Interview: The Ocean Party


#tbw to when I briefly replaced Jordan in The Ocean Party. 

I’ve got a long history with Melbourne’s The Ocean Party, and their various side projects, but what it really boils down to is the fact that I’ve got a big ol’ rager for their music. Half their albums are decent introductions to this new boom of jangle pop we’ve been having of late in Aus, and the other half soar at the top as examples of what the rest of these strummers should hope to sound like one day.

The Ocean Party have got their fifth record, ‘Light Weight’, coming out this Friday on Spunk Records, and they’ll be swinging by The Vic in Marrickville for a cheeky free show that same night. Support comes from Mere Women, Cool Sounds and Dog Rock pioneers Weak Boys. Rest of the tour dates can be found here.

Before The OP Crew stop by Sydney, I sent a few q’s through to keyboardist Jordan (who I briefly replaced), and actually got some really solid a’s back:

1. You’ve been on Spunk for about four albums now – why are you so at home there?

We just have such an easy going relationship with Spunk. We send Aaron a record and he put’s it out. I don’t think we could work with a label that operates any different.

2. Do you think having everyone contribute songs to The Ocean Party is positive or detrimental?

I think its really positive. Objectivity is so hard to achieve on your own – as is an alternate subjectivity for that matter. Our inclusiveness means that we have a five-layer filter to run a song through. It can be tremendously reassuring to know that everyone is invested an idea- and alot easier to get things from the bedroom laptop into a more fleshed out form. The other aspect of our work style is that it encourages diversity from a base level. We all write differently, so even basic ideas are flavoured by each songwriter. I like to think this gives us more of a multi-focal narrative in our music as a whole.

3. Being so prolific and touring so much, are you afraid of creative exhaustion?

We’ve got a good cycle going now in terms of writing, playing, travelling and recording. Touring is a huge part of things for us, not only because we like playing around the country, but because it gives us alot of time to nut things out. When we were touring for Split we were already listening to demos for Soft Focus in the van, and when we head off this month we’ll be listening to our new demos. Alot of very valuable conversations and decisions come out of travelling together. So our schedule allows for regular shifts from creative to analytical rather than exhausting either.

4. When you went up to BIGSOUND recently, how did you view the conference as a whole? Is it good for Australian music to have that sort of annual event?

I’m sure if you are a buzz band BIGSOUND is great, we aren’t a buzz band and I would say we are all pretty happy about that. In saying that I think we all had fun at BIGSOUND and the one panel I went to was really good.

5. With half of you working in other bands and in pubs, how much of Melbourne’s music scene rubs off into your own band?

It’s immesurable really, not because it’s gargantuan, but more because its hard to trace your own influences. People outside the band might be able to see the ties better than us. We see alot of local music and know alot of the people involved, inevitably this must have an impact on us somehow. Even seeing something that you don’t like can be influential. You never really know not to do something until you see someone else do it.

6. You’ve always done a lot of regional touring – why do you do that, when it makes more sense financially and crowd wise to just do capital cities? Does it have anything at all to do with coming from Wagga?

Well, there isn’t a huge divide financially. On some previous tours our country gigs paid our way through. We’ve been going to some places regularly for some years now and see alot of familiar faces, which is a good reason to come back. For the Light Weight tour we’ll be seeing alot of smaller towns, which means we won’t have to drive huge stints and we’ll get to see new places. We are playing in Wagga on the way home, which will be nice too. Coming from Wagga I suppose we have a pretty good grasp on what to expect from a country town so maybe we have been more willing to go to them than other bands might be.

7. You do a lot touring in Aus, but haven’t done much outside the county, except for that small US tour last year. Is international touring something you’ve be more keen on in the future.

Sure. Liam is off touring with Totally Mild in Europe at the moment, so he’s scouting it out for us. We had a great time in the U.S.A. last October, so we’d love to go back. It’s costly with six people, so we’re at the mercy of our funds, but hopefully next year we’ll head overseas again.

8. You got to meet Calvin Johnson (Beat Happening/K Records) on that U.S. trip – who else would you like to stumble into on a tour?

Yeah, meeting Calvin was pretty out of the blue. We really haven’t run into many other celebs. Liam saw Rob Zombie and John 5 at the airport. We saw Leo Sayer eating a toastie in Mayfield (possibly not Leo Sayer). The other day we ran out of petrol in a little Victorian town called Cressy. We met a really unhelpful fat guy there who may have been a local celebrity. I don’t know who else we’d hope to meet.

