFERENCE HAS JUST UNVEILED ITS 2013 PROGRAM. THE PUSH GENERAL MANAGER PETER CHELLEW EXPLAINS ITS IMPORTANCE.

THINGS OF SWAMP & CARUS

Previously of Things Of Stone & Wood, The Swamp Dandies combine the permanent talents of ARIA Award-winning singer-songwriter Greg Arnold along with John Bedggood (Bernard Fanning and The Wilson Pickers) and Monique Zucco (Canvas). This Sunday will see them partner up with Carus Thompson to launch their new label Mind’s Eye Records on which both of their new albums have been released. Entry is free for children so get along and have a dance.

LITTLE MISS MUSIC

After winning the Crowded House International lyric-writing competition, touring with Lanie Lane, and releasing the ‘50s-inspired video for A Place Without Time, Sydney-based Miss Little is thrilled to finally bring her amazing band to Melbourne to release her new single Years tonight (Wednesday) at the Grace Darling Hotel. Brendan Maclean will be joining the road trip, and Melbourne locals April Maze round out the lineup. Doors open at 8.30pm and entry is $10+BF.

POMP AND PAGEANTS

ON THE V-LINE

FRENCH PETS

Animaux will launch their new single Paradise on Thursday 4 October at the Toff In Town. Mixed by Adam Rhodes (The Cat Empire, Angus & Julia Stone) at Sing Sing Studios, it is the second stand-alone single released by the band this year. Incorporating horn melodies, sultry backing vocals and a tight groove, Paradise is Animaux’s most polished release to date. Support on the night comes from their friends Francolin, Albert Salt and Smoking Toddler DJs.

CONFERENCE CALL

Peter Chellew

STILL LEARNING

What’s your favourite place to drink in Melbourne? Band rehearsal and any pub where bands are playing.

GF GETTING YOU DOWN?

Bad Vision have been playing every Saturday afternoon in the Tote front bar for the last month and savouring every moment of it. But it comes to an end this Saturday when they play their final show of the residency, with much entertainment to be had on the day. The Tote is hosting a Grand Final breakfast, followed by Money For Rope, Chris Russell’s Chicken Walk, The Bowers and a screening of the game in the band room. After the game, Bad Vision will crank into action along with Quince supporting. Entry is free for afternoon bands from 5-7pm.

The majestic 1920s Thornbury Theatre, with its marble staircase and chandeliers, is a great setting to experience the joyful musical journeys of My Friend The Chocolate Cake. Playing kitchen-sink piano tales with chamber orchestration, this Melbourne band have carved out a lengthy career and continue to delight audiences with their live shows. They play on Saturday 2 November with support from The Diving Bell.

If you invited someone awesome ‘round for dinner what would you cook? My vege lasagne is hailed across the land as being pretty tasty. So that.

Velma Grove hit Smith Street again at Yah Yah’s tomorrow night. The indie/roots band will hit the stage alongside the Melbourne gig veterans Brightly, who produce amazingly whimsical tunes, and their pal Emerson Snowe from Queensland. This event is guaranteed to not disappoint. So head down to Yah Yah’s on Thursday from 9pm for an unmissable show.

GRAND VISION

With their album Dark Before Blonde Dawn to be released later in October, Pageants will be putting their unique blend of tropical pop on full display as they play a set of both old and new tracks this Friday at the Grace Darling. Supported by a reverb-drenched Glaciers and the straight-up indie rock of Full Ugly, this gig will be a good way to welcome the warmer weather. Doors open at 9pm and entry is $8.

AT THE ZOO

Fresh off the back of nearly 40 shows around the country, Melbourne band Zoophyte return home and are gearing up for the release of a brand new single, Early Mourning. To celebrate, you can catch the band for their first home show in five months. The Evelyn will be heaving this Saturday as the band premiere songs from their new album Somewhere Elsewhere.

themusic.com.au

What are some of the highlights of this year’s Face The Music? This year, there are hot topics that people want to cover including music streaming, syncing, how to get festival bookings, crowdfunding and making more money from your music. We are presenting a bunch of new sessions like tour managing, booking agents, how to prepare for successful media interviews, securing tour supports, developing inroads into the USA, placing your music in TV and film and lots, lots more. Can we expect any changes from last year’s event? This year, we are providing a lot more interactivity for people with opportunities to book in to sit down one-on-one with experienced music managers, agents, lawyers, venue bookers and other professionals, new networking sessions, plus a new stream of small-group masterclasses to provide more in-depth expertise and advice. In what ways do you think FTM can help young bands and those hoping to start a career in the music industry? If you are coming into the music industry, you just have to get out amongst it, build relationships and develop your knowledge and skills. Face The Music provides a unique bigtop to learn new skills, get the facts and speak with some of those people you have been wanting to meet but can’t get past reception. How have you seen FTM grow over the years? Face The Music is in its fifth year. The event is still non-profit and is subsidised by the supporting music agencies which include Push, AAM, APRA, AIR, Music Victoria and City Of Melbourne. The tickets are ridiculously cheap compared to other music summits. We want Face The Music to grow steadily and stay real. How do you get the most out of FTM? Come to Face The Music with your whole band and make sure you all go to different sessions, then compare notes. Register early so you get the emails for all the masterclasses, speed meetings and exclusive small group options. At the conference, make a connection with other delegates, including people from the AWME conference. Bring ideas, questions and your music along with you. Face The Music takes place on Friday 16 November and Saturday 17 at the Arts Centre.


GET LUCKY

For the past three years The Pennys have been performing their uniquely upbeat blend of catchy rock and alternative country to audiences up and down the Australian East Coast. After supporting bands such as Eskimo Joe and Sneaky Sound System, The Pennys released their new album Around The Light in July 2012. They play the Retreat Hotel this Saturday with Bad Animal in support at 10pm. Spencer P Jones & The Escape Committee play an early set at 5pm. Entry is free.

JOE AND JOHN RETURN

STUDIO DIARY

From the land of privateers and voodoo queens come The Return Of The Voodoo Sheiks. They are a big band that play with muscle and mojo. Australian music greats Joe Camilleri and John McAll lead this old-school rhythm and blues big band that explore the blues side of jazz as they mix up a brew of Louis Jordan and Stray Cats with a bit of mystery that’ll have you hoofin’ the afternoon away. The doors open at 3pm with entry $20 on the door.

SPINNING THE MESSAGE

UNLIMITED

There are four members of rock’n’roll band The Spin. Each of them plays a different instrument, except for two of them who play the same instrument. They are launching their debut EP, It’s Come To This, this Friday at the Ding Dong Lounge as a double headline show with Messengers, who play ‘60s-inspired R&B, combining a unique blend of garage sounds and lush harmonies. The doors open at 8pm with entry $10 on the door.

Since touring their lead single Been Away Blues in March, Johnny Rock & The Limits are ready to launch the rest of their Been Too Long EP this month. The EP continues thematically with five more songs about wanting to escape, wanting to return to their roots and realising that it was rock‘n’roll that was needed all along. They launch the EP this Friday at the Retreat Hotel with Sydney rockers, Smitty & B Goode. The music starts at 9.30pm.

FINALS FEVER

This Saturday is Melbourne sporting fans’ favourite day of the year, the last Saturday in September. Yes that’s right, it’s AFL Grand Final day. For those of you who are footy fans and music fans, Ding Dong is throwing a party to celebrate with three of Melbourne’s finest up-and-coming indie bands, Towers, Tin Lion and The Honey Badgers. Celebrate with a big night at Ding Dong.

DUMB PUNK NOISE

THE LUCKY GIRL

Julitha Ryan is proud to announce the launch on vinyl of her first solo album The Lucky Girl. Playing with her on Wednesday 17 October at the Northcote Social Club will be her nine-piece band and they’ll be playing the album in its entirety, plus one or two surprises. Also on the bill will be Hugo Race and Melbourne poet and raconteur Alistair Stewart.

F

or their fourth studio album, Mirage Rock, Seattle’s Band Of Horses bunkered down in LA’s famous Sunset Sound studios with legendary UK producer Glyn Johns (The Beatles, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, The Band, The Who, we could go on forever) and came up with arguably their most vital release to date. To celebrate the album’s release and their impending Australian tour around the 2013 Big Day Out, Band Of Horses kindly provided us

SOLO SISTER

Waywardbreed began in late 2008 as a solo project for Justin Avery (ex-The Spoils). Since returning to Melbourne after touring Europe, Waywardbreed have sprouted more members, performing live through the winter and nearly completing a second album, Gathering For The Feast, to be released later in 2012. Waywardbreed will round out their September residency at the Retreat Hotel tonight (Wednesday) with two sets in the front bar from 8.30pm. Entry is free.

WHOOPS-A-DAISY

Inspired by flowers, kittens, sunshine and cold beer, Yesterdaisy, the new 7” from Bonniwells is being released on Anti Fade Records. The third release from Bonniwells will be launched at the Liberty Social tomorrow (Thursday) with support from the minimal pop racket of Clits and the surf instrumentals of The Towelheads. The 7” will be available for purchase on the night or as a pre-order from the Anti Fade website.

IF YOU CAN’T BEAT THEM

Following up their triple debut at the Workers Club, beat-fiends Demian, Clever Austin and Kirkis are finishing off their Wednesday residency at the Evelyn Hotel tonight. Each band’s performance is a luscious, ornamental, uniquely interpreted illustration of the relationship between hip hop and jazz. The line-up consists of wildcats from Hiatus Kaiyote, The Bamboos and The Operatives. The doors open at 8.30pm.

WHO: Band Of Horses WHAT: Mirage Rock (Columbia/Sony) WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 26 January, Big Day Out, Flemington Racecourse; Wednesday 23, Palais

A GREAT BILL

Bill & The Jerks present the third installation of the Showcase Series. Following the success of the first two instalments, this is set to be an awesome sequel with nine bands set to rock. Drop Bunny, Burnham Beaches, Unnecessary Tension, Jane Ln, Phantom 309, Millington, Cohorts Nomen, Purple Tusks and Panchromatic all take to the stage to create one night of wonder. Head to the Evelyn this Sunday from 6.15pm to enjoy the night.

NEVER MIND THE BOLLOCKS

North Melbourne TAFE are presenting Nevermind The ‘90s. Conceived to celebrate a decade of alternative music and radical style, the event will be held across three consecutive Friday nights kicking off at Revolver Upstairs on Friday 19 October, Noise Bar on Friday 26 and the National Hotel (Geelong) on Friday 2 November. With a dynamic line-up of emerging bands, including The Kilniks, Bad Taste, Pons and Copse covering classic songs from the ‘90s, these are shows not to be missed.

WINTER INTRICACY

ALI RESIDENC-E

October sees the return of fuzz songstress Ali E to the Retreat’s front bar for a Wednesday residency. Ali E and her band bring a unique twist to the best of shoegaze, soul and alt.rock. She will be joined on consecutive weeks by Alysia Manceau (The Velocettes), Andre Hooke (Khancoban), Phil & Liam (The Bowers), Ryan Nico (Tinsmoke) and Amaya Laucirica. It is free entry with bands from 8.30pm.

