Listened TISM release ‘I’ve Gone Hillsong’, first new song in almost 20 years, tease more gigs by Al Newstead from Double J

Driven by caffeinated guitars and four-to-the-floor drive, the track contains the cult-rock agitators’ enduring power to confound yet feel profound, parcelling up political commentary in a ridiculous, entertaining package.

“I masturbate over bushfires I create.” Wonder if this is going to make it to DJ Albo’s setlist? Funniest thing was actually how YouTube’s algorithm tried to suggest various Hillsong clips for me to watch after the video.
Liked The production of space and the changing character of the recording studio | Popular Music | Cambridge Core (Cambridge Core)

The propagation of low-cost music production technologies changes the way recording artists experience the spatial environments and technology of the recording studio. Concomitantly dwindling recording budgets have led to large-format studio closures. Many artists are choosing do-it-yourself (DIY) recording practices with the help of a producer, or self-produced, in non-purpose-built and domestic environments. This research seeks to understand the differences in creative agency and recording experience for performers in various recording environments. I use a practice-led approach to record performers in DIY recording spaces, large-format recording studios and a hybrid combination of both environments. I then use a Lefebvrian theoretical lens to analyse participant interviews and field notes. This research suggests that artist attitudes towards the choice of recording space are variable, with each participant preferring a different aspect of large-format and domestic spaces depending on which facet of those spaces they are considering. Despite this, the participants seem to experience DIY recording as broadly positive for creativity but respond with views that emphasise freedom from time constraints, a reclamation of power, fewer economic burdens and freedom to experiment. The research indicates that the DIY studio is emerging as a new paradigm in the recording field and defines the current era of music-making.

Listened CUSTARD BUTTERCUP (BEDFORD) : CUSTARD : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive from Internet Archive

Album ripped from CD in .WAV format.CD, artwork & booklet scanned at 1200DPI.In 1992, Custard released their first self-published album titled…

I remember reading about COW (Country or Western) featuring Dave McCormack, Glenn Thompson and Robert Moore, in Andrew Stafford’s book about the Brisbane music scene, Pig City: From the Saints to Savage Garden.

COW was far more than the in-joke their name suggested. Intending to score a hotel residency where they could have some fun, a few drinks and pick up a little extra cash at the end of the night, the band could indeed play country ‘or’ western, albeit with a knowing smirk. But such was the improvisational flair and natural showmanship of the musicians – McCormack in particular was becoming a formidable guitarist, distilling influences from Tom Waits’ sideman Marc Ribot to the Pixies’ Joey Santiago – that COW’s scope was almost limitless.

SOURCE: Andrew Stafford – Pig City: From the Saints to Savage Garden

Having played on Robert Forster’s Calling from a Country Phone, Moore had imagined COW as more than a band, but a ‘musical collective’.

Robert Moore had imagined COW as a musical collective similar to the Wild Bunch behind the first Massive Attack album, where a virtual reserve bench of musicians would be on call to play gigs or recordings. Often the band would be joined on stage by backing vocalists the Sirloin Sisters, twins Maureen and Suzie Hansen; at other times, former Go-Between John Willsteed and occasional Queensland Symphony Orchestra violinist John Bone would jump up to add their own flourishes.

SOURCE: Andrew Stafford – Pig City: From the Saints to Savage Garden

Coming to Bedford / Buttercup, I was left wondering where the country inspiration was. Although there are moments, say on the samples and licks on Fuming Out, but instead the album felt to me like jangly pop on speed. The fact that the album does not go much beyond 30 minutes with 11 tracks highlights this. In Andrew Stafford – Pig City: From the Saints to Savage Garden, Stafford includes a quote from from McCormick about the use of speed:

David McCormack: That’s when the drugs really came into play, around that time . . . In 1988–89 it was all speed, acid, ecstasy had just hit. And because we had nothing to do – we’d basically finished our degrees and were on the dole, and we were white middle-class kids from Kenmore – we could just get out of it forever. That’s why Who’s Gerald? broke up. We’d be speeding for days on end.

SOURCE: Andrew Stafford – Pig City: From the Saints to Savage Garden

One of the odd things about jumping into a focus on a band/artist is that it creates the conditions for different listening. With Buttercup/Bedford, I could not help make comparisons, whether it be:

  • Anna Lucia’s nod to The Pixies’ Debaser.
  • The British influences behind Delerious/I Live By The River.
  • The jingle jangle of the Go-Betweens throughout.

