Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Tetuzi Akiyama

This concert was just an one paragraph blurb in Rave, but 4 words caught my attention.
knife-play guitar style
Yes, apparently he plays his guitar with a knife. A steak knife, if you're being particular.

Tetuzi Akiyama is a Japanese improv instrumentalist, predominantely on the guitar. The Queensland Institute of Modern Art is bringing him out to play a free show on Thursday the 1st of July. It's part of MicroMONO9, which is their sound/performance music program.

It's free. It starts at 7pm. It's in room 40 of IMA. And it's a talented man with a guitar. And a knife. I don't know how I won't be there.

Videos of him (knife-less, unfortunately) can be seen here

Rock for the Regent

A few weekends back, Brisbane's much loved cinema the Regent shut for the last time. It was sad for some, as they have been trying so hard to preserve this last little bit of history in Queen Street Mall. Even though it's shut, there's still some die hards trying to save the theatre. And now they're throwing a concert for it.

Over three days at the Globe, the lineup includes Wolfmother and Katie Noonan, all for a reasonably low price in a very small and intimate setting. Check it out the 8th, 10th and 11th of July.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Pendulum tour

One of Australia's biggest exports, if we exclude iron ore, has to be Pendulum. These West Australian boys have put together some of the best drum and bass to ever come out of our fair land and have hit the big time all over the world.

We're lucky enough that they've decided to come home for a few weeks and play songs off of their cracking new album Immersion.

Grab your glowsticks (actually don't, I hate people that do that), put on your dancing shoes and raver pants (if so inclined) and catch them at the Tivoli over two days: November 3 and 4, all 18+.

If you've never listened to radio in Australia, you may have to check out their MySpace to see if you like them. http://www.myspace.com/pendulum

Bedouin Soundclash

Today's slightly-different-band-you've-probably-never-heard-of- but-are-still-coming-to-do-a-headline-tour-of-Australia-is Bedouin Soundclash.

These Canadians combine dub and reggae, with a sound that has elements of ska in it. It's upbeat and cheerful. I saw them play a few songs at Soundwave '09 not knowing who they were, and I found myself tapping my foot along and enjoying it immensely.

They are playing October 15 at the Zoo, 18+.


Friday, June 25, 2010

Public Enemy performing Fear of a Black Planet

The year was 1990, I was 5 and still in the height of my Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle craze. I didn't know about music that wasn't on Sesame Street, let alone the idea of hip-hop, still largely amongst the African-American community. In fact, most of us had no idea. And then came along Fear of a Black Planet.

Ignoring the garish clock-laden neck-wear of Flava Flav, Public Enemy (specifically lead lyricist Chuck D) challenged the notion of music, allowing the largely ignorant caucasian listeners to see things from an afro-centric point of view. And they did it with bloody good songs and clever lyrics.

The album went platinum and hit the charts in many countries. It even got added to the USA's Library of Congress' National Recording Registry. Despite the greatness of the album, most of us will know it for it's closing track, Fight the Power.

In celebration of 20 years since this groundbreaking release, my alma mater the University of Iowa (GO HAWKEYES!) hosted a hip-hop exhibit entitled “Two Turntables and a Microphone: Hip-Hop Contexts”. As part of this, Public Enemy got together to host a discussion panel on Fear of a Black Planet. And then they performed the album in full.

"That's great Chuck, but that's half a world away and a few months in the past!" I hear you saying. Yes, but now Public Enemy is taking the album tour on the road. And they'll be bringing it to our little town on January 5 2011, at the Sunset Sounds festival. Held at the Riverstage.

I presume they are the headliners, as the rest of the lineup will be announced on August 11th.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Music of the World Cup

That shit is hilarious. (You may have to click on it)

Soulfly tour

In my geeky, chubby pre-pubescent days, Soulfly was probably that first band that I got into that was completely different from anything else I listened to. I had no idea what it was back then, but their mix of thrash, nu-metal and tribal beats spoke to me. It probably helped they had a bunch of guest stars on their first 2 albums that I liked too.

Although I've drifted away from that geeky and chubby kid, and consequently the music that went with it, I still listen to Soulfly occassionally, including their new album from this year, Omen. It's not bad at all. They'll be touring Omen through Australia this September.

September 7, at the HiFi (18+)

They are also bring out two bands with them, City of Fire, which includes members of Fear Factory and Strapping Young Lad and Incite, which has Richie Cavalera (Max's, the lead singer of Soulfy, brother).

Bush are back baby

Gavin Rossdale used to write such great grunge music. And then he met Gwen Stefani, got happy, married and Bush broke up.

But yesterday they announced their reunion, a new single in the works and a concert.
In an interview with US radio station KROQ frontman Gavin Rossdale confirmed that the band, who originally disbanded in 2002, are reuniting to play music and speedway festival Epicenter Twenty Ten at the Auto Club Speedway In Fontana, California on September 25.

Rossdale also confirmed that Bush will release a new album in October and it will be preceded by their new single, Afterlife.
Exciting! Like a lot of people my age, Sixteen Stone was one of those first albums you really listened to as a kid, coming out in 1994. It really opened your eyes to music that was a little less than mainstream, even though it had a few hits on it. Amongst my friends, Glycerine was one of those songs that everyone learnt on a guitar and played together. Even just two days ago I was playing it and Everything Zen on my guitar.

I'll just have to wait for them to come to Australia now.

There's a few songs to listen to at Their Last.Fm

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Goldfrapp Splendour Sideshow

In what could be a first ever, Brisbane is getting a side show to the Splendour festival. Quickly announced yesterday, it's for British pop/electronic duo Goldfrapp.

