THE SAINTS DARK FUNERAL MELODIE NELSON ANA NICOLE
N O W AVA I L A B L E O N I PA D • W E D N E S D AY 21 N O V E M B E R 2 012 • I S S U E 12 51 • F R E E
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Mature themes, drug use, sexual references and coarse language
ADVANCE SCREENINGS THIS FRIDAY, SATURDAY & SUNDAY
IN CINEMAS NOVEMBER 29 5
“YES, JON STILL IS THE VOICE...ANDERSON’S VOICE REMAINS EXQUISITE.”
EVERYBODY’S TALKIN’ THEIR BRILLIANT LIVE ALBUM OUT NOW
EXPRESS & STAR
JON TRUCKS ANDERSON TROMBONE SHORTY YES WITH GUESTS
AN INTIMATE EVENING WITH
THE VOICE OF
& ORLEANS AVENUE
“GENIUS PLAYER” LENNY KRAVITZ “COMPLETELY BLOWN AWAY” JEFF BECK
BLUESFESTTOURING.COM.AU 02 6685 8310 LIMITED GA SEATING TICKETS ALSO AVAILABLE AT THE VENUE
ARTS CENTRE MELBOURNE HAMER HALL TUE 26 MAR
ALSO APPEARING AT BLUESFEST VISIT BLUESFESTTOURING.COM.AU FOR ALL TOURING ARTISTS
ALSO APPEARING AT BLUESFEST, VISIT BLUESFESTTOURING.COM.AU FOR ALL TOURING ARTISTS
THE CORNER WED 10 APR
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‘THE HARDER THEY COME’ ‘MANY RIVERS TO CROSS’ ‘YOU CAN GET IT IF YOU REALLY WANT’
THE KING OF REGGAE
THE FORUM SAT 23 MAR
THE CORNER WED 27 MAR
ALSO APPEARING AT BLUESFEST VISIT BLUESFESTTOURING.COM.AU FOR ALL TOURING ARTISTS
ALSO APPEARING AT BLUESFEST VISIT BLUESFESTTOURING.COM.AU FOR ALL TOURING ARTISTS
THE LONG AWAITED RETURN OF
ARMATRADING CLIFF TICKETMASTER.COM.AU 136 100
BLUESFESTTOURING.COM.AU 02 6685 8310 TICKETS ALSO AVAILABLE AT THE VENUE
ALSO TOURING: ROGER HODGSON THE LEGENDARY VOICE OF SUPERTRAMP A UNIQUE PAIRING OF BLUES AND SOUL BONNIE RAITT WITH SPECIAL GUEST MAVIS STAPLES JAKE SHIMABUKURO 11
THE SP RTING CLUB MONDAY
Roo & Wine for $9.99 TUESDAY
$12 all you can eat paella WEDNESDAY
Trivia - $12 Jugs all night THURSDAY
Two for One Entrées FRIDAY
Lizzanne Richards 6:30pm FRIDAY
DJ LEWIS 9pm SATURDAY
Groove Collective 6pm Sunday
Dan Watkins and Paddy Montgomery 6pm
27 WESTON ST, BRUNSWICK Tues - Fri 4pm till Late Sat & Sun 12pm till Late
DOMINI FORSTER, MADI WETBURY, LEAH SENIOR
MOMENTS NOTICE CHARLOTTE NICDAO, MARC DEAZ & ATLUK
6PM 8PM $8
BRONI JULIANNE JESSOP, SUNLARK & MONDAY PROJECT
QUINCE JAM FREYLA’S RAIN, EMMA WALL, JUDE PERL BAND
Open...MON - SAT...from 12pm ‘til late Kitchen til 10pm SUN...from 12pm ‘til 11pm Kitchen til 9pm
Live Music Bookings email@example.com www.wesleyanne.com.au
MELTING POT PRESENTS SONGWRITERS 2PM $8 IN THE ROUND BURLESQUE 8PM $30 AT THE WES TUESDAY
OPEN MIC NIGHT
Spring Special NEW SPRING MENU 12
2 for 1 meals weekdays before 6pm and all day Mondays $12 Jugs of Cider till 6pm. OPEN FOR LUNCH FROM MIDDAY
bookings: 9482 1333
W E D N E S D AY 2 1 N O V E M B E R 2 0 1 2
Wed 21. 6:30pm - e-wasteland a film by David Fedele (20mins) 8pm - Melbourne Producers Club Fri 23. 10pm - TEA Cosy Sounds Will Elder, Amy Jean, Daniel Filipovic & James Manning's final deep house infused throw down VISUALS: Lost Few Sat 24. 3:30pm - Chai Junction presents Thriller Shorts 10pm - Unstable Sounds techno stalwarts Qualé & Dean Benson supports Azrin, Jewelz, Henk.D & Left Mon 26. 6pm - The Vault a salon for creatives guest Philip Samartzis, sound artist Tue 27. 7:30pm - Loopdeloop an animation challenge November theme - BANG
MAXIMO PARK INPRESS 15 18 20 22 22 23 24 24 25 26 26 26 26 28 28 28 28 30 30 48
Foreword Line brings you all the latest tour announcements Moves and shakes with Industry News We gaze into our ARIA Awards crystal ball This Maximo Park song is not about you Aussie promoters fear Eyehategod Kora have finally found their groove Joe Pug is bigger than Texas Straight outta Holland, it’s The Saints Angus Stone believes love is all you need The lonely existence of Delaney Davidson Black Fox are attracted to abandoned places A message from Battleships Blaze Bayley and Paul Di’Anno are Iron Maiden alumni Radio Slave is sitting out the corporate events All India Radio have lost count of their releases Melodie Nelson is the sound of the (‘60s) suburbs Everybody dance now, it’s Ana Nicole Stargazing with Luke Legs The spirit of the Arthouse lives at the Reverence On The Record rates new releases from Twelve Foot Ninja and Neil Young & Crazy Horse
FRONT ROW 51 51 51
SATURDAY 24 NOVEMBER
The Sideshow Brides The lovely Fibbins sisters take to the stage for a rootsy arvo of superb harmonies and guitar. 5pm
SATURDAY 24 NOVEMBER
The Re-chords Hot rockin’ roots & rockabilly. 9pm
Check out what’s happening This Week In Arts We speak to Miss Bala star Stephanie Sigman Gori Spelling skates through for a chat about Roller Derby Xtreme
JVG Guitar Method A highly entertaining extravaganza led by frontman Jon von Goes, with Mark Ferrie (Rockwiz Orkestra), Ash Davies (too many bands too mention) & Dale Lindrea (the Vanguards). 5pm
THE UNION HOTEL
BRUNSWICK 109 UNION ST, BRUNSWICK UHBBOOKINGS@YAHOO.COM.AU
14 • To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags
52 52 52 52 54 54 54
Reviews of Glimpse and I, Animal Cultural Cringe gets into a theatre opening Trailer Trash offers condolences to Twihards as the saga concludes Ben Prendergast talks about new Red Stitch production Midsummer (A Play With Songs) Director Adam Spellicy describes his new play SubUrbia Madeleine Flynn and Tim Humphrey talk new ArtsHouse show Gauge Five minutes with Celeste Cody
BACK TO INPRESS 57 57 60 60 60 60 61 61 61 61 62 66 66 68 73
Gig Of The Week digs Kylie Auldist Live:Reviews gets chills at Coldplay Sarah Petchell will Wake The Dead with her punk and hardcore talk The freshest in urban news with OG Flavas Dan Condon blues and roots in Roots Down Weird shit with Fragmented Frequencies A look at the box with The TV Set Fresh flavours with Dance Moves Hip hop with Intelligible Flow Heavy shit with Adamantium Wolf The best Live gigs of the week If you haven’t appeared in Fred Negro’s Pub, your mother probably still speaks to you Jeff Jenkins gets down and local in Howzat! Our Gig Guide fills your diary for the weekend Find your new band and just about everything else in our classy Classifieds
Head to the Inpress Facebook page to score a copy of the Rocksmith game with Gibson guitar accessory. We’re also giving you the chance to win one of five double passes to see The Stranglers on Tuesday 4 December.
CREDITS EDITORIAL Group Managing Editor Andrew Mast Editor Shane O’Donohue firstname.lastname@example.org Assistant Editor Bryget Chrisfield Editorial Assistant Samson McDougall Arts Coordinator Cassandra Fumi email@example.com Staff Writer Michael Smith
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SUNDAY 25 NOVEMBER
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NEWS FROM THE FRONT
GOING LARGER Seattle’s Macklemore & Ryan Lewis cannot be stopped. With their forthcoming Sydney show almost immediately moving to a larger venue, they are thrilled to announce a second show for both Sydney and Melbourne to cope with the demand. The new Melbourne show is on Wednesday 13 February at the Corner.
WEDNESDAY 21 NOVEMBER
ECHO DRAMA KOOYEH FEED YOUR MUNKIE DJ R.E.L ENTRY $7, 8.30PM
THURSDAY 22 NOVEMBER
MIMI VELEVKSA THE ADVOCATES WHODAFUNKIT DJ DAN WATT (BEAT TV)
WATERBOYS TO TOUR
The Waterboys have announced their first-ever tour of Australia. Performing classic tunes such as The Whole Of The Moon and Fisherman’s Blues, plus works from their latest project An Appointment With Mr Yeats. Mike Scott and his Waterboys will be performing at Hamer Hall on Wednesday 30 January. Tickets on sale from 10am Friday 30 November.
ENTRY $10 DOOR, $8 THRU MOSHTIX, 8PM $2.50 POTS, $5 VODKAS!
ROLL IN THE HAY
FRIDAY 23 NOVEMBER
“Finding my dance” is Colin Hay’s expression for connecting with one’s authentic self. In the process, he takes audiences on a musical journey, sometimes straight down the main road and sometimes taking the twists and turns of the road less travelled. As a writer and vocalist, he has never been more masterful. You can see him in concert at the Performing Arts Centre (Hamilton) on Tuesday 12 February, Light House Theatre (Warrnambool) on Wednesday 13, Frankston Arts Centre on Friday 15, Athenaeum Theatre on Saturday 16, Capital Theatre (Bendigo) on Tuesday 19 and River Links Performing Arts (Shepparton) and Wednesday 20.
KYLIE AULDIST KARATEE BOOGALOO DJ MIKE GURRIERI
ENTRY $30 DOOR, $25 THRU MOSHTIX, 8.30PM
SATURDAY 24 NOVEMBER
SUBJEKTIVE FRANKENBOK BRONSON DECIMATUS
SUNDAY 25 NOVEMBER
OWNKIND KIERAN P. WEST & THE MELANOMADS LANE CHASER MATINEE – ENTRY $10, 1.30PM
SOMEONE ELSE’S WEDDING BAND AUTOPORTRAITS HEY! SANTIAGO ALEX MCMILLAN
EVENING – ENTRY $6, 7.30PM
MONDAY 26 NOVEMBER
RESIDENCY – FINAL NIGHT
GHOST ORKID NAI PALM KIRKIS
$2 ENTRY, 9PM $10 JUGS!
BLOODLINES Arlo Guthrie was born with a guitar in one hand and a harmonica in the other. He is the son of America’s most beloved singer-writer-philosopher Woody Guthrie. Arlo witnessed the transition from an earlier generation of ballad singers and bluesmen, to a new era of singer-songwriters such as Bob Dylan, Joan Baez and Phil Ochs; he learned something from everyone and developed his own style. He’s heading our way and plays Thursday 7 March at the National Theatre, and Friday 8 through Sunday 10 at Port Fairy Folk Festival.
Respected soul singer Vika Bull is set to tell the story of one of the most influential soul singers of all time: Etta James. Written by critically acclaimed UK author John Livings, At Last: The Etta James Story will premiere at Melbourne’s Athenaeum Theatre from Tuesday 19 February, just over a year after James’s death. The season runs until Sunday 3 March and tickets are on sale from Friday 30 November via Ticketek.
EASY AS ALGEBRA Mick Harvey
NEUBAUTEN TOUR SUPPORT Mick Harvey will be the very special guest support for Einstürzende Neubauten when the German avantindustrialists tour Australia this February. Joining Harvey on stage will be the highly respected violinist-guitarist JP Shilo and double bassist Rosie Westbrook. They perform Tuesday 19 February at the Palace Theatre.
FACEBOOK.COM/PAGES/THE-WORKERS-CLUB TWITTER.COM/THEWORKERSCLUB FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM - @THEWORKERSCLUB
THE IMPRINTS TBC SUPPORTS ENTRY $2, 9PM
TIX AVAILABLE THRU MOSHTIX: ECHO DRAMA (WEDNESDAYS IN NOVEMBER) OVER-REACTOR – SINGLE LAUNCH (NOV 29) ENGINE THREE SEVEN (NOV 30) “FEST-MAS” FT. POUR HABIT, ANCHORS AND MORE (DEC 1) SEX ON TOAST (TUESDAYS IN DECEMBER) THE PRIMARY (WEDNESDAYS IN DECEMBER) THE BOMBAY ROYALE (THURSDAYS IN DECEMBER) BOOMGATES – ROOFTOP SHOW (DEC 15)
Coveleski hit the road in December for a whirlwind tour. They’ll be showcasing tracks from their debut EP, playing to East Coast audiences for the first time. They play Saturday 8 December at Old Bar with Maricopa Wells, Born Lion and Bateman.
Fans can now get an extra dose of the wild antics of dancefloor dominators Major Lazer, known for burning up the dancefloor with their frenetic sounds and acrobats. Joining the conglomerate is wild child Dillon Francis, a major player in moombahton, plus the in-your-face Chicago trio of Krewella, and cult cool guy JPS. They play Thursday 29 November at the Hi-Fi Bar.
ETTA JAMES TRIBUTE
TUESDAY 27 OCTOBER
ON THE ROADSKI
ENTRY $15, 8PM
Across the past year, a prolific stream of selfproduced, self-recorded music has passed through Fergus Miller (aka Bored Nothing)’s Bandcamp page. Mixing shoegaze and sludge-metal, loner folk and riot grrrl, the first Bored Nothing album compiles the heights of these recordings, and features five songs that have never appeared elsewhere. Following a string of guest appearances over 2012, Bored Nothing will officially launch the newly released debut on Saturday 5 January at the Gasometer.
WED 21 + THU 22 NOV
FRI 23 NOV
WED 28 NOV
(SINGLE LAUNCH) THE PRETTY LITTLES STRANGERS FROM NOW ON
(SINGLE TOUR – WA) MATT GLASS AND THE LOOSE CANNONS
SAT 24 NOV
THU 29 NOV
(THUNDAMENTALS) SOLILOQUY REMI
LARK LILY & KING
SUN 25 NOV (MATINEE SHOW)
FRI 30 NOV
(ALBUM LAUNCH) SUMMON THE BIRDS (ALBUM LAUNCH)
ALL INDIA RADIO SUN 25 NOV
KEITH FULLERTON WHITMAN (USA) + OREN AMBARCHI/ROBBIE AVENIAM DUO
16 • For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news
SUN 2 DEC 2012 (MATINEE SHOW) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’
FRI 7 DEC
SAT 15 DEC
WED IN JANUARY RESIDENCY
(ALBUM LAUNCH) MERE THEORY (LAST EVER MELBOURNE SHOW)
THE TIGER & ME
ARAKATAKA (2 JAN) LAMINE SONKO & THE AFRICAN INTELLEGENCE (RHYTHM
SUN 16 DEC (MATINEE SHOW)
JOHN FLANAGAN & THE BEGIN AGAINS
MARK FREE (MON 19TH) JONES THUGS & HARMONY (MON 26TH)
AFTER THE FALL SAT 8 DEC
HALFWAY TO FOURTH CHRIS CAVILL
TUES IN DECEMBER RESIDENCY PLAYWRITE CARL FOX, KIKUYU (4 DEC) TULLY ON TULLY, BRIGHTLY (11 DEC)
SUN 9 DEC (MATINEE SHOW) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’
WED 5 DEC
THU 13 DEC
BEN WELLS & THE MIDDLE NAMES
SAT 1 DEC
BUCHANAN TOM MILEK THU 6 DEC
(ALBUM TOUR) THE PRETTY LITTLES THE RED LIGHTS
WILL & THE PEOPLE
When The Mess Hall announced they would play their one-and-only Melbourne show for 2012 on Saturday 24 November at the Northcote Social Club they didn’t anticipate the demand for a second show, which is now on sale for Sunday 25 at the same venue.
TICKETS AVAILABLE FROM
(USA) LITTLE BASTARD JESS RIBEIRO
THE MAGIC BONES
TUE IN NOVEMBER RESIDENCY SUN 2 DEC KATE MARTIN THE VAUDEVILLE AINSLEE WILLS (20 NOV) PACKWOOD, THE DARJEELINGS SMASH (27 NOV)
During their recent string of sold-out shows across the nation, Mutemath stunned all with their artistry and live performances, delivering songs from their third studio album Odd Soul. On their return, Mutemath will thrill fans with a preview of some newer material. They’ll play Friday 22 March at Billboard.
BOBBY ALU SARITAH (SOLO)
SEVEN YEAR ITCH (EP LAUNCH) THE DARJEELINGS WINDSOR THIEVES FRI 14 DEC
GREY GHOST HAILEY CRAMER REMI
PAPA PILKO & THE BINRATS MUSTERED COURAGE
SAT 22 DEC ‘WHO THE HELL – XMAS FUNRAYS / RELAUNCH PARTY’ FEAT. THEM SWOOPS HARTS BUCHANAN SUN 23 DEC (MATINEE SHOW)
BABERAHAM LINCOLN LAUREN GLEEZER FRI 28 DEC
THE TROUBLE WITH TEMPLETON (BRIS – FALLS FESTIVAL SIDESHOW)
SUNDAY OLD MATE LUNCH SPECIALS $14 STEAK W/ CHIPS AND SALAD $14 CHICKEN PARMA W/ CHIPS AND SALAD ALSO ON THE CALENDAR POLO CLUB – SAT 5 JAN CHRIS DUKE & THE ROYALS - SAT 12 JAN ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’ JAY HOAD (VIDEO LAUNCH) - SUN 27 JAN (MATINEE SHOW) ‘MISTLETONE & LA NIGHTS’ PRESENTS NITE JEWEL (USA – LANEWAY FESTIVAL SIDESHOW) - MON 4 FEB HOLY OTHER (UK – LANEWAY)
Secret Sounds presents
THE JUNGLE GIANTS
SAT 29 DEC FESTIVAL HALL ticketmaster.com.au - 136 100 (Licensed All Ages)
TICKETS ON SALE NOW twodoorcinemaclub.com secret-sounds.com.au
NEW ALBUM BEACON OUT NOW. FEATURES THE SINGLES SLEEP ALONE AND SUN.
NEWS FROM THE FRONT
SUN’S ON FIRE Sun City are a fittingly-named electro pop duo hailing from Perth. With a nod to the likes of m83 and Passion Pit, the outfit blend classic ‘80s analogue synth hooks with big baselines and dynamic vocals. Their sophomore EP, Set Alight, is testament to their penchant for sunny electro pop. Performing at Parklife, Stereosonic and Summadayze, as well as supporting Aston Shuffle, Sun City will embark on their first national tour and play Friday 25 January at Can’t Say.
I N D U S T RY N E W S W I T H S C O T T F I T Z S I M O N S email@example.com
FLUME LANDS BEHIND BOY BAND ON CHART Sydney’s 21-year-old flavour of the month producer Flume has debuted at two on the ARIA Albums Chart this week, second only to British boy band One Direction. Flume’s Flume – released through Future Classic – had been battling with One Direction’s Take Me Home all week on the chart – even getting the better of it on the iTunes chart – but the physicalstock buying power of One Direction’s pre-teen audience got them over the line with a platinum record in the first week. Having only played his first show a year ago, 2012 has been Flume’s year and he’s been particularly lauded at showcase sets around the world. As Taylor Swift and Pink fell to three and four respectively, other debuts this week came from Soundgarden at six with King Animal, with The Rolling Stones’ latest compilation Grrr! arriving at eight. Green Day’s second release in their ambitious trio of albums, Dos!, just made it into the top ten with The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2 soundtrack at 11. In a week that sees a lot of change in the top 20, Deftones’ Koi No Yokan debuted at 16, with Lana Del Rey’s Born To Die – The Paradise edition re-issue and Paradise EP itself debuting at 18 and 19 respectively.
CHUGG ANNOUNCE ‘VERSION OF BLUESFEST’ IN DENI Chugg Entertainment have announced the inaugural Deni Blues & Roots Festival, with the Deniliquin site – in New South Wales’ Riverina – set to provide another stop for artists touring for the Bluesfest and West Coast Blues & Roots festival. Chugg Entertainment Project Manager Nick Chugg told theMusic.com.au that the festival was “basically a version of it [Bluesfest] down there.” The first announcement boasted Santana, Chris Isaak, Steve Miller Band, Bonnie Raitt, Jimmy Cliff, Tony Joe White and more for the inaugural event, with another announcement due in the coming weeks. The site will hold 9,000 people and Chugg said today, “The line-up’s fantastic… Deniliquin attracts about a million people a year, we should be able to reach that easy.”
SIA TOPS US DANCE CHART AGAIN Sia’s latest collaboration with David Guetta, She Wolf, gives the Aussie singer-songwriter her second US Dance/Club Play number one. Earlier this year Sia and Guetta (under his Jack Back guise) topped the American dance chart with Wild One Two on 5 May. Other Australian movement in the US album charts this week saw Parkway Drive’s Atlas drop to 121 after peaking at 32 last week and Tame Impala’s Lonerism fell to 198 in its fifth week – it peaked at 34.
MARTIN ATKINS: “IF PEOPLE AREN’T STEALING YOUR MUSIC, YOU’RE FUCKED.” Former PiL member and music industry author Martin Atkins opened the Face The Music conference in Melbourne last Friday, with an irreverent and funny keynote speech that relied upon a key theme of, “You’re fucked”. Atkins cut through bloated arguments to highlight basic principles of a largelyonline industry. “It’s not a problem if 20,000 people illegally download your music,” he argued, “it’s a problem if they don’t.” Atkins urged artists to create their own success and look at opening up opportunities for themselves because no one else cares enough about ‘your band’ or ‘your new album’ to do it for you. “You need to make your own rules for your own unique specific situation… if you have momentum, you can do anything you want.” He finished with, “If you know that you’re fucked – then you’re not. If you think that you’re not – then you are.” Martin Atkins also does a spoken word/ DJ set on Thursday at Northcote Social Club.
DARK SIDE OF THE SPOON Grinspoon kick off 2013 playing the Big Day Out shows across the country with a special all-hits set. In March the band embark on their national Black Rabbits Tour. These shows will be the longest sets the band have ever played, with a mix of favourites and a healthy selection of new tunes from the new album, Black Rabbits. They play Friday 22 March at the Hi-Fi Bar, Wednesday 24 April at the Bended Elbow (Geelong), Thursday 25 at Pier Live (Frankston), Friday 26 at Inferno (Traralgon) and Saturday 27 at the Ferntree Gully Hotel.
PRETTY GOOD The Pretty Littles release their new EP I Am Not From A Small Town sometime around the end of the month. To celebrate, they’re playing a bunch of shows around town. You can catch them on Thursday at the Tote, Friday at the Workers Club, Saturday at the Espy Front Bar, Thursday 29 November at the B.East, Thursday 6 December at the Workers Club, Thursday 27 at Revolver Upstairs, Thursday 3 January at the Retreat Hotel and Friday 11 at the Loft (Warrnambool).
GET ON THE GRASS
THE OLD DO-OVER The Do-Over is finally making its Australian debut to kick off the Melbourne party season in style. Presented by Red Bull Music Academy, the first ever Australian instalment of the event sees residents Aloe Blacc, Haycock and Strong set up shop at St Kilda’s Circa Pool Deck on Sunday 2 December from 2 to 10pm. Entry is free, RSVP (thedoover.net/melbourne/) is mandatory, and only the three hosts know the identities of the all-star line-up of mystery guests who will appear on the day.
CLUB NIGHT TOUR Miller Genuine Draft is bringing ten resident DJs from ten of the world’s most iconic nightclubs to Australia as part of Miller City Sessions. Guests will be able to experience the pumping atmosphere of top venues from four key destinations – London, Ibiza, New York and Las Vegas. As part of the series Gina Turner plays this Saturday at Paddys (Albury), Friday 30 November at Home House (Geelong) and Saturday 15 December at Karova Lounge (Ballarat). There are a heap of other showcases, head to facebook.com/MillerBeerANZ for all the details.
Melbourne’s purveyor of petite pop, Kikuyu (Sez Wilks), follows up her recent tour of China with a run of Australian shows. Among the list of dates are support slots for the first Australian tour by Melbourne-via-Portland songwriter Super XX Man. They both appear on Sunday 2 December at the Grace Darling and Saturday 19 January at the Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine). You can catch Kikuyu solo on Tuesday 4 December at the Workers Club.
BREW BROS Home Brew, backed with a full live band, are taking their show on the Aussie roads again, announcing the Bender Tour before the year’s end. This will be the Kiwis’ third Australian tour in less than a year and they’re psyching themselves up for three days of carnage. With support from Esther Stephens and special guests they play Thursday 13 December at Ding Dong Lounge.
UPSTAIRS DOWNSTAIRS Since the release of Vile Horizons, Mezzanine have hardly drawn breath. They’ve completed an eight-date national tour, received significant national airplay and supported the likes of Dappled Cities, Hunting Grounds, British India, The Medics, Even, Emperors and We All Want To. Now, with a new line-up and a fistful of new songs, Mezzanine are ready to hit the road again. They play Friday 14 December at Noise Bar.
BACK TO URTH Urthboy’s new album Smokey’s Haunt has received a phenomenal response after debuting at number 14 on the ARIA Album Chart. He’s now put together a live band to tour the album in 2013 alongside cohort Jane Tyrrell. Supporting are Jimblah and One Sixth, the exciting young MC hailing from Namibia and residing in Melbourne, whose debut album Electronic Mail just dropped on Obese. They play Saturday 2 March at the Corner Hotel. All pre-sale ticket buyers will receive a free MP3 remix of Knee Length Socks by Trials.
STEREOSONIC SIDES Due to overwhelming ticket demand during the current pre-sale windows for Neil Finn & Paul Kelly’s unique shows at the Palais Theatre, tickets for a fifth show are now on sale. The extra date is Monday 4 March and tickets are available through Ticketmaster.
18 • For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news
Punk rock legends Descendents are headed back to Australia in 2013. This time they’re bringing a cross-section of punk rock’s finest with them for massive shows with good vibes and fun times. With Bouncing Souls, Frenzal Rhomb and Bodyjar along for the ride, this line-up is a once in a lifetime chance for punk rock-lovin’ folks of all persuasions. Catch the show on Saturday 9 February at Festival Hall.
BURNING CIRCUIT Scorcher Fest is renowned in the Australian music industry for its dedication to local original acts, showcasing pretty close to 80% local artists at each festival. In 2012 Scorcher Fest has booked 369 bands that profit from their own ticket sales. The Ten Year Celebration Circuit kicks off shortly and hits Noise Bar on Sunday 9 December. For full line-up and tickets head to scorcherfest.com.au.
SUNRISE, SUNSET Buchanan return this Australian Music Month with a fresh run of dates and accompanying tour single When The Sun Comes Round Again, their first taste of new music since Run Faster. The band are set to testdrive their new material across the country and play this Tuesday at the Toff In Town and Wednesday 5 December and Saturday 22 at the Workers Club.
FELINE FRIENDS The Cat Empire have spent much of 2012 touring overseas, but now they are home making plenty of noise in the studio, writing and recording their new longplayer, which is set for release in May. They will head out on the road in March to play the new songs, and some of the old favourites. They’ll play the Prince Of Wales on Wednesday 20 and Thursday 21 March with special guests Flap!.
WINTER HOUSES Beach House have announced Wintercoats as the sole support for their hotly anticipated upcoming theatre shows. Wednesday 9 January at the Forum Theatre.
Space Dimension Controller, aka Jack Hamill, has come from relative obscurity to become one of the leading lights on the global electronic music scene since he first attended the Red Bull Music Academy in 2010. After his truimphant debut Australian tour earlier this year, Space Dimension Controller will return to Australia to help us see in the new year. He plays New Year’s Day at Let Them Eat Cake.
Syrian musical legend Omar Souleyman has announced supports for his forthcoming tour down under. For his Wednesday 5 December Hi-Fi Bar show he’ll be accompanied by Cumbia Cosmonauts, Children Of The Wave and Mondo Loco DJs.
ON THE DECLINE
OMAR’S A COMIN’
Stereosonic is coming up and the sideshows have now been announced. On Thursday 29 November Major Lazer, Dillon Francis, Krewella play the Hi-Fi Bar; and Saturday 1 December Markus Schulz plays Room680, Loco Dice and Adam Beyer play Brown Alley and Brodinski, Gesaffelstein, Club Cheval and French Fries play The Bottom End.
LIFE IN THE NORTHLANE To most people within the Australian metal and hardcore scenes, the emergence of metal band Northlane has been somewhat of an overnight rise. Since the release of their debut album Discoveries last year the band have gone from strength to strength. They’re soon embarking on their Worldeater Tour and will play Friday 18 January at Neil Wilson Pavilion (Wodonga) and Saturday 19 at the Mechanics Institute (Ballarat).
CINEMA FOR CHARITY On Sunday 2 December Bertie Blackman and Loon Lake will rock the Ben & Jerry’s Openair Cinemas stage at South Beach Reserve in St Kilda. Ben & Jerry’s Openair Cinemas is a summer event that features a great mix of classic and recent movies playing on an outdoor screen from dusk every Sunday throughout the sunny season until 6 January. All ticket proceeds go to Fairtrade, a not-for-profit member organisation that aims to improve the position of farmers, producers and workers and their families in developing countries.
NEWS FROM THE FRONT
PLENTY OLD ENOUGH Dragon were rock’n’roll warriors of the late-’70s/early’80s touring scene and emperors of excess. Their live shows were unsurpassed and their notorious rock‘n’roll lifestyle well documented. In October Dragon released The Dragon Years: 40th Anniversary Collection – a 40-track full career retrospective. Dragon will join forces with Jimmy Barnes, Baby Animals (select dates), Ian Moss and Chocolate Starfish and hit the road for the Red Hot Summer Tour. They play Sunday 13 January at Mildura Waterfront Soundshell, Saturday 2 February at Kryal Castle (Ballarat), Sunday 3 at Victory Park Soundshell (Traralgon), Saturday 30 March at Warrnambool Racecourse, Sunday 31 at Mansfield Showgrounds and Saturday 11 May at Palms At Crown.
THE BIG GUNS
INDUSTRY NEWS WITH SCOTT FITZSIMONS firstname.lastname@example.org
King Cannons are not a band that you can expect to fit into the traditional two-year release, tour, release cycle. Only months since the release of their debut, they are already in the studio tracking new tunes because they think they are the best songs that they have written. They stomp into the Tote on Friday 14 December with guests The Hello Morning.
A Place To Bury Strangers are an uncompromising noise-rock trio that create lush, dense layers of atmospheric noise. With a new rhythm section consisting of New Zealand’s Dion Lunadon (formally of D4) on bass and Robi Gonzalez on drums, they will return to Australia in January for a run of dates in support of their third album, Worship. They play Sunday 20 January at the Corner Hotel.
OBEY YOUR MASTERS
ARENA IN THE HOUSE
New York’s Masters At Work are confirmed to headline Welcome Summer on New Year’s Day in Melbourne. This is a day party event from 1pm to 1am over two party rooms and a waterside outdoor area at Peninsula (Docklands). The bill also includes Kaz James, Ivan Gough (TV Rock), John Course, Simon Digby, Steve Bleas, James Belias, Apap and more. Tickets are $85 and available now from Ticketmaster.
Tina Arena performed three sold-out shows in Melbourne in July and August this year as part of the Hamer Hall re-opening celebrations and upon her return she will once again be accompanied by her band and an orchestra led by young Melbourne conductor Nicholas Buc. Melbourne fans will get another opportunity to see Arena shine when she performs on Tuesday 12 February at Hamer Hall.
ON YER BIKE
Formed in early 2010, Sleep ∞ Over is the dreamy sounds of singular Austin artist, Stefanie Franciotti. After becoming known for her melodies and classic pop-song structures Sleep ∞ Over quickly gained the attention of the esteemed Night People label. Whilst the first EP was released on cassette during a flood of hazy lo-fi releases, Sleep ∞ Over’s melodic aesthetic rose to the top of the genre. She plays Friday 1 February at Liberty Social.
Bombay Bicycle Club have changed some dates on their upcoming tour and will now play New Year’s Day at the Regal Ballroom. All existing tickets are valid for the new show. Those who can no longer attend can get a full refund at the point of purchase.
IS BON IS GOOD Bonjah will return to the live stage after six months of songwriting in preparation for their third album. Fresh from playing to thousands at JuWi Festival in Germany and selling out their London show, Bonjah went straight into the studio and started fleshing out new ideas. They play Friday 4 January at the Torquay Hotel, Sunday 6 at Baha Tacos (Rye) and Friday 18 and Saturday 19 at the Espy’s Gershwin Room.
GOLDEN DAYS TO THE MAX Extreme along with guitar virtuoso Richie Kotzen are touring Australia in 2013. Extreme won a legion of fans during the ‘80s and ‘90s selling over ten million records including their global smash hit More Than Words. Richie Kotzen is a renowned guitar prodigy in his own right texturing both his own releases and those from a string of notable acts including Poison and Mr Big. They’ll play Friday 19 April at the Palace Theatre.
YOUTUBE DUDE Hailing from Melbourne, Dub FX (real name Benjamin Stanford) has generated a legion of fans worldwide purely on YouTube (he has over 70-million views) where videos of his street performances have captivated music audiences. He is set to tour the East Coast of his home country, performing at Hi-Fi Bar on Friday 25 January.
TIM FINN JOINS THE BAYS Now in its eighth year, Between The Bays is firmly established as Mornington Peninsula’s best music festival on the summer calendar, rain or shine. Joining The Hoodoo Gurus, James Reyne, Troy Cassar-Daley and more for Between The Bays on Saturday 23 February is Tim Finn. Head to betweenthebays.com for tickets and info.
SOLID ROCK ANNIVERSARY SHOW To celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Solid Rock, Shane Howard gathers his musical friends from across the nation to join him in Melbourne and capture the great spirit that was raised at the unique concert held at Uluru in October. Other Side Of The Rock brings the spirit of reconciliation and a message of great hope directly from the people at the heart of this country to the Forum Theatre on Saturday 8 December. Joining Howard for this milestone concert are Archie Roach, Thelma Plum, Mark Atkins, Yirrmal & The Yolngu Boys, Bart Willoughby, Neil Murray, Amy Saunders, Emma Donovan and Ross Hannaford, with more guests to be announced. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster.
As a member of the gold-selling hip-hop outfit, Jurassic 5, DJ Nu-Mark graced the group with precision production and cutting-edge stage routines. Best known for his production on the raw anthem What’s Golden such creativity only hinted at the creativity Nu-Mark has explored since Jurassic 5’s breakup in 2006. Check out DJ Nu-Mark plus Psyde Projects, Low Budget and Ms Butt on Saturday 29 December in the Espy Gershwin Room.
FUNKY CHICKEN San Francisco label Dirtybird creators and conspirators Claude VonStroke and Justin Martin, along with their newer crew member J Phlip, are confirmed to tour Australia early next year. The trio will tour across Australia under the banner of Dirtybird and will bring their skills to Friday 25 January at Brown Alley.
JUST A KID This year has been a huge success for Kid Mac with the release of his debut album No Man’s Land. The album is a solid collection of alternative, electro and indie-rock tracks with rap over the top, and collaborations with the likes of Mickey Avalon, Mat McHugh (The Beautiful Girls) and Sarah McLeod. He’s embarking on his Lunatic Tour and plays Saturday 5 January at the Espy.
OH SO PRETTY The Pretty Things are set to hit Sydney and Melbourne and what better way to lift the excitement level yet another notch than to add shows and announce a stellar line-up of support acts. In addition to their Tuesday 4 December Corner Hotel show with Jim Keay’s Dirty Dirty and Thursday 13 at the Caravan Club with Frowning Clouds, they’ll play a second Caravan show on Friday 14 with The Breadmakers.
THE CAT IS BACK Catcall is back and ready to hit the stage once more, this time to celebrate the vinyl release of her debut album The Warmest Place. The record has received a very limited pressing and will be first made available to fans who attend the live shows, and then through her online store. It’s first in best dressed, so don’t miss your chance to grab one on Thursday 13 December at the Toff In Town.
AJ MADDAH: “SOUNDWAVE IS NOT AUSTRALIA’S GOT TALENT.” Soundwave and Harvest promoter AJ Maddah has opened up on his opposition to booking inexperienced local bands on his festival during a Q&A session at last week’s Face The Music conference in Melbourne. A subdued Maddah, who said he was under the weather (“I think it was The Dandy Warhols coughing on me”), went through his entry to Australian music through The Angels to the realisation of the Harvest Festival last year, which he had been planning for seven years. One of the main questions posed to Maddah was the perceived lack of local artists on his festivals, particularly punk and metal-focused Soundwave, a fact that he denied. “Soundwave is not Australia’s Got Talent. Soundwave is not the place – and I do get emails, bless ‘em, from kids looking to play,” he said. “Soundwave used to be 50/50 Australians and internationals. Being with a niche festival you don’t have a great pool of talent to draw from. If you’re serious about your band and it is your life, those are the bands we want. If you have a day job or [you’re] doing [it] for a laugh, or I don’t think you have the right experience, we can’t put you on Soundwave.” Maddah, who admitted it was a “control thing”, said that party-prone locals in the early years of Soundwave had turned him off. “If you were there in 2007… the cockhead that’s sneaking people backstage – that’s inevitably the Australian band… We want serious bands who aren’t using it as a last chance to party. There was so much dick-baggery that we decided we were only going to book serious bands. And my only responsibility is the people who buy tickets to the show. Sorry, I have no responsibility to the local scene – which I worked [in] for ten years and got nothing from.” He claimed that when you remove bands already touring heavily that aren’t on a lot of other festivals from the equation, “you’ve pretty much got the bands I’ve put on the festivals.”
ABC LABELS REVEAL SIGNINGS The ABC has announced The Wolfe Brothers will join ABC Music and Melbourne Ska Orchestra will become a part of FOUR | FOUR. The festivalrenowned 30-piece collective Melbourne Ska Orchestra was founded by Nicky Bomba and the collective are currently recording their debut fulllength. A product of reality TV show Australia’s Got Talent, country rock Tasmanians The Wolfe Brothers will release their debut album It’s On through ABC Music Friday 18 January.
MARS VOLTA’S LEADER DUBS SUNN O))) ‘FUCKING CRYBABIES’ The brains behind The Mars Volta – Omar RodriguezLopez – has branded fellow experimentalists, drone masters Sunn O))), “crybabies” over their decision to pull the plug on a planned Australian tour earlier this year. Rodriguez-Lopez’s tour is being promoted by Heathen Skulls’ Robert MacManus, who was at the centre of the Sunn O))) controversy when the band alleged that the promoter couldn’t deliver on contract deadlines. Speaking to Street Press Australia’s Lochlan Watt, Rodriguez-Lopez – whose previous tour was also promoted by Heathen Skulls – said that Sunn O))) should ‘get real’ with their expectations of promoters. “Shit, they sound like a bunch of fucking crybabies to me,” Rodriguez-Lopez said. “So you’re telling me that a promoter was wishy-washy with some of the shit that he promised? Fucking join the club, that’s why there’s promoters and that’s why there’s people who make music. It’s like, that’s the way it goes down. I’ll put it to you this way – if we were to cancel a tour every time that a promoter didn’t come through with what they said it was going to be like, we might have gone on one tour in this past 20 years. Promoting in general... you go to Mexico and the promoters are all tied with the Mafia, same thing with Russia. What can you say about it?”
PRESENTED BY For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news • 19
It’s that time again, when we break out the crystal ball in an attempt to second guess the results of the 26th ARIA Awards. Will they better their average of previous years? Do you agree/disagree warmly/violently? Read on. 360, Missy Higgins and Dougy Mandagi cover and feature pics by Kane Hibberd.
AND THE WINNER IS...UMM... With the ARIA Fine Arts and Artisan Award categories already announced, as are this year’s inductees into the ARIA Hall of Fame, and a week of ARIA-associated events leading up to the big night, this year being held in the Sydney Entertainment Centre on Thursday 29 November, the ARIA Awards are looking like one of the biggest nights yet for Australian music. Plus Hilltop Hoods, Jessica Mauboy, 360, The Temper Trap, The Jezabels, Guy Sebastian, Kimbra, Missy Higgins and international guest Taylor Swift will be performing.
