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THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 3


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themusic 21ST AUGUST 2013

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INSIDE FEATURES Japandroids

Chloë Grace Moretz Simon Reynolds

review

Franz Ferdinand Shane Carruth Alison Mosshart Fat Freddy’s Drop Midnight Juggernauts Sarah Hine Ego

“BLOMKAMP’S PICTURE HAS NONE OF THE FAUX-WEIGHTY PORTENT HUNG ON EVEN THE FLIMSIEST OF SUPERHERO MOVIES.” - FILM CAREW ON ELYSIUM

“THIS IS A TRICKY BALANCING ACT THAT FOR THE MOST PART WORKS BRILLIANTLY.” - OLIVER COLEMAN REVIEWS THE CHERRY ORCHARD (P52)

The Beasts Of Bourbon Zoe Pepper Benedict Hardie Elena Carapetis White Lies King Krule Dragon Holi Festival

REVIEWS

Album: Avenged Sevenfold Live: Pluto Jonze Film: Elysium Theatre: The Cherry Orchard Muso Gear: Cole Clark Angel Guitar

THE GUIDE Cover: King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard Local News Gig Guide

FASHION

“CONTRARY TO POPULAR MYTH, IT DID NOT CAUSE ME TO SINK INTO A CHILDISH MESS.” - NATASHA LEE ON THE PHENOMENON OF ONESIES (P30) “THEY’VE GOT GRIT, GRUNT AND A HAIRY SOUND THAT RAISES YOUR HACKLES AND MAKES YOUR FEET BEAT AND YOUR EARS SEAR.” - ISOBEL ROBERTS-ORR REVIEWS DARTS (P49)

feature “IT DOESN’T MATTER HOW YOU PLAY THEM, WHEN YOU HIT THE CHORUS, THE CROWD COMES IN AND JUST SINGS THEM LIKE CRAZY.” - TODD HUNTER OF DRAGON (P37)

Eat: European Food Sport: Five Sports You Didn’t Know

“[IT’S] AN INTERACTIVE AUDIO SHOW THAT IS ESSENTIALLY A CRIME THRILLER, USING PRETTY OVERT MASKS.”

Social Media: Seven Drones Trend: Onesies Travel: Volunteering in Swaziland Visual Art: Clutch The End: NonPerformance Enhancing Drugs

- ZOE PEPPER ON THE CONFIDENCE MAN (P33)

review 8 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013


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CREDITS PUBLISHER

Street Press Australia Pty Ltd

GROUP MANAGING EDITOR Andrew Mast

EDITOR Bryget Chrisfield

ARTS AND CULTURE EDITOR Cassandra Fumi

EDITORIAL ASSISTANT Stephanie Liew

MUSO EDITOR Michael Smith

GIG GUIDE Justine Lynch vic.giguide@themusic.com.au

SENIOR CONTRIBUTOR Jeff Jenkins

CONTRIBUTORS Aleksia Barron, Atticus Bastow, Steve Bell, Luke Carter, Anthony Carew, Oliver Coleman, Rebecca Cook, Adam Curley, Cyclone, Guy Davis, Dan Condon, Simon Eales, Guido Farnell, Sam Fell, Tim Finney, Bob Baker Fish, Cameron Grace, Tom Hawking, Andrew Hazel, Brendan Hitchens, Jeff Jenkins, Kate Kingsmill, Baz McAlister, Samson McDougall, Tony McMahon, Fred Negro, Matt O’Neill, Josh Ramselaar, Paul Ransom, Dylan Stewart, Stephanie Tell, Izzy Tolhurst, Nic Toupee, Dominique Wall, Glenn Waller, Matthew Ziccone

THIS WEEK THINGS TO DO THIS WEEK • 21 AUGUST - 27 AUGUST 2013

wtf?

lol

SENIOR PHOTOGRAPHER Kane Hibberd

PHOTOGRAPHERS Andrew Briscoe, Holly Engelhardt, Jay Hynes, Lou Lou Nutt

NATIONAL SALES MANAGER Brett Dayman

ADVERTISING DEPT sales@themusic.com.au Leigh Treweek, Tim Wessling

ART DIRECTOR Matt Davis

ART DEPT vic.art@themusic.com.au Nicholas Hopkins, Eamon Stewart

A Facebook page has sprung up titled “Mysterious Metal Pyramids of High St Northcote”. Have you seen them? The median strip art hasn’t been there long at all, but cost ratepayers $32,000 plus $2,400 in installation costs. Worst of all, they resemble spiky metal deathtraps that wouldn’t look out of place on a vampire version of It’s A Knockout! Let’s face it, if Westgarth Traders Association president Peter Lynch can bust a watermelon on one of the points, imagine what could happen to a cyclist’s noggin if they took a tumble? #bloodandgutsandgreaseofftherod

ADMIN&ACCOUNTS Loretta Zoppolone Shelly Neergaard Jarrod Kendall Leanne Simpson accounts@themusic.com.au

DISTRO Anita D’Angelo distro@themusic.com.au Subscriptions store.themusic.com.au

CONTACT US Tel 03 9421 4499 Fax 03 9421 1011 info@themusic.com.au www.themusic.com.au 584 Nicholson St, Fitzroy North 3068 Locked Bag 2001, Clifton Hill VIC 2001

MELBOURNE

If you missed The Hayloft Project’s black comedy Delectable Shelter at Theatre Works in 2011 it’s back in Melb. This piece – written and directed by Benedict Hardie, HP’s new artistic director – has been touring and is here for two shows at the Northcote Town Hall, 21 and 22 Aug. It will change the way you experience the Foreigner song I Want To Know What Love Is.

watch

If you haven’t yet checked out This Charming Charlie, Lauren LoPrete’s Tumblr page, save it for a time when you need cheering up. The genius pairings of The Smiths lyrics with images from Charles Schulz’s Peanuts comic series are truly inspired. You wouldn’t think it were possible to make OG misery guts Morrissey’s lyrics – such as “I am human and I need to be loved/Just like everybody else does” and “I would go out tonight/But I haven’t got a stitch to wear”– so heartwarming and quaint. Could Lucy van Pelt be classified an emo cartoon character?


win

On a list of ‘Things that really piss us off ’ here at theMusic, people who crash into you while checking their phone is pretty high up there. Finally, somebody has decided to bring an end to this assault on simple manners (or at least try), with Japan just erecting smartphone warning signs that read: “Walking while using a smartphone is dangerous... But those people probably didn’t see this announcement.”

watch

cringe

Howdy Miley Cyrus! Guess what? We get it! You’re a big old girl now and you want people to stop treating you like some dang Disney starlet! But, please stop. All this twerking shit at old mate Terry Richardson’s blindingly white studio is just… odd, uncomfortable and like watching your sister feel herself up. And no one wants to do that. Okay? Thanks.

We’ve all been that lonely soul trawling through their phone for some late-night extracurricular activities, and the video for Arctic Monkey’s new single, Why’d You Only Call Me When Your High? captures the desperation of the situation in full drug distorted glory. The song mightn’t be as good as Do I Wanna Know? (which they cross promote cheekily here), but the clip is an absolute corker. What’s Alex on? Anyone’s guess. But if he’s offering, then, well...

lol

“That’s not a campaign; this is a campaign.” The Daily Show with Jon Stewart knows how to break the ridiculousness of politics down, and in less than eight minutes they’ve managed to show the world what a bunch of jokers most of Australia’s candidates are. Peter ‘merlot cock’ Dowling, Stephanie “turbo-Palin” Banister, Jaymes Diaz; they’re all gloriously roasted by the great John Oliver on DOWN-UNDERcision 2013. Laugh at the gaffs while shaking your head at the frightening reality of it.


national news news@themusic.com.au THE CRIBS

SHINING STAR

He’s American by birth and a Brit by base, but Cosmo Jarvis recognises Australia as his adopted home. Embraced by our nation, songs like Love This quickly became summer singalong favourites and with a new record in the pipelines for early next year, the prolific 23-year-old will left spirits with material new and old. Along with rambunctious indie rockers Lime Cordiale, the devilish pop auteur will play Beetle Bar, Brisbane, 13 Oct; Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, 15 Oct; Workers Club, Melbourne, 16 Oct; Karova Lounge, Ballarat, 18 Oct; Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine, 19 Oct; Barwon Club, Geelong, 20 Oct (matinee); Annandale Hotel, Sydney, 24 Oct; Mona Vale Hotel, Sydney, 25 Oct; Fat As Butter, Newcastle, 26 Oct; and Yours and Owls, Wollongong, 27 Oct.

THE HUMAN JUKEBOX SIBLING SOUNDS

Help British brothers The Cribs celebrate ten years of chaotic rock goodness when they land on our shores for a full national tour later this year. Prepare to for a sweat-fest at one of these following dates: 23 Oct, The Small Ballroom, Newcastle; 24 Oct, Beresford Upstairs, Sydney; 25 Oct, The Zoo, Brisbane; 26 Oct, Ding Dong, Melbourne; and 29 Oct, Rosemount Hotel, Perth. All shows are proudly presented by The Music.

SOUTHERN BASS

There are few producers more revered and respected in the world of electronic music than Hernan Cattaneo. The Argentinean has spent the his career – spanning three decades – putting South American club culture on the map, all the while dictating the dance in some of the world’s biggest venues including Homelands, Bedrock, Pacha and Fabric. Cattaneo will be returning to Australia next month, bringing his deep, progressive house to select capital city venues. Check him out 20 Sep, Prince Bandroom, Melbourne; 21 Sep, The Ivy, Sydney (day) and The Met, Brisbane (night); and 22 Sep, The Court, Perth.

SURE TO BE A HOOT

Owl Eyes’ debut record Nightswim continues to give and give, with the Melbourne dream pop starlet ready to drop her fourth single off the longplayer. Along with Willow Beats and The Kite String Tangle, Brooke ‘Owl Eyes’ Addamo will tour Hurricane this spring, performing at Alhambra Lounge, Brisbane, 11 Oct; Woombye Pub, Sunshine Coast, 12 Oct; Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, 16 to 18 Oct; Oxford Art Factory, Sydney, 19 Oct; Wollongong UniBar, 24 Oct; ANU Bar, Canberra, 25 Oct; and Fat As Butter Festival, Newcastle, 26 Oct. And heads up, The Kite String Tangle doesn’t appear in Wollongong or Canberra – sorry folks.

SO THIS IS WHY THE LIBS HAVEN’T LET ABBOTT SAY ANYTHING FOR THE LAST THREE YEARS... EDDIE PERFECT [@EDDIEPERFECT] BOARDS THE POLITICAL ZIGGERS TRAIN.

12 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Paul Dempsey can tell a story, no question. His work with Something For Kate has turned the songwriter into a musical icon of this country and his solo output has only solidified such a notion further. In amongst all this though, Dempsey has built a reputation as a formidable covers gun, tackling everything from The Clash’s Rock The Casbah to more modern fare like Active Child’s Hanging On, all in his own distinct style. Now, that side of his repertoire is going to be showcased, with the Shotgun Karaoke tour heading around the country: 5 Oct, The Zoo, Brisbane; 9 Oct, Lizotte’s, Dee Why; 10 Oct, Lizotte’s, Kincumber; 11 Oct, Lizotte’s, Newcastle; 12 Oct, Factory Theatre, Sydney; 20 Oct, Fly By Night, Fremantle; and 25 Oct, The Hi-Fi, Melbourne. Special guest at all dates is Melbourne up-and-comer Olympia.

DAN SULTAN

LONE RANGER

Local legend Dan Sultan will be showcasing his refined side with his Back To Basics tour, playing in stripped back solo mode before he releases his third record. Catch him 23 Oct, Lizotte’s, Newcastle; 24 Oct, The Basement, Sydney; 25 Oct, Heritage Hotel, Bulli; 26 Oct, The Abbey, Canberra; 31 Oct, Old Museum, Brisbane; 1 Nov, Woombye Pub, Sunshine Coast; 2 Nov, Thornbury Theatre, Melbourne; 8 Nov, The Wool Exchange, Geelong; 9 Nov, Theatre Royal, Castlemaine; 16 Nov, Fly By Night, Fremantle; and 17 Nov, Ellington Jazz Club, Perth. Proudly presented by The Music.


national news news@themusic.com.au ASTA

BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN

TEEN SENSATIONS

Since taking out last year’s triple j Unearthed High competition, Asta has been steadily been solidifying her position as one of Australia’s most exciting young talents and now she’s excited to reach out to her ever-growing fanbase with the Synergy Tour. Swim with the Tasmanian’s gorgeous neu pop on 21 Sep, Goodgod, Sydney (afternoon/all ages; evening/18+); 28 Sep, Brisbane Powerhouse (afternoon/all ages) and Alhambra Lounge, Brisbane (evening/18+); 4 Oct, Northcote Social Club, Melbourne; and 5 Oct, Phoenix Youth Centre, Melbourne (afternoon/all ages). Proudly presented by The Music.

LORDE

BABY THEY WERE BORN TO RUN

Holy shitballs! Most Bruce Springsteen lovers thought they got it pretty sweet when The Boss ripped through some marathon sets earlier this year with his longstanding E Street Band. But we can guarantee you few – if any – of those fans would have guessed they’d get a second slice of the magic in less than 12 months. However, here we are, stoked to tell you that New Jersey’s favourite son and his cohorts will be touring Down Under in 2014. Here are the all ages dates: 7 Feb, Perth Arena; 15 Feb, AAMI Park, Melbourne; 19 Feb, Allphones Arena, Sydney; 22 Feb, Hope Estate, Hunter Valley; and 26 Feb, Brisbane Entertainment Centre, with supports at the various shows including a reformed Hunters & Collectors, Dan Sultan and The Rubens. Tickets go on sale this coming Monday, but we recommend getting on the pre-sale happening Wednesday because these shows are going to sell out, no question!

EVERYTHING I SAY SHOULD BE ACCOMPANIED BY SOMEONE PLAYING A THEREMIN

YASSIR LESTER [@YASSIR_LESTER] CAN ONLY DREAM.

RAISE ME UP

Emerging from nowhere to be topping the US alternative charts with her track Royals, New Zealand’s Lorde has had a monumental rise to the top in 2013 and now with the release of upcoming debut album Pure Heroine the 16-year-old will play an intimate run of dates along the east coast. The songstress performs 16 Oct, The Zoo, Brisbane; 17 Oct, Metro Theatre, Sydney; 19 Oct, Zierholz, Canberra; 21 Oct, Corner Hotel, Melbourne, with Oliver Tank supporting at all dates.

PURE LOONACY

The release of Loon Lake’s debut album is itching closer and closer and, as the band drop the second single from the forthcoming LP, Carolina. Dance all crazy like when the quartet play Spectrum, Sydney, 9 Oct; Black Bear Lodge, Brisbane, 10 Oct; Howler, Melbourne, 11 Oct; and Flyrite, Perth, 17 Oct.

PUNK ACROSS BORDERS

It may not be a recognised punk hotbed, but that arguably makes the dedication and success of Useless ID all the more magic. The Israeli noise makers have been causing the pit to heave for twenty years now and continue to fly the Middle East punk flag high, with their explosive, melodic strains. Catch them with Perth loudmouths The Decline at these dates: 8 Nov, Prince of Wales, Bunbury; 9 Nov, Blood Rock Fest, Rosemount Hotel, Perth; 12 Nov, Worker’s Club, Melbourne; 13 Nov, Great Northern, Newcastle; 14 Nov, Hot Damn, Sydney; and 15 Nov, Crowbar, Brisbane.

IMAGINING THEIR DESTINY

Their recent tour with A Day To Remember and The Devil Wears Prada proved that Dream On Dreamer have what it takes to operate alongside the big boys of metalcore and now the five-piece Melbourne outfit are excited to hit out on their own headline tour, giving their latest record Loveless the full treatment for fans. Dream On Dreamer will punish these venues into submission: The Tempo Hotel, Brisbane, 31 Oct; Expressive Grounds, Gold Coast (all ages), 1 Nov; Annandale Hotel, Sydney, 2 Nov (afternoon all ages and evening 18+); Racket Club, Newcastle, 3 Nov (licensed/all ages); Basement, Canberra, 6 Nov; The Hi-Fi, Melbourne, 7 Nov; Arrows On Swanston, Melbourne, 8 Nov (all ages); Amplifier, Perth, 10 Nov (18+); and HQ, Perth, 11 Nov (all ages). THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 13


local news vic.news@themusic.com.au THE ORBWEAVERS

GOOD WORK, GUYS

To celebrate the forthcoming release of the All That Good Work/Blue EP, late-night curators Naysayer & Gilsun will be taking their visceral live show throughout Australia in September and October. The club is Naysayer & Gilsun’s next stop, as they perform a live audio-visual show, NGTV. Check it out at The Hi-Fi on 27 Sep, with guests Otologic and Two Bright Lakes DJs.

HAVIN’ A LARKIN

DREAMWEAVER

Much loved Melbourne act The Orbweavers (pictured) return with a full band to launch their new single Match Factory/Ceiling Rose at Northcote Social Club on 15 Sep. Match Factory is a song about loss and leaving, while Ceiling Rose is a song about secrets and dreams, waking and worrying in the night, drifting between states of consciousness. Joining The Orbweavers for the matinee launch will be Sydney solo artist, Shiver Like Timber.

IT’S IN YOUR HEAD

One of dance music’s most mysterious and influential figures, Zomby, is set to play one of his very rare DJ shows at New Guernica on 13 Sep, his first ever performance in Melbourne. Zomby’s debut album, this year’s With Love, is the work of a producer who has absorbed the shifting textures and plains of electronic music firsthand, and reconfigured them into a definitive, sprawling love letter to the soulful dance music of his past.

SHOCK’N’ROLL

The Shock of The New continues on 24 Aug upstairs at The Gasometer Hotel with DJs Simona Kapitolina and Viva L’amour: better living through synth modernism via darkwave, newbeat, techno and Italo. The Shock of The New is a queer and gender diverse event that runs from 10pm to 3am, and entry’s only $5.

WINNERS AND LOSERS

Sydney’s 23-year-old Aimee Francis has announced a national tour behind new single, Losers Game. Francis has toured the world with the likes of Pat Benatar and Steel Panther and warmed the walls of iconic venues including The Viper Room (US) and The Whisky a Go Go with her rebellious rock anthems. She performs at Musicman Megastore, Bendigo, 27 Sep; Baha Tacos, Rye, 4 Oct; and The Espy, 5 Oct.

SECOND BROTHER

The Amity Affliction are stoked to announce a second huge 18+ Melbourne show on their upcoming October Brothers In Arms tour, after the 23 Oct date at Palace Theatre sold out. Set for 24 Oct at the same venue, this will be the only show added to the epic run they’ll be undertaking with a hand-picked crew of international mates. Tickets are still available for the under-18 show on 22 Oct. KEITH HARING MURAL

STEAMING STIMMING

Hamburg’s Martin Stimming performs live at Brown Alley on 20 Sep. Breaking through in 2008 and picking up an award for Best Newcomer at the Ibiza DJ Awards in 2010, his remixes for the likes of Sascha Funke, Claude VonStroke and Robert Babicz to name but a few have further spread his influence amongst the discerning house and tech community, and cemented his reputation as one of the scene’s most exceptional producers.

“I JUST HEARD THE TERM SWAGGAMUFFIN FOR THE FIRST TIME AND NOW I’M SAD” - SO ARE WE, MARK RONSON [@IAMMARKRONSON12], SO ARE WE. 14 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Kenny Larkin is one of the world’s Detroit techno leaders in the electronic music industry today. As a producer, DJ and remixer, Larkin has mesmerised crowds and fans across the globe for the last 20 years with his music. Since 1990, Larkin has cemented his name in the pages of dance music history along with fellow Detroit techno music mates, Derrick May, Carl Craig and Kevin Saunderson. Check him out when he comes to Brown Alley on 20 Sep.

HERITAGE HARING

Minister for the Arts, Heidi Victoria, unveiled the restored Keith Haring mural with Italian conservator Antonio Rava at the old Collingwood Tech site on 18 Aug. It was added to the Victorian Heritage Register in 2004 and is one of only 31 known Haring murals across the world that still exists. The mural is an important cultural and artistic asset and this project will protect it for future generations of Victorians and art lovers the world over. It’s worth visiting and seeing with your own eyes.


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SUN 25 AUG

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THE ELECTRIC I HAYLEY HOOPLA LAMINE SONKO AND ONE AFRICA ROXY LAVISH

COMING UP TIX AVAILABLE THRU MOSHTIX:

THREE’S A CROWD (MONDAYS IN AUGUST) JUSTICE & KAOS (TUESDAYS IN AUGUST) ONE DAY FUNDRAISER (AUG 30) AU REVIEW’S 5TH BDAY (SEPT 5) THE ALLIANCE TOUR FT. MAUNDZ, 4 AACES & MORE (SEPT 6) HELM – ALBUM LAUNCH (SEPT 7) CLAIM THE THRONE (SEPT 13) PLUDO (SEPT 14) VOLUMES (USA) (SEPT 8) THE ETERNAL – ALBUM LAUNCH (SEPT 20) SPIT SYNDICATE – SINGLE LAUNCH (SEPT 21) TIJUANA CARTEL (OCT 5) ELLIOT SMITH TRIBUTE (OCT 20)

AMORPHIS FRI 14 OCT

PORTER ROBINSON AND THE M MACHINE LIVE SUN 20 OCT

STRATOVARIUS WED 23 OCT

THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 15


local news vic.news@themusic.com.au

IT’S ELECTRIFYING

Lightning Bolt strike again, with a new onslaught of feedback-wrapped fury! Barbarian Boy is the Providence duo’s aptly named entry in the Adult Swim Single series, which finds Brian Chippendale and Brian Gibson lather a steady, clanging drum beat with waves of serrated lo-fi riffs and chest-thumping hollers. As well as playing at ATP’s Release The Bats Festival, Lightning Bolt will also perform their own shows. See them at the Corner Hotel on 30 Oct.

LET’S FACE IT

Melbourne’s own contemporary music conference Face The Music 2013 will be held over two days at the Arts Centre on 15 and 16 Nov. A sneak peak into the forthcoming line-up announcement (set for 11 Sep) includes: ARIA’s Dan Rosen, Australian music entrepreneur Bruce Milne, artist Cash Savage, John Watson of Eleven/John Watson Management, Sophie Miles of Mistletone Records, Peter Karpin of Universal Music Australia, Kim Carter of Rockstar Management, Dr Ianto Ware of the National Live Music Office, Darren Levin (Faster Louder/ Mess+Noise), Marcus Teague (The Vine), Tim Morrison of Trial Kennedy and Nic Warnock of RIP Society/Repressed Records. The format for Face The Music 2013 will include forums, presentations, networking, facilitated meetings, practical music workshops and the return of FTM12’s popular session, the debate. For more info, see facethemusic.org.au.

TWELVE FOOT NINJA

SHRIEKIN’ WITH JOY

Twelve Foot Ninja’s Shiruken tour kicks off next week and they’ve just announced some ripper support acts. Warming up the stage on 30 Aug at the Ferntree Gully Hotel will be Engine, while the party starts at the Corner Hotel on 4 Oct with Caligula’s Horse and Toehider. This will be Australia’s last chance to catch the ‘Ninja’s critically acclaimed live show before they leave for Europe and the USA.

“REALLY HOPING ELYSIUM KICKS OFF A TREND OF INDIAN DUDES BEING THE PRESIDENT IN MOVIES”

FOY VANCE

- AZIZ ANSARI [@AZIZANSARI11] SHINING FOR A NEW ROLE.

A RUSH OF BLOOD

IT’S FATAL

JAZZ IT UP

MERRY MEREDITH

With the aid of the Chunky Move’s Next Move initiative, award-winning choreographer Stephanie Lake has created the much awaited dance performance titled Aorta, an experimental piece that explores the interconnected nature of the human circulation system. It’s on from 22 to 30 Nov; book through chunkymove.com.

PLANS FOYLED

Songsmith Foy Vance will soon make his first ever appearance in Australia, off the back of his debut album Joy Of Nothing. The son of a travelling church minister, Vance spent time exploring the American South, an experience that broadened his music horizons. Returning to his birthplace Ireland years later, Foy began writing his own music, shaped by the sounds of his youth. See him at The Hi-Fi on 12 Oct playing a double bill with The Handsome Family, as part of Melbourne Festival. 16 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Russell Morris will be performing at the Wangaratta Jazz & Blues Festival (1 – 4 Nov) on a line-up that includes giants of the Australian blues Geoff Achison and Chris Wilson, elder statesmen of Australian jazz, trumpeter and singer Geoff Bull and Australian jazz legends Allan Browne, Mike Nock and Paul Grabowsky. The program also features international jazz and blues artists such as USA’s Gerald Clayton and Magic Trio, Belgian pianist Jef Neve, Dutch trumpeter Eric Vloeimans and his electric jazz band Kytecrash and Norway saxophonist Froy Aagre. See wangarattajazz.com for the full line-up.

Fresh from a widely acclaimed and extensive concert tour of Europe with his Italian-based Fatalists project, Hugo Race has brought the tour to Australia, showcasing latest album We Never Had Control at The Workers Club on 20 Sep. Joining the party will be special international and instrumental guests Sacri Cuori, all the way from Italy, and local band The Spoils.

Aunty Meredith just keeps bringing the goods year after year, doesn’t she? Feast your eyes on this line-up: Chic featuring Nile Rodgers, Brian Jonestown Massacre, Deerhunter, Melvins, Derrick May, Spiderbait, Clairy Browne & The Bangin’ Rackettes, Beasts Of Bourbon, Joey Bada$$, Vance Joy, Mac Demarco, The Bamboos, Hermitude, Dick Diver, Jon Hopkins, World’s End Press, Le1f, Beaches, Oliver Tank, Roland Tings, Stonefield, Courtney Barnett, The Smith Street Band, The UV Race, Baptism Of Uzi and more. There’s one tweak this year: 500 fewer folks there means more space to spread out.


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18 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

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music

THE SIMPLE THINGS IN LIFE Words Benny Doyle. Photos Leigh Righton (cover & next page), Tom Nugent (this page).


On the eve of Japandroids first ever headline tour of Australia, frontman Brian King talks with Benny Doyle about the slow build that’s resulted in one of the most exciting rock acts on the planet.

T

he beat of the drum, some tearing guitar chords and a passionate howl; Japandroids’ music comes from little but delivers a hell of a lot. The Vancouver duo’s 2012 record, Celebration Rock, is exactly what it says on the box – a burning-hot serving of howling tunes that doesn’t relent. Listening to the LP, you can practically see the sweat coming through the stereo. Fast-talking guitarist/vocalist Brian King is at home in Vancouver; he’s keeping an eye on a hockey game, resting and trying not to do very much. When you’re in a band like Japandroids though, nothing still means something. “I had the day off in the sense that I was not on tour – I didn’t have to play a show,” says King. “But I spent most of the day doing logistical stuff and

facet of your existence and make you want to be the best fucking human going.

simply means diminished returns on the stage and in the studio. And that result is good for no one, whether you’re a band member or merely a fan.

The guys have been slogging it out solidly on the road for a year or so now and are almost ready to start working on album number three. But not before the touring is complete. For as King explains, the band, unsurprisingly, like to keep things simple, and even though they may currently be putting ideas down, little riffs and the like, they’re not going to really focus on new music until the road is in their rear vision.