9. You did that small Aussie tour with Nathan Roche a while back – do you miss Nathan Roche? I miss Nathan Roche.

We miss Nathan Roche every day. There is nothing that can fix that. He is liable to appear in any town at anytime though, so maybe he’ll be the celeb we stumble into?

10. Snowy once tried really hard to refer to The Ocean Party as the OP Crew. When can the Australian public expect the inevitable name change, and diversion into Aus hip hop territory?

Mark has already chartered into Aus Hip Hop Territory and irrevocably changed the game with his Crowman Mixtape: Murder of Crow (2014). The Ocean Party has its finger in alot of pies Ryan, don’t dig too deep. OP Crew is a cool name though. When we’re past our prime we might head over to christian rock and become The Devotion Party.

11. When that dole wave playlist got announced on Apple Music, did you shit the bed and think we’ve made it?

I, until now, was not aware of that. I’ll put on the rubber bedsheets tonight and have a look. We made a cool $11.00 from Spotify last year, so Apple Music can’t be so bad.

New Punk: WOODBOOT + CUNTZ + Burlap + Exhaustion + Tommy T and the Classical Mishaps


It’s been a while between drinking piss at the keyboard and talking shit about new punk bands in Aus, so here’s a little compilation for ya:

WOODBOOT – Nerd Holocaust etc.

WOODBOOT are essentially Brisbane’s version of Housewives. They’re loud, brash, and uncouth. How good is the word uncouth? Not as good as WOODBOOT.

After the very excellent offering that was last year’s ‘Krang Gang’, WOODBOOT dropped a surprise release on us that’s essentially Angry Samoans engaged in a wrestle to the death with GG Allin. Although they’ve only offered three tracks thus far, the songs of their upcoming ‘Crime Time’ album are furious, bloody spurts of bile sure to stir the loins of every individual who likes the sound of a guitar ploughing headfirst into oblivion. The songs are short…angry…as manic as the facial expressions of Nicholas Cage wrapped within a career-defining role. Delirious, offensive, completely fucked – that is the way of the WOODBOOT.

CUNTZ – Nah Man

“Nah Man” is my favourite phrase to use in real life. It’s a response you can use in any circumstance – “Do you like this?”, “Can you turn down the music”, “Sir, please put the gun down, and raise your hands in the air”. It’s also the new teeth-bared single from Melbourne’s CUNTZ, a power-stance growler that was built to get the kids jumping up and down. Bored, sardonic lyrics grunting underneath bruised and broken instruments – fucking winner.

Burlap – Good Boy 

Watching a Burlap show is like watching the Titanic sink. It’s majestic, terrifying, and you know that someone is going to die. Only real difference is that instead of somewhere near the Arctic, this dramatic episode takes place nestled between the comfortable bear claws of Blackwire HQ.

From within that safe embrace, Burlap have developed “Good Boy”, the first track off their upcoming debut album, due soon on TRAIT Records, who were responsible for that incredible MAKING record. “Good Boy” is a hit of what Burlap do best – grotesque, bombastic music, a hateful Glasgow smile that cackles as it slits your mind apart.

Apparently, Burlap are going to be bravely adventuring away from Parramatta Rd soon for a free show at the Newtown Social Club on the 19th of October.

Exhaustion – Phased Out

Exhaustion never do the same thing twice. If it wasn’t evident from the incredible improvised set they performed at the Opera House earlier this year, with Dutch saxophonist Kris Wanders, then a quick scan through their discography will make it blatantly obvious. Moving from screeching post-punk to morbid goth, twisting and subverting genre and emotion with frightening ease, Exhaustion are restless and prolific.

Their most recent output is “Phased Out”, a six minute exercise in looming, metallic punk. Like a tidal wave, Exhaustion rear their heads, crest and then destroy, flattening the Earth and its inhabitants with drowning, torturing noise. This experience dominates the soul for a few minutes, before retreating into a sullen, sinister murmur, allowing you to contemplate the horrifying lambast you just witnessed firsthand.

Tommy T and the Classical Mishaps – Perfection

Tommy T and the Classical Mishaps make prickly, paranoid soundbites that sound like Wire woke up with spiders laying eggs in their stomachs. An amalgamation of Melbourne’s finest (Dribble, Power etc.) Tommy T drool and cackle with two minutes of raving self-appraisal that feels like its being spouted from the mouth of a serial killer rather than a self-congratulating debutante.

