The East Coast Blues & Roots Music Festival Byron Bay – BluesFest

John Butler

The East Coast Blues & Roots Music Festival Byron Bay (or BluesFest) is held at the Belongil Fields, Ewingsdale Road in Byron Bay over the Easter long weekend (20th March – 24 March 2008).  A line up of international and national blues, folk, hip hop, reggae, roots, soul, rock, and world musicians have been put together to perform and includes the amazing Sinead O’Connor, KT Tunstall, Patty Griffin, Clare Bowditch, Xavier Rudd, Rodrigo y Gabriela, Keith Urban, John Butler Trio, Lior and many, many more!

Jeff Martin Keith Urban  Wilco  Sinead O'Connor  Xavier Rudd  Buddy Guy
More Photos Here…

The Byron Bay Blues festival is truly an event and shouldn’t be missed! The new venue is roomy and the event is massive!! Along with the fantastic musical lineup, roaming entertainment and food stalls that sell really good food, I have too tip my hat too the organisers… the complete setup is run with precision.  Transport, security, service, sanity, schedule, direction… everything was organised, ensuring that the average punter had an memorable experience! 

The opening night saw Jeff Martin, Xavier Rudd, Keith Urban and John Butler whipping the crowd into musical bliss.  Wilco rocked! and Buddy Guy delivered a mind-blowing gritty set of blues…

 Link: Official Bluesfest Website
Related: http://www.byron-bay.com/
Photos: lifemusicmedia flickr photoset

Fraser Island – Queensland, Australia – 15 March 2008

Maheno Wreck
Fraser Island – The worlds largest sand island is a paradise of immense beauty and wonder.  Lush rainforests, crystal clear lakes, giant trees, enormous sandblows, shipwreck, wildlife, beaches and more… 

I was fortunate to have a day of four-wheel driving through this wonderland and discovered an amazing array of contrasting landscapes (eg. forests that surrond huge sandblows).  A day will only afford you visits to a small number of attractions (given the size of the island and the slowish pace required to navigate the sand tracks) and entice you back to see more.  The Maheno shipwreck was definitely a hightlight as was the rain forest around “Central Station” – originally used as a logging station (what were people thinkin!).  Also managed Wabby Lake and Lake mcKenzie (and when “they” say crystal clear – they really mean crystal clear).

This truly is a special place! 

Maheno Wreck   Tree  Maheno Wreck  Ironbark  Maheno Wreck

Links:   Fraser Island Information  –  Wikipedia
Photos: LifeMusicMedia flickr photoset 


4C Arts Collective – Art Party – 7 March 2008

Danny Wilhelm - Villains Of Wilhelm
4C say “4C is an arts collective devoted to utilising and promoting the strengths and talents of artists in a myriad fields to create events that positively contribute to the community”. 

Friday night saw just such a commitment fullfilled with a massive arts party @ The Valley Studios – Brisbane.  Offering live bands (Black Mustang, Villains of Wilhelm, The Black Arts, My Fiction), DJ’s (Beat and Blue, DJ Charlie Hustle), burlesque performers (Lena Marlene, Dangergirl), artwork exibits (Clarissa Bones and more), Breakdancers and Circus Performers, the night was ever moving and entertaining.  Crowd participation was inspired with an art wall that attracted many a budding artist. 

Links:  4C Arts Collective
Photos: flickr photoset 
 

WOW Brisbane Broncos Fan Day

Let's Go Broncos

**** Click here for the Brisbane Broncos 2009 Fan Day details ****

In the lead up to the NRL season, the WOW Brisbane Broncos held their annual Fan Day at Roma Street Parklands.  The day saw the entire Broncos first grade squad meet their fans for autographs, photographs and a game or two of touch footy. 

Wally Lewis  Darren Lockyer  Sam Thaiday  Justin Hodges

Links:  Brisbane Broncos Site

Photos: Photoset on Flickr

Quiksilver Pro Show Music Festival – 2008

QUIKSILVER PRO SHOW 2009 LINE UP, MORE ACTS ADDED! Click here for details!

