Video: Angie – Out of Age

All the elements were in play for Angie’s sophomore album to kick tremendous amounts of arse. Considering Angie’s storied past in bands like Circle Pit, Straight Arrows et. al., recorded and produced by Owen Penglis, and with the support of Rice is Nice, this album was always going to be a special one.

“Out of Age” simply reinforces that belief, with a Sonic Youth meets Chrome unpredictability, noise clashing with pop at high velocity. Angie’s vocals bleed through the screeching, schizophrenic guitars, and it’s not a huge leap of the imagination to see this as a belying live performance.

Remember the first time you went to a rock show? Like a real rock show, not a Beatles cover band. Remember how loud it was, how thrilling? How your ears nearly burst at the seams as each note pulverised your very being? That’s what the new Angie is. The lo-fi drone places you front and centre of one of her bludgeoningingly noisy shows which have that capability to bring you back to that snotty, earnest kid who thought seeing Rise Against at the Entertainment Centre was the most punk and vitriolic thing since you shaped your hair into a mohawk in the shower.

 

Catch Angie playing with Ela Stiles at a free show at the MCA this Thursday. I fuckn dare ya.

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New: Nathan Roche – Phantom Blues

After far, far too long, the prodigal son of prestige, Mr. Nathan Roche, has returned with a fan-fucking-tastic taster of his upcoming third (and allegedly last) album, “Cathedreal Made Outta Green Cards”.

If you’re feeling down, and you don’t know why, let Roche’s slow, sultry tones tell you why. You might not be able to mouth your own inner fears, and that’s why you’ve got the former man from Marf Loth and Camperdown and out to do it for you.

Via chain-clinking drum beats and depressed guitar jangle, Nathan will teach you the way of the neverending phantom blues. And whilst these blues might stretch on for an undetermined, and possibly infinite, period of time, Roche has the ability to make them all the more catchy, and ironically, enjoyable.

New From France: BCBG + Volage + Excusers

Aaaahhh, France, a country of lurvvvv, where you enter for 5 minutes, and leave a beret-wearing, baguette-toting, “S’il vous plait”-spouting example of indoctrination. Or at least, that’s what American WWII movies have taught me. I honestly know nothing about France, or Paris. But from the few examples of French music that have floated into my inbox as of late, it’s all a little bit of alright.

BCBG – Noces d’Argent 7″

According to old mate Google Translate, “Noces d’Argent” means ‘Silver Wedding’, which is really quite an accurate description of what occurs on this 7″. Only three songs and a remix long, it’s a beautiful, swirling palette of SIMPLY GORGEOUS songs. Put out by the one and only legend Nathan Roche, BCBG pack out their songs with atmosphere, like a Portishead that’s been taken hold of by Bjork. There’s a lot of serene beauty on here, and because of the language barrier (at least for my compatriots that only speak ‘Strayan) it becomes almost guaranteed that you’ll become lost in the music here. If Guillermo Del Toro had the same taste in music as he does with creating extraordinary worlds, as well as some semblance of nuance, BCBG would probably be his favourite band.

Volage – Heart Healing

If you’re a fan of The Growlers, Night Beats, or The Laurels, it’s doubtful that you’ll do anything less than explode with joy at the prospect of Volage. A decent garage-psych band out of everyone’s favourite city with a pointy thing in the middle, Volage love themselves some rollicking piano riffs and chugging guitars. When they adopt the freak-out pose of fellows like King Gizzard, such as “Loner”, that’s when shit gets really fun, and you want to try and bend your limbs into positions our Higher Power did not want you to.

Excusers – No Excusers

Alright, so I’m cheating here, in that Excusers are actually from Italy. However, their label, the always on-top-of-it Beko Disques (who have put out the likes of Day Ravies and Parading) are from France, so it works out. Fuck you, my blog, my rules. Anyway, these guys have created a gorgeous array of soft guitars that you can lie your head into. If this band was a pillow, they’d be of the highest-thread count, and stuffed with Golden Goose feathers. Rare and stunning, with a shining prescence, Excusers take things at a leisurely pace, spreading their sounds around with careful and delicate precision. Best track on here is “Youngest Buddle”, but they’re all bloody tops aren’t they?

