Beloved Melbourne live music venue FAD Gallery has launched its own merchandise

Beloved Melbourne live music venue FAD Gallery has launched its own merchandise

FAD Gallery has just launched its own line of tees, mugs and tote bags.

Melbourne live music institution FAD Gallery has just launched its own merchandise so its adoring fans can stay connected with the beloved venue during the current downturn.

So what can punters get their hands on?

Well, FAD Gallery have a range of t-shirts available including a black, grey and yellow option, while they also have black and white tote bags on offer. On top of that, they’ve launched their very own mug emblazoned with the FAD Gallery logo.

The tees are $50 while the tote bags and mugs are $25 and $20 respectively. This is just the start as well with the venue looking to add more items to the range over the coming weeks.

The merchandise has been developed to help the venue “keep on keepin’ on” during these strange times where venue shutdowns have occurred all across Victoria as a result of disruptions caused by COVID-19. FAD Gallery hasn’t hosted a gig in its beloved live music haunt since March.

In a historic effort, it will be the first time in the venue’s 25-year history that they’ve crafted their own merchandise – the design was completed by Phillipa Crisp while DAS T-Shirt Automat were integral in getting the FAD Gallery merch microsite live.

“We hope you’re all keeping as well as possible, it goes without saying we miss your faces, we miss opening our doors, but let’s keep on keeping on doing the right thing – we can get through this!” the venue’s owners Johnny Halleday and Oriana Wister-Zimmerman said in a statement.

“Stay cool, stay sane, and stay safe – we very much look forward to seeing you on the safe other side of the COVID storm – and we can all sing and dance with our groovy FAD merch – sounds like a damn fine thing to us!”

Check out FAD Gallery’s new merchandise here.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Beats by Beat: Foura’s feel-good set celebrates the resilience of the electronic community

Welcome to Beats by Beat, our mix series for electronic music lovers. Head here if you missed the previous Beats by Beat mix, produced by unconventional electronic producer, Kavil.

They say you can’t take the party scene out of Melbourne, and it’s true. Despite some of the world’s most hectic restrictions, local electronic music lovers are finding innovative ways to connect, network and dance together during lockdown.

Foura, formerly known as Lotus Moonchild, has long been a staple of the city, running parties and holding residencies at some of our favourite locations, including Revolver, Section 8, Lucky Coq, Glamorama and Hawker Hall, to name a few.

She frequents the Melbourne Music Week lineup and has played festivals including Let Them Eat Cake, Beyond the Valley and Falls Festival.

A shift in normality led to Foura deciding on a rebrand – with a new sound for a new persona, thanks to the support of the City of Melbourne COVID-19 Arts Grant.

Foura’s new production, ‘My Truth’ featuring Emy Zaluzna, has just been released as an ode to isolation and the strength of the community which continues to flourish despite the circumstances.

Foura has delivered a feel-good set surrounding her new track and Beat Magazine got the chance to sit down and find out more in a one-on-one interview about missing human connection, Zoom parties, longing for the Revolver dance floor, and finding creativity through harder times.

Find Foura on Spotify here and check out her Beats by Beat mix below. 

Beat Magazine · Beats by Beats #16: Foura Mix and Interview

Follow us on Soundcloud to be alerted of the newest mixes, fresh from your favourite local artists.

Kwame’s new single ‘TOMMY’S IN TROUBLE’ is a powerful anti-discrimination anthem

Kwame recruits CLYPSO and Phil Fresh for the new track.

Kwame has just dropped his second single for 2020 in the form of powerful anti-discrimination anthem, ‘TOMMY’S IN TROUBLE’. Also featuring contributions from rising Sydney peers CLYPSO and Phil Fresh, the track speaks of society’s perpetual inconsistencies when it comes to freedom of speech.

As Tommy navigates his way through an oppressed world, he faces a number of difficult and unjust scenarios. “Table’s set and the tree is lit, Tommy got himself in trouble,” CLYPSO sings in the song’s chorus. Tommy’s journey hasn’t been easy – as he moves against his repression, the walls cave in and he’s got nowhere to go.

‘TOMMY’S IN TROUBLE’ is a multi-faceted story from three artists each from different backgrounds, which results in a strident and passionate culmination of defiance and opinion.

The new track follows on from ‘schleep.’, a slick two-minute number that turned heads across the music industry with its rawness and flow, further solidifying Kwame’s status in the Australian hip hop scene.

On the day of its March release, the track received a special launch when A$AP Ferg, whom Kwame supported in Melbourne, pulled the Ghanaian-Australian rapper on-stage during his sold-out Sydney show. The song has since gone onto amass over 1.5m streams.

Kwame also has a new EP on the way. Please, Get Home Safe is set for release on Friday October 30 and will feature ‘TOMMY’S IN TROUBLE’, however ‘schleep.’ will not appear on the record.

Check out the new track below.

‘TOMMY’S IN TROUBLE’ is out now via Def Jam ANZ. For more on Kwame, check out his Facebook and Instagram.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Members of Tropical Fuck Storm, Suss Cunts, Super Wild Horses and more form new band

Melbourne’s new supergroup, Slippry Intrigue, have delivered their first album.