New: Mope City – Untapped Utility


How good is free shit, hey? Whether it comes in the form of that extra packet of tomato sauce that the bloke at the tuckshop forgot to charge you for, or the crazy world of entertainment available at our fingertips thanks to torrenting websites on the WWW.INTERNET.COM, free shit is everywhere.

The latest carriage on the free shit train comes from Mope City, and their new single “Untapped Utility”. From their upcoming debut album ‘Petri-Dish’, due out later this year on Tenth Court Records (TENTH COURT RECORDS, YES!), the first morsel is rammed with buzzing guitars clanging against cheap amps, tipping between jangly verses and thriving post-punk choruses that wouldn’t feel out of place on a Circle Pit record.

Mope City launch “Untapped Utility” this Saturday at the Vic in Marrickville this Saturday. It’s free and The Warm Feelings play as well. If ya can’t make that one, then they’ll be playing a free Monday night show at Newtown Social Club, with Brissy’s Tape/Off and Beast & Flood on the 12th of October.

Sunday’s Coming; or Why Eddy Current Suppression Ring Playing Golden Plains Is Fucking Important

tumblr_mxa9laKDvn1rbk4jbo1_500Image stolen from Eddy Current’s website, photo orignally by Brett Frost

Alright, let’s get it out of the way – that title is straight fucked. But look, what was I going to do? Eddy Current have just been announced for Golden Plains 10th Birthday, and they’re going to be headlining the Sunday night. What else was I going to call this bloody article? It’s like Aunty Meredith was begging us: “OI! REMEMBER THAT SICK SONG THAT EDDY CURRENT DID? MAKE A PUN ABOUT THAT!”

Although I’ve fallen victim to the bait, my excitement hasn’t wilted. Why? Because Australia’s greatest group is coming out of retirement. There’s a whole generation that missed out on watching this band, a whole stream of teenagers and twenty-somethings, like myself, that thrived upon classic ECSR dynamite like “Get Up Morning” and “Which Way to Go”. Sure, you can look up one of the band’s many bootleg performances on Youtube, or their full set as part of triple j’s Live At the Wireless. But everyone knows that beholding Brendan Suppression throttle an audience through a computer screen is essentially musical porn, erotic punk voyeurism that pales in comparison to the real thing. I want to smell the sweat in the air, I want to feel the splashes of beer hailing down from a mosh of drunk punters. I want to hear Brendan’s gloves snap around the microphone, I want to hear Mikey Young’s guitar strings crackle, Brad Barry’s bass guitar propulsions and Danny Young’s drumsticks threatening to fracture the skins he beats. I want the live experience. I want to say that I saw what everyone else got to see.

Now, don’t take that to mean that this article is about mere bragging rights. Sure, the opportunity to witness ECSR doing what they do best is a claim worth lording over those who weren’t lucky enough to attend. But this desire, nay, NEED, extends further. It’s about completing the experience. Y’see, a band, especially one like ECSR, has got their entire legacy split into two parts: the recording and the performance. Now, the recordings, they speak for themselves. You’ve got five albums: three studio records, one compilation of 7″s and rarities and a live split with The UV Race. I think it’s fair to say that these albums are all works of art. No one is denying that, are they? WHO THE FUCK SAID…oh, that was just a cough? As you were, mate, as you were.

See, every few years, there’s an album, a loud, brash, unhealthy thing that smashes through the windscreen of the careening rock underworld, and gets thrown on a stretcher, into the hospital lights of the mainstream. Bloody and bruised, the band sits in a daze as concerned doctors and nurses of the media and music industry look on in disgust and concern. “What is it? Is it okay? Can we save it?”. Stretching back to The Saints, The Birthday Party and Radio Birdman, there will always be that album that explodes into the view of impressionable kids previously obssessed with dumb stuff like school, and it changes their worldview completely. It reaches up from its graveyard headquarters, and pulls the innocent child into its zombified dwelling, where they will marinate in the juices of the undead and decomposing. They will begin to treat music as a lifestyle, an adrenaline injection of stories, chords and vitriol that fuels their day to day lives, sucking them from their homely oasis, and into the hellhole of local bands and pubs. Recent examples could include The Drones’ “Wait Long By the River…”, Dick Diver’s “Calender Days”, and Royal Headache’s self-titled. Blank Realm look like they’re on their way there, but that’s an influence that remains to be seen (fingers crossed).

