Tag : sydney
Tag : sydney
Sydney trio Bloods have been on the rise for a couple of years, steadily gaining a reputation as one of Sydney’s most exciting live bands. Xavier Rubetzki Noonan chats to drummer Dirk Jonker about the band’s origins and recent successes ahead of their album tour – their biggest to date.
With a spunky and tightly-coiled punk-tinged garage-rock sound, Bloods have been impressing audiences around the country, and now, with the release of their debut LP, the band are poised to make their biggest splash yet. “I was in another band before Bloods who needed a singer, and one of the guys in the band worked with MC,” Jonker says, referring to bandmate Marihuzka Cornelius.
“We got her in pretty quickly and we thought her voice was amazing. We needed a bass player a bit down the track, and we knew Sweetie… well, we knew that she played violin, and we sort of went ‘hey, it’s got four strings…’ By some leap of faith we got her in, and she could play. Before long, we were getting Bloods together.”
It wasn’t too long before the new trio started gigging, either.
“I don’t think we waited very long…” Dirk laughs (as if to imply it might not have been long enough). “I remember when we first sat down together after the old band broke up and were like, ‘we want to keep playing together’… but I was just hitting a guitar case; I didn’t have a drum kit yet, I’d never owned one. But we came up with a really cool song that first day, and I reckon it was only a month or two later we were doing shows. I’d hate to hear it now, if there was a recording!”
He laughs again. But of course, once you have that first song, you realise it’s working. “I think it was really inspiring, just doing one song, and getting to go, hey, I like this song.”
Now, of course, this project with such haphazard origins has a fully fledged debut album to its name. The band’s live shows are in higher demand than ever, and now they even have more Twitter followers than the notorious American gang with which they share their name. (Yes, there’s a Bloods gang Twitter, and yes, we did happen on it by mistake). Does being in Bloods feel different now?
“Yeah, it does… I think for a while, sometimes people would come up to me after shows and go ‘You guys are so tight!’ and I’d kind of go… ‘really? How is that even possible?’”, he says with a self-deprecating smile. “But it’s been long enough now, that…” Dirk hesitates, not willing to compliment himself too much. “It is really weird, going from barely being able to play to having a full-on record that we’re touring. It’s bizarre. But it’s awesome.”
Looking at how far the band have come in the past year or two, there must have been a moment when the band grew from a fun project between friends into something more significant? “It was definitely just for fun at the start, and so it was so amazing when people started to latch on. Even with our first single, Goodnight, people seemed to respond really well to that, we got a fair bit of play on FBi, and we’ve been playing in bands for long enough to realise that this is actually kind of cool, and we should put a bit of effort into this and make it better. When we did our EP (2013’s Golden Fang), that was a turning point, because the material got better. That was when I personally thought this was worth putting our all into.”
Bloods, along with a handful of other bands, are at the front of an Australian garage-rock revival. Sydney’s guitar-band scene has taken a bit of a back seat to Brisbane’s over the past few years, but the band’s sound incorporates its New South Welshness, to the point that they’ve become something of a quintessential modern Sydney band. Their collaboration with producer Owen Penglis (also known as the frontman of Straight Arrows) has bolstered this: Dirk mentions he’s pretty much the guy when it comes to Sydney’s garage-rock scene. Has Sydney influenced the band’s songwriting? “I’m sure of it, yeah. It’s so ingrained in us. I suppose a lot of it is just the bands we play with; I don’t think we ever sit down and deliberately write anything Sydney-centric… but I think it definitely has an impact on us.”
Speaking of bands Bloods have played with, the band got the chance to tour alongside Veruca Salt in September.
“The Veruca Salt tour was a definite highlight. They were so nice, and it was fun doing shows with a band that we liked when we were younger. It was pretty wild. We didn’t know what to expect – sometimes you play shows with people and you barely talk to them, but then you do other ones where you totally become best friends with them, and thankfully it was kind of more the latter. They were so nice, and they knew all about us. It became pretty obvious that they’d personally picked us, and that was pretty mind-blowing.”
“But I think one of my favourite shows was the Velociraptor tour we did just before that. I just love all of those guys so much. It was awesome, because just hanging with them and getting totally hammered at every date was so fun, but getting to watch them after we finished – their show is so good – it got better and better. They’re so energetic that you just can’t help but be totally inspired: you get an adrenaline shot the second they start playing. I don’t know where they get the energy. Maybe the one dollar 7/11 coffees I hear they’re smashing all the time.”
As far as big moments go, though, they don’t come a lot bigger than releasing a debut album. Thankfully, the record is great: a little more polished than their older recordings, but not compromising on the DIY charm. “We didn’t want to get too clean with it, because we didn’t want to stray too far from what we think Bloods is. We wanted it to sound like what we sound like live, and I think we achieved that. I’d personally rather make a sweet punk record that sounds a bit raw than something super polished anyway, and that’s the reason we went with Owen. We loved the Palms album, we loved the Royal Headache album, so he was just the obvious choice.”
