Tuesday, 17 July 2012

I've Been Away but Now I'm Back

I’ve been slack. Really slack. I realised today that I haven’t written a post for over 10 months. Inexcusable. But to be honest…life got in the way. I went on holidays (several times), work got busy, weekends got full. You know the drill.

Anyway, I’m going to try and bring this blog back. And to start, I thought I’d do a bit of a dot point catch up of past gigs and general news.

·         I went to the inaugural Harvest Festival in Brisbane last November and loved it! It was a great festival with a fantastic line-up and a really chilled out vibe. I ended up catching the National, TV on the Radio, Bright Eyes, Portishead, and the Flaming Lips, amongst others.

·         In May, I was lucky enough to see the Purple One, Prince, live at the Brisbane Entertainment Centre. His gig was amazing with a great set-list, high production values and lots of general Prince-related awesomeness.

·         In June, I travelled half way across the world to see Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers in Hamburg and in London. The gigs were incredible and something that I can cross off my bucket list. Separate gig review post to come.

·         I have tickets to see Radiohead in November! Major excitement.

·         Green Day have announced that they’re releasing not one new album, but three new records. Uno, Dos and Tre will be released in September, November and January respectively. It’s a pretty ambitious project, so let’s see how the albums turn out. The band’s new single, Oh Love, came out early this morning and its….ok.

·         Weezer announced that they are touring Australia in January 2013. The band hasn’t come to our fair shores in over 16 years so there is a lot of anticipation for this tour. Also, they’ll be playing the Blue Album in full!

·         The Red Hot Chili Peppers will be headlining the Big Day Out in January 2013 but seeing as their new record sucks, I’m not sure I’ll be in attendance. Check out the full BDO 2013 line up here.

·         I also have tickets to Harvest Festival 2012. Gracing the bill are the likes of Beck, Sigur Ros, Mike Patton’s Mondo Cane, Grizzly Bear, Ben Folds Five, Santigold, Cake, the Dandy Warhols and more!

·         I went along to Henry Rollins’ spoken word gig at the Powerhouse in early 2012. As always, it was amazing and Henry Rollins is an outspoken genius.

That’s it for now. More to come soon.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Albums I’m Currently Obsessed With

Lately, I’ve been a bit narrow in my listening and have been obsessed with about four albums, listening to them on repeat. Most of them are old favourites with the comfort factor of a big warm doona.

Green Day – Nimrod

I’ve been listening to this album pretty constantly since its release in 1997 and although it’s not my favourite Green Day record, it’s pretty high on the list. The comfort and nostalgia factor of this record is off the charts.

Tom Petty – Wildflowers

I’ve only just started listening to this album (after buying it about 6 weeks ago) and already, I love, love, love it. It’s got some rock, some country and some great, lullaby-like ballads. Classic Tom Petty with a softer edge.

Social Distortion – Somewhere Between Heaven and Hell

I’m so obsessed with this album at the moment. A seamless blend of punk, country, blues and rockabilly…and Mike Ness’ amazing voice. Perfection in a punk record.

Neil Young – Harvest

Oh, how I love this record. It’s so soothing, so comforting, so beautiful. Even though the recording is less than amazing, each song is beautifully crafted and incredibly heartfelt. A Man Needs a Maid is the definite highlight for me.

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Soundwave Revolution Cancelled!

It’s been a bad week for music news. First the amazing Alexisonfire call it quits and now news has broken that the Soundwave Revolution festival has been cancelled!

There are a lot of rumours doing the rounds which suggest that headliners, Van Halen pulled out of Soundwave Rev and that festival organisers weren’t able to secure a suitable replacement in time.
According to promoter, AJ Maddah, a lot of the festival bands will still be coming to Australia to put on shows and multi-band mini festivals, details of which will be announced over the next week.
It is pretty disappointing that this festival has been cancelled…but honestly, I’m not that concerned because it was originally scheduled for the same day that I arrive here:

I’ll take New York over Van Halen any day of the week!

Monday, 8 August 2011

Alexisonfire Split

Sad news. After a solid 10-year stint, post-hardcore group, Alexisonfire have called it quits. According to the band’s official statement, Dallas Green has decided to concentrate on his City and Colour project and guitarist, Wade MacNeil has also decided to focus his attention on a new project.