Afro-beat doctors The Afrobiotics are playing Fridays in September at Bar Open. Hypnotic bass lines and undulating guitars lay the foundations for fiery horn lines and vocalist Lamine Sonko’s message of struggle, peace and sheer joy. Papa Chango will be supporting this Friday for the final night of the residency. The doors open at 10pm with free entry.

Streams Of Whiskey hit Bar Open on Grand Final day. Armed with their mandolins, accordions, banjos and all the other necessary ye olde world weapons, they are (by their own admission) the world’s best Pogues cover band. Johnny Gibson’s fire cracking rhythm section has never sounded better and is locking in tightly with the lightning strums of Mark Jennings on guitar. Get to Bar Open for some finals debauchery from 10pm. Entry is free.

WARM FEELINGS

After their band The Priory Dolls imploded in a perfect rock’n’roll cliché whilst working on their second album in Berlin, Rory Lampitt and Erin Taylor swiftly formed Warmth Crashes In. A result of two rockers having minimal techno blasted at them for a year, the band’s sound is ethereal to intense but always rhythmic, smooth and shiny. They play tonight (Wednesday) at the Tote with Flying Colours, Brightstar and Celery.

PIES AND TUNES

Big Winter combine stunning vocals and intricate instrumentation with the soul-stirring power of electric violin, guitar, bass, keyboard and drums. The five-piece Melbourne-based group are set to release their Simple Ideas EP at the Evelyn tomorrow (Thursday), with guest cellist Andrew Martin. They are supported by the Melissa Main Band and Broken Splendour, with a special DJ set by Polo Club. The doors open at 8.30pm.

The fifth-annual Grand Final Eve Pie Night at the Caravan Music Club is a night for footy fans and those who tend to wander in and out of the TV room on Grand Final day. It’s about the hoopla more than the game itself. It’s more than a gig and it is happening this Friday. The night will feature Billy Miller, Rebecca Barnard, Paul Stewart, Ian Bland, Charles Jenkins and Essendon legend Simon Maddon, along with the JVG All-Star Band.

CALL AND RESPONSE

CELTIC CLAY

King Parrot are a five-piece thrash grind metal outfit, brand new on the scene. They consist of members of bands that have punished the ears and minds of Australian metal heads for many years like Blood Duster, Dreadnaught, Watchdog Discipline, Cockfight Shootout, Stiff Meat and Mustang. The songs are short and delivered with blistering intent. Catch King Parrot live at the Evelyn this Friday with

WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED

THE HARD STUFF good mates Decimatus, Abrasion, Red Sky Burial and Burning In White. The doors open at 8pm.

Paying homage to the likes of Gillian Welch and Jolie Holland, Teresa Dixon (The Little Sisters) explores tragedy, loss, self deprecation and elation backed by some sweet finger picking on both acoustic guitar and banjo. She will be joined by special guest Tamarin Young on vocals and guitar and supported by Samara Cullen with some smooth country-folk, which goes perfectly with a sneaky Tuesday evening whiskey. Dixon plays the Retreat Hotel front bar this Tuesday from 8.30pm.

BAD BREED

with some photos of their in-studio experience, which they loudly proclaimed to be not only productive but a whole ton of fun to boot.

Three of the most famous bands ever have decided to play at Bar Open... This would be the case if Spermaids, Cuntz and Teenage Libido were really famous. They do happen to be three great bands though. Head to Bar Open tonight (Wednesday) to experience them. You’ll find some two-piece dumb punk noise, some three-piece dumb punk noise and some four-piece dumb punk noise. The doors open at 8pm with free entry.

With the release of their fifth studio album and a swag of dates at some of the country’s most reputable festivals, Victorian-based Celtic rock band Claymore are firmly cementing themselves as one of Australia’s most unique musical exports. They play this Saturday with Saoirse at the Caravan Music Club. The doors open at 8pm and general admission is $20, while reserved seating is $25 through the Caravan website.

themusic.com.au

Dave Larkin Band

LARKIN’ ABOUT

Don’t miss Dave Larkin (Dallas Crane/Gun Street Girls) in solo acoustic mode as he plays the last show of his September residency at the Retreat this Sunday in the front bar from 4pm. It will be a fine way to spend a sunny Sunday afternoon. Following Larkin out the back from 7pm will be the swamp blues of Backwood Creatures. Entry to both shows is free. In addition Dave Larkin Band and very special guests Ben Salter Duo are giving a little back to the people throwing a huge freebie at the Retreat on Friday 5 October. Music starts at 9pm. For more details, go to davelarkin.com.au. INPRESS • 95


EARLY ORDER

Shortfall

NEVERMIND THE SHORTFALL

Shortfall will smash out a half-hour set at the Prague on Thursday 4 October, debuting Dave Glavich as their newest member. Up second on the bill, Shortfall will support headlining band Temple, along with local bands Cooper Street and Firestone & Honey. Shortfall will also give fans a taste of their newest creation from the studio.

WET PLUMAGE

After an already impressive year for the band, Rainbird will now be crashing through the Tote this Saturday to headline alongside three of Melbourne’s most promising progressive rock groups, ONE (Video Launch), Kettlespider and Orsome Welles. All four bands are on the rise, so catch them while they are fresh. The doors open at 8pm and entry is $12.

TALE OF BEADLE THE BARBER

Despite coming from different parts of the globe, Australian blues/guitar maestro Ray Beadle and sultry Canadian chanteuse Jill Barber are united by a shared love of jazz classics. So much so, that the duo will showcase their “jazz chops” for a series of live shows down the East Coast this October and early November, on the Come Out Swinging tour. The tour culminates with two shows at Bennetts Lane on Friday 2 November.

The Grand Final for Not Your Average Battle Of The Bands is happening at Pony this Saturday. Natural Bull Logic, Damian Vanegeer, Gardenhead, Sharp Sharp Pretty and Bulk Of Man Vs Janic will all play to decide who are the best musicians. It is not a popularity contest. Wolfpack play the late show.

BRUNSWICK LUAU

Melbourne’s Longyard will be performing live on Sunday at Prahran Market Place from noon to 3pm. Head along for some gritty electric blues music. It’s free and all are welcome.

This Sunday at the Victoria Hotel come The Luau Cowboys. They will deliver a mix of bluegrass, blues, ethnic waltzes, rhumbas, early country ala Johnny Cash, the odd Cajun tune mixed with originals and some genuine Hawaiian slack-key tunes done in the island way. The music begins at 5pm and entry is free.

GARBAGE SPRITES

Trash Fairies are a five-piece industrial grunge outfit born in the hinterland of the Sunshine Coast. Taking their influences from diverse and reputable sources, such as The Muppets and Nine Inch Nails, they strive to rock the house with their original take on the ‘90s grunge that you love and the dance music that makes you groove. Trash Fairies play the Victoria Hotel, Brunswick this Friday with support from Euclid and Smash‘n’Swann. The doors open at 9pm and entry is free.

SENDING A MESSAGE

World class Australian singer and songwriter Julia Messenger will be performing at Bennetts Lane on Saturday 3 November. She will be joined by Luke Howard on piano, Justin Humphries on drums, and Craig Newman on bass. Pre-sale tickets range from $20 to $25 through the Bennetts Lane website. The doors will open at 8.30pm.

TURNER PLAY THE JOHN CURTIN THIS THURSDAY 27 SEPTEMBER, REVOLVER THIS FRIDAY 28 AND PURE POP THIS SUNDAY 30.

LOW-KEY LOKI

This October Melbourne band Loki will be showcasing tunes from their upcoming EP release. Their sound incorporates strong folk elements, boasting five-piece harmonies. Their expansion to a six-piece has allowed for the development of a more fluid live set, whilst still maintaining a high level of intimacy. Loki will be playing at the Grace Darling Hotel on Wednesday 3 October. Joining them will be fellow Melburnian indie/popsters Canary and Tom Milek.

RED FLOWERS

Beginning as a solo project in 2006 by frontwoman Lilly, The Lilly Rouge Band have grown to become a respected musical act. Splitting their time between the flashy-yet-trashy Gold Coast and the glitter and shine of Melbourne, Lilly Rouge plan on taking over the world one rock song at a time! The Lilly Rouge Band are now ready to reveal their five-track debut EP, Severed Souls, to their Melbourne fans and will play Revolver Upstairs tonight and Idgaff on Thursday.

NITE LIVE!

DJs Eric Wareheim and Douggpound will boost off stage after their Tim & Eric shows to party until late with their interactive DJ parties. They come to the Toff In Town this Sunday as the Dutch Boys DJ experience. There will be wicked beats and interactive chant-alongs. The doors open at 10.30pm and tickets are $10+BF through moshtix.

Three bands come together tomorrow at Pony for We’ve Been Expecting You. The line-up includes Sunshine Coast outfit Trash Fairies, the surfy-punk of NSW band Wilde Child and the tunes of local singer-songwriter John Pendleton. The doors open at 8.30pm. Shabon play the late show.

A DIFFERENT SPECIES

LANE’S WAY

Do you think you might suffer from a slight headache this Sunday post Grand Final? Nothing like a cruisy Sunday arvo with some fine tunes to nurse your head and soul back to good health and ready for a new week. Davey Lane will be completing his Sunday residency run at the Resurrection this Sunday from 4pm for free.

BRIDGE HOTEL GOODNESS

Haven’t made it to the Bridge Hotel in Castlemaine yet? Here are some good reasons to celebrate spring in the country with some fine tunes. DD Dumbo will be holding his own on Friday after supporting King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard at the Bridge last week. Cherrywood and Eaten By Dogs have the honour of performing for you on Grand Final night. Archer wraps up his September residency at the Bridge this Sunday and on Tuesday 2 October Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks and The Murlocs make their much-anticipated trip to Castlemaine.

LIKE AN ISLAND

WHAT TO EXPECT

96 • INPRESS

Taka Honda grew up in Japan, watching TV advertisements for Australian tourism about eternal sunshine on the beautiful sandy beaches. After completing his tertiary study, he moved to Melbourne in hope of surfing for the rest of his life. Instead of lying on the beach, getting tanned and chasing bikini girls, he learned to drink lattes, read books and play guitar. Check out Honda’s dreamy surf-folk music at the Resurrection tonight for the last of his September residency gigs.

Mona Delighta is an intimate evening of folkinspired, genre-spanning, song and storytelling at the Toff this Sunday, featuring some fine Australian female talent. Lose yourself in the ‘20s ragtime folk of Lady Danger, the melancholy yet mischievous indie folk of Cookie Baker and the haunting neo-folk of Sydney’s Caitlin Park. Settle in for a candlelit night to remember from 6pm. Tickets are $10+BF through Moshtix.

Join Humans As Animals for a month of refluxinducing pelvic thrusting and smile-lifting puppet twitching, whilst feeling the frenetic fusion that will hopefully lead you to your psychedelic concubine. The first of their October Toff Tuesday residency shows sees them supported by Hiatus Kaiyote and Lopaka. Entry is $10 on the door.

