Posts Tagged ‘Playlist’

Splendour In The Grass 2016 // Review

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Sun, cider and outrageous dancing, coupled with some damn good quality music, basically sums up Splendour 2016. As festival-goers nation wide begin to experience the post Splendour blues, I thought it would be best to recap the highlights and the hilarious life lessons learnt throughout the weekend.

Day 1// Can I pay you in magic?

Day one was top quality to say the least. Armed with falafel chips, staminade and vodka concealed in pringle packets, I joined thousands of enthusiastic punters making their way to SITG16. Thankfully the unspeakable mud-quandary-of-2015 quickly became an ancient memory, as the sun worked it’s magic and kicked off the weekend with nothing but blue skies all round. By the time we wrestled with our tents and got our lives in order, we headed in to see the timeless Aussie greats, the DMAs. As always they managed to fill the amphitheatre despite their early set time and didn’t disappoint. To the crowds delight Tommy O’Dell smashed out their ultimate jewel ‘Delete’ early on, followed by ‘Lay Down’, which even managed to get the hill dwellers up and grooving. Basically, the dorky dad like group lived up to expectations. The day rolled on with several highlights including Hayden James and Melbourne’s electronic quintet Total Giovanni, who got the entire crowd into an energetic dance fest. But it was the end of the night that made the day for me, with Brisbane’s Violent Soho cramming so many party-goers into the amphitheatre that security had to close entrances. The night ended on an ultimate high courtesy of The Strokes, who although started over 20 minutes late, performed a noteworthy set. Their last song ‘Last nite’ left us breathless and showed that these guys really are the cream of the crop.

Day 2 // It’s a bottle of white to start the night, a bottle of red to get to bed.

Waking up on day two, we were faced with difficult life decisions – whether to cue for showers for 2 hours or choose the ‘optional’ hygiene mindset of our fellow splendour goers. Thankfully we chose the latter, as we were able to experience an unforgettable performance by In loving memory of Szymon. An incredibly emotional and heartfelt performance was delivered from this tribute band to the late Australian singer-song writer, Szymon. Heartbreakingly, Szymon took his own life at the young age of 23 and in a move to keep his loving memory alive, his friends and family came together to create this beautiful music that entranced the entire crowd- it was truly special. As a polar opposite, we next went to King Gizzard and The Lizard Wizard who pulled one of the most energetic crowds of the entire festival. Watching from the hill, we witnessed dust whirlwinds spiralling out of control as fans formed an outlandish dance ring as ‘Robot Stop’ played out. It was Gang of Youths who really stole the show, with their lively performance, crowd surfing and sea of confetti. Lead singer Le’aupepe’s characteristic dance moves, struts across stage and refined vocals made you fall in love all over again with Australia’s favourite indie rock band.
The only comment I have on Ball Park Music – absolute perfection, I think I actually lost a few kg’s from all the dancing.

Although they couldn’t completely fill the 3-hour time allocation, The Cure solidified the night with their 30 song playlist. It became pretty apparent early on that this was going to be a marathon of a night, mixing classics with new material like ‘it can never be the same.’ Although I did find myself struggling to keep my energy up towards the end of the night, these Brit indie greats highlighted what pure legends they’ve become.

Day 3 // I am having fun. I am having a lot of fun.

Last but not least by any means, Day 3 was my favourite of the whole festival. I was happily introduced to a new artist Lapsley, whose vocals were through the roof and made blokes around the nation melt with her Bristish accent. At one point she commented, ‘I heard you can domesticate wombats, I think I’d like one.’ There’s a particular magic about being entranced and surprised by new artists and Lapsely’s chilled electronic vibes made a huge impression. Another new act for me was the Melbourne SKA orchestra, who were an orchestra with a difference. This 18 piece band displayed some of Australia’s finest musicians and the crowd reacted to them in waves. They had the entire mosh turning and waving at dwellers on the hill, with conductor Nicky Bomba directing the crowd ‘to turn on the count of four and dance like you’ve never danced before.’ Also of note, The Preatures delivered a heartfelt set, sending off their guitarist Gideon Bensen in true style.

Last the act we were all waiting for: Flume. “I just have to stop the music for a second,” he told the absolutely sardine-packed crowd in the amphitheatre. “This is just too surreal for me! I watched the pixies headline here in 2010 and now I’m here. Let’s fucking do this Splendour!” Basically from that point on, his set was flawless with multiple first class guest singers and his sneaky “Fuck Pauline Hanson, GOODNIGHT,” topping off one of the most diverse and impressive festivals in Australia’s calendar.

