alive - The I-94 Bar

Blades Of Grass - Dirty Streets (Alive Naturalsound)

dirty-streetsBeen on a Humble Pie trip for a bit around the I-94 Bar and it struck me that the less pastoral and more excessive they became, the better those guys got. This Mississippi-via-Memphis trio Dirty Streets is coming from the same place and despite their album's misnomer of a title (there's no sign of rolling fields and English countryside here) they purvey a fine line in swaggering rock.

If Footmen Tire You - The Bloody Hollies (Alive Naturalsound)

bloodyholliesjpgIf one of those great, booze-soaked rock and roll weekends like Garage Shock or the Las Vegas Shakedown were still a going concern (correct me if I'm wrong and one of them still is ) the Bloody Hollies would have been one of those bands that came in unheralded, blew everyone away and sold a ton at the merch table. And anyone who picked this album up would have been plenty satisfied 'cos it's 30 minutes of fire-breathin' punk fury.

Magical Dirt - Radio Moscow (Alive Natural Sound)

magical-dirtRadio Moscow’s “thing” is pretty easy to get your head around: Meandering but economical psychedelic guitar jams wrapped around bluesy vocals. Loud and comparatively clean with a dash of funk in the bottom end.

Mar Y Sol U.S Radio Broadcast - Alice Cooper (Applebush/Easy Action)

Mar Y SolThis one's an undiluted broadcast of a red-hot show by the Coop and the boys at the Mar Y Sol Pop Festival in Puerto Rico in 1972. That's to say, the original Alice Cooper Band, and not the crack session players and paid employees who followed.

Crank it. What you're hearing is the Alice Cooper Band at the peak of their powers. They're band in all senses of the word and a gnat's dick away from world domination with the release of their "School's Out" album.

The back story is the band was on a festival bill in Puerto Rico with the likes of Al Kooper, the Allman Bros, Emerson. Lake and Palmer, the Faces and David Peel and went on at 5am. You can't tell from the energy levels. A review at the time describes a festival beset by chaos, numbing humidity and massive financial losses. They would say that, wouldn't they. Let's hope the bands got paid. 

Rat On! - Swamp Dogg (Alive Naturalsound)

rat-onYou wouldn’t know it from the cover but “Rat On!” (1971) is a more polished production effort than Swamp Dogg’s debut from a year earlier, “Total Destruction To Your Mind”. Recorded at legendary studio Muscle Shoals, that’s where the conformity ends. “Rat On!” finds Swamp right in the pocket with a muscular rhythm section and a subversive feel. 

Scientists bring a sackload of magic

kim in colour barry takes photos
Kim Salmon in full flight. Photo by Barry C. Douglas of Barry Takes Photos.

Before we start: The Scientists were bloody brilliant; Geelong hosted a magical gig. See them while you can, you may never get this chance again.

Now, then. There really are times when not being a multi-millionaire is, frankly, a bit of a fucking niggle.

So there I was, reading that a certain band were going to tour Australia - they’ve played a few reunion gigs overseas as one of the two guitarists lives in London - but they haven’t toured Australia in well over a decade. So there’s every chance this could well be the last time I’ll ever see them.

The Stems announce three Australian shows before Europe

Stems 2018 bw lanscape

The Stems, Perth's most popular and iconic 80s garage rock band, celebrated the 30th anniversary of the release of their classic debut album "At First Sight Violets are Blue" with a successful all Australian capital cities tour in November 2017. To coincide with the tour, "At First Sight Violets are Blue" was reissued as a limited edition tour CD.

The tour garnered enough interest in Europe for Spain’’s Fuzzville Festival to make an offer for them to appear at the festival. More shows naturally followed and the band are now set to embark for a three week European tour over April/May which will cover Spain, France, Italy, Germany, Sweden and the UK. 

The UK leg includes a show at London's historic 100 Club.

They Shoot To Thrill and We Salute Them: AC/DC in Adelaide

brian hands

We three ladies - my daughter, sister and I - got into town, parked in the nearby parklands and hurried to the Cathedral Hotel. There was no sign of religion in the Cathedral, so we sculled a wine each and hurried across the park through the crowds to the Oval.

What was it like? It was six hours on my feet. Occasional whiffs of dope smoke. Beer spilled over me from all sides and from above. The odd three, four or five angry altercations, quickly stifled before the bouncers could arrive.

Total Destruction To Your Mind - Swamp Dogg (Alive Naturalsound)

 

total-destructionThere’s probably a complicated and entertaining backstory to the career re-birth of Jerry Williams Jr, prolific soul music producer and player also known as Swamp Dogg, but the bare bones are fairly evident. In his seventh decade and after years of relative obscurity, this former flatmate of Jerry Wexler and co-writer with Gary “U.S.” Bonds has hooked up with Alive Natural Sound and opened a floodgate of re-issues - of his own work and artists he’s produced or managed - and the results are pretty cool.

Warm reception as The On and Ons welcome us aboard

look up thereThe On and Ons Glenn Morris and Jon Roberts with guest guitarist Murray Cook . Shona Ross photo

At the risk of stating the bleeding obvious, this was a night of three contrasting but not dissimilar bands when The Smart Folk, Loose Pills and The On and Ons weaved their guitar pop web over Marrickville Bowling Club. It was also the album launch for The On and Ons' wonderful CD "Welcome Aboard".

These sorts of night are infrequent in Sydney these days. Ones where the bands on the bill complement each other and the venue doesn't turn people off, so they turn out in good numbers.

You’re here to read a live music review? Hang in there. There's a bit of preaching to go through, first...

Who To Trust Who To Kill Who To Love - The Bloody Hollies (Alive Naturalsound)

whototrust

Singers who even vaguely sound like Robert Plant shit me to tears but a large length of slack can be cut for The Bloody Hollies. A swag of catchy, brittle-edged songs, aggressive, the-blues-do-the-pogo playing and a large serving of irreverence get these Greater New Yorkers (now San Diegans) over the line.

Yours Until The Bitter End - The Bloody Hollies (Alive Naturalsound)

yours-until-the-bitter-endYou think you know me? I pick up the CD. Dumb band name. Dumb pun band name. Is there anything worse? God, I hope they are not whacky – or worse; zany. Pun band names often lead to zany. The scourge of Rock and Roll. I could always save the next 40 minutes of my life and just throw the thing away unplayed. The Barman said I could do that. Let me take a closer look.