“There’s so much that goes into touring in the way that we tour that people don’t ever see and don’t understand, y’know, because we have a couple of weeks off touring it’s easy to think we’re just sitting on a beach having fucking cocktails doing fuck all,” King scoffs jokingly. “So it’s not until the touring is done and you’re like , ‘Okay, you’ve kinda played all the shows you can play on this record, you’ve gone to as many places as you possibly can, now you’re going to take six-to-eight months off, twelve months off, and you’re not going to book any shows.’ That’s actually when you can focus a hundred per cent of your time on trying to write a really great album, and you don’t have to worry about all the logistics that go into touring. So that’s the plan now, we’re going to be touring through to about the fall, and then once the fall hits and we stop playing shows then we can make a plan to take a serious chunk of time off and make another record.”

“We’re a pretty black and white band in

No question about it, the band’s third full-length – although still an afterthought at this stage – is

“BECAUSE WE HAVE A COUPLE OF WEEKS OFF TOURING IT’S EASY TO THINK WE’RE JUST SITTING ON A BEACH HAVING FUCKING COCKTAILS DOING FUCK ALL.“

getting things ready for the next tour that we’re going to do. A band our size, we don’t have some army of people working for us to take care of stuff; Dave [Prowse – drums/vocals] and I mostly do everything ourselves still. And it’s not like a regular band where you can split things up between five people; everything is split between two or three people, between us and our tour manager we have to take care of this worldwide touring operation, so there’s a lot of work behind the scenes that people don’t see – work that goes into touring different parts of the world for several months at a time. “You have to get all these visas to all these places, you have to get all your equipment sorted out, you have to get your flights and transportation sorted out, all your merch has to get from here to there, and we’re still practicing to make sure we are tight for all the shows. It’s like a full-time job when we’re not on tour, just getting ready to go on the next one.” And get ready they do, for when Japandroids take the stage nothing else is significant. Their shows could be described as a visceral explosion; well-oiled chaos that seems simultaneously teetering on the edge while remaining totally in control. When the Canadians perform they don’t massage your soul; they kick you in the arse. They amplify your enthusiasm for every 20 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

the sense that we don’t work seriously on writing songs or writing a record when we’re in the middle of touring. We care a lot about our live shows and we tour so much that it kinda occupies all of our time and energy when we’re doing it. Our last record that we did, we basically wrote that entirely after we finished touring our first record [2009’s Post-Nothing], and a lot of stuff that had been written along the way got left behind and we kinda started from scratch when we got home.” Japandroids have learnt that if they try and mix the two, it

going to stir up some serious anticipation in the time leading towards a release. Since they formed Japandroids proper in 2006, after first connecting during university years before, King and partner in crime Prowse have seemingly made nothing but the right moves. Their DIY idealism and hard-working nature have drawn the affections of punk, rock and garage fans worldwide, while their punchy tunes and to-the-point albums have struck a chord with critics – who credit them with keeping modern rock honest – and festivals, who recognise their ability to destroy on any stage at any time. “We’ve definitely taken it further, we’re playing better, we’re playing harder, if you come and see our own shows we’re playing longer and I think we sound a lot better,” King admits, citing the band’s biggest improvements in the past 12 months. “I think we’ve gotten a lot better across the board. But I think as we’ve gotten better, the bar has been raised for how good we need to be, because we’re playing bigger rooms, we’re playing for more people, so there’s some growing pains in there inherently. Sometimes we’ve totally nailed it, and sometimes you walk off stage and you feel like, ‘Okay, I am officially in over my head.’ I think it’s a pretty natural learning curve, but I think we’ve managed to do a fairly good job, all things considered.


REASON TO BELIEVE The Music was fortunate enough to have caught Japandroids’ set on the first weekend of the 2013 Coachella festival, and it’s safe to say the Friday afternoon tear-up happening on the Gobi stage was electrifying stuff. While sharing memories of the event, King explains just what he took away from Japandroids’ desert days.

“There’s a handful of things that have happened in the last year that I can reflect on and go, ‘We were clearly not ready for [that] and we clearly fucked up,’ but there’s also a million times where it’s like, ‘I was really nervous about this, but we threw it down and we killed it and everyone had a blast and it was awesome.’” After already laying waste to audiences Down Under as part of Laneway Festival earlier this year, the Canadian two are set to return to play their own shows on their own terms. The environment this time though is set to suit the duo far better than a concrete jungle on a hot summer’s day. In those situations – in which Japandroids are finding themselves more frequently – King admits they’re still discovering strengths and extending capabilities. Where we’re going to experience them this time around, the frontman says they’ll be in their element. “I feel like we’ve mastered a certain size of indoor club, and we’re getting to a point now where when we play clubs we’re starting to play the bigger-sized ones, and when we play a festival we’re starting to play to more people and starting to not necessarily be on the smaller stage, so there’s definitely a learning curve in that – it’s a lot different. Playing in the afternoon

in a huge fucking tent outside is a lot different than playing a fivehundred capacity club at one o’clock in the morning, which is where we’d typically play, so there’s definitely a learning curve. I think we’re getting better [overall] but it’s still a work in progress.” And considering there were murmurs that a second Japandroids album wasn’t even going to happen – let alone a probable third – to be visiting Australia again and to be kicking goals still makes this incredible ride all

the more memorable for Japandroids. “Part of the advantage of treating the band like every tour might be the last one, every record might be the last one, you actually treat it that way when you’re out on the road, and I think that’s part of what motivates us to play the way we play on tour,” the frontman levels. “If we decide not to make another record for example, then this might be the last time we ever get to play in this place so we better make it pretty fucking good.”

WHEN & WHERE: 28 and 30 Aug, Corner Hotel

“One of the things I’ve learned is that a lot of it just comes down to confidence,” he states with authority. “Nick Cave fronting Grinderman or Karen O fronting Yeah Yeah Yeahs or Ian Svenonius fronting The Make-Up – these people just walk onstage and they seem to have the crowd in the palm of their hands before they’ve even said a word. I feel like we’re still a little bit intimidated by those bigger stages. I still walk out and I’m nervous. I don’t just waltz out there like I’m the centre of the universe. “So the biggest thing that I took away [from Coachella] was just to learn how to have a bit more confidence in what you’re doing when you walk out, because as long as you don’t get too carried away – I don’t know if I need Kanye West-confidence in myself – but there definitely is a certain amount that creates these textbook lead singer rock star types and they’re incredible to watch.” THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 21


film

KILLING IT Chloë Grace Moretz tells Guy Davis she took her Hit Girl role in the Kick-Ass films on her mother’s advice - every mum dreams of hearing their child say: “Okay, you cunts, let’s see what you can do now.”

V

iewers of film and television are well-aware by now that you mess with Chloë Grace Moretz at your own risk. The 16-year-old actress of course has a fair few lighter roles on her alarmingly extensive resume – the precocious voice of reason in (500) Days Of Summer, an adventurous bookworm in Martin Scorsese’s Hugo, Alec Baldwin’s teenage nemesis on 30 Rock – but it’s with somewhat darker, edgier roles in movies like Let Me In, the US remake of the acclaimed Swedish vampire story Let The Right One In, that she’s made an even greater impression. And maybe the biggest impression she’s made on movie-goers to date is with her role as pint-sized badass vigilante Mindy Macready, aka the purple-clad Hit Girl, in Kick-Ass, the big-screen adaptation of Mark Millar’s nasty, ultraviolent comic book. Trained in martial arts and maximum intimidation by her father and fellow costumed crimefighter Damon ‘Big Daddy’ Macready (Nicolas Cage), pre-teen Mindy had no qualms about laying waste to any lowlife in her path with guns, blades and a choice array of well-deployed profanity. (Her opening line to a gang of thugs – “Okay, you cunts, let’s see what you can do now” – inspired more than a few shocked gasps and laughs.)

she was doing – she was kind of lost. She never really had a childhood, and now she’s still putting on this mask and this uniform, thinking that’s what she wants to do. But I do think she really knows if she’s a vigilante or a villain. If she’s killing people for a cause or whether she’s just having fun, you know? Her moral compass has gone a bit haywire.” No fear of that happening to Moretz, who has strong family backing to help guide her career choices. “My mom would never allow me to do something she felt would harm me as a person or my career as a business,”

Girl. “My mom read it and she fell in love with it. She told me it was one of the best characters she’d ever read, so I read it and I fell in love with it too, and I just chased after it until I got it. So I booked the film, knowing exactly what was in the script and exactly what they wanted to shoot, and we did it.” Reprising the role was subsequently a no-brainer, and Moretz says “it was like coming home – it was super-fun to be back in the uniform.” Especially since starting work on Kick-Ass 2 came a mere two day after wrapping her previous job, playing the title role in Boys Don’t Cry director Kimberley Peirce’s new adaptation of Stephen King’s classic horror novel, Carrie. Playing the victimised Carrie White, who eventually uses her latent telekinetic powers to wreak vengeance on her high school tormentors, was a marked contrast to portraying Hit Girl. “It was kind of mind-boggling to be in this bloodied prom dress one day, beating up people in this purple superhero suit the next,” laughs Moretz. “They are the most polar opposite characters you could ever imagine!” She’s extremely excited about Carrie, which co-stars Julianne Moore and is due for release later this year, but admits she had a few misgivings before meeting with the studio backing the film. “Brian DePalma’s version of Carrie is a beloved movie for me, so when it came up during this meeting how Kimberley was already attached and I was told about the work the screenwriter was doing on the script, I went ‘Oh, so you’re not making some gory, hacky cheesefest; you’re making a real film’,” she says. “When I got the script and read it, I fell in love with who Carrie is. This is the perfect depiction of Stephen King’s Carrie – she is here who she is in the book. It isn’t a remake of DePalma’s film; it’s an adaptation of Stephen King’s book. And I fought tooth and nail

“IT WAS KIND OF MIND-BOGGLING TO BE IN THIS BLOODIED PROM DRESS ONE DAY, BEATING UP PEOPLE IN THIS PURPLE SUPERHERO SUIT THE NEXT” Three years on, Moretz is reprising her role as Mindy/ Hit Girl in Kick-Ass 2, with her character facing a far more dangerous adversary than the city’s criminal element. Enrolled in high school, she finds herself frenemies with a clique of mean girls who play just as dirty as the street scum she used to dispatch with such glee. But using her lethal skill-set to sort the situation is out of the question... right? Well, let’s not spoil anything in that regard. But fans of Hit Girl’s homicidal antics in the first film, directed by Matthew Vaughn, will be pleased to know that a fair few wrongdoers meet a messy fate at the business end of Mindy’s impressive arsenal in Kick-Ass 2, which sees writer-director Jeff Wadlow taking the reins. Moretz points out, however, that the character is a little torn at times as to whether she’s creating carnage in the name of justice or simply because she gets a kick out of it. “At the end of the first Kick-Ass, Mindy was orphaned,” she says. “And without her dad, she didn’t know what 22 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

she says. However, when the 11-year-old Moretz saw the action movie Wanted, she admits she raced home and told her mother she simply had to find a role similar to Angelina Jolie’s hard-hitting, straightshooting assassin. “And I’m not kidding, a month later my agent came to us and said ‘I’ve got this script, it’s a very risky role,’ and they gave me the whole spiel, all the pros and cons.” The script was Kick-Ass, the role was Hit

for this movie; I took four different meetings, did two auditions, and they all went for hours. I know that no one else could be Carrie like I could be Carrie. And when I was able to step on set and be her, it was my most fruitful experience as an actor.” That certainty is a key aspect of Moretz’s selection of roles. “If I look at something and I don’t go ‘I am going to be the best actor for this and I’m so invested in this, I don’t think anyone else can do it’, I won’t do the film. I won’t do it if I don’t have that feeling, even if I think the script is amazing. You’re living in the shoes of characters like Mindy and Carrie, and you have to be able to portray her in such a way that the audience doesn’t feel like you’re lying to them.”

WHAT: Kick- Ass 2 In cinemas 22 Aug


as a band. And personally speaking, I listen to the lyrics and the melody first [in a song]; I need some content, decent lyrical content, something to engage with.” To flesh out the foundation themes from which to build their latest opus, Hardy, Kapranos and their bandmates, guitarist Nick McCarthy and drummer Paul Thomson, would simply talk. Conversations about general things, about bigger pictures, about ideas that would work well on record. One person would bring something into whichever studio they were working in at the time – London, Glasgow, Stockholm, Oslo – and then Kapranos would expand on it, taking the initial ideas away for the afternoon before returning with something more substantial. “Alex has this ability to take an idea and to condense it into lyrics; I don’t have that, my melody writing’s terrible,” Hardy shrugs. “He can assimilate ideas much better than I can, so on a lot of songs he’ll come from a much more general theme and then we’ll have a chat about that, then I’ll come back the next week and there’ll be a song written with those themes – it’s quite good.”

music

SHARP DRESSED MEN Franz Ferdinand are back with leaner songs and snappier suits. Bob Hardy tells Benny Doyle about doing things the right way.

I

n 2004, Franz Ferdinand sung Take Me Out, which the world dutifully did, dancing along as the track charted globally. A year later they queried us: Do You Want To? And yes we did, we did want to. Now, they arrive with a statement: Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action. The title of Franz Ferdinand’s fourth album could very well be a summary of their career to now. The smashing success of their eponymous Mercury Prize-winning debut propelled the Glasgow four-piece to instant global acclaim, and over the following decade Franz Ferdinand have become synonymous with indie rock’n’roll in the UK: stylish, sharp-witted and constantly moving. Since their barnstorming sets at Coachella in April this year, the Glasgow quartet have been putting the ribbon around their brand new long-player, ten tracks of hip shaking jams that remind you just why the guitar is the sexiest instrument of all. And as bass player Bob Hardy explains, it’s a record ready to give. “I think the actual recordings, they’re quite dense, not in a bad sense, but there’s a lot going on that you can get rewarded [with] for repeat listening,” says the 32-year-old. “I also think [the songs] function immediately as well. [One thing] we were all conscious of in the studio is that they should be instantly arresting, but then it needs to have a little more depth that hopefully demands repeat listens. “Alex [Kapranos – vocalist/guitarist] has obviously been a producer in his own right. He’s working on three albums at the moment [from bands including The Cribs and Citizens], so he’s obviously very interested in production and sounds, as are the rest of the band,” he adds. “And I think that as we go further on in our recording career that becomes more a part of our process.” Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action is a guitar record first and foremost – Franz Ferdinand still refusing to go all experimental on us – but for once the staggering riffs were a secondary consideration. And although

24 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Hardy doesn’t directly admit it, their fresh songwriting approach can be seen as a reaction to their at-times sluggish 2009 LP, Tonight: Franz Ferdinand. “On our third album a lot of the songs did come from a riff or a groove, but I don’t think we were all completely satisfied with [those] songs, so this time around we worked backwards and we started everything with an idea,” he reveals. “Not a concept but an idea of what the song would be about, and then we’d work on lyrics and a tune, and then we’d learn to play it and arrange it as a band, then all the production stuff would come last.” Working backwards? Surely this would result in a loss of momentum for most groups? Franz Ferdinand, however, thrived with the structuring shift. “I think it’s a much better way for us to work,” the bassist informs. “It’s how it was on the first album to a large extent, and the best of the next two albums I think worked in that way. It suits us

Again, Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action – it works on so many levels. This record has been an enjoyable one to make for Franz Ferdinand. They have afforded themselves another four-year break between full-lengths, and with hindsight now on hand can see the benefits that come from taking stock of your achievements. When they exploded out of the Scottish streets originally, this wasn’t so much the case: “It was such a massive, quick success we had, it kind of took us all by surprise,” recalls Hardy. “And when you’re riding that wave you don’t really want to stop; you don’t want to break it, y’know what I mean?”

“BEING ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD, TO HAVE THAT REACTION... WAS ABSOLUTELY MENTAL.” Their debut was a monster hit, and one that Franz Ferdinand will be hard pressed to ever top. But rather than rushing to prove their place at the pinnacle, they currently hold a more considered outlook. However, it still seems suitable for the band to return with Harvest for some festival fun later this year, as according to Hardy it was here in Australia where the adventures of Franz Ferdinand first got rolling. “2004 we went to play Splendour In The Grass. It was our first time in Australia, not any of us had been, and it was just insane!” Hardy excitedly remembers. “We were in this tent and we played Take Me Out and the whole crowd was jumping and undulating. I can remember that vividly. Being on the other side of the world, to have that reaction – somewhere you’ve never been before – was absolutely mental.” WHAT: Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action (Domino/EMI) WHEN & WHERE: 10 Nov, Harvest, Werribee Park


his honest response to why he’s yet to tackle a strictly non-musical book project (though 2011’s Retromania did see him delve into fashion, science fiction and the space race while investigating pop culture’s obsession with its own past), arguing that his approach to music writing hasn’t always been all about the music anyway.

author

“I always use music to write about other things – music as the prism through which I write about politics or the human condition or anything that was on my mind,” Reynolds explains. “Love, race, class, gender, you can always use music to write about them.” Good music writing, for him, is about “trying to make a sensibility, really”. “And then try to persuade people to adopt it,” he laughs. “That’s the kind of music writing I grew up on. People who weren’t just writing about good music to buy, it was about music as a way of explaining yourself or your identity or your life or whatever.”

THE NEVER-ENDING JOURNEY

If veteran music journo Simon Reynolds had a second shot at his 2011 book Retromania, he tells Kris Swales that Daft Punk and Random Access Memories would have their own chapter.

I

f you were ever assembling your own pub trivia team equivalent of The Avengers, Simon Reynolds would be your first round draft pick for the vital ‘music encyclopaedia’ role. Speaking from Los Angeles (“the vanity capital of the world”) about his current book project – a look at the evolution and legacy of the 1970s glam rock movement – Reynolds is reeling off random facts within seconds. That a club called English Disco was the preferred hangout of Iggy Pop and David Bowie at their most decadent, and Mötley Crüe had their genesis in a band called London are minutiae that few music writers could casually recall, but Reynolds is no ordinary music writer. The Brit, based in LA for three years now and “something like 18 years – it’s hard to say” in New York City before that, has written definitive tomes on some of the biggest musical revolutions of the post-rock’n’roll era – postpunk and hip hop amongst them. Perhaps his most important work is Energy Flash: A Journey Through Rave Music And Dance Culture, the 1998 journal something of a Star Wars of electronic dance music considering it’s been re-released in two special editions since. The 2013 addendum sees Reynolds apply his participantobserver style of music journalism to the USA’s ‘EDM’ explosion, specifically with a two-day sojourn to the HARD Summer outdoor festival in his adopted homeland. Though only just on the right side of 50 when he hit the dancefloor in front of modern superstars such as Skrillex, Reynolds says the frequent flyer points racked up in 1990s nightclubs are still valuable for assessing this latest twist in the evolution of club culture. “I’m not going out shoving pills down my throat,” Reynolds admits, also expressing a dislike for extended doses of an EDM sound he describes as “too digitised”, “The thing is, it isn’t that different from what it was in the ‘90s, just in certain respects. It’s a lot more sexual. It was a kind of carnival-esque aspect as well which interests me – this total Las Vegas slash fancy dress carnival basically, like Rio de Janeiro in Brazil.”

So how does the author, set to speak at a series of writers’ events down the east coast of Australia, go about stepping back into a scene where the majority of the protagonists are half his age or younger? “You just wander around,” says Reynolds. “People are friendly. I look a bit young for my age as well, so I don’t stand out as much as I should do. But also people when they’re off their faces are pretty indiscreet as well. I wasn’t really snooping; you hear things. People on the train home were talking about their adventures and I heard people swapping anecdotes about how fucked up they got.” Reynolds’ conversational prose and knack for being in the right place at the right time have seen his work featured in a lengthy roll call of music publications, from now-defunct UK rag Melody Maker to Rolling Stone and beyond. “I haven’t had much desire,” comes

Reynolds namechecks Forest Swords as a standout amidst the “weird dance stuff and underground blog world sort of stuff ” that’s currently ruling his playlist. His curiosity has also been piqued by the 2013 long-players from Disclosure and Daft Punk – records that both fan the flames of rapidly shortening musical trend cycles he lit in Retromania. “I was very suspicious,” he says of Disclosure, the duo breathing life into the turn-of-the-century UK garage and 2-step sound he was “obsessed” with first time around. “It seems too soon to revive it, but I must admit when I heard the album [Settle] that it was quite a well done version of it, and they’d added enough new ideas to it to make it pretty good. But it’s weird to think that this sound from 1999, the cusp of the millennium, is being recycled and rediscovered.

“PEOPLE WHEN THEY’RE OFF THEIR FACES ARE PRETTY INDISCREET AS WELL. I WASN’T REALLY SNOOPING; YOU HEAR THINGS.” “Daft Punk – if [Random Access Memories] had come out when I was writing Retromania it would’ve deserved a whole chapter on its own, really. In fact, it has so many things that feed into my theories, like the track from Giorgio Moroder all about making the music of the future – but that becomes a memory. There’s a story about when [Donna Summer’s Moroderproduced] I Feel Love came out, Brian Eno heard it and grabbed a copy and ran around to David Bowie’s house and went ‘David, David, I’ve heard the future!’ “It’s an amazing record, I Feel Love, and it was revolutionary and all that, but nobody is going to say of Giorgio By Moroder... nobody is going to rush around to anyone’s house and say ‘I’ve heard the future’. There’s something very poignant about the fact that Giorgio Moroder and Daft Punk collaborate but they don’t actually do anything mind-blowing. They just do this rather sweet pastiche of something from 1977.” WHAT: Melbourne Writers Festival WHEN&WHERE: 30 Aug, The Wheeler Centre; 31 Aug, NGV; 1 Sep, ACMI THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 25


film

THE BIGGER PICTURE Shane Carruth wants his films to be subjective and open to interpretation, he tells Anthony Carew. His second feature Upstream Color has certainly got his audience scratching their heads.

“A

s an audience member, I want an experience that lasts longer than the running time of the film,” says Shane Carruth. The 41-yearold has just made a film that, he hopes, lives up to these expectations: Upstream Color. To call the film a labour of love, or even to bill Carruth as mere ‘auteur’, probably sells short how involved he was in every aspect. He wrote, directed, edited, photographed, scored and starred in the movie; and, in the US, he even self-distributed it. He’s probably more comparable to an indie musician than a

filmmaker; and, like the best of albums, there’s an elusive, interpretive quality to Upstream Color. “If you make a film and everyone walks out of it knowing exactly what it is, and their knowledge after seeing it is the full extent of what anyone will ever need to know about the story, I find it hard to believe that the experience would be compelling for people in any way,” says Carruth After showing at the recent Sydney and Melbourne film festivals, local audiences are getting in on the discussion. Which often begins with one question: WTF? Upstream Color

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essentially follows Amy Seimetz (herself another actor/ filmmaker), who is drugged with a parasite harvested from an exotic orchard. From there, it’s a flowing, sight/sound, vaguely-plotted portrait of the life-cycle of organisms on Earth, cycles of abuse, the dangers of bio-engineering, and the mysticism of field-recordings. “I don’t think anything I can say in conversation is particularly useful to understanding the film,” Carruth warns, early in our first interview. Across two conversations – first on a sketchy phone-line from Casablanca, then a week later in Paris – Carruth can seem evasive, confessedly “abrasive”. He refutes the notion that either Upstream Color or its 2004 predecessor Primer (a micro-budget time-travel chin-scratcher) has a single genesis-story about their beginnings, or can be interpreted a single way. “There’s a lack of exposition,” he says, “[because] I didn’t want to get bogged down in the specific minutia of the details.” Carruth doesn’t believe that any ‘misinterpretation’ is a problem – “if you make something that’s veiled, you’re doing so operating under the understanding that it will, in the big picture, only be truly understand by a select few.” Just as Upstream Color is a film about the ‘big picture’, ecologically, the filmmaker takes a big picture approach to his work. “The thing I’m most passionate about in filmmaking is that there’s universal quality that can be relevant when seen in any era,” offers Carruth. “Hopefully you can make a film that touches on this shared understanding of what it feels like to be a human in the world.” WHAT: Upstream Color In cinemas 22 Aug

THE OTHER WOMAN Alison Mosshart has starred in and scored her first feature film without appearing on screen or singing a lyric. Anthony Carew finds out how.

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lison Mosshart has been half of The Kills for the past decade, and then in 2009 she joined ‘supergroup’ The Dead Weather; each band earning not just the interest of rock’n’roll fans, but, due to the celebrity wives and ex-wives of co-collaborators Jamie Hince and Jack White, the attention of gossip mags. “Constructive criticism is great, but sadly we don’t live in a world of that anymore,” Mosshart says. “I’d say 90 per cent of stuff written about us I don’t read, because 90 per cent is, to be honest, idiotic.” Yet, if seeing her reflection in print has long since become meaningless for Mosshart, the 34-year-old has suddenly seen a far more confronting reflection: someone evoking her on screen. “I may have become desensitised to have people write about me, but having Julianne Moore ‘play’ me in a performance, that’s something else entirely,” Mosshart laughs. In What Maisie Knew, Moore plays a flaky rock’n’roller going through a divorce with Steve Coogan’s blithe art dealer, with their eight-year-old daughter being passed back and forth between them. Though the character isn’t based, at all on Mosshart, Moore’s on-stage performances entirely are; and the film is filled with Kills songs that Moore has re-recorded the vocals for.

26 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

“Julianne went through old Kills B-sides, leftover songs, vinyl bonuses, non-album tracks, things like that,” Mosshart explains. Moore took the impetus herself – seeing Mosshart as a figure of inspiration for her character, and approaching the singer to ask if it was okay. “I said, ‘Of course!’” Mosshart offers. “I love everything that she does. She’s just an incredible actress. But it was undeniably strange to listen to [the songs]. Hearing her sing with the exact same music – they’ve used the exact same tracks as we did on the originals; they’re still Jamie’s guitars and drums – that’s quite weird, for me.”

Mosshart wasn’t sure how the music would actually be represented in the film, which is a very loose adaptation of Henry James’ fin de siècle novel of the same name, and watching it for the first time at 2012’s Toronto International Film Festival, Mosshart went through a “whole gamut of emotions”, especially when Moore’s performance cut close to home. “It’s hard to watch if you’re in a band, but I think it’d be a hundred times harder if you were in a band and you had kids, and anyone had ever accused you of being a bad parent because you leave to go on tour,” Mosshart says. “The job is pretty crazy, you’re never home; so when that’s your job, it’s an uncomfortable thing to watch. I know what it’s like to be on a tour bus forever, but if I had a child [as well] and saw this film it would be almost too confronting.” WHAT: What Maisie Knew In cinemas 22 Aug


REFINED FLAVOUR

we just started writing beats,” Reedz says. “Those beats really started the songwriting process that led into Blackbird. They make their way into the live set really quickly. Often, we’ll tack it onto the end of a wellknown song and just jam on it and see where it goes.” It’s not just musical sprawl, either. Fiercely independent, Fat Freddy’s Drop release their records on their own label and are largely self-managed. No small feat, given they’ve got seven members to negotiate. With a touring schedule that spans multiple months and continents, their entire career has gradually grown into an ongoing exercise in navigating a series of disconnected schedules, perspectives and family commitments.

Chopper Reedz and his Fat Freddy’s Drop crew have got improvisation down pat, and now, as Matt O’Neill learns from the saxophonist, their target is more focused than ever before.

