• Gang War Sue Rynski photo

    Gang War's John Morgan talks

  • Robert Matheu photo

    Sonics Rendezvous Band - The One That Got Away

  • Mickster Baty

    15 years of Off The Hip Records

  • The Scientists

    Tony Thewlis' tales of the Scientists

BARFLY TOP TEN: KIng of Pop and author Dave Graney

dave graney 2017 top tenGo Go Sapien - "Love In Other Dimensions"
These guys are freaks who have gone beyond themselves on their latest epic. And they always put out a dynamite live show.
Clip for "THE IMAGINARY MAN" here.

Custard - The Common Touch
Second great album since reformation shows started.
Clip for "2000 Woman" here

Machine Translations - "Oh"
I always like Greg Walker's albums. He writes such great lyrics, too.
Clip for "Doom Boogie" here. 

Grey Lotus - "Acacia"
Great band from Haarlem in the Netherlands. They are tough. To play this well and so slow and tuneful.
Clip for "Song For Syd Barrett" here

The Stress of Leisure - "Eruption Bounce"
Favourite band from Brisbane. Great sounds and grooves.
Clip for "I Wanna Be Adult" here.

King Gizzard And the Lizard Wizzard
Well, they’ve released four albums so far this year and two singles this week……Great guys, phenomenal live show. Murders of the Universe!
Clip for "Countdown" here

The Sand Pebbles - "Desire Lines"
Must be their sixth or seventh. Lost some great members but rose out of the wreckage for this. 
Clip for "Desire Lines" here

Dave Graney and Clare Moore - "Let's Get Tight"
Well, we won't be in any other lists, so….
Clip for "I Need To Be Hot" here.

Back Behind The Kit - TV4 documentary

back behind the kit

So as a person with an extremely limited disposable income, I am unaccustomed to experiencing so much high quality entertainment in a short period of time.

A family member tripped across some kind of free trial TV subscription service and I keep binge-watching music flicks-witnessing one marvelous show after the next, kind of glimpsing how so many of my former peers are able to stay apolitical, apathetic, suitably sedated in their consumer hypno-spells.

BARFLY TOP TEN: "Descent Into The Maelstrom" filmmaker Jonathan J Sequeira

jonathan s top ten 2017Challenged myself to do a Radio Birdman top ten of 2018. Wasn't too difficult.

Pretty cool to see that so much good stuff is still happening from people who started more than 40 years ago - half of these would make the grade on anybody's list.

Jim Dickson - Coelum Versus
I think this might have come out last year, but I only listened to it this year so it's on the list. Great eclectic album from New Christs and Radio Birdman bassplayer! Music video for one of the tracks coming next year, well overdue (sorry Jim!)

Meanwhile, buy a copy here.

BARFLY TOP TEN: Brisbane's Phase 4 Records & Cassettes and LCMR record label honcho Donat Tahiraj

donat top ten 20172017 was a great year to celebrate the 50th anniversary of The Velvet Underground & Nico and "Forever Changes", the 40th of "(I’m) Stranded" and the 25th of something great (and local) which came out in 1992 that was more than likely one of Ed Kuepper’s. And speaking of Mr Kuepper, let’s launch into this Top Ten the Barman asked me to do.

I’ll just prattle on about live shows I’ve seen as they’re probably more entertaining than my thoughts on Cosey Fanni Tutti’s autobiography "Art Sex Music"  which isn’t  rock & roll enough or director Kriv Stenders’s recent feature documentary on the Go-Betweens which is probably too wimpy for readers in I-94 Land.

Fair enough - they’re not everyone’s cup of tea – especially if you prefer coffee.

1.-7. THE AINTS 2017 AUSTRALIAN TOUR OF THE EAST COAST
Apparently the best way to describe someone who follows Ed Kuepper’s shows from town to town is to call them an Edhead. In 1976, Saints fans were known as Kuepper Troopers as it was understood that even in those early days it was Ed’s band - up until 1978, at least.

So fast-forward to 2017, The Aints awake after a 25-year hiatus and decide to tour through the most of the country’s capital cities doing Saints material from ’73-’78.

