chris masuak - The I-94 Bar

A Date With Some Vampires or a Dark Surprise? Masuak joins Phantom Fifth for US mini-tour

phantom fifthNew York City-based band Phantom Fifth (pictured right) has announced that Chris “Klondike” Masuak will be joining them for shows in California and New York in July.

Phantom Fifth is from New York City and is comprised of expatriate Australian bassist Greg Delves (ex-Inner Sleeves, Radio Luxembourg), Irishman Colin McCarthy (drums) and US-born Paul Stinson (guitar, vocals.)  

Formed in 2015, the band bio says it "embraces the sonic sound and dark energy of Nick Cave, Joy Division, The Strokes and The Stooges. The Phantoms' sound is built around dark melodies, shimmering guitars, and propulsive bass lines, with lyrics about wolves, ghosts, murderous paramours, Italian discos, and other manifestations of love and madness".

Originally from California, where he co-founded the "punk Americana" band The Stripminers with members of X and The Donnas, Paul Stinson moved to Brooklyn in 2014 and quickly met up with power pop guru Delves and McCarthy (formerly of Amsterdam-based Belsonic Sound).

The trio immediately began writing, recording and performing in and around NYC and have plans in the works for tours of both the UK and Australia. The band's debut EP is due out in the US Summer of 2016.

July 20 – Brick & Mortar Music Hall, San Francisco, CA
July 22 – The Uptown Nightclub, Oakland, CA
July 24 – The Viper Room, Hollywood, CA
July 29 – The Bowery Electric, NYC

Phantom Fifth on the Web

Chris Masuak on the Web

 

BARFLY TOP TEN: Ace guitarist Chris Masuak, ex-Radio Birdman and the Hitmen

MAZ TOP 21. Definitely at the top of the heap that was 2017, Jonathan Sequeira risked life, limb, and genuine sanity to bring us “Descent Into The Maelstrom”, a fiercely objective, no holds barred documentary about the shit storm that was Radio Birdman.

How he managed to convince that particular sack of snakes to agree to anything in the first place is a testimony to his considerable appreciation of the band’s legend, his heroic patience, and his nutsack-clenching resolve. A minor miracle, more so because it certainly wasn’t the puff piece that some characters clearly expected in their “imagining” of the bands tumultuous and antagonistic history!

Vindication for some, the trashing of decades of carefully cultivated bullshit for others, replete with many a “Holy crap!” moment.

A rollicking good story about a special band, time, and place in history!

I liked it!

BARFLY TOP TEN: Buffalo Revisited lead bassist and guitarist with The Cool Charmers, “noted underground journalist” Steve Lorkin

steve lorkin top ten 2017Top 10 not in any order:

1)  White Stripes –Vault #33 Icky Thump X
Third Man Records Vault only release, 10 year anniversary edition. Includes a wacko coloured vinyl re-press of the double album plus two bonus albums containing all the non-album b-sides and the full demos housed in a way out box. The demos are furious ! Only released for a few months via Third Man Records.

2) Shy Impostors CD (maxi EP/mini album CD)
Unleashed by those God-loving folks at Citadel Records. Seven demos recorded 1980 and now finally after a loving re-mix by Jason Blackwell sound truly fab. The songs, vocals and rough as guts musicianship by these proto legends are gold. Melodic and dirty.

3)  Buffalo Revisited gig at Brewtality Festival in Melbourne
Is it truly an honour for me after being a Buffalo fan since 1974 to be playing with their mighty vocalist Dave Tice with some fellow Buffalo maniacs (Troy and Marcus). And to be playing those great songs (a mind melt to learn btw). We hit our cosmic groove at the Brewtality Festival in Melbourne; more to come for sure.

BARFLY TOP TEN: I-94 Bar writer Edwin Garland

edwin top ten 2017This year was returning to my childhood and gromit years - teenage times as well as inner-city music, alternative and garage rock, beer-soaked pubs and the alternative. Namely the Beatles, Midnight Oil and Patti Smith.

Patti Smith and Paul McCartney get the guernsey for the best gigs of the year. And for the same reasons. Both artists are incredible live and these final tours were a massive thank you to the fans…

1 Macca at Suncorp Brisbane

Sir Paul delivered on all fronts. With the most thoughtful visual show and a hit every minute over those three hours and ten minutes, it ranged from pure, four-on-the-floor garage rock with guitars sonically attacking to more mellow stuff.

From “I Want To Be Your Lover” which would have made the Stones sound like a get-together at a nursing home to “Helter Skelter”, to the bombastic, “Live And Let Die” which inflamed the stadium, the cheesy “Mull of Kintyre” with a 25-piece pipe band, to the solo acoustic moments with “Blackbird”, this was gold. Macca’s voice, his insights, wit and humility, and his guitar playing were magnificent; 42 songs played. I won’t forget it a hurry.

