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Wednesday, 15 February 2012 13:37

Time To Battle: Kerser

Kerser isn’t just a YouTube sensation and rap battle champ — with his debut LP, ‘The Nebulizer’, he’s proven he’s also one of the only guys around who can still sell albums.

Your debut album came out recently. What was the biggest shaping factor, in terms of its lyrical content?
My life up until now, going into the good and bad. Plus as much fun and shit stirring as we could throw in, and trying to offend anyone who dislikes me.

Any tracks in particular that sum the album up for you?
For a song that sums up the album, I would have to say 'No Fucken With Me Now', solely for the reason it's stamping that I'm here now and ready. 

You’ve often been described as charismatic and brutally honest. Has the intention always been to stir up a bit of controversy and gain notoriety this way?
Not really, I just say what is on my mind no matter what. And I think the fact that I don't change my style to fit in with the industry or radio requirements makes me different from everyone else, and people who discover it get hooked because they can feel the realness.

When you find that the pressures of promoting, recording and performing are weighing you down, where do you go for a reprieve?
I can not really explain how I get away. Let's just say I escape reality...

I’m guessing a lot of people have never really experienced a live rap battle, and only have things like ‘8 Mile’ to use as a reference point. Are battles in Australia anything like they’re portrayed in that movie?
No. For starters, the accapella battles that are running the circuit at the moment are 98 percent written, and I feel the battle scene is let down because all the battlers have their own little circles and try to block out up-and-comers. With me, though, I just told them all, 'I'm here, move'.

How do you prepare for a battle?
I make myself hate my opponent, no matter who it is. Then I take all my anger and put them into bars solely based on the person I am beating.

‘The Nebulizer’ is out now. Kerser plays the Prince Of Wales Friday March 2.

Wednesday, 16 November 2011 14:41

Timmy Trumpet

Not A Lady Boy

The Gold Coast’s Timmy Trumpet has become a staple of the Australian dance scene, with his brass instrument heard regularly across the land — blaring at any number of festival mainstages as much as early morning sessions in sweaty clubs.

What inspired the transition from playing jazz as a teenager to making electronic music? The desire to do something new and entertaining. I’ve always been dumbfounded by masses of people congregating to watch DJs spin other people’s records.

Do you still play jazz trumpet secretly by day?
Haha, no. But I get to improvise over new house tunes every week.

Do you think there is an advantage to having a live instrumental aspect to any DJ set?
Yes and no. This industry is much more superficial than the jazz scene. Any point of difference whether it be a trumpet, t-shirt label or set of fake boobs can make you subject to criticism.

How did mixing for Ministry Of Sound’s ‘Electro House Sessions 4’ compare to work you have done previously?
I had already mixed two Pacha CDs, so it wasn’t exactly out of my comfort zone. It was great to feature a few of my new tracks though including Tom Piper’s remix of ‘Trrrumpet’ which hit #11 on the ARIA charts; was hoping for a top 10 but it stayed #11 for 3 weeks... haha.

You’ve performed on many occasions with The Stafford Brothers, and appear in their reality TV show. What has been the highlight to date?
You’ll have to tune in to Season 2, which comes out in January featuring footage from Miami and Thailand. I’ll give you a tiny teaser though — Chris Stafford and a lady boy. That’s all I can say at this stage.

I hear you’ve been locked in the studio lately – what can we expect in terms of your next release?
Yeah, working on five tracks at the moment. Although I do spend a lot of time in the studio, most of it’s getting done on planes and in hotel rooms. I have seven flights this week.

With residency slots, touring, recording and radio show hosting, your schedule must be quite tight. What do you do for some Zen time?
Online shopping. I am an eBay addict. Unsure it can be defined as ‘Zen’ time but I absolutely love it.

Timmy Trumpet plays Electric Playground November 19 before heading down the Ipswich Motorway to play Hotel Metropole December 2.

Wednesday, 26 October 2011 12:44

Kobra Kai

Throwing Combos

Although they’ve been delivering beat-downs on the dance scene for a number of years, Kobra Kai are now a certified force thanks to the release of their eponymous debut album.

