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Wednesday, 30 November 2011 14:30

Dainjazone

New School Leader

Dainjazone, the man dubbed ‘leader of the new school’, prepares himself for a trip down under to showcase a collection of tunes and a taste of natural disaster. “I want to bring earthquakes and tornadoes to Australia so my presence is felt and the moments I create will leave a lasting impression,” he says. “My ambitions on this tour will be set at a high level. I motivate myself every time I travel.”

Travelling with such a title creates a certain wave of expectation, and as leader of the new school, the job description is perhaps best explained by the man himself. “It’s a brand. A business. A way of living. There are no breaks in what I have a passion for and what I represent. By being myself, I will accomplish more and people will see and appreciate what I’ve committed to, thus, translating to people finding the best in themselves.

“Excuses go out the window. A leader doesn’t lean on the excuses or point the finger. Ultimately, it’s how you prep yourself to react in game-time situations.”
Whether he’s prepared to rock the late-night dancefloor or capable of sinking the winning buzzer beater, Dainjazone is intent on moving past self-enforced industry barriers he sees other DJs “buying into”.

“There are so many barriers that us DJs buy into and we feel there's a pecking order or a tradition of some sort to follow. I don't buy into barriers. The thought and reason of barriers only limits what we are capable of accomplishing. If we really wanted to break down a barrier we would do so. “The excuse of not breaking a barrier down is only temporary until we think we're ready to tear it down. Why aren't we ready now?”

When it comes to breaking through barricades, one can only go so far before the next challenge appears and Dainjazone is not short of a plan. Next year there are no limits to the endeavours that will satisfy the appetite of one of the industry’s hungriest DJs. “I don't like to think of the best clubs as the end of the road. I'll be doing modelling and entertaining other facets of entertainment to help strengthen and expand my brand. Things just happen.”

DAINJAZONE PLAYS THE ULTIMATE FESTIVAL AFTERPARTY AT ELECTRIC PLAYGROUND THIS SUNDAY, DECEMBER 4.

Wednesday, 21 September 2011 13:39

Lore Crew

IT’S ABOUT FUN

Brisbane’s Lore Crew have wasted very little time building an impressive foundation for themselves. Now it’s on to the fun stuff.

“We make hip hop, fairly simply, with sort of big bells on and around it,” says crew member Harry Fisher. “We try not to take ourselves too seriously – we’re mainly about having fun.”

It’s with this theory that their brand of hip hop is practiced, with plenty of twists and turns, incorporating a plurality of elements ranging from funk to psychedelia. A measure of both new and old school worlds are each blended to bless the Brisbane-based act with a style of glitch-hop that’s fresh and original.
“Our style is mainly hip hop/ glitch – all through really. There are a few different styles in there, though. A bit of blues and jazz - Cuban and New Orleans - and we’re inspired by a lot of world music. It’s definitely important to make different music.”

Perhaps the one thing they’re completely (and quite obviously) serious about is making their particular brand of music different. As a band inspired by the likes of Rage Against The Machine, A Tribe Called Quest and The Herd, it’s reasonable to presume they’re interested in creating music that tends not to run alongside the standard radio-type tunes.

The direction and continuous growth of Lore Crew has followed the path of the glitch hop genre, and in the eyes of Mr Fisher, it’s a prosperous road ahead for one of hip hop’s fastest growing branches.
“Glitch is certainly taking off around the world, it’s going somewhere. I mean, it does not have as much legs as hip hop does but it’s there and is creating huge parties all around the world. It’s not gone mainstream like dubstep, yet. It’s still a bit underground.”

Their particular hybrid of hip hop and glitch has been rewarded with a recent run of shows all across the east coast, and they’re looking forward to their slot at Manifest this month. Quite a fitting platform for a band of their nature, it’s one that just can’t come quick enough for Lore Crew.
“We’re really looking forward to getting out there and also looking forward to the camping – we haven’t really done it for a long time. I can’t wait to be there … I expect to see a lot of different music but I’m mainly just looking forward to being there and drinking and having fun.”

Live, they promise to be a bit of a spectacle. With the same commitment and attitude they approach making music, their live show is well prepared.
“You can expect to see three rappers, a DJ and a dude on sampler and also on Ableton and guitar. We play a bit of live, glitchy riffs with heaps of rhymes – we’re a hip hop band making sure we’re having fun and we try to make sure that everyone else does as well.”