New band Slippry Intrigue, featuring members of Tropical Fuck Storm, Suss Cunts, Super Wild Horses, Mod Con and High Tension, has emerged from the depths of lockdown with the release of their first album, Infinity Slipper. 

Written and recorded in April during Melbourne’s stage three lockdown, Infinity Slipper has been released on Bandcamp as well as a limited run of casette tapes.

All proceeds from the album will be donated to Sisters Inside, an independent community organisation dedicated to advocating for the collective human rights of women and girls in prison.

Comprising Amy Franz (Super Wild Horses), Helena Holmes (Suss Cunts), Erica Dunn (Mod Con, Tropical Fuck Storm, Palm Springs), Lauren Hammel (High Tension, Tropical Fuck Storm), and Bess Davey, Slippry Intrigue “share instruments and drinks with free abandon and give no fucks,” according to their album announcement on Instagram.

The band describe their debut ten-track album, “mixed and massaged” by Mod Con’s Sara Retallick, as “a smorgasbord of one hit wonders never played before or since! Described by their greatest fans as ‘mostly unlistenable’ this improvised hot mess captures a slice of isolyf: frustration, boredom and laffing in the face of doom.”

Slippry Intrigue will premiere their first single ‘Karma Suture’ on PBS 106.7FM tonight between 5-7pm.

View this post on Instagram

Finally! The big announcement that no one has been waiting for! ♾👠♾👠♾👠♾👠♾👠♾👠♾👠 Introducing new band SLIPPRY INTRIGUE with their first album INFINITY SLIPPER. Ltd edition tapes are out today via bandcamp 👆🏼👆🏼👆🏼👆🏼👆🏼👆🏼👆🏼👆🏼👆🏼 Infinity Slipper is a smorgasbord of one hit wonders never played before or since! Described by their greatest fans as “mostly unlistenable” this improvised hot mess captures a slice of isolyf: frustration, boredom and laffing in the face of doom 🎭 Feat members of Super Wild Horses, Mod Con, Suss Cunts, High Tension, Tropical Fark Storm & introducing, the frothing enigma Spinach Portion! SLIPPRY INTRIGUE share instruments and drinks with free abandon & give no fucks. Long live the infinity slipper! 100% of proceeds from this tape go to Sisters Inside. Listen out tonight to Stove Love @pbsfm 5-7 for the premiere of ‘Karma Suture’ 🖖🏽 ♾ 👠♾👠♾👠♾👠♾👠♾👠♾👠

A post shared by MOD CON (@_modcon_) on

Infinity Slipper is out now via Bandcamp

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Brunswick East Entertainment Fest is bringing theatre and dance to the front lawn

The physical theatre troupe are spreading socially-distanced joy with their daily dance performances.

Walking down Nicholson Street, you can hear Brunswick East Entertainment Fest long before you see it. Rather, you can hear the response of heartily honked horns from passing cars and sentiments like, “Good on you, girls” yelled from a sensible distance by onlookers.

The intrigue mounts further as four neon lycra-clad dancers come into view, flinging their limbs in unison on a sharehouse lawn as a boom box bellows ’80s hits.

The front lawn dancers are housemates Kimberley Twiner, Lily Fish, Ell Sachs and Angela Fouhy, who call themselves The Wholesome Hour. With their respective livelihoods as physical theatre performers put on indefinite hold by the pandemic, Brunswick East Entertainment Fest was born out of a need to channel their creative energy into something positive.

“It just reached a stir-crazy kind of peak where the only obvious answer was to put on some ’80s costumes and go out the front and dance together,” says Twiner.

That peak was reached on Sunday September 6 when Victorian Premier, Dan Andrews announced that Melbourne’s strict stage four lockdown would be extended for a further two weeks while the state’s COVID Normal roadmap prolonged restrictions far beyond that.

“There was kind of this collective feeling of depression, I guess, in the community and then we just happened to have this compulsion that afternoon that we were going to go out and dance,” says Fish.

“It’s kind of spinning the situation a bit so that, ‘Oh fuck, we can’t do this. Oh fuck, we can’t do that’ is not the strongest voice in the room,” adds Twiner.

Since then, each sunny afternoon, The Wholesome Hour have been taking to their lawn to entertain their local community with daily dance performances.

Each professionally trained in a dynamic improvisational movement technique called ‘flocking’, they throw on their matching pink costumes, loud wigs and big smiles and head outside.

View this post on Instagram

Our gorgeous new neighbour friend Nicci is our unofficial documentarian. xx 💛💛💛💛💛Wave, be brave, say hello, feel the love, be the love xxx #brunswickeast #eastbrunswick #brunswick #melbournetodo #melbourneiloveyou #innercitylove #funny #stupid #important

A post shared by Brunswick East Entertain Fest (@brunswickeastentertainmentfest) on

The energy is infectious. Drivers beep their horns as passengers hang out car windows, clamouring to get a closer look, while pedestrians do a double-take, often wandering over for a quick dance before moving along.

“I think Melbourne people like being amongst creative people, so I think that’s a really strong kind of takeaway that people are getting. Like, ‘I do love Melbourne, this is why I love Melbourne and this is what makes Brunswick, Brunswick’,” says Twiner.