I wonder if these ideas are actually beyond that. The initial links are with the obvious, but somehow the true inspiration is outside of our reach. Stafford makes mention of the influence of Jonathan Richman.

Like Robert Forster, David McCormack had drawn considerable early inspiration from the suburban obsessions of Jonathan Richman.

David McCormack: I was at John Swingle’s house, he was in the Melniks, and he said you’ve got to hear this . . . He played me Roadrunner and Government Centre and it just blew my mind, it was one of those life-changing experiences. Because up until then I was listening to Devo and Kraftwerk, stuff like that, which is all very alienated, but it’s not really Brisbane. Brisbane’s too hot for that!

SOURCE: Andrew Stafford – Pig City: From the Saints to Savage Garden

Personally, I have not really listened to much of Richman’s work, even after my dive into The Go-Betweens. It leaves me thinking that maybe that although ideas often have origins and references, that these are not always present. Reading Paul Carter’s Dark Writings, I cannot help but wonder if the influences are beneath the line retraced:

The line is always the trace of earlier lines. However perfectly it copies what went before, the very act of retracing it represents a new departure.
To think the line differently is not only to read — and draw — maps and plans in a new way. It is to think differently about history. To materialize the act of representation is to appreciate that the performances of everyday life can themselves produce historical change.

SOURCE: Paul Carter – Dark Writing: Geography, Performance, Design

One of the oddities of the record are the inconsistences when it comes to the vocals. There is a lot made of Australian Academy of Music’s Encouragement Award prize of $500 recording time and how the band quickly recorded about 13 songs in eight hours, marking Buttercup / Bedford. However, looking at the booklet, I assume that this was the session in October 1990.


On first listen, I thought that tracks 4-10 was someone other than McCormick singing. However, looking at the booklet, clearly not. I am not sure if in the year between recording the initial tracks and the later tracks, McCormick had developed and changed or it was in the quality of the recording.

Read The Hacienda

Peter Hook, as co-founder of Joy Division and New Order, has been shaping the course of popular music for thirty years. He provided the propulsive …

Watching documentaries like The Hacienda – The Club that Shook Britain (BBC Documentary), one is left thinking about the ‘halycon’ days of The Hacienda. However, Peter Hook pulls back the sheet to reveal the reality of running a club. Although Hook is happy to engage with the usual talking points, such as Madonna playing there or the rise of House music, he also provides insight into the disaster it was from a business point of view and the impact it had.

The Haçienda was, as Hook says, in many ways the perfect example of how not to run a club – if you view a nightclub as a money-making business. But if, like the baggy trousered philanthropists Factory, you see it as an altruistic gift to your hometown and a breeding ground for the next generation of youth culture, it was, accidentally, purposefully, shambolically, anarchically, thrillingly, scarily, inspirationally, perfect. Hook appreciated the need to give something back but, he jokes, he didn’t realise that you had to give it all back. But then, as Wilson remarked: “Some people make money, others make history.”

Source: Review – The Haçienda: How Not to Run a Club by Peter Hook by Luke Bainbridge

This reminded me of something that Brian Eno said in a conversation with Daniel Lanois, that ‘beautiful things grow out of shit’.


“Now I don’t know why, but Morrissey had always hated Joy Division. Maybe Rob got it right when after a lively debate as the cameras were turned off he turned to Morrissey and said, ‘The trouble with you, Morrissey, is that you’ve never had the guts to kill yourself like Ian. You’re fucking jealous.’ You should have seen his face as he stormed off. I laughed me bollocks off.”

Listened Driveway Heart Attack, by The Fauves from The Fauves

22 track album

There is something strange about bumping into an old friend and the way in which the years between seem to disappear. I had a similar experience listening to Driveway Heart Attack by The Fauves. After recently seeing them live to celebrate Future Spa and Lazy Highway, I returned to Driveway Heart Attack interested to where their sound had evolved and changed.

I vaguely remember listening to Driveway Heart Attack when it was released in 2019, however it did not stand out at the time, so I moved on. As one review I found touched on, it is one of those albums that takes its time to sink in, but when it does it hooks you.

This album will take many listens before making a decision to love it so much. It really took time to grow on me.

Source: Driveway%20Heart%20Attack%20%E2%80%93%20The%20Fauves%20(Album%20Review) by szabologist

I recently spent some time with The Go-Betweens and could not help but hear how The Fauves continued the legacy. Not only do they continue the legacy of two alternating singers, but this is often built on top of infectious harmonies. With this said, even when I think that the chorused guitar has me thinking of The Cure or the acoustic pop reminds me of Josh Pyke, the album always sounds like The Fauves.