I reviewed their new album in my old blog (RIP) and it's not as dance-oriented as earlier Goldfrapp music, it's now more ambient and relaxed electronica. They are probably best known for their song Strict Machine (listen here).

They'll be at the Tivoli on July 30th.


Wayne's World:
Exqueese me? Have I seen this one before? "Frampton Comes Alive"? Everybody in the world has Frampton Comes Alive. If you lived in the suburbs you were issued it. It came in the mail with samples of "Tide".
Yeah, my dad is even more excited today with the announcement of a 1970's rock tour of awesome: Peter Frampton, America and Chicago.

Frampton, apart from his hilarious appearance on the Simpson's Lollapalooza episode (went to link it, but all videos have been removed), is famous for making the talk box famous. See below:

This classic American rock tour is hitting Riverstage on October 30.

I'd link their MySpaces for you, but back in their day, the internet was not on computers.

Joy Division tour... kind of

It's weird to think that it's been 30 years since Joy Division's debut album. 30 years... How music has changed since then.

Although not widely successful in it's day, the side B opening track She's Lost Control cemented Joy Division into the books of music history.

In celebration of the anniversary, Peter Hook (the original bassist and member of New Order) will be bringing special "friends" out to perform Unknown Pleasures in full. Along the way they will also be performing other Joy Division songs. The British tour also included videos and talks about the history of Joy Division and New Order.

It's all happening September 27 at the Tivoli.

This show will be polarising; some people like me would love to see these songs played live, even without Ian Curtis. The purists will hate it though.

Here's the famous She's Lost Control television performance. You can see Peter Hook in action at the start:
Joy Division-She's Lost Control-1979 from Meurglys68 on Vimeo.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Against Me! tour

There's no lying, I'm a huge Tom Gabel fan boy. I've come close to getting Against Me! stuff tattooed on me (but I'm a little pussy). So it's with glee that I can announce that Against Me! are coming back to Australia.

Starting many years ago as a solo acoustic punk act, Against Me! will be coming out with the full band this year. Not only will we get acoustic songs (like my favourite song I linked above) but the whole punk rock treatment.

Their new album White Crosses has polarised the fans. Many of the traditionalists miss the stripped back raw punk days of albums like Reinventing Axl Rose and As the Eternal Cowboy. Although these two albums are absolute classics, I love the direction they have taken with White Crosses. It's a bit more alternative rock, but the lyrical content that Tom Gabel produces is as good as it has ever been. He manages to turn almost every song he writes into a story.

Despite what you think of their new stuff, Against Me! is not a band to miss live. They always play songs from across their back catalogue and put on an amazing show. You'll find yourself chanting along and pumping fists to the sky without even realizing it.

October 7 at the HiFi (18+)

If you want to hear more of them, you can download their recently recorded Daytrotter sessions for free here: http://www.daytrotter.com/dt/against-me-concert/20032231-37382290.html The version of White Crosses here is top notch.

Eagles tour

Ahhh, the Eagles. Sort of an unofficial soundtrack to car trips in my youth. Next to Jimmy Buffet, my dad had a lot of Eagles casettes.

So I'll probably take him to go see them, the 13th of December, at the Entertainment Centre.

Paramore tour

"To post this tour or not" was an internal debate I had for about 5 minutes. I'm not the biggest fan of their music, but the lead singer is cute. And orange.

It's pop-punk.
October 17 at the Riverstage.

You can stream their entire new album here: http://www.paramore.net/album/brand-new-eyes/

Silversun Pickups Australian tour (as a support)

I remember about 3 or 4 years ago, these guys did a free show in the Valley. My coworker tried to drag me along to see it, but because of my associating their songs with a recent ex-girlfriend that was pissing me off (especially with her horrid habit of liking only music that was played on Triple J, the singles, not full albums) I skipped it. And I hate myself for it.

They do extremely dreamy shoegaze. And don't be fooled, that voice is not a female (much heated debate was had in the office about it). They also released one of the best albums of 2009, in Swoon.

What makes me mad is that their tour of Australia has them as supports. For Birds of Tokyo. Who are definitely not my cup of tea. I like their song Off Kilter, but for some reason I've never liked the band. Probably has something to do with the lead singer, who is from Karnivool, another band I've never liked for no apparent reason.

They'll be playing the Convention Centre on the 24th of September.

Silversun Pickups
Birds of Tokyo

In news that makes me hate myself for not getting tickets...

Metallica supports have been announced. Both are international acts.

Lamb of God

I saw Baroness at Soundwave a few months back and they were damn good.

It's October 16, 18 and 19 at the Entertainment Centre.

Bon Jovi tour

Big hair.
Big riffs.
Big hits.

Bon Jovi are coming down here for a stadium tour. They'll be invading Suncorp Stadium on the 14th of December. And if you don't know them, then have you listened to any music in the last 2 decades? Ever?

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Dangers/Graf Orlock, Burst City June 19 2010

I liked it so much I went back a second time. 6 bands, all ages. I could write another review about it, but I think I covered it well on Friday. Both Dangers and Graf were better this time, I think the product of it being less loud and more understandable. Anyway, this post is basically to post a video I took:

Friday, June 18, 2010

Enter Shikari

I saw Enter Shikari at the Big Day Out 2008, well at least I thought I did. I got hit on the head pretty bad during Anti-Flag and was a bit concussed. Then in Enter Shikari a fight dancer punched me square in the testacles. The rest of the day was a bit of a blur, to say the least.

After playing a Big Day Out and a Soundwave, they are finally bring their dub/dance/hardcore mix for their own headlining show throughout our lands. Their older songs were of a hardcore sound, but lately they've been leaning more towards the dancing and dub step side of the spectrum.

