HUNGRY KIDS OF HUNGARY KING TUFF THE BLACK SEEDS OTEP
N O W AVA I L A B L E O N I PA D • W E D N E S D AY 2 4 A P R I L 2 013 • I S S U E 12 71 • F R E E
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W E D N E S D AY 2 4 A P R I L 2 0 1 3
LUCKY THURSDAYS THU 25 APR
LoopHole - current exhibiting artist Naomi Wang - A Monument To Eternal Love Wed 24. 8pm-Soundscapes Monthly 'Dystopia'
BILLBOARD SATURDAYS SAT 27 APR
experimental & ambient electronic music Artists: Brookwise, By Elly & Lost Few Thu 25. 6pm - African Film Festival: Shorts and Sounds - a diverse night of African
MATT & KIM INPRESS 12
short films & DJs spinning Afrobeats Fri 26. 9pm - It's a London Thing
DADA LANDS, NO RULES OF DADA WED 24 APR
a night of UK garage from Duane A vs Rhys D
14 16 18
vs Rufkut vs Ru-Kasu supports Zayler, Aaron Static & J-Slyde - Visuals ALT ESC DEL Sat 27. 10pm - Unstable Sounds
an all-star line-up of techno and psychedelia Namarrkon & Chmcl Mssngr standing side-by-
ATARI TTEE TEENAGE ENAG GE RIOT MAK) (DIM M AK)
side with Autonomech, Azrin, Atonix & Freya
Mon 29. 6pm - The Vault - a salon for creatives
FFRI RI 1 RI 17 7 MA MAY MAY
Tue 30. 7pm - Loopdeloop animation challenge
ELUVEITIE FRI 24 MAY
Foreword Line brings you all the latest tour announcements Moves and shakes with Industry News Tegan & Sara‘s crossover sound is still quintessentially them The Kooks’ Hugh Harris is half-Aussie; and Buzzcocks share their recipe for longevity Tame Impala dish on feral share houses and pedal obsessions Karl Hyde does much more than simply create awesome dance music; and rock’n’roll and touring are where King Tuff’s heart lies Hungry Kids Of Hungary attempt to break out of the indie-pop mould Matt & Kim aim to make art out of simple things Otep’s frontwoman gets vocal about music piracy; James Reyne is about to have the time of his life; The Black Seeds watched thousands of people rush through the gate for them; and the absurd subject matters on Sons Of Rico’s album came from late-night internet voyages Whole Lotta Love looks back on their ten-year career; and Hamish Anderson doesn’t want to be boxed in On The Record rates new releases from Alkaline Trio and Thee Oh Sees
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SATURDAY 27 APRIL
KING BEE BISCUIT
R’N’B, GARAGE, AND SOUL BAND LED BY MATTY VEHL THE ZHIVAGOS. EXPECT EPIC HAMMOND ORGAN. 5PM
KIDDFECTIOUS FRIDAY 12 JUL
SATURDAY 27 APRIL
THE THREE KINGS
SOILWORK FRI 4 OCT
IAN COLLARD’S “OTHER” BAND, ALSO A ROCKIN’ BLUESY TRIO. 9PM
SUNDAY 28 APRIL
THEY SING OF AMPHETAMINEFUELLED SHEARERS, CARS, GUNS AND BROKEN HEARTS. 5PM
THE UNION HOTEL
BRUNSWICK 109 UNION ST, BRUNSWICK 9388 2235
10 • To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags
Check out This Week In Arts; we chat to Shawn Wayans about the brothers’ stand-up
tour; and Brandon Cronenberg gets into celebrity obsession in film Antiviral This week we review: I Know There’s A Lot Of Noise Outside But You Have To Close Your Eyes, Robot Vs Art, A Contract Of Love, Afghanistan: Hidden Treasures, and Watching (Mad) Men; Cultural Cringe gets in the Emerging Writers’ Festival; and Good Timing wraps up MICF Matthew McFarlane tells us about his dream part in True Minds; Jamie Meltzer gets into HRFF film Informant; and Kat Henry is all About Tommy at the moment
BACK TO INPRESS 33
42 46 48
Gig Of The Week gets groovy at Hoodoo Gurus-curated Dig It Up!; and LIVE:Reviews invades the stage at British India 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; and heavy shit with Adamantium Wolf Pop culture therapy with The Breakdown; hip hop with Intelligible Flow; other music from the other side with Fragmented Frequencies; and new current with Dance Moves The best Live gigs of the week and Sorted For EPs If you haven’t appeared in Fred Negro’s Pub, your mother probably still speaks to you; and Jeff Jenkins gets down and local in Howzat! Our Gig Guide fills your diary for the weekend Gear and tech talk in Muso Find your new band and just about everything else in our classy Classifieds
FRI 31 MAY
We have five double passes to see Drift, a film inspired by the true story of legendary Aussie surfwear moguls the Kelly brothers. Also up for grabs is a prize pack consisting of a copy of Andy Gordon’s new album The Reverent Jorfy and a double pass to the launch at the Chandelier Room (Moorabbin) this Saturday. Keep an eye on our Facebook page for a chance to win.
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NEWS FROM THE FRONT
HAILER FROM SYD For a taste of Sydney psychedelic rock’n’roll/pop, catch Hailer on tour through May and June launching their new album Another Way. Although the new material shares the eclectic spirit of Hailer’s first album Good Canyon, the recordings on Another Way track a departure from the psychedelic mellow soundscapes of their debut, to a more rhythmic guitar-driven music resulting in an intensity of sound that the groups live performances are known for. See them live on Thursday 13 June at the Brunswick Hotel, Friday 14 at Yah Yah’s and Saturday 15 at 303 (Northcote).
WEDNESDAY 24 APRIL
RESIDENCY – FINAL NIGHT
NEBRASKATAK ANIMAUX THE SUNSLEEPERS
THURSDAY 25 APRIL
SLEEP DECADE PASCAL BABARE & TEETH TOM MILEK $2.50 POTS, $5 VODKAS!
TOWERS COWGIRL CAVIAR EAMON & DUDI PROJECT FRIDAY 26 APRIL
TRUE LIVE SEX ON TOAST
SATURDAY 27 APRIL
JUMPING THROUGH HOOPS Ella Hooper’s new single Haxan is set for release this Friday, with a launch to be held at Workers Club on Thursday 9 May. The follow-up to first single Low High and another taste of Hooper’s forthcoming album In Tongues, Haxan (a Scandinavian word that translates roughly to ‘the witches’) is a tale of spells, hexes and illusions with peaks of angst and sweet, understated simmering.
CHAIN MALES Melbourne’s The Murlocs drop a unique and soulful R&B track, Rattle The Chain. It’s the first single taken from their forthcoming debut album, due late 2013. After gaining national attention with the acclaimed Tee Pee EP, which scored heavy rotation on community radio and triple j, the band went on to play Meredith, Harvest and Dig It Up festivals and support the likes of Steve Malkmus & The Jicks, Earthless, Gary Clarke Jr and Thee Oh Sees. The Murlocs are launching the single at the Northcote Social Club on Saturday 25 May with support from Hollow Everdaze and The Kremlings, and at Geelong’s Barwon Club on Friday 7 June.
NO MOVEMENT Unfortunately the inaugural Movement Festival, which was scheduled to take place in five cities this weekend, has been cancelled. Recent developments, including the withdrawal of Angel Haze (due to a clash in recording commitments) and more recently 2Chainz (due to Visa issues resulting from a pending unresolved court case) led to a change of venues in some markets, which has prompted patron feedback that the event no longer reflected what had been advertised. Ticket purchased over phone and online will be given automatic refunds, or you can get a refund at the original outlet you bought from.
SUNDAY CHAIRS NICOLETTE FORTE & FRIENDS SARAH CARNEGIE DJ HAINES
THEY WON’T BORIS Cult Japanese three-piece Boris will return to Australia this June for a set of special shows. The band will perform their record Flood plus other tracks spanning their career in an extended set. Formed in the early ‘90s as a four-piece with a sonic template of influences like Melvins and Earth, by the time of their 1996 debut as a trio, Boris had already hit their stride in creating unique ground-rattling heavy, melodic music. They went on to release more than 20 studio albums, as well as numerous collaborative albums. See them at the Corner on Wednesday 19 June.
SUNDAY 28 APRIL
PAINT ME A PHEONIX EUCLID CHICO FLASH
THE NEW POLLUTION METH LEOPARD SOOKY LA LA
MONDAY 29 APRIL
RESIDENCY – FINAL NIGHT
THE BEEGLES HOLLOW EVERDAZE PETE BIBBY PSYCHODASIES TUESDAY 30 APRIL
RESIDENCY – FINAL NIGHT
ACROSS THE POND Psychedelic legends Bardo Pond finally tour Australia this August. For more than 20 years, the Philadelphianbased space rock ensemble have been creating mind-expanding, acid-glazed psychedelic rock, without a hint of irony or an ounce of compromise. With their sound likened to that of Pink Floyd, The Velvet Underground, Sonic Youth, Spacemen 3 and My Bloody Valentine, Bardo Pond follow a similar tradition and create an all-encompassing wall of textured noise and lush soundscapes. Catch something special at the Corner on Saturday 3 August.
ON A RAMPAGE East Coast Rampage is the first headline tour for I Killed The Prom Queen since their Say Goodbye tour in 2008. Since then members have gone on to embark on a variety of different projects including Bring Me The Horizon and Deez Nuts. 2013 will see the band return with a tweaked lineup and a slew of new songs, with plans for a new album underway. On the tour, they’ll be joined by House Vs Hurricane, Buried In Verona and Saviour. Catch the quadruplewhammy at the Corner on Friday 21 June.
DECADE OF DRIVE Undisputed kings of Australian hardcore, Parkway Drive are set to commemorate ten years of achievements with a special anniversary tour this September. Major accomplishments have included two Goldcertified albums, two Platinum-selling DVDs, sold-out Australian tours, countless global circumnavigations, and appearances at virtually every major music festival on the planet. A celebration for both the band and their staunch fanbase, the tour shows’ setlists will comprise material spanning their entire back catalogue, including some older fan favourites that will be dusted off especially for the occasion. They come to the Palace on Friday 20 September.
THE SEVEN UPS LAMARAMA THE DO YO THANGS
FACEBOOK.COM/THEWORKERSCLUB INSTAGRAM @THEWORKERSCLUB TWITTER.COM/THEWORKERSCLUB TICKETS FROM THEWORKERSCLUB.COM.AU
TIX AVAILABLE THRU MOSHTIX: THE CACTUS CHANNEL (MONDAYS IN MAY) ECHO DRAMA (TUESDAYS IN MAY) I KNOW THE CHIEF (WEDNESDAYS IN MAY) VINCENT – SINGLE LAUNCH (MAY 3) ORPHEUS + NABERUS – DOUBLE ALBUM LAUNCH (MAY 4) SEATTLE – SINGLE LAUNCH (MAY 10) LORD – ALBUM LAUNCH (MAY 11) SKYWAYS ARE HIGHWAYS – EP LAUNCH (MAY 17) PLUDO – SINGLE LAUNCH (MAY 24) EL MOTH – EP LAUNCH (MAY 25)
WED 24 APR (ANZAC DAY PUBLIC HOLIDAY EVE)
(WA – ALBUM LAUNCH) THE DEMON PARADE
TUESDAYS IN APRIL RESIDENCY
HANNAH CAMERON, CHRIS PORT’S MIXER, & DJ EDD FISHER (TUE 30)
TAG @THEWORKERSCLUB ON INSTAGRAM DURING APR TO WIN MAY GOLDEN TICKET -A DOUBLE PASS TO EVERY SHOW IN MAY -$40 FOOD & DRINK VOUCHER SUN 5 MAY (MATINÉE) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’
FRI 10 MAY
THU 16 MAY
SUN 19 MAY
(SINGLE LAUNCH) THE CORNER SHOP KIDS SARAH STONE
HOUSE OF LAURENCE
(EP LAUNCH) THE GOOD MORROWS
(ALBUM LAUNCH) JACKSON MCLAREN NICK LARKINS
SUN 5 MAY
SAT 11 MAY
FRI 17 MAY
(SINGLE LAUNCH) HAARLO SHE SAID ZED
(EP LAUNCH) THE DREY ROLLIN BAND (SYD) CHERRYWOOD
(ALBUM LAUNCH) INTO THE WOODS
THU 25 APR (ANZAC DAY PUBLIC HOLIDAY) RY (EP LAUNCH) MIKEY HUNDRED SHADOW KITSUNÉ
WED 1 MAY
THE FOX PARTY
FRI 26 APR
THU 2 MAY
TUESDAYS IN MAY RESIDENCY
SUN 12 MAY
(SINGLE LAUNCH) ELOJI KWASI
(SINGLE LAUNCH) DIRT FARMER THE LAUGHING LEAVES
VALENTIINE (14 MAY) JOSEPH PAUL (21 MAY)
(ALBUM LAUNCH) THE NYMPHS
ALLDAY SAT 27 APR
SONS OF RICO
(ALBUM LAUNCH) APES NEIGHBOURHOOD YOUTH EVERY MONDAY!
TWERKERS CLUB FLETCH & JONES THUGZ’N HARMONY (22 APR) TWERKSHOP - TWERK LESSONS
12 • For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news
SHANE KENNEDY & THE CREEPS MEME
JEREMY NEALE FRI 3 MAY ‘UNFD & SELECT MUSIC PRESENT’
D AT SEA
CHASING GHOSTS SAT 4 MAY ‘PBS 106.7FM PRESENTS’ SOUL-A-GO-GO FEAT. MISS GOLDIE, ZACK RAMPAGE, DJ MANCHILD, RICHIE 1250 + SPECIAL GUEST
NEW GODS WED 8 MAY
VELMA GROVE (SINGLE LAUNCH) HIDING WITH BEARS CATCH RELEASE
SUN 12 MAY (MATINÉE SHOW) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’
SAT 18 MAY ‘EYEONEYE RECORDS LAUNCH PARTY’ - FEAT.
HOLLOW EVERDAZE JIMMY HAWK & THE ENDLESS
SUN 19 MAY (MATINÉE SHOW) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’
SAL KIMBER & THE THE STILLSONS (SINGLE LAUNCH) ROLLIN’ WHEEL LITTLE WISE
THU 9 MAY
DAN PARSONS & HIS BAND WED 15 MAY
(SINGLE LAUNCH) HAILEY CRAME SPENDER
(EP LAUNCH) TOWERS FLUXX!
POLICE & THIEVES
SUN 19 MAY (MATINÉE SHOW) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’
THE STILLSONS (SINGLE LAUNCH) LITTLE WISE
ALSO ON THE CALENDAR WED 22 MAY BISCOTTI (SINGLE LAUNCH) THU 23 MAY REDX (EP LAUNCH) FRI 24 MAY THE FROWNING CLOUDS (WELCOME HOME SHOW) SAT 25 MAY P.SMURF (EP LAUNCH) SUN 26 MAY (MATINÉE SHOW) ‘TIMBER & STEEL PRESENTS’ PAPA PILKO & THE BINRATS SUN 26 MAY JOSH FORNER (ALBUM LAUNCH) WED 29 MAY SECOND HAND HEART (SINGLE LAUNCH) FRI 31 MAY ANDY BULL (SINGLE LAUNCH) FRI 7 JUN THE CHEMIST (ALBUM LAUNCH)
NEWS FROM THE FRONT
NEON EMPIRE The Frontier Touring Company has announced that supporting Neon Trees for their heralded return Australian performances this May is Sydney’s own skilful rock outfit New Empire. Their self-produced sophomore record Symmetry debuted in the ARIA Album Chart Top 40. A sweeping collection of anthems, the rousing single One Heart/Million Voices became the theme song to the Nine Network’s national broadcast of the 2012 London Olympics. The dramatic flair of New Empire is the perfect companion to the synth-rock stylings of Neon Trees with their collective performances set to blow away Ding Dong on Wednesday 15 May.
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VALE CHRISSY AMPHLETT Legendary Australian rocker Chrissy Amphlett, lead singer of The Divinyls, has passed away after a battle with cancer at the age of 53, her husband Charley Drayton has confirmed this afternoon. He issued the following statement: “Our beloved Chrissy peacefully passed this afternoon. Christine Joy Amphlett succumbed to the effects of breast cancer and multiple sclerosis, diseases she vigorously fought with exceptional bravery and dignity. She passed gently, in her sleep, surrounded by close friends and family, including husband of 14 years, musician Charley Drayton; her sister, Leigh; nephew, Matt; and cousin Patricia Amphlett (“Little Pattie”). Chrissy’s light burns so very brightly. Hers was a life of passion and creativity; she always lived it to the fullest. With her force of character and vocal strength she paved the way for strong, sexy, outspoken women. Best remembered as the lead singer of the ARIA Hall of Fame inductee, Divinyls; last month she was named one of Australia’s top ten singers of all time. Chrissy expressed hope that her worldwide hit I Touch Myself would be utilized to remind all women to perform annual breast examinations.Chrissy was a true pioneer and a treasure to all whose lives her music and spirit touched.” Amphlett was born in Geelong in 1959 and formed the Divinyls with Mark McEntee, Jeremy Paul and Bjarne Ohlin in Sydney in 1980. The focal point of the band, much was made of Amphlett’s aggressive onstage behaviour and tough demeanour in front of rough rock’n’roll audiences. The band’s first LP Desperate debuted in the top five upon its release in 1983. The second LP, 1985’s What A Life! spawned a couple more major hits, most notably the iconic Pleasure And Pain, which did well on Australian charts and saw the band make a splash in the US, with the song getting to 12th spot on the Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks.But it was 1991’s I Touch Myself that saw the band achieve their greatest success, hitting the number one spot on the Australian charts, going top ten in the UK and top five in the US. The group eventually split early in 1997, though went on to reform and perform shows between 2006 and 2009. Amphlett, who in 2007 revealed she suffers from multiple sclerosis, was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2010. She married Drayton, who joined the Divinyls in the early 1990s and is the current drummer for Cold Chisel, in 1999. Last March Amphlett shared her physical struggles with her fans through a very personal Facebook post: “My illnesses have really exhausted this little body of mine that I have thrown from one end of a stage to another and performed thousands of shows that sadly some of you missed. With that said I am getting stronger but there is still some fine tuning and work to be done on myself. It’s a different self but my voice is strong and not affected by the MS as some reviewers have cruelly reported... I don’t reach out to people and talk about what I go through as we are all going through something... I am grateful to have the knowledge that all of this has shown me and I feel privileged that I am strong enough to ‘know’ and share that it’s really alright.” Damian Trotter, Managing Director of Sony ATV/EMI Publishing Australia, paid tribute to Amphlett when asked for comment by theMusic. com.au. “Australia bids farewell to a true original and a rock goddess of the first order in Chrissy Amphlett. Chrissy’s incredible songwriting on such classics as I Touch Myself, Boys In Town and Science Fiction along with her unique vocal style, provocative and daring stage presence, paved the way for a generation of female artists that followed. There has only ever been and only ever will be, one Chrissy Amphlett and on behalf of SonyATV/ EMI Music Publishing Australia, I extend my heartfelt condolences to Charley and the rest of her family.”
GODS CLUB To celebrate the release of a brand new music video for track Klispe from their debut EP, New Gods will be performing every Tuesday night at the Workers Club this May, with different guest acts each week. Collaborating once again with Lucy McCallum (creator of their first video clip, for track Razorblades, which followed on from the beautiful On Your Side), the Klispe clip is, according to McCallum, “a tongue-in-cheek montage about the psychology of modern capitalism”.
MIGUEL FROM MARS Miguel, the Grammy-winning R&B superstar known for his live performances, will join Bruno Mars on his Moonshine Jungle Tour of Australian March 2014. Miguel hit the mainstream in 2010 with the infectious first single All I Want Is You, a song that blended a stark hip-hop beat with Miguel’s creamy vocals to form a sound that was absent from the radio and established Miguel as one of the most unique and soulful voices in modern R&B. Catch international stars Bruno Mars and Miguel at Rod Laver Arena on Tuesday 4 (now sold out) and Wednesday 5 (newly added date) March, 2014.
PRIMARY PAINTS LOAD UP ON CARBS Carb On Carb are a girl and a boy from Auckland, New Zealand. They play noisy, poppy, dreamy emo guitar music. Their highlights of the past year have been playing the Camp A Low Hum and Chronophonuim festivals and doing a 95bfm In Session at Roundhead Studios. Carb On Carb will finish off their four-part seasonal tours with their Australasian Autumn Fall Tour in May. Check them out at the Public Bar on Wednesday 1 May and the Gasometer on Friday 3.
OMINOUS TOUR US outfit, Om, are bringing their unique blend of spiritually resonant and essential drone to Australia for a national tour this May. Om formed in 2003 from the rhythm section of the disbanded Stoner doom metal band, Sleep. With a line-up comprised of Al Cisneros on vocals and bass and Chris Hakius on drums, they released three albums plus singles and EPs on credible labels such as Holy Mountain, Sub Pop and Southern Lord. Their two most recent releases on Drag City have seen the band push their unique sound even further. Om come to the Hi-Fi Friday 10 May.
The Red Paintings are bringing an all-new stage show exclusively to Australia and will play a special show at the Espy on Saturday 15 June. Based between Australia and Los Angeles, The Red Paintings are a five-piece orchestral art rock group who incorporate other performance art features. With elaborate staging, costumes, painters and other artists, their shows combine sound and visuals to create a living canvas that stimulates the senses and minds of the audience.
A DASH OF LIFE Dash Berlin is returning to Australia to tour his latest #Musicislife album.Fans have eagerly been anticipating the announcement of the #Musicislife concert and stadium show since his standout performance at Stereosonic 2012. Joining Dash Berlin will be MaRLo, fresh from impressive performances at ASOT 600 in Beirut and Ministry of Sound in London. Catch both artists at Central Pier, Docklands on Saturday 8 June.
SKIP TO IT Fresh from playing two, packed main-stage performances at this year’s Bluesfest in Byron Bay, Skipping Girl Vinegar celebrate the release of their brand new single, Making Our Way, with two unique performances on the rooftop next to the classic neon sign of Audrey the Skipping Girl Vinegar in Abbotsford, Melbourne. The performances are Saturday 11 May, the first at 5pm (sold out) and the second following shortly after at 7.30pm, both taking full advantage of the spectacular sunset backdrop of Melbourne’s city skyline. The performances will be recorded live for release later in the year. Tickets available now from skippinggirlvinegar.com.
14 • For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news
GET BAPTISED Stray Current is the first taste of Baptism Of Uzi’s upcoming 10” five-track vinyl, Stray Currents. Stray Currents is the product of a lengthy creative process that began with the capturing of live sounds at Little Gold Studios in Melbourne. With the help of Steve Fraser at Little Gold, Baptism began paring back the once-sprawling live jams releasing the inherent melody and structure of Bojan Stojanov’s pop vision. Hear it performed in a live setting on Saturday 6 July at Northcote Social Club with Turtlenecjk and Atolls.
AN OLD FLAME Matt Corby has announced his first headline Australian tour in 12 months, having spent the last year touring the UK, Europe and US in support of the international release of his Into The Flame EP. He has been in a studio in LA for the past few months, writing and recording new material for his debut album, due for release later this year. It follows on from the huge success of Into The Flame, which is now accredited five times platinum status in Australia. Corby will return to Australia with his band to give fans a taste of what they can expect to hear. Corby will play the Palace Theatre on Friday 31 May.
TOTALLY TOGETHER Robotosaurus and Totally Unicorn, from Adelaide and Wollongong respectively, have been long-time friends but competition ensues whenever the stage is shared by these big men, especially when they have a split release to promote. With Izzy Rayson (Robots) and Drew Gardener (Unicorns) fronting some entertaining destruction-machines, this is going to be one of the hardest and most anticipated Australian release of 2013. Catch the Together Alone tour when it comes to the Reverence on Saturday 22 June.
CLAIRY AT THE CORNER Fresh off the back of SXSW and a headline tour of the USA, Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes return to Melbourne to perform their first Australian show of 2013 on Friday 31 May at the Corner. It’s already been a huge year for them, with their debut album Baby Caught the Bus reaching 66 on US iTunes charts, the single Love Letter used in a Heineken ad and the band getting signed to the prestigious US label, Vanguard, in February. Joining them with this low down, down-home party will be Juke Joint blues from Chris Russell’s Chicken Walk, singer-songwriter Ainslie Wills, New Orleans-inspired horns from The Bad Backs Marching Band and exotic tracks from Treasure Island DJs.
Baptism Of Uzi
THE WILD JUNGR Barb Jungr is set to make a welcome return to Australia in June. Renowned for her unique vocal style, interpretation of song and radical approach to arrangements, she will be accompanied on this tour by the extraordinary pianist Simon Wallace. For four consecutive years (2008 through to 2011) Jungr has ranked at the top of Time Out, New York’s Best Cabaret Awards for her shows, and in 2008 she also received the Nightlife Award for Outstanding Cabaret Vocalist. She will perform at the Melbourne Recital Centre Salon on Friday 14 and Saturday 15 June.
DOUBLE THE HEAT After the addition of Mojo Juju to select Australian shows The Reverend Horton Heat has now added a bunch of main supports and openers for the remaining shows on their upcoming tour. In Melbourne they will be joined by heavy hitters Doubleblack, who will bring their white hot, fat backbeat proto-rockabilly to proceedings. Catch the tour when it comes to Billboard Friday 31 May. Mojo Juju remains the sole support for The Reverend Horton Heat at the Caravan Music Club (Oakleigh) on Thursday 23 May.
British India’s Controller tour just got a whole lot larger, with ten extra dates added throughout May and early June. The extra dates focus on major regional locations allowing the band’s extensive fanbase to see them performing songs from their new album, Controller. The new shows are Karova Lounge (Ballarat) on Friday 17 May, Pelly Bar (Frankston) on Friday 24 and the Ferntree Gully Hotel on Saturday 25.
ONE IN A MILLION MDC, aka Millions Of Dead Cops, are credited as one of the most politically vocal American hardcore punk bands to come out of the early 1980s and will make their way to Australian shores for the first time this August. MDC are still full of break neck, old school, punk rock energy and loaded on furious guitar riffs, singing their anthems for the anarchic, open minded and disenfranchised. Seeing MDC live on Australian shores is sure to warm the hearts of old school punk rockers and delight newschool fans interested in the legacy of the punk genre. MDC will play the Corner Hotel on Thursday 15 August.
HEAVINESS MANIFESTED Introducing the ugly cousin of Saltar Hype Entertainment’s “At The Corner” events: Manifest At The Corner. On Friday 24 May, nine of Melbourne’s best heavy acts will thrash it out over the Corner’s two stages. Prepare to have your face melted as King Parrot, Dreadaught, Elm Street, Bronson, Voltera, Contrive, They, Cold Divide and Diprosus all light up the Corner Hotel.
NEWS FROM THE FRONT
A LOAD OF BULL
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Sydney’s Andy Bull has watched his new single Keep On Running go from strength to strength and is now taking a break from the studio in which he’s self-producing his next album and hitting the road for four very intimate shows around the country including one at Workers Club on Friday 31 May. Keep On Running was dropped upon an unsuspecting crowd and has taken audiences and tastemakers by surprise. His first ever self-produced affair, the song was instantly leapt upon by triple j and achieved number one most played for its first two weeks on air.
With tickets for the first You Am I shows in several cities selling out within hours of going on sale, the band are pleased to confirm additional shows. The response to this tour that will see You Am I present live performances of Hourly Daily and Hi Fi Way back-to-back in a lush theatre-styled extravaganza has been overwhelming. With the Forum show on Saturday 6 July now sold out, another couple on Wednesday 3 and Thursday 4 have been announced.
YARRA LIVE AND MUSICAL The inaugural City of Yarra Live Music Festival has been named the Leaps And Bounds Music Festival after the iconic Paul Kelly song that pays homage to the best live gigging area in Melbourne, the City of Yarra. Leaps And Bounds will run from Friday 5 to Sunday 21 July over 50 traditional venues from the Corner to the Empress and will include events at some unconventional venues as well. There will be Tram Sessions, a PBS-Live Studio Show, an indigenous community BBQ, and a collaboration with the Gertrude Street Projection Festival to close the event.
THORNY SUBJECTS Paul Thorn has created an innovative and impressive career, pleasing crowds with his muscular brand of roots music – bluesy, rocking and thoroughly Southern American, yet also speaking universal truths. Thorn reveals his fascinating personal history on the album Pimps & Preachers, addressing that subject on the title cut and in the intriguing “family portrait” he painted for the cover, which highlights his father, the preacher, and his uncle, the pimp. Catch him on Sunday 23 June at the Northcote Social Club Melbourne and Tuesday 25 at Hallam Hotel.
WILDE TIMES Mention Kim Wilde’s name and people’s eyes light up. The blonde singer with the siren voice and girl-next-door appeal is one of pop music’s most dazzling stars. In Australia she has always been close to our hearts having charted three number one mega hits – Kids In America, You Keep Me Hanging On and If I Can’t Have You. To put her amazing career in perspective she has sold ten million albums and 20 million singles and is the most charted British female artist of her generation. Joining Kim Wilde on the tour will be ‘80s heartthrob Nik Kershaw. Wilde and Kershaw will come to the Palace on Friday 18 October.
HEAVY BROW BRASS Perth brass hip hop sensation The Brow Horn Orchestra are once more hitting up the East Coast as part of their Inglourious Brassterds National Tour. The multi-award winning, high-energy, brass’n’beats five-piece put on a live show that simply cannot be ignored; with an irrefutable electric energy, live electronics and a heavy platter of global sounds. Coming off a raft of killer shows including the West Coast Blues and Roots Tour, Brow Horn Orchestra are bigger, brasher and better than ever. The tour stops off at the Espy on Thursday 16 May, the Spotted Mallard on Friday 17, Baha Tacos (Rye) on Saturday 18 and Westernport Hotel (San Remo) on Sunday 19.
IF YOU RETURN Eleanor McEvoy is returning for her If You Leave Australian tour in late May and June. McEvoy is one of Ireland’s most accomplished contemporary singer songwriters. Her song A Woman’s Heart was the title-track of the 1992 all-women compilation that remains Ireland’s best-selling album. Inspiration for If You Leave came from the simplicity of the great pop writing of the 1960s and features a wide range of collaborations with great musicians and vocalists such as Jimmy Smyth, James Delaney and Sharon Shannon. The tour comes to the National Celtic Festival (Portarlington) from Friday 7 to Monday 10 June, and the Northcote Social Club on Wednesday 12.
BEARDED SUPPORTS Ahead of the forthcoming Australian leg of The Beards first world tour the facially hirsute quartet have announced the support acts that will joining them on the road this May and June. Sydney cow-punk, string septet Little Bastard will be the main support for the tour; their live performances create the turbulence of Old Crow Medicine Show but can also hold the brutal sentiment of The Felice Brothers. Tasmanian up-and-comers Enola Fall will be opening the dates with their new EP Suburban Lovers. The tour hits the Pelly Bar (Frankston) on Thursday 13 June, the Theatre Royal (Castlemaine) on Friday 14, and the Hi-Fi and Saturday 15.
FAREWELL THE PEOPLE The People’s Market is about to wrap up for another year, but they’ll be leaving with a bang in their last week. There will be a night of live music and revelry this Friday, featuring performances by Dr Piffle & The Burlap Band, starting at 7pm. Then this Sunday, for the grand finale, Stanley Street will be closed from 12–10pm for a one-off Street Party. It’ll be headlined by Client Liaison and feature a DJ and acoustic set from Daniel Merriweather. Joining them are Clubfeet DJs, Airwolf, Glass Mirrors and The Raffaellas. And there’ll be food, of course; this month’s vendors and Hava Haba with specialty Caribbean cuisine.
TOTALLY MITCHIN’ As the guitarist and vocalist in Earthless, Howlin’ Rain and countless other sonically vibrating projects, Isaiah Mitchell has been tearing up stages for the better part of his life. After two very successful Australian tours by Earthless, Mitchell is making his third visit to Australia. Catch him performing at the Northcote Social Club on Wednesday 15 and 22 May, backed by an Australian rhythm section under the band name The Black Elk Medicine Band, which features Robert MacManus of ex-Grey Daturas and ex-Monarch on drums, and Nick ‘Paisley Adams’ Allbrook of Tame Impala and Pond on bass. Mitchell also plays solo at the Public Bar on Saturday 18.
SPACE FALL Tales In Space are incredibly excited to announce their first national tour of 2013, supporting Enola Fall, to celebrate the release of the first single from their upcoming debut album, the indie pop gem of a track, Shades. After Tales In Space’s buzzing soft release, instrumental wonder Starwars – for which their video received a SMAC nomination this year for Best On Screen, alongside FBi high rotation and triple j play – TiS have been whipping up remixes for notable acts such as Hungry Kids of Hungary, Dappled Cities, Little Fox and Expatriate. They play at the Espy on Friday 31 May and the B.East on Saturday 1 June.
CALENDAR DAZE WHAT A GUNNER Gilby Clarke was in Guns N’ Roses, and also played guitar for the MC5, Nancy Sinatra, Heart and Rockstar Supernova, as well as performing production duties for The Bronx, LA Guns and Alice Cooper. More importantly, he’s been a prolific solo artist, a mash-up of Keith Richards, Johnny Thunders and BB King. The Cleveland native hit the LA scene at 17 and started Candy, then onto Kill For Thrills. Clarke is now touring Australia in July and will play Northcote Social Club on Sunday 7.
Melbourne deep pop thinkers Dick Diver just launched their fulsomely-praised second album Calendar Days at a sold out show at the Tote. But where does that leave the band’s hordes of rabid fans who aren’t among the 300 or so lucky enough to get their mitts on a ticket? Well, never fear, because Dick Diver care have organised the Calendar Days Big Tour for July, taking in no less than six towns around the countryside. See them on Friday 5 July at the Corner with guests Twerps and The Stevens, as well as Saturday 6 at Castlemaine’s Bridge Hotel and Friday 12 at Geelong’s Barwon Club.
INDUSTRY NEWS WITH SCOTT FITZSIMONS firstname.lastname@example.org
DIPLO SPARKS FIST FIGHT AT EDM CONFERENCE Comments made by Diplo at the IMS Engage conference in Los Angeles have sparked a fight between his manager and the manager of DJ BL3END. According to Billboard, while on a panel with Instagram founder Kevin Systrom, Diplo alleged that BL3ND had purchased some of his massive social media following, which includes three million Facebook fans. He added that the DJ “only plays shows in the OC”. In the panel’s Q&A session DJ BL3ND’s manager Steve Haddad questioned Diplo’s claims, saying that he had “sold out” events in New York and hadn’t been playing in the OC recently. It’s alleged that Diplo’s manager Kevin Kusatsu told Haddad to “shut up” from the back of the room, “seemingly unprovoked and out of context”. Despite Diplo backing out of his claims, the two managers confronted one another at the side of the room before the fight broke out. It is not known who through the first punch, but the fight was broken up by conference officials. The IMS [International Music Summit] Engage conference is held at the beginning of the Ibiza season and is presented by Pete Tong.
KID ROCK ‘SAD’ FOR SCALPING HIS OWN TICKETS Kid Rock has come under attack from fellow musicians after admitting he scalps his own tickets. While promoting an American tour where he has capped ticket prices at $20 and food and drink at $4, the rock superstar was interviewed by CNN’s Piers Morgan and revealed an ugly underbelly to the ticket debate when he made the claim that many artists in the industry scalp their own tickets. “A lot of artists already do it, I think I’ve been guilty of it in the past too – we take some of our tickets, we put them on StubHub, overcharge, look what the market determines they’re worth. I’m taking 1,000 of them and I’m scalping them.” Rock was championing cheaper tickets for the public and winning his interviewer over until that point in the interview, even calling the prices of Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake tours, which exceed $200, “highway robbery”. “It’s garbage; I don’t care who you are,” he said. “I would consider both them in the circle of friends in the business, but I don’t agree with it. I know sometimes the market determines it, so what I’m gonna do for that is scalp 1,000 of my own tickets. There is a market for it.” Speaking at the Stone Music Festival press conference in Sydney, Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler was taken aback by the accusation. “Where did you hear about that? How do you know that?” he asked a reporter. “Well man, I don’t know... I’m gonna personally ask him. But if that’s true, that’s just really sad. I’m gonna call him and bust his chops about that... That’s severe.”