To recap, Splendour in The Grass 2016 was a weekend jam packed with the finest artists from across the globe, highlighting a diverse range of genres, ages and cultures. My only complaint? Our generation will now have severe hearing issues for the rest of our lives – something I’m certainly willing to sacrifice for such an epic weekend.

Thanks Splendour, until next time.

Edward Deer – Washed Ashore

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Edward Deer is a singer/songwriter from Sydney who has given us the first taste of his debut album ‘About Monsters‘, with the deep, spooky song ‘Washed Ashore‘.

Edward Deer has this amazing talent of being able to connect with the listener both lyrically, and vocally, singing in such a deep and touching manner. His voice combines with the haunting lyrics to create this visual tapestry of emotions that have inspired his song. Add the eerie whistling, slow calm beats, and soft guitars, and you have a song that is not just melancholy, but chilling, and really matches the intense emotion in the lyrics and vocals. ‘Washed Ashore’ is one of those songs that is so elegently crafted, you don’t mind listening to over and over, despite being slightly on the heavy side of things.

 

 

Andy Bull – Keep on Running

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Andy Bull has been a little quiet of late, so we were ecstatic to hear he’s back with a belter of a new tune called ‘Keep On Running‘.

Armed with a heavy but grooving opening baseline, ‘Keep on Running’ kicks into gear about 40s in with the first chorus, where it develops into a melodic explosion of keys, drums and vocals. The most incredible bit, and probably the main catchiness contributing factor is strangely what sounds are not played. The use of silence and breaks is what really makes this track. Add the awesome synths, rolling keys and the jolty beat in the later end of the track and its easy to see that Andy Bull has produced a fine tune. Its light, easy on the ears and super catchy, and considering that he not only recorded it, but produced it himself, a phenomenal effort.

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LANCELOT – You’ll Never Be Mine EP

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Sydney chap Lancelot has released a shiny bright new EP You’ll Never Be Mine, with two killer tracks. The 23-year-old up and coming producer has already come off of his previous EP We Can Dance and is well on his way to some big things in the future.

Lancelot’s tantalizing two tracks are a sweet mixture of house and electronic, with lush samples from 1970s American R&B ensemble S.O.S. Band. The tracks are smooth yet edgy with great beats and rhythm. The texture is full and rich, with inflections of electronic elements and clever, chunky sounds.

Lancelot is definitely a producer to keep your eye on as his music talent is undeniable. He’ll be on tour around Australia so make sure to catch a show on one of these dates below:

PERTH – 8th June at Geisha Bar

GOLD COAST – 21st June at Elsewhere

ADELAIDE – 27th June Wild Things at Rocket Bar

MELBOURNE – 28th June The Disco at 161

SYDNEY – 29th June EP Launch at (Secret Location)

Interview with Buchanan

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Pronounced Bew-cannon, the charming Josh and Luke joined me for a chat on their alternative-pop Melbourne band Buchanan, talking about their new album Human Spring. Here’s how it unfolded.

 

Start off by talking about how Buchanan started as a band. How did it come about?

Josh: Well it all kind of started at the end of 2009 when I was in England just visiting a few friends and working in the industry there and I started writing songs. They had this sound and I was interested in seeing what I could do with that sound, so that’s where Buchanan began and then I was lucky enough to have some friends who are musicians and I said “do you want to play in a band and see if we can take this further?” Basically it’s worked like that ever since, working with the people I know who work and play, creating a community based around the sound.

 

Do you write your own material?

Josh: Hell yeah! I wouldn’t do it any other way, playing live is part of being a band and if you go out and play other people’s songs it wouldn’t be half as rewarding.

 

Do you find that challenging?

Luke: Not when it comes naturally

Josh: Yeah, but of course it’s challenging, any job anyone does is challenging but fortunately there are enough moments where it’s not as challenging which justifies me doing it.

 

Explain the meaning of the name Buchanan.

Josh: I think when we wanted to come up with a strong name that didn’t have a sound or anything attached to it so we drew up a list of words that had a really strong feel that had no visual or audio association. Buchanan was the one that won. I would love to be able to tell you a cool story like it was the name of the oak tree under which I first had sex but it’s just not the case, it’s quite a boring story. I think my mum actually suggested the name!