The fact that since last year’s awards, we’ve seen six Australian singles and eight Australian albums top the national ARIA charts and that 93 Australian singles, albums and DVDs attain gold, platinum or multi-platinum status, goes to show not just how healthy Australia’s music industry is right now, but also how much more Australians are embracing their own artists. That’s been recognised by making Song Of The Year, Best International Artist, Best Australian Live Act and Best Video publicly-voted categories. So here are our thoughts on this year’s field of contenders. BEST DANCE RELEASE Nominees: Havana Brown – When The Lights Go Out; Hermitude – Hyperparadise; Ivan Gough & Feenixpawl feat Georgi Kay – In My Mind; Knife Party – Rage Valley; and Sneaky Sound System – From Here To Anywhere The consensus seems to be that while both Havana Brown and Knife Party have been scoring massively overseas, and fans were obviously pleased to see Sneaky Sound System back in contention while In My Mind was a significant club banger, Hermitude would have the numbers in the local context. Even so, the votes were split so evenly that the eventual swing is reflected below. Who will win? Havana Brown Who should win? Hermitude BEST COUNTRY ALBUM Nominees: Beccy Cole – Songs And Pictures; Catherine Britt – Always Never Enough; McAlister Kemp – Country Proud; The McClymonts – Two Worlds Collide; and Troy Cassar-Daley – Home A strong field, it has to be between the old favourite Troy Cassar-Daley and the all-grown-up Catherine Britt. Quite apart from a very solid album Britt has this year aligned herself with local indie icon Tim Rogers, which has alerted a few of his fans to her charms, but will that newly-aware contingent be enough to pull her across the line?
is down to whether the sales figures for each have been uppermost in the minds of the ARIA voters associated with labels, as against genuine industry fans. While The Bamboos are worthy of nomination, they are, of course, soul funksters rather than an urban act, and then the return of The Herd with such a quality album should count for something.
split between Children Collide and sentimental favourites Cold Chisel, but the incredible number of fans, more than 270,000, who flocked to last year’s ridiculously successful Light The Nitro national tour didn’t follow suit with Chisel’s new album, No Plans. Similarly, The Temper Trap didn’t do the figures of their first album, despite it being a far stronger record. Then again, The Jezabels have surprised us all over the years. Who will win? Cold Chisel Who should win? The Jezabels BEST POP RELEASE Nominees: Gotye – Making Mirrors; Guy Sebastian – Battle Scars; Jessica Mauboy – Gotcha; Kimbra – Vows; and San Cisco – Awkward The only thing possibly working against Gotye dominating in this category, considering his unprecedented international success, is the fact that his album was, in ARIA terms, released so long ago, at the beginning of the period covered in this year’s nominations. Kimbra’s association with Gotye courtesy the phenomenally successful Somebody That I Used To Know hasn’t done her career any harm either, and she followed it up with an equally successful album of her own, so she has to be a contender. Guy Sebastian has certainly worked hard to overcome the taint of Australian Idol and continues to make solid albums happily received by a loyal fanbase. He’s won plenty of audience-voted and sales-based awards, but he finds the industry-voted one tougher and, up against either Gotye or Kimbra, it’s unlikely he will this year. As for Jessica Mauboy, always popular, this record is, of course, lifted from the soundtrack of the equally popular feature film, The Sapphires, so can it really be credited as a her release per se? Who will win? Gotye Who should win? Gotye
Who will win? 360
BEST HARD ROCK/HEAVY METAL ALBUM
Who should win? Hilltop Hoods/The Herd
Nominees: Buried In Verona – Notorious; DZ Deathrays – Bloodstreams; Frenzal Rhomb – Smoko At The Pet Food Factory; House Vs Hurricane – Crooked Teeth; and Sleepmakeswaves – ...and so we destroyed everything
BEST ROCK ALBUM Nominees: Children Collide – Monument; Cold Chisel – No Plans; Oh Mercy – Deep Heat; The Jezabels – Prisoner; and The Temper Trap – The Temper Trap There’s an inevitable fuzziness about what is meant by rock these days, at least in terms of the nominees. While Children Collide and Cold Chisel, two generations apart, are categorically rock, the others are rather more dabblers; their indie atmospheric/ pop, or in the case of Oh Mercy, almost funk, nods at rather than embraces the rock. Within the voting community there’s bound to be something of a generational
There was a time this was Cold Chisel’s natural category. Anyway, while Sleepmakeswaves is probably the best album in terms of innovative new sounds, textures and compositions, it’s neither hard rock nor heavy metal, and we’re sure the sentimental favourites are sufficiently gobsmacked to have got this far to care whether they win. It’s got to be a contest between the hard rock DZ Deathrays, the defiantly metal Buried In Verona and House Vs Hurricane. DZ Deathrays are certainly the buzz band at the moment. Who will win? DZ Deathrays Who should win? Buried In Verona/House Vs Hurricane BEST BLUES & ROOTS ALBUM Nominees: Angus Stone – Broken Brights; Jeff Lang – Carried In Mind; Lanie Lane – To The Horses; Mia Dyson – The Moment; and Paul Green & The Other Colours – Behind The Stars Yet another strong field of essentially seasoned troopers contesting this category, apart from the incredibly hip and stylish Lane, whose face and voice have been everywhere this past year. Stone alone, while he’s delivered a great album, probably entered the field a little late. Lang, Greene and Dyson have been working the roots/blues field long and to a consistently high standard, and are probably truer representations of the category they’re contesting but… Who will win? Lanie Lane
BEST ADULT CONTEMPORARY ALBUM Nominees: Darren Hayes – Secret Codes And Battleships; Husky – Forever So; Josh Pyke – Only Sparrows; Katie Noonan & Karin Schaupp – Songs Of The Southern Skies; and Missy Higgins – The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle It’s hard to imagine anyone standing a chance against the most popular “comeback” album of the year. Then again, Husky have been kicking some serious goals overseas and on a debut album at that, which must count for something. Though of course, Missy Higgins is back in Australia on her own massive national tour after and equally impressive run of dates across North America and she’s got the numbers locally. Hayes had a big tour but he’s relatively forgotten outside of a stalwart fanbase. Who will win? Missy Higgins Who should win? Missy Higgins/Husky BEST INDEPENDENT RELEASE Nominees: Dappled Cities – Lake Air; Katie Noonan & Karin Schaupp – Songs Of The Southern Skies; San Cisco – Awkward; The Bamboos – Medicine Man and The Jezabels – Prisoner Best Independent Artists both last and this year at that other awards night, the Jagermeister Independent Music Awards, The Jezabels are probably the band most likely to get the gong here, though the fact that Dappled Cities released their album just as voting for the ARIAs began could have worked in their favour. Who will win? The Jezabels Who should win? The Bamboos BREAKTHROUGH ARTIST – RELEASE
BEST URBAN ALBUM
Nominees: 360 – Falling & Flying; Alpine – A Is For Alpine; Lanie Lane – To The Horses; Matt Corby – Brother; and San Cisco – Awkward
Nominees: 360 – Falling & Flying; Hilltop Hoods – Drinking From The Sun; Katalyst – Deep Impressions; The Bamboos – Medicine Man; and The Herd – Future Shade
This has to be a shoe-in for 360, aka Matt Colwell, who has gone through the roof this year, particularly live, selling out a
Who will win? Troy Cassar-Daley Who should win? Catherine Britt
As tribally loyal as Hilltop Hoods’ fans are – and for all the power in not only their latest album but also their innovative DVD releases – no one can deny that 2012 has been 360’s year. Whether that’s enough to guarantee he gets the pointy thingie
Who should win? Mia Dyson
ridiculous number of shows. Then again, Matt Corby has done phenomenally well himself, similarly selling out his indie gigs consistently, having built a career against the odds as an Australian Idol also-ran to prove himself a truly inspired songwriter, singer and performer with a unique style. Alpine are similarly unique. Who will win? 360 Who should win? Alpine BEST GROUP Nominees: Boy & Bear – Big Man; Cold Chisel – No Plans; Hilltop Hoods – Drinking From The Sun; The Jezabels – Prisoner; and The Temper Trap – The Temper Trap Last year of course was the year of Boy & Bear and this final single only really gets in this year because of its release date. Again, Cold Chisel would have to be the sentimental favourite and if voting was based on the success of a band live in concert last year’s phenomenal Light The Nitro tour, on attendance figures alone, would get them across the line. But that’s not going to happen. It’s between Hilltop Hoods and The Temper Trap then. Can a hip hop group finally get up and win Best Group? It’s the best shot in a long time – the only time even? Then again, The Jezabels could be the dark horse, coming in on the outside to take the prize. Then again, The Jezabels could split The Temper Trap vote. Hmm. Who will win? The Jezabels Who should win? The Temper Trap/Hilltop Hoods BEST FEMALE ARTIST Nominees: Jessica Mauboy – Gotcha; Kimbra – Vows; Lanie Lane – To The Horse; Missy Higgins – The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle; and Washington – Insomnia A year ago Washington seemed to be everywhere, while this year, it’s been Lanie Lane, but do either have the ergot of a resurrected, match-fit Missy Higgins? Jessica Mauboy meanwhile has the success of The Sapphires movie behind her as well. Kimbra of course has that international success and Gotye connection, but she’s really a Kiwi isn’t she? Not that that’s ever stopped anyone, right Finn brothers? And she won last year, so would be unlikely to get a second nod so soon. Who will win? Missy Higgins Who should win? Kimbra/Missy Higgins BEST MALE ARTIST Nominees: 360 – Falling & Flying; Angus Stone – Broken Brights; Gotye – Making Mirrors; Guy Sebastian – Battle Scars; Keith Urban – For You; and Matt Corby – Into The Flame Considering For You is the new track on a career retrospective best of, The Story So Far, you’d have to factor in the likelihood that, as good as Keith Urban is, his appearance in this category is more likely to have been influenced by his popular participation as a judge on The Voice than his merits musically and Nicole Kidman’s handbag. Ultimately this has to be a battle royal between 360 and Gotye – rapper versus indie pop. Who will win? Gotye Who should win? 360 ALBUM OF THE YEAR Nominees: 360 – Falling & Flying; Gotye – Making Mirrors; Missy Higgins – The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle; The Jezabels – Prisoner; and The Temper Trap – The Temper Trap Can the solo woman pull a rabbit out of the hat and the rug from under the men? The case has been made for each of these albums, great albums all, but it’s probably unlikely The Jezabels or The Temper Trap have the numbers despite the outstanding quality of the albums. So again, it’s 360 versus Gotye. Hey, that might make for quite an extraordinary album. And why not? Who will win? Gotye Who should win? The Jezabels Of course, you, dear readers, will be deciding four categories yourselves. Perhaps you’d like to share your thoughts on who will and who should win in those publicly-voted categories. Just go to themusic. com.au and voice your opinion.
WHAT: The 26th Annual ARIA Awards
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WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 29 November, Sydney Entertainment Centre
TO THE MAX Although frontman Paul Smith admits to garnering lyrical inspiration from “this little story of a strange relationship I had when I was in my late teens” for one Maximo Park song, Bryget Chrisfield hears about another occasion when he was forced to tell a misguided former flame, “None of these songs are about you”. aximo Park’s frontman Paul Smith is famous for his onstage exuberance. Has he ever fallen over and busted his arse? The bandleader chuckles. “I’ve been pretty lucky, really. I jumped off a stage once at a festival – it was in the North East and I was so excited that there was a festival in the North East [of England] and, you know, I was trying to put on the best show I possibly could, and at the end of the show I just thought, ‘Well, where do you go from here?’ And I jumped off the stage and landed on the ground kind of on both feet but, yeah! The jump went straight through my spine probably and I just thought, ‘That’s not the right thing to do,’ and I never did that again. It was definitely a misguided act, but at the same time you get carried away onstage and the only other time where I can think of something where I thought, ‘Right, I’m gonna – I could’ve really necked myself there,’ was in Italy. I remember the stage was set up quite differently to what we’re used to, and it was quite a small stage, and I was running across the stage probably in the last couple of songs and kinda ramping it up, and I was sort of running sideways and I tripped over Archis [Tiku, bass]’s monitor and I went flyin’! And I think I banged my head and just kept going.”
Don’t be fooled by Smith’s rambunctious onstage persona, the North East Englishman is softly spoken, extremely articulate and puts a lot of thought into his responses. He also certainly doesn’t take life as a touring musician for granted and enjoys exploring every town and district his band touch down in. “Whenever I get to a new place I just tend to go for a wander without a map,” he shares. “If it’s a big sort of sprawling metropolis I’ll take map, but just going around the corner and not knowing what’s there is quite exciting, and thinking you could see an amazing building or you could end up in a great record shop,” he laughs.
“One of the things that I often do is just go a day early to places since, you know, it’s lucky that we get our airfares paid for as a band. It doesn’t feel like you’re shelling out loads to go to all of these places so I don’t mind an extra night in a hotel or something beforehand, it gives me a chance to acclimatise and see something more of a place. But, yeah, it’s a shame. Some of the other lads should come on these little journeys, but maybe you’d just end up talking loads – end up at a place and you’d have a fun day, but it wouldn’t be the same kind of solitary journey that you might have where you have that little time to reflect.” It sounds as if Smith should take a film crew along and shoot his own travelogue, something like Steve Coogan’s BBC sitcom The Trip. The singer gently laughs, “Absolutely. I enjoy wandering around and I enjoyed that series, actually.” So who would be Smith’s travelling partner of choice, as Welsh comedian Rob Brydon was to Coogan in that series? “I don’t know anyone as funny as Rob Brydon,” he confesses. “I’m unfortunately a bit of a loner, I think.” During these spontaneous ambles, Smith admits he often feels inspired to write notes: “I try and write as much as I possibly can. Going to lots of different places gives you extra stimulation and extra things to write about… For the most part our lyrics are very personal and they’re quite descriptive at times, but I’d like to do something that is more purely descriptive and maybe do that in conjunction with a slightly different type of music. I’m not entirely sure how it would work out but, yeah! I always write down things that I’m interested in and just things that catch my eye, really, and things that seem unusual to me. And you can always go back to your notes and look at them and go, ‘Wow, that’s kinda like the first cliché that you would think of when you’re in Australia, let’s
get rid of that,’ and, you know, ‘That’s the best bit there’. You can go and assess these things, but it‘s good to keep a note of it and kind of map where you’ve been in terms of words.” When it’s revealed that this scribe’s favourite track from Maximo Park’s latest The National Health set is Write This Down, Smith details that particular song’s genesis. “Well Lukas [Wooller, keyboard] had a crazy synth riff, Dunc [Lloyd, guitar] had a crazy guitar riff and it felt like they couldn’t go together, but when we played them it suddenly sounded very Maximo Park and very right. And so I put together this little story of a strange relationship I had when I was in my teens – in my late teens – and for some reason it’d just popped up in my mind. But it was about this girl who had written lots of stuff in her diary about wanting to go out with me, and then we were going out together and she decided to share all of this with me and the rest of the story is in the song. It’s a pretty full-on song so we thought it would be a pretty good one to kind of reintroduce people to Maximo Park with.” Has there ever been a time when a friend or family member has approached Smith believing they are the inspiration behind a song? “A girl who I used to
go out with did say to me, ‘Oh, my friends keep telling me about all these songs that you’ve put on your records,’ and, you know, ‘Why did you write all these songs about me?’” he recalls. “And I said, ‘None of these songs are about you,’ which was pretty embarrassing, but I had to say it ‘cause she was wound up about it and I just thought, ‘You’re getting wound up over nothing,’ hahaha. I think she was quite hurt that the songs weren’t about her in the end. She was like, ‘Ah, I don’t wanna hear about myself all the time,’ and I was like, ‘Well, they’re not about you, so…’ That’s the only occasion where I’ve had a sort of lyrical confrontation. “I mean, a lot of [the lyrics] are composites where a line fits in with another line and creates a better song, and so you end up having things that are about a multitude of different people and different experiences that make a song more solid and palatable. So there you go.” WHO: Maximo Park WHEN & WHERE: Friday 30 December, Falls Festival, Marion Bay; Saturday 31, Falls Festival, Lorne; Wednesday 2 January, Corner Hotel
OUT OF TROUBLE After two decades of crippling drug addiction, Hurricane Katrina and the dirtiest riffs known to man, Eyehategod have a new record and first Australian tour in the pipeline. Brendan Crabb worships alongside the NOLA sludge lords’ vocalist Mike IX Williams. t seems like a lot of people were afraid to bring us over, I guess because of the reputation,” Eyehategod frontman Mike IX Williams says with a slight chuckle when asked about their impending maiden visit to Australia. “There’s been some trouble we’ve been in the past, but I guess it was pretty easy to get us in.”
“Some trouble” may be the understatement of 2012. The uncompromising, unseasonably heavy music the New Orleans sludge metal outfit has conjured during the past 23 years has come at a high personal cost. Substance abuse and internal disputes tore at them. Then came Hurricane Katrina, which destroyed the singer’s home and in the aftermath, he was convicted of narcotics charges and served time, forced to kick heroin while behind bars. The disaster also created geographical obstacles as members relocated and explored other musical endeavours, including guitarist Jimmy Bower returning to supergroup Down. “People were doing their own bands, record label problems, other sorts of trouble that we got in,” the frontman recounts.
We’re going to be doing some new songs in Australia; we’ll do some new stuff. But I’ve got a feeling that people are gonna want to hear a lot of the older stuff, seeing as we’ve never played there. It’ll be a good mix of the new stuff and a lot of the old stuff. “We basically don’t trust anyone as far as record labels go; it’s really hard to trust anybody to put out our record. So it’s taken us a long time to find the right people to put it out. We haven’t had bad luck in a while; the bad stuff that happened to us beside the hurricane, that all happened, in the, I’d say mid2000s. So the past seven, eight years has been really good for us. We’ve toured more than ever; I think we’ve toured more recently than we had earlier in our career. It’s not so much bad luck, it’s like I said, we [just] don’t trust these labels and we really want to find somebody that’s going to work with us and be a part of the band, as far as putting the record out.”
Since then things have stabilised, the band reconvening and preparing their first full-length since 2000’s Confederacy Of Ruined Lives. “It’s just Eyehategod; that’s all you can really say about it,” the vocalist offers. “A lot of people have said our new stuff reminds them of our second album (1993’s Take As Needed For Pain), that it’s in that old school vein. It’s gonna be a sick record; I’m dying to get into the studio. We’re not one of those bands to go super experimental or anything like that. We might have some weird parts or stuff in the songs, but we’re like AC/DC. We do what we do, no matter what.”
I pose whether Eyehategod could make a great record when the members are seemingly (relatively speaking) more content with their lot in life. “We’re still a bunch of negative, miserable bastards,” he quickly and goodnaturedly assures. “Nothing’s changed as far as that goes; we’re a bunch of depressed, miserable freaks. We have positivity in that we’re just trying to be focused about our music and push it out there further. I think that whether we’re on drugs, off drugs or whatever, we still are Eyehategod. We’re still gonna make the same type of music, even though you can’t deny that we’re older now and some of us have families. Some of the old excesses are gone. We still partake in a few different things, but some of the horrible old things are cleaned up, if you know what I’m saying.”
Williams informs us that the band essentially has the entire album written. “There’s a few songs that need work, and some of the vocals need to be put into the songs, but hopefully when we get back from these next set of shows; Australia, New York and all of that, we’re going to go in the studio. We supposedly have time booked already in the studio.
Williams explains that they have become more adept at channelling that sheer anguish into their records and live shows, but simultaneously not letting it hinder band functionality. “Things that have happened in the band and we’ve been involved in, they have given us some sort of a reputation… Going through like airport security, you don’t want to walk in there smelling like
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vodka and with blood on your clothes from the show last night. As far as I was talking about being more positive, that goes along with being a little more professional. We’re still the same people, but we do have a little more of a professional attitude than we used to have. In the early days, we just didn’t give a fuck about anything. We could care less if we broke up tomorrow. “Now we’ve got more of a good outlook on where we want to take the band and we want to stay out of trouble. That’s the main thing; we want to push the band as far as we can go. It is hard sometimes, especially when you’re on-stage, you want to destroy the microphone or something and you realise, ‘that’s gonna come out of my pocket now’. In the old days it didn’t matter, I’d pay the $300 for a microphone I broke, but now I’m like, ‘I can’t really be doing that anymore, I’ve got responsibilities’. But we’re still the same band; you’ll see it when you see us live. We put a thousand per cent energy into the shows.” What is it about heavy music that still excites him after this long in the game? “It’s something embedded in my soul, I guess. It’s that passion for music that we all have; all of us in the band love music.
We’re all a bunch of fans too. We love all kinds of music; we like a lot of music that’s not heavy, but also you can listen to anything you want. It’s just there, you’re just always burning to play music and you just want to play the most aggressive possible thing that you feel like, that’s in your heart.” Getting 20-plus years into their career and not having the same fire is obviously not an issue for Eyehategod. “No, I think if anything we’re more together on a professional level now, but we’re also tighter on stage. It depends on the night; it depends on what we drank the night before. It’s not a problem to get up there and give a thousand per cent, you know? It’s not like we’re tired. I know what you mean; some bands get up there and you can just tell they’re doing it for the money. That’s not what we’re doing; we’re doing it because we love the music and we love playing these songs. So that’s what it is. I don’t have to dig deep to find that energy, WHO: Eyehategod WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 24 November, Billboards The Venue; Sunday 25, Cherry Festival, Cherry Bar
TIME AND SPACE Sitting down to produce their sophomore album has been somewhat of an awakening for New Zealand soul brothers Kora. Singer Dan McGruer tells Monique Cowper he feels like they’ve finally found their groove. ith their dub-coated combination of metal and funk, Kora brought their unique sound across the Tasman almost five years ago with the support of some major bands, but behind the scenes bass player Dan McGruer claims they didn’t know a thing.
The band, which consists of the five Kora brothers and McGruer, have earned a strong following for their mellow sound, but broke onto the local scene after touring with Shihad and Cog, who then invited them to tour Australia. Their debut self-titled album showcased a variety of sounds from soul to hard rock, but McGruer says in the four years they have spent making Light Years at his home studio, they have learnt a lot. “We were always known as a live band, that’s how we carved a name for ourselves,” McGruer says. “We were very lucky because a lot of big-name bands liked our sound and so we got to play to some big crowds and generated a following from festivals and live shows. But when we started out eight years ago, we didn’t know shit. Our last album was all over the place. We’ve never had a genre, but even we were asking ourselves, ‘What the hell are we, what the hell kind of music do we play?’ We never had a proper answer.”
only making it for himself. There is a definite sense that Kora have the determination and drive to succeed and will not be satisfied with underground success. “I think any band, especially one that is still coming up, always wants to be bigger,” he says. “Ultimately as a musician you want as many people as possible to listen to your music. But of course it’s still important to have our personality in it. It’s got to be real. You never know what might happen. Hopefully it opens us up to a new audience. Watch this space.” WHO: Kora WHAT: Light Years (Remote Control) WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 24 November, The Hi-Fi
The main focus for Kora on this record was to define their sound. In the past they have been described as everything from prog-rock to reggae, but if Light Years is anything to go by, it seems the band may have settled in the sphere of R&B. In marketing, the band playfully refer to their new sound as ‘alien funk’. “We just went with the flow – there were no set rules about what we were going to do, we just wanted to create our own sound,” McGruer explains. “Light Years is a much more complete, polished record and it feels much more whole. “Over four years we’ve been working on writing; recording in my little house and producing ourselves,” he continues. “This sound is even fresh to us. It is eclectic but it feels much more together. We really wanted something which was one sound.” It was a somewhat unusual theme which eventually united the group and led to the title of the album, based on their love of video games and sci-fi. “It’s all about space, the galaxy,” McGruer says. “We’re all geeks, we’re into sci-fi movies so that’s what ties us all together. We didn’t sit down and plan it, but when we started playing there was this moment of, ‘Hang on, there is a space theme here’. For me personally, I love spacey sounds. My favourite is that dub, trippy, twinkly, starry stuff – that otherworldly sound.” From the opening track on Light Years, Kora have well and truly captured the ‘twinkly, starry stuff’. The theme is obvious and blends effortlessly with their combination of funk and dub, but those who discovered Kora off the back of heavier progrock gigs won’t see a lot of that influence on this record. The album is more quirky and interestingly, McGruer said using guitar just wasn’t enough. “We tried a lot of guitar, but to me it wasn’t heavy enough,” he says. “That’s probably why I’m a bass player, because I’ve always thought it was heavier than a guitar. I really liked that sound for this album. The guitar just wasn’t cutting it, so we’ve used a lot of synthesisers. I’m not really into heavy music anymore. I prefer classic dub. We’ve got to be true to ourselves, and true fans will like whatever we do.” Those who appreciated Kora’s political side may also be disappointed that the album is well and truly full almost entirely of love songs. It is an interesting decision by the band to change direction. Many acts will cling desperately to the formula of their debut album to try to recreate even the smallest amount of success, but Kora have to be respected for expanding their sound regardless of audience expectations. The synthesisers and samples feature heavily, but one aspect that is not lost is the luscious voices of the Kora brothers – Laughton, Francis, Stuart and Brad – and their ethereal harmonies. They have played the new material at some local gigs in their homeland and are receiving positive responses. “A few of the songs have been played live,” McGruer reveals. “We’ve opened with a few new songs and it feels really good; I can’t describe it, but it feels like I hoped it would.” For McGruer, the other major factor in producing a new album was working towards achieving a more mainstream audience. The bassist was actually studying commercial music when he met singer and lead guitarist Laughton Kora. The popular side of music is a topic usually avoided by many bands, but McGruer was refreshingly honest about his hopes for Kora. “We do appreciate more commercial music. We’ve always been a live band but there is definitely that push to make our music easier to listen to and instantly attractive to an audience.” McGruer explains the 1980’s music scene was a huge influence for Kora. “We appreciate and admire that big ‘80’s ballad, but we have put a twist on it with a classic chord change and taking influences from other places, putting all the best parts together. We were conscious of it and always thinking, ‘What would be the best chorus here?’, ‘What is a really catchy hook?’ and running with that. It’s something we worked really hard at.” While Kora may not have plans for world domination any time soon, McGruer expresses the hopes of many a musician in simply wanting his music to have a voice and not taking the popular line of
For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews • 23
WOE IS JOE Joe Pug has a yarn with Nick Argyriou about his new record, the Texan songwriting tradition and the legacy of Levon Helm. oe Pug’s follow-up record to 2010’s Messenger is this year’s The Great Despiser, a richer release that was motivated by the man’s enthrallment for the ‘storied songwriting tradition’ of Austin, Texas. For a town that has bred the likes of Guy Clark Jr and Kris Kristofferson, to 2012 Texas Heritage Songwriters’ Association Hall of Fame inductees Townes Van Zandt and Lyle Lovett, this was the idyllic place for Pug to continue to refine his craft.
Having toured Australia each year since his debut in 2010, the Maryland-born, Chicago-based artist has since tapped into the essence of both Nashville and his latest abode of Austin, the city where he wrote his sophomore. Pug returns here for a run of shows this month and recalls how those early visits with touring partner Justin Townes Earle helped forge his admiration for this land. “The first tour in the States with Justin was a fun tour; it was about eight weeks long and I was playing shows that were sold out, and on the side he wouldn’t shut up about his Australian visits,” he larks. Both Pug and Earle have since become firm festival favourites Down Under and have delivered intimate club spectacles ever since. “Having been a few times, I just love it there now,” the performer adds. While The Great Despiser was written in the inspired artistic landscape of Texas, it was in fact recorded back in Chicago at Engine Recording Studio with producer Brian Deck (Modest Mouse, Iron & Wine, Califone, Gomez). The album features key players such as Sam Kassirer (Josh Ritter, Langhorne Slim) on piano, organ and marimba, and Califone’s Jim Becker on rumbling guitar. The Hold Steady’s Craig Finn even inserts a little backing vocal on the album’s title track, so it’s clear that Pug is making all the right creative moves. Delivering yet another classy country-rock and folk release that demands repeat listens due to its potency, not because you don’t ‘get it’ first up, The Great Despiser is somewhat dissimilar in texture to Messenger, and is coated with sharper shades. Even the instrumentation is raised slightly with Pug admitting the achieved his wish to have “finally created arrangements that can stand shoulder to shoulder with the lyrics”. It’s a charmingly paced album filled with light and shadow, his
trademark troubadour darkness, scholarly words and a rare splendour that few singer-songwriters can match. “I think you ultimately want to create a work that doesn’t completely reveal itself on the first listen, and it has to be engaging enough to bring people along and to impress them at first and be more complex over time,” he agrees. Meanings also need to be taken on many different levels in order to further draw the listener into the wild narrative world of a songwriter, as Pug explains: “That’s when you are really on top of your game when you are able to connect [with the listener] on both a surface level and a deeper level.” Writing from a clean slate for The Great Despiser in Texas throughout 2011, Pug attests to not wanting to reproduce anything that he’s released previously, both lyrically and in a recording sense. That’s his motto – going forward – as should be the case for all musicians, but in many cases it just doesn’t come to fruition despite best intentions. “I just think it can be really disadvantageous as a songwriter to have a bunch of songs lying around that you can fall back on if you had to,” he says. “I like to really clean out the whole shed and the whole job of writing songs is by any means necessary to keep myself excited and inspired, and if you do that one thing, everything else falls in line behind,” informs Pug. Even though this sounds like a no-brainer, it’s quite a challenging zenith to reach as an author of song. “That’s the key thing – like, it sounds so simple but it’s difficult and you fail at it more than you succeed at it, which is my experience,” he tells. By ways of Texan songwriting deities, you can take a pick of countless luminaries’ styles seeping into modern-day artists’ sounds, particularly when you are entrenched there on assignment like Pug was, and still is. In many instances, it’s impossible not to be heavily influenced by the greats, but it’s all about channelling and balance, as well as bringing something novel to the table. “Part of the reason I came down to Texas was to be close to that songwriting tradition and obviously Townes Van Zandt and Steve Earle, who quickly went to Nashville but grew up here [are up there as muses],” he explains, before adding Lucinda Williams’ Texan chapter to the mix plus a few more.
“Bill Neely I admire, as both songwriter and performer, and then of course a fellow whose song [Start Again renamed Deep Dark Wells] I ended up covering. Harvey Thomas Young is another.” Recording with Brian Deck, Pug has this collection of tunes continuing to pull on that folk thread that’s invariably roots-driven with a slender sea shanty mélange. From track to track, the Pug chronicle is undiluted and resolute and, like Messenger, is informed by a string of loosely based ideas rather than a focused concept piece, something that Pug admits is nigh on impossible to achieve as a songwriter. “I really believe it’s ultimately an exercise doomed to failure because songwriters quite often have very different strengths to people who are novelists or playwrights [which Pug himself was studying to be at one time] or screenwriters because of the constraints of the form in which we work,” he says. Explaining that the limitations range from “a songwriters economy of words in being able to tell a whole story in a four-line verse or four-word line,” Pug admits that he and his peers spend much of their time reducing the written word instead of building it, so any yearning to construct the idealistic concept masterwork is frittered away. “You just spend so much time on the minutiae, that you build up that [particular] muscle in a very large way, and
it can be, if not crippling, [it becomes] a much weaker muscle when you want to look at things in a broader way,” he states. Having played some US shows with the heartbeat of The Band, Levon Helm, only weeks before he passed away from throat cancer in April, Pug continues to reflect on his time spent with a bona fide legend of the game and uses it as continual impetus. Driving an insane distance from Austin, Texas where he and band were attending SXSW, to Michigan Theatre in downtown Ann Arbor is clear evidence of his dedication. “When we were offered this gig we drove pretty much 25 straight hours and bisected the country because this was such an experience,” informs Pug. “It really made me and the guys feel like we were part of the tradition, to be accepted by this man whose music has had such a profound impact on our lives, and I don’t think I can overstate how affirming that was personally… I’m just so grateful.” WHO: Joe Pug WHAT: The Great Despiser (Lightning Rod) WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 21 and Thursday 22 November, Workers Club
SAINTS AND KINGS Chris Bailey fronts one of the most internationally-known bands in Australian music history, although the latest version of The Saints comes straight out of Holland via some overeating in France. Ross Clelland follows the geography. o some, it was the adrenalin spit of I’m Stranded that announced music was forever changed. To others, it was Ghost Ships’ brassdriven grown-up realisations and reflections. To Chris Bailey – who has variously sneered, yelled, crooned or rasped the words as he’s fronted various versions of The Saints since the mid-1970s – it’s “The old girl [he] just keep[s] coming back to”.
“From the early days, The Saints has been an ever-evolving thing, and I actually am flattered that people stay tuned for the next weird and wonderful deviation from its basic course,” he clarifies. Bailey’s musical wanderings have led to a new Saints album, King Of The Sun, recorded in Sydney, while its creator still has the port of Amsterdam as his European home. “I have no idea why I’ve been here for 15 years,” Bailey (monkey) puzzles. “Back in the ‘90s we did a showcase here, my girlfriend loved the place and announced we should move here. And, strangely enough, two years later we did… That said, Amsterdam is really very handy to everything. If you want to be middle-European, there are few places more middle than this,” he considers, dryly. That move came after a few years in Scandinavia. “I was happy living in Sweden – even if I’m not really sure how I ended up there, for that matter – I thought it was paradise.” Another European aside also postponed The Saints’ latest resurrection: Bailey taking to bass, along with regular Saints drummer Peter Wilkinson, working as rhythm section and collaborators for Frenchman Renaud Brustlein, aka Hash Burns. “The name apparently works better as a pun in the local lingo,” Bailey helpfully explains. “Renaud opened for The Saints a few times, and a number of people exercised guilt on me to make a record with him, as he was ‘really really good’. And, oddly, it turned out he is in fact really really good. “The behind-the-scenes vibe was the hope we’d end up with one of the little singer-songwriter – or, as we call it, ‘singer-songwanker’ – albums which are such an unfortunate fashion at the moment. We subverted that idea, and became a little loud band, which allowed me to give Pete the job as drummer. In turn, this allowed us
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to tour, and eat and drink our brains out. We recorded the album in a little farmhouse up in the mountains near Grenoble. Three meals a day, plus snacks, and wine – a long way from bad hamburgers on the Pacific Highway. “We toured and, as we only had one album of songs, we filled the set up with old Saints songs done in ze Froggy country rarwk-style,” he accents. “But then I came to make the record that has become King Of The Sun, and it was ‘Oh, how am I gonna do this?’” The reconciliation with his original Saints foil, Ed Kuepper, that many thought could never happen, helped. “The acoustic tour with Ed was actually quite a good thing for us to do. After doing those nostalgic Saints ‘reunion’ shows, we went a different way – stripping it right back.” There’s a chuckled postscript: “And just as an experiment to see if we could stand each other for long periods of time… It reached the point where we again realised why we can’t work with each other – Ed and I just have completely different approaches to working. We’re both strong and stubborn old working girls who like things our own way.
had in our heads. It was of the time, certainly, but I don’t put them on the turntable very often.”
“So then I started recording a new record with Sean Carey – really just one of the best engineers I’ve ever worked with, and his guitar playing is a bonus. Although we come from very different backgrounds, immediately after the first session I had this strange revelation: ‘Zoot Alors! This sounds like a Saints album.’”
Making my job easier, Bailey starts questioning himself. “Is it cyclical? Will the next one go noisy again? Well, actually, I’m struggling with that ‘what comes next’ as we speak. I do seem to be heading, er, focusing – I’m actually not very good with describing what I do – more to that liking for orchestration, and colouring and stuff.”
For longtime followers, King Of The Sun is a bit of a throwback to the band’s bluesy-flavoured work of the ‘80s and ‘90s. Layered brass and string arrangements make the songs sound rich and well thought out. The singer conditionally agrees: “I had a vague plan. After making a couple of what were ‘very noisy’ kind of albums, it was always my intention to steer back to something of that ‘singer-songwanker’ vibe – but as a studio recording, with those kind of flourishes. Why? Just because I’m a contrary bastard who does that.” The man knows himself, if nothing else.
The self-anaIysis continues: “I actually had some time – ha, some years – where I made the stupid delusion I was that guitar player hero kind of guy. And as much as I can enjoy plugging in and turning the Marshall up to twelve and all that, you reach that point where you realise too much of a good thing is not necessarily a good thing.”
“Some of the records I made with Caspar (Wijnberg, latter-era collaborator) were buzzy, screechy – distortion on distortion. We had the ideas but probably not the technical abilities to make the sounds we
This touring line-up of the band will include keyboards and a brass section to add some of the record’s textures and moods. Does this mean the next stylistic swerve might take the band off towards a jazz and swing period? Bailey ponders, then laughs. “I don’t mind a bit of swing, but jazz merely confuses me. As it, I’m sure, does with most people – even those who claim to understand it.” True that.
The typical delays, complications and details of the business side of show-business have held up the new album and accompanying tour until now: “the usual tomfoolery” as Bailey describes it. “It’s a new label, the whole new shebang. It took some time to organise things over here – and over there – and now it’s all go.” He’s also very determined that this is a Saints of now, rather than of past glories. “Having done the heritage band bollocks the last couple of times – some people thought it was great, some thought it was shit, and I felt it probably somewhere in between the two – I’ve made it very clear I’ve done that. I really don’t want to be a cabaret band, a nostalgia act. If that’s how The Saints ended up, I’d be sickeningly disappointed. That said, we have played a great many RSLs in our time.” WHO: The Saints WHAT: King Of The Sun (Highway 125) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 23 November, Corner Hotel; Monday 3 December, Sidney Myer Music Bowl (supporting Blondie)
HERE BE MONSTERS Eyeballing people in Amsterdam’s red light district convinced Angus Stone that love is all you need, he tells Michael Smith. he now solo Angus Stone is talking about how time seems to have flown since he and his sister Julia kicked off their careers with a little EP, Chocolates And Cigarettes, in 2005. “I just got back from a tour of the States and Europe, and I was just talking to a friend down the road and it felt like I’d just stepped out for a second and nothing changed – came back, felt like a bit of time travel – it was cool.”
That “second” saw Stone on tour for two months, playing dates all over Canada and the US (including the Troubadour in LA), the UK and Europe. This time, of course, he’s been traveling as an artist in his own right, performing songs from his solo album, Broken Bright. There was a ‘debut’ solo album, Smoking Gun, back in 2009, but he released that under the moniker Lady Of The Sunshine, feeling it wasn’t quite time to step out of the duo at the time.
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“The European tour was sold out,” he continues, on the line from the farm he bought himself six months ago. “The crowds there, the people are just really passionate about their arts and they’re really listening – it’s their medicine in many ways. It’s good. It’s really funny, ‘cause I’ll be playing in Paris or something, and people after the show [will say], ‘Oh, Julia was just here, she talked about you and your dogs on stage’,” he smiles. “We’re sort of just missing each other around the world. It’s cool – we’re both just doing our own thing now.” Broken Brights is as diverse an album as you’d expect from an increasingly confident songwriter. One minute it’s all banjos and mandolins and steeped in a rootsy folk style, the next it’s searing electric guitars; Stone veers from soft intimate vocals to heartfelt rock-leaning growls. “For me, this album and the songs, I like to see them somewhat as motion pictures,” he says. “A lot of the songs were written in motion, on the road, and recorded in that way also. I dunno – it’s hard to say where, within some time capsule, of when the songs came, because they’re
always there in a way, you know? You have a seed in the back of your mind and then they call out to you when they’re ready, and they’ve probably always been there,” he chuckles, “since however long. “I don’t believe in demos. I believe you walk into the studio, wherever it [may] be, and the time is right when you know it and the song, that’s its moment. There’s no other time but that, and if it doesn’t shine in that moment, then it doesn’t deserve to exist. I think for a lot of these songs, just those times where a song was ready, the time [to record] had to be then and we’d be on the road and we’d book a studio in Switzerland, or in India we did some stuff, or Amsterdam and here in my lounge room in Australia. So it was a compilation of many continents.” While Stone has suggested that this album includes perhaps some of his most personal songs to date, the release is no simple confessional or even diary in the usual singer-songwriter sense. “There are some songs there that grew from melodies of old songs. I find that it’s almost like using a different side of your brain when you pick up an old theme and you make something new of them. It’s almost like you’re being a bit naughty in a way – you get to sort of… I dunno, put a new sort of psyche through it, and feeling, and you don’t have to think as much or be as poetic in a way with the wording – you just have to think about the feeling and just let it flow. “Some of the songs worked like that and some of them are, yeah, like short films. I’d be sitting and watching a little bit of television – I’d watch an old western or see the bird on the buffalo and just little seeds would turn into me jumping into someone else’s shoes for a moment. It’s like a self-portrait in a way as well and I get to let my imagination run wild. I think it’s a balance of dreams and daydreaming and everything – loss and adventure – I think it’s a collection of the lot of them. I think what I’m coming to learn more and more is to let the song speak, and it’ll answer the questions in time.” Then, of course, the imaginations of the filmmakers who translate his songs into clips for your visual pleasure run wild. The visuals for Monsters, the third single to be lifted from the album, are very different
to those that either Stone imagined as he wrote it or the listener might perceive the storyline. “This film clip I got together with Taylor Steele – he’s a bit of a legend of a filmmaker in the surfing industry – and we got together and we were drinking some beers and bouncing off each other with ideas and I’ve been writing this short story about this guy who gets transformed into another world and realises that he’s in danger; you know, there are lots of monsters… That’s not a very good description of the detail but he falls into this other world and realises he has to get out or realise himself in that world as a monster as well. “It starts off and I’m being dragged through the forest by this… he’s almost like the keeper of the woods, so he’s the guardian sort of old man – and he drags me off, and he’s sort of protecting me. I don’t realise that at the time and I escape and I realise that I shouldn’t have escaped and I’ve got myself into even more trouble when there are all these little, like, the Lost Boys after me. It’s really fun; it was a really fun day. They dressed me up and put blood all over my face
and we’re out in this beautiful pine forest, just really lush and picturesque and in a way it was cinematic.” The song itself came out of a very different setting. “The song I wrote in Amsterdam,” he recalls. “I lived in Amsterdam for a little bit – I wanted to do some writing – and I was walking round the red light district and some other places and it was late at night and just the look in people’s eyes… There are so many stories, just catching a glimpse of someone’s eye, and I felt that we’re all in this world together but we definitely have to embrace that monster – really we all need love – and it’s about that.” WHO: Angus Stone WHAT: Broken Brights (Desert Harvest/EMI) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 22 November, Palace; Friday 23, Ferntree Gully Hotel; Saturday 24, Pier Live, Frankston; Friday 28 December, Falls Festival, Lorne
For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews • 25
DOUBLE SCOOP COUNTRY New Zealand’s Delaney Davidson rescued fellow Americana-lovin’ songwriter Marlon Williams from a life of ice-cream making, he tells Nic Toupee. he album Sad But True is actually the secret history of country music songwriting volume one,” jokes Delaney Davidson, enigmatic Kiwi songwriter, self-described as “part wandering minstrel, part travelling salesman”. He and simpatico songwriting cohort Marlon Williams teamed up to write the album after a chance meeting that Davidson swears is true –it just also happens to be a conveniently brilliant anecdote.
With a member of Black Fox getting married in Japan, the Melbourne band took the opportunity to do some recording and explore abandoned theme parks in the Land Of The Rising Sun, writes Kate Kinsgmill.