HILLTOP HOODS SCORE ZOO YORK DEAL The Hilltop Hoods have struck up a partnership with clothing company Zoo York and will work on collaborative projects to be unveiled next year, theMusic.com.au revealed. The band’s Suffa said, “We’ve always been fans of Zoo York, they understand hip hop culture, and that’s why we can’t wait to work with them.” The company’s Mike Vati said that alongside their 20th anniversary celebrations next year, “the partnership opportunity felt natural and organic for both parties”. The names came with the confirmation that their album Drinking From The Sun had gone double platinum (140,000 copies) in Australia and they were working on their Walking Under Stars follow-up.
TRACY MORGAN IN SEXISM ROW Before a sold-out Regal Theatre in Perth, 30 Rock star Tracy Morgan addressed the bad press he received after fans allegedly stormed out of Hamer Hall during the Melbourne International Comedy Festival – some demanding refunds – claiming he was misogynistic and lacked humour. Women’s rights campaigner Melinda Tankard urged the cancellation of his remaining Australian dates. “It’s fear, she doesn’t understand me,” Morgan said. In his intro piece for Drum Media’s Comedy Festival Guide, triple j host and comedian Tom Ballard wrote, “If you saw Tracy Morgan’s show without researching his work at all and you were offended and called in to talkback radio to complain and you feel like you deserve a refund, please write a letter explaining your situation to Go Fuck Yourself, PO Box You’re A Dickhead.”
PRESENTED BY For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news • 15
Canadian twins Tegan & Sara have been a name synonymous with indie among music lovers for well over a decade now, but that notion is about to receive a shake-up with the release of their seventh album, Heartthrob. Tegan Quin reveals all to Ben Preece.
eartthrob is the new record from Tegan & Sara, a name that’s been closely associated to some of the most perfect indie pop the music world has seen in the last decade or so. Their tracks have been featured all over TV shows and been covered by the likes of The White Stripes, they’ve written songs for the likes of Lisa Loeb and Carly Rae Jepsen and collaborated with other artists – everyone from Tiesto and Theophilus London to The Reason and Against Me!
But it would seem for their seventh album, the Quin twins have traded the guitars and often angsty vocals for synths and delivered something, well, a lot more polished, definitely more produced and something that lands well and truly in the commercial pop world. Tegan Quin (the older by eight minutes) certainly would never call it selling out and she’s believable – the pair have been flirting with pop melodies and structures for years, coming closest on 2009’s Sainthood with a track called Alligator, a song that danced around much like Madonna’s Holiday. “You know what?” Quin muses. “It’s funny, being so intimate with our music and the intricacies of it, it’s not actually too removed from the past. I am not trying to, in any way, minimise how different Heartthrob really sounds but [2004’s] So Jealous and [2007’s] The Con and Sainthood were actually quite keyboardheavy, but we just had quite a lot of guitar in there as well. I don’t know, it just feels like one of those things, that over time, a record just develops. Even those older ones and the songs off So Jealous and The Con have really evolved over the years as we’ve been touring and travelling and developing as artists, so the songs don’t seem like that big of a shift. Last night we went from [Heartthrob’s] Goodbye, Goodbye to [So Jealous’] Where Does The Good Go to How Come You Don’t Want Me, another new song and it was effortless. There’s some math of change of production on Heartthrob but it’s still quintessential Tegan and Sara, they still have those very heavy emotional elements while juxtaposing it with upbeat melody and, in this case, a lot of upbeat rhythms and stuff.” To up the ante this time around, the sisters called upon the assistance of Greg Kurstin, a producer and musician who has a varied and star-swollen resume that includes the likes of Beck, Sia, The Shins, Ke$ha and Kelly Clarkson. “Greg Kirsten really does hurdle over both worlds quite effortlessly,” Quin explains. “He’s an incredible musician, playing with incredible acts like Beck for ten years and just an incredible artist, a really great writer and seems to just have an enormous respect for artists and writers and specifically, we were interested in him because he’d worked predominantly with women and female vocalists. He had just finished making The Shins’ record too and I was like, ‘Ok, this guy can work with like Ke$ha and Kelly Clarkson one week and be like making The Shins’ record – this is our guy.’ One of the first songs I played for Greg was I Was A Fool and the demo was just me playing piano and there was a little bit of acoustic guitar strumming. All the other producers we’d reached out to were like, ‘Oh, just keep that organic and acoustic and maybe put an orchestra on it,’ and Greg swung around after the first chorus and was like ‘this is a pop song, this is huge, I’d just turn this into a massive pop song,’ and I felt like this was our guy. That’s what you need after fourteen years, someone who just sees the other side.”
IT’S STILL QUINTESSENTIAL TEGAN AND SARA, THEY STILL HAVE THOSE VERY HEAVY EMOTIONAL ELEMENTS WHILE JUXTAPOSING IT WITH UPBEAT MELODY AND, IN THIS CASE, A LOT OF UPBEAT RHYTHMS AND STUFF.” There’s more to this story
on the iPad
Even the demoing process was a completely different one when compared to how Tegan & Sara have worked in the past. “When we started writing music for the album, Sara immediately was not interested in doing anything guitar-heavy or even demoing and writing on one,” Quin reveals. “So that was definitely an influence on the demos – the first couple of songs that we wrote, like Now I’m All Messed Up, I Couldn’t Be Your Friend and Closer, we just gravitated towards piano. We also instinctually wanted to collaborate more than we have in the past, so Sara and I ended up sending songs back and forth with big open spaces. Sara made lyrical and melody choices for me and wrote all of the bridges on all of my songs. So it was a lot more collaboration, so the demos didn’t stick out as much as usual as, you know, this is a Sara song and this a Tegan song. “In the past, we’ve always felt we needed to take that space from each other to write; writing is a very solitary and meditative experience. With this record, it felt like we’ve experienced so much growth over the last six years writing with other people, we needed to take that growth to the
next level internally. I think Heartthrob was the response to that as well. I wanted to figure out if there was a way to bridge those two worlds. We are really comfortable in the indie world but I also was seeing this amazing trend where indie musicians were crossing over into pop, you know, bands like Gotye, Fun., Florence + The Machine and The xx were having major commercial success and so I thought that if pop was ready for a little emotional depth and integrity, then I want to be there. That’s how that came up with it all.” It would seem the crossover in sound hasn’t harmed the duo’s following any; they tend to generate the most rabid of fans that seemingly
follow them anywhere they choose to dive. Quin is very aware of the connection between the fans and their music and cites it as number one. “We are constantly reminded of that by them [the fans]. They constantly tell us that it’s us and the stories and they relate to the words. If anything, my fear with Heartthrob was that maybe it was heavy on the production and they’d miss the real substance that this record holds. I think songs like How Come You Don’t Want Me and Now I’m All Messed Up and I Couldn’t Be Your Friend and I Was A Fool, these are the best songs we’ve ever written and, if anything, the production has allowed us to really push those songs to the extreme.
“I was less concerned with this one, I remember when we went from So Jealous to The Con in 2007 and I was way more worried, because we went from having one little keyboard on stage to having four keyboards on stage. So we transitioned years ago on actually feeling like a guitardriven band and the perception was still that we were that guitar-driven band, when we’d actually been collaborating with with dance da da artists he past six for th the years Even years. S on Sainthood, there thee were four fo tracks on o that r record thhat didn’t tha that have hhavve one one guitar you know, on it, you Nightw htwaa and Nightwatch Pap apperb erbaa Head Paperback ndd Alligator, Alliig All ig and et e cetera. cetera, et didn didn id ’tt feel f that I didn’t worrie wor ried i d so much worried feltlt crazy c as I felt antici ant anti i ipat icipat patio io and anticipation excitement excite exc itemen men just to step ste tep off tep off the h ledge. I feltt like fel like ke w we we’d e been tteetering tee te ing on teri o the edg ge for a long time edge and kind k nd ki nd of of circling p p music pop music i and pop o arrangements arrran rangg for or a while while since whi maybe may be The Con withh song wi wit ssongs o gss like ong Backk In Bac In Your Yo Head You and th and then en aagain with Alligator and a lot All Al lligat gator torr an off the th collaborative collla co lla work. I really trust our audience, I feel they’ve really come to us from really different places – we haven’t really had a big single in such a long time, and yet I still feel our audience has still been growing and growing organically. So I feel, in a strange way, they’re the ones that kind of created this record, they’re the ones who encouraged us and supported us through all these different collaborations and different sounding records, so I don’t know, I was more just anxious and excited to hear what they thought. You lose fans with every record, but you also gain new fans so you can’t worry too much as long as we do our best to infuse our records with as much integrity and thoughtfulness, I think we keep majority of fans happy.”
INFLUENCING HEARTTHROB There’s not exactly a lot out there that sounds like Tegan & Sara, so influences are hard to spot immediately. Sure, a couple of years ago they borrowed heavily from Madonna’s Holiday and clearly identify with their contemporaries crossing over largely from the indie world to the pop stratosphere, but it’s still surprising to learn just what Tegan Quin was spinning when writing for their seventh album, Hearthrob. “I think that Erasure and Ace Of Base were both huge influences on us growing up; those two are probably the ones that get the most eyebrow lifts. But I also listened to a lot of early Madonna and Cyndi Lauper and probably the thing that influenced the majority of what I wrote was Kate Bush, actually. I’ve been a fan over the years but my step-dad gave me his whole record collection from the ‘70s and ‘80s a couple of years ago and I hadn’t had time to dig into it, I just started devouring a lot of the ‘80s music he owned. A lot of it I didn’t even remember listening to growing up and I was like, ‘Oh my God, these vocals and interplay and melodies’ – it was just like vocal gymnastics and was all over the place. I just thought that all this music sounded so fun and interesting but also so dark at the same time. “I remember about a year ago and reading up on some early Tom Petty and a song like American Girl, to me, just feeling so dark, but it comes off as so easy-listening, fun and awesome. It brought back some really great memories but when we started diving back into these early-’80s records, I was surprised that there was actually a lot of depth in pop music. There was a little doubt and a lot of intensity and political and social commentary. I just thought we shouldn’t shy away from that in our own music.”
WHO: Tegan & Sara WHAT: Heartthrob (Warner) Thursday 2 May, Palais; Sunday 4, Groovin’ The Moo, Prince Of Wales Showground, Bendigo
A BUNCH OF KOOKS Half-Australian and proud, Hugh Harris of The Kooks tries to explain their new musical direction to Celline Narinli. Spoiler: may involve keytars. alling from his sofa in London at the “ungodly hour” of 9am, Hugh Harris is usually the “getting up and having a purpose”-type, but with his current, more relaxed Kooks-schedule, there’s no reason he can’t sleep in. His unbroken morning voice concurs.
“I really, really would love to play some new songs. It’s going to be really difficult for us to go back to the old ones, but we’re not really finished with the new album yet. So, if we did – which all of us would be up for it – they wouldn’t really be the right versions.
Last in the country for Splendour In The Grass in 2012, The Kooks will be returning to Australia for Groovin’ The Moo, and are “ecstatic” to return down under. “We have the best time down there, it’s insane. Everyone loves it.”
“You can be really over-pressured about these things though, it is also important to kind of wait a bit. So we may play one or two new songs, yeah. I’d really love for that to happen. I’ll be pushing for it. But if we don’t do it, it’s not our fault.” Then who can we blame? “Hm… management. We blame the management,” he laughs.
Prior to their first tour of Australia, the band weren’t sure what to expect and had some preconceived ideas about what Australians would be like. “I’m half-Australian, and I was a bit nervous about the [debut] trek when we went there and whether the guys would get beaten up by bogans or jocks, or whether they’ll not get beaten up and just like have the best time on the beach,” he jokes. “And luckily the latter happened and we all fell slightly in love.” Harris expands on his past experiences with the aforementioned ‘bogans’ and ‘jocks’ with a touch of seriousness as he explains his experience at Falls Music & Arts Festival – which the band played in 2011. “Especially in Lorne (laughs), I mean, that’s a real treasure trove of aggression. I thought like surfing people were supposed to be quite relaxed and hippie-d up, but they’re not.” Though we can’t claim Harris as one of our own – he has given us permission to claim half of him – he goes on to admit that Australia is his favourite place to tour, as it allows him to see his family in Corryong, Victoria, or as he likes to tag it, “the middle of nowhere”. “I have cousins, I have aunties, uncles [who all live in Australia]. My dad’s Australian. My sister lives in Melbourne. So, yeah, the best tour for me is going to Australia because I get to see family.“ The Kooks will get to see and experience a lot more of regional Australia in May as the Groovin’ The Moo festival stops over in Maitland, Canberra, Bunbury and Townsville. New material is something Harris would love to unleash at the festival, since it has been nearly two years since their latest offering, Junk Of The Heart, but there’s something that’s stopping them from doing so.
With new material floating around – the first taste (in the form of an EP or single) to drop in the middle of the year – Harris believes the band has “found [their] feet again” in terms of musical direction. “We’re working really spontaneously. And it’s certainly not going to take three years to do it,” assures Harris, referring to the three-year wait between album number two – the highly-acclaimed Konk (2008) – and their most recent effort Junk Of The Heart (2011). “We’ve got set songs down already, and it’s sounding very fresh and very exciting,” he continues. “But you know, it’s hard to talk about music. It’s very difficult to explain to somebody what music sounds like. It’s just, for me, it’s something that has kind of given me a lot of energy, and I think I can probably say the same about all of us. We’ve sort of found our feet again.” The Kooks have experienced a number of line-up changes, although the core members of the band have been together for 11 years: something that most bands could only dream of achieving. And so, in Harris’ opinion, what has kept the band glued together for the past decade is their desire to evolve musically; most prominent in Junk… as electronic elements weaseled their way into the classic Kooks sound. Their upcoming album may be even more of a surprise to fans. “Yeah, we all play synths,” laughs Harris. “No, not really. Yeah, it’s bullshit. I was thinking of swapping my guitar for a keytar at one point but I realised I’d have to shoot myself in my face if I were to do that, from the shame. “There’s a bit of modernity on the new album. It’s hard [to describe it] because I don’t think we’ve ever really been guitar people or rock’n’roll people. We listen to
every aspect of every genre of music. It’s mainly about the songwriting and melody for us, whether that’s on a keytar or a gee-tar, it’s irrelevant for us, really. There’s more modern stuff but there’s also guitar stuff.” The last thing Harris wants The Kooks to become is a band exhausted with their art. “I’ve seen bands at festivals on stage, completely disinterested in what they do and completely kind of like, not there, not engaged with their music. And for us, we don’t want to get to a point where we get sick of anything. Like, that’s the importance of evolution. You know, if you’re not enjoying something then you know, change it, make it yours.” Breaking up and ending things had crossed their minds but that was never the option. “It’s an easy way out,” responds Harris. “But I don’t think any of us were really, sort of, in our heart of hearts, had really factored that in. But of course you think about it a lot – I’m sure every band thinks about splitting up at some point in their life. We’ve somehow managed to maintain interest in what we’re doing in this project. It’s something that is important and is working. You just have to kind of evolve and change, and that’s something that’s either a natural progression or something that you have to force.”
And this evolution has gone beyond their music. With a strong fan base, The Kooks have utilised their power for good and philanthropy, choosing to donate a portion of their ticket sales to charities like the Kato Fund, which advocates for human rights and equality, regardless of sexual orientation, as Harris explains, is something very close to their hearts. “It means a lot to the world, especially in countries like America, where it’s just such a modern country yet it has such dated rights. It means a massive amount to us. But I mean combining music and politics is always a dangerous thing, but having said that, if you do have a voice and an audience you should try and use it for a good cause. If you have an audience then you have a voice and you can use it for the right reason.” WHO: The Kooks WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 1 and Friday 3 May, Palais; Sunday 4, Groovin’ The Moo, Prince Of Wales Showground, Bendigo
BUZZ BITES There is no stopping Pete Shelley, as he and his Buzzcocks rally for another tour of Australia. He confides in Brendan Telford his recipe for longevity within the 21st century. t goes without saying that without the likes of Orgasm Addict and Ever Fallen In Love, the face of rock music and the advent of punk would have taken an altogether different hue. Manchester’s Buzzcocks burst forth alongside geographical and musical contemporaries Sex Pistols and The Smiths as beacons of light in a politically tumultuous time. But what set the band apart – and what has them still together, playing strong tours spanning four decades – is the inherent balance of political disenfranchisement, emotional upheaval and an undercurrent of effervescent hope, all coloured in with verve, swagger and panache. Now back on Australian shores as part of the Hoodoo Guruscurated Dig It Up! Festival, the Buzzcocks juggernaut continues to roll on unabated, despite the fact that the current members are scattered across the globe.
“I live in Estonia at the minute; we played a show here about a year ago and I’ve stayed ever since,” Shelley laughs. “It would be easy to just retire, but it’s even easier to get up in the morning and play music. And it’s easier still when someone invites you to Australia to play, which always is a definite yes.” Headlining what is fast becoming a go-to annual event for touchstones in rock’n’roll both past, present and future, Shelley is growing more comfortable every day with the idea of being noted as a musical legacy, especially as ever-expanding technology makes such an idea increasingly hard to fathom. “It’s quite flattering really to be honoured in such a way,” Shelley muses. “I guess it helps people to still pay attention. I read an article a few months ago about how music has no linear structure now. Decades ago, when you discovered a band that you liked, you would have to wait months or years before you could get any new material from them, or sometimes to even find someone likeminded in their musical direction or sound. All music was seen in a linear way. Now with the internet and YouTube, you can find out about all sorts of things across genres and time frames in a matter of seconds. People don’t need to raid their parents’ or aunts and uncles’ or brothers and sisters’ record collections anymore. It’s no longer ‘in the family’; quite often there’s no personal experience at all.
18 • For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews
“That’s how I got into music,” Shelley continues. “I was spending the summer at my auntie’s place in Scotland, it was raining a lot and she had this great old radiogram with all the records she had bought when growing up as a teenager. So my musical education was listening to those records and discovering things that had bypassed me because I hadn’t even been born (when the records came out). Now young people who come to a Buzzcocks show, they are there because a current band they liked mentioned us, or it’s linked to something they have listened to on iTunes. And hopefully there are still the ones where they might go into the garage and go, ‘Dad, what are these?’ ‘Well, they’re records, son!’ And five minutes later, after the kid has stopped laughing, they’ll listen and go ‘Oh, I quite like this.’ Regardless, it all becomes connected in some way, so that rather than just listening to music from now, you can listen to music from all of time, really.” For a band that has continued to play their embryonic hits alongside their older, wiser gems like a badge of honour, it’s a sign of how indelibly prescient and timeless much of the band’s initial sonic aesthetic has remained. This is something that has not always held true for much of that era’s other punk visionaries, a fact that Shelley holds is quite simple. “It comes down in part to the song structure and lyrics, obviously, but also it’s a matter of people taking those songs and investing themselves in them,” Shelley insists. “Often music is made very much of a time and place, and when you take that on board you can appreciate what the song is doing at any time and appreciate it for that, without necessarily connecting with the song itself. It becomes more of a history thing, linking to it because it represents a time. Political songs in particular hold true to that. But people, rather than externalise things that affect them, they internalise them: ‘this is how I feel, this is what I would say, this is how it happened to me.’ And so they become autobiographical, these emotional songs, and that is why they last so long. They are also really good songs, don’t forget – everyone loves a good tune. People like things that are upbeat in some way. That’s why I’m not a big fan of Coldplay.”
Identifying what helps the Buzzcocks withstand, and indeed defeat, the test of time is one thing; imparting this knowledge and identifying it in modern bands is something else altogether. “I certainly don’t know, but I imagine there will be bands that do the same, as there are generations of people now that are identifying with certain elements and trends that will resonate in their future,” Shelley concedes. “There are trends that are fads that will fade away over time, but such things existed in the ‘60s and ‘70s too. It’s that emotional investment that people come back to, not some YouTube sensation that has captured imaginations for 15 minutes. Personally, I haven’t bought a CD in a long time, so I’m not claiming to be ‘down with the kids’, but I can say that things go in stages – you can tell from a certain band or generation that they don’t like prog rock or something. It churns, and it’s a natural thing anyway to move away from something in order to come back to it. Occasionally I will hear something that I like, and I’ll get the album and find that the song is the only thing I like on it. I do that, and I do check out the latest releases on Spotify or whatever, but I mainly don’t chase anything down. Sometimes we’ll tour with a band and I’ll think they’re brilliant, but within a few years unfortunately success eludes them and they split up.”
Nevertheless Shelley admits that he doesn’t see an end to the tunnel for the Buzzcocks. “There is no rhyme or reason to it, really, and we are very lucky to have been able to sustain making music as a living for as long as we have,” Shelley admits. “Even now, when we get together there is this excitement like meeting old friends. Our last show was in Bratislava, which was three months ago now, and the itch is already there. Then we have three gigs in the UK before coming down to Australia, and we’ll dust off some of the old classics, get into shape. There are moments when you are geared for a show and half way through you go, ‘why the hell do I sign up for this?’. But that never lasts, because you have another show to start things over. If it got to half-mast, where it’s no longer fun, then the plug will be pulled. But look at it this way – there’s a party every night where you’re the main guest, everyone wants to talk to you, there’s drink and there’s food, and you get to go up and play loud music whenever you want to, which is usually all the time. What a fantastic life.” WHO: Buzzcocks WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 25 April, Dig It Up!, Palace
FORWARD CHARGE From belting out sprawling jams with working titles such as ‘Blues Prog Epic’ in a feral share house in Perth to playing sold-out shows worldwide, Tame Impala’s career trajectory continues to soar. Mastermind/frontman Kevin Parker casually tells Bryget Chrisfield that The Chemical Brothers have recently been in touch. ere you lucky enough to pick up a copy of Tame Impala’s debut EP re-released on 12” red vinyl for Record Store Day over the weekend? The band’s vinyl releases have been known to sell out before fans have a chance to snap one up, but Tame Impala frontman Kevin Parker assures, “I think we’re on top of that these days. We’re a lot more kind of organised with supply and demand.” When this EP first came out, the release was mistakenly referred to as ‘Antares Mira Sun’ and Parker stresses, “That was back in the good old days when that was the only thing journalists had to talk about, ‘cause it was one of the only things on our Wikipedia page: ‘Tame Impala are a band and also there was some confusion about the title of their EP’,” he laughs. “But, yeah! I mean, the people that get stuff wrong – I just don’t really care enough to correct them or anything.”
Sounds like the trigger for an eviction notice. “Yeah, I think that whole place kinda spiralled out of control and it was inevitable that – I mean, I think we were good tenants,” Parker backpedals, “you know, when we had at least a week’s preparation for rent inspection. It got pretty feral.” Are we talking a scene from The Young Ones? “Oh, to the tee,” he enthuses. “I mean, it was feral in the best possible way. It’s like there was so much shit everywhere that, throughout the house, there’s only a little path where you can walk because there’s just crap either side – whether it’s musical instruments or, ah, mouldy coffee cups.” When the possibility of mushrooms growing in corners of rooms is raised, Parker offers, “Right, yeah well there’s another reason our lease was hanging on by a fine thread, was the presence of drugs.” Although mushrooms weren’t growing freely, Parker adds: “Unfortunately we had to just keep ‘em in the freezer.”
They’ve just performed at Coachella, but Tame Impala had “a pretty casual start to the year”, according to Parker: “We had most of January off. It’s been a while since I had a good deal of free time in Perth, you know, during the real summer.” Probably the last time Tame Impala (and shared-member band, Pond) spent a considerable amount of time off on home turf would have been circa 2008, before their musical careers really took off. Back then a lot of time was spent jamming under a mulberry tree in the backyard of their share house. “Oh, yeah,” Parker recalls, “Troy Terrace. We got evicted. Well, nah, I think the landlord was selling the house or something. But, yeah, that was the end of an era when we had to leave the house.” Creativity blossomed not just under that mulberry tree but also in “other places around the house”. On the roof? “Yep, on the roof as well. We had the police called on us one day for attempting to have a jam on the roof,” Parker remembers. “It was night time and AC/DC were playing down the road. In fact, they had already finished. I wasn’t actually there – we were on tour at the time – but our friend Joe [Ryan, Pond’s guitarist/bassist], the ringleader of said jam, was in lots of trouble.”
If you’ve ever caught Tame Impala live, you would have noticed Parker’s preference for performing barefoot. On whether he hurts himself constantly by treading on foreign objects, Parker shares, “Just stage friction burns where it’s, like, wood or concrete or whatever [pauses]. Now that I think about it, all the time! [chuckles]. I’ve never really thought about it before. In fact, my feet have copped a battering over the last few years. You don’t even really notice. Like, sometimes you sort of, you know, step on a pedal or step back quickly and then you’ll step on something and you’ll cut yourself, but you won’t even notice until the end of the show… Needless to say, many injuries incurred.” Parker’s clearly a man with a pedal obsession and he describes his recent purchase from a Moog factory as “a fun piece of equipment”: “MF-101 Moogerfooger Low Pass filter”. “I’ve wanted one for a while,” he continues. “I mean, if you say the word ‘Moogerfooger’, it’s kind of a vague description of what it sounds like.” Is it similar to the wah-wah pedal? “You’re actually pretty close,” Parker encourages. “I mean, a wah-wah is a form of Low Pass filter and this one is a different type of Low Pass filter. You can make it a wah-wah, put it that way.”
Looking back on the rise of Tame Impala, Parker opines, “I definitely don’t think we fit into the overnight success story category at all.” And it may surprise you to learn that that beast of a track, Elephant (which is currently all over the small screen having been synced to an advertisement for the new BlackBerry Z10 smartphone), from Tame Impala’s latest longplayer Lonerism, “was one of the first songs [they] played as Tame Impala when they started playing gigs as a band”. “It actually had a completely different structure and everything,” the frontman elaborates. “There was this other section that just sounded completely different and, ah, [laughs] the song used to be called ‘Blues Prog Epic’. That was just the working title, because there weren’t many real lyrics. It was just kind of this totally progressive structure to the song where it was barely even a song. It just had all these different parts in it. I mean, that was just the name because we needed something to refer to it as. So we were just, ‘Oh, that Blues Prog Epic one,’ you know? Anyway, thankfully we got a different name.”
It’s impossible not to feel “like an elephant/ Shaking his big grey trunk for the hell of it” to the Todd Rundgren remix of Elephant with those already gigantic, thumping beats further emphasised. “It’s pretty cool,” Parker agrees. “I mean, we were just delighted that Todd Rundgren was interacting with our music in some way.” When asked whether any other artists have reached out to Tame Impala, Parker ponders, “Ah, occasionally. Um, yeah. Yeah! [laughs] The Chemical Brothers got in touch not long ago – that was pretty amazing. Not necessarily to remix, and not necessarily for anything, but [we] just had the conversation about doing something.” WHO: Tame Impala WHEN & WHERE: Friday 26 April, Festival Hall; Saturday 4 May, Groovin’ The Moo, Prince Of Wales Showground, Bendigo
For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews • 19
AFTER THE DANCE Underworld are so much more than just legends of the dance floor, as Karl Hyde’s experimental new solo album Edgeland demonstrates. Matt O’Neill speaks to the vocalist about the blossoming of his other talents. n recent years, Underworld have been almost inescapable. They famously acted as musical directors of Danny Boyle’s universally acclaimed 2012 Olympics Opening Ceremony. They’ve also provided the scores to that same director’s recent film Trance (co-founder Rick Smith flying solo) and 2011 Royal National Theatre production of Frankenstein – in addition to releasing their eighth studio album Barking in 2010.
Lately, it seems Karl Hyde and Rick Smith have undergone something of a creative renaissance. Whereas once known solely as purveyors of a particularly cinematic breed of ‘90s dance music, their recent years have been spent branching out. Not just with film scores, either. Hyde has spent the past handful of years exhibiting his visual artwork and collaborating with Brian Eno. He’s just released his debut solo album Edgeland. “I feel really good. It’s been given a great response. I feel like getting it made was the main hurdle and I can just enjoy it being out there in the world now,” Hyde laughs. “You know, there was the whole process of doing something without the familiar band and people and processes of doing things that, in itself, was unusual. Then, of course, there was a voyage of rediscovery for lyric writing.” “I had to spend quite a long time just looking at myself and figuring out if I was capable of going further with my lyric writing than I had in the past 20 years. There were moments there where I definitely had to seek out a lot of help from my writer mates. You know, get them to guide me through the rapids,” the frontman continues. “I’m not so nervous about it, though. I was so delighted with the way it worked out on the first day I was just buzzing.” It’s a strange record. Hyde’s baritone vocal and idiosyncratic poetics brand it as an Underworld offshoot. Similarly, there’s an air of angular melancholy that seems to hang over the album. Yet, it’s far from club-friendly. Heavily improvised (between Hyde and collaborator Leo Abrahams) and profoundly abstract, it’s an album of atmospherics and experimentation. A weird, post-electronic-folk, pre-dawn blur of a record.
“They’re all improvised. The vocals, the instruments. They’re all first take,” Hyde explains. “I did have a day where I just tried going in with what I’d normally do with Underworld. Notebooks full of words, really. Utterly uncrafted. It ended up as a day I just discarded, though. It didn’t work at all. That was when I realised this solo album business was going to be harder than I thought.” “What’s interesting is the band I’ve assembled for this project is playing both the album and revisiting Underworld tracks, which was a very deliberate decision on my part,” the frontman continues. “Because I wanted to draw a line between the sounds Underworld have always made that have perhaps been a bit obscured as we’ve gone a bit more dance-focussed.” The idea for the album came from Hyde’s experiments with Brian Eno in Pure Scenius. Employed alongside a host of fellow groundbreaking musicians (including Australian trio The Necks) for a performance at Eno’s Luminous Festival in Sydney in 2009, Hyde was challenged as a vocalist to think about lyrics and composition from a different perspective, specifically, an improvisational perspective. “It started around the time I came down to Sydney with Brian Eno. I’d been talking with Brian a lot and working in the studio on our own collaborations and he’d been encouraging me to use words more. More than I do with Underworld,” he says. “The nature of Underworld’s music is that it doesn’t require a lot of words. I’ve always agreed with that, too. Dance music is often hampered by too many words.” “So, as Underworld was heading in that direction, Brian encouraged me to actually use more words. And, at a sound check at the Sydney Opera House, I stood there and had a very clear vision that that was where I wanted Underworld to be standing at some point in the near future.” “You know, between the dance tunes,” he explains. “Songs, really. Stuff on the first album, like Tongue. That’s been the case on all our records and yet the band has never really explored that live. I started to feel that desire, very strongly, to explore that and perform with a different temperament. Those feelings and
thoughts that came together at the Opera House with Brian made me realise I needed to go explore that.” The genesis of Edgeland says something about Underworld, though. Ideally, it puts paid to the notion that their current diversity of projects is a recent development. While their work roster has been particularly eclectic in recent years, they’ve never been simply a successful dance act. This, after all, is a partnership formed while both players were at art school in the ‘70s. For example, both members of Underworld were founding members of art/design collective Tomato. Underworld’s entire visual aesthetic since the ‘90s has been handled by the collective. Their relationship with film dates back to 1996’s Trainspotting. Their debut film score was actually back in 2006 for Anthony Minghella’s Breaking And Entering. It’s really not surprising at all to see Hyde and Smith exploring new avenues. “Had we been more traditional, I think you’d have had the Barking album, two or three years of touring and then you’d have had another album.” Hyde explains. “Instead, since Barking, you’ve had the Frankenstein score, a couple of art exhibitions, the Olympics, the Trance score and now Edgeland. That honestly hadn’t occurred to me until a friend pointed it out recently. I thought to myself, ‘well, that’s good, isn’t it?’”
“I mean, life isn’t boring. When people ask what motivates me, I honestly have to say boredom. Without boredom, I just keep ticking over. Boredom’s great, though, because, what happens is, I’ll start getting bored and asking myself what I’d really love to do – ‘Oh, what I’d really love to do is paint‘; ‘what I’d really love to do is make a movie‘. And my head goes; ‘Well, why don’t you?’” “I mean, life’s too short for just one album every three years,” he laughs. “I think Underworld has many audiences. I think Rick and I may have misunderstood Underworld and the potential of Underworld and we’re just now really starting to use our different voices and different faces. I think maybe our disparate audiences have been neglected by us just focussing on dance music.” “That’s why I went back to exhibiting in galleries. That’s why I answered the call from Brian. That’s why Frankenstein,” he says emphatically. “I think we’ve finally woken up to just what it is we’ve got with Underworld.” WHO: Karl Hyde WHAT: Edgeland (Universal) WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 25 May, Melbourne Recital Centre
KING TUFF Kyle Thomas aka King Tuff has had stints in a few bands and brushes with a few styles of music, but rock’n’roll and the touring life is where his heart really is, he tells Anthony Carew. or years, if you wanted to buy a King Tuff record, you had to be ready to pay the price. Kyle Thomas, the Brattleboro, Vermont native behind the fuzzedout, garage-rockin’ one-man-band, had first turned out his debut King Tuff LP, Was Dead, in 2007, as a selfreleased CD-R. In 2008 it was pressed up for the first time on vinyl, and, from there, each limited-run wax pressing came with a collectible touch: Thomas would individually draw on each cover, for example. When a vinyl/cassette run came on the cult underground-garage label Burger Records in 2010, King Tuff’s ‘collectible’ status went through the roof, and copies of Was Dead started getting flipped on eBay for nuts sums of cash.
“It’s a pretty crazy feeling: ‘wait, somebody is willing to pay over $100 for something I just put out, like, last year?’” says Thomas, with a shake of his head. “It is a good feeling, but it’s also a bad one. It’s kind of a double-edged sword; I don’t want some teenager from the Midwest to have to scrounge up all his cash to have one of my records. It’s really flattering to be thought of as so ‘collectible’, but you’d much rather that just everyone could have it.” A widely-available reissue of Was Dead has just come out, which will dent the market a little, but also make it so that everyone who wants to get in on the King Tuff debut can. The album is a noisy, overdriven, ballsto-the-wall garage-fuzz that essentially inhabits the same audio realm as White Fence, Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees, et al; but it was made in total isolation. “I didn’t really ever think that anyone would hear it,” recounts Thomas. “I didn’t have a label or anything, I was just purely making an album that, personally, I really wanted to hear. There was a rock’n’roll void in the time that I made it. I started recording in the mid2000s, from 2003 to 2006 was when I was writing the songs. And it wasn’t that there was no one around doing something similar, but I didn’t know about anyone. Even back then, ten years ago, it was harder to know about stuff, about these small, awesome rock’n’roll bands from other cities or other countries. So, all the music that I was listening to was 30 or 40 years old. So, I wanted
20 • For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews
to make something new that had that same feeling – something that I liked. Whether or not the rest of the world got to hear it, whether anyone else got to hear it.” Thomas had grown up, as a kid, in thrall to rock’n’roll; harbouring childhood obsessions with Green Day, AC/DC, Jimi Hendrix and Metallica. And noise in general. “I was always making noise, banging on things, drawing pictures,” Thomas offers. “I started playing drums in the school band in like third or fourth grade. Then I picked up the guitar in fifth grade, when I was 10. From the first time I picked up a guitar, I just always tried to write my own songs. I’ve been pretty much on that path ever since. There’s been a few diversions into other types of music, but I’ve pretty much always had a rock’n’roll heart.” Those diversions include a stint in freak-folk outfit Feathers, a gang of Vermont hippies who found favour with Devendra Banhart in the peak of that Golden Apples Of The Sun era. As well as two LPs effectively ‘fronting’ Witch, a band best known as the stonerrock outfit in which J Mascis plays drums. Witch wound up in 2008, after their second LP, Paralyzed, which came right after the vinyl debut of King Tuff. Thomas suddenly found himself at a low ebb: nothing going on, and a bunch of songs that he didn’t know what to do with. So he founded Happy Birthday. “I was writing these other weirder songs, that were both more poppy and way more experimental in form,” says Thomas. “So I decided to start this whole other band with my friend Chris Weisman. He was like a genius from a different spectrum. He’s a jazz musician who knows the guitar inside out, and can make it do things I never could. I wrote the songs with him, and he helped take them in this other direction completely, far from straight-ahead rock’n’roll.” Thomas and Weisman recruited Ruth Garbus —Thomas’s former Feathers bandmate, and the sister of Tune-Yards’ Merrill Garbus— to sing and play drums, and played what they thought would be a one-off show. They played a handful more, rockin’ with no real ambition, then found it all change when they signed to legendary
indie label Sub Pop. “There was such a change that occurred in the life of that band. At first we were just doing it totally for fun, as almost this social thing. Then we signed with Sub Pop, and started touring a lot, and things got a bit more complicated,” remembers Thomas. “Chris and Ruth didn’t want to dedicate their lives to touring, which is totally understandable, but it just meant there was this weird period in the band where we had different goals, and a record label expecting that we’d tour as much as possible. I was fine with that, so, at that point, I figured I’d just go back to doing my own thing, and bring back King Tuff.”
show on a boat that was going around the New York City harbour. I could barely stand up, let alone sing and play guitar. We were really terrible.”). His Happy Birthday bandmates may not have liked touring, but Thomas spent his teenaged years riding Greyhound buses (“they’re all pretty seedy, they’re all pretty bleak. You see people at their worst. A lot of people on drugs freaking out, freaking out at the gas station stops, and the [Greyhound] stations are always the worst. It’s kind of this horrific way to travel, but there’s something I really like about it; the element of danger, perhaps”), and is a born traveller, perils be damned.