Album Review: Nathan Roche-Magnetic Memories

About a month ago, I went and interviewed Nathan Roche. Why wouldn’t I? The dude’s a staple of Sydney’s music scene, and seeing his galloping hair do at pretty much every show worth going to brings me a sigh of relief. Roche is here. I went to the right gig. Everything’s gonna turn out okay. I’m not going to get hit with a maelstrom of shitty tunes.

Back to the interview, I asked him about how he was etc., and he mentioned he had just finished working on a new album. Immediately, my anticipation boner started heaving. A new Nathan Roche album? As in, the same guy that did ‘Watch It Wharf’? I rushed to the bathroom as fast as my stained jeans would allow.

However, Roche passed it off like it was nothing, a mere trivial matter. Yeah, new album, whatever mate, let’s talk about how much of an asshole Lou Reed was and how Neanderthals are puppets of the Sony Corporation*. Oh Nathan, you trickster, you! You’re the equivalent of Lando Calrissian, supposedly betraying me to the dark forces of The Republic Pty. Ltd., only to chuck a swifty and get me and my crew out of that sticky situation! Hell, you’ve even come to Jabba’s Palace, and unfrozen all the carbonite shit and killed my main enemy Boba Fett! Basically, that extended metaphor is saying that Nathan Roche has delivered a spectacular sophomore product, that’ll have the major labels crawling in his faeces in some sort of attempt to gain his attention.

And how has this come to be? How has a simple, understated man with a guitar and the ability to drawl a yarn better than Banjo Patterson with three whiskeys down him, come to perform such a wonderful piece of music? Because Nathan Roche is a man of the people! Yes, much like Martin Luther King Jr, Nelson Mandela and Kid Rock, Roche is a megaphone of the plights, pleas and observations of your average semi-house-broken, Bondi Rescue-watching, permanently-single legends that make Australian culture such a pleasure to be a part of.

However, it extends past the demeanour on his excellent debut ‘Watch It Wharf’. ‘Magnetic Memories’ expands Roche’s musical repertoire and attitudes at the same rate of goth boners spreading when Robert Smith’s says something mildly sassy on Facebook. Don’t fear, there’s the usual gurgling, brash-meets-too-drunk-to-give-a-fuck slacker bangerz on the album. ‘Walsh Bay Waltz/Gordon’s Bay Jig’ contains the usual irreverent slobbering from Roche, pandering lovelorn ‘ooo’s’ to downtrodden landmarks of Sydney next to a plaintive guitar. And ‘Alcoholics Anonymous’ has a drunken balladry to it, the sort of swaying feeling implanted into it that one gets from either being on a ship, or five bourbon and cokes to the wind.

But it’s too hard not to notice the wonderful reaching that Roche is chucking into the songs. I guess you could call it experimenting, but that doesn’t quite fit. Lemme digress. ‘Call Back’ has an Alex Cameron-reincarnated-as-Roal-Duke feel to it, blazing down a Nevada freeway on a cocktail of drugs and The Stones kicking it in the back. ‘Down at the Docks’ has something of a battle cry to it, and even a dripping wet guitar solo, and ‘One More Stinking Day’ has a Vaudevillian kick, a bitter narrative slickness that Nathan Roche hasn’t really shown before.

But hands down, it’s the title track that showcases that Roche is on the path to glory. Maybe it’s an increased gelling with serial muso partner Joseph Ireland, but this song is a rum ‘n’ coconut away from being set in the final scene of the ‘Bad Ending’ in Wayne’s World, where Rob Lowe is about to fuck Wayne’s girlfriend in a tropical paradise. It’s the sort of thing you’d unashamedly do a hulu dance to. You wanna know how many other songs fit into that very specific genre? Just one-Nathan Roche’s ‘Magnetic Memories’.

‘Magnetic Memories’ ends up being a completely unique, highly enjoyable and flexibly diverse record. It dips into all sorts of styles and genres with the laidback attitude of Roche himself. It’s a step in the perfectly right direction, away from ‘Watch It Wharf’, but losing none of the charisma and charm that it’s narrator exudes. Fuckin’ A Nathan! Fuckin’ A!

 

*actual conversation topics from interview with Nathan Roche.