“Marlon and I were double-booked to play the same concert by accident,” he begins. “Someone I knew had a residency on Wednesday nights, and was going on tour. So, he asked me if I’d do it for him. I turned up at the show and Marlon was there as well – it took us ten seconds to realise we were both booked to cover for him. We introduced ourselves and talked about whether we would do alternate weeks, but in the end we decided to do it together. So we worked out what songs we both knew and liked and realised that we both loved the same songwriting.” After discussing how they would work out their performance, the pair decided to take a chance on the knife’s edge of spontaneous and very public musical experimentation. Luckily for the pair, their unrehearsed duets worked so well that they continued out the few weeks of the fill-in shift together. “After the shows were finished, we decided we still wanted to work together. Marlon had a job working in the local dairy making ice-creams – he makes really good ice-cream. In fact, the dairy where he worked had an international reputation as an icecream maker. Luckily, he made the right choice in the end, and chose making music, over making icecream, which is fortunate for me and our album.” What was revealed to both Davidson and Williams by their sudden collaboration was not just their mutual love of the same kinds of music – Americana, country music, sad and lonesome storytelling music – but their fortunate and rare computability of temperament as musicians and creatives. “I think we both have real respect for each other’s style of writing. We both are quite…” he pauses to choose
the right words, “ego free in the way we have a real respect and love for the song itself. That’s basically the most important thing to us – the song, how it ends up.” That’s not to say the pair are interchangeable – in fact, as Davidson explains, there’s a partnership of complementary songwriting territories. “We have a very different modus. Marlon likes the fictional side of songwriting; he creates people and personas that don’t exist. He creates whole worlds that the songs are set in, sometimes very geographically specific places. Whereas me, I tend to be more broadly focussed on the human condition. I like to say things that I think will mean something to people. I like to ask people what they think life’s about, or why they think things happen. I think the two approaches are a great combination, and very often, they work together.” Prior to his collaboration with Williams, Davidson had billed himself “the loneliest man alive”; it’s perhaps a great motivator for songwriting, but in the life of a touring musician difficult to believe – there seems to be semi-constant company both on and off stage. But it’s quality, not quantity, for Davidson, and with Williams perhaps he’s the loneliest man no longer. “It’s a weird paradox. If you are a one-man band you do a lot of travelling; it’s not just a shtick I adopt, it’s a definite part of my life. I have good friends all over the world but it’s not the same as being with people who have known you for a long time – there’s only so much you can share. A relationship’s strength comes from trust and the knowledge that you’ll continue to be around.” WHO: Delaney Davidson WHAT: Sad But True (Lyttleton) WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 22 November, Public Bar; Friday 23, Spotted Mallard; Saturday 24, Old Bar
FAR FROM SUNK Jordan Sturdee, commander-in-voice of Sydney four-piece Battleships, does Q&A battle with Izzy Tolhurst, discussing their musical litter and the “runt” that they produced. hile Sydney is the city that now provides a diverse and enthusiastic music scene for Battleships, and one that Jordan Sturdee insists is central to their success, he does occasionally long for his home shores, sitting a little further north on the Sunshine Coast. “I think the other guys really like it here,” he begins. “But I miss the coast a bit… just having more space and y’know, even walking home from work in gridlock today, I dunno, it’s different. Look, there are benefits to every part of the country; I don’t know if we would have had the same opportunities had we not moved to Sydney.”
That record is titled To You, yet Sturdee says it’s to no one in particular. “A lot of the songs are messages to people and are quite personal, but at the same time a lot of the focus is on people that we’ve seen or people that we want to leave a message for.” Another group noted for their ambiguous, often cryptic messages are Radiohead, the British act sighted by Sturdee as a mutual love for him and his bandmates. Beyond that however, the musical taste of the Battleships four is completely hit and
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cattered across Japan are several amusement parks that have closed down, been abandoned and left to disintegrate. Vines grow over rollercoasters, castles have been left to rust and these enormous venues, once designed for people to enjoy themselves in, are now creepily fascinating places left vacant, rusting, falling apart and overrun by nature.
Melbourne band Black Fox were in Japan for guitarist Daniel Mullens’ wedding to his Japanese wife, and part of the band’s debut album, Line Of Sight, was recorded over there. When they’re not playing music, one of the band’s other common interests is exploring abandoned places; in fact, the inner sleeve of Line Of Sight is a photo of the band lurking in one of Melbourne’s underground tunnels. So when the Melbourne five-piece – brothers Daniel and Leigh Mullens, both on guitar, vocalist Dane Robertson, drummer Mitch Freeman and bassist Andrei Seleznev – were in Japan, they took the opportunity to explore some abandoned theme parks. “It seems that when they go out of business they just walk away from them and leave them sitting there while the trees slowly grow over the rollercoasters; it’s really quite beautiful,” says Robertson. “The arcades are still filled with all the games, there’s a monorail, there’s rollercoasters, there’s themed streets and a castle, and nature is starting to reclaim it all. So the rollercoasters are like intertwined with vines that are growing up all over it, and all of the grass is overgrown and the pavements are cracked. It’s amazing how quickly they just all fall apart when they’re not maintained. There’s something so amazing about it.” By the time they reached Japan, the band had been working on the songs for their debut album for more than a year. Far from being newbies at this whole rock business though, the brothers Mullens and Robertson had all been in a band called The Smoke together, releasing two albums before one of the members moved to Sydney and the group transmogrified into
Black Fox. This new incarnation, deeply influenced by classic rock such as The Rolling Stones and Pink Floyd, played for about a year as a four-piece before Freeman and Seleznev joined the band and they hit their stride. “Without a doubt,” says Robertson of their influences. “Bands that have stood the test of time, like The Cure and The Smiths. It tends to be mainly British stuff to be honest. I think in any given era there’s a whole lot of trends which are so easy to fall into, like the dubstep stuff that’s going on at the moment, whereas I hope that if someone listens to our stuff in ten years’ time it’ll still sound alright.” Maintaining momentum with the songs over that period wasn’t difficult, Robertson admits, even though they had to tuck it into evenings and weekends. “It takes time and you’ve got to keep going with it, but we always have such a great time when we’re doing it. We’ll go out and have breakfast of a weekend and head down to a rehearsal studio or someone’s living room and record bits and we make it pretty fun so that makes it pretty easy.” Their live shows are known for being rambunctious, and at the album launch at the Espy, Robertson promises “plenty of partying and fun, and we definitely like to get people up and dancing so there’ll be plenty of that.” And while he says the band actively encourages drunken pashes in the crowds at their gigs, for the band themselves, “It’s a fine line between being drunk to the point where you’re having a great time, and then not getting too drunk to the point where you can no longer play. And we’ve teetered on that line a few times.” WHO: Black Fox WHAT: Line Of Sight (Independent) WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 24 November, Espy
SOMEWHERE IN TIME Both former vocalists for one of heavy metal’s most influential acts, Iron Maiden, Paul Di’Anno and Blaze Bayley will embark on their first co-headlining tour of Australia. Brendan Crabb talks to the prowler and a man on the edge.
Ironically, it was the success and regular radio play of singles In Retrospect and Your Words that Sturdee says delayed the release of a more complete body of songs, leaving many extra songs reluctantly jettisoned. “When it finally came time to release something we’d done that was more of a collection, we had way too many songs,” he says. “So it ended up being a seven-track release, and an EP’s usually around five songs. So now that it’s not quite an album, we’ve got this runt of a release that’s too small for an album and too big for an EP! But we do have a big backlog of songs, and it’s hard to put songs aside like that. But it is good to have something out.”
OUT OF SIGHT
miss. “It’s quite diverse – Jono [Bowden] the bass player likes a lot of jazz, Dan [McMurray] likes Mars Volta through to Taylor Swift (there’s a lot of random stuff he likes), he’s big on Interpol too. But we’ve got a few that we’re definitely all into and Radiohead is one of them.” Although the assured indie that peppers the release would suggest otherwise, Sturdee is weirdly curious about the response to their release, namely opinions of the negative variety. “I always wonder, if people hate it what will they say to rip us apart?” he ponders. “Just out of curiosity, I’ve thought about it a few times and jumped onto Pitchfork and sites like that to have a look, but we’re pretty small still – maybe we’re not well known enough to be hated just yet.” For the time being, however, he seems moored in contentment with the positive feedback. “People who contact us say that they love us, but I guess they wouldn’t bother contacting us if they hated it,” he levels. Looking ahead, Battleships are committed to a promising few months of touring, including a recently-won spot on the Homebake bill, which it turns out is the crew’s very first festival appearance. “We’re really excited about that,” he beams, “truly excited to have won that. And I’m just happy to be there as a spectator as well. And I’ve heard Peats Ridge has a great vibe, so we’re excited about that as well.” WHO: Battleships WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 22 November, Espy Front Bar
aul Di’Anno and Blaze Bayley share a unique common ground; both recorded two studio albums with Iron Maiden, albeit in vastly different circumstances. The former fronted the British metal legends on their classic first two records (1980’s Iron Maiden and 1981’s Killers), being at the forefront of their rapid ascent in the late-‘70s/early‘80s. He was replaced by Bruce Dickinson, to legions of fans the definitive Maiden vocalist. When The Air Raid Siren departed in 1993 following a decade of dizzying success, Bayley stepped in. Unfortunately this coincided with a lull in their drawing power, although founder/bassist/linchpin Steve Harris reveals in Mick Wall’s authorised biography that the first Bayley-fronted record, 1995’s The X Factor, is one of his favourites. After poorly received follow-up Virtual XI and its troubled tour, Dickinson returned in 1999. Maiden have since experienced significant career resurgence, again playing to packed arenas and headlining major festivals.
Both ex-singers are asked if they envisioned them making such a triumphant return at the turn of the millennium? “I don’t really listen to ‘em, of course I hear ‘em here and there, but really can’t say,” Di’Anno comments. “I think they never left the top. Everything comes and goes, they never really left. They’re just in that icon stage now – legendary, good on ‘em.” “Yes, I haven’t had much time to listen to the albums but I never doubted that they would return,” Bayley responds. “[I attribute it to] their hardcore fanbase – they’ve supported Maiden over many years and are very loyal. There’s also the great songwriting of Steve Harris of course.” Bayley’s tenure coincided with a general downturn in metal’s popularity. Metallica and Pantera flourished, but otherwise grunge and nu-metal superseded the more traditional styles. “I didn’t really care,” he emphasises. “If there are ten fans or 10,000, I still try to give the best
performance possible. I knew it wasn’t my fault so there was nothing I could do about it, apart from giving the best show. It was a great time for me.” The question is posed as to whether Bayley felt the Maiden releases he appeared on were unfairly treated by fans and critics, or if he was made a scapegoat for their lesser performance? “I don’t know,” he mulls. “They were very different to what the fans were used to, so I did expect them to be more critical. I am very proud of these albums and having the chance to work with Steve. It was a difficult time for fans because their favourite singer had left the band, so I understand why they were not happy. I try to go see them when they are touring in the UK, but it’s difficult because I am also on tour a lot of the times. I stay in touch with Steve and mixed some of the songs from my new album The King Of Metal in his studio.” While Bayley has always spoken with fondness about the metal icons, during The History Of Iron Maiden Part 1: The Early Days DVD, Di’Anno discusses his tenure with much endearment and admiration for their ongoing drive, but he’s also criticised the current incarnation, reportedly comparing Harris to Hitler for his (allegedly) tyrannical grip over the band. “Mate, everyone takes want they want from what I say, usually the bloody wrong way too,” Di’Anno ponders. “Of course I have very deep affection from my times in Maiden; it was the time of (my) life until the end, when it wasn’t something I loved anymore. But it was becoming huge; it was a real hard decision to quit, or be kicked out… depends who you talk to.” WHO: Paul Di’Anno and Blaze Bayley WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 22 November, The Hi-Fi
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UNDERGROUND SLAVE While everyone is climbing on board the EDM movement, Matthew Edwards, aka Radio Slave, tells Cyclone he’d much prefer to sit out those “pyrotechnic events sponsored by global corporations”. adio Slave (aka Matthew Edwards) will headline The Likes Of You party as part of Melbourne Music Week’s Where?House series. And the Brit DJ/ producer, now based in Berlin where he regularly plays the cooler-than-cool Panorama Bar, couldn’t be more effusive about our scene. “Let me put it this way: if I was gonna move to Australia then I’d definitely live in Melbourne,” says Edwards, who last hit Summadayze 2012. “It was the first [Australian] city I visited way back in 2007 for the Red Bull Music Academy (RBMA) and I’ve made some great friends there. Plus there’s some cool clubs. I’m always impressed by the music, art and fashion scene. I really feel I can relax when I’m DJing and play all sorts of crazy records and the crowd will get it.”
Martin Kennedy’s lost count of how many releases All India Radio now have. Tony McMahon discovers the band’s latest, Red Shadow Landing, is a different kettle of fish – and not just because of the red vinyl.
As with his pal Carl Craig, Edwards has never easily slotted into any single genre, spanning house, techno, minimalism and dark disco. In 2012 he touts his style as ”future dub house”. “I don’t even know if that’s a genre, but I’m really into playing very trippy, dubbed-out techno, so nothing’s really changed.” But, while Edwards is musically progressive he’s old school when it comes to vinyl. Much of Edwards’ time is vested in his label Rekids, which this year issued Siberian phenom Nina Kraviz’s debut. “I actually met Nina in Melbourne back in 2007 at the RBMA. She was a participant and we met by chance when I was going into the studio to record a live mix for the RBMA Radio. I was there with [German DJ] Gerd Janson and, while we were chatting, a young girl was mixing the most obscure Detroit techno and Chicago house in the studio and we were both like, ‘Who’s this
girl?’ So, after Melbourne, we stayed in touch. Nina invited me to play at the Propaganda club in Moscow and, later that night, she handed me two CDs loaded with demos. When I got home later that day, I checked them out and just knew we had to work together.” Edwards plans to release no less than three albums next year, one as Rekid, another as Quiet Village, and a third with his Seadevils collaborator Thomas “Cagedbaby” Gandey. Meanwhile, US deep house icon Joe Claussell has reinterpreted The Machine’s 2010 RedHead LP, as Mad Professor did Massive Attack’s Protection. Edwards has remixed Kylie, but would he go further? “Well, last year I got to work with Bryan Ferry. Joel and I created a remix for him [of Me Oh My] under our Quiet Village alias. But I don’t really check out much new pop stuff. If the music was good, I’d definitely consider working again with Kylie.” Edwards has been long critical of the “commodification” of dance. “The overground will get richer and the underground will become poorer,” he rues. “This year a lot of DJs, promoters and agents have really shown their true colours. They will all tell you it’s been a tremendous year for this so-called ‘EDM’ movement – puke! Of course, I don’t blame people for wanting to make money, but the knock-on effect of these pyrotechnic events sponsored by global corporations where ‘superstar’ DJs play the worst and most offensive generic crap just isn’t helping the underground. I’ve seen it first hand and it takes a strong will not to get drawn into this world.” WHO: Radio Slave WHEN & WHERE: Friday 23 November, Melbourne Music Week, Where?House
DARK END OF THE STREET With her second album as Melodie Nelson, Lia Tsamoglou has created a more detailed and cohesive song cycle which, as she explains to Chris Familton, is based around her fascination with the cultural shift of late ‘60s suburbia. n 2011, Melodie Nelson released her debut album Meditations On the Sun, a collection of songs deeply indebted to the sound of late ‘60s girl groups filtered through the glow and haze of ‘90s Mazzy Star. Now, only a year later, she is releasing its successor To The Dollhouse, which takes the premise of that first record and expands it with confidence and clarity. Although the gap between releases seems short, the new album was in fact recorded only a few months after her debut release and finished early in 2012.
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Heading into album number two, Tsamoglou had a much clearer view of what she wanted to achieve in terms of song narrative and sound. “I had a bit more of a plan with this one,” she tells. “I had a deadline and I stuck to it, I made notes and I had more of an idea of what I wanted. Now, looking back, I can see that the first one
28 • For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews
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Where does Kennedy think this record fits in with the rest of his body of work? Interestingly, he says, while he sees it as quite a separate entity, there are also ties that bind. “I think it sits out pretty much on its own. Like I touched on before, it’s a lot more of a band collaboration rather than just me half solo, half band, which is kind of how we’ve done it in the past. At the same time, there are certain elements in this record that have been in each album all the way back to the beginning. I quite like to include themes that I’ve used before, just for some kind of continuity, even if it’s not immediately obvious.” Kennedy has mentioned his band twice now. Does this mean he’s interested in All India Radio becoming more of a live act? It seems he’s still sitting on the fence slightly. “Yes and no,” he says. “When I say ‘new band members’, these guys have been
playing with me for years, but I guess I still see them as the new guys. But this is the first time we’ve all recorded together by going into a proper studio and spending time just making the music.” Although this might all be a bit new to him, Kennedy is supremely confident that the songs from Red Shadow Landing will make for a killer live show. “Although we’ve played a couple of live gigs here and there, it really hasn’t been that often. The live thing has always kind of been secondary to the recording. This time around, though, because we wanted to record the band more-or-less live in the studio, we knew the songs would translate well live. These songs, I’m really comfortable playing them live. In the past I’d created songs and then tried to interpret them live. These songs began as live songs, so hopefully they’ll sound good live. I think they will.” And the launch itself? It’s a matinee show at the Workers Club, and, even when you’re as prolific as Kennedy, events like this are still a special occasion. There’s a super support, age-friendly timing, and the extraordinarily sexy notion of coming home with red vinyl tucked under one’s arm. “The other band playing is Summon The Birds, and they’re launching their album as well, so it’s going to be great,” continues Kennedy. “Last album launch was a matinee show and we found that a really good time to play. It brought out a lot of people who ordinarily wouldn’t have come, so we thought we’d do that again. So hopefully it’ll bring out some people who need to be home by a certain time. I’m one of those people, really. Doing the red vinyl was something like $50 more, so we thought we’d go for that. It’s a beautiful thing to hold in your hand.” WHO: All India Radio WHAT: Red Shadow Landing (Inevitable Recordings) WHEN & WHERE: Sunday 25 November, Workers Club (1:30pm)
STEP ON IT With a Melbourne radio heavyweight on their side, Ana Nicole’s thrust at notoriety is half won. Melissa D’or tells Samson McDougall that their live shows elicit a strange response – dancing. hen Melissa D’or, bassist and vocalist for Melbourne band Ana Nicole, heard RRR’s Stephen ‘The Ghost’ Walker had spruiked their debut Twinkie on his now-legendary show Skull Cave, she was telling anyone who’d listen. Skull Cave listeners will understand that though Walker’s musical taste and knowledge is wide and varied, the man loves and plays bold music – stuff that challenges the listener. Twinkie will do this. It’s all soaked in echoed vocals, metronomic but glitchy drum jags and duelling synth and bass. As Walker put it: “They have managed to get a fantastic widescreen wall-ofsound electronic-based drive to the entire album… It’s one of those records that if you put it on a decent sound system they just sound bigger and deeper.”
“It’s been about a year since we went down to Melbourne to record it, which is crazy; I can’t believe how quickly the year has flown by,” she admits. “I mixed it in January, and then I wasn’t 100% happy, so I took it to Chris Townsend in Tasmania who mixed the first one. That was a little bit time-consuming, and then we got caught up in doing a single and video clip. I was still looking for a label, as the last one dissolved a week before my album launch which wasn’t great! It was those types of things that delayed it. My manager even wanted to push it out to next year, but we thought, ‘It’s done and ready to go out, so we may as well just get it out’. A year is still quite a quick turnaround, and I’ve noticed a few others doing that. I mean really, what else are you doing? I didn’t pick up massive tours and I wasn’t traipsing overseas all the time, so what else am I going to do other than hang out at home and write some new songs?”
ocal purveyors of hypnotic chilltronica, All India Radio are celebrating their 12th year with an 11th album, the impossibly gorgeous Red Shadow Landing. As if this wasn’t prolific enough, frontman Martin Kennedy has also made three albums in collaboration with The Church’s Steve Kilbey. But back to the current record; actually, Kennedy says, there might be one or two more that we’ve forgotten to count. “It might be more than that. I’ve lost track. There’s been a few collections and compilations and things like that, so it might be more than 11. But I’ve always found it easy to write songs. I think I approached this album differently to the previous one in that there was a definite plan to involve the whole band and almost record a live album. We hadn’t really done that before. Each album I have a different mindset for. If people started to say that they were all beginning to sound the same, then I might have to think about doing things differently.”
The acid houser was spinning as early as 1992 in London. Over the years Edwards has developed a succession of album projects as Rekid, the eclectic and sample-based Quiet Village and the multimedia The Machine. Still, most clubbers know him as Radio Slave. He’s cut hot tracks, remixed big names like Kylie Minogue (the glorious Slow) and UNKLE, and mixed 2009’s tastemaking Fabric 48 comp.
INTO THE RED
is more of a collection of songs over a period of four years, so I knew I wanted a particular theme on this one. I knew how I wanted the songs to sound, with a suburban, late ‘60s/early ‘70s vibe. I recorded the first album in the country so there were themes of nature, if there was any theme that tied those songs together. This one I actually had an idea that, because I was recording it in suburban Melbourne, I wanted a seedy, suburban side to it, like the Polanksi movies Rosemary’s Baby and Repulsion. The concept was the seedier side of the late ‘60s and that shift in western culture. It’s a fascinating era. I realised I’d been interested in the pop culture around that for years, so it made sense.” Musicians often talk about records that loom large during either the writing or recording of their own albums, and for Melodie Nelson there were a number of important influences that soundtracked the making of To The Dollhouse. “I couldn’t stop listening to The Beach Boys Surf’s Up because it is such a weird album. I think that’s where Brian Wilson had pretty much lost his mind and only contributed a few songs, but it has these insane four-part harmonies and some great songwriting by Carl Wilson. I was listening to Isaac Hayes, which influenced the bass lines, and Serge Gainsbourg was a big influence as always, even more so on this album. Another one was The Manson Family album, which has these crazy girl harmonies. Listening to that got a bit scary after a while, though.” WHO: Melodie Nelson WHAT: To The Dollhouse (Broken Stone/Inertia) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 23 November, Grace Darling
“I got all these text messages when I was at work when [Walker] was talking about us on the radio,” says D’or. “It’s like, if somebody is going to review your album, you want him to; if somebody on radio is going to talk about you, you’d want it to be him. To get kind words from The Ghost is pretty much a life achievement… I pretty much told everyone in the office – most of them had no idea what I was talkin’ about, but that’s okay.” Their sound evolved through a long period of D’or and now drummer Simon Castricum jamming. Though they had no clear sonic directive to work towards, or from, D’or reckons her choice of instrument played a large role. “I play the Epiphone Thunderbird, with heaps of overdrive,” she says. “It’s a tree-trunk of a bass, heavy… They’re known for a really heavy sound – like if you go right back to a Detroit, MC5 or Stooges kind of sound right through to even Nikki Sixx from Mötley Crüe [who also] plays one. “We come from a range of styles and I guess so do our audience. The common thing we see at our shows, which I think is quite rare for Melbourne, is that our crowd dance… actually dancing, not the Melbourne nod-the-head look-too-serious, but really-getting-into-it dancing. There’s nothing better than playing live to that.”
They’ve been forced to find a replacement for guitarist (and notable visual artist) Masato Takasaka, so the launch will be their first live show with Andrew Kershaw. “He’s a real character and has a lot of personality,” says D’or. “[He] not only fits in well with the band but adds another level as well, so I’m really keen to see him live. The energy in rehearsals is already really amazing, so I can’t wait to see that on stage.” They’ve also enlisted Romy Hoffman’s synth-punk project A-Gender for support duties, along with postwank (their description) two-piece Franco Cozzo. The album artwork is a stumbling block; all cake, whipped cream and high heels, it belies what’s inside. “I guess we could have been a bit more obvious and gone for some sort of moody and dark, serious image,” D’or says, “but that’s not really our style. Most of our songs are about greed, excess, desire, love and the conflicts that come along with those things. The excess in the photo reflects that, so the simple ‘standing on the cake’ is just a bit of a subversive dig.” On Twinkie, the band did everything themselves (except mixing and mastering), right down to cutting out the cover lift-outs. Not a big believer in the CD as a format, D’or says the physical release was more about servicing radio than anything else. Of the internet release she says, “It’s a bit of a silent activity. You don’t really get a sense of it; that’s why I’m really looking forward to the launch. And it’s like we’re already onto the next thing, y’know, we’re already looking at new songs, so we don’t really want to spend too much time looking back… we need to keep moving.” WHO: Ana Nicole WHAT: Twinkie (Girls Who Smoke Poke) WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 24 November, Gasometer
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ROMANTIC TIME Queenscliff festivalgoers can expect some unexpected romance as part of Luke Legs’ set. Tony McMahon gazes at the moon.
With a new book celebrating the glory days of Melbourne’s Arthouse Hotel, the pub’s former owners are establishing a similar community around new venue the Reverence Hotel, writes Brendan Hitchens.
eelong-based folk country songsmith Luke Legs and his band The Midnight Specials have long been gathering a reputation for high-quality songwriting and exhilarating performances layered with family band harmonies and a distinctly grassroots feel. Their debut album, Why Oh Why (My Caroline), was acclaimed and saw them perform to sell-out crowds during a massive national tour. Given all this, it would be easy to think that Legs himself would be taking an upcoming appearance at Queenscliff Music Festival in his stride. The truth is, though, he’s as excited as a kid on Christmas morning, to put it mildly.
“Yeah, look, I’ve got a pretty bad hangover today, but the thought of playing at Queenscliff is going to snap me out of it for sure. If someone had have told us this five years ago when we started the band, we would have not believed it. We’ve always been punters there, and now we’re just so stoked to be part of the event. I’m a Geelong boy, so I’ve been going for years. I just can’t believe it, I’m so stoked. As a band, we had a set of goals we wanted to achieve. Right at the beginning, we thought that it would be amazing if, one day, we could play Queenscliff.” But Legs is not just excited about the thrill of taking the stage. It seems that he’s almost as happy about the line-up of great bands he’s going to be seeing – not surprising, since the 2012 festival is arguably the best Queenscliff has ever seen. “You kind of have your show in mind all the time, but the bands that are there are just such amazing bands, some of them we’re really inspired by. So, I think, seeing some of these other bands perform actually gives you inspiration and motivation for your own show. I don’t plan to leave the festival the whole time. I want to party. Despite all the expectation and organisation for our own show, I think it’s important to take a moment and realise where you are.” Even though it’s obviously not, will Legs be attempting to treat Queenscliff as just another gig? The reason we ask is that a number of artists are on the record as stating that this is the kind of thing they feel they should do at big festivals. Legs, though, is decidedly not one of
30 • For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews
SHAPE OF PUNK TO COME
them. “We’re definitely changing the way we play. Our setlist will be different to any other setlist we’ve ever played. Our live show is evolving all the time, and we really think about every show we do. We want to debut a whole lot of new songs at Queenscliff, which is a bit of a risk, because our fans all love our old songs. But we really want to see how they go. All our songs are stories, in a way, so I’ll be thinking long and hard about what stories I think the fans are going to relate to.” Finally, it appears that Legs is bravely going to use this show to debut one particular song that’s very close to his heart. If his description is anything to go by, it should be worth the price of admission alone. “Playing a song live and seeing how people react is a really good indicator of what’s working and what’s not. We’ll play a song live and, depending on the response to it, we’ll work from there. We’re going to debut a song at Queenscliff based on a story my grandfather told me. He wasn’t a romantic man, but him and grandma used to go out and look at the moon and that was their romantic time. After man landed there, they stopped doing it because they felt it was never the same. I’ve put that into a song and we’ll see how that goes.” WHO: Luke Legs WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 24 November, Queenscliff Music Festival
djacent to a used car yard and a petrol station, 28 Napier Street, Footscray lies in the heart of working-class Melbourne. The skyline is interspersed with shipping containers and iron cranes, as seagulls flail against a distant sea breeze. Further on the horizon loom city skyscrapers, the Eureka Tower and the disused Docklands ferris wheel. Napier Street’s position is prime real estate for a burgeoning cultural precinct, a missing link between metropolitan Melbourne and outer suburbia.
Her old hotel, now transformed into an Irish pub, has been imortalised in the form of a 200-page hardcover coffee table book titled Home Is Where The Arty Is. Curator and publisher Inga Liubinas says the project has been a two-year task. “Having taken photos of bands for ten years, predominantly at the Arthouse, I’ve always had the dream of putting together a book of images. Once I heard of the venue’s impending closure, I thought there would never be a better time to produce such a book.“
Sitting here is the Reverence Hotel, the next chapter from the Bodiam family, owners and operators of the Arthouse from 1991 until its final show in April 2011. The Arthouse was an institution that hosted the country’s, and indeed world’s, finest alternative acts week in and out; owner Melanie Bodiam admits that calling last drinks for the venue was devastating, but came at the right time. “The closure was a combination of the lease ending,” she explains, “losing a few hours off our license because live music was deemed a high risk, and residents moving into the city. It was something we knew couldn’t keep existing the way it was.”
Amongst the book’s many contributors are Chuck Ragan (Hot Water Music), Tim Barry (Avail), Gordy Forman (Frenzal Rhomb), Matt Maunder (Mindsnare), Steve Milligan (Mid Youth Crisis), Tom Read (Bodyjar) and Tom Lyncolgn (The Nation Blue). “I got a great response,” says Liubinas on the call out for contributors, joking, “it got to the point where I felt people were avoiding me at shows because I kept hassling them for stories and photos.”
The new venue, previously an “unloved old pub” known as the Exchange Hotel, was christened the Reverence in June and now boasts two band rooms, a public bar and kitchen. “We looked at every pub that was for sale or up for lease in Melbourne,” she says. “We’d been looking before the Arthouse had closed and found this place roughly four months after the closure.” The new venue has inherited much from the Arthouse, including bar staff and the esteemed jukebox, but the Reverence offers more than the former venue could. “The Arthouse was purely a venue, but the Reverence is a public bar, a community space. The Arthouse was purely for music people, whereas this is for locals as well. Plus we’re on one of Melbourne’s busiest truck roads, so we can never make more noise than the traffic,” she laughs.
Home Is Where The Arty Is will be launched at the Lithuanian Club in North Melbourne on Friday night with acoustic performances from many Arthouse regulars, as well as a speech from Lord Mayor Robert Doyle. The book, along with the short-lived Arthouse Recording studio, have been the benefactors of City Of Melbourne Arts & Small Business grants. Naturally, the Reverence will also host events to launch the book including one-off reformation shows from H-Block 101 and Away From Now. Local resident and H-Block 101 guitarist Karl Mautner says, “it’s a safe bet,” this will be their last show. That is of course “unless there’s an Arthouse feature film in the works”. WHAT: Home Is Where The Arty Is launch WHEN & WHERE: Friday 23 November, Lithuanian Club; Saturday 24 (H-Block 101) and Sunday 25 (Away From Now), Reverence Hotel
ISSUE 03 • NOVEMBER 2012
DEEP SEA ARCADE AT SOUNDCHECK, GRACE POTTER PREPARES FOR BLUESFEST, FORTUNE FAV OURS KERRI SIMPSON, CRYSTAL THOMA S TAKES A CHANCE
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PRS DAY AT GUITAR FACTORY PARRAMATTA The Guitar Factory in Parramatta is presenting a PRS guitar day Sunday 25 November from 11am to 3pm. Join the Guitar Factory team, Brett Kingman and Peter Peric for a day of Paul Reed Smith guitars appreciation, in which they will have all of their stock proudly displayed along with some very special private stock that will be flown in especially for this event. This is a great opportunity to choose from a large variety of hand-picked, some even extremely limited edition PRS guitars at prices never to be repeated! Demoing the PRS guitars on the day will be two respected Australian players. Peter Peric is a Sydney-based black/death metal guitarist best known for his work with Nazxul, Rookwood & Infernal Mehtod. He’s toured the globe extensively and shared stages with bands such as Satyricon, Watain, Anathema, Possessed, Dark Tranquility among many. His unorthodox approach to the guitar is a must see for true metal maniacs! Also appearing on the day will be Brett Kingman, one of Australia’s busiest players. Inspired by ‘70s classic and glam-rock guitarists and beginning his professional career at the age of 12, Kingman has become one of Australia’s better known hired guns and has spent time touring and recording with Australian icons such as James Reyne (presently touring), Daryl Braithwaite, Ross Wilson, Renee Geyer, Joe Camilleri, Vika & Linda Bull, Peter Andre, Jenny Morris and dozens of others. Visit www. guitarfactory.com.au/ for more information
CREDITS MUSO. ISSUE 3 - NOVEMBER 2012 PH: 03 9421 4499 FAX: 03 9421 1011 584 Nicholson St Nth Fitzroy 3068 WEBSITE: www.themusic.com.au EDITOR: Greg Phillips firstname.lastname@example.org DISTRIBUTION ENQUIRIES: email@example.com LAYOUT & DESIGN: Matt Davis IPAD EDITION: Dave Harvey CONTRIBUTORS: Reza Nasseri, Baz Bardoe, Sean Pollard, Christopher Steller, Michael Smith, Marcel Yammouni. PHOTOGRAPHER: Kane Hibberd Published by Street Press Australia PTY LTD PRINTED BY: Rural Press
GUITARS PLUS TURNS 30
Greek six-piece symphonic metal band Nightfall recorded their new album, Cassiopeia, in four different places, with vocals and keys recorded at Soundflakes Studios and Cyberia in Greece, the drums tracked at Soundlodge studios in Germany, and guitars and bass at Boomcave studios in Nashville, Tennessee. World’s End Press have been working on their debut album with Tim Goldsworthy (DFA, Mo Wax, The Rapture) at Rockfield Studios in Wales and Massive Attack Studios in Bristol. San Franciscobased Thao & The Get Down Stay Down recorded their third album, We The Common, with producer John Congleton (St. Vincent, Bill Callahan, The Walkmen) at his Elmwood Recording studios in Dallas.
In a world of rapid change, it’s great to know that some things remain the same. Chris Voce, proprietor of Guitars Plus in Victoria’s bayside suburb, Sandringham, first served customers from behind his counter in November 1982. Thirty years down the track he’s still there (with his team) doing what he does best. Chris is one of the most knowledgeable retail guys in Australia when it comes to guitars. Chris has been thinking about celebrating the milestone, however claims he’s been too busy to do anything about it. A nice problem to have after 30 years’ service in the local music gear industry. Guitars Plus is well known for its excellent repair department. It’s not everyone you can trust your cherished guitar with but it’ll be safe and sound in the hands of Guitars Plus. The store also has an excellent reputation for guitar tuition with the likes of Simon Croft teaching. Simon is about to head to Europe at the request of Queen’s Brian May to perform in We Will Rock You. Visit www. guitarsplus.com.au for more information or better still, call into 5 Melrose St Sandringham in Victoria and talk guitars with Chris.
ENGADINE MUSIC DOES COLE CLARK Engadine Music in NSW has been appointed as a specialist store for locally-made guitar brand Cole Clark. Cole Clark produce quality instruments featuring some of our country’s finest tone woods and construction techniques. All guitars come with an internally-fitted ABS hard-shell case. A D’Addario 3D 3 pack of acoustic strings is included with any Cole Clark purchase. Engadine also offers a free setup adjustment and check three months after purchase. They also offer a 14-day ‘satisfaction guaranteed’ period. The Cole Clark deal runs through until Christmas. Engadine has an extensive range of Christmas giftware lines suitable for all musicians too. As an encouragement for personal shoppers to visit the store, from now until Christmas Engadine is offering guitar string sets for just $4.95, an offer which is not available online. Visit www. engadinemusic.com.au for more information.
n this issue, The Living End look back at a stellar career during their Retrospective Tour while others such as Deep Sea Arcade, who are just starting out on their musical journey, very much look to the future. It was quite inspiring to still see the excitement in the eyes of Chris , Andy and Scott from The Living End as they reminisced about days gone by. Although it didn’t make the final story cut, one of the more interesting discussions was about their worst gig ever. Scott immediately claimed Bakersfield, California where he feared for his life during set-up as crack addicts roamed the foyer and the venue owner waltzed around with a baseball bat for protection. Chris on the other hand saw it differently. Even though the venue was next door to a prison and the dodgy audience was virtually in his face as he played guitar, he remembers the gig as a triumph because they dug deep and won them over. They have played every kind of gig possible from weddings to funerals to bikie compounds
Cameron Webb (Motörhead, Danzig, Social Distortion) mixed the new album, Now And Forever, from Swedish glam-metal four-piece Sister Sin. The eponymous debut album by Melbourne six-piece Money For Rope was recorded and mixed by Steven Schram (The Vasco Era, Devastations, Little Red). Perth psych folk rockers The Morning Night called in The Brian Jonestown Massacre’s Ricky Maymi to produce their debut album, Otis. Perth-born Melbournebased producer Anna Laverty is currently working on the debut solo album from The Panics frontman Jae Laffer, having recently finished producing an EP for triple j darlings Dirt Farmer.
and are still selling out nearly every gig they play. You gotta admire those guys! Also in this issue, Kerri Simpson and Crystal Thomas typify the spirit of the indie musician, where life tries its best to get in the way of their art. Paul Noble speaks with pride about the new range of Casio synths. A playful Grace Potter (or pottymouth as I discovered) tells of her excitement to be playing Bluesfest on the same bill as Robert Plant, and we road test a bunch of amazing new products. The common theme running through this issue (or any issue of Muso really) is the enjoyment the artists still get out of their music, whether they’re new to it professionally or have been doing it for years. You won’t find any jaded rock stars in this title!
GREG PHILLIPS Muso Editor
EMAIL FOR CHANCE TO WIN A STERLING MUSIC MAN RAY35 BASS Sterling’s Music Man Ray35 bass body is contoured for playing comfort with a maple neck attached via a solid six-bolt neck joint. Sterling use a swamp ash for the body that’s light weight for percussive lows, subtle mids and expansive highs. Music Man-designed components include three-band active preamp, humbucking pickup and bridge, standard equipment for all Ray series basses. The low B string remains tight and solid along the 34” scale. The tone is all Music Man Sterling by Music Man, gig bag is included. Valued at $1,395, Muso readers have the chance to WIN one of these basses and entry is simple. All you need to do is email your contact details and the codeword ‘Muso” to info@cmcmusic. com.au between Nov 19, 2012 and Jan 5, 2013. Winner will be announced on the CMC Music Facebook page on January 10, 2013. www.cmcmusic.com.au
FREE EFFECTS UNITS WITH TC PURCHASES There are some amazing TC Helicon and TC Electronic deals happening for the months of November and December. From TC Helicon for vocalists, purchase any VoiceLive Play, VoiceLive Play GTX, Voicetone Mic Mechanic or VoiceTone Single before December 31 and you get a FREE MP-75 Vocal Performance Microphone. The other deal is from TC Electronic and is for guitarists. Buy any two TC compact pedals and you’ll earn yourself a TC Electronic Spark Booster pedal for FREE. or purchase a BG250 bass combo, BH250, BH500,RH450, RH750 or Blacksmith bass amp and receive a FREE Corona Chorus pedal. www.tcelectonic.com/holiday-rebate
LIMITED AVAILABILITY MUSIC MAN MODELS Music Man have opened order windows for two new releases for November only – ie when the date rolls over to December 1, you’ll be unable to order these models ever again: This year, at the US Arlington Guitar show, Music Man introduced a limited run of Silhouettes with Ash bodies, custom-wound humbuckers (as featured in the Axis and Albert Lee HH models), and Floyd Rose tremolos. A huge success, they decided to offer them to their international distributors. Colours include Black, Trans Purple, Trans Teal, Pacific Blue Burst and Natural These guitars can be ordered with matching or non-matching headstocks and with either rosewood or maple fingerboards. The other limited offer is the Music Man Sledge. www.cmcmusic.com.au
t couldn’t have been more straight forward. The original idea was to play their debut album in its entirety at a gig or two. But the more the band and management talked, the bigger the concept became. All six albums, all cities and let’s take a swag of support bands along for the ride. The Living End’s The Retrospective Tour has become one of the most successful Australian tours by a local band, ever. As gig after gig sold out, the band were hunkered down at Melbourne’s Deluxe Studios bringing to life the 80 or so songs from their back catalogue. Again, it would have been much simpler to take one set of standard TLE gear out to nail these songs, but that’s not The Living End’s way. “We want to try to play the albums as true as possible,” said bass player Scott Owen. Guitarist and TLE main man Chris Cheney agrees. “When there are 80 songs to learn, we don’t want there to be 80 songs with the same guitar tone for every single tune.” Such fastidiousness comes at a price though. Not only did they have to go back and learn the back catalogue, they also had to try to recall what gear was used on each track. “We’ve been like, ‘I can’t remember what delay that was, put the record on!’ So we’d tweak it and try to match it.”
Chris has dusted down some old guitars for the tour and is keen to give them some stage time to help emulate the original album tones. “I have an old 1962 Double Anniversary Gretsch which is just beautiful. It’s kind of like an old car, when it’s up and running. It’s nice but it takes a little bit to get going and doesn’t really compete that well with my newer Gretschs. I’m dialing in a few little sounds here and there on my effects board but otherwise it is still pretty bare bones. It’s still a basic rock n roll foundation and not many effects… a lot of delays! Scott is also excited to be hearing Chris rip out some classic Living End riffs. “It’s awesome to hear all of that stuff again,” he said. “Chris is being fucking shy, he’s rather meticulous about his effects and getting them all perfect like they are on the record.” Their gear has actually changed over the years, as they discovered during rehearsals. “I was looking at a photo of Scott and I and our first drummer playing at the Yarraville Hotel back in about 1993,” recalls Chris. “I had two Fender Twins behind me, a Tube Screamer and a digital delay pedal, which I used to adjust the increments on as I went. Now I have this pedalboard in front of me which basically has a whole lot of buttons on it which are like patches, which then go back through like a brain, which then engages certain pedals and delays and it is very convoluted. Basically, now I am running like a C3PO-like Millenium Falcon pedalboard! We started out with a direct line in, maybe a delay pedal, Chuck Berry style and it’s kind of gone more U2 as we have gone along. I’m [pretty] strict in getting the delays right. Some of the songs depend on that. My biggest thing is that I can’t remember half the shit that I was playing with on those earlier records. We’ve got an extra guitar player now, Adrian Lombardi, so I not only have to learn what I used to play, but I have to learn the overdubs too. He’ll be like, ‘How are you playing that bit?’