 

Talk a bit about your journey as a musician, and how you began to really make it in the industry and how you’ve made it here today.

Josh: Luke has basically been playing in bands and he’s got more of a punk hardcore background, he’s actually done it hard and been playing in pubs forever. I’ve grown up with pop writers so I’ve been blessed in some ways to have seen how the industry works but I’ve had to learn the opposite of what Luke has which is how to grow a band whereas Luke taught me this is how a band works and I taught him this is how the industry works. The coming together of that has been why we’ve been pretty blessed; we’ve had a lot of airplay and had offers from record companies and stuff like that. We’ve managed to teach each other a lot of invaluable stuff, it’s like we’ve thrown together two people’s ten years experience and instantly have twenty if that makes sense.

 

Considering you both have different experiences, do you think you’ve brought different things to the table that combine together for Buchanan?

Josh: I think we do really compliment each other in what we know, it’s a pretty unusual combination and I think that’s why it’s working right now and hopefully it continues to work.  

  

Who’s your biggest music inspiration?

Luke: I really like a lot of people, I really try to emulate a lot of artists who’s main focus is tearing things apart and putting them back together again for example, Wilco, Radiohead, artists that a lot of people claim as influences.  I’m influenced even by smaller punk and hardcore bands, and even pop bands that are willing to destroy something in order to make it better.

Josh: That’s like me, my inspiration comes from people who just don’t give a shit about trying to be restrained and cool, and just go out there and put on massive shows. Bands like Queen who are just like “we do what we do”, that’s the Buchanan mentality. So they’re my inspiration.

 

What was it like working with such talented people such as Catherine Marks and Andy Baldwin?

Josh: It was a pleasure; it was an honour really in some respects. I remember before we started recording we knew we’d be hiring a producer but it was like what kind of producer, how, where and all that and Catherine came about quite suddenly we weren’t even looking at that point, we hadn’t even started writing and her manager called my manager and said “are there any artists who need help at the moment?” and he said “sure you can do a trial day with Buchanan”. We turned up not knowing what was going to happen and knowing not much about her and it quite literally led to two months of non-stop collaboration. It was one of those fairytale stories, it’s not very often that my life resembles a Hollywood movie but I guess this is the exception.

 

 

I’ve listened to your full album, it’s absolutely amazing the way it’s been produced and mixed, you must be so happy with the end result, what do you want the listeners to get out of the album? (do you want to take them on a journey, portray something? Etc)

Josh: It’s quite a pop-y, upbeat album but it was certainly an emotional process to create, there are songs that are emotional and I think they’re not emotional for us (Josh and Luke) as listeners because we only hear what the problems are or what we’ve done. Some people think that fast albums can’t be emotional but that’s bullshit, if the album makes you feel like you want to skip to the station instead of walk, if it makes you smile when you’re fucking pissed off because your laundry wasn’t done, whatever your problem is, I’d like to think that this can actually make people happy or cheer them up.

  

What has been your best memory/moment of your musical career so far?

Josh: There’s probably twenty of them, but there’s that one moment where after a few sessions of writing there would be a moment where you pick and pick and pick at a particular part of a song and all of a sudden everything makes sense.

Luke: The moment where you know a song’s done and you start jumping around.

Josh: Yeah, we hope no one can ever watch that but that’s what makes it all worthwhile. But of course you just want one word so I’m going to say Laneway 2011 (Josh and Luke laugh)

 

What are the plans for 2013? Any gigs/album tours?

Josh: The plan is we’re going to do a launch show in Melbourne in a few weeks after the album’s come out and we’ll probably do a few other dates on the east coast around that Melbourne show. Following that I’m going off to England to write for a couple of months and then I’ll come back around September, I think the plan is to do a big headline national tour and perhaps some festivals.

 

Zeahorse – Career

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Lismore four piece, Zeahorse, have announced themselves with a brand new tune called ‘Career‘.

A loud rock tune that simply bombards your ear drums (in a good way), ‘Career’ is a dream debut for Zeahorse who have been playing the local scene for nigh on four years. Driven by a heavy grooving bassline and backed by powerful thumping  drums, ‘Career’ is the kind of song that demands your attention due to the sheer enormity of the wall of sound being delivered. Tinged with reverb and draped in grungy punk vibes, Zeahorse have a tune that is full of intense energy and just freaking awesome. Check it out.

 

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