Checked into
In Year 11, my school did something common for so many schools in the area, a trip to Central Australia. As a part of this trip, we were allowed to take $30 of spending money. For some, this meant buying opals in Cooper Pedy or souvenirs along the way. For me, it meant buying The Fauves Lazy Highway. Let loose on Alice Springs for an afternoon, I ended up in a music store, where I found the album with a bonus disc. I have always been a sucker for bonus discs and unique packaging, like digipaks. So there went most of my money.

I recently read Bobby Gillespie’s memoir Tenement Kid. In it he talks about losing his ‘rock and roll virginity’ to Thin Lizzy:

I lost my rock and roll virginity to Phil Lynott and Thin Lizzy that night. I was filled with the Holy Spirit of Rock and Roll, never to be the same again.

Source: Tenement Kid by Bobby Gillespie

I am not sure I would have described it in the same way as Gillespie, but something changed for me when I saw The Fauves at an under-age gig at EV’s in Croydon in 1997. Although I had been to a few random community concerts, this was my first concert of loud rock music with a proper most pit. Although I did not come away with a chipped tooth from crowd surfing, like my friend, I was definitely left changed for the better.

I think that Lazy Highway then met me at the right time. Not only was it the ‘next album’ after discovering the band, but it shone a strange light on the world that I was living in. As an album, it carried a strange balance between the Doctor’s sentimentality and Coxy’s quirky cynicism. As Dan Condon summarises:

They were able to put a spin on Australian life at the time in a way that was in no way cringe, but never really glorified things too much either.

Source: The Fauves announce live shows, playing classic albums in full

Along with Thousand Yard Stare, these two albums have really stayed with me over time. Although I seem to have drifted away after that.

I wanted to go to their performance of Lazy Highways at the Workers Club,  but sadly had COVID. I was therefore happy to see them follow up with a second performance at the Corner Hotel. Even better, this time including both Future Spa and Lazy Highway, as well as being supported by Dave McCormick playing a solo set deep cuts, classics and a cover of Taylor Swift’s Blank Space.

It was a great concert as they churned through Lazy Highway and Future Spa.


Something that I enjoyed was how human it all felt. There was endless banter about how many records they did not sell, how they did not visit Teddy in hospital while making Lazy Highways and how the Doctor still needs the dots on the guitar neck when playing the chords. My only disappointment was that I felt that the keyboards performed by Phil Natt got lost in the mix.

Afterwards, I was left thinking about the trend to play anniversary gigs and the expectations this can place on the artist. For example, I wondered if Cox often played around with the melodies to keep the songs fresh. However, watching some older videos online, it would seem that this has always been the case. This left thinking about the expectation to play what the punters want versus the desire to play newer tracks. In the presser, it states:

We need reasons to put on shows.
You need reasons to come to them.

Read CONVERSATIONS – a new book by Steve Reich by Steve ReichSteve Reich

A surprising, enlightening series of conversations that shed new light on the music and career of “our greatest living composer” (New York Times).

Steve Reich is a living legend in the world of contemporary classical music. As a leader of the minimalist movement in the 1960s, his works have become central to the musical landscape worldwide, influencing generations of younger musicians, choreographers and visual artists. He has explored non-Western music and American vernacular music from jazz to rock, as well as groundbreaking music and video pieces. He toured the world with his own ensemble and his compositions are performed internationally by major orchestras and ensembles.

I remember playing Steve Reich’s Different Trains for my Year 11 student’s when studying the Holocaust. I used it as a means of exploring how we represent a topic, such as the past. after reading Conversations, I wonder if I really understood the complexity of the piece at the time, let alone what my students thought.

Through conversations held during the peek of COVID lockdowns, as well as some pieces from the past, Steve Reich speaks with various people who have been a part of his music over time, including:

  • David Lang
  • Brian Eno
  • Richard Serra
  • Michael Gordon
  • Michael Tilson Thomas
  • Russell Hartenberger
  • Robert Hurwitz
  • Stephen Sondheim
  • Jonny Greenwood
  • David Harrington
  • Elizabeth Lim-Dutton
  • David Robertson
  • Micaela Haslam
  • Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker
  • Julia Wolfe
  • Nico Muhly
  • Beryl Korot
  • Colin Currie
  • Brad Lubman

Whether it be a part of creating it, reproducing it or engaging with it, each of the conversations adds a different perspective to Reich’s music.

