Fat Freddy’s long awaited return to Australia!

Wednesday, March 18th, 2009 | News | No Comments
Fat Freddy's long awaited return to Australia!

New Zealand’s most talked about group, Fat Freddy’s Drop, are back in Australia this month kicking off their week long tour of sweet sweet dub reggae, roots, breakbeats & soul.

The tour starts in Melbourne tomorrow night at the ‘Palace Metro’ in St Kilda, our apologies for not posting this earlier for those who are in Melbourne and haven’t already heard, just take it easy tonight and then whooshtaaa! get up in there.

Fat Freddy’s Drop – The Nod (Live)

Fat Freddy’s Drop will play:

Thursday 19th – Palace Metro – Melbourne

Tickets: www.ticketmaster.com.au

Friday 20th – HQ – Adelaide

Tickets: www.venuetix.com.au venuetix outlets & B Sharp Records

Saturday 21st – Enmore Theatre – Sydney

Tickets: www.enmoretheartre.com.au, www.ticketek.com, 132 849 & ticketek outlets

Friday 27th – The Tivoli – Brisbane

Tickets: www.ticketek.com, 132 849, & Rockinghorse Records

Saturday 28th & Sunday 29th – The Great Northern – Byron Bay

Tickets: Hotel Great Northern, 02 6685 6454 & www.oztix.com.au.oztix.com.au ph 1300 762 545

If you haven’t seen any of their recent material you can See earlier article here.

You can check out more of Fat Freddy’s Drop at:


and for full tour info check out the dude’s who are bringing them at:



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I-Nation Festival 2009 about to go off

Tuesday, March 3rd, 2009 | News | No Comments
I-Nation Festival 2009 about to go off

People……. If you can remember/scroll back to an article on this site from last year, about the New Zealand musician/producer/all round nice guy: Mr. Oakley “O.G.” Grenell, then you might have already heard of ‘I-Nation’. If you haven’t heard of it yet, I would like to inform you about this legendary annual music festival held in Whitecliffs, North Canterbury. This years line up includes Very Good favourites like Tiki, The Little Bushman, Ladi 6 and members of shapeshifter.

I-Nation was described as “the outdoor party of the year” by one NZ magazine, which is a pretty big statement these days, with the amount of outdoor parties going on in NZ. So it basically goes down (and off) out in the bush with a mean-as sound system and family-friendly environment. As the official website states: “This year the legendary valley of Whitecliffs just 45mins west of Christchurch will once again host some of Aotearoa’s finest talent in Drum n Bass, Dubstep, Jungle, Funk, Soul & Breaks.”

There is less than three weeks to go and tickets are selling fast for the gig, which is expected by the organisers to sell out. If your not in the area to catch it, make sure you at least check out the website! It has some cool stuff, full information on all the artists, maps and a full run-down off the whole situation really.

Ticket Info:

$85 Tickets plus BF available from Cosmic Corner Stores NZ-wide or $100 Limited Gate Sales available upon entry.  Tickets can also be purchased online from www.cosmiccorner.co.nz/tickets – Children under 15 free with ID if accompanied by a parent or guardian.

When/where it’s at:

Start Time:
Saturday, March 21, 2009 at 12:00pm
End Time:
Sunday, March 22, 2009 at 6:00pm
Whitecliffs – 45mins West of Christchurch, NZ


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The Good, the Bad and the Queen

Tuesday, October 7th, 2008 | News | No Comments
The Good, the Bad and the Queen

If you like cinematic violence and vengeance, then you may know that Sergio Leone’s spaghetti Western “Dollars” trilogy featured Clint Eastwood as the man with no name. The today’s informational update deals with a band with no name, a project that has become known as “The Good, the Bad and the Queen”, which is the title of the album they created. Some in the music business have called it a super group, which is a convenient way to describe a collective of people who have all been in other bands.