As Scott Middleton (aka MC D-Tech) explains, the record is representative of a band with various backgrounds and styles. â€œIt delivers a good spectrum of what we’ve been doing lately. It's not just drum & bass, and it isn’t just dubstep. It’s a mix of drum & bass, dubstep, hip hop, reggae, breaks – there’s a bit of something for everybody. What we try to do is just write music that we like, because there are a lot of different influences in the band – I used to play guitar and sing in a punk band and a lot of other members are into punk, and there’s also a lot of reggae and roots influences.”

First coming to prominence in 2007 after winning Triple J Unearthed NSW, it has taken Kobra Kai a long time to get to this point. Scott admits this is partly due to the evolution of their sound, and partly because releasing an independent album isn’t that easy. 

“When we started, the band was a little different and had more of an organic sound. Everything had been run through MIDI for a very long time, and we were only using certain sounds on the drums. We then started to transition from an organic sound to a mixture of organic and electronic. So nowadays, the drummer has a complete acoustic and electronic kit that he can tap in and out of. The songwriting has really matured too – there’s a lot more structure involved in and around what we do.

“Recording the album was quite a long process – we’ve been working on it for quite some time. We wrote so many tunes over such a long period, it was hard to nail down ten of them and say ‘right, we’ll put those on an album’. Every musician will tell you it’s a massive struggle – especially releasing independently. But it’s been worth it, and the best thing is this time we’ve written another album, so I guess once summer is over we’ll try to hit the studio again and get another one out. We’re gonna steam roll off this tour.”

Kobra Kai play the Hi-Fi Nov. 10 and the Buddha Bar, Byron Bay, Nov. 12. They also support The Upbeats at Uber Nov. 11. ‘Kobra Kai’ is out now.

Wednesday, 19 October 2011 12:22

Blue King Brown

Music For Humans

We live in an increasingly globalised world, and it’s time we became wiser to it. With their recent album, Blue King Brown are taking charge of our education.

Ever the impassioned voice of human equality, frontwoman Natalie Pa’apa’a talks about the philosophy that inspired 2010's ‘Worldwize Part 1 – North & South’ release.
“It was inspired by something called a medicine wheel, which is part of Native American philosophy. It’s basically a circle with a line from north to south and one from east to west. The circle is about acknowledging people from all four directions, irrelevant of race, religion, colour and creed. Furthermore each point represents mental health, spiritual health, physical health and emotional health – just well-being and things like that.

“I feel as though Native American philosophy really aligns with my own, and acknowledging the four directions is really what inspired the album.”
As a reflection of this inspiration, the band drew on music from abroad during the writing and recording processes for ‘Worldwize Part 1’.
“At the time we were just starting to get out and tour the world internationally, and we had been to Jamaica to record the vocals for the album. There was some definite inspiration from Jamaican artists, and more of that urban sounding reggae as opposed to the really rootsy, acoustic reggae. We went for more of the dancehall driven stuff, and urban sounds in that vein from other parts of the world.”

To achieve a reggae sound with more urban appeal, plenty of time was spent on production than ever before, tweaking sounds to create full and unique tracks.
“We really learned how to get the sounds we wanted. That process took us a lot longer than on our first album, ‘Stand Up’. You can hear the difference in it because ‘Stand Up’ was recorded live and pretty much finished in the studio. On ‘Worldwize...’ we did a lot more post-production – we spent a lot more time adding beats to the live drumming, incorporating this diverse range of sounds into the creation of each song, and enhancing each beat or rhythm or vocal melody or horn melody.”

With a poignant world philosophy and a mix of international sounds, Blue King Brown are a musical reflection of an increasingly globalised world. Natalie admits her own views have much to do with the message behind the music.
“It’s really inspired by my views that we are part of a global community as human beings. Of course we consider ourselves Australian or American, or as part of the country that we live in, but we also need to remember that we all share this one home called Earth – there’s only one planet like it. It stems from wanting to remind people of our human connection to each other and to our planet, and to really keep that in mind when we go about our business. It’s important to be mindful of what does and doesn’t damage our global community, our environment and our planet.”

