All posts by Marshall Cullen

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Big Merino – Black Cockatoos Single and Video

big merino black cockatoos cover art

Big Merino – New Single – Black Cockatoos

The second single to be lifted from the current Surburban Wildlife album (MGM) is called Black Cockatoos. Released in a 3-track format, the lead song is accompanied by another album track “Sometimes” as well as a brand new, previously unreleased tune “A Day Without You” held over from the album sessions earlier this year.

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The stunning brand new video for “Black Cockatoos”(see pics)  shot by Director Alan Harca will be launched at the Black Cockatoos Launch at Django Bar Camelot on December 2, following a warm up show Sunday November 11 at the Botany View Hotel, Newtown.(this weekend)

For a sneak peak of the ‘look’ of the forthcoming video here’s the completed clip for B Side ‘Sometimes’ shot in the same space

Just click here or image below

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Formed a little over two years ago, Big Merino play original songs that blur the lines between rock, country, blues, roots, soul, funk and grunge, while occasionally making forays into lesser known genres such as New Orleans 2nd Line.

Citing their major influences as Glen Hansard, The Frames, Jackson Browne and The Rolling Stones, songwriters Alex Craig and Stuart Davis write socially and politically-charged songs that are sometimes gentle and nostalgic and at other times nothing less than a fierce cry for revolution.

Lead singer/guitarist Stuart Davis cut his teeth singing Gospel with Tony Backhouse in Cafe at the Gates of Salvation, and brings that soulful Gospel feel to everything he does. He is joined by Alex Craig on guitar, Peter Richardson on bass and Colin Sevitt on drums.

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The Suburban Wildlife album was recorded by Russell Pilling over three weeks at Damien Gerard Studios. Russell also remixed “Black Cockatoos” specially for this single release, adding some timpani tracks that weren’t on the album mix.

The album features guest performances from some of the cream of Australia’s musical talent including-
Living legend James Greening on trombone, souzaphone, euphonium, trombone, trumpet, flugelhorn and pocket cornet (the main feature of previously unreleased song ‘A Day Without You”)
Jonathan Zwartz - Double Bass
Johnny G - from Johnny G and the E-Types on piano, organ and accordion
Jess Ciampa - Australia’s most sought after percussionist
Michel Rose - pedal steel (The Catholics) and
finally a string quartet from the Sydney Chamber Orchestra. 

See TheMusic studio sessions article here. 

“Great songs, great songwriting and the best of it full of a real sincerity and commitment.”
Michael Smith – Rhythms

“‘Sometimes’ with its soaring backing vocals is one of the most powerful rock songs I’ve heard in many years. ‘Black Cockatoos’ with the string quartet and a brilliant guitar work by Alex Craig is destined to become an Australian classic.”

BIG MERINO
Black Cockatoos Single
Official Release All Digital Platforms via MGM
November 2 2018

Click below to download or stream.

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John Kennedy’s Second Best reviewed by Bernard Zuel

In 2001, John Kennedy compiled the early vinyl singles and album selections from his bands JFK and the Cuban Crisis, Love Gone Wrong and the Honeymooners.

17 years later, its follow-up retrospective collection is out now in all good record stores. 

Leading music journalist and former Sydney Morning Herald writer Bernard Zuel has reviewed the set known as “Second Best: Greatest Bits Vol. 2″.

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“Well of course John Kennedy would call the second set of his career songs collections “second best”. If he’d called it something like “the other bits”, “warmed up leftovers” or “oh no, not me again”, none of us would have been surprised,” Zuel writes.  “This way he gets a play on words, a dig at himself, and a reminder he’s been around long enough to warrant at least two sets of favourite songs before we have stopped laughing: result.”

Kennedy and his band (with the current line-up of Love Gone Wrong drummer Peter Timmerman, ex-Wiggle Murray Cook on guitar and former Pop Mechanics’ leader Paul Scott on bass) blend pop, rock, folk and country, all topped with the uniqueness of Kennedy’s vocal and lyrics.

Zuel says, “Some of his lines have the double dose pleasure of being funny on first hearing and rather telling on second, an effect which is enhanced with a voice that sometimes just seems to be taking the piss. Even when it’s not. Speaking of his voice, yes, when he is not dropping down to a Johnny Cash-ish timbre he has always sounded a fair bit like Elvis Costello – which is what caught the ears of some of us way back when he first appeared as the presidential JFK & The Cuban Crisis.”

