Sunday, May 31, 2009

Fantastic Magic

All this drama about Wavves... I feel so sorry for him. How can you not get fucked up on too many drugs after passing the point of absolute exhaustion brought on by months of constant touring? I'd be a mess. And I know that people have been touring and not losing their shit forever, but it must be so daunting and so exhausting - being 'discovered' when you've been writing great stuff for years.

I love his older stuff. Nathan's recordings as Fantastic Magic was much less noisy - psychedelic surf pop with a gentle summer vibe and lots of joy and jangling bells.

They don't write together anymore, but I really wish they did. Reminds me of early Devendra recordings. They played with Arial Pink, U.S Girls, Vampire Weekend, The Muslims (pre Soft Pack obvs), Crocodiles, even Strange Boys. Their show with Strange Boys show would have been amazing actually - Strange Boys, Fantastic Magic and Crystal Antlers on the one bill.

'Sea Of Gold' Fantastic Magic Mp3 [zshare]

'Jam and Yima' Fantastic Magic Mp3 [zshare]

For what it's worth, I hope he gets his shit together.

Also, while you're here - If you're in Sydney next weekend we're having a party -


‘Another Night On Earth’
Monday 8th June, 2009 at Sydney’s Metro Theatre
All Ages
5:00 pm -10:00 pm

With Sarah Blasko, Holly Throsby, New Buffalo (solo), Jack Ladder, Firekites, Machine Translations, Grand Salvo, Songs, Megastick Fanfare, Bearhug, Sherlocks Daughter, Fergus Brown, Ghoul, Parades, Caitlin Park, The Holy Soul and many more! Plus, secret special guests to be announced soon...

Tickets $30.00 from and venue box office

All ticket sales receive an ‘Another Night On Earth’ poster and Spunk CD Sampler!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Galaxie with Soft Circle

The Donuts girls are staring a new party on Sunday night and Soft Circle is playing!!!!

Its at my favourite bk venue glasslands and for only $5 you can see SC do his trippty soundscapes with sets from Justin Miller, Jacques Renault and Lovefingers.

They've also got free vegan treats for all and you can watch the Galaxie movie someone called AC has made.

Soft Circle has been saying he has a "new album in the works" forever... I've already complained about that so won't again. But go see what he's been up to and let me know how the new stuff sounds! The tunes on his Myspace sound really spread out and ambient. It's a Sunday night too - Apart from watching Desperate Housewives what else is there to do?!

Galaxy party myspace

rich girl

I've loved my fair share of girl-groups in my time (Girlfriend, Spice Girls, TLC) but there comes a time when a girl need to accept musical maturation.

But then Rich produces another girl group and I lose my shit

Sure it sounds like 1 Thing, but 1 Thing IS POSSIBLY THE BEST POP SINGLE EVERY RECORDED so its totally ok REMEMBER

I used to DJ 1 Thing and Crazy In Love at FBi nights in between Kills tracks. People took a while to warm to it.

Thursday, May 28, 2009


I've found myself with some time today to check in on some of the music I'd not been keeping up to date with.

I first heard Ghostape when he featured on Canberra born, Swiss raised, Berlin based Plastique de Reve's Death From Abroad released 12" Lost In The City.

To draw comparisons - The Swiss 19 year old has the homemade wonky pop sensibilities of Miccachu, the wooziness of Ducktails, and the percussive disco of Mi Ami.

People In The Sky released his Many Stars EP last year, which you can still buy online here. The tracks are wackier and less dancey than those he's posting on Myspace now. I prefer his more recent tunes, but I still really like the 80s synth daggyness of Many Stars.

'I Feel' Ghostape Mp3 [z share]

I love the glockenspiel driving this track.

The minimalism of the track, focus on percussion and the quirkiness and melodrama of his vocals all remind me of Hot Chip to be honest.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Letter: Matthew Schnipper

Dear Matthew,

In this week's 'Slept On' you didn't seem like yourself. Not that we've ever actually met, I'm hardly the best judge. But you seemed less, I don't know. What? Less cheery. Less inspired.

