Sunday, 7 June 2009

Vice verses

I've been writing a few things here and there for Vice Australia. These are my reviews from the last two issues. A few of these did not make it into the Technology issue, but I have decided to include them anyway. Writing for Vice is an interesting experience. All critiques are written according to the Vice style guide. There is also a Tough Troubles Interview, but you'll have to source a copy for that.

King Creosote 1/10
‘’Flick the Vs’’
Domino Records UK.

A puppy freaks out when it sees it’s own reflection for the first time. It growls, gnaws it’s teeth and lunges back and forth, but on the inside, it’s scared. King Creosote felt similar when they first heard their new record. They cheered, slapped high-fives and jumped up and down, but on the inside, the lads were petrified. A puppy soon learns to chase cats and catch Frisbees. King Creosote seldom leaves the kennel.


Jenny Wilson 9/10
Universal Music Australia

Swedes can be boring when you actually meet them. Their sense of humour revolves around the lighter side of furniture malfunction, the irony of poor design, and the tragedy of regressive social-politics. I’m sure Jenny Wilson chuckled when she accidentally rolled the tape back too far for an overdub. Oh how she laughed (in a reserved manner) when she sang slightly off-key in a two-part harmony. In her open-plan, practically furnished recording studio, Jenny Wilson has produced high-quality, accessible and mature product.

Peaches 5/10
‘’I Feel Cream’’
Remote Control Records Australia

Peaches’ relevance is waning, fast! This particular offering could appeal to the roaming packs of weekend warriors, crawling the Brunzo Street tiles this Saturday night. They’re wearing the same shirts. They’re sporting stubbie holders on their wrists. They’re drinking Bundy Rum. They don’t care much for the hairy-armpit brigade singing, but chicks hell froth over this shit so whatever.

Iron Lung/Hatred Surge collaboration 10/10
Iron Lung Records USA

Neanderthal man cowered in fear the moment he first put his hand into naked flame. Upon second and third attempts, he quickly learned to approach with trepidation, curiosity and above all else, respect. Following this, the constructive and destructive properties of fire became an integral part of his day-to-day existence. In 2009, ‘’Broken’’ is the closest possible case study we have towards gaining an empathetic understanding of early man’s initial journey of discovery.

Spoonbill 6/10
Omelette Records Australia

After reading the words ‘’quirk funk’’ in the promo sheet, I was certain this was file-13 material. However, truth be told, these guys actually make me laugh, ALOT! Spoonbill sounds like a group of mischievous kids snooping around a stainless steel kitchen at night. Every song could have been used as the introduction to the ABC children’s television show- ‘’Lift Off.’’ Indeed, Mark Mitchell could definitely perform a grotesque striptease to this album!

The Night Terrors 10
Back to Zero
Exo Records

Exo Records is good records. Night Terrors music is good music. TNT has a serious Goblin-vibe happening here. They could easily score a horror film set in American Apparel. I could picture tram-loads of Gentlewomen with the same body shape, clothes, opinions and haircuts walking around the racks in a zombie like state, just tripping on all the offensive colours and price tags.

Madder Lake 10
Butterfly Farm
Aztec Records

The Australian psychedelic bands of the 70s were an unruly mob of farm boys, surfers and factory hands, completely armed to the teeth with amplification! They got into communal living for the drugs and the loose sheilas. They didn’t give a shit for peace, love and understanding. They were real men, with real problems, who would punch your head in if you looked at them funny. Along with contemporaries Coloured Balls and Black Feather, Madder Lake played the hostile suburban pub circuit every night of the week. They’re offerings were of an astonishingly high standard, but due to who they were, and where they were from, they never received much international recognition. Maybe this release will see these acid-eaters finally get their dues? Vinyl reissue please.

Dirty York 5
Waiting on St George
Whisky Mama Records

Australian career musicians, aye? I prefer to call them call centre employees. Listen, it didn’t work for Daryl Braithwait, James Reyne or the Tin Lids, so what makes you think it’ll work for you? You live in Melbourne, not New York. This came on when I was watching TV. It caught my attention immediately. So much so, I had to crank the volume on the TV just so I could hear the show I was watching. Eventually, I got up and turned the stereo off and was much happier.

Heirs 9
Exo Records

Drums are unreal aren’t they? You smash the fuck out em’ and it feels good. The drummer from Heirs approaches the drums with anger and frustration. Whether he’s setting them up, playing them, throwing them into the car, or liaising with drum shop employees, this guy is not happy, and it shows. Heirs are fingering the pulse, hard! Now they just gotta leave the melody at home and make the ugliness, uglier.

DM Smith 7
Heavy Ghost
Spunk Records

Ignorence breeds the best music. Robert Johnson didn’t sell his sole to do good at calculus. He done it so he could play guitar like Satan. You shouldent have to be a rocket surgeon to understand music. I wish these guys done a instruction book so I have understand it gooder. Not that I can read or nothin’, but still...

Bellini 3
The Precious Prize of Gravity
Temporary Resident records

If Bellini had distorted guitar, double kicks and screaming, they would be a technical heavy metal band and you would hate them. Their fans would be from outside the city fringe and you would hate them too. Their pants would be too loose and you would refuse to be friends with them. As it stands though, Bellini are non-threatening and angular enough for you and mates to like them. Ladies and Gentlemen, this is the sound of progressive minds at work. This is the sound of strong musical ability. This is the sound of paint drying.


1 comment:

B-RO! said...

Please write record reviews for the next issue of THE NEGATIVE GUEST LIST fanzine. I like these ones! I thanks!