Monday, March 31, 2008

BMX Brand X ride again

And the verdict? The Brand X boys let loose with a mighty roar of rock that threatened to drown out the Sunday arvo's reverie right across the town. I went a block away to a servo to get a can of drink and could hardly hear myself in the shop. Noice. The teenagers were all suitably surly and unimpressed. The band who owned the P.A were... adequate. 10 Second Riot is a great name for a band. Now they just gotta write some songs to match.

The bands set up on the edge of the skatebowl apron, and bychrist did a couple of the riders give it a red hot go. Props to the guy who continually tried to pull off the 720 degree spin and continually came within a pube's length of nutting himself. Big-ups to the poor little bugger who found out who wins in a game of Razor Scooter versus BMX. Seeing what looked like a 3 year old strapped into a camo-green helmet and wraparound glasses calmly trot out on his mini-scooter while all about him insane teenagers on BMXs flashed past with nary a care gave me hope that a new generation of youngsters without fear is on its way.

I'm talking, of course, of the inaugural Fuck this All Ages Gig At A Venue Bullshit Let's Just Set Up and Give It A Crack at the Skatebowl gig last Sunday, which for all purposes, went very nicely. Always nice to see some coppers running the barbie and handing out snags to the very people they're used to hassling. It was so easy, so stress-free, so easily organised there is no possibility of it happening again this year. Why would ya? Someone said it might happen again next year....

Me? I set up the Dodgy DJ kit in secret and patched into the P.A system. It all went rockin, until I was given the nastiest, most terrible thing a DJ could hear. "Could you turn it down? Some of the kids say they can't hear each other speaking." Outrageous. This is what 11 years of unmitigated evil in the shape of a man built only of eyebrows and fundamentalist Christian dogma brings.
Tomorrow we have another Show With No Name. Somehow I'm going to have to work in the classic Break the Ice by John Farnham. The very keen will know it's John's contribution to the classic BMX film Rad. In fact, here's John in all his glory for you right now - hope Lenny's not watching....

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Do you wanna DJ me gig?

That's not what he really said. The man known as Jones rang. He said there was a gig at the Ballarat skatepark. His band, the Best Boy Band in Ballarat, were gonna play. Condition was, the guy who owns the P.A. and he has a band, too.

Thinking this could go anywhere, I wondered....

Because the Brand X are a bunch of guys in their 30s holding on to the dream of fuckin' loud, fast, funny music.. I heard these guys the night I met Hot Thighs, my gorgeous girlfriend. First thing I thought was 'hillbilly fugazi'. Which is pretty accurate, except any accusations of being straight edge...

But this other band? Could be a bit soft... And when you're old, you want to let the skaters know that loud, ugly music is a family. And the elders must be respected. Ladeez and gennilmen, this is how the Brand X take to techno...

It's a four hour gig. One of the bands plays really fast, quick songs. Umm... and it looks like the 'DJ rig' is going to be a portable CD stereo patched through a mixer into the P.A.... cheap? punk? p'shaw!

And take that fuckin' mp3 player outta here, kid! I'm tryin' to patch me record player into that gas barbie!

Show With No Name playlist March 26

Hard to say what the theme was this week.
'Disjointed' comes to mind.
Have been gradually adding some new links to folks who write with a passion, verve and the usual grab bag of adjectives you can't apply much to music writing these days.

Take Last Tram Home over there in the 6 Dim Sims of Separation box. Or the extreme rock and jazz excitement of Dave Lang over at Man With No Shame. And the man who's so Sydney underground/birdman/newchrists/iggy/diedprettyrock it hurts (in a good way), the Barman's Ranting at the I-94. This be good writin'. The Herald-Shun, the pAge, the former Government Gazette turned "We can make hate and right wing frothing into objective debate" pamphlet. They not be good writin'.
But I digress. Disjointed, you say. Yes. Here's what we played. Including a tribute to us getting Van Halen back on the road.

Radio Birdman - New Race (1992 version)
Front End Loader - We Don't Understand You
Motorhead - Stay Clean
Wagons - Snakebite
The Hold Steady - Hot Soft Light
Jimi Hendrix - Crosstown Traffic
Colonel Claypool's Bucket of Bernie Brains - Junior
Frank Zappa - Jonescrusher
Heeby Jeebies - Rubber Biscuit
Tragically Hip - Silver Jet
Lobby Loyde - Too Poor to Die
Lazy Farmer's Sons - Withered By the Dawn
Fugazi - Screaming at a Wall

7 O'Clock High Octane for Helen mix:
Pennywise - Bro Hymn
Mighty Mighty Bosstones - Lights Out
Bad Brains - Jah People Make the World Go Round
Voodoo Glowskulls - Monstruo del Gabinete
The Misfits - From Hell They Came

Van Halen - Dance the Night Away
Red Kross - Any Hour, Every Day
Dubrovniks - She Got No Love
Merry Clayton - Gimme Shelter
Purple Hearts - Just a Little Bit
Andre Williams - I Wanna Be Your Show
Celibate Rifles - Jesus On TV
The Now Time Delegation - Bye Bye
The Replacements - Bastards of the Young
The Gimmies - Living on 16 Shadows
The Victims - Television Addict
The Powdermonkeys - The Doldrums

Monday, March 24, 2008

Death on wheels: the traditional Easter media snuff fest

There are some Australian media cliches that withstand the test of time - we will always have rain failing to dampen spirits of revellers at the Melbourne Cup, and close-up shots of fat arses and guts during stories about obesity, but at this time of the year we get long, drawn-out cavalcades of B-grade personalities during interminable telethons accompanied by images of people handing over giant novelty cheques.