Work It Out has been out for a couple of months now, and the band are happy to have the opportunity to reflect. “The feedback has been pretty much all great, thank god. We sort of flogged away on this for quite a while, so it gets to a point where you’ve just heard it so many times, and you can’t really even tell what it sounds like anymore, because you’re too bogged down in the technical side of it. But to put it out and have friends pull me aside and tell me they really love it, it’s really great, and such a relief. Seeing it being played on radio, getting good reviews… It’s awesome.”
-Xavier Rubetzki Noonan / @xavierrn
This month is all about two things: The folk siblings that are the ubiquitous duo of Angus and Julia Stone, and fashion/fashion/more fashion!
Our news editor Dave sits down with Angus Stone to chat about that famed call from super producer Rick Rubin – and the resulting album that caused him to reconsider that little sibling project he had tucked into his back pocket. Read our cover story to find out more about the elusive duo, and their plans for writing together in the future.
And now… fashion. You see, it was Melbourne Spring Fashion Week last week – and this week it’s New York Spring Fashion Week – so it’s pretty hard to escape all of the lustworthy clothing coming at us for the season ahead. We review each show from MSFW, detail our favourite emerging designers, take a sneak peek at the best of NYFW so far, and run through a couple of streetstyle snaps from Melbourne’s finest.
Shall we go back to music then? The Vines’ new lineup is here, and ready to rock: Drummer Lachy West chats to us about the new release. There’s also interviews in there with Andy Bull, Holy Holy, and soul sister Chelsea Wilson.
We review the casual dining excellence that is Melbourne’s Niew Amsterdam, and review Night Moves – a movie about an eco-terrorist plot that descends into paranoia and guilt. There are album reviews, there’s news about blaming your parents for being an alcoholic, and there’s a new food truck alert (hello Hammer and Tong!)
Phew! Enough? Let’s get into it… simply click on the cover below to read it. Here’s to Spring, and enjoy.
From the Alphabet Pony Team x
See that headline? That’s called clickbait children.
Conde Nast Traveller has released their 2014 ranking of the World’s Friendliest (and Unfriendliest) Cities, and Melbourne has come out on top. We’re tied with Auckland, but let’s ignore that for now.
But probably even more unsurprising is that France had no less than three cities in the top ten least friendly cities in the world, confirming once again that they are the country that gives the least fucks about garnering additional tourism dollars.
At the top was Johannesburg, South Africa. Mainly because all its citizens voted for themselves.
THE WORLD’S TOP TEN FRIENDLIEST CITIES
1. (tied) Melbourne, Australia / Auckland, New Zealand
3. Victoria, Canada
4. Charleston, USA
5. (tied) Dublin, Ireland / Sydney, Australia
7. Siem Reap, Cambodia
8. Cape Town, South Africa
9. (tied) Savannah, USA / Seville, Spain
11. (tied) Budapest, Hungary / Salzburg, Austria
THE WORLD’S TOP TEN UNFRIENDLIEST CITIES
1. Johannesburg, South Africa
2. Cannes, France
3. Moscow, Russia
4. Paris, France
5. Marseille, France
6. Beijing, China
7. Frankfurt, Germany
8. Milan, Italy
9. Monte Carlo, Monaco
10. Nassau, Bahamas
Coldplay, A Sky Full Of Stars
Were you one of the extras in Newtown acting surprised as Chris Martin wandered past you with a rainbow Mary Poppins-esque get up? Congrats! Well, your face is finally famous – and it only took them 2 days to get the video up while in the meantime they were generating millions more in earned media performing at the 50th MAX Sessions and inviting Kylie on stage at the Enmore Theatre. Coldplay win again.
T.I. ft. Iggy Azalea, No Mediocre
On the upside there’s ‘normal’ women playing sports! There’s Iggy Azalea being awesome! There’s brand synergy with the World Cup! On the downside there’s all that misogyny etc. #whatabummer… Look T.I., an offensive clip does not a Thicke make – you have to really LIVE it. Call us when you are outed by Instagram fans cheating on your wife.
OK Go, The Writing’s On The Wall
More proof that OK Go ‘get’ the internet. So next time you want to make a clip ‘go viral’, perhaps give them a buzz? In a way, the fantastic-ness of this visual feast is a shame: They’re actually an awesome band with awesome music, and they really don’t get enough props for that. Next time they’re in town, see them live: Highly recommended. Much cowbell. Most excellent.
-Bianca O’Neill / @musicjourno
Every year at MBFWA, fashionistas flock to Sydney’s Carriageworks to be inspired by the latest attempts to bridge the fashion / art divide from our best designers across the country – and every year, I can’t wait for The Innovators runway. A procession of young, fresh and often avant-garde collections ensues, as does my appreciation for the new guard stomping down their oft tired and derivative predecessors.