THE LIVING END
Look back, gear up and go for it! it and I’m like, ‘Dude, I don’t know… I’m just trying to figure out my own bit.’ Adrian has been our touring rhythm guitar player now for almost two years.” It’s not just Chris and his original guitar tones which needed to be recreated. The same issues befell bassist Scott and to a lesser degree drummer Andy Strachan. Often it took a flick through photo albums to find clues as to what gear they were using at any given time. “Those old photos that I found, you had three milk crates and you had that cube on top, another little speaker on top of that then a tweeter thing,” Cheney recalls of Scott’s bass rig. “It looked like a little robot. That was like ‘93, ‘94, we were just out of school and you went through a lot of pickups.” Like most musicians, Scott has always been on the quest for a perfect stage sound but for someone who plays a
The Living End are a third of the way through their massive Retrospective Tour, in which they’re playing all six of their albums to sold out crowds in five cities. They were conducting final rehearsal when Muso’s Greg Phillips caught up with the band. double bass, it’s never been easy. “It always been a major thorn in my side, playing an instrument in a manner it wasn’t supposed to be played,” said Scott. “Then getting it to be amplified and sound like a quality instrument on a rock‘n’roll stage, is a real mission. I’m always getting closer and closer to what I’m seeing in my mind. It’s hard. It’s not like going into a guitar shop and saying, ‘I’ll have that sound’. It’s something that I have to make up. I went through all these weird and wacky ideas of getting the pickup inside the bass, mounting pickups
inside them in which case you need to cut a hole in the bass to get in there. There’s been one luthier who has tended to my every whim with [the] double bass over all the years I have played, Ben Puglisi, and I appreciate him so much. Even when I have ideas like, ‘Why not cut a hole in this section? He’s gone, ‘Man, you are going to regret that so much one day… I’ll do it for you just to appease your curiosity but you’re going to fucking regret it, I swear to God.’ A year later I’d bring it in and ask him to patch that hole up but yes, it’s been an endless search.”
For Cheney, the quest for the perfect sound is part and parcel of what being in a rock band is all about. “You’ve got to search for those things because there wasn’t a template for what we were trying to do at that early point,” he said. “There’s parts of us that wanted to be this but also a modern rock band, not a traditional rockabilly band – we want to be able to play at volume. I’ve got extra struts in my guitars from trying to play at high volume… extra things that I have put into my guitars over the years to try to handle the fact that we’re this rockabilly band that wants to be The Who!” Looking back, Andy Strachan believes he has gone smaller and quieter with his drum kit. “My drum tech and front of house guys over the years have said to me, ‘You don’t need cymbals that make your eyes bleed’, but that’s what I thought back then,” he said. “On
the Big Day Out stage or whatever, I thought you needed cymbals that were louder then amps. You don’t. That’s what microphones are for, so that’s the only lesson I have really learnt. Other than that, I try to get new drums to sound like vintage drums. They’re all thin shells, mahogany and maple. It’s a Pearl Masterworks kit. Masterworks is apparently like … whatever you want. Their idea is that they’ll build you whatever you need. To that degree, they’re right on the money and will pretty much do whatever you want. Instead of having 8 ply maple and 3 ply birch, I go for 4 plys of mahogany with maple blue rings and that’s as close as I have found to a vintage drum kit. I try to make them sound as old as possible. The cymbals are a big thing I learnt. They’re thin and quieter cymbals and actually sound a lot better, especially when you have the vocal mic open, like a Z Custom is just going to bleed all over the stage and ruin the front of house guy’s day. That’s where it all stemmed from, the front of house guy and drum tech saying that it doesn’t have to be that loud. The snare drum either; you can play quietly and let the mics do the work. With the cymbals, Zildjian K Hybrid Crashes is what I have been playing, quite thin but 18s and 19s, 21” sweet ride which is what I have been playing for five or six years now; and a pair of 15” Hybrid hats, K Lights so they are quite thin – way quieter than they used to be. I used to play all Z Customs and A Projections, cymbals which tore your ears apart.” As the beers chugged down and the memories become more vivid, the guys revelled in stories about how the band has given them the opportunity to meet some of their musical heroes, and how bizarre it has been that some of them such as Richard Clapton, Brad Shepherd, Daryl Braithwaite, and Neil Finn bother to come backstage or even compliment them on their music. After all these years and a new record breaking tour, it seems The Living End deep down are basically just music fans. “It’s why we’re here,” said Chris. “It’s gotta be why we’re here: a) because we are patient, b) because we are ambitious motherfuckers and c) because we are music lovers. We still get along. We have been through everything a band could possibly go through. We’ve been through drug issues, girlfriend issues, issues where I don’t want to see you or be around you, musical direction issues. We’ve been through everything like that and we are still around. A lot of bands don’t have that patience. We’ve always felt that we can go on and do something a little better.” Andy’s eyes light up too and chips in. “There was a moment a couple of weeks ago and we were playing How Do We Know and it felt fantastic. The whole rehearsal went for about five hours playing together and going, ‘Yeah, that was fine’. Then there was this magic moment where, even after all this time… we have played that song a thousand times but it just felt so exciting and so good. That’s what it is all about… those moments.” “It’s not about the accolades or how many payers or much merch we sold,” Chris says in summary. “It’s really about, ‘Shit that felt good when we played’. You hope that never leaves you.” www.thelivingend.com
Deep Sea Arcade laid Outlands on us this year, an album full of dreamlike ‘60s-influenced pop rock gems. Sean Pollard caught up with the band at soundcheck in Melbourne during their recent national tour.
olling into the Corner to begin yet another nationwide jaunt, Sydney psych pop outfit Deep Sea Arcade have been riding a huge wave of success since the release of their debut album, Outlands, earlier this year. Almost five years of recording time and experimentation has paid off for these boys as Outlands seems to have spawned more singles than your average Rihanna album. Tracks like Girls, Seen No Right, Steam and the latest offering, Granite City, have seen
pretty much all of the first record, especially See No Right. I’ve also got a Juno 60 but because I don’t tour with that; it’s mapped across the keyboard as well. There’s also a Roland Jupiter and a Hammond through a Leslie speaker in stereo. I also sampled stuff off vinyl records. I have this old sampling module at home that you can do really good pitch shifting with, so I use that all the time as well.” So, to get down to brass tacks, McKenzie has attempted to take a small universe of instruments and sounds on the road with Deep Sea Arcade – and is succeeding due to the versatility of his MPC-1000 set up. When teamed up with a MIDI keyboard, this enables Deep Sea Arcade to faithfully replicate the psychedelic washes and pumped up guitar hooks of Outlands without having to lug weighty keyboards all over the country. www.facebook.com/deepseaarcade
Outlandish riffs this four-piece garner more than a cult following as they pick up festival slots and sell out venues all over the country. Their sound is rooted in the experimental pop of the late ‘60s and early ‘70s, but also harks back to a time when Oasis, Stone Roses and The Happy Mondays ruled the world and Manchester was the thriving epicentre of a jangly guitar-based pop scene. One look at frontman Nic McKenzie on stage gives this influence away as he struts about, points at the audience and delivers a note-perfect tribute to his Hacienda-loving forefathers. Deep Sea Arcade are no mere rip-off though, and it’s the sheer strength of their songwriting combined with a loving attention to detail when it comes to equipment and recording techniques that has led to their burgeoning success. We find singer Nic McKenzie out front of The Corner on what has become a rainy Friday afternoon in Melbourne. While the rest of the band busy themselves with the vagaries of postsoundcheck life (setting up the merch desk, checking the door list, eating parmagiana) McKenzie is more than happy to explain the various gear and techniques Deep Sea Arcade use on stage and in the studio to create their sound. He’s certainly qualified as, as he explains, the bulk of Outlands was created in collaboration with bassist Nick Weaver as the rest of the band dropped in and out of various studios as needed. Far from a control freak, it’s clear that McKenzie has a singular vision about where he feels the band’s sound should go and what kind of equipment they need to replicate their sound on stage, especially when it comes to the most crucial element of any pop band - the guitars. “Jimmy uses a 2002 Les Paul and runs it mainly through a Marshall Reflector Reverb,” McKenzie explains with a little help from his new guitarist, over his shoulder. “He also uses a pretty simple DS-1 Boss Distortion pedal, which is pretty much the same setup that I play through when I’m at home so it’s easy for him to replicate the sounds I normally get. On top of this he also has a Jekyll and Hyde Overdrive pedal as well as a Soviet Small Stone Phaser and a DD-20.” As a live outfit, Deep Sea Arcade’s twin-guitar attack is a little different to most bands, predominantly due to lead guitarist Simon Relf ’s use of a 12-string guitar. Often perceived as a notoriously unreliable instrument live, especially when it comes to tuning and consistency of tone, Relf has honed his use of the 12-string down to an art. The guitar itself is an Eastwood Classic 12. Often unfairly written off as a secondary copy of the old Gretsch 12-string guitars, it generally features two EW-Retro Humbucker pickups to recreate a classic twangy ‘60s sound and, in the live arena, can prove to be a versatile and great sounding tool. Relf normally runs the Classic 12 (as well as his standard Fender Telecaster) through a Fender Stage 100 amplifier which, as he tells it, “has this beautiful sound and is really reliable but it’s broken for the first time in five years. So I’m playing through a Blues Junior tonight. I normally tour with a DeVille because you can never really hire those stage 100s through any backline companies or anything. Those Blues Junior’s are pretty nice though.” McKenzie himself is a bit of an audiophile and really perks up when quizzed on the small keyboard-based rig he employs onstage and in the studio. Rather than relying on a Nord or any other standard keys setup, McKenzie uses a MIDI keyboard to control an Akai MPC-1000 into which he’s plugged in a galaxy of samples picked up from studio to studio, record to record or even instrument to instrument. “I’ve got about twenty or thirty keyboards mapped onto it. Every time I go to a studio I’ll map something onto it. I’ve got mellotrons, strings, violins, flutes, choir, brass, so if I’m in the studio or even on stage I can just dial through. I’ve also got about six different types of Casiotone mapped across it. We were in a bunch of different studios and every time we’d go in and track stuff at Megaphon (a famous Sydney studio based in St Peters that has witnessed the likes of Midnight Oil, The Cruel Sea and more recently The Jezebels through its doors) and Carlos was tracking on drums and it was taking ages – I’d just go in, look around and sample all their keyboards.” It’s not just keyboards that McKenzie has dialled into this setup though, and closer inspection reveals he’s been extremely creative with the way he’s put his rig together. “I’ve also sampled guitar sounds and mapped them across. I’ve got that thing where you play out a tremolo thing... like (sings Pulp Fiction theme tune)... I don’t know what it’s called,” he laughs. “I tracked that all across every key so I can play that chord and it sounds like a Hammond Dulcimer - but it’s actually guitars. That sound is on
Crystal Thomas has released her second album, A Chance In Hell, and chats with Greg Phillips about its origins, the recording process and the future.
BEN BUNTING CRYSTAL’S LIVE GUITARIST “My live set up for Crystal is a Fender Jag through a 1968 (Australian-made) Wasp amp head. I just use a Boss delay pedal and an ‘80s Boss dual overdrive. My own style is a bit looser and unhinged than the CD. I decided to play more off Crystal’s voice and her vocal melody rather than follow the notes or structure on the CD.”
t was an Arts Victoria grant in 2009 that allowed Crystal Thomas to record her second album, A Chance In Hell. “The plan was to hunker down and write fifteen songs as quickly as I could, without rushing them so much that the quality was compromised,” she explains. Her first album, Crystal Thomas and The Flowers of Evil, was recorded in spasms over a three-year period, a
Taking her chances production practice she wanted to avoid this time around. “I set aside five weeks to write fifteen or as many songs as I could. With the first album, I was working at a call centre and had saved $150 to get the engineer out to Matt Walker’s studio. I’d record two drum tracks, pack down, go back to the call centre, save up for another few weeks, get the engineer out and so on. This time around I wanted more of a raw thing, coming from a place of emotion rather than any particular precision feel.” Crystal also wanted her second album to be more of a collaborative effort. She assembled some respected Melbourne players - Spencer P Jones, Matt Walker, Matt Green, Tim McCormack and Phil Collings - to both write and record with. She even had lyrical contributions from her mother and grandfather. For an album possessing so much raw rock emotion, loud, swaggering guitar sounds and sometimes sordid subject matter, the method in which Crystal wrote the songs was comparatively conservative. “As loose as my writing style may appear, my roots are firmly placed in my admin past. I had appointments set up with Spencer, Matt Walker, Greeny and Tim, who I wrote with. All my lyric
ideas were typed up, in folders and labelled. I’d be there with my pen and paper and folders going, okay, I’m ready to rock now! It was hilarious. I very much research and plan songs like it is a day job. I have drafts of my lyrics saved on my computer and I write them independently of the music.” The songs on the album are quite diverse in style, which isn’t surprising considering the different writing collaborations, but
also the style in which Crystal sings from track to track is varied. I wondered who her vocal influences were and who she borrows from. “Yeah, there are probably different personas of me on the album,” she suggests. “I guess it depends on the song but Spencer converted me to Amy Winehouse. I was never really a fan but then again, I’d never paid much attention to her. So I guess the song I Could Die Right Now is kind of a tribute;
obviously this was before she died. The song itself is actually about addiction, not to drugs or alcohol. The lyrics are shrouded in metaphors to do with drug and alcohol addiction but it is actually exploring the idea that you can be addicted to a person. Also that you can be addicted to music or chasing the dream and that it can be just as much of a rollercoaster ride with euphoric highs and devastating lows and scrounging together a gig. It plays out the same way.” An artist’s second album is often referred to as the ‘difficult’ one, and for good reason. For Crystal though, it wasn’t an issue. “I had a pretty tangible set of emotions to work off. Some pretty traumatic things had just happened. Life was my muse. I guess the second album was written primarily from experiences which happened during that year. There were still some of the old themes filtering back through. I am very much in the vein of confessional lyricists. I guess it’s dark because I am trying to write music which is cathartic. When I first listened to Nick Cave’s The
t’s a pretty good life here in Australia for the music fan. With so much amazing and varied talent to choose from, we’re incredibly lucky. For the artists themselves … not so much. Our lack of population generally means the majority of acts don’t get anywhere near the recognition or financial rewards they deserve. Melbourne-based singersongwriter Kerri Simpson is one of those artists. She’s often dubbed a blues singer, but her discography
Simpson plays guitar too and owns an impressive sunburst tone Epiphone
A fortunate life The new album is the second in a trilogy of recordings (the Knockin’ At The Backdoor series), made possible by a grant she received from Brunswick’s Thirty Mill studios. The generous grant allowed Kerri to record up to 50 songs, from which she then grouped tracks into either the country-flavoured Maybe By Midnight album, the new blues/rootstinged Fortune Favoured Me or the yet to be complied jazz and gospel-style record. For Fortune Favoured Me, Kerri called on a bunch of guitar-slinging guests to stamp their personality on a track or two. Contributions came from Geoff Achison, Shannon Bourne, Matt Walker, Jeff Lang and Charles Jenkins, some of Australia’s finest musicians. “Each song was a bit of an essence of each guitar player involved,” Kerri explains. “Not necessarily about their nature or character, just trying to capture a little bit of the ambience of the artist. Geoff Achison’s song is about
Crystal, who has just completed a diploma of professional writing and editing, chose to record the album with her band in performance mode as opposed to doing separate vocal takes.
It started almost as an acoustic blues thing.” Howl features an intense scream-like vocal, so I wondered if the emotion may have come as a result of a bad day at Kerri’s day job as a librarian. “Ha, no. I was sort of thinking about the Marianne Faithful song, Why’d Ya Do it. I was thinking about the intensity of the vocal. By the time we got into the studio Langy just ramped it up and I had to match that intensity.”
Melbourne-based blues diva Kerri Simpson releases the second album of her Knockin At The Backdoor trilogy and speaks to Muso’s Greg Phillips.
proves she’s much more than that, having dabbled in many genres. She can sure as shit belt out a tune, that much is certain, and when she ventures into a New Orleans-style voodoo vibe, Kerri can scare the pants off you too. I offer track 3, Howl, off her new album, Fortune Favoured Me, as evidence.
Good Son on cassette when I was fifteen, it transported me to this alternative world. It was such an amazing experience to feel. I was at a girls’ school and it was all a bit nice and boring. So I put on this cassette and was transported to this dark and dangerous world. I wanted to do for others what that cassette had done for me.”
being out on the road and missing his beloved partner. With Pirates Are a Girl’s Best Friend, I was sitting around with band members Dean Addison (bass) and Ben Grayson (keyboards), talking about the Caribbean and Cuba and different rhythms.” Matt Walker shone his fretted light on the track Silver’s Last Stand. “He came and put all those beautiful ambient guitar lines down, so it was really just a matter of running a vocal and not doing too much
to it. All the guys put down a lot of tracks and we could edit what we wanted and leave bits in or take them out. With Howl, Jeff Lang’s track, there was much more layering and editing and manipulating of sounds. Matt’s track is untouched and Jeff ’s we played with a lot more. With Geoff Achison, he put down several guitar parts and we turned the song around after he had left. Geoff did it in one groove and Colin and I turned it into another.”
Shannon Bourne played on three tracks and co-wrote Insatiable with Simpson. Bourne’s dirty fuzz tones compliment Simpson’s dark, soulful vocal perfectly on this track. “We both share a great love of very dark heavy music and sounds,” Kerri says of her musical relationship with Bourne. “He knew the vibe I was going for … the spooky, haunting psychological thriller. Shannon and I have known each other for a long time and we can play off each other and match each other’s moods in terms of feel and intonation. He gets where I’m coming from and I tend to explain things more in imagery and sound rather than technically.” The brief Simpson gave the guitarists was quite basic: come in, jam with her band and do something roots-based. There was rarely a rehearsal before the record button was pushed. The state a song begun in wasn’t necessarily how it turned out. “Jeff Lang’s track started off as a Delta blues thing and ended as Howl, which is the most full-on track on the album.
SHANNON BOURNE’S GUITAR TRACKS
“For these recordings I did Kerri’s album (Insatiable and Mr. Wolf), I used my 1962 Champagne Sparkle Gretsch and my Ulbrick Arena 50 head with a single 1x12 speaker box. For the fuzz tones I used a ZVEX Fuzz Factory with a little delay. The clean tone on Mr. Wolf was just my Gretsch straight into the Ulbrick. ” - Shannon Bourne
However, she wasn’t in the same room as the band when tape rolled, the vocal booth which Matt Walker had set up at his home studio being in his toilet. “It was very reverb drenched. It had a concrete floor and wooden walls. Matt’s studio had recently been refurbished so the toilet was the vocal booth. It actually had a little glass window. We set up some curtains and various bits and pieces. At one point I wanted to get all atmospheric and set up a whole bunch of tea lights. Everyone freaked out and came running saying you can’t have tea lights next to cloth and electrics. I just wanted a vibe. I had to either sing in the dark or with the toilet light on. It is important that the album represents an emotion or experience. “The first album was melancholy and pretty and poetic. The second was, I dunno, sexy, angry, playful. I’m not sure what the emotion will be for the next one but Ben (Bunting, her stage guitarist) and I were talking about it being more narrative driven.” www.offthehip.com.au www.crystalthomas. com.au
Sheraton guitar as well as an Ovation 12 string. “When I first started playing on stage, I got a 12-string because it filled out the sound a bit and hid the fact that I couldn’t play solos. When I started playing with great bands, I just needed something to play rhythm on.” Kerri doesn’t own any microphones but in the studio used an AKGC12. She was also thrilled to be the first guinea pig to test the studio’s new desk. “At Thirty Mill they just installed a new Neve desk, Custom series 75. Neve made it to Colin Wynne and Mark Opitz’s specs. It’s like a world first they’re trying out for Neve, which is pretty exciting, we got to finish the mixing on that. “I’m not big on technique. I just love anything that is heartfelt. Australian artists, I love Chris Wilson. In full flight nobody goes near him. Any blues or soul singer, he can match. There’s a myriad of female vocalists I work with … Nichaud Fitzgibbon, Kylie Auldist, Monique Brumby and Rebecca Barnard who are all incredible.” www.kerrisimpson.com
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Nord Stage keyboard. then you have all your PCM based stuff as well, all the gig-ready stuff, piano, strings, brass sounds, as well as all your percussive stuff, drum kits, electronic kits, ethnic kits, everything you would expect to find on a pro keyboard.
Casio’s Paul Noble chats to Muso about the new XWP1, XWG1 and how they both figure in his own music making.
t’s kind of a badge of honour for musicians. You align yourself to a particular instrument brand and find yourself defending it as a Holden fan would against a Ford fiend. Paul Noble has been a professional musician for around 25 years. He has played some big gigs with John Farnham and Pseudo Echo, to name just a couple, and by day is a product education specialist for a keyboard company. His chosen brand, the one he believes in, is Casio. It’s
Noble synth the eighties the company which came to prominence in the ‘80s for producing hi-tech family keyboards. The same family keyboards which are showing up so often today on the latest hipster’s albums. More recently however, Casio has belied it’s dinky keyboard image and put some serious time, effort and money into the development of performance grade synthesisers. The result of their toil is the recent release of two powerful and affordable instruments, the XWP1 and XW G1, and indeed, these are pioneering times for Casio. Speaking to Casio’s Paul Noble, you get the impression he has some pride in working with these synths, can chat at length about them and more importantly, speak in truth about them. Not that anything pre-dating the XWP1 or XWG1 was not talkworthy, it’s just that there seems to be a genuine buzz around the company for this gear. Paul’s association with Casio goes back a long way. His first ever synth purchase was another brand, an Ensoniq ESQ1, quite a hi tech buy first up. Then soon after, he acquired a Casio CZ1000, the famous 80s model … he’d caught the Casio bug. With such an ingrained perception of what their keyboards are known for, it was a tough ask for Casio’s development team to come up with something
the pro players would stand up and take notice of. Paul believes they’ve got things right with the new synths and hopes people open their eyes and ears to give them a go. “I would say that people are going to be quite surprised when they experience these things because that isn’t traditionally Casio’s reputation,” he said. “Especially when you look at the package you get with these synths and you consider the fact that they are both under a thousand dollars, you would expect them to be sub-
pro market product, as I did to be honest. However, to play them, I honestly believe they would cut it anywhere on any stage. They are absolutely brilliant.” Paul loves the ‘80s sounds these keys have to offer and uses them to the max when he can. Noble’s current music projects include Gener8tor, an originals band and also Gold Chisel, a Cold Chisel tribute act. “I am a classic ‘80s Muso,” Paul said of his influences, and he finds it easy to emulate those sounds with these new Casio releases.
“I love all the Polysynths… that typical sawtooth type sound or anything clavinet-like. So I’ll get a clavinet sound and you can add up to 200 DSP effects to any sound onboard and you can multi layer the DSPs too. You can layer up to six at a time.” It’s not only the ‘80s sounds on the XWP1 and XWG1 which Paul is impressed with. “The versatility is huge and also the ease of use is outstanding,” he said. “There are some classic, big fat 80s analogue sounds as well as having all the modern day digital samples on them too.,” he tells. “There are two models, the XWP1 which is what we call the Performance synth. For real players, guys who are quite skilled who want great sounds, the P1 is the go. It features multiple sound engines which I think would appeal to any pro musician. You have a six oscillator, monophonic analogue synth. Then you have a Hex layer polyphonic synth which allows you to lay up to 6 different patches at one time and mix and control each individually. You have a drawbar organ sound engine, with nine drawbar organ sliders, as well as fast and slow Leslie, percussive effects, all the stuff that you might see on something like a
“It also gives you features like the step sequencer, which allows you to put grooves together really quickly and easily. It has a phrase sequencer, which you can sequence a phrase into and then loop. You can key assign, so you can trigger it to play in any key by simply touching a piano keyboard. You can use that or any sound in conjunction with the onboard arpeggiator. It’s a powerful instrument and you have realtime control over everything, your envelopes, frequency cut off, and decay.” Noble is equally excited about the XWG1. “With the groove synth. We probably see a bit of an integration into the DJ market. The way I use this synth is in integration with things like the iPad, iPhone, computers. It actually has a rubber pad on the side of it
where you can sit your iPad or iPhone. The big feature with that model is the sampler. It has the ability to take ten samples internally, without adding extra memory which you can do easily by adding a SD card, they take up to 32 gig. So it can store up to ten samples at full quality, each up to 19 seconds long. “What you hear go in is exactly what you hear come out. With your computer, you can sample a drum loop, then you can add through the sampler, some realtime parts which you might play in yourself… then record in some vocals. You get this great integration between your audio parts with your live keyboard performance.” It’s rumoured that there will be a special edition gold version of Casio’s new synths landing in limited number prior to Christmas and don’t be surprised to see new releases soon. Casio is committed to the new direction they have taken. As for Paul, try to catch him at a Cold Chisel gig at a club near you soon. www.soundtechnology. com.au
a moment occasionally to freak out, but for the most part I just like to create slide tones.”
After three invites from the Bluesfest promoter, Grace Potter finally gets to bring her band to Australia for the Easter festival next year. Greg Phillips reports.
Grace is somewhat of a gear nerd and has kept most of the instruments she has played during her career, with some of them now a little more road weary than others. “The first guitar I ever bought was a (Gibson) J45 from the 1930s, which I don’t take out on the road anymore,” she explained. “Then later I got an ES125 which is a smaller body cutaway semi hollow body Gibson that has some intonation problems so I keep that at home. It sounds great for recording. Has a great old Sun Studio sound to it.”
race Potter and The Nocturnals have been invited to play Bluesfest three years running, yet due to their busy dance card, could never tweak their schedule enough to make it down. At next year’s event, Australian audiences will finally get to experience their show. There are many reasons why Bluesfest crowds should devour this band. Firstly, because in the great tradition
Potter gold for Bluesfest of rock touring bands, they’ve been at it solid for ten years, came out of America’s roots music festival circuit and are as rockin’ tight as they come. Secondly, it’s Grace herself who has such wonderful stage presence. As for her image, she may give the impression she’s off to a cocktail party, often wearing high heels and a tightly fitting mini skirt, but she’s also usually armed with a Gibson Flying V (her own signature model) slung over her shoulder or ripping licks from behind a Hammond B3. “I think it’s a good trick to play on people,” said Grace. “They see this little Barbie doll come on stage or whatever I may look like on any given day, but then we kick in and it can be surprising for people to hear the noises that I can make.” The noises she refers to have been compared to iconic female vocalists such as Janis Joplin. However, it’s the male rock singers which have had more impact on Grace’s vocal style. “I admire Robert Plant,” she said. “I’m very excited that he’ll be at the Byron Bay music festival. He was a huge influence on me. When I was just learning how to tour, most of my influences were men. Freddie
King, Steve Winwood ... for his organ playing and his singing. The Allman Brothers... a major influence was Ozzie Osbourne... AC/ DC was a big one for me. I felt more affinity to the sexual energy of the men on stage than the more timid phrasing of women. It’s not that I don’t love women vocalists and I think there are some great ones, but there are not that many great female rock singers.”
Potter is equally adept at both guitar and organ, and was chuffed when Gibson guitars acknowledged her musical prowess with her own signature model Flying V. “I have been a huge fan of the Flying V ever since I first picked one up,” she said of the honour. “It’s mostly to do with the weight distribution. I think part of the influence is, even though I love to play the guitar, I love to dance. I love
movement and certain guitars are too weight-centric, especially Les Pauls. It felt too heavy all in one place, almost like a pendulum. With the Flying V, if I set it down it kind of stands on its own. I can really flail around and I’m not going to kill myself with it.” In the early days of the band, Potter ran her guitar through a ‘71 Gibson Goldtone, but years of stage abuse has relegated that amp to the studio. She now runs her Flying V through a Fender Vibrolux. “I like the Vibrolux a lot, it has a good dimension to it,” she said. “When I run it through some reverb, it really creates Black Beauty (Neil’s famous Les Paul guitar), Neil Young crunchy tones that I like. I have two amazing guitar players, Scott and Matty. When it comes to solos or creating beautiful textures, I’m just there as meat and potatoes. I like to think of myself as very rock-steady rhythm guitarist. I certainly like playing the slide and a lot of open tunings. I’ll take
It’s no surprise that Grace’s gear exists in differing states of health. A photo is brought to her attention which depicts her standing in heels on a beautiful old Hammond organ. “At least it was mine!” she exclaims. “When I first started playing the B3 I broke a lot of keys. I have really strong hands and am really muscular with the way I play. I got it from Billy Preston and his style of organ playing. I’d break a key every night. I was very frustrated that day, I remember the
show and the photo. It doesn’t happen all the time but you’re right, it was a sad night for that keyboard.” Among her collection of instruments at home, Grace also owns a ‘56 Hammond A100, two B3s and a 1972 Hammond Porta B, which her band bought for her as a 21st birthday present. More than anything, Potter is proud of the many hours her band has played and takes a dim view of artists who don’t experience that same collaborative joy on stage. “It pisses me off when I meet musicians who are talented but don’t have that joy of camaraderie with other people, sharing music... people who have worked hard and can really appreciate what it takes to get to this place. Scotty and Matty and I have been together ten years now. To be able to say that I did it with these people, it’s a rich part of the rock’n’roll blanket. I’m very happy to have my family with me as part of it.” Grace Potter & The Nocturnals play Bluesfest, Easter weekend 2013 www.bluesfest.com.au
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Purchase a BG250 bass combo, BH250, BH500, RH450, RH750 or Blacksmith bass amp between November 1st and December 31st, 2012, print out and mail in the rebate form, and you will receive a FREE Corona Chorus pedal by mail. Visit www.tcelectronic.com/ holiday-rebate for complete details and rebate forms.
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“I tried coated strings like everyone else; I didn’t like them. Cleartone are so bright and responsive, I forgot they were coated. Bend them in good health.”
-Tommy Emmanuel Guitar Virtuoso
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lvarez guitars is one of the biggest guitar brands in the USA, having been at it for over 45 years. The company has a strong affiliation with master luthier Kazuo Yairi who, at 80, still oversees their daily operations in Japan. The Alvarez AD60 CE is part of their Artist series, offering a truckload of features and exceptional value for money with each model. This particular guitar is a full-size gloss-finished cutaway dreadnought fitted with a B-Band Sys 650 preamp. The specs are rather impressive: a lovely warm sitka spruce top, chocolatey mahogany back and sides and a dark, tight grained rosewood fingerboard and a bi-level rosewood bridge designed to maximize sustain. A dovetail neck joint sets the neck to the body, increasing sustain and the note transfer, with notes jumping out into you. Alvarez consider this guitar their best value for money to date, the quality of materials, construction and
REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: SALES@DADDARIO.COM.AU
craftsmanship normally unseen at this price. Visually, this instrument looks solid and smart with a darker coloured top, unique bridge design, cool pickguard and authentic abalone and mother of pearl inlaid on the headstock, rosette and even on the tips of the bridge pins. A cool cream pinstripe binds on the top to the body and a smooth satin cream binding surrounds the back and sides.
I started by plugging in my Shure Beta 58 and sending the XLR out to my mixing desk, threw on a pair on phones and jumped in for a quick taste of the presets. Immediately levels, compression and EQ sounded right. The reverbs and delays offered in the first group of settings sounded stunning, with the “Cathedral” preset displaying a nice long tail, perfect for a solo performance or ballad. These tones were so great I jumped on over to YouTube for a quick karaoke session to see how they‘d sit in a mix. After having blown my lungs out after a few songs, I noticed that this unit is essentially a Swiss army knife for vocalists, a real quick fix that can work both live and in the studio, and perfect for adding multiple layers to a mix. The “Ensemble” setting provided a good doubled/chorused tone, but it was the “Double Voice”, “Four Voice” and “Unison” patches that were truly outstanding. The “Four Voice” uses harmony doubling in conjunction with a short delay to create four separate voices, and I love this sort of effect live as it really makes the vocal stick out of a mix.
Harmony and Pitch Correct both sounded fantastic, but harmony processing lacks a key input (from say an acoustic guitar or keyboard), so complex pitch shifting based around different chords and multiple keys is a lot harder to coordinate, but if you’re using the harmony for simple songs, you’ll be happy. The effect tracks beautifully and the inclusion of the “Gender” function changes the formant in your voice so your harmonies sound like a different person singing - brilliant! Pitch correct is a lot of fun too. Not only do you get to use it as a contemporary effect, but also for very subtle, natural pitching, making you sound better than you really are (very important for me).
Roland VT-12 Vocal Trainer
he Roland VT-12 vocal trainer is a wonderful tool to develop your singing voice. This handy device comes with a built-in tuner and metronome to aid pitch and timing, as well as 12 warm-up tracks and 186 exercise tracks to turn you into a seasoned veteran. You also have the ability to record tracks via the “Record In” mini jack, as well as evaluating your performance afterwards with the “Review” function. Also bundled in is Vocal Workouts for the Contemporary Singer by Anne Peckham from the Berklee College of Music, acting as a comprehensive guide for the unit, well laid out and easy to understand. I tested the VT-12 with a pair of headphones using the in-built mic to see how well it detected pitch. The mic is very sensitive, showing all the little slides and vibratos surrounding notes you sing. Hitting the “Pitch” button starts you off with an A, and the “b” and “#” keys
REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.ROLANDCORP.COM.AU
raise or lower pitch respectively. Hitting the “Metronome” button engages a click track that’s either changed manually or tapped to a specific tempo. The warm-up exercises have you doing a whole bunch of fun things like buzzing noises and “ooh’s” and “ahh’s” over full backings with real instruments. What’s especially cool is there’s no compression on the voice so you can hear how the singing teacher projects and alters his/her voice to hit certain notes. Each exercise is followed by a backing track so you can practice without the teacher. After you’ve finishing singing, you can analyse your performance with the “Review” button as every exercise automatically records your vocals. After you’ve warmed up it’s time to get into real workouts. Workouts are divided into separate categories for voice type, vocal experience, harmony singing and the famous 50 Concone Opus 9 lessons for medium classical voice. The basic workouts for Low and High Voices are the same, except elevating to different pitches depending on voice type. The exercises have you performing different styles like Rock, Latin, Gospel, Jazz and minor scales, and are a lot of fun, making practice enjoyable and effective. Often you’re just singing phrases, going up by half steps to work on extending your range, checking the note display to for key, or singing in harmony with the teacher, which is especially enjoyable. Advanced workouts are obviously a lot harder, featuring trills that are more intricate and runs, with wider steps between notes. Nevertheless, remember, practice makes perfect so don’t be disappointed if you don’t nail these straight off the bat. Harmony practice is so awesome, as voices are separated in each headphone, so you can isolate either the top or bottom harmony and learn how to pitch against another voice. Finally, there are the 50 Concone Opus 9 lessons for the medium voice. These exercises are even fun if you’re not into classical music, and you can invent opera gibberish like me if your feeling a bit loose on a Friday night. These lessons are world-renowned and will undoubtedly call out to your inner “Bocelli”. The Roland VT-12 is a great tool for any sort of vocalist, and comes with a great book, and superb audio tracks.
REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.ROLANDCORP.COM.AU
he Boss VE-5 is a cool little multi-effects processor that’s simple to use and a lot of fun. It’s essentially a plug in and play unit with 30 well thought-out presets, onboard looper and built-in mic. You can overwrite the presets and access an additional 20 banks for up to 50 patches, with the ability to save three “Favourite Sounds” for fast recall on the fly.
This guitar feels great, as a lovely cutaway provides easy access to higher frets and the silky smooth neck allows you to glide up and down effortlessly. String tension is strong, allowing you to slam the strings with a heavier pick for massive projection and a strong mid-heavy voice. Tuning is an absolute joy as the bone nut and bridge eliminate snags and further add to the tone, the chrome machineheads roll smoothly and the onboard tuner (on the B-Band) is awesome, changing from blue to bright green when the string is in tune. Out of the box, this guitar was almost perfectly in tune, only a couple of cents short of A440. The sound was strong and focused with clear tops and bottoms, with the AD60 sounding a bit bigger than your average dreadnought, producing a solid bass and natural hi-fi tone that’s perfect for recording. Action was at a medium height allowing notes to ring clearly, but making it difficult to play fast single note runs, but finger-picking yielded a smoother tone. Electronics-wise the B-Band SYS 650 is an absolute gem of a pickup, featuring an onboard tuner, controls for Bass, Middle and Treble as well as a midrange notch that scoops out annoying feedback at 330Hz. Ther AST and UST pickups (above saddle transducer/under saddle transducer) sound completely different to each other. The AST sounds very natural highlighting the lower mids, whereas the UST highlights upper mids and presence. You can achieve a killer tone just by blending the two sounds together, without going near the EQ. The Alvarez AD60CE is a professional instrument worthy of high-quality recordings, stadium-sized gigs or your own personal enjoyment. It’s the perfect instrument if you’re at the stage where you want to start gigging or you’re a seasoned pro and open to the idea of using a mid-priced instrument.
Boss VE-5 Vocal Performer
Rock Tips Liquid Callus Formula REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.PROMUSICAUSTRALIA.COM
ne of the age-old dilemmas with learning the guitar (or any stringed instrument) is the initial pain associated with fretting down strings, especially when you’re just starting out and playing a guitar with old rusty strings and an action a mile high. Previous solutions have involved the use of ointment (and by ointment I mean alcohol), glues, bandages, turning your amp up way too loud and not caring, the use of fake finger tips like Tony Iommi (who of course had to because of an industrial accident) or simply not caring, full stop. If you are however quick to give up on this fine instrument because of fingertip pain you may need some help … you may need some (enter booming voice) “Rock Tips” (pun intended). I’d honestly have to say the whole idea of liquid calluses had me worried at first. It had me thinking of a science experiment where you actually grow the callous like a carrot or potato in water, and I was afraid I’d end up like that guy in Stephen King’s Creepshow where the guy turns into a plant. Cast your fears aside; this stuff is a great alternative to solutions of the past, working much better than band aids, or household glues like superglue which are really hard to get off and completely desensitize your fingers. Trust me, once you’ve become immune to the smell, it actually works amazingly well (help me I’m turning into a late night TV commercial announcer!). That’s because Rock Tips claim this product has been developed from a medical adhesive for the skin. The solution takes about a minute to dry and comes off with soap and water.
You can select from Soft, Hard, Electric 1, Electric 2 and Robot functions, with the latter snapping everything to a single selected note. I was a real fan of combining the pitch correct and harmony together, using the pitch correct with a specific key and turning the gender back to deepen my shrill Anglo-Saxon voice, while adding the harmony for a unison effect for the sort of “Auto-tune” that saturates the airwaves. Other outstanding presets were “Radio”, for a band-pass radio/ telephone effect, “Heavy Scream”, which pitches down a high scream for a brutal death metal, “Space Lounge” for a flanged robot effect, and “Opera Queen” instantly turns you into a soprano. The onboard mic was okay, though if anything a little honky, and the looper killer, perfect for beat-boxing and adding multiple layers with ease. As a whole, the Boss VE-5 is a superb tool for vocalists wanting to get started with using effects; so much under the hood at this price!
I pulled the bottle out of the pack and slowly applied the solution to my fingertips and flesh underneath the nails. The smell of liquid is just horrible and may have hallucinogenic properties (no sniffing kids), but I soldiered on into the unknown, on my quest for the perfect callus. The solution dries like clear nail polish in about a minute, then you can start playing. At first, the feeling is a little strange; you lose sensitivity but can still feel the strings. After a little while you adjust very well and begin to realise that even everyday guitar playing actually causes a little bit of pain and stress on your fingertips (even with calluses). One coating wasn’t
enough for me, so I applied another layer. At this point in time I’ve recently returned from a month-long holiday overseas having barely touched a guitar in all that time (except for a couple of impromptu performances with an Asian cover band), so my calluses are pretty soft right now. The Rock Tips formula gave me the feeling of old stubborn fingertips from hours of steelstring acoustic guitar playing, so you get a definite edge when it comes to endurance. The experience is quite enjoyable, so I decided to cover the fingertips on my right hand as well for a bit of fingerstlye. The formula definitely works better on your fretting hand because a lot more surface area is required on your picking hand, so you’ll have to really baste your fingers to get the best results. Just about anyone can benefit from the Rock Tips solution, even seasoned professionals who get cracked, dry skin. So if you’re suffering from pain, here’s a tip, get “Rock Tips”.
Novation Mini Nova REVIEWER: BAZ BARDOE INFO: WWW.INNOVATIVEMUSIC.COM.AU
wo things immediately stand out about Novation’s new MiniNova. Firstly it has some similarities to Korg’s classic MicroKorg, which enjoys a prominent position in my studio. And the second is that it looks brilliant, and this impression just escalates when you fire it up and all those lights come on. It has a very cool futureretro kind of look, with controls that are obviously durable – this is a synth that will beg to be let out of the studio once in a while.
Below the editing section at the top right, where a combination of knobs and sliders allows you to adjust 24 parameters for each patch, there’s a section with eight pads. These can be used to write arpeggio patterns, skip between favourite patches or make adjustments to patches, depending which mode is selected. It’s a clever and tactile way of approaching a few useful performance attributes. Overall the layout is logical and extremely well thought out. My review unit didn’t have an instruction manual and that wasn’t a problem. If you’ve used a synth before you’ll get the hang of it quickly and there’s plenty of material online at the Novation site. The preset sounds can be navigated alphabetically or numerically, and as mentioned are divided into broad genres. One of these options – ‘classic synth’ – is apt because that is what springs to mind when I play this compact beast. There’s a huge range of ‘classic’ sounds, from biting ‘acid’ squeals to stabs and huge pads. The filter sweeps are seamlessly even, and once you get the arpeggiator going you don’t want it to stop. Sonically it’s every bit as good as it looks – a real pleasure to play and the ergonomics are fantastic. Some companies set the bar high. Novation are one of those. Their kit is always top notch and I’m pleased to say the MiniNova continues in that tradition. Editing software and all the necessary in/out connections means this great synth can integrate with a computer-based system, or standalone. It ticks all the boxes for me.
