The MusicOz Australian Independent Music Awards for 2013 was heralded in on Thursday night. The night began with the red carpet in which each of the artists in the award’s shows 18 categories.
The big winners of the night were band I Am Sam taking out the award for the Australian Artist of the year. Other winners included Mama Kin taking out two awards on the night including the Blues and Roots Award. Silver Cities took out the award for Christian/ Spiritual. Battleships, who are currently touring with Boy and Bear, won the award for Alternative. Jono Fernandez took out the award for Producer of the Year.
There were some stellar performances on the night from Aussie rock legends Irwin Thomas and Steve Balbi who were also recognized under the Aussie Rock Legends category. There were also some great performances from some of the nominated artists including Kid Mac, Blind Munkee, and Neon City. There was also a performance from former Australia’s Got Talent contestant Liam Burrows.
Although, the execution of the awards felt somewhat unorganized on the night, the awards show itself was a pure celebration of local talent; and the atmosphere in the room was one of local artists supporting each other.
The whole Australian Independent Music Awards has helped to launch up and coming faces of Australian music as well as provide them with a pedestal to have their music recognized locally and internationally.
Photographs from the Australian Independent Music Awards are available at Mosca Media Australia
Tonight will herald the 2013 Australian Independent Music Awards presented by MusicOz. Heading up the night will be a host of independent Australian artists including Steve Balbi (Noiseworks), Tania Doko, Peking Duk, Bernard Fanning and Jimmy Barnes. There will also be performances from Spirit of the Land and Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu.
The Australian Independent Music Awards work to provide a platform for unsigned artists with over 180 finalists in all genres and the Producer of the Year Finalists. You can party at the Star and get your tickets here: http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/show.aspx?sh=MUSICAWA13
Red Carpet 5.00pm – 6.30pm
Pirrama Rd Entrance to The Star
Pre-Show Event 6.00pm – 7.30pm
The Deck – outside the Event Centre
Award Show 7.30pm – 9.45pm
Event Centre at The Star
EventAfter Party 10.00pm – 3.00am
Marquee Nightclub at The Star
Erykah Abi Wright better know as Erykah Badu is best known for her eccentric style and cerebral music, is a Grammy- award winning American soul singer and songwriter. Badu is ‘regarded as the Queen of Neo Soul. Her sound — a concoction of soul, hip-hop and jazz — cannot be contained to a single genre. Self-described as a “mother first”, Badu is a touring artist, dj, teacher, community activist, holistic healer, vegan, recycler, and conscious spirit.
Baduizm, Badu’s highly acclaimed debut album, was released in early 1997 went triple platinum and, along with “On & On“, won Grammy Awards at the 1998 ceremony. This spring, Badu released her fifth studio album, and second installment of a two-part New Amerykah series.
New Amerykah, Part 1: Fourth World War, a concept album that was digitally produced and political in tone, debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 chart and Rolling Stone named it one of the year’s best albums.
New Amerykah, Part II: Return of the Ahnk, which features lush live instrumentation and taps into Badu’s emotional side by thematically focusing on romance and relationships, made its debut at No. 5 on the Billboard 200 chart.
Definitely a must-see show!
Badu will be performing at:
General release tickets on sale midday Monday November 11.
“You’re only allowed to blink to liquidate your eyes, no smiling is allowed, no facial expressions and no body contact. Any of the above and you’re OUT!!” These are the rules for the first ice-breaker of the night at Alphamama‘s first show for “13 Trips” based on her debut album Truth, Trips and Revelations.
Once the first winner was established, Alphamama decides that we’re going to have two more rounds and asked for contestants – I bravely put my hand up. The rules are repeated again and then I deeply stare into my opponents eyes, all the while thinking what a funky and creative way to start the night. I win my first round but lose the semis, but as a participant receive an EP with a collection of Alphamama’s songs – ‘If Ya Gon Lie’, ‘Bad Appel’ (feat. Ngaiire), ‘Moodjack’, ‘Dawning’, ‘Bad Appel Shadow Remix’ and ‘Bad Appel Studio Tann Dubstep Remix’.
