Dishing the Lachlan Valley Dirt on a Sydney Saturday night

joeys coop moshpitJoeys Coop.

JOEYS COOP
+ THE SMART FOLK
MoshPit, St Peters, NSW
Saturday 26 March, 2022

A Sydney night of intermittent rain stifles the post-COVID nightlife revival. Or so it seems. The Best Little Small Bar in Sydney, The MoshPit, has other ideas - and so do Joeys Coop and supports The Smart Folk.

It almost goes without saying that pandemic lockdowns have put obstacles in the way of everything. Joeys Coop put the release of their second album on ice and tonight is the Sydney leg of a much-delayed world (read: New South Wales) tour to launch “Lachlan Valley Dirt” at The MoshPit in Sydney’s inner-west.

The impacts of the dirty little virus live on. A whole bunch of MoshPit patrons who were at the King Street Crawl gigs a fortnight before were taken down by it. An unrelated infection forced The Smart Folk to play the Sydney Rock ‘n’ Roll & Alternative’s Sixities Stage without bass-player Keith Claringbold.

Tonight’s news is that another wave of COVID infections and the seven-day isolation rule has shut down a two-band bill at the nearby Golden Barley Hotel. A few punters and unaffected band members make their way to this show.

X hits the spot at first Sydney Rock 'n' Roll and Alternative Festival

 x factory floor crX are Geof Holmes, Rick Studentt, John Butler and Steve Lucas. Photo by The Barman

SYDNEY ROCK 'N' ROLL & ALTERNATIVE FESTIVAL
I-94 BAR STAGE

+ JUPITER 5
+ SONIC GARAGE
+ THE DARRANS
The Factory Floor, Marrickville, NSW
Sunday, 20 March 2022

 Finally a gig that got me into the city, out of my COVID slumber and ignoring the daily infection numbers.

The rare spark of motivation was the Sydney Rock and Roll & Alterative Festival, an extension of Tiffany Palmer’s amazing and long-running Sydney Rock ‘n’ Roll Markets   This event had become an institution in this city over the last decade - until COVID put an end to and anything half decent in a dull and corporate investment hub.

I was here at the Factory Theatre in Marrickville for The Barman’s I-94 Bar Stage in the room called The Factory Floor, but I did manage to peek at a few other stages. I discovered that cowboys and cowgirls were out in force with line dancing alive and well. It’s practiced by people whose childhood was dominated by episodes of “Hi Five”. Line dancing is allegedly cool and has left its mark on society with community colleges teaching the stuff. As a bloke who grew up in the bush, this pretentious King Street urban country fashion is amusing.

No disputin' that The Media Whores next need to skewer Putin

a light in a dark placeA Light In A Dark Place – The Media Whores (Twenty Stone Blatt)

Four studio albums into this punk rock caper and The Media Whores aren’t mellowing with age. History records that there have been more battles in their home of Stirlingshire, Scotland, over the last 500 years than most old school Aussie pubs, so it’s only fitting that they keep fighting wars on multiple fronts.

Wanna talk about old punks?  The creative fulcrum of Craig (vocals and guitar) and Doogie Mackie (bass and backing vocals) lit their first fire together in 2008 and the band almost won a mainstream industry Mercury prize in 2017 for their caustic “Dangerous Minds” long player. Presumably, a win would have been the kiss of death so let’s give thanks for the judges’ lack of good taste.

COVID disrupts, but does not defeat, Hard-Ons tour

The Hard-Ons kicked off their “I'm Sorry Sir, That Riff's Been Taken Tour” - their first tour with new singer Tim Rogers - with three sold out shows on the weekend, only to hit a hurdle yesterday. 

The group issued a statement this morning:"

We regret to advise that the band has unfortunately been struck with Covid, with one of us testing positive earlier today, so under current Public Health Orders they're required to self-isolate. As a result, we’ve had to reschedule this week’s shows. These performances will however proceed on the following dates. Existing ticket holders do not need to do anything as tickets will automatically apply for the new date. 

The re-scheduled New South Wales dates are:

Wed June 1 - Wollongong, La La La's - tickets here
Thu June 2 - Sydney, Factory Theatre (for Great Southern Nights) (with guests Flowers For Jayne) - tickets here
Fri June 3 - Newcastle, Cambridge Hotel - tickets here
Sat June 4 - Avalon, Avalon RSL (with guests Raising Ravens) - tickets here

Shows in Canberra, Adelaide, Geelong and Melbourne will proceed as scheduled. 

