By Alana Mazurke
Next week will see the reputable BIGSOUND festival return for it’s 13th year showcasing an array of up and coming musicians, music industry figureheads and conferences bracing modern day issues arising within the industry. The event is known as one of the most relevant industry guided festivals in Australia both at home and internationally. This year will see two days of a hundred bands plus performing at 12 different venues in Fortitude Valley, Brisbane as well as 30 new speakers, 37 panels and keynote addresses including the legend himself Mick Harvey. Established acts such as Megan Washington, Liam Finn, The Church and Russell Morris will be there talking music, careers, lifestyles and then some making the event all the more larger in scale.
Below is a list of top 10 artists showcasing at this years event comprised for their immense talent shown already, however, every musician is deserving of recognition so for the full lists of acts and ticketing information head to the BIGSOUND website.
2. Client Liaison
6. HOLY HOLY
7. Kathryn Rollins
8. Milwaukee Banks
10. The Creases
NEW MUSIC: Cold War Kids01.09.14
By Alana Mazurke
With the recent announcement of forthcoming album Hold My Home set for release October 17th, Cold War Kids have given us a taste of their new material uploading latest track “All This Could Be Yours” via Soundcloud. The four piece have cemented a headline spot on this years 2014/2015 Falls Festival bill, stating that Australian fans will be the first to hear the new tracks live. The track showcases the notorious vocals of Nathan Willett as well as paying homage to the rawness and poetic lyricism expected to be found in the early stages of Cold War Kids catalogue.
Listen to the new single below.
Tickets and information on this years Falls Festival can be found here.
Daniel Merriweather @ Howler – 06-08-201406.08.14
Photos by: Cesar Rodrigues
New Track From Melbourne’s Playwrite30.07.14
Written in the Victorian hinterland by band members Patrick Holcombe and Jordan White and orchestrated over hundreds of dark nights in a Brunswick warehouse by the band as a whole. The single was recorded deep in the heart of Melbourne at Sing Sing Studio, produced by Jimi Maroudas (Kimbra, Eskimo Joe, Bertie Blackman) and mastered by Emily Lazar (Haim, Vampire Weekend, James Vincent).
PHOTOS: The Aviary Studio Is Expanding23.07.14
FEATURE: Holy Holy08.07.14
By Alana Mazurke
Consisting of Timothy Carroll and Oscar Dawson, duo Holy Holy released their first EP The Pacific earlier this year to much critical acclaim. The release has already seen two of the four tracks showcased as singles – “Impossible Like You” and “House Of Cards”, both of which have received extremely good reception from listeners. The bands first tour sees them at Shebeen this Friday night to promote their contemporary melodically driven, yet upbeat tunes whilst further enhancing the anticipation of a full length debut. I talked to Tim about the makings of a new band and setting the EP out for the nations viewing as well as becoming curator to a boutique festival in Tasmania, signing to a label and the potential of an album release for Holy Holy.
“Some songs on the album are a bit sweeter and melodic; it was good to get the more rocky songs on the EP and make some space on the album for those so that the album will make a slightly different statement.”
Award winning singer songwriter Carroll explains why he and Dawson (who can be known for his work in Ali Barter and Dukes of Windsor) chose to release an EP rather than long play in light f the bands launch.“We have more than an albums worth of songs recorded but decided that releasing an EP with a couple songs we were really proud of and touring those first before an LP release would be best as a new band. So the albums there ready to come when we feel the time is right.” With a mention of even more new songs being rehearsed in the week past, I feel fans can be thankful that we will be hearing new Holy Holy material sooner than later.
The duo were picked up by Sydney based label Wonderlick in the early stages of their career, snapping them up in the midst of a bidding wave of wanting buyers. “It’s a big a decision as whom you want to play in the band. There’s a lot of different things to consider as a young band like if it’s at the right time, who the team is, the actual agreements that you make; each deal that a label does with a band can be different across the board so the important thing is to have a good team support to aid those decisions. You need to understand what it is you’re agreeing to but there’s also an element of trust of the people making the offer. They [Wonder lick] came to Brisbane to see a few shows and they were in to what we were doing and were there from the beginning wanting to be involved. There was that effort there and feeling of trust, it felt right.” Apparently not having to put all the bands expenses on the personal credit cards anymore has its perks also.
First meeting as volunteers in South East Asia, Carroll and Dawson found themselves drawn to each other’s personalities and musical capabilities. After a freak encounter again years later the pair decided to start making music, recording first demos in 2011 whilst in Europe. “We definitely have a big connection; he’s a thoughtful and intelligent person and he’s certainly an interesting dinner party companion. Thankfully over the years we were just keeping in touch and were really fortunate that while in Europe we came together again and started writing.”
