• First review of the album for James Williamson & The Pink Hearts

  • Birth of the Celibate Rifles

  • Why The Fleshtones still drink for free

Adelaide meets its Waterloo

the bravesRemember ABBA? No, you probably don't want to, but there are a lot of reasons why you should. And I'll come back to this. For now, just remember ABBA.

Now, I've been wanting to see The Braves (pictured right) for several years now, and every time I've been near Melbourne they've not been playing. Finally (after touring Europe), they've decided to "do" Adelaide.

Apparently there was mulled cider available, which no-one told me about until too late. And while I missed the first act completely, and gasbagged in another room while The Howling Fog were on: but they sounded good, and people whose opinion I trust enjoyed them, so I'll have to check them out. They're on Facebook.

Now - Kawaguchu Masami’s New Rock Syndicate (Kasumuen Records)

now front coverSonically speaking, there’s an awful lot going on here. It's like a bowl of musical ramen.

For those not in the know (that’d be most of us) Masami Kawaguchi is a underground legend in Japan, playing with a string of bands (Miminikoto, Haino Keiji's Aihiyo) and touring the USA and Europe numerous times. He sings, plays guitar and occasionally holds down the bottom end on bass.

There is an Australian connection: Tokyo-based Masami toured and recorded with Penny Ikinger and Deniz Tek in Japan a few years ago. He plays guitar in Penny's latest album. His solo record, the quirky and earthy "The Mad Guitar Sings”, came out in Australia a year or more ago, and he played some solo shows. 

Finally! Radio Birdman documentary makes it to DVD

descent deluxe box

The long awaited DVD of “Descent Into The Maelstrom: The Radio Birdman Story” will be released in Australia on September 21, with Europe, the USA and Japan to follow.

The DVD will come in a digipak or deluxe edition, the latter with a swag of extra collateral, an LP of the soundtrack, bonuses and a signed certificate of authenticity.The standard DVD also contains a wealth of previously unseen interviews. Pre-orders of the digipak and deluxe sets are open here. The deluie edition is pictured above.

We'll post news about the overseas releases as it comes to hand.

Director Jonathan Sequeira’s campaign to have the world-acclaimed documentary screened on free-to-air TV in Australia via the national broadcaster, ABC, continues and you can lodge your own protest via the link at the bottom of this page.

 

Leadfinger's Stew fights cancer as appeal launched

stew gofundme

It's an all-too-familiar story: Veteran of the Sydney and Wollongong underground scenes, Stewart “Leadfinger” Cunningham, has been undergoing treatment for lung cancer since June. Friends are rallying behind the vocalist-guitarist with a GoFundMe appeal launched and at least one benefit show in the pipeline.

Stewart has been a stalwart of the Australian underground music scene for the last three decades in bands such as Proton Energy Pills, Brother Brick,The Yes Men, Asteroid B-612, Challenger 7 and for the last 12 years, Leadfinger.

Apex b/w Surfing Douche - Prehistoric Douche (Surely Poor Records)

prehistoric douche45They might have started as a jokey Stooges tribute act playing Tuesday nights at Cherry Bar while their other bands were on hiatus but Melbourne’s Prehistoric Douche sound just like the sort of garage-surf monster that most underground rocvk and roll scenes need. Sydney could sure do with them. 

“Surfing Douche” starts out like a de-railed Lizard Train song, with a rumbling bottom end yielding to dual flick-knife guitars and banshee lyrics about going surfing. There’s a significant debt owed to the early Crusaders and The Freeloaders to these ears (your own results might vary) but whatever way you cut it, it’s seriously good. The ludicrous accapella Beach Boys breakdown just adds to the mayhem.

Urban Nature - Blaney featuring Mark E. Smith (YERRR Records)

blaney featuring mesYou may recall I reviewed Blaney's most recent album, "The Severance" (pay attention at the back, you) and I have no qualms about not changing my seven bottle verdict. 

"Urban Nature" is Blaney's third LP featuring Mark E Smith; I don't have the other two, ("Smith And Blaney" and "The Train Part 3"), both on the (defunct?) Voiceprint label.

No, me neither. but on the strength of "Urban Nature" I've ordered both. One wonders aloud whether there's a definitive collection of Smith/Blaney in the works; if not, there should be. Why?

Aussie troubadours take their brands of darkness on the road

plater live fawniaMichael Plater live. Fawnia photo. 

Now, there are a few of you out there who read The I-94 Bar regularly. You may have noticed I'm rather a fan of Australian musician/songwriters Michael Plater and Tim Hudspith.

Plater's music spans various indie, gothic folk, country and “noir” influences, and his first two albums “Exit Keys” (2012) and “Mythologies” (2016) have received worldwide critical acclaim. Hudspith plays guitar with  Goldentone, Colourhweel, The Low-Fi Cowboys, Death Valley PTA and Dead Eyed Seraphim and is a solo artist in his own right. 

This month Melbourne-based Plater and Adelaidian Hudspith (a Ballarat expat) will be touring select interstate venues with intertwining dates, plus some shows in their own right at the end. So, Sydneysiders, Brisvegas residents, Canbrites and Newkies, get out of the house. Dates are at the bottom of the article.  

I was hoping to see the two Sydney shows, but ... as you know, Adelaide's electricity bills aren't what they used to be, so I had to content myself with doing an interview with both Plater and Hudspith..

They're going to kick them out in Sydney

It's 50 years since the MC5 recorded their seminal "Kick Out The Jams" album. While Wayne Kramer's celebratory MC50 project is on the road in Europe and the USA and is not showing any signs of coming to Australia, That's why Sydney's SC5 are having a party of their own on September 8.

I-94 Bar is presenting the KOTJ 50th Anniversary show at Marrickville Bowling Club, featuring the SC5 playing "KOTJ" in its entirety. It's 30 years since the SC5 - an inner-city super group of sorts aka the Sydney City Five - first gathered to play the music of the MC5. Members have included personnel from the New Christs, The Eastern Dark and Daredevil, with Radio Birdman's Deniz Tek sitting in. 

Support will come from Turbobelco (paying homage to Turbonegro) and Australis Uber Alles (in tribute to the Dead Kennedys) and tickets are on sale here

Plenty of Soap - Speedboat (Tom Stehlik) and Love In Other Diminsions - Go Go Sapien (HQR)

plenty of soapIf you enjoyed the Laughing Clowns and their slightly wonky, soaring horns, and which Hunnas later wielded to equally great effect, you're in for a treat. Speedboat (from Adelaide) supported both bands and, I can attest, to great effect. While LC and H&C certainly influenced Speedboat, one wonders if the influence was all one-way. 

If you don't know Speedboat, what they were about came from many unlikely sources (their name apparently springs from an Elvis movie), and I'm not giving away the joy of Tom Stehlik's liner notes).

Liner notes? Do Speedboat rate that? 

By fuck they do. 'Plenty of Soap' holds the equivalent of four LPs plus a fistful of singles and b-sides, Stehlik's liner notes actually tell the story of the band. Frankly, most bands - especially a band held in such high regard as Speedboat (and all without a recording contract) - fuck up entirely. 

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