I just wanted to tell you that I look forward to your column every week. I'm not often engaged by magazine and online editorial, but this morning was really excited when I remembered Fader would have published your latest ramblings over night. Ramblings implies an incoherence, so perhaps that is the wrong word to use. But what I most enjoy about your column is its looseness. Journalists who review albums by describing technical structures and stressing compositional details bore me. I want to know how music pushes people to consider and reconsider their world, and what someone daydreams when they listen to a piece of music.

I manage a record label called Spunk. I think you'd really like some of the music on the label. Holly Throsby got a 4 star review in Mojo this month. Not that I read Mojo. But it's a huge thing for an independent from Sydney. We're so far away from the rest of the world. It is such a long way. I was in New York in January and I fell in love with Brooklyn. I want to come back for CMJ, but there is always so much work that needs to be done, and it's not like I can take a weekend vacation and be back for Monday morning. There is some great things happening in Sydney at the moment though. Last night Brian Eno curated a light show which was projected on to the Opera House for a festival called Vivid Sydney. It was pretty cool.


Monday, May 25, 2009

Two Weeks wtih Grizzly Bear

I have difficulty with the Black Cab sessions. The thing I love about live music videos recorded of bands in suburban locations is that the band is forced to interact with the spaces they find themselves in, whether unusual or banal. This always creates unique, layered and unpredictable videos that often tell you a lot more about a band or soloist that you will see in a live show. Forced to interact with an unsuspecting audience, in situations that they have no control over, performers often reveal much more of themselves. This is why I help out with Shoot The Player - I love seeing what happens when musicians are let lose, free to roam and perform and take chances they typically can't take when in a concert-setting. Recently for STP we filmed Ben Lee in a park in Rushcutters Bay, and his spontaneity and the response he received from those around at the time was remarkable and made fantastic viewing. The same goes for a shoot we did with Lightspeed Champion, who on a whim decided to film an awfully awkward cover of The Strokes' Heart In A Cage in a sex shop on Oxford Street in Sydney last year.

My issue with Black Cab is that the performers don't have to take themselves out of their comfort zones. They perform in an enclosed space much like a stage, removed from their audience. The format does nothing to humanise them, and they seem as untouchable as they do when on stage.

Black Cab Sessions have just released a video of Grizzly Bear performing All We Ask. You can watch it here

Also just released is the monumentally talented Patrick Daughters' video for Two Weeks.

I feel like you learn much more about the band watching Daughters' video, than you do the Black Cab Session clip.

Two Weeks

Daughterss first video was in 2003 for Maps by Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Since, he's been invited into the Directors Bureau and is now responsible for some of the most innovative and/or adorable clips I've recently seen, including the totally trippy video of Liar's Plaster Casts of Everything and Feist's gorgeously entertaining 1, 2, 3, 4 (which had him nominated for a Grammy.)

For Two Weeks, he seems to have really captured their playfulness and vibrancy, and want not to be taken too seriously. The whimsical pop melody, somewhat surreal lyrics and pretty harmonies are so suited to his approach - the boy's expressions are hilarious, and as their heads start to glow and sparks start to fly, I can imagine the five of them all sitting around a table full of beers laughing as they sketch out the idea of playing possessed puppets.

They might have never happened. But at least the clip made me imagine it did. Not like the Black Cab video, which I had to play through three times because I kept losing interest and getting distracted.

My fave blog boys have an interview with Ed Droste online now - head to And tell them I say hello.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

those darlins

This is a (not particularly very good) video of Whole Damn Thing by one of my favourite 2009 discoveries Those Darlins

Those Darlins "Whole Damn Thing" from Tugboat Productions on Vimeo.

"I got drunk and I ate a chicken, I ate a chicken I found in my kitchen. Not just a leg and not just a wing, I'd like to let you know that I ate the whole damn thing."

Such a great chorus AND it's a true story apparently, written after Nikki Darling came home wasted and found an old chicken was all there was to eat in the fridge.

