Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Week Six

It was a pretty big show this week, one I was quite excited about. I aired my first interview for the show with Ben Nash, the singer and guitarist for Sydney band 78 Saab. We chatted about the new album 'Crossed Lines', the long delay between the release of their first album 'Picture a hum, can't hear a sound' and 'Crossed Lines' and of course, the uncontrollable force that is the media. 78 Saab recently featured in Andrew Bolt's column, a journalist for Melbourne's Herald Sun newspaper. Bolt wrote about the recent riots in Sydney and correlates bands like 78 Saab, who he described as living out the irresponsible drunken rockstar cliche, with such events. Obviously Ben didn't appreciate the bizarre correlation but took it on the chin, concluding that once a band's songs and quotes are out there it's all public property. Ultimately they gained more exposure through the article and provided some interesting interview banter! Check the Oz Music Project website in the next couple of days to read my article on the interview! Thanks to Ben Nash.

Rockin the 'burbs: 78 Saab

I had a special segment for my little brother, Jake, the cool skater dude that lives in the room next door to mine. Finally he is started to appreciate the art that is muzak and I decided to celebrate this with Art Brut's very cool tune 'My Little Brother' just discovered rock and roll! Keep it up Jake, you'll soon be as pretentious as all the indie kids I know.

Happy Birthday to Elle, who turned 20 on the airwaves, this Tuesday 29th March. Of course Elle is the brains behind Music is my Radar (10-12 Monday nights), a very cool indie show that everyone needs to tune in to. Hope you liked my Beatles loving.

Playlist for Monday 28th march:

Bluebottle Kiss - Return to the city of folded arms
The Bravery - An honest mistake
Low - California
Moving Units - Available
78 Saab - Like it was before
78 Saab - Beat of your drum
Art Brut - My little brother
The Killers - Mr Brightside
The Mountain Goats - Palmcorder Yajna
Nations by the River - Boy
78 Saab - All a Lie
The Beatles - Birthday
Red Jezebel - Joyful Possibility
78 Saab - Cops
Afghan Whigs - Fountain and Fairfax
Iron and Wine - Such Great Heights (original by The Postal Service)

Friday, March 25, 2005


belief=function=belief is show of the week on SYN! Wow, quite a shock to the system! Thanks to everyone who listens and all those at SYN. Perhaps it has something to do with Andrew Bolt being discussed by the less than impressed Ben Nash from 78 Saab, which will be aired this Monday 28th March. Don't miss it! If you do you could miss witnessing the point at which SYN is edited into Andrew Bolt's upcoming column in the Herald Sun! Catch you on the airwaves this Monday.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Week Five

Wow, had so much fun this week! Thank you so much Simon, the people's poet, and my lovely guest programmer on the show. It was good to break up my voice a bit with his random, poetic thoughts. Apologies for playing the wrong REM track, however, I think it worked out to Simon's advantage as we consequently had a back to back session of his favourite band. I enjoyed myself immensely and you're welcome to come back anytime Simon!

The People's Poet

Also, special thanks to Bianca, who sat in the studio to observe the fine art of radio programming, for her support, laughter and authority over the SMS page. Thanks to all those who SMSed in! It's always lovely getting SMS...

Big show next week! I am airing an interview I had with Ben Nash, the singer/guitarist from Sydney band 78 Saab. We chat about the release of their new album, Crossed Lines, the media and what a 'stooge' Andrew Bolt is! Be sure to tune in next week!

Playlist for Monday 21st March:

The Rapture - Olio
This is your life (Fight Club Soundtrack)
Hot Hot Heat - Bandages
Johnny Cash - What is truth?
Belle and Sebastian - Step into my office, baby
Brian Johnstown Massacre - All around you
Tom Waits - The piano has been drinking (not me)
Youth Group - Booth Street
The Fragments - You saw me fall
Dirty Three - Red
Built to Spill - I would hurt a fly
Sleepy Jackson - You've got no more days left
Dios Malos - You got me all wrong
REM - Begin the begin
REM - The Flowers of Guatemala
The Postal Service - We will become silhouettes
You Am I - Ordinary
The Dandy Warhols - Good Morning
Radiohead - Sunday Bloody Sunday (original by U2)

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Week Four

"I love pretentious music!"

Wow, The Black Keys officially rock my world! Seeing them last Thursday night put me in a real 70s good old rock n roll music mind frame. They sound so gritty and raw and so much energy exchanged between the two guys. Amazing show, and I scored an awesome t-shirt and three badges! Merch always sucks me in. So in light of being gobsmakced by how good The Black Keys were, I decided to put a bit of a 70s slant on the show with a retrospective (dedicated to none other than my Uncle Stan;) of great old school artists. It was very difficult to choose a couple of bands from back then cos my god, how many there were! Nonetheless, I narrowed it down to three songs I have been obsessed with in some point in my life: David Bowie's Rebel, Rebel (love that riff), Pink Floyd's Wish you were here and The Kinks LoLa. Had a lot of fun with this segment. Of course I ended the show with The Black Keys cover of a Kinks song: Act Nice and Gentle.