Each member has had previous success as part of another group, or in the case of Drummer Tony Allen as a hugely influential solo artist in his own right. Just to let you know the team I will quote from pitchfork, who summed the band up in their usual droll but pretentious style, as “On bass, Clash veteran Paul Simonon. On guitar, Simon Tong, late of the Verve. On drums, the unimpeachable Afrobeat master Tony Allen. Behind the boards, somewhere, the ubiquitous, beloved Danger Mouse. And Albarn himself on top, his ego and voice the would-be X-factor that ties these disparate kindred souls together.” So yes I is a slightly odd mish-mash of talent, but their collective creativity has created a great sound.

To explain, the project began around the time of the demise of Damon Albarn’s previous band Blur, when he connected with Nigerian drummer Tony Allen. Guitarist Simon Tong got on board and they went to Mali, Africa to collaborate in 2004. The result was not completely productive and did not produce any released recordings, but after getting back to London Albarn got former Clash bassist Paul Simonon into the mix, and things went from there. By 2006 the group released the single “Herculean” and performed live for crowds around London. On April 4, 2007, The Good, The Bad & The Queen became the first EMI album to be made available for download in the new DRM-free, high quality MP3 format.

So what’s it all about? No stranger to side-projects and oddities, Albarn has worked with some legends (including Dan The Automator) since his time in blur, not only as one of the masterminds behind animated band The Gorillaz. It’s definitely an intriguing sound, which is a bit of a mixture of other styles, that can be quite haunting and paints an atmospheric picture of modern life in London, or any chaotic urban area. As with most culture it is based in it’s on time and space, but also looks at the broader picture of society, in a dirty, brooding post-911 “War on Terror” world. I enjoy dark, claustrophobic and cryptic lyrics like these from the song Herculean:

“And the medicine man is here 24/7
You can get it fast in Armageddon
Everyone is on the way to heaven

Each individual member brings their own skills to the mix, Albarn’s song writing and lyrical abilities are honed and at the forefront. The drumming and general beats are brilliant. Allen’s skills turn, what could otherwise be thought of as simplistic songs, into something to keep you guessing, so good you’d think he was a drum machine. While most tracks can stand on their own two feet, it is the sort of album created to be listen to, as one collective output, on your headphones while you wait for public transport whisk you away to another place.

-Video: Nature Springs-

By the way: If you are keen to hear about Damon Albarn’s next project with Tank girl creator Jamie Hewlett, look out for Monkey: Journey To The West!

To find out more about “The Good, the Bad and the Queen” album, check out these sites:

Official Site

Offical Fan Site

Myspace Site

“Drink all day coz the country’s at war
You’ll be falling on the palace walls
I can’t be any more than I say
In the flood you’ll get washed away
When the sunset world begins”

(The Kingdom of Doom -TG TB & TQ)

By the good/Bad…Yossarian

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Kia Ora – Kora

Monday, September 29th, 2008 | Reviews | No Comments
Kia Ora - Kora

Last Thursday night in Melbourne, we were lucky enough to finally see one of New Zealands leading bands, Kora, perform at Hi-Fi Bar. With a reputation as a must see live act spreading thoughout Australia, New Zealand, and more recently Europe, and having listened to the music they have been releasing over the last 6 years, we were intrigued as to how they would live up to the expectations we had.

It’s worth noting the callibre of artists coming out of New Zealand, especially in their live performances, when considering their reputation as one of New Zealand’s best. The bar has been set in more recent times by such a strong aray of NZ’ers such as Fat Freddy’s Drop, Katchafire, The Black Seeds, Olmecha Supreme, Che Fu, and countless other musicians. Set to this backdrop this comparison was always going to be difficult to deliver on… but deliver they did.

From the cheeky, playful performance they brought to Hi-fi Bar, it was no surprise to learn that some of Kora’s members have studied performing arts, with as little as the raise of an eyebrow causing the audience to erupt into screams all evening. These four brothers (literally) and “one token white guy”, as they described themselves, kept the mojo flowing all night, even into the second encore the audience demanded.

