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Live Music Reviews

Posted 11 Jan 2017 @ 1:38pm

 

One year on from their set at the Corner, it was a huge jump for Modern Baseball to 170 Russell. Foxtrot started off the evening with an adequate set, but there wasn’t much to write home about. Their drummer gave it a hell of a go though and his fills gave the band technical precision that didn’t seem to make it on the drawing board for their lead singer.
 
Hometown...

Posted 11 Jan 2017 @ 1:34pm

 

After hearing of underwhelming shows on his last tour, punters could be forgiven for entering with slight trepidation, but those fears were quickly cast aside. Jamie T moved commandingly around the stage and used that traditional British rockstar arrogance to get the crowd dancing in no time.
 
Opening with crowd favourite Power Over Men, the set started with maximum...

Posted 11 Jan 2017 @ 1:29pm

 

Fortunes were up first. Conor McCabe’s honey-smooth vocals were the clear highlight, the frontman strutting the stage, bouncing gently on his toes, doing his best to stimulate the crowd. Producer Barnaby Matthews manned a modest station, each instrumental detail a result of his electronic wizardry. That seemed to be the idea, anyway. It was so difficult to detect just how much input...

Posted 11 Jan 2017 @ 1:27pm

The good-vibes bar was set high early as Christopher Port broke-in the growing crowd with a track of warm swelling synths, tight garage, two-step and soulful vocal samples. The enthusiasm seemed to reverberate around the room as the set progressed and was very well-deserved. Port’s set had a spontaneous feel to it, and the surging bass and percussive breakdowns made good use of Howler’s system...

Posted 9 Jan 2017 @ 3:42pm

 

As a musical microcosm, Beyond The Valley exemplified the inherent passion and thrill within supporters of the industry that will never, ever die. In many ways, enthusiasts have potentially been tested in this past year, be it through the closing of live music venues, the relentless cancellation of long-standing festivals and the passing of several beloved musical icons. Punters are a...

Posted 5 Jan 2017 @ 11:37am

It seems ignorant to begin a review of Falls Festival Lorne without acknowledging the tragic culmination of factors that led to the injury and emergency treatment of over 80 festival goers, with 20 hospitalised, and countless more attendees, friends and family at home traumatised.

 

To all music lovers, harness the lesson to be learned,...

Posted 31 Dec 2016 @ 4:02pm

 

There are only two things certain in life: death and Xmas Even being solid as a bloody rock.
 
As worn out Melburnians limped to the end of the year, Even decided to slap them awake and celebrate the 20th anniversary of their seminal debut record Less Is More. There was plenty of nostalgia in the air when ‘90s gents Header played a lively set of dad-tastic tunes – singer...

Posted 31 Dec 2016 @ 3:57pm

 

Ah, Christmas. The old upright piano pulled next to the crackling fire; the whole family gathered around singing carols while father belts out a few choice chords; and eggnog aplenty as the dog runs around joyously in reindeer antlers. Yeah, nah. Thank god The Bennies were in town to save us all from the cheesy nightmare.
 
Coming off the back of a huge year conquering the...

Posted 21 Dec 2016 @ 1:47pm

 

If you're going to bill a show as “An Evening with…” this is how you do it. Watching longtime mates Josh Pyke and Bob Evans rattle off hits and stories to an adoring crowd was a great highlight in a year that was desperately in need of some.
 
There was no backing band, just a couple of guys and their guitars. Pyke and Evans walked onto the stage and launched straight into...

Posted 21 Dec 2016 @ 1:46pm

 

When a local Australian artist to be supported by two internationals, it shows the absolute magnitude of the performer, raising expectations to dizzying heights. Not to say that Flume is a strictly local artist. He’s been kicking goals since the release of Skin playing a shows across Europe and the US, with Aria wins and Grammy nominations to boot.
 
Melbourne’s leg of the...