David Bowie at his glam rock best

The hype surrounding The Arcade Fire did not get the better of them. I think the album 'Funeral' is fantastic. It seems these days that every new band that comes out of a buzz city (like Montreal for example) gets loaded with hype. And it's bad cos it will ultimately set you up for disappointment, unless they really do knock the wind out of you. Arcade Fire is a beautiful band, be sure to check them out. You can check out the review I aired at the bottom of this post. Don't like it? Well just post a comment or email me and we'll get talking!

I am really looking forward to next week! My lovely friend Simon is coming into the studio to guest program with me, and he has exceptional music taste. I won't give away any secrets of what he will be airing but I can guarantee it will be a great show! As such the album review segment will be put aside for a week so we can squash in as many tunes as possible!

Thanks for the SMS and lovely emails. it's great getting feedback. Thanks particularly to David who emailed me, you'll be hearing some Postal Service next week, unless I can get my hands on the great cover song that was suggested.

Right now, it's off to watch Modest Mouse on the OC!

Playlist for Monday 14th March:

Placebo - Bulletproof cupid
The Departure - Be my enemy
Kings of Leon - Taper jean girl
The Mess Hall - Lock and Load
Modest Mouse - Float On
Interpol - Evil
Radiohead - Idioteque
David Bowie - Rebel, Rebel
Pink Floyd - Wish you were here
The Kinks - LoLa
Stereophonics - Dakota
P.J. Harvey - The whores hustle and the hustlers whore
Arcade Fire - Neighborhood 1 (Tunnels)
Gerling - Blood on the microphone (part 1)
TV on the Radio - King Eternal
78 Saab - No Illusions
Augie March - The Good Gardner (On how he fell)
Sparklehorse - Comfort Me
The Black Keys - Act Nice and Gentle (original by The Kinks)

Album Review: Arcade Fire - Funeral

Funerals are bleak, desolate affairs, faces dressed in gloom and bodies groomed in black. They are not events to keep bottled away forever hidden in the depths of your heart. The Arcade Fire’s debut album is marked with death: two of the band member’s grandparents passed away and a third member’s aunty died. As such, they use their debut album as a catharsis for the pain. Strangely, it’s not altogether depressing, but more uplifting; an epic reaffirmation of life itself.

‘Funerals’ has a recurring theme of the neighborhood, as four songs have neighborhood in their title while there are allusions to it in others. Just like a neighborhood is spread with a diversity of people, this record takes you through a multiplicity of sounds; from gorgeous pop leanings to intense, power stricken guitars, accompanied by a small orchestra the whole way. Although ‘Funeral’ is wholeheartedly vibrant and inspiring, there is always an ominous current rumbling under the surface, threatening to smother. The beauty of the Arcade fire is that they never succumb to the dark side, and as such there is a sense of ordered chaos in the songs.

Neighborhood #1 (Tunnels) opens the album with intricate piano and builds into a euphoric tale of two loved ones escaping from their snow covered neighborhood to live in their own isolated world, as memories of parents and bedrooms begin to fade. Neighborhood #2 (Laika) throws a piano accordion in the mix, sounding like something coming from a café in a street in Paris. Une Annee sans lumiere, and Crown of Love are slightly subdued and controlled, they beg for an emotional outbreak and do so unpredictably. Crown of Love is reminiscent of Bright Eyes, both musically and lyrically. The song boasts a lethargic melody, before it turns into an intense orchestral showdown, as singer Win Butler laments a lost love with lyrics like “If you want me/Please forgive me/The crown of love has fallen from me”. Wake Up keeps the despairing theme, with hearts filled with nothing, but there is an elated choir singing a heavenly, wordless chorus.

Neighborhood #3 (Power Out) charges out of its cage with a dynamic drum beat and Butler’s shrill voice proclaims that the “power is out in the heart of man”, begging you “to take it from your heart, put it in your hand”. A melodic xylophone taps throughout the song, making it the most striking by far. The lyrics are marked with a sense of urgency, as they are with all the songs on ‘Funeral’ and you get the sense that Arcade Fire feel that the heart of man is corrupt. But there is always that sense of hope inherent throughout the whole record.

