“Celebrating the ultimate sounds of tomorrow, today, Future Music Festival is a 10-hour sonic boom that travels Australia at the speed of sound and rivals any major festival experience on the planet. This unique, world-class event blends the biggest names in electronic music with the brightest stars of Hip Hop, Pop, Indie Rock and beyond …” Read the full story
Laneway Festival has announced the first round of bands that will be gracing the stages next year. The current hype surrounding bands like The xx will sell a lot of tickets I am sure, but there is also huge interest in Wild Beasts, Black Lips, as well as Mecury-nominated Florence and the Machine.
The big draw card for a lot of people, however, will no doubt be the appearance of Echo and the Bunnymen on the list. Heading in to their 4th decade of making music, the makeup of Echo and the Bunnymen has changed a little of the years, but by all accounts their sound now is remarkably similar to that of the late 70s and early 80s. It will be fascinating to see what they have up their sleeves early next year.
Full line up details can be found here
There will also be a change in venue for 2010, no longer will we be squashed intimately snuggled down Reiby Place, but will be benfiting from the ‘ample space’ of Sydney College of the Arts in Rozelle. As a ‘bohemian hotbed of creative talent’ I am sure that the new location will be more than suitable for a Sunday in the sun.
Details on the venue can be found here
Tickets on sales 9am Friday 30 October from www.greentix.com.au
I’m sitting in the cosy bottom floor of El Rocco’s at Bar Me (154 Brougham Street, Kings Cross). The room is warm, while dimly lit and the crowd seems almost at home in the candle light. I’ve arrived for Julia Why – who contact me via TMB.
The lights dim further, the candles appear to brighten as the crowd warms while Julia introduces herself to the room. Her guitar opens with strong, binding rhythms.
When I listen to her voice: it’s warm, almost haunting. Her articulation is nice: almost Irish/UK – nice round tones over deep melodies. Maybe a hint of Evanesence, but there’s something stronger there, something else, something deeper (and less opraratic). She doesn’t say much – she doesn’t need to.
I really enjoy Julia’s control and inflection with the notes – memorable steps careful phrasing, good use of rhyme. Her rawness, and openness with the crowd speaks volumes of wisdom beyond her years.
Julia’s lyric choices are definitely not your ordinary lyrics – and they have a really nice dynamic between being quite raw, and shaping some very pretty metaphors. They appear to be quite honest.
“The wine is too far away.” Best line. She just said she’s looking for a bass player – and honestly, she read my mind! This would sound great with a full band behind it.
Julia – wow, what a show. These are some great foundations to set.
Amazing. Just amazing.
First release tickets on sale at ITM from 9am Thursday, 20th August. Check out the Stereosonic 2009 lineup below:
Fedde Le Grand
The Bloody Beetroots feat MC Justin Pearson
Miss Kittin & The Hacker
Cut Copy DJs
Drop the Lime
Tim Sweeney (DFA)
The Cobra Snake
Juan Kidd/Jason Herd
+ and more to be announced
Dates for Stereosonic – Australia
Sat 28th November – Moore Park, Hordern, RHI & Surrounds, Sydney
Sun 29th November – Claremont Showground, Perth
Sat 5th December – Bonython Park, Adelaide
Sat 5th December – Royal Melbourne Showgrounds, Melbourne
Sun 6th December – Eagle Farm Racecourse, Brisbane
For all those fans who missed out on seeing Bloc Party at Splendour, the band will be playing only one other gig in Australia, at the Museum of Contemporary Art on Tuesday July 28.
Tickets go on sale this Thursday, 9 July. To purchase, fans will need to go to www.mastercard.com.au/music
Last night the godfather of dub, Lee “Scratch” Perry and his band performed at the Sydney Opera House as part of Brian Eno’s Luminous festival. Perry has always been a mad bugger, and now at 73 years old, he’s a mad ancient bugger, complete with purple-dyed hair and beard, gold-sprayed shoes and loads of bling. His half-open eyes show the toll that years of ganja and other drugs have taken, but at least he is still alive, a fact that should give Iggy Pop hope for a long future ahead of him!