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at Freddy’s Drop began with an exceptionally broad canvas. Since embraced worldwide as a stellar live act, it’s become easy to overlook the eccentricity of the group’s origins. Coalescing in the late-‘90s, Fat Freddy’s Drop began purely as a jam band. For years, their live sets were almost entirely improvised. Even today, a significant portion of each performance is composed in the heat of the moment. Which isn’t unusual, in and of itself. Plenty of bands can be described as capable improvisers. Fewer can lay claim to having a multi-platinum, award-winning debut album under their belts. Released in 2005, Fat Freddy’s Drop’s Based On A True Story has sold over 100,000 copies in New Zealand alone. Which is unusual. Fat Freddy’s Drop’s world-conquering career was built on a foundation of sprawling improvisation.

So, Blackbird is something of a development. Released earlier this year, the band’s third album sees Fat Freddy’s Drop ditching the sprawl of Based On A True Story and 2009’s Dr Boondigga & The Big BW in favour of shorter, tighter works. While many of the tracks still push into six- and seven-minute territories, their overall songwriting is sharper and punchier. It’s a work of surprisingly lean structure. “I think, for me, it feels a little bit more deliberate. Or something,” saxophonist Scott Towers, aka Chopper Reedz, says. “I think we’ve been doing this for a long time now and we’re starting to really wrap our heads around songwriting. I feel like we get to the meat of a song a lot quicker on this album than we have on our previous records. We’ve done a better job of narrowing our focus for each particular song. “There are many, many versions of these songs. And some of the versions are miles away from where they started,” Reedz says. “Russia, the second song on the album, is a pretty straight dub tune; except, when we started playing it, that dub part was just a small section of a completely different piece of music. That’s how we played that song for a long, long time. Until someone in

rehearsal said it should just be the dub section.” In a weird way, it’s an oddly fitting turn of events. Fat Freddy’s Drop have defined their career through the

“Touring has become a fine art now,” Reedz boasts with a laugh. “We know exactly what we need to do to make it work, what everyone requires in terms of space. Even to the point where our tour manager and agent in the UK can talk about how many shows we’ve got in a row on a tour and what each of us can do on our day off to re-energise. We’re a pretty slick

“TO JUST PLAY AN OLD SONG IN THE MIDDLE OF SOME BRAND NEW JAM OR IDEA IS REALLY APPEALING.” management of sprawl. Based On A True Story took nearly five years to fully assemble. Each record involves years of live shows, random jams, edits, remixes and restructuring. Recording every live show, the band sift through each improvisation later to look for ideas and hooks. It’s an intensive process. “As soon as we finished Dr Boondigga we chucked some MPCs and drum machines in a cupboard and, to just fill in time while we waited for artwork to be finalised and stuff,

combo on the road, these days. You have to be.” So, it’s only natural for the band to have streamlined their musical sprawl with their third album. Having started with such a broad canvas, each year of the band’s existence is an exercise in growing more refined and specific in their approaches, though Reedz remains insistent that the band’s love of improvisation and exploration will always play a major role in their output. “The improvising idea is still a huge part of what we’re about – always [has] been, always will be – but I feel like we can make our set that much more interesting now because we have an array of key songs we can throw into the set if we want to,” he says. “The ability to surprise an audience is great. To just play an old song in the middle of some brand new jam or idea is really appealing.” WHAT: Blackbird (Remote Control) WHEN & WHERE: 31 Aug and 1 Sep, The Forum

music


film

GOD’S EYE VIEW

Rolling Stones At The Max, the first-ever Imax concert movie, and one of the first times a production had dared lift the then-monstrous Imax camera into the air, they’d wanted to make their own Imax movie.

Sarah Hines – producer of Imax film The Earth Wins – tells Anthony Carew about getting caught in the midst of Hurricane Katrina while filming.

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n overhead viewpoint in movies – filmed from on high, be it on crane or from helicopter – is often called the ‘God’s Eye’ shot. The Earth Wins, an Imax movie about wide-scale environmental change, is filmed entirely from the God’s Eye viewpoint; its director, Jerry Grayson, being a former Navy pilot; the Melbourne-based production company behind it called Helifilms. And listening to producer Sarah Hine talk about filming The Earth Wins – with a large-format camera from thousands of feet up, able to hone in on unsuspecting peoples and animals on the

A STILL FOR THE EARTH WINS

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ground – shows how close its makers came to Godly omniscience. “Filming the world from that elevated point-ofview is, in some ways, the only way you can really understand the global perspective,” explains Hine. “We live our daily lives in such close quarters that we become so close-sighted, that it’s difficult for us to be able to see the big picture. But when you see things from the God’s Eye perspective, you’re able to see the relationship between man and nature.” The genesis of The Earth Wins dates back to 2005. Grayson and Hine were working on

They were testing out the then-new Cineflex camera when Hurricane Katrina started to approach the Gulf Coast. With no flights going into New Orleans, they hired a Winnebago and drove through the night from Los Angeles to Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and suddenly found themselves at Ground Zero of a natural disaster. “There was an airspace allowance for news-gathering choppers, so we were allowed to shoot footage of certain parts of the aftermath that haven’t been often seen,” Hine recounts. “The stench of a half-submerged New Orleans was pretty hideous. It was really emotional to shoot such destruction, and the chaos that befell in the aftermath.” The project turned intensely personal in 2009, when Hine and Grayson fought to save their own country property from the Black Saturday bushfires of 2009, and then sought immediate permission to get access to the airspace above the areas affected by the blaze. “We wanted to make an environmental film that was a real call-to-action, but where the call-to-action needed to come from the audience’s engagement. It needed to be arrestingly visual; we wanted to use images and music to convey the reality of climate change to an audience,” says Hine. “And the immense scale of the destruction that these natural disasters can wrought upon the landscape, that’s something you can only really see from the air.” WHAT: The Earth Wins WHEN: 28 Aug, Imax Melbourne

VISUAL TRIP Modular’s latest signing, Ego delivers a live show unlike that of anyone else in Australia. Matt O’Neill speaks to the Sydney VJ/producer about how it all works ahead of his latest tour.

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go is a product of his times. More than that, he seems to be vaguely ahead of them. A hybrid VJ and producer, Ego’s iconoclastic output spans across psychedelic visual art, razor-sharp hip hop DJing and creative video and audio production. There are a handful of artists working in a similar arena (most famously Brisbane VJ pioneer Sampology) but Ego takes matters further than any of his peers. “Well, I’m super heavily inspired by guys like Sampology and DJ Yoda overseas. I definitely think Sampology has paved the way for me and a lot of other guys around the world to really get their head around what’s possible,” the VJ says. “I guess, for me, I kind of had a choice – I could either be a B-grade Sampology or I could try and do something different. So, I’ve tried to really push the visual side of what I do.” Ego’s shows are mindbogglingly complex. From a live standpoint, it seems relatively straightforward. The Sydneysider simply DJs in Serato with a standard video plug-in. However, an astonishing amount of preparation goes down long before a set hits the club. His current tour, for example, boasts a production that apparently took a solid six months to assemble. “Pretty much, yeah,” he admits. “Everything I do takes time. That’s the thing with video – it doesn’t happen overnight. Some clips took me a couple of weeks to do. One of the

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clips I did samples of a lot of old magazines and textbooks and found footage. All animated and thrown together. The whole process of that took a long time. Scouring op shops for material to edit, bringing it all together. “Like I said, I’ve tried to bring out the visual artist part of me a bit more. I’ve tried to bring out a distinct style and flavour that was my own. You know, one that couldn’t have come from your DJ Yodas or Sampologys. I use the full Adobe suite. I cut out images and collect still images in Photoshop, I use Adobe Premiere to cut video together. I spend most of my time in After Effects, doing animation and stuff.”

It’s Ego’s unilateral approach that puts him ahead of the curve. He’s not just a DJ with a facility for chopping up video. He’s as much a visual artist as he is a music producer as he is a DJ. There’s really very little precedent for his kind of artist. He’s just recently signed to Modular Recordings but is still in the process of figuring out exactly what his medium is – he’ll be releasing an EP, but there has to be more to it. “It’s a good question,” he laughs. “I’m working on an EP, at the moment. A sample-based video EP. That will be released in both an audio version and a visual version – on Vimeo and YouTube and pushed to radio as well. All of the conventional channels like iTunes. I suppose that’s a bit of an ideal release for what I do, at the moment. Other than that, I don’t know. It’s kind of the beauty of this craft that it is quite temporary. “Or quite hard for people to get their head around,” he clarifies. “They don’t always know how to approach it. You know, it’s not something that people can just figure out and download or buy or listen to it on the radio. It doesn’t have an obvious home.” WHEN: 21 Aug, Karova Lounge; 22 Aug, Eureka Hotel; 23 Aug, Can’t Say


THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 29


fashion

ONESIE MOMENT, PLEASE… They crept in among us like a cute, fluffy armada of awkward, oversized animals. But Natasha Lee explains why she welcomes our new onesie overlords, and finds out the deal behind the haters and conspiracy theorists of the trend.

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dmittedly, I have a lot of problems. But regressive, infantile fantasies that see me constantly battle a painful urge to wear adult nappies and suck my thumb in public are not one of them. Nor do I crave, as Freud believed we all do, “to return to the womb”. Okay, not so sure about the last one given it could actually exist somewhere deep, deep in the inherent cesspool that is my subconscious, but who’s judging? My world does not, as the ABC’s Annabel Crabb (alas, one of the many columnists who have expounded their nauseating pseudo-psychological theories on the subject) writes: “structurally infantilise me to a degree where I now see no alternative to dressing like an actual baby. I should be independent by now, but here I am – an overdeveloped house pet, in effect”. Wait, what? Now, I’m no Carl Jung, but how’s this for a theory: onesies are a fad. You know, a trend. These things come in waves; like planking, My Little Pony and mankinis. Maybe, just maybe, there is no need to read any kind of sick Freudian theory into it. I have worn a onesie, albeit only once, to a friend’s themed birthday party. Needless to say, my mother was horrified and refused to believe that I had willingly 30 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

ordered the onesie, saying that, “the delivery man has made a mistake and dropped off a baby suit”. Oh mother, there’s no mistake. That garish pink pig is mine.

who make a big deal about wanting to, ‘stand out, man’, but they do it by being a conformist! It’s about trying to be on trend by being ridiculous.”

Contrary to popular myth, it did not cause me to sink into a childish mess, but rather, provided me with some jolly good, warm comfort. End of.

“I can’t say I’ve seen it a lot in real life,” says Cousens. “I have seen it a lot on TV or online media, and people tend to wear them at music festivals.”

So why all the hate?

“I don’t get why people are making onesies sound like some weird fetish,” says 22-year-old Brighette Ryan, who claims that Ryan Gosling was behind her decision to purchase her pink giraffe playsuit.

Radio broadcaster (and non-onesie wearer) Stephen Cenatiempo likens the cuddly, animal suits to flaunting your pyjamas out in public: “It’s a bit like the goth uniform,” he explains. “You know, all those people

But co-founder of online opinion site Something Clever, Daniel Cousens, finds onesie wearing is more a case of reel life, rather than reality.

The trend has spawned a stack of online stores, while at the time of publication there were 80,847 results for onesies on eBay.

“I think Ryan promoted them on Ellen, and that’s why I went a bought mine. Look, they’re just a fad, but they’re a comfy fad.” Cenatiempo agrees, kind of, adding that they’re merely plush vehicles for attention seekers: “They’re not even real onesies, anyway. They don’t even come with socks.”


CREDITS MODELS:

Blue Onesie – Nicole Lau Pikachu – Danae Pearl Tiger – Chelsea Burroughs

STYLIST: GIRL

CO-ORDINATED BY: GIRL

PHOTOS:

Nathan Mewett

“THESE THINGS COME IN WAVES; LIKE PLANKING, MY LITTLE PONY AND MANKINIS.”

Needless to say, the hate and vitriol against the Japaneseinspired playthings has come thick and fast. Earlier this year, former Kevin Rudd spokesperson Lachlan Harris started an online petition calling for a onesie ban.

But don’t worry; both Cousens and Ryan are certain the fad is close to fading.

“As hard as it is to believe,” began Harris, “you are adults now. One of the least talked about, but most important, elements of adulthood is the responsibility to stop wearing clothes designed for small humans in nappies.” Ouch. (Despite several attempts, Harris did not return any of The Music’s calls/SMSs/tweets).

“It probably won’t last much longer now, because once it becomes a ‘thing’, which onesies have, these things usually fade,” explains Cousins.

The pro-onesie world hit back, launching a counter petition, titled ‘Lockie Harris And Anyone Born Before 1983: Stop Petitioning Gen Y To Stop Wearing Onesies’.

Ryan, however, isn’t ready to throw out her pink giraffe just yet, saying that she believes they’ll stick around until at least next year.

Sufficient mudslinging took place. Insults were served. And, as expected, both parties managed to achieve absolutely nothing. Ultimately, as with every obtusely, oversaturated fad, the real winners here are mates Tom Cohn and Nick Harriman, who are the co-founders of Kigu – one of the biggest online onesie retailers. The pair originally bought 300 suits back from Japan for a cool two grand. A few years on, and their turnover has blown out to almost $1.7 million.

“I mean, I think it will be around next winter,” she says, “but that’s it. I think after that people will just get really sick of them.” Oh well. Back to planking it is then. THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 31


music

THE BACK WITH THREE BEASTS

offended was (later Beast) Charlie (Owen), but he was cool about it – I think he quite liked the idea of seeing that version too.

Intrigue! Conflict! Even a little crime and punishment! The 2013 election campaign? No, just some ingredients of the legend that is The Beasts Of Bourbon. With shows celebrating surviving 30 years, Spencer P Jones takes Ross Clelland through some of the latest convolutions.

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is own musical history, whether under his own name, in bands such as The Johnnys and Hell To Pay, or as sometime sideman to Paul Kelly and Chris Bailey all make Spencer P. Jones a name to be respected. He’s also one of only two – the other being the inimitable Tex Perkins – to make it through the 30 years and three distinct line-ups of ragged glory that is The Beasts Of Bourbon. This also means he gets to do the triple shift as the band run through their chequered history and personnel over consecutive nights, but he’s typically laconic and matter-of-fact about making it this far. “Of course you never thought that far ahead. But I don’t see why we can’t keep doing it - as long as we’re all still alive, and sort of well,” Mr Jones deadpans down the line. Thing is, the ‘still alive’ element might only be half joking. The Beasts have always gone in hard, and there have been some burnouts and line-up implosions through their history.

have come together lately through a mixture of accident and design. The most unlikely revival - that of the original 1983 ensemble featuring Kim Salmon, then fellow-Scientist Boris Sujdovic and a man of many myths and stories in his own right, James Baker on drums – put back together for The Drones-curated All Tomorrow Parties event. By coincidence, Jones and Baker were putting together what would become The Nothing

“That was meant to be a one-off - and then we got offered the Iggy Pop tour, and Charlie couldn’t do one of the shows – he was off with Jimmy Barnes opening for Bruce Springsteen, as you do. Not the sort of gig you can knock back,” he adds drily. “So we asked Charlie if it was okay to get Kim in for that. He was okay with it – well, relieved he was off the hook. “These shows, we’ve just decided to be a bit more organised. It’s not like Tex and I got together and fiendishly conjured something up. It all been too complicated to be a plan.” But it does come down to Spencer and Perkins doing triple duty, covering the whole Beasts catalogue of sodden blues with occasional outbreaks of romance, drug smuggling and blood. “Ah, you gotta pay the troll if you want to rock and roll,” he philosophises. And admits there’s a different dynamic for him in each of the band’s formations. “Oh yeah, each ‘band’ does feel a little different – whether that’s me just playing slide on some songs some nights, or some things in the way Charlie and I work, which is different to the way I play off Kim and the way he does things – and even they’ve changed a bit over the years. “Have I got a favourite child among the lineups? I don’t think so. Wait, maybe – sometimes. I’ve played on a lot of records over the years,” he understates. “I still think (Beasts’ debut) The Axeman’s Jazz is a great record, The Low Road is a great record. And I think Gone and Little Animals are pretty good records – the last one could have been a bit longer. But I’m just second guessing.”

“I STILL THINK (BEASTS’ DEBUT) THE AXEMAN’S JAZZ IS A GREAT RECORD, THE LOW ROAD IS A GREAT RECORD.” When presented with the facts, the guitarist lets out a coughing laugh: “Yeah, it is a fucking miracle really, isn’t it?” before getting a bit of perspective: “There is a lot of bullshit about this band. Gossip, rumour - and somewhere along the line that becomes fact. But OK, there’s a bit of notoriety, maybe rightly. And sure, one of our members has spent some time in jail, but that’s his issue. And I reckon we’re not the only band where that’s the case.” There’s a knowing chuckle. “But looking back, the Beasts is probably one of the few things in most of our lives that’s turned out pretty much effortless, and we can just keep coming back to it. It’s the old hot rod thing - it’s in the garage, we take it out for a run every few years. Maybe take some things off or bolt on some new ones, give it a bit of a polish and off we go. You just turn over the V8 every so often.” The flipside is that things sometimes just crumble into place. Performances of the various eras of Beasts 32 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Butts record with Gareth Liddiard and Fiona Kitschin, but weren’t the first to know about it. “Gareth never said anything to me or James about that idea. The ATP people went to Kim first before anybody else - and offered him a very princely sum which made him happy. It was like a focus from a whole different side, and it worked out. Possibly the only person who might have been

Even after 30 years, there’s still something that keeps them coming back: “Absolutely – we can still find something in these songs. Maybe because it’s always been that part-time, ‘other thing’ most of us do, sometimes.” Mr Jones has more in the diary once this Beasts excursion is done. There’s a solo record done where he plays just about everything on it, as well as producing “a real pop record” for Ally Spazzy that “just needs a couple more songs” and…“I’m doing another Escape Committee record – that’s really my main band now. But some of them are a bit upset that Western Australian couple (Liddiard and Kitschin) horned in and took some the songs they never got the chance to record. I might have do some peacemaking.” WHEN & WHERE: 29-31 Aug, The Memo St Kilda


AUDIENCE AS ACTOR Headsets, masks, audience-as-performer: Zoe Pepper tells Simon Eales how The Conf idence Man works.

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take what must seem like an eternity to work out exactly how Zoe Pepper’s upcoming show at the Arts House, The Confidence Man, actually works. With monkish patience she walks me through the concept, which she developed with Adriane Daff and their awardwinning Perth-based company, Side Pony Productions. In a wonky nutshell, it’s “an interactive audio show that is essentially a crime thriller, using pretty overt masks”. Find another play with that description and I’ll eat my trilby. The Confidence Man’s plot mixes crime thriller and family drama. The characters are “poised on the precipice of a deeply sinister and disturbing chain of events when a

large sports bag full of cash is brought into his very ordinary home.” From there a labyrinthine tale, criss-crossing action and morality, unfolds. However, and here’s the catch, six audience members, “if they turn up early and are willing,” Pepper says, are the play’s only performers. They’re each given an oversized, caricatured mask representing the character they’ll play for the duration of the show, and a headset through which they hear pre-recorded audio specific to that character – a mixture of inner thoughts, dialogue and instruction guiding them through the world of the play. “Each character has their own discrete channel, so they hear

their own audio, and then [physically] interact with the other characters based on the timing of the audio. But, for us, it’s all about weaving all the characters together, making sure the right characters are answering the door at the right time, and that all the scenes match up. I worked with six actors and we rehearsed over a week, just like a normal play. Then we recorded the tracks, made sure it was all timed perfectly. We basically hit play at the start, and the audience does the rest.” The audience, of course, all don headsets too. As multiple conversations, monologues and pieces of action happen on stage, they can toggle through which characters they want to hear. “The story is dense, so you will essentially be creating your own story by the way you change the channel. That’s at your own discretion. No one will have experienced the same story by the end.”

theatre

The crime/thriller genre usually asks its audience to strap in and shut up as they’re whisked away on a rollercoaster ride. Not so with this choose-your-ownadventure. Intertwined character relations and the family drama that plays out provide extra layers of complexity that bust generic borders and allow this traversal of the text. Pepper is happy to relinquish control. “We’ve been working on it for quite a while now, and we’ve tried it in a different kind of story, which was more politically driven. And the plot was much more complicated, in a theoretical way, which just didn’t work for the world of the play. We needed something far more action driven.” As a result, The Confidence Man shapes up as a beautiful balance of thrills, choice and technical wizardry. WHAT: Confidence Man WHEN & WHERE: 28 Aug to 1 Sep, Arts House

THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 33


music

GIMME SHELTER The Hayloft Project’s Delectable Shelter is yet another work tackling the apocalypse. Ahead of its Brisbane season, writer/director Benedict Hardie explains to Matt O’Neill how that was kind of an accident.

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electable Shelter isn’t your typical post-apocalyptic piece of work. You won’t find any cyber-punk aesthetics draped across the theatre. There are no abandoned cities or devastated towns looming on the horizon. As the title suggests, its characters stay safely sheltered away from the apocalypse. Well, relatively safely, anyway. Apparently, a choir of ‘80s pop enthusiasts stalk the halls, for some reason. “The choir is very much integrated into the story,” writer/ director Benedict Hardie teases. “It’s slowly revealed, over the course of the play, who they actually are. It initially appears that they’re just a Brechtian interlude sort of thing – you know, a song put in between scenes for a

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song’s sake – but, as you get deeper into the story, you actually start to realise that’s not the case. They actually have their own place in the story.” It’s a bit of a weird take on the end of the world. Which, frankly, is a relief. The apocalypse has become a surprisingly popular topic in fiction over the past handful of years. In 2013’s cinema alone, we’ve had two major comedy films tackling the premise (This Is The End and The World’s End) arrive within months of each other. However, Hardie is confident he’s got a different spin. Largely because he arrived at the topic by complete accident.

“Yeah, it’s turned out that it’s quite a theme. I read an article written back in 2011 that actually listed five or six plays that were on about the apocalypse even back then,” the writer says. “It’s definitely a trope. Personally, I wanted to write a play which was about the secret fears and irrational desires and prejudices that might be inside of us that we never have to face. In order to do that, I had to kill everyone alive except for five people. “And, suddenly, the secrets and desires of those five people are very important. If you’re the last five human beings alive, what you think and do not say takes on much more credence,” he says. “So, then, I found myself going down the sci-fi road with a certain amount of purpose. It was sort of an accidental sci-fi. What I wanted to write was a black comedy about prejudices and fears.” If it sounds too highfalutin or eccentric, it isn’t. Hardie and his company The Hayloft Project have roadtested the show extensively. By the end of its lifecycle, Delectable Shelter will have toured to Mildura, Portland, Warragul, Hobart, Newcastle, Healesville, Sale, Bendigo, Castlemaine, Byron Bay, Sydney, Knox, Northcote, Moonee Ponds and Brisbane. Hardie sounds almost relieved when discussing the work’s reception. “It’s been really good. We’ve been getting return curtain calls at the end of each show. It’s going really well,” he smiles. “I think it’s quite an exciting show to tour. I’ve done a lot of touring work as an actor and I think Australia sometimes talks down to its theatre audiences. We take a lot of safe bets. And this show is most definitely not any kind of safe bet.” WHAT: Delectable Shelter WHEN & WHERE: Tuesday 6 to Saturday 10 August, Brisbane Powerhouse, Visy Theatre


WITH SPECIAL GUESTS HARMONY

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THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 35


travel

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here’s an unusual sound filling the air of New Delhi on this overcast March morning. Absent is the cacophony of car, motorcycle and tuk-tuk horns that usually soundtracks a transport system best described as Delhi Dodgems, replaced instead by an eerie silence – or perhaps, more accurately, the sound of expectation. The annual Holi Festival has arrived in the bustling Paharganj district, home to countless tourist-filled hotels, honest street vendors, and just as many shady street hustlers. Last night, small bonfires were lit on the side of the narrow streets and laneways to burn evil spirits as part of the Holika Dahan ritual. If that was a solemn undertaking, the main festivities are far more celebratory. Later tonight parties will rage across the city, with artists such as Ace Ventura and Liquid Soul bringing the psy and progressive sounds familiar to Australian bush doof goers into New Delhi’s cultural melting pot. Daytime, though, is where the real fun lies – just not fun of the good, clean variety. For Holi, at its essence, is the Indian equivalent of an Australian high school muck-up day; reminiscent of the water fights of Thailand’s Songkran Festival, but with colour. Lots of it. While families tend to enjoy their own Holi celebrations behind closed doors, groups of Indian males – predominately in their teens and 20s – roam the streets and laneways of Paharganj. They’re bearing bags of richly coloured food dyes to smear on the hair, face and bodies of their fellow man so that everybody looks the same, hence breaking down barriers of age, sex, caste and creed for the day.

THE MANY FACES OF HOLI Kris Swales walks the streets of New Delhi’s Paharganj district for the Holi Festival, a day where humanity is united by colour, but some of Delhi’s demons can’t help but show their face.

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Meanwhile, the rooftops above are lined with snipers eyeing off unsuspecting passersby – some simply emptying buckets of water on their prey, others throwing water balloons with the ferocity of a pitcher on the plate for the first innings of baseball’s World Series. There’s a largely carnival atmosphere in the air as perfect strangers, both local and foreign, greet each other with the “Happy Holi!” cry, trade colours, then hug warmly. Men who don’t participate with the enthusiasm of their brethren are chided as being “macho”, but in a city where public displays of affection between males are commonplace, the machos are few and far between. Futuristic water pistols, gigantic air pumps and spray cans of foul-tasting coloured foam are also part of the arsenals of seasoned Holi veterans, who drench anyone who walks past whether they’re prepared or not. Throngs of party-goers gather en masse in some areas where the colour trading feels more like competitive sport, though always with the same smiling faces. Some side streets, strangely, remain as silent as the morning air. The colour and water fights begin to die down around lunchtime, just as proceedings take on a sinister edge. A pair of British sisters are groped first by one young local man, then by a mob which quickly forms around them. This isn’t an isolated incident for a female tourist today, so it’s time to go back to the hotel and take a good, hard look in the mirror. These dyes are colourfast, and it’s going to take more than one scrubbing session before the face looking back at you is a familiar one.


travel

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theatre

SHAKING THE FORMULA Remove the formal tone, throw in some ocker relevance, and suddenly Shakespeare is Shane from Mudgee. Not quite, but as Elena Carapetis tells Brendan Hitchens, his play Comedy Of Errors is being found again through familiarity.

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ustralia’s national Shakespeare company, Bell Shakespeare and the State Theatre Company of South Australia are collaborating for the first time to bring to life Shakespeare’s 600-year-old play Comedy Of Errors, this time delivered in a contemporary Australian way. Since premiering in Adelaide, the play has been met with an overwhelming response. “With a comedy you can pretty much tell straight away if the audience is on board because you have this wave of energy coming back to you via this thing called a

laugh,” jokes actor Elena Carapetis. “So far all of our crowds have been extremely vocal, and that’s a really great thing. When an audience has forgotten itself and is relaxed and in the story enough to feel comfortable about laughing out loud with [hundreds of ] other people, then that’s a really good thing – I feel like we’re doing our job.” What has made Comedy Of Errors so successful is its ability for the setting and the ten-strong cast to connect with people of different generations. “Imara Savage, our director, has created a world that’s so Australian and young. It’s vibrant, but completely true

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LIVING IT UP There comes a time in a band’s career where you can play the hits, work up new material or just simply have fun. Dragon are doing all three, as Todd Hunter informs Michael Smith.

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n 2005, bass player Todd Hunter was invited to revisit his old band Dragon’s catalogue as part of Liberation’s Acoustic Blue series of albums. Hunter called in guitarist and producer Bruce Reid, who brought drummer Pete Drummond into the project, and then invited fellow New Zealand ex-pat Mark Williams to sing the songs. They’ve been together ever since.

