ANDY GILL (GANG OF FOUR) Interview.

Returning the Gift (of ‘Entertainment!’): an interview with Andy Gill by Mikaelie Evans.

Since forming in 1977, Gang of Four has had multiple reincarnations which have twisted and turned melodies from the band’s initial sound through genres and decades alike.

From their first release in 1979, their record ‘Entertainment!’ solidified the band’s mark on early punk rock; with their 12-tracks boasting guitar twangs and fierce lyrics, Gang of Four would progressively influence a vast range of bands to later come.

In 2019, Gang of Four is celebrating the 40th year anniversary of ‘Entertainment!’, with an international tour showcasing their musical diversity throughout the band’s history. Chatting with the last founding member still a part of the legacy, original guitarist Andy Gill speaks about what fans can anticipate on their forthcoming tour. Continue reading

MMW: CIVIC SOUNDS LANEWAY FESTIVAL – Regurgitator, Nai Palm, RVG, Ro, Auntie Leo & The Backstabbers, The Bennies, The Cherry Dolls, Bec Sandridge, Destrends, IV League, The Grogans, Batz, DPRS – Democratic Peoples Republic of Surf. Cherry Bar, AC/DC Lane, Melbourne. 18-11-2018.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.
Photos Zo Damage.

Opening up AC/DC laneway as a part of Melbourne Music Week, the infamous Cherry Bar plays home to this year’s Civic Laneway Festival. Hosting a diverse variety of some of our cities finest bands, the venue has organised a set-up catering to the diverse line-up, with the inside stage adorning its regular velvet red backdrop, the outside stage boasts a similar rock n roll aesthetic.

On the outside stage, DPRS (AKA Democratic People’s Republic of Surf) began the day with their soothing surf melodies, welcoming the early arrivers into the festival with their catchy summer tunes. Following on are Batz, with front-woman Christina Albury flipping off her bandmates for arriving late. Their garage-disco melodies sweep our feet into motion, as we groove across of the laneway’s heating concrete.

Leading us inside with their catchy grunge openers, The Grogans take to the Cherry Stage with high energies as the three-piece supercharge us into the early afternoon. Outside, IV League channel their contagious choruses through the amplifiers as punters begin to congregate under the sunshine to experience their performance. Continue reading

SCOTT RUSSO (UNWRITTEN LAW) Interview + Tour Info.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.

When Californian Skies are forecast to meet Australian shores: an interview with Unwritten Law’s Scott Russo.

As Scott Russo answers the phone, he’s having several other conversations with those in the lounge room. It’s 1pm in San Francisco and the people from immigration have arrived an hour early to complete his paper work for Unwritten Law’s upcoming tour of Australia. After an initially jolted introduction, we settle into the exchange of questions and stories related to the bands future, past and present.

With the frontman’s paperwork currently in process, we nostalgic punters Down Under have a lot to be excited for. With the beginning of their scheduled tour dates quickly approaching, we know that we can anticipate their 1998 self titled album AKA The Black Album in full, but what else?! Despite the fact that I may be considerably too young to be an old-school fan, I couldn’t hold back my excitement when it came to asking Scott, “So, what can you expect? Well, we’re gonna play the Black Record from front to back, the first song to the last song, and then we are gonna break down that set and play additions.” Continue reading

RITES OF PASSAGE TATTOO FESTIVAL – Day 2. Royal Exhibition Building, Carlton, Melbourne. 08-04-2017.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.
Photos Matt Allan Photos.

Day two of the annual Rites Of Passage Tattoo Festival held at Melbourne’s Royal Exhibition Building welcomed punters of all ages through its large doors into a world filled of art and culture.

Lining the entrance were stalls of assorted goods, varying from alternative jewellery to barber knives, hot chilli sauces to the soft amplifications from Cranbourne Music’s Fender and Gretsch guitars, along with various merchandise stands like Killer March and Crawling Death.

Following the sound of buzzing needles around the first line of stalls lead me to find the first tattoo booth along the wall, which was Paul Rapley’s stand. Rapley was hard at work on a rib piece, and the guy receiving it made the overly asked question of “does that hurt?” sound even more rhetorical. Continue reading

THE DAMAGE REPORT – Day 1: Holy Serpent, Swidgen, TTTDC, Dead Root. The Old Bar, Melbourne. 03-03-2017. PART 2.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.
Photos Sally Townsend Photography.

365 days make an entire year and even for extremely enthusiastic punters, 365 gigs in one year seems excessive and unlikely to be an achievable goal… Especially when they’re a different gig every. damn. day… But against any doubt that it wouldn’t be possible, Melbourne-based photographer Zo Damage went all out for an entire year and even broke herself into the Guinness World Records.

In celebration of her 10th year since becoming a published photographer, Damage has produced an intimate look into a year of Melbourne’s live music scene and the community that makes it. 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

COSMIC PSYCHOS, Power, Batpiss, Organ Donor. Bendigo Hotel, Melbourne. 27-01-2017.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.
Photos Suzanne Phoenix – Photos Punctuate My Life.

Comprising an ecstatic Melbournian line-up for the evening, Organ Donor kicked off the first of three massive nights in celebration of The Bendigo Hotel’s 7th Birthday Bash. The three-piece unleashed their defiant hardcore rhythms throughout the filling band room, setting the pace for the evening’s line up to follow.

Batpiss are next in line, who hit the stage with a loud presence; distorted vocals mix through their coarse layers of spiralling guitar licks and dooming drums. Bringing the boozy crowd to the front of the room are the deepening grooves of their set list that turns into rounds of applause as they slur The Bendi a happy birthday. The venue doesn’t look big enough for the amount of punters who have managed to find enough space to stand. This makes it hard to believe that it’s become big enough to provide the space for the swelling pit of jumping heads that’s on the rise, though they’re making it work as they jump wildly about throughout the Batpiss show. Continue reading

REFUSED, Sick Of It All, High Tension. Prince Bandroom, Melbourne. 25-01-2017.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.
Photos Adam Russ – Right Eye Media Australia.

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

DENNIS LYXZÉN (REFUSED) Interview.

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

THE DANDY WARHOLS, Morning Harvey. Big Top, Sydney. 04-11-2016.

Words Mikaelie A. Evans.

Welcoming a swelling sea of Sydneysiders into Luna Park’s Big Top venue are Brisbane four piece, Morning Harvey. The breezy indie rockers ease through their set with the warmth of their sounds serenading the growing crowd.

A band kept an untold secret until recently, Morning Harvey introduce their eccentric and dynamic songs to the receptive punters who become one with the blissful evening.

Though a relatively large venue, The Big Top holds some sort of intimacy within as the stage lights produce a show of their own; soon there is a brief intermission and, after queuing for too long at the bar, the anticipated act of the evening begin… Through a wall of amplified fuzz, The Dandy Warhols erupt into their opening instrumental piece.

The large sea of heads bounce in unison as The Dandys groove into their pre-emptive set, though there are a few minor technical difficulties which are casually excused. Continue reading