NEBULA ‘To The Center’ (Reissue) Review.

Words El Jefe.

So when Eddie and Ruben split from Fu, and subsequently hooked up with former Fu bassist, Mark Abshire, to form Nebula, you could assume they would be strutting a similar path to Fu Manchu, albeit with a different songwriting stance, you know, due to being different songwriters etc. And there ARE similarities, but that’s not to say Nebula aren’t / weren’t their own unique entity. Leaning more to the psych-rock side of the spectrum, and capped of with Romano’s heavily Bonham-esque drumming, they released a slew of awesome EP’s and albums. And because we’re a deserving bunch of motherfuckers, Heavy Psych Sounds have very kindly reissued a whole bunch of Nebula records. Good news for fans old and new. I myself have finally (or will have once the order arrives!) landed the Nebula classic To The Center on good ol’ fashioned vinyl. My CD version has been played too many times to count and remains a firm contender for the El Jefe Ultimate Top 25. So now, eighteen years or so after I first bought it, I get a shot at reviewing it. And it’s Saturday! Continue reading

UNWRITTEN LAW, Blindspot, Kerb. Carine Tavern, Perth. 21-02-2018.

Words Carys Hurcom.
Photos Kim Anderson – Shoot The Wicked Witch.

I owe a lot to Unwritten Law. Unwritten Law (and The Vandals) inclusion on the ‘Idle Hands’ soundtrack (anyone remember that film?) are the reason I fell madly in love with punk music. However, over the years, my enthusiasm for Unwritten Law has waned; maybe it has been the previous five or so years of average performances by the band, or the stories of their off stage antics, or my chance meeting with the band in 2015, but whatever it is, I was oscillating between excited and apprehensive about tonight’s gig. Continue reading

FU MANCHU ‘Clone Of The Universe’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe.
Photo John Gilhooley.

Fu Manchu. A band who, along with the likes of Nebula, Monster Magnet and Kyuss set the scene for the scores of stoner bands who followed in their wake, and have never themselves dropped a beat with their own output. And with barely a lineup change this millennium, they sound as solid as fuck, too.

With this latest blast of sonic mayhem, Clone Of The Universe, we see Fu Manchu crack open the Holy Riff Bible and write a new chapter. No mean feat for a band who have been cranking out behemoth riffs for over thirty fucking years. Clone is their twelfth album, and is right up there with the classic Fu records like Eatin’ Dust and California Crossing. Continue reading

UNWRITTEN LAW, The Drop Bears, The Dead Love, Bukowski. The Croxton, Melbourne. 09-02-2018.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.
Photos Stephen Boxshall.

The opening of doors into The Croxton’s band room is a little bit later than anticipated (probably due to VIP’s meeting with the headliners taking double time for selfies) but we fill it at a steady pace. The thirstier punters begin the soon-to-be never-ending queue for grog in an excited frenzy, others choose their spot within the room.

Our first act of the evening are Melbourne’s four-piece band, Bukowski. Their choice of name doesn’t necessarily suit their style of music – presumably an ode to Charles, wasn’t Bukowski more of a classical man?– but it seems to be irrelevant as we applaud their set, indulging in the local talent. These guys are one of the upcoming acts that we should watch, so it was a shame their set had to be shortened due to the late starting time. They leave us in a state of awe and appreciation for being there, and we progress into patiently waiting for what’s to come. Continue reading

SHAME. The Tote Hotel, Melbourne. 08-02-2018.

Words Mark Ireland.

Before Shame even landed in Australia, they had a hell of a reputation but with enough secrecy to still have some surprises up their sleeves. They have been heavily lauded in the British and American music press, they tore Glastonbury apart last year and punched Laneway Festival so hard it was coughing up blood, so when they landed at The Tote the energy of the band and the crowd was salacious, you could feel the condensation just dripping from the ceiling.

Lead singer Charlie Steen hulked about the stage staring down the crowd, you felt like he was going to attack at any point, but this is all stage persona.

When they burst into the single ‘The Lick’ and the opening lyric is “So in the past week I’ve made several trips to the gynaecologists”, you know the boys tongues are firmly planted in their cheek, they wear their influences heavily on their sleeves, The Fall, Eddy Current. Steen has the Mark E Smith’s venomous lyric spit combined with Brenden Huntley’s manic dance moves. The song ‘Friction’ with it’s heavy chiming guitars flogs the crowd around the head and induces aural comas. The entire pub is transfixed, a bomb could have gone off and the crowd wouldn’t have noticed in the slightest, that’s how enigmatic they were. Continue reading

FRANK CARTER & THE RATTLESNAKES + Cancer Bats. Fowler’s Live, Adelaide. 06-02-2018.

Words Will Oakeshott.