Next in line is the Tokai ES 148, part of their Vintage Series manufactured in Japan. The 148 is a take on Gibson’s classic ES 335 and Epiphone Casino, both extremely popular semi hollowbody guitars renowned for their unique tone and response. The body consists of an arched maple top, back and sides, onepiece mahogany set neck and rosewood fingerboard. The ES 148’s semi-hollow body design heavily borrows from a 335,
The feel is so soft in my hands; it needs to be played lightly for some jazz lovin’ or maybe with a dollop of drive for some blues. I know many guitarists love the smokiness you get from a 335, so you can really drive your amp or pedal, just don’t expect a tight, slamming bass response for ‘80s-era thrash metal. A hearty D profile (think Les Paul Standard) shapes the neck and the body contours beautifully for sitting down or standing up; it’s a pleasure to play in all positions. A medium action and decent string tension (feels like a set of 10s) removes any sort of fret buzz and makes notes sustain nice and long. Tokai’s setup department have done a bang-on job, making sure you clean up your playing so every note is more intentional and focused, and the Kluson-style tuners actually feel better than the real thing, a bit tighter and less sensitive than Gibsons. Clean tones are exceptionally pleasant. You can really hear the top end sparkle mixed with the long, sweet sustain. In this respect, it sounds just like a 335 should, and marries beautifully with a Fender-style amp for clean warmth. Gain also works well for different styles, adding a bit of overdrive on a clean sound for some blues, a little bit of amp drive for some classic rock breakup, or some fuzz for Eric Johnsonstyle leads and Queens of the Stone Age mud. The semi hollow body design ensures that notes naturally sustain, so not a lot of drive is required.
REVIEWER: CHRIS STELLER INFO: WWW.CMI.COM.AU
Functionality is what you’d expect in this price range, with the 7” colour ‘TouchView’ display as your GUI, making parameter access easy. A new menu in the top left of the screen allows you to jump around to the different functions and return with ease. Krome uses EDS-X, another of those awesome KORG acronyms that can leave you guessing for a long time. It’s loaded with nearly 4GB of sounds: Kronos-derived full-length, unlooped piano and drum sounds; electric pianos with eight-level velocity switching; 640 programs and 288 combinations, plus 32 drum kits out of the box, with more memory slots for your own sound creations. It also has 256 GM2 programs and 9 GM2 drum kits, making standard MIDI file playback a breeze. All of the bread and butter capabilities are there: Four types of filter routing, two multi-mode filters per oscillator, plenty of useful effects, EQ for each program or song track, and great drum sounds, with a pattern assigned to each program for instant inspiration/jamming fun.
The on-board sequencer features 16 MIDI tracks plus a master track, plenty of memory and templates for easy setup. The Cue Lists, with up to 99 steps in a list, are a great way to set up jukebox-style playback or assemble a different version of your song.
Tokai ES 148
with a strip of solid wood running down the middle with hollow wings added for that unmistakable tone and response. Two PAF Vintage MK2 pickups (made in Japan) sound like the real deal, warm and thick with an open voicing, and the LS VB bridge, in conjunction with the SSG6 Trapeze Tailpiece, borrows from the Casino providing different sustain, tension and overtones to a stock 335. It’s fair to say this guitar is a real piece of eye candy, delivered in a stunning “Sunburst” (in reality Tobacco-burst) finish that shows off the flamed maple top and creates depth with multiple coats of nitrocellulose, like an old American hot rod. The back is just as nice, with a lovely dark shadowing where the neck meets the headstock and body as well as a teardrop sunburst outline on the body’s back.
Krome Music Workstation from KORG
he newest workstation from KORG continues the Japanese company’s determination to provide more features for the working musician’s dollar. Krome is the next model in line from the successful M50 and also utilises many features introduced last year by its up-market sibling, the Kronos. Krome comes in three models, of course: the 61- and 73-key workstations feature a semi-weighted (synth-style) keyboard, while the 88-key model is weighted, utilising KORG’s NH keyboard, which is graded in weight from low to high notes. The look is simple and efficient. On the back are stereo outputs, inputs for pedals and USB connection to your computer, plus an SD Card slot for data storage.
REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.JADEAUSTRALIA.COM.AU
lot of us musicians (including myself ) feel drawn to the timelessness of classic instruments, that iconic Stratocaster snap, fat Les Paul crunch, twangin’ Telecaster jangle and Rickenbacker chime. What’s even better is that one company does them all and has been doing them a long time. Tokai are the masters of reverse engineering, bringing you uncanny copies of the originals as I found out previously when reviewing their “Love Rock”, (Les Paul style) model a while back.
like ‘resonance’, ‘attack’ and so forth. The sound engine is supposedly the same as its big brother the Ultra Nova, and the MiniNova certainly packs some punch. The sound quality is just excellent. It has 18-voice polyphony, three oscillators, 14 conventional wave shapes, 36 wavetables and 20 digital waveforms; 14 filter types, six envelope generators, up to five effects per patch, a versatile arpeggiator, a vocoder and vocal effects processing. With the option of audio-in so you can run an external sound source through its signal processing and a 37-key keyboard, it offers tremendous value in a very compact and stylish package.
The layout is clear and easy to understand, without a reliance on all those hidden menus some synths suffer from. Like the Micro Korg it has a ‘genre knob’ which helps navigate the generous 256 presets, though the inclusion of a ‘dubstep’ option may date quickly. This knob is near the centre with the LED display to the left and a large filter knob to the right, with four more knobs and six banks of parameters, so you can adjust all the usual suspects
This review was done on the 61-key model, so you’ll have to judge the weighted 88-key for yourself. Krome’s main piano sample had me wanting to actually play piano because of its quality, which is amazing in this price range. As a matter of fact, the Krome piano sample is probably bigger than the entire ROM block in most of the competition’s offerings. The GUI is easy and the layout is efficient, the sequencer works well and there’s a downloadable editor (standalone or VST/ AU plug-in), and the little blue LED in the ‘R’ on the back of the unit is cute. The mini-jack headphone output is a bit annoying (why?), but everything works well and the video manual is a very easy to understand guide to using the features of Krome, presented by product specialist, Steve McNally. Krome is a serious contender for your hard-earned!
Simon and Patrick Woodland Pro Spruce guitar REVIEW: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.DYNAMICMUSIC.COM.AU
There’s also a comprehensive pattern generator, drum tracks and polyphonic arpeggiators for helping with instant inspiration when you’re stuck for ideas.
hen I first heard I’d be reviewing a Simon and Patrick guitar I immediately thought of Simon and Garfunkel’s The Sounds Of Silence, tumbleweeds rolling along barren landscapes and seagulls soaring over cliffs. What I really should have pictured was the craft of Robert Godin, the innovator behind his own brand of unique instruments as well as Art & Lutherie and Seagull guitars. While the Art & Lutherie guitars are aimed at the entry level/ intermediate market, Simon and Patrick are a step up, appealing to the intermediate/professional player. All production takes place in Canada, so expect quality North American spruce, fine Quebecan craftsmanship and a proven track record. Under the spotlight today we have the Simon and Patrick Woodland Pro Spruce is a simple, wellput together acoustic that’ll spark some interest. This guitar has its charms because it doesn’t go overboard with the bling. It’s both tasteful and classy, with a selection of eye-catching woods that are still a little modest, a soft creamy spruce top with a tightly uniform grain, elegant mahogany back and sides that’s wonderfully speckled and flamed, and an animal-striped mahogany headstock shaped like a lovely old Martin. The rosewood bridge and fingerboard has a fine grain and is so soft and dark it almost feels like ebony, and there’s even a cool centre strip on the back of the body for something extra. Simon and Patrick go to great lengths to tell you they only use the finest materials. Every guitar comes with “a select pressure-tested top” for the highest levels of stiffness and rigidity ensuring maximum harmonic vibration. The body is a little bit smaller on this guitar than your average at about 51cm long and 12.5cm deep (at the base), so it’s very comfortable and not bulky in any way. The most immediately striking aspect however is the toothpick-thin neck that feels more like an electric guitar. The 24.84” neck and 16” fingerboard make it a delight to play and the soft rosewood and super-slim frets makes holding down notes very comfortable and resistance free. The
action is low, really low for an acoustic, so you can shred it up or play bar chords with the greatest of ease. A Tusq nut and saddle are fitted for snag-free string travel and maximum note transfer and sustain, and the custom 14:1 machine heads sit high taking a bit more string than your average tuner as well as maintaining perfect tuning stability. The review model came without a pickup, but you can also get this guitar with a B-Band AT-3 preamp. Tone-wise, this guitar sounds pretty good. The sound is fairly balanced, with a mild top end, rich midrange and a relatively loose bass that carries the note out for a while. One would have to understand that this is a smaller acoustic so it won’t project as loudly or have as much bottom end thud as your average dreadnaught or jumbo. If you’re an electric guitarist who likes small C-shaped necks, low actions and smaller string spacing you’d love this guitar.
Griffin Technology Studio Connect, Guitar Connect and Midi Connect REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.GALACTICMUSIC.COM.AU
riffin Technology is a company devoted to providing accessories, cases, headphones and odds and ends for all portable Apple and Android products. For a guy that does a lot of reviews, it’s always interesting to see how innovation renders a different approach to creating music, and how companies involved with technology, like Apple, end up being an essential part of this industry. Today I’m looking at three products from Griffin Technology: the Studio Connect, Guitar Connect Pro and Midi Connect. All three devices are designed for use with iPad, iPhone or iPod Touch. First up, the Studio Connect is an iPad dock and audio interface that charges your iPad and sends and receives both audio and MIDI to and fro. The idea of having this kind of setup lets you have your own little recording studio for use anywhere. Even the Gorillaz recorded their last album, The Fall, completely on an iPad. The Studio Connect features MIDI in and
Griffin Technology makes it easier and more affordable to get your own little recording studio happening than ever before. Now ideas won’t get lost when you’re on tour when you set up a little recording studio in your hotel room.
REVIEWER: REZA NASSERI INFO: WWW.JADEAUSTRALIA.COM.AU
I plugged my Gibson Les Paul into the Guitar Connect Pro and went into Amplitube Slash, which is a real tone monster of an app. I had a killer tone in no time with nothing other than a guitar, Guitar Connect Pro and iPhone. The unit performed flawlessly with minimal latency, and I can’t wait for someone to rock up to a gig one day with nothing other than an iPhone, and blow away the guy with a $5000 Mesa rig. Finally the MIDI connect is a great little way to get MIDI into and out of an iPad, iPhone or iPod touch. This is a very simple way of triggering sounds via a MIDI controller and worked perfectly with Garageband in the same was Studio Connect did, but with just MIDI in and out this time. I used my MIDI keyboard to access a whole library of pianos, keyboards, synthesisers and drums with the touch of a key.
Timberidge TRBC-4ST Acoustic Bass
he Jade-inspired range of Timberidge guitars have been kicking goals recently, and because I’ve had my hands on the adorable Mini 4 Acoustic and Series 1 Dreadnought, I can personally attest to this. These guys are all about quality with their Australian-designed instruments at a fraction of the cost of their international counterparts.
out, a ¼” mono audio input, a 1/8” stereo input, an RCA output and a headphone output. I tested this unit using Garageband on the iPad 2, which is a great app filled with virtual instruments and amp emulators and effects. I plugged in my guitar and MIDI keyboard so I now had full access to all the program had to offer. In no time I was writing a song with a great Fender Twin emulation, delicate acoustic pianos, drums and nice fat DI’d bass. I could even plug in a dynamic mic and work on vocals, but was perfect with my quick composition so far. All I had in terms of gear was an iPad 2, electric guitar, MIDI keyboard, headphones and Studio Connect, all of which could be easily transported and set up anywhere. Next, I tested the Guitar Connect Pro, which transforms your analogue guitar signal into a completely digital one. The device is extremely simple with a ¼” input and a level control for input sensitivity. Also, the Guitar Connect Pro can be used with an iPhone as well as an iPad, whereas the Studio Connect is only compatible with iPad.
I now have the pleasure of reviewing the Timberidge TRBC-4ST, a full-sized acoustic bass, a concept that first reared its head in my consciousness during the MTV Unplugged years. I’ve always thought a double bass to be more practical, but in reality most bassists don’t know how to play the double bass (including myself ), and some enjoy the unique tone an acoustic bass offers. The TRBC-4ST features a warm solid cedar top (for a darker tone) and gorgeous mahogany back and sides for visual and audible pleasure. A Tusq nut and saddle ensure flawless tone, sustain and tuning in conjunction with four gold diecast tuners and a set of D’Addario EXP Phosphor Bronze strings. Plugged in, a B-Band A3T preamp, pickup and tuner amplify and shape the sound. Out of the box, this instrument looks impressive. There’s a lovely compromise between a unique body shape, rich blend of woods and subtle, classy design. Standout features include the gorgeous warm grain in the cedar, smoky animal stripe on the back and sides, and the tanned neck-join and the raw grain on the back of the neck. In my hands a satin finish is always a personal favourite (usually the gloss is first to go when making mods), and this bass feels fantastic. The neck profile is great and plays just as well as any acoustic guitar or electric bass, and the shape of the body seems to mould into you also for great comfort. The action is low to medium with some fret buzz when you really slam into the strings and the string tension fairly loose so it’s nice for fingerstyle, thumb attack, bending and overall dynamics. Unplugged she sounds great, with a lot more projection and depth than I thought would be possible. The tone is nice and versatile when you dig in with you fingers, from a slow, warm attack at the neck to a hard, fast note when you move closer to the bridge. Using a pick was also effective and will sit nicely if you’re jamming with an acoustic guitarist
or with a little group. The tone in general is very bright thanks to the fresh set of EXPs, and a loose tension and low action make it less desirable for popping and slapping. Without an amp there’s enough depth and projection for solo players and medium volume jams, but anything more will require juice. The B-Band AT3 is simple and sounds fantastic. This bass really translates well plugged in, and would sound fantastic in place of an electric bass when played with a band. The amplified tone is really broad along the whole tonal spectrum with the added brightness you’d expect from an acoustic instrument. The EQ on the preamp is vital for emulating different electric tones. Rolling back the mids, treble and presence for a good slap tone and pumping the mids will really glue the bass to the mix. I especially liked the inclusion of an XLR input so you can go straight to a rehearsal or a gig with just your bass. The Timberidge TRBC-4ST is such a versatile, well thought out instrument.
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FRI 30 NOV | BENDED ELBOW | GEELONG
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SINGLED OUT WITH BRYGET CHRISFIELD
ON THE RECORD
BOB EVANS Don’t Wanna Grow Up Anymore EMI
BORED NOTHING Bored Nothing
A handful of years ago, Fergus Miller – the man behind Bored Nothing – had no fixed address and certainly no master plan for success in the music world. He basically recorded homemade tapes and demos – a la Daniel Johnston – while surfing from couch to couch, giving them away to anyone he thought might like them.
The Swan Liberator Music There’s a shitload going on here and all is wrapped in a blanket of fuzz. Hit the three-minute mark and it’s almost like a new track coming in before it all fades out. Lyrics are indecipherable, which make the music paramount. There’s a guitar riff to hum along with and the drumming’s mental. It’s pretty obscure, but definitely devoted to revisiting ‘90s grunge. Remember when Joey Greco, the host of that awesome reality show Cheaters, dedicated to naming and shaming adulterers, got stabbed while being filmed? Now that was awesome.
OLLY MURS FEAT FLO RIDA Troublemaker Sony Olly Murs has that whole Adam Levine sultry sexiness with oodles of funk thang to his vocal. In fact, this song could have been written for Maroon 5 once that wah-wah guitar kicks in. Murs is a very likeable character (although he looks heaps better with a trilby on) and Troublemaker’s so catchy you’ll need booster shots to increase immunity. Guilty pleasure? If your ears like it, why fight it?
Fast forward to today, and Miller is now a permanent resident of Melbourne, has four of these tapes under his belt and a band made up of musical chums at his disposal. His recordings have proved to be such a talking point that they have been turned into this eponymous release. Just five of the tracks here have never appeared anywhere before; the rest were born on his tapes and on his Bandcamp page.
JANE DUST & THE GIANT HOOPOES Space Odyssey: Part 1
Bob Evans (Kevin Mitchell to his mum) is obviously in a really inspired place right now. Don’t Wanna Grow Up Anymore may be a million miles from … Bull Creek, but the multi-octave, layered vocals and nostalgic guitar tones immediately serenade. Thanks to an arrangement that positively glistens and pops with added handclaps, you’ll be playing this one over and over on your internal jukebox after just one listen. Distorted grabs reminiscent of tuning an old transistor radio open and close the track, which bodes extremely well for the next album by Bob Evans – less country, more rockin’.
There is no chronology to the album, meaning that things bounce around from lovely melodic numbers in the vein of Teenage Fanclub, to fuzzy-as-hell shoegaze and garage pop. The thread that holds everything together though is Miller’s lovely vocal. It has a softness that lands somewhere between Elliott Smith and Norman Blake. Charlie’s Creek, for instance, sounds incredibly Smith-esque, while Darcy is an example of how grungy things can get. Sonically, Just Another Maniac falls twixt the two, and sets the tone for much of the rest of the record. Bored Nothing perhaps sounds more like a collection of songs than a coherent album (because that’s basically is what it is). But this ‘greatest hits’, of sorts, has plenty of excellent moments and showcases a really fine songwriter and indeed a name to watch in 2013. Robert Townsend
Independent More novel than album, Space Odyssey: Part 1, from local eccentrics Jane Dust & the Giant Hoopoes, is a rip-roaring, rollicking, all-fun nine-track ride through the charming vagaries of a truly unique songwriting mind. It’s a concept album, telling the, err, story of (apparently) The Creature, a shapeshifting minion from Hell, bent on destruction, but let’s not get stuck in the details shall we? There’s barely been a more enjoyable record released in Melbourne in recent memory, and Dust and her cohorts are in supreme control of every element of the process. There’s something of a supergroup at work here, with The Giant Hoopoes comprising Clare Moore, Stu Thomas, Will Hindmarsh and Louisa Trewartha, their long years of experience shining through from note one. And the arrangements – though world class – use horn and storytelling in an iconoclastic manner quite unlike anything you’ve ever heard before. There is an intoxicating impetus to the record that begins from the opening track, grabs you truly and well, and doesn’t let go until the epic finale. Comparisons to Kubrick’s great work are inevitable, I suppose, and they could conceivably go something like this: Stan The Man in a Brunswick share house, booted ignominiously out of VCA, decides he wants to make music instead of film, or something. Despite this, Space Odyssey: Part 1 is alarmingly original, and deserves our sustained attention on this basis alone. There’s also stunning songwriting and storytelling, assured musicianship, and, well, something like gravitas here. Given all this, we’ll now await Space Odyssey: Part 2 with seriously baited breath.
THEE OH SEES Putrifiers II
Freeform Patterns After watching Thee Oh Sees rip it up high on top of old Sugar Mountain earlier this year, it was not hard to fall in love with this charismatic garage band from San Francisco. Furiously prolific John Dwyer and his band Thee Oh Sees come to us with plenty of inspiration and stamina, having released over ten albums and a virtual tidal wave of 7” singles in just six years. If delving into back catalogue might seem like a daunting and somewhat intimidating task then the best way to get a feel for Thee Oh Sees is to perhaps start with their latest album. Coming at us with perhaps a little more gloss on the mix than usual, Putrifiers II continues to find Thee Oh Sees existing at the intersection of garage, punk, ‘60s pop and psychedelic rock. Unlike last year’s Carrion Crawler, which took no hostages with its riotous psychedelic garage freak-out, Putrifiers II explores the softer and more refined side of these influences. Album opener Wax Face, with its lusciously warm and distorted fuzzed-out vibes sounds like vintage Troggs on heavier, nastier psychedelics. Across much of this album Brigid Dawson and Dwyer’s vocals melt into each other as they opt for strange and unsettling childlike falsetto harmonies. Warmed by strings, the cool swirls of sound on So Nice are pure Velvet Underground. The title track is a compelling stoner-rock dirge with a kind of rock‘n’roll twist. Sounding appropriately spaced out, Lupine Dominus works an irresistible kosmische groove while Goodnight Baby brings a bright fluffy pop mood to the mix. It would be an understatement to call Thee Oh Sees multifaceted. Putrifiers II showcases the gentler side of their music and should provide plenty of inspiration to dive into their extensive back catalogue. An Australian-only bonus disc of rough and raw demos, which includes a few tunes that didn’t make the album, makes this an essential package. Guido Farnell
DICK DIVER Alice Chapter Music These guys make making sweet music sound effortless. All three guitars lock in and jangle away as if the instruments are driving their masters, vocals coming in and out almost incidentally. Lyrics are the equivalent of a string of Facebook status updates: “I get out of bed/I get my toast to the perfect shade of gold.” But who says inspiration can’t be found in the everyday? And the listener’s too busy being swept away by the melodies to search for any sort of deep message anyway.
TWELVE FOOT NINJA
Island City Records
Gonna Make It
Debut albums can be a jittery, nervous proposition. Therefore, it’s striking how assured Melbourne’s Twelve Foot Ninja are on their initial full-length, despite its versatility. Perhaps it’s their hardworking touring ethic and two previous EPs that provided them with this unwavering self-belief.
Is devotional doom a genre? Can metal and Sufism coexist in the same work? Is it possible to achieve enlightenment through drones and elongated bass riffs? We’re always talking of transcendence in music, in achieving some kind of ecstatic nirvana, and Om wear their spiritualism on their sleeves. It’s in their profoundly religious iconography; song titles such as Sinai; and lyrics dripping with ritualistic religious speak, referencing the Red Sea, faquirs and astral flight.
The San Cisco story began in a pretty familiar way. Fremantle kids, 18 years old, form band in garage, write songs, put out EPs, see what happens. This is where things go a bit nuts. One of the tracks from one of these EPs was called Awkward – a cute-as-a-button call-andresponse tune which went absolutely bananas with the nation’s youth vote and eventually landed in the top ten of triple j’s Hottest 100 countdown. From there it was all sold-out shows, international record deals and phone commercials. Now, we witness their next step – a self-titled debut album. After all the dust has cleared and you’ve finally managed to get Awkward out of your head, one question remains: is San Cisco any good?
Independent This is an Art Vs Science side-project and that band’s vocalist/keyboardist Jim Finn has clearly found inspiration in Fat Boy Slim’s Praise You (the piano riff) and Jesus Was Way Cool by King Missile. He even sings with a bit of an American accent on this tune, especially in the “I’m gonna make it home for breakfast” choruses. It’s all very hands in the air and bound to get the kids to whom this sounds original excited but, to this pair of ears, well, I’d prefer to cue up the two aforementioned songs on my iPod before I’d put this one on repeat.
PRINCE RAMA So Destroyed EMI So Destroyed is lifted from this Brooklyn sister duo’s current longplayer, Top 10 Hits Of The End Of The World. Hate the album title. Hate it even more when I read that the release “finds the two-piece ‘performing’ as ten fictional bands that (fictionally) had top-ten hits on the eve of the apocalypse”. They’re obviously Steiner school graduates. Oh no, wait! They were raised on a Hare Krishna commune in Florida. Close enough. ShouId have read their background before I inserted this into the player. That way I would’ve known to give Taraka and Nimai (WTFFFFFFFF!?) a wide berth.
48 • For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews
If there’s a type of modern music these bipolar progrockers don’t incorporate, it probably hasn’t been created yet. King For A Day…-era Faith No More is an appropriate ground zero, and not merely because of singer Kin’s Patton-esque vocal acrobatics. This is apparent in coherent, natural stylistic melding; after hearing the effortless mix of hard rock riffage, electronica, bossa nova and lounge-like crooning on opener, Coming For You, you’ll be pondering why nobody combined them previously. Somewhere, Ill Niño will be wiping tears from their dreadlock-covered eyes. Kingdom’s smooth vocal melodies continue the Patton theme, while also infusing Eastern elements. Throw in liberal doses of funk, classic rock and metallic riffs and that’s still not entirely encapsulating the scope. Mother Sky balances prog tendencies with reggae and irresistible hooks, while the groove-laden Shuriken, Vanguard and title track are also winners. Selected heavier riffs feel a tad too similar, but they rarely get bogged down in one idea for long, so it’s of little consequence.
All these allusions alter your approach to their music. Church music is greeted with a kind of rapt devotional attention, and it’s hard not to at least initially put Om’s music on a pedestal, above all those who sing about cars, girls and imbibing chemicals. It’s very clear this music is shooting for a higher plane. Though where this is, and which spiritual escalator they’re on, is far from clear. Om were born from the ashes of Sleep, a bunch of stoner doomers with a penchant for very long songs, though five albums down the track they’ve moved well beyond the doom or sludge moniker. In fact, the traces of metal are rapidly disappearing, and we’re left with an almost neoclassical, quasi-exotic deconstruction of the genre. Opener Addis features a female vocalist singing Hindi; tabla kicks in and though it’s heavy as hell with bass and drums, it’s also sparse, allowing plenty of space for mournful strings.
Australia’s proggy hard rock scene is crowded, what with Karnivool, Sydonia, Floating Me and Dead Letter Circus leading the pack. Twelve Foot Ninja are an even more wide-reaching proposition. These giant-sized warriors won’t be lurking unnoticed in the shadows for much longer.
They do get heavy and doomy, however, with impossibly de-tuned, thick, heavy, almost funky bass, metronomic percussion, violin, cello, viola, flute and the aforementioned table, as well as a touch of nasty vocals. But it feels like so much more, particularly when they escape the heavy riffage of their past, create something new and transcend.
Bob Baker Fish
Short answer: yes. San Cisco is, at its core, an old-fashioned pop record for a modern age. Never outstaying its welcome, it borrows bits and pieces from the best British and American guitar pop of the last decade and fashions them into an intoxicating whole. There’s a little Vampire Weekend, a dash of Foster The People with just a tad of Metronomy in there as well. The difference between San Cisco and other groups of their ilk is the way their magpie tendencies come without a hint of pretension, leading more to a kaleidoscopic homage than a flat-out rip-off. Opener Beach and latest hit Wild Things both owe instrumental debts to Gorillaz, but Scarlett Stevens’ distinctively deadpan vocals make them very worthy additions. In fact, just about every track on San Cisco could be a single and, with the way things have gone over the past year, there’s every chance they will be. Chris Hayden
Some bands just refuse to die. Norwegian ‘deathpunk’ proponents Turbonegro rise from the ashes of calamity once more and return with their eight album, Sexual Harassment. If 2007 album Retox was the sound of a band stuttering to a halt, then this is the soundtrack to a rebirth, their vitality returned in spades. Three members have left since that last long-player – including frontman Hank von Helvete – but they’ve regrouped and kept on keeping on, with the creative core of Thomas “Happy-Tom” Seltzer and Knut “Euroboy” Schreiner still at the helm.
Ever since their brilliantly idiosyncratic third LP, Winchester Cathedral, landed in 2006, Liverpool’s offkilter noiseniks Clinic have been steadfastly creating their own sound, lent credence by frontman Ade Blackburn’s androgynous, terse vocals and use of vintage organs and the clarinet. They haven’t veered far from the formula that they themselves concocted.
Never one to take themselves seriously, Brisbane’s self-proclaimed kings of cocktail-laced psychedelic country cabaret The Vaginabillies have released Every Day Starts With An E (Or Praise The Lord And Pass The Seafood Extender). The cover art is Elvis’ head bursting from an egg, eight-balls for eyes and an eel slithering through his ears, with an elephant at either side… you get the picture. None of this makes sense, nor is it meant to. This is mental shambolic schlock rock, and it’s a hell of a lot of fun.
With news of a new Neil Young album it’s difficult not to wonder which artist we’re going to get. In a 40-plusyear career he’s offered up some legendary albums and also some real turkeys. One useful indication is the presence of his rock band Crazy Horse. Young loves them for their feel and their willingness to stick to a groove and allow him to solo endlessly over the top. There’s no denying Crazy Horse bring out the best in Young primarily because they make him get electric.
New singer Tony Sylvester has massive shoes to fill but he’s aware of this – he was after all the head of the London Turbojugend – and while on initial listens it seems incongruous having a UK accent out front of this distinctly Scandinavian outfit, once you overcome that hurdle it’s possible to appreciate the songs for what they are – a clutch of typically potent rock’n’roll belters. Hello Darkness is a devious mission statement for their return, while tracks such as Shake Your Shit Machine and You Give Me Worms are way better than their titles – as always Turbonegro are a bunch of supremely intelligent (albeit heroically reckless) folk trying to pass themselves off as dumb rock’n’rollers. As always the costumes, iconography, inherent humour and reliance on rock’n’roll tropes tend to mask the brilliance of this evergreen bunch of misfits. They might have some new faces, and they’ll almost certainly never make another Apocalypse Dudes, but it’s comforting to know that Turbonegro are still out their partying for our sins. Steve Bell
Every Day Starts With An E
New album, Free Reign, opens with the excellent Misty, a brooding lurker of a track that is patient in doling out the pay-off, the swirling tempo hypnotic and alluring in equal measure, and alludes to a slight change of pace. Such hopes are dashed with See Saw, which, while not bad, sounds like a paler imitation of themselves. Yet, it’s the perfect title and would have made for a better album moniker, as the nine tracks undulate from mediocrity to refreshing inspiration like a metronome. Miss You experiments with the Clinic staples, offering a jam-oriented take and subdued vocals from Blackburn to create a lysergic moment of bliss, while Sun And The Moon is a psych loop gem. But this is offset by the chirping headache that King Kong becomes after repeated listens, and For The Season is almost non-existent. Producer Daniel Lopatin is a fairly evident participant here, bringing his oblique machinations to the fore, yet these tracks are too languid and freeform to remain relevant for long. Free Reign is Clinic’s seventh release and it doesn’t add anything new, neither turning its back on nor recreating the past. It comes off like a smudged carbon copy or a half-forgotten dream – somewhat familiar, yet disappointing due to lack of clarity.
The opener is a misnomer of sorts – a killer sort-of instrumental called Wild World Of Water Sports. It allows the musicians here – Robert Lee on guitar, Richard Buchanan on bass and Patrick ‘El Sharko’ Mahoney on the skins – to cut loose, a breakneck introduction. Ringleader Andrew ‘El Stumpo’ Leavold saunters on for ‘Arry, a one-act rock opera about a man who likes pigeons (as in, likes likes them), and the scene is set for an album of curveballs and debauchery. Happy Crab takes the calypso route to carouse with drug-fuelled crazy crustaceans; Dennis Whopper looks at the famous actor and Klaus Kinski as they take lots of mushrooms (“They’re frightening the monkeys”); the inter-species relations continue with Hot Monkey Woman and the Under The Sea-esque decadent re-imagining of Donovan’s Atlantis. Other taboos are smashed with Dachau Baby, Le Donkey Punch and No More LSD For Me (and to a lesser extent by covering Dragon’s Rain), while Stumpy’s rant against Brisbane on Welcome To Prison is worth the price of admission alone.
Psychedelic Pill is an album drowning in reflection and aging. He rails against mp3s, the commercialisation of art and the death of the hippy dream, yet also tips his hat to Dylan, and delivers a rousing tune about his birthplace in Ontario. At more than 87 minutes, Psychedelic Pill is Young’s longest album, a double-disc set providing plenty of space between the extended hypnotic riffs for a man intent on looking backwards. In fact it’s the combination of earnest nostalgia and ragged anthemic playing that makes Psychedelic Pill so rewarding. “She likes to burn,” he offers on She’s Always Dancing, and the same could be said for Young. Four decades on and he’s still playing with matches. Bob Baker Fish
Which leads us to Psychedelic Pill, and from the opening chords of the 27-and-a-half-minute Drifting Back, it’s clear that Young is back where he belongs, wielding epic ramshackle garage jams out of the ether. There’s something reassuring about finding him here: big, loud, noisy, loose and lumbering, lost in a reverie, guitar flailing in full flight, buoyed by Crazy Horse’s rough-hewn energy.
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For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews • 49
ADRIAN BOHM & PHIL MCINTYRE P ROU D LY P R E S E N T
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WEDNESDAY 21 My Cunt Full Of Ashes – a new piece of theatre from Nicola Gunn and Laurence Strangio, inspired by the writings of Hélène Cixous. An exposure of human need achieved through language and physicality. La Mama Theatre, 7.30pm, until Friday 23 November. 2 One Another – a new work by Artistic Director Rafael Bonachela. With 16 dancers, this piece celebrates relationships, interactions and the sheer beauty of the human form. Arts Centre, 8pm, until Saturday 1 December.
THURSDAY 22 Cinemix: Nick Huggins Plays I Am Eleven – Two Bright Lakes founder Nick Huggins scored documentary I Am Eleven. The work of Melbourne-based filmmaker Genevieve Bailey features interviews with 11-year-olds from 15 different countries. Nick Huggins and his band will be recreating his soundtrack for I Am Eleven live on stage. Part of Melbourne Music Week, ACMI, 7pm. American Colour – a photography exhibition from US-based Canadian artist Joshua Bonnetta. Shot during a pilgrimage from New York to Kansas on rolls of 16mm Kodachrome film. Opening, Screen Space, 6pm, until Saturday 15 December.
Tales Of Terror at ACMI
2 One Another
FRIDAY 23 Normie The Musical – a musical based on Australian musician Normie Rowe in the 1960s. Scotch College, 7.45pm, until Saturday 1 December.
SATURDAY 24 Tales Of Terror – a screening of three tales of terror based on the stories of Edgar Allan Poe. This 1962 horror film is directed by Roger Corman followed by a Q&A with Chris Bailey. ACMI, 7pm.
SUNDAY 25 The Sunday Showdown: One Shot Special – ten comics will compete this Sunday arvo. With headliners Harley Breen (Melb Comedy Fest Comic’s Choice Award) and Georgina McEncroe (3AW, Spicks & Specks), who are also on the judging panel. The Portland Hotel, 2pm.
MONDAY 26 SubUrbia – a play written by Eric Bogosian and directed by Adam Spellicy. A portrait of mid-90s existential angst that focuses on a group of young adults who hang out outside their local convenience store. Preview performance, Abbotsford Convent, 7.30pm, until Friday 7 December
UPCOMING IN ARTS The Wayans Brothers – comedians, producers, writers and siblings Shawn and Marlon Wayans will tour Australia for the first time in May. They’re known for Scary Movie 1 and 2, White Chicks and In Living Color. Tickets on sale 9am today. Dance Massive – this 13-day dance festival will kick off with Natalie Abbots, Physical Fractals. Highlights include the World premiere of 247 Days, from Chunky Move after the successful Melbourne Festival show, An Act Of Now. Anthony Hamilton will present the world premiere of Blank Project 1 & 2 and Lucy Guerin Inc will bring Conversation Piece to Melbourne after its season at Belvoir. Dance Massive will run Monday 12 to Saturday 24 March across four venues, with six world premieres and 18 productions. For more info head to dancemassive.com.au.
The Wayans Brothers
Jo Lloyd’s Future Perfect part of Dance Massive 13’
GAMERS AND MUSO’S A WICKED GIVEAWAY We have a Gibson guitar, cord and a copy of the game Rocksmith™ to giveaway. This is the first and only game that lets you plug any real guitar into your Xbox 360®, PlayStation®3 system, or PC. Enabling you to learn to play guitar and bass or just develop your skills whilst gaming. It like a treadmill for guitarists and with summer just around the corner never
underestimated the importance of a beach body or strumming skills. To enter head to themusic.com.au
PART OF THE SOLUTION “It’s been difficult doing press for this film, talking about my country, answering all these questions,” says Stephanie Sigman, the 25-year-old star of Mexican crime-thriller, Miss Bala. She talks to Anthony Carew about the issues exposed. Exciting Central American film Miss Bala, finds Sigman’s pseudo-titular character held hostage as bait in a trans-Tijuana turf war between a crime cartel and anti-narcotic cops. “Sometimes people ask me ‘what’s the solution for this problem?’ Like,
seriously? I have no idea. If I had any idea I wouldn’t be making films, I’d be a politician or something.” Stephanie Sigman was making her first ever feature film with Miss Bala. “Believe it or not, I had fun!” she laughs, of starring in
THIS WEEK IN
the gruelling, gripping picture; speaking with a sense of awe for director Gerardo Naranjo and DOP Mátyás Erdély, who “guided [her]” through the film’s tense action scenes and carefullycomposed frames. Sigman is present in nearly every frame; the shoot finding her spending “12 hours a day in character, at least,” every day for six weeks. She scored the role due to hailing from Northern Mexico, where it was filmed, and for having a long history as a model, which gave her an insight into her character’s beauty pageant aspirations. Yet Sigman sees few - save for the geographical - similarities between her and her role; seeing her career-model-since-shewas-16 history as being a shrine to independence, whereas her character’s sheltered, familial upbringing is one of innocence. “The character is so pure [and] untouched by the world,” Sigman says. “She hasn’t done a lot of things, or seen a lot of things. She has this rare naïveté. I think this character has a beautiful thing – innocence. But the world she lives in – being innocent – it’s a flaw. It’s a flaw that can be exploited. I think she’s a reflection of how a lot of people in Mexico feel.” After Miss Bala premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2011 (“It was the first time I saw the film, then – I was so very proud,” Sigman recounts), it opened in its homeland amid drama that proved divisive. “It was controversial
WAM BAM, THANK YOU MA’AM!
OMG, roller derby is so hot right now, as Roller Derby Xtreme is about to prove prove. When derby dolls Gori Spelling and Fisti Cuffs rolled into town, fresh meat Paul Ransom skated over to get a pre-tour fix. Chicks on roller-skates? Full body contact? Girls with names like Fisti Cuffs? Sure it sounds like porn, but it’s really sport. As Americana crazes go, roller derby is one of the most eye popping. With its mix of retro skate kitsch and extreme sport muscle, it has exploded out of the States and launched itself onto the arena spectacular scene. When Roller Derby Xtreme (RDX) hits the tracks here in November it will doubtless raise the razzle dazzle surrounding the high impact girl-on-girl action
even further. Fresh off the plane from LA, rival derby dolls Gori Spelling and Fisti Cuffs are quick to add that the sport is an all ages attraction, although Spelling does allow a little AO latitude. “We primarily focus on the athleticism of it but, y’know, it is girls on roller-skates, so... think of that what you will.” RDX fans are already au fait with the blockers and jammers that make up this sport, but newbies may well wonder what they are looking at (apart from the obvious). As Spelling explains, two teams of
five go head-to-head on a banked track, with four blockers and one point i scoring i jjammer per side id competing sharp, fast sixty second bursts. As Fisti Cuffs recalls, “When I first started playing in 2003 I had no idea what I was getting into. I was, like, ‘Oh cool, it’s like bowling on roller skates’. At that point the rules were just a page long, so it was just a bunch of girls getting together and roller skating and then drinking afterwards.” Since then the format has firmed, local and national leagues have formed and a World Cup event has been held. “Roller Derby is the fastest growing women’s sport,” Gori Spelling declares. “I think that’s because it’s really addictive. Y’know, you start skating and then
here,” she says, on the phone in Mexico City. “50 percent of the people had this reaction like, ‘Why are we making films about this? It’s already all over the news’. But the other [half] of the people thought that it was very cool that we were making a film like this about the subject; that we’re making a good film about it.” Miss Bala touched such a nerve, Sigman thinks, because her titular character - in her innocence and confusion - holds up a mirror to how so much of Mexican society feels about the country’s narcotic conflicts. “Sometimes when you see these news reports on TV, you feel like, ‘How can this be happening in my country?’” she says. “But I think it’s starting to feel closer to people, now, because the war that the government declared on the cartels is very problematic. Because the cartels have so much power, and have had it for so long. It’s almost like the country is at war, now. It’s a very bad, very complicated, very conflicted situation; one that’s difficult to understand, even for Mexicans. It really affects the energy in the country. You can feel this big, like, question mark. How is this happening? How did we get to this point, as a country? What can we do about it?” WHAT: Miss Bala WHEN & WHERE: Opening, Thursday 22 November, Exclusive to Cinema Nova. you tell your girlfriends and they join and they fall in love with it as well. Also, from a fan perspective, it’s a really exciting game to watch.” The toughness of the sport is one of its big selling points, as Spelling clearly recognises. “It’s a really aggressive sport, a full contact women’s sport. There are lots of bumps and bruises and definitely knee injuries. But mostly it’s just a lot of soreness. I have a pretty bad bruise on my bbutt right now and today on the aairplane for fifteen hours was not pleasant.” the girls of RDX For their Oz tour th will compete as the th LA Derby Dolls and the NY Gotham Girls, featuring Bombshell Betty, track stars like Bo Bonnie Thunders aand Stefcon 1, and Fisti. To help along with Gori an local punters get ttheir heads around Bamalam will the action Betty B provide on-track ccommentary. girls whizzing With ten skater gir 35° banked track, around a steep 35 roller derby might seem chaotic but as the sport has evolved it has become incredibly strategic. “We definitely practise specific moves, both in defence and offence,” Spelling says. “It’s tough but it’s also pretty smart.” No surprise then that when Gori Spelling and Fisti Cuffs return to these shores for their six match tour they will be playing to an ever expanding fanbase. “It’s crazy,’ coos Fisti. “Even in the past year the international derby community has just exponentially grown and, y’know, everyone has gotten a lot better.” WHAT: Roller Derby Xtreme Tour WHEN & WHERE: Friday 23 November, Hisense Arena.
