Hello I-94 Barflies. What a shitty year it’s been. Charlie Watts’ passing makes me feel old and I type with a heavy heart with the passing a few days ago of my friend, the great guitarist John Nolan (Bored!, Powder Monkeys, Spencer P Jones and The Escape Committee and more recently Powerline Sneakers.) Last drinks, last smokes. R.I.P.
Thank fuck there is music. There have been numerous great releases this past 12 months, so here we go.
Let’s face it, rock’n’roll is absolutely and completely stupid and ridiculous. That’s why I love it. And the more stupid and ridiculous it is, the more I like it.
Gimme some lycra clad idiot climbing up a speaker stack screaming about how rock’n’roll they are, or some sweaty Hornbag dancing on a bar carrying on about kebabs and chlymydia (Hi Celia) and I’m in heaven.
Sure I like serious bands, but jeez they’ve gotta be very very fucken good to cut the mustard..... or the cheese. A good bit of cheese with rock’n’roll is also a very good thing.
I can’t go past a dumb and ridiculous band even if they are a bunch of talentless losers. Just as long as they rock and make me giggle. Bonus points awarded for juvenile toilet humour because that’s the best kind of humour.
I just want to be entertained, and I want to have fun.
Chris Newwton in The Smart Folk. Corrie Ancone photo .
10 great Australian indie singles from 2021 you may not have heard…yet
By Chris Newton – guitarist/vocalist from The Smart Folk, and The Lost Husky; and bassist from Tigers At The Edge Of Time.
Like many fellow musos, in 2021 after getting out of the gates early in what proved to be a false start race that lockdown soon put sternly to bed, I fell into the pit of songwriter’s block for six months.
Thankfully, many bands – several of whom I’m privileged to call friends – didn’t suffer the same fate.
Here’s just ten independent ‘singles’ that have hit the online shelves this year, that give me (and hopefully you) hope for the musical future. In no particular order…
Shooting up vaccine while saying, “’scuse me while I kiss the sky
Wavves – “Hideaway” album. I play it every day for months. Loved ‘em since “King of The Beach”.
Private Function - Best rock/punk band in Australia and also the funniest. Their live shows are action from start to finish.
Ceremony – There has been an astonishing progression over the last 10 years. Think Husker Dü/Replacements, but they have gotten to this neon, cool place at the moment. Their old shows on YouTube are killer.
A kid I made, Spike Vincent, made this beautiful song called “Time Machine”, it’s in skateboarding movies etc. I love it.
Watching this year’s Stones tour on YouTube and the Beatles doco (I love both of ‘em.)
Started a new label called Rolled in Glitter Records: “You can’t shine a turd but you can roll it in glitter” . I will be raiding my vaults. Vanity label extreme.
How my close friends were supportive during virus crazy time.
Shane McGowan doco “Fairy Tale in New York”. It gives me rising sad tears every time.
Also fuck all you, you rusted on Radio Birdman heads!!!
Greetings Rockers and Goomers! It’s the end of another weird year. How many is that now?
Here are my Top Ten releases - mostly Australian artists - and venues, in no particular order of preference. Not all were released in 2021 - but close enough. These releases and venues kept me sane in 2021.Merry Xmas and a free and Happy New Year!