“It’s been the most stable line-up, this one, and just looks like it’s going to keep going. We did our 500th show Saturday night, [27 July]! And there’s new stuff happening all the time – there’s a new EP; there’s a live album and DVD from the 40th anniversary tour coming out soon – so, yeah! We’re just doing stuff all the time, ‘cause it’s what we do. These latest dates kick off what the band hopes will be a series of tours under the banner “Dragon Celebrates…”, in this case The Police. Anyone who saw them during their 2010 season of touring would have experienced Dragon’s “tribute to the British Invasion”.

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to the story that Shakespeare wanted to tell. She said, ‘Okay, in Shakespeare’s time the character would have been represented like this, but in our time and in this world, it can be represented like this’. My character, for example, is almost based on a Kardashian,” says Carapetis. “[And] instead of going from 9am to 6pm, the play goes from 9pm to 6am. It’s a mad cat night through Kings Cross in Sydney; a real contemporary, urban, young pop-culture-laden spin on the show.” In a twist of fate, Carapetis began her stage career performing Dogg’s Hamlet, Cahoot’s Macbeth in 1988 and years later finds herself again tackling Shakespeare’s eclectic repertoire. “Unlike, ‘regular acting’, Shakespeare requires a particular athleticism to all of your skills as an actor: vocally, physically, intellectually. In any other regular play if you lose the text you can sort of ad lib and the audience might not know, but an audience that is going to see Shakespeare will know the text inside out.” Carapetis’ long acting resume is a combination of stage and screen performances including 2005 independent film Look Both Ways, theatre production Truck Stop and cult teen drama series Heartbreak High, though it’s television that gets her stopped in the street. “I do get recognised for Heartbreak High... Most recently I’ve been on a TV commercial and people recognise me more from that than they do theatre. Television has a way of framing you so that people remember you more clearly than theatre, but also less people unfortunately see theatre. Hopefully we can change that.”

WHAT: Comedy Of Errors WHEN & WHERE: 20 to 31 Aug, Arts Centre, Fairfax

“Probably the idea started there,” Hunter admits. “This time we’re gonna play a bunch of Police songs because we love them so much. They’re such great songs to play and you can stretch [them] out, bend them every which way. It doesn’t matter how you play them, when you hit the chorus, the crowd comes in and just sings them like crazy,” he chuckles. “Which is what you want – you want a community, folkloric thing happening.” Dragon’s audiences already do this: sing along to all the hits, from breakthrough single This Time, through April Sun In Cuba, Are You Old Enough, Rain, and their last real hit, 1987’s cover of Kool & The Gang’s Celebration. And why shouldn’t a band with that sort of legacy have a bit of fun? After all, Dragon might have celebrated 40 years together last year, but they’ve paid the price, losing drummer Neil Storey and their keyboard player/ original hitmaker Paul Hewson to drugs in 1976 and 1985 respectively, and Todd’s brother, charismatic singer Marc, to throat cancer in 1998. Nowadays, it’s all about enjoying playing music together. The Police, of course, is the perfect showcase for the band’s youngest member, drummer Pete Drummond. “Now he’s playing drums with one hand, plays keyboards with the other and is singing at the same time,” Hunter points out enthusiastically. As it happens, the band had already been playing Message In A Bottle in the set. “Quite often we’d just throw it in, he says. “But it might be Light On The Hill, Slim Dusty – whatever, you know? If it turns out to be fun, which I think it will, we’ll just keep doing it. Everything’s loose enough now, which is great.” WHEN & WHERE: 23 Aug, Corner Hotel


APPROACHING MIDNIGHT

When they needed to follow up the brilliant video for Ballad Of The War Machine, they took a very interesting approach, especially in the modern age of online video and ‘content creation’.

Vincent Vendetta from the mysterious dance/prog/indie/ impossible to categorise outfit Midnight Juggernauts talks Chris Yates through the recording of their latest record Uncanny Valley, and lets him in on what else kept the band busy during their lengthy hiatus.

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idnight Juggernauts do not rush things. Vendetta and his bandmates Andrew Szerkeres and Daniel Stricker have spent three years each time crafting the two records that followed their debut album Dystopia, with the newest Uncanny Valley finally being delivered. Their touring schedule for The Crystal Axis kept them busy for about a year after its release, but they have taken a long break from recording and even from playing shows – almost two years. A recent run of dates across the country to support the first single from Uncanny Valley, Ballad Of The War Machine, gave them the opportunity to hone their chops again ahead of the launch of the record proper, with Vendetta admitting he was actually pretty rusty. “Our April run was our first run of shows for a few years I suppose,” he says with an inflection in his voice suggesting he only just realised the notion himself. “It was good to get back into it because after a break like that it’s hard to tell what it feels like onstage again. We had a really good time and I guess the first few shows felt like a bit of a warm up because I’d forgotten

he reflects. “We spent a bit of time in this village in the south of France where a friend had this church that was converted into a studio. We spent a bit of time in this idyllic location writing and recording so I think the atmosphere of that place followed through onto the album. There’s some dancey elements but a lot of it is quite laidback. It’s not like it’s banging dance tunes. “[And] we like taking our time, for better or worse,” he laughs. “It means that we have a

music

“We wanted to make a video that wasn’t a normal clip,” he explains. “We wanted the content of the video to be interesting in its own right. We had the idea of making this hybrid video that was like an informative, pseudo-doco. We’re always interested in that world and the genesis of different technologies. I was reading this book called Moving Innovations which is about the early history of computer animation, and then started researching more of these programmers and the corporations and universities that had computer labs and geniuses making these trials. A lot of the trials really weren’t that well known so we really wanted to make a visual history of that period. It was just something we did out of our own interest really.” For the album’s first single Ballad Of The War Machine, the group leaked the song as a video via a series of Russian music blogs, pretending to be a long forgotten Russian new wave dance act called The Spirit Of The Night. “We thought that since it’s been a while since we were out there, we wanted to return in an interesting way,” Vendetta says.”Putting out a song anonymously and posing as a Soviet pop band from 30 years ago seemed pretty weird. We weren’t sure it was going to be believable but when we shot it and put it out there it was quite hilarious seeing the response it was getting, from people in Russia and South America and the US. We had some Russian friends who helped us spread it through discussion boards and blogs and sites in countries who probably wouldn’t be aware of us.”

“PUTTING OUT A SONG ANONYMOUSLY AND POSING AS A SOVIET POP BAND FROM 30 YEARS AGO SEEMED PRETTY WEIRD.” how to play a lot of the songs and forgotten some of the words. Beforehand we had some pretty intensive rehearsals to get back into it. The Groovin’ The Moo tour and the Tame Impala shows which we jumped on board were all ages, and it was funny looking out in the crowd and seeing a lot of young people that were probably about seven years old when we started.” Uncanny Valley seems like the next logical progression for the band. While it’s practically impossible to pigeonhole what they do into any pre-existing genres, they inhabit a sound that is uniquely theirs and very identifiable. After recording The Crystal Axis in a remote beach house in Australia, they decided to isolate themselves once again for the follow up, albeit in completely different surroundings. “We had a direction that we wanted to go and we definitely wanted a cohesive feeling for the whole album,”

more relaxed pace for recording and there’s not so much stress in the studio. It can be dangerous. There’s three heads in this band so it can take a while for us all to decide it’s a finished piece of music and it’s ready for the world. [But] we all felt pretty happy with the album as it was.” Video art has always played a large role in the bigger concept of Midnight Juggernauts, too.

Many people bought the gag wholesale as fact, with some commentators even fondly ‘remembering’ seeing the group back in the day, and lots more trying to research and find out more about this historical anomaly. This was largely due to the authenticity of the clip. Treated to look like a decaying VHS tape, the video was shot in various locations around Moscow including a military aircraft graveyard. “It was like a dream come true filming there. Our Russian friend spoke to the security guard and we gave him a little money and he let us sneak in. We got to climb on all the aircrafts and it was like a playground, we had so much fun!” WHAT: Uncanny Valley (Siberia/Remote Control) WHEN & WHERE: 23 Aug, Karova Lounge, Ballarat; 24 Aug, Corner Hotel THE MUSIC • 21 AUGUST 2013 • 39


rock LP, but a modern hybrid one. The title-track is neo ‘80s disco that subverts the aspirational subtexts of new romanticism for the age of austerity.

music

KEEP ON RUNNING

Their hearts may be troubled, but White Lies’ spirit is anything but. Charles Cave tells Cyclone why they’re sick of treading water.

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ritish synth-rockers White Lies are back with an all-important – and ambitious – third album, Big TV. Those songs about existential angst have been displaced by chronicles of long distance love and its dissolution. But White Lies remain a new romantic pop band with a fetish for heavy metal guitars – and adoration of the dark. The UK press has suggested that Big TV is White Lies’ “make-or-break” album after 2011’s Ritual failed to blow up to Muse-like levels – or, at least, build on their debut, To Lose My Life, a UK chart-topper. Indeed, the euphorically emo Death was heard in The Vampire Diaries. Today Charles Cave, White Lies’ primary songwriter and bassist, acknowledges that the techno-oriented (and tragically underrated) Ritual, which Alan Moulder (Depeche Mode) produced, was “an experimentation to a certain degree”. If anything, Big TV, led by the stadium-friendly There Goes Our Love Again, consolidates their previous work. Even Ritual had Bigger Than Us. White Lies have stripped back their music to its bones. “It’s definitely a distilling of a lot of those ideas and chiselling down into something that we enjoy working on and playing and listening to – and that we also feel that our fans have latched onto.” Cave has known his bandmates Harry McVeigh (vocals, guitar) and Jack Lawrence-Brown (drums) since they were kids in West London suburb Ealing. The trio originally performed indie-pop as Fear Of Flying, only to dramatically reinvent themselves as the post-punk, nay goth, White Lies. The Fiction Records signings foreshadowed Savages. For Big TV, White Lies reunited with Ed Buller, who’d guided their debut. What he offered them is precious time. “The thing about Ed is he’s a very old-fashioned producer, in that he is completely invested in the project,” enthuses Cave. “Ed’s there from day one when we’re sending him shitty demos.” Buller, “a big synth nut”, played in The Psychedelic Furs, White Lies’ precursors, 40 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

before establishing himself as a producer for the likes of Suede (and Australia’s Eskimo Joe). He gets bands – and knows songwriting. Cave, a perfectionist, wanted Big TV to be more melodic, which required considered composition, not just flashy production. “We’ve always been able to write pretty anthemic choruses, but I think I’ve found in the past that the verses often tread water a little bit.” White Lies have never been easy to peg. Ritual saw them veer into electronica, the band name-checking credible techno practitioners Richie Hawtin and Trentemøller. They hooked up with the dubstep Chase & Status for the stunning Embrace off No More Idols. But, though Cave DJs, he claims to be useless at identifying artists he digs. Still, White Lies are currently listening to Jon Hopkins’ emotronica Immunity, which Cave deems “fantastic”. At any rate, Big TV is a

In fact, Big TV is a concept album of sorts. It tells the story of a girl, possibly Eastern European, who leaves a small town for the big city to locate an absent father, abandoning her boyfriend. The album, Cave says, explores the ensuing “level of realism and disappointment that sets in when she figures out that it’s not just as easy as rocking up and having a conventional life – whatever she thinks that is.” Cave was inspired by tales he’s heard of people seeking new lives. However, any talk of a ‘concept album’ shouldn’t scare off listeners. “I don’t think it’s integral to the record, necessarily. I think it provided a really good focal point for me when writing lyrics and also I suppose for working on songs and figuring out what kind of songs were needed for the record. There’s a fragmented and disjointed narrative throughout the record that I’m completely aware of – and I’m sure Harry’s completely aware of... [But] it’s by no means a story or concept or theme that I’m trying to say is just the most important thing about the record. No one has to go away having been really moved by this story.” The irony with White Lies has always been that, while Cave pens the lyrics, McVeigh sings them – and with incredible conviction. It’s like a director/ actor relationship. Regardless, in such a scenario, a depersonalised narrative makes sense. “Harry and I have been friends for ten years and we understand each other very well,” Cave begins. “I also feel that my lyrics, on the whole, are fairly self-explanatory. They’re not too cryptic.” Besides, Cave believes that a song like Big TV ’s Blade Runner-y ballad Change is universal. “You’d have to be pretty dumb not to understand what

“...YOU’VE ACCEPTED THAT IT’S NOT COMING BACK, THAT DOESN’T MEAN YOU HAVE TO FEEL OKAY WITH IT.” the song’s about and not to empathise with it in some way. It’s really purposely basic lyrics about a break-up and about accepting that a relationship has finished, but also saying that, just because you’ve accepted that it’s finished, and you’ve accepted that it’s not coming back, that doesn’t mean you have to feel okay with it. That doesn’t mean that it’s not very unpleasant. I know Harry hasn’t been through a traumatic break-up, per se, luckily for him, but he’s an emotionally intelligent guy – he can understand how that would feel!” White Lies last hit Australia for 2009’s Splendour In The Grass. A tour leg two years ago was cancelled following the Japanese tsunami. Cave rues that in the past a lack of local label support has curbed their ability to gig here. “The shows weren’t gonna be big enough to even pay for us to get there.” But they’re determined to return. “We’ll definitely be coming to Australia this record,” Cave says. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we were over actually very early next year. I think we’ll be over to do our own club shows; we haven’t been since 2009, so, yeah, it’s about time.” WHAT: Big TV (Universal)


the individual is a temple, a space to be explored,” Marshall says, of 6 Feet Beneath The Moon. “It’s very much a clear homage to the individual, to one’s self and the experience of yourself.”

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Yet, contrastingly, this album about the individual as temple is just as much about dwelling amidst society; living in a city, surrounded by so many people, a sense of desperation in the air. “A lot of the [songs],” on 6 Feet Beneath The Moon, Marshall furthers, “are about feeling lost, about being lost. About feeling out of your depth. It’s about feeling simultaneously out of control yet still controlled by other people. That’s what the title means, 6 Feet Beneath The Moon: it’s about being buried beneath the darkness, underneath what you look up to, what glows in the sky.”

BORN TO BE KING King Krule (aka Archy Marshall) has been writing songs since he was eight. The teenage singer-songwriter tells Anthony Carew about his need for control.

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t’s 2AM in London, and Archy Marshall is “currently in a girl’s bedroom”, sounding suspiciously like he may’ve just had a sly smoke. The lateness of the hour – and, indeed, the baked drawl – have much in common with the music Marshall makes as King Krule. Singing in a deep, dark, gravelly voice, Marshall paints pained portraits of urban decay over music whose spartan samples and glinting guitars play almost as some bluesy counter to The xx, sung in slurs that make him sound like South London’s answer to Tom Waits. It’s music that sounds weathered, world-weary, and woe-betold; quite a feat for someone who, at the time of his boudoir phonecall, was still a week shy of his 19th birthday.

The main narrative, when listening to King Krule’s music – and his debut LP, 6 Feet Beneath The Moon – is the contrast between Marshall’s tender years/ babyface, and the sound he makes. But, though still a teenager, he’s already an old musical soul – harbouring the desire to make sound as some of his most formative memories. “One of my earliest memories, I remember looking at maracas, a really nice set of maracas,” Marshall recounts. “It’s true. I still can remember that feeling: just being a kid, staring at them, and really wanting to be a musician.” Marshall wrote his first song as an eight year-old, and became a fully-fledged songwriter at 12, rolling tape on an eight-track recorder that allowed him to assemble songs in isolation; the feeling he recalls was “like being a scientist”, with every day a new experiment. Eventually, he’d end up at a place so many prodigious English talents have, doing his high school study at the Brit School, whose alumni have populated endless girl-groups and talent-quests. Marshall’s not so keen on talking about his school years, but wants to make sure that he’s never spoken of as some sculpted talent, steered by the hands of others. “My music has always been something I’ve done by myself,” Marshall says. “When I started, it was definitely

about wanting to reach out to other people, trying to find guidance, to get that from other people, but I never did. My biggest influence just came from within. Music was just something I really wanted to do. It felt so natural, so urgent. It was just like a fact of nature for myself.” By the time he made 6 Feet Beneath The Moon, music had become “a form of self-exploration” for Marshall. The LP marks a 14-song study of 19 years, its eldest tune dating back to when the songwriter was 12. In his early days, cutting his teeth as a home-recorder, Marshall initially called himself Zoo Kid, before switching to a handle inspired by Donkey Kong Country’s King K. Rool for a debut, self-titled 2011 EP, released when he was 17. Many of the songs have already trickled out on previous releases, and they chart Marshall growing up, and coming-of-age on tape. “It’s about finding dark parts within yourself, about how

While the press-release trumpets co-production by Rodaidh McDonald – who’s worked with The xx and Savages – an under-discussed contributor to the sound of the record is long time Stereolab drummer Andy Ramsay, who served as engineer, studio boss, and essential gear-lender to Marshall. The teenager met him when they were both at work on Mount Kimbie’s second LP, Cold Spring Fault Less Youth, on which King Krule guested on a pair of vocal performances, and from which Marshall learnt more than he expected. “It was, in many ways, uncomfortable for me, because I had no control at all,” he says. “The music wasn’t created by me at all. And fitting my voice into their music, I couldn’t use the same tricks and techniques that I was used to using in my own music. I was mapping my style to them, and it couldn’t have felt more different. It taught me a lot about experiment, and different approaches.”

“IT’S ABOUT FINDING DARK PARTS WITHIN YOURSELF, ABOUT HOW THE INDIVIDUAL IS A TEMPLE, A SPACE TO BE EXPLORED.” Though sounding world weary, Marshall is still young enough that every experience is a learning experience. Touring the world for the last two years has helped him “open [his] mind”, and he’s unjaded enough to “fall in love with every new place” he stops at. Not just when he, say, plays a church in Warsaw (“It was weird: everyone was sat down to watch us play,” he recounts. “All the aisles were filled out, and all eyes were on me. There I was, at the front; it felt like I’d accidentally wandered in and been asked to do a service”), but by each crowd. “It’s still so early for me that I’m always fascinated by who’s actually going to come and see me play,” says Marshall. “I’m genuinely interested to meet the people who like my music. It wasn’t that long ago when I knew everyone who liked my music; it was just my friends. But now I can travel to somewhere like Nagano, Japan, and there will be people there, excited to see me play. It’s quite mind blowing. It’s unreal.” WHAT: 6 Feet Beneath The Moon (XL/Remote Control) THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 41


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reviews

ALBUM OF THE WEEK

This week: Zola Jesus covers herself, Matt Damon fights to get off earth in Elysium and our thoughts on the MXR Super Badass Distortion Pedal

KING KRULE

6 Feet Beneath The Moon True Panther/XL Jake Bugg ruined the blanket statement: no other 19-year-old in contemporary music could summon the pathos of Archy Marshall, King Krule. Krule’s debut album 6 Feet Beneath The Moon is angry and simple, but too long, and overwrought (great art being not what is put in so much as what is taken out, etc.). Track one Easy Easy is recognisable as a previously released single – it’s a wonderful song. Marshall’s vocals come apart again and again like a pre-schooler’s shoelace. He sounds as if he’s cooking the lyrics up as he goes along; a rare and precocious talent in a musician. His work is his voice, hoarse and sonorous. “I need the warmth of your mother to hold me down/Hold me down/Girl, let me lay here,” Marshall howls oedipally in The Krockadile. A very young man boiling himself alive with self-loathing right there.

★★★½

TRACKLIST 1. Easy Easy 2. Borderline 3. Has This Hit? 4. Foreign 2 5. Ceiling 6. Baby Blue 7. Cementality

8. A Lizard State 9. Will I Come 10. Ocean Bed 11. Neptune Estate 12. The Krockadile 13. Out Getting Ribs 14. Bathed In Grey

There are standouts in 6 Feet... – pools of gloom, ironically, hiding from proverbial streetlamp light. The record is too well-produced. Gone is Krule’s grit, 6 Feet... turns Zoo Kid’s A Lizard State into a ska track. There’s also a second incarnation of Has This Hit? on the record, supplanting the lo-fi halo of its first incarnation with a question mark (literally) and the magnesium-flare of top dollar production values. Still, Marshall is a brilliant lyricist, largely because he sings every word like he is blaming the listener (and the critic) for his having written it. Callum Twigger

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album reviews

FRANZ FERDINAND

AVENGED SEVENFOLD

Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action

Hail To The King Roadrunner/Warner

Domino/EMI It’s been almost a decade since France Ferdinand announced their arrival with hit single, Take Me Out, and their self-titled debut. They emerged confident in their sound then and haven’t messed with it too much since. Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action sees the next small, but not disposable, step in their evolution. Opening track, Right Action, shows from the get-go that the Franz guitars are as jangly and the rhythms as staccato and precise as ever. But don’t be fooled, this isn’t just a rehashing of that signature sound. Evil Eye is a jaunty, theremin-infused number that sounds like it could be used in the opening credits of a ‘50s sci-fi parody. Love Illumination returns to that vintage Franz Ferdinand sound, with singer Alex Kapranos philosophising about a “sweet love celebration”. It almost sounds

★★★ ½ like a self-help affirmation, but is somehow sweet and genuine. The Universe Extended delivers a late album breather that’s a little more contemplative than the rest of the record, before Brief Encounters brings a laidback ska rhythm to continue the low-key wind down. Goodbye Lovers And Friends marches towards the closing moments, with Kapranos going so far as to finish the album with, “This really is the end”. If Franz Ferdinand were attempting any neck-jarring changes in direction, they failed miserably. But if their goal was to make another record of catchy, tight-jeaned alt. rock, Right Thoughts, Right Words, Right Action more than delivers. Pete Laurie

If there was ever an American band that sounds like America, it is Avenged Sevenfold. Like fellow patriots George W. Bush, Chris Brown and Michael Bay, these Californian rockers have never allowed other people’s opinions or common sense stand in the way of their doing whatever the fuck they want to do. What they want to do, as becomes immediately apparent on their sixth album, Hail To The King, is play balls-out stadium rock and to be like Guns N’ Roses, minus those god damn sissy ballads. Paring back on the intricacies of 2010’s Nightmare, songs like the title track and This Means War are beefy slabs of Zacky Vengeance and Synyster Gates showing off their rock god guitar licks, while new drummer Arin Ilejay somehow manages to make a drum kit sound more bombastic than Phil Collins’ In The Air Tonight and frontman M.

SARA STORER

ZOLA JESUS

ABC Music/Universal

Sacred Bones/Inertia

Storytelling is at the heart of any great country artist and Sara Storer is still a great storyteller. Lovegrass, her fifth studio record and her first of entirely new material since 2007’s Silver Skies, comes after marriage and family life – experiences that are on this album’s sleeve. She openly admits the title track is written for her husband (it doesn’t have the same tension as a Kasey Chambers/Shane Nicholson duet, it’s far warmer) and other cuts – Come On Rain, Heart & Sold, You’re My Everything – can be attributed to that same family muse. Even when it’s not about them, a romanticised Australian country life underpins everything here.

Zola Jesus, or Nika Roza Danilova as she is rarely referred to, has clearly transcended her electro-gothic roots. After being asked to perform at New York’s Guggenheim Museum in 2012, Danilova took the bold idea of performing her songs in a stripped back, small orchestral arrangement. This album is the result of those performances.

Lovegrass

One point that the record steps out from personal accounts is on ANZAC ode Pozie, which features a particularly wise-sounding John Williamson. It cements this as a proud Australian record, but it’s not flag-waving nationalism, it’s a tactfully44 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

★★★ Shadows does his best Axl wail. It’s an obvious formula, but A7X manage to keep it interesting for the album’s duration. Hail To The King is the sonic equivalent of a stretch Hummer monster truck with Bald Eagle decals and a vanity licence plate driving through a McDonald’s drivethru to order a McGriddle and an extra, extra-large Dr Pepper. The thing is big, decadent and completely over the top. And like that McGriddle and Dr P, Hail To The King might leave you feeling a little queasy afterwards, but when you’re there and you’re in the moment, its delights are undeniable. Avenged Sevenfold, FUCK YEAH! Tom Hersey

Versions

★★★ ½ delivered and humble dose of self-esteem. The musicianship is impeccably unobtrusive; existing as a platform rather than an engine room, with Matt Fell’s producing equally balanced and restrained. If there is a fault here it’s the overarching familiarity and lack of experimentation, but such excitement would be at odds with this selection of songs. Storer doesn’t need to prove anything on Lovegrass after the career she’s had, and the break has given her a chance to choose the time and manner of her return. This feels right, it feels natural and it feels comfortable. Scott Fitzsimons

As wonderful as the existing Zola Jesus albums are, lush and beautiful are hardly terms that come to mind when describing them, so it’s all the more wonderful that this album works as well as it does. Stripped of the gothic dark wave electronica, we are given more room to marvel at how utterly gorgeous a singer Danilova is when she allows herself to be. The new arrangements, for the most part, stick to the original in terms of structure, but the string and minimal beat backing breathes a human immediacy into the music that

★★★ ½ simply wasn’t there before. The new versions of Hikikomori and Seekir are so excellent that it’s difficult to hear the originals presented as they were. Of the nine songs here, only one is a new track and five are from her most recent LP, so there is a tendency to compare these to the originals or perhaps feel slighted by a cover album of one’s own songs – but this wouldn’t be fair. Danilova hasn’t necessarily created magic with this record per se, but in revealing these songs for the beautiful pieces they clearly are, she’s certainly discovered it. Andrew McDonald


album reviews

★★★½

TIRED PONY The Ghost Of The Mountain Universal With members including Gary Lightbody (Snow Patrol), Richard Colburn (Belle & Sebastian) and Peter Buck (REM), Tired Pony could collapse into a terrible mess of conflicting egos. But The Ghost Of The Mountain manages to highlight the respective talents of its members, while becoming something in its own right. Light, sincere and reflective, The Ghost Of The Mountain is a great example of a supergroup creating something new and worthwhile. Pete Laurie

★★★½

★★★½

★★½

BELLE & SEBASTIAN

CROCODILES

A$AP FERG

Shock

A$AP Worldwide/Polo Grounds/Sony

Rough Trade

The gentle rock‘n’roll of Crimes Of Passion makes an unashamed nod to The Jesus & Mary Chain’s Psychocandy – the main difference being a little less fuzz and a little more warmth.

The Third Eye Centre The Third Eye Centre, a collection of rarities, collectibles and nonLP tunes (Belle & Sebastian’s second such release), covers their work over the last ten years and deftly demonstrates why they are so highly lauded. There are a number of remixes included, the most notable being the Avalanches’ tribal transformation of I’m A Cuckoo. With such perfect indie pop offerings as Heaven In The Afternoon, The Third Eye Centre is a definite must have.

Crimes Of Passion

The camaraderie of light and dark that exist throughout the album are a refreshing and more palatable departure from the more noise-laden albums past, though there’s just enough fuzz to remind us of the band’s earlier catalogue, with an additional softness that makes it far easier to digest. Justine Keating

Dominique Wall

Trap Lord

Ferg, often described as the only member of the A$AP clique besides Rocky with star potential, is tough to pin down. He’ll drop a Bone Thugsn-Harmony tribute the next track after a Bone Thugs-nHarmony cameo. He’ll disclose his ambition to “be as known as Jesus” in interviews. He’ll send out a sing-song guest spot: Kissin’ Pink. He’s becoming known as someone who brings excitement. Sadly, Trap Lord is not that artist’s album; this is not the fun Ferg promised. It’s a debut, sure, but for now his apparent destiny seems a little way off. James d’Apice

★★★½

★★★½

★★★

BLESSTHEFALL DEVILDRIVER Hollow Bodies

Winter Kills

DON WALKER

Fearless/Shock

Roadrunner/Warner

MGM

On their fourth album, posthardcore outfit Blessthefall combine fatalistic riffs within in an organised display of mayhem, combining sickly sweet melodic phrases with downright aggressive passages that by any logical means should not work. After years of terrorising stages across the globe, Hollow Bodies is the band’s most cohesive work to date. The band’s adaptability in combining metalcore and pop sentimentality is perfectly demonstrated in the single, You Wear A Crown But You’re No King, and the album’s title track, yet it’s the grittier songs where Blessthefall sound more comfortable – and they do that honourably.

