dave graney - The I-94 Bar

Dave Graney & The Mistly in Adelaide

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Wheatsheaf Hotel, Thebarton, Australia, August 31 & September 1, 2013

Parallel worlds are, I am convinced, real places. You just have to find a doorway.

Get some Cosmic Love with Malcolm Hill

Signed-up member of the Melbourne Music Mafia, Malcolm Hill, is premiering a new single with his band Malcolm Hill and Live Flesh.

"Cosmic Love", and its companion song "Anybody Seen My Girl", are a digital precursors to a full album later this star from Geelong-born Hill, a writer and staple of the 1980s Melbourne underground music scene with Buick KBT and Head Undone. Hill has guested with the likes of Dave Graney and the Coral Snakes, Nick Cave and The Dirty Three so he's well-credentialled to say the least.

Grab a download of his new songs here.

Harry Howard and the NDE in Adelaide

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Harry Howard and Dave Graney - Trish Nacey photo

The Metro - November 22, 2012

It's been over two years since I've seen Harry Howard and the NDE live and I feel a bit like a kid with too much red cordial and wedding cake sloshing around inside. So I'm on the lemonade tonight.

Arriving at the Metro a little late (it's Friday night and we've been home to feed, listen to the band do a sterling four songs and interview on local radio 3D, guzzle red cordial and cake, change and dash back out) I catch a few songs of the St Morris Sinners ripping up a rug and am dragged just outside to breathe the same air as half the smokers in Adelaide.

Harry Howard and the NDE, The Holy Soul and The Nice Folk in Sydney

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Harry Howard and The NDE at The Facory Floor.    Lyndal Irons photo

Many years ago when Sydney was full of thriving, original music venues, Friday night for me was always a combination of either playing gigs or checking out new bands.

There was never a shortage. I grabbed my copy of "On the Street" on the Wednesday, eased into my chair and sat there with my red pen. After reading the odd review, I would scrawl and circle names of bands to see in the “What’s On.”

Every now then I would get to the Lansdowne, Evening Star, Hopetoun and many others and be happy with just finding a new band. Well, times change. Nothing remains the same. Seeing a new band is a rare night out these days.

Living Legends honours Dave Graney and Clare Moore, Steve Lucas

The Melbourne music scene is world-renowned for being a bubbling volcano of rock 'n' roll fire and creativity that throws up rare diamonds and musical gems. The Leaps and Bounds Music Festival honours its stars each year with its Living Legends series.

Beginning in 2014, the Living Legends feted that year were rock gods Spencer Jones, Kim Salmon and Charlie Owen. This year the honour is bestowed on another trio who are fully legendary in the eyes of their peers and music lovers.

Munster Times issues 21 and 22

munster timesEverybody of a certain vintage who follows non-mainstream rock and roll has a soft spot for ‘zines. One of the reasons you’re reading this electronic magazine is down to two, 48 Crash and Vicious Kitten.

48 Crash was the archetypal Sydney zine of the early ‘80s. Hand-written (and coloured, sometimes), its photocopied pages spoke of Le Hoodoo Gurus, the Visitors, the three-piece Screaming Tribesmen and the Lipstick Killers - bands that struggled to attract mainstream attention elsewhere. It championed the so-called Detroit Sound that fuelled the Sydney music scene for more than a decade.

Ten years later, Vicious Kitten was an offshoot of the record label of the same name and professional publication that aimed its lens at people like Johnny Thunders, Kevin K, Jeff Dahl and Freddy Lynxx. Very Lower East Side, in spirit.

An honourable mention also to Sydney's B Side, that covered the left-of-centre, extreme local musical scene. Unbelievably Bad fills the same niche today. There were the rock local papers (RAM, the bible, and Juke) that were consumed religiously, but zines had all the cool stuff and never mentioned Chisel, Icehouse or Farnham. 

Play mystLY For Me – Dave Graney and The mystLY (self released)

play mystlyDon’t call it cabaret. Dave Graney makes reference to the tag on one of these tracks, pointing that he and his band, the mystLY, would be on a higher pay-scale, and no doubt playing in a different class of gin joints, if that’s what they were.

