Top Tens for 2022: "Red White and Blue" publisher and original punk Bob Short
Anna White photo
Two of the hardest working men in Australian show business, Ed Kuepper and Jim White, return for a short series of duo shows this summer.
Kuepper has just completed a run of residency shows with his new instrumental project Asteroid Ekosystem and drummer White is taking a brief pause from international touring with Bill Callahan, Xylouris White and Marisa Anderson.
The pair will continue their journey of exploration via Kuepper’s extensive catalogue and a studio release by the pair looms in 2023. Acoustic troubadour Darren Cross will open all shows which are on sale now via feelpresents.com
ED KUEPPER & JIM WHITE
Thu Feb 2 Murwillumbah, The Regent
Fri Feb 3 Coffs Harbour, The Jetty
Sat Feb 4 Brisbane, The Outpost
Wed Feb 8 Sydney, The Great Club
Thu Feb 9 Cronulla, Brass Monkey
Fri Feb 10 Melbourne, Brunswick Ballroom
1. Dion Lunadon “Beyond Everything” Album
This is the second solo album by ex-D4 member Dion Lunadon. I actually discovered his first album via a review on this very site and loved it instantly. If anything this one is even better - a really cool mix of super raw Stooges-y guitars, moody synths, atmospheric interludes and balls-out garage rock.
2. Love Gang "Meanstreak" Single
This band's debut album “Dead Man's Game” was one of my favourites of 2019 so I was stoked to get this tasty morsel from their follow up due in January 2023 on the excellent Heavy Psych Sounds label. It’s a roaring greasy blues proto metal number that absolutely pummels the listener. Kind of sounds like Budgie meets Motorhead and all the awesomeness that would entail.
Ten Things, Bands and Albums that have caught my eye in 2022, in no particular order.
The Square Tugs – “Monster Hits “
This LP is a cracker. The Brisbane-based trio started out as a Circle Jerks cover band (hence the name), but this isn't a one-dimensional release: 16 tracks that channel everything old school (the Ramones, The Damned etc) into a great album that gets better the more you listen. Its an old school sound without sounding jaded; it still manages to sound fresh with great production and a mix of songs which are funny and also political. Most of the songs clock in at under two minutes - the only disappointment is that they're over. Check it out.
The Dark Clouds – “My Way Or The Highway”
It's taken forever for these slack bastards to get an album out, and as a consequence many of these songs will sound familar to those of you who have seen ‘em live. It's been worth the wait though as this is a belting rock ‘n’ roll record. Led by a larger-than-life frontman, a wicked lead guitarist and a tight as a fishe’s bottom rhythm section – they’re just as good on record as they are live which is no mean feat. They are one of the most under rated live rock bands in the country. Uf there was any justice they would be filling big venues. If you are fans of rocking proto punk, or balls-to-the-wall Aussie pub rock you'll find something worth your while here. Buy the record, catch them live (they're old - every show could be their last.)
JD STAYFREE’s 2022 TOP TEN
THE GODFATHERS "Alpha Beta Gamma Delta"
One of my favorite '80s kid rebel bands still making top notch punknroll with smart lyrics, Beatles quality melodies, and new wave movie romantic vibes. So great, exactly the kinda music I wanna hear in my elderly Goth years. I totally vibe with every note on this modern day masterpiece. They still speak straight to my heart.
Tears of the Minotaur - The Christopher Marshall Predestination (self released)
I guess the starting point here will be 1980s noisy blues outfit Harem Scarem, formed by Charlie and Christopher Marshall. Until they found Chris Wilson, Christopher was lead vocalist. And I do wish for a few live tapes of that line-up.
And, curious how things turn out.
Like his fellow bandmate the late Chris Wilson, Marshall's voice is quite extraordinary, and you can pretty much pick your own favourite blues vocalist to compare him to.
Punk Traumatic Stress Disorder - Cull The Band (Tomorrow Records)
“Punk Traumatic Stress Disorder” is one helluva a punk rock record and by that I mean it’s everything you want in a punk album: songs full of anger, hate, profanity and, most of all, humor. Yes, humor abounds throughout these 11 wonderful tunes.
Jeff Stephens (ex-Exploding White Mice) was kind enough to drop me a line and talk a little about how some of Adelaide’s finest musicians got to together in Cull The Band:
Strung Out On Heavens High, 1980-1982 - Religious Overdose (Optic Nerve Recordings/Glass Records)
Nope, never heard of Religious Overdose. So I put it on. And suddenly, that weird Adelaide time from about 1978 to 1981 was back.
Bands like Nuvo Bloc, Systems Go, The Lounge. You sort of knew some of their influences. And rather than be like so many other bands smitten with the underground music movement currently sweeping the globe, they'd deliberately avoided mimicry to produce something both damn strange and damn good.