Meat and potatoes remain popular because they mostly hit the spot. Groove-oriented metal cohorts DevilDriver must recognise this because they haven’t altered the recipe too radically after six records. Everconsistent, the Americans’ attack bristles with potency; fusion of Pantera-esque stomp, melo-death trimmings, monstrous circle-pit fodder (Gutted) and memorable hooks (Winter Kills) ensuring they could teach the Germans a few lessons regarding efficiency. Covering indie/electro mob AWOLNATION’s Sail deviates from their norm, but proves to be a misfire. Few curveballs, but another mosh-friendly beast.

He is among the best – the most Australian – of songwriters. And that might be part of the problem on parts.

James Dawson

Brendan Crabb

Hully Gully

He has the turn of phrase, the so drily laconic voice. The stories, like the drive out of the ‘Cross in Young Girls, or the wait as the tide ebbs On The Beach, are heat-hazed atmospheric things, but elsewhere it seems he feels the need to play up that nasal twang to almost parody. Maybe accept the lift but perhaps pretend to doze when some of the yarns seem a bit arch. Ross Clelland

★★★½

ELLIOTT WHEELER

The Long Time MGM Elliott Wheeler has emerged with a suitably cinematic, orchestrated and dark solo debut six years in the making. Wheeler’s gentle falsetto vocals decorate a handful of tracks, accompanying the slick electronic production on Crystal Love, reminiscent of Antony & The Johnsons, while a collection of charming guest female vocalists grace the remaining tracks. The Long Time is a rounded and complete effort compiled from the flowing and orchestral influence of Wheeler’s experience shaping film scores, but with the added pull of modernity, electronica and beats. Lorin Reid THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 45


singles/ep reviews

★★★½

RAINBOW CHAN Haircut

Silo Arts & Records Dreamy, multi-layered vocals and a counter-melody of the bass, ticking percussion, and sparse and varied synth bits.

CALL THE SHOTS FT TONY LOVATO I’ll Pop Your Punk Independent Snotty boys whining in the form of bland pop punk: “I wrote a song explaining why I wish that you would die.” Good for you, honey.

THE NAKED & FAMOUS Hearts Like Ours Somewhat Damaged An over-simplistic albeit anthemic melody is transformed into a ripper of a track thanks to ‘80s power-pop synths.

★★★½

★★★★

HAYDEN JAMES

LOUIS SPOILS

Hayden James

Rush Recordings

Future Classic

Independent

The question to ask here is, can Hayden James come close Permission To Love on his debut self-titled EP? Sure, when the big single comes along as the centrepiece – with its easy groove and big, catchy pitch-shifted vocals – it shows the Sydney electronic artist at his best and most accessible. But there are other tracks to savour here as well, slightly weirder and perhaps ultimately more memorable. The simple satisfying hum of Embrace is a great way to close out the EP, while the slow and minimalistic Lay Down outdoes Permission To Love in the sensuality stakes.

Calling in some heavy-hitting musical mates to help him out, Melbourne’s Jake Rush has released his debut EP as Louis Spoils. The tracks offer up various approaches to indie pop, allowing just enough room for weird idiosyncrasies and plenty of space for strong melodies. Although there is a fair bit of different instrumentation to feast upon, the best of Rush comes from the warmth of his voice and the expressive guitar work on tracks such as Bugsy Moore and Modestly Amused. Stepping outside his comfort zone with a little abrasion on The Fixx also pays dividends.

Jan Wisniewski

Jan Wisniewski

Jan Wisniewski

Louis Spoils

THE DEAD HEIR The Dead Heir

There’s not much to know about The Dead Heir, but the debut EP from these Melbourne lads is definitely worth a play. In the vein of the those manymembered bands that are bringing back the sounds of early-psychedelia, these guys have produced a very solid seven-song set that’s not just throwaway pastiche. The moody soul of No Doors takes the cake as the album standout. A true, full-band effort with layers of guitar, organ and bass, moving together with the rhythms of percussion to create some solid grooves. They play 8 Sep at The Workers Club.

LADY GAGA Burqa

★★★★

Universal “Enigma pop star is fun/She wear burqa for fashion.” Musically jarring, and conceptually and lyrically disrespectful.

TIGERTOWN

AIMEE FRANCIS

Independent

Losers Game Independent

A bit Pink, a bit early Avril, but neither here nor there. Francis’ strong vocals aren’t enough to make this song interesting.

SKIPPING GIRL VINEGAR West Coast Independent “Get in the car and let’s go,” is exactly what listening to this makes you feel like doing; it’s heavy on the percussion, banjo and enthusiasm. Stephanie Liew 46 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Wandering Eyes

★★★

TULLY ON TULLY Weightless

★★★½

TYLER TOUCHÉ

Technicolour Symphony

Three EPs in and Tigertown are only growing in the strength of their songwriting. The key to their sound comes in their multiple vocalists and whether they are interchanging or harmonising, it makes for some really impressive listening. They’re probably at their best when they combine this dynamic with the more dancey sound on early tracks Weary One and What You Came Here For. However it’s definitely cool to hear direct links to Rumours-era Fleetwood Mac on the latter tracks and they pull this off with aplomb. They play 28 and 29 Sep at The Workers Club.

Independent The Melbourne quintet return with a classy new EP of shining pop songs. Each track runs on percussion’s forward momentum and, with everything mixed pretty high, it can sound a little cluttered. Fortunately the band are able to play with, rather than over, each other and it’s great that keyboardist Pete Corrigan’s soft flourishes are highlighted. But really the fortunes of these songs fall to Natalie Foster, whose voice is all over Weightless. Her confident croon mixes nicely with more self-doubting lyrics to move beyond the standard. They play 7 Sep at The Toff In Town.

With such a sound musical mind, the songs of this super-talented teen show influences that extend far beyond his Brisbane bedroom. There is something to marvel at with each new passage and musical turn on the sonic journey of breakout single Baguette. Heart In Motion will only enhance this kid’s reputation as he manages to keep things innovative while crafting an outstanding pop track. On both tracks it is the heavy funk of the underlying grooves that give Jordan Hawkins what could soon be his signature sound.

Jan Wisniewski

Jan Wisniewski

Jan Wisniewski

Create Control


THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 47


48 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013


live reviews

BASTILLE, TIGERTOWN, LURCH & CHIEF Corner Hotel: 16 Aug Lurch & Chief only got started in Melbourne a little more than 12 months ago but, working really hard during that time, the outfit have penned a sweet collection of tunes to take on the road. Around Hayden Somerville and Lili Hall’s duelling male and female lead vocals the rest of the band smoothly bring ‘70s rock influences together with big, indie-dance beats.

indie pop but at times they are so super-smooth that it starts to feel a little like yacht rock. Its 11pm and the sold-out venue is overflowing with Bastille fans who shriek with delight when the lads appear on stage while Twin Peaks’ Falling plays on the PA. It is entirely appropriate given lead singer Dan Smith’s much-publicised fascination with David Lynch. There isn’t anything too surreal about tonight’s gig as these pretty-boy indie popsters from South London deal a proper blast of seriously uplifting tunes. Practically every song off their debut album Bad Blood starts with slow verses that build into massive anthemic sing-a-long choruses that soar, instilling a sense of euphoria in the room that threatens to send wide-

BASTILLE @ CORNER HOTEL. PIC: LOU LOU NUTT

Their single We Are The Same is an obvious highlight that showcases the band at their tight and confident best. Tonight Lurch & Chief capably demonstrate why they are yet another fabulous addition to the local music scene. Definitely an act to watch. Next up, Sydney’s Tigertown look as though they have popped some kind of glamour pill for the occasion as they deliver a floppy Fleetwood Mac-esque moment that revolves around lush harmonies and sweet melodies. It’s a winning formula that allows the band to steal many hearts. As Tigertown move from the glowing folksy warmth of Lions And Witches to the more buoyant thump of What You Came Here For there is a light breezy vibe to their tunes. The outfit are aiming for dreamy,

DARTS, THE MCQUEENS, JONESEZ The Tote: 13 Aug Jonesez’ brand of energetic rock is an indie teen dream. It’s an accessible start to the night. Next up, The McQueens’ garage pop with soul is an engaging and eclectic mash-up that fluctuates between dreamy and driven. Their rock roots shine through with a rich mix of complex beats and a bit of fancy fingerwork on guitar. The McQueens teeters on the edge of cute at points, but never

BASTILLE @ CORNER HOTEL. PIC: LOU LOU NUTT

eyed fans into outer space. A dazzling light show sears our eyeballs with intense strobe effects that energise the crowd and add to the general feeling of mayhem that’s unfolding. Between Bad Blood, Laura Palmer, Icarus, Things We Lost In The Fire and Flaws they satisfy by playing pretty much everything that their fans have come to hear. Encores turn the gig into a monster dance party with the bounce of Rhythm Is A Dancer evolving into Corona’s classic Rhythm Of The Night. Concluding the night, Pompei comes with an irresistible hook that sounds like it was written by New Order. Bastille tread a very fine line between indie cool and complete crossover, which is where it seems these lads are ultimately headed. Guido Farnell

plummet as an underlying darkness and depth keeps them grounded. This solid grunge edge, powered by Harry Monaghan on drums, provides a driving undercurrent, overlaid with synth, soaring vocals and a few forays into electro interludes. Frontman Noah Harris’ vocals are gorgeous, but they need more clarity and emphasis to draw us in. Darts are more garage than pop – they’ve got grit, grunt and a hairy sound that raises your hackles and makes your feet beat and your ears sear. The band won triple j Unearthed in 2009 and there’s a lot of potential coming to fruition here. Darts are fun, they’re loud, they’re brutal, they’re driven and more people in

the room probably would’ve meant guaranteed dancing too. It’s pretty disappointing that not even the support acts have stuck around to see Darts play. Frankly, that’s just bad manners. The vocals would benefit from more clarity and emphasis, at some points they feel like a bit of an afterthought rather than complementing the tight instrumentals and acting as bait to hook their audience in further. Moreover, the vocals are good (and the occasional combined chorus is fun), they just need more space. The bass player’s fringe deserves mention as well: Boy, oh boy! That boy can wave his hair around like nobody’s business. Not

BASTILLE @ CORNER HOTEL. PIC: LOU LOU NUTT

to say that Darts should change what already comes across as a winning formula, but a clearer frontperson role to focus their energy wouldn’t go astray, especially with such an intimate crowd. To perform with gusto in front of an audience of six people is a feat in itself and we applaud Darts for it. With youthful vigour and a tight sound, it’s confusing that there isn’t an audience for this band of babes. Tonight’s combination of Jonesez/The McQueens/ Darts is punchy but, with the pews so poorly populated, the sparse crowd is left looking around, stunned that the joint is so empty. It’s a residency! Go support them next week. Izzy Tolhurst THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 49


live reviews

EAGLE & THE WORM The Workers Club: 13 Aug Clad in matching attire, down to their ties, The Bluebottles head up proceedings tonight. They take to the stage, bass player with jug of beer in hand. With limited vocal input occurring in the first couple of songs, attention turns to the ‘70s-centric guitar sounds reverberating around the room. The warm, beach-y vibe The Bluebottles effortlessly emanate helps ease the chill of the evening. Numbers such as Oceanside – complete with a somewhat confused, nevertheless welcome, sense of nostalgia – wash over a cluster of appreciative onlookers. It’s Melbourne locals Eagle &

material is fairly polished. A quick observation being that, on first impression, vocal style seems to be taking a new direction. The joys of matching a horn section with memorable guitar riffs, a characteristic of both old and new content, becomes even more apparent during this live performance, the funky vibe almost infectious in nature. As if experiencing a fit of spontaneity instigated by the magic of the horns, Brown calls out to the crowd, asking us to welcome a special guest. It’s none other than Saskwatch’s Nkechi Anele. As she makes her way through the crowd it becomes distinctly apparent that this is going to be fun. A spirited cover of The Jackson 5’s I Want You Back doesn’t disappoint, Anele captivating an awestruck audience with her sheer presence. As she climbs

EAGLE & THE WORM @ WORKERS CLUB. PIC: ANDREW BRISCOE

The Worm’s Tuesdays in August residency and the band test the stage’s capacity as they squeeze into place. It would seem that the crowd too has expanded although there’s still a neat gap up front, perhaps a reminder of what end of the week we’re at. The familiarity stemming from rousing renditions of Angela’s Lonely Heart and Give Me Time provides an injection of energy before bandleader Jarrad Brown announces new material. Visibility becomes an increasingly rare commodity due to the after effects of overly zealous smoke machine operation. Brown calls out to reassure us that the band is still onstage. The whole atmosphere is so laidback that the audience revels in the humour of the situation, although some must surely be wondering whether such effects are necessary. Despite this visual distraction, it’s easy enough to make out that Eagle & The Worm’s new 50 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

trying to find the best view, songstress Olympia fills the room with her Feist-like vocals. Next up is Patrick James: a man with two first names. James and his band warm the crowd up with some hot indie folk. The place is now packed and we are all getting manhandled by people pushing past. This is the first of two sold-out Corner gigs. It’s also the first show on the tour that sold out – Pyke has a lot of love waiting for him in Melbourne. Josh Pyke appears and the ladies go wild. He is adorable with his boyish side fringe, full beard and collared shirt buttoned to the top. Sweet looks aside, we have all come to hear this amazing lyricist’s great words. Pyke’s performance is flawless as he drifts between old and new songs, always bopping along

EAGLE & THE WORM @ WORKERS CLUB. PIC: ANDREW BRISCOE

down from the stage the gap finally disappears, the threshold between audience and performer having been decisively crossed. Jack Needham

JOSH PYKE, PATRICK JAMES, OLYMPIA Corner Hotel: 17 Aug While lining up in the outside queue, a woman in front jumps on the spot to keep warm, telling her daughter that she was right in saying they would need to bring a coat. Once inside the intimate venue we are finally sheltered from the winter winds. While the crowd shuffles around

with the beat and fuelling the crowd with good vibes. A true romantic, before Pyke plays Sew My Name, he gives us a headsup that now would be the right time to propose to someone in the crowd. (Apparently it has happened before.) Most of Pyke’s songs are for romantics, but he does occasionally weave some cheeky lyrics in; the crowd blushes when he sings, “I’d make you come, come to your senses,” during new track Warm In Winter. Melbourne is clearly longing for some shorts weather, singing desperately along to The Summer. The aforementioned mother without a jacket is likely to be singing the loudest. The encore features the popular Middle Of The Hill, a song about Pyke’s childhood. We all loudly sing the outro: “I don’t pay enough attention to the good things when I’ve got ‘em.” Pyke is in jolly spirits, beaming onstage

as he thanks us for allowing him to not have a “proper” job for the last ten years. He loves his fans and his fans love him back. He even hangs out at the merch stand after the gig to sign stubby holders like any top bloke should. Annie Brown

THE TROUBLE WITH TEMPLETON, ALI BARTER

Northcote Social Club: 16 Aug A fair chunk of Melbourne’s population seem to be flocking to NSC and getting rowdy in preparation for Brisbane band The

THE BLUEBOTTLES @ WORKERS CLUB. PIC: ANDREW BRISCOE

Trouble With Templeton’s album launch. Ali Barter brings a guest band that fits together remarkably well, supplementing her charismatic personality and sultry voice. That voice is put to good use in Barter’s set, which includes both solo songs and songs that utilise the entire band. While her songs are well put together, and she is obviously talented, most incorporate similar motifs, tempos and styles. By the end of the set, a lot of people tune out and head to the bar. When The Trouble With Templeton head out on stage, the mood changes dramatically. They bring a bracing hit of rock’n’roll, with vocals that are sometimes distorted and muffled, at other times completely clear. Although lead singer Thomas Calder admits he’s quite unwell – you can hear in his speaking voice that he’s clearly still recovering – his singing voice is still remarkably strong. The dynamic five-piece traverse the


live reviews lines between indie, rock’n’roll and alternative music without a hiccup. Although The Trouble With Templeton put on a great show, this Friday night crowd seem restless, chattering constantly to the point of rudeness. The music drowns them out but, in between songs, it becomes quite distracting. The fact isn’t lost on the band either, with Calder remarking the punters seem particularly talkative, while not explicitly chastising them. Still, apart from the loud crowd, The Trouble With Templeton are an excellent band to see live. They incorporate older songs including Six Months in A Cast alongside songs fresh from their newly released album Rookie. The band are electric and revitalising, making indie rock loud and fun. Sharona Lin

Bookshop and Why Don’t We Do Something? all have the kind of anthemic feel that even the most reluctant audience would find hard to resist. Their performance reflects the energy of their songs, which makes them an ideal support for tonight’s headliner. Taking to the stage in a purple blazer that was surely previously owned by Willy Wonka, Pluto Jonze starts off powerfully with Plastic Bag In A Hurricane. So physical is the performance already, it’s expected that we’ll soon be covered in popstar sweat. During Love The World Like A Child, Jonze’s Theremin falls over. No one seems to notice though, and Jonze’s performance is impressively unaffected. Speak With Your Feet offers the perfect opportunity for some projections, adding yet another element to the music that is already so richly

JOSH PYKE @ CORNER HOTEL. PIC: MATT ALAN

E

PLUTO JONZE, HEY GERONIMO, HUW MURDOCH

Northcote Social Club: 17 Aug It can be a hard slog opening up a gig. Huw Murdoch and band have the, frankly, impossible task of winning over a startlingly sober audience of about 18 people. Murdoch’s “active opening” isn’t quite active enough to jump-start the early arrivals. Hey Geronimo have a bit more luck injecting life into the growing crowd with their bouncy, Beach Boy-infused, half indie-half pop tunes. Songs such as Dreamboat Jack, Co-Op

less use of vocal backing tracks, which tend to take away from the live show. Eject attracts the largest crowd of dancers of the night, and seems a fitting way to end proceedings. However, Jonze makes the unnecessary decision to perform an encore. All Washed Up brings an underwhelming conclusion to the show. Not because it’s a bad song, but simply because it wasn’t the best choice. Jacqueline Flynn

DIRT FARMER, GAMMA RAYS, DAN & AMY The Workers Club: 15 Aug No strangers to this venue, brother and sister duo Dan &

JOSH PYKE @ CORNER HOTEL. PIC: MATT ALAN

layered. Jonze confides that the tour (of which this is the second show) has gotten “off to a rough start” due jamming one of his middle fingers in a car door in Adelaide. Fortunately Jonze doesn’t hear the rather impolite man next to us instruct him to “shove it up your arse” and gets on with the show, putting his injured finger through its paces with his trademark Theremin, now back in its upright position. A surprise comes in the form of a cover of En Vogue’s Don’t Let Go (Love), which finds new life in electric guitar form with a very clever inclusion of Jonze’s often used vocoder. Next is Hispedangongonajelanguiro (Capiche?), which leaves Jonze on the floor, playing harmonica for the beginning of the next song. Jonze makes a promise to improve his fitness before his next visit to Melbourne and this will hopefully also mean

Amy and band open the night with exquisite, pure ballads. They play songs about love, loss and life, all of which are delivered with melodic perfection and hair-raising harmonies. The most memorable track is one that captures frontman Dan Arnott’s empathy for Indigenous Australians over land stolen and culture neglected with the advent of white settlers in this country. In the current state of dismal politicking ahead of the election, the track is refreshingly impassioned and honest. It is this song, played mid-set, that silences the small-but-dedicated crowd. This supremely talented duo is worthy of headlining their own shows, but for the meantime serve as an effective and moving support act. Middlemen Gamma Rays launch into their set offering a considerably different style from

their predecessors, though the crowd lap up their hard and heavy method with equal enthusiasm. Most tracks are short and sharp, and while it feels like the two support acts reside on opposite sides of the genre gamut, the contrast works well and provides great diversity for the night. While both guitarists sing throughout Gamma Rays’ set, the lead’s voice is grossly and enticingly reminiscent of Silverchair’s Daniel Johns. Considered together, the supports also cover the varied influences and sound of headliners Dirt Farmer, whose slacker rock has a definite folk element too. When our headliners take to the modest stage, the equally modest room is full of enthusiastic punters, and even a few who adopt the band’s theme, donning farmer hats or weaving their hair into

JOSH PYKE @ CORNER HOTEL. PIC: MATT ALAN

quintessentially kid-of-the-ranch pigtails. To begin proceedings, tracks from Dirt Farmer’s selftitled EP including Johnny Marble and Kick It are tightly executed. Throughout the set, the band confirm they love this job. Indulging in extended outros and guitar solos, they appear to be highly intuitive of each other’s ability and unite in having an extraordinarily good time on stage. Naturally, this effect rubs off on the audience and there are no sullen or disapproving punters. The reason for the tour, the release of the second single She Shakes, is finally reached, and it is here that the crowd are thanked profusely for their attendance and support. Closing with Delilah Lightning, Dirt Farmer appear to be riding a steady ascent, carrying with them a sound that is infectious, engaging and long-lasting. Isobel Roberts-Orr THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 51


arts reviews

PROMPTER

it moved further from its conventional narrative structures into visceral displays of the psychotic performativity.

Theatre

Arts House (finished) Perth company Hydra Poesis’ Prompter begins with a journalist (Brendan Ewing) reporting from the capital city of St Sulpice, a fictional island in the south Pacific. He robotically reads text that scrolls up a teleprompter: an unexplained disaster has struck the island, hordes of people are fleeing, there is a potential coup d’etat in the houses of Parliament. The disaster is reported as it is happening, everything is entirely speculative. We see the audience of these news reports on screens suspended above the playing space. They appear via web link from their actual bedrooms around the globe, as far away as Los Angeles and London. The online performers then begin to descend into states of what the director calls, ‘performative psychosis’. They begin to perform actions of empathy in attempts to commune in some way with the disaster and the affected peoples. Prompter then

Oliver Coleman

STORIES I WANT TO TELL YOU IN PERSON Theatre

Malthouse to 25 Aug If Lally Katz could hold a note, she would have made a brilliant cabaret artist. The performer comes replete with confidence, clarity and control. Costume changes are nothing. Deadpan irony a breeze. And, as we know from her voluminous body of written work, she weaves stories with Class-A characters, humour and inviting, brighteyed innocence. Stories I Want to Tell You In Person is Katz’s solo show debut, and what a wonder that fact is. As she tells

UPSTREAM COLOR

follows the journalist in the days after the disaster as well as an Australian couple who have separated over differing reactions to the situation. There are a lot of ideas explored in this show: the frailties of a media that prizes speed of reporting above all else, the performativity of online identities, the first world’s relation to the developing world and Australia’s patronising international relations in the Pacific. The show also merges forms utilising the tropes of live art, naturalism, digital performance and dance. The effect, however, is often cacophonous and distancing. It was most effective when 52 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

us in the show itself, it was only after a string of near-misses in her love and professional life that the idea to perform in one of her own shows re-emerged as a realistic option. Her impersonations are superb and turn vividly written characters from her life into vibrant onstage presences. A nod must go to director AnneLouise Sarks for wrangling Katz’s untrained acting body so successfully. There’s no set, save for a couple of chairs and a shimmery, gold backdrop, but the lighting, sound and direction hone sharp focus on a ‘meta’ string of tales which link up Kew, New York and

Katz’s mind with the person that commands the stage. Simon Eales

unstable title character, but it is always entertaining. Molly’s adventure will surely draw a smile on your face, even if sometimes it is penned with confusion.

HEY! YEAH! IT’S MOLLY’S UPSTREAM TRAVELLING COLOR WORM SHOW! Film Grace Robertson

Theatre

In cinemas 22 Aug

Malthouse, Tower to 24 Aug The mist of a smoke machine and some garish variety show music welcome us into the Malthouse for Hey! Yeah! It’s Molly Travelling Worm Show!. The kooky play follows playwright Melita ‘Molly’ Rowston’s quest to find the all-but-forgotten local icon of Korumburra – a giant puppet earthworm. The result is a fitting tribute to tacky Australiana; everything is as big and not quite right as the box of goon that features regularly in the mise en scene. Rowston’s puppet companions are aged versions of Ozzie the Ostrich

With so many pieces to its puzzle, it’s difficult to summarise, but in a nutshell Upstream Color is a bio-sci-fi drama that’s part mystery, part romance. As Shane Carruth’s second feature film, it’s undeniably a commendable effort – a cinematic experience that stays ticking in your brain a while after its conclusion. However, its story and ambition outweigh the impact of the final product; Upstream Color is heavy on the allegory, yet skimps on human connection. This is due, in part, to the numb portrayals of the two protagonists, Kris (Amy Seimetz) and Jeff (Carruth) – even when

STORIES I WANT TO TELL YOU IN PERSON

and Claude the Crow had they spent the good part of their retirement in pubs. Manned by Benito Di Fonzo, they are ruffled with hilariously looser tongues, providing the audience some good laughs throughout. The Wiggles’ all-inclusive palette seems to have inspired both the dingy motel set and Rowston’s wardrobe, giving our retinas a work out. Rowston and co-performer Narda Shanley cram the hour-long show with hammy dialogue and physical humour, and we are always braced for a sudden gush of song and dance. The show can be as jumpy as the excitable and emotionally

they react strongly they come off wooden. Although, admittedly this is consistent with their clouded, muddled headspace after experiencing traumatic events they can’t seem to recall. It’s contradictory in that every scene – every sparse bit of dialogue, every close-up of plantation, every time the camera follows a hand’s movement – feels like it’s calculated and contributing to the film’s meaning, but nevertheless, much of the time we’re left with the impression that most of the depth is the ‘of field’ variety rather than the emotional kind. Behind every connection between the several plotlines, you can see the shadow of Carruth’s hand,


arts reviews

PROMPTER

nudging it lightly towards you: ‘here’s the next clue’. Despite some overly languid shots, it’s all gorgeous – muted tones heavy on the blues and dreamy blurs around all the edges, with a riveting sound design based on noises taken from nature. Dense in thematics, Upstream Color is worth watching to be a part of its discussion, moreso than merely in and of itself. It’s a film that is ripe to be theorised and analysed but, considering many of the events that occur, is disappointingly unaffecting. Stephanie Liew

THE CHERRY ORCHARD

THE CHERRY ORCHARD Theatre

MTC, The Sumner, to 25 Sep MTC’s production of The Cherry Orchard, unnecessarily marketed as ‘by Simon Stone after Chekhov’ (the totality of the plot and recognisable fragments of dialogue remain the same as the 1904 original), instigates a conversation about Australia’s historical development while not forgetting the core of Chekhov’s drama, which follows the demise

HEY! YEAH! IT’S MOLLY’S TRAVELLING WORM SHOW!

of a wealthy family of inherited privilege. In the face of a rapidly changing society they remain in a state of deluded stasis and eventually lose their wealth and standing. Their mansion and its cherry orchard are bought by the entrepreneurial former peasant Lopakhin – in this version a second generation migrant. The production’s costumes and props evoke the 1970s, yet there are few direct references to that period in the characters’ text. Over time a theatrical landscape existing in no specific time but framed by certain ideologies becomes apparent. Had Stone

attempted to transpose the ideologies of class that existed in pre-revolutionary Russia entirely into a contemporary Australian setting it would have felt anachronistic. Instead this production frames a dialogue that exists through time: between Chekhov’s text, the aspirational capitalism of post-war Australia and the ecological despair of today, a result of that capitalist excess. This is a tricky balancing act that for the most part works brilliantly. Intelligently directed, captivatingly designed, perfectly cast and superbly performed. Oliver Coleman

THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 53


muso

NEWS

THE NANCY WILSON NIGHTHAWK STANDARD Heart guitarist Nancy Wilson has long been a fan of one of Gibson’s more powerful “modern alternatives” and in recognition of the union of artist and instrument, Gibson USA has introduced the Nancy Wilson Nighthawk Standard, an elegant variation on a contemporary classic, featuring a figured Grade AAA maple top dressed in a high-gloss nitrocellulose Fireburst finish with Cherry back and neck, and a commemorative “Fanatic” truss-rod cover. The guitar retains all the distinctive ingredients that made the Nighthawk stand out initially, including the 25½” scale length for firm lows and chiming highs, the comfortable body contours, through-body stringing and unique Nighthawk bridge, and the superb versatility of the pairing of Nighthawk mini-humbucker and Nighthawk lead humbucker, with five-way switching for a range of humbucking and single-coil combinations.