“I’m based in Brisbane and Oscar in Melbourne. We’re separate and have been kind of moving around a lot…when we’re touring we see each other. We send each other a lot of music and on a down day try to get to a studio and do some recording or rehearsing as a band… I’d love the chance to play together more but we make it work.”
For the first time this year Tim along with fellow director Dan Rook, curated their first independent music festival Panama in Tasmania to great success. “When I was 18 there was a group of us who went and worked on UK festivals over the Summer, so we got to see a lot of festivals at the time, saw what worked, what we liked and didn’t like, we’d always talked about one day putting a festival up on Dans [Rook] site in Tasmania so we networked and it delivered the festival hah. It all came together last year and we decided to take the risk, it was originally a one night but when Charles Bradley came on board we had to commit to a two day event…we’re currently working on the 2015 program!”
“I’m Wide Awake, It’s Morning by Bright Eyes was an important album for me because even though I had been writing a lot before that, I was listening to it whilst overseas and I guess it set kind of a bench mark for me in light of musical genius hah.”
Recorded live to tape and produced by Matt Redlich – known for his work with Ball Park Music, Emma Louise and The Trouble With Templeton, The Pacific gives listeners four lyrically profound, musically innovative tracks.“Until recently I was writing songs by myself, and then taking them to the band where they added their parts; now were writing more collaboratively and Oscar as a brilliant composer has been having a larger influence on the songs. I’m much more enjoying that and the songs too are better for it.”
Tickets for Friday night’s gig can be found via www.holyholymusic.com/live/
You can buy The Pacific EP here.
FEATURE: Caitlin Park07.07.14
By Alana Mazurke
Sydney songstress and acoustic-electronic master Caitlin Park is soon to embark on an East Coast tour, showcasing sophomore LP The Sleeper. The album released in May, has seen the successful release of singles ‘Hold Your Gaze’ and ‘Lemonade’. Now the fellow True Detective fan has announced a new Ep titled To Breathe You Out set for release July 11th as a fitting conclusion to the story behind The Sleeper and is the B-side to the LP. On tour with the effervescent Park comes Emma Russack, Shanna Watson, Sahara Beck, Fieu and Joyride who has recently re worked the ‘Lemonade’ single into a solid remix.
”I’m watching each domino fall slowly but I just want to push them all now! “
In 2011 Park released her debut album Milk Annual and received a sparkling reception from critics. That reception also saw massive tour supports for Caitlin with the likes of Active Child, Big Scary, First Aid Kit and James Vincent McMorrow to name a few. I pondered whether or not the similarity of music and style was important for an emerging artist when choosing to accept a support or rather if the exposure was just as significant. ”I was in the UK when I was asked about supporting Active Child, had a listen and I actually thought it was quite dissimilar to what I do, yet it really captivated me. The one thing I would take into account [in playing as support act] would be the fact that playing a show to a really large audience doesn’t phase me, but to play to one that isn’t really interested is a really draining thing to do. You’re trying to captivate people who are listening which might be few and far between but if you’re playing to nothing it can be really tiring.”
Last year Park played with unknown prospects at The Great Escape Festival in Brighton, UK being picked from a multitude of Australian acts. She stayed on to play a string of sideshows and noted some differences from playing at her local in Sydney. “There was an interesting difference between playing Australia and the UK…in the way the audience would come up and say id really love that lyric and be really into the lyricism in the songs [in the UK] whereas Australia is more about the rhythm…you kind of feel like a bull in a pen surrounded by a whole lot of other bulls; it feels really high risk and you have this 20 minute showcase but turned out it was really good…we had a full house and I got to rehearse with the band that I’d never played with hah.”
“It’s not a long album but all of the tracks i’m really happy with, especially the way it feels when you listen to it from start to finish. I feel like people don’t really listen to an album start to finish, but artists do care about that and it means a lot to me, I really care deeply about the lyrics and the way it was put together.”
Having utilised a solid written schedule to bust out the recording of 10 songs in 8 days out in the remote Australian countryside, it’s no wonder Park is full of adulation toward her work. ”I’m extremely proud of the record and I think it’s the best piece of work that I’ve put together. It wasn’t really a slow process at all. I took a year off and then started writing the new album basically a year after Milk Annual came out; I realised that I wanted to create a conceptual album that fit really well because Milk Annual was quite a facetious album I wrote over 4 years. The first song on Milk Annual was the first song that I wrote ever. The sleeper was written over 2 months, at the time I was working 6 days a week – work 8 hour days and then go home eat nothing and write music. I find that I’m much more productive if I’m flat out. I took three months off working after writing Milk Annual and I wrote nothing!” Her capability to create this new aged version of folktronica in a way thats refreshing and fun yet meaningful whilst proving her talent as a multi-instrumentalist opens up a really exciting pathway for Park, to excel not only in Australia but internationally. There is no doubt that we will be seeing a lot more from this progressive singer-songwriter in the near future.
