Friday, December 26, 2014

Sheppard - "Smile"

Issued: 15 October 2014
Label: Empire Of Sound
Producer: Stuart Stuart

The third single from the "Bombs Away" album is a very cute pop number brimming with ukeleles and a catchy singalong chorus, which is typical of their trademark sound. Although it has not fared as well as "Geronimo", nevertheless it will capture the hearts of the fans.

Rating: 4/5

Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Veronicas - "The Veronicas"

Artist: The Veronicas
Label: Sony Music
Cat No: 8887-50129628
Year Of Release: 21 November, 2014
Produced by: Roger Alan Nichols, Toby Gad, Josh Alexander, Dreamlab & Ruffian, Chris Loco, DNA, Alex Shield, Nellee Hooper, Martin Hansen, Sandi Chilia
Personnel: Tyler Bryant (Banjo, resonator guitar, electric guitar and vocals on "Sanctified"), Billy Corgan (Guitar on "Did You Miss Me? (I'm A Veronica)"), Anthony Egizil & Khaled Rohaim (Keyboards and programming on "If You Love Someone"), David Musumeci (Guitars and Bass on "If You Love Someone"), Alex Dezen (Guitars on "You And Me")

Running Order:

1) Sanctified
2) Did You Miss Me? (I'm A Veronica)
3) Cruel
4) Line Of Fire
5) Teenage Millionaire
6) Born Bob Dylan
7) Always
8) Mad Love
9) You Ruin Me
10) More Like Me
11) If You Love Someone
12) Cold
13) Let Me Out
14) You And Me

Genres: Electronic, Pop, Alt-Country, Rock, Dance, Adult Orientated Rock

It is a well known saying in the music industry that third albums are the most difficult of a musician's career. It's the one that either makes or breaks them into the 'legendary' league and identifies their audience. No band has known this the harder way of late than The Veronicas.

After being embroiled in a massive power struggle with their former label Sire Records in 2009 due to several staff changes in the CEO and A&R departments, the newcomers didn't know what to do with The Veronicas or even bother to lift a finger marketing them in the international market after breaking the UK and European markets. In October 2013, Jess and Lisa had decided enough was enough and took to an Australian music forum to slag the living daylights out of Sire Records. Upon their return to Brisbane, they were quickly snapped up by Sony Music which their old friend Hayden Bell (who helped them sign with Sire in 2004) is now working as an A&R head at. Jessica had mentioned on Twitter that the new album would be an eclectic affair in which they were evolving from being a simple teen pop act to one that could cater to a variety of tastes.

The album opens up with industrial drums of the sleazy swamp rock "Sanctified", in which Lisa's boyfriend Tyler Bryant contributes guitar and banjo to interspersed with some soulful wailing from Jess and Lisa. A very stark contrast to the opening tracks of their past two albums, it's one of the strongest and innovative songs that they've ever done and one of my three top tracks of the album. You can just picture this song being a favourite for pole dancers.

"Did You Miss Me? (I'm A Veronica)" features Jess' ex-boyfriend Billy Corgan from Smashing Pumpkins on guitar with some badass rapping, bleeping synths reminiscent of fellow Brisbane band Regurgitator and some cute whistling in the chorus. The sonic guitar sounds are incredible which contrast with the dancey beat.

"Cruel" is a more brighter affair with a lively bopping beat, an 80's New Wave vibe and great power rock guitar riffing. This track was originally heard at the beginning of the video of "You Ruin Me" when Jess and Lisa are listening to it in the car on their way to the theatre.

"Line Of Fire" is dark and sensual with the girls purring the lyrics in the most sultry manner they can muster. The track was also broadcast as an audio only track on YouTube prior to the album being released. Plenty of rhymes and hooks abound in this track, and could possibly be a future single release.

"Teenage Millionaire" has a great pop/rock sound to it, and contains one of the best lyrics that they've written about being attracted to the more spiritual aspects of love over being materialistic.

"Born Bob Dylan" is a laid back ballad, but not one of the most catchiest tracks on the album. However, the lyrics are very endearing as to how they wish that they could be more expressive and poetic like Bob Dylan. There is an unobtrusive use of strings as well as some solid acoustic scrubbing.

"Always" sounds like they have borrowed a bit from the song "Always The Last To Know" by the band Emma & The Hungry Truth, but it did not make much impact on me.

I first heard "Mad Love" in 2012 at an acoustic gig that they did at Brew in Queen Street Mall. This is a great upbeat and catchy song with a singalong chorus to it.