We all feel better, some kids get to say 'hi mum' on telly and some of our more colourful 'business identities' get to write off another bag of money for the taxman - with the added bonus of televised character references for the next time the Feds come a-knocking.

The other grand tradition in Australian media is counting how many people are being killed on the roads - and then running a national scoreboard between the states, showing how many people got splattered. Currently it's 19 - but we can do better, Australia!
Have a look at how West Australia is going at it: Easter road toll in WA: 5 and rising See? That's a state that's getting behind the annual cull of young and old alike. Right now it's lunchtime on the Easter Monday and so far Google News has 399 stories listed about the Easter road toll. Extra bonus points to the kids of Cressy, however - for taking cops on a car chase after robbing a service station, while one of their mates was in the boot. They stacked into a tree. Sadly, officers were not allowed to handcuff any of them to the bumper bar, hand them a hacksaw then set a small fire in the dripping petrol.
At this point in Easter you can start playing media coverage bingo - you get bonuses for these particular words used in any headline/story text combination:
Horror, Carnage, Police Frustrated, Toll (never a bodycount or a corpse-score, it's always a toll), Young Lives, Fatality, Tragedy and Lives Shattered.

Tomorrow, we will bank the money Holden and Ford paid us to advertise stupid-fast cars to 19 year olds needing a manhood ritual, and the money we made from BMW and Mercedes making giant four wheel drives the new must-have accessory for the over 50 executives who just can't bear to be dragged off by those fucking 19 year olds. And then we will write an editorial about there needing to be more education and tougher laws. Australian media, you make me sick.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Resurrection shuffled: or getting hammered is traditional for Easter in Ballarat

Another weekend reading the Springfield versus Shelbyfield pissing contest of The Age and The Australian, considering again that perhaps all the best writers of culture have given up trying to be published on dead tree in Australia and are wandering about online, mostly. And then there's us. *tumbleweed*

Musically, the good, bad and ugly list this Easter looks like this: Paul Stanley says he will quit kiss, which only goes to show what kind of sway Len's editorial on last week's show has. My bringing out of Heard It On the X was the precursor to the announcement that ZZ Top are recording again, so I guess it's my turn to line up at the Disappointment Ride for my chance to watch once favoured legends squander their once-shiny legacy.
Yes, my mulleted teenage bad self was there when ZZ Top played at Olympic Park in 1987. Me, my two mates and about 10,000 bikies.They were awesome. Billy Gibbons helped bring me to the psychedelic and freaky in blues and rock and roll music... - ah, the Deguello album - but their gradual decline throughout the 1990s does bring back the classic modern musical dilemma: just where do you go after your psychedelic retro-hotrod becomes a push-button spaceship?
No, what we've seen this Easter is the arrival of the rock'n theme song for Presidential candidates. One of our spiky-haired brethren from Twisted Sister (no, not Dee...) has whipped up a version of I Wanna Rock - except it's I Want Barack.

Yes - how fucking stupid. But is it stupid enough to win more votes? I think so. Which means not only will this get really ridiculous as the major media outlets seek more creative ways to ignore 5 years of carnage in Iraq, and desperate old rockstars seek a way to be relevant again (Bono. Say no more.), but also as with most American political stunts and trends, Australia will either get a shitty copied version of this very soon, or a really good ripoff of it in about three to five years' time.

So here's my early picks for remakes/repostings/corpse raping of OzRock for Oz Politicians:

Kevin Must Be There - Eurogliders

Maxine - Sharon O'Neill

The Phillip Ruddock Blues - TISM

Kochsucker Blues - David Koch goes for Indendent MP with the Beasts of Bourbon

It's A Wong Way to the Top - the massed drummers sacked by AC-DC

What About Pete - Peter Garrett with Shannon Noll and the Hard Knocks Choir

Of course, I live in Ballarat. Where Steve Jones is the mayor. The farking bass player for the Sex Pistols, if you 'aven't 'eard... Although curiously, the Clash's Janey Jones could get a work out... Anyhoo.

At least hearing Sweet Home Bazz Obama sure will be funny... I'm sure. What we need is circuses made out of bread. I'm hungry.

Show With No Name playlist march 19

Easter. Jesus. No breaking stories on the lack of water this week. Although fans will note that the power of the Show With No Name endures, with the report that Van Halen may well be back on the road.