There is a quote by the infamous and supposed anonymous UK-based graffiti artist Banksy that states: “Art should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable” – this in retrospect, operates as a very suiting theme for what transpired at this event. The South Australian summer had certainly exposed its true colours providing sauna-like conditions, which was quite the opposite from both touring bands’ current home weather statuses (UK and Canada respectively). Landing on a Tuesday evening was also more of a predicament in terms of attendance, with spectator numbers being best described as dozens initially. However, art, more specifically punk music was never about “comfort”; truthfully it is more likened to rebellion, the underground and discomposure. So essentially these “conditions” as it were, surmised to an accommodating scenario. Continue reading

Punks Against Poverty #4: Xmas Edition! Blindspot, Benny Mayhem (with band), Joanie Get Angry, Grant Larseny (acoustic), Incomplete, Triggered. The Boston, Perth. 08-12-2017.

Words, Photos and Video, Kim Anderson – Shoot The Wicked Witch.

For the 4th Punks Against Poverty show I wanted to do something special and made it a Christmas show. I actually hate Christmas but I figure homeless people probably hate it more than me so why not try to put a happy spin on a shitty situation that’s still happening in the world.

I enlisted some of Perth’s coolest kids to pretend not to be Grinchier than me and sing Christmas songs, there was some resistance but they did it and nobody died. Grant Larseny took this one step further by actually writing a song for it! It’s a great song about Christmas in Australia and I think we can all identify with it on some level. It’s available for download on Bandcamp so definitely check it out!

New band Triggered covered Tim Minchin’s ‘White Wine In The Sun’, Incomplete covered Kevin Bloody Wilson, Joanie Get Angry sang ‘Do You Want To Build A Snowman’ and I’m gutted I missed it I really wanted to see what they did with a Disney song, Blindspot sang about 8 White Boomers and lastly Benny Mayhem sang The Pogues ‘Fairytale Of New York’. I had a playlist of random Christmas songs to play inbetween and despite not hearing half of the songs (it didn’t get paused while the bands played) The Wiggles ‘Felice Navidad’ played and I was feeling pretty proud of myself. Yes I played The Wiggles at a punk show. Continue reading

BORRACHO ‘Riffography’ Album Review.

Words El Jefe

Stoner rock power trio Borracho have had a busy 12 months; releasing two full-length LP’s in this period and they’ve backed up the excellent Atacama with Riffography, and it’s yet another grease and dirt road trip from hell.

Soundwise, Borracho are a gutsy and powerful unit, heavy on both grooves and distortion. And they know when to pull back as well as when to drop the clutch and hammer the riff home too. Supremely cohesive songwriting coupled with their playing always makes for a great album as well.

Riffography opens with the ball-tearing ‘Rectify’, and is quickly backed up with ‘Circulos Concentricos’, a re-recording of ‘Concentric Circles’ from their 2011 debut, Splitting Skies, and given a Spanish facelift and a great mangled guitar attack. Continue reading

GUITAR WOLF, Leeches, The Shakeys. The Boston, Perth. 30-11-2017.

Photos & footage Kim Anderson – Shoot The Wicked Witch.

Every time I head off to a show or a photoshoot I have this mini panic attack where I’m 100% convinced I’ve forgotten something important, only I haven’t. Tonight I spent an hour travelling to a show just to discover I left my camera battery on the kitchen counter. Of all the nights I choose tonight to screw up and I have all the regrets. ALL. THE. REGRETS. So I decided I’ve give reviewing another shot so I could feel less guilty for having a door spot. I know right, what’s wrong with me?

First up for tonight was The Shakeys. This is the third time I’ve seen them this week and in total contrast to the other nights this room didn’t have too many people there to see the opening act. This didn’t stop the band putting on one hell of a performance though. Come to think of it, I don’t think I’ve ever seen The Shakeys do a half-assed performance! Claire is a badass front woman and full of attitude. They started their set off with ‘Don’t Make Me Crawl’, and during their next song ‘Pink Demon’ people started getting off their seats and moving closer to the stage. They mentioned opening for Marky Ramone on Tuesday night and how he insisted they do a couple of covers. They decided they loved the songs and kept them in their set. Quite literally, it’s the same set as Tuesday night. This just made my job tonight so much easier. I can’t say that for the other bands though. During their final song ‘Drinkin Till Dawn’, they were joined on stage by members of The Beehives GoGo Dancers who danced up a storm. I’ve now decided The Shakeys need gogo dancers at every show! My opinion matters and everyone should listen to me. Continue reading

MYRKUR ‘Mareridt’ Album Review.

Words Will Oakeshott.

Amalie Bruun, better known as Black Metal multi-instrumentalist Myrkur has been the subject of both global praise and repulsive condemnation in her short three year existence creating magnificent music under the moniker. Having received atrocious death threats after the success of her exquisite debut LP M, Ms. Bruun utilised this animosity to provoke her creativity and the result is her astonishing sophomore record Mareridt.

Title and opening track ‘Mareridt’, the initiation into her artistic response and journey to the Earth’s reaction to the organic design that is Myrkur, acts as a spiritual calling; an invitation for her followers and adorers to come close to safety from the storm that is the banishment she is about to afflict on her adversaries. In retrospect it is a historic “Kulning” call and it honestly defies beauty. Continue reading