Chewing Out Your Rhythm On My Bubble Gum - Juliette Seizure & The Tremor-Dolls (Off The Hip)

tremor dollsHey Ho, Let’s Go! The original members of the Ramones are dead but their sound lives on in thousands of bands all over the world. It’s said that their greatest gift to music was when the Ramones played in your town because at least one band started after they left. I’m pretty sure that Juliette Seizure & The Tremor-Dolls are way too young to have seen The Ramones live, but they sure have listened to their records.

“Chewing Out Your Rhythm On My Bubble Gum” is full of classic Ramones driven riffs, aided by the smokey vocals of Shannon Cannon, Lauren and Zoe. It rocks and rolls, swaggers and pops with wonderful playing and well-crafted songs that just have you grooving from the first track until the last. It’s a winner, this album.

The Monkeywrench to hit Australia

monkeywrenchSupergroup The Monkeywrench are touring Australian shores for the first time.

Co-founded in 1991 by Mudhoney's Mark Arm and Steve Turner with Tim Kerr (guitarist for the Big Boys and Poison 13), The Monkeywrench was intended to be a one-album band. With additional members Tom Price (U-Men, Gas Huffer) and Australian Martin Bland (Lubricated Goat) they ended up recording three LPs: “Clean As A Broken Dick Dog” (1992), “Electric Children” (2000) & “Gabriel’s Horn” (2008).

Earlier this year, the band reunited to play ATP Festival in the UK plus shows in Seattle and London. With another performance at Sound on Sound Festival in Austin this November, the band decided to add Australia to their schedule.

With another reformation unlikely in the foreseeable future this could be the only time to see these legendary players on the one stage together as The Monkeywrench.

THE MONKEYWRENCH (USA)
AUSTRALIAN TOUR 2016

THURS 17TH NOV
CROWN & ANCHOR, ADELAIDE
Tix via Moshtix

FRI 18TH NOV
THE TOTE, MELBOURNE
Tix via venue website

SAT 19TH NOV
RIVER ROCKS, GEELONG

WED 23RD NOV
BRISBANE HOTEL, HOBART
Tix via Oztix

THURS 24TH NOV
THE BASEMENT, CANBERRA
Tix via Oztix

FRI 25TH NOV
NEWTOWN SOCIAL CLUB, SYDNEY
Tickets via venue website

I Want, Need, Love You: Garage-Beat Nuggets From The Festival Vaults - Various Artists (Playback Records)

FestivalNuggets SmallA vinyl fanatic you may be, but owning most of these 26 tracks in their original format would set you back almost as much as a down-payment on a modest piece of real estate in the over-heated Sydney property market. So put aside your collector scum aspirations and focus on the merits of this formidable collection of ‘60s gems on CD instead.

Australia’s garage and beat history is under-appreciated - despite the best efforts of labels like Raven and others of dubious legal standing - so new imprint Playback is a welcome market entrant. “I Want, Need, Love You” focuses on the output of The 5, Toni McCann, The Black Diamonds and The Pogs, spanning the period 1965-68, with about half the tracks new to CD. As many as possible have been sourced from the original masters.

Ex-Cramp Kid Congo back with new album

kid congo posterPacking their fourth and probably strongest album so far, Kid Congo & The Pink Monkey Birds are heading back to Australia in August. 

“La Araña Es La Vida” summons the Mexican muse of The Great Spider Goddess of Teoticuhan, who sprouts hallucinogenic morning glories and protects the underworld, or in Kid’s eyes, the world of underground music.

Recorded at The Harveyville High School gym in Kansas by guitarist-vocalist Kid Congo Powers (The Gun Club, The Cramps, Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds), bassist Kiki Solis (Baby Baby Dance With Me, Knife in The Water, Rhythm of Black Lines), drummer Ron Miller (Switch Hitter, Up The Academy) are joined by Chicano, Mosrite playing guitarist Mark Cisneros (Medications, Deathfix), it’s on In The Red Records.

Kid Congo and his band toured Australia to rapturous reviews in January 2016. The extensive tour just seven months later covers five states and the Northern Territory. 