Setting out work on his second King Tuff LP, a selftitled set released by Sub Pop in 2012, Thomas turned his one-time one-man-band into a live quartet, and hit the road, hard. “It felt like I was finally doing the right thing, and it felt very weird to me that I’d ever stopped doing King Tuff,” he says. Now, with the Pitchfork behemoth putting their corporate critical heft behind King Tuff – Best New Reissue, ahoy – Thomas finds his band on the up, no longer merely the province of flippers and vinyl nerds.
“It’s also a lot of sitting in a van, a lot of eating really shitty food,” Thomas admits. “But sometimes touring feels like the best thing ever, and I’m the luckiest person in the world to have this be my job, to be actually able to make a career out of being a musician. All those times you have a shitty experience, they’re just part of it. As the Australians say: it’s a long way to the top if you want to rock’n’roll.”
Which leads to King Tuff’s maiden Australian tour, whose suitably thorough itinerary includes a Melbourne show on a boat (“I have bad memories of playing a
WHO: King Tuff WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 25 April, Bermuda Float
DOIN’ IT FOR THEMSELVES With a national tour on the horizon, Hungry Kids Of Hungary’s Dean McGrath admits to Celline Narinli that their second album, You’re A Shadow, was an attempt to ‘break out’ of the indie-pop mould. ean McGrath, lead vocalist and guitarist of Hungry Kids Of Hungary, is taking some much needed rest and recuperation before they’re back on the promotion treadmill for their second record, You’re A Shadow. With a national tour on the horizon and Groovin’ The Moo festival dates, McGrath’s “not doing much at all” in his hometown of Brisbane. “I’m just sort of resting up before all the hard work of touring and promoting an album. So, yeah, it’s starting to ramp up again. We’re only a week out now.”
The four-piece released their debut record Escapades in 2010, and two EPs – Hungry Kids Of Hungary (2008) and Mega Mountain (2009) – just before that. Over those three years the band garnered a solid fanbase, but they still experienced “a mixture of emotions” prior to the release of the follow-up – in particular, nerves. “There were definitely some nerves,” he says. “We’d sort of been waiting for this for a while, and the record had been finished and in the can ready to go for a little bit. So, we were just sitting around going ‘When can we put it out?’” McGrath laughs. “When do we get to do all the fun stuff?’”
the whole album stuff’s done, I’m sort of personally still writing some stuff. But it’s not necessarily Hungry Kids Of Hungary songs. It’s a little personal pet project of mine. I don’t know whether it’s going to be released or if I’ll actually do anything with it. It’s just cleansing the palette between Hungry Kids records. I just want to write a bunch of stuff that just belongs to me, I guess. Bit of a vanity project.” WHO: Hungry Kids Of Hungary WHAT: You’re A Shadow (Stop Start/EMI) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 26 April, Corner Hotel; Sunday 4 May, Groovin’ The Moo, Prince Of Wales Showground, Bendigo
You’re A Shadow sees the indie crew taking on bolder and more ambitious avenues than their debut record, which McGrath admits is their attempt at breaking out of the indie-pop act mould that they’ve been locked in. “We’re still a pop band undeniably, and we’re not ashamed to say it. But [our aim was] to try and burst out of a certain mould of just being a simple happy-golucky pop act, and there’s a bit more behind these songs. “We had our own personal expectations of wanting to do something bigger and better and more satisfying, on a personal level. We try not to get too caught up in the ‘will this be embraced by everyone and will this be a success?’ [way of thinking]. We’re selfish like that,” chuckles McGrath. “We made our record for ourselves, first and foremost. We knew what we wanted to do – what would make us happy. So we went and did it.” Keeping that in mind, McGrath and Kane Mazlin (vocals, keys) – who share the songwriting duties – were overjoyed with the outcome of their self-proclaimed “best effort yet”. “From anything we’ve done, I think all four of us are most proudest of this record. And yeah, we finally have that feeling that we nailed it. And it’s a hard thing to achieve. You are your worst critic.” McGrath puts the success of the album down to a more “forwardthinking” approach, as he explains: “[The songs] are a lot more considered. On my part especially… The last record and all the stuff that sort of preceded this one, it was kind of just like, ‘just bash out the song’, and the first idea that comes to you is cool, and just go for it and get it done. Whereas this time around [the entire process was] a little lingered, just to push myself a little bit more, just to maybe take less obvious avenues with my songwriting.” But it wasn’t all smooth sailing for McGrath, whose songwriting inspiration came from a tougher period in his life. “Pretty much the whole year of 2011 for me was, you know, a bit of a writeoff. It was a really challenging year,” muses McGrath. “And it’s not something I can really go into detail on, because it has repercussions for other people who I was close to at the time, but I just had a lot of heavy shit going on. And you know, all that sort of informed what I was writing lyrically. So, yeah, all my songs are all about struggling through that time in my life.” And so he approached his songwriting as a form of therapy. “It’s a really sort of cathartic release in a really positive way,” he says. “I find, to deal with the tough stuff is to try and write a song about it. And you know what’s a really weird thing about it now? Playing these songs and promo-ing the album and just being like, ‘oh, when I wrote these songs it was pretty full-on and it was pretty, you know, right in the thick of it’. But right now it’s just sort of this, you know, it’s just a pop song – a pop record.” In a turn of events, the Brisbane outfit recruited Wayne Connolly (Dappled Cities, Something For Kate) for producing duties, which was previously assigned to ex-Philly Jays member and “interesting musical thinking” Simon ‘Berkfinger’ Berckelman, who is based in Berlin. “We had talked to Simon about the possibility of going overseas and doing it with him, yeah,” admits McGrath. “And we were sort of looking at different studios that we considered working in and looking at our budget and thinking ‘can we afford to do it this way? What’s gonna be affordable? And what’s gonna give us the best result?’ And, yeah, we were having curious conversations with Simon about all of that… It wasn’t viable to do it once we got back to Australia, trying to mix on different continents, different time zones, over the internet. It was just too difficult. And it was going to take way too long. But then, yeah, we ended up with the opportunity, served on a silver platter, and we went and did a couple of songs with Wayne, so we took that opportunity. We found our guy; we can stop looking now.“ On the brink of a national tour, the quartet have buckled down to start pre-tour preparations. One important addition to their prep: their “daggy” roadtrip mixtapes, which keep them sane on the road, and provide a highly entertaining karaoke opportunity. “We’ve got big driving weeks, so we like to make mixed CDs,” McGrath says. “And it’s usually our drummer [Ryan Strathie] who makes them and they’re usually daggy as hell, like purposely daggy as hell. So, we had like the ‘80s hair-metal band tour CD, and we’ve had the really cheesy ‘90s R&B tour CD. So, yeah, it’s always good to have some super-corny CD to sing along to in the van, when you’re starting to get cabin fever.” And what can we expect after the tour you may ask? Well, alongside his commitments to Hungry Kids, McGrath also reveals he has spent his spare time working on some new solo material, which he isn’t planning on releasing just yet. “Once
For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews • 21
GREASED LIGHTNING Brooklyn duo Matt & Kim love to make art out of simple things. Their lo-fi, high energy pop approach, coupled with videos that feature great, basic ideas, has got them attention at home and again to Australia to promote new album, Lightning. By Liz Giuffre. att Johnson, aka Matt from Matt & Kim, is talking from a tour bus moving across the states. In between trips from Seattle to San Francisco, he begins by dreaming of somewhere a little warmer. “Out of any territory, we love coming to Australia. We’ve been three times I believe, and even though it’s basically as far as way as we can go, there’s always something about the vibe and the culture that we just love, so we always request that we get to go there. Unfortunately we didn’t make it last year because we were making an album, but before that it was every year for a few years …. We did Big Day Out festival, and on a very small scale we’d come through and done some of our own club shows. This time we’re on another festival, Groovin’ The Moo, and a few sideshows … but I love festivals, people always come so open-minded and that’s where we get ‘em! We grab ‘em and we hold on tight and don’t let them go.”
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Being grabbed by Matt & Kim is not a difficult experience, as the upbeat, no-nonsense toe-tappers make themselves pretty easy to love. Johnson and Kim Schifino make music that walks a dance/pop line and relies on hooky simpleness, but they do so knowing how hard that form can be. “We think, ‘how can we be as simple and effective as we can make it, and that will be the purist form of it’? Meanwhile, some haters like to say, ‘that’s something like what my little nephew could do’. But that’s not the thing, it’s about taking a risk,” Johnson explains. “I always find with music, it feels really safe to really layer things up and add lots of stuff because then there’s nothing hanging out there, but I think a good example right now, and I know it’s popular in Australia too, is that Thrift Shop song [by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis]. For the most part there’s like three elements happening – a clap, a kick drum and that horn line –
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and they just work in perfect harmony, and that’s where something special happens. I think it’s very risky to go simple but I think the reward is worth it.” To date, Matt & Kim’s three albums have taken this motto to heart, with singles Daylight and Lessons Learned (2008/9), Good For Great (2011), Let’s Go (2012) and It’s Alright (2013) all particularly showing the pair’s talent for doing lots with a few simple tools. A strong hook to build around, some basic arrangements, and somehow an earworm that leaves the listener, well, grabbed tight. The pair add to their sounds some particularly curious images, too, with Lessons Learned featuring them stripping down to nothing as they walked through Times Square (for no good reason), Let’s Go letting them create some awesome ‘80s hair and kit for a fake family portrait, and most recently, It’s Alright featuring some highly choreographed, and very funny, horizontal hokey pokey. It’s a touch of the Ok Go effect with just one shot and one great idea, totally made the commitment of the band. “That video was an idea I had years ago, but it just never really happened. And then we were making the It’s Alright song and we were dancing around in the studio and we thought, ‘now’s the time, we’ve gotta make a video with dancing in it’,” Johnson says. “And then as we were shooting it and choreographing it, Tanisha Scott helped us choreograph it, and she’s done lots of other videos, all the Sean Paul videos and she’s been in Beyonce’s videos, and that’s what we were looking for. We didn’t want someone who was ‘modern dance’, we wanted the real booty shaking kinda stuff. And I forget how it even came up that we were decided to do stills of sex moves right in the middle, but I don’t know, we thought it would be funny. When we ended up shooting it we ended up shooting about 40 or 50 different positions in the day, and it was like 15 people in the crew watching us, I started becoming very uncomfortable thinking ‘is this what it’s like shooting porn? I don’t know, I just want to get this done!’”
Music video karma sutra aside, the single, which comes from latest album Lightning, was also an excuse for the band to finally record at home. “As a band that identifies with where we’re from, which is New York, it’s the first album we ever made in New York. The first album we made we Los Angeles, the second in Vermont, the third in Atlanta, Georgia, and this is the first album we’ve actually made in New York, and we made it in the apartment, and it was the last album we made in Grand Street, that we refer to in all our albums, we made it before we moved out of there. And it was sort of, I don’t know, I feel like it was great because we kept normal life going. We’d work on music in the day and then we’d see friends and what not at night, so we didn’t feel so isolated and I think in that way it just kept things a little more natural rather than being single-minded and deserted in some other town.” Matt & Kim’s home recording ended up being something of a farewell to their past too, as the pair get ready to move out and perhaps even grow up a little. “We’ve bought a house after living in this tiny, tiny railroad
apartment for the last eight years, which was like living in the hallway. It was cold in the winter and cold in the summer and it had rats, and had no gas, and it was just ‘a real New York experience’,” Johnson laughs. However, the ‘experience’ is also something he was clearly fond of, too. “We were ready to move on … but we had so much history in there. It’s funny, there’s a highway called the Brooklyn Queens Expressway and I always called it ‘my ocean’ because you just hear the cars whooshing past, for like eight years it sounded like waves going by. And that was probably captured in the background of vocal tracks is kinda cool.” WHO: Matt & Kim WHAT: Lightning (Liberator) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 3 May, Northcote Social Club, Sunday 4 May, Groovin’ The Moo; Prince Of Wales Showground, Bendigo
KISS MY ART
Californian metal outfit Otep were signed to Capitol Records in 2000 before they had a single release or tour under their belt. Frontwoman Otep Shamaya has been extremely vocal with her insights into the industry’s decline ever since. Lochlan Watt investigates. ydra, Otep’s sixth full-length, and third for Victory Records, was released in January with a publicity push that touted the collection of dark, poetic anthems as being the band’s final album. A press release explaining the album’s concept, one that revolves around “a girl corrupted by the world, corrugated by evil, ripped away from the golden, molten elixir of creativity, and abandoned on the placid, jagged rocks of a cruel and barbaric island where the rats poison themselves,” also stated that “this will be my last album”, with subsequent media also referring to their upcoming tours as being the last.
At the time of the interview, Otep were near the end of a US run in support of Hydra. Exclaiming that the shows had been “wonderful, fantastic”, one wonders if Shamaya is at all saddened by the prospect that the tour may be her last on American soil. “Well, I recently lost my companion animal – she died in January,” the outspoken animal rights activist says of her dog. “That experience... she had a brain tumour, although she was expected to survive – it was operable – she died a few days before surgery. That final defeat of someone who didn’t know what was wrong with her, you could see physically that she was in pain, and to see something that was so brave, so strong, and she fought every moment to live, to see her lose that battle, it really kind of taught me to live in the moment. So right now that’s what I’m doing.” So there may be more albums to come after Hydra? “I’m living in the moment, man. Right now in this moment, I’m talking to you on the phone. No one knows what the future will hold. Art is a large part of what I do, and I’m not going to stop creating.” In the lead up to the album’s release, Shamaya went all out in her verbal assault against music
Australian rock’n’roll stalwart, James Rayne, sits down with Tony McMahon to tell him all about his upcoming latest once in a lifetime tour.
piracy, even partially blaming it for her supposed forthcoming withdrawal from the industry. While to some it was seen as simply speaking the harsh truth – that most people are stealing music without sound justification – other commentators derided her rants as childish and unrealistic. “I think there were some people who agreed with it, and some people who disagreed with it, and maybe I was attacking them, but I have to defend art, I have to defend writers. [But] there are those of us in the underground who love the arts so much that we go down with the ship even when it’s burning, you know?” It’s a dark time of tumultuous time, at least for many musicians that came from major label backgrounds. At the end of the day the message is still more important than the money, but perhaps without the money, that message is harder to get out there. “Music is such a powerful force. It’s what we turn to in times of great tribulation. When our heart is broken. When disaster strikes,” Shamaya implores. “People turn to music and console themselves in song. That song costs 99 cents. That’s not much for something that’s going to stay with you for the rest of your life. For some people a Picasso painting is worth millions of dollars, but a song is equally valuable to so many people, but they don’t have to pay a million dollars, they have to pay less than a dollar.” WHO: Otep WHAT: Hydra (Victory/Riot!) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 26 April, Hi-Fi
SPROUTING SEEDS Tim Jarray’s day is “getting better with every wicket New Zealand takes against England”, but the kiwi cricket fan and bass player with The Black Seeds kindly turns the sound off to allow himself to be interviewed by Kate Kingsmill.
Originally formed in 1998 in Wellington, New Zealand, the reggae, funk, dub, soul, Afrobeat band made platinum sales in their home country with their first album, 2001’s Keep On Pushing. In between that record and their latest – they released their fifth studio album, Dust And Dirt, in April last year – their profile has been building steadily internationally. Ever since their third album, Into The Dojo, was released in Europe in 2007 through German-based label Sonar Kollektiv, The Black Seeds have been regular fixtures on the European festival circuit. That album garnered big airplay, particularly in Germany and France, and critical acclaim throughout Europe. The band followed up that bit of success by signing a US record deal with Easy Star Records, and now also tour extensively through North America. Not too bad for a crew from Wellington. “It’s sort of surprising when you come from Kiwiland and you head over there and people know your shit. It’s amazing,” Jarray admits.
Why does he think The Black Seeds sound has resonated so well with European audiences? “Because we’re awesome, why do you think?” he quips. “I’m kidding,” he adds, and then more seriously, “I think there’s a romanticism about New Zealand and the South Pacific and the relaxed vibe of it that they enjoy. I think people really respond to that. And in summer they all want to chill out and have a good time. It’s one of those things you can’t put your finger on that seems to come from this part of the world, which is cool. And other bands from New Zealand have kind of, without really trying to, created a scene.”
That explains why they have only just got around to touring Dust And Dirt in Australia now, a year after release.
For their East Coast tour, The Black Seeds will be playing mostly track from Dust And Dirt, “just because it’s still fresh for some people,” says Jarray. “We will generally play a few of the classic older ones but it’s generally good to keep it changing and not just play the same thing all the time. We like to keep people having a party. Without giving too much away, most of the band is likely to be doing DJing beforehand, so hopefully we’ll whip the crowd up before the band plays. It is a fairly high-energy set. Definitely for dancing, and lots of sweat is the ideal situation.”
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“We did two tours of Europe and America, which were fantastic,” says Jarray. “The second European tour was particularly good; we were touring through August because it’s obviously their summer holidays and that’s when all the main festivals are on. “We played at Sziget in Budapest, which is the biggest festival over in Europe – a phenomenal thing over a few
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“I got a call from the promoter saying there was a possibility of doing these shows with these other guys and I just said ‘count me in’. The four of us know each other pretty well and we’ve worked together a lot over the years. We all get on well, so that helps. We all live in Melbourne, so that helps, too. We’re all fortunate enough to have pretty extensive back catalogues of hits that people will know. The idea just sort of worked. It was a real no-brainer, actually.” Despite his uber professional standing, for some reason Inpress imagines Reyne as slightly nervous about this tour nonetheless. While admitting to Time Of My Life’s difference, though, Reyne says being able to blame someone else is always a comfort. “It’s not your regular show, that’s true. The good thing, though, is that because there’s four of us, it’s all care and diminished responsibility. You’re not reliant on selling it out with it just being you. So in that sense, it’s a bit more relaxed, really. Like I said, we all know each other really well, so there’s no having to worry about how someone’s going to behave on the road or anything like that. It’ll be fun because the pressure’s kind of off.” With such a vast and storied back catalogue, the obvious question here is how Reyne decides which songs he’ll play and which he’ll leave out. Besides wanting to represent his recent work, it doesn’t seem to be something he spends too much time fretting over. “Yeah, I don’t know what I’m going to do about that. We get about half an hour each so that’s, what, six or
seven songs? I don’t know, it’s something I’ll have to think about. You can’t please everybody. If you leave one out there’s always going to be someone asking why you didn’t play it. I do want to put at least one new one in. I’ll just have to sneak it in there, you know? The older I get and the more I play, the more I realise that some of these songs seem to be really important to people, they just seem to resonate. I always used to think that was kind of a cliché, but people often come up to me almost in tears – they’re probably pissed, but still – telling me how much they love certain songs.” Metaphorically rubbing his hands together in anticipation of historic Aussie rock‘n’roll dirt, your correspondent saves his best and most hard hitting question until last: given the other three aren’t here, does Reyne want to take the opportunity for some celebrity gossip? In a world exclusive, Inpress can now reveal that a certain ex-Sherbet singer… well, is rather talkative. “No, there isn’t any dirt I can really dish, they’re all too lovely. We also don’t do anything on tour that we’d be embarrassed about. I’m very clean living. I get up early in the mornings. I get off stage and go straight back to the hotel and read a book. Well… if you go shopping with Daryl he likes to talk to every person in the shop. He likes to have a chat. That’s about as nasty as I can get, really.” WHO: James Reyne WHAT: Time Of My Life WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 24 April, West Gippsland Arts Centre; Friday 26, Palais; Saturday 27, Costa Hall, Geelong; Sunday 28, Capital, Bendigo (two shows); Sunday 9 June, Melbourne Public, South Wharf
GOING THE DISTANCE With the release of their second record, In Rico Glaciers, Sons Of Rico are tighter than ever. But as vocalist Alex MacRae reveals to Daniel Cribb, the album is somewhat of a one-man band effort.
days on the island in the middle of the Danube, and huge crowds. It was amazing. We were doing sound checks in the middle of the day to empty rooms, and then realised they were holding people out, so five minutes before we had to play, the gates opened and ten thousand people came through the door, it was incredible. And the same sort of thing happened just outside of Amsterdam at the Lowlands festival. We were on the first day, around midday, and it was massive crowds. So for us, having been there so many times over the years, it was a pretty special feeling, really, to play these big festivals and have people respond and know the music and know the new tunes from the album.”
alk to any of the eight members of The Black Seeds and the conversation inevitably turns to touring. Pick a week, any week, and The Black Seeds will likely be playing a massive festival somewhere round the world.
n what is being billed as a world first, Melbourne’s iconic Palais Theatre will play host to the opening night of the Apia Time Of My Life Tour. Featuring Australian music legends Daryl Braithwaite, Joe Camilleri, James Reyne and Ross Wilson, this show is sure to be a seriously unmissable event. Tickets, also, should be at a significant premium, given each of these four artists are still selling out shows individually. When Inpress catches up with Reyne, the first thing we want to know is how the tour came about, but it seems that the more pertinent question might have been why it hasn’t happened before.
WHO: The Black Seeds WHEN & WHERE: Saturday 27 April, Hi-Fi
risbane was always at first a temporary thing, and I guess I could be moving back [to Perth] in six months, I could be moving to Melbourne, whatever, but being over in Brisbane has proven that Sons Of Rico can do that distance thing – the long distance relationship,” begins Sons Of Rico vocalist Alex MacRae on the band’s interstate dynamics. With MacRae and drummer Adam Weston (of Birds Of Tokyo fame) residing in Brisbane, and the other three members of Sons Of Rico back in Perth, the tyranny of distance is a big factor.
MacRae’s curious nature often leads to unlikely song matter, which is a reoccurring theme on the band’s sophomore record, In Rico Glaciers. One album track, Just My Type, deals with cannibal Armin Meiwes, who, in 2001, found a victim willing to be killed and eaten. “It was huge news for a while. It was amazing because the law system didn’t know how to deal with it, they were like, ‘Well, this guy was willing to be killed and eaten. Is this assisted suicide, or what?’. But anyway, I kind of turned it into a love story, and sort of peppering connotations of cannibalism and violence,” he laughs.
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A large portion of the absurd content on the record comes from isolation and late-night internet voyages investigating somewhat irrelevant subject matter as a way to stay sane. Without a car, and living at Weston’s house, 45 minutes out of town, MacRae had plenty of time to kill while writing the record in Brisbane. “I was living with his wife and kid while he was in LA with [Birds Of Tokyo] recording... basically for like six months I just stayed in the house, which was good, because I really had to focus on what I was doing, and find ways to keep it interesting, so I feel like it’s crept into this album that we’ve done,” the affable frontman explains.
With the others firmly embedded with other projects, when it came time to get down to business at Applewood Lane Studios with producer Magoo (Regurgitator, Art vs Science, Midnight Oil), it was up to MacRae to pull most of it together. “Everything is a blur now,” he laughs. “Adam laid down his drums in just over a week, Brett [Murray – keys] did a couple of bits on a couple of songs and then basically I did the rest…it was a bit of a one-man band thing for a lot of it, but we kind of felt like that was the smartest thing to do with the funds and the time that we had.” The album’s first single, You Don’t Know What Your Missing, was early proof that the one-man band approach and MacRae’s vision yielded success with listeners. “A lot of crew are connecting it with the glam rock vibe, which is not really intentional, but listening back it’s like, ‘I guess it’s kind of glam. Cool! I’ll embrace that’. It’s kind of gratuitously big and there’s guitar solos. It’s fun.” Despite the record being mainly run by MacRae, the band is tighter than ever. “We’ve become tighter, and we know each other better,” he smiles. “In terms of writing, I still take on the lead there, so not much has changed in that regard, and plus being in Brisbane it’s hard to write together – although it’s possible to do it, like putting things in Dropbox and going, ‘New idea up here – see what you think’. Like anything, there’s going to be changes, I think for us it’s a bit more subtle.” WHO: Sons Of Rico WHAT: In Rico Glaciers (Firestarter Music) WHEN & WHERE: Friday 26 April, Yarra Hotel, Geelong: Saturday 27, Workers Club
A DECADE OF ZEP LOVE
One of the most successful and credible tribute concerts based on the works of Led Zeppelin, Whole Lotta Love celebrates its tenth year this year. Its founder, guitarist and creative director Joseph Calderazzo chats to Michael Smith. t’s a little scary to realise that 2013 marks the 40th anniversary of the release of the fifth album, Houses Of The Holy, by one of the most influential rock bands ever, Led Zeppelin. The fact that one of the longest-running large scale concerts in homage to the band, Whole Lotta Love, is this year celebrating its tenth anniversary is testament not only to the enduring love of Zeppelin’s music but also the foresight and professionalism behind the production, which this year will feature singers Jimmy Cupples, Steve Balbi, Simon Meli, Dallas Frasca and Natasha Stuart, backed by a six-piece band and string trio. Taking the lion’s share of the guitar work, Jimmy Page’s domain of course, is the man whose vision the show was and its creative director, Geelong-born, Melbourne-raised, Sydney-based Joseph Calderazzo.
Hamish Anderson is an artist on the brink of a breakthrough. He sits down for a chat with Tony McMahon to talk friends in high places and why he doesn’t want to be boxed in.
“I actually started this Whole Lotta Love thing twelve years ago,” Calderazzo clarifies. “I first started it at [Kings Cross Sydney nightclub] The Iguana Bar – I was running a Tuesday night there called The Tuesday Night Club and it was for original artists. I ran that for five years and people like Bertie Blackman did her first ever gig there, like a lot of people and it was all acoustic. What I did one night, I wanted to pull fifteen of my favourite acoustic acts together all on the one night, get them to do one song each, and the ‘glue’ part would be they’ve all got to do a Beatles song and do it in their own way. “Then I thought it would be great to do a Zeppelin night, which I did, and it was all unplugged with acoustic guitars, a couple of cellos and a violin. We did that a couple of years and then went electric with it, which was a huge step, and that marks probably the first year, which is when I started working with [business partner] Martin [Contempree, CCEntertainment] on this, taking it into [iconic Sydney venue] The Basement.”
ith the release his debut, self-titled EP, and its single, Howl, local singer/songwriter Hamish Anderson looks set to secure himself a rare posion of prominence in what is a decidedly crowded and quality laden ﬁeld. Guest contribuons on the record by members of Foo Fighters, The Wallﬂowers and Angus & Julia Stone, do nothing to dispel the idea that Anderson is categorically going places, and the world class producon values don’t hurt, either. Above all else, a sense of quality – both musical and lyrical – comes though with this EP, but Anderson says it wasn’t something he necessarily set out with in mind.
That’s where it stayed for the next six years, an annual Led Zep fest that proved increasingly popular; so much so that the decision was made to take it to the next level. There’s no mid-sized venue in Sydney between The Basement and the Enmore Theatre but it worked and that gave Calderazzo the confidence to take it interstate to Melbourne, Brisbane and Perth. Surprisingly however, despite the size of the band performing behind the guest vocalists expanding and the stage production building commensurately, the template remained the same as it was that first night at The Iguana Bar. While during their tenure, Led Zeppelin released nine albums, there are obviously songs any self-respecting tribute must play. “It hasn’t changed mainly because there are certain songs that have to be played. There are some songs that are more interchangeable than others, but you’ve got to have Kashmir, you’ve obviously got to have Whole Lotta Love… Stairway To Heaven is the only one I’d like to get rid of. That was never in the show the first couple of times we did it, but I booked David Campbell to do maybe the fourth or fifth year and talking to him on the phone about repertoire, he said I could give him anything except for Stairway To Heaven, and I thought he said he wanted to do Stairway To Heaven! I wasn’t going to say to him I didn’t really want to add that song so I put him down for it. It was never discussed and we ended up doing the shows, so it made it into the show and now we can’t really get rid of it.”
WHAT: Whole Lotta Love WHEN & WHERE: Friday 10 May, Palais
“It kind of happened very organically and just snowballed, which was really cool. It was crazy. We recorded the single and Eric [producer Eric J. Dubowski] knew Rami [Jaffee, Foo Fighters keyboardist and founding member of The Wallflowers] and just said he thought he would really like it and thought he could add something really special to it. So, Eric sent it to him and almost straight away we got back a version with incredible organ on it and he texted me saying he really loved the song. A little while later there was a second song, Smoke And Mirrors, which we also thought Rami would be great for, and it just so happened that he was in Australia with The Foo’s. We tried to get in contact with him but we didn’t hear back. We just thought, ‘he’s a rock star, he’s really busy’. Then on the last day of the recording he called and said he’d be there in five minutes. He listened to the song for about two minutes and then he just laid down this ridiculously good organ track. After, he was, like, ‘just buy me a beer’. It was amazing.” When it comes to choosing an introductory track from a record, two schools of thought seem to dominate: radio friendliness and the notion that certain songs are good introductions. Anderson is emphatically of the second school when it comes to Howl.
“I don’t listen to radio very much, so I didn’t really think about it in those terms. It’s also five minutes and seventeen seconds long. I also didn’t want to release something that would kind of box me as an acoustic/ folk type person. I love that side of it, but it just seemed like a natural choice to make this the first single.” When it comes to translating his gorgeous sound to the stage, Anderson admits that it wasn’t always an easy task, although he does feel he’s nailed it now. “I kind of did everything backwards. When I went to Sydney, it was just kind of me, but I explained to Eric that I wanted some of these songs to have an arrangement for a sort of band sound. Since then, I’ve gathered my own band and, yeah, again, it really has come together quite naturally. Some songs require a bit more work than others, but some, like Howl, just worked in a live setting straight away.” And launching your debut EP is something that only happens once in a lifetime. Accordingly, Anderson wants his upcoming show at the Toff In Town to be one to truly savour. “I love the Toff. We played there not long ago. It’s probably my favourite venue in Melbourne: great sound, great people to deal with and there just always seems to be a great vibe around the place. We’ve got some friends who’ll be joining us for some songs. We’ve just done a music video for Howl, so we might include that a little bit, yeah, just try to make it a little bit of a special night. We’ve also kind of broken it down into a few different sets: one a bit rockier, one more acoustic, things like that. Just trying to make it not so much like a normal show.” WHO: Hamish Anderson WHAT: Hamish Anderson (Independent) WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 1 May, Toff In Town
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SINGLED OUT WITH STEPHANIE LIEW
ON THE RECORD
BLAQ CARRIE FEAT ADAM GEORGE Let There Be Hope
The A&R Department
Haxan Independent Although surer than debut single Low High, Haxan still falls short of the bar Hooper’s trying to reach. Much too lengthy, with Hooper’s muffled vocals mixed too dully among the sound, Haxan comes off sounding like a lesser Warpaint in the verses and has a disappointingly unmemorable, long and anticlimactic chorus. Glimpses of intrigue are quashed by pointless meandering.
DRAKE FEAT JAMES FAUNTLEROY Girls Love Beyoncé Young Money/Cash Money/Universal We can always rely on Aubrey to impart his knowledge of women, but on slow jam Girls Love Beyoncé it seems Drizzy is ready to overcome his fear of commitment and find someone to “leave through the front door with”. Girls Love Beyoncé meets the high expectations of a single following up his album Take Care (2011), largely thanks to the addition of the [Destiny’s Child’s] Say My Name samples, and R&B singer Fauntleroy’s smooth, moody chorus vocals.
My Shame Is True
A Fairer Sea
The Last Good Party
For the past 15 years, Illinois’ Alkaline Trio have built a reputation as one of the most consistent poppunk bands on the planet, and on album number nine they deliver their most solid effort in years.
The latest album from these alt.country/indie/folksy rockers is so gentle, soft, dreamy and all those other cuddly adjectives it feels like a sleepwalk come to life. Steered by former Black Nielson frontman, Mike Gale, absorbing the album is akin to taking a stroll though some musical Elysian field, smothering you in its celestial cheerfulness.
The sleaziness has returned and the balls are back out with Gay Paris’ new long player delivering the good old-fashioned chunky riffs and sweaty burlesque we have come to expect. The inner-Sydney quartet, who gave us songs with track titles such as My First Wife? She Was A Fox Queen! have applied a similar formula to the one they used on the impressive 2011 release The Skeleton’s Problematic Granddaughter, with more rock and more ridiculously over-the-top-moments than the Sylvester Stallone movie of the same name. Theatrics and bodily juices aside, the band have honed their skills over the years too, and here demonstrate even more their exceptional talents as musicians and pioneers of whatever genre they have invented. One thing is certain, though – this band likes to party hard.
On their second album proper with Epitaph, which was engineered and produced by Bill Stevenson and Jason Livermore at The Blasting Room, the experimental flourishes of some of their more recent releases have been pushed to the background. My Shame Is True kicks off with She Lied To The FBI, an unadulterated, catchy pop-punk number with a sing-along chorus that recalls some of the band’s finest moments. Next up is the equally impressive I Wanna Be A Warhol, which features the unmistakable back-up vocals of The Lawrence Arms’ Brendan Kelly, and the lyrically darker but still musically upbeat I’m Only Here To Disappoint. Kiss You To Death is another highlight, as is the more bleak I, Pessimist, which features co-vocals from Rise Against frontman Tim McIlwrath. The sluggish Only Love doesn’t fare as well, but things quickly pick up again on The Torture Doctor, which features a “HeyHo” peppered chorus. Despite its reflective subject matter, the punchy Midnight Blue is one of the album’s most melodic and musically upbeat tracks. The album closes on a high note with the touching Young Lovers and relative slow-burner, Until Death Do Us Part.
The Zimbabwe-born, Brisbane-based rapper walks near the line of motivational preaching, but Blaq Carrie thankfully never oversteps it, instead convincing you to really listen to what she’s saying through her hard, multi-tracked vocals and a fiery conviction in her delivery. Through the organic accompaniment, she stands up for her culture, her place of belonging in the world as a woman of colour, and her desire to teach her future daughters to be strong and proud of who they are: “Never insecure of your skin tone darker/ Don’t be shy to get up and pushed over.” Makes you inspired, warm and gets your head nodding.
