The Adelaide music scene: to many of you it might be little more than a touring speed bump between Melbourne and Perth but to us it's a way of life. Feast within, on all its dysfunctioning splendour, as we bring you the highly satirical, laughingly fictional and intellectually imbecile tales from our rock & roll wasteland...
FEMME FATALES + THE BATTERY KIDS + TRIXIE PLAIN "TRANSMISSION LIVE" @ ED CASTLE / Friday June 27th 2008
Hi, I'm Spoz. You may remember me as that howling fuckwit that made fun of your band just last week. Or perhaps you don't. Shit.. come to think of it with all the wacky binge drinking antics around here even I have trouble remembering who the fuck I am half the time, or where the hell I left my laughable excuse for a 9-5 job at (fuck I love beer!); so for all of idiots who've arrived late to this party (hi Fasterlouder! regretting your decision to host this yet!?), it's probably best I give you a brief reintroduction. This is Spoz's Rant. This is a live music blog. It's written by Spoz: that'd be me and no it's not my real name (and no I'm not telling you what it is either). You may've seen me out there at EVERY freaking live gig in Adelaide: beer in one hand, camera in the other making an absolute dick of myself out front of a live stage. This is where I frequent this city's laughable excuse for a "live scene": take photos, videos, get retardingly drunk, publish 1-3 episodes of what I laughably call "live reviews" Monday to Friday (rife with dick and fart gags), only to do it all again the next week.. YES! Or maybe you've never seen me before but you've heard all of the insane rumours instead. "Spoz is everywhere and nowhere". "Spoz is impervious to conventional weapons, fire, electricity and water pressures upto 100 metres". "Spoz has two livers that regenerate every 2-3 years". "Spoz is 10ft tall, covered in brown fur, bends time and space and blasts napalm from out've his arse!" (and don't the chicks just love me for it!) *cough* either way, welcome to Spoz's Rant! Sure it ain't exactly hard hitting rock photo journalism; but its helped scam me a fuckload of free shit so far so this must be good for something! So come one, come all and welcome to the bloating corpse of it! Spoz's Rant: it's every reason why the eastern states are laughing at us right now; but we're proud of it all the same..
Tonight, in yet another thrilling episode of "why the fuck did I just waste my precious internet bandwidth on this shit!?", we find ourselves here at the Ed Castle for this month's installment of "Transmission Live": a howling carcrash of festive funtimes that throws both live bands AND indie DJs into the SAME tiny room, promotes itself like a pandemic all over the interspaz; only to flood this venue time and time again with hundreds of screaming idiots. Yeah I know, I don't get it either. If this was any other venue off in the east end ghetto, there'd be nothing but a "rent-a-crowd" hiding off in the corner, knodding off into their pint glasses before it all gets torn down due to "noise complaints" and replaced by yet another women's footware fashion boutique, Wok-in-a-box, inner city residental or shittyarse lounge bar banging electro 24/7. Hang your heads in shame "Transmission Live", clearly your bad example is ruining it for the rest of us!
TRIXIE PLAIN (****1/2) myspace :: Opening act for the night. Imagine if you will one of those classic 70's b-grade "snuff films" that starts off as a road movie starring a bunch of spaced out hippies, a "red-shirt" in a wheelchair, a teen couple into all manner of nastyarse pre-marital sex and a combi-van full of drugs. Now imagine them getting hopelessly stranded in the hillbilly boondocks as some lunatic by the name of Bubba in a clown mask hacks up everyone short of the "girl next door" with a chainsaw and a bathtub full of acid. If you can then imagine all of the above as fronted by Frank Black from The Pixies whilst Sonic Youth and the Sex Pistols fuzz up the guitars and drums from behind (and manage to lose the shittyarse Jessica Biel remake) then either you're just the borderline psycho we invented the terrorist hotline for; or you're much closer to understanding the ripe madness that is Trixie Plain. Starting out in late 2006 as the laugh-a-minute rage blackout of one W Shane Forster on drums, Linden Starr on guitar and his old lady banging out tunes on a busted up old Farfisa organ; there's has been no less the strange journey to get here tonight. I mean shit; who knew that killing a million braincells through excessive alcohol abuse could ever inspire something so utterly, shambolically ripe with genius as this triple headed beast!?