Read the entire review here at Bernard’s website: https://www.bernardzuel.net/single-post/2018/11/04/JOHN-KENNEDY-–-SECOND-BEST-REVIEW

OUT NOW on Foghorn Records through MGM.  

Available on CD and digital platforms. 

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Jessie May Kitchen – NEW SINGLE “Teen Love”

Hot on the heels of her sparkling debut, “Coffee Shop”, comes Jessie May Kitchen’s second single, “Teen Love.” A jangly guitar-driven pop song, it’s a sweet ode to all the uncertainties in the early days of teenage romance.

The 17 year old singer-songwriter says her new single, “goes through the emotions of our day by day, week by week, forbidden puppy love. It is written about the previous relationship I was in, when the person I was dating wasn’t sure about what they wanted or who they were yet, so it was very confusing for me.”

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Jessie May says she knew very early how much she wanted a life in music: “I wanted to become a singer/songwriter when I was 5 years old. I remember seeing people singing on TV and thinking, “Hey! That’s me!” My parents told me I could be anything I wanted as a young girl, but like most families panicked in my high school years telling me I, “should find a plan B” or go for something, you know, is, “easy, safe or guaranteed money,” So, for a while I was lost and didn’t write for years, until one day in 2016, I realized that I’m happiest in songwriting and singing; that this is who I’m supposed to be. So, I picked up a guitar and was me again. My parents are much more supportive of me now that I’m older.
And even if it’s not the ‘safest’ road to travel, it sure is the sunniest.”

A new video for “Teen Love” is in production right now and will be released soon.

In the meantime, check out her previous video “Coffee Shop”(which premiered on Scenstr earlier this year) as well as all the links and release details below! 

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The song has already been added to Mood Media and Soundslikecafe networks and it’s being picked up by community radio stations all around the country.

The new single release features 3 versions of the song – the main track,  an acoustic-only version just like Jessie performs it live and an instrumental.

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Jessie May Kitchen – Teen Love (Foghorn/MGM)
Released October 12 All Digital Platforms

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Tailor Birds NEW ALBUM – Where Will We Go To Break Free From The Crows

Sophie Kinston is Tailor Birds.
Tailor Birds newest album is music that soothes the soul, warms the spirit, and ignites your passion.
Even though the content is 6 songs they are each a 7-10 minute ‘Piece’ forming an album length body of work. Following the success of the previous work ‘Stilts on the Water’ (a single 40 minute piece) this release explores further electro/folk/world territory with more instrumentation such as Piano and Flute added to the already lush soundscape. Recorded in various studios throughout Europe while on tour and mixed and mastered  at Damien Gerard Studios Sydney the sonic quality is exceptional.

In Sophie’s own words, “Tailor Birds combines electronic violin, live looping, foley art, percussion, and rich harmonised vocals, to create a sound like no other. A sound that is all about the vibe and positive energy, building an audience that is as diverse as much as it is one, you could say that Sophie is a traveling troubadour. She believes that music should not just be about playing one gig after another with just the music making an impact, but is also o about connecting people to something good again, in a world that is constantly changing. Music needs to inspire and placing Tailor Birds in a space that can do just that, it makes an impact greater than you could ever imagine.”

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“Faint echoes of Kate Bush here, Enya there  but really like neither and often much spookier”
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Michael Smith – Rhythms Magazine

Tailor Birds’ key influences are Sigur Ros, the Kronos Quartet, Bear’s Den, Chet Faker and more. 
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Tailor Birds is currently touring through Australia.

Friday October 26 – Miama Marketta, Miami QLD

Saturday October 27 – Storytellers Festival, Raymond Terrace, NSW

Saturday November 3 – The Sound Society, Rainforest Green, South Bank Parklands, Brisbane QLD

Sunday November 4 – Peregian Beach Markets, QLD

Saturday November 17 – Cooran Acoustic Night,  Cooran QLD

Tune into these radio stations this week to hear Sophie talk about her new album and the tour.  Click the station logos to listen live via their websites!

 BAY FM 99.9 Byron Bay – Arts Canvass show at 9am this Thursday November 1

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4ZZZ Melbourne – Goldilocks Folk show at 6pm this Saturday November 3

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Listen to the new Tailor Birds album at your favourite music site:

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Gareth Koch and Peter Bonner Hit Note Of Success

With their debut release Don’t Tempt Me coming out last month on Planet/MGM, this new Tasmanian Duo have been pleasantly surprised to find a warm welcome for their collaborative effort.
Both Local and National interviews from the ABC to Commercial and Community Radio have been ongoing as well as a noteworthy piece in the local newspaper.