And a discovery: we found out the guy who hosts the 'lifestyle show' from 4-6pm before us was the bassist in the band who supported KISS at their legendary 1980 gig at Waverly Park. Lenny and I consider ourselves to be hard to impress - consider us impressed. Very. Especially when he backed up that tale with one about being a session bass player who knocked back royalties in favour of the one-off payment for his work on a little number called What About Me.
Big Al, your credibility just went up a thousand points on the Show With No Name... so inthe name of respectable lawyer-types who still hold a flame for metal, and with Easter on the horizon, we rolled in the rock:

Prisonshake - Bedtime Beats You Senseless
Rev Horton Heat - Prophet Stomp
Blur - Globe Alone
Harem Scarem - Animal Tracks
Rancid - Time Bomb
The Sparkles - Hipsville 29 B.C
Spanky Wilson - You Can't Judge a Book By Its Cover
Bzark - Be My Parasite
23rd of Elvis - Waco and The Outsider (live Karova desk mix)
Boris Sudjovic - A.Harry & Mainstays theme
Dead Milkmen - Punk Rock Girl
Teenage Radio Stars - Sweet Boredom
Thin Lizzy - Jailbreak

Seven O'Clock Rock**:
Suicidal Tendencies - Posessed to Skate
The Bronx - Cobra Lucha
Ramones - Gimme Gimme Shock Treatment
Misfits - Where Eagles Dare

Detroit Cobras - Bad Girl
Flamin Groovies - Golden Clouds
Circle Jerks - World Up My Ass
TISM - Extreme Sports Can Kiss My Arse
Frank Zappa - Stevie's Spanking
Martha and the Vandellas - Nowhere to Run
Butthole Surfers - Goofy's Concern
AFI - Wester
ZZ Top - Heard it On the X
The Clash - Janie Jones
Joe Jackson - Happy Ending
Alice Russell - End of the Road
Richard Cheese - Crazy Train
Bay City Rollers - Bang Shang alang

**dedicated to all hardcore fans who hang around petrol stations near skateparks

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Hot Autumn ideas for Ballarat Festivals

It's stinking hot... have only just now managed to pry Mick out of the refrigerator. Looked like he was holding a global warming conference in the salad drawer. Probably explained all the mayonaise everywhere. Lenny was last seen with a bass amp pouring smoke, carvings the words 23rd of Elvis ROCK into the minds of those at the Karova Bar. Anyhoo, we've been casting around the interwebs and we think we have some surefire hits to bring to the people of Ballarat...

Traditional Swan Strangling festival

Details are sktechy, but Mick tells me there is a long and honoured tradition in Ballarat for this, and it's high time the citizens paid for a festival to celebrate it.
Along with the Animals of Australia Who Threaten Little Kids Parade there will be a jazz component, with former members of Chiodo joining with Adam Simmons (who'll be playing an unprecedented 17 instruments at once), with the backing of the Sweet Monas on a Australia Council funded project simply called "Swan strangle sextet with chicken choke chorus."

Sly and the Family Vendy will play support on the night

Single Mum Sexpo
Featuring: 'Mars MILF of the Year'
Three day festival hosted in the hotspot of Delacomb - the suburb spurting with growth.
Located next to the Ballarat Tradesman's Convention.
Free childcare

The Dirty Frank Movie Festival
Come see Dirty Harry, Sudden Impact, Magnum Force, the Enforcer, The Dead Pool - with the classic soundtracks re-interpreted for accordion and by Ballarat's own Frank Callahan. All your favourite movies with interlude music performed live by the original 'Dirty' homocidal force for goodness and decency, Frank Callahan with a chorusline of victims performed by the best of Ballarat's thriving community theatre community..

Xtreme Footpath Warriors

A localised version of the Ultimate Warrior series: groups of big blokes belting the bejesus out of each other on the streets of Ballarat. The rest of us can bet money on it. Some of the money will be used for charity.

The Small Business Festival

Can you open a medium sized business on Sturt Street and reduce it to a smaller business, and then nothing at all in one week?Viewers can vote for whoever they hated in high school. Features the 'What shop is that?' tour of shops for people over 80, explaining the changes in the last week or three years.

In Frank Tonight - Frank Callahan's live to air variety show live from the Casablanca Club's All Night Bingo and Beats party. (Ladies bring a platter...) A non-stop cavalcade of Frank's favourite songs. And ads for Frank's DVDs and hygiene products. And looped favourites of Frank's most voted for Songs For Begging Cigarettes at the Plaza.

It's a Medieval Knockout
This once revered tv show reinvented for the jackass generation, aired live and uncut every friday night. with such fine events as:

Rave Jousting - brave boys hopped up on a heady brew of courage and cleaning products, atop horses given an industrial strength dose of Sudafeds to beat the 'flu. With DJs: Norman Dunnstown, the Vite Vite Posse, the Pleasant Hilltop Hoods and the Black Hill Mob.

Drug Search Obstacle Course and Rally - each contestant starts at the Deer Park service station and is handed a small package of pills. Contestants must use a combination of driving the backroads through Rockbank and Buninyong and deep cavity usage in the competition to avoid any detection in a series of police searches and pursuits.

Crusty demons Equestean Team - ever seen a horse do a 360 flip? Nup, neither of we. So we started this team. Be There. Be There! BEEE THEEEEEERE!!!!

Lay Back and Think of England
Brave boys hopped up on a heady brew of courage and veterinary products are placed in stirrups with their goolies on display. They are presented with a series from the Kryal Castle's special 18th century gynacological instrument collection - the first one who involuntarily squeezes their knees shut is out. And then we take SMS votes on how to use the instrument on them.

Extreme Ferris Wheels
Lake Wendouree is turned into battleground of converted Ferris Wheels, operating as single hubbbed monster trucks, powered by chemical waste products and converted steam technology, pumped from the water bores in the homes that surround Lake Wendouree. Extreme tractor and mower driving demonstrations as well.