The book was inspired by Conversations with Igor Stravinsky. Like that book, it provides a means of looking back at a long and distinguished career.

What fascinates me about such a long career is how technology had changed and evolved and the impact that this has had. It is interesting to listen to discussions about phasing associated with It’s Gonna Rain and thinking about someone like Fred Again and his use of everyday samples. I would love to know Reich’s thoughts on this.

I recently read Tony Cohen’s Half Deaf, Completely Mad and was left thinking that there is so much about music that I just overlook. I think books like this, which dive into some more complex and technical topics, are useful in gaining a peek behind the curtain.


Chapter 3. Richard Serra

“Best to do what you have been assigned to do. I have been given my assignment just as everyone has his or her assignment.”

Chapter 4. Michael Gordon

I think of harmony like rocket fuel. It’s such a big event.

I think we all meet who we’re supposed to meet and encounter what we’re supposed to encounter, and how that works, we don’t exactly know.

Chapter 5. Michael Tilson Thomas

MTT: I think a lot of the time what a conductor does is to confirm things that are happening. That’s a very important role.

I was talking with Sondheim, and I asked him, “How do you get this marvelous continuity, it seems to just pour out of you.” He said, “I could ask you the same question. It takes an infinite amount of hard work to make something sound like it’s effortless.” And I totally agree. There is more in my garbage can, whether it’s on the Mac desktop or the one filled with paper, than there is on a printed page. And it’s always been that way. I am my own worst critic. There is no critic who can compare to the criticism that I have inflicted on myself.

Chapter 6. Russell Hartenberger

I’ve often thought, it’s as if some artists of the same generation have receivers built into their brains, so to speak, and if they tune in to the same stations, they bond together. There is something literally in the air. Artists will pick up on that, and for all kinds of reasons, whether they’re listening to non-Western music or early Bob Dylan or Junior Walker with a repeating bass line or the first prelude of the Well-Tempered Clavier with the same rhythmic pattern repeated or Pérotin with those long held tones. All kinds of things seem to lock in.

Chapter 10. David Harrington

If I’m channeling it, I’m just the channel, I just work here!

Chapter 19. Brad Lubman

Well, to tell you the truth, I have always written both in a manuscript book and worked in real sound. Earlier on I had tape recorders. For Piano Phase, I recorded the pattern, made a tape loop of it and then sat down and played against it. In Drumming, say in the marimba section, which phase position works best? One beat ahead, two beats? Try it. Record it. Overdub it. I have always worked in real sound. And during the process, I would play back those prerecorded sections and critique them, as well. When I was writing Tehillim and didn’t play strings or winds, I would play them on a synth. Also, during that period of time I worked with my ensemble, I would compose so much and then we’d get into rehearsal right away. So, my music was rehearsed and corrections made while composing. That way of working continued up through The Desert Music in 1984, where I could only rehearse [a] small group of instruments. I started using computer notation in ’85 with Electric Counterpoint. And I mocked up the guitar using a sampling keyboard with a guitar sample. Then, a couple of years later, I started using Sibelius computer notation software with midi playback. So, in a way, it’s been smoothly continuous, always rooted in sound and always rooted in revision en route.

Read book by Moby by Contributors to Wikimedia projects

Porcelain: A Memoir is a 2016 memoir by American house musician Moby. Covering his youth in the 1970s until his worldwide success in the late 1990s with Play, the book also discusses the author’s spiritual struggles as a Christian, initial avoidance of and eventual recreational drug use,[1] and interest in animal rights and veganism. The book has been met favorably by critics. He had plans for a future volume covering the following decade, which he eventually released in 2019 under the title Then It Fell Apart.[2][3]

Growing up, I remember hearing Moby’s music, but I never owned (or even downloaded) any albums. To be honest, my memory of Moby is as much via TISM’s Moby-Dick Head:

Dear Moby

Having read your liner notes, I now violently oppose pain, death, famine, disease, slaughter, war, youth suicide, pollution, hitting your finger with the hammer, parking in disabled car parks, the industrial military complex, the death of innocent third world people, especially the children.

By the way, I’d like to thank Mohammed and the Dalai Lama, safari suits and stating the fucking obvious.

I stumbled upon Moby’s memoir Porcelain in the local libraries BorrowBox platform and .

After reading (or listening to Moby read) the book, I was left conflicted how I felt about Moby as both a person and an artist. I guess I went into the book hoping for some insight into the creative process, but instead came away wondering about the creative.

