VIDEO: Arctic Monkeys – “R U Mine?”

Arctic Monkeys

Disregarding the cringe-worthy spelling of the title, this feels like a great return to form for Arctic Monkeys.

I’ll admit that my interest in them began to wane after Favourite Worst Nightmare – but in all fairness, I never got around to giving subsequent albums a proper listen. I never had a problem with the dirtier, garage-esque sounds of their later output, but there’s something about the hooks and structure of this that almost feel reminiscent of their poppier days. Maybe they’re finally finding more of a balance after such a huge stylistic shift.

The video is really well done, as much as it looks like a DIY job. Check it out below, and you’ll see why.

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LIVE: The Panics, live at ANU Bar, Canberra (22-09-11)

Avalanche City opened the night, and I’m glad they made the trip from New Zealand. Their folkish hooks came coupled with instrumentation that felt both delicate at times, and very powerful at others. The rapid guitar picking jumped up from the tinkling additions of a glockenspiel and what seemed like a cross between a mandolin and a banjo (actually, according to Wikipedia it’s a “manjo” – you learn something new every day!). They were surprisingly good for a support act, and it was nice to start the night with a band that has not only a firm grasp of their sound, but also the talent to bring it across live. The only things I think their music and live show would benefit from is more explosive and giant moments. The potential to build them is there, they just need to take hold of it. But Avalanche City put on a great show, and are well worth checking out.

Next up were Georgia Fair. Known more widely as the band that wrote the song on that milk commercial, don’t be too quick to put them in a box (as great as “Picture Frames” is), because these guys have matured and developed since then. The softly-spoken folk numbers filled the bar, in-between guitar stabs and intricate backing melodies, and the band poured forth emotion, showing off both older tracks and newer unreleased ones.

Provided Georgia Fair don’t fall into the over-populated group of bands I call the “Boy And Bear niche”, they’ll have a great future ahead of them. With a sense of pace and melody, it would be interesting to see the band bring some bite into their sound, because I think it’s something they could definitely achieve well.

At any rate, Georgia Fair have a sense of style grounded in beautiful harmonies, and right now that’s more than enough to provide an entertaining set. The duo are preparing to release their full-length debut in about a month’s time, so make sure you look out for it!

There’s something quintessentially Australian about The Panics. From their modest yet enthusiastic stage presence, to their grandiose melodies, there’s something about them that screams out “geniune” and “down to earth”. It’s an attractive quality in musicians really, because no one enjoys going to a gig where the musicians’ ego crowds out the room. The fact that The Panics carry themselves in such a way does everything to reinforce the passion they have for their craft, and when you’re watching a passionate band perform, there isn’t much more you can ask for.

Running through a slew of older tracks, with a handful from their 2007 J-Award-winning album Cruel Guards, the band also introduced the polite crowd at ANU Bar to a few numbers from their latest release – Rain on the Humming Wire. That said, understandably “Don’t Fight It” received a very warm welcome, as did “Majesty” and “Get Us Home” (which was brought out for the encore).

As subdued as some of their songs are, the band’s energy and playing carried the performance. Jae Laffer’s very distinctive movements showed a man absorbed in the moment, and between the relaxed grooves and frenetic playing of the other members, the band didn’t drop a beat (from what I could tell).

It would’ve been particularly impressive to see them bring a brass player on tour for some of the instrumentation, in particular the melodies in “Don’t Fight It”. But I understand the logistics of these things make it often not worth the hassle, and the song didn’t suffer as a result which is the important thing.

The Panics put on a tight show, with impressive playing and a warming stage presence. It’s hard not to enjoy a band like this, especially when you have a perfect crowd. Their blend of alt-rock with slow-crawl country influences may not be entirely ground-breaking musical territory, but The Panics prove that when sometimes coupling a considerable amount of talent and dedication, a performance becomes less about challenging an audience and more about pulling them in – and that’s exactly what they do.

VIDEO: Jumping Ships – “Talisman”

Jumping Ships

Alcopop are a brilliant label. C’mon – Johnny Foreigner, Screaming Maldini, Stagecoach – what more do you need? Nothing, right? I know, they’re so good. Well lucky you, because you’ve got more! Jumping Ships are a part of that extensive list of “more”, and boy have they got a huge sound.

It’s truly a crime that their latest clip for song “Talisman” has so few views (505 at current count). Like a parent that’s caught you coming home at 4 in the morning, the band explode at the most unexpected moments, and the surprising way that the drums and guitars unconventionally weave together in the final moments will make the song latch onto the awesome-sector of your brain.