According to Natalie, there’s no better way to remind people of their connections than through music.
“Music is just such a positive way to connect with people, it really doesn’t matter whether you speak the language or not. It’s something that human beings have always and will always connect with, and I think it’s deeper than that we just like music – it’s a spiritual thing that we need as human beings to really live. I don’t think any of us could live without music, whether you’re a musician or not.”

While she agrees that playing and touring music for its own benefit is an admirable achievement for any artist, only a fool would suggest to this ardent humanist that political messages should be kept separate.
“Who could say that music and politics should be kept separate? That’s like putting a boundary on someone’s creative inspiration. You wouldn’t say that to Bob Marley, you wouldn’t say that to Bob Dylan, you wouldn’t say that to Rage Against The Machine. You can’t really say that. I mean you can say it, but you can’t back it up. You would never really put that sort of boundary on someone’s music – that’s ridiculous.

“I definitely feel as though I’ve been inspired myself, even when I was younger and wasn’t even playing music. Music inspires everyone whether you’re a musician or not. Personally, those artists I mentioned have all inspired me not just as a musician but also as a human, and I think that is important. I don’t think all musicians have to do it, but if they really feel passionate about the future and their communities then that’s what they should do. Also, artists who experience social and political unrest in their world, they need a way to speak about it and a way to sing about it and a way to feel about it.”

Inspired as a human, Natalie found that as a musician she couldn’t help but express her views and opinions when there was a crowd of open eyes and ears in front of her.
“When I first realised that I was on stage and I had a microphone, I was like ‘well I have this opportunity to say something and sing something that is important to me’, and I took that opportunity – I’m the sort person who would do that.
“It’s great to be invited to events and invited to be a fair trade ambassador and invited to community fundraisers, I feel really honoured that they would want me or Blue King Brown to come and give energy and give some love and raise awareness with them.

“We’ve worked with numerous organisations, and continue to do so – we want to do what we can to help. We became involved in with the Body Shop to help raise awareness about the child sex trafficking that’s occurring throughout Asia. When you hear these stories about children who are been trafficked, you’re just like ‘of course I will do whatever I can to try and stop that!’ It’s a very simple human reaction to want to help.”

With the voice of reggae spreading both locally and internationally, Blue King Brown are looking forward to stepping out of the studio this month to spread some more love and awareness.
“We’ve constantly heard these great reviews of Island Vibe. We’ve always wanted to go but it has never worked out timing-wise. But this year, I guess the planets have aligned and we’re coming. It’s so good that we have more and more roots and reggae-orientated festivals – this sort of culture is coming more into the mainstream in Australia. It’s a really positive thing and we like to support it.”

Blue King Brown will play Island Vibe, Home Beach, Minjerribah North Stradbroke Island, October 28-30. islandvibe.com.au

Wednesday, 12 October 2011 12:11

Salmonella Dub

COMING FULL CIRCLE

It’s been nearly two decades since Salmonella Dub surfaced across the Tasman with an innovative and mischievous style. The group’s guitarist, Andrew Penman, explains how the band is now attempting to revert back to the basics that established their unique sound.

“At times you sort of get into a formula, which we’re actually trying to break out of with the next round of recording. Over the last two or three albums we’ve all had the luxury of little home studios, which has of course meant that everyone has had the producer hat on at times. Then you end up with all these different ideas of how things should go. This process has meant a whole lot of stuff has fallen by the wayside, which consequently we’re trying to represent with the ‘Freak Controller Madness’ release at the moment.

“The problem I guess with the digital age is that the choices are unlimited. Although digital technology has allowed us to produce stuff without being in the same room, having spread out over the years has resulted in a loss of that x-factor of the live unit, which is what we were always about.

“Over the last few albums what’s tended to happen is that we’ll finish recording without actually having played through the whole album together. Then we’ll take it out on the road and by the end of the tour probably find that there are one or two tracks that stick and the rest get dropped. So with our twentieth anniversary coming up next year, and the sudden realisation of the pitfalls in the way we’ve been doing things, the plan is to get together for a space of time to develop the ideas as a group in the same room. That way we’ll nut things out as a live unit and in the process become emotionally involved together with what we’re doing arrangement-wise, rather than individually. Which is what we used to do – so we’ve pretty much gone full circle.”

