GROOVIN THE MOO: Violent Soho, The Wombats, The Darkness, Pnau, Milky Chance, Tash Sultana, Against Me!, The Smith Street Band, Architects, K.Flay, Amy Shark, Methyl Ethel, Horror My Friend, Tom West. Wayville, SA. 28-04-2017.

Words Will Oakeshott.

French writer Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr once wrote in his epigrams: “Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose”; which for those of unfamiliar with French translates to “the more it changes, the more it’s the same thing”. Groovin The Moo in 2017 made its first appearance in South Australia at the infamous Adelaide Showgrounds, vastly different from its original location in Oakbank. However, the sell-out crowd were once again greeted with a gloomy winter-esque atmosphere (referred to as “Groovin The Mud” in past years), but misery was far from consideration by the attendees, if there were premises to assign to the festival – “victory” and “mystery” would be certainly suiting.

Adelaide-based progressive folk luminary Tom West had the privilege of the opening slot for the festival and brought out his entire arsenal for the presentation. A six-piece band including keys and a banjo serenaded the early observers, although not quite in a spirited fashion, more-so a soothing manner. Single ‘Easy, Love’ was the standout which channelled Pennsylvania’s criminally unknown Koji; honestly though, it wasn’t an enthusiastic engagement but a warm welcome nonetheless. Continue reading

2016 TOP 10 RELEASES! Desert Highways staff + special guests from Orange Goblin, Monolord, Pagan / Little Lamb & The Rosemary’s!!

Words Anthony Moore.

There were some amazing releases that come out in 2016, and as with every year, I start out with the best of intentions keeping a list of my favourites as they hit, only to let it fall by the wayside by about March. Yeah I know, it doesn’t last long! So undoubtedly I will forgot lots of great releases from 2016. There’s been the talked about releases like Metallica’s Hardwired… To Self Destruct (which for me has been quite a disappointment, some moments of clarity and power but as whole, it wasn’t the driving force I was hoping for), then there’s been some that have come out of left field that have really thrown me for six and impressed me quite a lot, like Electric Magus Olympus Noms, which is Raul Sanchez (Magic Dirt, River Of Snakes, Midnight Woolf) latest offering through Wild Animals Records. Like with John Frusciante’s solo albums, some sound quite unique and very different to his work with Red Hot Chili Peppers (which is an awesome thing these days!) yet his style and soul still comes through in various ways. Electric Magus is like this for Sanchez compared to his ‘usual’ guitar driven work. It’s totally different yet still somehow connects with me for the same reasons.

I still listen to loads of releases from all around the world, but more and more as time goes on I find myself mainly listening to local bands. Possibly for a few reasons, I like to support local muso’s and friends, it’s possible to see them more live which in turn gets us more stoked on listening back to a band later, and maybe most importantly, there are just so many fuckin incredible bands in Melbourne and throughout Australia that there’s not enough time to sometimes reach out further. Continue reading

RATHEAD self-titled debut EP review + launch date.

Words Joel Parnell.

Despite being a small rural city with virtually no music scene to speak of, Shepparton is surprisingly chockas with great musicians. While only a measly few have broken the mould and been able to Sheppresent to the wider world in recent times (Australia’s answer to Ice Cube: Briggs, for one), there are plenty of sick tunes banging around in the 3630 if you just take the time to listen for them. One such example is the two-piece skate-punk band Rathead, who are just gearing up to drop their debut EP on April 23rd.

Rathead is Sam McPherson (Platypus) and Taylor Bain (Inedia, System Failure). The boys play the kind of music you would have heard on Tony Hawks Pro Skater 2 if only they weren’t 16 years too late (that’s a good thing). Their self titled debut drops in like a drunk Dustin Dollin with ‘Anything’, a song that bleeds melodic charisma while staying true to DIY punk-rock code of conduct. The production is raw as fuck and lends itself perfectly to the band’s stripped back style. Taylor Bains vocal style pays homage to ’80s skate-punk pioneers Gray Matter, yet retains a unique and refreshing tone for a heavy band. One thing that sets Rathead apart from their contemporaries is that they don’t rely on excessive screaming to give their songs an edge, nor do they indulge in any drawn out guitar solos. It’s just no-nonsense, get-to-the-fucking-point punk rock. Continue reading

JOEL PARNELL (THE PARNELLS) Interview, launch gig details & more!

Words Anthony Moore.
Photos Paul Dunham.

There are a few reasons why I wanted to do a Q&A with Joel Parnell, firstly, he writes exceptional pieces for Desert Highways, but that’s not the only reason, he’s also an awesome musician and songwriter. His newest creation, The Parnells (with younger brother Michael) are about to release their debut and do a double EP launch with Rathead at The Last Chance Rock & Roll Bar.

I started with what I thought to be a ridiculous first question and Joel (who later admitted he was going to tell me to fuck off but wasn’t sure if I was being serious or not), went along and answered it beautifully.

Anthony Moore: Where does your band name come from?

Joel Parnell: Obviously the band name comes from our last name, which is Parnell. I guess we thought that it would be cool to use it because it has the feel of something like ‘The Ramones’ or ‘The Smiths’, only it actually is our real name. We also hope to bring in other Parnells on future records as most of the people in our family play music. If we have any success with the band, it would be nice to have made our name something to be proud of. Continue reading

DESERT HIGHWAYS TOP 10 Releases for 2013 & more…

First of all, a massive thanx to all who have supported Desert Highways and to all the bands I have worked with especially The Hidden Venture, Drifter, Don Fernando, Seedy Jeezus and TTTDC. 2013 has been a massive year including the release of the debut Desert Highways 7″ with friends all being a part of its release, Chainsaw Hookers, Electric Frankenstein, Ben Brown and Mr Frumpy.

The below 10 –> 1 list is from my HEAVY Magazine Staff Top 10 Albums for 2013 List, under that I had to add some more as it’s just so hard to narrow things down! Check out the HEAVY link for some more kick arse lists. Some amazing releases amongst them!

Top 10 Releases for 2013. Continue reading