YAMAHA LIVE CUSTOM KITS The Live Custom series of drum kits from Yamaha has been designed with a greater focus on their playability in the live context. The kit uses 1.2mm oak plies that are ten per cent thicker than those used on Yamaha’s Oak Custom drums. Bass drum shells are comprised of eightply designs while the rack tom, floor tom and snare shells are constructed with six. The Live Custom therefore delivers a sound with greater strength and depth, providing rich expressive power that the manufacturer hopes “exceeds your imagination”. 54 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

IN THE STUDIO: GOSSLING/OH MERCY Stepping out of their respective musical comfort zones, Helen Croome aka Gossling and Alexander Gow of Oh Mercy took on the challenge of recording in French for a remarkable Australian compilation album. They talk to Michael Smith about flying to Paris to film a music video.

A

ustralian label Inertia had the idea that it might be fun to invite some of Australia’s most interesting contemporary artists to reinterpret some of the most famous of French pop songs, in French. The opening and first song lifted from the album, Mélodie Française, as a single was La Minute De Silence, written by one Salvadore Poe and interpreted here by Helen Croome aka Gossling and Oh Mercy’s Alexander Gow. “The producer of the track was Pip Norman, though he goes under the name Countbounce,” Croome begins. “He’s a hip hop dude,” Gow adds, “so they’re allowed to have pseudonyms!” “So it was at his studio in Preston in Melbourne.” That’s Bounce County Studios, and Norman is a founding member of the electrohip hop outfit TZU. Recording with Logic Pro 9, his favourite piece of gear is his much-prized RCA Dx77 vintage ribbon mic. “It’s impossible to know where something is going to go,” Gow continues. “Helen and I had discussed a few options, but to be fair to Helen, I probably got a little overexcited and probably was working on a bit of a different level to Helen, and kind of went ahead and followed my whim, and luckily it turned out great, ‘cause if it didn’t… I would have been to blame,” he laughs. “I know Pip’s studio really well. We didn’t have a ton of time to do it. We did it all in, maybe, six hours or something

like that, from scratch. So his understanding of his studio and being able to make things happen really quickly… As I said, I was kind of going at a hundred miles an hour and he was able to keep up with that, so in that he was particularly useful, doing the analogue synth you can hear on the track, which is one of my favourite parts.” “When we recorded the song, I only had a basic understanding of the lyrics,” Croome admits. As it happens, those artists that felt they needed a little help in their performances in French had the opportunity to with French tutors both in the studio and via Skype. The bonus for Croome and Gow in being the first cab off the album was the opportunity to go to Paris to film the promotional video for their song, thanks to French web-based music streaming

“IT’S IMPOSSIBLE TO KNOW WHERE SOMETHING IS GOING TO GO,” service, Deezer. Croome and Gow even launched the track in a performance at Deezer’s Paris office, while the production crew were given unprecedented permission to film in and around the legendary Moulin Rouge. The filmmakers based the black and white clip’s storyboard on old French films. “We probably did two ten-hour days, if not more, to film the clip. It was kind of a sightseeing adventure – you’re not going to send a couple of Australians to Paris and put them in a studio somewhere with green screen, so we got to walk around. I’d never been there before – Helen had once. We had some French camera people, but Lucy [Perrett], from the label, and her partner Jim [Yeomans] directed the clip.” Yeomans is a director at ampbox.tv, a London-based company, and specialises in fly on the wall, on the move footage. Shooting on the road for Kasabian, he has mastered the art. Due to the limited time available in Paris and the desire to shoot in as many locations as possible, he shot with two Canon 5Ds – one with shoulder rig – and a Canon 7D with a monopod and a bag of lenses. “There was a crew of four,” he explains. “We knew certain locations we wanted but also knew we would see stuff on the fly, so being able to run around town and not get tired was important. It was a case of walking, cabs and trains.” “It isn’t hard work,” Croome chuckles, “spending four days walking around Paris pretending that you like someone!” Mélodie Française is released by Inertia 16 Aug.


THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 55


muso

STUDIO CREDITS ENGINEER: Brendan Williams & Phil Bulleyment

ADDITIONAL ENGINEERING: Andrew Proudfoot & Rob Kelledy

PRODUCER: Brendan Williams

RECORDING STUDIOS: Giant Wafer, Wales; Edwin Street Recording Studio, Bury, UK; Dutch Uncles Rehearsal/Recording Space, Manchester

ARTWORK: Dr Me

IN THE STUDIO: DUTCH UNCLES Prog pop five-piece Dutch Uncles headed into deepest, darkest Wales to record their latest album. Michael Smith investigates.

R

euniting with producer Brendan Williams, who worked with them on their previous album, 2011’s Cadenza, Dutch Uncles headed to fully residential recording studio, Giant Wafer in mid-Wales, late last year to record their next album, Out Of Touch In The Wild. “Brendan was involved in the writing process as well,” bass player and the band’s principal composer, Robin Richards explains. “It was good having that sixth ear that we trusted. I tend to write music first on piano or on a guitar and then print it out as sheet music, so there’s a form of a song before we’ve even played it and I suppose that’s quite an unusual way to work, but then as a group we sort of mould it into the song that it can be. Not everything was finished when we went in to record, but we had a direction and it was more a case of filling in the gaps when we got there, I think.” Giant Wafer is based around a Speck Electronics Lilo 24-channel console going into ProTools HD, with the recording chain flowing through 24 channels of classic Neve and API preamps complementing the studio’s collection of industry standard microphones. For the analogue purists they have a beautiful fully refurbished 3M M23 1” eighttrack tape machine built in 1966. “We used the studio as more of another instrument. With Cadenza, the recording process was so fragmented; this time we knew the time that we had allocated there and we researched the studio that we thought had all the right instruments and if not, then we rented. There’s lots of studio composition, lots of times where we sat around and just broke things apart and put things back together again, and just used what was there and so in that sense, the

56 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

studio has a kind of character on the record. It wasn’t so much consolebased – we weren’t doing any mixing there or anything. It was mainly kind of DAW-based and everything was kind of ‘done in the box’ until we were there. They just had a lot of great preamps – API and Neve stuff – and great stuff for vocals as well, like Pultec EQs and really good compression stuff. So there wasn’t that much done on the desk – the desk was more just for monitoring really. It was more the environment of the control room that allowed us to all fit in there and contribute when we were working. The instrumentation dictated the way it was going to go. Whatever felt natural for each piece, whether it be a marimba and a vibraphone, or strings or more synths, we’d just place that in and then

“WE HAD A DIRECTION AND IT WAS MORE A CASE OF FILLING IN THE GAPS WHEN WE GOT THERE.” worked around that. We knew from the start we wanted to have strings, tuned percussion. That instantly gave it more of a distinct sound than the previous album had. We did about 90 per cent of the music and about 50 or 60 per cent of the vocals there, all the important bits that needed a bit of ambience. We had two good rooms in there, one that was a bit lively and one that was completely dead. But it did take us another five months after leaving the studio to finish the rest of the album.” The rest of the recording period was spent in their own recording/ rehearsal studio in Manchester with the final mixing and mastering done at Edwin Street Recording Studio, which is run by Phil Bulleyment, who co-produced, mixed and mastered the album. “He’s basically mixed everything that we’ve ever done,” Richards points out. The high spec recording studio, which also features a production suite for postproduction and learning, includes a Toft ATB24 24 Channel console, and industry standard ProTools 9 MOTU 24 i/o Core System. “He’s also our live engineer as well – it’s pretty good to have the guy who mixed the album mixing our live sound as well, getting it as close as possible to the studio sound.” Reproducing those sounds live, Dutch Uncles are sampling some parts of the album using an Akai MPC1000 Sampling Production Station, as well as an electric marimba from the US, a MalletKat from Alternate Mode – “a really fancy MIDI controller” as Richards describes it, “but it’s quite aesthetically pleasing as well.” Out Of Touch In The Wild by Dutch Uncles is out now through Memphis Industries/Breakaway Recordings.


muso

COLE CLARK ANGEL GUITAR

The “Angel” is the company’s latest addition, with a piezo pickup on the bridge, a face sensor and a mic inside the pre-amp box, which gives the option of all three or any one in combination. The Angel is full-scale length – with a smaller and more compact body than their Fat Lady range. Solid bunya wood is used for the soundboard, while the neck is Queensland maple.

There are three new “Mini” versions of the iconic Dunlop Fuzz Face available that all contain the original circuitry from those classic pedals, but in a much smaller format to fit comfortably on your pedal board. I had a chance to check out the bright, bold, aggressive tones of the little blue version, which is based on the original circuitry of a prized 1970 Fuzz Face fitted with silicon BC108 transistors. As always the simple two-knob format is perfect for instantly dialling in a killer tone, and a diverse array of sounds are achieved by plugging in different guitars with different pickups and manipulating your volume knob and pick attack. New features include reversed ins and outs, a bright blue LED, AC power jack and convenient new 9V battery door, making this design much friendlier to use alongside other on-stage pedals.

Steve Flack

Reza Nasseri

The Cole Clark story, in a nutshell, is that Cole and Clark, who met working at Maton, together had a vision of a different design style, one of a steel string guitar that has the integral neck and Spanish heel of a nylon string guitar but amplifying these guitars with multiple pickups in various places on the body rather than just on the bridge or in the sound hole of the guitar.

GREG BENNETT GD ACOUSTIC GUITARS

58 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

DUNLOP SILICON FUZZ FACE MINI DISTORTION

MXR SUPER BADASS DISTORTION

Greg Bennett is the man responsible for pouring quality back into what was once a “budget” brand, putting more thought into design and sourcing quality materials from around the world while still keeping costs low for the working man. His new GD series of acoustics retains the same philosophy and provides acoustic musicians with incredible value for money across the whole range. The Greg Bennett GD acoustics all feature a solid Sitka spruce top, mahogany back and sides, rosewood fingerboard and bridge, multi-ply bindings, die-cast tuners and their own ‘Thunderflex’ bracing system, which was designed to give the guitars a richer, louder sound. At the top of the range, the GD 100-S has a beautifully balanced voice that’s nice and even, with a crisp zing when chords are strummed out, and a delicate brilliance for fingerstyle playing.

The new MXR Super Badass Distortion is easily one of the most versatile distortion pedals out at the moment. What happens if you have found the perfect amp that sounds amazing clean but gets muddy when you crank the drive or switch channels? Or what if your amp sounds amazing when it’s distorted but terrible when clean? Do you need two separate rigs to achieve tonal perfection? Hell no! Throw your stack in the bin, get a killer little combo amp and throw a Super Badass in front of it. This pedal is a 100% fullspectrum analogue distortion that goes from a mild breakup to all-out liquid saturation, with a beautifully notched three-band EQ to shape your tone. A word of warning though – there’s a lot of output with this pedal, so it can make a combo sound a lot bigger than it looks.

Reza Nasseri

Reza Nasseri


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Street Press Australia requires a full-time and part-time Mac Operator to assist with the production of our four weekly state based editions of The Music and other publications. The position is based at our Fitzroy North office. The role will include updating advertising templates and layout of editorial pages within existing style guides. This position will create a fantastic base for a junior mac operator looking to acquire skills and sound industry experience. The role will have a major focus on processing artwork and co-ordinating the sending of pages to press. This position is for someone with a strong skill base, but still eager to learn new skills and experience an extremely busy and creative work environment.You must love indesign and photoshop with a keen eye on design and colour correction and be super organised. The workflow is high paced and demanding and suits someone that can multi task with an extremely strong attention to detail. Ideally the candidate has a minimum of two years experience in print-based design. The part-time position is for Thursday, Friday and Monday. Please email résumés with three samples of work in PDF form to employment@themusic.com.au

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WOOHOO IT’S TAX TIME!

Interested in Facebook Likes, YouTube Views, Twitter Followers Visit: http:// fatcatmedia.webs.com email: kobecorman@hotmail.com

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RECORDING STUDIOS SOUNDPARK RECORDING STUDIO Very comfortable and super relaxed studio with large wood and stone tracking room and isolation 3 booths. 24tk Pro-tools, loads of vintage recording equipment (inc tube/ribbon mics, over 20 classic pre’s neve etc, urei/emi compressors/eq’s, 24tk Tape, classic Fx, Vintage instruments (Ludwig 60’s drums, Vox/Fender/ampeg Amps, Hammond, Wurli, Grand Piano plus Lots More. $600 day (11hrs) with engineer or $60 per/hr. Without engineer $450 a day (14hours), Great Deal. See soundparkstudios.com.au for full list and photos. Contact Andrew for enquiries 0425 706 382 or email idge72@hotmail.com

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REHEARSAL ROOMS SOUNDPARK REHEARSALS Detax will maximise your tax refund or minimise your tax liability, by applying years of Entertainment & Arts industry tax knowledge. Individual Tax Returns from only $99. www.detax.com.au

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Great Rehearsal rooms in Northcote. Daytime $50. Nightime from $60 Storage Available, Car Parking, Gear for Hire, Comfortable Friendly Atmosphere. Daytime 12pm till 6pm, Night 6pm till 11pm. Phone Andrew 0425 706 382

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Learn how to use ProTools from the comfort of your own home. From learner to professional private tuition at affordable rates. kiel@kielhamesaudio.com | 0416205435

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MUSICIANS WANTED BASS PLAYER BASS PLAYER NEEDED Bass player needed for black keys style band. About to shoot film clip. PR campaign starting. Already getting radio play nationally. Central coast area preferred. Just finished successful tour wanting to tour again. Contact kurt: newregulars@live.com

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SINGER LEAD VOCALIST WANTED Sydney based progressive rock band looking for male lead vocalist. We are looking for a professional, creative and motivated individual who has a strong voice, is a dynamic melody-writer and connects well with the music. To hear current demos: www.reverbnation.com/borahorza Email us: borahorzaband@ hotmail.com Feel free to call- Tom: 0411288190 Rich: 0414997996

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SERVICES GRAPHIC DESIGN OPEN 7 DAYS Advertise your gigs the right way! Get professional and creative posters that people will remember. email: nreece.design@gmail.com

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THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 59


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the guide

How did you get together? We were living in two houses next door to each other for a while in Carlton so we decided to make a jam band. Sum up your musical sound in four words? It’s only rock’n’roll, man. If you could support any band in the world – past or present – who would it be? Beyoncé. You’re being sent into space, no iPod, you can bring one album – what would it be? Elektronik Türküler – Erkin Koray. Greatest rock’n’roll moment of your career to date? Rock’n’roll is not very rock’n’roll. Why should people come and see your band? Because life is sad and unfulfilling When and where for your next gig? 28 and 29 Aug, Northcote Social Club.

KING GIZZARD & THE LIZARD WIZARD

Website link for more info? kinggizzardandthelizardwizard.com

lifestyle

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the guide vic.live@themusic.com.au

FRONTLASH

LIVE THIS WEEK

EAR SAVIOUR

Jagwar Ma – Come Save Me (Andrew Weatherall mix). Just when you thought the song couldn’t sound any better.!

TOILET HUMOUR “Found Some Poo” on YouTube. The jingle’s really catchy and it’s SO much better than “I’ve Done A Poo”.

LET THERE BE LIGHT Walked past The Windsor lately? Until 8 Sep in celebration of the Grand Dame’s 130th anniversary, projection art illuminates the hotel’s façade. Don’t trip over a tripod while you gawk, now.

FAVOURITE CITY JEREMY KELSHAW FROM CLOUD CONTROL What’s your favourite city to tour and why? Amsterdam and NOT BECAUSE OF WHAT YOU THINK, haha. But my favourite venue in the world, The Paradiso is there. The Dutch love us, too.

YOU’RE IMPOSSIBLE

DRIFT AWAY

Holy Holy (pictured) will be demonstrating an album born in Stockholm and Berlin on 22 Aug at The Workers Club. Debuting their single Impossible Like You, the duo will be backed by the full band, with support from Ainslie Wills.

The Moonee Valley Drifters put together vocal passion, undeniable chops and swingin’ tunes, playing Western swing, hardcore country, Cajun, blues, and rockabilly all in their own unique style. They come to the Retreat Hotel on 25 Aug.

NOT RUTHLESS

OPEN UP

With a wide range of influences from folk and jazz to soul, Ruth Lindsey’s songwriting reveals her reflections on life. Lindsey’s lyrics form evocative imagery that’s enriched by her strong, distinctive voice. Check her out at the Retreat Hotel on 27 Aug.

Collarts will be holding their Open Day on 24 Aug from 10am to 2pm at their South Melbourne campus. Head along to find out how you can start your career in the music industry, check out the campus, and watch live performances.

PROWLER PARTY

A COLOURFUL STORM

Melbourne thrash metal masters Party Vibez are teaming up with New Zealand’s pedlars of angry, fast punk rock Prowler for a night of heavy tunes in the Reverence Hotel band room on 23 Aug. Road Ratz and Hailgun are bringin’ up the rear.

Shebeen Basement will be getting a whole afternoon of earthy beats with Sportsforest on 24 Aug. Brought to you by A Colourful Storm, there’s whole host of guest DJs, including Biscuit, Conrad and Misha to chart your sound needs.

Cloud Control touring now. Check The Guide for dates.

BACKLASH DOG DAYS ARE OVER

In a Chinese zoo, a Tibetan mastiff housed in an African lion’s cage barked and this was how suspicion was raised that it was not, in fact, a lion? That’s a bit ‘ruff ’ (sorry).

FULLY SICK The saying “I felt sick to my stomach” – where else can you feel sick? In the dick?

STAGE FRIGHT Anyone who was at The Workers Club for Eagle & The Worm’s Tuesday residency for allowing the biggest-ever circle of fear circumference! Handy for late arrivals wanting to get up the front, though.

FIRST ALBUM Harry Angus: Michael Jackson, Dangerous. On cassette. I was a late bloomer. Felix Riebl: The first one I can remember was Michael Jackson – Bad, and Money For Nothing by Dire Straits. The Cat Empire touring nationally from September. Check The Guide for dates.

FOR MORE HEAD TO THEMUSIC.COM.AU 62 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013


the guide vic.live@themusic.com.au

LIVE THIS WEEK

BEASTLY ROMANCE

FEET FIELDS

Old Bar patrons will be looking out for the moon on 23 Aug as it hosts the launch of Werewolves In Love, the new single from Sun God Replica’s (pictured) upcoming second album. My Left Boot will be shoeing in for a howling good time.

Both Gold Fields and Clubfeet (pictured) released successful albums this year; the former their debut in Black Sun and the latter their second full-length, titled Heirs & Graces. The two bands come together for a double header at The Prince on 23 Aug.

SINGLE FOCUS

FUN MACHINE Answered by: Chris Endrey Single title: Naked Body

PROCRASTINATION TECHNIQUES JASMINE RAE When things aren’t working what do you do to avoid recording? I use a few different techniques, but mostly I’ll go out to eat, drink or shop. I usually hate shopping for clothes, but when it’s in another country, it seems much more fun. Jasmine Rae’s new album If I Want To is out now.

THE RED LIGHTS DISTRICT Following on from the release of their well received single Chaperone earlier this year, The Red Lights (pictured) have clambered up the ranks of Melbourne’s indie-pop pecking order to the vision of their second EP. The Evelyn Hotel will be lit red on 24 Aug with the launch, which includes support from Dark Arts, I Know The Chief and Agility.

Dual bass maestros Lowtide (pictured) will be riding swell tunes at The Tote on 23 Aug, previewing some new material from their upcoming album. Supporting will be local acts Zone Out and The Stevens, as well as Sydney’s Day Ravies.

That Gold Street Sound is a Motown funk and soul band who will make you shake your tail feather. This six-piece crank out fiery devil’s music that’ll get you in the mood for romance. Get down to them when they play at the Retreat Hotel on 22 Aug.

Is this track from a forthcoming release/existing release? Yes! We like albums, so we made one. It’s aptly named Bodies On and will be out this summer. What was inspiring you during the song’s writing and recording? I’d just walked through a shit-eating shopping centre and seen a million ads telling women to look all weird. My work pants also had a massive hole showing off my undies, which can’t be discounted.

Do you play it differently live? Sure. Way more percussion jamming, way less Formula One car samples. Also we have a thrusting dance to go with it. Obviously.

What’s the f irst item on your rider for this tour? Maltesers.

When and where is your launch/next gig? 28 Aug, John Curtin Hotel; 29 Aug, Yah Yah’s. We’re playing back-to-back!

Stonefield are touring. Check The Guide for dates.

Website link for more info? funmachineband.tumblr.com

AMY FINDLAY FROM STONEFIELD

OLD GOLD

How long did it take to write/record? Twenty seconds to get the yelly idea and then a couple months to fine tune the roaring stuff.

We’ll like this song if we like... A good mandarin. Bare skin in the sun. Voyeurism.

RIDER MUST HAVE GET LOW

What’s the song about? Ignoring everybody and getting happy by being naked. Often.

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the guide vic.live@themusic.com.au

EP FOCUS

LIVE THIS WEEK

ALBUM FOCUS

PALMS Answered by: Al Grigg Album title: Step Brothers

CASTLECOMER Answered by: Bede Kennedy EP title: Lone Survivor How many releases do you have now? Danny’s Den (March 2012), Lone Survivor ( July 2013). We’re hoping for the debut album in early 2014. Was anything in particular inspiring you during the making? Other than our engineer Simon’s very inspiring ponytail, we were just generally inspired by the big recording rooms in 301 studios. We were like wide-eyed kids, just trying to take the whole shiny experience in. What’s your favourite song on it? The crowd dance during Forrest and Rosie which makes them fun live. But we get to rap on Lone Survivor! We’ll like this EP if we like... Vocals and beats. We’ve got plenty of fivepart harmonies, with strong rhythms and catchy hooks. Think someone shoving a firecracker up the arses of every member of Fleet Foxes. When and where is your launch/next gig? 23 Aug at Corner Hotel – the EP Tour Launch. It should be a fun (and relatively safe) riot. Website link for more info? facebook.com/castlecomer

Where did the title of your new album come from? My dad and Tom’s dad were single at the time and we were chatting about how they both used to love watching Just Shoot Me and smashing a bottle of red wine after work. We joked that they should get married, and then we’d be Step Brothers. Da dah! How many releases do you have now? Step Brothers is our debut album. So, one. Before that we just put a few songs out on the internet. How long did it take to write/ record? Mainly the songs were written in a really fruitful six months. We recorded it in our friend’s kitchen in three days, but spread out over about a year. Not a hugely efficient use of time in retrospect. Was anything in particular inspiring you during the making? When Tom and I called it a day on Red Riders, it really opened up the creative floodgates. We let ourselves do all the dumb, fun stuff we were always too straight-laced to do in RR. Also, I developed a really dumb, misguided crush on someone.

SPIDER CONTROL

The Basics (pictured), Snout, Joelistics and Even will perform at Rock The Boat at Northcote Social Club on 22 Aug to raise money for Adam Bandt’s election campaign and The Asylum Seeker Resource Centre.

With a sound built upon grooveladen beats, rocking guitars and trippy synth, Brisbane four-piece The Arachnids are playing at the Retreat Hotel on 24 Aug, in support of their second EP Lack Of Control.

ART HOUSE

SLOW DANCIN’

Shebeen’s Speakeasy Cinema is screening Doggiewoggiez! Poochiewoochiez! (2012) on 21 Aug. It’s a film that attempts to recreate Alejandro Jodorowsky’s 1973 film The Holy Mountain using only dog-related found footage edited together. Yep.

Oslow have released single Desert Dog Road while Ted Danson With Wolves recently released Tim Has A Really Good Idea (… Again!). Ahead of a split 7” release they play at Reverence Hotel on 24 Aug with Summer Hill, Apart From This and Stockades.

YOUNG’UNS

BOB IN THE CARAVAN

Off the back of their hit single We Come Running, LA’s Youngblood Hawke take a little time out from supporting Pink on her massive Australian tour to change it up by bringing their new brand of uplifting, powerful electro-pop to The Toff In Town on 24 Aug.

The Caravan Music Club is set to host Van Walker and Gallie presenting an evening of classic Bob Dylan, performing two of the artist’s most iconic albums in their entirety: John Wesley Harding and Desire. Set to be a stunning show, it happens on 23 Aug.

What’s your favourite song on it? This Last Year ‘cos it basically sums up the whole point of the album in three-and-a-half minutes. Also, cos Dion rips the most legendary solo on it. Will you do anything differently next time? More shredding, bigger choruses, tighter leggings, bigger hair. When and where is your launch/ next gig? We’re touring nationally supporting Cloud Control right now! 4 Sep, Karova Lounge, Ballarat; 5 Sep Star Bar, Bendigo; and 6 Sep, Forum Theatre. Website link for more info? facebook.com/palmsmusic

64 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

ROCK THE BOAT

BRIGHT SPARK Tom West is a songwriter and fingerpicker who wrote his first song at the tender age of 15 after being acrimoniously dumped by a high school sweetheart. His lyrics are clever, endearing and catchy. He launches his debut album A Spark In The Dark at Howler on 25 Aug with guests Citrus Jam and Jayne West.

FOR MORE HEAD TO THEMUSIC.COM.AU


the guide vic.live@themusic.com.au

LIVE THIS WEEK

DEAD KING

COLOURS OF SHAME

Fresh off the massive Airbourne tour, Palace Of The King are coming to Cherry Bar on 23 Aug to launch their self-titled EP. Warming up the stage on the night will be Dead City Ruins (pictured) and Adelaide band Angels Of Gung-Ho.

The suave and erudite All The Colours gentlemen are poised to release their latest single Shame from their self-titled forthcoming debut album. The track oozes a dapper and sophisticated charm. See the band at The Workers Club on 24 Aug.

EP FOCUS

MARLOW Answered by: Kiel Van Daal EP title: Seven How many releases do you have now? This is our debut EP, which we’ve also released two singles from and it’s out through MGM.

INTERIOR DECORATION STEWART HILL FROM DEAD LETTER CIRCUS

TIED TIGHT

SEEMS FAMILIAR

Six-piece The Hello Morning’s (pictured) pop-laden, soulful country tunes become psychedelic bliss-outs live. They launch their new EP Tie That Binds at the Northcote Social Club on 24 Aug with Grizzly Jim Lawrie Ali Barter and Winter Boy.