In terms of sound, Salmonella Dub have made a preemptive attempt to circle back to their roots with ‘Freak Controller’, something Andrew admits was intentional after the digital age had such an effect on their previous release, ‘Heal Me’.

“The idea was to try and make more of a live album. ‘Heal Me’ for us was an interesting process, and probably the culmination of everything I’ve just explained. David Harrow was producing it from LA and we haven’t seen him since ‘Killervision’, which was eight years before, so the whole thing was done online. Plus we’d gone through quite a change in what we were doing – Tiki (Taane) had gone off to do his solo albums – and we were very keen to forge ahead with the core line-up.

“My partner and I had just had our boy, so I was pretty much an at-home Dad and spending most of my day in the studio. Our drummer Dave, who does all the vocals, was coming backwards and forwards and it was actually quite a good creative process. But obviously the big flaw was that our producer was in LA. We were coming up with way too much stuff for the poor guy to wade through – at times there were up to 100 tracks running in each session. Plus Dave was getting carried away, almost going Crosby, Stills and Nash on the vocals. There would be eight or nine counter harmonies on things, which of course if you try to play live it’s like ‘Oh, that’s not gonna work is it?’ Great ideas, but a little bit flawed when it came to delivery.”

For Salmonella Dub, delivering on stage is possibly the most important aspect of their musical process, given that live shows are where dub and reggae have the most impact for listeners.
“First and foremost it’s about the bass. With a bigger rig and a nicer room, or preferably outdoors if you have a nice amphitheatre, you can really maximise that. But it’s also about the rhythms. As a young kid I was brought up getting wacked across the knuckles by an old lady teaching me piano. Then I had the luxury of working with a big jazz band, and there was this old guy who used to yell at me ‘Don’t bloody read that music, feel it! It isn’t the notes you play it’s the gaps between them!’ And that’s really what it’s about with dub. It’s about creating the space to be able to infer things that may not be there.”

Often hailed as innovators and pioneers of the dub sound, Andrew admits they’ve never felt the pressure of such labels given that it all began as a bit of fun.
“Although we had a bit of arrogance about our music, back when we started it was all very tongue-in-cheek. There wasn’t anything like what we were doing around us at the time – we started among what was very much a grunge rock scene. Dance music back then was frowned upon a bit. If we wanted to play a dance gig we would have to play at a trance party, otherwise we were playing rock gigs with bands like Shihad.

“The exciting thing is that over the course of the last ten years in particular, both Australia and New Zealand have developed this emerging voice that is very roots orientated, across many different genres from dub to dubstep and drum & bass, to hip hop – everything goes.”

Experienced travellers at the international level, Andrew has noticed that while receptive to roots music, places such as Europe lack the emergence of such a voice, something he attributes to our island homes.

“People have asked over the years why New Zealand and Australia are so receptive to reggae or dub. I think it’s an island thing – being by the sea. The Pacific Islander culture has embraced it, particularly with Jamaica and the whole history behind it that has shaped that style of music. Also on the flipside in New Zealand you’ve got the punk scene that really influenced it. There’s a whole white boy, punk, digi-dub, reggae ethic that’s crossed over as well, and it’s really melded together. I guess the big melting pot for that was drum & bass and dubstep.”

Salmonella Dub play The Coolangatta Hotel October 14 and the Hi-Fi October 15.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011 10:33

Funkoars

Pulling Ahead

Funkoars have been forging a path since the late ‘90s, and are now highly regarded in a sea of ever-emerging Aussie hip hop acts. It’s a fortunate thing, because as MC Sesta discusses, the industry’s tides have turned.

“You see the hip hop genre is getting exploited a bit because it is doing well. A lot of people will use the title to put on their music and ride that bandwagon a bit. It’s definitely not on the decline – it almost feels over-saturated. There are so many hip hop acts at the moment, and for emerging artists it’s more cutthroat than it used to be. When you only had a handful of hip hop groups, and stations like Triple J kind of had the responsibility to at least play a bit now and again, there seemed to be a lot of room for people.