KID CONGO & THE PINK MONKEY BIRDS AUSTRALIAN TOUR
THURS 18 AUG - Lighthouse Theatre, Darwin Festival, NT 
FRI 19 AUG - Mojo's, Fremantle, WA 
SAT 20 AUG - Crown & Anchor, Adelaide, SA 
WED 24 AUG - The Bridge Hotel, Castlemain, VIC 
THURS 25 AUG - Northcote Social Club, Melbourne, VIC 
FRI 26 AUG - Friday Nights @ NGV, Melbourne VIC
SAT 27 AUG - Caravan Music Club, Oakleigh, VIC 
THURS 1 SEPT - Oxford Art Factory, Sydney, NSW 
FRI 2 SEPT - The Triffid, Brisbane, QLD - Tickets

Landfill - Undead Apes (Mere Noise)

landfillIf you are looking for some nice, FM radio-friendly songs with melodies, coherent vocals, studio overdubs and perfect mixes, stop reading now. This album is not for you.

"Landfill" is one fast, fuck-knows-what album that’s like getting a shot of who-knows-what, you-know-where. Getting much info on the band off the internet isn't great but who cares this album is a good, fast 30 minutes of Brisbane punk rock at its best.

Surprise, Surprise EP - Dee Rangers (Sucker’s Choice Records)

dee rangers epAfter half a dozen albums you’d expect these Swedish veterans to be good at this thing called Garage Pop and they don’t let anybody down on this meaty four-song EP. It’s catchy, rough-edged pop with twin-guitars.

Dee Rangers are firmly stuck in the 1980s but that’s a positive around these parts. Sweden, the US West Coast, the UK and Australia were all hot spots back for garage rock with distinct ‘60s overtones back then and this release reminds you as much.

Prime cut “I Want You” is straight out of Burbank with a surging organ line, gritty guitars and an impassioned vocal all hanging off a catchy hook. Pers Nystrom announces Utte Petterson’s lead-break with a howl before we’re dropped back into the chorus. Killer stuff.

Scary Eyes b/w Grave Yard - Love Cans (Burning Sound/Sacred Hood Records)

love cans singleLove Cans play minimalist garage punk and and come from Switzerland. No, that sentence isn’t an oxymoron. The Land of Bankers, Cuckoo Clocks and Chocolate is, in fact, a rich breeding ground for this sort of music and Love Cans nail it as well as any.

Being a bare bones trio (guitar-keys-drums) of psychos, they revel in the lower end of the aural spectrum. Parochially speaking, this is the precisely the sound Australian kids are devouring in an underground scene that most people don't see because it generally operates outside of established "rock" venues. I'm sure things aren't much different in Europe.

Organist Dany Digler’s drawled vocal is buried in the mix on “Scary Eyes” which is a vaguely rockabilly-tinged work-out that meanders a little. The sound’s more jagged and strident on “Grave Yard” with Bab Digler’s distorted guitar to the fore. Dany’s Lux Interior-styled vocal (wailing about “too many dead”) and hypnotic organ sound give “Grave Yard” a seamy feel and its corpse is kicked along by Meryl Love’s simple but forceful drumming.

The vinyl single doesn't come with a download code but you can solve that problem (if it is one) by checking Love Cans out on Bandcamp where this is available as a physical product and download. If you like what you hear, Burning Sound can hook you up with another five track digital release.

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Love Cans on Bandcamp

Just a bunch of Heroes getting the Lead out on a Friday night

leadfinger factory wideLeadfinger and guests.  Shona Ross photo

It’s just not fair. They couldn’t just be content with releasing “Friday Night Heroes” - a record that’s on the (very) short-list for Aussie Album of The Year. Those unassuming Leadfinger blokes went and put on a live show to launch their record that was as good as Real Rock and Roll gets.

You can dismiss the above statement as hyperbole and never hunt down their music but it would be your loss. If Sydney’s live music scene replaced half its acts with bands as good as Leadfinger, we’d be Melbourne. Venues would magically re-open. People would go out again. It’s that simple.

The dilemma in Sydney is that gig-goers who used to consume live music regularly now conserve their funds and energy for something special or familiar. That indirectly pushes down the quality of bands – except, maybe, on a subterranean level , where the kids go – and that makes punters less likely to take a chance. Ergo, The Law of Diminishing Returns collides with Cultural Fragmentation. Hello: Cover Bands and Heritage Acts. Not that there’s anything wrong with that at the right time and place, but if it wasn’t for originality, we’d have no history to chase down. 

And you worry about minor shit like Trump getting his hands on the thermonuclear launch codes…

Somewhere Else - Rummage (Cannery Records)

rummageThis album is a diverse tapestry illustrating the diversity of the American music landscape. 

It has taken me quite a few listens for “Somewhere Else” to sink into my bones. After the third, fourth and fifth listen I was amazed at the variety of this album’s 12 tunes.

This album really does take you through the whole gamut of what is good and bad about American music.

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