In longevity terms, Graney is an “elder statesman” of the Australian music scene. He was a punk. He existed as expatriate dirt amid critical acclaim in London. He came home, entered the major label lifestyle for a time, became our King of Pop and decided that he could get along just fine on his own terms, playing music that didn’t fit radio programing templates.

Plenty of Soap - Speedboat (Tom Stehlik) and Love In Other Diminsions - Go Go Sapien (HQR)

plenty of soapIf you enjoyed the Laughing Clowns and their slightly wonky, soaring horns, and which Hunnas later wielded to equally great effect, you're in for a treat. Speedboat (from Adelaide) supported both bands and, I can attest, to great effect. While LC and H&C certainly influenced Speedboat, one wonders if the influence was all one-way. 

If you don't know Speedboat, what they were about came from many unlikely sources (their name apparently springs from an Elvis movie), and I'm not giving away the joy of Tom Stehlik's liner notes).

Liner notes? Do Speedboat rate that? 

By fuck they do. 'Plenty of Soap' holds the equivalent of four LPs plus a fistful of singles and b-sides, Stehlik's liner notes actually tell the story of the band. Frankly, most bands - especially a band held in such high regard as Speedboat (and all without a recording contract) - fuck up entirely. 

Sleepless Girls - Harry Howard and the NDE (Spooky Records)

sleepless girlsThis one gets seven bottles. Seven. Harry Howard and Ed Preston have excelled themselves in the most extraordinary way.

Right, I’ll calm down and try and explain. First, both HHNDE records have been natural progressions, with damn fine songs, and plenty to bounce around the room to. Memorable in every sense.

In 2016, it seems that times have changed. Time was when the “third album” was perceived as “difficult’; that a band found it difficult to develop onwards from their initial impetus and squirt to stardom. The Ramones’ third LP was written at the same time as their first, so no problem there. I suspect much the same could be said of the Stranglers, whose live sets in 1977 featured 90 minutes of ugly hits. However, these are exceptions.

Snakes alive! Sir David reforms his rock band

For those waiting for the grooving Dave Graney to re-enter the rock world, wait no more. The Golden Wolverine, High Plains Drifter and The Savage Sportsman is reforming his hard-arsed but grooving 1990s chart outfit, The Coral Snakes, for a handful of shows.

Graney, Rod Hayward, Gordy Blair, Robin Casiander and Clare Moore were The Coral Snakes and they had a string of major label albums, pushing their way into the mainstream. They ain't afraid to be heavy and rock and roll is where Sir Dave hides  

Dave Graney 'n' the Coral Snakes 2015
AUGUST
7 & 8 – Memo Music Hall, St Kilda
SEPTEMBER
4 – Newtown Social Club, Sydney
5 – Lizottes, Newcastle
OCTOBER
23 & 24 – Crown & Anchor, Adelaide

Stinky Lines, Avant Gardeners, Harry Howard and the NDE

 

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If the '90s and early '00s were the era of young folk aping the look of punk junkies (see Buffy the Vampire Slayer), the Twenteens will be remembered as the era of OI! BEARDFACE! YOU! FACE THE FUCKING AUDIENCE! You are PERFORMING! YOUR BACK DOES NOT PERFORM! YOU FUCKING TWAT!

Workshy by Dave Graney (Affirm Press)

Workshy Dave Graney 1Let's get one thing straight: Musicians do work. It may not be work as we know it, Jim, but it is a form of employment, and it requires a well-defined skillset.

Talent is important but so is patience. Professional musicians do more waiting around than almost any other occupation on Earth. Other than midwives - and at least they receive universal praise.

Solo artist, ex-Moodist and leadr of the White Buffalos, Coral Snakes and more, Dave Graney, knows this about his trade and much more. He conveys much wisdom in "Workshy". It is the ideal read for anyone thinking about sending their offspring into rock and roll. Which is where Dave hides. Pun intended.

"Workshy" is Dave's second autobiography. I know what you're thinking: He might have been crowned King of Australian Pop but where does Graney get off writing TWO books about himself? Well, Billy Thorpe managed to do it. And more of Dave's books might be true. Both men have bodies of work with parts that are wryly funny. I could be referring here to The Aztecs' "The Hoax Is Over". "Workshy" is considerably more focussed than that mess.