radio - The I-94 Bar

Birdman box set just a shot away

rb-logoThe planned Radio Birdman CD box set of previously released albums paid with bonus material from the vaults is now tracking for a late July release, it has been announced. 

Box Set – Radio Birdman (Citadel Records)

birdman-box-set-coverReviewing the new Radio Birdman box set is an absolute poisoned chalice. You know I’m going to give it five bottles, right? It contains most of the great recordings by the greatest band to have sprung from these shores. Bar none.

I include everyone in that statement from the Easybeats through AC/DC and onto whatever crap that is currently passing itself off as popular music. Forget your Hoodoo Gurus and your Sunnyboys, your Birthday Party and your assorted Johnny Come Latelys. This band was Ground Zero and Year Zero. Accept no substitutes.

"Radio Birdman. Box Set. Seven CDs. One DVD. One hundred Aussie bucks. Five Bottles. Yay. It’s great."

And that has been the extent of the reviews of this thing. Nobody has wanted to prod it with a stick and turn it on its side. And with several good reasons. Radio Birdman have always put the fanatic into fans. No more surly beast has ever walked the earth than a Radio Birdman fan.

Brujita by Chris Masuak and the Viveiro Wave Riders Association

Chris Masuak (Radio Birdman, Hitmen, Screaming Tribesmen) has a new music video live and it's a taster for a forthcoming album, currently in production with his Spanish band, The Viveiro Wave Riders Associaiton. Here it is in all its stark glory, showcasing the "dead centre" of Klondike's adopted home town of Viveiro, in northern Spain.

Chris Masuak says don't be a "Bird Brain" on new CD

Ex-Radio Birdman guitar slinger Chris Masuak has released a promotional clip to launch a crowd-funding campaign for his forthcoming album to come out on CD and it's likely to cause a stir with fans of his former band. The song's title is "Bird Brain."

You can get on board the crowdfunding campaign to grab anything from Birdman and Hitmen rarities, a Masuak show in your backyard to a copy of the album (when it comes out) here. Meanwhile, here's the clip:

Citadel Years - Deniz Tek (Citadel)

deniz tek citadel years new

Even if Radio Birdman were the sum of its parts, the solo output of its members surely deserves more than the cursory consideration many have been prepared to give. Case in point is this album. Deniz Tek has built a formidable body-of-work outside the framework of 

Crossroads b/w Oh Well - Deniz Tek (Career Records)

crossroadsHe never lets the grass grow under his boots so it’s no surprise to see another Deniz Tek single drop. Such things are essential, really, if you want to make money on the road in Europe and these two tracks were taken from a early sessions for a forthcoming Tek album. 

“Crossroads” is a back-to-basics slice of chunky riff-a-rama that wouldn’t have been out of place on the Doctor’s “Outside” album back in his major label spin-off days. Its immediate and stripped-back production doesn’t sound as dense as that record but it’s coming from a similar Birdmanesque place. There's no fresh ground broken but most will feel there probably doesn't need to be. 

Deniz Tek and Friends at The Midnight Special

It depends where you live but electrified Deniz Tek shows are more or less annual affairs these days, with the good Doctor spending half his time tending to A&E patients in Sydney, Australia, or Billings, Montana, with rock tours squeezed in during down-time.  Unplugged gigs, on the other hand, are fewer and further between.

Deniz Tek and The Bad Men live in Norway

Lady luck must have been looking out for me; I get sent on a last minute work trip to Oslo, and discover Deniz Tek will be in town for the opening night of his 2014 European Tour. The venue turns out to be a leisurely five-minute walk from my hotel. Easy Street.

First sighting: Radio Birdman box set tracklisting

pthThe tracklisting for the Radio Birdman boxset has leaked via a UK online retailer. The seven disc set (six CDs and a DVD) is slated for release in early October. 

Update: Citadel Mail Order is taking pre-orders here.

Information from the band that the Paddington Town Hall gig (cover pictured at right) would be the jewel in the box set crown appears to be spot-on with the core of the release being familiar. There is enough meat on the bones in the form of bonus material, however, to satisfy most people.

The band's out-of-print EPs and some startling alternate versons and demo songs are being included although some live material that's been doing the rounds of fans for years is remaining in the vault. 

French label launches exclusive Singles Club

pitsharkMighty little French label Pitshark continues to punch above its weight. Not content with issuing exclusive vinyl releases from the likes of the Stooges, Radio Birdman and the New Christs, it’s about to launch a Singles Club with a year’s worth of 7” records in bi-monthly waves.

In Heat - The Fools (self released)

in heat the foolsLet’s get the clichés out of the way; the show business myths that promise that the cream rises. That living fast and dying young will ensure immortality. It’s all bullshit. Too many artists fall through a crack in the Earth whilst laurels crown the insipid and the banal.

How many great albums and films have vanished to land fill? How many books are lost because libraries can’t afford the storage on their back catalogues? How much blood, sweat and tears has evaporated into the ether? Forgotten whilst the over culture lets us eat dog food. Here is your chance to right that wrong.

Klondike launches B side flimclip

Our favourite Canadian-born guitarist, Chris Masuak of Radio Birdman/Screaming Tribesmen/Hitmen fame, has a cheap and cheerful film clip doing the rounds online for the B side of his "Another Lost Weekend" single on Spanish label New H. Here's "Animal".