“Even though the moment is so, so, so brief, that human interaction completely alters the state of that person,” she continues. “Human to human contact will always create the most profound impact on someone.”

“In these times, people want to connect with their community. They want to feel like they’re engaged with the people around them because we are in this big thing together,” adds Sachs.

Not only has Brunswick East Entertainment Fest helped to lighten the lockdown load for neighbours and passers-by, but it’s helped The Wholesome Hour cope with having lost 12 months of work through event and festival cancellations and the uncertain future of Melbourne’s arts industry.

“If you have something to focus on in the day, like a creative thing, it just means you kind of get to forget about lockdown for a bit and you just feel absorbed in this thing, so it’s really nice having that,” explains Fouhy.

Brunswick Entertainment Fest has been met with such positive reception that The Wholesome Hour have started thinking about what else they can do to uplift their fellow Melburnians.

“We might even be premiering some new ideas within this next period,” says Fish. “People are used to us being there in the afternoon but maybe they’ll come past in the morning and there’ll be a different group of characters on the lawn doing something else.”

“We definitely have a lot of ideas as well because we’re like, ‘Hey, we’ve got a natural, in-built stage in our front lawn. Fuck, we don’t need to hire a theatre anymore! What? Theatre fees? No way! Let’s do that crazy idea out there’,” laughs Twiner.

In a world filled with uncertainty, one thing you can count on is that as long as the lockdown is in place and the sun is out, you’ll find The Wholesome Hour flocking in their front yard.

So, if you happen to stumble across Brunswick East Entertainment Fest on your walk down Nicholson Street, be sure to give them a big wave.

Find out more about Brunswick East Entertainment Fest by visiting their Facebook or Instagram

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Meet Cousin Will, the local indie record label fostering a new wave of music talent

The label has just put out a new compilation record.

Melbourne surf rock dudes The Grogans have built a dedicated local following over the last couple of years. Propping them up from behind the scenes has been Will Stoeckel aka Cousin Will – the band’s one-person management and record label operation.

Stoeckel started managing The Grogans in early 2018, overseeing Quin Grunden, Angus Vasic and Jordan Lewis’ rise from mid-week support act to triple j-endorsed national headliners. When it came time to release the band’s debut album, Stoeckel figured he’d put it out under his own label. And so, in October 2019, The Grogans’ Just What You Want became the inaugural release on Cousin Will Records.

Stoeckel wasn’t just acting on a whim. He’d moved to Melbourne from New South Wales a few years earlier to complete a Bachelor of Applied Business in the Music Industry.

“We were just chatting and I was like, I might as well put everything that I’m learning into practice with you guys, and it just kind of kicked off from there,” he says. “I’m third cousins with Jordie, which is a very strange connection, but that’s where the name Cousin Will comes from because that was my nickname from all of them.”

Stoeckel’s label aspirations go beyond having a logo to slap on the back of The Grogans’ releases. This is represented by Cousin Will’s upcoming second release, the instructively-titled Compilation 1.

The eight-song collection is out now digitally and on vinyl LP and features one track a piece from Polly & The Pockets, Auntie Leo & The Backstabbers, The Grogans, Velvet Bloom, The Gurdies, Outtatime and The Fillmores, as well as the first solo release from Grogans-frontperson Quin Grunden.

“Lots of the bands come from the Peninsula area or have members who come from around that area,” says Stoeckel. “So a lot of the bands are all connected through going to school together or working together or just little life connections like that. They’ve all formed bands and the community’s developed through whenever [The Grogans] have gigs, obviously we want to get our friends’ bands on supports and vice versa.”

They’re all new recordings, the majority of which were produced and engineered by Grunden. But despite the close personal and geographic links between the artists on Compilation 1, there’s a fair bit of stylistic variation.

Of the eight featured artists, The Fillmores play jangly guitar-pop in the style of The Clean and Dick Diver while Velvet Bloom is a jazz-pop artist who takes cues from local heroes Hiatus Kaiyote and Jaala. The Gurdies are an Australiana-influenced pub-punk outfit and Werribee’s Auntie Leo & The Backstabbers showcase a psychedelic-blues rock sound that’s not too far from The Grogans’ laidback surf-rock.

“I wasn’t too worried about whether all the songs would correlate,” says Stoeckel. “I just wanted to capture the sound of a fraction of our community at the moment and almost, in a way, timestamp where it is on record. So, if anything, the more variation between songs the better.”

Stoeckel’s desire to timestamp the community in its current state signifies an intention to keep growing the Cousin Will family. “I’ve already talk to a few other bands who are interested in another [compilation], so I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s another one next year,” he says.

View this post on Instagram

Compilation One is out now! hope everyone is blasting it 💥 head through my bio to stream or preorder it!

A post shared by Cousin Will (@cousinwillrecords) on

For the time being, though, he’s focused on giving this batch of artists a leg-up during an otherwise testing time for local musicians.

“A lot of the artists in the current stage [of their careers] wouldn’t be able to press their own records because it is expensive to do. So another whole idea of it was to have this record that everyone’s on and they have their first physical vinyl of their songs. That’s just a nice little thing to have.”