On 9 July singer-songwriter David Aurora began recording his third album, the follow up to Paradise Is Burning. On 11 July the album was put on hiatus. Now new material is flowing and the time has come to get back to business. He’ll be road testing some of this new stuff on Sunday 21 October at Pure Pop Records and Tuesday 23 at Gertrude’s Brown Couch.

LONGYARD AT THE MARKET

TOFF DELIGHTS

HUMANS AS MUSICIANS

ON AGAIN, OFF AGAIN

HAVE YOU HEARD?

HONDA RESURRECTION RES

ALL SYSTEMS A-GO-GO

This time Melbourne’s biggest soul and funk party has new digs with two rooms. Warm up the dancefloors at Laundry on Saturday 6 October, the original home of Soul-A-Go-Go when it first started over five years ago. PBS stars Vince Peach, Miss Goldie, Manchild, Pierre Baroni, Zack Rampage and special guest Andrew Young will be dishing up the best floor-thumpin’ 45s from 9pm until 3am. It’s $10 for members and $15 for future members.

PONY BATTLE ARENA

This Grand Final day the Victoria Hotel, Brunswick will throw its doors wide from 10am with a free BBQ breakfast. Get in early and line your tummy for what’s sure to be a day of much merriment. For your post-match enjoyment The Short Order Schefs will be performing from 7.30pm. They will serve up a stew of blues, reggae, country, rock and polka. As long as it grooves, swings or rocks, it’s in the pot.

Xenograft return to Pony this Friday to headline a diverse and exciting line-up. The six-piece instrumentalists will play with fellow instrumental act The Nest Itself, progressive four-piece Qlayface and the epic ambience of Squarehead. Entry is $10 on the door. Super Best Friends and Too Soon! play a double late show.

Atolls’ sound is built on shifting layers of loops and fuzz, with lead breaks purling out of hissing feedback. Mumble/Water, recorded in the band’s home studio in Geelong and mixed by Lucas, is the first taste of Atolls’ debut extended EP due early 2013. You can catch them with support from Sleep Decade and special guests on Thursday 25 October at Old Bar and Saturday 27 at the National Hotel (Geelong).

UNPLUGGED MEXICAN

Touché Hombre, one of Melbourne’s hottest Mexican restaurants, will support local artists every night this week when it hosts its second series of Unplugged. At Unplugged guests can enjoy tacos, tequila and tunes each night with intimate performances from artists including Son3, Jess Young Trio as well as The Tom Showtime Trio. Kicking off from tonight, the free events will run from 7pm until Thursday and 8pm Friday and Saturday until late.

themusic.com.au

How did you get together? Richard Turner, vocals/guitar: The four of us have all played together in various bands over the years. Initially when I kicked off the Turner project I only really wanted to play as a solo artist, but the music evolved and I got a little too carried away with my loop station and I needed a band to show the songs for what they were. Dave, Paul and Matt are such a natural fit. I don’t think I could play with anyone else. Have you recorded anything or do you prefer to tool around in your bedroom? The debut Turner LP Ghosts was released last July and the follow-up will be released next year. I have little to no patience for perfecting the art of bedroom recordings – I’ll usually demo a song until all the pieces of the puzzle are out of the box, but instead of spending hours putting the pieces together, I’ll move on to the next idea. Works better for me that way. Can you sum up your band’s sound in four words? Probably not convincingly… acoustic pop blues folk! Convinced? If you could support any band in the world, who would it be and why? Radiohead… because it’s Radiohead. Or Jim Ward, we love that guy. If a higher power smites your house and you can only save one record from the fire, what would it be? Tough call. I’d be lost without my copy of Jeff Buckley’s Grace, but I’ve been lucky enough to inherit original pressings of Pink Floyd’s The Wall and Led Zeppelin I-IV. Decisions, decisions – okay, I’d take Led Zeppelin III. Classic tracklisting. Do you have a lucky item of clothing you wear for gigs and what is it? The boys are always giving me stick for my love of v-necks. They’re just jealous, of course, and there is one in particular that was once originally blue… needless to say it’s had its fair share of weathering and in all honesty I’m not too sure what colour it is now. No doubt it’ll be in my bag when we make our way down to your fine city. If you invited someone awesome ‘round for dinner what would you cook? I make a mean toasted cheese sandwich! Seriously – they are the shit! What’s your favourite place to drink in Melbourne? I’m a big fan of Pure Pop in St Kilda. You don’t go there to do body shots off the German backpackers or any of that BS, it’s just an amazing place to hang out. A friend took me to the Retreat in Brunswick the last time we played Melbourne which was brilliant as well. I’d be happy spending a Sunday afternoon downing a few pints there. In all honesty Melbourne has that much to offer it doesn’t matter where you are enjoying a cold one.


DAREBIN CITY COUNCIL, FREEZA, DAREBIN MUSIC FEAST & LITTLE WING PRODUCTIONS PRESENT

LIFE IS NOISE PRESENTS FROM PORTLAND, OREGON

with special guests

WITH

Seven year itch golden brown

NORTHCOTE TOWN HALL

Saturday, october 6 7pm–10pm. $10 entry.

LAURA AND HIGH TEA

189 HIGH ST, NORTHCOTE tix available through Northcote town hall www.northcotetownhall.com

AUSTRALIAN TOUR 2012

This is an all ages, fully supervised, drug, alcohol & smoke free event. No passouts. For more info contact Darebin City Council (03) 8470 8001 or check out www.musicfeast.com.au

THURS OCTOBER 18 NORTHCOTE SOCIAL CLUB Tickets from www.lifeisnoise.com, The Corner & Oztix. Presale $35+BF.

LIFE IS NOISE PRESENTS CHICAGO’S LEGENDARY

WIN AN iPAD

WITH PLUS

GRAILS (USA)

NEW WAR AND

SLEEPMAKESWAVES

OR

iPHONE theMusic.com.au and amaysim are giving away an iPad 3 or one of two iPhones with three months free national standard calls and texts. All you need to do is let us know which festivals you will be rocking this festival season. To enter head to: themusic.com.au/news/all/2012/09/24/amaysim/

SATURDAY OCTOBER 13 THE CORNER HOTEL

TICKETS: WWW.CORNERHOTEL.COM, WWW.OZTIX.COM.AU AND WWW.LIFEISNOISE.COM $49+BF INPRESS • 97


HOWZAT! LOCAL MUSIC NEWS BY JEFF JENKINS can’t exactly high-five myself, or if I’m having a bad run, I can’t really talk it out with band mates. The best thing has probably been the freedom of writing something different and not becoming conditioned to any one way of writing. The worst thing is money, unfortunately. In a band situation, it’s like, ‘Right, everyone cough up a buck to pay for this’, whereas now it’s just me.”

Andrew McDonald

MCDONALD’S MASTERPIECE It’s a crowded marketplace and if you’re not on The Voice or The X Factor, it’s hard to break through. There are no tricks or gimmicks when it comes to Andrew McDonald’s debut solo album. It’s simply world-class music. Melancholic and moving. When Howzat! reviewed our notes about the record, one word kept recurring: beautiful. The album is called The Fugitive Assembly. “Originally, I wanted to start a band rather than do the one-man acoustic thing and I was actually thinking of a band name,” Andrew explains. He then saw the 1932 movie I Am A Fugitive From A Chain Gang. “I liked the word fugitive and pieced it together with ‘assembly’ after listening to the band Frontline Assembly.” Andrew’s solo sound is less frenetic than his previous band, Tiltmeter. “I do occasionally miss being in a band,” he admits. “I miss the camaraderie and sharing the highs and lows. If I have a good gig, I 98 • INPRESS

When Howzat! gave the album’s opening cut, The Soaring General, a spin on the radio, listeners compared it to Elliott Smith, Josh Pyke and The Beach Boys. “There’s one particular line in that song that made me think Josh Pyke when I first heard it recorded,” McDonald agrees. “To be honest, no one’s really told me that I sound like any one particular artist, which I guess is good. Indirectly, I’m sure I’m ripping off tons of songwriters.” Who are Andrew’s songwriting heroes? “I’d be lying if I didn’t mention Something For Kate. I’ve been watching them since before they even released albums and I’ve kind of grown up with them. I also liked the way Paul Dempsey would transcribe the songs onto acoustic and play shows, which gave me the same idea when I was playing in a band. Plus I still marvel at the arrangements, the hidden noise tracks and the often slow build to an emotional peak.” McDonald sings about “landing soon”, but The Fugitive Assembly has taken a long time to arrive. “Yeah, it’s been an awfully long process. In fact, I hit another snag when trying to press CD copies – which I’m still going to do. But in the meantime, I got so frustrated I just made the album available online (at bandcamp.com). There’s just been a series of minute details that have held it up, especially artwork. At one stage, I was content to just take a photo of myself wearing a towel and say, ‘Done!’”

One track is called What Scares You Most. McDonald still shudders when he thinks of Amityville II: The Possession. “It’s probably not that scary now, but I saw it as a kid and it kept me awake for years. I’d have to sleep on the couch until ushered to bed for fear I’d be possessed the same way as the boy in the film.” In the song, he sings, “At this late stage, I feel my age.” But The Fugitive Assembly shows there’s a lot of life left in this artist. “The finish line’s nowhere in sight, it’s still not over yet.”

Set This World On Fire THE JANOSKIANS (22, debut)

HOW DO YOU GET YOUR KICKS?

The Sapphires soundtrack (seven)

Fancy having a kick of the footy with Even? It’s one of the many packages on offer at pozible.com/evenfirst18, where the band is celebrating its first 18 years by asking fans to pick their 18 favourite Even songs and help fund a new compilation. Meanwhile, Ben Lee is getting his fans to finance his forthcoming album, Ayahuasca: Welcome To The Work, at pledgemusic. com. Ben explains that Ayahuasca is a South American jungle vine, used as “a visionary, healing medicine… I only hope the music contains some small portion of the deep nourishment that I have experienced from the plant medicine.” Howzat! has already signed up for the vintage Ben Lee beanie and signed CD – a bargain at $35.

LONG LIVE LIV

Happy birthday to arguably Australia’s most influential artist, Olivia Newton-John, who turns 64 today (Wednesday). Greg Arnold’s The Swamp Dandies, who released a tribute to Livvy last year, called Olivia, are launching their new single, Tomorrow, at the Northcote Social Club on Sunday afternoon with Carus Thompson.

