It never ceases to surprise me, the myriad ways in which a classic rock outfit can develop a style and method of expression which reaches out effortlessly into our lives, to help and spark our moods.
Even so, on first listen, although I could hear great talent here, it wasn’t getting to me. Until I reached what I suppose is Side Two, where things take a sudden left turn and … when the first side rolled again to play, the entire band made far, far more sense. And it’s been on repeat in the car to my great joy and the bane of the local cats and one rather irritated daddy possum.
Steve Lucas at the Newtown Social Club. Murray Bennett photo
X is a Sydney band.
I can’t think any other outfit that personified the street-level, brutal and at times minimalistic music of Sin City Sydney of the late ‘70s like X. Theirs' was a world of squats with a city awash with Terrence Clark's cheap smack, the odour of brown bags of dirty money and nightly beatings at Darlo police station.
It was a world of corrupt pollies and police in the post-Askin Sydney. X captured that harsh, nihilistic inner-city world. One that has long since been gentrified.
Confession time. I love Wendy James. But not in the way you're probably thinking. The five bottles you see at the end of this review are well earned but some will not share my enthusiasm. Wendy’s blistering hysterical British syllables may well strike terror in the sensitive ears of some. Fuck ‘em.
You'll immediately remember Wendy from '80s pop punk band Transvision Vamp. She'd tell that girl to shut up. She wanted your love. But baby she didn't care. A fierce blonde strumpet in a short black dress. The pin up girl who launched rather more than a thousand lustful teenage fancies for those too young to have noticed Debbie Harry.
These are dark times. It ain’t easy playing rock and roll in most countries and France is no exception. High culture looks down its nose at anything that’s not home-grown - just like a Paris waiter in an expensive restaurant sneers at linguistically-challenged tourists who can’t read the menu.
So give Chris Rolling and his band some credit for swimming against the tide. Chris who?
Proof that their “Black Book”45 was no fluke, this four-track seven-inch vinyl EP from an all-girl trio from the UK rocks like The Pandoras with chops. It’s garage rock in the finest tradition of the early Pretty Things with a splash of glam for good measure.
First impressions count for a lot and lead-off track and title tune “Mover And A Groover” roars out of the speakers like three women on a mission. Laura Anderson’s tuneful but strident vocal is mixed right up front. The primal production has Lois Tozer’s cymbals splashing all over the place but it’s mastered nice and loud with lots of mono-esque punch. The all-important engine room lays down the beat with authority.
Anderson’s raw and twangy guitar line leads off “Lorelei”, a tribute to a closed Soho nightspot. Sounds like a nice excuse for a re-opening. “Ain’t Worth The Time” nods simultaneously to The Crystals’ “Da Do Ron Ron” and Suzi Quarto. “Jezebel” goes back to the garage and is derivative as hell (you’ll recognise the riff) but infectious as well. An EP worth chasing down.
Thee Jezebels on Facebook
State Records on the Web
That this would be very good was a no-brainer. Van Campbell from Black Diamond Heavies and Freddy J IV from Radio Moscow in the same band? Yes, please.
This is raw blues with a dash of soul which is no surprise considering the principals’ main bands.. As you might expect, the band format (it’s not quite a duo - there is a bass player, probably added in post-production) strips it back to basics.
One of the most anticipated acts announced for the Soundwave 2016 festival series was L7. Soundwave collapsed but L7 has been confirmed for a run of Australian club shows in May.
Torchbearers for the Riot Grrl movement of the ‘90s, L7 were a massive influence worldwide and reformed in 2014 to rave reviews.
Billboard magazine describes their live show as "one of the hardest, rawest rock bands seen on stage in years”.
Find out for yourself when L7 plays five Aussie club dates.
L7 Australian Tour
13 – PERTH, Metropolis Fremantle
14 – ADELAIDE, The Gov
17 – MELBOURNE, 170 Russell
20 - May BRISBANE Eatons Hill
21- SYDNEY, Metro Theatre
Tickets on sale via: http://www.metropolistouring.com/L7
Presale: Wed 2nd March 9am - Thurs 3rd 5pm
GA: Friday 4th March on Sale 9am
They really are unstoppable and they shouldn’t be. Not at this stage of the game. Their goals might be modest - to have a good time reprising their own past, in the hope that you will too - but that doesn’t underplay how good the reincarnated Sunnyboys are on “Best Seat In The House”.
It’s officially their second live album but really their third (1993’s rough and ready “Shakin’” on Phantom seems to have been disowned) and it perfectly captures the band in all their pop-rock glory, playing the final gig on a mostly sold-out Australian run in March 2015.
Brisbane’s leading luthier and musical equipment emporium, Tym Guitars, is getting behind fund-raising for the ailing Spencer P. Jones by launching a limited edition fuzz pedal.
A whopping $200 of the $250 price for The Axeman’s Fuzz pedals will go to Spence, who is battling a chronic health condition and is unable to work.
You can pick up one of these monsters via Tym Guitars website.
The musically-challenged of us who can’t use a guitar pedal very well can make a donation at this GoFundMe site.