The Arcade Fire give a whole new definition to heartfelt emotion. The music is a welcome assault on the senses, affected your ever-changing mood throughout this 48 minutes. Sometimes it even feels like your floating above the clouds, ascending into somewhere so glorious where such beautiful music can exist. The songs are dripping with emotions and you know it runs through their veins and they succeed in injecting some into your own.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Week Three

"world, the time has come to...push the button"

And push the button I did, thanks to The Chemical Brothers and 'Galvanise'. I just love this song so much, and like I said it's very uncharacteristic of me to play this sort of track on the show, but what a great opener! Really enjoyed myself this week. I played a whole bunch of new tracks from Bloc Party , The Kills and Kaiser Chiefs, who are getting heaps of press over in the UK, another 'buzz' band perhaps. Bloc Party's new album 'Silent Alarm' is fantastic, got some gorgeous tracks on it, and i just love the drums/percussion, so original.

There's so much happening this Thursday night! Of course The Black Keys kick off their 3 shows tomorrow night at The Corner and continue till Friday. Thursday night is what my ticket has printed on it, but have to say I'm disappointed I chose the middle show, as Paul Dempsey from Something For Kate is playing a rare solo gig at The Northcote Social Club. Probably be trying some new tunes too! Oh, I'm so upset. I'll have to listen to one of the many bootlegs I have on the way to The Corner on Thursday night to satisfy my Something For Kate needs. Also, another Tsunami benefit conert is on at The Hifi bar, featuring Epicure, The Reservations, The Wellingtons and more. So you have no excuse to be sitting at home on Thursday night in Melbourne.

I aired my Doves album review from 'Some Cities', an exquisite UK album. Here's hoping they'll come down to our waters and tour it very soon. Next I think I will be doing The Arcade Fire's 'Funeral', another buzz band that I want to see actually live up to their hype.

Cover song was a great one: Ryan Adams with Wonderwall. He does it so beautifully, like he does everything really. I did hear tho, that when Liam Gallagher found out about the cover, he was so disgusted that he refused to play the song live again! Don't quote me on that one, I 'heard' it, cannot verify the facts though. Once again, post a suggestion about future cover songs to end the show with!!

Thanks a lot to El, on Music is my Radar, for calling me up and having an on-air live discussion about the brilliant Dears show last Wednesday night, something that I saved $40 on cos she got on the doorlist and I was her very special guest! Pretty much all I had to say was that it was a great show, and Murry is a very enigmatic frontman, and the bassist is very cute! Oh, and band's should play their back catalogue dammit!

Possible interview with 78 Saab coming up!

Playlist for Monday 7th March:

The Chemical Brothers - Galvanise
Maximo Park - The coast is always changing
The Music - Freedom Fighters
Bloc Party - So here we are
The Kills - The good ones
Kaiser Chiefs - Oh my god
The Faint - Desperate Guys
Phoenix - Run, run, run
The Black Keys - 10 AM Automatic
Something For Kate - Big screen television
Epicure - So Broken
Flamingo Crash - Yes? Yes? Yes?
Doves - Walk in fire
Dan Brodie - The Player
The Sleepy Jackson - Rain falls for wind
My Disco - Inhaler
Elbow - Red
Ryan Adams - Wonderwall (original by Oasis)

Album Review: Doves - 'Some Cities'

The first two albums by Manchester trio Doves contain some pearler tracks, but somehow the ambience generated throughout the music clouded the songs and many tracks just seemed to be fillers between the outstanding ones. Fortunately, the third album by Doves, entitled ‘Some Cities’, is much more consistent, with richly textured songs that are foreboding, yet altogether beautiful.

The songs on ‘Some Cities’ are still soaked in sparse atmospherics but they do not drown the music. Instead, catchy guitar hooks and the trademark Doves thumping drum beat are prominent and uplifting. The opening title track has a sense of urgency, with an insistent drum rhythm and melodic, joyful guitar, the song keeps building as each verse travels by. Second track and first single ‘Black and White Town’ keeps the beat up, the drums pounding over a simple soul strutting piano, with effects bursting randomly. Lyrics like "In satellite towns/There's no color and no sound" depict the dull life of living in the cities for these Manchester lads.

Doves music is often streaked with a darkness and anxiety, created by haunting atmospheres underlying the songs. Some Cities is no exception. ‘The Storm’ is surrounded by subtle orchestration, while final song Ambition is engulfed with eerie soundscapes. Jimi Goodwin’s voice, while not being the main attraction in the Doves music, has a dreary, melancholy feel, which adds to this slightly apprehensive mood the Doves create.

‘Snowden’ incorporates a divine angelic choir in an otherwise wordless chorus, easily sweeping you off your feet with driving guitar melodies. ‘Walk in Fire’ is reminiscent of the Doves previous album ‘Last Broadcast’ and is easily the most exquisite track on the album. It begins solitary and refined, gradually gaining momentum and the sonic guitar lick popping up here and there is the small gem in the song.

‘Some cities’ is bursting at the seams with intricate arrangements and rhythmic, pounding drum beats, keeping with the classic Doves sound. But altogether it is a progression of Lost Souls and The Last Broadcast, an album that is much more direct and focused.