CHART WATCH

It’s six weeks on top for Guy Sebastian. Battle Scars GUY SEBASTIAN (number one) Boom Boom JUSTICE CREW (seven)

themusic.com.au

Run Alone 360 (29) When The Lights Go Out HAVANA BROWN (30) Domino THE COLLECTIVE (35, debut) The Rubens THE RUBENS (number three, debut) This Was Tomorrow SETH SENTRY (six, debut) Pacifica THE PRESETS (ten) The Winter I Chose Happiness CLARE BOWDITCH (11, debut) Wreck & Ruin KASEY CHAMBERS & SHANE NICHOLSON (14) Chasing Ghosts THE AMITY AFFLICTION (15) The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle MISSY HIGGINS (23) My Journey KARISE EDEN (27) Falling & Flying 360 (30) The Story So Far KEITH URBAN (31) The Temper Trap THE TEMPER TRAP (34) Timomatic TIMOMATIC (39)

HOWZAT! PLAYLIST What Scares You Most ANDREW McDONALD Tomorrow THE SWAMP DANDIES I Still Can’t Find Her HENRY WAGONS Oh Japan MINIBIKES Why Don’t We Just Stay Home SARAH HUMPHREYS


INPRESS • 99


TOUR GUIDE

PRESENTS

BILLY BRAGG: Friday 19 October, Hamer Hall; Saturday 20, Melbourne Recital Centre; Tuesday 30, Prince Bandroom

MYSTERY JETS: September 26 Corner Hotel TIM & ERIC: Saturday 29, 30 September Forum DAPPLED CITIES, JAPE: October 12 Corner Hotel FUCK THE POLITICS (featuring Make Them Suffer, Boris The Blade, Widow The Sea): October 13 Espy OH MERCY: October 13 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 19 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 25 Hi-Fi BEC LAUGHTON: October 14 Workers Club THEESATISFACTION, BIG FREEDIA & THE DIVAS: October 18 Hi-Fi

THIS WEEK INTERNATIONAL

JAMES MORRISON: September 26 Forum SCISSOR SISTERS: September 26 Hamer Hall MYSTERY JETS: September 26 Corner Hotel EL GRAN COMBO DE PUERTO RICO: September 26 Palace Theatre FEAR FACTORY: September 28 Hi-Fi HIGH ON FIRE: September 28 Espy RUSSIAN CIRCLES: September 28 Corner Hotel ULCERATE: September 28 Bendigo Hotel GIGAMESH: September 29 Seven SNOW PATROL: September 30 Regent Theatre KELLY CLARKSON: October 1 Rod Laver Arena STEPHEN MALKMUS & THE JICKS: October 2 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine)

NATIONAL

NORTHEAST PARTY HOUSE: September 26 Corner Hotel SHANNON NOLL: September 26 Capital Theatre (Bendigo); 27 Wangaratta PAC; October 11 West Gippsland Arts Centre; 12 Ballarat Regent Multiplex; 13 Eastbank Centre (Shepparton); 14 Lighthouse Theatre (Warrnambool) CHICKS WHO LOVE GUNS: September 27 Workers Club WEDDINGS, PARTIES, ANYTHING: September 28 Palace COLLARBONES: September 28 Liberty Social SIX60: September 28 Forum Theatre SETH SENTRY: September 28 Karova Lounge, Ballarat; 29 Corner Hotel ELLIOT THE BULL: September 28 Revolver, 29 Empress SMITTY & B GOODE: September 28 Retreat; 29 Great Britain PATRICK JAMES: September 30 Workers Club

UPCOMING INTERNATIONAL

STEVE MALMUS & THE JICKS: October 3 Corner Hotel MC LARS: October 4 Next BIG DADDY KANE: October 4 Espy ALLO DARLIN’: October 4 Tote CANNIBAL CORPSE: October 5 Billboard JOE BATAAN: October 5 Hi-Fi THE EASTERN: October 5 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 6 Harvest Moon (Bellarine); 7 Workers Club BILL SUMMERS: October 5 Prince NEKROMANTIX: October 6 Hi-Fi STEEL PANTHER: October 7 Palace HIGH WOLF: October 7 Gasometer COUNT BASIE ORCHESTRA: October 10 Hamer Hall JOE BONAMASSA: October 11 Palais MARTIKA: October 11 Trak RUDIMENTAL: October 12 Brown Alley WARBRINGER: October 13 Northcote Social Club EVERCLEAR: October 13 Hi-Fi STEVE AOKI: October 13 Shed 4 (Docklands) TORTOISE: October 13 Corner Hotel THE ATOMIC BITCHWAX: October 14 Northcote Social Club THE SWELLERS: October 13 Bang; 14 Ferntree Gully Hotel BEC LAUGHTON: October 14 Workers Club BIG FREEDIA: October 17 Tote; 18 Hi-Fi; PAUL HEATON: October 18 Corner Hotel SAMPOLOGY: October 19 Vault 8 XIU XIU: October 19 Gasometer BILLY BRAGG: October 19 Hamer Hall; 20 Melbourne Recital Centre; 30 Prince Bandroom 100 • INPRESS

ALT-J: October 20 Ding Dong MATCHBOX 20, INXS: October 20 & 21 Rod Laver Arena LEE RANALDO: October 23 Pure Pop; 24 Hi-Fi ELAINE PAIGE: October 24 Palais PRINCE ALLA: October 26 Espy PURO INSTINCT: October 26 Bermuda Float WEDNESDAY 13: October 27 Esplanade MADLIB: October 28 Prince Bandroom THE BLACK KEYS: October 31 Sidney Myer Music Bowl JOHN WAITE: November 1 Palace AT THE GATES: November 2 Billboard JILL BARBER, RAY BEADLE: November 2 Bennetts Lane ARRESTED DEVELOPMENT: November 2 Prince GREGORY PORTER: November 3 Toff KELLY JOE PHELPS: November 3 Newport Substation; 5 Caravan Music Club CHERRY POPPIN’ DADDIES: November 5 Corner Hotel THE BLACK SEEDS: November 5 Espy TOUCHE AMORE: November 9 Reverence; 10 Phoenix Youth Centre EMMYLOU HARRIS: November 10 Palais GRIZZLY BEAR: November 12 Billboard MONDO CANE: November 12 Regent Theatre COLDPLAY: November 13 Etihad Stadium THE WAR ON DRUGS: November 13 Northcote Social Club DAVE DOBBYN: November 14 Corner Hotel RON POPE: November 15 Chapel Off Chapel ELECTRIC EMPIRE: November 15 Hi-Fi; 24, 25 Queenscliff Music Festival REFUSED: November 15 & 16 Palace BETWEEN THE BURIED & ME: November 16 Corner Hotel RADIOHEAD: November 16, 17 Rod Laver Arena GREGORY PAGE: November 16 Caravan Music Club BOYZ II MEN: November 17 Costa Hall (Geelong); 18 Billboard OWL CITY: November 18 Corner Hotel (matinee under-18s, evening 18+) SEUN KUTI: November 18 Hi-Fi ELTON JOHN: November 18 Rod Laver Arena DI’ANNO VS BLAZE: November 22 Hi-Fi DELANEY DAVIDSON: November 22 Public Bar; 23 Spotter Mallard; 24 Old Bar DARK FUNERAL: November 24 Corner Hotel KORA: November 24 Hi-Fi NICKELBACK: November 27, 28 Rod Laver Arena BIG D & THE KIDS TABLE: November 28 Barwon Club (Geelong); 29 Ding Dong Lounge IWRESTLEDABEARONCE: November 28 National Hotel (Geelong); 29 Corner Hotel; 30 TLC Bayswater SIMPLE MINDS, DEVO: November 29 Palais; December 1 Rochford Wines (Yarra Valley) WILL & THE PEOPLE: November 30 Whalers Hotel (Warrnambool); December 1 Workers Club THE SELECTER: November 30 Corner Hotel THE KNOCKS: December 1 Toff POUR HABITS: December 1 Evelyn; 2 Tote COLOR ME BADD: December 2 Alumbra THE PRETTY THINGS: December 4 Corner; 13, 14 Caravan Club JEFF MARTIN: December 5 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 6 Ruby’s Lounge (Belgrave); 7 Cherry Bar; 8 Northcote Social Club GRIMES: December 6, 7 Corner Hotel SPIRITUALIZED: December 6 Hi-Fi HOT SNAKES: December 7 Corner Hotel PRIMAL SCREAM: December 7 Palace TURBONEGRO: December 7 Hi-Fi LAGWAGON: December 8 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 9 Corner Hotel

BRITISH INDIA: October 18 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 19 Corner Hotel; 20 Pier Hotel (Frankston) XIU XIU: October 19 Gasometer VELOCIRAPTOR: October 19 Tote BILLY BRAGG: October 19 Hamer Hall; 20 Melbourne Recital Centre; 30 Prince Bandroom TEXT OF LIGHT: October 23 ACMI LEE RANALDO: October 24 Hi-Fi THURSTON MOORE: October 25 Hamer Hall GYPSY & THE CAT: October 26 Palace ARGENTINA, TOKYO DENMARK SWEDEN, THEM SWOOPS: October 26 Workers Club CATHERINE TRAICOS: October 28 Workers Club HALLOWEEN HOUSE OF HELL (featuring Violent Soho, Dune Rats, Drunk Mums): October 31 Workers Club BASTARDFEST 2012 (featuring Astriaal, Disentomb, Extortion, Broozer): November 3 Espy THE BEARDS: November 3 Hi-Fi; 22 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) REDCOATS: November 8 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 9 Bended Elbow (Geelong; 10 Ding Dong Lounge; 15 Star Bar (Bendigo); Friday 16 Whalers Hotel (Warrnambool). CHERRYFEST (featuring Eyehategod, Omar Rodriguez Lopez Band): November 25 Cherry Bar JEFF MARTIN: December 5 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 6 Ruby’s Lounge (Belgrave); 7 Cherry Bar; 8 Northcote Social Club EVAN DANDO & JULIANA HATFIELD: December 18, 19 Corner Hotel GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR: February 15 Forum EINSTÜRZENDE NEUBAUTEN: February 19 Palace Theatre BLUESFEST: (featuring Ben Harper, Iggy & The Stooges, Wilco): March 28-April 1, Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm, Byron Bay

WED 26 Agent 86, Lady Noir, Joybot, Kiti, Mr Thom Lucky Coq Baddums, Carmex Laundry Bar Clever Austin, Kirkis, Demian, Jackson Miles The Evelyn Corinne Grant, Adam Richard Comic’s Lounge

James Morrison Forum Theatre Jarek, Skippy’s Brain, Oh Deanna The Workers Club

Dan Krochmal, Fontaine, Sol The Empress

Kevin Johansen, The Nada Prince Bandroom

Danny Silver, Manchild, Mu-Gen Lounge Bar

King of the North, Strangers, Jack Davies Cherry Bar

Dead Water City Kent Street Bar, Fitzroy

K-Lee Bebida Bar

themusic.com.au

Open Mic Grind ‘n’ Groove Bar Open Mic, Brodie The Brunswick Hotel Open Mic The Thornbury Local Petar Tolich, Scotty E Co. & Fusion Nightclub at Crown Pete Cornelius The Standard Hotel Play Like A Girl Wesley Anne (Band Room) Scissor Sisters Hamer Hall Spermaids, Cuntz, Teenage Libido Bar Open Taka Honda, St Jeromes The Mimics, Yorque, The Scrimshaw Four The Curtin Bandroom Tom Fryer Quartet, Chris Frangou’s Sound Theory 303 Tom Tuena Veludo Warmth Crashes In, Low Tide, Flyying Colours, Celery, + More The Tote, Band Room Wayward Breed The Retreat Hotel Will Anderson, Carl Baron, Kitty Flanagan, Greg Fleet, + More Regent Theatre