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Let Me Turn You On - Various Artists (Real O Mind/Easy Action)

let-me-turn-you-onCompiler Geoff Ginsberg of Real O Mind Records nails it in the opening words of the liner notes when he observes that rock and roll is music for old people, made by old people. Not only is no-one appearing on this collection of 20 songs aged under 40, some have offspring who have been on the planet for longer than three decades. The clattering of canes and rattling of Zimmer frames never sounded so good.

Magical Dirt - Radio Moscow (Alive Natural Sound)

magical-dirtRadio Moscow’s “thing” is pretty easy to get your head around: Meandering but economical psychedelic guitar jams wrapped around bluesy vocals. Loud and comparatively clean with a dash of funk in the bottom end.

Masuak lashes out after Birdman omission

klondike-red-stratThe announcement of an Australian tour by a re-tooled Radio Birdman has provoked a savage reaction from overlooked guitarist Chris Masuak.

Speaking from his home in Spain and amplifying his comments via his Facebook page, Masuak described his exclusion as “cowardly and vindictive”.

“Despite my declared readiness, willingness, and assurances to put the band's interests and reputation well ahead of any personal differences I am ‘not invited to participate’ in the upcoming tour and promotion of the ultimate release of a band I have been associated with for 40 years,” Masuak said.

New Radio Birdman line-up unveiled

birdman-2014The re-tooled Radio Birdman (from left) is Jim Dickson, Dave Kettley, Rob Younger, Deniz Tek, Pip Hoyle and Nik Rieth.

Radio Birdman has announced the line-up for its October-November Australian tour with Nik Rieth drumming and Dave Kettley of the New Christs on guitar.
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Rieth, the former Celibate Rifles and briefly Visitors member, was behind the traps for a handful of Birdman shows in 2006. 

Kettley is a long-standing member of the New Christs and played a one-off gig in Tek and Younger, the band assembled for the Dig It Up! festival in Sydney in 2012.

They will join original members Rob Younger, Deniz Tek and Pip Hoyle, and longstanding bassist Jim Dickson. Longtime guitarist Chris Masuak is a notable omission. 
 

Radio Birdman announces intimate Sydney shows

BirdmnlogoRadio Birdman will warm up for its European tour with two intimate Sydney shows at the Factory Floor in Marrickville on June 5 and 6. 

In a Facebook post the band says: "With no other Australian appearances scheduled for 2015 these shows will provide a unique opportunity to catch the band in a small room - hot, loud and sweaty. This 'up close and intimate' experience, echoing the band's early days at the Oxford Funhouse, will not be repeated any time soon!"\

Support on both nights will be local rockers Black Heart Breakers and tickets are on sale here. European tour dates are in our Living Eye section.

 

Radio Birdman announces Oz tour

A surprise tour by a re-configured line-up of Radio Birdman has been announced to promote the forthcoming box set. The line-up features foundation members Rob Younger, Deniz Tek, Pip Hoyle with Jim Dickson and other friends.

Friday, 31st October 2014
Cambridge Hotel - Newcastle NSW
Tickets: www.bigtix.com.au

Saturday 1st November 2014
Manning Bar - Sydney NSW
Tickets: www.oztix.com.au

Sunday 2nd November 2014
Corner Hotel - Melbourne VIC
Tickets: www.ticketscout.com.au

Monday 3rd November 2014
Corner Hotel - Melbourne VIC
Tickets: www.ticketscout.com.au

Friday 7th November 2014
The Hi-Fi - Brisbane QLD
Tickets: http://tickets.thehifi.com.au/

Saturday 8th November 2014
The Gov - Adelaide SA
Tickets: www.oztix.com.au

Sunday 9th November 2014
Rosemount Hotel - Perth WA
Tickets: www.heatseeker.com.au \ www.oztix.com.au
and Heatseeker/Oztix Retail Outlets

Radio Birdman in Adelaide

kyleigh-rob
Ho to the Gov, where the food is great, the Coopers flows and Tuesday is legendary Ukelele night. I love the Gov. Great venue. And ho, back we go to the 1970s… hmm.
 
Does the spectacle always win in the end? Is the naming of the legend so important? You’d like to think not. You’d like to think that people wouldn’t be so fickle. 
 
You’d be wrong, of course.
 
To paraphrase H.L. Mencken (I know you have all his books) ‘Nobody ever went broke underestimating the intelligence of the people.’
 
A while back I wrote about The (British) Beat on this very stage. They played very well, worked hard. But long gone was the feral desperation of the Beat’s first releases -  and they came across rather like a cabaret act. Good fun, certainly, but not essential, not inspiring. If you’d never heard of them before, and you were told afterwards how important the Beat had been at a time and a place … you probably wouldn’t have believed it.
 
Of course, the crowd thought this version of the Beat were wonderful. Because you can’t argue with a spectacle, and a band would have to be pretty dire to beat down expectation. The (British) Beat were fun. But you can’t go back. To a certain extent, they were kinda covering their own songs. The intention, the point, the urgency, the personality-driven chemistries had all faded.
 
So, first money shot tonight: were The Main Band any good?