Perry’s band was a five piece, consisting of guitar, bass, drums and two keyboardists. Although not quite as advanced in years as Perry himself, the band were clearly experienced hands and looked very relaxed as delivered a very danceable dub groove for a solid two hours. Over recent years, the Opera House has become more expansive in its musical selections, which is great, but the fixed seating in the Opera Theatre does curtail the natural instinct to get up and boogie to danceable acts like this one. It was no surprise then, that the side aisles quickly filled up with groovers.
On the mixing desk was the legendary Adrian Sherwood and this must be the first time I’ve been to a gig where the mixer was almost as famous as the act on stage. Sherwood created the On-U Sound label back in 1979 and was a key figure in the UK reggae scene as well as being a driving force behind the dub-influenced industrial funk act Tackhead. Since then, Sherwood has dabbled in a wide range of styles as a producer and performed in his own right. He has been collaborating with Perry for over 10 years and clearly knows the material inside out. Given that dub music from its origins is fundamentally a studio creation, there are challenges recreating that in a live setting (although effects pedals, samplers and other technological developments do help). Fortunately, doing just that is the idea behind Sherwood’s creation of On-U Sound in the first place, and the years of experience shone through. This was perhaps the best mixed concert I have ever attended.
And the music itself? Some of the classics made an appearance, including “Blackboard Jungle Dub (version 2)”, which is one of the all-time dub classics and probably my favourite Lee “Scratch” Perry track. It is also a great example of a dub track that was very much a studio creation, but the band’s rendition was superb. Like so much dub, the original was an instrumental and for the live performance Perry, somewhat bizarrely, chose to sing lines from “Where-ever I lay my hat, that’s my home”. A strange choice, but it almost worked. Perry was first and foremost a producer, a creator of a distinctive sound. He was never a great singer (witness this track from 1982 for example) and age has not really improved his sound. His timing and sound was often uneven, his words largely imprehensible, but sometimes the eccentricity faded to the background and the singing and music blended perfectly. The uplifting “Kilimanjaro” was a case in point: fueled with the rather bizarre Rastafarian imagery that is so much a part of reggae, it was a triumph.
There were some disappointing omissions, I’d have loved to hear Disco Devil to name just one, but that really reflects the volume of Perry’s output over the years.
In all it was an extremely enjoyable concert, with an excellent sound fronted by one of the crazier giants of music history. It was an opportunity I was glad I didn’t miss.
The Flying Colours tour kicked off here in Canberra at the ANU Refractory last night with of course Bliss n Eso headlining but supported by a number of other Australian hip-hop groups including Pez, 360, DJ Matik and Diafrix.
That was one awesome gig, I have to say. And that’s an understatement – not sure Jye would be ok with me swearing on here so I’ll keep it civil. But it went off. The Refractory was absolutely packed, crowd really got into it … and there were plenty of sing-along opportunities, in fact all the groups did at least one “repeat after me” thing: oo-oo, ah-ah … you know how it goes.
Local live music photographer Boxy took some awesome photos of all the acts that performed.
All the groups who took the stage really got the crowd amped up. The atmosphere, the lighting, the sound – it just worked. Being the ANU, you do end up by the end of the evening standing/jumping in an inch of beer across the floor and have to dodge the empty cans that fly around the room but you’re having a great time so you don’t care – it’s all part of the fun!
Bliss n Eso seemed to have fun too, describing the crowd and gig as “damn crazy” on Twitter.
They’ve definetly set the bar for the Funkoars who are performing at the same venue later this month.
The next stop for the Flying Colours tour is Sydney, tonight – so if you can get to Luna Park this evening, get yourself a ticket (if they haven’t already sold out) and have a fucking awesome night!