You should still listen though! It’s not painful at all. You can grab a free download of “Talisman” at their BandCamp page over here!

TOUR: Gyroscope

Gyroscope have just announced the Choose Your Own Adventure tour! It’s going to be their only headline tour for 2011, and will see them hit the road through October and November to play a handful of dates. Sydney and Adelaide punters are especially lucky, as the band have managed to make the shows there all ages.

But more interestingly, this is a tour where you (yes, you!) will choose the setlist! By the democratic process of a Facebook vote, fans will be able to choose which songs Gyroscope practice and take out on the road with them.

Keen to vote? Run over here and like their Facebook page so that you can vote when it’s open.

All the tour details are below.

Tickets on sale Thursday August 25

THURSDAY OCTOBER 20
PRINCE OF WALES, BUNBURY WA
Heatseeker: http://www.heatseeker.com.au – 08 6210 2850 – Heatseeker Outlets
Venue Box Office: 08 9721 2016

FRIDAY OCTOBER 21
SETTLERS TAVERN, MARGARET RIVER WA
Heatseeker: http://www.heatseeker.com.au – 08 6210 2850 – Heatseeker Outlets

SATURDAY OCTOBER 22
STUDIO 146, ALBANY WA
Heatseeker: http://www.heatseeker.com.au – 08 6210 2850 – Heatseeker Outlets

SATURDAY OCTOBER 29
L’ATTITUDE 28,  GERALDTON WA
Heatseeker: http://www.heatseeker.com.au – 08 6210 2850 – Heatseeker Outlets
Venue Box Office: 08 9965 3776

WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 16
THE ZOO, BRISBANE QLD
Oztix: http://www.oztix.com.au – 1300 762 545 – Oztix outlets

THURSDAY NOVEMBER 17
THE GOV, ADELAIDE SA *Lic. All Ages*
Moshtix: http://www.moshtix.com.au – 1300 GET TIX – Moshtix Outlets
Venuetix: http://www.venuetix.com.au – 08 8225 8888

FRIDAY NOVEMBER 18
CORNER HOTEL, MELBOURNE VIC
Oztix: http://www.oztix.com.au – 1300 762 545 – Oztix outlets
Venue Box Office – http://www.cornerhotel.com – 03 9427 9198

SATURDAY NOVEMBER 19
THE FACTORY THEATRE, SYDNEY NSW *Lic. All Ages*
Oztix: http://www.oztix.com.au – 1300 762 545 – Oztix outlets
Ticketek: http://www.ticketek.com.au – 02 9550 3666
Venue Box Office: http://www.factorytheatre.com.au – 02 9550 3666

VIDEO/TOUR: Jebediah – “Battlesong”

To celebrate the launch of their latest single and video, “Battlesong”, Aussie rockers Jebediah have just announced a few more dates around the country (yes, more! They’re touring right now too!). That’s dedication. Check out the tour details below.

Thu 10 Nov – Metropolis, Fremantle WA
Thu 17 Nov – Billboard The Venue, Melbourne VIC
Fri 18 Nov –  Fowlers Live, Adelaide SA
Sat 19 Nov – Metro Theatre, Sydney NSW
Fri 25 Nov – HiFi, Brisbane QLD

Tickets are on sale Monday, the 22nd of August.

Check out the brand new video for “Battlesong” below. Full of lots of live shots, it captures the energy and atmosphere of their performances.

VIDEO: Jebediah – “Control”

How this video has so few views, especially after the huge popularity of “She’s Like A Comet”, really astounds me. It’s not a brand new video, but I feel obliged to share it in the hope that a few more people give it a listen. It’s a brilliant song and it deserves a bit more recognition.

Jebediah really manage to balance out the racing rock and poppy bites in this one, and Kevin Mitchell’s voice can change to suit accordingly. They’ve been around for quite a while, and I think they’ve well and truly earnt their place as one of Australia’s best modern rock bands that can consistently deliver good music.

VIDEO: The Living End – “Song For The Lonely”

Aussie rockers The Living End have just released their sixth full length album, The Ending Is Just The Beginning Repeating, and “Song for the Lonely” is the second single from the release!

Check out this brand new video from the guys. Not sure how I feel about the artistic choice to blur the guys “parts”, would’ve been better to cover them up another way. Overall the video has some cool slow-mo footage, but that seems to be about it. You can weave together any explanation you want about the water and paintball bombardment being a metaphor and how these people are lonely or oppressed or whatever, but it really doesn’t seem all that revolutionary. That said, it’s a cool song, and well, the video is at least interesting.

See what you think.