 

SPJ bio reflects on rock and roll's underground glory days

execution days lgeExecution Days: The Life and Times of Spencer P Jones
By Patrick Emery 
Love Police

“Those who can make you believe absurdities, can make you commit atrocities.-Voltaire

"I was stripped of all my dignity, blackest clouds hanging over me, I just waited as the moments ticked away, it was like my execution day..." -Spencer P. Jones

"I thought, hold on, I've got a rock band around here some place!"  - Tex Perkins

"Grief felt like fear"  - C.S. Lewis

I WAS ALWAYS ON YOUR SIDE

Man I'm a little bit furious that those fucked-up Fascists at Facebook permanently locked me out and I knew it was coming, because I saw them doing all that same shit to all my friends who are antiwar, pro human rights and civil liberties, all us poor suckers who fell hard for all that phony shit they told us when we were growing up about the Bill Of Rights that they covertly dismantled but insist we still have, even though we very clearly do not, or anyone advocating for freedom for Julian Assange.

The bullshit fact checking, accusations of violating their so-called community standards, all that shit. I posted a lot of links to antiwar organizers and truth tellers who've been purged from Mocking Bird mass media. Zuckerberg and his Great Lockstep cronies decided it was better to purge some of us completely, rather than have us actively factchecking the factcheckers and pushing back against their dangerous bullshit police state narratives.

Thankfully, a very thoughtful and considerate friend thought to send me an electronic copy of a book I'd been yearning to read and I guzzled the whole thing down like a pint while I was unable to contact my comrades on social media.

Surf and enjoy

space mariachisReturn Of The Space Mariachis – Stories From Shamehill (self released)

Surf-tiki rock from the Netherlands? I’m in. Let’s face it: stranger things happen in Amsterdam - usually involving special cakes sold at coffee shops - and this trio of reverb-obsessed retro heads is nothing if not inventive.

With assistance from The Hot Habanero Horns (actually two horns and a harmonica), Stories From Shamehill worked up their second full studio album over five days in 2021 and it’s a barrel of fun.

The Stories have been riding their surf wave since 2012 and have even managed to tour and record in California. Talk about taking coals to Newcastle…

Here's your Sunday dance card sorted, Sydney

Here's your guide to all that's occuring at the Sydney Rock 'n' Roll & Alternative Special at Marrickville's Factory Theatre this Sunday. You'll find a few of us at the I-94 Bar Stage featuring X, Jupiter 5, Sonic Garage and The Darrans with frequent forways to the Sixties Stage. Tickets are still available here but you'll have to be quick. 

Click on the More link to see the full four-stage line-up and times. 

Kiss This: Being on the outside with Jesus and The Mary Chain

barbed wire kissesBarbed Wire Kisses
By Zoe Howe
St. Martin's Press

 REVERENCE

Jim, William, Douglas and Bobby changed my life for the better. I owe those guys a profound debt of sincere gratitude. They are the coolest cool, the blackest black, the grooviest of the groovies.

All those bands who imitated the Mary Chain? I never liked any of 'em. That shoegaze shit was not for me. I was not into acid house or even that much Brit-Pop, really. For me, the Mary Chain was the zenith, the high point of standalone excellence. 1995 was the year The Man killed punk dead in my little underground world, when media consolidation under Bill Clinton ate up all the medium-sized labels that actual real garage bands used to have some remote hope of making records for, corporations bought up all the smallish venues, closed most of 'em, jacked up ticket prices with extra added fuck you fees, like hospitals, at all their enormo-dome sports coliseums, moneybags promotors started pushing those big five hundred dollar festivals in daylight with all the sunburnt sports assholes starring some heir and his laptop, ushered all those idiot normies into music scenes with their by numbers "Alternative" hoax bands.

Every big city had the trust fund Clones impersonating all our favorite bands, but with none of the soul or truth, or pathos or originality-just the surface gimmickry and expensive fancy vintage gear, paid for by their Little Lord Fauntleroy family fortunes. I dunno if it was me who coined the phrase, imitation generation, but no one I saw was putting anything much of their own on to the stage, just cheap, tacky impersonations of good bands the mainstream locals had never heard of, so they all seemed way more impressive and innovative, in their grunge era small ponds, than they really were.

Old Farts At Play and The Kids Are Alright

sonic garage 3Pete Bourke, Phil Van Rooyen and Pete Trifunovic from Sonic Garage.

Sonic Garage
Pocketwatch
Bayley and the Liquid Squid
Marrickville Bowling Club, NSW
Friday, 11 March 2022

You can say “Boring Old Fart” but it’s good to stare rheumy-eyed into the middle distance, drool into a beer and recall much less complicated times in hushed tones. Times like the early 1980s, when the biggest challenge on a Friday night was to decide which two or three rock and roll shows you were going to attend, all of them within a short distance of each other.  

If they were local bands, the door charge was free or modest, and if the headliner was on the national touring treadmill, entry might set you back a ten spot. At least one of the supports was a band you’d never heard of, but paying your money and taking your chances was all part of the ritual. You got to conduct a post-mortem as soon as their set was over or over a hair of the dog at your local the next day. 

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I-94 Bar