THU 27 Agave Maize, Internal Harvest, Rainshadow The Gasometer Hotel Anna’s Go Go Dance Classes Victoria Hotel Bish Bash Bosh, Zuzu Angel, Autoportraits Reverence Hotel, Footscray

Evermore, Lakyn Heperi, Ruby Frost, Natalie Ruiz The Toff In Town Galapogoose, Kikuyu, Zeal ACMI - Burton Club Gary Clark Jnr, Jackson Firebird, The Murlocs The Tote Gorsha, Inches, Mandek Penha The Empress Guilty Party Ferntree Gully Hotel Julia Turner Wesley Anne (Front Bar) Krystle Warren, Daniel Champagne Northcote Social Club Laura Imbruglia, The Taylor Project, Wiley Red Fox, Courtney Barnett The Old Bar Lilly Rouge, Black Tea House, Pedestrian Daze Idgaff Bar and Venue Living Music Showcase Revolt Marissa & Jonathan Skovron Red Bennies Masketta Fall Colonial Hotel Nick Haywood Quartet Bennetts Lane Pete Cornelius, Les Thomas The Drunken Poet Reds Under the Bed, Tim Neal Trio 303 Salad Days, The Rant The Great Britain Seagull, Fuyuko’s Fabels Bar Open Shabon Pony Late Show

DEFEATER: Thursday 27 September, Corner Hotel; Friday 28, TLC Bayswater (all ages)

Gold Bloom, The Ocean Party, Danvers The Old Bar

Jenny Biddle, Gen & Flora The Drunken Poet

El Gran Combo de Puerto Rico The Palace Theatre

Mystery Jets, Northeast Party House Corner Hotel

Elly Hoyt The Commune

Gary Clark Jnr, Chris Russell’s Chicken Walk, Max Crawdaddy Cherry Bar, Arvo Show

Damn The Maps, Wolf vs Fire, Long Holiday, Pyrene, Renegade Robot Cops The Espy, Lounge Bar

Dizzy’s Big Band Dizzy’s Jazz Club

Miss Little, April Maze, Brendan Maclean Grace Darling Hotel

Joe Chindamo Trio Bennetts Lane

Lady Antebellum, Tim Hart Palais Theatre Lilly Rouge, Black Tea House, Three Time Thrill Revolver Upstairs

Broken Splendour, Melissa Main & Band, Polo Club DJs The Evelyn Chicks Who Love Guns, Dark Arts, The Red Lights The Workers Club Corinne Grant, Adam Richard Comic’s Lounge Cullen Sporting Club Hotel Daydream Arcade, Turner, The Sunsleepers The Curtin Bandroom

Space Bong, Nobody Knew They Were Robots, Israel, Nous Karova Lounge, Ballarat The Chodes, Private Radio Empire, Alejandro Adams, Sleepy Dreamers The Brunswick Hotel The Gallant Trees, Carly Fern Wesley Anne (Band Room)

Defeater, Blacklisted Corner Hotel

The Jokers, Demian, The Feathered Friends, Silent Jay Revolver Upstairs

Dru & The Intentions, Jude Perl Band, Little Wise Veludo

The Mole, Miza, Louk Syrylo, + More Lounge Bar


TOUR GUIDE

MYSTERY JETS: Tonight (Wednesday 26 September), Corner Hotel

The Sweethearts, Vince Peach, Pierre Baroni Cherry Bar

Ezra Lee, Bruce Milne The LuWow Forbidden Temple

Three For Tea Lomond Hotel

Fear Factory, Thy Art Is Murder, Truth Corroded The Hi-Fi

Trash Fairies, Wilde Child, John Pendleton Pony Velma Grove, Brightly, Emerson Snowe Yah Yah’s Vincent’s Chair Northcote Town Hall

FRI 28 Antarctica, Night Orchids, Pollux B, DJ Blumpy The Old Bar Bee, Jaymie & Brant, Sailor Beware The Espy, Basement Bitter Sweet Kicks, Sweet Teens, Mariocopa Wells Yah Yah’s Chicks Who Love Guns, The Red Lights, The Louds, Hey Kid Bended Elbow, Geelong Clairy Browne & the Bangin’ Rackettes, Loretta & Tracey Miller Flying Saucer Club Collarbones, Oscar Key Sung, Major Napier Liberty Social Corinne Grant, Adam Richard Comic’s Lounge Dan Bourke & Friends The Drunken Poet Dane Certificate, Little Killing, Pronoun The Gasometer Hotel Das EFX, Black Sheep, Motley Prince Bandroom DD Dumbo The Bridge Hotel Dibby Dougherty Billboard Dru & The Intentions, Tara Spackman, Nick Magic Bar Nancy Eagle and the Worm!, Fraser A Gorman, Courtney Barnett & The Courtney Barnetts, Sam Cooper Northcote Social Club East Brunswick All Girls Choir The Post Office Hotel Emma Wall, Jessie Lloyd, Alison Ferrier, Ruth Katerelos Wesley Anne (Band Room)

Footy Sporting Club Hotel Foxtrot, Initials The Gasometer (Upstairs) Freya Hollick Glenlyon General Store Full Ugly, Pageants, Glaciers Grace Darling Hotel High on Fire, Summonus, Shellfin The Espy, Gershwin Room Isaac Tichauer, Boogs, Rowie, Luke McD, + More OneSixOne Jayne Denham The Palais, Hepburn Springs Kimba & Ryan, The Gin Remedy Band Bennetts Lane King Parrot, Decimatus, Abrasion, Burning In White The Evelyn

Russian Circles, Eagle Twin Corner Hotel

Adrian Whyte, Chinese Handcuffs Tago Mago

Six60 Forum Theatre

Bad Vision, Quince The Tote, Front Bar

Space Bong, Pneumatic Slaughter, Nous, + More Reverence Hotel, Footscray Speedtripper, The Aitches, Union Pacific, Lucy Arundel Cherry Bar Steve Smart, Amanda Anastasi, Maurice McNamara, Randall Stevens, Zenobia Frost British Crown Hotel Super Best Friends, Too Soon Pony Late Show The Afrobiotics Bar Open The Dirty Gypsy Loop The Electrique Birds, Vagabondi, The Divine Fluxus The Brunswick Hotel The Guilts, Speed Dating The Empress

Kingston Downes, Like Kites, Astley in Wayland, + More The Baroness, Brunswick

The Modern Age, Elliot the Bull, Turner, Dan & Hannah Acfield, Ruby Frost Revolver Upstairs

Kyle Hall, + More Brown Alley

The Spin, The Messengers, + Guests Ding Dong Lounge

Living Music Showcase Revolt Louis King & The Liars Club Lomond Hotel Lucy’s Crown, Dirty Ballroom, Caladonia, DJ Danger The Workers Club Matt Glass Wesley Anne (Front Bar) Mia Dyson Basement Discs Mondo Kane Regent Theatre Open Mic St Andrew’s Hotel Paulie Bignell & the Thornbury Two, Coral Lee & the Silver Scream Tago Mago Phil Para Trio Baha Tacos Phil Ross, Chris Mac, B-Boogie, Dean T, Johnny M, Jay-J, 5FT2 Co. & Fusion Nightclub at Crown Richie 1250 Yah Yah’s (Late)

SAT 29

Seth Sentry, Grey Ghost Karova Lounge, Ballarat

Tony Touch, Scatter Scatter Sound System, N’fa, One Sixth, + More The Espy, Lounge Bar Trash Fairies, Elucid, Smash n Swann Victoria Hotel Trio Agogo, Funk Buddies, Captain Groove 303 Tzu, Sietta Pelican Bar, Frankston Velvet Cake Gypsies The Thornbury Local Weddings Parties Anything, Even, Livingstone Daisies, Brian Nankervis The Palace Theatre

Bugdust, Dukes Of Deliciousness, Cold Harbour, Rocket Queen Yah Yah’s Cherrywood, Eaten By Dogs The Bridge Hotel Chris Franklin The Palais, Hepburn Springs Chris Wilson The Drunken Poet Corinne Grant, Adam Richard Comic’s Lounge

JENNIFER LOPEZ: December 11, 12 Rod Laver Arena ALEXISONFIRE: December 12 Festival Hall REGINA SPEKTOR: December 14 Plenary JB SMOOVE: December 15 Thornbury Theatre EVAN DAND0, JULIANA HATFIELD: December 18 Corner Hotel MORRISSEY: December 19 Festival Hall 65DAYSOFSTATIC: January 4 Corner Hotel NIGHTWISH: January 14 Palace DAVID BYRNE & ST VINCENT: January 14, 15 Hamer Hall WEEZER: January 16 Sidney Myer Music Bowl ALESTORM: January 18 Hi-Fi GARY CLARK JR: January 22 Corner Hotel THE KILLERS: January 22 Palace CRYSTAL CASTLES: January 22 Billboard BAND OF HORSES: January 23 Palais OFF!: January 23 Corner Hotel SLEIGH BELLS: January 23 Billboard JEFF THE BROTHERHOOD: January 23 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 24 Corner Hotel ANIMAL COLLECTIVE: January 23 Palace BLOODY BEETROOTS: January 24 Palace ALABAMA SHAKES: January 24 Forum ABOVE & BEYOND: February 2 Hisense Arena CELTIC THUNDER: February 7 Geelong Arena; 9 Hisence Arena BARRY GIBB: February 12 Rod Laver Arena DAVID HASSELHOFF: February 14 Corner Hotel SWANS: February 15 Corner Hotel GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR: February 15 Forum CLIFF RICHARD: February 15, 16 Hamer Hall EINSTÜRZENDE NEUBAUTEN: February 19 Palace DR FEELGOOD: February 20 Caravan Club; 21 Corner Hotel NORAH JONES: February 21 Plenary LINKIN PARK: February 27 Rod Laver Arena ED SHEERAN: March 4, 5, 6 Festival Hall THE CIVIL WARS: March 12 St Michael’s Church NEWTON FAULKNER: April 11 Prince; 14 Caravan Music Club

NATIONAL

DJ Benny B, DJ Dan, Over The Fence, Lone Tyger, Masa Lounge The Espy, Gershwin Room Elliot the Bull, The Archetypal, National Airlines The Empress Frilly Knickers Jazz Band Wesley Anne, arvo Funkagenda Pretty Please Gabriel Lynch, Simon Phillips, Tom Tuena Wesley Anne (Band Room) Gigamesh Seven Nightclub Grand Perceptor, Child (Live), Grand Prismatic Grace Darling Hotel Hard Copy St Andrew’s Hotel JMQ, Emma Franz Dizzy’s Jazz Club Joe Kokomo Yah Yah’s (Late) Johnny Rock & The Limits The Great Britain Jshwa & The Kinship, Mattriks, + More Northcote Town Hall

Xenograft, The Nest Itself, Qlayeface, Squarehead Pony

King of the North, Rosencrantz, Levitating Churches, Shimmernet, Virtue, + More The Brunswick Hotel

Yardvark, Red Leader, Brooklyn’s Finest Revolver Upstairs (Late)

