Solo Ed (By Request) and fresh The Aints! gigs roll out

ed solo by request

It wouldn’t feel normal in Australia if it wasn’t raining Ed Kuepper shows. Already announced as the Melbourne headliners for this year’s Reclink Community Cup at Melbourne’s Victoria Park on June 24, Kuepper's new favourite band The Aints! are playing an additional show at Geelong’s Barwon Club Hotel the night before.

Joining Kuepper in The Aints! are Sunnyboys bassist Peter Oxley, Paul Larsen (drummer for both The Celibate Rifles and The New Christs) plus solo jazz performers Alister Spence (keyboards), Eamon Dilworth (trumpet) and an additional brass section. Tickets for The Aints! play The Saints with special guests Ausmuteants are on-sale here.

Jack Howard's Epic brass bookended by solo Steve Lucas and Penny Ikinger shows

epic brass

It’s renowned as one of Melbourne’s most spectacular rock and roll shows and it hits Sydney’s Factory Theatre at Marrickville on Saturday. Epic Brass is the brainchild of Hunters and Collectors horns man Jack Howard and employs a stellar cast of underground stars to showcase the songs of the Saints, X, Laughing Clowns, Painters and Dockers, the Hunnas and Midnight Oil.

Former Sydneysiders Ron Peno (Died Pretty), Steve Lucas (X), Penny Ikinger (Wet Taxis) will join Jack Howard and Fiona Lee Maynard, with John Archer (Hunters and Collectors) on bass and Ash Davies on drums. Tickets here.

If you’re of a resident of Sydney’s Inner-Western Delta, you won’t have far to catch two sideshows before and after Saturday. Steve Lucas plays a free solo show at the Golden Barley at Enmore from 8pm on Thursday night with Penny Ikinger backing up at the same venue at 7pm on Sunday, also gratis.

Get a Hard-On for vinyl at these shows

vinyl celebrationThe Hard-Ons are vinyl fans. They believe, like many others who are a bit greyer, that vinyl records that were released before the digital age tell fascinating stories about the song/artist/record label, that streaming and MP3s can’t quite relay.

The band is playing two shows this month that celebrate vinyl. The big news is that the first 120 punters to arrive at the June 1 show at the Chippendale Hotel in Sydney and the June 2 gig at the Cambridge Hotel in Newcastle will receive a discretely brown paper-bagged seven-inch single from the personal collection of the band members

Says Ray Ahn: “There are 240 random records culled from our personal collections and the like. Some are GREAT. Some are good. Some are OK. Some are pretty shithouse. All are from another time and place, there will be records from 50’s, 60’s, 70’s 80’s. In addition, three mega-rare Hard-Ons records that are probably worth a fair amount from the HARD-ONS’ archive will be up for grabs to six lucky punters.”

The band promises loads of Hard-Ons seven-inch records will be on sale at the merch table as well, including some long deleted rarities.

FRI 1 JUNE: CHIPPO HOTEL with WHITE DOG + HELLEBORES
SAT 2 JUNE: CAMBRIDGE Hotel NEWCASTLE + Human Failure + Obat Batuk

And later this month, the Hard-Ons hit Europe again:

Hard-Ons in Europe
JUNE
France
20 - TBA
21 – La Rochelle 
22 - Clisson, Hellfest
24 - Orleans, Blue Devil
Germany
25 - Essen, Don't Panic
26 - Osnabrück, Bastard Club
27 - Hamburg, Port Klang
28 - Berlin, music & peace
Finland
29 – Tampere

RIP Andy MacQueen (Exploding White Mice, Pro-Tools)

andy mcqueenExploding White Mice and Pro-Tools bassist Andy MacQueen has unexpectedly passed away. 

A fixture on the Adelaide live scene, it's understood Andy had complained of abdominal pains recently. Bandmates were understandably too upset to comment further but Jeff Stephens from the Mice posted this on his own Facebook page at 9.30 tonight:

All of us here in Exploding White Mice are utterly shocked and heartbroken at the passing of our dearly beloved Andy. Our deepest condolences go out to his family and to everyone who knew him. We love you Andy.

The Exploding White Mice reformed last year, playing two shows in their home town of Adelaide and making another appearance at the River Rocks festival in Geelong, Victoria. It’s understood plans were underway to tour more extensively. 

Power to burn on the LP version of "disasterpiece"

disasterpice lpIt’s said every great CD release deserves to come out on vinyl and the folks at Buttercup Records have been listening.

They’ve obliged by making Melbourne band Powerline Sneakers’ wonderful “disasterpiece” album, originally issued by Kasumuen Records on CD only, available on wax.

“disasterpiece” was one of The Barman’s choices in his 2017 Top Ten and it was easy to hear why. Gritty, hooky and raucous tunes from veteran survivors of bands like Powder Monkeys, Splatterheads and Ripe, it’s spent lots of time in the CD player and is reviewed here.