What really separates Alkaline Trio from their peers when they’re in-form is their passion, which My Shame Is True has in spades. It’s a welcome addition to their already impressive discography. Daniel Johnson
22 strikes the opening bell, beginning the harmonic journey with the tap-tap-tapping of the glockenspiel dancing delicately against the perfect harmonies of Gale and Claire Bennett. The gear changes ever-so-slightly, with the enchanting title track taking notes from eastmountainsouth and a stripped-down Lindsey Buckingham (post-Fleetwood), Gale’s breathless voice peaceful and shimmering. The California Dreaming-esque instruction of I’m Going To The Country sees Gale dive head-first into a ‘60sinspired sunkissed love fest, evoking The Mamas & The Papas (obviously), The Byrds and The Beach Boys. Co-Pilgrim keep the fuzzy, warm feeling in Come On Come On, before the almost acoustic No Man Or Mountain floods your ears. Perfect, whispered harmonies and lightly plucked guitars envelop you like some kind of dream. Rarely are albums able to keep you transfixed from cover to cover, most of us zoning in and out throughout, but Co-Pilgrim have managed to create one that will draw you in and wrap you up in its universe. Is it too early to start a best of 2013 list? It’s not? Good. Slam this album right in there. Natasha Lee
Anyone that’s seen the group live knows there was always a skinny, hairy, white rapper within vocalist Luke Monks just screaming to come out, and so it would seem his time has come with the track Trash Bird At Confessional, mashing scream, cock-rock and rap into something that is not a party song but an actual party by itself. In fact, all the songs on the album – reportedly made on a shoe-string budget of about $6K – aim for ‘epic’. Check out Ghost Of Umbra and if you’re not smashing your head in time with the riff within five seconds, I’ll eat my keyboard. You can expect more metal riffs, more underlying blues, more growling and sex then you could throw a packet of condoms at, plus, as the album title suggests, a damn good time. It’s hard not to wonder if the band aren’t actually taking the piss and are in fact trying to conquer the world, one fat riff at a time. Brilliant. Adam Wilding
TO KILL A KING Funeral Communion Records You’d chuck this song in the ‘trendy new wave/ folk rock’ category; the kind of music riding on the coattails of bands like Mumford & Sons (as trendy as it is to dislike them, too). We’ve heard it all before: the fingerpicking, the banjos, the trumpets. Its desire for an epic ending backfires when the build-up overstays its welcome; they didn’t know when to stop. Funeral is the kind of song that will be successful for a short while before people move onto the next It Thing and cast them aside.
SASKWATCH I Get Lonely Northside Records I Get Lonely is a slice of garagey soul excellence. It’s nothing too fancy or polished, with a reliance on vibe; vocalist Nkechi Anele’s wavering high notes, pushed up from deep within, over surf-rock guitars and a horn section that lifts the energy of everything that little bit more. It’s a nod to the ‘60s with their feet firmly grounded in the now. The groove is undeniable and its upbeat tempo seems to only complement Anele’s cries of loneliness and lust; not desperate, not wistful, rather a little hot-tempered, coyly teasing and persuasive.
KIRIN J CALLINAN Embracism Siberia Records The ever-provocative Kirin J Callinan’s Embracism is less of a song than a statement. It’s a vivid spiel about how a person should see themselves in the world on a physical level. It’s uncomfortable listening, and not an enjoyable one, which is likely the song’s purpose. The guitar squeals like nails on a chalkboard alongside throbbing, churning electronic compositions as Callinan snarls aggressively “you gotta love one another” and it sounds like both a sardonic comment and a threat; he’s the predator and his audience, the prey.
26 • For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews
STEVE EARLE & THE DUKES (& DUCHESSES)
Hero In Me Independent
The Low Highway
Loose Lips Records/Cooperative Music
Melbourne songstress Jenny Biddle has selfreleased her third album, Hero In Me, a record that owes its existence in part to crowdfunding and some generous benefactors.
New West/Warner Music
Your Twenties and ex-Metronomy multi-instrumentalist, Gabriel Stebbing has taken a few years to get his debut solo album released, having left his previous band in 2009, and adopting the moniker of Night Works under which to release it. Sadly, it seems he should have taken a little more time, preferably to re-think releasing it at all.
Biddle has won a number of awards, including Melbourne’s Best Busker, and it’s not hard to see why when you listen to Hero In Me. Beautiful mandolinpicking opens the title track. It’s not long before Biddle’s warm and inviting vocals begin on a very personal journey. It’s a journey that continues for the duration of the album and takes you through the highs and lows of love, but without the melodrama that often accompanies it. Rather than feeling sorry for themselves, the songs about broken relationships or unrequited love simply state the facts. Another feather in the cap of this talented multiinstrumentalist is the way she weaves her words together to create some beautifully-phrased lyrics. Good examples run throughout the whole album, such as on Running Out Of Lies, where she recalls: “I was savouring the moment in the flickering light/ We were teasing the air/Breathing the night”. There are a couple of more bluesy numbers, such as Pockets and Somebody To Love, where we get to hear Biddle’s mighty fine harmonica playing, yet she’s at her best on those tracks with more of a folk touch.
With so many great songs and albums to his name, it feels a bit strange to make a call as lofty as this; but The Low Highway, Steve Earle’s 15th studio album, is one of his finest moments yet. The title track is an auspicious beginning, it starts with a classic Earle grunt but by the time the first chorus is through you realise that you just don’t know where it’s going, something Earle carries through on each and every aspect of this record; just when you think you’ve figured out his direction, he’ll throw a sidestep to keep you guessing. Calico County kicks off with an almost Stones-esque riff and has buckets of swagger, as does the rocking That All You Got, featuring Earle in duet with an unspecified Duchess. Burnin’ It Down will be familiar to those who saw Earle early last year, the tale of a man wanting to torch a Wal-Mart hard to forget. Loves Gonna Blow My Way takes on something of a Western swing direction and 21st Century Blues sounds like classic Copperhead Road-era Earle, while After Mardi Gras and Invisible are simply brilliant songs that are dripping with emotion and don’t at any stage become predictable.
Biddle’s voice has a soothing quality to it and wraps itself around you like a warm blanket. She may not be a household name, but her work is full of the same spirit, sincerity and beauty as the best works of many of this country’s celebrated folk troubadours.
Earle has been pretty consistent with his recorded output of late, but this record bucks that trend by soaring well above and beyond what he’s given us over the past decade or so. Everyone knows that he is one of the best songwriters on the planet, but this record suggests he’s not content with that, he’s still striving to hit new and exciting heights.
Urban Heat Island
Urban Heat Island could easily be a reject from the 1980s, overflowing with bad lyrics, second-rate melodies and some painfully dodgy keyboard goings on. To make matters worse, it’s played out in an unholy amalgamation of R&B and electronica. The whole thing is on a slippery slope from the start, courtesy of a keyboard-heavy intro to Boys Born In Confident Times that is not too dissimilar to a bad ringtone. From there, Stebbing takes us on a very long journey through very middle-of-the-road sounds and it’s all you can do to stop imagining him in a pastel-coloured, shoulderpadded, double-breasted suit in a really bad ‘80s band. Despite all efforts to enjoy Urban Heat Island, there really is nothing to enjoy here. It doesn’t even fall into the “so bad it’s good” category. Just when you think things can’t get worse, along comes Share The Weather, which happens to contain one of the worst examples of rapping that is your misfortune to hear. Compounding the problem is that it is completely out of keeping with the rest of the song. An honest attempt was made to find Urban Heat Island a good album, yet with only one salvageable positive quality – the female backing vocals on Nathaniel – to be found, all that there is left to say is that it is a pity that once something has been heard, you can’t un-hear it. Dominique Wall
THEE OH SEES
THE DELTA RIGGS
THE BLACK ANGELS
FOUR (Acts Of Love)
Rah Rah Radio/Inertia
Hot on the heels of last year’s Putrifiers II comes Floating Coffin – the latest offering from the highly prolific San Franciscan outfit, Thee Oh Sees, and their 14th overall.
Even on his sixth solo record, Mick Harvey works in understatement, maybe still an unconscious reaction to his years as definitive sideman to big personalities, like Nick Cave and PJ Harvey. FOUR… takes his own music down to that most intimate level, and popular conceit of late, charting the flow and ebb of a single love affair. But from the first suite of five songs Summertime In New York, there’s already a feeling of nostalgia and melancholy; it’s a relationship being recalled, even a bit rewritten in memory, rather than of the moment.
The Delta Riggs have unabashedly thrown down the gauntlet in defense of rock with the release of their debut album, Hex.Lover.Killer, delivering the goods with such passion and energy that you can almost hear them sweat. From start to finish, there is not one moment where this quintet fail to stay true to their raison d’être. Some tunes are straight-out rock, such as single Rah Rah Radio while others bring a hefty blues and psychedelic influence, such as Perfume & Lace. Even when they’re in a quieter mood on tracks like I Was Profound Tomorrow, they’re still playing hard. This track in particular has incredibly loud echoes of The Rolling Stones ringing throughout.
One of the highlights of last year’s Harvest festival was lying on the grass and listening to the fuzzy, spaced-out drones of The Black Angels filling the air with strange vibrations. The outfit’s latest album finds the powerfully overwhelming and mind expanding psychedelics of their earlier work transforming into flower-powered paisley pop. The blunted stoner slouch has stepped up to a more forthright, edgier and aggressive approach. The sinister narcotic drones are reigned in as the band do their best to sound like a long forgotten ‘60s garage band recently remembered on a Nuggets compilation.
Not interested in easing you into the record, John Dwyer and co push you into the deep end with I Come From The Mountain, a track full of reckless abandon that has you hooked before you know what’s happened. The pace doesn’t slow down until halfway through Floating Coffin with the fuzz-heavy Strawberries 1 + 2. This provides an opportunity to pull yourself together after the high-paced aural assault of the previous four tracks. It doesn’t last long, though, with things picking right back up with Maze Fancier. Tunnel Time is a definite highlight that easily stands out and manages to snap your brain out of a wallof-sound haze and back to attention. Minotaur is an oddity in that it is unlike anything else on this record and has a strong Pixies vibe going on, especially with Brigid Dawson’s Kim Deal-esque backing vocals.
Thee Oh Sees’ brand of wigged-out, psychedelicdrenched garage rock has worked well for them over the years and continues to do so. Floating Coffin will not disappoint old fans and will blow away new ones, and, as we’ve come to expect from this intriguing outfit, is chock-full of garage-fuelled goodness.
At times, it doesn’t even need words: Midnight On The Ramparts is the walk home after kissing her on the doorstep, whistling almost tunelessly to yourself, before the thought processes come some way into the stroll. The instrumentation is mostly quiet, the increasingly respected JP Shilo and Rosie Westbrook’s upright bass the underpinnings. He does, however, take some songs of others and puts his own spin on them. Van Morrison’s The Way Young Lovers Do is quiet, but with some churn underneath maybe suggesting the doubts that remain, while his take on namesake PJ’s Glorious comes with echoes of her fierce choppiness in the guitar attack and emotions. Then, as so often happens, Wild Hearts Run Out Of Time, as Act 3 rightly puts it. The (kinda) eponymous anthem of it, Roy Orbison’s Wild Hearts, cutting back the original’s widescreen cri de coeur, to a more personal desolation. FOUR… is just another example of Harvey’s careful eye and ear, and a talent that can be confident, self-effacing and honest all at once.
The cover art for Floating Coffin may not be pretty, but it certainly is in keeping with the cover art of the band’s previous releases. Having said that, the blurred collage of strawberries, eyes and gnashed dog teeth does suit the music within in some warped way.
The production on Hex.Lover.Killer may be slick, but they’ve been wise enough to leave enough rough edges to keep things nice and dirty. There is so much going on in these tracks, yet the mixing has been masterfully done, allowing you to discover a new component to each track every time you listen to the album. Their wise and well-timed use of percussion, whether it be in the form of a tambourine (Stars), piano (Anybody Home) or some fine rattling maracas – or is that an egg shaker? – (giving Naked a great Western flavour) to name a few, is inspired and proves to be the cherry on the proverbial cake throughout the album. With Hex. Lover.Killer, The Delta Riggs have shown that they don’t care what you think – they’re just here to give the music world a shot in the arm with a no-holds-barred mix of rock, retro glamour and a hell of a lot of life.
Referencing acts like The Yardbirds, The Doors, The Byrds and many of the bands Alan McGee would have liked to signed to Creation, The Black Angels for the first time achieve an accessibility that will surprise fans of their earlier work. This is best exemplified on the cautionary Don’t Play With Guns and War On Holiday, which come with anthemic hooks that would have given these songs some traction on the charts back in 1966. It’s interesting that the antiwar sentiment of Broken Soldier would have been as relevant in the ‘60s as it is today. The production is of course crisper and cleaner than anything that would have been recorded back in the day. The glorious acid rock of I Hear Colours is a technicolour highlight. The woozy pastel colours of Holland with its swirls of organ and mellotron is a delight. Slowing things down, the brooding Black Isn’t Black approaches a dark, almost gothic vibe. Exploring a different facet of the psychedelic ‘60s this time around, The Black Angels still take us on quite a trip.
If you’re out after midnight on a Friday or Saturday night, Melbourne has lots of public transport options to get you home. Last trains leave the city between 12 and 1am Last trams leave the city between 1 and 2am NightRider buses leave the city and run until early in the morning.
For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews • 27
THIS WEEK IN
Mention the surname ‘Wayans’ and you’ll get a polarising reaction: the Wayans brothers are the geniuses behind groundbreaking iconic ‘90s sketch comedy series In Living Color, which also launched Jim Carrey and Jamie Foxx. They collaborated on the genius 1988 blaxploitation spoof I’m Gonna Git You Sucka. But in recent years they’ve copped a bit of flak for spoofing other movie genres in films such as Dance Flick and four Scary Movie outings, and cross-dressing as Paris-and-Nicole-a-likes in White Chicks. Eldest brother Keenen Ivory and his cohorts Damon, Marlon, Shawn and the rest may not be the darlings of the critics but judging by the box office, the fans love them.
Iron Man 3
The Avengers 3D – in the lead up to the midnight release of Iron Man 3, major cinemas are re-screening The Avengers 3D. It was the first Marvel film to make over $1 billion worldwide and the biggest opening week to date. Get yourself psyched for Iron Man 3 and watch Joss Whedon’s epic superhero film. Village Cinemas Fountain Gate, 9pm.
Cowboy Mouth – a play by Sam Shepherd and his then lover, fellow writer, Patti Smith from indie theatre darlings Exhibit A, directed by Emily O’Brien Brown with Belinda Misevski and Benjamin Rigby. “She wants to turn him into a rockstar, but they fall in love.” Goodtime Studios, 8pm to Sunday 28 April.
People’s Market: The Last Supper – the People’s Market is closing with a five day celebration, tonight get some noms in ya at the last supper. Curated degustation by chefs Michael Fox and Matt Forbes. The People’s Market, 6pm. Beached – a play directed by Petra Kalive and written by Melissa Bubnic a dark satire about reality TV, love and the person behind the freak. MTC, 7.30pm, to Friday 10 May.
Video Doctor – an exhibition that came from a collaboration with New York video and media art organisation Electronic Arts Intermix, this group show has work by Corey Arcangel, Paper Rad, Valerio Ciccone and Leo Cussen. It’s about hacking into, remixing and rekindling the aesthetic of old technologies including VHS and video games. Opening, Arts Project Australia, 3pm to 5pm, exhibiting to Tuesday 28 May. About Tommy – a play by Thor Bjorn Krebs thats been translated by David Duchin based on a series of actual events in the territories formerly known as Yugoslavia, directed by Kat Henry. Red Stitch Actors Theatre, 8pm, to Saturday 25 May.
ANZAC Day Dawn Service – wake up bright and early on this public holiday and head to the Shrine of Remembrance to watch the sun rise as we commemorate the landing of Australian and New Zealand soldiers at Gallipoli 98 years ago in 1915. An ongoing tradition, the Dawn Service comes from the military when soldiers where asked to ‘stand to’ at dawn and dusk, times when they were most likely to be attacked by enemies. There is also an ANZAC Day march at 9am. Shrine of Remembrance, 6am. Hollywood Costume – an exhibition that explores the central role of costume design, an essential tool of cinema storytelling. It will illuminate the costume designer’s creative process from script to screen and reveal the collaborative dialogue that leads to the invention of authentic characters in the story. Part of Melbourne Winter Masterpieces, tonight to 9pm, exhibiting to Sunday 18 August.
WAYANS’ WORLD They’re more known for TV and movies than stand-up but Marlon and his bro Shawn Wayans are heading to Australia to redress that balance, writes Baz McAlister.
Wayans is smack in the middle of Way family born to Howell the ten-sibling t and Elvira Wayans, who all grew up in the projects in New York. “We grew up in a big household and we grew up poor, so we spent a lot of time just trying to make each other laugh. All we had were laughs,” laug says Wayans. “When I was a baby, Keenen was already 15. There was Keen gap between some of a generation ge my oother siblings and my parents, and Keenen helped bridge that gap.” Keenen Ivory Wayans seems to be Keen the general of the army; when the th brothers collaborate on creative
SUNDAY 28 People’s Market: Street Party – dance on the streets and get into it, don’t just watch. To close the People’s Market see Client Liaison and Acoustic Set from Daniel Merriweather. The People’s Market, from 12pm.
GIVEAWAY You there, Inpress reader! You could win one of three double passes to see Legally Blonde The Musical on Thursday 9 May at The Princess Theatre. For your chance to win stalk the Inpress Facebook page and bend and snap.
NOT? To continue the discussion head to @frontrowSPA and tweet us
28 • To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags
Growing Up The Son Of Canada’s Most Acclaimed Filmmaker, Brandon Cronenbergg Tells Anthony Carew About His First-Hand on. Experience With Today’s Celebrity Obsession. “My father does have some fairly crazy fans,” laughs Brandon Cronenberg, the son of legendary director David Cronenberg. “And I experienced some of that weird celebrity-by-proxy thing. On my first day at this new high-school, some kid came up to me and said: ‘I heard you were coming. We have a lot to discuss.’ I think, mostly, he really wanted to know if my dad would have lunch with him.” Cronenberg’s debut film, Antiviral, is an exploration of the obsession of the TMZ realm —“that extreme fanaticism is completely insane, it suggests a total loss of perspective”— couched through something familiar to fans of
“That’s who we make the movies for – the fans,” says Shawn Wayans. “A critic is a person who’s paid to have an opinion on absolutely everything. As long as we’re making movies we’ll be making them for the people.”
his father: body-horror. In 2004, Cronenberg, who’d just begun film-school, came down with a brutal flu, which lead to “semiconscious reveries” where he “was obsessing about the fact that [he] had something in [his] body that, physically, came from another body, and it felt weirdly intimate.” “It occurred to me that a celebrityobsessed fan of, say, Angelina Jolie, could conceivably want germs from her as a way of connecting physically to this person they’re obsessed with,” offers Cronenberg. So, slowly, that became the central idea driving his debut feature; which explores intersections of celebrity and physicality in a dystopian
ne near-future barely rem removed from our curr current digital reality. “We ddon’t really like to think of oourselves, now, as bodies,” Cro Cronenberg says. “People are more invested in these idealised, digitised versions of themselves than they are in their actual corpus. And it relates to celebrity culture, too: in these profiles, people play both the paparazzi and the celebrity; so much of Twitter is taking candid photos of you coming out of restaurants, or telling people what you’re eating, just documenting this endless banality all day. It’s like you’re living your own celebrity experience.” Antiviral, with its contrasts between “antiseptic, bright-white interiors [and] macroscopic close-ups of the body,” is a film about mortal decay and digital immortality. “The physical body of the human-being
projects, Wayans says they often defer to Keenen on the final say. But if he’s the general, then Shawn Wayans and brother Marlon are the dashing young captains, on the front line. They write together, quite often act together and now they’re coming to Australia to do stand-up comedy together. Wayans says stand-up has been in his blood ever since he was 17, when he challenged himself to get on stage around the same time brother Keenen was shooting I’m Gonna Git You Sucka (in which Shawn Wayans had a small part). “Marlon and I are in the same show but we do different [solo] sets,” Wayans explains. “In my comedy I like to talk about my life, growing up, being part of a big family – not too many stories from backstage and whatnot, I like to keep it all universal and relatable. We’re really excited to be able to come out on tour and connect with our fanbases around the world. I’d say come out and see us, check your brain at the door and have a really great time.” Beyond doing stand-up, Wayans says he’s currently hip-deep in a new spoof movie script. “I can’t tell you what it’s spoofing in case you steal my movie [idea],” he laughs, “but when it comes out, you’ll know that’s what we were talking about. But Keenen has a movie coming out next year, A Haunted House, which is kind of like Paranormal Activity if it happened to a black couple.” WHAT: The Wayans Brothers WHEN & WHERE: Friday 10 May, Athenaeum who is the celebrityy is almost cultural construct of unrelated to the cult exists in the media the celebrity that ex consciousness,” and the public consc posits Cronenberg. ““Even when that body dies, the celebrity celeb construct commercials 40 years lives on in commerc the Tupac later. Think about th that it stands for. hologram, and all th career is still ongoing, Tupac’s music caree almost 20 years after he died.” It’s a thoughtful, deeplyphilosophical piece of filmmaking that marks a plenty impressive debut. Still, just as he’s experienced all his life —“people approach you with a lot of preconceptions; both undeserved respect and undeserved contempt”— Cronenberg will be forever compared to his father. “On the one hand, no doubt it’s attracted more attention to my film. On the other, it’s the only frame through which it’s viewed; and so much of the discussion is how my film relates to my father’s career, and not it as its own thing,” he says. “People say: ‘he’s making horror films just like his horror-film father’. But he hasn’t made a horror film in over 20 years! He’s been making anything but: periodpieces, crime dramas. To avoid everything he’s touched on in his very long career would be very difficult.” The younger Cronenberg could’ve made a romantic-comedy, perhaps? “Well, I think Antiviral is a romantic-comedy. But no one else agrees with me.” WHAT: Antiviral WHEN & WHERE: In cinemas Thursday 25 April Exclusive to Cinema Nova
REVIEWS WAT C H I N G
I KNOW THERE’S A LOT OF NOISE OUTSIDE BUT YOU HAVE TO CLOSE YOUR EYES THEATRE I never see plays twice. It is extremely grating to know what’s coming next or to endure, again, things that didn’t work. Only very good plays warrant continued exploration, and hence another ticket bought and night spent. I’ll be seeing I’m Trying to Kiss You’s show I Know There’s A Lot Of Noise Outside But You Have To Close Your Eyes again. Ostensibly it is a 50-minute, two-hand Gen Y feminist intervention in our culture’s legacy of prescribing a simplified and psychologically inhumane gender role to women, that debuted and
C U LT U R A L
TO HAVE AND TO HOLD S6, E4
absence of husband. Everyone wants what others have, resentfully; this the parry/thrust of office politics in a place where “everybody’s crying”.
This Week On Mad Men: The swingin’ ’60s reveal Dishonest Don is way square. He keep things French with Lindsay Weir’s wig/Catholicguilt, but the “man who plays many roles” bristles when Meta-SoapOperatic Megan (“my storyline is getting more developed!”) pretends to kiss on TV for her swinger bosses. While Joan and old pal Kate french boys to Bonnie & Clyde, the maleprivileged men of Madison Avenue get pissy: Don the possessive, faux-moralist husband; stoned Stan flipping the bird at careerist Peggy; Harry throwing a tanty at Joan’s seniority, even if her co-partners still “treat [her] like a secretary.” Dawn, an actual secretary, makes do as Independent Woman pt.2 only in the
How Big Is Thy Weiner: After the TV-as-high-art rush of the return, this was plot-driven, lacking the formalist flourish of the show’s most Weinerish moments. Arcane & Able: Broadway Joe Does Broadway! Starring Joe Namath! With Special Guest Stars Joey Heatherton! Julie Andrews! And “The Duke” John Wayne! Pete Campbell’s PunchableWeasel-Face Watch: Smirkin’ PC winkily pimpin’ his bach pad to Don: “it’s available to you, if you ever need to spend a night in the city…” Anthony Carew Screening every Monday night, 5.20pm and 8.30pm, on Showcase
ROBOTS VS. ART THEATRE
sold out at the 2011 Melbourne Fringe and has been masterfully developed since. But its success, and the reason I’ll see it again, is in the complex of seemingly infantile jibberish that ITKY brings into the light as both a facade for woman’s forced silence and a haywire, scatter-bombing first step towards a language undictated by patriarchal notions of sense. Simon Eales La Mama Theatre to Sunday 5 May
Robots Vs. Art “[argues] the power of art”. Set in a post-apocalyptic world where robots have enslaved the human race, the show explores issues surrounding the validity of art, the value of life and the threat of technology. Performances by Natasha Jacobs, Paul David Goddard and Simon Maiden are fantastic, with each actor managing the intentionally overly-mechanical dialogue and physicality of the robot characters with ease. Daniel Federiksen’s performance as human character Giles is let down by the fact that (ironically) it is difficult to empathise with him. Furthermore, while the piece flows well, some narrative choices are rushed and poorly executed. As well, the
AFGHANISTAN: HIDDEN TREASURES EXHIBITION Hidden treasure, acts of bravery, ancient empires and lashings of gold. Antiquity doesn’t get much more exciting than this exhibition, which also comes with a very modern story of heroism. The objects on display are part of a trove thought to have been lost to looters under the Taliban. Thanks to some quick-thinking courage on the part of the Afghanistan National Museum staff they were actually tucked away in a vault. Rediscovered in 2003, the collection of pottery, glass, carvings and jewellery span millennia of human history, and tell some great stories along the way. The most beautiful items reveal the East-meets-West cultural
tounge-in-cheek references to the Melbourne Independent Theatre scene are numerous enough to be grating. However, while Robot Vs. Art is 15% short of being a spectacular show (to use their jargon) it is definitely a stand out of MICF and well worth checking out. Benjamin Meyer La Mama Theatre: Courthouse to Sunday 5 May syncretism that resulted from Afghanistan’s position at the heart of the ancient Silk Road trading route – think Roman statues with Indian-style clothing, Greek carvings with Syrian motifs, and ChineseSiberian influenced jewellery. The show is elegantly presented by the Melbourne Museum, who opt to create atmosphere using dramatic lighting and creative display stands and avoid cheesy video reconstructions. The audio guide, voiced by our own Jon Faine, is a must for any self-respecting history nerd. The only omission is a lack of references to the US invasion of Afghanistan in 2001. Still, it offers a very different, and infinitely richer, picture of the region than what you will find in the news. Sarah Braybrooke Melbourne Museum to Sunday 28 July
A CONTRACT OF LOVE TALK With the push to legalise gay marriage, is anyone asking whether marriage is something we all should aspire to, anyway? Building up to the opening of Dance Of Death, The Malthouse Theatre presented a discussion on this topic, with Richard Watts hosting the terrifically ferocious Helen Razer, the suave and erudite Benjamin Law, the eminently intellectual Professor Dennis Altman and the wise and wonderful Jacqui Tomlins. Razer, reclining on a chaise lounge bedecked in a beaded wedding gown, challenged gay marriage as supporting a ‘flawed hetero-normative situation’ while the right to feel ‘normal’ was
vigorously supported in principle by Laws. There are more important battles to fight, claims Professor Altman, while noting that once upon a time being gay freed one from conforming to the model of
monogamy, a model which works just fine for the happily married for ten years Jacqui Tomlins and her (lesbian) partner. The conversation comprised a vigorous and inspired debate with each panellist agreeing
on how privileged we were to be having it in the first place. Liza Dezfouli Malthouse Theatres: Dance Of Death runs to Sunday 19 May
WITH REBECCA COOK There was no robot cake or balloons but there was a game and plenty of shenanigans worthy of a ten-year-old’s birthday party at the program launch of the tenth annual Emerging Writers Festival (EWF) on Wednesday night. The program launched with an event titled The Discomfort Zone, where four writers (graphic novelist Nicki Greenberg, novelist Toni Jordan, young adult author Andrew McDonald and comedian Luke Ryan) were challenged to get out of their respective comfort zones and write a piece well outside of their usual genre. Each writer then revealed their work with a public reading at the launch. Jordan wrote poetry and Greenberg wrote a recipe for brisket, while Ryan dug out a sci-fi epic novel he wrote when he was 14 years old called Love Shall Sustain Me. The rediscovered treasure had the audience in stitches, as did McDonald, who turned his young adult pen to erotica, which Festival Director, Sam Twyford-Moore described as “cannibal post-sex” fiction. The reading resulted in the audience squirming with both delight and awkwardness. But while the exercise was a success, Twyford-Moore says he “can’t really see any of the authors selling any copies” of their works. This is Twyford-Moore’s first year as Festival Director, stepping into the very big footprints left by Lisa Dempster, who over her threeyear reign built EWF into a highly innovative and expanded festival. Having moved to Melbourne from Sydney late last year, TwyfordMoore is no stranger to the literary scene; he’s worked with the NSW Writers Centre and knows all about trying to balance writing
with holding down a paying job. Although, he admits he hasn’t had much time for scribbling of late and it’s no wonder – this year there are more than 50 events and 200 artists involved in the 11-day program. And having lived and breathed the program intensely for so many months, Twyford-Moore is naturally keen to see it become a reality on Thursday 23 May. This year there are masterclasses on theatre writing, screenwriting and performing your work aloud, while the flagship Writers’ Conference returns to the Melbourne Town Hall on Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 May. There will also be a special Writers’ Retreat at Abbotsford Convent (Saturday 1-Sunday 2 June) themed around writing and wellbeing with workshops such as ‘Writing and Yoga’ and ‘Writing and Meditation’. Now while yoga might mix well with writing, surely for most emerging writers the problem is too much meditation and not enough action. Cringe thinks perhaps some more effective workshops along the wellbeing theme could be ‘Writing and Not Going to the Kitchen Every Five Minutes’ and ‘Writing and Actual Typing’. This year the Festival is also going international, sending a writer (Laura Jean McKay) to the Bali Emerging Writers Festival while bringing writer and performance poet Khairani ‘Okka’ Barokka out from Indonesia for the first time. As per usual EWF has some come up with some truly creative nights out, including Turn The Words Up Loud! where Dave Graney, Alicia Sometimes and Angie Hart will explore the relationship between music and writing. There will also an Emerging Q&A hosted by Benjamin Law, which will no doubt cause quite a few ‘comments’.
as part of
WITH KIRSTEN LAW And so, the time has come to wave goodbye to the giant, furry, fluorescent-genitaled monster that is MICF 2013. Where is the monster going? Isn’t it obvious? It’s retreating to its cave to illegally download the episodes of Mad Men and Game Of Thrones that it needs to catch up on while nursing the flu it caught at the Hi-Fi Bar on Saturday. ’Tis a melancholic time for Melbourne’s comedy community; a time of endings, reflection, contemplation, and the perfect time for the post-festival blues to set in. Hopefully, though, many participants are also basking in the warm light of accomplishment. At a guess, I’d say this year’s festival was not only the biggest in terms of the number of acts in the guide, but also probably drew the largest audience numbers MICF has seen for many a year. Local raconteur, Jon Bennett, concurs. “There seemed to be a real bump in audience numbers for most people. Usually around the middle of the festival you see some sad faces, but this year seems to have been successful for most and it created a really great atmosphere.” It was a big year for shows of a darker hue. There were those with names hinting at diagnosed psychiatric conditions, like Pippa Evans’ Bipolar and Sam McCool’s Multiple Personality Distorter, and then there were those more subtly named and somberly themed. Two examples of these were David Quirk’s Shaking Hands With Danger, which took out the Piece of Wood award, and Simon Keck’s Nob
Happy Sock, which nabbed the Gibbo. Jon Bennett, whose show Fire In The Meth Lab recounts the painful story of his brother’s neardemise, says, “It was so nice to see people I actually know well win the awards. Both were emotion-filled, honest storytelling shows... Hold on! My show was an emotion-filled, honest storytelling show. Screw you, Keck and Quirk! No, I guess the judges just prefer suicide and infidelity over drug addiction.” I wonder how Bennett would have felt if Michael Workman’s Ave Loretta had taken out the Barry, creating a phenomenon that I like to call ‘The Queckman Effect’. With a trio of mournful confessionals up for major awards this year, it feels like there’s something stirring in the de-stigmatisation department of the Troubled Comedian’s Club. Or, what I like to think of as the Comedian’s Club. As for the future, what will our beloved funny people be doing now they’ve ticked the MICF box? Some will hunker down to write their next opus. Some, like certifiably insane Jon Bennett, will be pausing for a minute before jetting off to other comedy and fringe festivals in Sydney, Montreal, Winnipeg and Edinburgh. “I’ve had only six nights off performing since mid January!” Bennett moans. “It’s bullshit, but these are the things you have to do to sustain a career in comedy. And by career, I mean break even for the year.” Lolz! The things we do to avoid getting a desk job.
For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews • 29
as he witnesses the atrocities that were happening with a sense of futility and inability to intervene, such is the mandate of the UN”.
DREAM ON Rarely arely do actors get the hance to star in the role chance of a lifetime so early in their career. Matthew McFarlane tells Oliver Coelman how his dream part came about. Matthew McFarlane tumbles through the doors of the Melbourne Theatre Company (MTC) headquarters at half past one just in time for our interview, having spent the morning teaching year 10 drama and music out at Lilydale Secondary School. He tells me, “I’m actually at university doing my teaching qualification at the moment just to prepare for if there are quieter times I’ll have something – a plan B.” Right now, those quieter times seem some way off as he counts down the days till the opening of True Minds, the new Joanna MurraySmith commission at the MTC. Regardless of his foresighted preparation for the times when employment might not come so thick and fast, things are going pretty swimmingly for McFarlane as he completes the final week of rehearsals for the new comedy from Australia’s most produced playwright. True Minds centres on a clash of political and social ideologies. Daisy, the daughter of a prominent left wing political figure, is soon to be betrothed to Benedict (Matt McFarlane) whose mother is the iron-lady of Australia’s political right. Their marriage plans have been kept under wraps until now. However, Daisy’s carefully stage-managed first meeting with Benedict’s imposing mother goes off the rails when her uninhibited parents and alcoholic ex-boyfriend, fresh from a stint in rehab, both show up unannounced. Obviously, hilarity ensues. Murray-Smith has taken inspiration from the lighting fast dialogue and verbal gymnastics of the Preston Sturges screwball comedies of the 1930s and 40s.
