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Leave Home Deluxe Edition – Ramones (Rhino)

Ramones LeaveHome DeluxeEditionContest the claim if you like, but there isn’t a better Ramones album than “Leave Home”, their second long-player.

Yes, the debut was retrospectively ground-breaking and a beacon for rock and roll’s shift back-to-basics, but “Leave Home” surely should have been the point where “punk” (at least as America knew it) crossed the line, converting from Cult Curiosity to Mainstream Soundtrack.

High-tensile guitars, off-colour humour, melodies and energy live large within its groove. Bubblegum, doo-wop, pop and rock bundled into the perfect musical package, married to an image of teen rebellion, leather jackets and shades. What the fuck is there not to love?

They Just Want Their Fun: Why Exploding White Mice will walk again

mice album cover

Exploding White Mice burst on to the Australian musical landscape in 1983. They formed in Adelaide = the so-called City of Churches – and toured Australia constantly, releasing their “A Nest Of Vipers” EP in 1985.

Originally Paul Gilchrist on vocals, Andy MacQueen on bass, Gerry Barrett on guitar, Craig Rodda on drums and Giles Barrow on rhythm guitar, they made an immediate mark with their mix of Radio Birdman-meets-the-Ramones punk rock.

This is the Modern World

young modern the govHo to The Gov in Adelaide once more, for Vic of Mr V Music and the organiser of tonight’s barney headlined by Young Modern (pictured right), has kindly placed my name on the door.

As you may know, The Gov is opposite a vile concrete pissoir with the flashing lights known as the Adelaide Entertainment Centre, which also reminds me of a huge birthday cake concealing a rather unpleasant surprise for the party-goers. 

Which is one more reason why going to the Gov is so enjoyable, because it is a haven of hospitality, pubby goodness, good cheer and competent and friendly staff.

There have been times when I’ve been at the Gov and seriously considered not crossing the road to see whatever humungous stars await inside the concrete barn, but simply to stay in the cosiness and get cosily and happily fuddled instead.

Love is a Gamble - Steve Wernick Band (RPM Records) & Cold Mother Night - Tom Redwood (Walking Bird Records)

love is a gambleBoth discs get five bottles. That’s really all you need to know. Go get them, here’s the contact details for Steve Wernick and Tom Redwood

Good. Reviews completed. Payment in the usual manner, please Barman, used notes in a brown paper bag round the back of the cistern, third cubicle on the left, usual pub.

No? Bugger, you readers are a demanding lot.

Oh, all right then. Both albumss here deal with love and loss, despair and joy, isolation and continuity. There are a few similarities with the music, although really… both travel in different directions. Let’s begin with … 

Oh My! b/w The Silent Birds (First Take) - The Golden Rail (self released)

oh my golden rail singleMelbourne-via-Perth power-poppers The Golden Rail have released this as a taster to their forthcoming album. With a cv that includes playing with Header, The Rainyard, The Jangle Band, DM3, The Palisades, and Showbag, you could suspect it’s going to be good - and it is.

“Oh My!” Is lilting jangle-pop with with a sweet chorus reminiscent of a Robert Forster song. Written by the band’s creative core of Jeff Baker and  Ian Freeman, it sounds like it dropped right out of the sky during paisley pop’s mid-‘80s heyday...right after the Go Betweens had seeded the clouds. 

Nothing's Taboo in this Beat surrender

pange chris yolandaPange, Chris and Yolanda of Beat Taboo. 

The Beat Taboo, 
The Metro, Adelaide, Friday, August 18, 2017 
The Grace Emily, Adelaide,  Saturday, August 19, 2017
Pics by Mandy Tzaras

For a while there I didn’t think I’d be able to see any bands this weekend, as your poor scribe being pulled in several directions at once seems to be a bit of a hobby for some. 

So we were only able to squeeze in Melbourne visitors The Beat Taboo on both nights of their Adelaide stand. I must apologise to the other bands, they know who they are, and, be reassured, I will see them again, properly.

In the meantime, I would like you to cast your mind back to the dimly recalled halls of the (yes, I know, here we go again) 1970s and 1980s. 

Rarebits - Fast Cars (Methodmusic)

rarebitsIt's been mentioned here before that Fast Cars are a 1980s Sydney mod band, revolving around the creative core of Di Levi (vocals, guitar) and Fabian Byrne (guitar), that reformed a couple of years ago to make more music. This EP is their second since re-convening and was compiled for the “15th Dream of Dr Sardonicus Festival” in Wales earlier this month.

Mod is a label that suggests Union Jacks, sharp clothes, Vespa scooters and The Who, but Fast Cars aren’t constricted by the genre’s straight jacket. “Rarebits” comprises four old tracks and two new ones and takes the band deep into psychedelic pop territory.

Welcome Aboard - The On and Ons (Citadel)

On and Ons WelcomeGreat guitar pop is timeless and that’s what Sydney’s The On and Ons have delivered (again) on their second long-player. 

Well established on the strength of their 2015 debut, “It’s The On And Ons Calling”, Morris and Co have doubled down on the pop factor on “Welcome Aboard”. The rock is turned down just a tad and (to these ears at least) it takes a few more listens for the songs to take hold.

Truth-be-told, I almost marked it down half-a-beer for not rocking as much as the debut - but the pop smarts won out. 

Forever My Baby b/w The Last Time - The Dahlmanns with Andy Shernoff (Next Big Thing/Pop Detective)

forever my baby whiteThe advice doesn’t come often around here but when it does, it’s always free. So here’s a dose: If you see a record with The Dahlmanns’ name on it and you’re into powerpop, buy it. The same goes for Andy Shernoff (but you probably knew that already). This one has both so how can you go wrong?

The Dahlmanns are wife-and-husband, Line Dahlman and Andre Dahlmann, plus a bunch of other Norwegian Dahlmanns, currently Otto, Jan Erik, Magnus, and Pål. Shernoff is the songwriting genius behind The Dictators (R.I.P.) and his own solo work. Andy wrote both songs and duets with Line on the A side.

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