Limited to 300 hand-numbered copies on vinyl, it’s the usual bang-up Buttercup job - three colour variants, spectacular new artwork by Glenn Smith, double-sided insert and download card. Follow this link to order a copy before they're gone. 

Ex-Stooge James Williamson's new album looms

jameswilliamsonpinkhearts

The debut album from ex-Iggy and the Stooges guitarist James Williamson and his new band, The Pink Hearts, comes out on June 22 and we’ll have a review live in about a week.

“Behind the Shade” by James Williamson and The Pink Hearts will be on Williamson’s own Leopard Lady Records and is a diverse but powerful effort, with Frank Meyer (Streetwalkin’ Cheetahs) and Petra Haden (That Dog) sharing lead vocals. 

Haden was one of the feature vocalists on Williamson’s album of previously unreleased studio versions of Stooges songs, “Re-Licked”. She also contributed violin to “The Departed” on the final Stooges album. “Ready To Die”. 

On “Behind The Shade”, Williamson supplies all of the riffs, guitar parts and most of the bass. The album also includes a host of accompanists.

They include Michael Urbano (Smash Mouth, Bourgeois Tagg, Todd Rundgren, John Hiatt) on percussion, Gregg Foreman, Hervé Salters, Paul Roessler, Nick Hart, and Audrey Vera on keyboards and piano, Jason Carmer on bass, Don Rooke on lap steel, Geoff Yeaton and Tony Peebles on saxophone and Steffen Kuehn on trumpet.

Click Read More for a video teaser and the tracklist.

Sydney to celebrate 45 years of Volcanic Rock

buffalo 45 adIt’s been cited as one of the most influential hard rock albums in Australian music history. Buffalo’s “Volcanic Rock” turns 45 this year.

To mark the occasion, vocalist Dave Tice is playing some special shows with current band, Buffalo Revisited, playing the album and a handful of other hand-picked highlights from the band’s five-album career.

The first will be presemnted by the I-94 Bar at Sydney’s Bald Faced Stag Hotel on Saturday, June 30.

Recorded mostly live at United Sound in Sydney, “Volcanic Rock” appeared in August 1973 on the Vertigo label, also home to Black Sabbath.

Attracting minimal airplay, it was critically-hailed and tracks like “Freedom”, The Prophet” and “Shylock” wrote the template for stoner rock.

Revealed: Ed and The Aints delivering two albums for the price of one

peter oxley studioBy the time you read this, Ed Kuepper and his new favourite band The Aints will be ensconced in Phil Punch’s Sydney studio, recording their new album.

“The Church of Simultaneous Existence” was previewed on the recent runs of Aints shows across Australia, and will consist mostly of old songs intended for a fourth album by the early (definitive) version of the Kuepper-Bailey Saints.

The Aints lineup is Peter Oxley (bass), Paul Larsen (drums) and Alister Spence (keys) with Kuepper on vocals and guitar, backed by a three-piece horn section. The photo at right of Peter Oxley in the studio yesteday is courtesy of Feelpresents. 

Last Friday night at Sydney's Marrickville Bowling Club, The Aints played a bracket of the album songs in their entirety. They backed up that blistering show with an appearance the following night at the Gumball festival in the Hunter Valley..

Did we say recording “a new album” (singular)? The Aints are also recording a new Ed Kuepper album - with strings.

It’s the same “electric trio” configuration that appeared with Ed and the Nonsemble Strings at Leftys Old Time Musical Hall in Brisbane in December 2017.

No release dates have been announced for either album but mixing sessions have been scheduled, so watch this space.

This R.E.M. tribute goes out to the ones they love

Tis the season to pay tribute, it seems. “The Ones We Love” is a unique series of concerts in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne, celebrating R.E.M. and featuring an all-star line-up of singers, most of them drawn from the Australian semi-underground.

Jeff Martin (The Tea Party), Steve Kilbey (The Church), Ron S. Peno (Died Pretty), Trish Young (The Clouds), Alannah Russack (The Hummingbirds), Ashley Naylor (Even), Greg Atkinson (Ups & Downs), Peter Fenton (Crow) and Amanda Brown (The Go-Betweens) are sharing star billing. Backing will come from The Exploding Boys who, at last glance, comprised members of Glide and Died Pretty. 

THE ONES WE LOVE: Celebrating R.E.M.
AUG
31 - Brisbane, Tivoli Theatre
Sep
6 - Melbourne, Palais Theatre
7 - Sydney, State Theatre
Tickets - Pre Sale: Friday May 4th, 9am Local Times. On Sale -   Monday May 7th, 9am Local Times. 
From Metropolis Touring