“Now people are much more focused on the bottom lines of ‘this has to chart, this has to reach these people, I have to impress these people who have signed me’. It is a lot more business orientated and market driven, which is annoying. But there are still beacons of hope out there who are fighting the good fight, and it’s definitely sprouting in every aspect. The production side is more world class now, it’s not just a bunch of dudes who decide to get together and write some raps. It is maturing.”

Despite having established themselves as a relevant, engaging act, Sesta admits that things were still easier when Funkoars first started out.
“The start felt the easiest because you don’t have any expectations, you’re just doing what you really like to do, which we’d already been doing for years before that, probably in 1999 we were all together. Funkoars wasn’t created but we were learning how to make beats. We were among the few people in the small Adelaide scene who were making that kind of music. Everybody was really passionate about it, and it wasn’t the sort of stuff you could hear anywhere else.

“It wasn’t until around the third album – where you have your fanbase – that it got more difficult. Our music is very personal, it’s very much a snapshot of what we’re thinking at the time. As you grow up things change and circumstances change, which gets reflected in your music and you get a bit anxious about how people are going to receive it.”

The group will soon find out what sort of reception their latest album ‘The Quickening’ garnered, as they begin a tour next month that will include several festival slots – something Sesta always looks forward to.
“I mostly like them because you get to pick the good bits out of your sets. Usually in a club for our own show we have to play at least an hour set, whereas at a festival you’re told ‘hey you only have to do half an hour to 45 minutes’, so you can refine it and get the best parts. The festivals are the pay off – I think everyone is all around in a much more happy, positive mood. It’s a different vibe. A lot of the time even people who are not your fans will be more likely to come check you out, which is always good. Having said that nothing does beat the dark, shitty, sweaty clubs. They’re what really forged us I think.”

Such clubs shaped the live energy that’s an integral part of what the Funkoars bring to the Aussie hip hop world, an energy that’s often toted as rowdy and dangerous.
“I think that’s the kind of energy we like to bring to anything – a sort of honest rawness. We’ve got the kind of music we like, we know the kind of vibe we like to get with our songs, and we’ve always sort of stuck to that kind of formula. But when we do our live shows it’s very much like anything can happen – nothing’s too formulated, everything is a bit on the fly. We’ve got our set list, but we like to interact with the crowd a lot and just sort of let whatever happens happen. If something goes wrong it’s not a bad thing – we like to have a laugh about it. Overall it’s that raw, livewire energy that we like to put into our music. But dangerous? I don’t know, not literally.”

Funkoars play Sprung Festival, at the Brisbane Botanic Gardens and Riverstage, on October 15. ‘The Quickening’ is available now. sprunghiphop.com.au

Wednesday, 21 September 2011 15:58

Ruben Guthrie

Theatre In Preview

A discussion with ‘Ruben Guthrie’ actresses Kathryn Marquet and Lauren Orrell leads you to believe that there’s something slightly off with modern drinking culture.

Although it premiered in Sydney back in 2008, this will be the first time ‘Ruben Guthrie’ has run in Brisbane. For the uninitiated, Lauren gives a run-down of the play. “It’s about this young, 28- or 29-year-old man at the top of his game in the ad world. I think like a lot of young people in society, particularly these days, he has a problem with binge drinking.

Throughout the play the question is always how far does it go - is it an addiction? Is it a cultural thing? Is it a phase in life? Ultimately the impact on his life is so much so that the important things start to tear and break away, and he is left alone to deal with his problems. He goes from one extreme to the other too, from binge drinking to being ultra sober and healthy, and that in a sense is almost as destructive as the drinking in a lot of ways.”

“Yeah because he throws a lot away,” adds Kathryn. “At the start of the play he loses his fiancée, and then he starts going to AA and you know, everything is falling apart in his life - his parents have split up, and he becomes crap at his job because he’s not drinking.”