Wendouree Warrior
Lake Wendouree is caged and turned into a tribute/replica of the Mad Max 3 movie, complete with cage and bungee ropes with a special vehicle arena, allowing for demolition derby-style Carmaggeddon action.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Ballarat festival ideas

Shit! Goddamn! Make mine a cheese and ham! Mick Dog's revelation of another fantastic attempt for Ballarat to sink a shitload of money into something other than the behemoth of boring, the Begonia Fester-Vale, ignites a spark of interest in the cloistered explosive fumes of my pants. A festival, you say? Not like at Sovereign Hill, where a tonne of money was dumped on a sad and pathetic retelling of the tragic story of Australian music in the 1980s, as re-enacted by the people who were actually there (was it true the staff of Sovvie Hill were PAID to watch James Reyne?)

How to get the folk of Ballarat on board and supportive of something more complicated than queuing for dimmies at the Hamburger Cart, yet not as awkward as standing around on Camp Street watching councillors get drunk and Ballarat artists get short shrift during the Commonwealth Games...

Here's the grab bag of festival ideas we could - or yet might have if the collective genius of the Middle Aged Caucasians Without Soul has its indomitable way in Ballarat:

Crimean War Festival: everyone has to dress up as their favourite character from this charming 19th century fracas between Russia and the Poms, Frogs and Turks. The highlight is a restaging of the Siege of Sebastopol, with Ballarat's own namesake of this historic place heavily bombed, and then invaded by the armies of Wendouree and Redan in their fleet of P-Plate Commodores.

The Plugger Festival

A festival of quietly spoken, barrel chested large men who can kick footies a fuckin' long way. They will all gather at a footy ground and begin drinking in March. In April, one will say "jeez, I'm a bit hungry" and then the 8 weeks of barbque food festival will begin. Sausages of the World, Celebrity Steak Sandwiches (I'll have the Terri Irwinburger) and Exotic Onion Cutting With Chainsaw displays ensue. A sideline program of dishlickers and a parade of beefy blokes in utes driving past giving a passive 'owyuzgarn?' will also bring put back the 'big bastard from the country' that's been missing in Ballarat's marketing.

Single Mums on the Tear
Finally, a week long shindig for all those young women who found out just being able to shoot a wad into the back of the net doesn't neccessarily qualify a man as good fatherhood material. Instead of just wandering mindlessly around Stocklands Wendouree or the Mall with your screaming brats, here's the chance to get together with other mums and really discuss those big issues of whether Breehanna has become an over-used name for the effects of unwanted pregancies and maybe cop a rough shag from some miscellaneous speed freak from Colac. Music from live Britney and Bon Jovi tribute shows and, of course, an invite out to every tattooed dirty bastard across the state that there's plenty of desperate-for-any-action types gathered in one spot, so we can begin the process all over again 9 months after this event.

Stupid people and the impending massacre in Ballarat

My favourite author of all time is a bloked called Harlan Ellison. Your fuckin' uneducated fault for not knowing who he is. He's doing some interviews with people because there's a movie coming out about him. Knowing Australia we'll get the usual 5 second-crap press release rewrite, about 8 months after the fact - not unlike SBS TV news finding out that Terry Pratchett has dementia last night... like it was fuckin' news.... (can't even find the story on their website, that's how important they thought it was)

Anyhoo, I read this interview with Harlan on and I thought this particular quote resonated best, although sadly, it may mean the end of Ballarat as a heavily populated regional city if Harlan ever moves here:

"I'm an elitist because I think there are too many stupid people in the
world. But one must not pity them; one must take an AK-47 and kill them. You
just need to kill as many stupid people as you can find. Go out in the streets
and ask them if they have ever heard of Guy de Maupassant. No? Bam, you're dead.

Have you ever heard of Bessie Smith? No? Bam, you're dead. Beyond that, I
think it is really smartass of me to be cranky at people for not being as good
as I want them to be. I have, I suppose, a very peculiar love-hate relationship
with the human race. As a concept, the human race seems to be a very workable
idea. When you get down to the individuals, most of them need a ball-peen hammer
to the middle of their forehead to make them move even as a slow pony. I figure
any species that is capable of writing "Moby-Dick" and painting the Sistine
Chapel ceiling and putting people on the moon does not have to settle for novels
by Judith Krantz, McDonald's toad burgers and movies like "Dumb and Dumberer."

What is that Latin phrase? Spero melior -- I hope for better things. I have
a very low tolerance threshold. It's one of my many, many flaws and I get cranky
with people..."

Friday, March 14, 2008

Hits and Gig(gles)

Hello Fans,

It's been a while, but then again I have been hiding in the cavities of certain diplomats to bring you this fast breaking news story.

I must say it's serendipitious (thats the word for covering your lovers rooty bits in Ice Magic and making them stand in the fridge so you can crack their rocks off) to read Dr. Le Skips well deserved skunking of the Begonia debacle.
Indeed it's good to see someone backing up and squeezing the anal glands hard at those motherfluffers.

The rumour is that somehow, somewhere the City council has actually managed to hire someone competent and fun to do the big Arts Officer job, (rather than another middle aged nitwit who thinks water colors of menopausal clowns are the ducks guts) and that there may be (drum roll please...) the chance of getting a proper festival in town.

Y'know.....a festival that has fun in it. That you look forward to. That lets new stuff hapen. That contains no Brian Adams.