Trixie Plain. I never would've thought it years ago, but tonight they OWN this stage. Theirs is a set rife with caveman sophistication, the buzz of urine on an electrified fence, the warming glow of a burning car wreck, the cheer of a night's festive cowtipping and a scarecrow effigy melting on a BBQ grilltop as Gibby Haynes from the Butthole Surfers yammers a demented yodel. They're everything that was retarded, inbred and awesome about grunge and punk country before the armchair masturbations of Pearl Jam ruined it for everyone in the mid 90's. Fuck full of guitars and bass detuned to a hillbilly haemorrhage, a trinity of gang vocals as blitheringly incoherent as they are brilliant and the idiot thrash of a pounding snare drum? ooohyeaah!
Yup, as much as they may be the theory of evolution in reverse and every reason why nobody should EVER take a road trip into the red states of America alone. The more they regress into the primordial swamp tonight, the more awesome they sound. I mean fuck, just look at 'ol "sausage fingers" Abe Froman go mental to this shit: Trixie Plain? YEEEHOOOO!!
THE BATTERY KIDS (****) myspace :: Your appreciation for this second band tonight may entirely depend on two factors: (a) how much you want to punch Daniel Johns in the face anytime he sings, (b) how much you want to punch yourself in the face rather than listen to anything written by the band Muse. Since (as you may've guessed) this band could be loosely described as a bit of column (a) mixed with a bit of column (b). Both in lead singer Shannon Juvan's ability to ape Daniel John's freaky combo attack of whiny falsetto and sneering effeminate growl and in his band's insane ability to channel Muse's knack for running an entire A-Z of personality disorders and a Book of Revelations in a single song when entirely unnecessary. Such is the endless charm and spastic hysterics that is The Battery Kids. Granted from first impressions; this band may elicit a violent response somewhat akin to your hyperactive four year old nephew demonstrating his Kung Fu Panda impersonation by nailing his foot square in your crotch; watching a home video of a live birth projected into an IMAX movie theatre in 3D, stubbing your toe on an entire kitchen sink worth of clanging pots, pans and kitchen utensils whilst attempting to sneak into a North Korean military installation undetected or attempting to watch William Shatner perform Shakespeare. However, upon 2nd or 3rd visitation, their shit really DOES begin to grow on you. Whoaaaaaa..
As thanks to a near perfect sound mix and all the psyche meds my doctor prescribed to me to stop my insane wish to claw my own face off (pheeuww!), I'm actually really quite enjoying this shit tonight; as The Battery Kids are never one's to shy away from on stage theatrics. Watch as Shannon Juvan awkwardly twitches, whines and shrieks out front on leads like all of puberty has hit him at once; Shannon Simpson flails for the exaggerated overarm swing time and time again on the drums out back, Tom Krieg has a fullblown meltdown as he hunches, lurches and scurries maddeningly from one end of the stage to the other (blissfully unaware his fly is "flying south" all the while), whilst Bowl Lipson on keys reanacts every parent's worst nightmare with a Toys-R-Us A-grade hissyfit. It sure as shit ain't subtle; but oooh fuck is it hilarious to watch!
FEMME FATALES (***1/2) myspace :: And speaking of shit that is far from subtle, here's the Femme Fatales! Yup, even if you've never heard the name (or anything approaching "nu-rave" before), chances are you've seen all this shit everywhere you go like heralds of an impending Apocalypse. They're the fluoro pink "Choose Life" t-shirt. They're the chuppa chop, fruitloop, alcopop, every other kind of alco "popped" full of redbull and a bar that sells nothing but RTD's and bottled water. They're strobe lights, glow sticks, fog machines and laser beams. They're chunky oversized woolen jumpers in geometric zig-zag patterns and shitcrazy ramblings about aliens and lost civilizations. They're smiley faces, pogo dancing, making hyperactive aircraft landing signals with your hands and wearing surgical masks. And in case you still can't picture it, they're the bright yellow rimmed sunnies of any 16 year old shitstain bringing about the end of days with a catagory five block party. Oh yes, they're Cory (fucking) Worthington with a bullet. Some call it nu-rave, some call it electro, some call it dance-punk, shitdisco or the worst extremes of metrosexuality (and I like to call it the way of the windowlicker); but whatever the FUCK this shit it, Femme Fatales have us gargling up to our nips in it. If the Klaxons, Crystal Castles, Daft Punk, Damn Arms and the Test Icicles ever made into a Japanese gameshow they would sound JUST as stupid as the Femme Fatales. They are the blinking neon beast, they are the END of civilization as we know it..