As a narrative, the memoir traces Moby’s life from the late eighties when he was living in a factory, until the release of Play at the end of nineties. For me, it has all the expectations of a memoir. A regular smattering of other famous people such as Jeff Buckley, Trent Reznor and Robert Downey Jnr. Coming from nowhere to seemingly succeed. Coming to some sort of realisation about life. In some ways, this felt similar to Bobby Gillespie’s Tenement Kid.

The style of the book was often very matter of fact, contradictions and all. For example, in the beginning he recounts leading bible studies and contemplating giving up all his worldly possessions to follow God, like some sort of modern St Francis of Assisi. While the book ends in a world awash with alcohol and sex, and no prayers for forgiveness afterwards. It was interesting thinking about this alongside Tom Tilley’s memoir, where he turned away from Pentecostal church. The difference was I found Tilley’s account to be more believable, whereas Moby almost came across as a fractured character out of some sort of modern Francis O’Conner story.

Overall, Porclein is another reminder of how many repetitions it often takes to get to any semblance of success. Therefore, the challenge as Austin Kleon would suggest is to ‘just keep going’.

Checked into

Twinkle Digitz

I told my daughter I was going to see Twinkle Digitz. She asked me who the heck that was. After seeing Twinkle Digitz now for a third time (first, second), I kind of ask myself the same question every time. I played her Boogyin’ with my Baby-o and she said that I like it because of the synthesisers. That is clearly a part of it. However, I think that it is more than that. Even though the music and performance is carefree, slightly daggy and sometimes very silly, I think there are anchovies to be had. Also, there is something chaotic about the music that draws me in. Even though so much is based on triggers, it still feels like it could break at any minute, especially amidst an impromptu jig mid song.

I have lost count of how many times I have watched / listened to his An Apocolyptic Evening stream. Yes I was there to see Damian Cowell, I did not even know that Twinkle Digitz was the support until a few days before hand, but when I found out I was not going to miss it for the world. He played all the usual tracks, such as Pandora’s Box, Shit Eatin’ Grin, Boogyin’ with my Baby-o, Dancing ln My Dreams, God Machine and Blackmail Boogie. However, he also played a couple of newer tracks.

The first addition was In the City. This is a song of contrasts, with its blissful guitar driven verse which then explodes into the chorus. In some ways it reminds me of Radiohead’s Palo Alto. This he played when I saw him at Thornbury Local, but I could not hear it at the back. The other addition was the ‘almost finished’ It’s Autonomous Thomas, a song he supposedly co-wrote with ChatGPT. This had a different feel, although it was built on a rich bed of arpeggios, it was a bit more of a slow build.

I am hoping that the mention of ‘almost finished’ might mean that one day there might be a Twinkle Digitz album or EP. There is definitely something missed when it comes to high-fidelity depending on the streamed video recordings. But then again, maybe there is something about not necessarily knowing what you are going to get each time Twinkle Digitz performs that is a part of the appeal.

Damian Cowell

I saw Damian Cowell’s Disco Machine a few years ago after the release of Only the Shit You Love. I wondered if I was biased by it being the first concert I went to post-lockdown. However, I was not disappointed second time around.

Some artists are just different live. Sometimes it is the energy of the performance, sometimes it is the sound, sometimes it is the reimagination of the songs. For Cowell I feel it is all three.

I love the wall of sound produced live and the energy that comes with this. In addition to the singers up front, with one less musician on stage this time and a reduced percussion section, there was more space for Andy Hazel and Gordon Blake to bounce around at the back of the stage. (I especially loved Hazel’s shuffle associated with Sanctuary.) While the contrast between Cowell and his back-up singers brings out something different to the music. Although many of these parts are often present in the recorded music, in a song like Fuck I’m Dead, they provide something different to Cowell’s original recording.

After both gigs, I was intrigued with how Cowell never seems to rest on his laurels. I imagine he could just turn up and roll out the hits, but instead he always seems to be trying new things, playing different, even if it is his old music. For example, he played Garbage from Machiavelli and the Four Seasons. The choice felt like it was as much about Cowell’s modern sound as it was about some token rolling out the past. The only disappointment was that Cubase / visuals crashed halfway through the show, although nothing as bad as the video from The Zoo. Even with all the efforts mid-song to get the computer up and running again, some things are just not meant to be.