For me, ‘Primary Colours’ was the album that changed my perspective on the world. I consumed it at the ripe age of 15, and it was a record that seperated me from my previous infatuation with Nirvana, Foo Fighters and Stone Temple Pilots. It made me realise that there was actually some crazy shit happening in my own backyard. With the aid of Straight Arrows and the aforementioned Royal Headache, ECSR opened my eyes to a thriving scene of people with instruments, assembling music that anyone could make. A few pedals, a coupla chords, and your mates – BOOM! Bob’s your uncle and you’ve got a garage band. But what seperated ESCR and these other garage bands, and indeed, what inspired a young ginger kid with no friends to dive into the world of local music, was the energy. The appeal of Eddy Current Suppression Ring wasn’t necessarily apparent in their traditional skill, but the way they translated raw power into an album of recorded music. Their charm, and by an extension their legacy, exuded from that unmatched foercity. The poetry of their music was a culmination of their un-apolegetic Australian identity and unbudging adoration of rock n roll music. They tore away the bullshit that was so evident in many of their peers, and commited themselves to making music that could be judged purely on its merit of making you smash in a fucking wall.

‘Primary Colours’ persists with a listenability because ECSR created an essential, timeless portal that transcends other rock albums. It gets to the meat and bones of the soul, and refuses to loosen its vice grip. It’s a masterpiece because it understands the same basic values that have made classics of The Stooges’ ‘Raw Power’ and Black Flag’s ‘Damaged’. ECSR understand core concepts – lust, boredom, confusion – and boil it into steaming aggression custom made for any hormone-addled kid who wants to fuck and rock their way out of adolescence. You could travel to any point in historu, chuck on “You Let Me Be Honest With You”, or “Anxiety” and be met with raging grins and rabid reactions of glee. Personally, it was that understanding that rock music could open the gates to a more manic human being inside of me that eventually leeched its way into other facets of my life, and bascially, that’s how I’ve ended up as a foul-mouthed fuckwit who spends more time flipping through records than being a productive member of society.

So, Eddy Current’s records cracked open who I am now, and I’m certain they’ve lubricated the process with a fair few others. But unless you had awesome parents or a fucking great fake ID, there’s a lot of kids between the ages of 18-23 that have never been afforded the opportunity to see the band. There’s also legions of fans who have gotten into the band after they went on hiatus. In the time since ECSR called it a day, their influence has grown at a parasitic rate. Nearly driven to insanity, feverish and blind, these fans NEED to see their favourite band. We NEED to complete the second half of the equation. We NEED to chew upon memories of our favourite rock n roll group jumping up and down on a stage in rural Victoria. We NEED this, or we might just fucking die.

For this reason, it’s just incredible that we are going to be afforded the opportunity to see Eddy Current Suppression Ring headline Golden Plains Festival next year. It’ll probably be really good. Maybe not the best show they’ve ever performed, but that’s not really the point. It’ll be relieving to close the gap on the ECSR fandom that I, and many others, have been festooning on for the last five years. In just a few months, when the lights dim and the band walk off stage, tired but exhilarated at their first performance in yonks, I’ll stand in a field of strangers, covered in mud and chest heaving. Cheers will fade to mild chatter as the next band begins to set up. But who gives a shit? I got to see Australia’s greatest band in the flesh, and it’s probably going to be one of the most important moments in my brief life so far.

The 10th Golden Plains will take place March 12-14th at the Meredith Supernatural Ampitheathre in Victoria. Ya gotta be in it to win it, so head along to the ballot here to be in the chance to buy a ticket. I’d really prefer if you didn’t because then there’s better odds for me to win, but whatever.

P.S You really should buy all of Eddy Current Suppression Ring’s records ‘n stuff here. Trust me, there’s worse things to drop cash on than three flawless albums that have influenced a generation.

New: Miners – Wrings


Like Teenage Fanclub and Sonic Youth had a kid that grew up on The Brat Pack and crippling self-doubt, “Wrings” announces Miners’ debut EP ‘Pala’. It’s plucky and packed with feedback, not the variety that turns listeners away but the kind that cocoons your head between the expensive headphones you should be listening to this on. Sweeping guitars combat with forlorn vocals, jangly riffs pacing themselves until they tumble into careeening squall.

