Music Reviews

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:57pm


When Spiderbait announced a run of shows to celebrate the 21st anniversary of their most lauded album, Ivy and the Big Apples, it’s pretty safe to say Melbourne liked them apples.
Support came from Bitch Diesel, a trash punk pop band made up of four no shit-taking females, singing songs about super relatable stuff. Bad bosses, getting dumped, a penchant for white wine,...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:43pm


On his debut album, Rag’n’Bone Man fuses all the best parts of pop, gospel, modern hip hop and classic soul – his raw vocals adding to the emotion.
Innocent Man echoes John Legend’s best work, utilising brass horns to full effect, while Skin’s introduction lays the gospel organ on thick before launching into a full choir backing. Be The Man is a poppy number, contrasting...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:41pm



Sophomore album After Hours, Close to Dawn has some really great tracks on it. Lead single Creepin sounded great live and is impressive on record. Golden drew a lot of attention for its distinct and ‘un-Kingswood’ sound. It’s a really good song – yes, it does sound different to the tracks on their debut, but is that such a terrible thing? Library Books is another strong and...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:40pm



We’re fast approaching the eye of Hurricane Gizzard in 2017, and the first upon the staggering stack of five albums they'll release this year is a welcome corker.
In true King Giz fashion, Flying Microtonal Banana represents another stylistic territory to conquer – gentler, but never reserved. Indeed, tracks like Open Water and Rattlesnake exude the same frantic...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:39pm



Foam’s debut album showcases a furious mix of psychedelic, garage and alternative rock; echoing the likes of the Butthole Surfers or The Drones. Mass Chew is particularly mellow compared to what comes next, with some interesting guitar effects to kick things off. The garage-tone really shines through with Get On Board, with its incredibly infectious riff that’ll have you...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:38pm



A treasure trove of Australian electronic music composed during the ‘70s and ‘80s. From the obscure Informatics, German Humour, And An A, Distant Locust to the borderline important, The Metronomes, Voight/465, Whirlywirld, Primitive Calculators to those who had at least 15 minutes of fame such as The Reels, Models, Dugites, Ya Ya Choral and Machinations. This is a...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:31pm



The Shins’ fifth album Heartworms is their first in four years and the follow-up to The Port of Morrow. Anticipation has been high for the latest offering from the indie stalwarts, with the enigmatic James Mercer again at the helm of their latest creation. The angular melodic pop on this release is masterfully arranged and produced. Kooky vocal arrangements, bizarre...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 1:09pm

Can someone ask Nintendo to send me a Switch and new Zelda and I’ll review it for next week’s column cheers.


Single Of The Week

Lorde : Green Light

Folks, it’s a banger. Green Light holds onto Lorde’s initial exploration of overbearing mundanity, eeriness sublimating into rollicking triumph. Lorde has become a pop superstar in the past three years, and...

Posted 8 Mar 2017 @ 9:38am



Paint has a very upbeat and funky, almost psychedelic feel, with drums and a flowing synth omnipresent. Like a more upbeat Tame Impala record, Paint keeps the swaying tunes coming, with vocals almost as catchy as the rhythms. Once you fall in love with this record, you find yourself singing the lyrics in your head all day and you aren’t even a little bit mad about it....

Posted 7 Mar 2017 @ 6:08pm

Zo Damage, a prolific photographer for Melbourne's underground music scene, is celebrating her tenth year of being a published music photographer. She commemorated this by challenging herself to photograph 365 gigs over 365 days. The Damage Report is an exhibition of this challenge.


As is fitting for an exhibition of music photography, each night is accompanied by a concert...

Posted 6 Mar 2017 @ 6:45pm

The Pixies returned to Melbourne for a dazzling, sharp performance that illustrated their continued legacy as an iconic band within the alternative rock genre. Their last Australian tour was in 2014 for Sydney’s Vivid festival. Three years later, they’ve made their return, touring their latest album Head Carrier.
The Pixies have been rocking since the ‘80s. Since then, they’ve...

Posted 6 Mar 2017 @ 6:42pm

Brother Ali took to the stage to raucous applause. He was the main draw for the vast majority of fans. Whether you think an MC means a Mic Controller or a Master of Ceremonies it can be agreed that Brother Ali makes his mic work a ceremony.
His set mixed catchy songs with moments of crowd control and speeches. The interlude discussions had heavy themes of love and politics. Even...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:21pm



Close Your Eyes and See is the seventh album from globetrotting Australian legends The Blackeyed Susans, who have been whipping up a sophisticated emotive storm since 1989. On this enticing album, which was elegantly produced by Dan Luscombe, the band create a richly textured sound that embraces light and shade while managing to be both atmospheric and memorably melodic....