The varied nature of the music they’re making reflects their diverse line-up, with the many musical styles present within the group combining well.
“Everyone has a view, we always talk stuff over with every decision and that way we are all heard and each have some input into things in a sort of group discussion. We also run our own record label - Moistlab Records - which just released its first compilation of Aussie glitch-hop and dubstep tracks.
“And, while we are essentially a hip hop band, we’re always pushing ourselves to incorporate more of these sorts of elements and further develop our sound.”

Although humble with the success they’ve enjoyed recently, they’re already looking to the future with a move to brighter pastures on the cards.
“We’re looking into migrating to Victoria next year to have fun and hopefully tap into the music scene down there.”

LORE CREW PLAY MANIFEST, WHICH TAKES PLACE THIS WEEKEND AT BESTBROOK MOUNTAIN RESORT SEPTEMBER 23-25.

Wednesday, 03 August 2011 12:31

Matt Corby

Communicant 

Some may still remember Matt Corby as the fresh faced young chap from ‘Idol’ a few years ago. If they met the rugged troubadour in a dark alley today,  few would comment on the resemblance.

Wednesday, 27 July 2011 16:41

Sea Legs

Landed

Treading firmly on land, Sydney alternative three-piece Sea Legs garner plenty of momentum as they push forward on a national tour.

Wednesday, 20 July 2011 14:12

Loop The Loop

Blow By Blow

Gene Peterson is a man who’s attracted to the spectacular and, alongside longtime adversary Adam Page, his latest production promises such.

Loop The Loop blends a unique set-up of musical talent, competitive spirit and improvisation to bring forth a show of various thrills and excitement. "It's a musical battle between myself and Adam Page. We're both multi-instrumentalists and, throughout the show, we attempt to outplay each other via different instruments and also by making music out of random objects," co-star and producer Gene says. "Half the time it's trying to be musical and outplay each other with our musicianship and half the time it's just us trying to be idiots really. It's quite a lot of fun."

The bout takes place in a fitting manner as the two artists lock head to head in a boxing ring, aggressively exchanging musical blows in a bid to rival and outshine the other; the looping effect pedal allowing each artist to create a variety of riffs, giving the impression of a live band. Though the pair are friends, the nature of the performance does influence a certain element of competitiveness. "We are at each other's throats for a lot of it. We're also having a heap of fun but the theatrics of the performance is that we are two boxers in a match-up, competing for the title. It gets quite serious; it almost becomes physical at one point in the show."

Maintaining a smooth balance between musical and comedic in an area of unpredictability can become, at times, chaotic, but that's all part of the show. "That's what we do for a living, you know. There's a lot going on but we enjoy what we do. It is difficult and I find it difficult but the show has a high level of musicality, as well as a high level of performance, so there's a lot going on. That's what we do and we love it."

There's plenty more where that came from. Following Loop The Loop is 360 Allstars, a show with a grand nature which plans to encompass Peterson's very own urban circus.
"We've got some big names locked in ... It's going to be a pretty fantastic show."

 LOOP THE LOOP PLAYS THE ARTS CENTRE GOLD COAST SATURDAY JULY 30.

Wednesday, 29 June 2011 13:33

Inland Sea

Ahoy

In a band which boasts ten members, even the simplest decisions can become difficult. Though it’s likely that Inland Sea have the ability to rid this burden given the long list of accomplishments they’ve achieved since forming in 2010.

The swift production of their debut EP, ‘Traitor’, is perhaps a reflection of their determination to succeed in the industry, but it’s another element that’s acknowledged by band member Claire Whiting. “It’s more a reflection of our excitement, I think,” she says. "A lot of us were already in the music industry and were in the industry for a while. I’ve been writing songs for years and years and did my solo thing, Alistair had his own band and about seven of the members had their own bands and had been doing that for a while.

“We kind of knew the things that you do, we’d built up those ideas and contacts, so when we met each other and all fell madly in love with each other’s music, we wanted to get it done really quickly and we love it, so we wanted other people to hear it really quickly.”

Having received praise in spades for their live performances, ‘Traitor’ has also enjoyed a tremendous reception in the public and media alike.
“We really like it. The process was really interesting. It has pretty, beautiful folk melodies on it … it’s a big sound; a big, big, folk sounding thing. We have five singers, so there are a lot of harmonies.

“For us, it’s just been really flattering the way people have taken it. For it to be received so well, we love it for that. We loved it before, we get the music, obviously, but other people get it as well and that’s really flattering.”

Admirable is the humbling and modest manner - a vivid feature of the music also - in which they respond to the compliments directed at them. The ‘with a pinch of salt’ approach assures all 20 feet are kept on the ground. “I always say that if you’re going to take a really bad review to heart, you should take a really good review to heart. I think that if you’re going to read reviews, you should probably not take them too seriously. I mean, it’s wonderful and we take the reviewers seriously but we don’t let it go to our heads.