Edit: turns out the poster is wrong. I have a feeling they changed it to not clash with Parkway Drive.
They'll be playing two shows in Brisbane, both at the HiFi. 20th of September is the 18+ show, while the 21st is the under 18 show. With them will be Australia's House vs Hurricane. They do a similar thing, mixing electronica with hardcore.

Enter Shikari
House vs Hurricane

Graf Orlock/Dangers/Infinite Thought Process/Marathon (Tempo Bar, 17 June 2010)

I had been waiting a long time for this show, so it was with great expectations that I walked into the Tempo Bar this afternoon. The Stage Door at Tempo Bar seemed a strange place for a hardcore show, it was too nice and brightly lit. Way too classy and it even had clean toilets!

That aside, about 150 punters half filled the basement venue. Most got in early to see local boys Marathon take the stage. This was their unofficial new album release show and they played a few tracks of their recently completed (days ago) album. One of their friends took the second microphone to add vocals to one of the closing songs and the crowd had obviously seen them before, as they joined in with singing some of the songs.

Sunshine Coast boys Infinite Thought Process were next, playing their progressive hardcore and metal. Their guitars were fast, the singing was heavy and the songs were long; none of which is a bad thing. They were all talented musicians, but at no point did they try to out play each other, instead creating complex yet beautiful melodies, interspersed with breakdowns and lightning fast solos. This was best demonstrated in their instrumental song, when the lead singer sat down for a breather. The remaining musicians played a lush sounding song, slowly building it up, until it eventually ran into their next song which happened to be the heaviest of the set.

Dangers started by thanking us for showing up, as they weren't expecting more than maybe 5 people. They came out hard and fast, within one song there were already monitors tipped upside down and clothing lost. The passion and energy exerted by the lead singer was amazing, he put his entire being into singing each song. He explained to the crowd that despite the overly depressing and suicidal themes of their music, it was really about a celebration of life and living, before dedicating the song Cure for Cancer to his grandfather who had a long battle with cancer.

The small, yet energetic crowd was given a masterclass in hardcore music philosophy. The entire band played as hard and as heavy as they could. The singer spent most of his time in the crowd, fighting and dancing with the few brave souls at the front that kept colliding with each other, and to the lesser extent the floor. A healthy mix of both of their albums was played and a few explanations were given for the newer songs as well.

Obviously more than a few of the crowd were in for Dangers only, as their was a lot less people by the time Graf Orlock took the stage. Not that there was much of a changeover, with the guitarist being the same for both bands and all of the same equipment being used.

Graf's cinematic grindcore is an experience in itself. Their soundcheck was the theme from Predator, which got me and Clus quite excited. Every song was introduced with samples from movies and the guitarist would also stop mid-riff to press the button to play more samples.

The volume and intensity was cranked up, with the Tempo Bar flooded with feedback the entire time. My poor ear plugs barely drowned out the noise. But this suited their grindcore sound. The band played to the smaller crowd on their first visit to Brisbane, with both guitarists and the singer coming out to the floor and throwing themselves into the few of us standing at the front of the stage. They closed their too short set with the Dream Left Behind, the sounds of Jurassic Park converting Clus into their new biggest fan.

If you get the chance, you can see Graf Orlock and Dangers again on Saturday at Burst City or Sunday at Shed 5. Both all ages shows. I'd recommend going to see them, as this was an amazing gig. And Dangers, if you are reading this, play Stay at Home Mom next time please.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Ima Robot new song

Ima Robot combine indie, punk and dance music into a strange combination that generally ends up in me dancing.

They've got a new album coming out soon and they have released a track from it for free. Ruthless is available for free on their website http://imarobot.com/, so go there and get it for yourself.

My thoughts after a few listens is that it is a more ambient electronic feel, channeling bands such as Janes Addiction and Groove Armada. In fact, the vocals make it sound a heck of a lot like Janes Addiction. It's a long six and a half minute song with none of that dance feel that their more popular previous tracks have had. It's just relaxing and laid back.

If this is the direction they have gone for the entire new album, they will lose a lot of fans of their dance punk stylings. However, I like bands that reinvent themselves and I really like the feel that Ruthless has. Time will tell I guess.

Sounds Like Brisbane fiesta!

I only just found out about this, but it's tomorrow night as part of Brisbane's Inhabit Fiesta, a celebration of the rebirth of Brisbane's laneways and alleyways, ala Melbourne. A bunch of local independent bands are playing together in the streets of the city. So rug up!

Burnett Lane Stage
  • Blowhard (pictured above, classic Brisbane ska): 9.15pm
  • The Optimen: 8.15pm
  • Last Dinosaurs: 7.30pm
  • Butcher Birds: 6.45pm
  • My Fiction: 6.10pm
  • Novia Scotia: 5.30pm
Island Court Stage
  • Halfway: 9.15pm
  • The Rational Academy: 8.15pm
  • Texas Tea: 7.30pm
  • Fushia: 6.45pm
  • Wiley Reed: 6.00pm
  • Carry Nation: 5.30pm
The stages are Island Court off Elizabeth St between George St and Elizabeth Arcade and, Burnett Lane off Albert St near Queen St Mall, Brisbane CBD. And best of all, it's FREE!

TripleJ Impossible Music Festival

For the first time in years, I actually listened to Triple J in my car the other day. I had left my CDs at home, 612ABC were droning on about rugby league and 4ZZZ were talking about god knows what, so I had no choice. But they were asking people their 3 favourite live acts. All in anticipation for their Impossible Music Festival.

This festival is when Triple J listeners vote for their favourite live acts and over the course of a weekend live sets of these bands are played. It's a novel idea. Back in the day I took a few down on casette and I still have Frenzal Rhomb's and Rage Against the Machine's. I lost my At the Drive-In one though. (Future project maybe, copying these to my computer...) So I got thinking, what are my three favourite live bands and what were my three concerts over the approximately 200 I've been to in the last 9 years?