A festival that makes the final few seconds of the National News just after the Weather (thats when you know you've made it in this country.....when some be-suited gonk says "rain and drizzle in Canberra...and now lets take a look at the Ballarat Festival where forty seven competitors had to swim through ice water, root a peguin and do three vodka luges in order to be crowed "Mr Hypothermia....." (fade to Summer Bay).

Yup. You heard it. A festival.
The question do we stop the Menzies frotting conseratives from giving it the icy dick of Satan?
Or letting Mr. Bus and his cardboard minimalism (or as we older types say "Fuckin boring horseshit") from hi-jacking the thing and using this fuckin "Tolerance" card to be piss poor and drag the whole thing down so Ballarat can hate itself again?

Is it possible in this town to say "We are just as mad as any other bastards. Our freak flag with be made of colored steam".(?)
Is it possible to get a festival up that shows those boring city doodles that no one here gives a shit about goast cheese ceramics and get Lydiard street covered in snow by one of those big snow blowing bastards?
Is it possoble to say "Shut up already with the cold. Put on another jumper and create a huge percussion sculpture that plays a tune when it pisses down on the locals?
Is it possible to have bands playing in the cold and (gasp!) you might have to dance (is that the word? I've only seen it in movies....) to keep warm?
Is it possible to have on street carveries of delectable roast meats and rivers of molten chocolate?
Is it possible to have a chilli fest in amongst it all so you have to roll around in the snow to stop your head from exploding?
Is it possible for the waring faction of ning nongs in this buggered burgh to set aside tribal differences and having a crack at defeating the larger threat of being bored fucking stupid?

Who knows?
But it's on the cards again.
Admittedly its a bit like a bunch of old soviets (sitting in the streets of Moscow with a McSomething, talking to the Ford dealership on the mobile about getting extended warrenties) suddenly geting teary about how much fun home made pickles were.

But they were good pickles, goddammit.
Damn fine pickles and when you dropped a few of those saucy gherkins down the cakehole and chased it through with some of Uncle Vlas's homemade thistle vodka, you did feel beter.

Even as you went blind for a while, (Uncle Vlas always loved the thinner in the mix. Cheap bastard...) and the pickle popped out a freshly burnt gullet hole, you realised what a good short film it would have made and realised no where else could a metaphor for a festival in my town be made but here.

And that's got to count for something.

Til next time

Mick "The worker's flag was in this box....shit...where it is?....hang on I'll ring her Maj..." Dog.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Show With No Name playlist March 11

OK, so the Van Halen thing didn't quite work out. It was always going to be a short term deal... but speaking of breathing life into a rehabbed body, Lenny was just a little bit chuffed with the news that Ace Frehley was back out and touring again. KISS may well be playing to an audience of broom pushers, waiters and freebie holders at the Grand Pricks, but we'll be holding out for Melbourne shows of Ace and his new crew of drug-free, boozefree (we used to call them straight edge, dear...) young hotshots. Bring the fuckin' Ozone, baby...

So anyhoo - in the wake of Golden Plains it was a mixed bag this week in terms of music choice. I'm still a bit flutter-hearted over the Dirtbombs and those insane Taswegians the Scientists of Modern Music. We did help promote another massive story from the Courier about needing rain to break the drought... awesome stuff.

23rd of Elvis - Way Before That
Frank Zappa - Muffin Man (live)
AC/DC - Beating Around the Bush
Roky Erikson - Standy for the Fire Demon
The Monkeywrench - Bring on the Judgement Day
Big Star - Life Is White
John Zorn - You Will Be Shot
Dirtbombs - Everlovin' Man
Leafhound - Freelance Fiend
Richard Cheese - Rape Me
Cosmic Psychos - Shove
Andre Williams - Sling It Bang It, Give it Cabfare Home
Prisonshake - $20
Guns n Roses - Anything Goes
The Fireballs - Big Black Hearse

7'oclock Rock
Sick of It All - This Day and Age
Henry Rollins - Stop, Look and Listen
One Inch Punch - Insult Your Intelligence
The Vandals - Behind the Music

Ace Frehley - Rip It Out
Lobby Loyde - Heavy Metal Kid
Aerosmith - Mama Kin
Blondie - Dreamin'
Spencer Davis Group - Time Seller
Flaming Lips - Mr Ambulance Driver
23rd of Elvis - Outsider
Ace Frehley - What's On Your Mind?
5678s - Guitar Date
Ace Frehley - Wiped Out
Bay City Rollers - Bang Shang Alang

Oh, by the way, did I mention down at Golden Plains I was told AGAIN the story of a plucky promoter who thinks they can get Led Zeppelin to play Kryal Castle?

Oh! And we got our first international shout-out from our man Jeckles at shittyblogradio. Always so nice when the folks responsible for voting in the next man with their finger on the world nuclear trigger smile upon us peasants of the Pacific... big ups!