Late November, The Insomniacs, Caulfield Royal Melbourne Hotel

STRANGERS: October 3, 10, 17, 24 Cherry Bar THE AMITY AFFLICTION: October 4, 5 (two shows: under-18 and 18+) Palace Theatre SASKWATCH: October 5 Corner Hotel; 6 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 8 Palais (Hepburn Springs) SOUND OF SEASONS: October 5 Newmarket Hotel (Bendigo); 6 Fist 2 Face (Ringwood, all ages), Royal Melbourne Hotel; 7 National Hotel (Geelong) THE DECLINE: October 5 Bendigo Hotel TIM ROGERS: October 5 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 6 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine) MICK THOMAS, SAL KIMBER: October 5 Leura Park Estate Vineyard (Curlewis); 6 Big Marma Murtoa Big Weekend; 12 The Sisters Hall; 13 Mollongghip Hall; 14 Wandiligong Hall; 19 Caravan Music Club; 20 Toora Community Hall; 21 Substation (Newport) DARREN PERCIVAL: October 6 Palms At Crown KING GIZZARD & THE LIZARD WIZARD: October 6, 7 Tote TIGERTOWN: October 7 Workers Club SOMETHING FOR KATE: October 6, 7, 8 Corner Hotel HEY GERONIMO: October 6 Workers Club CREO: October 6 Ding Dong JOE MOORE: October 6 the Wick THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS: October 6 Workers Club MINIBIKES: October 6 Northcote Social Club THE PRETTY LITTLES: October 6 Ding Dong MATT WALKER: October 6 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine), 7 Toff In Town KARISE EDEN: October 10, 11 St Michael’s Church HUSKY: October 11 Corner CROOKED SAINT: October 11 Spirit Bar (Traralgon); 12 Western Port Hotel; 13 Baby Black Cafe (Bacchus Marsh); 15 Empress, 16 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 17 Pure Pop Records GLASS TOWERS: October 12 Evelyn MANTRA: October 12 Espy JULIA & THE DEEP SEA SIRENS: October 12 Empress REGURGITATOR: October 12 Hi-Fi STEP-PANTHER: October 12 Workers Club OCEANICS: October 12 Grace Darling CAULFIED: October 12 POW (Werribee); 13 TLC (Bayswater); 14 Nash (Geelong) WE ALL WANT TO: October 12 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 13 Pure Pop (3pm), Yah Yah’s OH MERCY: October 12 Loft (Warrnambool); 13 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 19 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 25 Hi-Fi

themusic.com.au

GAY PARIS: Friday 30 November, Tote; Saturday 1 December, National Hotel (Geelong)

THE ASTON SHUFFLE: October 13 Toff DALLAS FRASCA: October 12 Prince Of Wales MAKE THEM SUFFER: October 13 Espy COERCE, TOTALLY UNICORN: October 13 John Curtin MARGRET ROADKNIGHT: October 14 Yarraville Community Centre DIG: October 14 Corner Hotel HAT FITZ & CARA ROBINSON: October 18 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine); 19 Harvester Moon (Bellarine); 20 Baha Tacos (Rye); 21 Workers Club BRITISH INDIA: October 18 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 19 Corner Hotel, 20 Pier Live (Frankston) IMMIGRANT UNION, ROYSTON VASIE: October 18 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 19 Ding Dong; 20 National Hotel (Geelong) DRUNK MUMS: October 19 Grace Darling THE PREATURES: October 19 Workers Club. VELOCIRAPTOR: October 19 Tote MY DISCO: October 19 Hi-Fi IN HEARTS WAKE: October 20 Bang; 21 OLP (Ringwood) SUGAR ARMY: October 20 Toff CHARLES JENKINS: October 21 Northcote Social Club LAST DINOSAURS: October 21 Ding Dong (under-18s); 25, 26 Corner Hotel JOSH PYKE: October 24 Palais (Hepburn Springs); 25 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 26 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 27 Meeniyan Town Hall GYPSY AND THE CAT: October 26 Palace CLARE BOWDITCH: October 26 Regal Ballroom; 27 GPAC SARAH HUMPHREYS: October 26 Wesley Anne; 27 Pure Pop Records & Elwood Lounge DOMNICKS: October 26 Caravan Music Club ROBERT FORSTER: 26 October Thornbury Theatre; 27 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine); 28 Caravan Music Club ARGENTINA, TOKYO DENMARK SWEDEN, THEM SWOOPS: October 26 Workers Club BLKOUT: October 27 Gasometer; 28 Collingwood Masonic Centre TIN SPARROW: October 27 Workers Club ANDREW MORRIS: October 27 Grace Darling CATHERINE TRAICOS: October 28 Workers Club LISA MITCHELL: October 31 Athenaeum Theatre MAMA KIN: November 1 Northcote Social Club YUNG WARRIORS: November 1 The Loft (Warrnambool); 2 FReeZA (Portland); 16 First Floor; 17 National Hotel (Geelong); 29 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); December 7 Sand Bar (Mildura) THUNDAMENTALS: November 2 Basement 159; 3 Northcote Social Club THE SAINTS: November 2 Corner COSMIC PSYCHOS: November 2 Tote THE DEMON PARADE: November 2 Ding Dong SUZANNAH ESPIE, LIZ STRINGER, CHRIS ALTMANN: November 2 Basement Discs, Caravan Club; 3 Thornbury Theatre; 4 Old Hepburn Hotel; 15 Red Room (Ararat) MOJO JUJU: November 2 Northcote Social Club; 3 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine) THE PAPER KITES: November 2 Corner Hotel; 3 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) ELIZABETH ROSE: November 3 Workers Club PRINNIE STEVENS & MAHALIA BARNES: November 3 Palms At Crown; 21 Regent Theatre (Ballarat); 22 Lighthouse Theatre (Warrnambool) HENRY WAGONS: November 3 National Hotel (Geelong); 4 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine); 5 Thornbury Theatre THE BEARDS: November 3 Northcote Social Club; 22 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) BUTTERFLY BOUCHER: November 3 Empress; 25 Queenscliff Music Festival CLAUDE HAY: November 3 Blues Train; 4 Worker; 10 Bendigo Blues Feast; December 1 Blues Train; 2 Westernport Hotel (San Remo) HORSELL COMMON: November 5 Plastic HUNGRY KIDS OF HUNGARY: November 4 Northcote Social Club DELTA GOODREM: November 7, 8 Hamer Hall INPRESS • 101


Lime Cordiale, Private, Hot English, Adam Hynes The Espy, Lounge Bar

Scott Tinkler Quartet Uptown Jazz CafĂŠ

Matt Bailey Sporting Club Hotel

Short Order Schefs Victoria Hotel

Melatonin, DJ MishMash, Belfi n 303

Sounds of Sirus Rubys Lounge

MGMC ft Amy Young, Femme, Brooke Evers, Tate Strauss, Phil Ross, + More Co. & Fusion Nightclub at Crown Money For Rope, The Bowers, Chris Russell’s Chicken Walk, + More The Tote Natural Bull Logic, Damian Vanegeer, Gardenhead, + More Pony Nick Charles St Andrew’s Hotel, Arvo Show Proletarian Riot, The Sweaters, Fierce Mild, Jess Moussi The Espy, Basement

Seth Sentry Corner Hotel

Spectrum Lomond Hotel Spoonful The Post Office Hotel Streams of Whiskey Bar Open The Bread Makers, Hipshaker DJs The LuWow Forbidden Temple The Engagement, Royal Parade, Fox Road The Workers Club The Mung, The Day Everything Became Nothing, Fat Guy Wears Mystic Wolf Shirt, Party Vibez The Gasometer Hotel The Velvets, Rise of the Rat, Son of Set, Initials Reverence Hotel, Footscray Tim & Eric Forum Theatre

Rachel Haircut, Taay Ninh, Able 8, Hypercolour Horse Bazaar

Tommie Sunshine Prince Bandroom

Rebelquin, Nicolette Forte, TJ Quinton Chandelier Room

Towers, Tin Lion, Honey Badgers, + Guests Ding Dong Lounge

Tony Kopa Prince Maximilian

Tzu, Sietta Ferntree Gully Hotel

Archer The Bridge Hotel (afternoon)

Unstable Sounds Loop

Ben Wright Smith & The Birthday Girls The Post Office Hotel

Vaudeville Smash, We The People, Charlotte Nicdao Northcote Social Club Vic Farrel, Merry Prain, Richard Jeffrey The Thornbury Local Waiting Room, Stockades, Carbs, Calavacde The Gasometer (Upstairs) Windjammer Brass Quintet, Mel’Bones Trombone Quartet 303, Arvo Show Winter People, Founds, City vs Country The Toff In Town Wolfpack Pony Late Show Working Horse Irons, Blazin’ Entrails, The Jacks, Mary M Cherry Bar Zoophyte, Pandorum, The Hiding, The Vendettas The Evelyn

Burlesque At The Wes Wesley Anne (Band Room) Cameron Oates Dan O’Connell, Carlton Carus Thompson, The Swamp Dandies Northcote Social Club, Arvo Show Chaise Lounge, The Greenbatch Effect, Rebecca Perkins, + More The Empress Chris Russell’s Chicken Walk, Dean Muller, Max Crawdaddy Cherry Bar, Arvo Show Dan Watkins, Paddy Montgomery Sporting Club Hotel Davey Lane St Jeromes Diana Rouvas, Carmen Smith Thornbury Theatre

SUN 30 Andyblack, Haggis The Toff In Town (Carriage Room)

JVG Guitar Method Lomond Hotel (afternoon)

Trichotomy with String Quartet, Sarah Curro Bennetts Lane

Ken Maher, Tony Hargreaves Lomond Hotel

Rowan Blackmore The Drunken Poet

Turner Pure Pop Records

Shannon Bourne Band Way Out West Club (Williamstown)

Vince Jones Flying Saucer Club

Brendan Kelly, Thunderhorse, High Suburban The Brunswick Hotel

Voodoo Sheiks Caravan Music Club

Collage The Espy, Lounge Bar

Water Music, Saint Hill, Sissy Langford The Gasometer (Upstairs)

Eagle Twin, Hotel Wrecking City Traders, + Special Guests Northcote Social Club

Lady Danger, Cookie Baker, Caitlin Park The Toff In Town

Snow Patrol Regent Theatre Steve Parkin Wesley Anne

Large No 12’s Labour In Vain

Super Fat Fruit, Freya & The Smoky Seas, Rusty Douglas, Roxy Lavish, + More The Brunswick Hotel (afternoon)

Longyard Prahran Market Place Lucy Wilson, Maricopa Wells, Brad Vincent Reverence Hotel, Footscray Melting Pot Wesley Anne, arvo Michael Waugh The Great Britain Nudist Funk Orchestra, Dale Ryder Band, Bad Boys Batacuda The Espy, Lounge Bar Open Decks The Thornbury Local

Ten Gallon Head, Green’s Dairy Angel Ensemble Tago Mago The Citradels, Crepes, Ryan West The Gasometer Hotel The Decoys The Standard Hotel The Groove Truck Ruby’s Lounge The Luau Cowboys Victoria Hotel (afternoon) The Nudgels The Drunken Poet, Arvo Show