Live bands:

3. The Bronx (the lead singer chugging wine in the pit while singing at Soundwave 2007)
2. The Matches (so much energy, stage presence and character. Also the lead guitarist broke his hand and played everything one handed)
1. The Dillinger Escape Plan.

And my favourite concerts in general:

3.Norma Jean/Every Time I Die/Darkest Hour/A Secret Death, 8th June 2007 at the Arena in Fortitude Valley

At the time, I knew maybe 3 Norma Jean songs, but was told to go. And I was glad I did.

The crowd was only half full, but the Norma Jean singer encouraged us to get into the music, just to "scream any words, it doesn't matter if you don't know the song!" And we did. The final song featured the singer climbing up and hanging off of the Arena's rafters while screaming into the mike. Not to mention I heard Every Time I Die for the first time.

I can't wait for Norma Jean to finally come back.

2. From Autumn to Ashes/The Bled/The Getaway Plan/The Paper and the Plane, 23 November 2006, at her Majesty's Basement in Brisbane

This was a great day for me. Earlier in the morning I went to the opening day of the Ashes cricket match, where Steve Harmison famously did this in the first ball:

I also got offered my engineering job that day. And later that night, Clus and I trooped into Queen Street Mall at 11 pm to go to this show. There were maybe 50 people in the audience. We didn't know of the problems with FATA losing their singer just days before. We didn't realize they had brought in a drummer and that Fran, the original drummer, only just learnt how to scream the vocals (as a consequence, he did his voice in and the tour was cancelled days later).

It was pure insanity as the clock ticked over towards 2 am. I was already tired (and fairly intoxicated from the morning). The Bled came out hard and fast, doing their first song as a sound check. The lead singer was stopping halfway through and asking for "more kick and snare" on his monitors. FATA squeezed onto the tiny stage and instead of doing an encore just played Short Stories with Tragic Endings (apparently for the first time in 5 years). There was broken glass and falling moshers everywhere, my legs were cut to shreds. There was a guy that had just got out of prison an hour before and had the band sign his parole docket. I walked out of that tiny basement stage as deaf as I have ever been.

1. Dillinger Escape Plan/Poison the Well/Every Time I Die/Evergreen Terrace, 25 February 2009 at the Forum in Sydney

This was a sideshow to the Soundwave festival and Clus and I trekked down to Sydney for it. Fucking hell Clus, you were standing next to me for all of these shows. I guess I've got you to thank for it all.

The lineup was incredible for Australia, 4 international bands that I loved for $40. The crowd were pretty shit for the first few bands and I got stuck in a lineup trying to get in for most of Evergreen Terrace (Nine Inch Nails were playing directly across the road and it was chaos) but when Dillinger came on, my entire idea of what live music is was changed forever. This video of Milk Lizard I took on my phone was about as quiet as they got all night:

Quiet, yet they are still jumping around like idiots. At one point the singer was climbing on the PAs, one guitarist was 2 storeys up swinging off chains while the other guitarist was on the balcony leaning over it and playing like a madman. I have never seen a band put so much energy into a show before.

Special mentions also go to:
Brand New (July 5 2003 at Gabes Oasis in Iowa City and 22 January 2008 at the Tivoli in Brisbane) - In Iowa City they were bumrushed on the stage and had all of their instruments unplugged. Jesse climbed up to the roof, hung upside and played Weezer's Say it Ain't So, while the rest of the band plugged their instruments in and joined. Never once did they make us clear the stage. And at the Tivoli they were a band possessed, trashing their instruments in an amazing 10 minute finish of Welcome to Bangkok (I think).

Mars Volta (24 January 2006 at the Arena) - Third time of seeing them, yet the first as a headliner. No openers, just them playing for hours of insanity. Including Frances the Mute.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

100 albums of the last decade

Yesterday's post was also partly in response to this: http://sputnikmusic.com/blog/?p=1925, Sputnikmusic's top 100 albums of the last decade. Although I feel most of the list is just an attempt to look cool, I am mighty impressed by their ballsy number 1 choice.

I've got a lot of albums I need to listen to now, according to that list.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Chuck's Top Ten albums of all time (as of this week at least)

I got asked the other day to name my top 10 albums of all time. It was a throw away topic of conversation, but one that left my head reeling. What exactly makes an album one of my all time favourites? I made a shortlist of about 50 albums, but then I added more and more that I kept forgetting about. I dug through my records, I dug through my MP3's, hell, I even dug through my parent's 12" from the 70s.

The list covered all generations, from Creendence Clearwater Revival's Cosmo's Factory in the late 60s, Neil Young's Harvest in the early 70s, Tears for Fears' Songs from the Big Chair in the 80s, Dr Dre's Chronic in the 90s, Taking Back Sunday's Tell All Your Friends in the early emo 2000s and even as recent as Los Campesinos! and Dangers' albums of 2010. But none of those albums made the cut.

My shortist came down to about 20. And looking at it, it wasn't surprising if you know me. It covers the wide range of music I like. I stripped out multiple albums from the one band (damn you Modest Mouse) and stared at a list of 15. I then said fuck it and made the 10. So here it is. But first, some honourable mentions. Albums that just missed the cut:

Finch - Say Hello to Sunshine
Buckethead - Monsters and Robots
The Vandals - Hitler Bad. Vandals Good.
Against Me! - As the Eternal Cowboy
Alexisonfire - Crisis
Between the Buried and Me - Alaska
Poison the Well - Opposite of December
The Bouncing Souls - How I Spent My Summer Vacation
Brand New - Deja Entendu
Wilco - Yankee Hotel Foxtrot

10. Suicide Machines - Destruction by Definition

A surprising start, right? Not really if you've ever been in my car. My mate Elliot once commented how this album had never left my car in a year. And it's true. I play it almost weekly.