To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags • 51
C U LT U R A L
GLIMPSE THEATRE Glimpse is a new work by newborn company The Kin Collective. Reminiscent of Robert Altman’s 1993 film Short Cuts. There are around half a dozen stories that loosely interconnect, the delight for the audience is in working out how they are related and exploring how a glimpse into someone’s life may change our initial perceptions of them. With high profile company members such as Marg Downey (Fast Forward, Kath & Kim), Michala Banas (McLeod’s Daughters, Winners And Losers) and Noni Hazlehurst (no credits required), expectations were high. And for the most part they were met head on. A glacial pace to a repetitive opening scene between two homeless people was fortunately a one-off, with meter and dialogue improving markedly throughout the rest of the 90 minute performance. Downey, as a school teacher caring for a sick husband, was pleasure
I, ANIMAL AUDIO TOUR I am an animal. We humans share 97% of our DNA with gorillas, we go through the same teenage stages as mandrills and we fall in love like gibbons. At the beginning of I, Animal, the audience is invited to choose from four potential tours – we went with ‘Monkeys’. Part of the fun of the show is that you only get one of four potential options. The Monkey tour focuses on ‘ancestry’ – where we come from, who we are and who we have been. At points it felt like there was a little too much introspection but it also called for nostalgia and remembering the wonder of visiting the zoo as a kid. The best
on stage as she contemplated a surprising offer from Dan Hamill doing an excellent Jude Law impersonation, while Linc Hasler was heartbreaking as an angry man at his mother’s funeral. The moments between Downey and Maitland (who also directed the work) as her teenage daughter were achingly real. The many story strands were well braided into one cohesive performance, but it was confusing at times when new characters were introduced, perhaps with such a large cast (eight in total) I didn’t expect them to be playing multiple roles. In the end, the sheer premise of the piece meant we only met characters for fleeting moments, when their tales seemed worthy of much longer examinations. I wanted to know more. Glimpse is a very promising debut for an exciting new company and let’s hope we see more than glimpses of them in the future. Rebecca Cook Fortyfivedownstairs until Sunday 2 December
part of the tour was when the male gibbon came to the window to check us out and hung around for that whole section of the show. If we weren’t listening to a story about the gibbon pair’s love, all the attention could have very easily been mistaken for flirting. The interactive ‘Zöe’ that accompanied us throughout our experience was worth the rather long line before the show commenced. The device talks to you the whole time, acting as a sort of audio guide and occasionally asks for interactive input, which is woven into the show at later points. An engaging, heartwarming and stimulating show. Izzy Roberts-Orr Melbourne Zoo until Thursday 21 January songs are usually at a pivotal point in the play and happen when you can’t have dialogue that speaks to the truth. The song takes over and gives you that moment of truth that can’t be expressed in words.”
IS THIS IT? One of the stars of Red Stitch’s latest production Midsummer (A Play With Songs), Ben Prendergast talks running, sexing and more running with Kate Kinsgmill. It starts, like so many of the best stories do, with a one-night stand between two people who should never have got together. Red Stitch’s latest theatre production, Midsummer (A Play With Songs), is a summertime romantic comedy (albeit set in an Edinburgh summer so is more grey and chilly than sunny and sweltering) and involves a fair bit of raunch, laughs and drunkenness. Bob (Ben Prendergast), is a petty criminal who meets high-powered divorce lawyer Helena (Ella Caldwell) in an Edinburgh bar. The pair end up with a load of cash that isn’t theirs and decide to spend it. “For every reason they shouldn’t end up together, so of course they do,” says Prendergast. “And so it’s really a retelling of this crazy
lost weekend. There’s all kinds of crazy shit. There’s bondage, there’s running, there’s sweating, there’s sexing, there’s more running, there’s more sexing and then there’s music in there somewhere. And it’s all in Scottish accents…” As an actor in his mid-30s, Prendergast says he was able to draw for his performance on a whole raft of personal experience that most people of a similar age can relate to. “Absolutely. It’s the existential question in your 30s – What does it all mean? And these two kind of discover each other and rediscover themselves a little bit in this crazy-arse weekend. I think a lot of people will relate. Especially those people who came through the indie music scene and maybe had high hopes for themselves
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as a musician. ‘Is this it?’ That’s the general theme of this play.” In fact, Prendergast feared he may be relating too much to the play when he read it. “There were so many twists and turns that I can’t reveal that were in direct alignment to stuff I’d gone through only even recently. Separation from life partners and new partners and feeling like you might be a little bit of a fuck up… where do you go from here? You have to be careful as an actor sometimes to not connect so much that you’re just going to be a weeping mess onstage!” he laughs. “But at the end of the day it’s a comedy and it’s funny.” There is a lot crammed into the hour-and-a-half-long play, including a substantial musical element, but as Prendergast points out, this is strictly not a musical. “John [Kachoyan, director] and David [Greig, playwright] specifically didn’t call it a musical. It’s titled Midsummer (A Play With Song) and that’s essentially what it is. The
Prendergast is also a professional musician, so the opportunity to combine acting and music has been “great”. “Having to sing in a Scottish accent is completely new and weird and in a lot of ways a wonderful thing because it’s a whole new characterisation in the song. And the music’s wonderful. It’s quite simple but it stops the piece from going off the rails a little bit. The songs are really poignant, not shoegazing or anything, but kind of lovely. So the music’s just a whole other facet to the show but it’s certainly not centre stage. They’re very similar disciplines except you do more with your body when there isn’t a guitar strapped to it.” And what about the sexy bits? “It’s a very safe sex scene, but it’s a very raunchy sex scene,” says Prendergast. “And they’re in their heads the whole time. I mean, everyone’s been there where you’re with someone who you’re very attracted to and you want to do a good job so you’ve kind of got to talk yourself into being good!” he laughs. “And so we actually see that played out in both these characters’ heads. Plus, they’re pissed!” The effect on the audience, he says, is that “Time flies. You get out of the theatre and you feel like you want to go and get drunk and fall in love after this show.” WHAT: Midsummer (A Play With Songs) WHEN & WHERE: Now until Saturday 15 December, Red Stitch Actors Theatre.
WITH REBECCA COOK The opening night of new theatre company Kin Collective’s debut Glimpse was a star-studded affair both on stage and off. Treading the boards were Marg Downey (Kath & Kim), Michala Banas (Winners & Losers), Keith Brockett (The Librarians) and a strong ensemble cast with a trailer full of TV, stage and film credits; while Sigrid Thornton, Jane Turner and Virginia Gay enjoyed some downtime in the audience. For Tom Barton, who plays Ziggy in the show, the opening night also held its fair share of nerves for another reason. “As is the nature of devising your own show, time was of the essence and scenes were being rehearsed and adjusted even on the morning the show opened. In fact the script underwent major changes just a week before we opened,” he says. “These late changes were certainly nerve-racking but it worked out in the end. Opening night was the first time we had a big audience in. We had no idea what the response would be but there was certainly plenty of laughter.” Barton also reveals how the cast managed to create such realistic characters. “All the actors in the cast work in different ways. Some even go out into the real world as their character and interact with people. You never know when you might come across an actor in character.” Consider yourself warned – especially if you run into Dan Hamill’s magicobsessed homeless man. But the Glimpse opening night punters weren’t the only entertainment heavy-hitters in town last week, there was also a swag of film types here for the Screen Producers Association of Australia (SPAA) annual conference. This year the conference was held at Docklands and included keynote speeches by Gillian Armstrong, Managing Director of Content & Production at BBC Worldwide
Helen Jackson and Stephen Garrett, who is the Chairman of Kudos Film &Television (Spooks, Hustle, Ashes To Ashes, Life On Mars and Hunted. Perhaps putting the conference in Docklands was a masterstroke for SPAA: English producers must always be on the hunt for bleak locations. What isn’t bleak is the future for production company Essential Media & Entertainment, who’ve had a magnificent year with Rake and the Jack Irish telemovies and rightly took out the Independent Producer Of The Year Award for 2012 at the conference’s gala dinner on Wednesday night. The company are currently working on a feature film about the Australian author of Mary Poppins, which will star Tom Hanks and Emma Thompson, and the third season of Gourmet Farmer. In acknowledgement of the other ‘screens’ that are growing exponentially at the moment, the Federal Arts Minister Simon Crean dropped into the pow-wow to offer up a new $20-million Australian Interactive Games Fund. “Australian games studios are recognised internationally for their skill and originality in developing interactive games played all over the world but the local industry is coming under increased pressure in the midst of a major market shift,” Crean said. Now, as the fund will be administered by SPAA, I wonder if the application process couldn’t also get a bit more interactive – TV-style. How about it starts with some X-Factor talent search rounds where gamers must pump out their game ideas in rap or song, with the most popular (voted by viewers at home) then heading into a Big Brother house scenario where applicants must play Xbox with the housemates until only the strong remain. To be honest it’s probably easier than the real hoops you have to jump through to apply.
WITH GUY DAVIS It wasn’t gonna go down like this. I had plans for this edition of Trailer Trash – it was gonna be a celebration (please hear Chappelle-as-Rick-James when you say that in your head) of the bits and pieces of pop culture I’d recently found edifying, engaging and entertaining. Like the ongoing wealth of Scandinavian crime thrillers making their way to our screens. I know, I know, such shows are usually the province of rainy or chilly winter afternoons, when the bleakness of the weather provides an ideal counterpoint to the grimness of the stories. But even though the temperature may be rising, the three Wallander telemovies airing on ABC1 over the next few Sunday nights (with Kenneth Branagh delivering some fucking powerhouse work in the title role of the morose, dogged police inspector) are still some top-shelf viewing, as is The Bridge, a ten-part murder mystery about a bisected body found on the Swedish-Danish border. It’s now available on DVD thanks to your friends at Madman Entertainment, so I recommend you snap that shit up sharpish. Or the fact that The Twilight Saga is finally over. Okay, that was just mean. It’s not my brand of whimsy, true, but plenty (PLENTY) of other people dig it and will miss their annual fix of Bella, Edward and Taylor Lautner’s well-toned torso. To them, I offer my condolences on the saga’s conclusion and a sincere hope they find something
equally captivating to snap them up and sweep them away. Because everybody deserves their something. Something they have an admiration of or an appreciation for. Everybody should be allowed to be a fan or a follower, to dig something casually or dig into it so deeply they become quite the authority on it. Maybe it makes me casual to the point of nonchalant, but I tend to believe there should be no rules to fandom. That is, other than the golden rule, which can be applied to pretty much every aspect of life – don’t be an arsehole. Sadly, that rule can be bent or downright broken when it comes to 21st century geek culture. Last week, there was somewhat of an uproar when comic-book artist Tony Harris railed against “cosplay chicks” who “don’t know shit about comics beyond whatever Google image search you did to get ref on the most mainstream character with the most revealing costume ever”. (Please note: quote slightly modified in that I tidied up some of the grammar and spelling and turned off the caps lock.) Look, I’m no fan of cosplay, but unless someone is using it to convince some poor simpleton into believing they’re that actual character and then taking advantage of them in any number of ways, who gives a fuck whether someone dresses up as Catwoman or Charlie Brown and ventures out in public as such? How does it diminish your well-being? Does it sap your appreciation of what you enjoy? If it does, you really might wanna take a good, long look at yourself and what you claim to like.
X TI 3 $3
Based on a novel by INGVAR AMBJØRNSEN Stage adaptation by AXEL HELLSTENIUS Translated by NICHOLAS NORRIS
TH U YO
ELLING in collaboration with PETTER NÆSS Adapted by SIMON BENT
‘blissfully funny and touching’ THE GUARDIAN
‘an utterly delightful theatrical gem’ THE DAILY TELEGRAPH
OSLO’S ODDEST ODD-COUPLE After years of institutional life Elling and his hapless housemate Kjell are thrust into the real world, clinging together in the hope of staying aﬂoat. Based on the Oscar-nominated ﬁlm, this laugh-wrenching hit comedy oozes charm, humour and compassion.
29 OCT — 8 DEC
SOUTHBANK THEATRE, THE SUMNER BOOK NOW MTC.COM.AU BERT LABONTÉ, RONALD FALK, DARREN GILSHENAN, EMILY GODDARD, HAYDEN SPENCER DIRECTOR PAMELA RABE SET & COSTUME DESIGNER CHRISTINA SMITH LIGHTING DESIGNER MATT SCOTT COMPOSER/SOUND DESIGNER DAVID FRANZKE
MTC is a department of the University of Melbourne
Major Partner Opening Night
LETTERS AND NUMBERS
PLEASE COME AGAIN
Artists A Arti rt st stss Ma M Madeleine d le de lein inne Fl Flynn lyn ynnn aand ndd Tim Tim Hu Ti Hump Humphrey mphr mp hrey hr ey have h ve ha ve ccre created reat re ated ed Gauge, Gaaug uge, an an interactive int n er erac actitive acti tive ve aart artistic rtis istiticc installation innstal inst sttal a la lat ation tthat hhaat lo llooks ook oks ks at at tthe he iideas he deas de as ooff we w weather, eat ath the her,r, water and scale. They spoke to Aleksia Barron about the dual inspirations of poetry and data.
“[Growing up in the country] gives you a relationship to weather that’s different to [the one you’d have] if you grew up in the city,” says Flynn. “I grew up on a wheat farm in north-eastern Victoria, and water was a really big thing in the ‘70s: distribution, resources, containing water.” It seems fitting that Flynn and Humphrey would then turn their talents to a project inspired by water and weather, especially given their artistic predilections. As Flynn explains, “We’ve been working a lot with trying to make poetic sense of data – of large numbers, of large collections of things.” In a bid to balance the dichotomy of science and poetry, Flynn and Humphrey have created Gauge, a multi-sensory interactive artistic experience. To achieve their vision, they assembled a team of varying disciplines. Artists Graeme Leak, Rosemary Joy and Cameron Robbins came on board, as did two scientists: Australian National University’s Dr Michael Roderick and the University of Melbourne’s Dr Adrian Pearce. The scientists and artists have collaborated across the various installations that make up Gauge, and it’s clear from speaking with
Flynn and Humphrey that they are incredibly engaged with the results. The conversation veers from discussing the “closed system” of water in the atmosphere to the beauty of the sound of water in different situations. Humphrey explains their fascination by saying, “We think about what it sounds like, basically – all the different ways that water can sound, with the different ways that it’s contained and channelled and used. We had our curiosities piqued by the sound of low bubbles, or the sound of rain on strings, [water] falling on a piano.” The idea of water on piano strings has been realised in the form of the “water piano”, an installation where water has been incorporated into the instrument, which visitors to Gauge can actually play. Gauge has been created in the Meat Market space, a large, historically significant venue that has lent itself well to realising Flynn and Humphrey’s vision. From the interactive installations to the weather station installed on the venue roof, they are proud to have created a thought-provoking and highly engaging experience. “We’re hoping that people will come and play with it and hang out in it,” says Flynn, adding that her greatest hope for Gauge is that it will provoke curiosity about weather and water in those who visit. Given the phenomenal importance of water and its particularly vital role in the dry Australian landscape, it seems that Gauge could have much of importance to say – and some beautiful, innovative ways of saying it. WHAT: Gauge (as part of Going Nowhere program) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 23 to Sunday 25 November, Arts House: Meat Market
their successful rockstar friend to return from out of town. wn.
“A grunge-era version of Waiting For Godot,” is how director Adam Spellicy describes the play SubUrbia. Sarah Braybrooke gets the lowdown from the filmmaker.
A far cry from the play’s venue in the charmingly arty environs of Abbotsford Convent, Spellicy describes the carpark setting as representing “any sort of suburban hell-hole in the middle of anywhere.” Anonymity and ennui are the order of the day, and nothing says that better than the forecourt of an allnight convenience chain store.
Written by Eric Bogosian in the early ‘90s and then turned into a Richard Linklater film, the action centres around a group of young people who hang around the car park of a 7-Eleven, trying to work out what they want to do with their lives as they wait for
The characters want to get out of the suburban wasteland they find themselves in, but there are barriers in the way, both real and imagined. Spellicy explains; “All [of them] are very frustrated, alienated and insecure. Some of them live in this
kind of imagined future that they see for themselves, and haven’t got a clue how to get there.” In the meantime, the carpark is where they meet. “It’s the preinternet age, and in those days there wasn’t any such thing as a global community. Wherever you had the fortune or misfortune to be born, you had to find members of your tribe if you were going to have a chance in hell of not sinking into the quicksand of suburbia. You had to find the other freaks and weirdos and creative types to collaborate with and support each other.” After growing up in Adelaide, Spellicy knows teenage disenchantment when he sees it.
As the second decade of the 20th century unfolds, Spellicy – who was in his mid-20s at the height of the ‘90s – is part of a generation who came of age in the Slackers era and are now starting to look back. You can put your Nirvana t-shirts, flannel shirts and Dr Martens away though; he’s adamant that the play is far from just a bit of retro indulgence. “It’s not a nostalgia piece and it doesn’t feel at all dated. It almost feels like it’s examining the seed of a kind of malaise that is now in full bloom.” He gives an example: “There’s a kind of paralysis in one of the central characters, where if he can’t do something extraordinary straight away he doesn’t want to do anything at all... I feel like that [kind of] paralysis seems to be almost an epidemic among people who are the same age as the play’s characters in 2012.” WHAT: SubUrbia WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 28 to Saturday 30 November, The Abbotsford Convent
ART S TA R T E R
Five minutes with
CELESTE CODY Why is a festival like Short + Sweet important? Short + Sweet is a vehicle for the fledgling artist to put on quality, supported work, and for the experienced artist to showcase new work to a respected and respectful audience. The fact that S+S has hundreds of participants is an indication of how important it is to have the festival. It is a colourful patchwork of Melbourne theatre. As a participant in Short + Sweet in years past, what was it like creating a piece that went for ten minutes? I participated in S+S three years in a row as a director and as a creator in my last year. I found the concept of telling a rounded and interesting story in ten minutes hard at first, but by the third year I found it liberating.
With ten minutes you can take the entire audience on a journey. You just have to make sure that you are creating something that’s sincere. What do you think is the most important aspect of being the Theatre Festival Director? Being open-minded and friendly. There are a lot of individual participants who all have a voice. Always keeping in mind that there are many individual artists in the festival is super important. What’s the most memorable Short + Sweet piece you remember seeing? Born In A Taxi did a fantastic physical theatre piece in the 2008 S+S. What in your everyday life do you do that takes ten minutes? Blowdrying my hair, catching the train to the city, grabbing some soup at lunchtime, quick game of ping pong. What was the first play you saw?
I would have been very young. I did see The King And I and Hot Shoe Shuffle. I remember not being allowed to see Blackrock when I was young. The most memorable memory of a play I saw when I was younger was Stolen. What do you think theatre should be? Anything and everything. I think a purist attitude to anything artistic is counter-productive. Theatre can be something isolating and distant, making you feel detached and emotional, or it can be warm and funny and make you want to happy kick all the way home. The validity of all theatre is in the eye of the artist. WHAT: Short+Sweet Festival WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 21 November to Sunday 9 December, Chapel Off Chapel Disclosure: Inpress Arts Coordinator Cassandra Fumi is a participant in the Short & Sweet Festival
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54 • For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews
M AC K AY
D I S TA N C E
E D U C AT I O N
CRICOS Provider Codes: QLD-00219C, NSW-01315F, VIC-01624D CO13684B
When it comes to the weather, Madeleine Flynn and Tim Humphrey are connected more closely than most. The two artists, who have been working together for nearly 20 years (“in art and in life,” says Flynn), both grew up in rural Australia, and are both extremely aware of the tenuous relationship between people, livelihoods, water and weather. It’s this shared background that sparked their desire to create Gauge, an interactive installation designed to provoke curiosity about these integral environmental forces.
“There’s a part of Adelaide that’s cool, which is about the size of a postage stamp, but the rest of it is just unadulterated suburbs.” For him, breaking free was all about using his imagination “I made the choice with my friends to form a band, create my own reality and get out.” After focussing on music and filmmaking, he has only moved into theatre directing recently, a transition he describes as “a challenge, and quite a thrill.”
DEERHOOF SEVERED HEADS DOVEMAN LUSTMORD BUKE AND GASE ACTRESS VAN DYKE PARKS WITH GUESTS INC. DANIEL JOHNS BRYCE DESSNER (THE NATIONAL) THIS IS THE KIT JHEREK BISCHOFF NEIL FINN PAUL KELLY GLEN HANSARD ARCHIE ROACH LAURIE ANDERSON & KRONOS QUARTET JG THIRLWELL’S MANOREXIA CLOGS (FEAT. PADMA NEWSOME) GORAN BREGOVIC DEMDIKE STARE SOLARIS (BEN FROST WITH VISUALS BY BRIAN ENO) ROBIN FOX POLE TIM HECKER & DANIEL LOPATIN (AKA ONEOHTRIX POINT NEVER) BEN FROST ATOMTM TRINITY (BIOSPHERE, LUSTMORD & MFO) THE CARETAKER / V/ VM
Fresh Pizza. Old Price. $3 Pizza for dinner at Bimbo.
GIG OF THE WEEK
KYLIE AULDIST FRIDAY, EVELYN Kylie Auldist has been making music all her life (like, she actually recorded her first song at age six) and has just launched her third solo album, Still Life. Auldist rose to notoriety through her involvement with The Bamboos and her voice is now respected as one of the best Australia has to offer. It’s not uncommon for Auldist to be mentioned in the company of the likes of Sharon Jones and Diana Ross and her launch at the Evelyn this Friday is an opportunity to witness a worldclass soul songstress at the top of her game. If you like music with soul, don’t miss this.
FRONTLASH CLASS ACT
Was great to hear Jack Thompson recite Banjo Patterson’s Man From Snowy River at the Screen Music Awards on Monday. As far as tributes to this cinema legend’s career goes, it could have only been topped by a re-enactment of Sunday Too Far Away’s famed bare-arse washing scene. Coldplay pics by Kane Hibberd a lady the row in front of us practically humping her plastic chair during The Scientist. Martin certainly has a very sexual way of grinding into that piano, which is probably what set her off.
COLDPLAY THE TEMPER TRAP ETIHAD STADIUM As we walk in and out of black curtained-off sections, getting closer to our designated aisle in the gargantuan Etihad Stadium, we hear throbbing bass and news commentary samples from the London riots. It’s The Temper Trap and they launch straight into London’s Burning. Frontman Doug Mandagi sounds a bit harsh in the “AAAAaaaah” bits, which call to mind a toddler hooning about playing aeroplane crash. And what’s with the lyrics, “Everything is nothing”? Please discuss. There’s a carnie in the stalls who has brought along a rhythmic gymnast’s ribbon, which she flails about. “It’s good to be home,” Mandagi stresses regularly. Science Of Fear, with its rolling percussion, ups the ante and sees punters jigging away in their seats, but the whole ‘frontman providing additional drums’ shtick is getting a bit old – which bands don’t do that these days? Sweet Disposition explodes aural bliss-bombs throughout the stadium. The frontman tests out Chris Martin’s catwalk during this final song and it’s pleasing to note this hasn’t been made out of bounds for Coldplay’s support act. Reams of black fabric cover the arena seats behind the stage and these have been graffed with neon painted
phrases such as “clumsy things” and “luminous and wired”, which looks kinda like a rock eisteddfod backdrop. All were handed special Mylo Xyloto wristbands upon entry and now messages on the giant screens insist that we put them on since they’re “Part Of The Show”. With Etihad’s roof open tonight, we pray these wristbands are heated! Coldplay’s intro tape of choice is from Back To The Future’s main title. As the title track from the band’s latest album kicks in, all wristbands illuminate making the audience resemble a field of multicoloured flashing tinsel. It’s difficult to achieve wow-factor these days, but they’ve one-upped the effect AC/DC created at this very stadium with their sea of lit-up, red headbands avec devil horns. Pyros detonate in pretty colours. Then cue the confetti cannons. Impossibly far-reaching lasers accentuate this arena’s vast periphery. What an opener! And now for some power ballads. Chris Martin pulls up a piano stool to showcase those magnificent pipes on In My Place and we notice the graff theme has extended to Coldplay’s musical instruments, which are all decorated accordingly. There’s a burning smell. Oh, no! Have some of the wristbands caught fire? Thankfully it’s just post-pyro stench. Martin promises us the best concert ever and then stops his bandmates a few notes into their next song, admitting he fucked up. That jovial, self-deprecating manner of his ensures instant forgiveness. There’s
Enter that insistent Yellow guitar riff. It’s amazing how many fans try to sing along with Martin, his range is extraordinary and so they invariably have to regulate octaves through the verses and then catch up with, “Your SKI-in/Oh yeah, your skin and BO-ones.” Truly luminous. Rihanna appearing on screen to mime her Princess Of China parts in absentia just puts us in a bad mood, ‘cause her concert was appalling last year. The visuals also take a while to catch up to the sample, which makes her image’s lip-synching outta wack. Martin needs to cut it out with the crazy eyes; he’s just fine without the added OTT expression. When Martin sings Warning Sign, many in the crowd would love to have the following phrase delivered personally: “So I crawl back into your open arms.” There’s then a very abrupt transition into Don’t Let It Break Your Heart. Drummer Will Champion is a contender for fastest sticksman alive here and his arms move faster than the human eye can register. Martin substitutes “Ramsay Street” into a song at one point for those paying attention and when he pops up on a mini-stage beyond the halfway mark, GA patrons make a beeline for it. The rest of Coldplay join Martin and there’s another false start, but we love him for acknowledging yet another blunder. As Coldplay race through the crowd back to the main stage, we’re reminded of when Martin similarly legged it across the Sydney Cricket Ground during his band’s generous appearance at Sound Relief. That was in Fix You, which is a poignant inclusion again tonight. Coldplay are dedicated to providing an experience.
JUNGLE OUT THERE Hope you’re checking out lots of local talent during Melbourne Music Week – tomorrow night’s Music Safari is the highlight of the program. It’s the perfect opportunity to support venues that stage live music all year ‘round – rather than scene-y temporary venues charging us overthe-top prices to drink beer from paper cups.
LET THERE BE ROCK AC/DC now available on iTunes? Christmas must be coming…
BACKLASH BANKING ON IT
The World Bank has finally got on board in acknowledging the potential devastating impact of climate change. Wouldn’t have anything to do with all those developing countries they’ve loaned money to being washed away by rising sea levels, would it?
IMPORTED BECKS David Beckham’s management have hosed down speculation he’s headed to Australia to play in the A League, but have hinted they are seriously accepting an AFL offer to take Israel Folau’s place at Greater Western Sydney.
PLANE STUPIDITY Good on Rihanna for flying a bunch of music journos around the world to promote her new album, even if the singer locked herself in a panic room while everyone else smashed piss. Attention record companies: we promise we’ll behave if you take us on the next one.
For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews • 57
A Man, puts a whole lot of soul back into the song that Salt-N-Pepa kind of left out when they covered it. Whether she is harmonising with her backing singers, sounding a little like Destiny’s Child, or putting a bit of an acid-jazz spin on the arrangements, Monique’s music is more influenced by what happened in the ‘90s than the ‘60s or ‘70s. She concludes her show with a new tune and this sassy showstopper suggests that Monique’s next album will definitely be worth the wait. Back in the day in amongst Incognito, Brand New Heavies and Young Disciples was Omar. Omar’s vintage makes him more of a young soul rebel than part of the current generation of neo-soul artists. Thrilling the ladies, it was Omar who possibly inspired D’Angelo to take his shirt off for the cover of Voodoo and while Stevie Wonder has recently claimed to like Frank Ocean’s music, he was talking up Omar in much the same way many years ago. Tonight Omar’s band produces a busy jangle that puts a soulful spin on funk and acid jazz-inspired grooves as he croons on a selection of hits and some new tunes. After dealing some seriously uplifting, sun-kissed vibes, Omar reflects that it has taken him 20 years to finally tour Australia. His singing voice may be deep and resonant, but it is amusing that he sounds like a bit of a geezer when he talks. While the hype machine has dubbed Omar a “soul legend”, he’s had a curiously slow-burning career that has given us a mixed bag of just six albums. The Prince is only half full, but the fans that Omar has drawn are fanatical and they enthusiastically take photos and applaud his every move. Covers of the old William DeVaughn tune Be Thankful For What You Got and Roy Ayers’ Everybody Loves The Sunshine offer the most blissedout moments. Landing gently, Omar’s groovalicious tunes provide a chilled Friday night comedown. Guido Farnell
EMMYLOU HARRIS & HER RED DIRT BOYS, BEN ABRAHAM PALAIS: 10/11/12 Grizzly Bear pic by Andrew Briscoe
GRIZZLY BEAR, KIRIN J CALLINAN BILLBOARD: 13/1/12 Reinventing himself at every turn, tonight we see Kirin J Callinan cast as ringleader. Opening on his own as he strangles a tone from his guitar, Callinan is here tonight not only by virtue of his presence on Grizzly Bear bassist Chris Taylor’s record label, but also due to a growing appreciation for his visceral art-rock of late. Midway through he rolls out his band and things get a bit The Virgin Suicides as four instrumentally adept ladies play along while Callinan stalks about the stage, shouting at them inaudibly. Things threaten to fall apart completely on several occasions but, as it’s all in the name of spontaneity and experimentalism, it gets a pass. Grizzly Bear hit the stage bang on time tonight. The venue is rammed with super fans, a fact not lost on co-vocalist Ed Droste as he takes the time to thank everyone profusely before playing a note. When those notes do come, they’re in the form of Speak In Rounds taken from the universally acknowledged Shields. It’s a fitting opener as, like many songs in their set tonight, the track moves from lowing melancholy to all-out tempestuousness so quickly you often wonder if you’ve gotten lost and found yourself in the middle of another tune. The sound at Billboard is pristine, and as the band launch into the Daniel Rossen-led Sleeping Ute, cylinders really start firing. Rossen himself is a revelation, his guitar work breathtaking. Grizzly Bear really do exist as more than the sum of their parts, especially tonight. Every member contributes something unique – whether it’s Chris Taylor’s choirboy falsetto and woodwind work (although the way he stoops to play really does look like he’s about to charm a snake from a wicker basket), Droste’s distinctive baroque vocals or Chris Bear’s hurricanery on the drums. They seem like nice guys too and there’s zero pretension about the way they casually chat to the crowd, constantly mentioning the fact that Billboard is a former strip club and joining in with some well-oiled audience members in calling for Bear (the drummer, not the band) to play a solo. He ends up explaining paradiddles. While You Wait For The Others sees things loosen up to a point where the band’s travelling instrumentalist stage dives (seriously), but as they finish the encore with an almost a cappella version of Veckatimest’s All We Ask, there’s no doubt in the room that we’re witnessing something very serious and equally mercurial. Chris Hayden
ASIF ALI KHAN & GROUP ARTS CENTRE FORECOURT: 11/11/12 Passion and emotional intensity are displayed commonly enough in songs of romantic love and grief, but they are rarely observed in songs of spiritual devotion. Such is the case with the qawwali music as performed by Asif
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Ali Khan & Group. Qawwali, a form of Sufi devotional music dating back at least 700 years, is mainly performed at Sufi shrines and religious festivals in Pakistan and India, and is designed to connect spiritually with its listeners for extended periods of time. Khan, a student of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan -- the larger-than-life Pakistani singer fêted for bringing the genre to the attention of international audiences in the ‘80s and ‘90s – plays the Punjabi Ang form of qawwali like his late master. Together with his nine-men strong qawwali party, he sits cross-legged on a Persian rug spread on the ground. Khan and three other vocalists – two of whom also play the harmonium (a small portable hand-pumped keyboard instrument) – sit in the front row, and the rhythmic section, consisting of percussionist and handclapping chorus, sit in the back row. In a brief introduction, they explain that all they share comes from within them. And although the messages that follow in the spoken words of their songs may be initially lost due to language barrier, the power and passion of their music soon embrace and draw the audience in with driving, finely attuned rhythms. Two harmoniums, a table and dholak (hand drums with tensioning rope lacing around) plus energetic handclapping are all that accompany Khan and the singers’ full-throated vocals to mesmerising effect. Their voices regularly rise to a feverish level and fall instantly to a quiet whisper in the space of a heartbeat, often reinforced through Khan’s expressive, skyward hand gestures. In the tradition of attending a qawwali party’s performance, the audience is invited to show their appreciation by slipping donations under a cushion positioned at the front of the stage throughout the concert. For their final song, they invite everyone to stand on their feet and join the chorus with their clapping, paying tribute to the spirit of the music itself.
“I know I do a lot of sad songs, but they make me happy,” Emmylou Harris laughs apologetically after an impassioned rendition of The Pearl. She tries to compensate by immediately following up with the patina-defying Together Again, but the audience is only too happy to indulge her. Earlier, local Ben Abraham proved impressive in support with his own country-style songs – his wide-ranging voice soaring high under the tall Baroque-domed theatre. However, Emmylou Harris’s steely, silvertinged vocals easily eclipse him as soon as she steps on stage – with her now-signature, snow-white hair and matching sequinned white boots – and opens with the first bars of Songbird. Her Red Dirt Boys alternately layer or showcase the banjo, accordion, fiddle, keyboard, electric guitar, bass and percussion. The setlist is a thoughtful balance of contemplative items drawn largely from Harris’ latest album Hard Bargain against upbeat country-rock selections from her extensive back catalogue. After more than four decades of writing and performing, Harris is earnest in arriving at a juncture where she reflects on mortality – not only stemming from the cumulative loss of many central relationships in her own life, but also some of those she has never met. My Name Is Emmett Till is a haunting narrative told from the perspective of the 14-year-old African American boy in the title, whose brutal 1955 murder in Mississippi was a defining moment in American Civil Rights history. The most poignant songs however, are of losses closer to home – Darlin’ Kate is a fragile, heartbreaking tribute to close friend
and late folk singer Kate McGarrigle, performed solely by Harris with her classical guitar. The Ship On His Arm is inspired by an artwork gift from a good friend who passed away last year and stirs thoughts of her own parents’ love despite separation and the unknown. She engages in a little lighthearted banter to rouse our hearts from the emotional weight her songs cast and also pays acknowledgements to mentors and trail-blazers such as The Carter Family, the McGarrigle Sisters, Gram Parsons and Texan singersongwriter Billy Joe Shaver, whose Old Five And Dimers Like Me the band performs in their encore. Her voice has matured with a distinct crispness over the years that make the higher notes a little challenging (she jokingly admits at one point that “the air is so thin up there”). And the familiar, slow-burning harmonies and yearning verses of love, loss and isolation are now viewed through wisdom that only age can bring. Ching Pei Khoo
REFUSED PALACE: 15/11/12 A single note drones over an older-than-your-average and increasingly restless Palace crowd. A black ‘Refused’ curtain drops, covering the stage, and we add another 20 minutes to the 14 years we’ve waited for the Swedish five-piece to finally tour their ‘groundbreaking’ album of 1998, The Shape Of Punk To Come: A Chimerical Bombination In 12 Bursts. As the banner drops, some wonky backing track mumbles and they launch into the album’s title number – a statement of intent – as the downstairs crowd predictably goes fucking berserk. Vocalist Dennis Lyxzén is a ball of energy, but he just doesn’t own it. A whip of a man, he can move – he even pulls splits at one point – but where The Bronx’s Matt Caughthran, say, can hold the crowd with the intensity of his eyes alone, Lyxzén’s constant gyrations distract from the gravity of the situation. The playing is impeccable. The interplay between guitarists Jon Brännström and Kristofer Steen is flawless and fast. The sound is decent without being great and, moving through a chunk of the album early, they bring the required energy levels to do the album justice. Unfortunately, there’s a mammoth in the room that goes by the name ‘Nostalgia’. No matter how you try to escape it, ‘dynamic’ tempo shifts and whiney ‘political’ diatribes between songs stink of 1990s ‘emotional hardcore’. It’s only a trace element of the show as a whole but, like a mosquito bite, the niggle is disproportionate to the scale. There are high points, especially deeper into the set where the band move into a more brutal and steadily tempoed phase. The Deadly Rhythm is the only true flash of brilliance, though Refused Are Fucking Dead, complete with fat-man stage invader, elicits the strongest mosh response of the night. They touch on at least a portion of The Stooges’ TV Eye and moving into the back end of the set, when they finally drop the Swedish precision and actually cut loose, there are moments where you start to wonder what might have been. Destroying the audience with New Noise as the first encore number and going out with the highlight of the night, Tannhauser/Derive, is a deft touch – leaving sweatdrenched punters with a sense of closure (they’re not ever coming back). But there was always a void between the statement this album was trying to make and what the band actually do. Shiny guitars, OTT stage theatrics and pouty emotional shit are not, were not, and will never be what ‘punk rock’ is about. What we can be thankful for is that it’s not 1998 anymore and The Shape Of Punk To Come was not the punk that came to pass. Samson McDougall
Although each musical item runs for up to 15 minutes, Khan’s impassioned, wide-ranging vocals and fierce concentration don’t reveal even the slightest hint of exhaustion. It is not hard to imagine that he could easily continue on in his master’s vision and successfully take qawwali music across borders much further afield. Ching Pei Khoo
OMAR, CANDICE MONIQUE & THE OPTICS PRINCE BANDROOM: 09/11/12 Candice Monique has been slinking around the bars and clubs of Melbourne, hitting us up with her unique blend of urban styles for some years now. Fronting her band The Optics, Monique sings a selection of tunes from her 2010 debut In My Soul and plenty of new material that we can expect to hear on her next album. Monique’s style is soulful, which is in keeping with the theme of the evening, but she and her band effortlessly blend r’n’b, funk and even a little daisy-age hip hop. Her cover of the old Stax soul hit by Linda Lyndell, What
Refused pic by Kane Hibberd
Mike Patton’s Mondo Cane @ Regent Theatre pics by Heidi Takla
MIKE PATTON’S MONDO CANE REGENT THEATRE: 12/11/12 Mike Patton appears looking like the Godfather with his slicked-back hair and white jacketand-pants combo – an outfit perfectly suited to performing his interpretations of orchestral Italian pop music from the ‘50s and ‘60s. Tonight Mondo Cane involves a full band, string ensemble and three back-up singers all led by a conductor, with Patton the undeniable star. He brings his trademark quirkiness as he starts the brilliantly crazy jazz cacophony of Che Notte! with the sharp, loud blast of a cap gun. Next, the sultriness of Ore D’Amore is a complete contrast and, interestingly, towards the end Patton inserts the lyrics from
a Men At Work song, Who Can It Be Now?, in the first inkling of a cheeky Australian tribute. The swelling string introduction to Quello Che Conta then segues into the brutal intensity of Urlo Negro, complete with its insanely happy chorus sitting in between Patton’s deranged, high-pitched screaming. Throughout the night during breaks between songs, the flute player riffs into the intro of Men At Work’s Down Under, which makes Patton crack up laughing every time. It seems perhaps an in-joke, or maybe the band are enjoying giving the performance an Australian touch – it’s hard to tell.
! LE SA
One of the best things about an intimate gig like this is that all the headline act’s instruments are laid out and ready to go. There’s only 15 minutes between Noga’s conclusion and The Dark Horses taking to the stage. The billing of this show as The Dark Horses featuring Tex Perkins, rather than the other way around, is testament to the band’s collective ability. Sure, Sexy Texy is still the main man, and patrols the stage with a swagger and a grin, but his band are more than a sum of their parts. Long-time collaborator Charlie Owen is in his element, jumping from instrument to instrument with glee. Drummer Gus Agars hits with purpose, and the rest of the band work with each other perfectly.
The last song is the beautiful Scalinatella, with guitar accompaniment bringing out the pureness of Patton’s voice, especially in the gorgeous repetitive lyrics that fade out on his agile tongue. The band creeps underneath ever so quietly; the swelling strings and haunting clarinet finish off. “That’s all we got!” And it is more than enough. Jaye Weatherburn
THE DARK HORSES FEAT TEX PERKINS, MIKE NOGA Upon entering the Corner tonight, it only takes a second to realise that, despite the long-term
If there’s a complaint, it’s that some of the harmonies are a bit off and this reduces moments that could be brilliant to mediocrity. But it’s hardly enough to take away from what is a great show. Drawing from the band’s back catalogue as well as showcasing tracks from their latest album, Everyone’s Alone, The Dark Horses please their audience, and even though they play for well over their allotted hour, it all feels much too short. Dylan Stewart
UKULELE ORCHESTRA GREAT BRITAIN
Storia D’Amore is perhaps the best Patton reinvention tonight – his endless capacity for reinterpretation is impressive as he sings quickfire, singsong lyrics then turns effortlessly into a growling, operatic lunatic. The chameleonic nature of his voice is completely engaging: from a saccharine pop croon to a menacing metal shriek. As the band makes moves to exit the stage, Patton looks around, saying, “Fuck it, let’s do another one!” The vocal crowd yells for more, some questionable requests being rock hits from Patton’s Faith No More days.
By the time Mike Noga takes to the stage, the chairs are all but full, the rest of us scattered around the room ready to enjoy the show. Accompanied by keyboardist Steve Heskell, the 45-minute set fits the venue well. Without striving for heights above his reach, Noga restricts himself to his comfort zone. He’s out from behind the drum kit that he mans so well for, The Drones; instead, he’s on acoustic guitar with raspy, broken vocals. His is a solid set, and the between-song banter is as good as we’ve come to expect from this rapscallion.
G IN IA D! RN AL AN TU TR EM RE AUS IC D TO UBL P BY
pulling power and near-godliness of Tex Perkins, tonight we’re in intimate mode. The plush red curtain has been pulled out, and a cluster of tables and chairs sit front of stage, ready to accommodate any hopeful punter.
CORNER HOTEL: 15/11/12
“If this next one doesn’t get you in the mood, you’re dead!” Patton inserts his vocal gymnastics and sound effects into the perky calypso verses
LES CURRIE & SEAN MCKENNA PRESENT
of Pinne Fucile Ed Occhiali. “I’m fascinated by fascinators, anyone got one?” Inexplicably, one woman has a fascinator with her tonight, and makes her way to the stage. She pins it to Patton’s head, and departs after a peck on the cheek, fanning herself with her hand as Patton says, “Well that pretty much is going to ruin the next song”. He launches into L’Uomo Che Non Sapeva Amare, a crooning waltz that seems just right coming out of the mouth of a man wearing a fascinator. A girl in a flouncy dress races from her seat to the front of the stage, holding up a note for Patton to take. He eventually notices her, and, mid-lyric, takes the page. He looks at it briefly, still singing, then flings it away, finishing the song and muttering, “I speak no English,” with a nonchalant shrug. The crowd laughs, and Patton remains entertainer extraordinaire.