Kora live in Whakatane

Even in Australia’s music capital, Melbourne, it’s unusual to attract sell out shows on a Thursday night, but this prominent live venue in the heart of the city was stretched to it’s 900 capacity, including the 16th step where we were chilling out with our champagne (apologies to the guy we spilled a little bit on… twice… sorry bro).

Our group, which at the beginning of the evening was filled out with Kiwi’s, Aussie’s, Americans, Dutch, and English, among others, united at the close of the evening to sing the crowds obviously favourite track “Politician”, only re-enforcing the universal appeal which has recently seen them receive offers from Europe and further abroad.  We all left the concert with a new must see group, hoping that the recent success won’t take away our opportunities to see them locally on Thursday nights if their fan base continues to grow at the rate it has been.

Kete Aronui – an insight into Kora

They talked the talk,

They walked the walk,

and they brought us comfort…

You can check out more of Kora at:



…bs & Miss Peti

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Black Seeds at the Civic

Wednesday, September 17th, 2008 | Reviews | 1 Comment
Black Seeds at the Civic

On a slightly cold but not wet Christchurch evening, people of all cultures and creeds (that are tolerated in our enthusiastic, but small city), congregated together to celebrate what has now almost become a cultural institution. This was last Friday night,  September 12th to be exact, when I lined up with the rest of the crowd at the venue ‘The Civic’ to get in and check out long-time favourites The Black Seeds, who are touring their fifth and latest album “Solid Ground” (see V.G Article from July 29th, 2008 for more details).

They were supported by local groups The Oakley ‘OG’ Grenell live band, and The Dubwise Soundsystem who got the crowd all nicely warmed up and feeling the vibes. OG and guests started around 10pm or so, with their ‘roots rock’ live ensemble. Oakley who was mostly on guitar (and vocals on Bob Marley cover ‘Kaya’) appeared on stage with a full cast of stars including 2 singers, 2 MCs and other assorted musicians. The crowd was really digging their tunes and loving the positive atmosphere they created.

Next was Dubwise who although are personal favourites of mine, seemed as though they should have been first in the line up. No disrespect meant to MC Snypa Levi and DJ Messenjah, but it was hard for the pair to hold the crowds attention after the interactive groove-fest that was the OG band. Now this may say more about the crowd than the artists, but my opinion still stands, they should have started the gig first up, with OG in the middle.

Just after midnight the crowd rocketed into full force as they anticipated the presence of the mighty Black Seeds, who kicked off the set with one of their recent singles “Slingshot” (from the new album) and fired off Boys of the Coasta few more songs before saying a big hello to the highly stimulated crowd, who responded accordingly. The double-edged-sword of the Christchurch live scene is that crowds go wild, so they are guaranteed to react, but not always as expected. This means that they can either be very vocally supportive, or obnoxious and aggressive, more so than other main centres of New Zealand.  On this peaceful Friday night though, all the goodness came alive, with very little anger and the only pushing in the sold out crowd, was in time to the beat.

It seems that after years of touring both locally and around the globe, the boys have perfected the art of the live gig and are quite the consummate professionals, knowing exactly when to bust out the right song, to tickle the crowds fancy. They played a great range of songs spanning all their albums, including a personal favourite of mine “Coming back home”. The attended masses were definitely not disappointed, and went away with a funky satisfied feeling. Not only due to the powerful music, trippy visual displays and the sweet smells of marijuana hanging patiently in the air, but mainly due to the reverie from a night of good times shared by all. The Black Seeds irresistible mixture of reggae, dub and funk all thrown together to create a party vibe, has been the backbone of many casual barbecues and back-yard-cricket games, and will live on for many summers to come. Viva la The Black Seeds!

-Video For the single ‘Slingshot’-

If you’re after more info or details: check out The Black Seeds awesome website

…where you can listen to their songs and play with giraffes!

The Black Seeds Official Site

“Love is given, taken away
Never take more than you give I say
Life has a way of telling us
When your causing a mess or fuss”

(Slingshot – The Black Seeds)

Until next time …Yossarian

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