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:19pm



Opener Certainty suggests a band in the throes of old school synth-pop as if Gary Numan never left popular taste. All Join In updates things a little but the peevish singalong shows that the band favour a slow evolution, albeit with slightly underdone results.
Vocalist James Bagshaw sounds like a choirboy who could use a shot of caffeine – his saccharine voice...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:18pm



It is in the context of ruby-tinged memories of rock’n’roll’s old school aesthetic that we turn to Powerline Sneakers. This is a band filled to the brim with old school rock’n’roll credibility: Sly Faulkner (Splatterheads), John Nolan (Powdermonkeys), Katie Dixon (Ripe) and Mark Hurst (Guttersnipes). Powerline Sneakers is awash with the brazen attitude of punk rock, the...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:17pm



MC Solo’s voice is not the most melodic going around. His monotone delivery is more akin to spoken word than braggadocious raps, and for newcomers to Horrorshow’s music one or two spins is unlikely to convert you. More is the shame. Because here is the thing: Solo is quite possibly the best lyricist on the local scene today.
His prose flows effortlessly,...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:16pm



The Bats come out with their guns casually blazing on their ninth studio album, The Deep Set. 20 years on, The Dunedin lifers can still produce a collection of songs replete with pop pleasantries and full of wistful whimsy.
Opener Rooftops shifts fluidly from sad indie pop to an uplifting chorus that morphs into a crescendoing climax with escalating guitar...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:14pm



If you’re unfamiliar with Homeshake – think of Toro y Moi slowed down to 33 rpm and a joint piping out Chaz Bundick’s mouth. The lackadaisical Mac DeMarco offshoot that is Peter Sagar produces slacker synth pop which is useful listening in two situations – when you’re high or as a backdrop for a quiet night in with a bottle of shiraz.
Taking his synthesiser...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:12pm



In traditional Menzingers style, their latest offering is fun, fast and seriously punk rock. There’s one noticeable difference to past releases – in After The Party, The Menzingers are inserting themselves into the post-30 punk club, saying goodbye to youth and embracing that inevitable journey we all face – age.
And it’s a bittersweet adventure the band is...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 2:11pm

I’m still profusely vomiting from Oscars Fever, baby!


Single Of The Week

Methyl Ethel : L'Heure des Sorcières

Perth’s Methyl Ethel again ascend to dizzying heights, fleshing out into a festival-sized arrangement on L'Heure des Sorcières, indulging in brilliant, cascading flair. New LP Everything Is Forgotten arrives this week.



Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 11:04am

Stadium-sized singalongs, crowdsurfers galore and unexpectedly spectacular covers were on the menu when The Gooch Palms stormed through Yah Yahs
Tonight’ll be the last time we ever see The Gooch Palms play at a venue the size of Yah Yah’s. What the two-piece garage rock’n’roll outfit lack in band members, they make up for in enormous onstage energy. Leroy Macqueen and Kat Friend...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 10:59am


It was in a reflective mood that I ventured to see Gawurra. The theme of reflection recurred throughout the evening prompted in part by the carpet in the Velvet Room which is the same colour and pattern as the carpet in the church of the small town where I grew up. On settling in to see support act Didirri, the sound was crystal clear. He played a series of his own songs in the manner...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 10:56am

Phoenix Street found itself hosting waiting fans interlocked in isolated arguments of which MC would be best of the night. Andre Jemal got a sneaky mention. Penny Purr got named dropped. All punters agreed that Scribe was an MC worthy of headlining a talented roster of performers. 
The show started and cycled through MCs seamlessly. When one MC finished, barely a minute would...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 10:39am

Brooklyn’s Big Thief made their Australian debut off the back of their lauded album Masterpiece. The four piece looked timid on the large stage, their nervous energy palpable from the crowd. While they never quite looked at ease, this enhanced the sincerity of the set.
It was hard not to be moved by their performance with lead singer Adrianne Lenker’s voice full of unfiltered...

Posted 1 Mar 2017 @ 10:36am


The night began with Corin adequately warming up the venue, pushing out her signature mix of hammering beats tied with old video game samples. Oscar Key Sung followed, proceeding to pull things back to a more relaxed space. It’s hard not to be relaxed by the man, he’s got a voice as smooth as butter which, in part, captures the nostalgia of popular R&B while simultaneously...

Posted 24 Feb 2017 @ 1:59pm


Will Toledo of Car Seat Headrest is one of the most unassuming rock stars you’ll ever witness, so much so he played The Gasometer, a humble sized room for the lo-fi genius.
The bandroom filled up quickly for Dan Oke and his band Jarrow who possess an upbeat blend of garage and surf rock which was an ideal match for Car Seat Headrest. Oke rocked out so hard during the...

Posted 24 Feb 2017 @ 9:45am

What do you get when you fill a bus with the finest faces of Melbourne’s music media scene and send them on the road for three days? Well, besides hungover. You get the Victorian Music Crawl, a musical adventure like no other.


It’s no secret we are spoiled when it comes to both quality and quantity of music and arts in Melbourne....

Posted 23 Feb 2017 @ 5:53pm

Post-rock doesn’t get as good as Explosions in the Sky, the quartet who have defined the genre for nearly twenty years. Support comes from New Zealand’s Fazerdaze who impress with their hypnotic dream pop and graciousness towards the attentive crowd. They serve as a palatable starter for the main course of the evening, striking the perfect balance of energy during their set.

Posted 22 Feb 2017 @ 3:44pm

Upon walking down the stairs into 170 Russell and hearing the sounds of Nursery Crimes’ Sad from their ‘92 belter, Fun Hurts, we’re instantly transported back to a time when the city was awash with mohawks, Goo was the best place in Melbourne, and punk rock was all the rage.
Teenage memories came bubbling back to the surface as Nursery Crimes blew the dust off their back...

Posted 22 Feb 2017 @ 3:42pm

California’s Neurosis have nurtured their ear-splitting noise for over 30 years, gradually transitioning from roots in hardcore punk to the complex post metal beast they’re now recognised as. They’ve crept along the murky outskirts of the heavy music spectrum with a sound too challenging for mainstream ears. 2016 birthed their eleventh studio album, Fires Within Fires, which saw the band...