I Shit Me

Fuck I’m Dead

(Sort of) Emo

The Arseless Chaps

The Boy In The Box

Cool For Catamites

Market Forces

Damian Cowell’s Disco Machine

Get Yer Dag On!

This Is Bullshit

S Club

Where the Fuck’s the Vengabus?




Who the f*** is Damian Cowell?

Damian Cowell wrote a song called “I Was The Guy in TISM”. So there’s that. There was no Damian Cowell in TISM, but one of the masked personas’ voice and those distinctive lyrics are pretty familiar.

Since 2004 Damian Cowell has formed 3 bands, released 8 albums, been a stand-up comedian, published a graphic novel, been commissioned by MONA, produced a 19-episode podcast and created a 19-episode animated series. Now he’s back to bring you some of the best bits.

What the f*** is Damian Cowell?

Damian Cowell is a compilation album celebrating his work in ROOT!, The DC3 and Damian Cowell’s Disco Machine, plus some new things. It features a new version of”Fuck I’m Dead”, his collaborations with Tony Martin, Shaun Micallef, Celia Pacquolaand, Ella Hooper plus previously unreleased versions of songs from his 2010 lost masterpiece “Surface Paradise”.

Why the f*** is Damian Cowell?

He started out wearing a mask and pretending to be someone else. Since then he’s hidden behind the security of 3 bands. Now he’s just Damian Cowell: the social satirist, the singer, the songwriter, the band, the brand.

Who the f*** are Damian Cowell?

Damian Cowell the band features some familiar faces, like Gordon Blake, Andy Hazel and Emily Jarrett, plus some new ones. Oh, and Damian Cowell will be there too. His old friend Tony Martin may also make an appearance. To celebrate the release of Damian Cowell the album, Damian Cowell the band are touring nationally, playing selections from across his career. And even a few from you know who.

Not sure what ‘Damian Cowell’ the album is, but I am a yes whoever or whatever Damian Cowell is. Kind of feels like Cowell’s own Eras-style tour.
Listened The Loveliest Time by Contributors to Wikimedia projects from Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.

The Loveliest Time is the seventh studio album by Canadian singer Carly Rae Jepsen, released on July 28, 2023, by 604, Schoolboy and Interscope Records. It serves as a companion piece to The Loneliest Time (2022), featuring songs from sessions for the original album. It was preceded by the single “Shy Boy”.

I am always intrigued by the choices made in putting an album together. I accept that there are some artists, like Tame Impala, that record the album and that is it. However, Carly Rae Jepsen has spoken quite a bit over the years how she write a lot of songs, many of which do not it onto the album. This has led to a tradition of releasing a B-side album with each of her albums.

In the course of composing her last two albums, Emotion and Dedicated, Jepsen wrote more than 200 songs. Many of her favorite works didn’t make it onto either final album, so she’s started a tradition of releasing “Side B” records on the one-year anniversary of her last release.

Source: “I’m a bit of an overwriter”: How Carly Rae Jepsen whittled 200 songs down to 12 for her new album by Charlie Harding

One of the interesting things in listening to Loveliest Times is how some of these songs would have changed the feel of The Loneliest Times. This is picked up somewhat in the title of the album ‘The Loveliest Times’ as this album does feel more upbeat to the often reflective The Loneliest Times. Maybe we might never hear ‘Disco Sweat’ in its entirety, but it definitely feels like it always has a presence, especially in the B-Sides:

I have an entire album called Disco Sweat that no one will ever hear. It was really fun to make, though. “Cut to the Feeling” is a good example of that. It was never going to come out. And then I did a voiceover for the cartoon film Ballerina, and they were like, “Do you have any tunes?” And I’m like, “Well, this one’s very theatrical. I think it could work.” So that’s sort of how I roll. [The song made the year-end best lists on Billboard, Pitchfork, Rolling Stone, and Vanity Fair.]

Source: “I’m a bit of an overwriter”: How Carly Rae Jepsen whittled 200 songs down to 12 for her new album by Charlie Harding

Listen to This Love Isn’t Crazy from Dedicated B-Sides for another possible ‘Disco Sweat’ track.

Listened From Little Things Big Things Grow from ABC Radio National

This is the story a song written by Kev Carmody and Paul Kelly around a campfire in 1988. What started off as a casually recorded folk number has become what Carmody calls “a kind of cultural love song”: a foundational entry in the Australian songbook.

This year’s NAIDOC Week theme is “For Our Elders”, so RN’s Rudi Bremer went to speak with Kev Carmody at his studio on Kambuwal Country to gather his recollections of From Little Things Big Things Grow as it started, the story of the Gurindji Walk Off that inspired it, and the many different iterations he’s performed and heard in the last thirty years.