Site Times & Map For We Love Sounds
Free set booklets will also be available from the entry point on the day. If you haven’t got tickets yet, remember that the Diesel Only The Brave crew are giving away 2 tickets for nadda as a part of the new fragrance launch – and they’ll even be there tomorrow!
Diesel U Music pres. Renaissance (Royal Hall Of Industries)
8.30pm-10.00pm: Armand Van Helden
7.00pm-8.30pm: Laidback Luke
5.30pm-7.00pm: James Zabiela
4.45pm-5.30pm: Kissy Sell Out (Live)
3.30pm-4.45pm: Dirty South
2.30pm-3.30pm: Grafton Primary (Live)
2.15pm-2.30pm: The Aston Shuffle
1.30pm-2.15pm: Pivot (Live)
1.00pm-1.30pm: The Aston Shuffle
12.00pm-1.00pm: Radio Ink (Live)
Armin Arena (Hordern Pavilion)
5.30pm-10.00pm: Armin van Buuren
4.00pm-5.30pm: Matthew Dekay
2.00pm-4.00pm: Chris Lake
12.45pm-2.00pm: Robbie Lowe
12.00pm-12.45pm: ITM Comp Winner
Lost Baggage (Forum)
8.30pm-10.00pm: 16 Bit Lolitas
7.15pm-8.30pm: Popof (Live)
6.00pm-7.15pm: Guy Gerber (Live)
4.30pm-6.00pm: Anja Schneider
1.30pm-3.00pm: Justin Martin
12.45pm-1.30pm: Emerson Todd
12.00pm-12.45pm: Bump DJs
Bang Gang (Coachbay)
7.30pm-8.45pm: Bang Gang Allstar Jam
6.15pm-7.30pm: Dave Nada
4.00pm-5.15pm: Doom & Hoodrat
3.00pm-4.00pm: Bag Raiders
1.00pm-2.00pm: Dangerous Dan
12.00pm-1.00pm: Bang Gang Hangover Set
Trashbags (Byron Kennedy Hall)
9.00pm-10.00pm: Danger (Live)
7.00pm-9.00pm: Guns N Bombs
2.00pm-3.30pm: Trashbags Posse Djs
12.00pm-2.00pm: Trashbags Posse Djs
Lost Disco (Peter Finch Grass)
8.30pm-10.00pm: In Flagranti (Live)
5.15pm-6.00pm: Jimi Polar (Live)
4.15pm-5.15pm: Nathan Mclay
3.30pm-4.15pm: Spruce Lee
2:30pm-3:30pm: Le Rouge
1:30pm-2:30pm: Disco Not Disco
12:45pm-1:30pm: Better Days
8.30pm-10.00pm: The Aston Shuffle (Encore)
7.30pm-8.30pm: Act Yo Age (Live)
6.30pm-7.30pm: Dj Neoteric (Dubsided)
5.00pm-6.30pm: Sleater Brockman Vs Kato
2.30pm-3.30pm: James Taylor Vs Ben Morris
1.00pm-2.30pm: Jimmy Posters Vs Dbr
12.00pm-1.00pm: Rob Zobec
Parklife lineup has just been released.
PLEASE NOTE: UPDATED LINE UP HERE: parklife
Parklife 2009 lineup, in alphabetical order:
Art vs Science
The Aston Shuffle
Busy P (DJ & host)
The Cool Kids
Empire of the Sun
Dates for Parklife 2009
Sat 26th Sep – Botanic Gardens & Riverstage, Brisbane
Sun 27th Sep – Wellington Square, Perth
Sat 3rd Oct – Birrarung Marr, Melbourne
Sun 4th Oct – Kippax Lake, Moore Park, Sydney
Mon 5th Oct – Botanic Park, Adelaide
The Hellenic Club in Canberra is a bit of an odd venue for a rock gig, but as Flynn explained the band just wanted to try something different from performing at the local universities. Fair enough. I didn’t particular like the venue choice but the performance itself was of course awesome.