Likening themselves to mentors Day Ravies (who’s Sam Wilkinson is releasing the EP under his Strange Pursuits label), Miners snap in and out with a swooning and efficient jam that every pedal nerd is going to be salivating over. You can catch ’em when they play The Record Crate on the 3rd of October w/ Draining Pool and Milkk.

New: Big White – Dinosaur City

bigwhitepressWhat dinosaur would Big White be? Obviously, the first answer you’d go for is Stegosaurus. Awkward and loveable, these legends have got spikes on their backs! But they’re not spikes to impale enemies on, NO! These are spikes that belong in a playground, for the kiddies to climb over and frolic upon as single dads hawk at soccer mums over cups of overpriced lattes. Loveable and goofy, they’re freaks of nature that we can all get around.

Ah, shit, nah, on second listen, maybe they’re a Brachiosaurus…have you seen the heights of Nick Griffith and Jack Wotton? Every gig Big White play, it feels like those two are munching on roof beams instead of prehistoric leaves. Or maybe they’re a bunch of Compsognathus’, aka those little shits running around in Jurassic Park. Big White, split into five little cheeky green guys causing pop mischief and spitting acid in Newman’s face?

Ah, fuck it, this dinosaur shit is hard. Just enjoy the bloody song whydoncha?

Top 10 Bands of Laneway Festival 2016


Laneway Festival just announced their lineup for 2016, and fuck me, I’ve shit the bed…twice. Whilst I clean the sheets, old mate WordPress came calling, and now you’ve got a list, ANOTHER BLOODY LIST, telling YOU who to go and begrudgingly see after you inevitably figure out that those caps you bought off the lad in Camperdown Park are duds.

10. Violent Soho

It seems real weird that Violent Soho were booked for Laneway Festival. The festival has always prided itself on booking acts either on the cusp of popularity, or who have only recently tasted that sweet, sweet music career success. Violent Soho easily sell out some of the biggest venues in the country, and already played the festival in 2011. It’s not really a complaint, as the band always put on a hell of a show, but it begs the question as to why the festival didn’t book someone more emerging as opposed to a band so established? Still, if ya feel like showering in other people’s sweat (read: my sweat) in a mosh, your best bet is to head to wherever Soho are playing.

9. Silicon

Kody Nielsen’s got a resume worth having a gag over: The Mint Chicks, Opossum, Unknown Mortal Orchestra, and now Silicon. Old mate’s been signed to Domino Records (via Weird World), home to Sebadoh, Jon Hopkins and Dan Deacon. He’s got a record coming out which features the bloody tops “Burning Sugar”, and in a few weeks he’s going to be touring with Tame Impala Only one of those achievements is boring.

8. Majical Cloudz

Jesus Christ, Majical Cloudz are pretty good at making you feel like you’ve accomplished nothing with your life. The voice of Devon Welsh is like a mixture of your parents’ telling you that they’re disappointed in you and being left at the altar. There’s a whole lot of pain there, and it’s shaping up to be that watching Majical Cloudz in the flesh is going to feel like Frosty the Snowman is reaching into our chest cavities and strangling our hearts.


These guys are fucked, in the best way possible. Think of the danceable noise of Holy Fuck, but trodden with paranoia and an addiction to unpredictability. Their ‘Get Colour’ record is an incredible experience that, if listened to correctly, should blow out your ear drums. Their new record ‘Death Magic’ is equally visceral, a dark, violent affair well-worth your time. Allegedly, HEALTH’s live shows are surreal events that warrant ear plugs and a clean smock.

6. Thundercat

Look, I’ll be honest, my heart fluttered for a second when I thought that the cult 80’s kids cartoon I watched re-runs of when my parents were asleep was going to make a live-action comeback. I would bite the dick off a gargoyle if that opportunity presented itself. Unfortunately, we’ll have to settle for the other Thundercat, a Flying Lotus collaborator, bass god and master of neo-soul who will make us all want to be better people. #realtalk though, how sick would it be to abuse a pimply kid in a Snarf costume between craft beers and Grimes?

5. The Goon Sax

Let’s be real: it was definitely my article on the best bands of BIGSOUND that got this one over the line. You can be one of the best emerging acts to put jangle-pop on its head, you can pull off an incredibly heartfelt and original set in a packed out bar in Brisbane, and you can warrant a whole lot of tongue wagging with the announcement that you’re joining Chapter Music off the back of a few demos. But you can’t underestimate the power of #localblogs.