Wik and South Sea Islander rapper Ziggy Ramo, Electric Fields vocalist Zaachariaha Fielding from the Anangu Pitjantjatjara Yankunytjatjara (APY) Lands and Adelaide producer Michael Ross, and Zillmere State School Year 7 Class of 2003 student Tonii-Lee Betts join Craig Tilmouth to talk about their interpretations of the song that Carmody says “belongs to everyone now”.

From Little Things Big Things Grow, as performed by:

Kev Carmody, Paul Kelly and the Tiddas from the 1993 album Bloodlines

Paul Kelly & the Messengers from the 1991 album Comedy

Kev Carmody and Paul Kelly live at the national memorial service for Gough Whitlam, 2014

The Waifs, from the 2020 album Cannot Buy My Soul: The Songs of Kev Carmody

Electric Fields from the 2020 album Cannot Buy My Soul: The Songs of Kev Carmody

Ziggy Ramo, from the 2021 single From Little Things

Zillmere State School Year 7 Class of 2003

Paul Kelly & Jess Hitchcock live in 2019 on the album People

You also heard Kev Carmody’s song Thou Shalt Not Steal from the 1988 album Pillars of Society, and the opening of Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9 (‘Choral’), performed by the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra and Wilhelm Furtwängler.

Rudi Bremer speaks with Kev Carmody about writing of his track From Little Things Big Things Grow with Paul Kelly and its legacy. The two explore the many covers of the track, including:

  • Ziggy Ramo
  • Electric Fields
  • The Waifs
  • Zillmere State School
  • Paul Kelly & Jess Hitchcock

Carmody compares the various covers to “the embers coming off the fire”. This is interesting to consider alongside Walter Benjamin’s idea of ‘the translation as a tangent‘.  Carmody also says that as a song it “belongs to everyone now.”

Listened Atta by Contributors to Wikimedia projects from Wikimedia Foundation, Inc.

Átta (lit. ’Eight’) is the eighth studio album by Icelandic post-rock band Sigur Rós, released through Von Dur and BMG Rights Management on 16 June 2023. It is their first studio album in 10 years, following Kveikur (2013), and is their first since 2012’s Valtari to feature keyboardist Kjartan Sveinsson, who rejoined the band in 2022. The seven-minute lead single “Blóðberg” was released on 12 June 2023 alongside its music video, directed by Johan Renck. Physical editions of the album are scheduled to be released on 1 September 2023. The band will embark on a tour from June 2023 backed by a 41-piece orchestra.

In Phil Mongredien’s review, he describes Átta as ‘disappointing homogeneity’. I wonder if the criticisms of the albums ‘unengaging’ nature reflects the challenges of the modern world where so much revolves around the ‘next hit’. If this is what you are after, then this album may not be it. (Maybe try Jonsi’s solo album Shiver?) However, I wonder if Sigur Rós ever really fitted that niche?

Ian Cohen suggests that the album offers ‘equisite beauty’.

While he’s never made the same album twice, either as a solo artist or a collaborator or the frontman of Sigur Rós, he’s also never made an album that turned out anything other than exquisitely beautiful, no matter how much he’s fought against it.

Source: Átta – Sigur Rós by Ian Cohen

While NPR argues that this is an album for our times. In an interview with Bob Boilen, Jónsi describes the album as heavy but hopeful.

It is interesting because when we were doing this album, there was this, I don’t know, maybe it’s just in the world we’re living now, but it’s this doom and gloom everywhere you scroll on social media and and everything kind of has this apocalyptic feel to it. The world is ending, nature is dying, climate disasters one after the other. Yeah, wildfires in Canada and a lot of wildfires in LA War in Ukraine and all this stuff. And we were kind of doing it at that time the war started and all these disasters. And I remember, yeah, there’s definitely something … not gloomy, but, I don’t know, something heavy but also hopeful [at the] same time.

Source: Jónsi explains how Sigur Rós made its first new album in a decade by @NPR

This balance allows the listener to make of it what they want.

I think what is most remarkable is that people take their own meaning from it because they don’t understand the lyrics. Or everybody makes their own meaning and interpretation in their mind. And I think that’s kind of amazing. You’re not like being spoon fed some specific lyrics, some love lyrics or something.