Stoeckel is inspired by the example of local labels Flightless and Anti Fade Records, both of which have grown from microcosmic beginnings into trusted tastemakers. He’s also impressed by the structure of the bigger label and management indies like I OH YOU and UNFD.

So, what are the long-term goals for Cousin Will?

“The main thing at the moment is to begin working with more bands, more within our community as well as branching out. Just hearing bands that I like and that the Grogan guys also like and approaching them and hopefully working with some more people.”

Give the album a spin below.

Cousin Will Records’ new compilation LP, Compilation 1, is out now. For more on Cousin Will, check out their Bandcamp, Facebook and Instagram pages.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Gimme Gimme recruit Grammy Award-winner Van Hunt for groovy new track, ‘Fight Dirty’

The new track from emerging Aussie brother-sister duo Gimme Gimme is a sonic feast for your soul.

Aussie brother-sister duo Gimme Gimme have just delivered a vibrant new single, ‘Fight Dirty’, characterised by its lush production, Sisqó-esque violin sections, juicy trumpet builds and Beyoncé-flavoured drum line.

The danceable-yet-dark melodies and rhythms mirror the narrative of ‘Fight Dirty’ which explores the tension that comes with fighting with a loved one.

“’Fight Dirty’ is all about sharing love with a person who, when the going gets tough, uses words as knives and aims for the jugular,” says Gimme Gimme vocalist and violinist, Esther Henderson. “Whether it be a mother, father, partner, daughter, best friend or boss, sometimes the battlefield can get muddy, and this is what ‘Fight Dirty’ sets out to express.”

‘Fight Dirty’ also features the soulful vocals of Van Hunt, a Grammy Award-winning artist who has solidified his own reputation as a hit-maker in the United States. The track is set to appear on a forthcoming 2021 EP, titled Taylor St – a record which will also feature Gimme Gimme’s debut single, ‘The Feed’, released in July.

Check out the new track below.

‘Fight Dirty’ is out now. For more on Gimme Gimme, check out their Facebook and Instagram pages.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Listen to Powderfinger’s new song ‘Day by Day’, their first new music in a decade

Powderfinger are back in a big way.

While much of the music industry lies asleep, legendary Australian rockers Powderfinger have been up and about throughout 2020, performing a livestream show to raise money for Support Act and Beyond Blue in May, before then releasing a 20th-anniversary reissue of their seminal album, Odyssey Number Five.

Now, the revered outfit have just lifted the lid on their first single in a decade, which is set to appear on a new album of unreleased tracks to be released sometime this year.

‘Day by Day’ is a frenetic rock number that bears all the anthemic sensibilities that Powderfinger have become known for – sky-reaching choruses, big guitar lines and the same visceral enthusiasm of some of their most iconic numbers such as ‘My Happiness’, ‘These Days’ and ‘Sunsets’.

The track was initially recorded during the Vulture Street sessions of 2003 but initially never saw the light of day.

“’Day by Day’ was never completed until we opened the archives and went sniffing around for tracks that had never been released,” says vocalist Bernard Fanning. “We never even really had a rough mix of it as we had obviously decided at the time that it didn’t quite fit with the rest of the songs on that album. Looking back now, I’m not sure why and I’m actually amazed we didn’t find a place for it on the record. Once we found it, we had [ARIA Award-winning] Nick DiDia remix it and get it into shape.”

Check out the new track below.

For more on Powderfinger, check out their website and Facebook page.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

The Boite introduces new initiative so more music lovers can access their online gigs

As part of the multicultural music organisation’s ongoing ‘Adapt, Not Cancel’ project.

Ever since the beginning of COVID-19, The Boite has been running their ‘Adapt, Not Cancel’ series to give gig opportunities to musicians at a time where they’ve lost most if not all of their work.

Across the six months that it’s been running, ‘Adapt, Not Cancel’ has proved to be a huge success welcoming artists to perform from all across the world. Up until early July, the series had garnered 35,000 views online and supported 65 artists and 15 audio and video techs.

The next step in the ‘Adapt, Not Cancel’ evolution sees The Boite introduce a new initiative – its ‘5 concerts for $5’ series. For five gigs in September and October, The Boite has dropped the individual ticket price to $5.

The Melbourne music tastemakers believe that anyone should have the opportunity to engage with art and music, regardless of their financial situation, and so ‘5 concerts for $5’ was born.

“We’ve been doing these online concerts since March 22, and we have made them available through social media and through our networks of supporters and members, many of whom would have planned to attend live events with The Boite over the course of the year,” The Boite Programming Director Therese Virtue says.

“Then, as the COVID restrictions went on and became more severe, we began wondering if there were people who were unable to access our events because of the ticket prices – so many people have lost jobs, or are on very limited incomes, so we decided to make an opportunity for everyone to attend regardless of income.”

The ‘5 concerts for $5’ series will commence with a performance from multi-award-winning jazz-inspired collective Zulya & The Children of the Underground Trio from 4pm on Sunday September 20. Then on Sunday October 4, two of Australia’s finest mandolin players, Luke Plumb and Stephen Lalor, will come together to perform a special show.