Our show starts and is infused with an excerpt of a pre-recorded story of which the audience need to follow, at first it took me a couple of minutes to decipher the story and how Alphamama very boldly incorporated this with her first music set, the song being “Blurred Lines” by Robin Thicke feat T.I. & Pharrell.
The night continues with the video excerpts, all the while keeping the audience thinking, deciphering the message. Fully supported by the various song covers. Being a “90′s” child myself I loved hearing “Creep” by TLC to a backing of “Return of the Mack” by Mark Morrison and other such covers.
The vocal arrangements were definitely a highlight of the night, and having two very different styled singers accompany Alphamama really blended well, especially when hearing “Indie” reminded me of an Amy Winehouse meets Janis Joplin type voice. Being the first time hearing Alphamama, her charismatic stage presence did not disappoint – she had my full attention.
Aside from the soulful voices we had a freestyling rap / poetry segment that occurred. The topics / themes were based on lies that our audience had told at some stage of their life and we were requested to write these down prior to the start of the evening of which, Alphamama and her creative team would then apply a lyrical flow. The hook was amazing, but to see the creative standard of the freestyling ebbs and flows was something from another world. Whilst I would just see words, the Alphamama team see lyrics to a song, lyrics to a rap, a meaningful and deep source to create a number one selling single maybe?
All in all Alphamama is definitely not a show that you want to miss!!! A very confident young woman with style and grace who knows how to grab your attention through her art and even more-so knows how to captivate, maintain and command the attention of her audience.
Thirty years ago a San Francisco punk band by the name of The Dead Kennedys toured Australia for the first and only time. They had a huge underground following given the nature of their music being perfect to slam dance and stage dive to and the political slant to their music. They caused a lot of feathers to ruffle and on that tour the band encountered police, riot squads and members being randomly arrested at different stages of the five week tour. The tour went into folklore and The Dead Kennedys became one of the most revered and respected punk bands of their generation.
Thirty years on, former front man, spoken word artist and political agitator Jello Biafra returns to front a musical project and perform for many of us who were not around for that DK tour of ’83. Jello Biafra & The Guantanamo School Of Medicine carry the same vein of The Dead Kennedys. Jello snarls with sarcastic and oft caustic wit to a back beat of soaring garage guitar riffs and rollicking bass lines. The man might be well into his fifties, but he still bounces around the stage like he did thirty years ago.
On the back of the bands second album White People And the Damage Done, a full house at the Metro were treated to the classic Biafra theatrics and stage presence that very few have been able to mimic the way he does. Coming out in a blood splattered lab coat and his hands dripping in blood, waving empathically with his cheesy, politician smile, they launched into tracks off the album like ‘Road Rage’ and ‘John Dillenger’. In between songs, Biafra gave us his opinion on the likes of Gina Rinehart and Clive Palmer’s influence through wealth on our political landscape, reasons why we shouldn’t just let Tony Abbott win the next election (or be led into the ABBOTToir, as he called it) and why how we can do our part to stop corporate greed – which is central theme to new album.
It wasn’t until he delved into some of The Dead Kennedys back catalogue with tracks like ‘California Uber Alles’, ‘Nazi Punks Fuck Off’ and ‘Kill The Poor’ when the crowd completely lost control and the pit went wild and a constant stream of stage divers climbed up and leapt from the stage. (Kudos to security letting them and to Biafra for insisting no barriers at the front of the stage) The frenzy, reminiscent of footage I’ve seen from Dead Kennedys shows also inspired Biafra to join in not once, but twice. How many 50 year olds do you know who would be prepared to do that? Hell I’m 33 and I wouldn’t!
Supported by Australia’s pub punk icons The Hard Ons who mixed it up with their sound that floats between punk rock and thrash metal. It’s good to see Blackie back on stage after his bashing incident. (Blackie was beaten up on his taxi route last year) Opening the night was Zeahorse who have this great mix of sound that sits somewhere between The Rollins Band aggressiveness and Kyuss over distorted cruisiness, but it was Biafra and his band of merry men who put on a show that many bands could learn from. Not content with one encore, they came back out for a second encore that included the legendary Dead Kennedys song‘Holiday in Cambodia’.
