15 December

Review: Meredith Music Festival 2014

meredith-music-festival

There are two kinds of people living in Victoria: those who have bathed in the glow of Meredith’s Supernatural Amphitheatre, and those who have not. There’s no shame in being in the latter category – it’s just difficult for Meredith devotees to describe the experience without going all teary-eyed and mumbling words like “BYO booze… only one stage… Ferris wheel… Inspiration Point… music?”

Still, we must try. Over two decades ago, a dude named Chris Nolan invited some mates to his farm to listen to his favourite local bands. Now, thousands of music-lovers plan their social calendar (and their personal finances) around one weekend in December. And if we didn’t see you in the crowd this year, then here are some moments that might make you reconsider your choices in 2015.

Best on-stage banter
Friday night, 10pm. A saxophonist in a sharp skipper’s outfit addresses the audience with a very serious expression on his face.… Read more

15 December

Stephen Cummings doco Don’t Throw Stones is crowdfunding a general release

Posted by in Movies, Music, News

Back in 2009, Stephen Cummings wrote a fine memoir about his time in the Sports. Will It Be Funny Tomorrow, Billy? documented each epic disappointment that an anxious young chap in a rising band might encounter. It was imbued with a very gloomy (some might say very English), just-my-luck humour that made it stand out from the memoirs of his peers.

And now it’s a film. Don’t Throw Stones, a documentary by filmmaker Mike Brooks that premiered at MIFF, uses the brilliantly simple premise of giving people in the book the right of reply. Just as Cummings reads passages from the book, so do former band mates, industry big-hitters and friends, who then respond – sometimes with great indignation, sometimes with regret. Many of them, after all, painfully experienced firsthand Cummings’ refusal to jump through the hoops of the American record label, bringing the band to a grinding halt when on the brink of making it huge.… Read more

9 December

Aussie indie film shines a light onto Melbourne’s music scene – and it needs your help

Posted by in Movies, Music, News

Play it Safe 1

So you’re hoping to make an independent feature film in Australia, and you don’t have any government or commercial funding. If you’re not already packing some serious coin, bringing your film to life isn’t going to be easy.

Your solution? Like many musicians, artists and filmmakers, crowd-funding could very well be your saviour. Such is the case with indie film Play it Safe: a Melbourne flick that dives into our city’s music scene.

Play it Safe is the story of 26-year-old musician Jamie, who gets a soul-crushing job at a school after his band breaks up. It’s a sticky place that most artists find themselves in at some point or another: do you break out on your own and take the risk of failure – or do you play it safe?

Melbourne writer and director Chris Pahlow is the driving force behind the film. A long-time lover of the local music scene, he’s directed music videos for the likes of hip-hop artists Mantra and Allday.… Read more

5 December

Merry Lynchmas, Melbourne: Jazz Party presents a Twin Peaks Christmas party

Twin Peaks3

Until right this second, you never knew how much you wanted to go to a Twin Peaks-themed party. Now that you do, you’re happier than Agent Cooper tucking into his first damn good cherry pie.

While Santa’s saddling up his reindeer, the John Curtin Hotel will transform into One Eyed Jacks (that’s the casino/brothel in Twin Peaks, if your memory is a little rusty). The event is courtesy of the guys from Melbourne music collective Jazz Party – and they’re really committing to the theme.

Take the food and drinks, for example: there’ll be coffee and pie, as well as cocktails including the spicy Fire Walk With Me, the sweet Agent Cooper’s Breakfast Syrup and the mysterious Log Lady’s Secret. Tunes-wise, get set for live sets by Mojo Juju, Daniel Merriweather, Loretta Miller, Simone Page Jones and Kira Puru, as well as DJ sets from Percy Valentine and Chinabone.

But most importantly, what are you going to wear?… Read more

24 November

Melbourne muso Mike Noga is crowd-funding his third album

Mike Noga

It takes a whole lot of talent, time and hard work to write a killer album. It takes a whole lot of cash to record that killer album.

Melbourne singer-songwriter Mike Noga knows this better than most people. For the past two decades, Noga has played drums for bands and artists including the Drones, Something for Kate frontman Paul Dempsey and Glenn Richards – all the while pursuing a solo career. He’s released two solo albums, and spent the last year in London writing his third; his most ambitious project yet. Dempsey is on board as producer, and it’s all ready to be recorded, mixed, mastered and distributed.

Here’s where you come in. Following in the footsteps of musicians like Aussie muso Davey Lane, Noga is running a Pozible campaign to fund his album. The target is $16,000, and with seven days to go until deadline, he’s well on his way to achieving it.… Read more