joy division - The I-94 Bar

BARFLY TOP TEN: Mick Medew of Mick Medew & The Mesmerisers

mick twin townsIn no special order:

1. The Damned at The Triffid, Brisbane, March 15
A school night: Wednesday. The Mesmerisers go on at 7.30pm to a packed house. We carve, the crowd makes us feel like they are there to see us. The Damned 's tour manager remarks that he has never encountered a support band being granted a bottle of Gordon's gin as part of their drink rider: another milestone ticked.

The Damned play for two-and-a-half hours - brilliantly. They are a big hit with the audience - and with Captain Sensible back in the band, they could hardly miss.

2. Perfect Match
Now I do know where she comes from: Banyo. I’ve got a Date with a Banyo girl, tonight.

3. Died Pretty, Radio Birdman and The Mesmerisers at The Tivoli Theatre, Brisbane, June 23
The crowd have all turned up early and turn on to us straight away. Died Pretty get better every time I see them. They always were a fantastic band.

4. Perfect Purchase
My Zoom H5 portable recording device does everything i wanted it to.

5. Gap Farmers Markets, Brisbane, June 25
Andrew Ross and Co sure know how to put on a festival . We go on before dusk. I wear my sunglasses for half the set. Michael again chooses the right shirt for the occasion.

Record Play Pause: Confessions of a Post-Punk Percussionist: The Joy Division Years by Stephen Morris (Hachette Australia)

morris bookHe's the drummer chap in Joy Division and now New Order. Morris has written about how he got there, but with a rather rueful (and lucky for us, gently comic) look back at what a twat he once was. Cleverly written, sensibly contrite and a bit ashamed of himself, this is corking stuff. Even if you weren't interested in his music, in fact.

However, we're also in modern myth territory. That means the tragic suicide of frontman Ian Curtis; a death which seemed to grip the nation's rather maudlin youth and media of the day to such an extent that death of The Ruts' frontman, Malcolm Owen a couple of months later, was completely eclipsed; surely both were equally as tragic. 

But no, the Joy Division wave, which was only just rearing up, hit the UK quite hard. 

Seven Mutants walk into a bar...

easily amused cvrCurse of the Easily Amused – The Mutants (Liberation Hall)

The Art Punk genre is a mixed bag. Throw in a New Wave descriptor and the name can refer to anything, really. So if you’re confused approaching this retrospective collection by a late ‘70s San Francisco band, be not alone.

At last count there were enough bands using the name The Mutants to fill a large tour bus. As well as Art Lyzak's ‘70s Hamtramck, Detroit, outfit with Bootsey X, there was a Pink Fairies-inspired Merseyside, UK, combo and a 2000s supergroup featuring Rat Scabies.There’s even an instrumental Finnish band, so there’s been a whole lotta mutating goin’ on.  

These West Coast Mutants sprang from the same diverse scene that had already spawned Flipper, the Nuns and the Avengers but took a more artful approach inspired by the trash films of John Waters and the vibe of Andy Warhol’sFactory crew. Which doesn’t mean they sound anything like the Velvets.

There's life in this Nasty last gasp

last gaspWaiting For The Last Gasp Of My Generation – Nasty S and The Ghost Chasers (Twenty Something Records)

French journeyman Nasty Samyhas been on the European underground touring circuit as long as anyone can remember, playing with the likes of Second Rate, Hawaii Samurai, The Black Zombie Procession, Demon Vendetta, Cab Drivers Stories, Teenage Renegadeand a bunch of other bands you’ve possibly never heard of.

He’s a lifer.

He’s also a magazine writer of some repute.

“Waiting For the Last Gasp…” is a cover album, with Nasty S playing most of the stringed instruments on a selection of ‘80s and ‘90s punkish and powerpop songs that he digs, and with a rotating cast of guest vocalists.

I-94 Bar