Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Review: V/A - Rock Of Ages Original Motion Picture Soundtrack

This review was originally syndicated with Tone Deaf, and reproduced here in its entirety. 
Various Artists - Rock of Ages Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Sony Music, 2012)

Guitar Hero 
and Glee have a lot to answer for, but perhaps we can start the inquiry with their bastard child – namely, the Rock Of Ages soundtrack.

Whether simulating a rock star with a plastic instrument in the comfort of your loungeroom, or selling a message that ‘anyone can be a pop singer’ - from the wheelchair-bound geek to the clean-cut preppy  - both forms of entertainment are essentially about mimicry. Like them, this soundtrack of the movie adaptation of the 80s MTV Generation musical is too.

The effect however, isn’t as heroic or cheesily rewarding when the people performing the same glorified karaoke are some of Hollywood’s biggest and richest stars.

Enter Tom Cruise…. Sorry, “Stacee Jaxxx”… singing Guns N Roses gold standard, “Paradise City”, the track that opens the compilation is pretty much a microcosm for the whole shameless experiment.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

"My hideous little baby" Interview: Jonathan Boulet

This interview was originally conducted for, and published by Tone Deaf. Reproduced in its entirety here because I can...
Upon release of his self-titled debut three years ago, Jonathan Boulet quickly found himself labelled as Sydney’s ‘skate rat’. Albeit an internationally recognised one, thanks to the street cred of hip label, Modular, but a ‘skate-rat’ nonetheless.

With his second release however, Boulet is ready to outgrow those previously constricting tags, starting with his new album’s tongue-garbling title. We Keep The Beat, Found The Sound, See The Need, Start The Heart is one of the lengthier titles in recent memory, it’s sing-song name bound to appear alongside Fiona Apple’s When The Pawn Hits The Conflicts He Thinks Like A King… (we’ll spare you the full title) in future music lists.

Monday, June 11, 2012

'have fun, find a girl' Interview: Devin

This interview was originally conducted for, and published by Tone Deaf. It is reproduced here in its entirety.
From the moment Devin’s debut album, Romancing, bursts to life with the brash garage rock and raucous riffs of ‘Masochist,’ the New Yorker sounds every bit the passionate upstart rocker he looks on the front cover.

A monochromatic photo of the bequiffed singer/guitarist slouched against a stairwell, dressed in  a tweed jacket and snappy open-breast shirt, his model-handsome face pulling his best vacant stare; it’s a look that, like its aural contents, is at once a balance of retro-chic and modern style.

Romancing’s twelve tracks are straight-up, no-nonsense rock n’ roll inspired by the classics. With his nasal twang that hovers somewhere between the sneer of a young Mick Jagger and the raw clarity of early Iggy Pop, Devin barrels through punk-infused chunks of Stooges-powered guitar delivered with a dash of Strokes-worthy cool.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Review: Storm Corrosion - Storm Corrosion

Storm Corrosion - Storm Corrosion (Roadrunner Records, 2012)
To say that Storm Corrosion was highly anticipated by the musical community for which it was intended, is a bit like saying the internet only mildly revolutionised modern technology. 

Steven Wilson
and Mikael Ã…kerfeldt are two men whose names have not only become synonyms for the most revered kind of distinctive, creative art in their field (progressive rock and metal music for those playing at home); but also two names that had been paired together in fevered anticipation ever since Wilson produced Opeth’s Blackwater Park in 2001.

Even with full disclosure from the pair that their much sough-after collaboration would deliberately fly in the face of the prog-metal supergroup tag they'd been saddled with; the results of their creative partnership are still a surprising listen.