Tuesday, March 31, 2009

If Atheists Ruled the World

Check it out, apparently "all text directly from online Christian fundamentalist forums". Wow.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Shut Off The Light

Getting a bit nostalgic this weekend. Watching Bloc Party on Rage last night got me inspired to revisit their debut album, Silent Alarm. It really was the soundtrack of 2005. I listened back to it today and was suddenly revisiting a whole series of memories. Isn't it funny how music can do that?

M83 are playing this Thursday. I can't wait. Saturdays = Youth was one of my favourite records of last year. Kim + Jesse was my fave from the album. Like the whole album it was a bit of a slow burner, but such a great melodramatic pop song. 

And while we're on the subject of heat. This weekend, I've been basking in the hothotheat of Betty Davis. Not to be confused with Bette Davis, the American Actress and subject of the Kim Carnes 80s hit. I'm talking Betty the fox on the motorbike, amazing fuzzed out guitar licks and firey focals, model and I guess in some ways famous for being Miles Davis' second wife. But really she should be much more famous for her own talent - not to mention amazing beauty. She's often credited with being a huge musical influence on her famous jazz musician husband - and introducing him to much more experimental sounds. Bitches Brew was apparently inspired by her. Go and immerse yourself in This Is It, an anthology of her 3 albums. 

Friday, March 20, 2009

Dancing in the Dark

Guitars are making a come back, perhaps an antidote to all the dirty disco that's been around lately. Don't get me wrong, I've embraced the disco tip as much as the next person, but I'm quietly pretty happy that there seems to be a flood of excellent indie-pop-guitar-melody-albums around, or on their way.

Brooklyn duo Matt + Kim are captivating hearts with their most recent release. They came out to Australia last year and completely charmed everyone. They're coming back in May, so if you missed them this is your chance to redeem yourself. But watch out, you might develop a serious crush. They are just so damn cute.

So, the band that's going to be The Next Big Thing is a group from Boston. The story goes that Michael Angelakos wrote a bunch of songs for his then girlfriend's valentines day present. While the relationship didn't last the EP, Chunk of Change, has gone on to do amazing things for them. Passion Pit finished recording the debut full-length in New York a couple of months ago, and delivered some sneak peaks at SXSW and across Europe - by all accounts to rapturous applause. Manners is scheduled to drop in May.
This one's a bit older, but there's a bit of a theme at the moment of couples making music or people who used to work for record labels getting together and starting their own musical [ad]venture. We Have Band tick both of these boxes. They recorded their tunes in their kitchen and managed to get them featured on a couple of compilations from super cool label Kitsune. They're one of the hyped bands at SXSW this year and seem to have a non-stop, relentless touring schedule.

Other bands that are causing much excitement with impending album releases. Frenchies Phoenix have got a new album dropping in May. And it's now a matter of days until the Yeah Yeah Yeahs album arrives in stores. The video for their new single Zero is here, apparently they/ their record label doesn't like embedding.

And it seems that The Boss is having a bit of a renaissance. Over summer at various gigs and music festivals it seemed like it was a requirement for someone to play a Springsteen cover. As long as it's early Boss there's no complaints from me. I think Dancing In the Dark is one of my all-time favourites, listen to the lyrics, such heartbreak! Although at one gig when someone played a cover of this it became quite contentious - my friend was adamant that the song is all about writers block - not heartbreak. What do you think? Also, check out the classic clip - dude can rock jeans and a white tee like no one else. And keep an eye out for a young Courtney Cox in there too.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Gimme the Awesome

My favourite band today is Endless Boogie. I've just been immersing myself in their debut full-length Focus Level and the more and more I listen, the more and more I love. It's a nice relief from an overdose of disco. It came out last year overseas, but has only just been released in Australia this week.

Their story goes that they got together in 1997. A bunch of them worked at super cool New York based record label, Matador records, and another was a professional record collector. They started out as an 'old man hobby', just jamming. And drinking and getting stoned, if their music is anything to go by. Anyways, it turns out they became a pretty freakin' amazing band.

For a long time they didn't play gigs, unless invited, and only released a couple of limited 12". But now they've put out an album. All psych + classic rock flavourings. Check them out over at Last.fm

Monday, March 16, 2009

Ribbon of Dreams

I am a nerd. I am a nerd who's obsessed with media. And music. Which is perhaps why most of my twitter feeds are from media organisations and music folk. It's a bit tragic I guess. 

The other week when I was out someone asked me what I'd been doing. I rattled off a few things and they innocently asked me if I did anything that wasn't work.

It's a bit confronting when you realise that your idea of funtimes is possibly another's idea of work. I work in television, I spend an ungodly amount of time on the interweb, on my weekends I present a radio show. And then, in my spare time, for kicks, I do more stuff. I make radio documentaries, I interview artists for FuzzyTV....

When I take those things away, aside from jogging, cooking, drinking red wine and seeing bands, I have the shock realisation that maybe I don't have a life. Although, I guess that all of the things I do are very social and much fun. But I don't have any hobbies as such. I don't collect stamps or make macrame pot plant holders, although I'd like to learn... Maybe I should make that a priority?

But whatevs.

Here are some of the things I've read or stumbled across in the last little while that got me a bit excited.