“I think it’s important to stay grounded. When people say really nice things about you, it’s really nice and it feels good, and we thank them, but we’re not going to become big-headed all of a sudden. If we let that sink in too much, then get a bad review, we’re going to take that the same way. What’s needed is a balance; with criticism you need to know what to take on board and what not to take on board.”

A feature sometimes lacking in bands, whether successful or not, is the perfect combination of intelligence and talent. This mixture is not absent in Inland Sea, which is possibly the reason they’re marching onwards with such pace. Having enjoyed a number of tour support slots, including John Steel Singers, the indie pop ten-piece have their sights set on a tour of their own. “We’re very excited; headlining shows is going to be great. Being a ten-person band, sometimes people aren’t prepared for that and headlining our show means that we can make everyone prepared. Practically, it’s great. The fact that we’ll be going on an Inland Sea tour is going to be wonderful, considering we are such a young band as well.”

For July, a residency at the Brisbane Powerhouse will be the platform for their bittersweet alt. folk musings, where the incoming tide brings a number of free shows throughout the month. “It’s always flattering to be given a residency because that means they don’t mind seeing your face every Friday night for a month, but especially at The Powerhouse because it’s such a beautiful venue and just to get to go there and hang out, it’s going to be great.
“We’re going to reveal some new songs and I think it’s the perfect time to do that. So we’ve got that coming up and we’re going to start recording out second EP on July 7.”

To see why they’re held in such high regard, catch them in their element, on stage and in action. In contrast to their music, the reason to see them is simple. “It’s good ol’ music.”

INLAND SEA PLAY THE BRISBANE POWERHOUSE EVERY FRIDAY OF JULY, BEGINNING JULY 1.

Thursday, 23 June 2011 11:06

Snob Scrilla

Headed Stateside

The journey of Sean Ray - aka Snob Scrilla - began 27 years ago in Clovis, California. After heading to Australia to further his study a number of years ago, Snob is now entrenched in the local music scene - but for how long?

Signing with Ministry of Sound last year; has that given you the perfect platform to indulge more in electronica? It definitely opened up a new door to projects that were focused more in that direction. I think my music was always influenced by artists in the genre, but never so blatantly club oriented.

Having produced and written music for other artists - winning an ARIA Award in the process - what’s the most enjoyable element of writing for others. When you're writing for other people you’re crafting a sound for them, an image even sometimes, and being able to find the right sound and track for that artist is really fulfilling.

You’re California born and raised; do you plan to return to the States and try to repeat the success you’ve had in this country? Yeah, I'm moving back in about a month’s time to set up shop with my partner to focus on writing and production for artists over there. I'm still working through my second album and once that’s finished, I’ll be back to tour that. It'll be back and forth for the next few years, but I’m not complaining.

Living in California and Sydney – I’ll go with an obvious question here: who has the better beaches? Sydney, hands down… but you already knew that.

In the past few years, you’ve shared a stage with a variety of successful artists. Who has been the most impressive for you? That's a tough one, but I think for me it would have to be Public Enemy. To have the kind of longevity they have had is one thing, but to still be so relevant is what is more impressive than anything.

Your headed to Brisbane to play the AfterDark Events launch party; what can the kids expect from Snob Scrilla? Super grime through and through; just ruckus party joints from beginning to end, and a whole lot of randomness.

Snob Scrilla headlines AfterDark Events launch at GPO June 24.

Thursday, 23 June 2011 10:25

Crystal Fighters

 

Basque-ing    

A quality debut album and relentless touring has ensured electronic folk masters Crystal Fighters are held in high demand.

Their well-focussed and creative depiction of traditional Basque music and storytelling has helped them stand out from the crowd. Being acknowledged as one of the more innovative and exciting live acts in the world also helps, and with this reputation they plan to hit Parklife with force.

“It will be as dramatic and energetic as promised, all being well,” says vocalist and guitarist, Sebastian Pringle. “We feel like we wrote the songs in a certain way, with drama and passion in mind, and when we were writing them, we had no idea that we’d be playing them to audiences in Australia and beyond. It’ll be a great honour to be there and we’ll definitely bring all the fire and heat that we can.”

A dramatic and eventful encounter is sure to be expected. They frequently format their set to the standards of opera, with each song telling a story, paving the way for forward thinking ideas in the electronic folk movement of dance music.