Lach Leckie of Roger That @ Quicksilver Pro-Show
[Photo: Stuart Blythe]

QUIKSILVER PRO SHOW 2009 LINE UP, MORE ACTS ADDED! Click here for details!

“Debuting in 2007 as the must-attend party alongside the Quiksilver Pro – the first contest on surfing’s ASP Mens World Tour – the inaugural festival saw bands like The Beautiful Girls, The Herd and The Winnie Coopers dominate the line-up in front of a sell out crowd of 2500 sun-drenched fans.

Now in its second year, the Quiksilver Pro Show is paddling into a musical feast of roots, rock, electro and hip hop – right on the sand at Duranbah Beach, one of the Australia’s most consistent surf breaks.

Appearing as headliners after their biggest and most successful year yet is the three piece synth-electro outfit the MIDNIGHT JUGGERNAUTS.” (ref: Official Proshow website)

Crowd @ Quicksilver Pro Show Festival 2007  Ash Grunwald @ Quicksilver Pro-Show  Rok Poshtya of The Herd @ Quicksilver Pro-Show  Crowd @ Quicksilver Pro Show Festival

When: Saturday March 1st, 2008. John Follent Park, Duranbah Beach, Tweed Heads
Links:  theproshow.com.au
Photos: 2007 Photos 

The Odyssey 2007 Xmas Cabaret Freakshow – The Globe, Fortitude Valley – December 15 2007

Monster Zoku Onsomb

Review by Lisa Lamb

The Odyssey Xmas Cabaret Freakshow is one of the highlights of the year, held annually with three stages of music, theatre, art, dance, film, animation, comedy, puppetry, experimental noise, digital media, fire, mask, magik and soul. Combining the best of local talent with international performers such as Tiger Lil (*The Happy Sideshow* & Machine Gun Fellatio).

All part of an evil plan devised by Daniel Endicott of Odyssey Productions to unleash the world’s most daredevil entertainers on the seedy underbelly of this city starring the cream of Brisbane Burlesque including Miss Bertie, Miss Kitty Conquest, La Viola Vixen, Lena Marlene, The Gamble Sisters, Miss Mindi, Peppa Minx and Tony Campbell in all his tap dancing glory

Kafka played the foyer stage with their unique blend of jazz and funk.
The Blood Poets were a great opening band on the main stage with their catchy pop, rock and dance tunes, just the name alone is enough to keep you interested. Delivering a tight set with an unexpected appearance by burlesque performer Lady Vee as an added bonus!
Continue reading

Tripod – Smaller Than Jesus

Tripod
After a chance meeting with Gatesy, Scod and Yon at Southbank, I was fortunate enough to gain photo access to their Tripod – “Smaller Than Jesus” show at the Tivoli in Brisbane 1 Dec 2007.   

Photos:  LifeMusicMedia flickr photo set
More:     Tripod interview by fellow comedian Lisa Lamb (at FasterLouder) 
Show review at Australian Stage by Jack Teiwes
Tripod on MyspaceTripod Homepage

CD Review – The Exploders, Easy and the Sun

 The Exploders

The variation of influences throughout The Exploders second LP, Easy and the Sun, are easily identifiable not only by a familiar feel of all that was good of the 70’s to the current era’s commercially successful rock songs, but also a nice harmonised original approach to certain tracks that only enhance the listening experience.

This album is a well balanced mix of raunchy rock, roll and pop with a splash of tailored grunge. The first four tracks, for me, were the most outstanding.

‘Little Summer Dress’ is a feel good song, bringing back the innocence and boppiness of the early Beatles era.

‘Straight Ahead’ with its well grooved bass riffs, tightly woven lead riffs and fast pasted lyrics will leave you pumped. If you’re after an in-your-face, attitude levels to the max, Rock, Roll, Jump and Shout experience then look no further.

With adrenalin pumping, ‘Cola’ delivers a steady paced catchy song that safely delivers you back, but not too softly, to the ground.

‘Blueberry Lane – for me, a five minute journey spanning a number of emotions. This is due to the many characteristic changes e.g, driving verse, floating chorus, raunchy guitar interlude and more!