I didn’t take my Canon DSLR camera as I didn’t want to risk getting it damaged; I overestimated how crammed the venue would be. As it happened only two thirds of the room was filled – the gig had more of the feel of a new band trying out at the local pub. A really loud band.
I don’t know if I’m just getting old but I sure missed my earplugs which I seemed to have misplaced at one of my band’s recent gigs. It was very loud. Oh, but anyway I did snap a pic with my cameraphone.
The support act, Calling all Cars – well, I liked a few of their songs but overall it just sounded messy with no instrument definition, just cacophanic.
Surprised there was no encore by Cog – they just finished up 11pm sharp and that was it, the roadies came on stage and started packing up. A little disappointing, it was so sudden. They’ve only released two albums and didn’t even play some of their more well-known songs such as The Spine.
Nonetheless I enjoyed it
Karnivool are set to appease their eager fan base with the announcement of a national capital city tour in June combined with the unleashing of their highly anticipated new album ‘SOUND AWAKE’due for release late in May this year. This is the band’s first headlining tour in over a year, their past three tours have sold out so fans are urged to ensure they get in early to avoid disappointment when tickets go on sale on Thursday April 23.
It’s been three days and the post-blues blues are sort of beginning to fade. The 2009 East Coast Blues & Roots Music Festival was my first Bluesfest, and proved to be a superb way to pop the cherry and chill out in Byron Bay for a few days.
What was awesome?
1. Blue King Brown – I’ve never seen BKB live before but the energy and mood of their whole set was simply joyous. Natalie Pa’apa’a was smoking in some short-shorts and a leetle black singlet. I chugged two Smirnoff Ice’s and danced the whole way through.
2. Seasick Steve – what a fascinating man. The 68 year old guitarist still looks like the hobo he used to be (and took frequent swigs of whisky from a bottle under his chair in between songs) but his sound is superb and his stories are humbling. Easily the crowd favourite among the smaller Bluesfest acts. Read the full story
GUEST POST BY: Chloe
The show was disappointing for so many reasons. And for a handful of others it was a realisation that things had changed since the group last came out 5
years ago. As for the highlights, there were just enough to make this an enjoyable, though hardly incredible, night out.
Let’s Cover Off The Good Points First
N*E*R*D Make really good music. But it’s not hip hop. Not like I like my hip hop. This is the epitome of Pop music; incredibly catchy hooks “all the girls waiting in the line for the bathroom….”, rock-meets-hip hop hybrids (remember how much we liked Aerosmith meets RunDMC?) and heart tumbling
rhythm (two live drummers – what could be better). And don’t forget, these are the production genius’ behind the Neptunes, the best productio force since Timbaland. This show had all the hits “Sooner or Later”, “Lapdance” “Rockstar”, the crowd loved it, the girls got to go and dance on stage. It was a lot of fun.
But Let’s Not Brush Over the Bad Bits
Late on Stage.
Come on guys, how many shows do you perform in a year? Is it that hard to get the entourage together to get on stage at the promised time. And ten minutes changing the lights to hype up the crowd can only work for so long.
Get a new Sound Technician Pharell. You make some of the best pop of the moment, your two drummers are fantastic, and live guitar rocks. But if the guy behind the desk continues to make you sound like a chipmunk, or keeps you drowned out by the band, it really does sound terrible. Full marks to the punter who tried to get a refund from the promoter at the end of the show though. Read the back of the ticket next time!
Early Off Stage
What no encore? Isn’t the band supposed to leave the stage. The crowd cheers for a few minutes and then they come back on? Well you fooled us this time. After a paltry 63 minutes of playing, the band left the stage, and the house lights came on a few moments later.
… and How Music Has Changed (or Why I Am A Jaded Music Snob)
Pharell asked the crowd; “Hands Up If You’re Original Sydney…!?”. Nice to see everyone did. Was it ironic that 5 minutes later N*E*R*D pulled out “that” White Stripes bass line to get the crowd into action again. I think Grandmaster Flash also played it in his warm up set. Sorry, what were you saying about original?