Nothing Ever Gets Lost - Claire Birchall & The Phantom Hitchhikers (Off The Hip/Night Owl Records)

nothing ever gets lostYou know exactly what he’s gonna say: Sydney reviewer gets pissed off at the excess of musical talent in rival city Melbourne. Gets all angsty and laments The Good Old Days when Sydney more than held a candle to Melbourne. You’re partly right.

Cutting to the chase…Claire Birchall IS one of those uber talents from “down south” who grew up in the fertile Geelong scene and now lives in Melbourne. She plays everything from beatbox-backed pop to lean and mean rock. Genres are just a vehicle for the songs. “Nothing Ever Gets Lost” is a gnarly, blues-rock album.

The purple and blue cover art deceptively looks like one of those “Back From The Grave” acid punk compilations. The music, however, is fuzzy and warm and glows from the inside. There’s a great sense of dynamics and Birchall’s voice resonates with character and a world-weary charm. 

BARFLY TOP TEN: James McCann from James McCann and The New Vindictives

james juxe photo

James McCann leading The New Vindictives in Europe.  JUXE photo. 

1) The Damned @ 170 Russell St, Melbourne
I’ve always loved The Damned: the rush of energy of their first few singles and albums. My wife is a big fan and she educated me on all things Damned. I missed them last time around so I was pumped to see them finally, to say the least.

I didn’t want to be disappointed so I did my homework and watched recent live shows on YouTube and read recent reviews. By all accounts the band was on fire , so I was ready for it and they didn’t disappoint.

They are still Punk Rock weirdos at heart and it was side splitting when Captain Sensible talked about Kurt Vile playing before them at Golden Plains: “It used to be Phil Collins and Paul Weller , but I’ve found a new one KURT Fucking Vile , what a fucking tosser “ It's true so much contemporary underground music is middle of the road , like Bread in the 70’s or LRB , this shit is still the enemy, even though I’m sure Kurt Vile is a lovely guy.

BARFLY TOP TEN: Clare Moore, drummer for Dave Graney & The Mistly, The Moodists and Harry Howard and the NDE

clare moore 2017The Stress of Leisure…Eruption Bounce

Go Go Sapien …. Love in Other Dimensions

King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard …Sketches of East Brunswick

Rebecca Barnard… Music for Relaxation

Grey Lotus …   Acacia

Georgio “The Dove” Valentino…. The Future Lasts a Long Time

Charlie Marshall and The Curious Minds… Sublime

Julitha Ryan…The Winter Journey

Ross McLennan…. All the colours print can manage

Cam Butler…..  Find your Love

Jim James … Eternally Even

BARFLY TOP TEN: Off The Hip label and shop owner and drummer Mickster Baty

mickster top ten 2017Top Ten, in alphabetical order:

Datura4 @ Cherry Bar, Melbourne:
Holy moly, what an amazing show!! Twin guitar action plus rock'n'roll swagger.

Golden Rail -“Electric Trails From Nowhere" album:
Sweet jangle pop, includes the hit single "Oh My".

Grinding Eyes “self titled“ album:
Hi-fi heavy psych, reminds me of Motocaster.

Los Tones - “What Happened" album:
I love the haunting-garage sound of this record.

BARFLY TOP TENS: Mine Host, The Barman

Rossy and BarmanThe Celebrity Roadie informs The Barman that he can't go out in public like that. As usual, he's ignored. Kyleigh Pitcher photo.

This is a Top Ten of two parts. First, live gigs, and second, albums. You know. Second part, different from the first.The rule of not reviewing my own gigs goes right out the door from the get-go. Got an issue with that? See you in the carpark...

Chris Masuak and the Sydney City Wave Riders:
This was a sensational run of shows- a mini-tour in and around Sydney because that’s all that time allowed - by Klondike and his crack band of Tony Bambach (bass) and Stuart Wilson (drums). Great players, top blokes. Armed with a killer setlist drawing on most of Chris’s back catalogue, the guys fired from the get go. Many of the versions surpassed the originals with Maz playing two guitar parts, as few people can. The shows blew away much of the skullduggery and malakarey involved with certain ghosts from the recent past.

HITS at Marrickville Bowlo
You can’t keep playing the same old songs or you’ll get staid and there’s no sign of HITS doing that just yet. Members are now scattered the length of the East Coast so it can’t be easy getting together…or maybe that’s a blessing in disguise because it keeps things fresh. They continue to be THE Aussie band to follow.

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