There are enough hooks (but not too many) to promote a few songs to commercial airplay – and rightly so, the well crafted punchy songs, in my book, are a winner.

Reviewed for:  TheDwarf.com.au

CD Review – No Through Road – Too Much Or Not Enough

No Through Road

Lifting Matt Banham to new heights in musical expression is his 6-piece band No Though Road. Hailing from Adeliade, No Through Road comprises of Matt Banham, Steph Crase, Nic Datson, Marcin Kobylecki, Steve Banham and Ianto Ware.

The album “Too Much or Not Enough” offers twenty, yep that’s right, twenty tracks. 12 tracks are the main CD while we are also given 8 BONUS tracks. So, depending on your musical tastes, this will either be too much or not enough. With this many songs, spanning a year and a half of recordings, you can expect the unexpected. From numbers that offer high energy, get up and dance, to forelorn ballads and some unexpected, surprising off-beat diversions.

A number of songs from this album including “Die For Something” have been doing the rounds on radio stations throughout Australia and rightly so. But, I want more! I’d like to see added to station’s playlists – “I Want You”, “Crush this Town” and “The Next Bob Dylan”. These songs totally rock! “I Want You” is more of a soft rock ballad, but boppy none-the-less. Both “Crush This Town” and “The Next Bob Dylan” are a faster paced – in your face – tracks that would have all punters jumping.

Track 7 – Die for something starts off with recorders (reminding me of “here we come just a marching down the street”) then quickly moves to raw energy then to 60’s psychodelica – excellent.

Another surprise on the album was the last track (21) “She is only in your DREAMS.” It sounds like the band started partying hard prior to recording this. I have heard similar songs (if that’s what you can call them) at parties where everyone has partaken of copious quantities of alcohol. I think the word I’m looking for is cacophony.

Overall, to sum up, the re-incarnation of Matt Banham into No Through Road, with his unique artistic view of the world can only strengthen his foothold in the Australian Music Industry.

Revied for: TheDwarf.com.au

Upsize, The Radiators and the Angels @ Acacia Ridge Hotel – May 4th 2007

Upsize
The Basement Bar at Acacia Ridge Hotel played host to an awesome night where Upsize , The Radiators and The Angels played live and loud! Rock shall never die!

Brisbane rock band Upsize totally rocked the Basement Bar to over a crowd of a 1000. Upsize are playing gigs around Brisbane promoting their debut CD West End Delicacy . They were the perfect band to get the crowd worked up in anticipation of The Radiators and The Angels performances. Upsize’s performance was outstanding, playing all the songs off their debut CD plus a few others which had the crowd jumping and yelling for more!

The Radiators
When The Radiators hit the stage, a wave of people surged forward. If it wasn’t for the guardrail the band would have been engulfed completely. The crowd varied in ages, from late teens to mid to late sixties. The Radiators had everyone nodding, feet tapping, jumping up and down as well as singing along. Everyone, no matter what age, appeared to know all the words to all the songs.

The Radiators started with a few of their slower and older classics like Summer Holiday , and by the time they started playing You Gimme Head , you couldn’t hear the band over the crowd singing. After decades of playing live gigs, The Radiators continue to wow their audience with an adrenaline filled performance.

The Angels
The Angels. What more can be said? The name itself makes you want to bow down low and chant “We’re not worthy! We’re not worthy!” The Angels have a repertoire spanning nearly 3 decades with countless hits including Take A Long Line, After The Rain, Mr Damage, Straight Jacket and their first major hit Am I Ever Gonna See Your Face Again? , which were all performed to the delight of the audience. All that experience has been polished to the extent that you almost feel that you’re listening to the CD.

Friday night was surreal. Not only did we have more Australian rock’n’roll history than you could poke a stick at, the rock’n’roll was picked up and carried forward into the present by Upsize. As I said at the beginning of the review, Rock shall never die!

Reviewed for: FasterLouder.com.au 
Photos: Upsize flickr photo set  and   The Angels & The Radiators flickr photo set