McFarlane reflects on the play, “First of all what made me want to do it: It’s such strong writing. I was laughing off the page reading it in my bedroom and then I was weeping at the end. There is a reason she is Australia’s number one playwright.” The events of the play might sound like an absurd turn of events but it is the close examination of people and their tightly held beliefs which makes a Joanna Murray-Smith play ring with incisive truth. “You only need to see her writing on stage to realise that it’s not about fictitious events. It’s about real stories and real lives and real problems. This particular play doesn’t sugar coat the problems, it lays it out on the table and askscan we overcome these problems?” Since graduating from the Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts in 2007 McFarlane has consistently been in work. Mostly, on large international and locally produced musicals such as Love Never Dies and Priscilla-Queen of the Desert. Even so, the role of Benedict Perring is, in some ways, the break that McFarlane has been waiting for. “An MTC production was the first play I ever saw when I was young and so from then on I’ve been hell bent on working with the company. This is the one I’ve been waiting for, in terms of wanting to work with one of the best dramatic institutions in the country.” He’s been wanting to break into straight theatre for some time now. “I’ve learnt to sing and dance out of necessity for employment. To make sure I continue in the industry. But I love acting. Acting is my passion. It is my number one. And, it’s liberating to have a new piece to work on. No other actor has been Benedict Perring before which I find a really amazing opportunity and responsibility to deliver a performance that I’m proud of and that is original.” WHAT: True Minds WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 25 April to Saturday 8 June, MTC, The Sumner Theatre
AN EXPLORATION OF DISINTEGRATION Despite its set D setting tting in the past, Red Stitch’s latest play About Tommyy is more relevant to today’s society than we may think, as director Kat Henry tells Simon Eales. I catch Kat Henry, dir director of Red production, About Stitch’s latest produc Tommy, on the tram home from a successful tech run in front of the show’s multitude of designers. She’s stoked with how everything is going in the development of this tech-heavy show two weeks out from opening night. Henry, working for the first time within the loving Red Stitch family,
Henry argues that, despite this being a story about a Dane involved in a far-off w war 20 years ago, About Tommy is an acutely relevant, if unusual, ex exploration. “I guess our position hhas had to come through the hhuman empathy that we’ve been aable to have for these characters, rather r than making a certain politic political statement, for a few reasons: we in Australia have never had a conflict c on our own soil, we don’ don’t have a first hand experience oof what that’s like, so we weren’t ggoing to try and pretend that we did did, or take sides when it’s a very complicated argument.” It seems that the reality also remains for the team at the helm of About Tommy that we need to confront our own capacity to commit acts of genocide. “You could argue that it’s a while ago now, but what we’re talking about is ethnic cleansing and genocide like the Holocaust was, and the Holocaust has resulted in a massive and ongoing conversation,” Henry says. “Obviously in other parts of the world genocide and ethnic cleansing
That’s why, for Henry, the media’s intervention is so integral to Western society’s capacity to confront mass-scale atrocities of humanity. As opposed to the Holocaust, “in the 1990s we had the benefit of having media on the ground, so no one could say that it didn’t happen,” she says. But barrelled into this opportunity for awareness is a compounded indictment on human empathy. “There are so many crises like this that’ve happened since the Holocaust that perhaps haven’t had coverage, mainly for political reasons; they are sheltered from us. But there are, continuously, these horrific things going on, and it’s the fault of media that we don’t know anything about it.” Plays like Krebs’ – documentary in style, teamed with directors like Henry and companies like Red Stitch, taking advantage of theatre’s multimedia opportunities, even if far-removed from the event’s epicentre – remain important in their capacity to show the the effects of such devastations on human lives and minds. WHAT: About Tommy WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 24 April to Saturday 25 May, Red Stitch Actors Theatre
TRUTH SEEKER Documentary maker Jamie Meltzer tells Anthony Carew the reason behind his decision to profile the mysterious motives behind radical-activist turned FBI informant, Brandon Darby.
In the final days of 2008, Brandon Darby — a one-time radical leftist activist from Austin, Texas— typed an open letter to the internet, in which he owned up to media allegations that he was the incriminating FBI informant in the case of the Texas Two, a pair of college kids arrested for possession of Molotov cocktails at the 2008 Republic National Convention. They’d been demonised by the media, portrayed as domestic terrorists, and imprisoned thanks to the testimony —they said entrapment— of Darby. To some, Darby was a hero; to most, he was a snitch. “People have really strong responses one way or the other,” says Jamie Meltzer, the documentarian —and professor of documentary history at Stanford— who’s profiled Darby in the awesome Informant. “We have some great arguments in the Q&As! Standing up and yelling at each other, denouncing Brandon, or denouncing me for not denouncing Brandon. I knew I was stepping into that territory, so all of that has only been satisfying.” From the moment Meltzer read Darby’s open letter, he saw him as a ‘perfect’ documentary subject: “someone who does
30 • To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags
says the show, by Danish playwrite Thor Bjorn Krebs, is a challenging interrogation of the grand-scale clash between the human psyche and the realities of war. As she tells, it “follows the story of a young Danish recruit into the Danish National Brigade and his subsequent deployment to the former Yugoslavia and the conflicts they were undergoing in the 1990s. From there we see his psychological dissolution
“Thematically, we’re looking at psychological disintegration,” she continues. “We’re looking at the human effects of witnessing these atrocities and being involved in them; what that does to somebody under that kind of pressure and being very confused about what ttheir role is.”
are still occurring. It is so easy to shut our eyes, but this kind of thing is still happening: Africa is a mess, and there are pockets of conflict all over the world which are frighteningly, astonishingly easy to shut away from us.”
something that opens up a lot of really intriguing questions, which you can then explore for the next three years you’ll be making the film.” Taking the Errol Morris approach, in a fashion similar to Bart Layton’s Oscar-winning The Imposter, Meltzer sits down his unreliable narrator in front of the camera, dramatically recreates his testimony, and then calls it all into question; making for a fascinating study in the slippery notions of truth and reality. “The challenge in this film was working with this really controversial character and respect the audience enough to let them come to their own conclusions about who he was and what he did,” offers Meltzer. “Brandon trusted me, but he also was aware that I wasn’t making a puff-piece. And it was difficult because I knew that, to make a good film, I had to betray him. I had to betray everybody in the film. I knew it was that kind of a movie: for it to be successful, nobody who was in the film could be 100% happy with it.” “Really early on,” Meltzer continues, “the one thing that let me know that I definitely had a film in this, was that I’d spent a whole day talking to Brandon, interviewing him, and you’d understand him, and really
see things from his point of view, and really feel for him. And then the next day I went and talked to Scott Crow —who almost turns out to be Brandon’s nemesis in the film— and I was completely under his spell. I realised this was going to be a film about conflicting perspectives, where almost everyone on camera is unreliable.” In short: a film about an unreliable narrator becomes a puzzle of conflicting opinions, all of which are just as unreliable. “I wanted to put viewers in that uncomfortable
position of asking them: ‘What do you think happened? Who do you think is telling the truth? Is anyone telling the truth?’” Meltzer says. “Essentially what I’m doing is putting viewers in the same position I was in when I was making the film, where you’re figuring out who you believe, and trying to find answers.” WHAT: Informant WHEN & WHERE: Thursday 16 May, Human Rights Film Festival, ACMI Cinemas
Debut EP out now Official Launch at The Toff
WED May 1st $1o ON the dooR “Anderson’s Howl is driven by a down and dirty guitar sound that makes you lead with the crotch and grind up on an amp until you get an electric shock to match the tingle in your spine, complemented by Hamish’s own smoky vocals. Sex." Musicfeeds, April 2013
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GIG OF THE WEEK
DIG IT UP! THURSDAY, PALACE & SPLEEN BAR What better way to commemorate the Diggers on Anzac Day (after attending the dawn service and killing it in a game of two-up, of course) than raising your jars while watching Hoodoo Gurus perform Mars Needs Guitars in its entirety: we’re talking the set containing Gurus classics such as Bittersweet, Death Defying, Like Wow – Wipeout (practise that Goodyear-esque clapping pattern in advance, this is très important to your popularity on the day). We also have it on good authority that they squeeze in a few other smash hits as well. The inaugural Dig It Up! event was rad last year and its followup line-up – Blue Oyster Cult, Flamin’ Groovies, Buzzcocks, Peter Case Band, The Stems – means you’ll wanna pull an all-dayer (it kicks off at midday). Huzzah! And that’s just on ONE of the stages (there are three – one way up top in Palace’s Attic and another at the nearby Spleen Bar). Our sister/ bruvva mag The Drum in Sydney reckoned it was da bomb, so you know what to do. See ya at the bar!
FRONTLASH DUDE (LOOKS LIKE A LADY)
Steven Tyler’s showmanship plus flowing, clashing tie-dyed garb that usually only middleaged women would pluck from the sale rack. All together now, “I Don’t Wanna Miss A Thi-ing”.
SONG (SOUNDS LIKE LADY) Is it just us or does new Daft Punk Feat Pharrell song Get Lucky sound a little like Modjo’s Lady (Hear Me Tonight) got lucky with Nile Rodgers? Random Access Memories indeed.
TUUUNE! British India pics by Andrew Briscoe
BRITISH INDIA CORNER HOTEL: 19/04/13
The venue is so rammed tonight that it’s a case of ‘good luck getting to the toilet and back without missing half the gig and copping a deliberate elbow to the face’. British India are performing before a home crowd and their four album-strong catalogue has undoubtedly soundtracked many first pashes, crowd-surfs, bongs and/or break-ups. Every skyward punch is delivered with
gusto and there’s beer spillage galore as fans recognise ‘their’ song’s intro playing out within this one-and-aquarter hour set. The band play a generous smattering of material from their debut, Guillotine, including Run The Red Light and Tie Up My Hands, and it sounds weird to hear frontman Declan Melia introducing a song thus: “Let’s take it back to ‘94” – have they really been slogging it out on the live scene for that long? Wearing a casual selection of flannies, hoodies and V-neck jumpers, British India don’t dress any differently from their audience. And it’s details like this that make British India’s fans feel like their onstage heroes could double as their besties. There’s an enthusiastic clap-along during new song, and band realisation, We Don’t Need Anyone that shows this ain’t a case of ‘I like your old stuff better than your new stuff’. The stage is bookended by projections of new album Controller’s artwork and this Melbourne four-piece is clearly chuffed with their latest outing, even though Melia confesses it’s always nervewracking to approach each touring cycle off the back of a new release due to trepidation as to whether anyone will turn up. Frenzied crowd-surfing during Another Christmas
In The Trenches provides evidence that British India need not have worried about the reaction to their new material. The kicking riff in Safari shows off Nic Wilson’s chops and the further we plunge into this show, the more triple j Hottest 100 inclusions are revealed. Lovers sway and sing in unison to I Said I’m Sorry, possibly getting a few apologies in the bank for impending bad behaviour.
Had a sneaky listen to new Mount Kimbie and gotta say we’re totally knocked out by their collabs with King Krule.
DESPERATELY SEEKING OLD FARTS Suggested dating site ads on Facey such as “find mature love”. Pass, thanks.
There’s a mass stage invasion during Black & White Radio and it’s all a bit where did Melia “GO-GO-GO-GO!” They’ve never done encores (and definitely no encore fake-outs), so British India exit stage left while the exhibitionists clamber from the stage and quickly check their friends’ smartphone footage for proof of their five seconds.
Far from Vanilla, British India are more like a trusted brand: as hard as your tight-arse granny might try to convince you that bootleg Bonds are as good as the genuine article, we all know the truth. British India have a factory-tested live show; they offer up solid riffs, singalong anthems and the opportunity to forget your woes for the set’s duration.
JUST KEEP WALKING
As if the lyrics in that Noiseworks song Touch – “Reach OUT and/Reach OUT and…” – aren’t annoying enough!? The punter repeatedly singing “Free chowder” deserved to be touched repeatedly by a sharp object.
Pedestrians that look as if they’re gonna quickly bolt across the road in front of your car, but then make a lot of excess limb movement and move at about the same pace as a pensioner using a Zimmer frame.
For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews • 33
his usual deeper register. He quickly follows that up with one of his much earlier hits, Alejate, literally translated, he explains animatedly, as “get the hell out”. “It suits my masculine style,” he quips. It draws a litany of sighs, applause and pledges of love from the audience of both genders. He injects a dose of talk-show camaraderie by taking a roaming mike and wandering up one of the aisles, giddily faux-singing Beyonce’s All The Single Ladies and nearly risking life and limb to phalanxes of adoring female fans and his first ever canine audience member.
the sounds produced. There is a curious set-up on the stage – strings that look like fishing line tied around mic stands placed in front of performers who are connected via this clothesline-like structure. Soon their purpose is revealed: they are pulled and yanked in all directions to create different sounds. This is called the StyHarp, a custom-built instrument for Matthew Herbert’s show One Pig. Sounds heard and emotions felt during the show are intense and varied, from tribal, jungle sounds to crackling, thundering bass that makes the walls rattle.
His “song about being dumped”, Happy In My Heartache, lives up to its title – its jaunty, bright tempo contrasting starkly with the next track, a faithful rendition of Jimmy Webb’s The Moon’s A Harsh Mistress. Groban’s rich timbre imbues additional depth to anything he vocalises, and even though he regularly performs covers, he has a knack of artfully transforming them and making them his own. Nowhere is this gift more lightheartedly acknowledged as in the viral video that’s making rounds of him belting out tweets from Kanye West.
These sounds get louder and scarier, akin to a steam train interspersed with the cracking of a whip. It could be the background music for a horror film. The beat becomes up-tempo and then almost silent, with only some eerie, alien ghost sounds audible. The noises rumble and groan, and there are high-pitched squeaks and a sound resembles something scurrying across a polished wooden floor. An old piano melody fills the room, with the deep sound of an oboe. It is uplifting and cheerful, almost Fantasia-like. The sounds and melodies created from this ten-second sample seem infinite and we are given a sense of Herbert’s genius. Whether or not the audience understands how ingenious he is may not be important, but there is a great appreciation that Herbert has created something outstanding and innovative.
He balances the gravity and sombreness of his tenor’s voice by constantly peppering genial conviviality and rapid banter in between tracks, whether he is encouraging a fan to toss one cent coins at him on stage or comparing the cuddliness of his buffed guitarist Tariqh Akoni with that of a koala he’d held in Perth. Earlier favourites Vincent and To Where You Are stay the test of time, and Groban is to be commended for utilising and promoting local talent throughout his tour – in this case, the aforementioned orchestra and the Royal Melbourne Philharmonic Choir supporting the self-described “giant” voice as he closes with You Raise Me Up. Ching Pei Khoo Byran Adams Pic by Holly Engelhardt
BRYAN ADAMS ROD LAVER ARENA: 20/04/13 This Canadian crooner may be 53 years old, but he’s still got what it takes to rock a stage (even if the visual effects behind him are more ‘90s screen saver than cutting-edge). Bryan Adams has an enthusiastic crowd eating out of the palm of his hand from the moment he kicks off his set, playing favourite hits such as Can’t Stop This Thing We Started and Thought I’d Died And Gone To Heaven. It’s easy to be a little cynical about gigs like this – plenty of ageing rockers have hit the road in later years only to disappoint their loyal fans with subpar, bored performances. Adams, however, is cut from a different, more entertaining cloth. He seems genuinely thrilled to be on stage, pausing between songs to really engage with the crowd and at one point even spotting an old friend. And then, of course, there are the hits: Summer Of ’69, Cuts Like A Knife and (Everything I Do) I Do It For You to name just a few. These are the songs that entire generations have learned by osmosis; there’s no person (not even the most reluctant of plus-ones) who doesn’t know every word. Adams plays out his old tricks (an audience member, “Janine from Melton”, joins him onstage for the duet When You’re Gone) and some new ones (at one point, a drum kit made out of upturned buckets and pots is dragged out). The gig is well into its second hour, but from the way the audience are screaming, you’d think Adams had just stepped on stage. “You wanna keep going, eh?” he asks them. “Uh, you do know I’ve got 16 albums?” The band leave the stage and Adams stands alone, holding an acoustic guitar. Even stripped-back, he’s compelling. He finishes the show in full crooner mode, singing Straight From The Heart and a solo version of All For Love, during which he more than compensates for the absences of Rod Stewart and Sting. The crowd doesn’t want to see him go but when the house lights come up, the punters are all smiles. It’s everything they’d hoped for, and a little something more. Aleksia Barron
DICK DIVER, MILK TEDDY, FREE TIME TOTE: 19/04/13 There’s pretty high pressure at the Tote tonight with tickets selling out in advance and an intimidating lineup. Openers for the night Free Time are a ridiculously laid-back garage four-piece whose chordy, lo-fi sound and prominent base hooks pack out the Tote band room within minutes. Lead vocalist and guitarist Dion Nania seems endearingly amateur between songs, explaining that they picked “all the hard songs first”. However, the band launches into complete precision when performing their accessible indie-pop songs. While some are slow and meandering, others are upbeat and poppy. They’re the perfect openers for the jangly Dick Diver. Milk Teddy manages to pack out the room even further. This psychedelic five-piece has an atmospheric sound that incorporates reverb and a heavy use
34 • For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews
of Wah pedal, integrated into long instrumental sections and floating melodies. Thomas Mendelovits is a unique vocalist with his wailing, borderline androgynous vocals double mic’d and penetrating clearly through the sound of the thoroughly wellbalanced band. Milk Teddy have a new-age, shoegaze feel, one with a resonant sound like a whale call. If Milk Teddy were packed, headliners Dick Diver are well and truly at capacity tonight at the Tote. They’re here tonight launching their second album Calendar Days and the atmosphere is bubbly. If one thing’s clear about this catchy indie-pop outfit, it’s that no one member is the star. The four members are multi-talented musicians, frequently switching instruments and taking turns leading the vocals and charming the crowd with their friendly and awkward banter. They create a casual atmosphere and completely lack pretence; guitarist Ru Edwards accepting some red lipstick and cracking cheesy jokes, and drummer Steph Hughes demanding a Bacardi Breezer. For the album’s title track, Hughes takes up the guitar and leads the vocals with guitarist Al McKay on drums. Hughes’ Australian accent, as with the majority of the songs, rings through with a comforting reminder of the proficiency of our very own local music. It’s a melodic highlight and a demonstration of the band’s clear, bright sound, as well as a great combination of the band members’ vocals, alternating leading and backing and intertwining well. During Boys, another highlight, bassist Al Montfort leads the vocals and Edwards’ takes up the bass. Montfort jokingly swings his microphone like a crooner with his laid-back vocals reminiscent of Lou Reed. After the set ends, to the dismay of every person in the room, any lingering fans might have caught three of the band members doing a casual celebratory group hug as the audience spilled out of the Tote. You can’t not fall in love with Dick Diver. Overall it was an amazingly consistent bill with the expected standard not only met but far exceeded. Stephanie Tell
JOSH GROBAN PALAIS: 20/04/13 It’s the last weekend of the Comedy Festival and Melburnians are spoilt for choice with what hilarity they should catch for a good Saturday wind down. Judging from tonight’s sold-out performance at the Palais, it seems that many of them have cottoned on that Josh Groban provides the best of both worlds: those famous spine-tingling tenor-baritone vocals teamed with witty, self-effacing humour. Ticket holders have been warned; Groban will be on stage early without any preceding support acts. His entourage includes an eight-piece wind and horn orchestra, two percussionists, a keyboardist, and two guitarists symmetrically arranged on either side of the ever-youthful figure on the grand piano, centre stage. February Song from his third studio album Awake (2006) features early, with Groban clearly showing he is just as much at ease with reaching the high falsetto notes as he is in singing in
UNDERGROUND LOVERS, THE MORNING AFTER GIRLS CORNER HOTEL: 20/04/13 The Morning After Girls benefit from an early crowd who were drawn out for impressive local outfit Lowtide. After spending time in New York it’s good to see the boys back in Melbourne, and as Sacha Lucashenko and Martin B Sleeman lock into their roles as dual frontmen with perfect synchronicity it seems a wonder the band can’t find wider recognition in Australia – perhaps destined for a perennial underground following, much like tonight’s headliners. Tonight Underground Lovers return to the venue where they played their very first show in 1990. Following a slight gap in festivities, a light projection appears across the stage curtain and a rush of punters swarm up close, eager to see their long-time heroes. But they are kept waiting for a little while longer until all of a sudden the band room seems packed to the brim. The soundchecking guitar slowly turns into a recognisable chord sequence from Glenn Bennie and the curtains opens to a cheer as Underground Lovers launch into All Brand New. The commanding voice of Vincent Giarrusso has lost no quality in middle age and Bennie sets about driving the band’s sonic output, adorned in a nondescript hoodie and cap. Another dimension is added to the sound when Philippa Nihill steps on stage to sing lead on I Was Right – her dreamy vocals mashed against the driving, dirty pulse fuelled by a busy rhythm section. With the veterans supported by drug-induced video projections, they play two of the standout (if down-tempo) tracks from their new album, Weekend, back-to-back with some younger attendees especially enjoying The Undies’ knockout versions of Dream To Me and Haunted (Acedia). As the set continues, Giarrusso seems to notice a lack of energy within the audience. “Why so quiet?” he asks. This is soon rectified when they launch into Leaves Me Blind classic, Your Eyes -- though some of its prettier parts are lost in the intensity of the dark psychedelia. It soon becomes clear that the band have crafted their set to explode in its second half with Giarrusso at the helm as they run through Eastside Stories, new single Au Pair and Can For Now. What has come to feel like something of a rock’n’roll extravaganza soon comes to a close, but not before Giarrusso lights up a crowd-gifted cigarette during the extended encore performance of Las Vegas. Jan Wisniewski
MATTHEW HERBERT: THE END OF SILENCE MELBOURNE RECITAL CENTRE: 12/04/13 Matthew Herbert comes out onto the stage to greet the audience. Solemn and straight faced, he only says one thing: “It’s important that you know that each and every sound comes from a single recording.” That recording is a ten-second snippet recorded by photographer Sebastien Meyer being bombed by a Gaddafi plane during a battle in Libya. Herbert takes a seat and the three members of his group join him on stage. Dressed in black, and also quite solemn, they are another reminder that this show is not so much about the performance as it is about
MATTHEW HERBERT: ONE PIG MELBOURNE RECITAL CENTRE: 13/04/13 A man walks out on stage, picks up some hay from a hay bale and rustles it in front of the microphone. A second man comes on and breathes into the microphone. One by one the performers enter and offer up different sounds until there are five people on the stage. They all put on white lab coats and sit around what looks like a pigpen. Yann Seznec, creator of the StyHarp, turns to reveal his back to the audience. It reads “SEP” (September abbreviated). Throughout the performance, he changes into lab coats emblazoned with different months of the year, which represents a month in the pig’s life. In August, he jumps around in the pigpen. In September, the music is chaotic. In October, a melody is made from snorts and oinks, and the music becomes slow and dreamlike with brass and horns. Each pull of the StyHarp string makes a different snorting sound and it makes an amusing, almost cartoon-like melody that makes some audience members giggle. But the fun, playful sounds are over in December, with sounds of a chainsaw and an ear-splittingly loud screech, which causes members of the audience to block their ears. A second member joins the pigpen, then a third, then Matthew Herbert, then the last remaining performer. They all pull on the strings in different directions, creating a noisy melting pot of sounds. The whirring sound of a propeller buzzes throughout the room. Seznec takes off his lab coat to reveal a fire engine red jacket. It’s easily identifiable as representing blood and the pig’s slaughter when the sound of blood dripping fills the room with haunting echoes. Jesse Gerner, head chef at Melbourne’s Ayslebury Bar & Restaurant, appears at the back of the stage and holds up two large knives, rubbing them together in an exaggerated fashion. A group member cuts into a large, white bone with a saw and moves it back and forth, grinding and grating the audience’s ears and tingling their spines. This sound becomes a sample for the next song and Herbert adds a beat, tweaking and twisting knobs to take the music off in a new direction. The smell of cooked pork starts wafting through the room with the assistance of a fan. There’s another loud buzz that gets higher and higher in pitch. The sound of pork sizzling gets louder and again Herbert transforms this into a loop for another new song, this one down-tempo and cruisey. The smell becomes more pungent, filling the room and everyone’s noses within. There’s a lot to watch at the one time – Gerner adding spices here and garnishing there; Herbert intent on twisting knobs, pushing buttons and keys; the drummer beating his drums made of pigskin; others pulling the strings of the StyHarp in different directions. Gerner lights a candle at the table and the music comes to an end. Herbert sings a heartwarming, melancholic song at the piano, a kind of prayer or grace, with lyrics such as, “A simple love is all we need/Enough to multiply/Dignify each day, and so to rest upon my head/Occupy my thoughts instead”, while the other ensemble members stand around the table, heads bowed and hands clasped, with the cooked pork before them. The last sound the audience hears is chewing, chatter, cutlery jangling and slurps. Herbert and his group receive a standing ovation for this show, which is truly unique and quite bizarre. The cooked pork dishes remain untouched on the table and the question as to whether they will be eaten is left unanswered. It is a fitting end to a musical journey that provokes questions about slaughtering and eating animals, the process an animal goes through from farm to dinner table, and remembering the life of an animal through music. Belinda Healy
poppy sound, these two certainly aren’t this reviewers favourites, but you have to admire the band’s versatility. Speaking of favourites, we move on to beautiful track The Future Was A Dream. This, together with Times Gonna Get Me By and Bare Feet, are definitely all tracks to listen out for come June. Keyboardist Roxy works her magic and the crowd is immersed for a very special few minutes, the moment only broken by the rising thermometer. In fact, the whole gig has a special feel. No one knows what’s coming next, no one knows all the lyrics, yet there’s this feeling of familiarity that results in a relaxed energy. It’s an unpretentious crowd at an unpretentious venue and the carefree vibe is fostered by this unpretentious band. There’s no shouting (save for one swaying lady at the front of the crowd) and no sea of phones. The focus is on the music, and it deserves to be. We’re sweat-drenched and the end of the night is embraced with a euphoric rendition of Gonna Make It. Having indeed made it, there is a rush to the exit and its promise of fresh air. Jack Needham
DAMON & NAOMI, GUY BLACKMAN Vydamo Pic by Aleksandar Kostadinoski
VYDAMO, WE THE PEOPLE TOFF IN TOWN: 13/04/13 The night’s only just begun and Melbourne’s We The People perform a captivating set that inspires an energetic crowd to turn to dance early in the piece. We hear polished originals such as Superstars and Leon alongside a mashed-up Taylor Swift number, so good, even the starlet’s most vehement detractors would find hard to resist. The boys later turn their hands to Twinsy’s Water Bombs with the resulting magic reinforcing the notion that this sound, in the same vein as The Cairos, is definitely going somewhere. Tonight’s not just about a live performance for fans of Jim Finn’s latest project, Vydamo. It’s an opportunity to hear what will be on the debut album, due in June. So far, key-laden singles Gonna Make It and Hurricane have
given us a glimpse of what to expect – catchy numbers with ‘70s-drenched vocals that are a world away from Art Vs Science (Finn’s primary band). Enjoying a heavy amount of radio play, the aforementioned two singles have created an atmosphere of intense anticipation, which is evident inside the Toff. Let’s be straight up about this: Tonight does not disappoint. Easing into proceedings with Little Things, we’re in for an 11-song set that is so incredibly polished it’s genuinely hard to believe that this is only Vydamo’s second gig. Up until this point the project has been presented as a one-man show. However, Vydamo the band is what’s truly on show tonight. Everything fits together so perfectly. Finn, down to earth yet professional to the core, delights in making mention (a couple of times) that his brother Tom is on bass. A homage to Art Vs Science can be heard with the heavier Let It Go and Living In The Sunshine, and the crowd seems to love this deviation. As a fan of Vydamo’s
TOFF IN TOWN: 14/04/13 Sitting at an electric piano, Guy Blackman charms a small crowd of seated punters with a selection of simple pop songs that are delivered in a straightforward, almost-earnest manner and with a knowing grin. Most of Blackman’s songs deal with lyrics that are painfully honest – awkward reflections on the various states of being in love. Blackman suggests that Don’t Ask Don’t Tell is about gays in the military, but it also feels like an old Pet Shop Boys song about an estranged couple on the verge of splitting up. Touch And Go comes with a smoother, loved-up vibe and Blackman acknowledges that he started writing ‘smooth’ music because he realised some of his earlier material made him and his listeners feel uncomfortable. It’s not long before he’s treating us to a pretty sweet version of Kate McGarrigle’s dramatic Go Leave. Looking nervous, Blackman takes a few gulps of water and, when this elicits a giggle from the audience, he exclaims, “I need to keep my vocal cords hydrated!” Blackman’s nervous because he is unsure as to whether he should play us the next unnamed and unreleased song, but the intimacy of tonight’s gig
ensures he’s relaxed enough to let loose an emotional tale of unrequited love that involves a male stripper in a gay bar who goes home with his girlfriend every night after the show. It is heartbreaking stuff but it all gets a little icky with Camming when Blackman sings of shows on the internet with headless torsos. The mood is soon buoyed with a politely toe-tapping version of Gayle. Blackman warns us that Damon & Naomi will blow us away, and they do so right from the opening bars of their set without even breaking a sweat. It’s a simple recipe. Damon Krukowski plays guitar and Naomi Yang plays keys as the duo’s harmonising vocals delicately intertwine. The minimal arrangements produce a sound that is just so impossibly magical and astonishingly beautiful that everyone in the crowd is transported in the few minutes it takes them to play How Do I Say Goodbye. Of course this is to be expected from the duo that once constituted two thirds of the legendary Galaxie 500, a band that continues to inspire with its trademark dreamy shoegaze pop. An impossibly beautiful sound that Damon & Naomi kind of keep alive while embracing softer, sweeter, more intimate sounds. Drawing from their back catalogue that extends over seven albums, they quickly dispense flawless versions of What She Brings, supposedly inspired by a visit to the Freud Museum in London; the super-dreamy A Second Life; and the bleak Ueno Station, which is about just how grim it is up in northern Japan. After New York City, Krukowski reveals that the duo are about to re-release The Wondrous World Of…, which will feature Kramer’s original mix of the album. Amusingly, Krukowski tells us that Kramer advised the band that he had erased the original mixes of the album when there was disagreement on how the record should sound. It never was erased, of course, and years later it seems to have turned up in a bag of tapes Kramer recently handed back to the duo. Moments later they approach the sublime with the evocative Helsinki from their last album False Beats And True Hearts. They match this with a spellbinding version of the painfully bittersweet Turn Of The Century that drifts as smoothly as the clouds on a still day. The duo encore with a delicately hazy, outof-focus cover of Tim Buckley’s underground evergreen Song To The Siren. An intimate evening of music with a couple of talented singer-songwriters who simply make some of the most beautiful music imaginable. Guido Farnell
For more reviews go to themusic.com.au/reviews • 35
WAKE THE DEAD
BLUES ‘N’ ROOTS WITH DAN CONDON ROOTS@DRUMMEDIA.COM.AU
THE HEAVY SHIT WITH LOCHLAN WATT
HARDCORE AND PUNK WITH SARAH PETCHELL
marks an epic new era for the Sydney based technical/progressive death metal group. Local melodic death metal group Orpheus have debuted the title track from and have pre-orders going for their forthcoming second album, ResIllusion. A press release from the group states that “with blaring riffs, catchy melodic hooks thunderous drumming and diverse vocals, ResIllusion proves that Orpheus is continuing to cement their own name and style into this era of melodic death metal”. You can check things out at orpheusofficial.com.
Mavis Staples The first taste of the new LP from Mavis Staples appeared online a bit over a week ago and it is brilliant. She has once again teamed up with Wilco’s Jeff Tweedy (who produced her excellent 2010 release You Are Not Alone) for this next LP, which is called One True Vine and will be released in July. The first taste that I alluded to earlier was a rendition of the classic Funkadelic track Can You Get To That, from their seminal 1971 album Maggot Brain. It’s brilliantly performed, not at all trying to be as psychedelic as the original and retaining that warm, earthy feel that made Staples’ last record so endearing. I haven’t had a confirmed release date for the album yet, but I’d be expecting it through Anti-/Warner some time in the last week or two of July. It has been four years since we were privy to a new studio record from the legendary Texas singer-songwriter Guy Clark, but he also has an LP due out this July, My Favourite Picture Of You due out on DualTone Records some time towards the end of that month. The story behind the title track of the album is quite a funny one; dedicated to the great singersongwriter Susanna Clark – Guy’s wife who passed away last year – the name comes from a time when she found Clark and his buddy Townes Van Zandt drunk and stormed out of the house. This is where Clark captured a Polaroid picture of a grumpy Susanna Clark which adorns the front of the album. Word is, it is one of the best Guy Clark albums in a while, the stark and simple beauty of his songs once again completely outstanding, but we’ll have to wait and see. I’ve pretty much given up hope that we’ll see the master in Australia, I hope he proves me wrong. One of Clark’s protégés back in the 1970s was the now legendary-in-his-own-right Steve Earle, who released his latest LP The Low Highway through New West/Warner about a week and a half ago now. I’m a big Steve Earle fan and have enjoyed everything he has done of late, truly, but nothing quite had me prepared for this new record – after many listens I’m beginning to think it might be his best record yet, which I’m aware is a mighty big call. Earle, with his Dukes (and Duchesses) backing him up, takes us on a journey through pretty much all of the different American genres he has tried his hand at over the decades and has come up with a really diverse record that is simply packed full of amazing songs. At one time it sounds like you’re listening to the Stones, at others it sounds like he’s in a string band and then it’s like Bruce Springsteen has infiltrated Earle’s brain. First single Invisible just didn’t really do it for me when I first heard it – but I was wrong. It’s a brilliant track and will rank highly at the end of the year. The Low Highway is one of the great albums of 2013. Maybe not quite as brilliant, but still worth a look is the new LP from Steve Martin And Edie Brickwell, Love Has Come For You, which is out through Universal this Friday. Funnyman Martin brings his brilliant banjo skills to the record while Brickwell’s voice proves to be a pretty great accompaniment to the unique five-string playing of Martin. Martin sums it up best when speaking of the album, saying, “I think that the goal of any collaboration should be to come up with something that each individual wouldn’t have come up with on their own, and I think that we’ve done that here.” Indeed you couldn’t imagine either making an LP like Love Has Come For You on their own, so mission successful. Not exactly the best Americana/folk record you’ll hear all year but still worth a listen if you’re curious.
36 • For more opinion go to themusic.com.au/blog
Black Sabbath The legendary Black Sabbath will be in Australia very soon. The band will play with support from New Zealand’s Shihad on Monday 29 April and Wednesday May 1 at the Rod Laver Arena. Australian metalcore pioneers I Killed The Prom Queen has announced their first Australian tour since 2011, and they’re bringing along House Vs Hurricane, Buried In Verona and Perth’s Saviour along for the ride. Catch them at the Corner Hotel on Friday 21 June. Tickets are on sale now from weareunified.oztix.com.au. Parkway Drive are also going to be hitting the road in Australia once more, celebrating their ten year anniversary as a band this September. Last week the band re-released their 2005 debut album Killing With A Smile on a limited 12” release for Record Store Day. Catch them at The Palace on Friday 20 September for an 18+ event. Tickets are available now through all Oztix outlets. Originally slated to visit in June, Norwegian black metal group Enslaved have pushed their tour back to November. Catch them with Sydney’s Rise of Avernus on Friday 1 November at the Hi-Fi. Point Below Zero have released their new single Passage for free download over at pointbelowzero.bandcamp.com. The release
Monstrorum Historia, the second album from Sydney sludge merchants Lo!, is now available through Pelagic Records. A full stream of this enigmatic, diverse collection of songs can be heard over at cvltnation.net. Industrial metallers Witchgrinder have just dropped the title track to their forthcoming debut album. The Demon Calling is due out through RTD Records on Friday 3 May, and you can hear the song over at triple j Unearthed. The local group will be touring in support of the release, and you can check them out on Friday 14 June with Sydonia, Bronson and Cold Divide over at the Espy. Antagonist AD from New Zealand have dropped a new American Psycho-inspired clip to their track Paul Allen. You can catch the band live next month on a monstrous tour of metalcore with The Ghost Inside, Emmure and Hand Of Mercy at the Hi-Fi on Saturday 25 and Sunday 26 May. Sydney grind group Fat Guy Wears Mystic Wolf Shirt are hitting the road with Canberra grindpals The Reverend Jesse Custer at the end of the month. You can catch the two, with locals TBA, on Sunday 5 May at the Public Bar. Dys/Closure, the new album from FGWMWS, is available now through Art As Catharsis. Catch American nu-metal outfit Otep in Melbourne this Friday at the Hi-Fi. Queensland’s Darkc3ll and Sydney’s Recoil VOR will provide support. Tickets are available for $50+BF.