But what makes this album a classic to me, is the upbeat mix of punk, ska and hardcore. This album was all about kids having a good time and enjoying life. Let's just make a band and play all the styles of music we like singing songs about whatever is relevant to us. The Vans Song was all about shoes, New Girl is a guy boasting about his new girlfriend to whoever is within ear shot and Hey Ska is just a classic anthem of being confused about growing up.

Everytime I listen to this I just have flashbacks to being 14 and playing Tony Hawk's Pro Skater (#1) on the Nintendo 64 as well. Those were carefree days.

9. The Roots - Game Theory

In a generation of throw away hip-hop albums, that generally show case 1 or 2 songs with "skits", this is a diamond in the rough. It's not got the outstanding tracks that their album Phrenology had, but this is one of those albums of yesteryears, where the sum of the whole is greater than the individual parts.

It builds up with a sample criticising wars before launching into what could almost be described as a broody post-punk kind of feel of False Media, with Black Thought touching some deep and meaningful territory. It builds up through In The Music before hitting full crescendo in Here I Come (quite possibly my song of 2006) before bringing it all the way back with Can't Stop This, a touching and hauting tribute to their friend.

While listening to this you ride the entire wave of emotions.

8. The Fratellis - Costello Music

There is nothing about this album to make it a classic. It's far from anything original. But that's exactly why I love it. Costello Music was not recorded to change the face of music, it was recorded simply to make you dance. And it manages to do that for me every time. The up beat tempos channel Clash style punk as well as elements of ska and dance. It's just fast and full of energy.

7. Sonic Youth - Goo

I am probably a little more than slightly obsessed with Goo. I have the CD. I have the re-issue 180 gram 12". I also have the album cover on a shirt. That last one is purely for the art appreciation of the cover. So musically, why is this the best Sonic Youth album from the 16 released in 30 years? And it's the songs. Goo is a hit factory.

Dirty Boots starts the album the way I like Sonic Youth: noisy and full of guitars. Kool Thing, featuring Chuck D of Public Enemy, is almost as mainstream pop-rock as Sonic Youth ever got. Mildred Pierce on the other hand is as far away from mainstream rock as it gets, a post-rock song ending with 30 seconds of almost pure grindcore. Goo demonstrates everything that is Sonic Youth, all in 11 tracks.

6. Primus - Sailing the Seas of Cheese

There was no doubting that Primus would feature somewhere in my list and Sailing the Seas of Cheese is the obvious choice. Interesting, it is also the 2nd album on the list that featured a song on the soundtrack to the original Tony Hawk's Pro Skater (and Goldfinger almost made it as well, that must say a lot about the time I came into music).

Seas of Cheese holds the greatest collection of Primus songs, with most of them being outstanding tracks. The redneck drawl of Jerry Was A Racecar driver, the Tom Waits yelling-through-a-megaphone story of Tommy the Cat, the fast bass slapping of Is It Luck, the repetitive art-rock of Bastards and Those Damned Blue Collar Tweekers and the what the fuck moment of Grandad's Little Ditty... This album is everything Primus is. They've got great songs on all of their other albums, but that is generally padded by a few filler materials, of which Seas of Cheese has none.

The day I saw the album played live, front to back, was one of the greatest days of my life.

5. Modest Mouse - Lonesome Crowded West

Musically, this album should be a disaster. It makes no sense. The mix of instruments at times is so borderline to being noise and at other times so soft that you strain to pick it up. The music itself throws out all theory and the lyrics are just pure whacked out nonsense. The only thing holding the madness together is Isaac Brock. And wow, he does.

The loud noisy freak outs of early Modest Mouse is what I love best about the band and Lonesome Crowded West has both Shit Luck and Doin' the Cockroach, both songs that build and layer noise into an explosion. Mellowing out the album are folkie tunes like Jesus Christ Was an Only Child, Long Distance Drunk and Bankrupt On selling.

The whole album teeters on the edge of lunacy with polar swings back and forth. The sound is huge for only a 5 piece band and marks the turning point of their career. They've mellowed out a bit since this album but this is what defined their sound as a band.

4. Decemberists - Picaresque

Nautical European folk music. That is all.

But really, there is no modern story teller like Colin Melloy, the lead singer. Each track of Picaresque tells a story. And sometimes it is a very long story. That sounds like a sea shanty (The Mariner's Revenge Song). The music of the album paints the scenes almost as good as the words and you can just imagine yourself there. And when you're not imagining yourself in the story, you are imagining yourself around a campire in 19th century Europe listening to the gypsy nomads telling a musical story.

3. Bob Dylan - Highway 61 Revisited

The most hated of Bob Dylan's albums (well at the time at least) is my favourite. This is where Bob Dylan turned his back on folk and his musical past. This is when he embraced the future and became a full electric rock band. And really, not much changed. Sure it was louder with more instruments, but there's still that Bob Dylan poetry through the whole album. And if anything, the band helped him write some really long songs, with great lyrical content. Doing that on a single acoustic guitar would've driven most listeners crazy. It was not quite the birth of rock 'n' roll, but Like a Rolling Stone, the classic opening track, launched mainstream rock to the world.

2. Refused - The Shape of Punk to Come: A Chimerical Bombation In 12 Bursts

“They told me that the classics never go out of style, but…they do. They do. Somehow, baby, I never thought that we would too.” And with that intro to the album, Refused summed up their greatest and their last album, the band famously imploding a few months later in the middle of a US tour. This album is everything the title makes it out to be: it was the shape of punk to come. Breakdowns, electronic instruments and noise, classical interludes, songs shifting 180 degrees in the middle, singing with screaming, simple riffs coupled with complex harmonies, clean guitar leading into crunching distortion, it's all there. And these days the music world is overrun with it.

