The Mark Of Cain returns to the fray to tackle cancer

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Heavyweights The Mark Of Cain return to Australian stages with a national tour in November and December, including a two-night stand in hometown Adelaide to raise money for a cancer charity.

“Having lost family members, friends and work colleagues to cancer in the past, I thought it was time to personally do something about cancer - not only to raise awareness, but also to do something directly to help fund cancer research,” TMOC singer-songwriter John Scott said. “As everyone knows, cancer doesn’t discriminate and we are all potentially only a doctor’s appointment away from hearing those life changing words."

Mid Liver Crisis - The Sick Livers (Glunk Records/Baldy Longhair)

mid liver crisisIt’s said there’s nothing new in rock and roll but sometimes it doesn’t matter a damn. Welsh trash punkers The Sick Livers do Turbonegro better than Turbonegro on their newest album, “Mid Liver Crisis”.

The Welsh are famous for their coal mines and given appropriate volume, the 10 tracks here would kill a canary quicker than a mineshaft full of methane. The Sick Livers sing anthems about drinking, fucking and staring into the abyss with a large chaser of dark humour.

There are no massed male choirs on “Mid Liver Crisis”, only the odd “woo-ooh” chorus rising behind buzzbomb guitars and the nagging vocal of frontman Ginge. If the last album, “Motors, Women, Drugs, Booze & Killing”, was in your face then “Mid Liver…” ups the ante in terms of violation of personal space. The engine rooim kicks harder than a pint glass full of port the morning after a seriously pissy Saturday night. 

Stooges saxman Steve Mackay seriously ill

steve mackaySteve Mackay - saxophonist for Iggy & the Stooges, Snakefinger's Blues Band, Commander Cody and Violent Femmes, among others - is critiically ill in hospital in San Francisco following complications from surgery.

Friends say he went into Seton Medical Centre in Daly City a few days ago with sepsis, a life threatening condition that can lead to inflammation and organ shutdown.

Close friends and family are understood to be at his bedside.

Mackay is best known for his contribution to the second Stooges album, “Fun House”, and was recruited by the band from Ann Arbor avant garde band Carnal Kitchen. 

Mackay toured with the group throughout 1970 but parted company late that year.

He came back into the fold for both lives of the reformed band and continued to tour heavily with them until their recent hiatus. He played on both “The Weirdness” and “Ready To Die” and toured with his own band in the 2000s.

Heather Harris photo

Voodoo Lust returns for two shows only

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Five years after their music last rang in anyone's ears, the enduring rock-pop sounds of Voodoo Lust are about to be heard again. 

Voodoo Lust returns to Sydney for one show only at The Factory Floor in Marrickville on Friday, November 20 and tickets are on sale here. They play Brisbane's Beetle Bar on November 28 with tickets on sale on the door. 

Voodoo Lust was an integral part of the explosion of the Australian independent pub rock circuit of the 1980s with a string of independent chart hits and tours with some of the biggest names in rock and roll.

They’ll be joined by Leadfinger, the power quartet led by Stewart Cunningham (Asteroid B612, Brother Brick), and the gloriously ramshackle inner-west garage rock heroes The Escapes.

Oz stoner rock Godfather hits Melbourne

dave ticeHe’s been called “the Godfather of Aussie stoner rock” and his status as co-founder of the legendary 70's band Buffalo (also home to Pete Wells who went on to Rose Tattoo) alone entitles Dave Tice to undying respect.

Tice also went on to front UK pub rockers The Count Bishops, formed Sydney’s Headhunters and his own Dave Tice Band. Long-running residencies with ex-ACDC bassist Mark Evans made the Tice and Evans duo a fixture in Sydney. His influence on the Australian rock, blues and heavy metal scene has been enormous.

The Sydney-based veteran still has one of the best voices in the business and is playing four dates in Melbourne to showcase his impressive back catalogue, partnering with a band of hot local players:

Thursday 24th September - Mr Boogieman Bar (Abbotsford)
Friday 25th September - Station 59 (Richmond)
Saturday 26th September - The Reverence Hotel (Footscray)
Sunday 27th September - The Flying Saucer Club (Elsternwick)

Stranglers head Down Under

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Seminal stars of the ‘70s Brit-punk movement The Stranglers are making their way to Australia in 2016, celebrating more than 40 years of raising hell.

Winding around Australia to all mainland capitals, The Stranglers will play hits and much loved tracks from their extensive back catalogue, from 1977's acclaimed debut “Rattus Norvegicus” through to 2012's return to form “Giants”.

Forming in 1974 in small-town England, The Stranglers are now revered as one of the most exciting, credible and influential bands to have emerged from the British punk scene. 

Landslide - Spurs for Jesus b/w Pearl Cadillac - Deadwood 76 (Stanley Records)

spurs deadwood splitThe blurb says this split-single is by Sydney’s two best purveyors of cowpunk and who's going to argue? Anyone who’s had prior live exposure to Spurs for Jesus or the more rarely-sighted Deadwood 76 will know both as a soundtrack to an afternoon of wearing beer goggles and raucous fun. It’s been that way for a couple of decades.

Spurs claim the honours on their “Landslide” side where twin guitar and lap steel attack from Matt Alison and Martin Martini cuts a swathe. Musically, it’s edging towards tough beat rock than straight-up country twang. No Liverpuddlian accents here, however, and Kane’s insistent phrasing and Spats' lap steel ensures the song stays on the rough shoulder of the road. Killer engine room, too, and the smarties among us will know there’s no show without that beat.

Deadwood 76 mines the rich alluvial vein that’s known as Outlaw Alt-Country with “Pearl Cadillac”, a boozy tale that’s told from the waist down. The lap steel cuts through with venom and the guitars have a matching edge to their twang. Good guys wear white but this song has a black heart.

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Stanley Records on the Web

Levitating Churches - Levitating Churches (No Squares Or Hippies)

levitating churchesAdelaide is known as the City of Churches but don't let the name distract you: Levitating Churches have their feet placed firmly in Melbourne, the home of Australia’s live music scene and a magnet for similarly-minded underground acts. This, their self-titled debut long-player, is enough to make the rest of Australia jealous that they can’t lob down to their local music dive and regularly soak up this stuff live.

Their name and cover art summon preconceptions of a meeting between Steve Kilbey and Co and the Thirteenth Floor Elevators (the band moniker apparently derivies from a mis-heard Roky lyric) but there’s a rough and ready undercurrent to Levitating Churches’ music that comes straight from the Aussie pub rock scene of the ‘70s.

The band dives into psychedelia on the swirling “Time Machine” but harks back to sterner stuff on “1973” and the blues-chugging “Levitating Boogie” and most of their LP rocks rather than floats. If rocking rows your boat don’t approach with trepidation.

Below The Belt - James Leg (Alive Naturalsounds)

below the beltThere’s a place where dirty blues, soul and gospel intersect that many aim for but few get near. That James Leg lands in the middle drop-zone with the precision of a BASE jumper on a million dollar bet says you most of what you need to know about his latest solo record.

James Leg - aka John Wesley Myers of the Black Diamond Heavies and The Immortal Lee County Killers - is the bona fide son of a preacher man from Port Arthur, Texas. Armed with a baritone that could knock down a brick wall from 20 paces and a Fender Rhodes, he’s unleashing his third solo album (the last with label mates Left Lane Cruiser in tow.) It’s in similar vein to what’s gone before, but this time with a touch more variety.

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