Following that, the Melbourne Shakuhachi Festival concert will take place on Sunday October 11 before Melbourne recorder player Ryan Williams will team up with Japan-based Miyama McQueen-Tokita for special event titled Unknown Mirrors on Sunday October 18.

The final event in the series will see Persian-Australia singer Shirin Majd perform a collection of love songs. Majd sings in Farsi, Turkish, Spanish and English, so this is sure to be an intriguing show.

The Boite’s ‘5 concerts for $5’ series kicks off on Sunday September 20 and runs until Sunday October 18. For more info and to grab tickets, head here.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Kaiya’s upbeat new single ‘Introspect’ is the lockdown remedy every Melburnian needs

A sprinkle of optimism at a time when we need it most.

Emerging Melbourne R&B artist Kaiya has just revealed her debut single, ‘Introspect’, which seeks to imbue positivity into a glum COVID-19 world. With particular reference to Melbourne’s stage four lockdown, ‘Introspect’ combines Kaiya’s smooth R&B vocals with lush mid-tempo production and stands as a reminder for listeners that everything is going to be ok.

The song first served as a remedy for Kaiya’s own concerns before the concept grew. Soon enough, Kaiya’s idea for ‘Introspect’ was more profound – its message an optimistic infusion for those feeling a little hopeless with their current circumstances.

Strewn with relevance and relatability, it’s no surprise ‘Introspect’ was bedroom written and recorded. There’s an honesty and authenticity to the track that consolidates its compassionate identity.

“When I gazed out at the city I almost felt a sense of relief that it was finally on pause,” Kaiya says of the song’s inspiration. “We’re always trying to go somewhere and to just be there in silence with no beeping of cars was magical.”

While Turkish music was the theme of her family household, it was hip hop that captured Kaiya’s heart early in the piece. Ever since, Kaiya’s been on a journey to explore the foundations of the New York-bred genre, peering into early jazz inspirations before then immersing herself in neo-soul and R&B for which her inspirations Frank Ocean and SZA came into the picture.

To accompany the new track, Kaiya will be dropping a music video on Friday September 18 which she also crafted herself.

Check out the new track below.

‘Introspect’ is out now. For more on Kaiya, check out her website, Facebook and Instagram pages.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

Dealing with increased screen time: Is a digital detox during a pandemic even possible?

We mustn’t feel guilty for the increased screen time we’ve been experiencing.

We’ve all experienced the pang of guilt, when that notification bubble pops up on our phones, reminding us of the seemingly-endless time we’ve spent staring at our screens. That pesky nudge that we may have spent one too many hours scrolling through TikTok or Instagram as we navigate our ongoing lockdown.

It’s hard to ignore the plethora of information and research showing too much screen time can have a negative effect on our mental health and productivity, causing us to associate wrongfulness with time spent in front of our digital screens.

Now, we hear you. How are you supposed to unplug when work, study, communication with loved ones, modes to unwind and even workouts are all online? It’s not just a matter of feeling naked without our phones anymore. We rely on being online for our livelihood and responsibilities as an Australian citizen.

Technology and education researcher, Dr Karl Sebire, says not all screen time is bad, and that we mustn’t be so hard on ourselves given our current circumstances.

“It’s about balance. So, just like how we all enjoy a cheat meal or an extra drink on the weekend or things like that, you shouldn’t feel guilty if you have some downtime scrolling through TikTok or looking at things on Instagram, as long as it’s something that you find relaxes you,” Dr Sebire says.

“It becomes negative as far as screen time goes, if it starts to make you either sad or depressed, or you find you’re not achieving other tasks because you’re drawn into the things on your phone or laptop, tablet or whatever it is.”

View this post on Instagram

i think my phone stopped sending me weekly alerts for screen time hours because it feels bad for me • #comic #comics #webcomics #screentime #alerts #bed #chips #darkness #void #spiral #quarantine #QUAR

A post shared by alex krokus (@alexkrokus) on

Dr Sebire says we should view screen time the same as calories. All foods contain calories but depending on your choices it can either fuel or harm your body. So, there is beneficial screen time, such as research for an assignment or emails with clients which equates to productivity, and then there are moments where you’ve perhaps found yourself in a YouTube rabbit hole mindlessly watching a video of a clumsy panda.

But, Dr Sebire says just like food, it’s about moderation. We should have the choice in engaging in ‘calorific’ online activities but it’s about making responsible choices and practicing self-control.

“So, it’s about the balance and if you’re looking at Instagram Stories and it’s just full of people not in lockdown and you’re feeling a great sense of FOMO or things like that, you’ve got to ask yourself is that a good use of screen time? Is it good calories or bad calories?” Dr Sebire says.

With COVID-19 pivoting our lifestyle online, it’s no secret our screen time has accelerated at high speed. Data released from consulting firm Kantar in April revealed an overall increase in media consumption across all platforms in direct correlation with the pandemic. Web browsing increased by 70%, TV viewing by 63% and social media engagement increased by 61% over normal usage rates.

The data also shows that people in the 18-34 age bracket displayed the biggest increase in usage across messaging platforms. WhatsApp, Facebook and Instagram have all seen a 40%+ increase in usage from under 35-year-olds.