Panchromatic, Purple Tusks, Cohorts Nomen, Millington, + More The Evelyn

Erik Parker, Jimmy Daniel Chandelier Room Ivanhoe School of Music 303, Arvo Show

Pugsley Buzzard St Andrew’s Hotel, Arvo Show

Opa 303

Eli Cash, Yeo, Big Smoke Bar Open

TUE 02

Kaleidoscope, Carta Extremis, Riff Fist Yah Yah’s

The Swamp Dandies, Carus Thompson Northcote Social Club

Patrick James, Hamish Anderson, Jude Jacobs The Workers Club (afternoon)

The Un-Australians, Lords of Cosmic Small, The Minute Takers Cherry Bar Tim & Eric Forum Theatre

Zulya & The Children Of The Underground Northcote Town Hall

MON 01

Human As Animals, Hiatus Kaiyote, Lopaka The Toff In Town

Cherry Jam Cherry Bar

Irish Session Lomond Hotel

Jam Sessions The Old Bar

Jeff Green, Matt Hardy, Monty Franklin Comic’s Lounge

Kelly Clarkson, The Fray, Sarah De Bono Rod Laver Arena

Klub M.U.K 303

Mortal Coil, Knight/ Thompson/Browne, + More 303 Passionate Tongues - Poetry and Spoken Word The Brunswick Hotel Process Loop Strangers From Now On, Duck Duck Chop, Teenage Libido Northcote Social Club The Ramshackle Army, Max Savage The Espy, Lounge Bar

Melody Moon Bar Nancy Open Mic Wesley Anne (Band Room) Sean Simmons John Curtin Hotel Stephen Malkmus & The Jinks, The Murlocs The Bridge Hotel Winter Palace, Deborah Quilter, Venice Music The Old Bar

“Live At The Lomond� THU 27TH 8:30PM

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THE BRUNSWICK HOTELâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S OPEN MIC

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WITH YOUR HOST BRODIE GET IN AND REGISTER FROM 7PM ONWARDS $10 JUGS OF BRUNSWICK BITTER

LIARS CLUB (Swinginâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; R&B)

THURSDAY THE 27TH OF SEPTEMBER - 8PM TILL MIDNIGHT $3 SCHOONERS OF CARLTON DRAUGHT $5 BASIC SPIRITS 8PM

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SUN 30TH

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5:30PM

FEATURING PRIVATE RADIO EMPIRE, ALEJANDRO ADAMS, SLEEPY DREAMERS

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FRIDAY THE 28TH OF SEPTEMBER - 9PM

THE ELECTRIQUE BIRDS

9:00PM

WITH GUESTS THE DIVINE FLUXUS, VAGABONDI SATURDAY THE 29TH OF SEPTEMBER - MIDDAY

GRAND FINAL DAY 2012

BIG SCREENS INSIDE AND OUT! BBQ! FEATURING PERFORMANCES BY: KING OF THE NORTH, ROSENCRANTS, LEVITATING CHURCHES, SHIMMERNET, VIRTUE, MILLION DOLLAR JAM BAND SUNDAY THE 30TH OF SEPTEMBER - 4PM

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KEN MAHER & TONY HARGREAVES (Acoustic roots)

TUE 2ND IIRISH SESSION 8:00PM

SUPER FAT FRUIT

WITH GUESTS FREYA AND SMOKY SEAS, RUSTY DOUGLAS, ROXY LAVISH, DARN MATTER, CLANCYE MONDAY THE 1ST OF OCTOBER - 8PM

PASSIONATE TONGUES POETRY HOSTED BY MICHAEL REYNOLDS OPEN STAGE READINGS AND SPOKEN WORD WELCOME WITH FEATURE PERFORMERS EVERY FORTNIGHT $10 JUGS OF CARLTON DRAUGHT TUESDAY THE 2ND OF OCTOBER - 8PM

THE BRUNSWICK HOTEL DISCOVERY NIGHT

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~ EXCELLENT RESTAURANT AND BAR MEALS

FRI 28 SEPTEMBER

Phil Para Trio SAT 29 SEPTEMBER

William Blaxland AND Papa Maul FRI 5 OCTOBER

Sticky Fingers [syd] SAT 6 OCTOBER

PEACE PIE SAT 13 OCTOBER

PRESIDENT ROOTS SAT 20 OCTOBER

Hat Fitz and Cara


VENUE GUIDE BAHA TACOS

Friday Phil Para Trio

BAR OPEN

Wednesday Spermaids, Cuntz, Teenage Libido Thursday Seagull, Fuyuko’s Fabels Friday The Afrobiotics Saturday Streams of Whiskey Sunday Eli Cash, Yeo, Big Smoke

BILLBOARD

Friday Dibby Dougherty

CORNER HOTEL

Wednesday Mystery Jets, Northeast Party House Thursday Defeater, Blacklisted Friday Russian Circles, Eagle Twin Saturday Seth Sentry

GRACE DARLING HOTEL

Wednesday Miss Little, April Maze, Brendan Maclean Friday Full Ugly, Pageants, Glaciers Saturday Grand Perceptor, Child (Live), Grand Prismatic

LOOP

Friday The Dirty Gypsy Saturday Unstable Sounds Monday Process

LOUNGE BAR

Wednesday Danny Silver, Manchild, Mu-Gen Thursday The Mole, Miza, Louk Syrylo, + More

NORTHCOTE SOCIAL CLUB

Thursday Krystle Warren, Daniel Champagne

Friday Eagle and the Worm!, Fraser A Gorman, Courtney Barnett & The Courtney Barnetts, Sam Cooper Saturday Vaudeville Smash, We The People, Charlotte Nicdao Sunday The Swamp Dandies, Carus Thompson Monday Strangers From Now On, Duck Duck Chop, Teenage Libido Tuesday Eagle Twin, Hotel Wrecking City Traders, + Special Guests

NORTHCOTE SOCIAL CLUB, ARVO SHOW

Sunday Carus Thompson, The Swamp Dandies

PONY

Thursday Trash Fairies, Wilde Child, John Pendleton Friday Xenograft, The Nest Itself, Qlayeface, Squarehead Saturday Natural Bull Logic, Damian Vanegeer, Gardenhead, + More

PONY LATE SHOW

Thursday Shabon Friday Super Best Friends, Too Soon Saturday Wolfpack

PRINCE BANDROOM

Wednesday Kevin Johansen, The Nada Friday Das EFX, Black Sheep, Motley Saturday Tommie Sunshine

REVOLVER UPSTAIRS

Wednesday Lilly Rouge, Black Tea House, Three Time Thrill Thursday The Jokers, Demian, The Feathered Friends, Silent Jay Friday The Modern Age, Elliot the Bull, Turner, Dan & Hannah Acfield, Ruby Frost

SPORTING CLUB HOTEL

Thursday Cullen

Friday Footy Saturday Matt Bailey Sunday Dan Watkins, Paddy Montgomery

THE BRIDGE HOTEL (AFTERNOON)

Sunday Archer

THE DRUNKEN POET

Wednesday Jenny Biddle, Gen & Flora Thursday Pete Cornelius, Les Thomas Friday Dan Bourke & Friends Saturday Chris Wilson Sunday Rowan Blackmore

THE DRUNKEN POET, ARVO SHOW

Sunday The Nudgels

Thursday Broken Splendour, Melissa Main & Band, Polo Club DJs Friday King Parrot, Decimatus, Abrasion, Burning In White Saturday Zoophyte, Pandorum, The Hiding, The Vendettas Sunday Panchromatic, Purple Tusks, Cohorts Nomen, Millington, + More

THE HI-FI

Friday Fear Factory, Thy Art Is Murder, Truth Corroded

THE OLD BAR

Wednesday Gold Bloom, The Ocean Party, Danvers Thursday Laura Imbruglia, The Taylor Project, Wiley Red Fox, Courtney Barnett Friday Antarctica, Night Orchids, Pollux B, DJ Blumpy Monday Jam Sessions Tuesday Winter Palace, Deborah Quilter, Venice Music

THE STANDARD HOTEL

THE WORKERS CLUB (AFTERNOON)

Wednesday Pete Cornelius Sunday The Decoys

Sunday Patrick James, Hamish Anderson, Jude Jacobs

THE TOFF IN TOWN

WESLEY ANNE

Thursday Evermore, Lakyn Heperi, Ruby Frost, Natalie Ruiz Saturday Winter People, Founds, City vs Country Sunday Lady Danger, Cookie Baker, Caitlin Park Tuesday Human As Animals, Hiatus Kaiyote, Lopaka

THE TOTE

Thursday Gary Clark Jnr, Jackson Firebird, The Murlocs Saturday Money For Rope, The Bowers, Chris Russell’s Chicken Walk, + More

Sunday Steve Parkin

YAH YAH’S

Thursday Velma Grove, Brightly, Emerson Snowe Friday Bitter Sweet Kicks, Sweet Teens, Mariocopa Wells Saturday Bugdust, Dukes Of Deliciousness, Cold Harbour, Rocket Queen Sunday*Kaleidoscope, Carta Extremis, Riff Fist

THE EVELYN

Wednesday Clever Austin, Kirkis, Demian, Jackson Miles

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INPRESS • 103


104 â&#x20AC;˘ INPRESS

themusic.com.au


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INPRESS • 105


WITH MICHAEL SMITH

PAUL GILBERT GUITAR MASTERCLASS

Although Allans Billy Hyde have announced their nationwide closing down sale, they’re still committed to presenting two final masterclasses by internationally renowned guitarists. Last week we mentioned the Jeff Loomis guitar clinic, which happens Thursday 4 October at Allans Billy Hyde Melbourne, and this week, the final Allans Billy Hyde showcase masterclass is a visit by founding Mr Big guitarist Paul Gilbert, whose ferocious picking technique has revolutionised not just the approach to shredding but playing styles across the musical spectrum. Renowned for his accuracy, creativity and power, as well as a great sense of humour, Gilbert will be presenting a threehour masterclass/clinic that’ll include a chance to get up and jam with the man, from 7.30pm Thursday 11 October at 360 Theatre in Lower Plenty. Tickets are $79 plus booking fee, with pre-paying customers receiving a Thump Music Showbag that includes more than $50 worth of gear. You can book through the Allans Billy Hyde website or check into the Thump Music website.

STUDIOS 301 SYDNEY JUST GOT BIGGER

As of October, Studios 301 in Alexandria, in Sydney’s inner-west, will boast six new music production studios within what is now one of the largest studio complexes in the world. As their press release tells it, “Each studio is self contained, comprising of a large control room and adjacent recording booth. The acoustics of the control room have been expertly treated for a flat and natural response, and are extremely well isolated from neighbouring studios. Immediately in front of the control room, the booth has been deadened for un-coloured recording of vocals and instruments, which patches through to the control room and neighbouring booths. The audio wiring, and a comprehensive star earthing system, has been installed by our techs in all rooms. Each studio is a 22 sqm control room and 3.6 sqm recording booth.” Each will be available for long-term hire, so for details, bookings or a chance to check the rooms out, call Anthony Garvin on (02) 8396 7266 or email Anthony@studios301.com.