Les Le L es Currie Cu C ur rr rie ie & Sean Sea ean M Mc McKenna cK Ke enn nna pres pr p present re es se en nt THE
‘ABSOLUTELY THE BEST OF BRITISH’ MONTY PYTHON’S MICHAEL PALIN
““THE “T TH HE E BEST BE ES ST MUSICAL MU M US US SIIIC CA C CAL AL E NT N TE ER RT TA AIN INM ME ENT NT IN IN THE THE TH ENTERTAINMENT CO C OUN UNT TR RY Y… … COUNTRY… WORT WO RTH TR RTH TR A AV VELL ELL EL LIING IN NG G WORTH AVELLING TH T HOUS SA AN ND D MILES MIL ILES ES TO TO HEAR.” HE H EA AR R ..”” A THOUSAND THE TH T HE IN HE IINDEPENDENT ND DEP DE E END EP EN ND N DENT DENT EN NT (UK) NT (U UK) UK K)) K
““ABSOLUTELY “A AB BS SO OL LUT TEL ELY THE TH T HE BEST OF BRITISH” BE B ES ST TO F BR B R IIT TIS TIS ISH” H”
““WONDERFULLY “W WO ON ND DE ER RF FULLY LLY Y CLEVER” CLE LEV VE ER” ER” R” DAVID DA D A AVID DB BO BOW BOWIE OWIIE OW E
Photo: T. Mitchell
MONTY MON MO M O ON NT TY YP PYT PYTHON’S YT Y THO HON HON ON’S MICHAEL MIIIC M CH HA HAE AEL PALIN AE PALI A N
‘WONDERFULLY CLEVER’DAVID BOWIE
ARTS CENTRE MELBOURNE, HAMER HALL WED 20 FEBRUARY 8PM Book at artscentremelbourne.com.au or call 1300 182 183 www.ukuleleorchestraofgreatbritain.com.au For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews • 59
WAKE THE DEAD
BLUES ‘N’ ROOTS WITH DAN CONDON ROOTS@INPRESS.COM.AU
THE HEAVY SHIT WITH LOCHLAN WATT
HARDCORE AND PUNK WITH SARAH PETCHELL
promises of refunded tickets that are yet to come through, another round of bad news perhaps comes as no surprise to many. Maybe it’s time to bow out of the game? What a mess.
Wanda Jackson The Lumineers really shot to fame earlier this year when their debut, eponymous record started to do very nice business in the USA and Aussie audiences started paying attention. The band have been out on the road with everyone from Old Crow Medicine Show to Dave Matthews Band (how does that horrid, horrid act manage to select such great supports?), but this is after they played a whole bunch of open mic nights in their native Denver, Colorado, where they presumably earned their performing stripes. The band now see themselves heading out to Australia next year for a bunch of shows (plus they’ll be on the Bluesfest bill, I promise) and it will be interesting to see how much their fan base can expand between now and then. I’d imagine a fair bit, their Ho Hey tune has just gone to radio and they kinda seem like one of those bands that Aussies are going to lap up. Anyway, they’re at the Corner Hotel on Friday 29 March. Can promoters out there please tell me why you haven’t brought The Avett Brothers back to Australia? Their new LP Carpenter is pretty tidy and they’ve gotta be good for at least a few hundred people in each city, right? I seriously would like to know, my email address is above. We already knew that the legendary Arlo Guthrie was going to be in the country early next year. He has been announced as appearing at both the Port Fairy Folk Festival and Blue Mountains Folk Festival, but he’s added a whole heap of headline shows to his schedule, shows that will see him playing in front of audiences all over the country. The 65-year-old folk singer is one of the world’s most renowned protest singers, taking after his father – the legendary Woody Guthrie – and rose to prominence late in the 1960s with Alice’s Restaurant Massacree, an 18-minute talking blues song that proved he had the ability to tell a story through song much like his old man. The City Of New Orleans was another hit for Guthrie, its four minute duration a little friendlier to the general public and no doubt helping it get into the American Top 40. His other most popular song was Coming Into Los Angeles, it gaining huge popularity thanks to its inclusion in the Woodstock movie and soundtrack album. Guthrie will have some very special company with him on this trip – he brings his daughter and son-in-law out to support on each show with Sarah Lee Guthrie & Johnny Irion opening on each and every date. They play the National Theatre on Thursday 7 March. The legendary Carole King announced a round of enormous headline shows in Australia last week that will see her heading along to some of the country’s bigger venues. King was last here in tandem with James Taylor for a bunch of shows that I have been told were really special. She has the kind of songbook that suggests she would probably be a pretty incredible prospect on the live stage; if you want to find out then you can do just that when she plays the Plenary on Monday 18 February. Speaking of legendary women in the world of music, Wanda Jackson’s return to Australia is pretty exciting and a bunch of intimate sideshows announced recently has me even more excited. Listening to the undisputed First Lady Of Rockabilly’s recent records, it sounds like we might have a bit of a reinvigorated Jackson on our hands next year. No rock’n’roll fan should miss seeing this legendary performer live as she plays tunes from throughout her career. Catch her at the Corner Hotel on Wednesday 20 March. In closing, I’d just like to say that you should listen to Midnight Oil’s new Essential Oils compilation because it’s amazing and will actually make you a better person. Cheers.
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Dark Funeral This week’s instalment of Adamantium Wolf comes at you from the Wi-Fi of KFC in Magelang, Central Java, Indonesia. I’ve been on tour over here for the last week and I can’t even begin to describe how ridiculous and amazing the experience has been. Wild, insane, totally fucking mental – none of it would begin to paint an accurate picture of what we’ve been through so far. Let’s just say that heavy music fans might think they are hard done by in Australia when it comes to their options with venues, shows, and bands… we are straight up spoiled little brats who have it anything but hard. The struggle faced on the streets every day here is completely real and it’s easy to see why the NYHC vibe has rubbed off so strongly over here. Take nothing for granted – no one here does. Every show is a blessing and every riff could be your last. Mosh harder, represent harder, play harder. Italian power metal lords Firewind have postponed their scheduled tour for April due to “circumstances beyond the band’s control”. Given the various dramas of late from tour promoters Whiplash Festival, including multiple cancelled international bands on their previous festival tour; publicly annoyed bands and punters who are having their comments deleted from the Whiplash Facebook page; as well as
Melbourne’s A Million Dead Birds Laughing have lost their long-serving and rather unique vocalist, Adam Stewart. A mutual split, it apparently needed to happen in order for the singer to work through some “personal issues”. The band are currently performing with former The Schoenberg Automaton vocalist Colin Cadell from Brisbane. You can catch them this Friday at the Gasometer with Brazen Bull, Akaname and Broozer. Fresh off their first overseas jaunt in Canada, Sydney metalcore group Northlane have announced a massive regional tour for January. They’ll be supported by Byron Bay’s In Hearts Wake and fellow Sydneysiders Endless Heights. You can catch the bands all throughout rural Victoria in mid-January, with shows in Wodonga, Mt Gambier, Warnambool and more… check out northlane.oztix.com.au for details. Sydney-based post-metal seven-piece We Lost The Sea have got some pre-orders for their second album happening. The Quietest Place On Earth can be pre-ordered as a download, a double LP, or a double LP with various variations on merchandise through welostthesea.bandcamp. com. Fans of Cult Of Luna, ISIS and The Ocean need to get on board with this as soon as possible. Fuck… I’m Dead’s long-awaited second album is finally real. You can get the 21-track, 26-minute mayhemic masterpiece of Melbourne’s finest goregrind through Blastasfuk Grindcore Records or fuckimdead.bigcartel.com. Swedish black metal masters Dark Funeral are hitting up Melbourne this weekend – check them out at the Corner Hotel this Saturday with Draconis Infernum from Singapore, Denouncement Pyre, Okera, Iciclan and Belligerent Intent.
FRAGMENTED FREQUENCIES WITH BOB BAKER FISH
The Overtone Ensemble A couple of weeks ago Fragmented Frequencies managed to catch local experimental group The Overtone Ensemble. A quartet led by Tim Catlin, each member played a homemade instrument constructed with a series of aluminium rods that looked like TV antennae. Wearing rubber gloves coated with rosin, they would stroke these rods, making them resonate, creating this amazing pitch of sound that just hovered in the air. It was a truly unique sonic experience, the kind of class and rigour that we’d expect from Catlin. His most recent release, on beautiful white vinyl no less, is his second collaboration with prolific Dutch producer Rutger Zuydervelt, aka Machinefabriek, and is called Patina (Low Point). They’ve followed a similar modus operandi as Glisten, where Catlin sends over a bunch of prepared guitar sounds that Zuydervelt then processes. This time Catlin has his new toy, a prepared sitar, as well as guitar and it’s resulted in a quite gentle drone-based work, interspersed with fragile flecks of guitar, looped recordings of record surface noise (which is a little ironic) and gentle chiming guitar. It’s an album that offers the space and stillness of Oren Ambarchi’s work on Touch, yet possesses a wider palette and greater complexity. This is a truly innovative, immersive and beautiful work. Infinite Decimals launched their new DVD recently, an audiovisual opus in which the improvisations of Melbourne duo Barnaby Oliver (guitar/piano) and
Don Rogers (bass/percussion) are married to Paul Rodgers’ images. Removing emotive song titles, each release thus far has featured a different array of infinite decimals; thus the DVD is titled 299 792 458 M.S 2012. At times it sees the musical duo somewhat more subdued, having to do less now that the images are providing some sort of contextual cover. It might also be because these days Rodgers gets all his existential noisy chaos out of his system playing with the Paul Kidney Experience. There are multiple techniques at play here, everything from animation to heavily processed images on a city street, though the visuals come in and out of sync with the music, at times seemingly wedded to the sounds, at others the objective seeming to be to highlight the difference. They’ve also just released 0.10992905085008, another four tracks of instrumental goodness, including a two-minute live recording from a show at last year’s Loop. Check infinitedecimals. bandcamp.com or their Facebook page. After a recent outing with The Congos, Californiabased Texas native Sun Araw has returned with a new album of deconstructed electronic squiggles. Inner Treaty (Drag City/Fuse) is a typically inebriated mess of sounds that should be conflicting, yet somehow manages to mass into some sort of vaguely coherent whole, referencing everything from dub and reggae to R&B and experimental music. At times we enter spiritual jazz territory, others experimental noodling. It’s scattered, ramshackle, carefree, feeling loose and improvised. With Melbourne electro cumbia pioneers The Cumbia Cosmonauts it’s always been difficult to tell where the DJing ended and production began. Their latest release, Tropical Bass Station (Chumsa Records), sees them creating much of their own sounds, and moving closer to a club vibe, utilising dub techniques and all manner of things that don’t fit into most people’s idea of cumbia. They’re launching it Friday 23 November at the Northcote Social Club with Congo Tardis #1 and Lamine Sonko & The African Intelligence. They’ve also just been announced as supporting legendary Syrian wedding singer Omar Souleyman next month.
The Bronx So if you missed Refused while they were in town last week, you missed out on them schooling a large proportion of modern hardcore bands on the way that hardcore bands should perform and behave. Irrespective of ticket prices or venues, the reality is that this was one of the performances of the year and is one that will not easily be supplanted in my mind (in much the same way Fucked Up destroyed Sydney’s Standard back in December last year, or the first time I saw Coerce live). Anyway, onto this week. I would like to start this week with one of the BIGGEST TOUR ANNOUNCEMENTS OF THE YEAR! Seriously, if this is an indication of what’s to come in 2013 then bring it! Thanks to Blue Murder and Destroy All Lines, punk fans can rejoice. When Descendents toured Australian in 2010 with No Sleep Til, that in itself was something fans had waited for. I don’t think they ever anticipated that the band would come back, but indeed that’s what they’re doing in February. But no, it doesn’t stop there as coming with them will be The Bouncing Souls, also returning for the first time since 2010, and celebrating their 23rd year as a band. BUT EVEN THEN the Australian national supports are Frenzal Rhomb and Bodyjar. So seriously, bring on summer, bring on 2013 and bring on Descendents. To top things off, the Melbourne show will feature Game Over. You can catch the tour when it hits Festival Hall on Saturday 9 February. Tickets go on sale this Thursday. It has been a long five years, but FINALLY the new album from The Bronx is going to be released in February. Continuing the trend of previous albums, the record is called The Bronx (IV) and it comes as the group celebrate their ten-year anniversary. Already up for pre-order, the world can get a taste of the new album through the track Ribcage which is available on iTunes and on 7”. Twelve tracks in just under 40 minutes, this sounds like The Bronx that we all know and love. Even more exciting is the fact that a new album inevitably means a tour (I have no information on this, but it is a logical assumption) and a tour means an opportunity to dance my butt off and scream at the top of my lungs. Title Fight have proven themselves to be more than a fad. Their most recent album, Floral Green, has proven that. I think it has something to do with the homage to the ‘90s combined with the complete honesty and earnestness with which they wear their influences on their sleeves that has made this album so appealing to so many. Having previously toured back in 2011, Title Fight are now returning to Australia in venues better suited to their size and standing as a band. On their second ever headline tour of Australia, Title Fight will be bringing Tasmania’s Luca Brasi along for the ride, fresh from releasing their most recent 7” Tassie. So you can catch the tour when it hits Melbourne on Saturday 16 March at the Reverence Hotel in Footscray for an 18+ show and then on Sunday 17 at Phoenix Youth Centre (also in Footscray) for an all-ages show. Tickets are on sale now. Last up for this week, Blink-182 announced a couple of weeks ago that they were finished with Interscope Records and that from here on out they would be going independent and releasing their material themselves. In the weeks that followed, Mark Hoppus and Tom DeLonge offered tantalising hints of new material in the form of an EP to be released just before Christmas. Now these hints have been concreted with the announcement that the EP will be dropping on 18 December, with pre-orders expected to be launched any day now (so keep an eye out). Blink have been very vocal about this release, declaring that this is the start of a new era for them and that they are keeping all options open. Drummer Travis Barker was also quoted as declaring that the material was a hundred times better than the songs on their last release Neighborhoods.
NEW CURRENTS WITH TIM FINNEY
URBAN AND R&B NEWS BY CYCLONE
HIP HOP NEWS AND COMMENTARY WITH ALEKSIA BARRON
Lindstrøm Remarkably, it’s now nearly ten years since HansPeter Lindstrøm first shook the post-Metro Area Italo revivalist scene with his swirling, ruminative brand of space disco. In the near-decade since, Lindstrøm has cemented himself as being as close to dance music orthodoxy as you can get without being Carl Craig; as far as I can tell, no one dislikes the guy, at most quibbling that some earlier artists (Idjut Boys, Faze Action), anticipated many of his tricks, or that he’s overrated relative to his fellow Scandinavian disconaut peers. So the problems that beset the Norwegian are the problems faced by any artist at the top of their heap for so long – how to maintain the momentum? It doesn’t help that Italo-disco, and the late ‘70/ early ‘80s generally – as organising principles in contemporary dance music – started to decline from their pinnacle of influence about five years ago (let’s call this dynamic ‘peak disco’). Lindstrøm has responded to this decline logically, by making each project a consciously startling deviation from his own norm; 2008’s elegiac Where You Go I Go Too was a paean to widescreen ‘80s soundtrack music (Vangelis’s music for Bladerunner, Moroder’s repurposing of Metropolis), while 2009’s Real Life Is No Cool with vocalist Christabelle was a loveable shift into fretful Jam & Lewis-style R&B. The pressure of constant self-reinvention became apparent on Six Cups of Rebel, released at the beginning of this year; a preposterously overblown disco/prog-rock fusion that achieved the unlikely feat of making fellow Norwegian producers and proud purveyors of ridiculousness Mungolian Jet Set appear restrained. Six Cups Of Rebel is rather better than it’s often made out to be, but it’s also exhausting to listen to, and its frenzied arm-waving mostly underscored the difficulty of pushing Lindstrøm’s brand of maximalist disco forward on any meaningful sonic level (as opposed to adding guitar solos and muppet vocals). Perhaps adding insult to injury, compatriot Todd Terje was winning plaudits at the same time by heading in the opposite direction, offering uncharacteristically serious and stripped-back synthesiser explorations that pick up where Steve Reich’s Music For 18 Musicians and Manuel Göttsching’s E2-E4 left off. Lindstrøm has responded in unusually swift succession with the concise Smalhans, perhaps not coincidentally mixed entirely by Terje. Opener R - k -St feels like a straight-laced reversion to type, all cheerful Moroder synth pulses that trace both energetic minor oscillations and a more soothing narrative arc. So far, so familiar. But the tale immediately becomes more bewitching from next track Lamm-El-Aar, which has otherwise identical ingredients that feel compressed and shaken up, the synth arpeggios ducking and weaving with dizzying agility and complexity in an intricate dance that, listening, you feel you can only just follow. Never alienating, Lamm-El-Aar and the tracks that follow offer up a brand of melodic density that bubbles with self-delight and the delight of the audience, like a free-wheeling conversation that flows so naturally it’s impossible to recreate after the fact; both Eg-Ged-Osis and the irrepressibly joyful Vos-Sako-Rv feel like they’re constantly climaxing with starry-eyed wonder. I’m frequently reminded of Orbital’s 1999 album Middle Of Nowhere, which shared Smalhans’ love of ceaselessly interweaving synth arpeggios rising and cresting in Mandelbrot Set-like profusions of colour and curlicue. The difference is that where Orbital used the entire kitchen sink, Smalhans is rigorous in its self-discipline and restrictive ingredients, its sustained love letter to the arpeggio distinguished by its ideological purity. This serves to make it the producer’s least obviously ground-breaking release yet – vulnerable to dismissal as, basically, Ewan Pearson on red cordial – but if you’re sensitive to the twists and turns in Lindstrøm’s craft, then Smalhans’ back-to-basics approach reveals itself as yet another milestone in the producer’s near-golden run.
What is it about indie hipsters and R&B at the moment? They love Frank Ocean, The Weeknd and post-dubstep soulstress Jessie Ware. Beyoncé’s sister Solange has been dubbed “The Indie Knowles” by NME. Indeed, indie and urban are mixing in intriguingly avant-garde ways, Bon Iver’s Justin Vernon having collaborated with both Kanye West and James Blake. Lana Del Rey basically cut a hip hop soul album in Born To Die, hiring ‘Ye producer Emile Haynie. Sometime folkie Channy Leaneagh fronts Minneapolis’ Poliça who, diggin’ Ocean, The Weeknd and, er, Auto-Tune boffin The-Dream, modernises Aaliyah’s ‘90s tech&B (similarly beloved by The xx) on Give You The Ghost. Poliça’s definitive song? The twisted ‘80s goth funk Dark Star with its horns. Even Canadian rave rebels Crystal Castles have R&B inflections on their new album, (III). Strange. The Weeknd, AKA Abel Tesfaye, has been off the radar in 2012 while Ocean stunned critics with channel ORANGE. But the Toronto soulster, now signed to Universal, is closing out the year with Trilogy. This comprises the three mixtapes (including House Of Balloons) that he made available for free download in 2011, only remastered with a handful of new songs. However, the most underrated figure in blog era altR&B has gotta be California’s Miguel Pimentel – or just Miguel. Happily, like Solange, the quiffed neosoulster’s fortunes are turning around. Pimentel’s latest album, Kaleidoscope Dream, has proven a critical triumph (Pitchfork loved it) and reached #3 in the US. You may have heard the sublime lead single Adorn, a ballad redolent of Marvin Gaye’s Sexual Healing, but with illwave sonic textures. Pimentel inked a deal with Jive Records – the label behind R Kelly and Aaliyah – in 2007. His debut, All I Want Is You, was then shelved as he battled a
former production company. It finally surfaced in late 2010 and, though initially faltering, became a cult (or sleeper) success with the single Sure Thing. Jive was subsequently absorbed into RCA. Meanwhile, Pimentel decided to assume greater control of his music – and marketing. He’s strategically used digital EPs to generate buzz ahead of Kaleidoscope Dream. It’s paid off. Sony Australia is giving it a concerted push. The theme of Kaleidoscope Dream is fantasy – or subconscious desire – and so it’s all very subliminal, Pimentel crafting a futuristic quiet storm. In many respects, he’s more into electro than traditional hip hop, favouring synths and employing experimental recording techniques. At the same time Pimentel, who plays guitar, is not adverse to alternative or funk rock. There are some shoegazey effects. Don’t Look Back, Use Me and Arch & Point border on being R&B takes on Radiohead (mind, Pimentel has a more pliable voice than Thom Yorke!). The Thrill, driven by its bass, is almost ‘80s indie, and Pussy Is Mine, the sparest song on an album of spare songs, is subdued grunge with simple guitar. Though Pimentel himself produced Adorn, he’s again worked with respected studio types – among them Salaam Remi, still best known for producing Amy Winehouse. Remi helmed Pimentel’s first single, All I Want Is You, featuring J Cole. Here, he oversees the trippy title-track, a distant cousin of Raphael Saadiq’s Skyy, Can You Feel Me or Ocean’s Pyramids that lifts its bassline from Labi Siffre’s I Got The, and the slinky yet spacey How Many Drinks?, which Pimentel sings partly falsetto, Maxwell-style (oh, and there’s a rap interlude). Another Fugees affiliate, Jerry ‘Wonda’ Duplessis, Wyclef Jean’s cuz, is on board for the current single Do You..., a hybrid of shoegaze and rocksteady. Pimentel actually croons, “Do you like drugs?” Alicia Keys has a writing credit for the pianoladen Where’s The Fun In Forever, deceptively upbeat. Kaleidoscope Dream isn’t so far away from Poliça’s retro-futuristic soul, but it’ll also appeal to fans of the mainstream Trey Songz, with whom Pimentel has toured. Certainly, Pimentel has rejected any suggestion that he’s a “typical R&B artist,” telling Billboard, “I want to change urban radio.” The revolution continues...
THE TV SET ANDREW MAST TAKES A BIG LOOK AT THE SMALL SCREEN
Karl Rove Without doubt the best TV of recent times has been Fox News post-Obama election win. Far from “fair and balanced”, Fox anchors became raw and unbalanced – there was the kind of emotional outpouring that reality TV directors would give their right Snooki for. These folk went way off the script. From the now infamous moment when right-wing commentator Karl Rove went into denial of the Republican loss, it was quite obvious we were in for a rough ride through the seven stages of grief. Rove has always loomed large on Fox and so, of course, he was a guest on the news outlet’s live coverage of the US election. At the point of the evening when all media outlets began to call the election in favour of Barack Obama and the Democrats, Rove challenged the call. The excruciating moment was made all the more embarrassing by Rove’s insistence that everyone else’s figures were faulty. It got to the point where election coverage co-host Megyn Kelly had to hike to the network’s tally area and ask their backroom nerds to justify their calling it a night for the Democrats. Never has denial been so beautifully realised in TV drama. Ah, if only Foxtel’s other Rove was half as convincing. And so after the denial the next six stages of grief landed in quick succession. There was pain – pretty much immediately after the Rove incident. Never had professional anchors appeared on screen looking so agonised. It was hard not to feel sorry them… for the briefest of moments. Because the anger kicked into gear as soon as all the onscreen staff had managed a decent night’s kip. Moving fast for a team still
mopping up tears, the Fox News site published the article Five Ways The Mainstream Media Tipped The Scales In Favour Of Obama. The gist of this piece became the mantra for Fox News’s squawking heads over the next 24 hours (it must be pointed out here that a network pulling in close to five million viewers for its top-rating show The O’Reilly Factor is seriously hard-pushed to not be considered a part of the mainstream media itself). One commentator spat out the word “excessive” in relation to how the “lamestream” media laid on its praise for Obama. Then came the depression. One Fox face almost sobbed about the masses who voted against presidential candidate Mitt Romney, “they ought to be on our side”. Then came the upward-turn stage when they grasped onto the fact that Republicans held on the majority of seats in the House – “we didn’t lose,” squealed one joyous commentator. The reconstruction stage followed swiftly as Fox frontpersons blatantly began plotting how to rebrand Republican policies to appeal to those who voted for Obama. The new mantras became “Latino” and “Hispanic”. Most of Friday’s post-election broadcasts set out to show how Latin-friendly they could be. There was even an Hispanic band playing on one program. See, we’ve already forgotten Fox’s unswaying support for the harshest of immigration policies over the years. Hell, we’ve even forgotten that hours earlier they were blaming Latinos for voting for Obama because, along with all those blacks and sluts, they wanted those free abortions he was dishing out. Nope, now Latinos were a race who fundamentally share Republican Christian values. This can only mean that the final stage of grief, acceptance and hope, is on the way. This will never be as good television as watching Fox convince us that Democrat followers voted in Obama because they are so dumb they actually believe he’s magic. (This ‘magic’ conspiracy even earnt itself an entire segment on one Fox News program.) Who wants to see hope and acceptance on Fox? Because as Fox News itself learnt from the first Obama election, ‘Hope’ sucks.
Deece The best things in life are, in fact, very rarely free, but we can add the new Jackie Onassis EP Holiday to that list. It’s the first release for the Sydney duo, who are part of the One Day crew alongside the ascendant Spit Syndicate and the ever-brilliant Horrorshow. They recently supported Spit Syndicate in Melbourne and dropped a very impressive set, and it’s great to see that they can back up their on-stage skills with good results in the studio. From the strangely sublime Smoke Trails to the brilliantly brassy Crystal Ballin’, these eight tracks make for worthy repeat listening. And, of course, you can get it all for free. Download Holiday from jackieonassis.net. Crate Cartel’s Fluent Form has been lying a little dormant in 2012, but he’s been cropping up now and then with some fierce tracks, the latest of which is Ricochet Rabbit. The rhythmic alliteration of the title is a good indication of the track itself, which features Fluey’s trademark ferocious yet precise rhymes over a dark Must beat. It certainly suggests good things will be upon us when Fluent Form’s third LP drops. The track has been put up for preview on Bandcamp and can be downloaded in just about any format your little heart desires in exchange for whatever you want to pay. Ping ping ping, indeed. Check it out and show your appreciation at fluentform.bandcamp.com. This Friday, we’ll also see the release of Melbourne MC Deece’s debut solo album, A Cornered Season. Deece’s frequent collaborator, producer B Wiv, is certainly a key member of the album team, producing six of the 16 tracks, but A Cornered Season has really been Deece’s opportunity to singlehandedly take the reins on an LP release. With Deece a fixture in local hip hop for many years, it’s little surprise that a plethora of noteworthy MCs and producers have stepped up to contribute to this record – Maundz, Geko, Mass MC and Bigfoot are among those featured on the mic, while the production roster includes the aforementioned B Wiv, WIK, Plutonic Lab and more. A Cornered Season drops this Friday 23 November, so make sure you pick yourself up a copy to check out the latest from this influential artist. Another important solo offering that’s hit us in the recent months is J Mac’s EP, The Wake Up Call. J Mac’s been tearing up Melbourne stages aplenty over the last few months with his fellow Aphilliate P.Link, and his solo EP has proven to be well worth the wait. The seven-track EP is packed with plenty of tight rhymes and classic beats, and J Mac proves on more than one occasion that he has a talent for turning a phrase (“You thought I missed the train/But I made my own tracks” is a beauty). Production comes courtesy of Must Volkoff, Trem One, Vince Van Go and Engineer, plus guest appearances from P.Link and One-Sixth. You can grab a copy via iTunes or at rawthenticrecords.bigcartel.com. If live gigs are music to your ears, get down to the Laundry Bar this Friday 23 November for Tycotic and Lomas’ ‘joint’ launch show. You really do have to call it a ‘joint’ launch under the circumstances – Tycotic will be releasing his new single, The Weed Song (possibly about gardening, probably not), and Lomas is dropping a new video mixtape, Diary Of A Mad Half-Black Woman. Both NSW artists have been doing the hard yards supporting Australian and international performers, so if you like their vibe, make sure you’re there to support them when they take centre stage. Also performing will be intriguing female hip hop act Fatal Attraction and Hybrid Flow.
For more opinion go to themusic.com.au/blog • 61
HAVE YOU HEARD?
THE KEY OF PLATER
After a year of relentless gigs, local noir artrockers Michael Plater & The Exit Keys will be playing their final show for 2012 at Tago Mago this Sunday afternoon. Joining them will be the legendary Ben Salter (The Gin Club) and indie-pop geniuses The Coves. The show kicks off at 4pm and it’s free entry.
At the Toff In Town in November Pourparlour are your resident band. Not only are they digitally launching a new track off their debut EP at the start of each week, but this Tuesday they are
MONARCHY IN UNISON
LUCKY SEVEN PLAY SUMMER SWING SMACKDOWN AT ST KILDA TOWN HALL ON SATURDAY 24 NOVEMBER How did you get together? Jase (vocals/trumpet) tried several times with different combinations of Adelaide musicians to put a swing band together, and it wasn’t until 2004 that our happy little group of misfits bundled together a set of ‘40s swing hits and supported Adelaide rockabilly band The Saucermen on their album launch at the Jade Monkey. The Lucky Seven project blossomed from there. Have you recorded anything or do you prefer to tool around in your bedroom? Lucky Seven has one studio album, Waiting For Valet, a couple of live albums and have had the pleasure of being asked to assist on several collaboration albums. After nine years it is time to pull the finger out and get another studio press done.
Union Royale combine the pedal steel and vocals of Shane Reilly (Tex Perkins, Blue Sun), the Hammond organ of the legendary Tim Neal (Paul Williamson Hammond Combo, Archie Roach) and the percussion of Toby Lang (ex-The Audreys, Kate Nash). These intimate Sunday sessions starting at 4pm are free for one and all at the Spotted Mallard.
BUN IN THE OVEN Teen sensations The Breadmakers hit the LuWow on Saturday to lay down their thumpin’ swamp pop in the temple of sin, shame and scintillation. Shake, stomp and wear out that aqua dancefloor once again. Don’t miss out and bring ya own damn maracas. From 8pm, $10.
ALTERED STATES Chris Altmann returns to Australia to present his new album, Nothing But Nice Things. Tonight (Wednesday) he teams up with Nick Murphy. Last year Murphy released his second album post-The Anyones and toured nationally to critical acclaim. Catch them both in the Retreat front bar from 8.30pm.
PARTY ANIMALS We all love a good party, and this November RSPCA Victoria is calling upon animal lovers of all ages to go wild with their mates and participate in their exciting new event – RSPCA Party Animals. Whether it is a cocktail party, BBQ, or just pre-gig drinks, you’ll be helping raise much-needed funds. Register online to learn more about the event and how you can host your own party at rspcapartyanimals.com.
GET SOME TRILL ON Little League Bounce Club presents another banging event for November with the usual players alongside some local heavyweights: DJ Perplex, A13 and Hellez. With such an all-star line-up, expect hood classics and heavy rollers all night, along with skills, spills and some trill on Friday at Laundry Bar.
The final Victorian Roller Derby League showdown for 2012 concludes in a wild celebration at the Spotted Mallard this Saturday. The night features bands from 10pm including the all-girl ‘60s garage quintet The Reprobettes, plus a special secret act featuring the triumphant return home for one of the VRDL’s own singing superstars. Entry is free.
REAL DEAL MCNEIL
DEAR JOHNNIE Get loose with Johnnie & The Johnnie Johnnies, Melbourne masters of wild ‘60s garage go-go, this Thursday at the LuWow. Setting the dancefloor alight with a cocktail mix of psychedelic garage surf-rock exotica, come and party like a tidal wave hit your livingroom. It’s $7 on the door, for an 8.30pm start. Johnnie & The Johnnie Johnnies – just like a Hawaiian milkshake, only crunchy.
WHAT’S IT WORTH In the name of Melbourne Music Week and all that is loose, the friends who make up I Oh You! are returning to the Toff In Town to host a free party as part of the Music Safari this Thursday. Brisbane’s Millions will headline with a little help from special guests Mining Boom. I Oh You DJs will spin until the end. Doors open at 7.30pm.
Hailing from the wilds of Ontario, Canada, Tracy McNeil has quickly become one of Melbourne’s finest imports. Her sound is an authentic mix of alt.country and rock-pop goodness, dip-dyed in Australian roots. Tracy McNeil and band play a free show this Thursday with one of Melbourne’s newest and most exciting bands, Raised By Eagles, featuring Luke Sinclair on vocals. It’s all happening at the Retreat Hotel from 8pm in the bandroom.
MORRISON ROCKETS The Morrisons play rock’n’roll. The Morrisons play rock’n’roll loud. The Morrisons play rock’n’roll loud and fast. The Morrisons are a Melbourne four-piece punk rock’n’roll orgasm, infamous for filling sticky dancefloors with sweaty bootay. They’ll be bringing their own special brand of dumbas-dogshit punk to the Retreat Hotel this Friday with their good mates Red Rockets Of Borneo. Music starts at 9.30pm.
Following on from the release of her debut single Shoestring, Dune will be bringing her sonic kaleidoscope of tracks to the Toff In Town this Saturday. Dune will once again be taking punters on an uplifting sonic journey, traversing expansive sonic landscapes and soaring vocals, all driven by textured tribal beats. Doors open at 8pm with tickets $12+BF through Moshtix outlets.
Can you sum up your band’s sound in four words? Brady Bunch gypsy psychedelia. If you could support any band in the world, who would it be and why? Are we allowed to say Radiohead because we missed out on tickets? If a higher power smites your house and you can only save one record from the fire, what would it be? I would save one of my grandfather’s 78-speed big-band records seeing as I haven’t been able to find a record player to listen to them yet. Do you have a lucky item of clothing you wear for gigs and what is it? I tend to wear the same shoes every time. Then again, I wear the same shoes every day. If you invited someone awesome ‘round for dinner what would you cook? We are pretty inventive with our cuisine. We can make a fine curry, and then if that person was to stay over, we make a mean scrambled eggs. What’s your favourite place to drink in Melbourne? Emma’s house. It’s cheap and we get to piss off shitty neighbours.
DROPPED Penny Ikinger was born out of Sydney’s underground indie-rock scene of the late ‘80s. She is recognised as an icon of Australian indie rock. In the past month or so she has been busy touring in part at the invite of legendary Sydney indie label, Citadel Records, helping them celebrate 30 years since their inception. She now brings her band to Melbourne for a magical show this Saturday at the Retreat, with support from Faspeedelay.
IN THE COMMUNE
62 • For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news
Have you recorded anything or do you prefer to tool around in your bedroom? Bedroom recordings are more of a means of getting ideas laid out, which is productive, but when more professional approaches have been offered we’ve been glad to take up those opportunities to cement our sound.
Singer-songwriter Alex Hallahan mixes music genres and the human condition into an intoxicating soundtrack of life on his latest album, Human Veins. He is backed by his band The Woodland Hunters, who brilliantly create a textured landscape alongside Hallahan’s songwriting prowess. Catch them live in the Retreat Hotel front bar this Saturday from 4pm followed by Rocky & The Two Bob Millionaires at 7.30pm.
ON A BUDGET
This Sunday the Toff In Town is set to welcome the blues and rock swagger of Melbourne’s The Hello Morning, and the folk and alt.country stylings of Buffalo Tales. The Trouble With Templeton will complete the evening, along with a special pre-Meredith Festival warm-up performance by an artist we’ll refer to as Lima Spitz for this one time only. The doors open at 6pm with tickets $14.80+BF through Moshtix outlets.
HOWARD SUPPORT SHIPS PIANO AT THEIR EP LAUNCH ON THURSDAY 22 NOVEMBER AT THE TOTE. How did you get together? Edward Lloyd, guitar/vocals: Three of us started jamming in a suburban backyard shed accompanied by slabs of Coopers and The Brady Bunch. Eventually we got around to recruiting a second guitarist and a drummer and everything fell into place.
If a higher power smites your house and you can only save one record from the fire, what would it be? My vinyl press of Gerry Mulligan and the Concert Jazz Band at the Village Vanguard and I guess I better grab the wife and kids as well.
What’s your favourite place to drink in Melbourne? The LuWow. Josh and Bab’s put on one hell of a show!
The Ramshackle Army have signed on for a special three-week residency at the Spotted Mallard to bust out some old and new songs. They will play two sets this Thursday as the final instalment of their mini-residency. Rich Davies & The Devils Union will support from 9pm. Entry is $5.
BREAKING THE MOULD
If you could support any band in the world, who would it be and why? TICK! We supported Cherry Poppin’ Daddies last week. Had a ball. They are a lovely group of guys and we were able to spend enough time with them to allow our giddy fandom to subside and talk on a ‘big boy’ level about music and the world (ha!).
If you invited someone awesome ‘round for dinner what would you cook? I would ring Matt, our alto player, and have him whip up something.... funnily enough, we are neighbours and he is quite the chef – very convenient.
After releasing two singles this year – 1963 and Good Intentions – and receiving great reviews and solid radio play, Heavy Beach are releasing their debut self-titled EP. The launch will be held at the Gasometer on Friday 30 November with supports from local dreamboat band Lowtide, Brisbane’s rope-slinging babes Nite Fields and superstars Atolls. Entry is $10 and the bands start at 9pm sharp.
Can you sum up your band’s sound in four words? Swing, rockabilly, roots and suits.
Do you have a lucky item of clothing you wear for gigs and what is it? I guess for the whole band it would be our hats.... we never gig without them.
joined by Tully On Tully. The doors open at 7.30pm. Entry is $10 on the door.
After months hidden in the depths of their studio, Tessa & The Typecast return to hometown Melbourne to launch their new single Fire at the Toff In Town (tonight). Don’t miss the opportunity to be one of the first to experience the new Tessa & The Typecast as they are joined by Francolin and Esther Holt. Doors open at 7.30pm with $10 entry.
HAVE YOU HEARD?
DEM BONES Magic Bones announced a new double a-side single that takes a geographic leap across America. Magic Bones have once again self-produced a mean set and will release their new double a-side single on Friday at the Workers Club with support from The Pretty Littles, Strangers From Now On and Child.
End your spring cleaning at the Retreat Festival this Sunday. Sponsored by Brunswick’s finest brew, Brunswick Bitter, this festival featuring 11 local artists will shake the floorboards from midday until the neighbours start complaining. Enjoy the sunshine in the beer garden, have a boogie to Playwrite and Crooked Saint or cross to the acoustic stage where Lucy Wise, Rosaline Yuen and many more will be plucking their guitar strings into the night. It’s $15 on the door or presales through Trybooking. Doors open at 12pm.
SORTED FOR EPS WITH STEPHANIE LIEW
TOKYO DENMARK SWEDEN
Tokyo Denmark Sweden Independent Tokyo Denmark Sweden are a local trio with the potential for international appeal. With songs that sound like the thinking person’s club hits – dance club beats, female pop melodies and synth lines whose sole purpose is to get you moving – it’s easy to see how the band have piqued some interest despite only having existed for the last year or so. From the perfect-for-radio When It Breaks, the chunky synth in Lights Off, to the cut and chopped triumphant synths and almost retro videogame drum pad beats of Little Quarters, the EP is polished and professional. Paper Sails is the odd one out with its electro-rock leanings, crunchy drums, piano tones and added male vocals, but its penchant for the atmospheric makes it cohesive within the EP nonetheless.
PHILOSOPHY OF SOUND Fragile Disco Discotexas Philosophy Of Sound really enjoy that syncopated, muting style of playing funk guitar; it’s present on every song on the EP, most prominently on Freedom, What For? (Rework), a social commentary of sorts on the concept of freedom and being a slave to entertainment and media: “Olympic games and sci-fi names, it’s all on television/There’s games to win some money and there’s also Eurovision/These days it’s all on internet but still it’s television/ You can be always be entertained, you can forego your freedom.” Opener It Is Like That is repetitive and annoying-catchy, potentially an ear-worm you’ll want to be rid of after several minutes. A long jam, the instrumentation becomes trance-like at times – psychedelic, evoking that dizzy-on-the-dancefloor feeling. The Ilya Santana Bizarro Disco remix of the track, however, makes it sound like a completely different song; there’s a string synth line, waddling bass, home-made percussion sounds (tins, pots, hollow items, bongos), topped off with pew-pew laser noises (admittedly a bit out of place). The title track is an instrumental that comprises battling synth lines, sliding chords on guitar and metronome beats; it holds its own without vocals, unlike Young Lover, despite its cloud-like padded synths, whip-crack drums and carefully considered dynamics. A promising effort from this Melbourne duo.
Tristen Bird is back at the Retreat Hotel next Tuesday at 8.30pm. It’s going to be another intimate front bar show; joining him again will be the incredible Ben Franz on pedal steel guitar plus other special guests for two sets of new and old material.
Grace Knight is one of the most enduring talents in Australian music. With ARIA nominations and chart-topping recordings in each of the past three decades, Knight’s spellbinding performances touch the soul and lift the heart. This Saturday night, the Flying Saucer Club will be rolling out the red carpet for Knight. Doors open at 8pm.
ON HIS FLUTE Wouter Kellerman’s live shows demonstrate why he is regarded as one of South Africa’s most musically adventurous proponents. He incorporates a fusion of influences and styles into his music, from traditional Senegalese songs to tango-inspired numbers and from South African sounds and rhythms to Irish influences. Kellerman plays this Thursday at the Thornbury Theatre from 8pm.
AURAL WINDOW – STONES AND SOUNDS What’s the song about? Mike Palomeque, drums: iPhone zombie monsters taking over planet earth. Is this track from a forthcoming/ existing release? It’s the first single from our new EP called Candlelight. How long did it take to write/record? Our demos change a lot over the weeks before we record; it is never set in stone until it is finally recorded. We recorded the new EP in two weeks up at Electric Sun Studios.
TROUBLED WATERS With roots in Melbourne, Phillip Island, Tasmania and New Zealand, Bridgewater brings together an interesting group of musicians with songs to match. The band’s debut album continues the kind of sound pioneered by bands such as The Rolling Stones, Fleetwood Mac and The Black Crowes. Bridgewater launch their self-titled album this Friday at the Revolver Bandroom with special guests James O’Brien (The Boat People) and Lydia Crawshaw. Doors open at 9pm with $15 entry.
GET DOWN BENNY Mark Wilkinson presents Benny’s On The Rooftop, the first single lifted from his forthcoming album. Having become a crowd favourite and staple of Wilkinson’s live show, this dark up-tempo track seemed an obvious choice to introduce his new studio sound. Head along to the Thornbury Theatre this Friday to hear the single and other new tracks from 8pm. Entry is $20 on the door.