1 Patti Smith at the State Theatre and spoken word at Sydney Opera House

Another pair of gigs where Patti gave 300 percent. Patti engaged us with insights, stories and, as with Macca, showed a great deal of humility. The band, led by Lenny Kaye, at times still had the intensity of 1975 CBGBs Patti, yet with overtones of a grandmother and an earth mother.

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.

BARFLY TOP TENS: Sydney Celebrity Roadie Peter "Rossy" Ross

rossy and johnny rocketeerThe Celebrity Roadie Peter Ross attracts fans wherever he goes. Veteran road manager John Pearce (right) inspects his ponytail to make sure it's real. 

The On and Ons @ almost everywhere – The Sydney power-pop phenomenon rolls on and gets ready to record a third album. Strong songs from singer/songwriter Glenn Morris and the pedigree of Clyde Bramley, Jon Roberts and Brian Morris make for irresistible pop. Welcome Aboard!
Watch here.

The Flaming Hands @ Factory Theatre & Enmore – A couple of power packed shows from these '80s icons blew my mind. Julie Mostyn’s crack band of Radio Birdman’s Warwick Gilbert, Peter Bull and Barton Price brought a polished sheen to Jeff Sullivan and Julie’s songs. They should come back again… soon!
Watch here.

BARFLY TOP TENS: The Barman

cr top ten 2016In no particular order...here's the best of 2016:

"Brujita" - Chris Masuak and The Viveiro Wave Riders
Best rock pop record of 2016 by a long way. Did I mention it’s on I-94 Bar Records and you can buy a copy here?

"Friday Night Heroes" - Leadfinger
The soulful Sydney-via-Wollongong rock and roll band par excellence just keeps getting better.

"Evolution" - Tamam Shud
Damn, if this doesn’t rock I don’t know what does. Veterans from the beginning of time (well, birth of Australian surf-psychedelia) sound dirty and relevant at the same time. They deliver the goods live, too.

"Post Pop Depression" - Iggy Pop
His best album since “New Values”. Big grooves and melodies with a sharp, Germanic essence, it’s proof that Iggy needs another talent to bounce off to deliver his best work.

“Diamond In The Forehead" - Garry Gray and The Sixth Circle
The album was killer and the short run of Sydney shows was just as good. Were you you? One day you might claim to have been. Nice people, to boot.

"Lost Cities" - Ed Kuepper
Ed’s been an underrated treasure since finding his solo feet in the late ‘80s. This adds to the considerable body of work. An album of great songs with understated intensity.

Kylie Pitcher photo

Chris Masuak and his Harbour City Wave Riders cut a swathe

 
The I-94 Bar presented Chris Masuak and The Harbour City Wave Riders shows are making their way through and around Sydney. BZ Filmco shot this footage of the band tearing through "Niagara" at a packed Factory Floor last Friday night.

After a Wollongong show last Saturday and a private gig in Maiitland, the former Radio Birdman guitar slinger and his crack crew move onto Newcastle"s Small Ballroom on Friday and Narrabeen RSL on Saturday. Tickets fro Newcastle are hereand Narrabeen here. The whirlwind run winds up with Chris playing a free solo show at The Midnight Spedcial in Newtown on Sunday night.  

Chris Masuak announces Sydney show

maz factoryChris Masuak’s musical history reads like a muscle car ride through the mean streets of Australia’s rock and roll underground, but appearances Down Under have been few and far between since he relocated to Spain. Masuak is about to right that wrong with a handful of select shows in NSW in March and April, his first in four years.

Riding the best reviews of this solo career with his album “Brujita”, recorded in Spain, the ex-Radio Birdman guitarist will play a handful of selected Aussie dates with a hand-picked Australian band, The Harbour City Wave Riders, featuring Tony Bambach (Lime Spiders) on bass and Stuart Wilson (New Christs, Loose Pills) on drums.

Chris Masuak's Dog Soldier to assault French stages

Dog Soldier alternative posterChris Masuak is embarking on his first French tour in three years in January 2018 with a new band, Chris Masuak’s Dog Soldier.

Masuak carries one of rock 'n’ roll’s proudest pedigrees, his musical history reading like a “Who’s Who” of the Australian underground, so he should need no introduction around here.

The Canadian born Masuak first achieved notoriety as the teenage guitarist for legendary Radio Birdman, the torch-bearers of punk rock in Australia.

He subsequently went on to form The Hitmen, played in the New Christs and the Screaming Tribesmen and now lives in Spain where he plays and tours regularly.

Dog Soldier celebrates and preserves that proud tradition, with members from Europe’s underground and cult elite.

Bruno Mondo, bass player from The TV Men, Gunners, Trotskids and The Outside, is a veteran of France’s punk rock scene. Juan Martinez El Karaq is the drummer, from Spain’s hardcore elite and Masuak's power-punk trio, Viveiro Wave Riders.

JANUARY
10 - Paris/Montreuil - Armony Live
11 - Le Havre - L’Escale
12 - Brest - Le Ptit Minou
13 - Rennes - Mondo Bizarro
14 - Vannes - Jam Session
15 - Rennes - Ty Anna Tavarn