“From the opening verse of their title track, Don’t Tempt Me, the seamless mix of Koch’s classical guitar and Bonner’s pop-rock vocal delivery manages to give listeners a glimpse into a songwriting partnership that takes in hundreds of years worth of influences.”
The Launceston Examiner (full article)

Community Radio Syndicated Show Aussie Music Weekly  were quick to jump on the case interviewing the guys for a forthcoming broadcast and featuring the EP in their new release section.

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Hear the interview

The Don’t Tempt Me EP has also been sent out to over 1000 Aussie Cafes via cafe music network Soundslikecafe and found an immediate popular fit with enough cafes to achieve a number 1 on their featured album charts.

Not a bad start for what started out as a side project!

The Tasmanian-based songwriting team of Gareth Koch and Peter Bonner draws inspiration from medieval music to post-modern psychedelia, with every imaginable influence in between.? Bonner and Koch have a strong and immediately recognisable musical identity, a new sound and aesthetic that comes with a fluid movement across genres. The result is an array of catchy pop tunes, soulful ballads, blues grooves and rock songs.

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Gareth: “Mine is an unusual musical trajectory. I play in the Australian Guitar Trio and also in a hard rock band. So these two audiences are quite different. One is there to listen, the other is there to dance and sort of listen! The songwriting partnership with Pete Bonner is a separate project again. A great creative outlet for me, a chance to allow a flow of ideas to take form without the need to ‘tailor’ in a specific way.”

Peter: “I think a crowd can expect a diverse music experience with rock, blues, classical, folk and pop flavours. I love a wide range for genres from the heavy rock sounds of Jethro Tull, the jazz/funk of Steely Dan, the country ballads of James Taylor through to the country/rock influences of Bonnie Raitt.”

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GARETH KOCH + PETER BONNER – DON’T TEMPT ME was expertly mixed at Damien Gerard Studios Sydney and superbly mastered by Grammy Award winning Wiliam Bowden. It is out now on Planet/MGM.

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John Kennedy Releases Second Best (Greatest Bits Vol 2)

A second “best of” compilation featuring key album tracks from 8 albums. 

Released on Foghorn Records October 2018.  

Distributed by MGM. Available on CD and digital. 

Released in 2001, John Kennedy’s Inner West album brought together the early vinyl singles and album selections from his bands JFK and the Cuban Crisis, Love Gone Wrong and the Honeymooners. That was his first “best of” collection. So, that makes this Kennedy’s Second Best of.  

Since the heady days in the 1980’s, topping the Australian independent music charts, Kennedy has released a number of albums on various labels in Europe and Australia. Whether it was lack of promotion or distribution, or his audience simply moving on that was the cause, those albums went largely unnoticed. Even those who have followed his music probably wouldn’t have known they existed. 

Now, with this Second Best compilation release, the key tracks from those albums are collected to show that the beat did indeed go on. It serves the purpose of giving these songs a new lease of life and hopefully points people back to those lost albums. 

An enthusiastic young music journalist once described John Kennedy as a humble genius. Kennedy is neither a genius nor particularly humble. The Sydney musician is the writer and performer of many fine songs, some of which have found a place in the hearts of music fans of the golden era of Australian independent music. 

Kennedy started his music career in Brisbane in the early ‘80’s with his band JFK and the Cuban Crisis. He moved to Sydney and after establishing itself on the indie music scene the band broke up leaving Kennedy to follow a solo career with his band vehicle, John Kennedy’s Love Gone Wrong. Despite numerous indie hits, commercial crossover proved to be elusive leading to his decision to leave Australia. Kennedy spent the ‘90’s living and playing music in Berlin, Hong Kong and London before returning to Sydney’s Inner West in 2000. He formed a new band, John Kennedy’s 68 Comeback Special and continues to perform and produce independent releases. 

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Launch show at the Petersham Bowling Club, 77 Brighton St, Petersham NSW 

From 8pm on Friday 19 October 

With guest support act, Terry Serio And The Half Truths 

Presales tickets available via Oztix$15 plus booking fee. 

Tickets to launch show: https://tickets.oztix.com.au/outlet/event/f357a005-2a7d-4c54-be68-57ad002036a6?Event=93934 

Or tickets at the door. 

(Shows in Melbourne in November and in Brisbane in December.) 

For more launch  information email: ellavis@yahoo.com.au 

 

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