Bob Evans follows up the release of his fourth album Familiar Stranger with a regional tour. See him in solo mode at Karova Lounge, Ballarat on 22 Aug; Torquay Hotel on 23 Aug; and Westernport Hotel, San Remo on 24 Aug.

HOPIN’ FOR POPIN’

TREAT ‘EM MEAN

Influenced by a variety of rock and pop genres, The Pope’s Assassins’ sound is raw, energetic, yet poetic. They play at the Reverence Hotel on 22 Aug, with Triangle Fight, The Sterlings and Leigh Robertson.

Brooke Russell & The Mean Reds’ debut album Poor Virginia blends country, blues, swing and folk. See ‘em perform at The Toff In Town on 25 Aug, with Jemma & Her Wise Young Ambitious Men and Strine Singers.

Do you hang anything on the walls to inspire you when recording? Not really... but we’re big on inspirational desktop wall papers. Justin Bieber, David Hasselhoff, Susan Boyle, Michael Jackson. It really depends on what emotion you’re trying to tap into at the time: Angry, sexy, hungry... Dead Letter Circus’ new album The Catalyst Fire out now.

Was anything in particular inspiring you during the making? The writing and production spanned two years, so it’s a mixed bag of influences and emotions. Collaborating with our producer Stevie Knight had a big influence and really refined our sound. What’s your favourite song on it? Maybe In Time. It’s our latest single and we played it for the first time last night to an audience! We’ll like this EP if we like... An eclectic range; it’s a sampler of the band in its entirely so it’s a good selection. Some of it’s subtle some and atmospheric but it’s also very driven. When and where is your launch/next gig? 24 Aug, Ferntree Gully Hotel with Jericco; 31 Aug, Wool Exchange, Geelong, with The Getaway Plan, Jericco and more. Website link for more info? marlowtheband.com.au

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THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 65


opinion

OG FLAVAS

ADAMANTIUM WOLF

WAKE THE DEAD

URBAN AND R&B NEWS WITH CYCLONE

METAL, HARDCORE AND PUNK WITH LOCHLAN WATT

HARDCORE AND PUNK WITH SARAH PETCHELL

Horrorshow’s comeback, King Amongst Many, has debuted at No. 2 on the ARIA charts. Today Australian hip hop is huge, but there are no high-profile female MCs. This makes the ascent of expat Iggy Azalea (AKA Amethyst Kelly) so remarkable. In 2006 a teen Kelly, obsessed with 2Pac, left NSW’s coastal Mullumbimby for the US, determined to become a superstar rapper. After songs like Pu$$y went viral, she signed to TI’s Grand Hustle Records. Kelly was selected for XXL’s 2012 ‘Top 10 Freshman’ edition, infuriating Azealia Banks. Now the Work femcee, meant to replace Angel Haze at the ill-fated Movement Festival, will support Beyoncé in Oz. Oddly, her adults-only lyrics caused ‘issues’ when she toured with Rita Ora. Azaleans supposedly should expect the rapper’s album, The New Classic, next month via Island Def Jam – almost a year on from her timely, Diplo-blessed mixtape TrapGold. Kelly, indebted to Ke$ha as much as to Nicki Minaj, is no Missy Elliott-style suffragette, her image a parody of pornographic femininity. The rapper, who’s dated A$AP Rocky, might be Coco “Mrs Ice-T” Austin’s minime. Besides, her music is less hip hop than EDM. Kelly appears blithely ignorant of an ancient taboo in skip hop: thou shalt not fake an American accent. Happily, Aussie hip hop has two new ‘queens’ to join Elefant Traks’ Sky’High. Chelsea Jane will be the lone femcee at Sprung Festival, while Adelaide’s Kimence recently dropped her Butterthief debut, One View – the song The Quest is about conquering a man’s world.

IGGY AZALEA 66 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

The incident that was on everyone’s lips last week was Ampgate – aka who the hell is moronic enough to steal an amp from a venue that a band is playing at and basically hold it for ransom.

LAMB OF GOD

There have been a lot of international tours announced lately; we’re talking about more than ever before seen in Australia. Here’s some metal, hardcore and punk bands coming through this country from September through to December alone: Lamb Of God, Meshuggah, Soilwork, Bring Me The Horizon, Crossfaith, Amorphis, Behemoth, Hour Of Penance, Kvelertak, Black Flag (sidenote: lawsuits are heaps punk and Greg Ginn is obviously a legend), Boysetsfire, The Ataris, Snuff, No Fun At All, For The Fallen Dreams, The Plot In You, The Devin Townsend Project, Church Of Misery, Palm, Korpiklaani, Stratovarius, Rolo Tomassi, Nile, The Faceless, Volumes, Every Time I Die, Firewind, Enslaved, Scott Kelly, Jarboe, Chelsea Grin, Stick To Your Guns, Between The Buried & Me, and probably a whole bunch more that are yet to be announced, still be negotiated, or were simply overlooked. Granted, some of these bands are in fact touring together, but with such a sheer volume it doesn’t do much to dilute the absolute megaload of choices. With only about five cities included on the majority of these tours – Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Perth – it doesn’t take a genius to work out that there’s going to be a lot of clashes. Some of these clashing gigs are being announced months after the other, displaying either a complete ignorance or a complete disregard. It’s also worth noting that very few of these tours include Australian acts – kudos to those promoters who still make the effort, because there’s a reason the most successfully corporate touring companies don’t usually practice this.

We should all be grateful that we’ve got more choices to make about our live entertainment than ever before, but the current situation is unprecedented, and presents a number of questions. Where does the oversaturation of international shows leave local gigs? What about upcoming Australian bands trying to tour off their own backs? It feels like we’re seeing less of that than before, or perhaps the tours of Australian bands are just struggling for visibility in rather busy market. Do we have a big enough population that can afford to regularly purchase enough $50+ tickets for all these touring companies to survive? Is the bubble about to burst, or is our live music industry simply blossoming and I’m all worried about nothing? Here’s some things for promoters to consider. Communicate with each other in advance: try and avoid clashes before they happen, as they can annoy punters just as much as promoters. I’ve seen a Facebook group set up for Melbourne metal promotions that is already proving to be quite handy, though it is interesting to observe those who decline to share what is up their sleeves. Tour more regional areas: there’s dozens of viable country towns just screaming out for live music. It might not be as calculated a bet as being able to comfortably book three Melbourne stops, but persistence will build scenes and open up new pathways for musicians, businessmen and music lovers. Don’t forget that the music industry thrives on community. It’s the people who buy tickets to shows that will shape where things go from here, and the next six months are set to be a very interesting time for the heavy music industry in Australia.

The victim was Wil Wagner, singer of The Smith Street Band, who had a brand new amp stolen from a show the band played at the Old Bar in Melbourne two weekends ago. The guy picked it up, and walked straight out (he was also wearing some questionable headgear, but that’s an entirely different crime). But my question is this: what on earth would possess someone to do that? Is it just a crime of opportunity? Was it a prank? I don’t know, and I guess I never will. But what does come out of this is the hilarious and sensitive way that Wil Wagner dealt with the situation in the days following. He just wanted to the amp back, and what followed was the social media campaign known as Ampgate. Wagner used the band’s social media accounts to reveal information as it came to light. We know what the guy looks like – if you know him, come forward. And someone did dob a mate in and facilitated a comedy of errors, that we can look back on and laugh at now but I’m sure was frustrating at the time. If you’re in a band, jump on The Smith Street Band Facebook page and read it. There are a few lessons in there on how to deal with jerks who steal amps, or just jerks in general. It is also an excellent lesson in how effective a tool social media can be in getting word out and driving people to action. wakethedead@themusic.com.au

THE SMITH STREET BAND


opinion

INTELLIGIBLE FLOW

TRAILER TRASH

THE GET DOWN

HIP HOP NEWS & COMMENTARY WITH ALEKSIA BARRON

DIVES INTO YOUR SCREENS AND IDIOT BOXES WITH GUY DAVIS

FUNKY SHIT WITH OBLIVEUS

This week, I heard two things that piqued my interest. The first was Kendrick Lamar’s verse on Big Sean’s battle track, Control, where he called out by name the contemporaries whose careers he plans to annihilate by becoming bigger and better than any of them (and stealing all their fans). If you haven’t caught up on this one yet, the internet is your friend. Seriously, it’s everywhere.

I’m not proud of what I’m about to admit, and if there’s any chance of getting in hot water legally due to this disclosure, well, I’ll deny I ever made it. But when I was a teenager, I shoplifted a paperback copy of Bret Easton Ellis’ debut novel Less Than Zero. I have no idea what prompted me to walk away from that display rack outside the bookstore with it clutched in my hot little hand – I’d never heard of the author, never read anything about his chilly, detached tale of the young and the degenerate in Los Angeles. But a brief flick through the first few pages convinced me that this was something worth investigating further. And the more I read, the more intrigued I became by the author’s clinical descriptions of a world where everyone had access to all the sex and drugs they could ever want but no one seemed to be having any fun at all.

Since Control went viral, I’ve heard a few people saying that Lamar’s words will reignite competition in hip hop and inspire other rappers to produce their best work in retaliation. I felt some mild agreement around this, until I heard my second interest-piquing track for the week. While I was driving home the other night, I heard the title track from Hyjak’s new album, The Light At The End Of The Tunnel. It’s a truly fantastic piece of work – gritty, uncompromising, beautifully delivered and highly memorable. The autobiographical track is aided by Hyjak’s distinctive voice – he sounds like a really angry version of Eminem crossed with Drapht (it’s a good thing), and it all adds up to very compelling listening.

I stuck with Ellis through my late teens and 20s. I literally wore the cover off my (bought and paid-for!) copy of his second novel The Rules Of Attraction from re-reading it so often. Like so many others, I was enthralled and repulsed by American Psycho; like not so many others, I was bewitched by the brilliance of his Glamorama, which I maintain is something of an unheralded classic. But his subsequent novels, while displaying flashes and glints of the approach and attitude that has lured me in years earlier, I read more out of a sense of obligation than anything else. Maybe there was some hope in there as well. Maybe Ellis would either rediscover that certain something or find something new to say and a new way of saying it.

Calling out your competition and flying your competitive flag proudly is fine, but what makes hip hop great, actually, is great hip hop. I’d listen to The Light At The End Of The Tunnel any day of the week over a musical pissing content. Kendrick Lamar is a terrific artist, but he was just as terrific before he pitted himself against his peers in verse. Here’s hoping that everyone gets back to making tracks, not pulling rank, in short order. Meanwhile, give Hyjak’s new record a spin – it’s the bomb.

In recent years, Ellis has become more a provocateur than anything else, using Twitter to make calculatedly outrageous

HYJAK

pronouncements or pick pointless fights with public figures actually doing something worth a damn with their lives. As befits a resident of LA, Ellis talked about the movies a lot, and about his desire to shift from writing novels to penning screenplays. There was talk of various projects but none seemed to come to fruition until it was announced that he was collaborating with Paul Schrader (the screenwriter of Taxi Driver, the director of American Gigolo) on – what else? – a tale of the young and the degenerate titled The Canyons. The duo used the crowd-funding method Kickstarter to raise the micro-budget for the film, and cast boy-next-door porn star James Deen and cautionary tale Lindsay Lohan in the lead roles. Deen’s Christian and Lohan’s Tara are financially wealthy but spiritually bankrupt, and they spend a lot of their time having conversations that are thoroughly dull and depressing and threeways with app-sourced strangers that are only marginally more exciting. (Seriously, The Canyons makes sex look like a goddamn chore.) Other stuff happens, I’m sure – I seem to recall someone pulling a knife at some stage, and I’m pretty sure characters went out for a meal on at least two separate occasions. But rather than tell an involving story or convincingly depict a certain milieu or lifestyle, The Canyons instead seems hell-bent on inducing the viewer into a coma from which they may never wake up. Although he does seem more comfortable as an actor when he gets the chance to penetrate someone, Deen is actually not without presence. Lohan is just carrying around so much baggage these days that it’s hard to view her as a performer.

THE CANYONS

THE CACTUS CHANNEL

Let’s jump straight into some Trap that everyone’s digging. Ostblockschlampen take a slightly different twist on just about anything they get their hands on, most notably their dark, banging re-works of the Macklemore & Ryan Lewis hits Cant Hold Us and Thrift Shop. Whilst falling firmly in the dirty, electro side of the trap phenomena, these Germans know how to drop the bombs. Also off tap is their Baile funk tweap (trap/tweak – my copyright, so step off ) of the Gorillaz smash Feel Good Inc for its borderline hard style and laser glow stick, happypants vibe. But don’t let that scare you away, because this duo seriously rocks it. Soundcloud the name if you don’t believe me. I now need to jump genres to hype Melbourne’s very own Hope Street Recordings and the new album by The Cactus Channel, Wooden Boy, coming out in September. First single, Wooden Boy (Part 3) is a slice of loose, dreamy funk with horn stabs aplenty so go to their Facebook page to catch a glimpse of some animated lunacy that goes great with this smoking-hot track. Speaking of hot tracks, the Black Caesar crew have scaled down and moved up in the world and are now hosting a strictly funk/soul 45s-only party on the last Saturday of every month at the hardest to find cocktail bar in the CBD, Murmur. Their first shindig at the new venue is 31 Aug, so stop in for a great night out. With that, I’m outta’ here. THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 67


opinion

HOWZAT! LOCAL MUSIC BY JEFF JENKINS

IN LIKE FLYNN

On the new Major Chord album, Transition, Dan Flynn thanks his boys, Bas and Euca, “For making me feel like John Lennon”. “In my household I’m bigger than John Lennon,” Dan smiles, adding, “this probably won’t cause quite the same backlash as John’s comments about Jesus.” Dan is Major Chord. Four albums in, would he like to see just his name on the cover? “I’m not sure. I’ve thought about dropping Major Chord and going with my own name, but with a new band, I wouldn’t want to call it ‘Dan Flynn’, and I’m not really into the whole ‘So-and-So & The So-and-Sos’.” Transition is a collection of whip-smart folk pop. Dan wrote the title track after his dad died (“which was a huge shock to us all”): “I’d just started putting together a proper band, something I hadn’t done for many years. So the song came out of a time in my life when things were changing.” Transition (to be

68 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

launched 31 Aug at Bella Union) is one of 2013’s best, deserving an audience far bigger than Dan’s immediate family. “My wife’s my biggest fan and she always plays my music at home, so the boys have literally grown up with it. They’re still very young but it’s probably never occurred to them that I’m not a world famous rock star. I often smile at the thought of them talking to their confused classmates about Major Chord in the same way that others might refer to The Beatles.”

NOT SO WISE

Sometimes idol worship goes too far. Triple R’s Brian Wise has had a motorbike accident, just like his hero, Bob Dylan. Brian’s bingle was not as mysterious as Bob’s, but it happened at a bad time – during RRRadiothon. Get well soon, Brian.

GRAPE EXPECTATIONS

Fourteen years after their sparkling self-titled debut, The

MAJOR CHORD

Grapes have issued their second album, Western Sun (launching 24 Aug at The Spotted Mallard). Both Ashley Naylor and Sherry Rich now have kids, and the new album addresses parenting pressures. But growing old has never sounded so cool. Ash’s guitar work is a highlight. It’s expressive but sounds effortless. It feels gloriously loose, yet there’s not a note out of place. “We love the same kinds of music,” Sherry says. “I’m a little bit country, he’s a little bit

rock’n’roll. We’re both redheads and vegetarians. It all adds up.”

RETURN OF THE KING

Out next month: Clifford Hoad’s Kings Of The Sun and a new album, Rock Til Ya Die – “the best hard rock record I’ve heard out of this country in the past 25 years,” according to Neil Rogers, host of Triple R’s The Australian Mood.

HOT LINE

“Where I’m going, I don’t know/ I’m just making it up as I go” – Major Chord, Everything Is Everything.


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THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 69


the guide vic.gigguide@themusic.com.au Palace Of The King + Dead City Ruins + Angels of Gung Ho + Creo + DJ Max Crawdaddy: Cherry Bar, Melbourne

THE MUSIC PRESENTS The Real McKenzies, The Go Set: Aug 28 The Loft (Warrnambool); 31 The Espy; Sep 1 Barwon Club (Geelong)

21 Northcote Social Club

Japandroids: Aug 28, 30 Corner Hotel

Jinja Safari: Sep 25 The Loft (Warrnambool); 26 Barwon Club (Geelong); 27 Forum Theatre; 28 Karova Lounge (Ballarat)

The Stiffys: Aug 29 Beav’s Bar (Geelong); 30 Musicman Megastore (Bendigo); 31 Grace Darling Hotel Dead Letter Circus: Aug 30 Wool Exchange (Geelong); 31 The Hi-Fi Twelve Foot Ninja: Aug 30 Ferntree Gully Hotel; Oct 4 Corner Hotel Cloud Control: Sep 4 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 5 Star Bar (Bendigo); 6 Forum Theatre Big Scary: Sep 5 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 6 The Hi-Fi Hungry Kids Of Hungary: Sep 5 Barwon Club (Geelong); 6 Corner Hotel; 7 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) Peace: Sep 13 Eagle Bar La Trobe University; 14, 15 Northcote Social Club The Drones: Sep 13, 14 The Hi-Fi The Gangsters’ Ball: Sep 14 Forum Theatre The Paper Kites: Sep 15 The Hi-Fi; 28 Forum Theatre Illy: Sep 20 Corner Hotel Ngaiire: Sep 20 Baha Tacos;

WED 21

Tierra: 303, Northcote

Secret Headliner + Nick Allbrook: Bar Open, Fitzroy Open Mic + Various: Bonnie & Clydes Cafe & Cocktail Bar, Thornbury Ross Hannaford & The Critters: Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh

Foals: Sep 26, 27 Palace Theatre Horrorshow: Sep 29 Ding Dong Lounge; Oct 17 Karova Lounge (Ballarat); 18 Wool Exchange (Geelong) Xavier Rudd: Oct 2, 3 Forum Theatre The Jungle Giants: Oct 4, 6 The Hi-Fi; 5 Karova Lounge (Ballarat) Asta: Oct 4 Northcote Social Club; 5 Phoenix Youth Centre

Wine, Whiskey, Women feat. Jenny Biddle + Alicia Adkins: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne

Next feat. For Our Hero + Oh Pacific + Brighter At Night + Pantallica + Silent Rose: Colonial Hotel, Melbourne

Jennie Mortimer Trio: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond

The Cribs: Oct 26 Ding Dong Lounge Boy & Bear: Nov 1 Wool Exchange (Geelong); 2, 3 Forum Theatre Nancy Vandal: Nov 2 Reverence Hotel

Collage + Various: The Espy (Lounge Bar), St Kilda Abstract Mutation + Ollie Brown + Karma Rebuild: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood Xenos + Party Vibe + Headless Death + Sewercide: The Gasometer Hotel (Upstairs), Collingwood Georgia Fields: The Standard Hotel, Fitzroy

Alta + Leaks: The Workers Club, Fitzroy

Open Mic + Various: The Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine

Revomatix + DJ Vince Peach + Pierre Baroni: Cherry Bar, Melbourne

Active Child: Oct 26 Melbourne Recital Centre

Red Lantern Colony + Lomax + Breaking Hart Benton: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North

Secret Good Times Club (Open Mic) + Various: Tago Mago, Thornbury

Bill Parton Trio + Artist Proof + Nathan Leigh Jones + The Karmens: Barwon Club, South Geelong

Dominique + Lost Colonies + The Habits + She Said You: Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne

Slow Club feat. Ondas Alpha + Papa Maul + Willow Darling: The Tote, Collingwood

Roots of Music feat Thando + Special Guests : Revolver Upstairs, Prahran

GIG OF THE WEEK LINDSEY STIRLING: AUG 26, 27 CORNER HOTEL

Archie Roach: Oct 18, 19 Arts Centre Playhouse

Dizzy’s Big Band + Peter Hearne: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond

Farrow + Dan & Amy + Rob Muinos: Old Bar, Fitzroy

John Turcio: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond

Ash + Skipping Girl Vinegar + Dancing Heals: Corner Hotel, Richmond

Tales In Space + Motor Ace: Cherry Bar, Melbourne

Ego: Karova Lounge, Ballarat

My Secret Circus + High Side Driver + Blindmunkee: Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne

Yo La Tengo: Oct 18 Hamer Hall

Parking Lot Experiments + The Harpoons: The Toff In Town, Melbourne

Justice & Kaos feat. Ry: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy

Dragon Celebrates ‘The Police’ + Guests: Corner Hotel, Richmond

Rudimental: Sep 21 Festival Hall

Damen Samuel + Matt Glass + Michael Waugh: Wesley Anne, Northcote Rusty Brown + Brett Wood: Whole Lotta Love, Brunswick East

THU 22

Kickin The B at 303 feat. Ben Grayson Trio: 303, Northcote Fun Machine: After Dark, Carlton Congratulations Everybody + The Citradels + Gnomes: Bar Open, Fitzroy

Taste Of Indie Collective feat. Sarah Eida + Five Acre Field + One and the Same: Edinburgh Castle Hotel, Brunswick 4Tress + Little House Godz + Diana’s Bow: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North Ego: Eureka Hotel, Geelong Ed Kuepper: Flying Saucer Club, Elsternwick Morning Harvey: Grace Darling Hotel, Collingwood Bob Evans: Karova Lounge, Ballarat Taj Trio: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East Mood + NuBody: Loop, Melbourne

Shark Defense Australia Fundraiser feat. Wolfpack + Internal Nightmare + Vendetta + Myyth + Burning In White: The Espy (Basement), St Kilda Game + Special Guests : The Espy, St Kilda Jurassic Penguin + The Evercold + Archives + Love Alone: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood Perth + Pete Bibby + Emlyn Johnson: The Gasometer Hotel (Upstairs), Collingwood Alison Ferrier: The Post Office Hotel, Coburg The Impossible No Goods + JP Shilo: The Public Bar, North Melbourne Melanie Smith: The Thornbury Local, Thornbury Big Words + Hugo Bladel + Deuce Kicks: The Toff In Town, Melbourne Prowler + Up & Atom + Apart From This + Aitches: The Tote, Collingwood Slow Club feat. Darts + 8 Bit Love + Going Swimming: The Tote, Collingwood Holy Holy + Ainslie Wills + The Trouble With Templeton: The Workers Club, Fitzroy Phil Para Duo: Whole Lotta Love, Brunswick East

Sooky La La + Wooly Beef: Lounge Bar, Melbourne

Have/Hold + Ted Danson With Wolves + Oslow + Zzzounds: Wrangler Studios, West Footscray

Rock The Boat feat. The Basics + Joelistics + Snout + Even: Northcote Social Club, Northcote

Funk Buddies + Soul Safari + Kingston Crown: Yah Yah’s, Fitzroy

Zeahorse + Iowa + Tangrams + Duck Duck Chop: Old Bar, Fitzroy The Pope’s Assassins + Triangle Fight + The Sterlings + Leigh Robertson: Reverence Hotel (Front Bar ), Footscray Melbourne Fresh Industry Showcase+Various: Revolver Upstairs, Prahran Pink: Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne For Film’s Sake Fundraiser feat. Red Rockets of Borneo + Alek - Hurdy Gurdy + The Dark Ales + Vicuna Coat + The Beegles + DJ Mr Sharp: Tago Mago, Thornbury John Montesante Quintet + Jeff Duff: The Commune, East Melbourne Marlon Williams + Dan Parsons: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne

FRI 23

Illustre Fundraiser feat. Up & Atom + Strickland + Ordnance + The Happy Lonesome: 303, Northcote The Mountains: Baha Tacos, Rye Purple Tusks + Dave Adams Sextet Trio: Bar Open, Fitzroy Barbarion: Barwon Club, South Geelong Ego: Can’t Say, Mlebourne Van Walker + Gallie: Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh

Shadows Of Hyenas + Pandorum + The Fallen Angels + Pretty Dulcie: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy The Merccurials: Famous Blue Raincoat, South Kingsville Ed Kuepper: Flying Saucer Club, Elsternwick Amy Ganter & The Love & Squalors + Matt Harrison + Harrison Storm: Great Britain Hotel, Richmond Midnight Juggernauts + Kirin J Callinan + Fascinator: Karova Lounge, Ballarat Kelly Auty : Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East Discotheque’+Elana Musto + Greg Sara + Scott T: Match Bar, Melbourne Friday Nights at Monet’s Garden feat. Seekae: National Gallery of Victoria, Southbank As A Rival: Nexus Youth Centre, HORSHAM Pseudo Echo + Vultures of Venus: Northcote Social Club, Northcote Sun God Replica + My Left Boot + The Electric Guitars: Old Bar, Fitzroy Prowler + Party Vibez + Hailgun + Road Ratz: Reverence Hotel (Band Room), Footscray Revolver Fridays / Yaldi Boomtime! + Various DJs: Revolver Upstairs, Prahran The Vitriols + Fulton Sttreet + Nikhail + Miniatures: Revolver Upstairs, Prahran Perth’s Song Explosion+Various: Rochester Castle Hotel, Fitzroy Pink: Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne Fire & Theft: Tago Mago, Thornbury Skyscraper Stan & The Commission Flats : The Cornish Arms, Brunswick Lincoln Le Fevre & The Insiders + Ceres + Jamie Hay: The Curtin, Carlton Jimmy Stewart: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne

Rock Dungeon feat. Stronger Than All + Avirus + Severity: CBD Club, Melbourne

Traditional Irish Music Session with Dan Bourke & Friends: The Drunken Poet (Early (6pm)) , Melbourne

Chris Wilson + Shannon Bourne: Cherry Bar (Afternoon) , Melbourne

Batpiss + Ouch My Face + Evil Ways + Acid Vain: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood

1000S OF GIGS AT YOUR FINGERTIPS. FOR MORE HEAD TO THEMUSIC.COM.AU 70 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Bill Parton Trio + Artist Proof + Nathan Leigh Jones + The Karmens: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North


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THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 71


the guide vic.gigguide@themusic.com.au The Union Pacific + Life & Limb + Ted Danson With Wolves + Oslow + Popolice: The Gasometer Hotel (Upstairs), Collingwood

RDzJB + Famous Will + Nicolette Forte + Friends + Tane Emia Moore + Dave Simony: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North

Moving Pictures + Mental As Anything + Jeff Duff: The Palms, Southbank

The Red Lights + Dark Arts + I Know The Chief + Agility: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy

Spoonful: The Post Office Hotel, Coburg

Jericco + Marlow: Ferntree Gully Hotel, Ferntree Gully

Gold Fields + Clubfeet: The Prince, St Kilda

Saturday Live Sessions feat. Howlin’ Steam Train + Simon Levick: Ferntree Gully Hotel, Ferntree Gully

Agonhymn + Arrowhead + Hotel Wrecking City Traders + Child: The Public Bar, North Melbourne Rio De Melody + Little Flame & The Strings: The Thornbury Local, Thornbury Lowtide + The Stevens + Day Ravies + Zone Out: The Tote, Collingwood Slow Club feat. Disasters + Life Pilot + Culprits: The Tote, Collingwood Castlecomer + The Neighbourhood Youth + Five Mile Town: The Workers Club, Fitzroy Bob Evans: Torquay Hotel, Torquay Gosti: Wesley Anne (Band Room), Northcote Broni: Wesley Anne (Front Bar/Early), Northcote