"You Ruin Me" produced by DNA hallmarks a new found maturity in their sound as they embrace AOR. It sounds similar to The Carpenters "Yesterday Once More" and "Jar Of Hearts". This is them at their purest and emotional as Lisa sings about being used and dragged into the ground by an ex-lover and her voice comes close to cracking at times. The remix by Josh Katz issued as the B-side of the CD single sounds like he was influenced by Erasure, The Human League and La Roux when creating it.

"More Like Me" is another energetic dance rock number, although again not one of the more stand out tracks on the album.

"If You Love Someone" is going to the be the second single to be released from the album. Good soulful number with nice acoustic guitar strumming and a rousing chorus. Great message about not being afraid to tell somebody you love them if you do.

"Cold" is one of the Vfans favourites, and several were hoping that it'd be included on the album. It sounds a bit like "Portrait Of An American Family" by P!nk, and it drips with attitude and anger over having a cowardly boyfriend.

"Let Me Out" is another foray into the AOR territory, despite the gentle backing track the lyrics are about being trapped in a possessive relationship.

The closer "You And Me" opens with a cute folksy backing a bit like The Beatles "Julia" and Bob Dylan's "Blowing in the Wind", and harmonies reminiscent of their past labelmates Tegan and Sara. The song talks about loving each other from childhood innocence and braving other changes that take place in their lives.


Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Veronicas - You Ruin Me (2014)

Label: Sony Music
Lyrics & Music: DNA & Jessica Origliasso/Lisa Origliasso

The best comeback of 2014 has come from The Veronicas beyond doubt.
After a much publicised acrimonious split with Warner Music in late 2013 and making a few local public appearances in Brisbane, they have bounced back with a new record deal and an unpretentious ballad about being messed about by former lovers.
Sounding similar to Wham!'s "Last Christmas" and The Carpenters, they are at their most emotional with Lisa's vocals almost cracking in parts from the sheer strain of the lyrics.  
The single's B-side is a remix by Jess' boyfriend Josh Katz who gives it an 80's elector pop treatment in a similar vein to Erasure and La Roux.
It's probably fitting that they chose a ballad to be their new single as a sign of them growing up and leaving their past behind to look forward to a bright new future with Sony Music. 

Get on it, girls!! 


Monday, July 28, 2014

Six Ft Hick: Chicken

Label: Valve/East West Records
Distributor: Warner Music Australia
Cat No: 8573-85678-2
Year Of Release: 2000
Produced by: Tony Cohen
Mixed by: Tony Cohen (tracks 1 - 4), Jeff Lovejoy (tracks 5 - 13), Loki Lockwood (track 8)
Personnel: Geoff Corbett (vocals), Ben Corbett (vocals), Dan Baebler (guitar), Fred Noonan (drums), Karim Mellowship (electric banjo)

Back in 1999 - 2000, Warner Music in Australia was riding high on the Brisrock bandwagon with Regurgitator, Pangaea and Pretty Violet Stain. This band slipped through the cracks commercially, but are one of the most exciting and energetic and controversial rock'n'roll acts to ever come out of Brisbane.
Led by the Corbett brothers, the band grew up in the ultra-conservative bible-toting town of Nambour before starting out in Brisbane in 1995.
This album is a holy combination of rockabilly, punk, and swamp rock bristling with some great fuzzy scrubbed guitars, more swagger that makes Iggy Pop look like a choirboy and frantic drumbeats.
Geoff Corbett recently confessed to me that it was a very interesting time for the band during the recording sessions. You can virtually smell the alcohol and whatnot wafting through the studio during the making for a band that enjoyed their unmarried childless reckless yoof to the max.
Some of the song titles ensured that this band would not get airplay on Austereo networks such as the delightfully titled "Dog Eared Porno Mag", "Oysters", "Jesus, Gimme Peace" and "Goddamn". The Corbett's naughty glands work overtime on this album as well as on stage (you have to witness Ben's throwing himself and writhing on the floor and smashing his microphone on his forehead as well as Geoff sculling beer out of his cowboy boots).
If indie, emo and grunge bore you to death and you just feel like a good throwback to the days when rock'n'roll was fun and dangerous to like at the same time then definitely give this album a few spins.
These days, the band are in their 40's and both the Corbett lads are married with children but the wild stage antics and their facetious and socially biting humour are very much still intact. If old age doesn't get to them, rock'n'roll will first.