Tonight was the closest we came to seeing the “real” Dead Kennedys perform onstage. (Let’s not talk about the atrocity of an act the former band members are touring with) Jello Biafra still has the stage presence and frenzy that really should defy him at his age but it probably just goes to show that age is a number and you feel as young as you want to feel.
The Metro Theatre is one of Sydney’s leading venues hosting an array of notable and emerging local and international artists across a wide variety of musical genres and more. But once you step foot into the venue, categories and stereotypes are no longer existent. People begin to embrace the music and one another. This was evident on Friday night at Julian Marley’s Sydney show (son of reggae legend Bob Marley). The Metro presented with a diverse range of individuals from the youthful to the old timers, cultures, from all walks of life and there was such a great sense of unison. After all, that is the essence of reggae music – ‘One Love’.
I must mention that the lady who stood next to me at the front row told me ‘this is the first time I’ve ever heard reggae music, I got dragged along to this show and I’m fucking loving it!’. Music is powerful, but reggae music can change your mentality!
Upon arrival, Sydney based 10 piece roots-reggae band The Strides took to stage with songs from their album Reclamation. Still rocking out since we last saw them perform almost two years ago at Notes Live in Newtown.
After The Strides it seemed like a prolonged set up time for Blue King Brown, however, it was well worth the wait. The audience was greeted by the ladies of Melbourne-based reggae-roots band Blue King Brown, with an acoustic set featuring lead singer Natalie Pa’apa’a and vocalists representing West Papua. With only three vocalists I predicted that this would be an intimate and engaging experience, and we were immersed in the rhythm of the music as well as the message that they wanted to share. Natalie illustrated a song about a couple that were separated due to the hindrance of bureaucratic red tape, however they were reunited again. At the end of BKB’s set I was left with a resonating message “Free West Papua” which was clearly stated on Natalie’s acoustic kickbox.
The crowd was anticipating Julian Marley and as he entered the stage, it was apparent that his father’s spirit continues to live on. Marley shared his Rastafarian faith, knowledge, music and of course his father’s life and spirit. There was a sense of nostalgia growing up to the Marley’s voices in my cassette player. No doubt Marley is acknowledged as an individual artist, but he is also an inclusive collaborator with his 12-piece Uprising Band, performing some original tunes as well as father Bob’s hits. Some memorable songs were ‘Boom Draw’, ‘Babylon Cookie Jar’ and Bob Marley’s ‘Kaya’.
It was refreshing to join some of the country’s most thriving reggae bands alongside Julian Marley, and no doubt they were aptly chosen to support him. With a combination of ‘Worldwize’ humanitarian reggae-roots acts, it became an insightful and memorable show. Although I could see that a larger venue could have easily accommodated a larger crowd.
Click here to check out our photographs from Julian Marley’s Sydney show!
He has a voice of an angel, a razor sharp wit and swears so much it would make the demon blush a deeper shade of maroon. He is also an incredible entertainer. Paul McDermott‘s Sydney Comedy Festival show “Paul Sings” gives the diminutive artist a chance to reflect on his musical comedy career with a show revisiting some of those songs that showcased his amazing voice. Trailing back to the early days of Doug Anthony Allstars, through to his work within the Good News Week franchises and his short lived ABC series Sideshow, McDermott broke up the songs with anecdotal tales with comedic timing and full of belly laughs.
Haven taken the show around the country as part of the various cities comedy festivals, tonight was the final show and McDermott and his four piece band were “ready to tear this a new one!” I’ve always been a fan of Paul’s singing ability but hearing a bulk of his songs in one setting I discovered how clever he is as a songwriter. He proclaims during the show that he “wrote most of these songs on the Tuesday morning before a taping” and being devoid of any musical playing ability he would have to hum the melody to other musicians to write the music which normally “lead to us fighting for an hour and in the end we had a song”. But Paul, whether he likes it or not, is a great songwriter. His lyrics create strong imagery and he takes you through a story to each song and the deliverance is pure class as he adapts the ultimate frontman demeanour.