Monday, March 10, 2008

Stick your begonias up your arse; we're at Golden Plains

Our humble state of Victoria has few rivals when it comes to shit-awful/boring-as-sand festival events, but few of these can better the absolute creamy fly-covered turdness of Ballarat's Begonia Festival. It takes a special kind of journalist to whip interest out of this shallow grave of ratepayers money, and we salute the hardworking womble who chiselled out this particular irony-free zone in the Courier, Ballarat's august paper of record. All errors of grammar and syntax have been kept from the original publication, and I've highlighted the bits that nail the sad, decaying corpse-eating pit of sadness that is Begonia Festival 2008:

Traditionally the festival is based around the flowers, art,
craft and stalls. But this year younger children could not get enough of
the "We Built This City" cardboard box arena and jumping castle. Not to
mention the mobile entertainment vehicle simply known as The Bus, which came
complete with Internet access and console games.
About 250 children had visited the cardboard box area in just the first few hours it had opened Saturday morning.
Box City "safety officer" Nathan Gurney said safety was his middle name.
"I have got cable ties for tricky corners, a texta for making signs and then a spare texta just in case," he said.
"We haven't counted exactly how many boxes are here, but there is at least 2000."
Children were encouraged to stack boxes as high as possible, before knocking them down and starting again.
While children had fun with the boxes, the Begonia Festival was of
course about the begonia's. Festival volunteer Graeme Strachan said "bus
loads" of tourists had stopped to admire flowers inside the Robert Clark
Conservatory which this year came complete with an Aladdin theme. Mr Strachan
said the drought had failed to dampen the size, or colour of the flowers.

Ladies and gennilmen, it don't get much better than that. I missed the parade, but again, the laser-sharp reportage of The Courier mentions this year had more floats than ever. Ballarat folk who were there say this is because most of the city's garbage trucks and Council vehicles were tacked on to the end of it. Apparently you could SMS a vote for your favourite garbage truck. Instead of whinging about the hijacking of more than $200,000 of public money to feed the sad egos of a few people who insist there be nothing interesting allowed to happen in Ballarat, just down the highway we were losing our minds to two insane Tasmanians with synths and vocoders

It was Golden Plains the 2nd, and yea, did it rock verily. Here's the shortlist summary:

Ween: overblown, overhyped and over here. Two hours onstage and you still can't play Gabrielle? Sure, you're a shit-hot guitarist. But if you can't do something more than play your own jukebox in double the time allowed the other bands, you are boring. Fuck off back to novelty songland.

Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings: plagued by a dodgy microphone but nailed the funk/soul banner to the wall and made everyone dance a funky salute to it

South Rakkas Crew: when will they learn? Dancehall djs are fine, but don't ever walk onstage at the Supernatural Ampitheatre and think you can pull this 'put your hands in the air' shit. We will call it as we see it. And you are wankers.

The Dirtbombs: Everything that is good about rock. Totally awesome, two drummers, awesomely huge sound, tight as fuck with a proper traincrash finish. A joy to behold.

The Vines: will the crowd stop giving this guy shit about antidepressants and being bipolar? Probably not. But the crowd danced. The old folks remained impassive.

Jens Lekman: somebody call TISM. I have a new target for them.

Buffalo Tom: OK... but making jokes about Altamont? *yawn* And he fucked up the chorus on Taillights Fade. Seriously, mate - you only had to get one song right. Is that too much to ask some hasbeen college rockers?

The Panics: great stuff. It's true what people are saying about them being the new Go-Betweens. If only he can keep from sounding like whassiface from the Whitlams, he'll be alright.

Pikelet were a tasty discovery early on. Kind of like Bjork, but from Northcote. Chick plays accordion, makes her own live loops and sings. Never seen a band all recline on banana lounges while the singer does a solo number... these guys were interesting.

Beirut got bigged up to me by the aforementioned Systah BB. She said not to miss 'em. I say: what if Morrissey joined a Balkan-gypsy band? The girls sighed. The band were great, but never hit that vodka-fuelled gypsy speed metal vibe that I like with that kind of music.

The Bamboos: the night after Sharon Jones, the skips had a crack at this "funk and soul" thing, and these bad boys from Melbourne danced up the pitch and belted it waaaaay out of the park. I'll never see the Bar-Kays or the Mar-Keys, but by Christ I saw the Bamboos knock it out with total sharp-suited aplomb, ably helped by Kylie Auldist on the mic and - I shit you not - a freestyle rap sesh from the TimTam Genie.

Jay Reatard: just when I thought I was going to die from either the heat or boring music, these guys played a set of furiously fast and stupid punk rock. And the bass player was playing a four string Flying Vee - how rock is that?

Jane Badler and Sir: most of this was spent explaining to sad young folk what the tv series V was all about. Her music sounded like something you'd hear Sunday arvo at the rehab clinic. The musical equivalent of a trip to Wobbie's World - it's never going to be great, but it's important you at least see how crap it can be.

Iron And Wine: great, but I wish I was sitting down and it wasn't so crowded. Which is a stupid thing to say at a music festival. Perfect music for hot days amid the gum trees.

Scientists of Modern Music: two little guys from Tassie goin' ballistic. What can I say? I hate keyboard driven Pseudo Newman tunes (that's the fusion of Pseudo Echo and Gary Newman, y'all..), but these guys were stupidly infectious and fun.

Meanwhile, in Ballarat's Botanic Gardens.. Councillor Hudson encouraged residents to come along to the Lake foreshore to soak up the festival atmosphere. "We have a great entertainment line-up in store this year with everything from Kylie Minogue's pop anthems to tributes to Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Junior with The Rat Pack Show," he said.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Songs to play in space should not be picked by children

I guess if you're feeling shitty you go and listen to shitty blog radio. So I did. Ah, Jeckles. Just one microphone away from climbing the watertower, and I for one salute you. You sounded like you're having a much worse time of it, and that's one thing that always makes someone feeling shit feel better. Remember, we're shittier than you though. We can't even afford to get our audio online yet. Did we mention public radio in Ballarat is not as gorgeous as you'd expect, although broadcasting from outside a donut van is a bonus

Of course, one can't go far before one stumbles upon a class piece of pissweakness: this one inspired by the loving folks at the Australian*
"ASTRONAUTS on the International Space Station (ISS) are to get an unusual treat - an MP3 player loaded with a playlist of songs specially chosen for people in orbit.The top ten was selected by a 14-year-old Norwegian girl, Therese Miljeteig, who won a competition staged by the European Space Agency (ESA)."