This year was no different: Ciara Nolan followed in Emma Mulholland’s footsteps, delivering a streetwear collection with the perfect amount of blase cool. Logvin Code experimented with architectural lines and untraditional materials. Hayley Dawson showed us once again that simple and sleek is best. Bei Na Wei combined construction with futurism, and made us believe perspex is a legitimate backpack material. Kiaya Daniels delivered just the kind of menswear that the Australian industry needs right now, and Yousef Akbar pierced origami folding with plastic rods to forgo zippers and buttons.
It was inspiring, it was forward looking – and above all, it was innovative.
Ciara Nolan: A bold decision to base her latest collection around dinosaurs could have been a total disaster – but instead, it was totally inspired. The sweatshirt has been making a comeback recently via Kenzo et al, but Nolan’s whimsical dinosaur heads and technicolour reptilian prints were SO much cooler. On point, and instantly saleable.
Logvin Code: I never thought I’d say the more fringe the better, but after seeing this young designer’s collection punctuated by unusual materials and almost scale-like loops of metallic fringing I’m totally on board. I can see a dystopian future where we all look fab, our hair is perfectly sleek, and all-over metallic is the norm – and I’d like to live there please.
Hayley Dawson: Every time I go to fashion week I am distractedly entranced by pretty colours, pattern clashes, and floaty, fussy fabrics – but then one designer brings it all back to the basics, and I realise just how perfect simple can be. Hayley Dawson was that designer for me this year – but it must be said, that as simple and sleek as these designs look, the precise architecture is masterful.
Bei Na Wei: You know how I was just talking about that metallic-clad dystopian future? Now imagine there’s a 70s playboy party raging by the pool, and you just might understand where Bei Na Wei is coming from. I’m not sure just how crazy you have to be to pair crystalline 70s visors with boxy perspex backpacks and folded, architectural futurism, but it’s just the kind of crazy I like.
Kiaya Daniels: This girl has her finger on the international pulse of men’s fashion – I’m just not sure how many Aussie blokes are ready for it yet. In that lovely Instagram-tinged world overseas – where Scando and Japanese hipsters wear skirts alongside Kanye West, paired with impeccable tailoring and and an undercut – all us girls fawn over their supreme chic-ness. Now we need the local boys to play along.
Yousef Akbar: Combining sunset-tinged colours with origami tailoring, oversized perspex-rods-as-fasteners, and a heavy dose of glitter could have been a mess, but here it was pretty enthralling. There is admittedly some more work to do to really make those perspex rods seamless, but nonetheless it was unique. And that’s really what The Innovators is all about.
-Bianca O’Neill / @musicjourno
This article was originally published on Eventfinder.
Although the handout at the MBFWA runway for Emma Mulholland’s ‘Risqué Business’ explains that the collection emerged from creating an 80s inspired alternative to streetstyle workwear, it was the playful final touches of butterfly clips attached to backpacks and post it note prints that reminded me more of the kind of kid I wish I was at highschool.
Leaving behind her previous penchant for acid neons and out-there prints, Emma Mulholland has created a pretty pastel tinged world this time around, and her colour restraint has delivered a collection that’s all the better for it.
If her aim was to create incredibly wearable pieces then she has certainly done that – but that hardly does Mulholland justice. There’s a cool kid sensibility innate in any of her collections; a kind of instant retro chic that lends nostalgia without feeling derivative.
It’s in the easy-fit t-shirt emblazoned with ‘Bored’, and the circle bag casually thrown over the shoulder telling you to ‘Chill Out’.
It’s a quirky humour that I saw emulated in Ciara Nolan’s dinosaur-inspired collection this year – an up and coming designer featured in the MBFWA Innovators runway, a runway that lent a spot to Mulholland herself back in 2011.
And with fresh, inspired ideas flowing in year after year from her collections, it’s really no wonder Mulholland has found fans and disciples alike.
-Bianca O’Neill / @musicjourno
From Michael Lo Sordo’s laid back glam to Maticevski’s pale voluminous perfection, Day 2 (officially Day 3) of MBFWA was most likely the most chic. Tuesday’s shows were also all about swim: We Are Handsome took over the Paddington Reservoir with a huge live python, Talulah brought airy florals to Carriageworks, and the Swim runway was delightfully bright.
Let’s talk We Are Handsome for a moment: It was certainly a spectacle from the duo this year, set in the greenery-heavy aqueducts below Oxford St. There was an element of overgrown jungle to the event, which appeared to be the perfect pairing with vibrant tropical prints, swimwear featuring macaws and technicolour palms, and of course a bright yellow python that hung languidly around a surprisingly comfortable model’s neck.
Sure, we all love a gorgeous swimsuit – and WAH has them in spades – but I was particularly enamoured with the ready-to-wear that accompanied the collection this year, something that the pair are doing more and more. Fresh, acid-bright crops and loose, light wide-leg pants accompanied cute mini-shorts and a jaw-dropping structural skirt as finale.
-Bianca O’Neill / @musicjourno