Of course what I failed to mention in all the above: is despite sounding like a sixpack of circus midgets smashing up a casio keyboard with a sledgehammer, and despite barely registering as anything that even remotely resembling "music", as long as you're utterly twatted out've your skull; they're still the MOST retarding fun on a dancefloor you could ever have this side of a heart attack (and quite possibly on the other side too). Stabbing metronomic beats, fisting synths, gunning binary guitars and vocals that sound like a gaggle of geese fucking in a wind tunnel as a crowd around you goes fucking batshit beserk; aaaaah what's not to love?
Yup, despite nu-rave arguably being some of the most retarding shit humanity has ever invented. Despite it being the main reason I don't go anywhere near Rocket Bar, Electric Circus, or The Future Music Festival now even if my life depended on it (don't even get me STARTED on that "Summer Party" back in January.. yeeeeesh!). It's chance moments like these, where you can't help but love being THAT idiot with the camera stuck in the middle of it all! :)
1:29AM - With Femme Fatales finished for the night, and the shattering remains of my teeth since found embedded in the walls around me, removed, cleaned and reassembled back in my skull; "Transmission Live" kicks into phase two with a rapid rotation of their resident DJs: such as everyone's favourite DJ Ross Ross Ross going spastic on the plastic decks..
As the crowd responds in kind with a shitcrazy wall to wall of windowlickers, metro gnomes, fashion nazis, scenster tragics and technicolour dickheads splattering all over the dancefloor..
And as much as I'd like to think that this hipster doofus here is ACTUALLY dancing to Joy Division. What's the bet he's simply making a twit of himself to that fuckarse annoying song by The Wombats you've heard a billion times on Triple J (whilst somewhere off in the distance you'll hear the soothing sounds of me blowing my brains out with a shotgun). Awesome!
1:51AM - Yup, I know what you're all thinking; but before I could hope to end it all with both business ends of a smoking shotgun, I'm since ambushed on stage by this exciteable airhead on stage, who thinks THIS would be an opportune moment for a photo shoot..
It's anyone's guess why she's making a twit of herself on camera; but since she's gone to all this effort (and fuckit, when am I NOT known to encourage this kind've stupidity) I'm rewarding her with this month's honourary "Teagan Paige Gregory Award for Alcoholic Excellence" (so named after one of the other pissheads who pulled this same freaking stunt LAST month).. yeeouch!
2:26AM - But just like all good things in this world, it's all fun and games and shooting fish heads in a beer barrel until a grinning midget like DJ Kenan jumps on the decks and his metrosexual ambiguity in song selection sends everyone screaming for the exit signs.. weeeeeeee!
2:46AM - This is me hiding out in the the beergardens, drinking myself retarded till all the screaming in my head goes away (aaaaah just like every other weekend I'm out)..
2:53AM - Here's Bec at the bar absolutely overjoyed to be serving all these dickheads all night..
And these are all those drunkarse photos I always end up taking at the end of the night for no reason whatsoever other than to provide an endless supply for everyone's myspaz and spazbook profiles the following week (it's lame I know but hell, someone's gotta post them).
4:32AM - Thus bringing to a close yet another episode of Spoz's Rant. An episode that begins just like every other one with all the best intentions in giving you the finest this Adelaide scene has to offer: the music, the venues, the people, the noise, the colour and all the life inbetween; only to end up a howling mess of flash photography, alcoholism and Bec here blowing bubbles over the bar for absolutely no other reason whatsoever other than it looks cool. Yup, as much as I would love to make sense of any of this shit, right here is pretty much where it's at: collapsing dead at the end of another long night without a freaking clue what to make of it all..
So be sure to tune in next time (bring your molotov cocktails!) as we bring yet another exciting installment of "why the government is doing everything in their power to outlaw this retarded shit once and for all" (otherwise thinly disguised as a live music blog on a scene the rest of the nation does its best to ignore). Yup, we may be pissing all our lives away in the arse end of this planet with nary but a fart to show for it; but who would have it ANY other way? :)