I've been saying for a while I think 70s rockabilly is where its at. After the recent popularity of drone and post punk Velvet Underground inspired sounds, ital disco revivalists and d.i.y garage band productions, it is high time for some jangly, rootsy Americana and upbeat harmonized fun! By the way the guy isn't in the band - he's just the rouge, nameless male fill-in drummer.

Pre-order their debut album from their website. If you head to their Myspace there is a heap of dates as they're currently touring America.

I would totally love a live singalong to Wild One:

"I may be the sweetheart you dreamed of all your life, but just 'cos Im sweet don't mean I'm always nice... If you don't want it wild then quit hanging 'round with me, you knew right from the start that's my personality..."

jens lekman made a mixtape

It's cold and windy in Sydney today, Winter is coming.

Weather considered, I am finding this collection of songs is so wonderfully perfect for this morning.

Pan flutes, an ital disco childrens choir, excerpts of Jens recordings, and Alicia Keys.

'The Summer Never Ends' (part 3) MP3 (direct download, via

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Patrick Watson

I really love Patrick Watson's new album Wooden Arms (click the link to listen).

I also really love that whisks are being used for percussion

But what is that glass box? And where did it come from?

#97 Patrick Watson / Part 1 - A Take Away Show from La Blogotheque on Vimeo.

'Slip Into My Skin' Patrick Watson Mp3 [z share] (from Close To Paradise, released 2006)

Watson and his band (the Wooden Arms) are touring Wooden Arms now. Details and ticket information are available at his website Apparently the live show is breathtaking (if just for Watson's voice alone!)


I got an email from Dean from True Panther yesterday with a link to the new video for Apply by Glasser.

The swirls and hazy silhouettes coupled with her gorgeous haunting vocals sent me straight into the deepest trance and my eyes couldn't focus on my computer screen. Drifting in and out of the pictures swirling like coloured oils in water on glass, I had to watch the video a few times to take it all in. See stills/inspiration at her blog, and watch the video on Pitchfork.

It reminded me of the video for Luke Temple's Tunnelvision. Even though his is shot on Super 8 and totally different visually, it has the same feel.

You can still pre-order Glasser's Apply 12" (with the remixes and artwork I talked about a few weeks back) from the True Panther store. Hurry though, after a Pitchfork premiere I imagine copies will sell out very quickly.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


I watched Angel Deradoorian perform earlier this year at BAM with The Dirty Projectors. Live, her voice is as resonant as it is on record - powerful but carefully considered, so as not to overwhelm. Her solo material is waftier and more romantic than material by Longstreth and The Dirty Projectors, reminding me a little of Grouper in her echoed, whispered melodies.

She's 22 and has just finished a mini album Mind Raft, released yesterday through Brooklyn indie label Love Pump United. If you head to their website you can grab a copy, but you can also find it at Insound - who are selling the EP with a limited edition poster!

This song isn't on the EP.

Grey Teeth Mp3 [z share]

Drift Away.

Friday, May 1, 2009

New Look

I wrote about Sarah Ruba in a piece for Pages Magazine last year. It was a feature called 'Model Musicians' about women who are pretty enough to walk catwalks by day and musically talented enough to perform in bands by night.

At 23 years old Ruba is a talented cookie. Her and her husband (28 year old producer and multi-instrumentalist Adam Pavao) make super cool pop electro as New Look and they have recently made their latest recordings available for free download from their website.

Pavao's sparse electronica is gorgeously complimented by Ruba's soulful and sweet vocals. The prodcution work of Jimmy Edgar (his low-fi electronic beats and pop melodies) has obviously had a huge influence on their recordings and in fact, one of their latest singles Function Of Your Love is a cover of a soon-to-be-released Edgar 12". I think they might be friends or something. That, or they're just huge fans!

Download How's My Hair? EP [.zip direct download]

'Function Of Your Love' Mp3 [.zip direct download]

They should work on their live show though. Their visuals are great, but it wouldn't hurt to look up from the DJ booth once or twice (particularly when most of your music is already pre-recorded.)

New Look from Those City Nights on Vimeo.