2019 Barfly Top Tens: Keith Claringbold

kc 2019TOP TEN GIGS 2019
Ashley King photo

It is always hard to cut it down to ten but here goes.

Ice Cream Hands supported by Bryan Estapa Band- Factory Floor, Sydney 
A great night of cleverly and carefully crafted power pop from Ice Cream Hands as Charles Jenkins and co bewitched us again with their sublime sounds. Support act Bryan Estapa Band were also a delight with their songs that owe a bit of a nod to high quality 70s AM radio sounds.

Charlotte and The Harlots/COFFIN/Turbobelco/Generation Landslide/Hy Test/Neptune Power Federation – Marrickville Bowling Club, Sydney
All killer no filler as this mighty bill saw each band up the ante and be better than the one before them. COFFIN and Neptune Power Federation were especially outstanding.

Thee Marshmallow Overcoat – The Caravan Club, Oakleigh, Melbourne.
Ashley Naylor, Davey Lane and Brett Wolfie playing two sets of their favourites from the 60s and 70s. Do I need to say more?

Ice Cream Hands – The Caravan Club, Oakleigh, Melbourne.
Oh yes, the night after Thee Marshmallow Overcoat, at the same venue. Bliss, heaven on a stick and a more sympathetic mix than was apparent at the Factory Floor show.

The Dark Clouds/Mick Medew and The Mesmerisers/Radio Birdman – Factory Theatre
The Dark Clouds showed why they are one of the best hard rock bands around but it was Mick Medew and The Mesmerisers who wowed the crowd with their set. Peppered with tracks from the Open Season album and select gems from Mick’s back catalogue they were the stars of the night. Radio Birdman also delivered a fine set and it was probably Rob Younger’s best vocal performance with RB for some time.

Schizophonics back for Round Two

schizophonics aus nzExplosive trio The Schizophonics are inflicting their unique rock and roll show on audiences in Australia and New Zeraland for a second time in 2020 as well as Japan.

The San Diego band - essentailly singer-guitarist Pat Beers and drummer wife Lety - have both a new album, "People in The Sky",and a new bass player, Kiwi Takumi McIntyre (formerly of the Cavemen), in tow and made a huge impression on their 2019 tour of Australia and New Zealand. .

Antipodean audiences had seldom (if at all) witnessed the likes of levitational front man Pat  , whose sweaty splits , 720 degree spins (all before completion of the first song!) had local audiences gagging!!  The Schizophonics combine the swagger of James Brown breakdancing to the Stooges, with the sonic attack of  Hendrix and the MC5 in their hooky garage pop. 

I-94 Bar will co-present the Sydney gig at Marrickville Bowling Club (shifted from the Hideaway Bar) on March 12. The Facebook event is here and tickets for that show are on sale here.

The Schizophonics
NZ-Australia-Japan Tour
FEB
NZ
21 - Leigh at Leigh Saw Mill
22 - Tauranga at Woodcock (Not) - ask Austin
24 - Wellington at Valhalla
25 - Takaka at Mussell Inn
26 - Blenheim at The Plant
27 - Christchurch at Space Academy
28 - Dunedin at The Cook
29 - Raglan at The Yot Club
MAR
1 - Whangarei at The Whangarei Club
4-- Auckland at Neck Of The Woods
6 - Napier at Paisley Stage
7 - Upper Hutt at Obey The Spliff
AUS
8 - Hobart @ The Brisbane
10 - Brisbane @ Netherworld Arcade - FREE SHOW
11 - Newcastle @ The Badger's Lair
12 - Sydney @ Hideaway Bar
13- Wolllongong @ La La La's
14 -Melbourne @ The Tote
15th - Melbourne @ TBA
JPN
19 -Shimokitazawa Three, Tokyo
20 - Namba Mele, Osaka
21 - Higashikoenji UFOclub, Tokyo
22 - Club Heavysick, Tokyo

England's (bad) Dreaming

just a bad dream box set“Just A Bad Dream: Sixty British Garage & Trash Nuggets 1981-89”– Various Artists (Cherry Red)

While most of us in Australia in the ‘80s and ‘90s were obsessing with the US resurgence in trashy ‘60s garage rock, the Brits were having a wild old time with the same sort of stuff. This stellar three-disc, clamshell box set lifts the lid on what was going on behind the Warm Beer Curtain, in cracking fashion.

Flash back to the dawn of the 1980s: Boxed in by the constraints of punk rock - which had morphed into a fashion parade by then - and repulsed by the rise of New Romanticism, a good many Brit bands made like it was still raining German V2’s and headed deep underground.

To be fair, you can also blame the Cramps for much of this, although the Poms were arguably able to tap their own deep, local wellspring. We Aussies, on the other hand, got locked into our own US ‘60s punk trip, thanks to our own tastemaker bands, and those buyers for local record stores who spent most of their time in the States.

Johnny Casino is back with a widescreen Saints re-make

Expatriate Australian musician Johnny Casino (Asteroid B612, Johnny Casino & The Secrets) is now domiciled in Spain where he's been busy playing band and solo shows and recording in the studio. He's re-emerged on the Interwebs today with a taste of his next solo album with a cover of the Chris Bailey Saints' "Ghost Ships". You can stream it buy it (for a pittance) at Bandcamp via that link below. We're biased but think it shits all over Bruce Springsteen's "Just Like Fire Would".