It wouldn’t be Paul McDermott without some insults and put downs and those who kept arriving late felt the wrath of McDermott in only a way he could get away with. (Tone fair to the group who came in with ten minutes to go should have probably not bothered) The funniest part of the night was his retelling of how he and Marina Prior met Paul Stanley from KISS while performing the musical Witches Of Eastwick and how he managed to dry hump the KISS frontman in front Stanley’s manager and girlfriend in a display of as an with no fear who enjoys pushing the boundaries to its tenth degree.
Not one to be content with the shows end, he took the band and audience into the foyer for an encore and then stuck around meeting with fans for some time after it was all said and done. The accomplished artist, comedian and singer could easily continue to add to this show and write more songs and establish a music career. An entertaining show that is part crooner concert, part comedy show, part variety cabaret sideshow. Whatever it is, it highlights the talents of Paul McDermott.
There’s something to be said of any band that can hop flawlessly from rock to reggae to drum and bass and back again and take a crowd of people along with them for the ride. And that is that they are undeniable rock stars. That’s just what I’d call New Zealand band Six60 who managed to effortlessly transition between genres this past Friday when they hit the stage at The Metro in Sydney to a sold out crowd.
Opening with their light hearted reggae anthem ‘Don’t Forget Your Roots’ the energetic 5 piece captivated the audience thanks to their boyish enthusiasm and playfulness on stage. Six60 made it clear that they love what they do. In return the crowd assured them that the feeling was mutual by singing (or screaming?) along to almost every note of every word of every song that they played throughout the show. It didn’t matter whether the guys were tackling honey-coated reggae or gutsy rock tinged tracks the crowd was with them every step of the way, and the atmosphere of the show felt a lot like one hell-of-a-party.
Lead singer Matiu Walters’ vocals remained flawless through out the show, despite the fact that he jumped around the stage with boundless energy for 90% of the show and the fact that he’s the only singer in the band – there’s no backing vocalists to help him out. I couldn’t help but ponder how much warmth extra vocals and harmonies would add to the bands sound, but Walters looked like he didn’t mind carrying all the vocal responsibilities at all. And I quickly forgot about my love of harmonies as Walters’ vocals gave more than most do; he was honest and subtle when required on the stripped back numbers but switched to bold and strong on command. All of this delivered with his cheeky devil-may-care attitude, which was perfectly in tune with the rest of the bands mood.
By the time the show got to its encore of ‘Someone To Be Around’, thanks to the crowds unusual chant choice of “Whoop there it is!”, Six60 had delivered a strong show that managed to have the dynamic energy of a stadium rock concert while maintaining the personable, down to earth vibe of your local pub gig. But as humble and carefree as Six60 may appear they are far more than just a pub band. Six60 make having the musical equivalent of split personality not only look easy, but very much like something that every band should take a stab at. After all why should we have to stick with one genre if we can enjoy a mash of them all in one show by one talented band? If Six60 keep dishing out their brand of rock-roots-reggae with a dash of dub then I’ll gladly keep making room on my plate for more of their treats.
Birds of Tokyo took to the stage and the Enmore Theatre quivered with applause and screams from the crowd. This show marked the end of a tour for Birds of Tokyo with their new album ‘March Fires.’ They get straight to it with a song off the album.
The crowd, whilst not the most lively, are taken on a journey from the bands most recent stuff, to their early songs, and they are receptive.
Ian Kenny, the vocalist, keeps the front of the crowd moshing by dancing along to the tunes on stage.
The backdrop lights up in flashing images, telling a story to accompany each song.
A woman next to me leans over to her friend and says ‘what do you think?’ The friend replies ‘thank you SO much for introducing me to them. They are amazing!’ She then gets back to gyrating and head-banging with the rest of the crowd.