And the results from this inspired act of collective decision-making?
- Here Comes The Sun - Beatles

- Come Fly With Me - Frank Sinatra
- Rocket Man - Elton John
- Up Where We Belong - Joe Cocker and Jennifer Warnes
- Imagine - John Lennon
- Flashdance - What A Feeling - Irene Cara
- Walk of Life - Dire Straits
- Fly - Celine Dion
- Rockin' All Over The World - Status Quo
- I Believe I Can Fly - R Kelly

What is happening to the youth? Have the Norse begun injecting the essence of babyboomer into the livers of a new master-race of Power FM listeners? Whosever idea this was should be the next person we fire into space. Preferably at a course intersecting with that of a miltary satellite on its way down. Preferably with Mark Knopfler's black abyss-like boringness turned into a solid fuel.

*conditions apply

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Tap the 5 sided bottle for Gary Gygax

Speaking as a former +2 charisma (with sword cursed berzerker) dwarf-thief, I would like to say my fondest wishes for Gary Gygax, who has just moved up to the next level carrying a shitload of integrity points. Curiously, it's also the anniversary of the death of Jon Belushi, but who's counting? The important thing is Gazza got a cameo on Futurama. It's the best you could hope for in possibly the most unsexy of popular culture podiums to inhabit - that of nerd overlord. I don't care what the unbelivers say - it was a shitload of fun and something you didn't have to worry about being plugged into a wall to do.

However, I want to celebrate something about GG - not Allin, darling - and his effect on music.

He wasn't just the man who gave us Dungeons and Dragons, - he was, if you allow me this saving throw - an unrewarded influence in helping propogate the basic ingredients for the foment and spread of these things known as heavy/power metal.... I believe the youngsters call it battle metal, or, indeed epic metal, for those familiar with GuitarHero favourites DragonForce.

High pitched little guys yelping about the nest of orcs they've uncovered in the fifth room under the trapdoor tunnel. Then imagining all of that happening with a bitchin' double-handed tapping solo and audience participation chorus. It's the little things that keep us going.

Otherwise you look at one anniversary on this day - say, oh, the one about non-proliferation of nuclear weapons, and then stumble across the one about the Guy from the Former Government We Can't Properly Call Criminals Yet who figured he'd get in on a bit of that oil money shit the Yanks been yappin' about.
And then you start to feel shit about things again. In fact, one goes about quoting the grand prophets:

Work, play; Night, day -They shit me.
Good, bad; Happy, sad -They shit me.
He, she; They, we -They shit me.
Rich, poor; Less, more -They shit me.
Out, in; Fat, thin -They shit me.
Black, white; Left, white -They shit me.
and yes... you could say
But they don't shit me one tiny, eentzy, weentzy, miniscule, macroscopic, nanoseismic, pan-insignificant, zoophytic, neo-nonexistent little bit compared to the wayI shit me.

Fuckit. I'm hiring a yoga clown.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Show With No Name playlist March 4

Hmm. Found out what happens when you accidentally play a song that turns out should have stayed a secret shame... add 'Buffalo Tom' to the list of songs that shouldn't be played on the Show along with other entries, such as 'any Halen with Hagar' and 'Bruce Springbok'. But i digress. I would like to say that *again* rock and roll has shown its transformative and healing powers - one tiny little radio station at the arse end of the paris end of ballarat has managed to get Van Halen back together.

Ladies and gennilmen, it's a bona fide rock and roll miracle. It's not the first time the Show has brought bands back together this year. But we're not stopping there. Break out the baby cheeses and the goon, we're getting Halen to play the Begonia Festival Parade. It was meant to be.

Lazy Farmer's Sons - Withered By the Dawn (bootleg recording)
Billy Thorpe - Momma (live at Melbourne Town Hall)
Van Halen - Somebody Get Me a Doctor
Dirtbombs - Everlovin' Man
Dirtbombs - They Hated Us In Scandinavia
Dramarama - Anything, Anything
The Who - A Quick One While He's Away
TISM - Would the Last Person to Leave Please Turn Out the Enlightenment
Richard Cheese - Milkshake
Van Halen - Dance the Night Away

7o'clock rock
Motorhead - I'm So Bad Baby I Don't Care
The Dwarves - Over You
Lunachicks - BadAss Bitch

Van Halen - Romeo's Delight
Barry Black - Cockroaches
The Cobras - Restless
Buffalo Tom - Taillights Fade

Special set for the gal who is sick:
Screaming Trees - Uncle Anaesthesia
Boss Hog - I'm Sick
WASP - I Don't Need a Doctor

Van Halen - Dead or Alive
Frank Zappa - Magic Fingers
Jello Biafra & Life After Life - Still Is Still Moving to Me
Iggy and the Stooges - Search and Destroy
Van Halen - Little Guitars
Bay City Rollers - Bang Shang Alang