Facebook also shared its own data in March showing views on Instagram and Facebook Live doubled in one week while also reporting an 1,000%+ increase in Messenger group video calls the month prior.

It’s probably a safe assumption to make that not all time consumed glued to our digital screens over this period was benefiting our productive mind or feeding our soul. There are times spent on our devices we could most likely reassess and review.

The benefits of unplugging our devices, beyond putting a blanket on the stream of COVID-19 updates, are a plenty. Beyond Blue says removing yourself from your screen every now and again can result in a “more content and calmer you”.

It will even cure obesity! Okay, not quite. But, Beyond Blue does acknowledge Australia’s obesity issue can largely be associated to a lifestyle tied to the couch, staring at a screen.

View this post on Instagram

Too much screen.⁠⠀ Misfit Monday.⁠⠀ ⁠⠀ #concepts #sketch #doodles #editorial #misfitmonday #screentime #illustration #editorialillustration #mondaymisfits #sketches #concepts #shelved #rejects #trytryagain #sketchbook #scraps #illustration #atlantacreatives #art #motivationmonday

A post shared by Rachel Eleanor ( on

As Melburnians remain in lockdown for the next little while, stepping away from our digital devices will continue to be a difficult, and often unrealistic, task. But Dr Sebire says simple things like switching FaceTime catchups to a normal phone call can make a big difference.

“We’ve evolved to communicate non-verbally and now our brains are working overtime to understand each other when all those cues are lost,” Dr Sebire says. “So that’s why people are probably feeling an immense amount of fatigue at the end of the day sitting on Zoom because your brain’s working overtime to try and understand the things that come naturally when you’re face to face with someone.

“So, you might be able to just have a chat, either walking outside or sitting on the couch and you don’t have to be looking at yourself almost the whole time. But, if you want to chat, you might prefer to text them, or a simple old-fashioned phone call might do the trick.”

Another thing that’s worth being wary of is checking in on yourself if you’ve just gone from working screen to social screen with no downtime in between. Do I need to take a break?

Taking time to ensure you’re breaking up your ‘good’ and ‘bad’ screen time can help your brain process the difference between work and relaxation. But, the main takeaway is to not feel guilt and to acknowledge that screen time is healthy.

“Think about if we didn’t have any screen time at the moment, how truly isolated we would be and to look forward to the fact that hopefully in the coming weeks, we will be able to put the phones away and to be without them,” says Dr Sebire.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

World-first COVID-safe music festival announced for Australia

From the WA promoters Macro Music.

A world-first COVID-safe festival is set to hit Western Australia in October with Macro Music announcing the inaugural edition of Good Day Sunshine.

Going down on Saturday October 31 in Busselton, the event will be capped at 5,000 people and split into four separate areas, each named after famous surf spots in the region – Cobblestones, Windmills, The Point and Injidup. At the centre of the festival there will be a revolving stage, aptly named The Turntable Stage.

Each of the four sections will be split into 1,250-people capacities to decrease the risk of any spread of COVID-19 and allow Good Day Sunshine to operate at Western Australia’s current spacing restrictions of two square metres per person.

With each area operating as its own individual event, with its own entry, exit and amenities, punters will be able to select which area they want to be in prior to the event via a secure online booking system. Once they have chosen their area, the festival-goer must remain in that section for the entirety of the event.

“We are excited to roll out this format for Good Day Sunshine. It will be great to have music events of a larger capacity rolling in Australia again,” said Macro Music CEO Ross Macpherson. “We have been working with the local council, police, health and various other stakeholders to ensure the format complies with the current COVID guidelines for WA. All have been incredibly supportive of our ideas.

“We will be monitoring the situation, and we are in constant contact with the relevant stakeholders. Should the situation in WA change, we will work to whatever guidelines are needed. The health and safety of our patrons and the state of WA are our top priority. And of course, if a situation arises that prevents us from going ahead, we will be prepared to refund tickets.”

The first lineup has also been announced for the event with the likes of John Butler, Xavier Rudd, Josh Pyke, Vikki Thorn, Kyle Lionhart, Dulcie and Moon & Honey set to perform.

Check out a walk-through of the event below.

Good Day Sunshine goes down in Busselton, WA, on Saturday October 31. More info here.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

17 sure-fire ways to get kicked out or refused entry to a club

Do with this information what you will.

It’s been six months since Melburnians have been able to step foot in their favourite clubs and bars, and it’s really starting to hurt. Everyone is looking back on the Melbourne clubbing scene with rose-coloured glasses, reminiscing on live music, getting sweaty on the dance floor and stumbling down that treacherous Revs staircase at sunrise.

But in this yearning haze, it’s easy to forget the minefield that is Melbourne clubbing. Getting in and staying in venues is an art form that takes practice and skill to perfect, and we’re all very, very out of practice.

So as a refresher, here are some quick and easy ways to end your night before it’s even begun.

And yes, all these things have actually happened.

1. Taking your shoes off in the entry line

Okay, it’s a long walk to Yah Yah’s and you wore heels because you weren’t planning on going out. No matter the circumstances, don’t shed your hooves under a bouncer’s watchful eye.