There is simply no better manifesto to everything this band stood for then this album. The album’s foreword states that “ideas can be expressed over any soundtrack” and this was the ideal soundtrack for it.  The raw anger and disgust at capitalism and the politics of the modern world that was the core belief of the band is just released and jammed down our throats through Dennis' angry vocals and the bone crushing accompanying guitar work.

It's not just the music, it's the whole album. In the modern age of CD's and downloads, an album package is just something to hold the music. Not this album though, their entire philosophy and manifesto is there in the notes, for all to see.

1. At the Drive-In - Relationship of Command

Relationship of Command mirrors so many aspects of Refused's Shape of Punk to Come, it's scary. Both albums were the band's final ones, scoring them their hard worked for success before the bands imploded. Both albums sound nothing like their previous work. Both albums took hardcore music to places no one had imagined.

Whereas Refused went the way of a crushing manifesto, At the Drive-In continued their absolutely gibberish: guitars that followed no musical path with lyrics of absolute nonsense. And it was amazing.

Personally, this album is what woke me up to music. 9th grade, my mate lent me the CD. 2 days later I had bought it (for $6.99 in Best Buy's up and coming artist display). A year later I had learnt most of the bass guitar parts and played along to it daily. 10 years later I am still listening to it over and over again, wishing for someone else to make music this fresh and new to me again.

The songs on the album have all been hand crafted with such intricacy, listen to the bass in Quarantined play with the sounds of the storm, the piano in Non-Zero Possibility, the crazy guitar in Cosmonaut... every single sound has been strategically thought out and placed. perfectly. It's a masterpiece.

More Metallica dates

Despite the fact that I spun the Kill Them All vinyl more than a few times over the weekend, I'm still kind of unmotivated to go see Metallica live.

It's the combination of the venue, the over the top cost and their last few albums that have made me apathetic. However, if you're wanting to go see them on a rare tour of Australia, they've announced a few more Brisbane dates.

October 16, 18 and 19. All at the Entertainment Centre.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Cola Wars

The boys of Bodyjar are never ones to rest. Not long after Bodyjar finished forever, half of them are back with the band Cola Wars. Here's their new single:

It's more mainstream rock, that's for sure. But in a good way. And even though Cam's in the band, he doesn't seem to sing. Which creeps me out a little. You can see the distinctive outline of his Explorer guitar in the video, but that's about it.

They'll be playing Rosies on July 10th.

Now if only Burn the City gets back together in the fall out of Bodyjar...

Camp Kill Yourself

You've heard of Jackass, right? Bam Margera? Wildboys? Steve-o? Well that craziness started in one place, CKY. Over a decade ago a bunch of mates got together and did crazy stunts. And taped them. At the same time, some of them formed a band of the same name. And they put out some good music:

I saw them way back in 2002, opening for Guns 'n' Roses and Mixmaster Mike. They were good. Even my mother enjoyed them. Although she thought they were a bit drugged up.

Over their few albums, they've carved out a very niche sound. A clean yet grudgy rock sound. Once you hear CKY, you'll recognise their sound anywhere. Which you hopefully will when they come out to Australia this year.

15th August, HiFi, 18+.

And because I can, here's a video of the CKY guys (not the band) making fun of He-Man.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Parklife 2010

Parklife is a festival I've yet to attend. It brings out some good bands, but never enough to motivate me to plonk down the money. So what does 2010 hold in store?

I've italicized the ones I've seen and bolded the ones I want to:
  • Groove Armada
  • The Dandy Warhols
  • Cut Copy
  • The Wombats
  • Darwin Deez
  • Ou Est Le Swimming Pool
  • Wolf Gang
  • Washington
  • Gypsy and the cat
  • Missy Elliott
  • Kele
  • Midnight Juggernauts
  • Dan Black
  • Chiddy Bang
  • Mix Master Mike
  • Sinden
  • Bag Raiders
  • Ajax
  • Soulwax
  • Busy P
  • Uffie
  • Jack Beats
  • The Glitch Mob
  • Brodinski
  • DJ Mehdi
  • AC Slater
  • Yolanda Be Cool vs Dcup
  • Holy Ghost!
  • Memory Tapes
  • Classixx
  • Delorean
  • New Young Pony Club
  • The Swiss
  • Jesse Rose
  • Grum
Obviously, to me, it's probably not worth going. But if you like your dance and electronica music and enjoy the experience of a festival, then this is probably for you (coincidentally, both things I don't like).

September 25, at the Gold Coast Parklands.

Arcade Fire new song

The Arcade Fire's first album Funeral was like an avalanche: very slow moving at the start, but the more people listened to it the more it grew on them. Now it's a mainstay of many great albums list.

Their take on orchestral indie flopped for their second album, but now they stand on the cusp of releasing their third album and many people are already hailing it a return to form. They've got a new song doing the rounds, the Suburbs. It's got a bit of an upbeat pop melody, with less of the multi-instrumental feel that they pushed to death in Neon Love.

For now, I can't figure out how to embed Hype-m music, so check it out for yourself here: http://hypem.com/artist/Arcade%20Fire/1/

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Q: Anthrax + Fall Out Boy + Every Time I Die = ?

A: The Damned Things

The singer from Every Time I Die, guitarists from Anthrax (including Scott Ian's beard) and the drummer and guitarist from Fall Out Boy make up the Damned Things. And on first demo, they do Southern inspired rock/metal (which seems to be quite the flavour of the week).