It was written by award-winning actor/ writer Brendan Cowell during a year of sobriety, which came after the realisation that he was indulging in boozy habits a little too frequently.
“It’s very funny, and very dark,” Kathryn explains. “I think there are certain autobiographical elements to it but, as with anything, writers kind of take bits from all over. It’s not exactly ‘his story’ or anything.”

Despite its humorous components, both actresses feel the play reflects the seriousness and reality of the binge-drinking problem that Cowell found himself struggling with. As Kathryn describes, it’s an issue that affects more than just the central character.

“Almost everyone in the play has been affected in some way by addiction and by drinking. The only person in the play who doesn’t have an addiction is Zoya (Lauren’s character), and I guess the mum as well.” “But she’s been around it her whole life,” comments Lauren.

“Yeah her father was an alcoholic, her husband is an alcoholic, and her son’s an alcoholic. She questions whether she has a type, in that she seeks out these men who have this addiction. So the play also looks at the generational affects of it as well - is alcoholism an inherited trait? Are we born with the need to consume it?”

At the core of the play is this question of excessive drinking and where it stems from. One thing that everyone can agree on is that Australians are particularly adept at it.
“I think it’s almost to free yourself from social constraints,” Lauren professes. "It’s an arena in which you can fully be yourself - warts and all - and it’s socially acceptable because you either don’t remember or you’re drunk.”

“And also the play explores the idea that it’s sometimes people’s only way to communicate well, it does break down borders,” Kathryn says. “For example, Ruben’s father feels that without his son drinking, they can’t actually have a conversation.”

“There’s that really beautiful thing too, on the topic of drinking being an inherited thing, where Ruben talks not so much about alcoholism itself being inherited but about inheriting generations of unexpressed pain and anger,” Lauren reflects. “Are you dealing with generations of things you don’t understand that have somehow manifested in your being?”

Such manifestations seem evident in the Australian way of drinking, however instead of being inherent in our culture alone Lauren believes that “… it’s a human thing. There’s just different cultural ways of expressing it.” Even with such sweeping contemporary issues to tackle, Kathryn finds that in modern plays such as ‘Ruben Guthrie’ it is easier to communicate them to an audience.

“When you’re dealing with stuff from the past or characters that are not quite from this era, you’re dealing a lot more with your imagination. With contemporary stuff you can draw a lot more from the world around you, and there’s no obstacle with the audience in terms of the text. They understand the way you’re speaking on stage, so there’s a lot more freedom. Plus you’re not wearing a corset!”

‘Ruben Guthrie’ will premiere at La Boite’s Roundhouse Theatre on October 8 for a limited season. On a strict budget? Save 40% - first four shows all tickets $26.

Wednesday, 14 September 2011 16:21

Holy Fuck

That Band

Some weird sounds and a simple expletive have inadvertently made Holy Fuck somewhat of an infamous name in music.

Founding member Brian Borcherdt reflects on the origins of the unfavourable aspect of their reputation. “We got a very small grant [in 2006] that helped buffer the costs of some plane tickets, which we very much needed to play our debut at Glastonbury – we were an unsigned band and it was a big opportunity. But so many months later when our conservative government was trying to find an excuse to nix that particular vein of arts funding, they looked no further than a band that had ‘fuck’ in its name. So by a really roundabout, scapegoating way they chose to make that their reason. Anyone with half a brain knows that wasn’t the reason. People don’t make big decisions based on that – we’re not on the playground at school. But that’s now largely what we’re known for. People know us as ‘that band’.”

Holy Fuck’s beginnings were also slightly tarnished after the release of their eponymous first album.
“Making the weird instrumental record may have alarmed some people due to their expectations of what they considered to be a party band, and a fun band live. People were really salivating for that first record, and when we put it out it was really weird. I know it pissed a lot of people off – they hated it. They thought we were gonna be this party/ dance band. I think that’s the fine line we’ve treaded since – being weird but also a fun band, one you can enjoy live.”