Posted 21 Dec 2016 @ 1:40pm

 

Kicking off the night was new outfit Hearing who offered up twee and droning garage pop. Beneath the low ceilings aglow with fairy lights, the crowd swayed in unison to the sweetest kind of sad jams. 
 
Next up was Truly Holy, who recently released their newest single, One Thousand Years. The four-piece provided expansive, shimmering soundscapes, culminating in crashing...

Posted 14 Dec 2016 @ 1:46pm

 

The evening kicked off with Child, whose heavy psych blues got plenty of fervent heads a-nodding, if not completely banging. Their set was only three songs long, but each was filled with so many progressions and soulful vocals that the cheers that followed were well deserved and clearly sincere. Singer/guitarist Mathias climbed into a passionate jammin’ groove which he refused to...

Posted 14 Dec 2016 @ 1:37pm

 

The last date of Chairlift's Australian tour fell on a Wednesday, and if one was serious about beating the mid-week blues, there was no better place to be. An evening filled with the Brooklyn synth pop stars’ signature hypnotic vibes, with support from Confidence Man and The Harpoons, served as the perfect panacea.  
 
Confidence Man brought the house down with raw retro...

Posted 12 Dec 2016 @ 3:21pm

Coldplay's current tour saw them fill stadiums three nights on the trot with a show boasting all of the bells and whistles: think fireworks, confetti cannons (which belched different types of confetti, including glitter and tissue-paper leaves, which looked a treat drifting over the stadium), wristbands for every member of the audience, which lit up the stadium like Christmas, giant balloons...

Posted 12 Dec 2016 @ 3:13pm

 

Early birds were treated to the delights of the Steve Miller Band. Not the American MOR warhorse, but the handsome Antipodean one. Book ended by two female members, Steve Miller brought to life visions of Boss Hog, The White Stripes and any garage trio you could think of. Hunched over his axe like a demented Gene Vincent, Miller growled his way to oblivion. This band is going places....

Posted 12 Dec 2016 @ 3:08pm

Something like a mixture of Rainbow Serpent, Glastonbury and Burning Man, there was so much happening at The Pleasure Garden.
 
There were roving theatrical performers, impressive art installations, carnival rides and food galore. There were day beds to chill out on or even a roller skating rink if you were in the mood to risk your ankles. The eye for detail was jaw dropping. Such...

Posted 12 Dec 2016 @ 1:02pm

 

Sunshine, a Bar-BQ, some great live music with a twist of humour, conviviality, beers and fundraising for a good cause. What more could you want to celebrate the beginning of summer and bring together Melbournians with a passion for community radio and live music? RRR BBQ day held at CERES Environment Park on the edge of the Merri Creek in East Brunswick has become an institution on...

Posted 12 Dec 2016 @ 11:03am

To many, the feeling of returning to the supernatural amphitheatre is something akin to coming home. The general feeling of joy that fills the place, exhibited by each and every attendee, has not changed throughout the years. Guards are dropped and the stress of everyday life is put aside for the weekend.

 

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Posted 7 Dec 2016 @ 11:21am

 

Unfortunately both James Moloney and the Mad Dog Harrisons and Grenadiers fell victim to some of rock’s greatest pitfalls. Rather than ambition, it was illusion that propelled the Mad Dog Harrisons’ sound: Moloney’s voice was a contrived, punk groan, shredding solos offered no other purpose than to slap on additional rock factor, and each song ended with a crashing, epic jam when it...

Posted 7 Dec 2016 @ 11:19am

 

Having released one of the best albums of the year, it’s no surprise most of the crowd for Angel Olsen have arrived early and made a beeline for the front.
 
Supporting Olsen is Jack Ladder, who reworked tracks from his Dreamlanders project for a rare solo performance. It’s a testament to his talent that Ladder had plenty of presence without a band, offering an interesting...