The producer + writer from The Sopranos, David Chase, has returned to HBO to produce a new show. It's called Ribbon of Dreams and it's about the ruthless world of films. I'm guessing Entourage but with less pilates and parties, and more plotting and paranoia. I'm intrigued. Most of the stuff HBO produces is simply awesome. The Sopranos a work of genius. And the plot of the series sounds pretty addictive read more about it in this New York Times article

The Mac is coming back. I was talking with my hairdresser today about how 'retrosexual' is the in thing right now. Women want a man who can fix things, who's all hairy and masculine, not a man who has more products than you and spends way more time and money on clothes than you do. On this tip, the ultimate handy man is MacGyver and there are plans a-foot to revive him, by making a feature film about the man who can do amazing things with some panty-hose, a paper clip and a stick of chewing gum. They haven't cast his role yet. More information here

The internets are a-flood with speculation over Joaquin Pheonix and his crazy antics. There was that appearance on Letterman. And his claims to be quitting acting to follow a career as a rapper. And last week he had an altercation with a dude in a bar who was heckling him. It was all caught on film, because he's being followed around by a film crew. Some allege that he's making a mockumentary about quitting acting and becoming a rapper. Others, like Casey Affleck, claim it's a legitimate documentary about this transition. Whatever it is - I can't wait to see it. For more, read this article in the London Times last week. Here's the heckling and his response, last week in Miami:

Lily Allen really is the IT girl right now. She's become a demi-god like darling of the media. She's relevant enough to so many people that she's talked about in trashy mags and in high-brow publications like The New Yorker and The Guardian. Not many people have that kind of cross-over appeal. Which is probably why she needs to get legal protection from the Pap. They sound pretty full-on in their total stalking of her. Sacha Frere-Jones from The New Yorker has this fascinating audio from the Pap who were hunting her around NY while he was hanging out with her for a day. Listen to the whole story here. I wish I was half as cool, sassy and witty as her and half as smart and insightful as him when I grow up.

One of my favourite music blogs is Allez Allez. They've got two excellent mixes up at the moment - which couldn't be more different. One from G the P and the other by Heartbreak. Check em both out.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Earlier in the year I was telling you about my New Years adventures - interviewing all the artists at Field Day... well here are Ladyhawke, Late of the Pier, A-Trak, Jamie Lidell and Ajax. Enjoy.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

The Dream

Sometimes when work or life is a bit beige I spice things up by day dreaming that I live in a hip hop musical – or something closer to a teen dance film. Think ‘Step It Up’. 

Unfortunately, this is just a dream.

In reality my life isn’t anywhere near as glamorous, romantic, coordinated or dramatic.

I play a chosen video clip on repeat in the background of my screen, trying to focus on my serious professional pursuits while falling in and out of the escapist reality of the glamorous video clip world. Think Beyonce, Nelly Furtado, JT, even M.I.A.

This week has been a spectacular immersion in a truly great combination – LL Cool J and The Dream. And a little bit of classic LL Cool J, cause you know, Ladies Love Cool James.

Last year I got so inspired I enrolled in Hip Hop Dance Classes at the Sydney Dance Company. I went along feeling very realistic about what I was embarking upon. I knew I’d be shit. I wasn’t harbouring deluded visions of being naturally brilliant and suddenly getting a call from JT, Beyonce or Jay Z asking me to go on their next international tour as their star dancer. But I felt confident that I at least I had a sense of rhythm, I mean that’s my bread and butter, and I’ve spent my fair share number of hours and late nights in clubs, and even won the odd late night booty shaking dance-off. So while I knew I’d be shit I didn’t think I’d be the worst person in the world. Anyway, I was going along to have fun with some girlfriends so it’d be ok. Or so I thought.

On our first day we arrived to a scene of super cute and tiny dancers. I felt like some sort of giant. It was plain to see that this beginners class was in fact a group of people who’ve been dancing for years. People were stretching and working on dance combinations in the hallways. It was like something out of one of my favourite teen dance movie! Which was both kinda funny, and kinda horrifying.

Anyway, we really did suck. Like, badly. But we went back for a number of weeks, hoping to see some sort of improvement. It was quite confronting, to go back week after week, to do something you’re so entirely bad at. Aside from being super fit, to succeed in dance classes you need to be the kind of person who can pat your stomach and rub your head at the same time. You need to be able to think and move quickly, follow instruction while doing something else, not think about what you’re doing, and remember what happens next. And not worry about what people around you are doing, or what they think about what you’re doing [badly]. I thought this sounded simple. I’m the queen of multitasking. But, I discovered the hard way, that dance-dancing is really freakin hard.

Then one day my girls couldn’t make it, but I was dedicated to the cause so I went solo. I decided to go up the front of the class to be close to the teacher and try and follow her lead. This combination, flying solo at the front of the class, was perhaps one of the worst decisions of my life! It was like going back to primary school and reliving one of those horrible moments of public humiliation. After that, I couldn’t go back. I was too mortified and traumatised.

Months have now passed, I’ve had some good therapy sessions, and I’m feeling ready to face my fears. I’m going back to try again, and see if I can't rock that thang. You know, it's all about livin' the dream. Or at least enjoying The Dream.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

S-S-S-Single Bed

This song popped into my headphones on my way to work this morning and made me smile. The video is pretty funny too. Thought I'd share it with you. Disco gold for your Friday afternoon.


Starting at the top of the alphabet, one of my favourite releases for last year and still on rotation months later is No Way Down from Swedish duo, Air France. They're signed to The Tough Alliance's Sincerely Yours label. They're dreamy. And their music videos are perfectly suited to their music: thoughtful, carefree, introspective, mostly happy, sometimes nostalgic, sepia memories of romance, summer, sweetness and sunshine.

No Excuses


Collapsing At Your Doorstep

Check out the rest of their tunes and videos or read an interview they did last month with Pitchforkmedia

Monday, March 2, 2009

Get Busy

In January Sydney has a huge party in the middle of the city to celebrate and launch the Sydney Festival. It's called Festival First Night and it's pretty hectic and crazy. But fun.

I quickly chatted with Busy P from Ed Banger Records for Fuzzy TV about his summer in Australia and plans for 2009.