Put Away The Phones Guys
I love live shows these days. I love to watch everyone concentrate more on the photos they are taking than the show. I love watching kids taking photos
using too much flash, or recording whole songs on a $200 camera which they think will be as watchable as MTV. Forget about lifestreaming for a minute. Just dance!
Oh – and Pharell has his own Social Network now. His new online community. It’s http://www.artst.com/... I think. Pharell had us all get our or ‘mobile devises’ and type it in. I was too busy dancing to get back online at a live show. So this may be a plug for something else. Enjoy it anyway.
It’s hard not to be a little overcome in the presence of afrobeat originator Tony Allen.
After all, Brian Eno has described him as “perhaps the greatest drummer who has ever lived.” Since the early sixties he’s been a pioneering force in contemporary African music, and his influence can be heard across a broad spectrum of musical styles. I asked Tony what first inspired him to pick up the drum sticks.
“I wanted to create my own style of music. God gave me a gift, and I followed my own path.”
He pauses to reflect for a moment, and adds “I always wanted to be different than other drummers, that’s why I’ve never tried to do anything else than afrobeat.”
Afrobeat was borne of an aim to provide social commentary on the inequalities inherent in African society. As a part of Fela Kuti’s Africa ’70, Allen was a foundational force in its development. He is quick to note that the problems afrobeat confronts are not exclusive to the continent, and in fact much of the drive behind the movement was motivated by struggles overseas.
“The social problems are not concentrated in Africa. Don’t forget that Fela had to go to the USA in 1969, meeting with the US black people to start to realize his Africanism.. As soon as we came back from the states, he started his fight against the governments and the dictature.”
A thoughtful expression crosses his faces as he muses “One sometimes has to move away from his own country to be completely aware of his home.”
Rather than adopt the same style of protest that his American contemporaries were developing, Allen states that he was always drawn to create something unique.
“I always wanted to sound different than U.S. jazz or hip hop artists. I hoped that maybe this alternative music vision would be able to effect someting in our society.”
With such a long history, I ask Tony whether he feels afrobeat might have lost some of its political urgency. I wonder whether it is still as politically charged.
“As long as African people will suffer of many diseases, there will always be artists fighting for them.”
His influence on popular music cannot be understated. The past twenty years have seen him collaborate with many big name artists. It would seem he has a soft spot for Blur and Gorillaz front man Damon Albarn.
(As Albarn does for him. The 2000 Blur single ‘Music Is My Radar’ is a tribute to Allen, the song ending with Albarn repeating the phrase “Tony Allen got me dancing.”)
“My aim has always been to fuse afrobeat with other styles of music and to spread it all over the world. I love to experience my drumming with others, like my different collaborations with Damon Albarn.”
His work with Albarn has included drumming on The Good, The Bad and The Queen album released in 2007, and he assures me there will be more to come from the pair, among other works.
“I am currently working with Damon Albarn on a new album project with other guests. I am also involved in Africa Express, a series of events promoting African music. We’ve had some hectic shows at Glastonbury, Liverpool, Lagos and Kinshasa, and there’s more to come in 2009.”
The world of music has changed a lot since Allen first taught himself to drum, but he remains optimistic about the industry as a whole. Whatever some might say about music losing some of its soul, it remains essential to him.
“It is vital for me. I don’t care what people may say about it.”
Allen shows no signs of retiring as time goes on, with his many collaborations in the works as well as a new album ready for release.
“My new album “Secret agent” will be released next June under World Circuit Records. But I won’t play my new album in this Australian tour.. next time for sure!”
Allen tours Australia in March. For info, head over here.
Musicfeeds - Tighter than a nun’s schedule!