Posted 7 Dec 2016 @ 11:16am

Melbourne’s Enlight opened the festival on the Ice Stage. Driven by the angelic vocals of Rachael Graham, the quartet’s mix of fragile harmonies and chugging riffs drew a humble crowd. Qlaye Face lit up the Fire Stage with skittering rhythms tied to ethereal croons, before Bear the Mammoth summoned sprawling instrumental post-rock akin to bands like Explosions in the Sky; their densely layered...

Posted 2 Dec 2016 @ 10:16am

 

Julien Baker is the kind of performer who makes you feel at home. Bursting with talent and heart, it was something incredibly special to watch her hold down just one of the many sold out shows she’s playing on her debut Australian tour. Treating her fans Down Under to songs from her 2015 Sprained Ankle EP as well as some newies, the 21-year-old from Memphis proved beyond any shadow of...

Posted 2 Dec 2016 @ 10:08am

 

The stage name The Tallest Man on Earth is like a private joke between the performer and his fans. At 1.7 metres tall Kristian Matsson wasn’t even the tallest man on stage, but everything else about him, from his voice to his stage presence, was huge.
 
Four years from his last stint in Australia, The Tallest Man on Earth is still undoubtedly one of the most exciting and...

Posted 30 Nov 2016 @ 1:44pm

 

Openers The Ocean’s take on progressive metal went down smoother than whisky on the rocks. Lead vocalist Loïc Rossetti pulled a Maynard James Keenan to begin with, gently crooning from the back of the stage before shifting forward to steal the limelight with his angelic howl. Firmament’s tribal meanderings simmered and bubbled before rising up into thunderous metallic grooves, Damian...

Posted 30 Nov 2016 @ 1:41pm

 

Her voice is dreamy and gentle, her harmonies are gorgeous, her folk swagger commands the attention of every person in the room: Julia Jacklin is a force to be reckoned with.
 
In the soldout Howler bandroom, Jacklin unleashed her album Don’t Let The Kids Win, in her own words, “the album straight up, no surprises.” The setlist was strong, featuring what seemed like hit...

Posted 30 Nov 2016 @ 1:38pm

 

Paradise’s fourth installation continued the trends that solidified its place as a treasure in Melbourne’s music scene. Featuring a lineup that shifted between pop, heavier electronic and indie acts over three music hubs, along with stunning natural surrounds and near freezing temperatures, the event continued to boast a truly individual camping experience, much to the pleasure of...

Posted 30 Nov 2016 @ 1:36pm

 

After teasing their new single Death to the Lads during their last Aussie tour, The Smith Street Band opened the set with the roaring anthem against dickheads, the packed room already singing along word-perfect with the ever-lovable Wil Wagner. Suffer was a brand new and never played taste of their upcoming album, doused with heavy vibes, with dense riffs and Wagner’s quintessential...

Posted 30 Nov 2016 @ 1:35pm

 

At a time in history when it feels as if the world may be hurtling to hell in a hand basket, it's reassuring that in its 20th year the Queenscliff Music Festival has maintained its inclusive, eclectic and convivial atmosphere.
 
The weekend began with the rich vocals and assured guitar licks of Jordie Lane & The Sleepers. Lane was in fine voice and displayed a warm and...

Posted 30 Nov 2016 @ 1:29pm

 

The night began with Sydney group The Art taking to the stage to get the audience nice and warm. Having just released their latest album All In The Mind, The Art played a few of their older tracks laced with some of their new.  There were big vocals and some even bigger biceps, as their topless drummer attacked the skins.
 
Bathed in violet lights The Cult entered the...

Posted 29 Nov 2016 @ 3:37pm

Tankerville eased punters into the night with their short sharp heavy fuzz. Their between song banter was great, and their humorous take on punk certainly kept fans keen. They had plenty of songs to play and few of them crept over a minute.
 
Shepperton Aeroplane, provided a weird sense of familiarity – that could be because two thirds of the Peep Tempel were acting as the rhythm...

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