Not sure how I feel about it yet, but there's definitely potential there. Check out their demos yourself:


So Frenchy, So Chic

I can't believe I almost missed this show, but it somehow slipped under my radar. Probably because of it's "artsy fartsy" ways.

So Frenchy So Chic is a show at the Powerhouse next Monday, the 14th of June. This show features some French bands, most notably Nouvelle Vague. I saw Nouvelle Vague at V Fest years ago and was swept up by the whole vibe they give off. The vibe is Bossa Nova covers of classic punk and new wave songs. Although purely a covers band, they do something most covers bands don't: they make the song completely theirs. For instance, Joy Division's Love Will Tear Us Apart:

Amazing stuff. Nouvelle Vague has a revolving door of female singers, most notable in the past Emilie Simon and Camille. I am not 100% sure who is singing on this tour, but whoever it is, you can guarantee she will be amazing.

Saturday, June 5, 2010


If you have talked to me about music in the last few months, you know I won't shut up about this band. For good reason. Dangers have put out one of the best hardcore albums of the last few years. And we are lucky enough that they are coming to spend a few weeks in Australia, touring with grindcore band Graf Orlock.

The opening track from their new album (called Stay At Home Mom) should get you into it:

<a href="http://wearedangers.bandcamp.com/album/messy-isnt-it">Stay-At-Home Mom by DANGERS</a>
It's also the song that I got the name of the blog from.

The shows:
17 June - Tempo Bar (former Bar 288), local supports are Marathon and Infinite Thought Process. Both great bands that I've seen. Marathon are hardcore, Infinite Thought Process channel Between the Buried and Me. Like a Xerox machine. 18+. $10.
18 June - Northern Rivers Sound, Lismore. AA
19 June - Burst City.  This show starts at 4pm, leaving plenty of time to go see Carpathian at Thriller (Rosies) that night. $15. AA
20 June - Shed 5, Gold Coast. AA

If you like hardcore, do yourself a favour. Go see these shows. They are cheap, so I don't really hear any excuse why you shouldn't. Even if you are going to Strung Out or Carpathian during that weekend, make the effort. I'll at least be at the Tempo Bar and Burst City shows.

Graf Orlock
Infinite Thought Process

Friday, June 4, 2010


Watch Out! by Alexisonfire is one of my favourite albums of all time. Accidents by Alexisonfire slots into the top 4 songs in my mind. So why am I less than keen for this new tour?

Quite simply, nothing will ever top that tour they did with good friends Moneen years ago. The culmination of the gig with both bands getting together to play Accidents... glorious. Since then they've released a less than awe inspiring album and I've seen them two more times. They still put on a great show, so I think I can be convinced to go back.

As a band, they are an interesting mix. A scream singer, a hardcore-punk throat vocal singer and a more suited to acoustic singer/songwriting singer. They put together punk songs, hardcore songs, softer ballads and throw in a bit of metal for kicks. Somewhere in their back catalogue is a song everyone will like, you've just got to find it. Hell, I even had a pretentious indie-ex-girlfriend liking their song Boiled Frogs. Go figure.

I'd recommend getting tickets to this early, I can see it selling out. I'm still undecided, but I probably will go, just for the awesomeness of their back catalogue.

October 7, the Tivoli. 18+

And this is Accidents:

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Go-Between Bridge

Why am I posting about a bridge? More importantly, this bridge:

Not very pretty, is it? This concrete behemoth is the Go-Between Bridge, named after the iconic (read: no one actually knew who they were in their day) Brisbane band, the Go-Betweens. And to celebrate the opening of this bridge, there's going to be a concert. On the bridge.

In the spirit of the extreme indie-ness of the Go Betweens, the concert features all Australian indie. Angus and Julia Stone for some reason are headlining over the last remaining half of the Go-Betweens: Robert Forster. Also included are Josh Pyke, Bob Evans, Yves Klein Blue and locals, the John Steel Singers.

It's the afternoon of June 25th, on the West End side of the bridge and will be about $50.

The sad thing is, the Go Betweens are still relatively unknown in their home country and town, but were incredibly large in England. You may know the Go Betweens from their song in a Sunday Mail ad a few years ago:

A Day on the Green 2010

I must be old at heart, as a Day on the Green always has bands that I'd love to go see. Mainly for her:

This year is once again a stellar line up, The Pretenders and Blondie. I'm not going to write much about these 2 bands. If you don't know them, then you don't deserve to listen to music. Throw in some wine and you have a great day!

12 December, at Sirromet Wines, Mt Cotton

Beach Boys

In what the press agencies/government have been calling a "coup", the Beach Boys are coming to Australia for one show. At the Gold Coast 600.

The Gold Coast 600, aka the former Indy, aka the former whatever-the-hell-it-was-last year international car race thingy. That's drunken bogans, loud cars, exhaust fumes and unattractive older women flashing their tits at you. So why not have the Beach Boys? It seems to be everything they stood for.

If you want to partake of this, it's happening October 22-24 down at Surfers Paradise. There's 3 days of music to go along with the V8s this year, and they are:

Friday: Ian Carey (Ministry of Sound), The Potbelleez, Kid Kenobi and MC Shureshock, and Static Revenger featuring Luciana
Saturday: Beach Boys, The Baby Animals, Noiseworks, The Angels, Mondo Rock and James Reyne
Sunday: Empire of the Sun, Sneaky Sound System and The Funkoars

If I decided to go, I'd head in on the Saturday, mainly for this:

Extortion/I Exist

This could be one of the loudest, heaviest and best Australian local hardcore tours of the year. Extortion, I Exist and SXWZD (sex wizard) are bashing around the country for a few shows.