In spite of all this, it’s fair to say that some bad press received in years past pales in comparison to the high praise the band has received for their latest release, ‘Latin’, which Brian admits is largely thanks to endless touring and a consistent line-up.
“There are a handful of things that are different about our previous record, but one of them was definitely that it came at a time in our band where we didn’t have a particular line-up, it was more like an idea between friends. With this last record it’s not like we deliberately sat down and built a rock opera, or knew in particular what songs were going to go on it. But inevitably it was going to be the same four people, because that’s the reality of a band.

“On ‘LP’ (their sophomore release) it wasn’t so much about stuff we were doing live as what we were doing in that moment in the studio. But then ‘Latin’ was very much about capturing that live sound, and part of the momentum to get the album done was based on us touring. I would like to say in a good way that there’s a sense of urgency and intensity to it, and that’s probably why. We were always making albums while touring and while everything was firing off all at once.”

Despite a variety of influences and numerous transitional members, Holy Fuck have always foregone conventionality as a band in regards to guitarists and vocalists, something Brian attributes to their diverse backgrounds.

“We came together via other projects where we were able to get a lot out of our system. We’ve been in punk bands and rock bands and weird party bands, and Graham (Walsh) and myself are predominantly guitar players. I think starting this band was about doing something creative and something fun – I knew right away I didn’t want to pick up the microphone and sing or play guitar because I already had those outlets. It’s just about getting your rocks off in a different way. But it’s fun, and it allows us the freedom to do this because the ego doesn’t get involved and say ‘oh shit, no one can hear my guitar solo’, or ‘they don’t understand my lyrics’. Suddenly a lot of those traps you can fall into as a band have dissipated because you’ve become a collective unit – one big organic rhythm section. It’s a lot of fun, and really cathartic.”

Despite being a liberating experience, Brian admits the last few years have taken their toll.
“There’s logically going to be a certain amount of burnout, where you really do need some down time after five years of consistent touring. Early this year we finally came crashing to a halt – in a good way, but I think we need the break. We’ll start again soon.”


Holy Fuck will play Harvest Festival at the Brisbane Botanical Gardens on November 19. harvestfestival.com

Wednesday, 24 August 2011 13:01

The Living End

Living In The Moment    

There’s a very life-affirming philosophy embedded in the title of The Living End’s sixth studio album, one that reflects the lessons they’ve found themselves constantly learning.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011 14:12

Philly Blunt

Bootlegging Parties
Not content for his wares to circulate only on the west coast, Philly Blunt is heading interstate with his convoy of crooked party-starters.

Perth is the most isolated capital city in the world. What effect does this have on its music scene?
I think it's good for our music scene. It means we tend to do our own thing a bit more as we're not influenced so much by surrounding cities. There is a documentary from last year called 'There's Something In The Water', which is all about the effect our isolation has on the Perth music scene. The community is small but very tight knit which helps breed a great amount of creativity.

You’re the brainchild behind the ‘Bootleg’ dance parties in Perth. Did you feel as though parties of that particular scope were lacking on the Australian scene?
Our goal was always to run a night that was just about having fun in a party type atmosphere - getting rid of the seriousness that can sometimes creep into dance music. Our tag line is: Tunes you know in the styles you love. So we keep the bangin' club beats, but sprinkle a little parmesan on the top.

How do you think we’ll match up to your home crowds when you bring ‘Bootleg’ to the east coast?
I'm sure you guys will bring the party! We had a 'Bootleg' in Brisbane a year or so ago and it was off the hook - we're expecting bigger and better this time.

Prohibition thrived on them, and dance parties seem to be dedicating them more and more time. Is there something that makes bootlegs so appealing?
I think it can be nice to hear something you know in a different format, it can also be fun to hear something that shouldn't be messed with, messed with.

011 sees you expanding your influence into multiple projects - the Black & Blunt duo, a collaboration with vocalist Will Stoker, and your side project The Nines. Which is making the most headway to date?
Things have been firing up for Black & Blunt at the moment with a stack of new tunes coming out. The next one is a remix for Lee Coombs and Meat Katie on Lot49.

Philly Blunt will be playing ‘Bootleg’ at Barsoma on Saturday August 13.

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