In all seriousness, it’ll be interesting to see how The Goon Sax pull off a set at a festival like Laneway. In a pub, they’re on home turf, playing to small, packed crowds of people that adore the music they make; their charm arises from their faults and humbleness displayed on the homely  pub stage. Who knows what might go down in front of gum-chewing punters hanging for Hudson Mohawke. Fingers crossed the rest of Australia gets to see the magic that I saw at Ric’s a few weeks back.


Their second album was a bit of an uneven affair, lacking the succinct and determined power of their debut, but there’s little doubt that METZ have lost the strength of their live show. Their show at GoodGod two years ago remains one of my favourites, and not just because they were joined by TV Colours and Batpiss. There’s an ungodly amount of bite in METZ’s music which is hurled at anyone within a fortunate distance. The Laneway organisers should put these guys and HEALTH together and ensure that NOBODY CAN HEAR ANYTHING EVER AGAIN!

3. Vince Staples

Rap is not my strong game. Shit, it’s not even my game. I don’t know the rules, I don’t own the proper paraphernalia, and sometimes I get scared when I listen to an N.W.A song. But Vince Staples swooped in and plastered his ‘Summertime ’06’ record everywhere, and shit, I ain’t even mad. This album is thrilling, a thuggish, brutal hip-hop record that floats between expert production and terrifying lyrics. Live, his exuberance and savagery will produce gulps of fear in the squares of Australia.

2. Blank Realm

The Australian contingent is pretty solid this year, relying less on proven success stories of yore (e.g Dune Rats and Courtney Barnett last year) and more on instinct and intuition. It explains why artists like Ali Barter and High Tension found their way on the lineup. But Blank Realm!?? I assumed this band was doomed to a fate of being adored after their time, like fellow Brisbanites The Saints. But Laneway have made the right choice and picked up the best band in Australia for performance duties. Good. Fucking. Option. Mates.

Seriously, the shunning of mainstream popularity for Blank Realm is criminal. How many masterpieces have you got to release before the floodgates of mass devotion open? The answer is three. Blank Realm have three masterpieces. They just released their latest opus, and fuck me, if you still haven’t checked it out, then do yourself a favour and press repeat until your fingers bleed.


Some dickhead graphic designer completely forgot to put SPOD’s name on the lineup again! Jesus Christ! Two years in a row! That’s a stab in the back, isn’t it! Maybe the contracts still have yet to go through, but c’mon! Pull yourself together! He’s a national icon!

PREMIERE: Hobby Farm – Wrong Things


Garfield was a prophet: Mondays suck. There’s that sudden realisation that all the harm you’ve inflicted upon yourself over the weekend will suddenly and inescapably catch up to you, and turn a mere 24 hours into a lifetime of pain. Unless you’re me. Shit, Mondays are great for me. I do nothing. I wake up around 1 in the afternoon, hang out with my dogs, catch an episode of The Sopranos, and then have a 4:30 FaceTime Conference with the fellas. Technology, amirite?

But this Monday’s different, because there’s the first look screening of the debut single from Hobby Farm. Yet another side-project from a member of The Ocean Party, it’s beginning to look like The OP’s are trying to organise some sort of mass acquisition of Melbourne night-life, where the entire jangle pop ensemble stages a show at every venue in The Great Art Capital of ‘Straya. Listen mate, you’re either going to an Ocean Party show, or you’re going to the casino.

Not that it would be a bad thing – amongst Ciggie Witch, Velcro, Cool Sounds, Jordan Thompson, Snowy Nasdaq, and a couple others I’m probably forgetting, you can check out Hobby Farm, probably playing a quiet but warmly received set in the Tote front bar. They kick off with their first song “Wrong Things”. Mournful guitars warble next to bruised sax and Zac Denton duets with an unnamed woman on a nostalgia-stained sermon. He’s dressed as a professor, with a glass tumbler filled with the finest wine in the supermarket to match; he’s reminiscing, as all good lecturers do, on his woes. His brother looks on from the corner of the room, shirtless and covered in sweat from all the iron-pumping and kidney punches. The song ends, the tears well, the crowd stands, the room erupts.

And that’s what I did on Monday.