A theme? When nostalgia goes ugly

I found a theme. No show is complete without a theme. It's like Ballarat without the hamburger cart. Like weekends without the sound of V8s howling up and down Sturt Street. Tonight's theme will involve referring to Van Halen breaking up. Again. Older than the Spice Girls, better looking in spandex, but doomed to the same fate. Or, as these pictures show, a far cry from anything like they used to be. Possibly mutating into some Smeagol/Gollum like behavior, at a guess...->
Although performances were lined up through April 19, cited unnamed
sources as saying the band's hotel reservations are being canceled now that
rest of the tour has been scrapped. The band's last three shows were
canceled as
Eddie Van Halen is said to be having "issues," the report said.
The rock icon,
who spent time in rehab last year, has been in media
headlines the last few
weeks because his ex-wife, actress Valerie
Bertinelli, is making the rounds to
promote her new tell-all memoir.

It's over, Johnny. When it's no longer fun, walk away. Tonight, on 99.9FM across western Victoria: Van Halen - A Requiem

Maybe Michael Anthony and the newly rested Alex Van Halen should look around at second careers for guitar rock heroes - like guest roles on Battlestar Galactica, like Scottie Ian's doing...

it's trivial

Those of you who are regular listeners to the show, well, you're obviously fucking well lying aren't you? Still seeing as you've no real clue as to the whereabouts nor the actual existence of this blogsight the risk of offending you has passed. In the immortal words of Don Rickles "I kid because I love, however, I kill cos Iknow people". Anyhoo, the original premise as requested by V the S, was along the lines of where do you get your ideas from vis a vis trivia? First of all I'd like to apologise for the phrase vis a vis. It's not really something you're likely to say in any conversation is it. I wonder if it's just me that once presented with a typewriter keyboard feels the deep and earnest need to use words that would never enter my head whilst speaking. Whilst, that's another one, earnest doesn't show it's head to often nowadays come to think of it. Whilst, earnest, vis avis, spume, nowadays. These are words that common life has passed by. The problem is they can get in the way of a very average story. When was the last time you found yourself on the receiving end of an at best factual but tedious story being thrown at you in slow motion by folk under the false impression that they are following in the comedy stylings of Eddie Pryor but are really taking 10 minutes to hit you with an anecdote that with the correct trimming could've been punched out in oooh, 7 seconds. Then, assuming you're brain is on hold, run through all the major issues of the tale again in tripilicate! Now look, I'm no family all round entertainer and I accept this wholeheartedly. But I do realise when a story is SHIT and if so I try to speed the fucker up so as not to further damage loved ones. An example that cannot be traced? Sure. "There once was a male adolescent of dubious hygiene who hailed from somewhere in the general area of rural Victoria. Well one day, and one can only presume that the weather was humid, he felt compelled to remove his testicles from there enclosing sheath or trouser then bathing them in liquids and soaps for as if to cleanse them. When the Matriach of the family got wind of these developments she immediately felt compelled to act and with the force and fury of the Gods at her back warned the young man that if he did not reposition the scrotary area in a suitable shape of woven fabric she would be forced to ,quite literally, raise to her fullest height from the very earth on which she stood, only to come crashing down on the culprits rendering all function obsolete." Or to put it another way. "There was a young man from Horsham". Now, as far as starting your own trivia here is what you do. Step 1. Make it up. Step 2. Do it another 29 times. Step 3. There is no Step 3.

Another Tuesday, another reason to believe in rock

I've awoken on a grey tuesday in march, thinking what kind of tunes do you play on such a foetal Autumnal date. Of course, I've been indulging in some secret shame music... stuff that Lenny or MickDog would ruthlessly mock (and my poor tongueless self, by default), despite my feeble scrawlings on the VoiceFM-supplied Etch-O-Sketch for the Voice Impaired. I was abused as a child. I can't help why I like the music I do. I was even sent away to band camp and everything... a young white teenager exposed to the power and the passion of the suburban community band. This was before the accident and the ensuing job sweeping floors at an old fashioned 'student radio station' which lead to running away to join the black clothed people across the river at the 'inner city public radio station'... which is another story entirely. Sorry, my pacemaker's buzzing me.

Everybody's got a secret shame in music. Don't get me wrong, I still like finding out just how extreme - and extremely stupid rock and roll can get (ladies and gentlemen, I give you... the Irish Band.) I like trying to keep up with the youth of Ballarat and seeing what they're up to... I love finding some incredible music from waaaay off the map that you'd never ever expect to see. But I love my secret shame music. Music played in the privacy of one's home, or the high volume, dinosaur-powered isolation chamber that is the automobile, because no-one's gunna understand why you like this stuff...

And there's degrees of secret shame. Grabbing a cricket bat and rocking out to Acca Dacca may be one man's weekly fact of life in the kitchen and while another's momentary lapse of judgement to think he looks cool playing air guitar could be all a tight-suited money lizard needs to loosen up and be bit nicer to people. They'll still burn on various levels of Hell, but it's nice to be nice. Of course standing in a pub full of metal freaks and loudly proclaiming Kylie Minogue really has developed into and all-round entertainer , well, that's another thing, innit?
On with the show. I'm gonna go find Len. I hear he's been out trying to raise money to get a heavily armed team of guerillas to move in and help him re-open the Unicorn Hotel as a dedicated musuem, cinema and bar/venue.