I’m a big Alexisonfire fan and was lucky enough to see them live twice. It’s really disappointing that they’ve called it quits as it seems that they were really on top of their game. Their last two albums, Crisis and Old Crows/Young Cardinals, were both fantastic and their live shows were incredibly tight.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Mary Hits Brisbane

Remember when I said that I love musical theatre? Well, last week it was announced that the Australian production of Mary Poppins will be heading to Brisbane after its season in Sydney! How exciting!

The show, which recently won eight Helpmann Awards, opens at the Lyric Theatre, QPAC on the 5th of January, with tickets on sale from the 8th of August.

Yes, I’ve already seen it twice but don’t think that I’m not going to go again…because I am.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Candy Apple Grey

I am currently obsessed with Husker Du’s 1986 album Candy Apple Grey. I started listening to Husker Du about seven years ago because a lot of my favourite bands cited them as their favourite band. I have a few of their albums but Candy Apple Grey is by far my favourite.

This album is a definite departure from Husker Du’s classic hardcore/punk sound and sees the band experiment with more melodic, almost emo styles of song writing.

Like their previous albums, Candy Apple Grey is still frenetic and angry, but is much broader and well-rounded than their other records. There are the fast-paced punchy punk songs peppered with resentment but then there are some really pared-back, beautifully solemn tracks.

As usual, Bob Mould and Grant Hart individually wrote tracks on the album and shared vocal duties. Both Bob and Grant’s vocals are fantastic, as are their lyrics. To me, stand out tracks include Don’t Want to Know If You Are Lonely (one of my all-time favourite songs), Eiffel Tower High and Sorry Somehow.

After a few listens, it’s easy to see how this album influenced bands like Soundgarden, Green Day and particularly Nirvana. Candy Apple Grey is full of angst, anger and alienation but is beautifully put together. It’s hard to ignore the similarities that exist between this record and Nirvana’s Nevermind.

Unfortunately, it’s a shallow and tinny recording which will put some people off, but to me, it adds to the atmosphere of the record.

Friday, 29 July 2011

Green Day v Recovery

Remember this post about the greatest Recovery moments? Well, after some clever YouTube-ing I found the amazing Green Day interview for your viewing pleasure.

The quality is awful, probably due to the fact that this clip was once taped on a VHS (I know! What is a VHS?), but it is hilarious. The band look tired and/or stoned and obviously think host, Dylan Lewis is a major tool.

I taped this when it first aired and watched it constantly...so much so that my VHS (ancient technology) actually broke from all the wear and tear! Oh, the memories. Oh, the perils of live television!

Wednesday, 27 July 2011

Pearl Jam Twenty

I cannot wait for this:

Being a big Pearl Jam fan, I am really, really keen to see this. Lots of interviews, lots of footage from the vault and its directed by Cameron Crowe! Sure old Cameron has directed some crap films (Vanilla Sky) but he's also directed some gems (Fast Times at Ridgemont High, Almost Famous? Oh yes!).

The trailer is so great...it gave me goosebumps.

It says it's out in Fall 2011, which I guess means it'll be out between September and November this year.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

New York, New York!

This isn't really related to music, but in two months, I'll be here:

I am insanely excited and am starting to count down the days already (58 days to go...if you're wondering).

I must be subconsciously working up to my trip because I've been listening to a hell of a lot of Ramones, Talking Heads, James Brown and old Frank Sinatra recently. Every time I listen to New York, New York I get way over-excited.  

I want to catch a band or two while I'm there. Primus and Portishead are both playing (as well as a stack of others that I wouldn't mind seeing), so we definitely have options, people.

Oh, please let the next two months fly by!

Monday, 25 July 2011

The Rumours Were True!

Remember this post about the heavily rumoured Harvest Festival? Well, the rumours were true! Full details of the festival were announced a couple of days ago, including the (really decent) lineup and the dates.
I'd love to see The Flaming Lips, Portishead, Bright Eyes and a couple of the other bands, but at $135 a ticket, it's pretty steep...particularly given all the other great festivals and gigs that have come our way recently.
Anyways, here are the details:
The Flaming Lips
Bright Eyes
The National
Mercury Rev
Hypnotic Brass Ensemble
Family Stone
Holy Fuck
Death In Vegas
The Walkmen
Dappled Cities
This Town Needs Guns
Foxy Shazam
The Holidays
Kormac’s Big Band

Saturday 12th November – Werribee Park, Melbourne
Sunday 13th November – Parramatta Park, Sydney
Saturday 19th November – Botanical Gardens, Brisbane