Hobby Farm’s debut album is out now on Osborne Again, in the old USB format (TECHNOLOGY!) or Name-Your-Price on Bandcamp.

Video: Love Signs – Not Used to Losing


Fuuuuuuuck, now I gotta brain freeze. Yeah….shit, yeah, I thought it was gone, but now it’s back. Mmmm, ah ah ah ah, Jesus, ah ah ah, no, don’t talk to me, no, shit, shit, shit, yep, yep it’s gone.

That’s the new song from Love Signs – it’s sugary sweet pop purpose built for the brain freeze effect. Except you’re not screaming in pain, thrashing your arms in a savage case of frosty Parkinson’s – you’re having a jolly old time falling in love with some of Brissy’s finest.

If the sugar-caked melodies weren’t enough “Not Used to Losing” throws down the gauntlet with an all-star cast hanging out in malls, singing karaoke, and lying in terrifyingly rigid positions on the bleachers. In reference to that final activity – Brisbane, fuck’s wrong with you mate? That’s what serial killers do! Love Signs are the band that you want playing in the background when you go on your first date, not your first murdering spree!

New: Summer Flake + Alex Lahey + Fern


I’d love to give each of these women their own little post, because god knows they deserve it. But these tracks have gone undocumented for too long, and I’m afraid that if I let it go any longer then I won’t get to lay claim about being into them before they were headlining Coachella. Bragging rights are pretty much the only reason I exist, and it’s taken too long for me to post about these tracks. Look, what I’m saying is that I’m fucking lazy –  give us a break, I’ve been watching the #libspill with my parents, I’ve been doing some real productive shit.

Summer Flake – The Sun Won’t Shine

Summer Flake returns with her trademark stab of evocative songwriting. She’s in full flight with “The Sun Won’t Shine”, a song that’s delivered with all the potent beauty that Steph Crase’s voice is capable of (hint: a fuck tonne). BUT BE WARNED! Listen to the lyrics and prepare to burst into tears. If you want to just go about your life, drinking coffee and ruling at Instagram, then feel free to float along with the clinking guitars and Summer Flake’s gorgeous vocals. Take even the mildest peep into the words coming from her mouth, and you’ll be opened to a world of nihilistic self-criticism. In saying that, Summer Flake is probably the only one who can make you giggle to a line like “You’ve got no chance of ever succeeding”. She’s a real charmer like that

P.S Let’s smile at our insecurities together this weekend when Summer Flake plays at the Small World Festival. Palms, Jack Ladder, DZ Deathrays and the fucking CHURCH are playing as well.

Alex Lahey – Air Mail

Take a look at that photo. Shit, you’d be forgiven for thinking that you were looking at a Courtney Barnett Jr. – cool looking lady that you can’t help but want to be best mates with after a glance, wearing a normal sweater and shoulder length brunette hair. Jesus, she’s even standing in front of a homemade nature painting. MILK! OI MILK! I GOT YA NEXT SIGNING! RIGHT BLOODY HERE!

Actually, I was impressed with Alex Lahey before I pressed the play button, and it’s got nothing to do with any sort of likeness to another Melbournite. She also plays in Animaux, and makes an appearance in the new Tully on Tully clip; but her solo material moves far away from the electro-pop stylings of the former two. “Air Mail” is a simple, plucky tune, anchored by a steady, honeyed voice – on her debut, Lahey manages to be catchy without relying on any cliched tricks. She simply sings about body parts and love (don’t be fucking gross ya muppet) and wraps the whole thing up in less than three minutes. How’s that for a bloody Cinderella effect? Well produced and buoyant, Lahey has made a spot on pop song and what’s more, she sounds like she’s done it before having the first sip of a morning coffee. Well worth keeping an eye on this one.

Fern – It Comes Slow

This is a slow burner. Like, Sixth Sense levels of slow burner. Nearly running into five minutes, Fern drop a few subtle hints of how awesome its gonna get/the fact that Bruce has been a ghost THIS ENTIRE TIME. We’ve got lush vocals, a nice palette of instrumentation, and tantalising pushes in the chorus that hint at something more. It’s not until the finale were the potential is unlocked: the guitars churn to an impossible rate, Willis collapses to his knees and the audience lets out a collective “OH FUCK, ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME?”. Just do us a favour Fernies, don’t go the way of M. Night Shyamalan. Nobody needs another bloody Village.