Dr Dupree: The Standard Hotel, Fitzroy Various: The Thornbury Local (5pm), Thornbury Brooke Russell & The Mean Reds + Jemma & The Wise Young Ambitious Men + Strine Singers: The Toff In Town, Melbourne Indian Red + Mercians + I Know The Chief: The Workers Club, Fitzroy Acoustic Guitar Spectacular with Michael Fix + Nick Charles + Paul Wookey: Thornbury Theatre, Thornbury

Grace Knight : Flying Saucer Club, Elsternwick Snakadaktal: Forum Theatre, Melbourne

MON 26

Ed Colman & The Twins: Fusion, Crown, Southbank Fun Machine: Grace Darling Hotel, Collingwood The Staffords + Halcyon Drive: Great Britain Hotel, Richmond Lama Tendar - Fundraiser for Tibetan Children’s Fund + Various: Kindred Studios (Frontspace) , Yarraville Swamplands + The Idle Hoes: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East The Hello Morning + Grizzly Jim Lawrie + Ali Barter + Winter Boy: Northcote Social Club, Northcote

L ebowskis Present Trio

FOR OUR HERO: AUG 22 COLONIAL HOTEL; 24 WRANGLER STUDIOS The Shock Of The New with DJ Simona Capitolina + Viva L’Amour: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood Lisa Miller: The Post Office Hotel, Coburg The In The Out + Meth Leopard: The Public Bar, North Melbourne

Weekender + Various: Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne Birds & The Bees Showcase + Various: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North Tom West + Citrus Jam + Jayne West: Evelyn Hotel (Afternoon) , Fitzroy

The Smith Street Band + Cheap Girls: Karova Lounge, Ballarat

Songwriter Sessions with Lachlan Davidson + Kristy Cox + Nigel Wearne + more: Old Bar, Fitzroy

Ultrafox: Lomond Hotel (Afternoon) , Brunswick East

Paul WIlliamson’s Hammond Combo: Rainbow Hotel, Fitzroy The Daryl McKenzie Jazz Orchestra + Nichaud Fitzgibbon + Tim Davies: The Apartment, Melbourne

Boogie Monster + Fun Machine + Vowel Movement + Howard: Yah Yah’s, Fitzroy

Keshie: Rainbow Hotel, Fitzroy

The Council + Chris Russell: The Tote (Front Bar/ Afternoon), Collingwood

Alex Watts: Yarra Hotel, Geelong

The Arachnids: Retreat Hotel, Brunswick

Lakes + Forces + White Hex + Pro Life: The Tote, Collingwood

Life Pilot + I Valiant + Culprits + Kingdom In Crisis: Reverence Hotel (Band Room) , Footscray

Bob Evans: The Westernport Hotel, San Remo

Marty Kelly & The Weekenders: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East

All The Colours + The Fandroids + Dru Chen: The Workers Club, Fitzroy

Beersoaked Sundays with Whitewash + The Infants + Ohms: Old Bar, Fitzroy

Ed Kuepper: Theatre Royal, Castlemaine

Lot 56: Rainbow Hotel, Fitzroy

Hollow Everdaze: Barwon Club, South Geelong The West Winds Speakeasy + Various: Bella Union, Carlton South The Meltdown: Bennetts Lane, Melbourne Darren Sylvester + Geoffrey O’Connor + Early Woman: Boney, Melbourne The Slaughtermen: Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh Kashmere Club + The Velvets + Buddha In A Chocolate Box + DJ Mermaid: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Midnight Juggernauts + Kirin J Callinan + Fascinator: Corner Hotel, Richmond Rat & Co + Ben Wright Smith + DD Dumber + ‘Jumpin’ Jack William: Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne John Montesante Quintet + Jeff Duff: Dizzy’s Jazz Club, Richmond Hello Satellites + Open Swimmer + Cold Hands Warm Heart: Empress Hotel (Afternoon) , Fitzroy North

Bang feat. Lydia + A Sleepless Melody + Tigers: Royal Melbourne Hotel, Melbourne Tago Mago Fundraiser feat. Thunder Box + Seedy Jezus + The Dark Ales + The Whorls + Dirt Land + Jukai Forest + Peter Bibby + Emlyn Johnson + more: Tago Mago, Thornbury Long Holiday + Mammoth Mammoth: The Bridge Hotel, Castlemaine Liam Gerner + Friends: The Cornish Arms, Brunswick Moosejaw Rif le Club: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne Progfest 2013 feat. Sleepmakeswaves + Voyager + Glass Empire + Caligula’s Horse + A Lonely Crowd + Toehider + Alithia + Acrasia + Rise Of Avernus + The Black Galaxy Experience + Troldhaugen + Bear The Mammoth + Anarion + Rainbird + more: The Espy, St Kilda The Kill + Die Pidgeon DIe + Headless Death + Pregnancy: The Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood Tux + Lunaire + The Karmens: The Gasometer Hotel (Upstairs/ Matinee), Collingwood

Rod Payne & His Full Time Lovers: Victoria Hotel, Brunswick Elephant Gun + The Bits: Whole Lotta Love, Brunswick East For Our Hero + Forever Ends Here + Call The Shots: Wrangler Studios (All Ages), West Footscray The Eighth 88s + Mighty Duke & The Lords + Cyclo Think + Jets & Ammo: Yah Yah’s, Fitzroy

SUN 25

Rudely Interrupted + The Night Before Tomorrow + Gasoline Stew & The Dump: 303 (Afternoon), Northcote

The Moonee Valley Drifters: Retreat Hotel (Front Bar/ Afternoon), Brunswick Stomp Dog + The Prairie Kings + Aurora: Reverence Hotel (Front Bar), Footscray Pink: Rod Laver Arena, Melbourne Charles Jenkins: Royal Oak Hotel, Fitzroy North Phoebe & Schina + Nic Tate Band + Joe Conroy: Tago Mago, Thornbury Collard Greens & Gravy: The Bay Hotel, Mornington Broderick Smith: The Bridge Hotel (Afternoon), Castlemaine Lindsay Field + Sam See + Glyn Mason: The Carringbush Hotel, Abbotsford

OPA: 303, Northcote

Dear Ale: The Curtin, Carlton

Angel Eyes + Hamburger Lady + Default Jamerson + Sissysocks: Bar Open, Fitzroy

Ravenswood: The Drunken Poet (Afternoon), Melbourne

Phoebe Jacobs + Matt Kelly: Bar Open (Downstairs / 3pm) , Fitzroy Jeff Duff + Grand Wazoo: Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh My Dynamite + DJ Max Crawdaddy: Cherry Bar (Afternoon) , Melbourne Slug’s Birthday! + Various: Cherry Bar, Melbourne

The Bona Fide Travellers: The Drunken Poet, Melbourne Dale Ryder Band + Bad Boys Batucada + Ms Butt: The Espy (Lounge Bar), St Kilda Pimmon + People Person + Tim Coster: The Gasometer Hotel (Upstairs/Matinee), Collingwood Mick Turner + Caroline Kennedy: The Post Office Hotel, Coburg

1000S OF GIGS AT YOUR FINGERTIPS. FOR MORE HEAD TO THEMUSIC.COM.AU 72 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Jack Earl Trio: Famous Blue Raincoat, South Kingsville

Vincs & Wakeling: Famous Blue Raincoat (Afternoon) , South Kingsville

The Mountains: Pure Pop Records, St Kilda

Lamine Sonko & The African Intelligence: Bar Open, Fitzroy

Three’s A Crowd feat. Toxic Lipstick + Talkshow Boy + O Littleblood: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy

Youngblood Hawke + Special Guests: The Toff In Town, Melbourne

Snakadaktal: Wool Exchange, Geelong

Apart From This + Oslow + Ted Danson With Wolves + Summerhill: Reverence Hotel (Front Bar ) , Footscray

Lindsey Stirling: Corner Hotel, Richmond

The Velvet Cake Gypsies: The Thornbury Local, Thornbury

Rich Davies & The Devil’s Union + Saint Jude + Luke Legs: Old Bar, Fitzroy

SAT 24

Cherry Jam + Various: Cherry Bar, Melbourne

The Dufranes + Steel Birds + Jimmy Stewart: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy

Dave Sirianni: Whole Lotta Love, Brunswick East

Have/Hold + Limits + Angry Seas + Elevator Talk: 303, Northcote

Le Fleur + Gary Norman Trio: 303, Northcote

Monday Night Mass feat. Ciggie Witch + The Galaxy Folk + Popolice: Northcote Social Club, Northcote

Rattlin’ Bones Blackwood + Adam Hayes: The Espy (Lounge Bar), St Kilda Beastwars + My Left Boot + Hotel Wrecking City Traders + Rainy Day Women: The Espy, St Kilda Lenka: The Workers Club, Fitzroy

TUE 27

Kill Shot: Cherry Bar, Melbourne Lindsey Stirling + Guests: Corner Hotel, Richmond Way Of The Eagle + Guests: Ding Dong Lounge, Melbourne Open Mic + Various: Empress Hotel, Fitzroy North The Electric I feat. Hayley Hoopla + Lamine Sonko & The African Intelligence + Roxy Lavish: Evelyn Hotel, Fitzroy Kain Borlase Trio: Kojo Brown, Richmond Irish Session: Lomond Hotel, Brunswick East Collage + Various: The Espy, St Kilda Eagle & The Worm + Sagamore: The Workers Club, Fitzroy


Fri 23. 9pm - Moving Visions. Moving Visions #2 Photography Exhibition & DJs: Amin Payne, JPS & Edd

Sat 24. 9pm - Equal Dose

DJs: Nort, Cali, Rips, Matter, Xitation, Silver Fox, Backroom Reality Visuals by: Aday Lighting by Tron Audio

Mon 26. 6.30pm - Problems with property forum

Australians for Affordable Housing, debate and discussion MCÕd by Kate Shaw

Tues 27. 8 pm LoopdeLoop

LoopdeLoop is a monthly animation challenge.

Wed 28 6 pm - Pozzible

Special - crowd funding forum for musicians

Wed 21st August ‘Wine, Whiskey, Women’ 8pm: Alicia Adkins 9pm: Jenny Biddle Thu 22nd August 8pm: Dan Parsons 9pm: Marlon Williams (NZ) Fri 23rd August 6pm: Traditional Irish Music Session with Dan Bourke and Friends 8.30pm: Jimmy Stewart Sat 24th August 9pm: MooseJaw Rifle Club Sun 25th August 4pm: Ravenswood 6:30pm: The Bona Fide Travelers Tue 27th August 8pm: Weekly Trivia The Drunken Poet, 65 Peel Street (Directly opposite Queen Vic Market). Phone: 03 9348 9797 www.thedrunkenpoet.com.au

Gig Bookings: drunkenpoetmusic@gmail.com

SAT 24TH

THE PRESLEY FAMILY Two Sets from 5pm to 7pm SUN 25TH

GRUMPY NEIGHBOUR Rockin’ Country 5pm to 7pm

COMING SOON TO THE LABOUR

Grand Master Monk (Newcastle) Lisa Miller Trio The Decoys JVG Guitar Method

197A BRUNSIWCK ST FITZROY 3065 (03) 9417 5955 THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 73


eat/drink

POLE POSITION Dylan Stewart debunks European myths to experience some new flavours that have long been bringing people together. Pic by Holly Engelhardt.

I

do my shopping at the market. Given the hordes at the Queen Victoria and Preston markets in Melbourne, and Paddy’s and the Parramatta Farmers Market in Sydney, I’m not the only one. The meat section brims with glory, the fish section has a fresh appeal and the general mayhem of the fruit area is enough to drive anyone to spend $20 on blueberries in the middle of winter. But without fail, the best place in any market is the deli. Offering meats, pickles, cheeses and strange, mysterious delights, it’s a place where foreign tin cans line the counters, offering wondrous preserves and unique flavour experiences to those who dare sample from their contents. And it’s as good a place as any to discover European cuisine. As little as five years ago, to hear a restaurant labelled as ‘European’ would mean Italian influences, some Greek and French smatterings offered, and perhaps tapas or a schnitzel. Nowadays, the proliferation of European restaurants is, like the cuisine itself, subtle but satisfying. With the Cold and Balkan Wars ending in the past 25 years and the subsequent tensions settling in the time since, emigrants (and their offspring) in Australia are now focusing on life enjoyment rather than pure survival. A generation of chefs are drawing inspiration from their ancestors to bring their traditional dishes to an Australian public on the lookout for a wholesome, friendly dining experience. One such purveyor is Daniel Dobra, head chef of Melbourne’s soon-to-be-open Brutale. Having grown up in a proud Croatian household in Esperance, Western Australia, Dobra has spent most of his life working in hospitality in WA and Victoria. “My goal through Brutale is to break down the stereotypes related to European food,” Dobra said. “I want to educate the people of Australia [on] the true beauty that lies hidden within Eastern and Central Europe’s food, drink and culture.” With 20-plus countries, a population of over 400 million, and a fractured, still-developing history, this might seem a large task, but it’s one that he’s up for.

74 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

TOP EUROPEAN DISHES

PIEROGI Dumplings first boiled then baked or fried, usually in butter with onions. They are normally stuffed with sauerkraut, ground meat or cheese.

“I think due to the nature and trends of Australia, a majority of people these days want a high quality meal at an affordable price with not too much fuss and hassle when they go out for dinner. People want to eat food that they can share with their friends and family. The days of single entree, main course and dessert are not over, but people want simple pleasures they can relate to. European food is extremely simple, can be made at low cost and can be shared and enjoyed by one and all.” After speaking to Dobra, I decide to test his theory, and after visiting Babcia (grandmother) at Preston Market’s Slovonia Deli and Peter Langtry’s Polish Deli at the Queen Vic Market I arrive home with a Slovenian salami, Polish wedding sausage, Baltic pickled herring, pierogis and the ingredients for ćevapi, börek, borscht beef and fritule. With the borscht beef – beetroots, diced beef, shredded cabbage and onions – slow-cooking for five hours, it’s not difficult to recruit some friends to give their opinions on my European smorgasbord. Ćevapi, hand-rolled pork and beef mince sausages cooked tenderly on the barbecue, whets their appetites as the spicy beef börek is pulled from the oven. The borscht beef is the perfect meal for a cold winter’s day, warming the insides of everyone at the table as it’s washed down with wine. Finally, the fritule, or Croatian donuts, are the piece de resistance. Kneaded dough with raisins, lemon zest and brandy, the spoonfuls of mixture sizzle temptingly in an oil-filled pan, before they are drizzled with extra brandy, dusted with icing sugar and served hot. Sure, the ingredients in European food are not groundbreaking. They do, however, have the ability to draw friends and family together and warm the soul. Goulash, rakija (fermented fruit-based liquor), and anything cooked in a peka (a cast-iron dish in which meat is cooked in a wood-fired oven) have had Europeans loving and laughing around the dinner table for centuries. For Daniel Dobra, the goal is simple: “I just want to share the true beauty of Eastern European food.” It shouldn’t be too difficult.

POLISH SAUSAGE WITH PICKLES This is an arvo dish best eaten with vodka.

BORSCHT The worst soup to eat if you’re wearing a white top. Served hot or cold, Borscht is a beetroot based soup.


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THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 75


sport

5 SPORTS YOU DON’T KNOW YET Scott Fitzsimons discovers five sports he might actually excel in. in

A

re you starting to realise that you’re never going to make it to the Olympics? You’ll never get to party in the athletes’ village and never earn the right to get the Olympic rings tattooed on your arm. It’s a depressing fact that most of us have to come to terms with… but there’s a cure. We’ve had a look through the margins of the organised sport canon and found there are at least five less-than-mainstream but still incredibly prestigious sports you can earn that arm tatt in.

CHESSBOXING Pretty self-explanatory: you start with a chess game and then jump in the boxing ring, take a minute’s rest and then do it over again. Bout ends when someone loses either the chess game or the fight, with each getting more difficult to concentrate on over the course of 11 rounds (six chess, five boxing). Mainly played by Germans and Russians, it’s yet to really take off in Australia, which gives us a unique opportunity to get in early and organise a ‘National Championship’ before a real governing body notices. Not to be confused with the traditional Australian ‘pub chess’, where if you lose the game you belt the bloke opposite you with what’s left of your schooner.

VIGORO Mainly played by women, Vigoro is a cricket hybrid, with paddles instead of bats and two ‘bowlers’ (chucking is encouraged) at a time from the one end of a pitch. Most popular in New South Wales, it tends to confuse the hell out of people when played after the morning kids’ cricket divisions finish up. The sport enjoyed a hint of popularity earlier this century, but has since found itself overshadowed by traditional cricket given that the national women’s team is doing so much better than the men’s. There is a real chance that you could walk into the Australian squad now.

RIDE-ON LAWN MOWER RACING This is probably the greatest human pursuit of all time. Born during a lunch session in an English 76 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

pub by a group of blokes who wanted a cheap motorsport alternative, it involves taking the blades out of your ride-on mower and modifying the engine, according to stringent technical regulations, so that it becomes a triumph of engineering and speed. Sir Stirling Moss and Derek Bell (Formula 1 and Le Mans legends respectively) took part in the first ever 12-hour lawn mower enduro in the late ‘70s (they only bloody won), setting the tone for one of the most illustrious events on the international sporting calendar. There is a local association, so get off your arse and we’ll see you at the Deni Ute Muster meeting.

COMBAT JUGGLING

Juggling in an arena where, as well as throwing your batons up in the air and catching them again, you’re using one of said batons to whack your opponent’s. Fast-paced and sometimes brutal, Major League Contact promotes game variations such as ‘Kill The King’, ‘Sumo’ and ‘Zombie’. There is, however, a feeling that it is made up of all the kids who not only couldn’t make the cross country team, but were overlooked for the school tunnel ball squad as well. It looks pretty bloody hard, but so is cutting off your own thumb with a butter knife or ‘drifting’ in motorsports – a lot of dedication, will power and practice goes in, but at the end of the day you still look like a moron.

TASMANIAN APPLE & SALMON RACE

Let’s be honest, any reason to go to Tassie (and we mean any reason) is a good reason. If you need to spend an afternoon standing by a river with a Boag’s Draught in hand and one eye on an apple floating down the stream then count us the fuck in. The Huon Apple and Salmon race is an annual fundraiser for the local Rotary club, and while postponed for this year (local power struggle, we reckon) that just gives us more time to perfect our release technique and ability to identify the fastest rips. You may think that dropping an apple or fake salmon in a river may be all about luck, but that’s what separates the champions from the pretenders.

FACT:

The 12-hour lawn mower race in West Sussex is the pinnacle of human endurance.

FACT:

Everything should always be played to raise money for Tasmanian Rotary Clubs.

FACT:

We could not confirm that anyone who plays Combat Juggling has ever been laid.


lifestyle

TWEETRATURE? Usingg twitter in the wayy one might g write a haiku, haiku, Nigeriang American writer Teju j Cole has been creating a new kind of literature, literature as Oliver Coleman discovers.

T

eju Cole, the Nigerian-American author, began writing on twitter as an exercise in form. Initially, he was responding to the work of Félix Fénéon, a Parisian writer who worked during the early 20th century. Fénéon wrote fait divers, a type of short newspaper article that was usually grim, darkly humorous and with Fénéon’s touch, pointedly ironic: A dishwasher from Nancy, Vital Frérotte, who had just come back from Lourdes cured forever of tuberculosis, died Sunday by mistake. Cole appropriated the form of the fait divers as a homage to Fénéon and titled his own work, Small Fates. He began the project while researching an upcoming nonfiction work about daily life in contemporary Lagos, the Nigerian metropolis where he grew up. His mission was

to show the complexities of Lagos, a place so often thought about in the “broad and meaningless category of Africa”. Cole wanted “to show that what happens in the rest of the world happens in Nigeria too, with a little craziness all our own mixed in.” He discovered that the fait divers was the perfect fit for the 140 character limitations of twitter: Pastor Ogbeke, preaching fervently during a storm in Obrura, received fire from heaven, in the form of lightning, and died. Or,“Nobody shot anybody,” the Abuja police spokesman confirmed, after the driver Stephen, 35, shot by Abuja police, almost died. Cole articulates the delight of crafting the perfectly balanced small fate; he worked each tweet through around 12 drafts. “Somehow, some of them were so odd and so shocking that people started to pay attention.” Cole’s following began to increase and he now has over 100,000 followers. Part of the attraction of twitter for Cole was the “eruptive” potential of a conscientiously

composed tweet that could strike through an otherwise unremarkable twitter feed. “I knew that each day, as I was writing, that timelines are filled with other kinds of narratives or information and so there was a sense of, not a wish to shock, but a wish to arrive in people’s timelines; in a sense to arrive in their consciousness with something different.” There are the obvious obstructions when writing on twitter: it’s fragmented and ephemeral. Cole points out that while writing a book is “a marathon”, writing on twitter is more of a “long jump”. Twitter does however enable direct and immediate contact between writer and audience. The foremost attraction for the artist working on twitter is it solves the problem of distribution. While writing itself is not prohibitively expensive, the actual costs of publishing are. “Twitter is kind of a wonderful, peculiar solution to that problem. Let’s say you have 200 followers. That’s 200 people you can send out a thought to in an unmediated way. If you happen to have 10,000 followers, or one-hundred thousand, or one million, then the scale of the thing is actually quite staggering.” After Cole had written several thousand Small Fates the project came to a natural conclusion as he began to work on other projects. A recent work that extended its life beyond twitter was Seven Short Stories About Drones. Cole took the opening lines of famous works of literature that introduced their famed characters and interrupted their narratives with targeted strikes by military drones. He questions how the United States government has assassinated upwards of 5000 people in its drone war. “The reason a crime of that scale could just happen was because these people... were not treated as if they were real human beings. There was an empathy gap; a failure of compassion somewhere in there.” Cole sought to bridge that gap by replacing the nameless, faceless targets of the assassinations with characters with whom we hold ongoing and deeply empathetic relationships. “You can’t do that to Mrs Dalloway. You can’t kill her off just like that. But this is what the US was and is doing to actual real life human beings whom we do not know.” THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 77


travel

SONGS FOR SWAZILAND Two Australian volunteers with two completely different skill sets have joined forces in Swaziland to boost the pride and identity of rural Swazi women through song. Myles Mumford and Isabel Ross talk about their experience.

CURRENT ASSIGNMENTS ON AUSTRALIAN VOLUNTEERS INTERNATIONAL Forestry Management Trainer – The United Republic of Tanzania Auto Electrics Technical Instructor – The United Republic of Tanzania Midwifery Tutor – Ethiopia Surgeon – The United Republic of Tanzania Physiotherapist – Namibia Accountant – Papua New Guinea Vocational Education Mentor – Solomon Islands Medical Supplies Support Officer – Solomon Islands

S

waziland is one of the last remaining absolute monarchies in the world. To visitors, it appears like an idyllic kingdom that escapes the conflict and poverty of other African countries. However, to those that live there, Swaziland paints a very different picture. With just one million people in a country half the size of Tasmania, Swaziland suffers the highest rates of HIV in the world, and the lowest life expectancy. Around one-third of women are sexually abused by the time they turn 18 and, until recently, women were considered minors under the legal guardianship of their husbands. This juxtaposition leaves volunteers like Myles Mumford and Isabel Ross constantly reframing their views and expectations. “One day I’m Skyping my family in Australia, then the next day I’ll be talking to a teenage girl who is forced to sell her body just so that she can eat,” says Mumford. One thing that Swaziland does enjoy, though, is a love of music. Thanks to radio, music such as reggae, gospel and house can be heard blaring everywhere you go, especially in restaurants and on public transport. Radio reigns supreme, forming the main means of mass communication in the country because it’s free and easily accessible by all. Despite the musical obsession, the local music scene in Swaziland is very small. Musical equipment including instruments are very expensive; recording and production costs are very high and often poor quality; plus, there is no copyright control or royalties in the country. As a result, musicians there make very little money except through the occasional live performance or sponsorship deals, and many try to develop their careers in South Africa, leaving a massive brain drain. Myles Mumford is a recording engineer with Lusweti Institute for Health Development 78 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

Communication. During his time in Swaziland, Mumford has been able to build a recording studio with a grant from the Australian High Commission. Using this, he has produced local radio content and created a number of musical projects around positive social behavioral change. Meanwhile, Isabel Ross works as a Health Program Advisor with Gone Rural boMake (‘women’), a community development organisation that works with 800 women artisans and their communities on health, education, water, sanitation and women’s empowerment initiatives. Seeing the joy that singing gives to women in Swaziland, Ross and Mumford decided to team up and record six groups of Gone Rural artisans singing their choice of traditional songs. Seventyone women donned traditional dress and walked miles to be a part of the recordings, which despite the sometimes heartbreaking lyrics, they sang with great gusto and joy. Many commented that they came because they wanted to use their talents to spread their message to the world through song. “We chose these songs because they have meaning in our lives as women. Life can be hard in Swaziland, but as women we are powerful, and we know that we have the strength to face these challenges,” said Nokuthula from Lavumisa. “Singing is a great way for us to come together and celebrate as women.” The songs have been compiled into an album that is being sold through Gone Rural stores and online to raise funds for Gone Rural boMake’s projects. In addition to this, Mumford has recorded an album of Lubombo musicians to raise funds for Swaziland’s first community radio station.

Researcher/ Campaign Officer – Lebanon Audiologist – Namibia To hear the music, and to support these projects, please go to: gonerural. bandcamp.com or lubombocomm unityradio. bandcamp.com For more info on becoming a volunteer head to: australian volunteers.com


THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 79


culture One photograph. Every day for a year. Plus a quote – an overheard statement, a song lyric, a passage from a book – Anything, as long as it was text. What followed became a strange, unwieldy, funny, silly and occasionally strangely profound portrait of 365 days featuring the people I loved and the curious things I photograph for money in the independent theatre industry. People started getting competitive about being quoted. It all got joyously out of hand. And it gave me a year’s worth of memories to clutch onto. sarahwalkerphotos. com

CLUTCH

80 • THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013

A 365 day project by photographer Sarah Walker.


THE GUIDE CHECK TONIGHT OR PLAN AHEAD

Tonight, this weekend or 2014 – just select your dates and in less than a second you will know what’s happening

WHERE DO YOU WANT TO GO?

Select your favourite venue or venues

1000s OF GIGS AT YOUR FINGERTIPS

YOU KNOW THE ARTISTS YOU WANT TO SEE!

Choose one or 1,000 we will tell you where they’re playing

YOU HAVE YOUR FAVOURITE PLACES

Save your favourite venues to your home screen and know whats on at a single click

YOU’VE FOUND YOUR GIG Add it to your calendar and buy your tickets

THE MUSIC • 21ST AUGUST 2013 • 81


the end

NON-PERFORMANCE ENHANCING DRUGS POT

CHEMICAL MAKEUP Grass clippings from the MCG, SCG and the Gabba.

KNOWN FOR? Helping you believe that you can reach the top.

LIKELY USER University Games team.

PROS? Great team-building exercise.

CONS? Funds allocated for training equipment diverted into extra-cheesy Doritos storage.

KROKODIL CHEMICAL MAKEUP

Extreme morphine laced with white line fever.

KNOWN FOR? Being Russia’s most devastating drug/playing mind games with the other teams.

LIKELY USER Team Russia.

PROS? Scaly skin makes it easy to identify other teammates.

CONS? You’re usually dead within a month, so teams will likely offer you match payments over a three-year-contract.

HEROIN

CHEMICAL MAKEUP The tears of your enemies.

KNOWN FOR? An effective painkiller to smash through the barrier of that snapped Achilles.

LIKELY USER Wooden spooners.

PROS? The feeling of winning, all the time, every time.

CONS? Hard to take a top-up mid-game.

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The Music (Melbourne) Issue 2