Tour dates below.
July 11th//The Vanguard//Sydney
August 1st//Bella Union//Melbourne
w/ Emma Russack & Shanna Watson
August 2nd//The Hive//Brisbane (All Ages)
w/ Fieu & Sahara Beck
PHOTOS: Violent Soho @ The Hifi Bar Melbourne – 05-07-201405.07.14
PHOTOS: Archer @ The Workers Club – 29-06-201402.07.14
Checkout Archer here…
PHOTOS: DARK MOFO 2014 by SUPPLE FOX – Red Death Ball – Kirin J Callinan – Bronx – HTRK – Mykki Blanco & MORE22.06.14
RED DEATH BALL
FAUX MO – Bronx, Mykki Blanco, 6 Ft Hick, HTRK, Kirin J Callinan, & Jazz Party
FERRIS WHEEL OF DEATH
PHOTOS: Joelistics @ The Workers Club 14-06-201417.06.14
Photos: Cesar Rodrigues
Q&A: The Creases17.06.14
By Alana Mazurke
Four piece The Creases have had a string of fortune recently with a signing to a major label, numerous well known support act slots as well as the announcement of their first EP set to be released later in the year. I talk to vocalist and guitarist Aimon Clark about the latest successes to shed some light on a young bands upcoming.
I guess the first question I have to ask is how does a small from Brisbane who’d only been around for a short time feel after opening for acts like Franz Ferdinand and The Preatures? I mean, surely it would have been a learning curve for all involved, but did it give you any extra drive to make music or play music live, more so than before?
It was pretty surreal honestly, especially playing with Franz Ferdinand. It was a last minute offer from them and I grew up loving their music, theirs were probably some of the first songs I ever learned to play on guitar, so when we found we had the gig I was jumping around my house with excitement trying to find people to tell. The Preatures show was also pretty amazing, I think it was our second or third show ever so we were pretty nervous to play so soon with a band we respected so much. Both these bands were some of the nicest and most generous people we could’ve hoped to have played with, the level of professionalism and talent was incredibly inspiring.
The track ‘I Won’t Wait’ was released on vinyl. A lot of bands are now choosing to release their music be it albums or first EP’s on vinyl; are the days of compact discs truly over?
Maybe for the moment but these things always come in cycles, I think more and more bands are even releasing stuff on tape these days. I started collecting records because I remember how proud my dad was of his vinyls and wanted to maybe one day show something like that to my kids, instead of an ipod full of songs or a burnt cd or something. It’s always nice to have something to hold, and most vinyls these days usually come with free mp3 downloads (which is pretty handy).
Signing to Liberation Music; i’m not going to ask how it feels, because obviously it’s pretty satisfying. How hard is it for an unsigned band to make their way into the music industry i.e. how hard was it for The Creases until this deal?
Haha, yeah definitely feels pretty good. We were incredibly lucky with this band to be ‘discovered’ incredibly early into our career. It must’ve been so hard for bands in the days before blogs and the internet, im not sure exactly how you would go about getting noticed. In saying that though we did work really hard to get where we are today and were also insanely lucky to land our manager Maggie, one of the hardest working ladies in Brisbane.
Having played recently at The Great Escape Festival, did you find the reception and or vibe to be different in the UK to Australia?
The Great Escape festival was pretty amazing, Brighton is definitely one of the coolest places I’ve ever been. The shows felt pretty similar to home the vibe of the festival in general was really different. The closest thing we have back home is Brisbane’s Bigsound festival which doesn’t quite take over the city as much, although it is still pretty young. Everyone in Brighton knew about Great Escape and there were so many international artists and things today outside of shows, I would love to go back again one day.
You’ll be releasing your first EP sooner than later this year. What can people expect from the 5 tracks? After the releasing ‘Static Lines’ to the public, does that ease any apprehensive feelings you may have had toward putting your work to everyone?
Yeah definitely, It’s nothing too drastic but Static Lines definitely has a different feel from our earlier releases. I really hoped people would like where we’re going and so far it seems to be going pretty well! This EP definitely has more of a whole band feel to it and most tracks were recorded live all together. It’s definitely more professional sounding than our first single but we were trying to make an EP that we would like to listen to and hopefully some other people will as well.