The album is called "Vibrations...Yours and Mine" and it will be up clsoe and personal with JC, his vocie and a few guitar pedals. It's scheduled for release in March or April 2020.

 

A double-dose of pop and punk fun

 
little murders ep
the fiction ep

Little Murders EP - Little Murders (Off The Hip)
Sweetness Brings The Light EP - The Fiction (Off the Hip)

It’s a crazy, mixed-up world where music-lovers buy things in every available format. This four-track vinyl EP comes direct from the “Dromana-Rama” CD album which is not available as an LP, so if you’re both a Little Murders fan and a vinyl fetishist, this is the only way to satisfy your habit.

“Memory Sky” is a superb opener but there’s also not a dud among the selections here. Which are: “Wait”, “Train” and “52 Bands”. The “Dromana-Rama” album has a lot of depth and grows with each listen, but something has to be said for assembling four of its best songs on a slice of black vinyl. If you don’t walk away from a listen thinking that power-pop-rock can't get any better, you have industrial deafness or your tastebuds have relocated to your back passage. 

And those Hollywood nights

all that shinesAll That Shines Under The Hollywood Sign by Iris Berry (Punk Hostage Press)

“It appeared clear to me - partly because of the lies that filled my history textbooks - that the intent of formal education was to inculcate obedience to a social order that did not deserve my loyalty. Defiance seemed the only dignified response to the adult world.”
- Timothy B. Tyson, Blood Done Sign My Name: A True Story)

“Most men today cannot conceive of a freedom that does not involve somebody's slavery. They do not want equality because the thrill of their happiness comes from having things that others have not.”
- W.E.B. DuBois, Darkwater: Voices from Within the Veil)

"The fortunate is seldom satisfied with the fact of being fortunate. Beyond this, he needs to know that he has a right to his good fortune. He wants to be convinced that he 'deserves' it, and above all that he deserves it in comparison with others. He wishes to be allowed the belief that the less fortunate also merely experiences his due. Good fortune thus wants to be 'legitimate' fortune." - Max Weber

"A catalog of catastrophic events shaped our lives..." - Iris Berry

ALMOST GOLD...

Iris Berry is my favorite movie star. In my personal rocknroll pantheon, she will always be the queen of the Hollywood underground. Hard livin' hellion, heroine, helper, healer, auteur, essayist. She lived on 10, on full-blast, for a long time, and has written several riveting books about it, including "Daughters Of Bastards", and her latest enchanting collection of poetic reminiscing's, "All That Shines Under The Hollywood Sign".

Part of the reason she is always such a big hit on the spoken word circuit is because we are all getting older and are increasingly nostalgic for our own wayward punk rock youth, and therefore, love hearing those far out and heavy, true tales from her seen it all history, but also, because something about her speaking voice is oh so very consoling and soothing, it is a tender, understanding salve for the sad and lonely, and scarred for life, all 'us last of the last, limping landmarks and leather clad convalescents. She has a comforting presence, because she emanates real deep, genuine article beauty, from the inside out. We can all recognize her as one of our kind. 

This French band's EP is one Sweed ride

thee sweedersThee Sweeders - Thee Sweeders (Let’s Sweed Records)

No idea if there’s a decent garage rock “scene” of any sorts in Annency, France. The French tend to do to rock and roll what Australia's backpacker killer Ivan Milat did to tourists, both using a place called a shallow grave, but if there is, it’s lucky to have Thee Sweeders as part of it. This release is six tracks on vinyl of fine, hard driving punk rock and roll.

Comparisons are often odious and best avoided but let’s pause and consider a couple:

The Murder City Devils gave equal prominence to keys and guitar and produced some of the best Stooges-in-the-garage skronk to come out of Seattle, Washington, in the wake of grunge in the ‘90s.Thee Sweeders peddle a similar style, with Oliv’s swirling electric piano mixing it with Cuibs’ chunky guitar. Sweeders vocalist Gilles approximates Spencer Moody’s uncivil yowl - and probably speaks better English.

Ups and Downs recall their best on new 45

the real world 45The Real World b/w Closer Still - Ups and Downs (Basketcase Records)

Two old songs given the re-recording treatment and issued on seven-inch vinyl. It’s well worth your time, energy and modest pocket money to seek and procure.  The A side (aka the Upside) was a cassette-only release from 1983, and it sounds just like the band did back then i.e. melodic and chiming. Urgent guitars, courtesy of John Flade and Peter Shaw, power the song with a great soulful vocal from Greg Atkinson. 

Flip it over when it’s done and the previously unreleased song “Closer Still” in freshly-recorded form switches the mood momentarily to subdued reflection, before breaking into a canter. The Sunnyboys-style harmonies and soulfulness again stand out.. Grab it digtlally hereor seek the physical product via your store of choice. Google won't let you down on that score.

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Dream Team to light up Brisvegas with one-off Junk Bar show

sunday night dream cardCrticial acclaim for their recent run of solo shows together in Melbourne has prompted Penny Ikinger (ex-Wet Taxis, Sacred Cowboys) and Mick Medew (ex-Screaming Tribesmen, Mick Medew and the Rumours and currently in Mick Medew and the Mesmerisers) to do it all again in Brisbane with a one-off show at The Junk Bar.

Mick and Penny will play the Sunday Night Dream Card show on January 12. They'll play sets of their own material - and music of bands they have been in - and duet on some slected tunes. 

The Junk Bar has limitd capacity so pre-sale tickets are the only way of guaranteing a spot and they can be bought here.

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