FRAGMENTED FREQUENCIES WITH BOB BAKER FISH
Ayarkhaan Every March Fragmented Frequencies travels to WOMADelaide in search of the new, of strange cultural collisions, unique traditions and inspiring musical personalities. Some seem to have just dropped from an alien planet fully formed, utilising approaches and instrumentation far outside our Western understanding, whilst others merge traditions liberally in an attempt to create true global appeal. Ayarkhaan are a trio of Siberian women whose ethereal, almost cosmic vocals and harmonies preserve the legacy of the indigenous people of the Sakha Republic. Dressed in exotic opulent finery, their sound and presence would be enough, yet one totally unexpected element pushes it over the edge and headlong into genius: The Khomus, or Jews Harp. When the three of them pull out this instrument, reach around their faces and begin twanging in unison, murmurs of astonishment ripple through the audience. It’s a remarkable sound. These women have clearly been influenced by contemporary techno music. They breathe into the microphones, conjuring up a bleak and cold Siberian plain, causing an involuntary shiver on a 33-degree day. They’re truly one of the most beautiful, astonishing and weirdest acts you will ever see. The ngoni is an ancient West African lute like instrument with an incredible textual sound. It’s the “African guitar,” according to Bassekou Kouyate of Ngoni Ba, the Malian master musician with his band
made up of family members. Bassekou’s sound is newly electric as evidenced on his excellent Jama Ko (Out There/ Planet Company) album of this year, recorded during the political coup in Mali. Over the four days they play repeatedly in increasingly extreme heat, their sounds drifting effortlessly over the lush botanical gardens. Bassekou has been strongly influenced by Western artists, like the blues of Taj Mahal (who appears on his album), and the banjo of Bela Fleck. Not only does he use a wah pedal, and have pickups dug into the hide of his ngoni, but the most telling example of his desire to embrace western approaches is more compositional. Vieux Farka Toure may be Mali’s Jimi Hendrix, but Bassekou is their Neil Young. WOMADelaide offers some remarkable moments. Like Tunisian oud and freejazz musician, Dhafer Youssef, cupping a hand over his mouth like he’s about to whisper, before delivering a heartbreakingly sad high-pitched vocal that no one in the audience seems to know how to take. Reunion Island singer Christine Salem’s musical cooking was also a highlight. While her band help out initially, they quickly lose interest, grabbing the water cooler to use as percussion, banging pots and pans, and shakers while chanting. Between offering how much chilli to add, Christine joins in, her mix of Creole, and Swahili vocals truly captivating. It’s one of the most intimate performances of the festival, unplanned, totally off the cuff. Then she feeds us chicken. Finally there’s Serbian composer Goran Bregovic and his Wedding And Funeral Band. A unique Balkan orchestra, with brass, guitar, a vocal choir, strings, and percussion they’re equally adept at bringing the huge bombastic party music from his recent Champagne For Gypsies (Cartell), as his classical scores to Emir Kusturica films. It’s the concert hall colliding with Serbian traditions and it’s astounding. Much like WOMADelaide itself.
Parkway Drive This morning I woke up to a tweet from a friend saying that she couldn’t get onto the AFI website. It had crashed with the amount of traffic hitting the site. I hadn’t heard any rumours of a new album, so wondering what it could be I headed over to afireinside.net and, lo and behold, there’s a teaser video showing Davey Havok walking out to a stage, before letting it rip to start a show. And there it stops with the statement “September 2013”. Fingers crossed for a new album. It has been a while since the band last released new music but the soft spot I hold in my heart for this band from my teenage years still has me a little giddy with excitement as to what a new album could be like. MDC are known by a couple of names – Millions Of Dead Cops or Multi Death Corporation – but under either name, they are credited as one of the most politically vocal American hardcore punk bands to come out of the early 1980s. Now, this August, the band will head to Australia for the very first time. This is kind of special, as MDC were one of the true pioneers of what we know hardcore to be today, and their 1982 self-titled debut is widely regarded as a punk classic. You can catch the tour when it hits Melbourne on Thursday 15 August for a show at Corner Hotel, and I believe tickets are on sale now. 2013 sees Parkway Drive celebrating their tenth year as a band. Let’s look at the achievements: two gold-certified albums, two platinum-selling DVDs, countless sold-out Australian tours, countless global circumnavigations and appearances at almost every major music festival on the planet. 2012’s Atlas was the biggest album of the band’s career, not only just in terms of popularity but it also saw the band exploring new sonic avenues that left fans and critics stunned. So what’s the best way for a band to celebrate their tenth anniversary? A massive national tour is how. You can catch the band on Friday 20 September for an 18+ show at the Palace. 2012 was a massive year for Frank Turner. Between selling out Wembley Arena and playing the Olympics, the only thing missing was a new record. That was held over until 2013, with the folk-punk hero having released his fifth album last week. Called Tape Deck Heart, this is the follow-up to England Keep My Bones, a record which saw Turner reach huge heights. The question is, how much bigger can he get? Only time will tell, but in the meantime, go and pick up the album and see what’s on Turner’s mind. The first video from the album is called Plain Sailing Weather and is streaming online now. UK hardcore act Your Demise (not to be confused with the Tasmanian band of the same name) have announced that they will be calling it a day. But not until March 2014. The plan is that the band will play farewell performances between October 2013 and March 2014 (with Australian shows apparently very much on the cards), but have cancelled planned US and Canadian dates for May. The quintet sent a message to their fans via video, and there are plans afoot for a 2014 DVD release documenting the band’s career, as well as their forthcoming farewell touring. With contemporaries like NOFX, Bad Religion, Lagwagon and Strung Out having already issued their own commemorative box sets in the last few months, it looks like Pennywise are the next to announce that they will be putting together a set of their own. According to an interview with guitarist Fletcher Dragge, “Our first order of business is trying to put together a cool box set to celebrate our 25th anniversary as a band. It’s going to be really comprehensive and has a bunch of songs that didn’t make past albums as well as outtakes and randomly recorded stuff that we think is cool, as well as other stuff that’s never been heard. The box set is going to include two or three brand new songs.” Dragge went on to say that the band is in a good place at the moment so the plan is to take advantage of the positive mindset and be productive.
NEW CURRENTS WITH TIM FINNEY
URBAN AND R&B NEWS BY CYCLONE
HIP HOP NEWS & COMMENTARY WITH ALEKSIA BARRON
Om’mas Keith Om’Mas Keith of Sa-Ra released his debut album City Pulse over the internet for free at the start of the year, to limited (or, rather, absolutely no) fanfare. You remember Sa-Ra, or at least you remember hearing about them: crazy West Coast hepcat avant-soul types who were greeted with much beard-stroking (pre-modern beard era) enthusiasm in the mid-00s. I must admit, I’m not being the world’s biggest Sa-Ra fan, though both their albums are pretty nice. What I am a fan of is co-member Shafiq Husayn’s 2009 album Shafiq En’ A-Free-Ka, which, if you want more of that Erykah Badu New Amerykah vibe is basically the best example of same going. But back to Om’Mas. You’d think there’d be at least some reaction to an album from the dude, who has long been known as the member of the group most into the synthetic sounds of ‘80s and ‘00s R&B. The absence of hype in this case is curious but I suspect accidental: even in this age of hyper-connectivity, sometimes the right album just doesn’t get to the right ears. I think that’s gonna change though, because City Pulse is rather awesome, the kind of avant-meetsmainstream extravaganza that we always say we want but precious few actually can pull off. Om’Mas does it here by drawing the co-ordinates between his influences – on the one hand, Prince circa Raspberry Beret, Scritti Politti circa Wood Beez, Jam & Lewis’ work with The SOS Band; and on the other, the modern equivalents of same from The-Dream, Polow Da Don, Ty$ and so on – and then simply bending the resulting constellation into new shapes for each song. The result is an album both diverse and singleminded, touching on a variety of styles and feels while seeming to make the same underlying point on each occasion. Hence there is an expected thread of unity running through the stylistic contortions as various as the fussy, self-consciously smooth string-led soul of Pulse Of The City, the sighing dream-pop of Uh Oh It’s Love (which curiously recalls Ultra Vivid Scene at their most narcoleptic), the snapping modern R&B of Explode, the lovelorn slow jam You’re The Only One 4 Me (Phil Collins’ In The Air Tonight re-imagined as a devotional), the impossibly sparkly synth-pop of All Alone With You, the rumbling funk of China White or the shrill and theatrical electro of U Know I Want U. A lot of that is Om’Mas’ occasionally-cloying sexed-up space-lothario persona (perhaps at its weakest on opener Slow Motion), which comes on like The-Dream hanging out at the Mos Eisley Cantina. But despite this sense of personality, City Pulse retains a loose, collaboratory mixtape vibe, assisted by the judicious use of agreeably obvious dialogue samples from sources such as Beat Street and When Harry Met Sally. This unselfconscious pleasure-centered approach extends to Om’Mas’ sonic sensibilities: throughout, the mix is cluttered with multi-tracked male and female vocals, tremulously fluttering synth chords, ostentatious multi-tiered percussion and endless parades of one-off, squiggly sample-stuff; an over-baked cake that tastes all the better for it. For all its retro impulses, City Pulse is an unabashedly modern album, both in its maximalist kitchen-sink tendencies, and in the general condition which it speaks to and represents, the desire to fill every space of genre-possibility that hovers like dark matter between disparate past achievements. Time was, it wouldn’t have occurred to anyone that (say) the distance between Prince and Scritti Polltti needed colouring in, but modern popular music abhors a vacuum, so it was inevitable that someone was gonna try it on. We’re lucky that someone turned out to have as much panache and dazzling swag as Om’Mas exhibits here.
Lil Wayne has done it. So have Lauryn Hill and the Wu-Tang Clan... All have put out “suicide” albums – not “suicide” albums like Frank Sinatra’s ‘50s No One Cares, which was steeped in melancholy, despair and loneliness, but the kind that potentially kills careers. One of R&B’s most notorious misadventures was Terence Trent D’Arby’s follow-up to the ‘80s blockbuster Introducing The Hardline According To... The alternately wantonly indulgent or perversely rebellious Neither Fish Nor Flesh ended his chart run. It baffled fans in the same way Ms Hill did with the preachy – and rudimental – acoustica of MTV Unplugged No. 2.0 or the Wu (well, RZA) with the “hippy” 8 Diagrams. Long before Snoop Dogg conceived of a noble reggae reincarnation, he was airing throwaway albums on Master P’s No Limit, to the outrage of the “headz”. Even Nas and Jay-Z have had fishy albums. In 2010 Lil Wayne (AKA Dwayne Carter, Jr) tried some rock star cosplay on Rebirth. It was widely dissed. He’s not learnt, either. The comic eccentric’s hotly anticipated I Am Not A Human Being II closes with more nu-metal in Hello. Carter, who supported Eminem in Australia two years ago, has endured legal and health issues, plus the odd beef (notably with Pusha T). The New Orleans rapper has denied media suggestions that his recent seizures had anything to do with consuming purple drank (codeine-laced cough syrup), instead revealing a history of epilepsy. Regardless, Carter’s bio throws around words like “icon”, “trailblazer” and the always dubious “brand” to stress his achievements over any controversies. And he’s hired Kanye West’s “creative content company” DONDA to design the minimalist art for IANAHB II – a hellish-looking butterfly its motif.
Carter’s tenth outing, IANAHB II is the sequel to 2010’s sloppy first volume, hurriedly assembled when he was due to be incarcerated for weapons possession. It also follows Tha Carter IV, the top-selling hip hop album of 2011. Weezy has his moments on this comeback, even if the days of Tha Carter III are apparently behind him. The album opens with the flamboyant piano of IANAHB, masterminded by jazz muso ELEW (AKA Eric Lewis), who, specialising in “rockjazz”, has previously covered Nirvana. Brilliantly, the Brit Jamie Lidell’s gospelly Compass is sampled for Back To You. In fact, the proto James Blake really should have insisted on a “feature” credit. Most of Carter’s guests and producers are lesser known. Others are predictable (Three 6 Mafia’s Juicy J). Drake, signed to Carter’s Young Money (under Birdman’s Cash Money), appears on the synthy – and catchy – hit Love Me alongside Haitian-American rappa-ternt-sanga Future. It’s helmed by Atlanta’s Mike WiLL Made It, who had a hand in ‘Ye’s Mercy (dude is also attached to Miley Cyrus’ upcoming “urban” foray Reborn, as is Tyler, The Creator!). Young Money’s other big star, Nicki Minaj, is absent – unless you count a joint on the Deluxe edition. Miami femcee Trina, Carter’s ex-girlfriend, fills the breach on Wowzerz. Carter often relies on Cool and Dre, in-house producers at Cash Money. Trap figurehead 2 Chainz cameos on two songs – one the epic banger Days And Days, which again has an incongruously bluesy sample, and the other T-Minus’ spooky voodoo Rich As Fuck. Carter has the muchmocked Soulja Boy on the chopped and screwed Trigger Finger. Soulja does a decent job producing Wowzerz, too. Y’all may actually crank that. Carter offers a social critique in his unrepentant (and 2Pac-like) God Bless Amerika. But on much of IANAHB II Carter is complacent. We’ve already heard the sex, drugs and guns talk – not to mention the Southern bounce, trance riffs and Auto-tune. The gangsta swagger of Gunwalk sounds hollow after so many arms-related tragedies in the US. On the flip side, Romance, one of those songsfor-the-ladies, is corny to the point of parody. Like good ol’ Frank, Weezy does it his way – and IANAHB II reached No. 2 Stateside. Still, we’re more excited about Drake’s forthcoming Nothing Was The Same...
THE BREAKDOWN POP CULTURE THERAPY WITH ADAM CURLEY Nilson’s vocal scrapes and dark, swaggering guitar lines with fall-down phrasing. It’s out through Bon Voyage.
Camperdown & Out The record store has undergone a fairly drastic reputation overhaul this past decade. While local independent stores have always had a (fairly lowly) place in the retail food chain, it hasn’t taken long for the overall image of the record shop to switch from that of a neon-signed hall of bargain-bin trash to, now, a keeper and curator of physical products of aesthetic and of course aural value. Now we duck down to the store to pick up a hand-screened, limited-run split 7” from our favourite bands or producers and end up throwing records from Spunk or Remote Control into the basket, too. And as the record store’s purpose changes and as our view of it is reconfigured, there’s no better time than to cease our “save the poor record store” catch-cries. This year’s Record Store Day – held last Saturday – was more about seeing what our local store owners were up to, what they were championing and picking up an LP or cassette (or medium of choice/availability) in the process. In the spirit of “curating” a collection of great musical products from local acts, below is a list of releases (recent and not so) well worth hunting down. Most are limited-press or available in select locations; some can be purchased as downloads but all are much prettier in the flesh. Melbourne’s Deep Heat teamed up with angstsquallers White Walls to release a split 7” especially for Record Store Day, out through Poison City Records. It follows on from bristling, idea-filled releases from both bands: Deep Heat’s recently launched second EP of dense Washington-gazing indie pop, New Design, and White Walls’ wave-ofdistortion self-titled record, released last November. Brisbane-hailing duo Ex-Con in February pushed out a self-titled 7” of dank, lo-fi garage punk. It’s at turns theatrical and underplayed, a deft balancing of Jo
Far more musically battered is Meat Thump’s Box Of Wine 7”, which was released through its late member Brendon Annesley’s Negative Guest List label and is now available through the Eternal Soundcheck site. Released after Annesley’s passing last year, it’s worth the backtrack: two droning, clattering, chiming, slurring songs from the Brisbane group, also featuring White Hex’s James Kritzler. As the Negative Guest List Bandcamp suggested upon its release, “Do yourself a favour: don’t read into these Meat Thump songs.” It’s simply beautifully ragged rock’n’roll. Again from Brisbane, and also available on Eternal Souncheck, is Useless, a cassette from duo Teen Ax. Blaring guitars, peaking screams: the songs almost drown themselves out, deafening the technology used to record them. There’s no real emotion on show. Teen Ax merely present no-holdsbarred horror, like a Saw film or General Pants. Melbourne foursome The Stevens released their debut EP of bedroom pop on cassette and CD-R last year. Now Chapter Records – the cosy home of catchy, spectacled non-hits – has released it on 7” vinyl (with download card). The band is currently recording their debut album with Mikey Young. It hardly needs plugging given the rants and raves it has caused down the coast, but the debut album from Sydney’s Camperdown & Out, Couldn’t Be Better, is out through Popfrenzy and is a real suburban afternoon delight. Featuring members of the more audacious Royal Headache and Dead Farmers, the band digs deep into Sydney’s past and draws bows to its present, as heard in the ratbag yearning of the single Manly. Melbourne’s Yolke have been quietly working in the background for some years now, beginning as a minimal psych jam band and developing their songwriting in their own time. Their second EP, Syrup, has just been released and it’s a shimmying, breezing, wheezing and calmly stunning collection of songs. For record hunters, here’s the rub: it only currently exists in physical form in Mexico. Now there’s a challenge for the local store owner.
Kings Konekted Our hip hop scene is good at a lot of things, but it seems that touring festivals headed by international drawcards isn’t one of them. Two major events got cancelled last week – the Movement Festival was canned just days before it was due to get going, and Supafest has now been “postponed”. The depressing part is that after so many cancelled tours and festival SNAFUs, this barely even feels like news. Instead, it just seems like another in a long line of similar incidents – remember when Flo Rida skipped out on the Fat As Butter festival, or the disaster that was Heatwave? The interesting thing about the Movement Festival cancellation is that, according to the official channels, this one wasn’t even derailed by a headliner (or even an act that people, like, wanted to see). Two less prominent acts, 2 Chainz and Angel Haze, both withdrew from the festival over the last few weeks and the consequent “unrest from punters” is being given as the reason for the event’s eventual cancellation. Given that most of the event’s main drawcards remained on the bill, it seems a bit of a stretch that even both of them dropping out annoyed enough festivalgoers to warrant a cancellation (a hypothesis supported by the protestations of pretty much everyone on the Festival’s Facebook page). Nas and Joey Bada$$ were clearly the reasons most people stumped up the cash for tickets, and reputable Aussie acts like Bliss N Eso were good inclusions that added value. Unfortunately, Movement (which looked like one of the more promising hip hop festival bills to emerge in recent years) has now gone the way of its punchline predecessors. Shame. If you’re a ticketholder and somehow only just finding out about this, you can get a refund from your point of purchase. Kings Konekted have just dropped their debut six-track EP The Campaign, and if you haven’t given this a spin yet, I’d suggest you rectify this immediately. These underground champions have been building their name for years, and it paid off when they were featured on Trem’s outstanding album For The Term Of His Natural Life. Speaking of Trem, he helps out on production for The Campaign alongside Stricknine and Prowla, but it’s the two Kings Konekted MCs, Dontez and Culprit, who make this such compelling listening. This is intense, gut-punching hip hop – the opposite of pop, infused with dark undercurrents and unflinching honesty. If the abyss stared into these guys, they’d just stare that sucker right back down. You can grab The Campaign at good record stores or online via iTunes, and you should check out their two-track clip (Good Blood & Hand Shakes and Repertoire Strong) on YouTube: youtube.com/kingskonekted. Also out now is Kid Sinatra, a free EP from K21. The Adelaide youngster was recently awarded Head of State – South Australia in the 2012 Ozhiphop.com awards in recognition of his engagement of young talent via hip hop workshops, and 2013 seems like it’ll be an even bigger year for him. He’s been signed to Golden Era and is set to drop an album with them later this year (following up on his 2012 independent release Single Minded Civilian), but in the meantime, we have Kid Sinatra to tide us over. The five-track EP, which has been released exclusively via acclaimmag.com, features new and previously unreleased tracks – something of a taste-tester for the direction the upcoming album will likely go in. If you want to check out the Kid Sinatra EP, you can grab it from acclaimmag.com/ music/premiere-k21-kid-sinatra, and stay tuned for what will probably be plenty of big news out of the K21 camp before the year is out.
For more opinion go to themusic.com.au/blog • 37
SORTED FOR EPS WITH JAN WISNIESKI
WILDCAT GENERAL STRIKE The Truth About Music (Independent) Codswallop is the debut EP from Wildcat General Strike aka Paul Connor. The Truth About Music works exceptionally well as an opener. The overarching guitar riff is given prominence throughout as Connor croons with a northern England drawl. The spacious, bass-heavy verse giving way to a fuzzed-out chorus makes High School Diploma hard to resist. The constant use of the clean opening to guitar-overload on the EP becomes a little grating but this is rectified with final track The World Is An OK Place – a cool piece of retro glam. Despite some quality tracks there is room for Connor to break structure and further explore the musical and lyrical themes he touches on with Codswallop.
VANCE JOY God Loves You When You’re Dancing (Liberation Music) Melbourne’s Vance Joy has delivered a confident and well-rounded debut EP. As a folk artist the effectiveness of these songs relies much on the charisma and expression present in his voice and at times they can come across a little weightless. The light instrumental fare only adds to this feeling. However, there is no denying Vance Joy creates pretty songs, his delicate voice combining with some wonderful phrasing to turn passable lyrics into something worth singing along to. Emmylou and Snaggletooth stand out, with their length allowing the stories to build and change with the music. Vance Joy launches God Loves You When You’re Dancing with four shows: this Saturday, two on Sunday and Tuesday at Northcote Social Club.
Sons Of Lee Marvin, now into their ninth year, have recently released their third album Cutthroats And Conjurers, which mixes a little of their quietly spoken side with their no frills, garage rock’n’roll. They’ll be teaming up with Little Murders, who began punching out their power-pop tunes more than 30 years ago, and returned to the live scene in a little while back, releasing their latest album Dig For Plenty in 2011 to impressive reviews. Catch them at the Great Britain this Saturday.
Bar Open are shifting gears and kicking in the turbo on Thursday nights, with Melbourne’s legion of heavy bands taking up residence. To kick things off there’ll be five of the best for an explosive Anzac Day bonanza. Come down and see the crazy guys from Clowns, punkin’ rawkers Wolfpack, the hypnotic fury from Kids Of Zoo, party punkers Foxtrot and poking your eyes out first up are Cyclone Diablo.
WAYFARERS Last year proved advantageous for the singer Ainslie Wills, who released and toured two singles in anticipation of her forthcoming album including You Go Your Way, I’ll Go Mine. Ainslie’s new album features textured, atmospheric storytelling, which is cinematic in scope and closely felt. It will be launched tonight (Wednesday) at the Northcote Social Club with supports from Spender and Oscar Lush.
SUN RISES AGAIN Sun Rising celebrates the amazing and timeless music that came from Sun Records in Memphis, in particular the early years (1950-1957). The show focuses on artists including Elvis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, Jerry Lee Lewis, Roy Orbison, Rufus Thomas Jr, Howlin’ Wolf, BB King and many more. Rather than merely impersonating the artists mentioned above, Sun Rising pay homage to the artists by accurately representing the music while recounting some interesting anecdotes about their part in the history of Sun Records. Catch the show this Friday at Lucky 13 Garage (Moorabbin), and future dates Friday 17 May at the Flying Saucer Club, Saturday 18 at Theatre Royal (Castlemaine) and Sunday 19 at the Karova Lounge (Ballarat).
HAMISH ANDERSON Hamish Anderson
FIRE BEHAVING AS AIR Desire (Independent) The dream begins when the first note of Limerence floats in, and layers-upon-layers build with each new element gently introduced. Beck Lee’s voice glistens, gently wafting above the soft cacophony beneath her. That is how the debut EP from local gazers Fire Behaving As Air kicks off. Tolerance continues on in a similar vein, though the heavier emphasis on guitars gives the track a nice edge. As the EP drifts into The Horses there becomes a nagging need for potent melody. The final two tracks, while undeniable attractive, don’t fulfil this longing either. Desire is very nearly something very special and Fire Behaving As Air have the potential to create near-perfect music.
HAPPY DANCE Following on from a national run of shows supporting Iceland’s Of Monsters & Men and Australia’s Julia Stone, Melbourne singer-songwriter Vance Joy has just announced three headline shows for April. The tour will showcase the intricate sounds of his debut EP God Loves You When You’re Dancing. This will be the first headline tour for Vance Joy with his band with support from Grizzly Jim Lawrie. He’s already sold out three shows, his fourth at the Northcote Social Club this Tuesday is selling fast.
A CHARMED DEATH Monday Night Mass sees the Northcote Social Club band room door thrown open for a free band extravaganza from the deepest caverns of Melbourne’s underground. This week it’ll be Scattered Order, Angel Eyes, Dead River, Bom Aterg and White Hex DJs. Come and hear why the Social Club band room is regarded as one of the best sounding rooms in town and have your face melted by some of Melbourne’s finest.
CHANCE YOUR ARM Sydney MC Chance Waters is launching his album Infinity with four shows in Victoria. Waters will be kicking off his Victorian album launches at Kay Street Saloon Bar (Traralgon) tonight (Wednesday). This will be followed by shows at the Ferntree Gully Hotel this Thursday, at the Northcote Social Club on Friday and will be wrapping things up with a grand finale on Friday 27 April at Karova Lounge (Ballarat).
(Independent) Hamish Anderson is something like a troubadour; stories flow from him with a country-rock swagger. He can carry a song with just a guitar and his voice and on the standout track from this debut EP, he does just that with only minimal backing. Winter has a timeless quality and when Anderson asks, “Is young love really meant to make me feel this old?” the tenderness is striking. Elsewhere the tempo is a little more upbeat. The polished sound may win you over but none of the other tracks bring the house down, proving that nothing is as good as a great song performed with sincerity. Hamish Anderson launches the EP at the Toff on Wednesday 1 May.
It’s sure to be an interesting one with Lunars this Thursday at the Rochester Castle. Also playing subliminal tunes to penetrate your mind is the Enclosures (two parts New Estate, one part Popolice). This’ll be one bizarre psychological sound experiment.
Hailing from the big smoke of Burn City, Lupine (formerly known as Django & The Big Smoke) are a five-piece folk/blues experiment who are not to be missed. With tales of murder, love and loss and the walking dead, 2013 is set to be the year of the wolf. Currently touring the release of their debut EP, Lupine will be playing at the Grace Darling this Thursday with supports from the astronomical sounds of Nun Of The Tongue and swashbuckling scallywags Cabbages & Kings.
The End Of The Divide – Chapter 2 The second wholly self-created EP from Kaisha, released through her own label, is an eerie, affecting and ultimately powerful release. Despite the pervading Middle Eastern sound this deserves to avoid the broad mislabel of world music. The vocal delivery on opening track Eyes Wide brings to mind Mad Season-era Layne Staley, with the multitracked title refrain repeated throughout. Shining The Light continues what sounds like a thousandyear-old personal story. The two-part Forgive Me My Mother rounds out the EP. The haunting tension of part one features a pulsing heartbeat under its sparse instrumentation that finally breaks in part two as Kaisha pushes into the heart of her Armenian ancestry. A masterful effort that will probably not get the recognition it deserves.
ALICE IN NUNDERLAND
SHERIFF BACK IN TOWN
As weedy and rolling in the vocals as in the vintage garage playing, Up And At Them is the wonderfully unsteady second tune revealed from Geelong quartet The Living Eyes’ forthcoming self-titled album. They’ll be launching their new LP at the Grace Darling basement this Friday with Bonniwells, Galaxy Folk and The Clits.
PEER PRESSURE Perth band Pat Chow will be making a trip across the Nullarbor for one show only this Anzac Day eve. Joining them on the day will be the always enjoyable Nervous, the sweet drawl of Ciggie Witch and the perfect pop of Grandstands. They’ll be playing at the Grace Darling tonight (Wednesday).
Fresh off the back of a whirlwind Wild Western Australian tour, Sheriff make their triumphant return to Public Bar. Over the years Sheriff have seen of their best/worst moments under the gargoyle lady, within the walls of North Melbourne’s Public Bar. This Friday is their first headline at the glorious venue since its reopening. Joining Sheriff will be everyone’s favourite paisley shirt, riff machines Sun God Replica and in their first show on Melbourne soil, the ground stomping swamp lords of the north Greta Mob (Sydney).
Following on from the success of her debut record Over My Shoulder, Tui Award finalist Mel Parsons has just released of her brand new album, Red Grey Blue. One of NZ’s rising songwriting stars, Parsons is in her element on stage and has supported and played alongside some of NZ’s best including Don McGlashan, Greg Johnson, Anika Moa and The Warratahs. Her debut album was a finalist in the NZ Music Awards for Folk Album of the Year in 2009, and she has toured NZ numerous times both as a solo artist and with her backing band. She’ll be playing in the Wesley Anne band room this Friday with support from Dan Parsons.
HEADS OF CHARM
Heads Of Charm is the new trash rock band for David Gagliardi (ex-Laura), Sam Whiting (Nikko) and Sam Reid (Bone). Their first live show is Anzac Day this Thursday at the Public Bar with support from Sparkspitter (SA) and Mansion, Alaska. As an Anzac Day special, there will be 2-Up tutorials and games in the bar from 2pm. The bands start at 8pm. Heads Of Charm’s debut EP If I Was Still General Manager Of The World You Guys Would Be Fucked! will be available on the night.
The Gallant Trees derived their name from a James Boag advert and originally started as a solo project in Adelaide in 2008 before moving to Melbourne. When the Birdwatching EP was released in March 2009, drums and bass players were soon added. They’ll be playing this Saturday at the Wesley Anne with support from Elephant Eyes, Josh Durno and Ian Murtagh.
Kieran Ryan, songwriter and one half of now split indie rock duo Kid Sam has released his first solo album. The self-titled record has a much wider and more expansive sound than that of Kid Sam’s much acclaimed 2009 release, illustrating Ryan’s versatility as a singer and songwriter. Ryan and his six-piece band will be launching the album at the Toff In Town this Saturday. There’ll be supports from Jessica Says, Seagull and The Mining Boom.
When he recorded his latest album, Love Come Save Me, The Beautiful Girls’ Mat McHugh wasn’t sure which way to go. All the elements that had once been separate had, over the past decade, merged into one. He decided the new album would be released under his own name. He performs live with The Seperatista Soundsystem tonight (Wednesday) at the Espy.
38 • For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news
GRETA MOB – THE PETITE BOURGEOIS BLUES What’s the song about? Rhyece O’Neill, vocals/guitar/piano/drums/bass/ corrugated iron/railway bolts: The labour theory of value. Is this track from a forthcoming/ existing release? It is our first single off our forthcoming album Let The Sunburnt Country Burn and is available now as a pay-what-you-want (free) download from gretamob.bandcamp.com. How long did it take to write/record? The writing/recording was drawn out over about 12 months for the whole album. It was drawn out because we all work day jobs that take up all our precious time. It was recorded in Berlin, Sydney and an abandoned shearing shed in Mudgee. We recorded and mixed everything ourselves. What was inspiring you during the song’s writing and recording? Lightnin’ Hopkins and Townes Van Zandt. We’ll like this song if we like… The Bad Seeds, Beasts Of Bourbon, Cosmic Psychos, The Powder Monkeys, PJ Harvey, I Spit On Your Gravy. Will you be launching it? Yes. You can too. Our CD singles are great to throw at people you don’t like. Oh. You mean a gig? Yes, of course! We are launching it at the Tote on Saturday 27 April with the awesome Buried Horses and ripping Jack On Fire as co-headline supports.
GOODBYE, MR ANDERSON Melbourne’s Hamish Anderson has made a name for himself locally through a live show that encompasses a mix of blues, rock and folk with moments of loud, electric, blues-soaked songs and delicate acoustic balladry. His self-titled EP and its lead single Howl will be launched at the Toff In Town tonight next Wednesday 1 May.
KNIGHTS AND WIZARDS To celebrate their forthcoming debut album Better Than The Wizards are throwing a party at the Toff tonight (Wednesday). This six-pieceblend pop, funk, rock and jazz and take their influences from a wide range of genres to create a diverse, fun, energetic and powerful live performance. In support are some of Melbourne’s most entertaining live acts floating around at the minute: Soul Safari, followed by Jen Knight & The Cavaliers and then the Simon Wright Band.
BUBBLE JOCKEY BJ Morriszonkle, is without a doubt the zaniest one man act you’ll ever hear or see. Hunched maniacally over his double decker keyboards, BJ Morriszonkle thumps out frenetic rhythms, contrasting drama, mystery, horror, theme park-esque tunes, mixing perfect adult contemporary pop introspection with bubblegum Dead Kennedys’ punk. He has confused audiences at pubs, clubs, festivals, in nursing homes, fire escapes, children’s playgrounds, record stores and backyards throughout Australia and beyond. He’ll be bringing his onstage audacity to the Spotted Mallard this Thursday with support from Jimmy Tait.
BETTER OUT THAN IN You are cordially invited to the album launch for Camperdown & Out’s long-awaited debut release Couldn’t Be Better. The four fellas from Sydney’s inner-West will embark upon a four-date tour, spanning Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and one more along the way. They’ll be joined by Mad Nanna and Ocean Party this Friday at the Tote.
Check out six-piece Paint Me A Phoenix dust of some feathers on a Sunday afternoon at the Evelyn Hotel. Helping complete the afternoon are Euclid – a four-piece who create emotive soundscapes, bound by convoluting rhythms and sounds that speak volumes without words. And Chico Flash will be opening the stage with their experimental jams.
After a brief period of inactivity, 50 Lions have announced a string of shows and a new release Pray For Nothing to mark their return. The EP comprises three new blistering tracks, which continue from where the band left off after their 2009 release Where Life Expires. They’ll be playing this Friday at the Bendigo Hotel joined by Sydney’s Vigilante, who have received a lot of well deserved attention after the release of their 12” EP Quality Of Life. Rounding out the line up are Outsiders Code, Thorns and Perth band The Others.
TIMOTHY NELSON & THE INFIDELS – MARY LOU What’s the song about? Timothy Nelson, songs/vocals/keys/guitar: The realisation of being on a downward spiral, the urgency of escaping the situation you’re in, bitches and hoes. Is this track from a forthcoming/ existing release? An album will be out later in the year. Working title is Thriller: 2, followed by a Greatest Hits. How long did it take to write/record? We spent a few days, one of which was Australia Day, in the studio with Joel Quartermain (Eskimo Joe) producing and Adam Round co-engineering. As much as we wanted to show off our Southern Cross tattoos down at the foreshore we decided to suffer for our art instead, for better or worse. Luke [Dux, guitar] may get deported. What was inspiring you during the song’s writing and recording? A healthy dose of ELO and cheap crack. I was in Santa Cruz annoying Luke and his missus on a holiday trip-of-a-lifetime when they turfed me out of the motel room. My smartphone was still inside so I had no choice but to write a hit.
This Thursday night at the Evelyn Hotel, Howard are back to bring you their blend of psychedelic, gypsy and folk-rock. Also to share the stage over the night with some incredible talent are special guests Towers, Cowgirl Caviar, The Eamon & Dudi Project and DJ Cattie Boobie.
BRUTALLY FEARLESS Twenty year veterans of the Aussie metal scene, Dreadnaught are bringing their tried and tested brand of metal and Australian rock to the stage this Saturday night. They’ll be joined by Desecrator’s punishing twin guitar attack. Also join the Amish’s fresh thrash stylings, and Diprosus’ brutal pounding rhythms and chunky groove metal tunes at the Gasometer’s Three Decades of Brutality.
Quarry Mountain Dead Rats welcome interstate vagabonds Dr Piffle & The Burlap Band to join them for a genre-tearing, banjo-thrilled, beer-choked, washboard-thrusting night of entertainment. If you’re after high energy, good vibes and infectious tunes that will make you wanna move then head down to the Tote tonight (Wednesday).
CHURCH PEWS Touted as one of Australia’s most exciting up and coming folk rock band, Sunday Chairs have burst on to the scene to take on all corners. Four of Melbourne’s most accomplished musicians has opened up a rare sound reflecting lost innocence and charm. Sunday Chairs’ much anticipated debut release will officially be launched live at the Evelyn Hotel this Saturday with the support of DJ Haines, Nicolette Forte & Friends and Sarah Carnegie.