DIRTY BASTARDS La Bastard are back with a new bass player, new songs and a new album. Out through Off The Hip in January, Tales From The Beyond explores the sultry, darker underbelly of La Bastard. La Bastard will be showcasing songs from the new album with a select run of warm-up shows before launching the new record in February, followed by a national tour. The band will celebrate their comeback show at the Old Bar on Friday 30 November with Sun-God Replica and Mightiest Of Guns.
SUPER WILD RETURN Super Wild Horses have been hiding out for most of this year, working hard at finishing off album two. It’s finished and will be out early next year. In the meantime they will be previewing a bunch of new songs on Friday 30 November at the Grace Darling. Special guests Teeth And Tongue and Pageants will also appear with a hand from DJ Twerps. The doors open at 8pm.
HEAVY BEACH Heavy Beach
64 • For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news
Will you be launching it? Friday 30 November at the John Curtin Hotel. For more info see: auralwindow.com and facebook.com/auralwindow
What was inspiring you during the making of the EP? The amazing musicians that played on the EP and the talented people surrounding me. Also watching the growth and birth of this EP has been like watching a new life grow. It has been so organic and rich. It exceeded all my expectations. I have grown as a musician and songwriter and am so grateful for all of it and now with The Missing Pieces just want to share it with the world!
They’re a band with strings, piano, big tunes and a plainly daft name and are unique among their peers – My Friend The Chocolate Cake will play a show at the Flying Saucer Club this Friday. The gig will feature songs from the band’s huge and impressive back catalogue as well as their latest release Fiasco. Doors open at 8pm.
Do you play it differently live? Pretty much the same, but we leave out the Gregorian folk chanting and Peruvian flute samples.
How long did it take to write/record? Six months to record. The songs were written over the last three years.
LuWow presents Girls In The Garage: a night of rampant female rock’n’roll, beat, garage and R&B. Featuring The Kave Inn and all-girl garage growlers The Reprobettes on the loose and out to get every thrill they can beg, buy or steal! Lock up your sons for the battle of the discjockettes, Barbara Blaze Vs The Duchess, and the ever bustin’ moves of the leopard-clad Gogo Goddesses. This Friday, 8pm, $5.
We’ll like this song if we like… Peanut butter… and sunshine!
How many releases do you have now? One EP release, two single releases.
LOCK UP YOUR SONS
The Lost And Lonesome Recording Co and Knock Yr Socks Off Records are presenting the launch party for Milk Teddy’s debut LP Zingers. It’s at the Tote this Sunday with Yama Boy, The Stevens and The Ancients also appearing as supports. DJ Bjenny will round out the night. Doors open at 4pm with $10 entry. A full BBQ and salads are included.
What was inspiring you during the song’s writing and recording? As heavy as we are and as melodic, all of us have a lot of different music tastes and we combined our best parts. The demo came from mashing together two separate songs to form one. It seemed fitting that this song came from working together.
ALEXIS NICOLE – PAPER CUT OUTS
Independent Featuring guitarist and vocalist Ali Edmonds (Little Athletics, Damn Terran, Ali E), drummer Mark Renall (Howl At The Moon) and bassist Clayton Pegus (Spun Rivals), Heavy Beach incorporate the best things about ‘90s psychgrunge guitar pop with modern sensibilities. In 1963, reserved string plucking evolves into open, expansive riffing and tones that are simultaneously fuzzy and elegant. Fire, much like most of the other songs on the EP, is based on the guitar playing off a simple bassline; the instruments are each given enough space to move and explore their own parts within a song. Good Intentions is noticeably darker, sexier and more vivacious than the rest, with sultry bass, a non-traditional time signature and the surprising but fitting addition of organ. It makes the other tracks sound laidback in comparison. Heavy Beach show their punk influences on Five Days, which revolves around two main notes and a repetitive melody, while I Know You’ll Wait is sassy, modern rock that oozes an air of confidence from its bass grooves and Edmonds’ vocals. However, Edmonds is at her most enticing on Warm Shadows, where she sings lowly and almost scathingly, a sharp edge to her voice. It will be interesting to see where Heavy Beach take their sound.
NOT FORGOTTEN Propelled by her sold-out preview show at the Famous Spiegeltent in March, the historic Thornbury Theatre will provide the setting for the release of Mietta’s debut CD single Gone. Mietta’s eclectic musical style, intoxicating vocals and rhythms blend Brazilian samba, Spanish flamenco and even hints of Middle Eastern music. She will be joined by special guests Ngaiire and Arte Kanela this Sunday from 7.45pm.
What’s your favourite song on it? My favourite song is Letting Go as it means a lot to my life this year especially, having experienced lows and gaining the strength and healing to move forward, overcome them, stand up and start again as a new person. We’ll like the EP if we like… Songs that don’t hold back and share every element of emotion and hopefully take you on a journey of growth. Raw, folk/roots music… Will you be launching it? Next Wednesday 28 November at the Toff In Town.
HOWZAT! LOCAL MUSIC NEWS BY JEFF JENKINS
BETWEEN THE DARKNESS AND THE DAWN “Share with me,” Lauren Bruce sings on her debut album, Before The Dust Settles, “’cause I wanna share with you.” Lauren’s songs lure you with a gentle, poetic grace, but her hooks hit you unexpectedly. Just when you have her pegged as fragile and delicate, she strikes you with a sassy chorus. Before The Dust Settles is the best debut album I’ve heard this year. The back-story is a bewdy: a young singersongwriter from Nambucca Heads lands in London seeking fame and fortune. She ends up cold and lonely, but just as she’s planning to return home, she meets another Australian musician, Matt Whytcross, who invites her to record at his house – an old church in Lincolnshire, about two hours from London. The nearest town is a place called Boston,
66 • For more opinion go to themusic.com.au/blog
Before The Dust Settles (out now on iTunes and CD Baby through Gumption Music) heralds the arrival of a remarkable new talent. Lauren could be music’s second greatest Bruce. As she sings at the start of the album, “The sun’s coming up on my dreams.”
which inspired Elton John’s Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting. “And nothing has changed,” Matt laughs. “It’s the Moe of England.” Lauren plans to record a song or two. Three months later, she has finished an album, ready to be mastered at Abbey Road Studios. “It was exciting and scary,” Lauren reflects on the recording. “The songs were so fresh and emotional and then I was stuck with them in such an isolated place. I really had to face why I’d created them.”
The title, Before The Dust Settles, was suggested by Eli Stowe, who recorded and mixed the album. “It was about everything being so up in the air and transient and emotional,” Lauren explains. “It was a period of change, but it’s during those times that magic happens; it’s when creativity flourishes. Using that vulnerability and uncertainty to capture something that’s beautiful and real.” The album features a homesickness song called Pickin’ Bones. “It was right in the middle of a really cold winter in London,” Lauren recalls, “I was trying to write a happy song, so I was strumming away on E for about twenty minutes. I just wanted home and family and I wanted to feel the summer vibe of Australia. And all I could see were grumpy people on the Tube.” Music was Lauren’s salvation. “I’ve got my iPod,” she sings, defiantly. “I didn’t have any money, but I knew that as long as I had my music, I could get through.” Lauren now calls Melbourne home. “Everybody in London told me to go to Melbourne,” she smiles. “It’s so cultural and the music scene is so great. And it’s also got the four seasons that I love.”
Fresh from launching his new best-of, The Story So Far, Hunters & Collectors’ Jack Howard is adding his trumpet to The Break, the “supergroup” featuring Rob, Jim and Martin from Midnight Oil, and the Violent Femmes’ Brian Ritchie. Coincidentally, Jack was once mistaken for Peter Garrett while on tour in the US (he was also wrongly recognised as Right Said Fred). The Break’s cosmic new album will be out in March.
As Year 12 students celebrate schoolies, Abbey Stone is promoting her debut single. For Everything is a poignant piece of piano pop, reflecting on 13 years of sharing school with friends and people you barely get to know. “We made it through,” Abbey declares. Abbey has just finished her VCE exams at Northcote High, where she debuted the song at school assembly. “It was so nice to get to perform the song for everyone it was written about,” she says. “It’s a cliché, but the song wrote itself. I was sitting at the piano, looking at a photo of me and one of my best friends. I realised that our lives were going to be so different next year.” Abbey – who turned 18 this month – has wanted to be a singer ever since hearing Aerosmith’s I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing when she was four. She grew up in Fitzroy, and her grandmother would often get her to sing for fellow tram travellers. “I guess they were my first gigs,” Abbey laughs. Her school’s career counsellor recently called, concerned that Abbey hadn’t applied for any university courses. But Abbey plans to make music her life. And For Everything shows that she’s got the goods.
CHART WATCH Still no homegrown hits in the top ten. Heartless SAMANTHA JADE (number 12, debut) Battle Scars GUY SEBASTIAN (15) Party Bass BOMBS AWAY (27) Rock Star REECE MASTIN (29) Wish You Were Here DELTA GOODREM (33) Get Along GUY SEBASTIAN (34, debut) Take It Home JOHNNY RUFFO (35) Boom Boom JUSTICE CREW (36) Clair de Lune FLIGHT FACILITIES (38, debut) Flume floods the charts, landing at two. Flume FLUME (2, debut) Armageddon GUY SEBASTIAN (5) Child Of The Universe DELTA GOODREM (13) Beautiful Nightmare REECE MASTIN (17) Essential Oils MIDNIGHT OIL (24) Atlas PARKWAY DRIVE (26) The Rubens THE RUBENS (33) Beautiful Noise LEE KERNAGHAN (35)
HOWZAT! PLAYLIST Into My Garden LAUREN BRUCE Let Me Live JACK HOWARD For Everything ABBEY STONE Maybe SPAZZYS Broken Heart Attack BEKI COLADA
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TOUR GUIDE OMAR RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ: Sunday 25 November, CherryFest, ACDC Lane; Sunday 2 December, Corner Hotel
THIS WEEK INTERNATIONAL BROTHER ALI, SEAN PRICE: November 21 Prince JOE PUG: November 21 Workers Club DI’ANNOS BLAZE: November 22 Hi-Fi MARTIN ATKINS: November 22 Northcote Social Club DELANEY DAVIDSON: November 22 Public Bar; 23 Spotted Mallard; 24 Old Bar COOLIES: November 23 Gasometer FREQ NASTY: November 23 Brown Alley HOPSIN: November 23 Prince DARK FUNERAL: November 24 Corner Hotel KORA: November 24 Hi-Fi EYEHATEGOD: November 24 Billboard JOEY CAPE: November 24 Bang NICKELBACK: November 27
NATIONAL ANGUS STONE: November 21 Palace; 23 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 24 Pier Live (Frankston) JACKSON MCLAREN: November 22 BALL PARK MUSIC: November 22 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 23 Palace BATTLESHIPS: November 22 Espy DUNE: November 22 Toff In Town THE PRETTY LITTLES: November 22 Tote; 23 Workers Club; 24 Espy Front Bar GUY SEBASTIAN: November 22 Trak Lounge Bar MILLIONS: November 22 Toff In Town THE BEARDS: November 22 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) MAGIC BONES: November 23 Workers Club PIRATE: November 23 Bar 303 GREENTHIEF: November 23 Brunswick Hotel MARK WILKINSON: November 23 Thornbury Theatre MELODIE NELSON: November 23 Grace Darling EAGLE & THE WORM: November 23 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 25 Pure Pop KYLIE AULDIST: November 23 Evelyn BOB EVANS: November 23 Trades Hall STRANGETALK: November 23 Ding Dong THE DEMON PARADE: November 23 Espy NORTHLANE: November 23 Healesville Public Hall; 24 Coburg Public Hall; 25 Ringwood Community Hall TUKA: November 24 Workers Club THE MESS HALL: November 24, 25 Northcote Social Club BLACK FOX: November 24 Espy THE DAVIDSON BROTHERS: November 24 Yinnar Hotel THE FUMES: November 24 Espy AGENCY DUB COLLECTIVE: November 24 Espy Gershwin Room MILK TEDDY: November 25 Tote MAKE THEM SUFFER: November 25 Invasion Fest (Ringwood); 26 Eastern Station Hotel (Ballarat) ART OF SLEEPING: November 27 Northcote Social Club
FESTIVALS QUEENSCLIFF MUSIC FESTIVAL: November 23–25 A DAY ON THE GREEN: November 24 Rochford Vines (Yarra Valley) CHERRYFEST: November 25 Cherry Bar
UPCOMING INTERNATIONAL NICKELBACK: November 28 Rod Laver Arena IWRESTLEDABEARONCE: November 29 Corner Hotel; 30 TLC Bayswater MAJOR LAZER: November 29 Hi-Fi SIMPLE MINDS, DEVO, THE CHURCH: 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 MICHAEL MAYER: November 30 Prince Bandroom THE KNOCKS: December 1 Toff MARK FARINA: December 1 Mercat POUR HABITS: December 1 Evelyn; 2 Tote REEL BIG FISH, GOLDFINGER, ZEBRAHEAD: December 2 Palace COLOR ME BADD: December 2 Alumbra SOULWAX: December 2 Red Bennies OMAR RODRIGUEZ-LOPEZ: December 2 Corner Hotel BLONDIE: December 3 Sidney Myer Music Bowl 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 OMAR SOULEYMAN: December 5 Hi-Fi GRIMES: December 6, 7 Corner Hotel SPIRITUALIZED: December 6 Hi-Fi DJ KENTARO: December 6 Espy HOT SNAKES: December 7 Corner Hotel PRIMAL SCREAM: December 7 Palace TYGA: December 7 Prince Bandroom TODD TERJE: December 7 Liberty Social TURBONEGRO: December 7 Hi-Fi MAYDAY PARADE: December 8 Billboard LAGWAGON: December 8 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 9, 10 Corner Hotel HAWTHORNE HEIGHTS: December 8 Bang; 9 Pelly Bar (Frankston) JENNIFER LOPEZ: December 11, 12 Rod Laver Arena ALEXISONFIRE: December 12 Festival Hall HOME BREW: December 12 Ding Dong KENDRICK LAMAR: December 13 Prince REGINA SPEKTOR: December 14 Plenary SHIHAD: December 14 Espy PAUL KALKBRENNER: December 14 Billboard JB SMOOVE: December 15 Thornbury Theatre EVAN DAND0, JULIANA HATFIELD: December 18 Corner Hotel MORRISSEY: December 19 Festival Hall THE DATSUNS: December 20, 21 The Espy LOST ANGELS: December 21 Hi-Fi KENDRICK LAMAR: December 21 Palace Theatre THOMAS GOLD: December 22 Alumbra COSMO JARVIS: December 29 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); January 3 Corner DJ NU-MARK: December 29 Espy SHARON VAN ETTEN: December 30 Corner BOMBAY BICYCLE CLUB: January 1 Regal Ballroom SBTRKT: January 2 Billboard BEST COAST: January 2 Hi-Fi WILLIS EARL BEAL: January 2 Northcote Social Club MAXIMO PARK: January 2 Corner FIRST AID KIT: January 2 Forum BLOOD RED SHOES: January 3 Hi-Fi 65DAYSOFSTATIC: January 4 Corner Hotel THE HIVES: January 6 Forum SHARON JONES & THE DAP KINGS: January 6 Summer Of Soul Festival; 8 Corner Hotel BEACH HOUSE: January 9 Forum HOT CHIP: Janurary 9 Palace VENGABOYS: January 10 Espy BEN SOLLEE: January 10 Northcote Social Club; 11 Meeniyan Town Hall; 12 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine) PETER MURPHY: January 11 Corner BASEMENT JAXX: January 11 MCG MARDUK: January 11 Hi-Fi DJANGO DJANGO: January 12 Hi-Fi GARY JULES: January 12 Corner; 13 Trak Lounge SABATON: January 13 Corner DRAGON: January 13 Mildura Waterfront Soundshell; February 2 Kryal Castle (Ballarat); 3 Victory Park Soundshell (Traralgon); March 30 Warrnambool Racecourse; 31 Mansfield Showgrounds; May 11 Palms At Crown NIGHTWISH: January 14 Palace DAVID BYRNE & ST VINCENT: January 14, 15 Hamer Hall
68 • To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags
PRESENTS MARTIN ATKINS: November 22 Northcote Social Club BALL PARK MUSIC: November 22 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 23 Palace; December 29 Ding Dong Lounge (U18) VICTORIAN ROLLER DERBY LEAGUE: November 25 Melbourne Showgrounds CHERRYFEST (featuring Eyehategod, Omar Rodriguez Lopez Band): November 25 Cherry Bar JORDIE LANE: November 29, 30 and December 2 Northcote Social Club; December 1 Baby Black Café (Bacchus Marsh) EVIL EDDIE: November 30 Karova Lounge (Ballarat), December 1 Northcote Social Club; 6 National Hotel (Geelong) JEFF MARTIN: December 5 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 6 Ruby’s Lounge (Belgrave); 7 Cherry Bar; 8 Northcote Social Club PRIMAL SCREAM: December 7 Palace PIGEON: December 14 Platform One EVAN DANDO & JULIANA HATFIELD: December 18, 19 Corner Hotel KINGSWOOD: December 21 Cherry Bar; 31 Espy TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB: December 29 Festival Hall BORED NOTHING: January 5 Gasometer THE HIVES: January 6 Forum BEACH HOUSE: January 9 Forum YEASAYER: February 6 Hi-Fi MS MR: February 7 Northcote Social Club GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR: February 15 Forum FATHER JOHN MISTY: Februray 17 Hi-Fi PAUL KELLY & NEIL FINN: February 16, 18, 19, 20, March 4 Palais; March 2 A Day On The Green, All Saints Winery (Rutherglen) EINSTÜRZENDE NEUBAUTEN, MICK HARVEY: February 19 Palace CAT POWER: March 7 Forum DINOSAUR JR: March 7 Corner Hotel PORT FAIRY FOLK FESTIVAL (featuring Arlo Guthrie, Gurrumul, Glen Hansard): March 8-11 Port Fairy TORO Y MOI: March 9 Corner Hotel FUTURE MUSIC FESTIVAL: (featuring The Stone Roses, The Prodigy, Steve Aoki): March 10 Flemington Racecourse JON SPENCER BLUES EXPLOSION: March 15 Espy; 16 Corner Hotel GRINSPOON: March 22 Hi-Fi; April 24 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 25 Pier Live (Frankston); 26 Inferno (Traralgon); 27 Ferntree Gully Hotel BONNIE RAITT, MAVIS STAPLES: March 27 State Theatre IGGY & THE STOOGES, BEASTS OF BOURBON: March 27 Festival Hall BLUESFEST: (featuring Ben Harper, Iggy & The Stooges, Wilco): March 28-April 1 Tyagarah Tea Tree Farm (Byron Bay) ROGER HODGSON: March 28 Palais BLIND BOYS OF ALABAMA: April 3 Hamer Hall
WED 21 Agent 86, Lady Noir, + More Lucky Coq Angus Stone, Steve Smyth Palace Theatre Anne Of The Wolves Open Studio Ashy Bebida Bar Book of Ships, Great Earthquake, Kira Puru, Wilds The Empress Brother Ali, Sean Price Prince Bandroom Channelle Davis, Michelle Meehan The Drunken Poet Danny Silver, Manchild, Mu-Gen Lounge Bar Dash Veludo Dizzys Big Band, Peter Hearne Dizzy’s Jazz Club
Duncan Redmonds, Jamie Hay, Pete The Stud, Mattdoor Axeshun Bar Open Joe Pug, Little Bastard, Jess Ribiero Workers Club Junk Horses, Sad Tropics, + More Public Bar Kyle Taylor, Tane, + More Barwon Club Leighton Stace, + Guests Kent Street Bar, Fitzroy Leon Thomas, Ali Barter, Nick Cassey Grace Darling Hotel Madi Weybury, Domini Forster, Leah Senior Wesley Anne Magnusson & Wilson Quartet 303
Mammoth Mammoth, Dog hair Jacket, Uzaru Cherry Bar Mustered Courage, John Flanagan & The Begin Agains, Drooling Mouths of Memphis Dogs Bar Nadine Landry & Sammy Lind, The Beenies Northcote Social Club Nash Lee Bennetts Lane Open Mic, Brodie Brunswick Hotel Open Stage The Bridge Hotel Ruby Rose, Sean Lynch, Cameron Adamns, + More Revolver Upstairs Seymour Hollow, Palm Springs The Standard Hotel Strong Push, Steph Brett & The Sugar Fed Leopards, Roesy The Tote The Demon Parade Pretty Please The Pretty Littles, Major Tom & The Atoms, Brother James The Old Bar The Red Lights, Darts, The Summervilles The Liberty Social The Weary John Curtin Hotel Tigertown Arcadia Hotel - South Yarra Tycho, Kyson The Hi-Fi
THU 22 A Million Dead Birds Laughing, Brazen Bull, Akaname, Moth Barwon Club Angus Stone, Steve Smyth Palace Theatre Auto Portraits, Psalm Beach, Winter Nationale The Old Bar Baberaham Lincoln, Citrus Jam, Bella Jabara Revolver Upstairs Ball Park Music, Loon Lake, Pons Bended Elbow, Geelong Barbarion, Baptism of Uzi, The Murlocs, Fraser A Gorman, Laura Imbruglia, Stu Mackenzie Pony
DJ Manchild Ding Dong Lounge Drooling Mouths of Memphis, Moose Jaw Rifle Club, Ghost Towns of the Midwest Brunswick Hotel Duke Batavia, Cylinders, Davey Lane Grace Darling Hotel Eagle and the Worm!, Animaux, Nabraskatak John Curtin Hotel Evil Twin, The Hometown Electric Great Britain Hotel Flybyz The Order Of Melbourne Frowning Clouds, The Bluebottles, Sam Cooper, Dj Roy, Vince Peach, Pierre Baroni Cherry Bar Geek Pie Pony Late Show Gold Tango, Ratsak, Ex Con, Hunting Pictures The Gasometer Hotel Jackson McLaren Gertrude’s Brown Couch Joe Pug, Little Bastard, Jess Ribiero Workers Club Johnnie & The Johnnie Johnnies The LuWow Forbidden Temple Jordan Murray Uptown Jazz Café King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard, + Guests Thousand Pound Bend Leez Lido, Bullets In Berlin, Grandmaster Vicious Rochester Castle Hotel Martin Atkins, Burn In Hell Northcote Social Club Midnight Alibi Reverence Hotel, Footscray Millions, Mining Boom, I Oh You DJs The Toff In Town Mimi Velevska, The Advocates, Whodafunkit, DJ Dan Watt The Evelyn Parachute Youth, Clubfeet, Jabuki Corner Hotel
MARTIN ATKINS: Thursday 22 November, Northcote Social Club
Battleships, Second Hand Heart, Ben Wright Smith & The Birthday Girls The Espy, Lounge Bar Black Aces, The Scarletts, Dead City Ruins, Overdrive Ruby’s Lounge Charlotte Nicdao, Marc Deaz, Atluk Wesley Anne Conductors, James Kane, + More New Guernica Constant Light, Golden Light, Document Swell The Gasometer (Upstairs) Delaney Davidson, Marlon Williams Public Bar
Paul Dianno, Blaze Bayley The Hi-Fi Prequel, Edd Fisher, Principal Blackman The Toff In Town (Carriage Room) Ryk’s Blue Planet The Bridge Hotel Sam Cope & The Trained Professionals 303 Ships Piano, The Pretty Littles, Uday Tigers, Howard The Tote Smoking Toddlers, Bootyquest, Electric Avenue, Chaperone Gold Laundry Bar
Son of Set, Razors of Ockham, Let Them Eat Cake Yah Yah’s Stephen Magnusson Bennetts Lane System of Venus, Coco Velue, Grossgod, Olmeg Bar Open Teeth & Tongue Little King Café The Beards, The Snowdroppers, The Stiffys Karova Lounge, Ballarat The Cork Ceili Allstars, The Drunken Preachers The Drunken Poet The Putbacks Lomond Hotel The Ramshackle Army, Rich Davies, The Devils Union Spotted Mallard - Brunswick Tracy McNeil & Band, Raised By Eagles The Retreat Hotel Tully On Tully, Talulah, Laura Smock The Empress Wouter Kellerman Thornbury Theatre Yvette Johansson The Commune
FRI 23 Angus Stone Ferntree Gully Hotel Ball Park Music, Loon Lake Palace Theatre Bayou, Sean M Whelan, Claire Hollingsworth, Songs From Afield The Empress Bob Evans, Thelma Plum Bella Union Trades Hall Brazen Bull, A Million Dead Birds Laughing, Akaname, Broozer The Gasometer (Upstairs) Bridgewater, James O’Brien, Lydia Crawshaw Revolver Upstairs Chris Wilson Cherry Bar, Arvo Show Cumbia Cosmonauts, Congo Tardis, Lamine Sonko & The African Intelligence Northcote Social Club Dan Bourke & Friends The Drunken Poet Darius Bassiray, Muska, Kodiak Kid, Monkee, + More Brown Alley Dead, Vaz, Coerce, Bone, Laura Macfarlane (99) The Tote
Dean T, Matty G, 5FT2, B-Boogie, + More Co. & Fusion Nightclub at Crown Delaney Davidson, Marlon Williams, The Ukeladies Spotted Mallard - Brunswick Dizzy Wright, DJ Hoppa, Jarren Benton, + More Prince Bandroom DJ Pierre, Phortune, + More OneSixOne Eagle & The Worm The Bridge Hotel Greenthief, SHERIFF, Hotel on Mayfair, Tang Brunswick Hotel Julianne Jessop, Sunlark, Monday Project Wesley Anne Kill Em All, British Steel, + More Ruby’s Lounge King of the North, My Left Boot, Battle Axe Howlers, DJ Big Muff, DJ Lucy Cherry Bar Kunjani Dizzy’s Jazz Club Kylie Auldist, + Special Guests The Evelyn Lauren Elizabeth The Vineyard Looking Glass, Bat Piss, DJ Crispi The Old Bar Mark Wilkinson Thornbury Theatre Max Savage Elsternwick Hotel Melodie Nelson, Sarah Mary Chadwick, Circular Keys Grace Darling Hotel Mezzanine Abode Mustered Courage Lomond Hotel My Friend The Chocolate Cake Flying Saucer Club Neil Murray Caravan Music Club Northlane Healesville Public Hall Open Mic St Andrew’s Hotel Oppression, Building Jericho, Vendetta Bended Elbow, Geelong Poprocks at the Toff The Toff In Town Rat King, Nervous, Lenin Lennon, Psalm Beach Pony Richie 1250 Yah Yah’s (Late) Rites Wild, Absolute Boys, Terrible Truths The Gasometer Hotel Roy Green Band, Goat Spit Barwon Club Sol Nation Bar Open
Strange Talk, Movements Ding Dong Lounge Terrible Truths, Throbulator Pony Late Show The Church of Hysteria, Bucket Men, + More Brunswick Arts Space The In The Out, The Dead Heads, The Midnight Scavengers Yah Yah’s The Magic Bones, The Pretty Littles, Strangers From Now On, Child, Johnnyville DJs Workers Club
Agency Dub Collective, Lotek, Pataphysics, Ra!s Crucial, Chant Down Sound The Espy, Gershwin Room Ana Nicole, A Gender, Geryon The Gasometer Hotel Andee Frost The Toff In Town (Late) Angus Stone, Steve Smyth Pier Live Big Winter, Gabe & His Band, Bandito The Empress Black Fox, The Naysayers The Espy, Basement
MILK TEDDY: Sunday 25 November, Tote
The Morrisons, Red Rockets Of Borneo, DJ Shaky Memorial Retreat Hotel The Naysayers, Street Fangs, Charm, Houndsteeth The Espy, Basement The Reprobettes, The Kave Inn The LuWow Forbidden Temple The Saints, Kingswood, Spencer P Jones & The Escape Committee Corner Hotel The Snow Droppers, Lurch & Chief, The Demon Parade, Bored Nothing, Courtney Constantinou, Bee The Espy, Lounge Bar Tycotic, Meriki Hood, Fatal Attraction Laundry Bar Xenograft, Pirate, A Lonely Crowd, Trio Agogo 303 You Am I Karova Lounge
SAT 24 8 Bit Love John Curtin Hotel Acoustic Bended Elbow, Geelong
Collard, Greens & Gravy Elsternwick Hotel Daniel Oldcare, Rani Huszar Red Bennies Dark Funeral, Draconis Infernum, Denouncement Pyre, Okera, Belligerent Intent, Iciclan Corner Hotel Davidson Brothers Yinnar Hotel - Yinnar Dead City Ruins, The Charge, Black Aces, DJ Mary Cherry Bar Diana May Clark & The Sunny Set Paris Cat Jazz Club Dixon Cider, Burn In Hell, Bombing Angels, Muscle Mary, Scray Fish Pony DJ Ryza, Joe Sofo, Tate Strauss, Phil Ross, + More Co. & Fusion Nightclub at Crown Dune, Spender The Toff In Town Eyehategod, I Exist Billboard (early show) Flyying Colours, Honey Badgers, Mr Sharp Pony Late Show Footy, Automating, Em Vecue The Empress (afternoon)
TOUR GUIDE NATIONAL JACKSON MCLAREN: November 29 Gertrudes Brown Couch BALL PARK MUSIC: November 29 December Ding Dong THE PRETTY LITTLES: November 29 B.East; December 6 Workers Club; 27 Revolver Upstairs; January 3 Retreat Hotel; 11 Loft (Warrnambool) INDIAN SUMMER DJS: November 29 Eureka (Geelong); 30 Can’t Say OVER-REACTOR: November 29 Evelyn Hotel NIKKO: November 29 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 30 Public Bar; December 1 Reverence Hotel YUNG WARRIORS: November 29 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); December 7 Sand Bar (Mildura) JORDIE LANE: November 29, 30 Northcote Social Club; December 1 Baby Black Cafe (Bacchus Marsh); 2 Northcote Social Club HANDS LIKE HOUSES: November 30 Beaconsfield Community Complex; December 1 Bang; 2 Musicman Megastore (Bendigo) GAY PARIS: November 30 Tote NITE FIELDS: November 30 Gasometer EVIL EDDIE: November 30 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); December 1 Northcote Social Club SAN CISCO: November 30 Bended Elbow (Geelong); December 1, 2 Corner Hotel MONEY FOR ROPE: November 30 Barwon Club (Geelong); December 1 Ding Dong MISSY HIGGINS: December 4 Palais SARITAH: November 30 B.East THE TOOT TOOT TOOTS: November 30 Barwon Heads Hotel; December 1 Apollo Bay Hotel; 8 Meredith; 22 the Loft (Warrnambool) BRISCOE: December 1 Workers Club KUTCHA EDWARDS: December 1 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine) WORLD’S END PRESS: December 1 Shadow Electric CLAUDE HAY: December 1 Blues Train; 2 Westernport Hotel (San Remo) KIKUYU: December 2 Grace Darling; January 19 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); December 4 Workers Club RUDELY INTERRUPTED: December 3 secret location BIRDS OF TOKYO: December 5 Ormond Hall BUCHANAN: December 5, 22 Workers Club THE RAY MANN THREE: December 5 Toff In Town TAME IMPALA: December 5, 6 Forum; 7 Meredith; 31 Pyramid Rock BEN WELLS & THE MIDDLE NAMES: December 5 Workers Club; 6 Beav’s Bar (Geelong) CITY RIOTS: December 6 Workers Club YESYOU: December 6 Toff THE OWLS: December 6 Espy KRISTA POLVERE: December 6 Ding Dong REECE MASTIN: December 6 Hisense; January 26 Geelong Arena MERE THEORY: December 7 Workers Club LISA MILLER: December 7 Northcote Social Club; 8 Flying Saucer Club CHRISTINE ANU: December 7, 8 Bennetts Lane CLARE BOWDITCH: December 8 Arts Centre JOE ROBINSON: December 8 Toff COVELESKI: December 8 Old Bar GOTYE: December 8 Sidney Myer Music Bowl ZOOPHYTE: December 8 Ding Dong
SUPER WILD HORSES: Friday 30 November, Grace Darling
MESSRS: December 8 Grace Darling SAM SPARRO: December 9 Prince AFTER THE FALL: December 11 Workers Club THE LIVING END: December 11-17, 20, 21, 22 Corner Hotel MIKE NOGA, BEN SALTER: December 13 Karova Lounge; 14 Old Bar SHANNON NOLL: December 13 Spirit Bar & Lounge (Traralgon); 14 Wellers Restaurant (Kangaroo Ground) CATCALL: December 13 Toff In Town HARD-ONS: December 14 Northcote Socila Club KING CANNONS: December 14 Tote MEZZANINE: December 14 Noise Bar PIGEON: December 14 Can’t Say JUSTINE CLARKE: December 15 Dallas Brooks Centre CUB SCOUTS: December 15 Toff In Town EVAN DANDO & JULIANA HATFIELD: December 19 Corner Hotel THE BENNIES: December 20 Revolver ABBE MAY: December 20 Toff In Town THE DEMON PARADE: December 21 Can’t Say DARREN HANLON: December 21 Northcote Social Club KINGSWOOD: December 21 Cherry Bar; 31 Espy SPENCER P JONES & THE NOTHING BUTTS: December 21 Thornbury Theatre PARKWAY DRIVE: December 22 Festival Hall HUMAN NATURE: December 22, 23 Hamer Hall MISTLETONE MANATEE MATINEE XMAS: December 23 Northcote Social Club SOMERSET BARNARD: December 27 Retreat Hotel; 29 Dandenong Market; 30 Armageddon Cake (Geelong) CHILDREN COLLIDE: December 28 Espy THE TROUBLE WITH TEMPLETON: December 28 Workers Club TWO DOOR CINEMA CLUB: December 29 Festival Hall TOTALLY ENORMOUS EXTINCT DINOSAURS: December 29 Corner SPIDERBAIT, SOMETHING FOR KATE ET AL: December 31 Espy YACHT CLUB DJS: December 31 Ding Dong EBOLAGOLDFISH: January 4 Revolver BONJAH: January 4 Torquay Hotel; 6 Baha Tacos (Rye); 18, 19 Espy Gershwin Room BORED NOTHING: January 5 Gasometer KID MAC: January 5 Espy KSSR: January 11 Liberty Social
To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags • 69
Freyjaâ€™s Rain, Emma Wall, The Urban Folk, Jude Perl Band Wesley Anne. Band Room Going Swimming, Bored Nothing The Tote (afternoon) Grace Knight Flying Saucer Club H Block 101, The Hawaiian Islands, The Tearaways, Bloody Hammer, Slick 46, The Union Pacific Reverence Hotel, Footscray Hoodlum Shouts, Looking Glass, Epic The Gasomater Hotel (Upstairs) Afternoon Joe Chindamo Trio Uptown Jazz CafĂŠ Joey Cape BANG @ Royal Melbourne Hotel John Montesante Quintet, Elly Hoyt Dizzyâ€™s Jazz Club King of the North Great Britain Hotel Kora, The Nudge The Hi-Fi Kynan, + Guests Great Britan Hotel (afternoon) Mark Smith St Andrewâ€™s Hotel, Afternoon Mesa Cosa, Ross de Chene Hurricanes, Bad Vision, Quince Grace Darling Hotel Mighty Duke & The Lords, Delaney Davidson, Marlon Williams, Gator Queen The Old Bar
Mike Steva, Dave Pham, Eddie Mac, Phil K Brown Alley Moonee Valley Drifters, Emma Franz Victoria Hotel Nadine Landry & Sammy Lind, + Friends Lomond Hotel Northlane Coburg Town Hall Penny Ikinger, Faspeedelay, Rocky & The 2 Bob Millionaires, Alex Hallahan & the Woodland Hunters, DJ Xander Retreat Hotel Quince Jam Wesley Anne Rayon Moon, Scot Drakula, Bidet Mate, Sandcastles, Drunk Mums The Gasometer (Upstairs) Shane Dilorio Brunswick Hotel - Arvo Simmer Bar Open Smoky Seas, Darn Matter, The Beegles 303 Sol Nation The Palais, Hepburn Springs Subjektive, Frankenbok, Bronson, Decimatus The Evelyn Tasty Cakes Yah Yahâ€™s (Late) Teeth & Tongue, Harmony, Olympia The Shadow Electric Bar - Abbotsford Ten Foot Pole, Liberation Front, Cash No!, Beaver Revolver Upstairs
The Breadmakers The LuWow Forbidden Temple The Fumes, The Pretty Littles, The Corsairs, White Summer The Espy Front Bar The High Fangs, Yis, Richie 1250 & The Brides Of Christ, Western Stars Yah Yahâ€™s The Madhouse Barwon Club The Mess Hall, Uday Tigers, The Pretty Littles Northcote Social Club The Oubliette Abode The Quarrelmen Central Club Hotel The ReChords Union Club Hotel The Reprobettes, + Guests Spotted Mallard - Brunswick The Shambelles The Drunken Poet The Sideshow Brides Union Hotel Brunswick The Snowdroppers, The Peep Tempel, Cherrywood Rubyâ€™s Lounge The Vendettas, The Jacks, Indian Mynah Cornish Arms Hotel Tuka, Soliloquy, Remi Workers Club Twinsy, Sampology, Sons et al, + More Ding Dong Lounge Valentine, Long Holiday, Inedia, Boy Red The Tote
Vasoline St Andrewâ€™s Hotel Virtue, Bottle Of Smoke, Jaspers Dilemma, City Sound Brunswick Hotel VULGARGRAD, Unified Gecko, Vardos Caravan Music Club
SUN 25 4 Peace Band Beaumaris RSL 70s Variety Night The Empress All India Radio, Summon The Birds Workers Club, arvo show Andyblack, Haggis The Toff in Town, Afternoon session Away From Now, ANCHORS, The Gun Runners, Camp David, Join The Amish Reverence Hotel, Footscray Burlesque At The Wes Wesley Anne. Band Room Crooked Face, 50 Bags, Strawberry Fist Cake, The Half Pints, Spew n Guts, Admiral Ackbars Dishonourable Discharge Brunswick Hotel - Arvo Crooked Saint, Playwrite The Retreat Hotel Dan Waters, The Nymphs, Shaun Brown, Mikeangelo Northcote Social Club, Arvo Show
Dianaâ€™s Bow, Let Them Eat Cake, Remzelk Brunswick Hotel False Profi t, Collateral Damage, Wartooth Yah Yahâ€™s Geoff Achison The Bay Hotel, Mornington Hey Gringo Yarra Glen Grand Hotel Keith Fullerton Whitman, Oren Ambarchi, Robbie Avenaim, Marco Fusinato, Dean Roberts Workers Club Kelly Auty Band Lomond Hotel (afternoon) Les Thomas, Checkerboard The Drunken Poet, Arvo Show Luau Cowboys Hickinbotham Winery Marty Kelly & Aubrey Maher Lomond Hotel Melting Pot Wesley Anne, Afternoon Mietta, Ngaiire, Arte Kanela Thornbury Theatre Milk Teddy, The Stevens, The Ancients, Yama Boy, DJ Bjenny The Tote Naps, Max Crumbs, Wooshie Bar Open Northlane Ringwood Community Hall Nudist Funk Orchestra, Dale Ryder Band, Bad Boys Batacuda, Ms Butt The Espy, Lounge Bar
Omar Rodriquez-Lopez Group, Eyehategod, Tumbleweed, Dern Rutlidge, Henry Wagons, + More Cherry Bar Opa! 303 Ownkind, Kieran P West, The Melanomaids, Lane Chaser The Evelyn Phobiac, Cat Cat, Hell Seltzer, Big Tobacco The Gasometer (Upstairs) Playwrite, Crooked Saint, The Little Sisters, I Am Love Proof, + More Retreat Hotel Ruckus St Andrewâ€™s Hotel, Afternoon Saint Jude, Chris Russellâ€™s Chicken Walk, Head Honcho, DJ Dan Lewis The Old Bar Shackleton Carringbush Hotel Sweet Felicia, The Honeytones The Standard Hotel The Detonators Ferntree Gully Hotel The Dianaâ€™s, Jack On Fire, Extreme Wheeze, Peter Bibby Grace Darling Hotel The Mess Hall, Super Wild Horses Northcote Social Club The Storyteller & The Pianist 303, Arvo Show
The Trouble With Templeton, The Hello Morning, Wes Carrâ€™s Buffalo Tales, Lima Spitz The Toff In Town The Weight, Risk and Reason, Frozen Over, Reincarnation The Gasometer Hotel Timothy Cannon, Anna Cordel The Empress (afternoon) Union Royale Spotted Mallard - Brunswick Unnecessary Tension Great Britain Hotel Whereâ€™s Joss? Wharf Hotel Women of Letters Thornbury Theatre, Velvet Room Yasmin Levy Playhouse, The Arts Centre
MON 26 Ashley Fils-Aime, + Friends Brunswick Hotel Cherry Jam Cherry Bar Chris Young Quartet, The Songbird Project 303 Ghost Orkid, Nai Palm, Kirkis The Evelyn Make Them Suffer, Oceano, The Saviour, + More Eastern Station Hotel, BallaratMonte Diamonte, Blackmolls Prince Bandroom Songwriter Sessions The Old Bar
The Shelf The Toff In TownVaz, Dead, Wicked City, Hunting Pictures Northcote Social Club Zoophyte, Tom Tuena The Espy, Lounge Bar
TUE 27 Art Of Sleeping, Vance Joy, Neda Northcote Social Club Davy Simony, Bodies of Wonderland, Tash Sultana 303 Irish Session Lomond Hotel JMC Academy Performance Brunswick Hotel Make it Up Club Bar Open Nickelback Rod Laver Arena Open Mic, Nicolette Forte Prince Bandroom Open Mic Wesley Anne. Band Room Pourparlour, Tully On Tully The Toff In Town Red X Cherry Bar The Broken Sweethearts, Jayne West, Ali Barter, Dave Gillen, + More The Espy, Lounge Bar Tristen Bird Retreat Hotel Venice Music, Alicia Adkins, Sean Pollard The Old Bar
â€œLive At The Lomondâ€? THU 22ND
140 Sydney Rd
NO COVER CHARGE
(Boofy banjos nâ€™ all)
WEDNESDAY THE 21ST OF NOVEMBER - 8PM
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