You don’t get many people going to Nine Inch Nails gigs that are ‘kind of in to them’, or that have picked up a spare ticket from a mate at the last minute so pop along just to see what all the fuss is about. In many people’s eyes (including my own) Trent doesn’t put a foot wrong, not just when producing and performing but also in taking a stance against the traditional music industry and its inflexible distribution model.
Well, what is arguably Australia’s biggest and most eminent music festival wraps up in Perth today. I figure it would be remiss if TMB didn’t bring its wonderful readers some correspondence from the front lines of Sydney’s Homebush Olympic precinct.
This year’s event toured five cities in Australia and one in New Zealand, and was headlined by the Prodigy and the legendary Neil Young. The event was, luckily, unhampered by violence or any other dramas, but in most cities, was hindered by extreme heat. Regardless, the bands played on.
My expectations for this event were stratospheric as soon as it was announced. Either because of the superlative reputation it had in the UK for being a grown-up, chilled out festival, the involvement of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, the venue itself or, more likely, a combination of all three. Read the full story
On Friday night, I headed to Luna Park to catch a highly-anticipated (by me) gig at the Big Top.
First up was Ash Grunwald, who I’ve been listening to lately but have never known much about. I was surprised by the fact that Grunwald is a one-man show. He does the guitars and vocals and operates a snare, kick drum and toms using his feet. Great plan, in theory, but if you break a string and get flustered (and admit that to your audience), you’ve got no one to hold things while you get your shit together. While Ash rocks at what he does, his feet were half a second behind the rest of him. Get a drummer, son.
The OAF is a great venue. It feels like Fabric in 2001/ 2002 and not just because of the industrial set up with open brick- and metal-work. As with (nu skool) breaks 7 or 8 years ago, there was a genuine feeling that we were about to see something a bit new and different.
The boys from the Blue Mountains, Hermitude, warmed it up with some jazz, reggae, dancehall and dub-influenced tunes, and looking around, it was interesting to see the audience watching the DJs like we were at a gig. Everyone was watching the stage, watching the guys perform.
The performance continued when a young scallywag took to the stage, with an air of awkwardness reminiscent of Ian Curtis. Skream was followed quickly by Benga who came out hollering in to his mic, keen to get the crowd pumped while his partner played the opening few tunes.
The set started off with frenetic pace. This was in spite of serious technical issues that plagued the first half, and which threatened to turn sections of the crowd nasty. The boys dealt with it all with supreme professionalism (Benga even started to sing ‘Night’ at one point) and once they had moved to a second set of decks it was all go.
About 10 minutes in things slowed down to a more dubstep speed, the bass started taking over and we knew things were about to get ‘fucking messy’. The sort of dubstep these guys play is fierce, dark, and unrelenting. The bass is raw and aggressive and makes you feel like you are at the centre of a thunderstorm. But in a good way.
It is also high energy, and Benga kept reminding us of that by shouting in to the mic. They were playing back-to-back, and were helped out on mic duties about half way in to the set when N-Type barrelled on to the stage having finished his set up at the Gaff (why these guys were booked for the same night I have no idea).
At times it seemed like we were watching 3 lads muck about in their bedroom, but it was amazing to see such passion for the music they were playing. By the time they had all had a crowdsurf (Benga looked like he got dumped on the floor, but I am sure he is alright), and yelling at everyone to ‘get fucking alien’ (still not sure what that means), the night was won.
Skream pointedly asked us who was at his gig in 2006 (of course, everyone was there), and it made me realise that whilst this all feels fresh and new in Australia, these boys have been around for a long time in the UK. Going on last night, we should see dubstep go from strength to strength in these parts in 2009.
I never knew that there were places (homes, institutions or whatever you want to call them) for people who were deaf. Daniel Marando from the diabolically bluesy Maladies sits across from me, staring out the window. Something seems to catch his eye as he turns and waves to an older lady sitting across the room, intently watching the Bold and the Beautiful with closed captions blaring.
“HI MARGARET, HOW ARE YOU?”