MY FAVOURITE PARTY ALBUM IS… GG Allin’s Always Was, Is And Always Shall Be. That first album of his is amazing; it’s definitely a tour favourite. The whole band like it. One time we tried playing one of the songs a few times but felt like idiots. MY FAVOURITE COMEDOWN ALBUM IS… Maybe Lee Hazlewood’s Trouble Is A Lonesome a Town? I guess he’s like a cowboy singing about the troubles of people in his town. It makes you feel less shitty when you wake up on a Sunday. It’s a ‘trying to make breakfast’ album. FIRST GIG I EVER ATTENDED WAS… At a youth café thing near where I lived in Hornsby, a band called Kermit The Fascist played. I was like 13 or 14, they turned me on to a lot of punk. I was pretty lucky when I was young, there were a lot of DIY shows around, all sorts of bands great and terrible. Stuff like Frenzal Rhomb, Nancy Vandal and cool weird local bands, too. WEIRDEST GIG EXPERIENCE I EVER HAD WAS… Yeah, I’ve got one. We went on tour to America when the album came out and we played in Columbus, Ohio. A band called Sex Tide played first and while we were playing the girl from that band was dancing and she slipped over face first and hit her head on the side of the stage, which was concrete. She went to the bathroom and was looking in the mirror at this blood all over her face and laughing hysterically. People were all like ‘should we call you an ambulance?’ but she couldn’t stop laughing. I don’t know what happened to her, I assume she was all right. We didn’t really know what happened until afterwards. Sex Tide were pretty decent, a weirdo Columbus band.
EAT OUT Originally hailing from Melbourne Adam Eaton is a singer-songwriter troubadour most recently based in Norway. He and his Norwegian band mates have recently premiered the new video for Wait Out taken from his from his forthcoming album Catastrophe. To coincide with the release of the video, Eaton will be performing a massive headline show at the Toff In Town this Thursday.
ALBUM I’M LOVING RIGHT NOW IS… A band called Witch and their album Lazy Bones!!. It’s like of a ‘70s funk-psych ambient album.
Will you be launching it? Yes we will! The whole country has to cop it: Thursday 25 April at Toff In Town, with Amanda Merdzan, Adam Eaton and Porcelain Pill.
Greta Mob fly south for their first headline show at the legendary Cobra Bar inside the home of Australian rock’n’roll – the Tote Hotel. The Mob will be joined by two of Australia’s finest young bands, Jack On Fire and Buried Horses, in a triple headline bill this Saturday night. It will also be the launch for Greta Mob’s debut single, The Petite Bourgeois Blues.
FIRST ALBUM I BOUGHT WITH MY OWN MONEY WAS… Offspring’s Smash from K-Mart in Hornsby.
After months in hiding, the lo-fi, alt-folk artist Jess Locke will resurface to play a rare show with full band. The Melbourne-based singer has released a series of home-recordings through bedroom label Lesstalk records, including two EPs and a split CD/cassette with N Martin. Following the release of her most recent EP, Locke’s playing at the Gasometer this Thursday. Joining the bill on the night will be country-punkers Maricopa Wells and dirty-swap-blues men Dead Gang.
Do you play it differently live? We can’t afford the whole string section but we sure know how to boogie on cue. In the video I’m dressed in full drag, on stage I wear nothing.
TORCHES & PITCHFORKS
Three great bands, The Adelaide Crows, Carp and Daimaru are looking to swirl you into an existential quandary with mystifying songs and carefully constructed but barely audible lyrics. This rock, blues and punk mix is the perfect way to ease back into the weekly fold of responsibility or to cure hangovers in the best way possible, at the Bendigo Hotel this Sunday Night.
LOCK N LOAD
We’ll like this song if we like… Falsetto hooks that could catch a whale and all-star drummer Peter “Four-To-TheFloor” Forgus’ trademark beats.
On first encounter, Minibikes’ debut album For Woods Or Trail one could easily imagine that the up and coming four-piece would be better suited to climates far warmer than the cold grey streets of Melbourne town. It is perhaps in protest to the eternal winter that plagues their home city that Minibikes have released a musical document which positively evokes the spirit of summer. They along with Jealous Husband will be gracing the Spotted Mallard this Friday night.
BROTHERS GRIM & THE BLUE MURDERS – ROLL IT IN How many releases do you have now? James Grim, vocalist/lead dancer: Three – A Broken Tuesday Session, The Year To Forget and Roll It In. How long did it take to write/record? We wrote the songs over two months and recorded them over five days. Basically we saddled up, kicked hard and hung on with all our might until the race was one and the vinyl arrived. What was inspiring you during the making of the EP? Misadventure, love, betrayal, sex and a general good sense of humour over the crazy things life throws at you around two in morning. What’s your favourite song on it? I love Baby Girl – a twisted look at what it may or may not be like having me as your parental figure. The song begins with the line “I killed the only man my daughter ever loved” (which I stole from the cover of an old ‘5Os pulp magazine) and ends with, “Nobody hurts my baby girl”. I’ll leave your imaginations to fill in the rest. We’ll like the EP if we like… The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, 6ft Hick, The Black Keys and The Fireballs. Will you be launching it? We’ll be launching Roll It In at the Hi-Fi Bar on Wednesday 24 April with our local favourites Howlin’ Steam Train and The Harlots.
THE BIGGEST NON-MUSICAL INFLEUCNES ON ME HAVE BEEN … I don’t know… the universe? No that sounds terrible. Food? Daylight? Nighttime? Living? [pauses] Living is good.
Despite having had an interrupted first two years from their singer’s fight with cancer, thrash rock, metal outfit Kilamaine have achieved an amazing amount. The boys are putting on their first full show of the In For The Kill tour, a release that has met acclaim from fans and peers. This will probably be their last show in Melbourne for a while so be sure to get to the Bendigo Hotel this Saturday. They’ll be supported by local heavy weights Omnivium, Nikhail, Horizons Edge and Cursing Tomorrow.
THE COOLEST PERSON I’VE EVER MET… Man, I don’t know [thinks for a while]. Man, I’m going to need some time [thinks again]. Fuck, I’ll ask Al [fellow Straight Arrow, Alex Grigg] Al… who’s the coolest person we’ve ever met? [Sound of rock’n’roll through small speakers almost drowns out bursts of laughter. A minute passes]. No, he’s useless. We met the guitarist from The Free Things a while ago he was cool. Personal from Personal & The Pizzas was pretty cool in a fucked up, angry, alcoholic way. [At this point Inpress suggests going to Hobart]. I just went to Hobart! We haven’t played there yet, but I went to the Brisbane [Hotel, Tasmanian rock venue of choice], it was awesome. They had a metal night and everyone was really nice and pints were really cheap. When the new album comes out we want to go.
TOLLWAYS This Friday, Engine will be playing at the Ding Dong Lounge to celebrate their brand new name and their brand new single World War Away. They’ll be joined by High Side Driver who’ll be launching their debut EP at the show as well. Other supports will be talented local rockers The Charge and Fisker.
PEACHY KEEN Everybody loves soul music! The original purveyors of the longest running soul night, DJ Vince Peach and Boss Action host Miss Goldie will be bringing you Mo’ Soul, the newest weekly soul night, following the tradition of the early ‘70s Northern Soul all-nighters at the Wigan Casino in Northern England. Tonight (Wednesday) will be the launch night at Ding Dong.
TENTH ANNIVERSARY This January Dappled Cities were commissioned by Sydney Festival to perform a selection of work from across their four studio albums in a Baroque style. The sold-out show played in Sydney Town Hall and included members of the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra. Now, the party continues with the announcement of twin club shows in Sydney and Melbourne, where the band will revisit their vast catalogue in a tight, sweaty, up-closeand-personal setting. They’ll be joined by Collarbones and Donny Benet at Ding Dong Lounge this Saturday for a show where fans will be able to request songs for the band to perform via Dappled Cities’ Facebook page.
THE BIGGEST CELEBRITY CRUSH I’VE EVER HAD IS... Um... I don’t really go for celebrities [pauses]. No... what a shitty answer. Fuck, I don’t know... next. Can I say that? NEXT! IF I COULD HANG OUT IN ANY TIME AND PLACE IN HISTORY IT’D BE… Fuck, I don’t know [long silence]. Back to specific times to see specific bands play, I guess. I’d love to see the early GG Allin shows when he was still wearing pants. That’d be cool. I’d like to see a lot of American soul groups, lots of New Orleans stuff like Eddie Bo playing live, that‘d be cool, something like that. Interview by Andy Hazel WHO: Straight Arrows WHAT: Dig It Up! WHEN & WHERE: Wednesday 24 April, The Attic
For more news/announcements go to themusic.com.au/news • 39
HOWZAT! LOCAL MUSIC NEWS BY JEFF JENKINS and signed a publishing deal with Mushroom. He’s now been back in Melbourne for three years. Is it home? “It is, yeah,” he smiles. “I’m settling in.”
NO ORDINARY GUY “It’s coming on winter, I love this place …” Tim Guy’s new album, Dreaming Of A Night Mango (out now on Lost and Lonesome), features a fine Melbourne song called Many People I Know. Is it ironic or sarcastic? “No,” says Tim, “I love the Melbourne winter, it’s my favourite season, for sure.” Tim is a true troubadour, having spent his musical life travelling. His passion flickered in Papua New Guinea, where he sold his bike to buy a guitar. Soon he was playing songs by Chuck Berry, The Beatles, AC/DC and Barnesy. He then started writing on the Gold Coast. When his band, The Burrows, folded, a chance sound-check meeting with Kiwi star Bic Runga in Melbourne led to a deal with Bic’s label. Tim relocated to Auckland, played at WOMAD NZ
40 • For more opinion go to themusic.com.au/blog
Tim, who is launching his fourth album at the Grace Darling tonight (Wednesday), loves Melbourne’s live scene. “You can play a lot here and never get out of town! It’s like being on tour in the city for eight months.” It’s an intriguing title: Dreaming Of A Night Mango. “My uncle came up with the title while trying to describe the sort of album title I needed,” Tim reveals. The record sounds real and raw, like Tim is playing in your lounge room. He was inspired by Bonnie Prince Billy’s covers EP, Ask Forgiveness. “It had a lot to grip onto, and was still really quiet as well.” Asked to list his favourite local songwriters, Tim mentions Gareth Liddiard. “I like listening to his album in the car by myself on the open road. Jae Laffer from The Panics is good, too. I heard that Don’t Fight It song on the radio the other week and it’s stayed with me every day since. And I’m getting right into the Warumpi Band at the moment, the way George sang Neil Murray’s songs.” Tim’s album concludes with Everyone But Me’s Got A Radio Song. Has Tim – who says PBS breakfast is his favourite radio show – deliberately set out to write a radio song during his career? “Not really, but yeah, maybe,” he laughs. “It would be something else to have one, but I haven’t fashioned a song to be where radio goes. But, wow, there are so many things that sound great on radio.” It’s appropriate that the launch is on Anzac Day eve, because the album features a song called
Armour Weight, which Tim wrote for his grandfather, an old digger. Did he tell Tim many war stories? “He doesn’t talk about it. But he did once tell me about Australian soldiers swimming in a crocodile-infested waterhole in the mountains of New Guinea.” Many People I Know also mentions the MCG, where Tim’s team, Collingwood, will be battling the mighty Bombers on Anzac Day.
WILLS THRILLS One of the most acclaimed albums so far this year has been Ainslie Wills’ debut, You Go Your Way, I’ll Go Mine (available on iTunes). And deservedly so. If KD Lang made an album in a beach house in Blairgowrie, it would probably sound like this: breezy, jazz-tinged and exquisite. As Mrs Marsh explained, “Just like the liquid gets into this chalk”, these songs do get in; in fact, they will stay with you for days. Ainslie is launching the album tonight (Wednesday) at the Northcote Social Club.
LOVE YOUR CROOKED NEIGHBOURS
this noted talent feels compelled to surrender their skills to the likes of KFC spokesperson Joel Madden. Yuck.” Singer-songwriter Sarah Humphreys was similarly dismayed, tweeting: “The absolutely incredible and forever inspiring Abby Dobson will be auditioning for The Voice? To try and turn Delta Goodrem’s chair around? Wow. Just wow. Please, go and support artists so they don’t have to do shit like this to pay the bills. My heart hurts.”
CHART WATCH The Stafford Brothers are sitting steady at number four. Hello STAFFORD BROTHERS (number four) Big Banana HAVANA BROWN (19) Holdin On FLUME (23) Lanterns BIRDS OF TOKYO (32) Russell Morris spends a third week in the Top 10. Flume FLUME (number six)
There are obviously some music fans in Ramsay Street. It was great to see a Charles Jenkins poster on the bedroom wall of Lou’s grandson Mason.
Sharkmouth RUSSELL MORRIS (10)
The Rubens THE RUBENS (26)
When recently gushing about Abby Dobson’s gorgeous duet with Mark Seymour, which appears on Mark’s new album, Seventh Heaven Club, Howzat! pondered: What next for Abby? Surprisingly, she has appeared on The Voice, not as a mentor but as a contestant. Sydney musician Brendan Maclean admits he’s puzzled. “Abby Dobson is valued by her peers as one of Australia’s top 100 vocalists,” Brendan wrote in an opinion piece for Faster Louder. “It seems a pity anyone of
Armageddon GUY SEBASTIAN (16)
March Fires BIRDS OF TOKYO (32)
HOWZAT! PLAYLIST Many People I Know TIM GUY Riding UNDERGROUND LOVERS Don’t Say A Word VAUDEVILLE SMASH Breathe LAUREN BRUCE Something I Prepared Earlier AINSLIE WILLS
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‘’IN FOR THE KILL’’ TOUR
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BORED NOTHING: May 11 Northcote Social Club BOB EVANS: May 16 Yarra Hotel (Geelong);
KIERAN RYAN: April 27 Toff
17 Corner; 18 Meeniyan Town Hall
TEGAN & SARA: May 2 Palais
SAN CISCO: May 23 Karova Lounge
THE KOOKS: May 3 Palais
(Ballarat); 25 Corner (two shows)
MATT & KIM: May 3 Northcote Social Club GROOVIN’ THE MOO: May 4 Prince Of Wales Showgrounds (Bendigo) MELBOURNE SKA ORCHESTRA: May 4 Forum THE HAPPY MONDAYS: May 5 Palace
THIS WEEK INTERNATIONAL DADA LIFE: April 24 Billboard MIDGE URE: April 24 Shoppingtown Hotel (Doncaster) BLUE OYSTER CULT: April 24 Prince Bandroom HAYWARD WILLIAMS: April 24 Pizza & Wine Club (Kyneton); 26 Northcote Social Club FIREWIND: April 25 Corner Hotel KING TUFF: April 25 Bermuda Float DERRICK MAY, BEN KLOCK, EATS EVERYTHING: April 25 Brown Alley OTEP: April 26 Hi-Fi THE BLACK SEEDS: April 27 Hi-Fi MEL PARSONS: April 27 Wesley Anne BANE: April 27 Bang TOOL: April 27, 28 Rod Laver Arena SUPER FLU: April 28 Revolver AEROSMITH: April 28 Sidney Myer Music Bowl THE BAD SHEPHERDS: April 29 Corner Hotel BLACK SABBATH: April 29 Rod Laver Arena THE BRONX: April 30 Corner Hotel
NATIONAL THE GROWL: April 24 Workers Club THE TEMPER TRAP: April 24 Festival Hall FLINCH: April 24 Espy MAT MCHUGH & THE SEPERATISTA SOUNDSYSTEM: April 24 Espy ALBARE: April 24 Melbourne Recital Centre AINSLIE WILLS: April 24 Northcote Social Club BROTHERS GRIM & THE BLUE MURDER: April 24 Hi-Fi GRINSPOON: April 24 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 25 Pier Live (Frankston); 26 Inferno (Traralgon); 27 Ferntree Gully Hotel HOUSE VS HURRICANE: April 24 Plastic; 25 Courthouse (Geelong); 26 Mooroolbark Community Centre EVERMORE: April 24 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 25 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 26 SSA Club (Albury) CHANCE WATERS: April 24 Kay Street Saloon Bar (Traralgon); 25 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 26 Northcote Social Club; 27 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) DIG IT UP! FT. HOODOO GURUS: April 25 Palace and surroundings SHOCKONE: April 25 Liberty Social TIMOTHY NELSON & THE INFIDELS: April 25 Toff MARSHALL OKELL: April 25 Ruby’s Lounge (Belgrave) FRANKENBOK, ABREACT, DREADNAUGHT, HEAVEN THE AXE, KING PARROT: April 25 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 26 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 27 Edge Hotel (Mildura); HUNGRY KIDS OF HUNGARY: April 26 Corner Hotel THE DRONES: April 26 Forum ALLDAY: April 26 Workers Club ROCKET TO MEMPHIS: April 26 LuWow; 27 Spotted Mallard SONS OF RICO: April 26 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 27 Workers Club TAME IMPALA: April 26 Festival Hall SPIT SYNDICATE: April 26 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) NEIGHBOURHOOD YOUTH: April 26 Barwon Club Hotel (Geelong) DARYL BRAITHWAITE, JOE CAMILLERI, JAMES REYNE, ROSS WILSON: April 26 Palais; 27 Geelong Costa Hall; 28 Capital Theatre (Bendigo) KIERAN RYAN: April 27 Toff VANCE JOY: April 27, 28 Northcote Social Club BIG SCARY: April 27 Corner Hotel TIMMY TRUMPET: April 24 Mynt Lounge (Werribee), Eureka Hotel (Geelong); 27 Billboard
UPCOMING INTERNATIONAL BLACK SABBATH: May 1 Rod Laver Arena THE BRONX: May 1 Corner Hotel CARB ON CARB: May 1 Public Bar; 3 Gasometer THE KOOKS: May 1, 3 Palais TEGAN & SARA: May 2 Palais TURIN BRAKES: May 2 Northcote Social Club; 3 Flying Saucer Club THEY MIGHT BE GIANTS: May 2, 3 Corner Hotel
THE BEARDS: June 13 Pelly Bar (Frankston); 14 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine); 15 Hi-Fi
FRIGHTENED RABBIT: May 8 Corner
YOU AM I: July 3, 4, 6 Forum
EMMA LOUISE: May 9 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 10 Corner; 11 Karova Lounge (Ballarat)
GOLD FIELDS: July 12 Karova Lounge;
THE RUBENS: May 10 Forum; 12 Yarra Hotel (Geelong)
13 Corner; 18 Eureka Hotel (Geelong)
SOMETHING FOR KATE: May 10 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 11 Pier Live (Frankston); 24 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine); June 14 Forum
JAPANDROIDS: August 28, 30 Corner
WED 24 APRIL 2013 Julien Wilson ‘B For Chicken’ Quartet: 303, Northcote Songrider’s Club+Various: Baha Tacos, Rye Afrobiotics: Bar Open, Fitzroy Stax On Soul Revue feat. Kylie Auldist, Suzannah Espie, Ian Collard, Ella Thompson, Wayne Jury, Eliza & Talei Wolfgramm: Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh The Workinghorse Irons, The Yard Apes, And We Are The Enemy: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Midnight Juggernauts, YesYou, Client Liaison: Corner Hotel, Richmond Death By Death Ray, The Television Sky: Cornish Arms Hotel, Brunswick Dizzy’s Big Band, Peter Hearne: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond Nick Larkins & The Bones, Wicked Annabel, Pensive Penguin: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North Timmy Trumpet: Eureka Hotel, Geelong The Temper Trap, Alpine, MT Warning: Festival Hall, West Melbourne Tim Guy, Last Leaves, Glitter Rats: Grace Darling Hotel (Band Room), Collingwood Pat Chow, Nervous, Ciggie Witch, Grandstands: Grace Darling Hotel (Basement), Collingwood Evermore, Adam Martin, Compliments Of Gus: Karova Lounge, Ballarat Chance Waters, Mind Over Matter: Kay St, Traralgon Motley, MZ Risk, Rat Pack: Lounge Bar, Melbourne Albare: Melbourne Recital Centre, Southbank The Skampz: Monash Hotel, Clayton Timmy Trumpet: Mynt, Werribee
42 • To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags
NORTHLANE: June 9, 10 Corner
Ainslie Wills, Spender, Oscar Lush: Northcote Social Club, Northcote SiB, Oxblvd, Tinsmoke: Old Bar, Fitzroy Blue Oyster Cult: Prince Bandroom (Bandroom), St Kilda Jude Perl, DJ Yasumo, Esther Holt: Revolver Upstairs, Prahran Bang+The Getaway Plan, Remission Theory, Way With Words, All We Need: Royal Melbourne Hotel, Melbourne Next+House vs Hurricane, Prepared Like A Bride, Storm The Sky, Brooklyn: Royal Melbourne Hotel, Melbourne Midge Ure: Shoppingtown Hotel, Doncaster The Alan Ladds: Spotted Mallard, Brunswick Anchors, Strickland, The Union Pacific, Up and Atom: The Bendigo, Collingwood Open Mic Night+Various: The Brunswick Hotel, Brunswick Immigrant Union: The Curtin, Carlton The Shambelles: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne Collage with Cleveland Blues, Virtue, Scaramouche, Slugger & the Stone: The Espy (Basement), St Kilda Mat McHugh, Special Guests : The Espy (Lounge Bar), St Kilda The Finks, Courtney Barnett: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood Brothers Grimm & The Blue Murders, Howlin’ Steam Train, The Harlots: The Hi-Fi, Melbourne Harmonica Sam, The Domestic Bumblebees: The Luwow, Fitzroy The Meanies, Drunk Mums, Clowns: The Public Bar, North Melbourne Don Hillman’s Secret Beach: The Quiet Man Hotel, Flemington Riddle Me This Trivia Night+Various: The Sporting Club, Brunswick Danny Walsh Trio: The Standard Hotel, Fitzroy
FOALS: September 27 Palace
Groove Syndicate: The Thornbury Local, Thornbury Better Than The Wizards, Simon Wright Band, Jen Knight & The Cavaliers, Soul Safari: The Toff In Town, Melbourne Holy Moses Heartache, Monkey’s Pirate, Lauren Moore: The Tote, Collingwood Quarry Mountain Dead Rats, Dr Piffle & The Burlap Band: The Tote (Front Bar ), Collingwood The Growl, The Demon Parade, Them Bruins: The Workers Club, Fitzroy Russell Morris: Wellers, Kangaroo Ground Simply Acoustic+Various: Wesley Anne, Northcote Grinspoon, Kingswood, Emperors: Yarra Hotel, Geelong Mustered Courage: Yinnar Community Hotel, Yinnar
THU 25 APRIL 2013 Stephen Bowtell Band: 303, Northcote Quarry Mountain Dead Rats: Baha Tacos, Rye Anzac Day Punk Night feat. Clowns, Wolfpack, Kids Of Zoo, Foxtrot, Cyclone Diablo: Bar Open, Fitzroy Reverend Funk & The Horns Of Salvation, DJ Vince Peach, Pierre Baroni: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Next feat. The Broderick, Hallower, Jurassic Penguin, Those Things: Colonial Hotel, Melbourne Sticky Fingers, Lyall Moloney, Bootleg Rascal: Corner Hotel, Richmond Stephanie Monk: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond Bermuda Float with King Tuff, The UV Race, more: Dock 9, Docklands Tim Woodz: Edinburgh Castle Hotel, Brunswick
Roscoe James Irwin, Al Parkinson, Grizzly Jim Laurie: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North Sleep Decade, Pascal Babare, Teeth, Tom Milek: Evelyn Hotel (Afternoon), Fitzroy Howard, Towers, Cowgirl Caviar, Eamon & Dudi Project, DJ Cattie Boobie: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy Chance Waters, Mind Over Matter: Ferntree Gully Hotel, Ferntree Gully Oscar Galt, Synestatic, Discovery Of A Fox: Gertrude’s Brown Couch, Fitzroy Lupine, Nun Of The Tongues, Cabbages & Kings: Grace Darling Hotel (Band Room), Collingwood Lake Palmer: Great Britain Hotel, Richmond Frankenbok, King Parrot, Heaven The Axe, Abreact: Karova Lounge, Ballarat The Hats, The Factory: Lounge Bar, Melbourne Hayward Williams, The Yearlings: Northcote Social Club, Northcote Cassini, Ghetto Ghetto, Nervous, Knitting For Gran: Old Bar, Fitzroy Dig It Up feat. Hoodoo Gurus, Blue Oyster Cult, The Flamin’ Groovies, Buzzcocks, more: Palace Theatre, Melbourne Grinspoon, Kingswood, : Pier Live, Frankston Josh Owen: Prince Bandroom (Public Bar), St Kilda Grim Fandango, Apart From This, Kill The Matador, Oslow: Reverence Hotel, Footscray BJ Morriszonkle, Jimmy Tait: Spotted Mallard, Brunswick Charles Baby, Farrow: The B.East, Brunswick East The Eleven Dollar Bills, Craven Souls, Shabon: The Bendigo, Collingwood Yoshitoro, Lieutenant Jam, The Ugly Kings, Beloved Elk: The Brunswick Hotel, Brunswick The Bonafide Travellers: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne Shockone: The Liberty Social, Melbourne
Heads Of Charm, Sparkspitter, Mansion Alaska: The Public Bar, North Melbourne Donnie Dureau, Guests: The Sporting Club, Brunswick Adam Easton, Timothy Nelson & The Infidels, Amanda Merdzan, Porcelain Pill: The Toff In Town, Melbourne Nihl, Bear The Mammoth, Jarek, Kaleidescope: The Tote, Collingwood Ry, Mikey Hundred, Shadow Kitsune: The Workers Club, Fitzroy The Boys: Wesley Anne (Front Bar), Northcote Cathy Menezes Stanislavski Stockwell Quartet : Wesley Anne, Northcote The Floors, more: Yah Yah’s, Fitzroy Evermore: Yarra Hotel, Geelong
FRI 26 APRIL 2013 Svelt, Biscotti, Mangelwurzel: 303, Northcote Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Mustered Courage, Hayward Williams, Sandi Thom, Daniel Champagne, Garry & Georgia Rose: Apollo Bay Catholic Church Hall, Apollo Bay Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. DJ Eddy, Tre Samuels: Apollo Bay Foreshore Reserve (Side Stage), Apollo Bay Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Ghost Orkid, Dubmarine, Bonjah, Marshall Okell, Hussy Hicks: Apollo Bay Foreshore Reserve (Main Stage), Apollo Bay
Rattling Bones Blackwood, more: Cornish Arms Hotel, Brunswick Kunjani: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond The Alan Ladds: Edinburgh Castle Hotel, Brunswick Matt Katsis: Elsternwick Hotel, Elsternwick Wakefield Acoustic Festival feat. Dave Wright & The Midnight Electric, Michael Milne, Johnny Gibson & The Hangovers: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North Dave Wright & The Midnight Electric, Michael Milne, Johnny Gibson & The Hangovers: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North True Live, Special Guests : Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy Tame Impala, Midnight Juggernauts: Festival Hall, West Melbourne Into The Music The Music Of Van Morrison+Joe Creighton: Flying Saucer Club, Elsternwick The Drones, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard: Forum Theatre, Melbourne Gena Rose Bruce, Murdena, Gretta Ziller: Gertrude’s Brown Couch, Fitzroy Tane, Sam Brittian, Tanya Batt: Grace Darling Hotel (Band Room), Collingwood The Living Eyes, Bonniwells, Galaxy Folk, The Clits, DJ King OPP: Grace Darling Hotel (Basement), Collingwood
BLUE OYSTER CULT: April 24 Prince Bandroom
Sticky Fingers: Baha Tacos, Rye Vulgargrad: Bar Open, Fitzroy The Neighbourhood Youth: Barwon Club, South Geelong The Detonators: Black Hatt Hotel, Geelong Mark Seymour & the Undertow: Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh Spencer P Jones: Cherry Bar (Afternoon), Melbourne Killshot, Chinatown Angels, Beggarman, DJ Lucy Arundel: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Hungry Kids Of Hungary, The Preatures, Them Swoops: Corner Hotel, Richmond
Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Redcoats, Palace Of The King, Blue Eyes Cry, Jess Ribeiro & The Bone Collectors, Warchief: Great Ocean Hotel, Apollo Bay Grinspoon, Kingswood: Inferno Nightclub, Traralgon, Traralgon Spit Syndicate, Jackie Onassis: Karova Lounge, Ballarat Roadhouse Romeos: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East Sun Rising: The Songs That Made Memphis: Lucky 13 Garage, Moorabbin
House vs Hurricane, Prepared Like A Bride, Storm The Sky, Brooklyn: Mooroolbark Community Centre, Mooroolbark Chance Waters, Mind Over Matter, Kryptic: Northcote Social Club, Northcote God Bows To Math, Dead, Bodies, Pioneers Of Good Science, DJ Whiskey Cream: Old Bar, Fitzroy Time Of My Life+Daryl Braithwaite, Joe Camilleri, James Reyne, Ross Wilson: Palais Theatre, St Kilda Claude Hay, Tex Miller: Piping Hot Chicken Shop, Ocean Grove Bitter Sweet Kicks: Prince Bandroom (Public Bar), St Kilda Mr Vegas: Prince Bandroom (Bandroom), St Kilda La Dance Massive+DJ Petty Cash: Rainbow Hotel, Fitzroy Fear Like Us, Hoodlum Shouts, Ribbons Patterns: Reverence Hotel, Footscray Rainbird, Sentia, Durk, Waking Eden: Revolver Upstairs, Prahran Marshall Okell & The Pride: Ruby’s Lounge, Belgrave Minibikes, Jealous Husband: Spotted Mallard, Brunswick Vigilante, Outsiders Code, Thorns, The Others: The Bendigo, Collingwood King Parrot, Frankenbok: The Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine Full Code, Ziah Ziam, Zone 12, Big Volcano: The Brunswick Hotel, Brunswick Lowtide, A Dead Forest Index, Flyying Colours, Premium Fantasy: The Curtin, Carlton Traditional Irish Music Session with Dan Bourke & Friends: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne City Calm Down, Private Life, Diamond, The Raffaellas, Brendan West: The Espy (Lounge Bar), St Kilda Street Fangs, Master Beta, Sex St Band: The Espy (Basement), St Kilda Brendan West: The Espy (Front Bar), St Kilda Horse MacGyver, Angel Eyes, Jonny Telafone, Calico Cat: The Gasometer Hotel (Upstairs), Collingwood Harry Howard & Edwina Preston: The Gem, Collingwood Kennedys Creek: The Loft, Warrnambool The Booze Bombs, Rocket To Memphis, DJ Jumpin’ Josh, Dan The Man: The Luwow, Fitzroy Stu Thomas Paradox: The Post Office Hotel, Coburg Sherriff, Greta Mob, Sun God Replica: The Public Bar, North Melbourne Josh Forner: The Sporting Club, Brunswick
Scarlette Cook, Rachel Samuel: The Thornbury Local, Thornbury PopRocks with Dr Phil Smith: The Toff In Town, Melbourne Camperdown & Out, Mad Nanna, The Ocean Party: The Tote, Collingwood Front Bar+Cobra, Kitty Rock & The Bad Ladies: The Tote, Collingwood Allday, Eloji, Kwasi: The Workers Club, Fitzroy Dan Parsons, Mel Parsons: Wesley Anne, Northcote Trio Agogo: Wesley Anne (Front Bar), Northcote The Fearless Vampire Killers, DJ Fanta Pants: Yah Yah’s, Fitzroy Sons of Rico, Special Guests : Yarra Hotel, Geelong
Darling James: Edinburgh Castle Hotel, Brunswick Good Morning Blues Band: Elsternwick Hotel, Elsternwick Wakefield Acoustic Festival feat. Bellusira, Grand Cru, Underground, more: Empress Hotel (Afternoon), Fitzroy North Sunday Chairs, Nicolette Forte & Friends, Sarah Carnegie, DJ Haines: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy Grinspoon, Kingswood, Emperors: Ferntree Gully Hotel, Ferntree Gully Live Sessions with Jackson Firebird, Simon Levick: Ferntree Gully Hotel, Flanagan’s Bar, Ferntree Gully
Fourteen Nights At Sea, Ninety Nine, Bulls, DJ Kezbot: Old Bar, Fitzroy John Patrick & The Keepers: Prince Bandroom (Public Bar), St Kilda The Prayerbabies: Rainbow Hotel, Fitzroy Cupid Falls, In Your Hands, Street Fangs, Lieutenant Jam: Reverence Hotel, Footscray The Well-Wel Show feat. Ginger & Tonic: Revolt (Artspace), Melbourne Tool: Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne
AINSLIE WILLS: April 24 Northcote Social Club
SAT 27 APRIL 2013 Strangely Attraktive: 303, Northcote Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Miserable Little Bastards, Aluka, Aya Larkin, The SIdeshow Brides, Ukuholics, Mal Webb: Apollo Bay Catholic Church Hall, Apollo Bay Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Ryan Coffey, Alister Turrill, Pete Denahy, Electric Filth, Vieux Farka Toure: Apollo Bay Foreshore Reserve (Side Stage), Apollo Bay Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. The Woohoo Revue, OKA, King Of The North, Skunkhour, Hiatus Kaiyote, Redcoats, Kingfisha, Chase The Sun, Mustered Courage, Sandi Thom, Jess Ribeiro & The Bone Collectors, Hayward Williams: Apollo Bay Foreshore Reserve (Main Stage), Apollo Bay The Jed Rowe Band: Baha Tacos, Rye Purple Tusks: Bar Open, Fitzroy Peking Duk, Timmy Trumpet, more: Billboard The Venue, Melbourne The Flamin’ Groovies, Even: Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh Temple, Ownkind, Voodoocain, DJ Mermaid: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Big Scary, Caitlin Park, I’lls: Corner Hotel, Richmond The Solicitors, Rumour Control, Hunting Season: Cornish Arms Hotel, Brunswick Dappled Cities, Collarbones, Donny Benet: Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne Roger Clark Quartet, Sonya Veronica: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond Kate Walker, Guests: Edinburgh Castle Hotel (Afternoon), Brunswick
Time Of My Life+Daryl Braithwaite, Joe Camilleri, James Reyne, Ross Wilson: Geelong Performing Arts Centre (Costa Hall), Geelong Canary, Tulalah: Grace Darling Hotel (Band Room), Collingwood Collaborative Glitch+Various: Great Britain Hotel (Afternoon), Richmond Little Murders, Sons Of Lee Marvin: Great Britain Hotel, Richmond Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Sex On Toast, Ghost Orkid, Marshall Okell, Lamarama, Lachlan Bryan & The Wildes, The Attics, Alex Bowen: Great Ocean Hotel, Apollo Bay Chance Waters, Mind Over Matter: Karova Lounge, Ballarat Dirty York: Labour In Vain, Fitzroy Break The Ice Festval feat. Cold World, Miles Away, 50 Lions, Iron Mind, more: Lilydale Showgrounds, Lilydale Quadrajet: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Bobby Alu, Abbie Cardwell & The Chicano Rockers, Jordie Lane, Warchief, Daniel Champagne, Katie Wighton, Matt Kelly With Strings, Tre Samuels, The Yearlings, Blue Eyes Cry, Briagolong Bush Band: Mechanics Institute, Apollo Bay Vance Joy, Ali Barter, Roscoe James Irwin: Northcote Social Club, Northcote
Bang+Bane, Hopeless: Royal Melbourne Hotel, Melbourne Rocket To Memphis: Spotted Mallard, Brunswick Ben Kelly & Band: St Andrews Hotel (Afternoon), St Andrews Killamaine, Incrypt, Nikhail, Edge, Feed My Frankenstein: The Bendigo, Collingwood Claude Hay: The Blues Train, Queenscliff The Pass Outs, The Caning, Transistor, 23AOA: The Brunswick Hotel, Brunswick Archer, The Long Gone Daddies: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne Area-7, Between The Wars, Ribbons Patterns, The Shadow League, Phil Para Duo: The Espy (Lounge Bar), St Kilda Phil Para Band: The Espy (Front Bar), St Kilda Dreadnaught, Desecrator, Join The Amish, Diprosus: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood Dark Arts #1 - Sound Art Series+Miles Brown, Porpoise Torture, Jealous Husband, Glass Bricks: The Gasometer Hotel (Upstairs), Collingwood The Black Seeds: The Hi-Fi, Melbourne Favela Rock: The Liberty Social, Melbourne Transience, Series, Hex: The Loft, Warrnambool Spoonful: The Post Office Hotel, Coburg