SOUND BYTES

More than 15 years since they released their last album, Soundgarden finally drop their sixth studio record, King Animal, in November, recorded at Studio X in Seattle with producer Adam Kasper (Foo Fighters, Nirvana, Pearl Jam), Joe Barresi (Queens Of The Stone Age, Weezer) then mixing it in Pasadena, California. The end of August saw Red Door Sounds Recording Studio in Collingwood play host to American R&B superstar Kelly Rowland when she stopped off in Melbourne to record her latest single, due for release later in the year. The expanded Birds Of Tokyo took themselves off to LA to record their forthcoming EP, This Fire, with producer Dave Coole (Silversun Pickups) and mixing engineer, Tony Hoffer (M83, Beck, The Kooks). The self-produced latest album, I’ll Be A Dog, from Melbourne garage band Midnight Woolf was recorded over a year by Raul Sanchez at Mobile Crossbone Recording Studios.

TWO SONS IN ONE The second album, thefearofmissingout, from thenewno2, the musical outlet for Dhani Harrison, is very much a band album, as he tells Michael Smith.

T

here are two sons of famous musical fathers at the core of UK experimental pop combo thenewno2. Dhani Harrison is, of course, the son of the late, great George of Beatles fame, but equally important to the formula is keyboards player and programmer Paul Hicks, who is the son of the guitarist and songwriter in that other great UK ‘60s pop institution, The Hollies. Hicks got his start in the business working as an engineer, mixer and producer at the same Abbey Road Studios both his father and Harrison’s made all their greatest hits, and was heavily involved in preserving The Beatles recordings, working with their original producer George Martin as part of a team coordinated by Allan Rouse in remixing and remastering their entire catalogue, for which he won three Grammy Awards. Thenewno2, their name a reference to the Patrick McGoohan character in the ‘60s UK TV cult series, The Prisoner, formed in 2006 around an already collaboration between singer, songwriter and guitarist Harrison and drummer and synth player Oliver Heck, and they approached Hicks, whom Harrison had also played with off and on for years, to engineer and mix their debut album, 2009’s You Are Here. Since then, Hecks has moved on and Hicks has become a part of the now trans-Atlantic group – “I finally got him out in the sunlight,” Harrison laughs – that also features keyboards player and guitarist Jonathan Sadoff, guitarist Jeremy Faccone, bass player Nick Fyffe and drummer Frank Zummo. The band’s second album, thefearofmissingout, produced by pHd (Paul and Dhani), features a combination of live and programmed instruments overlain with obscure samples that creates what they describe as “an intricate collage of trip-hop, blues, dub, reggae, and electronica sounds”. The core of the music however bears all the hallmarks of classic pop melody, but there’s an obvious passion for creating unique sonic contexts within which those melodies are presented. So what took Harrison down this path? “I dunno – fun I think,” he admits. “I love brewing stuff. I tend make this up to hear myself. It’s experimental music, so some of it works and some of it doesn’t; you’re never quite sure if it’s going to work. And some days you’ll come back to it and think, ‘Oh God, that’s not working,’ and some days it’s just perfect – ‘Oh great, I didn’t expect that to work but it did.’ So it’s try and try again until you get something that you like. “Knowing when to stop – that’s the tricky bit. When Paul and I are working, some days you just

want to release a bit of music, you know, so you won’t give up on it and you’ll stay up all night, right until it has to go to the mastering, and sometimes you’ll get it back and you’ll have worked on it so much that you run out of tracks – you’ve got ninety-two tracks going. One day I saw Paul and I said, ‘Okay, that means it’s done then,’ because we can’t add any more tracks, so it has to be done! Then some days you’ve got a little drums and a vocal for a song and before you even put anything else on it, Paul will turn to me and say, ‘That’s done – that’s great. Just leave it like that – it’s perfect.’ So yes, you know, it is a bit tricky to know when to stop. But when you see someone start to go mental in the studio, that’s a good time to say, ‘Okay, I think it’s time to stop now.’ “But Paul is so good at. Once he got a taste for the programming, he’s impossible to stop and how far he could go. He really makes things a lot easier for me. I wrote a lot with Jeremy and Jon on this record; Frank was around, and we got to really sketch things out live. There was a lot of material for this record and we’ve already started working on stuff for the next record, which will be more of an ambient dance record – that’s gonna be really fun.” The album was recorded at FPSHOT, the studio at Friar Park, the Victorian neo-Gothic Harrison family home in Henley-on-Thames just outside of London, originally set up in 1972 as a 16-track

analogue tape-based facility, and also in a studio, dubbed H.O.T West that Harrison has in Santa Monica, California (H.O.T. for Henley-on-Thames). “I hang out with a lot of musicians,” he explains. “I live in Venice Beach [California] and there are a lot of people who live around me, so having a studio, I’ll get a phone call, ‘I need some guitar doing on this, can you come over?’ ‘Oh, you can come over to mine to do it,’ so it’s easier. It was so much harder when I was in the countryside in England. There was never anyone around, I was always by myself,” he laughs. “But here, everyone’s played on everything, and everyone’s in four bands. There are a lot of collaborations going on. And all of my New York friends tend to see me in LA touring a lot, so whenever they come into town, they come straight to the studio and if we’re lucky we can get them to do something on a track. It’s like having a football squad to play with.” A few members of the “football squad” lend their vocals to various tracks on the new album, among them the rapper RZA, blues roots musician Ben Harper, with whom Harrison performs, alongside Joseph Arthur, in a side project called Fistful Of Mercy; Icelandic pop singer Throunn Antonia and Holly Marilyn from The Child. thefearofmissingout is out now on Cooking Vinyl through Shock.

ENGINEER PROFILE

The new album, To The Dollhouse, from Melodie Nelson, the solo moniker of Lia Tsamoglou, was recorded in Melbourne by Simon Grounds (Laura Jean) and mixed in Tasmania by Chris Townend (Daniel Johns). Sister duo Scarlett Affection recorded their debut album, Forever Is A Long Long Time, with bass player, producer and arranger Dave Symes, who has collaborated with Sarah Blasko and Missy Higgins, at Megaphon Studios in Sydney, Shane Fahey engineering. One of this country’s finest singers, Wayne Jury, hooked up with fellow songwriter Dave Steele, at whose solar-powered, wind-generated The Studio On Windy Hill in Winchelsea on the Victorian coast, he recorded his latest album, Doors And Bridges, which the pair co-produced. David Briggs then mastered it at the Production Workshop. Jeff Duff and Icehouse bass player Steve Bull have been writing and recording an album together. The studio, for the moment, is Bull’s laptop. The new album, In Echoes Of Dawn, from Melbourne-based guitarist and songwriter Matt Walker, who co-produced it with Nikki Griffin106 • INPRESS

SAM JOHNSON

What areas of engineering do you specialise in? Studio recording and live sound. What is your favourite kind of project to work on? Any project, of any genre, that has inspired (and semi-rational) people looking forward to a place they want to take their music, and having a shared trust and open communication to get there. Are there any pieces of gear that you couldn’t get by without? The band. What song/album can we listen to to get the best idea of your work?

For warm and energetic punk and rock tones hear Sunshine And Technology by The Smith Street Band and Happy Endings by the Hawaiian Islands. For honest and raw folk and indie tones hear Diamond Teeth by Toy Boats and Cross Town Motions by Darren Gibson. For sculpted hi-fi and heavy metallic tones hear Xen by A Million Dead Birds Laughing. All the songs I suggested are available for listening at my Facebook work page. What do you like to see from an artist or band in the studio? Passion, patience, skill, trust and camaraderie. Are you currently working for a studio or are you freelancing? I’m freelancing, and have worked in studios in most

themusic.com.au

states, but end up tracking the bulk of it and mixing almost all of it in Melbourne where I live. Usually at Three Phase Studios in Brunswick East, where I get the most bang for my buck on lower budgets. Do you have any advice for young or inexperienced artists who are heading into a recording studio? Do pre production... Even more than once. Preferably with the producer or engineer you will be recording with. Its will always save time (and money) and stress later on. Do you have any words of wisdom for those wanting to become an audio engineer? Ready for a decade of mee goreng? Contact details: 0403 205 253 or sammusik@yahoo.com.au.


CONGRATULATIONS TO ALL THE 2012 NOMINEES : A MUSIC COMPANY FIRE S LEVEN T A R TER KS E INDICA AUSTRALIA KP RE M TRA C C U O R S DS MUSI IC ANT F LEF ACTICS INION MUSIC RED CAT RECORDS R KUNS THA OOTS T EMO SE OP T ES LLA UBLIC E OL ELECTRIC PUBLIC OPINIO CON US L TOM OC ORI PETR NM P IO P T PR S G RDS ENT R TROL ELECTRIC PUBLIC OPIN USIC OL N H REC G W INM O R IA PE O IO R E N D DE RDIN REC ERTA INERT ING MUSIC OBESE RE M CA ECO USE ORD U C ARKET S O T R I OL CO GUE ENT RAH C DS RE RD MU EWM DAGGIES TWO BRIGHT R O L N RE LEA DER JAR SIC N A K GAW E L ED C COR S R ES O VI SIC A Y MU D E OU DS ISH MUSIC SOULMA T U U T T E L R R E ON CE M KINNYF COR AMIN DER RE S NE CO TI ARRAH LEVEL T S C R D W R O S S U M RDS J RE RA EC ENT O US S O SO CORD E RECO I C BE LIB UR ORD E LI DS E GU C R E A R AT E M S LE OR T.X I O AL IVY N U M DS

APT ER URE MUS IC O C UDE F VIN TA REA RE GE TE N ELE TERT GIG CO N F A TIN ANT INM PIGL TR G M TR E E UN USI ACK NT T I IFI C ED OB S O V UL MA MUS ESE EC TE R IC OR D EC ES S S OU N

PIL VE OO IC GR S AL C MU Y I GIT DI MUS RISK GA D DS OL R GA UD OR R S C M EC ONT CO R SI ST TE C OTE SI MO EM T PE RE S R EN N RD AINM RE U RT E A O W ST C SI IC US BROUGHT TO YOU BY

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BEST INDEPENDENT DANCE/ELECTRONICA SINGLE

BREAKTHROUGH INDEPENDENT ARTIST OF THE YEAR

]CHET FAKER TERMS AND CONDITIONS

]CHET FAKER

]FLUME SLEEPLESS

]HUSKY

]PARACHUTE YOUTH CAN’T GET BETTER THAN THIS

]SAN CISCO

]TOM PIPER AND DANIEL FARLEY L.G.F.U.

]ROYAL HEADACHE

]TONITE ONLY GO

]THE RUBENS

BEST INDEPENDENT DANCE/ELECTRONICA ALBUM ]HERMITUDE HYPERPARADISE ]CHET FAKER THINKING IN TEXTURES ]JONTI TWIRLIGIG ]OLIVER TANK DREAMS ]T-REK DANCE MUSIC ]SAMPOLOGY DOOMSDAY DELUXE

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Inpress Issue 1243  

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...

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