The big winners aka the most popular songs, ‘Plans’ and ‘Lanterns’ got a round of sing-alongs from the audience, and coming from such a large audience, this was a delightful experience.
Whether you’re a newcomer to Birds of Tokyo, or a seasoned fan like myself, you will love their live show.
Their new sound, while not a huge leap away from their previous albums, is slightly more melodic and careful. That said, though, I think anyone that is a fan of their previous albums will love ‘March Fires.’
You really can’t lose with this band, because they are simply such a fun night out.
The support act for the night was Regular John. You might have heard this band doing the rounds on Triple J lately with their tracks ‘Sky Burial’ and ‘Strange Flowers.’
If you haven’t heard of them though they are a red-hot, psychedelic, punk rock four-piece band from New South Wales.
Their set-list on the night consisted mostly of songs from their most recent album ‘Strange Flowers’ and some from their previous album ‘The Peaceful Atom is a Bomb.’
Regular John have made up a huge step up from their first album to their last and have evolved into a sophisticated hard rock band.
They are still slightly experimental, particularly with their latest album, simply in that no two songs quite sound the same, but that’s something that, personally, draws me to them.
These guys are a gold-standard support act and I definitely recommend checking out one of their stand-alone live shows.
The Guppies are your standard teenage-y-punk band from Newcastle, which I guess is not that standard. They are great, all the same.
They have a fluid musical styling with a penchant for easily-accessible, very catchy tunes, like ‘Never Liked Mondays,’ and ‘Bad Blood.’
As terribly cliché as this might sound, the three-piece just simply know how to rock out on stage and gave us all a ‘rocking out’ lesson on Sunday night.
I also have to recommend catching these guys live.
It was no secret that everyone packing out the Manning Bar on Friday night was there to see Ball Park Music. In fact, this was the first University of Sydney end of O’week celebration, which had completely sold out – the bar was wall-to-wall, people.
The gig was being filmed and the crowd responded appropriately by, as one might put it, completely losing it. As soon as Ball Park Music started the first song, the crowd was singing along, but not just to some of the lyrics, to almost all of them.
In fact, this gig cemented in my mind just how far Ball Park Music have come over the past few years. I remember when I first saw them live at Townsville’s 2011 Full Noise Festival. The band were playing a fairly early spot, and only had a draggle of devoted fans come out to see them.
I could tell at the time, though, that they had the formula it took to be massive indie winners. They had a solid set list full of indie-pop songs that demand you to dance and sing-along, as well as great stage presence.
If you haven’t heard of Ball Park Music, now, then you should probably remove yourself from whatever rock you seem to live under that doesn’t pick up Triple J.
As they got into the gig, it soon became obvious that the majority of the audience were definitely devoted fans, as they knew the words to just about every song they played.
The band played stuff from both their last album Happiness and Surrounding Suburbs and their most recent album Museum, which they released last year. They also covered a Frankie Valley and the Four Seasons song ‘Oh What a Night,’ which proceeded to cause the audience to erupt in dance.
Without ever straying from their indie-pop style, they seem to just keep getting better. If you’re an indie-pop fan then you’d be crazy to miss one of these guy’s live shows.
Ball Park Music also had some killer support acts on the night, which received a lot of love from the crowd.
New Gods are a five-piece out of Melbourne. These guys are definitely the most pleasing of the support acts to an indie-pop lover’s ear and they have some definite winners in their set list.
New Gods have a somewhat basic, but thumping indie-pop rock sound propped up by great harmonies.
Lime Cordiale are another five-piece from Sydney. They have a 70’s beach-rock feel, with chilled out, but fun tunes. One of the things that sets these guys apart is their strategic use of trumpets on a lot of their tracks, which is particularly evident on the track ‘Pretty Girl.’
Some of their tracks collide a bit creating a wall of sound, but I dare anyone to not dance to them.
Professor are, yep, another five-piece with a slightly more heavy rock sound. Professor have a whimsical goth-rock feel and for some reason ‘pirate music’ comes to mind, due to their onstage presence and get up.
They have great energy, which they kicked off the show with and definitely had the audience going.