TOUR GUIDE MATT & KIM: May 3 Northcote Social Club EXAMPLE: May 3 Palace OBITUARY: May 3 Espy SIX60: May 3 Forum YACHT: May 3 Ding Dong NINA KRAVIZ: May 3 Brown Alley THIRD PARTY: May 4 Alumbra. Homehouse DEATHSTARS: May 4 Corner Hotel AEROSMITH: May 4 Rod Laver Arena NORMA JEAN: May 4 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 5 Corner Hotel BAAUER: May 4 Brown Alley SANDI THOM: May 4 Caravan Music Club; 5 Art Gallery of Ballarat; 9 Melbourne Recital Centre THE HAPPY MONDAYS: May 5 Palace FRIGHTENED RABBIT: May 8 Corner Hotel BETH ORTON: May 8 St Michael’s Church JULIAN MARLEY: May 9 Corner Hotel CRADLE OF FILTH: May 10 Palace OM: May 10 Hi-Fi DJ AFRIKA BAMBAATAA: May 11 Laundry DRAGON: May 11 Palms At Crown BEASTWARS: May 11 Bendigo Hotel; 12 Hi-Fi JELLO BIAFRA: May 11, 12 Corner Hotel; 17 Coolangatta Hotel UNIDA: May 12 Hi-Fi THE SEEKERS: May 14 Hamer Hall FUNERAL FOR A FRIEND: May 14 Corner Hotel; 15 Pier Live (Frankston) NEON TREES: May 15 Ding Dong ISAIAH MITCHELL: May 15, 22 Northcote Social Club; 18 Public Bar DEFTONES: May 17, 18 Palace TENACIOUS D: May 17 Palais LORDE: May 17 Workers Club MATT EDWARDS: May 17 Brown Alley LOCAL NATIVES: May 18 Forum DELANEY DAVIDSON: May 18 Spotted Mallard STAN RIDGWAY: May 18 Corner Hotel; 19 Caravan Club FRED V & GRAFIX: May 19 Royal Melbourne Hotel BOBBY WOMACK: May 21 Hamer Hall ...AND YOU WILL KNOW US BY THE TRAIL OF DEAD: May 22 Corner Hotel LITA FORD: May 23 Prince Bandroom THE REVEREND HORTON HEAT: May 23 Caravan Music Club; 31 Billboard; June 2 Ferntree Gully Hotel BORN OF OSIRIS: May 23 Hi-Fi; 24 Phoenix Youth Centre ELUVEITIE: May 24 Billboard OCTO OCTA, MAGIC TOUCH, BOBBY BROWSER: May 24, 25 Mercat EMMURE, THE GHOST INSIDE: May 25, 26 Hi-Fi
NATIONAL THE GROWL: April 24 Workers Club THE TEMPER TRAP: April 24 Festival Hall FLINCH: April 24 Espy MAT MCHUGH & THE SEPERATISTA SOUNDSYSTEM: April 24 Espy ALBARE: April 24 Melbourne Recital Centre AINSLIE WILLS: April 24 Northcote Social Club BROTHERS GRIM & THE BLUE MURDERS: April 24 Hi-Fi GRINSPOON: April 24 Bended Elbow (Geelong); 25 Pier Live (Frankston); 26 Inferno (Traralgon); 27 Ferntree Gully Hotel HOUSE VS HURRICANE: April 24 Plastic; 25 Courthouse (Geelong); 26 Mooroolbark Community Centre EVERMORE: April 24 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 25 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 26 SSA Club (Albury) CHANCE WATERS: April 24 Kay Street Saloon Bar (Traralgon); 25 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 26 Northcote Social Club; 27 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) DIG IT UP! FT. HOODOO GURUS: April 25 Palace and surroundings SHOCKONE: April 25 Liberty Social TIMOTHY NELSON & THE INFIDELS: April 25 Toff MARSHALL OKELL: April 25 Ruby’s Lounge (Belgrave) FRANKENBOK, ABREACT, DREADNAUGHT, HEAVEN THE AXE, KING PARROT: April 25 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 26 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 27 Edge Hotel (Mildura); May 17 Pelly Bar (Frankston); 18 Inferno (Traralgon); 31 Newmarket Hotel (Bendigo); June 28 Yahoo Bar (Shepparton) HUNGRY KIDS OF HUNGARY: April 26 Corner Hotel THE DRONES: April 26 Forum ALLDAY: April 26 Workers Club ROCKET TO MEMPHIS: April 26 LuWow; 27 Spotted Mallard SONS OF RICO: April 26 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 27 Workers Club TAME IMPALA: April 26 Festival Hall SPIT SYNDICATE: April 26 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) NEIGHBOURHOOD YOUTH: April 26 Barwon Club Hotel (Geelong); May 3 Mynt Lounge (Werribee) DARYL BRAITHWAITE, JOE CAMILLERI, JAMES REYNE, ROSS WILSON: April 26 Palais; 27 Geelong Costa Hall; 28 Capital Theatre (Bendigo) KIERAN RYAN: April 27 Toff
TOOL: April 27, 28 Rod Laver Arena
VANCE JOY: April 27, 28 Northcote Social Club BIG SCARY: April 27 Corner TIMMY TRUMPET: April 27 Billboard; 24 Mynt Lounge (Werribee), Eureka Hotel (Geelong) PEZ: May 2 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 3 Kay St Entertainment Complex (Traralgon) FLUME: May 2, 3 Festival Hall LOVE LIKE HATE: May 2 Grumpy’s Green; 4 Revolver DANIEL CHAMPAGNE: May 2 Beav’s Bar (Geelong); 3 Caravan Music Club; 4 Northcote Social Club; 10 Loft (Warrnambool) JOSH PYKE: May 3 Gertrude’s Brown Couch CITIZEN KAY: May 3 Espy TEX PERKINS, CHARLIE OWEN: May 3 Stones Of The Yarra Valley D AT SEA: May 3 Workers Club; 4 Showground Shed MELBOURNE SKA ORCHESTRA: May 4 Forum PATRICK ROBERTS: May 4 Palms At Crown KNIEVEL & TOBY MARTIN: May 4 Toff KRISTA POLVERE: May 4 Ding Dong GAY PARIS: May 4, 5 Cherry Bar; 24 Fitzroy Hotel; 31 Loft (Warnambool) GUY SEBASTIAN: May 4 Nowingi Place (Mildura); 8 Lighthouse Theatre (Warrnambool); 10 GPAC Costa Hall; 11 Eastbank Centre (Shepparton); 12, 13 Wangaratta Performing Arts Centre; 21, 22 Capital Theatre (Bendigo) NEW GODS: May 7, 14, 21, 28 Workers Club KATHRYN ROLLINS: May 9 Grace Darling ELLA HOOPER: May 9 Workers Club LAURA IMBRUGLIA: May 9 Bridge Hotel (Castlemaine); 11 Old Bar EMMA LOUISE: May 9 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 10 Corner; 11 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) SOMETHING FOR KATE: May 10 Ferntree Gully Hotel; 11 Pier Live (Frankston); 24 Theatre Royal (Castlemaine); June 14, 15 Forum MUSTERED COURAGE: May 10 Northcote Social Club MESSRS: May 10 Grace Darling; 11 Saloon Bar (Traralgon) THE RUBENS: May 10, 11 Forum; 12 Yarra Hotel (Geelong) BORED NOTHING: May 11 Northcote Social Club SKIPPING GIRL VINEGAR: May 11 Audrey’s Rooftop (Abbotsford) (two shows) STEVE KILBEY, MARTIN KENNEDY: May 12 Toff CHARLES BABY: May 16 Workers Club BOB EVANS: May 16 Yarra Hotel (Geelong); 17 Corner Hotel; 18 Meeniyan Town Hall THE BROW HORN ORCHESTRA: May 16 Espy; 17 Spotted Mallard; 18 Baha Tacos (Rye); 19 Westernport Hotel (San Remo) SETH SENTRY: May 17 Forum; 18 Ding Dong HEROES FOR HIRE: May 17 Wrangler Studios (Footscray) THE STEVENS: May 17 Tote BRITISH INDIA: May 17 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 24 Pelly Bar (Frankston); 25 Ferntree Gully Hotel THE DEEP END: May 18 Cherry Bar CITY RIOTS: May 18 Rochester Castle MARK SEYMOUR & THE UNDERTOW: May 18 Sphinx Hotel (Geelong) TONIGHT ALIVE: May 18, 19 Ding Dong REDX: May 23 Workers Club SAN CISCO: May 23 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 25 (two shows), 26 Corner Hotel LEE KERNAGHAN: May 23 Ballarat Regional Multiplex; 24 Warrnambool Lighthouse Theatre; 25 Geelong’s Costa Hall; 29 Bendigo’s Capital; 30 Swan Hill Town Hall; June 2 Shepparton Eastbank Centre MANIFEST AT THE CORNER FT KING PARROT: May 24 Corner Hotel JERICCO: May 25 Espy OWEN CAMPBELL: May 25 Spotted Mallard THE MURLOCS: May 25 Northcote Social Club CALL THE SHOTS: May 26 Fitzroy Town Hall
FESTIVALS GROOVIN’ THE MOO: May 4 Prince Of Wales Showground (Bendigo) CHERRYROCK013: May 5 AC/DC Lane HEART OF ST KILDA: May 14 Palais CAMP ELSEWHERE: May 17-19 Yarra Junction
To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags • 43
Potato Cake Queer Friendly Night feat. Baby Machine, Valentiine: The Public Bar, North Melbourne Greens Dairy Angel Ensemble: The Sporting Club, Brunswick
SUN 28 APRIL 2013
Howl & Crow, Guests: The Thornbury Local, Thornbury
Jazz Vocal Sessions+Various: 303 (Afternoon), Northcote
Kieran Ryan, Jessica Says, Seagull, Mining Boom: The Toff In Town, Melbourne
Cabbages & Kings, Trash Fairys: 303, Northcote
Greta Mob, Buried Horses, Jack On Fire: The Tote, Collingwood Naked Bodies, Brendan West & The Broken Bones: The Tote (Front Bar ), Collingwood Sons of Rico, Apes, The Neighbourhood Youth: The Workers Club, Fitzroy King Bee Biscuit: Union Hotel (Afternoon), Brunswick The Ocean Party, Velcro, Eliza Band: Wesley Anne (Afternoon), Northcote Letter B: Wesley Anne (Front Bar), Northcote The Gallant Trees, Elephant Eyes, Josh Durno, Ian Murtagh: Wesley Anne, Northcote Dirty F, Chico Flash, The Sinking Teeth: Yah Yahâ€™s, Fitzroy
Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Mal Webb: Apollo Bay Foreshore Reserve (Side Stage), Apollo Bay Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Abbie Cardwell & The Chicano Rockers, Bobby Alu, Turin Brakes, Jordie Lane, The Livingstone Daisies, Men In Suits: Apollo Bay Foreshore Reserve (Main Stage), Apollo Bay Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Claude Hay, Katie Wighton, Lachlan Bryan & The Wildes, Pete Denahy: Apollo Bay Hotel, Apollo Bay Anna Smyrk & The Appetites, Matt Glass, Mighty Sun, Matt Kelly: Bar Open, Fitzroy
Chris Russellâ€™s Chicken Walk, DJ Max Crawdaddy: Cherry Bar (Afternoon), Melbourne Benny & The Dukes, Up Up Away: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Tango Rubino: Edinburgh Castle Hotel (Afternoon), Brunswick Birds & The Bees Showcase+Various: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North Lazybones: Entice Restaurant, Murrumbeena Paint Me A Phoenix, Euclid, Chico Flash: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy Itchy Fingers: Ferntree Gully Hotel, Ferntree Gully Joe Forrester, Beautiful Change: Great Britain Hotel, Richmond Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Sex On Toast, El Moth, Lee Rosser & Tim Oâ€™Connor, Al Parkinson, Men In Suits, Alister Turrill: Great Ocean Hotel, Apollo Bay Ron S Peno & The Superstitions: Labour In Vain, Fitzroy Break The Ice Festval feat. Bane, Hopeless, Relentless, Warbrain, more: Lilydale Showgrounds, Lilydale
Brunswick Blues Shooters: Lomond Hotel (Afternoon), Brunswick East
Stax On Soul Revue+Simon Russel: Spotted Mallard, Brunswick
Ken Maher & Tony Hargreaves: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East
Chris Wilson: The Bay Hotel (Afternoon), Mornington
Road Ratz: Lounge Bar, Melbourne
The Adelaide Crows, Carp, Daimaru: The Bendigo, Collingwood
Apollo Bay Music Festival feat. Kingfisha, Alex Bowen, Miserable Little Bastards, The SIideshow Brides, Ryan Coffey, Aluka: Mechanics Institute, Apollo Bay Vance Joy, Ali Barter: Northcote Social Club (Matinee Show), Northcote Beersoaked Sundays with+LA Bastard, Ricochet Pete: Old Bar, Fitzroy Ben Kelly & Band: Open Studio, Northcote The Large Number 12s: Prince Bandroom (Public Bar), St Kilda Collard Greens & Gravy: Rainbow Hotel (Afternoon), Fitzroy Cherrywood: Reverence Hotel, Footscray Pheasant Pluckers: Royal Oak Hotel (Afternoon), Fitzroy North
Mountain & Swamp Sessions with Craig Woodward & Friends: The Gasometer Hotel (Front Bar / Afternoon), Collingwood Ali E: The Post Office Hotel, Coburg Dirt River Radio: The Standard Hotel, Fitzroy
Checkerboard: The Bridge Hotel (Afternoon), Castlemaine
Open Decks: The Thornbury Local (Afternoon), Thornbury
Sunfire Squad, Reeds Of The Temptress, James Caddy: The Brunswick Hotel, Brunswick
What We Talk About When We Talk About Australia+Various: The Toff In Town, Melbourne
Daryl Braithwaite, Joe Camilleri, James Reyne, Ross Wilson: The Capital, Bendigo Performing Arts Centre, Bendigo
King Tuff, Scotdrakula, Bad Aches, Skyways Are Highways: The Tote, Collingwood
Lindsay Field, Sam See, Glyn Mason: The Carringbush Hotel (Afternoon), Abbotsford Nick Charles, The Lucilles: The Drunken Poet (Afternoon), Melbourne Headspace, Dale Ryder Band, Bad Boys Batucada, Ms Butt: The Espy (Lounge Bar), St Kilda Trade, Gold Tango: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood
Young Guns Festival feat. Orange, Shoot The Messenger, Danish, She Said Zed, Ryan King, J. Baker, Sweet Talk The Princess, State Of Indecision, Sinful Solitude, Tayla-Muir, Toxic Daze, AllisonJessica, Casidhe, Your Underground Hero, Prosthesis Of Mind, more: Thornbury Theatre, Thornbury Luaua Boys: Victoria Hotel, Brunswick Olivers Army: Wesley Anne, Northcote
Blue Grass Jam Night+Various: The Sporting Club, Brunswick
29 APRIL 2013 Paper Plane, Bloom: 303, Northcote Cherry Jam: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Adrian Edmondson & The Bad Shepherds, Guests: Corner Hotel, Richmond The Beegles, Hollow Everdaze, Pete Bibby, Psychodasies: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy Scattered Order, Angel Eyes, Dead River, Bom Aterg, White Hex: Northcote Social Club, Northcote Songwriter Sessions+Various: Old Bar, Fitzroy Paul WIlliamsonâ€™s Hammond Combo: Rainbow Hotel, Fitzroy Black Sabbath: Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne Letâ€™s Get Funny At The Brunny+Various: The Brunswick Hotel, Brunswick Zoophyte, Tom Tuena: The Espy (Front Bar ), St Kilda Junk Horses, Mightiest Of Guns, Sam Reiher: The Public Bar, North Melbourne
TUE 30 APRIL 2013 The Alan Ladds, Andy Szikla: Cherry Bar, Melbourne The Bronx DJ Set+Matt Caughthran: Cherry Bar (Late), Melbourne The Bronx, Violent Soho, Blacklevel Embassy: Corner Hotel, Richmond Peter Foley: Dizzyâ€™s Jazz Club, Richmond Melbourne Improvisors Collective+JC Jazz Collective, Joe Oâ€™Connor Trio, more: Gertrudeâ€™s Brown Couch, Fitzroy Kain Borlase Trio: Kojo Brown, Richmond Irish Session: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East Vance Joy, Grizzly Jim Laurie: Northcote Social Club, Northcote Moving Parts feat. Aktion Unit, Scratch Plate, Bleach Boys: Old Bar, Fitzroy
â€œLive At The Lomondâ€? THU 25TH
140 Sydney Rd
NO COVER CHARGE
WEDNESDAY THE 24TH OF APRIL - 8PM
THE BRUNSWICK HOTELâ€™S OPEN MIC
WITH YOUR HOST BRODIE GET IN AND REGISTER FROM 7PM ONWARDS $10 JUGS OF BRUNSWICK BITTER THURSDAY THE 25TH OF APRIL - 8PM TILL 1AM
$3 SCHOONERS OF CARLTON DRAUGHT - $5 BASIC SPIRITS 8PM
WITH GUESTS LIEUTENANT JAM, THE UGLY KINGS, BELOVED ELK FRIDAY THE 26TH OF APRIL - 9PM
WITH GUESTS ZIAH ZIAM, ZONE 12, BIG VOLCANO SATURDAY THE 27TH OF APRIL - 5PM
MICHAEL PLATER AND THE EXIT KEYS
WITH GUESTS MIDNIGHT SCAVENGERS, TENDER BONES 9PM
THE PASS OUTS
FEATURING GUESTS THE CANING, TRANSISTOR, 23 ANGLES OF ATTACK SUNDAY THE 28TH OF APRIL - 6PM
WITH GUESTS REEDS OF THE TEMPTRESS, JAMES CADDY MONDAY THE 29TH OF APRIL - 8PM
â€œLETâ€™S GET FUNNY AT THE BRUNNYâ€?
$10 JUGS OF CARLTON DRAUGHT TUESDAY THE 30TH OF APRIL - 8PM
THE BRUNSWICK HOTEL DISCOVERY NIGHT
GIVING CHANCES TO UP AND COMING LOCAL TALENT! THIS WEEK: TBC!
44 â€˘ To check out the mags online go to themusic.com.au/mags
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BRUNSWICK BLUES SHOOTERS
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(Jump blues grooves)
SUN 28TH 9:00PM
KEN MAHER & TONY HARGREAVES (Acoustic roots)
TUES 30TH 8:00PM
(Diddley-diddley-dee) ALL GIGS FREE ~ EXCELLENT RESTAURANT AND BAR MEALS
YOU SCAN FOR ALL YOUR LATEST MUSIC NEWS 45
BEHIND THE LINES MY GEAR: SIX60 GUITARIST JI FRASER
Currently touring the country before relocating to Berlin with the band to back the release of the eponymous debut album by Sony Music Europe, kiwi band Six60 guitarist Ji Fraser talks you through his rig: “I use a 1960 SuperLead Marshall cab and on top of that I’ve got an Orange Dual Terror. My treble pedal board’s usually just a hotcake – I have a channel selector and I’m always switching between a heavy and clean tone, which I think is just the best tone around for the type of music we play. I’ve got a phase shifter, a Holy Grail, a Soul Preacher – these are all compression/reverb pedals – and I’ve got two Fender Strats, one which I customed. I flicked in DiMarzio pickups, and it’s all basically custom right down to the scratchboard and the tuning keys, and also as my backup I’ve got a 1959 pre-issue Stratocaster, so I’m a lucky boy – I’ve got most of the toys I’ve ever wanted.”
CUTTING VINYL It seems hard to be believe, considering the continuing resurgence and growth of vinyl as a preferred recorded music medium, both among young bands and fans, but right now, Australia can boast only one vinyl record pressing plant – Zenith Records in Albion, Victoria. And they only produce high quality vinyl – 7” singles, 12” albums – ranging in weight from 130g to 180g, cut on dub plates utilising the only G Neumann record cutting lathe in the country. If you master your recording at Studios 301 in Sydney, for vinyl pressings, most audio masters are sent direct to Abbey Road Studios in London, where a metal master is created, which is then sent back to Zenith Records. For details and what they can do for you, phone (03) 9311 0075 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
SOUND BYTES Willie Nelson and Family, his long-time touring and recording ensemble, went into Pedernales Recording Studio in Austin, Texas, to record Let’s Face The Music And Dance, the first in a series of albums celebrating his 80th birthday year, with producer Buddy Cannon, Butch Carr then mixing it at Budro Music Repair Shop in Nashville, Tennessee. US rock three-piece Skillet recorded their second album, Rise, in Los Angeles, re-teaming with producer Howard Benson (My Chemical Romance, All American Rejects), who helmed their first album, Awake. The highly anticipated fifth studio album, Tape Deck Heart, by Winchester, UK-born folk/punk hero Frank Turner was produced and mixed by Rich Costey (Muse, Weezer, Rage Against The Machine, Interpol). Enigmatic Englishman in LA guitarist and songwriter Richard Thompson recorded his latest album, Electric, at the 16-track analogue Nashville home studio of producer Buddy Miller (Shawn Colvin, Robert Plant) with, as he told Uncut, “lots of ancient microphones around the place. It’s the first time I’ve done the full analogue thing in a while.” Ron Sexsmith returned to Mitchell Froom (Neil Finn, American Music Club, Tim Finn, Elvis Costello) to record his latest album, Forever Endeavour, at the producer’s Froom & Board Studios in LA. Out here for this year’s Bluesfest, Shuggie Otis recorded his new double-CD set, Inspiration Information, at Columbia Studios and at Hawk Sound, the 16-track studio built in the backyard of the Otis family homestead in the West Athens neighbourhood of Los Angeles, the second disc a collection of previously unreleased studio and live tracks cut between 1975 and 2000. E (Mark Oliver Everett to his mum) produced and recorded the latest Eels album, Wonderful, Glorious, at The Compound in Silver Lake, LA, and his home studio, No-Hitsville in Los Feliz, also an LA suburb, built specifically to record this album as, it seems, his previous home studio had become too cramped for effective recording. LA indie-pop four-piece Family Of The Year cut their latest album, Loma Vista, with producer Wally Gagel (New Order, PJ Harvey). Reacting against the way they went about recording their previous album, Last Night On Earth, which was pretty much all about controls and computers, Noah & The Whale set up in West London’s British Grove Studios and recorded their latest album, Heart Of Nowhere, live in the studio.
46 • For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews
ADDING A SPOONFUL, CHK The new record, THR!!!LER, sees the originally Sacramento, California-based dance punks !!!, pronounced Chk Chk Chk, focusing their efforts on crafting an album with tighter song structures. As singer Nic Offer tells Michael Smith, that meant looking outside the band for production ideas once again. he last time !!! looked outside the band for production guidance was back in 2007 when they called in New York production duo Eric Emm and Joshua Ryan, who work as The Brothers, to coproduce their third album, Myth Takes. Five years on, they’ve taken the even more radical step of convening in Austin, Texas, to work with Spoon drummer and engineer/ producer Jim Eno on their latest album, THR!!!LER.
“He’s definitely one of those producers where his studio is his instrument,” !!! singer Nic Offer explains. “We’re fans of Spoon and were excited at the prospect of working with someone who is still in their prime, you know, and seeing what they could do with our sound. He wasn’t an obvious choice at all because everyone that I would run into while we were working on the record, I would say, ‘Yeah, we’re working with Jim from Spoon,’ and they’d be, like, ‘Wow, that’s kind of a neat idea.’ So everyone seemed surprised about it but once they got their head around it, they thought it made sense. It’s a surprising, logical choice.” Eno, who has produced albums for Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears and Via Audio among others, as well as coproducing most of the Spoon albums, set up his studio, Public Hi-Fi, back in 1998, while working on Spoon’s third album, Girls Can Tell, originally converting a detached garage into a one-room studio with a closet used for isolation. His initial setup featured an Ampex MM1200 16-track tape machine and a Trident 24 board, but in 2003 he bought a 1969 Neve 8016 console from a broker in London, drafting in electronics wiz Garry Creiman to rebuild it, and it remains the core of the studio, which was completely rebuilt after the
completion of Spoon’s 2005 album, Gimme Fiction, twice the footprint of the original and two stories high, with conduits for wiring, floating floors, multi-wall construction, acoustic doors/seals, double windows, etc. During the project, Eno worked very closely with Austin architect Mark Canada to create an acoustically sound, comfortable and creative environment for recording, with the control room designed by Steven Durr. He recommended Urei 813 time-aligned speakers, offering musicians the alternative of playing along without headphones. These days, Eno runs, alongside the Neve, a Studer 827 2” 24-track tape machine, along with Lynx Aurora VY16 32x32 1/o, Masterlink HD recorder and Otari MTR12 ½” four-track for tape echo, though ultimately he’s recording to ProTools. “We really liked their [Spoon’s] sound,” Offer continues his explanation of Eno as their choice for producer. “There’s a lot of space in their songs and it always seems there’s a lot of attention to sonic detail and trying to get something that sounds like its own world or something like that, and we always feel like we need more help in the songwriting department and he definitely has focused his production round some of our favourite songs from the last ten years or so. So we felt like he would probably bring all those things to the record, and he did. And it’s definitely a focus of his studio to have like an older, more classic, warmer sound, which works perfectly for the kind of music we do. “The album stayed close to the demos but I think there’s been a problem with us before just kind of achieving the sound that we had in our heads. Jim was just a good producer in that he could achieve it. The blueprints were pretty much there, but there was a lot of freedom in the blueprints if you know what I mean. There was room for discovery but the songs were there.” The !!! sound is very much about the bass and drums, about the rhythm section, which these days comprises Rafael Cohen on bass and Paul Quattrone on drums. “Bass can kind of come from anywhere,” Offer suggests. “We like to have lots of different sounds throughout the record – sometimes it’s a synth bass, sometimes it’s Mario [Andreaoni, guitarist], and a lot of time Rafael’s
playing guitar – it moves around a bit. But I think it was Mike Watt that said bass players are the secret meter of the band, and it’s definitely the bass lines, I believe that, especially for bands like us. Rafael likes the same kind of music we do. It’s been interesting because, you know, I guess he’s kind of like our third bass player and he has a style that’s probably closer to [original bass player] Justin [Van Der Volgen]’s style.” With members now scattered around the country – in New York City, Sacramento and Portland, Oregon – there are certain logistical issues regards working on material for THR!!!LER, but as Offer explains, “it was just really focused and it was every which way we could think to write, you know? No two songs are the same credits – it was different mixes and combinations of people in the band, and with something like Slyd, we brought in a girl to help write it with us. Slyd we actually didn’t do at all with Jim. That was kind of conceived in a different way and we didn’t expect to be something that we’d have to play live – just a record – and when it was the first song that the record company put out we were like, ‘Well, shit, we’d better learn it!’ It was really fun and definitely a challenge. Slyd was done in many places but mostly put together in New York with a young kid named Patrick Ford. THR!!!LER, by !!!, is released Friday 26 April on Warp through Inertia.
SIX-STRING VARIATIONS With his latest album, guitar wizard Joe Satriani was looking for his band to create the chemistry, as he tells Michael Smith. hen Joe Satriani reconvened the side project he’s in with former Van Halen singer Sammy Hagar and bass player Michael Anthony, and Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith – Chickenfoot – to cut their latest album, Chickenfoot III, he demurred, the right decision for that record as it turned out, to Hagar’s suggestion they cut it at his own studio. Satriani had thought to take it into Skywalker Sound in Marin County, California, where he’d cut his last few albums. When it came time to record his own – 14th – studio album, Unstoppable Momentum, it was to Skywalker he returned.
“You know, I really like the studio,” Satriani, on the line from Perth, the last city he visited on his recent run of guitar masterclasses through Australia, admits. “The music room is really special there. It’s huge, you know – it’s a scoring room that can hold a hundred-piece orchestra; you can set up about ten rock’n’roll bands in there, and that gives all of us a lot of opportunity to try different set-ups to capture the right sound for a song. It also gives us a great staging area for all the gear we might wanna use.” As you might have gathered from its name, Skywalker Sound was set up by the man behind the Star Wars movies, George Lucas, originally for filmmakers, and features six fully-equipped mixing studios, a large variety of both picture and sound editing rooms, an impressive Foley/ADR stage, and complete audio and video transfer services. In addition, it features the scoring stage Satriani used to record Unstoppable Momentum, measuring 60’ by 80’ with a 30’ ceiling, an adjustable acoustic system that allows the reverb time to be varied from .6 and 3 seconds. There are also four isolation booths within the space, and the control room features a 72-input Neve 88R analogue console with Encore automation. “The feeling of the studio is really nice – George Lucas and all the people there that are working on various films and video games and who knows what, they just create
a very creative atmosphere, and we always seem to get some really good results! I do a lot of recording at my home studio, which is all ProTools HD, and I’ll bring in the session files that we then play along to, to various degrees – sometimes we’ll replace everything, sometimes we’ll keep one keyboard part or two rhythm guitar parts. “In general, I wind up at the end of a touring cycle with maybe forty to sixty pieces of music, and then I’ll take two months, which this time was November and December 2012, and got that number down to twenty and then eventually kind of put my foot down at sixteen. So I showed up at the beginning of the year at Skywalker Sound with sixteen pieces and then we sort of went at it like that.” His current live and recording band features Vinnie Colauita (Sting, Jeff Beck) on drums, Chris Chaney (Jane’s Addiction) on bass and on keyboards, Mike Keneally (Dethklok), and it was the chemistry between the players Satriani wanted to capture on this album. “The goldmine I was looking to mine on this record was really the rhythm section,” Satriani explains. “We would go out and we would record just like a straightahead band, we’re all set up lookin’ at each other, and we would encourage the three guys to try different interpretations of the songs with each take, and generally after six or seven takes we had it. But each take was remarkably different, and I didn’t tell them, ‘hey, you’ve got to play this beat, make sure you always play that chord voicing there.’ I just encouraged everybody to use their musicianship to try something different, and they were all of that musical level where they could keep the song together but they could interpret it six or seven different ways and then wait to see what I thought. “That’s a lot of pressure. Think of it this way – they say you can do it twenty times until you get it right, there’s really no pressure, ‘cause you know exactly what you’re supposed to play so you just play it, right? But you’re confronted with someone like me that says, ‘hey, give me seven different versions and make ‘em up as you go along,’” he laughs. “Everybody had to dig deep, but these guys were great. They were very creative with strong enough personalities so that the situation didn’t make them feel pressured. So we got
these really very interesting interpretations of my music and every take I was surprised. Eventually all of us knew when, quite by accident I guess, everyone would come up with a version at the same time that seemed to complement every performance.” Unstoppable Momentum also saw Satriani once again coproducing with Canadian Mike Fraser (AC/ DC, Metallica, Aerosmith, Airborne), with whom he’s worked on his 1998 Crystal Planet, 2000 Engines Of Creation, 2004 Is There Love In Space?, 2006 Super Colossal and 2010 Black Swans And Wormhole Wizards albums, as well as 2011’s Chickenfoot III album and Live In Phoenix DVD. “It’s really great, you know – I’ve been able to work with two guys almost all the time in my career – John Cuniberti and Mike Fraser – and some of the records we’ve done together, the two of them working either as recording or session engineer or mixer… even John sometimes will master projects that Mike records for me and coproduces. So I felt this time around, once again Mike would be a great choice because of his experience with bands and the kinds of musicians I was bringing to the sessions.” Unstoppable Momentum, by Joe Satriani, is released Monday 6 May through Sony Music.
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Sol Republic has just launched its groundbreaking new range, Master Tracks over-ear headphones. With unique X3 Sound Engines, which deliver tight superdeep bass with smooth, controlled highs, Master Tracks deliver an exceptional immersive music experience balanced with powerful bass, clear highs and vocal accuracy, the over-ear design and articulating ear cushions providing outstanding sound, noise isolation and comfort. The beauty of these headphones lies in the X3’s mid-range. Mid is where voice lives, and because most people know what it’s supposed to sound like, many headphones tune it if it cannot be reproduced accurately. The X3 Sound Engines deliver mid-range vocals so clearly that the Master Tracks showcase instead of hides them. Constructed from Sol Republic’s proprietary polymer, FlexTech, Master Tracks headbands are lightweight in construction and can be twisted, bent or dropped without worry. They’re priced at $249.
MEET THE JOSH HOMME MATON He may be an American rock icon, but it’s Australia’s own classic guitar manufacturers, Maton, that have come up with a signature guitar for Josh Homme, of Queens Of The Stone Age/Eagles Of Death Metal fame The BB1200 JH is a hollow body electric with Victorian Blackwood front and back in a tobacco sunburst finish, a rock maple neck to give maximum sustain, warmth and a rounded tone with bite. Featuring a trapeze tailpiece and bridge, the BB1200 JH comes with Maton JHB and JHN pickups with Alnico 8 magnets, each pickup capable of being split to single coil mode.
IN THE STYLE OF JOE SATRIANI (RIFF AXELERATOR) After watching the Riff Axelerator lesson by Brisbanebased guitarist Andrew Farnham a few points came to mind. Firstly, the amount of instructional material on Joe Satriani, including full transcriptions of everything that he’d ever recorded, is huge but that doesn’t necessarily mean that the fledgling, aspiring guitar player will be able to make his or her way through it easily or even be able to find any of it accessible. In fact, it could be discouraging if you’re ill-equipped technically with underdone strength in the finger department. My second thought was that if there are small steps we can take to build our technique so that we can approach the level of skill needed to play either Satriani’s music or create our own at that standard, then these steps are well worth exploring and may be of enormous value. What Farnham has done with his In The Style Of Joe Satriani is to have composed ten riffs based on or “inspired by” Satriani that, if learnt thoroughly, could just be those small steps or even part of them to help a ‘Satch’ student make that breakthrough and reach the goal of playing at a masterful level. The strategy is that the ten riffs given as examples are able to be heard at a series of speeds so they can each be worked on at the speed that’s just right for where your playing is at. So you could start at the slowest speed and once you can play the riff comfortably at that tempo, move it up a notch until you ultimately play it at the top speed. In summing up, I think In The Style Of Joe Satriani is worth having in your library. www.riffaxelerator.com. Steve Flack
SHURE SRH FP35-L4 WIRELESS SYSTEM Shure’s new FP Wireless System is going to find a happy home on many video cameras, especially with the advent of DSLRs – the latest media-capturing miracle, a camera that also doubles as a video recorder. One of the problems with point-and-shoot video is that there are too many changes in the soundtrack that basically don’t work. The solution is simple: find a way to get the sound of a stationary mic into the recording device that’s attached to your video camera. There are, however, two problems – power and weight. A typical wireless mic is a box weighing a kilogram or two and is inappropriately large for modern video cameras. Additionally, it needs power and the camera is usually mobile and you don’t want to be shooting with the constraints of a power cable and some tech guiding you through 100 drunken patrons while you stumble to the ground. In the FP Wireless system, there are two options. Option one is two small cases modelled on the Shure SLX beltpacks, one the transmitter and the other the receiver. The receiver has several mounting options. The receiver only weighs 81 grams and two double AA batteries will get you out of trouble either end. Option two lets you attach a small transmitter to any conventional dynamic mic. In this way you have instant wireless mic without any extra expense. The wireless system features automatic channel selection and everything that needs adjusting is pretty straightforward. Paul Dengate
SLX® Wireless Microphone Systems
SMART, HARD-WORKING WIRELESS Whether it’s for a sound installation or a working band on the road, audio professionals need powerful wireless tools that can be set up quickly and used conﬁdently. Shure’s rugged SLX™ Wireless Systems exceed these demands with innovative automatic setup features, exceptional wireless clarity and legendary Shure microphones. Supporting up to 20 compatible systems across multiple UHF frequency bands, SLX smoothly integrates into houses of worship, lecture halls, conference rooms and mobile gear cases.
SLX MUSO Half Page.indd 1 50 •Shure For more interviews go to themusic.com.au/interviews
5/04/13 1:45 PM
Melbourne is one of the few true rock’n’roll capitols of the world. And Inpress magazine is the voice of this great rock’n’roll city. For ov...