The intricacy of their art is perhaps the most admirable feature of it all: the act, the show, the music. Though, it’s difficult to tell who or what Crystal Fighters are and which side the scale tips towards to in terms of their description: musicians or storytellers?

“We’re definitely about half and half. I think that’s a nice way of putting it. We do like to weave a story in and do something that dance music hasn’t done for a really long time; that sort of journey that DJs can sometimes craft, but bands playing dance music haven’t really done that yet. We really enjoy the peaks and troughs of the live journey.”

It’s straight out of the frying pan and into the fire for the band now, as they come off their just completed European tour to embrace the northern hemisphere’s festival season. In the space of a month they visit Spain, Germany, Poland, Switzerland, Holland and France, not to mention a return to folk haven Glastonbury. These lads really have it tough.

“We just finished a month long European tour, going round all of Eastern Europe, which we hadn’t really done before, that was amazing. Now, we’re hitting all the festivals in England and a lot in Europe … in Spain and the Basque country, which is good because a lot of our music sort of came from there.

“Then we’re coming to Australia in the  late summer/ early autumn and are really excited about that. Then I suppose we’ll be recording an album, which we’re writing at the moment, in the winter of this year, so we’ll hopefully be getting that out at some point next year.

“A lot of us have never been there (Australia) before, though I’ve actually been there before and I’m delighted to be returning. I know the people are really friendly and the parties are fun and hot and long.”

It’s perhaps quite a shock that they have time at all to catch their breath, never mind pen a few tracks on the side. The second offering is sure to give a little more insight into the group that many have their eyes on. The cosmic crusaders admit to a few ideas in the think tank and look forward to a different approach this time ‘round.

“When most of the ideas were written on that first album, we hadn’t really travelled much and had a little less experience of what people like about our music and don’t like, and what we like about it after playing it night after night and that sort of thing.

“I think it’ll be a more thought out affair rather than the chaotic trial and error but definitely we want to remain as experimental and sonically challenging as we can. The tempos we’re working out are quite unusual, in the sense that they don’t really fit into many genres or dance music types. That’s what makes it sound dance, so maybe we’ll be experimenting more established tempos - that might be it.”

It’s their second full year of mastering the hectic agenda of a globe-trotting band. Their demanding schedule, however, reflects how determined the Anglo/ Basque act are to build on their success. For now, though, they’re quite content doing what they do best.

“The schedule fills up pretty quick and we didn’t have much time to think about whether we’re doing things or whether we’re not doing them. We’re just glad to be busy enough doing this for a living.

“We’re passionate about what we do and we want to work hard to make sure people see the thing that they heard on the record in an interesting and worthwhile way when they come to see the concert. Obviously a lot of people won’t have heard the album so we want to make sure they still have fun.”

It’s this dedication and approach to live music that has cemented their reputation as one of the best in the world. In front of thousands of Australian fans, as well as the other acts on the Parklife line-up, they plan to prove their live credentials.

“I’m a big fan of the Gossip and MSTRKRFT,” Sebastian admits. “I feel like MSTRKRFT have been doing their thing in a great way for a while. Gossip and Santigold we know, so it’ll be great to play alongside them.”

Their trip down under takes place in October and it’s an occasion that will slice finely into international festival season, sure to be a highlight for both the band and local fans. Although it’s the touring that’s most enjoyed, the studio awaits and it may be as early as next year that we could see a follow up to ‘Star Of Love’.

“I think if we got the end in sight or have recorded an album that we’re really happy with it’d be ideal. I personally value the production and the studio result, it’s a really important thing. That will be the big challenge. Playing live is hard work but you’re with your friends and out on tour but the real grind is in the studio. If we have a half decent sounding album by this time next year then I’ll be happy.”

CRYSTAL FIGHTERS PLAY PARKLIFE AT BRISBANE RIVERSTAGE AND BOTANIC GARDENS ON SATURDAY OCTOBER 1. PARKLIFE.COM.AU

Wednesday, 15 June 2011 12:55

Tittsworth

Running For Mayor

Chinese-American artist Tittsworth has enjoyed his rapid rise to fame in clubs internationally, and this is as much a reflection of his tenacity as his raw talent behind the turntables.

Sinking his teeth into whatever comes his way, the versatile DJ does not limit his career to one particular area, opting for success in a plurality of adventures. A musician, producer, entrepreneur, community leader and, most recently, club owner; impressively, he doesn’t show signs of slowing down. â€œA lot of folks joke that I should run for mayor,” he says. “Did you know that our old D.C. mayor got busted for smoking crack with a prostitute while on camera and in office? Oh, we re-elected him too. I think I qualify!”