Both Extortion and I Exist do fast and heavy grindcore style music. I've had the pleasure of drinking with/seeing I Exist a few times and I've only recently got into Extortion. It's not really everyone's cup of tea, but if you like your really heavy and brutal music, I'd suggest you go to this.

August 19th, at Snitch (Club 299) with Marathon. 18+
August 20th, at Black Box (Sunshine Coast) with Abraxis. All Ages
August 21st, at Shed 5 (Gold Coast) with Ghost Town. All Ages.

Brisbane locals Marathon will support at Snitch. I've seen them with I Exist the last 2 times. Although not as heavy as the other bands, they are still a good local hardcore act.

I Exist

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Mark Lanegan

Mark came to the limelight as being a member of Queens of the Stone Age when they took off in the early 2000s. But he's much more than that.

He was a founding member of the 90's Seattle grunge band Screaming Trees. He's also a solo musician that has collaborated with Layne Staley (Alice in Chains), Isobel Campbell (Belle and Sebastian), Kurt Cobain, Mike McCready (Pearl Jam), Duff and Izzy (Guns n Roses), PJ Harvey, Dean Ween (Ween) and so many more. Currently he's also in the bands the Gutter Twins and the Twilight Singers.

Lanegan will be playing the Zoo solo on July 6 and you can be sure he will touch on all sorts of styles and songs from his unique musical history. A history covering many stylings that I can't even pick out what is a good starting point. So just start by listening to songs on his My Space.

(On a side note, I just now realized that he was that mysterious third singer for QOTSA the first time I saw them. They kept trading off between Nick Oliveri, Josh Homme and Mark Lanegan. Unfortunately, the last time I saw them (and probably forever now) they only had Josh Homme.)

Leonard Cohen tour

It seems like only a few months ago (wait, it was) but Lenoard Cohen is coming back. A lot of people of my generation probably have no idea who he is, so listen to this.

Yes, he's the guy that originally wrote Hallelujah, the song with which Jeff Buckley made us all cry. But that's just a pindrop in the lake that is Cohen's career. He's one of the world's best songwriters. He'll be playing the Brisbane Entertainment Centre on November 6.

BAM! Festival

I mentioned this new festival on my previous blog and I felt kind of dubious about it. It's a 3 day festival, playing 24 hours a day, out at Peaks Crossing. That's south of Brisbane, where I go hiking occasionally.

They've announced the first line-up and the first impression is simply... "Who?"

I've heard of maybe 4 of those bands and seen probably only 2. At the first look, I cannot be bothered going. They are going to have to get some big international headliners if they want to get a lot of people coming to it.

But if you are interested, its October 8th-10th and tickets are $205.


If there's one thing you should never do with this band, it's take them seriously. Just look at their promo picture:

It's whiskey-soaked-southern-metal that just doesn't give a hoot. They have song titles such as Alcohaulin' Ass. Their music may be fun and not serious, but their individual histories and musicianship it. They have members of Pantera, Mudvayne, Damageplan and Nothingface. In their previous bands they played the serious music, but now it's all about having fun.

And they are bringing it back to Australia, July 31 at the Tivoli.18+ only.

You can get their new song for free at their official website: http://www.hellyeahrocks.com/index.html

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Parkway Drive

Byron Bay's greatest export outside of cookies are the metalcore giants that are Parkway Drive.

Despite every second scene kid in Brisbane wearing a Parkway Drive t-shirt (which should automatically make the band cringeworthy) they do pretty damn good music. Their 2007 release, Horizons, was one of the best hardcore albums to come out in Australia and have earned them much publicity overseas.

2010 will see them release a new album, Deep Blue, and presales are already up for it. They will be touring the album and as always, be bringing some overseas supports with them. They are playing the Riverstage on September 22 with the Devil Wears Prada, the Ghost Inside and 50 Lions. It's a licensed and all-ages gig, with early reports saying tickets will be around the $40 mark.

I haven't seen Parkway since their infamous last all-ages gig at the Arena (rest in peace) in 2008, which ended with the riot squad and fire brigade showing up. And blood everywhere. It was so intense that it was one of the reasons that the Arena lost it's license and is now Mystique.

Here's Boneyards off of Horizons:

Of the supports, I've seen 50 Lions, who play an older style of hardcore-punk and have some great songs.

Parkway Drive
The Devil Wears Prada
The Ghost Inside
50 Lions

I've learnt my lesson

My first foray into the music blog world was an absolute failure.Within two months I had my account deleted by Blogger for repeated copyright infringement. I was a bit stunned by this, as I only had linked to sites that were put up by other people. Whereas my site got pulled down rapidly, the sites I got the links from (on Blogger mind you) are still going strong and still have all of their links up. Go figure.

I was more than happy to let this go. But people keep asking me what happened to it and what shows are coming up. So consider this The Picket Fence Cartel v2.0, the localized Brisbane version. I will no longer post download links unless they are all legit. If you want to get it yourself, it's not that hard. Type the following into Google: "mediafire band_name album_name". 90% of the time you will find what you want.

So what is this new version of the blog? It's going to be a dumping ground for all the upcoming concerts in Brisbane (or South East Queensland) that I care about, that I want to go to. So instead of having to email or text my random concert buddies for each band that comes out, they can just look here for it. I'll put links to their My Space/Last.FM/samples so you can check it out. But since my readership is aimed at most people I already know, you can probably just come to me and I'll sit you down, with a beer, and put that needle on the record (and play that song for you! (to paraphrase the Bouncing Souls)). I may even throw in album reviews and concert reviews as well, maybe even some music news. Depends how I feel.

So is this the definitive Brisbane concert guide? No, that's way too fucking hard with lots of obscure bands that most people wouldn't give 2 rats about. But hey, if you check here, maybe I'll catch you at some of these shows.