The band have been noted as multiple genres; seemingly there are a lot of influences in your music be it all very entertaining. When the band writes together, are there any notable differences in styles which on paper should clash and yet actually works to make a Creases track?
I think we all have a pretty cohesive idea of the way we want a song to sound during the writing stage, in saying that though nothing ever sounds the way you expect it to when the whole band plays together, which isn’t always a bad thing. I should also note that our new drummer is a pretty decent rapper, though these skills are yet to feature in any Creases songs (don’t want to rule anything out though).
The high waisted guitars, the two singers, the inevitable dancey bop when playing; is it safe to say you’re all Beatles fans?
Haha, it’s pretty hard not to be when you’re any kind of pop band where guitars are involved. I’m glad you noticed our dancey bop as well and will keep an eye out for any japanese performance artists in the future.
You’ve toured so much already only to continue with an up coming East coast tour to promote ‘Static Lines’. After the release of the EP, what does The Creases hope to have achieved by this time next year?
We’re definitely aiming to have an album out by early next year, we wrote this current EP in the month leading up to our first tour so it should be more than enough time for an album! Would love to keep touring Australia and the UK and to keep playing with and meeting cool people in each country.
‘Static Lines’ East Coast tour details below.
Friday//20 June//Black Bear Lodge//Brisbane
Saturday//21 June//Live It Up Festival, Brisbane (Under 18s)
Friday//27 June//Brighton Up Bar//Sydney
Sunday//27 July//Splendour In The Grass
FEATURE: Band Of Skulls12.06.14
By Alana Mazurke
English trio Band Of Skulls have announced an Australian East coast tour after the successful release of third album Himalayan. The LP, released March of this year, follows suit of previous releases 2012′s Sweet Sour and 2009′s Baby Darling Doll Face Honey, maintaining the known alt rock Band Of Skulls sound. Yet this time round it seems that the Southampton trio have decided to turn up the volume, pace and punch making their recent tour announcement all the more desirable. I spoke to vocalist and guitarist Russell Marsden about the upcoming tour, creating Himalayan and how the band could possibly deal with the incessant touring.
To say this band tour a lot would be a massive understatement. In the next 5 months the band will play in over 14 different countries and what seem to me to be an innumerable amount of shows with the band only just reaching the halfway mark. “You have to set yourself little goals, halfway is always a good goal to aim for. You don’t want to wish it away; you just take it as it all comes.” The long list includes quite some big named festivals such as Reeding and Leeds Festival and Glastonbury. “For our own shows we can prepare for them, with a festival they’re always different, it’s exciting but things can go wrong. You don’t know if you’re gonna enjoy a festival until it happens. It’s a great way to get your music to people that haven’t heard you yet… like one big music convention.”
“When we get to Glastonbury we will feel very satisfied with our days work.”
The last time Band Of Skulls reached our shoreline was in 2012 for their Sweet Sour tour and like many bands before them will make the long journey again to play their raw, bluesy raucousness. “There’s a healthy mix of cultures there and we seem to do well with a mix bag…Australia has all bases covered; we’re really excited to come back and play some bigger shows it feels like it’s been a long time.” Which is most likely due to the constant touring in between each album release. It’s been 5 years since the release of first LP which featured popular tracks ‘Death By Diamonds And Pearls’ and ‘Blood’; in retrospect 5 years seems like a long time, but even to me I haven’t felt it’s been all that long from hearing Band Of Skulls for the first time to now. “So much has happened but it doesn’t feel like a long time; we’ve been working for 5 years solid which is good as now when we played the songs together they all seem on the same level, old song or new song they just sound like us its cool to hear.”
“We do a lot of touring which is good but as a small band it costs a lot of money to do., I think a lot of bands will realise they need to sort a balance out with that. I think you’ll find more bands will put out more records out to support myself. I’d like to put more records out and work even faster than we are actually.”
The band worked with producer Nick Launay known for his work with Yeah Yeah Yeah’s and Nick Cave on the band’s latest studio release Himalayan. Launay, who is said to be an Australian advocate, really tied in well with this album. All 12 tracks just sound well produced and obviously tied in so well with the bands sound and structure. “Our goal was to make a record that would really help our live show…that was fun to play. It’s got more energy than the first record even. Nick…he opened our minds to a load of new ideas that we will take with us.” The LP was released earlier this year and is now available on vinyl and as Richard states “It’s something to show your mum!” Tour dates and info below as well as first single off the new record ‘Asleep At The Wheel’.
Melbourne//June 17th//The Hi-Fi
Syndey//June 20th//The Hi-Fi
Brisbane//June 21st//The Hi-Fi