Opening up a club in his hometown of Washington, D.C. was not so much a selfish business opportunity as it was a response to the need for a club-oriented scene in the capital city. â€œI got tired of not having a proper room for forward thinking dance music. I got frustrated coming off tours involving cities with such advanced dance scenes and wanted my own to have one. I didn’t like the fact that homies pushing good music weren't stopping for gigs in my home town.”

Tittsworth has also been busy with his website - tittsworth.com - which he explains is a platform for his passions. â€œIt’s all things questionably Tittsworth, including but not limited to what I put in my ear, in my stomach and on my skin. I like heavy beats, weird food and tattoos of varying quality and seriousness.”

The self-described ‘food adventurist’ adopts a less than natural approach to his gig preparation, favouring fresh (and live) sashimi to nerve-settling liquor. Preferring a slightly left of centre method is perhaps fitting, considering the diverse artist’s style. Prepared to enter Australia with a few tricks up his sleeve, he informs us of what to expect from a Tittsworth set. â€œI am travelling with custom Tittsworth earplugs for people that come to my shows. Also expect sweat, tank tops, enthusiasm, yelling, bass, party beats and questionable life decisions.”


TITTSWORTH PLAYS ELECTRIC PLAYGROUND JUNE 24.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011 12:31

Bias B Interview

Hip Poppa

With over 20 years of experience, Bias B has immersed himself so much in the grittier elements of Australian hip hop culture that he not only lives it, he epitomises it.

Controlling a career that now spans into its third decade isn’t short of its difficulties. Having a family has its complications, even for the seasoned pro, though his latest work would suggest otherwise.

“It’s a lot more mature and, I think, sonically it sounds more polished than other albums. The beats match and sit really well together, but overall I think it’s just a step up from other albums; the maturity and the content is just a bit more deeper and personal than other albums.”

Those interested to hear the insightful pieces of B’s mind, will be both content and satisfied with his approach to ‘Biaslife’. Not one to shun away from the harshness of life or afraid to open up, he spills out what to expect from his latest release. “A lot of honesty, someone speaking from their heart. I guess I’m giving a piece of my life, as honest as possible, I give that in every album but with this one a lot more, with having a family these days – it’s just an honest album coming from the eyes of someone who’s been part of Melbourne hip hop for a long time now.”

Besides collecting a lifetime worth of experience, the Melbourne-based veteran has witnessed a few things in his time. Bias B has watched it all rise from the bottom to the top. From humble beginnings in the dark recesses of the country’s underground, Australian hip hop, like the mass movement worldwide, rose to the forefront of the music scene, finding its character and fulfilling its potential.

“There used to be a lot of people just trying to sound like the American hip hop they were buying, but people have found their own voice now and got their own style, they’re being real technical with their lyrics, the beats, etc. I think they’ve just taken it to a lot more professional level.”

A prominent figure in the construction of the genre locally, it’s no surprise that he’s adopted a compassionate role within the industry, which means Bias is not only here to educate, he’s equipped to welcome the new breed coming through, having already paved the way. “I think it’s my responsibility to let people know who the good dudes are coming up and to give them a bit of inspiration,” he says. “I just let them know that they’re doing a good thing, I respect what they’re doing and tell them to keep it up. Just to let them know what they’re doing is a good thing and to take it further. “There’s so many rappers out there these days that you need to stand out. They got their own personality to it, their own persona, and I really got to encourage that.”

His paternal nature extends to home life, where he plays to a different crowd, and although it’s a small gig, it’s demanding. “I thought it’d be easy to be a stay-at-home dad and just write raps whenever I felt the need to – it doesn’t quite work that way with kids running around screaming and wanting your attention 100 percent of the time. In a way it does work, it makes me more mature about the music, I guess, and I think more about what I’m doing but, at the same time, when I’m inspired, which is usually late at night or early in the morning, it’s not a good time because you got to do the whole kid thing. It does have its positives and negatives, but overall it’s been quite difficult at the moment.”

It might be tough, but it’s certainly not going to encourage a career change. Another album is out there and B can’t wait to hit the ground running on his upcoming tour. “It’s just my life. It’s what I’ve always been. I started doing graffiti around 1987 when I was exposed to hip hop and ever since then it’s sort of been my number one thing. It makes me feel good inside. It’s just me, you know. I hear a good hip hop beat and I just want to rap; it just drives me to keep going.”

BIAS B PLAYS THE STEP INN ON SATURDAY JUNE 25. ‘BIASLIFE’ IS OUT NOW.

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