Nerve Quakes are, as they say, one to watch, particularly for goths or people open to the idea of goth – and they are very much a living, vital band, as the 7″ double a-side Running/Rewind, is testimony to.
Running is a track with industrial energy, slamming into its first chords with no mercy before the brief respite of the pounding verse and Caitie Moondog’s outstanding voice. If the lyrics want for tightening or a step away from vague gestures (an appeal to ambiguity which plagues Australian goth at present – these are something about robots, borrowed time, and yes, running both literal and metaphorical), then Moondog’s commitment to them more than redeems. Her voice is unyielding.
Published in April 2017, this feature article appears in vol 2 of Swampland, a Victorian long-form music journalism magazine.
This piece is a short history of the Perth DIY punk venue 208s, featuring interviews with members of the Reptilians, Agitated, Helta Skelta and the Darling Rangers and polaroid photos I took of live gigs there over the last few years.
With over three decades and nineteen albums under their belts, fierce Japanese girl pop, girl punk band Shonen Knife have more than proved their staying power. Although they’ve remained consistently productive during that time (and their most recent album prior to this one, Overdrive, was only released in 2014) the band have undergone a dramatic line-up shift, adding drummer Risa and bassist Naru with only Naoko Yamano remaining of the original line-up. Despite this, Adventure, written by the group collectively about their experiences of the last few years, doesn’t greatly depart from form: if you’re looking for Ramones-influenced pop punk with their trademark cute and quirky lyrics, here you’ll find more of the same.
I took High Fidelity as my holiday reading when I realised I’d already read all the other Penguin Classics in the airport bookshop. High Fidelity is the story of a 30-something deadbeat who decides his life is over as his long-term girlfriend leaves him because he’s a massive, whingey, manipulative jerk. After some soul searching, mainly centred around tearing down the other deadbeats who frequent his failing record store and having awkward sex with a folk musician, he contacts all the women who have dumped him in the past in an attempt to find out what it is that makes him a deadbeat – and maybe even fix it.
RICHARD: I’ll ask another generic question and we’ll go one by one. This generic question is: can you tell me about your instruments? And like… what it is, do they have a name… what is your relationship with your instrument?
Out-takes from an interview done for GAPE Zine Issue #1, spend some time with Perth post rockers Rag’n’Bone as we chat about Radelaide, scunge and the Perth scene.
Why Rag N Bone?
KIERA: So I guess we were going through a few different options – we started jamming way before we ever had an idea for a name – and we were like, “oh yeah, we should come up with something!” So we had Summertime Dark, was an option.
AXEL: Still could be honestly, it’s not too late to change. What have we got to lose?
KIERA: But I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of the rag’n’bone man or the rag’n’bone men… how they used to collect heaps of junk and people’s food and bones and chuck them in a cart and wheel them down the street… and I dunno, we just felt that that was appropriate for our music because it’s a bit of a mix.
AXEL: Unfortunately though, there is a rapper in the UK called Rag’N’Bone Man.
SARA: And there’s also like a Dutch dude, Danish dude who’s like a folk dude? He’s solo. Maybe the next time we release something we should do a split…
It’s not so unusual to see a heavy act take over The Bird these days, but The Pissedcolas, always uncommon faces in the scene, like to remind us of the limits of our sound equipment once in a while. Their newest release, a 12″ vinyl offering, will extend this to the stereos of their fans, but to launch it this drone/psych/garage/distortion group took roost in a packed Bird with a host of other bands. Continue reading LIVE REVIEW: The Pissedcolas at the Bird, 21.08.15
The vitriolic Nottingham duo returns to form after a short revue with Key Markets, an album probably meant to take aim at some notion of consumerism. Does this represent the bitter taste at the back of lyricist John Williamson’s throat following the commercial success of its predecessor,Divide And Exit, the 2014 outpouring of bile to universal acclaim that brought Sleaford Mods not only into the national spotlight, but turned them into music industry buzzwords on the international stage?
Probably. It’s hard to make out – Williamson’s lyrics stagger in jagged, unfocused zigzags like a blinded bull. Williamson quickly falls into a droll, irritated hum, akin to a mass of hornets not quite disturbed enough to leave their nest. With Andrew Fearn’s stripped back instrumentation, kit and a wet, sloppy kiss of a bass, the album rolls over you like a train over tracks, creates a drone, a haze, and sends you off, that sound-blocking you do at your retail job to avoid thinking too hard about your bleak at best future in a receding economy.
Hideous Sun Demon are something of Perth, Australia’s best kept secret – shielded from the national spotlight neighbours Tame Impala or POND might enjoy, Hideous have been brewing like the bacteria in that cup of coffee your science teacher left at the back of the classroom that one time, crawling from the ooze with their first album Sweatand practically an ecosystem of fellow grotty boy garage bands: Cool Band, Kitchen People and Aborted Tortoise to name a few.
It’s hard to explain what they sound like without using that tactile language: like the black stuff that comes out of a roadkill kangaroo, like the thick, viscous fake blood – the stuff that smells of liquid plastic – that squirts out of Ozploitation horror films, like pen ink spilt over your foot from a poorly executed stick ‘n’ poke, like that one patch of the couch no one will sit on after that one unfortunate happening at that one terrible party, the one that Gideon brought that THC-moonshine to, the one where the toilet was blocked up five metres down and Tom woke up six kilometres away naked in a park the next day. Or maybe take a bit of grunge fuzz and grind, a bit of psychobilly dexamphetamines, add the manic hoots and screeches of frontman Vin Buchanan-Simpson panting over the muscles of a gym junkie in ‘Flex’ (“Feel them crawling under my skin/Is it bigger?/Is it bigger?”) or word salad of ‘Ohio (Is It Dead Yet?)’, sprinkle a pinch of metal in mad shredding guitar solos and a dash of psych in extended psych-outs like ‘Neon Sound’, and you have an approximation of Hideous Sun Demon. Continue reading BAND PROFILE: Hideous Sun Demon, 08.07.15
With a pedigree of DIY cerebal post-hardcore influences like Fugazi, OFF!, and Savages, WaLL have set themselves a high bar, and matched with their ferocious, confronting energy live and frontman Kieran Welton’s weird promotional hashtags via the band’s twitter @wall_sounds – #postculture, #depressionisoppression, #iamobject, #iamsubject, #object, #object, #object, and the ever present ‘here come the hot chocolate kids’ slogan – give the project an indefinable quality hard to manifest in the studio. Object has gestated long in recording and production, and to much surprise and still absolutely none at all, has come out perfectly formed and already walking with the blood and caul still in its hair. Continue reading ALBUM REVIEW: WªLL, Object, 22.07.15