2. Taking your shoes off in the club

Yeah alright, just keep your shoes on. This one will give you tetanus or something.

3. Dancing on the furniture

At some venues such as Lucky Coq or Bimbo, there’s enough furniture to fit out your family home. That doesn’t mean jumping up and down on a couch or dancing on a table is a wise choice.

4. Telling the bouncer you’ve only had three drinks

Do you think any bouncer in the history of time has ever believed anyone who’s said they’ve only had three drinks? If they have to ask how much you’ve had, I think they already know the answer is too much (so why do they even bother asking?).

5. Closing your eyes in the smokers

It’s the first time you’ve been able to sit down in hours and the dancing combined with the seven vodka lime sodas you’ve downed have finally caught up with you.

“I just want to lean on my friend and close my eyes just for one second… pleeeeease.”

6. Then yelling “NOBODY BLINK” when they tell you not to close your eyes in the smokers

Alright, maaaybe that was pushing it.

7. Closing your eyes in the line for the toilet

General rule: keep your shoes on and your eyes open, okay?

8. Sometimes, just being a male

You’re either the guys begging a random group of girls to pretend you all came together, or you’re the random group of girls. It’s happened to everyone, and as much you want to deny it, it’ll happen again.

9. Running behind the bar to try and pour your own drink

Either you’re officially lit and the liquid courage has gotten to your head or you’re a mischievous rapscallion who yearns for the tomfoolery.

10. Trying to climb up the cage around a DJ booth

The result of acting on impulse and maybe getting a few laughs. Getting booted for this shouldn’t be surprising, honestly, you’re lucky you didn’t wind up with broken ankles.

11. Trying to get a drink from a different bartender after you’ve been cut off

You might think you’re showing 007 levels of spy-work and deception here, but chances are this will not work. You might not realise but bartenders can converse and talk to each other while they’re working.

12. Passing out… in the dunny

You don’t know how long you’ve been there but it was long enough for some people waiting in line to get security to come in and check. By the time they’ve managed to wake you up and open the door, its abundantly clear it’s time for you to head home.

13. Trying to smuggle in your own drinks

“No mate, I swear that can-shaped thing inside my bag is just my phone, seriously!”

14. Leaning on the outside wall in the entry line

Then having to convince the bouncer that you’re not so drunk you can’t stand up, you’re just tired and chose the wrong shoes to be standing in line for this long.

The Maxi Taxi ride here just really took it out of you. Sure, you could have toned down your acapella rendition of ‘Untouched’ by The Veronicas on the way there to save your energy, but that’s not really in your nature, is it?

15. Inciting a crowd chant of the Vengaboys’ ‘We Like to Party’ when the entry line is taking too long

Apparently, the bouncers don’t like to party.

16. Having a chunder

If you chunder in da club and aren’t kicked out, that’s a success story. If the aim on your projectile went awry and vom juice has wandered down your shirt, I’d give you a 1 in 100 chance of salvaging your night.

17. And of course, just being too damn drunk

It happens to the best of us.

Despite all your best efforts to stand up straight, look the bouncer dead in the eye, and act like an upstanding, functional member of society, you couldn’t quite hack it.

You can’t really argue much with this call, you had to know it was coming and as much as you wish you were on the d-floor right now, the bouncer probably made the right choice. Off you go mate, just try not to trip on you walk of shame out of here.

Keen on another fun read? Check out our piece on the 23 things every Melburnian has done on a night out.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

LIVE STREAM – River Whyless

The Levitt Shell Virtual Series allows travel and music lovers around Australia and the world, to be transported to the city of Memphis – virtually. For the remaining weeks of September, those at home can tune in on Saturdays at 10:30am (AEST), and watch performances from the last decade by some of the Levitt Shell’s and Memphis favourite artists.


The Levitt Shell Virtual Series allows travel and music lovers around Australia and the world, to be transported to the city of Memphis – virtually. For the remaining weeks of September, those at home can tune in on Saturdays at 10:30am (AEST), and watch performances from the last decade by some of the Levitt Shell’s and Memphis favourite artists.

New $4,957 fine announced for Melburnians caught trying to enter regional Victoria

The fine aims to deter those in metropolitan Melbourne from fleeing to regional Victoria as restrictions in those areas ease.

The Victorian government has announced a new fine of $4,957 for anybody caught trying to enter regional Victoria from metropolitan Melbourne. The new offence will be introduced from 11:59pm on Wednesday September 16.

With regional Victoria set to move to step three of the state government’s reopening roadmap from midnight tonight, the fine aims to deter those in Melbourne from fleeing to regional areas to enjoy the easing restrictions.

Police will also ramp up patrols of checkpoints, caravan parks, boat ramps, as well as state and national parks, particularly during the school holidays which commence on Monday September 21, to catch those doing the wrong thing.

“[Victoria Police] will be highly visible and active to prevent people from entering the regional and rural areas, particularly during the school holidays,” said Deputy Commissioner, Regional Operations Rick Nugent in a press conference this afternoon.

“We do not want regional and rural communities to be put at risk by Melbourne metropolitan people. We don’t want the virus to spread again in these rural areas,” he added.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

We chat to Sonia Serin about the inspiration behind her new video, ‘The Walls’

We catch up with the Melbourne singer-songwriter.

