Photos Adam Russ – Right Eye Media Australia.
Words Will Oakeshott.
Photos Alex Kwong Photography.
If this event could be surmised in one phrase, the legend of Black Flag, part-time actor, writer, spoken word genius and prodigy of anything else which interests him, Henry Rollins captured this show’s essence with his quote: “Life is weird, great and dangerous”.
Adelaide quartet Dirty Pagans had the honour of opening the event and were hellbent on crafting a weird and wonderful statement about their art. In terms of the historical undulated road modern rock’n’roll has undergone for decades since its inception, this four-piece are on a mission to explore the majority of this genre’s pathway. Elements of southern rock, classical rock, thrash metal, hair metal, stoner rock and sludge rock were all combined to create a rather original sound. Featuring songs from their Dirty Pagans EP and recently released full-length VOLUME 1, Dirty Pagans left an imposing impression on the modest but very intrigued audience. It was slightly abnormal but on that same note, awe-inspiring also.
Interview Will Oakeshott.
Musicians expanding their horizons outside of their accomplished art-form has been a rather prevalent occurrence for quite some time. Whether film, television, fashion, business or any other avenue, it has been a movement that countless musicians have ventured toward with varying levels of success. For Oregon’s Stoner Metal band Red Fang, the quartet has somewhat followed suit by joining forces with Teutonic Wine Company, also from Portland, to create a European style red wine blend entitled “Red Fang Red”. As guitarist and vocalist Bryan Giles explains, the scenario came together rather organically:
“The winery is called ‘Teutonic’ and they are a local Portland small winery and they are just really into heavy metal and making wine.” He describes relatively straightforward – “They contacted us to see if we wanted to make a wine with them which we were understandably interested in doing, even though I don’t really know much about wine, but it sounded like a fun experience. We did actually go pick grapes, bottled the wine, corked the wine and sorted the vines around the vineyard. Sadly though, we had to kill all the ladybugs.” Continue reading
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
Interview El Jefe.
After thirty odd years playing music, with the heavily influential Kyuss through Slo Burn, Unida and Hermano as well as a couple of solo projects, John Garcia, is well known to those into stoner / desert rock. His vocal style is often imitated (or at least attempted!), and the musical output is of a consistently high quality as well. Garcia is about to tour Australia in acoustic mode for the first time, and will be playing selections from his entire back catalogue. I recently spoke with John to get a run-down on what’s in store for the tour.
El Jefe – What’s your inspiration for choosing the songs you want to tackle acoustically, and how do you decide what might work best?
John Garcia – Well, to start with, I dig the challenge of doing things in a totally different way and to keep moving forward musically. Some songs like ‘Green Machine’, which work well with a full band can be much harder to do acoustically, so there is the challenge to make it work with just a guitar which is really cool. ‘Gardenia’ as well, is much harder to do this way, so it means I have to keep pushing the boundaries musically. ‘El Rodeo’ is just a rad song, and really fun to play, and with a tune like ‘Space Cadet’, I get to change a couple of the things with the vocals I didn’t like with the original. Continue reading
Trembling inside the darkened walls are the rumbling amplifiers that ricochet Melbourne’s High Tension once they’ve taken to the stage. Front woman Karina Utomo growls into the heavily beaten drum patterns, sometimes bellowing high pitched screams into the mic. The guitar riffs raise tensions of their own, fiercely backed by the heavy bass lines. At times singing, but mostly screaming, the crowds conversation turns to muffled pauses of awe as Utomo owns their set, ensuring that the evenings line up is going to be memorable.
Sick Of It All bring the NYCH ruckus onto the stage with them as they power straight into their set with such high energy and intensity that the crowd takes a moment to ease into their anthems. With a bit of warning, they play “The first song we ever wrote”, ‘My Life’, and unplugged ears cop an absolute beating. Front man Lou Koller gives more of a considerate warning: “Don’t get scared, cause it ain’t pretty.” Each of them are obviously in their elements as they run an engaging muck on stage, engrossing punters into the brewing pit with ‘Black Venom’, Koller eagerly tells us to “Get down to this shit!” Continue reading
Words Mikaelie A. Evans.
Since blowing up during the Swedish hardcore-punk scene of the early ’90s, Refused have gained a reputable name for themselves worldwide as they have continuously been one of the bands on the forefront of the phenomenon.
With time comes age, experience, influence and the overall state of the world, so it’s inevitable that their sound might have changed since their 1998 release The Shape Of Punk To Come. Following their longstanding hiatus (1999–2009) that was broken with speculation, rumours and a 2012 world tour, Refused released their first studio album in 17 years during 2015 via Epitaph Records. Titled Freedom, the 10-track brought critics and fans all over (again) out of hiding and straight back into the pit. As they embarked on another run of international shows, their new album became a celebration in itself. Fast forward a year, and Refused announced that they’d be coming back Down Under in early 2017… and the time has arrived! Continue reading
Words Dave Mullins.
There are very few punk bands that have had the kind of success that Pennywise has had. They are one of the most successful independent punk bands of all time, with over 3 million records sold worldwide. Their 1995 album, About Time, launched them into the hearts and minds of an entire generation and the album went gold in Australia. Pennywise decided to mark the 20th anniversary of the album with a tour of Australia which starts in late September. Dave Mullins had a chat with bassist Randy Bradbury about the album, the tour and what it’s like to tour with some of the best punk bands in the world.
Dave Mullins: So it’s the 20th Anniversary of About Time, the album has obviously been hugely important to fans of the band, and punk music in general. What are your thoughts on the legacy that Pennywise has?