The Veronicas - "The Secret Life Of"

Artist: The Veronicas
Label: Sire Records
Distributor: Warner Music
Catalogue No: 9362-49371-2
Release Date: 17 October 2005 (Australia); 14 February 2006 (US)
Produced By: Billy Steinberg, Greg Wells, Raine Maida, Chantal Kreviazuk, Max Martin, Rami Yacoub, Lucasz Gattwold, Toby Gad, Don Gilmore, Josh Alexander
Purchase Album At:

Jessica Origliasso: Vocals
Lisa Origliasso: Vocals

Backing Musicians: Josh Alexander, Randy Cooke, Toby Gad, Dr. Luke, Abe Loriel Jr, Cliff Magness, Raine Maida, Max Martin, Tim Pierce, Greg Wells, Steven Wolf, Rami Yacoub

Running Order:

1) 4Ever
2) Everything I'm Not
3) When It All Falls Apart
4) Revolution
5) Secret
6) Mouth Shut
7) Leave Me Alone
8) Speechless
9) Heavily Broken
10) I Could Get Used To This
11) Nobody Wins
12) Mother Mother

Genres: Rock, Pop/Punk, Teen Rock, Rock'n'Roll, Adult Orientated Rock

The Veronicas were no spring chickens prior to the release of their debut album "The Secret Life Of". They had been raised as performers ever since they were children by their parents Colleen and Joseph Origliasso. Prior to The Veronicas, they had released a few local singles under the name Jess & Lisa produced by Stuart Stuart from Chartsong.


Artist: The Nudists

Label: Independent

Cat No: RR002

Year Of Release: 2007

Produced by: Jonny Romeo at Antfarm Studios

Personnel: Conwae "Buble" Burrell (Vocals, Bass, Guitar and Drums)

Jonny Romeo (Drums, Guitar and Keyboards)

Danny McGirth (Lead Guitar)*

Kendall Penance (Guitar on @, Bass ( ^, Vocals)

Additional Musicians: Robby Viagra (Vocals)* (

Matt Shoobedoo (Vocals) (

Joanna Nilson (Vocals)* $ #

Edwina & Camille (Vocals)* #

Chloe (Vocals)*

Purchase album here:




3) F'N'C! *












The Nudists were the underground of the Brisbane underground and started in 2004 and ran till late 2007. The band's core members were the multi-talented Conwae Burrell (from Extra Foxx) and Jonny Romeo along with several friends and hangers on who would randomly join them on stage at gigs (random people who yelled into the band's mics were NOT members of the band or staged by them).

"Nuder Than Nude" title is a pastiche of the cult porn film "Sexier Than Sex" which I remember seeing advertised on the billboard for a sleazy adult theatre in Lutwyche that my bus used to pass on my way home from high school (anybody else remember it??). The theatre was eventually closed in 1985 to become an office for Telstra, and eventually Fernwood Fitness Centre.

As can be expected from the title, it is full of cheap thrills and shoThe album is an eclectic mix of electronica, rock, garage, and funk. The songs "Nude School" and "I'm Your Man" are not covers of the songs by Painters & Dockers and Wham!

Most of this album's charm lies in Conwae's languid vocals and lyrics which makes you wonder what they are on about half the time, let alone on. The best tracks on the album include "Nude School", the anthemic "C'mon Y'All Git Naked" complete with raps and snippets of female giggling from the "Nudettes", the trippy synth-funk of "To The Hospital" where they talk about using google to find out what the fuck a bilby is and where Jonny's cigarettes got to. "What Is Wrong?" is a more mellower number with dodgy mixed drums and moody guitars but it suddenly speeds up into a power pop number for 20 seconds.

Streamer Bendy EP

Label: Independent
Distributor: Self-distributed
Release Year: 2009
Catalogue Number: 09492222854-3 (CD)
Producers: Andrew Markwell & Streamer Bendy
Purchase EP here:

Streamer Bendy were formed by Matt Newton and former Federal Treasurer Wayne Swan's daughter Erinn in 2008 following the breakup of Erinn's previous band Nina May. Friends with The Veronicas (Jessica Origliasso took the band's photo for the EP), Streamer Bendy sound like they dug through their parents record collections and partied with their Blondie, Beatles and Transvision Vamp albums. Opening up with the attitude ridden "Boy Oh Boy" with its staccato guitar and drum fills, it goes into the glam rock-ish "Trophy Girl" which gives the finger to boys who think that sex with a girls is an entitlement to brag about to their mats. "Minnesota" has a Veronicas-ish vibe to it, whilst the ballad "I'm In Deep" about recovering from a hangover sounds like one of the songs from The Beatles "Abbey Road" album. It quickly picks up again with "Sweet Treat". Erinn's vocals drip with sex, energy and attitude and you can't help but feel excited and refreshed upon hearing their music.
Whilst the EP got rave reviews on Triple J, it did not catch on with commercial radio stations despite the songs being laden with good singalong choruses and great guitar hooks.
In 2013, Streamer Bendy decided to change their name to The Hangout, but not too much has been heard of them since.