Beloved Melbourne singer-songwriter Sonia Serin has just revealed her new single ‘The Walls’, which comes alongside a film clip shot by Goat Records’ Andrew Dobrowlski and Tori Dunbar from Humnize Productions.

The lyrics for the track are a candid exploration of the emotional barricades we put up to shield our most vulnerable selves in relationships. Mirroring the track, the accompanying clip is poised, elegant, yet beautifully honest.

A masterful drummer and guitarist who has only recently added the piano to her repertoire, Sonia is full of surprises. Despite the melodic power of her voice in ‘The Walls’ which instantly inspires emotional connection, Sonia says her voice is not her “main instrument”.

“I never really saw myself as a great singer as such,” Sonia says. “When I started songwriting, I was singing away the melodies myself, but really I find singing so difficult because you’re at your most vulnerable.”

The music video for ‘The Walls’ is particularly captivating. Shot at Melbourne’s own Montsalvat Art Residency and the Eltham Dance Studio, the clip’s visual language emphasises the ideas rippling through the lyrics. It features the dancers Luke Zapelli and Lindsey Gillard, who dance the tango and paso doble in an entrancing whirlwind, emulating the push and pull of relationships.

A self-professed “bit of a control freak”, Sonia was involved with the entire process for the music video clip, and even edited the video herself.

“I’m sure I frustrated the hell out of everyone,” she laughs. “Filming it, with the dancers, I think I enjoyed that the most on this track. They were so gracious, it was just so fun.”

With the track initially released last year, 2020’s ongoing disruptions delayed the music video’s release. The inspiration for ‘The Walls’ arose out of the “emotional distancing” and “freezing out” Sonia had experienced during a long-gone relationship, and as Sonia turns over a new leaf, now felt like the right time to get the clip out there.

“The UNRESOLVED album is really like a chapter of the last two or so years, during which I experienced an incredible amount of loss and grief, and it just feels like I’m coming out of that, like it’s a new chapter,” she says.

Sonia has a livestream gig coming up on Friday September 25 as part of Australian Acoustic Live which stands as her first gig since COVID-19 hit in mid-March.

“A livestream… it’ll be an interesting experience,” she chuckles. “I don’t really see myself as a front-person type of performer … I feel comfortable sitting back.”

But ‘The Walls’ and its video debut have signalled the start of a new chapter for Sonia, who says the release has brought with it a “feeling of closure” around the “emotional experience around the album and this song”.

With a gorgeous new video breathing life into her song about guarded exteriors and vulnerable insides, Sonia is contemplating her own walls, and how they might be falling away.

“I just feel energised, it’s almost like I’ve dropped a guard myself,” she says. “Like how I was saying I find it so hard to be vulnerable when I sing. Now, after all of this, I don’t care as much any more – that layer of self-consciousness is gone.”

For more on Sonia Serin, check out her website, Facebook and Instagram pages.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.

The captivating new video series that captures the impact of COVID-19 on the music industry

Introducing Banding Together.

The Australian Music Vault (AMV) is back with its latest project – a new three-part video series that captures the impact of COVID-19 on the music industry. Banding Together brings together recognised names from all corners of the industry to engage in honest conversations about how music has responded to the unprecedented situation.

The first interviews of Banding Together were conducted as early as April and across the next four months, the Australian Music Vault pieced the story together bit by bit. As COVID-19 shook the music industry in all different directions, the Australian Music Vault was there to document it.

From episode one which captures the early stages of the COVID-19 wrath, where the Australian music industry was debilitated almost instantly, to episode two which celebrates the unparalleled innovation of Isol-Aid – the Instagram Live music festival that not only redefined the way music can be consumed but also provided an escape for a country of forlorn music fans.

Episode three of Banding Together shines a light on the industry leaders. The likes of ARIA CEO Dan Rosen, esteemed artist manager Michael Parisi, Melbourne Lord Mayor Sally Capp, Arts Centre Melbourne CEO Claire Spencer AM, among others, share their stories of where the industry was placed before COVID-19 struck, and how it was suddenly upended in mid-March.

Other revered names to appear throughout the series include Jimmy Barnes, Michael Gudinski, Emily Ulman, Martin Foley, N’fa Jones and Bonnie Dalton, each providing their own unique snapshots of the shapeshifting industry before them.

Banding Together was produced by Australian Music Vault Music Industry Advisor & Special Projects, Carl Gardiner, alongside AMV Advisory Board Member, Marcus Knight.

“Both Marcus and I were humbled and extremely grateful for the trust shown by all the people from our music community we interviewed,” Gardiner said of the project. “They allowed us into their lives and lounge rooms during very challenging times. Their stories provide Banding Together the opportunity to show an insightful and very human side of our music community during these extraordinary times.”

The first episode of Banding Together is out now with the following two episodes to be released across the next two Tuesdays.

Watch episode one of Banding Together below.

The following two episodes of Banding Together will be released on Tuesdays September 22 and September 29. For more info, head to the Australian Music Vault website.

Never miss a story. Sign up to Beat’s newsletter and you’ll be served fresh music, arts, food and culture stories three times a week.