Source: Jónsi explains how Sigur Rós made its first new album in a decade by @NPR

I feel this album important for the moment in the same way that Mixing Colours was right for the start of the pandemic. It forces us to stop and consider.

I enjoyed this documentary on the ‘birth of Cool Britannia’. I am not sure I was aware how central Suede was. All I remember was the Oasis vs. Blur saga.

It all left me wondering whether this is a story that could have been told in different ways? There were certain voices not necessarily included, such as Bernard Butler. I also wondered about other artists, such as Pulp, and they place they served? Also, will time tell a different story?

Listened First Two Pages of Frankenstein, by The National from The National

11 track album

In an interview for Matt Berninger’s solo album, he spoke about the importance of exploring other projects and how that feeds back into The National. Listening to First Two Pages of Frankenstein, I cannot help but hear Aaron Dessner’s work on Taylor Swift’s Folklore and Evermore. I was therefore not surprised to find out that they were both recorded at Long Pond Studio. I feel it is more subdued, also it continues with the collaborative enterprise started with I Am Easy to Find, with appearances by Sufjan Stevens, Phoebe Bridgers and Taylor Swift.

Although I have enjoyed it, I cannot help compare it to High Violet. I wonder if it is on of those albums that would have a second life in seeing it live. I think time will tell where it sits in their œuvre.

Place between Taylor Swift’s Folklore and The War on Drugs.

I was wondering if Autechre had ever shared any insight into their process, this led me to Sean Booth’s Twitch AMA reposted on YouTube. I have never watched or listened to an AMA before, especially not one that goes for six hours. I must admit, I only got to the four hour mark, but it was kind of interesting. My two highlights were his answer to tinnitus and his discussion of by neuro-divergent.

Responding to how Booth manages tinnitus, he suggested that it is as much neurological as it is physical. He finds listening to Computer World by Kraftwerk fixes things.

Discussing autism spectrum disorder, Booth explains that he is lucky as the various traits have actually helped him with his music, just as CEO’s with narcissistic personality disorder have helped them.

Regarding my question, I think that it is probably something that you can only learn through experience.

Listened Desire, I Want To Turn Into You, by Caroline Polachek from Caroline Polachek

12 track album

There are some albums that I find hard to click with. I listened to Desire, I Want to Turn Into You when it came out and watched a few of Polachek’s television performances. I really did not know what to make of it. However, after listening to Switched on Pop’s discussion of the new age references and disruptive structure, I felt like I was better able to appreciate it.

In a performance on KXEP, she discusses the non-linear lyricism at the heart of the album, as well as the ‘hyper-maximalist’ approach designed to capture the too muchness and awe in the world. When challenges about pushing the boundaries of pop music, Polachek wonders if ‘pop’ means being part of an inside joke. She instead suggests that the binaries that matter to her are boldness and nuiance, it is about hitting in a different way. With this, she argues that the album is best considered as a constellation with some tracks acting as a bridge between different planets.

Place between Grimes and Montaigne.

Listened Methyl Ethel’s metamorphosis from

This is an extraordinary Take 5. There’s something a bit different about capturing an artist at a particular moment in their creative life. Not talking with me to promote an album or to spruik a tour… but in the midst of creating something new. And following a curiosity that will take them to this unknown end. This is where I found Jake Webb – better known as Methyl Ethel. The Fremantle based muso has made textured, leftfield pop for years now. And across four albums has shapeshifted what he does and how he thinks about sound.

For his Take 5, I gave Jake the theme of metamorphosis. And asked him to choose five songs that have marked chapters and change in his life. From The Supremes to Bjork to Deerhunter, this is deep conversation about art, and finding new ways every day to make something new.

The Supremes – Keep Me Hangin’ On
The White Stripes – Fell In Love With A Girl
Antony and the Johnsons – Swanlights
Bjork – Hunter
Deerhunter – Helicopter

Jake Webb provides an insight into his thoughts on music through five tracks. This included talking about his fascination with guitar and drums via The White Stripes, as well as his new fascination with cello. Personally, I could not imagine Methyl Ethel without bass, for me it is the ingredient to Webb’s music that ties everything together.

It was also an intriguing conversation for the insight it provided into the creative process. Webb spoke about the importance of process (coffee in the morning) and turning up. He also talked about splitting up his days into 45 minute blocks to prevent from falling down the rabbit hole, especially when working alone.

I was left with so many questions. For example, what has he learnt over the years? Is there anything that he would possibly do differently now, compared with the past? What does he do in-between each of the blocks of time? Has he always started with piano or is this a new thing?