Apr 25, 2012

New Song From Jonathan Boulet

This is great. Please listen.
"This Song Is Called Ragged" from the forthcoming new Jonathan Boulet album due out on June 8.

Apr 19, 2012

Charge Group Album Tour

There are two things you should do.

1-Buy the new Charge Group album.
2-Go and see them live.

Firstly, album number two for the Sydney four piece was a long time coming. But it was so worth the wait. It is a mature, intelligent, emotionally charged record full of guts and glory. It starts with the simply majestic "The Gold Is Gone". A mournful violin is welded to a elegant guitar chord before the vocals kick in. It takes us on a journey and it is quite a trip. Barring the overly simplistic "Broken Sunlight" there are no weaknesses on this remarkable album. Of course there is the chaotic and robust "Run", which is a standout. But beautiful moments abound elsewhere. Such as the stirring "Volcano" or the plaintive "Dominoes". Or the epic "I Saw The Leaves Falling Back To Their Branches". There is no fall away at the back end either. "Search Party" is a brooding beast of a song and already a live favourite, whilst "Hearth Of Your Home" just might end up becoming the best track on the album. "Janet's Song" closes off things perfectly. Its quiet contemplation a considered way to end the music. Charge Group are a band at the peak of their powers. They combine perfectly to achieve remarkable results. Their music is elegant and yet powerful. It is cathartic and supremely compelling. Undoubtedly the Australian album of the year so far. It just might be the best thing you hear all year.

In light of that you must the take the chance to see them live on their upcoming tour.
You won't regret it.

Charge Group Tour Dates
June 9, Street Theatre, Canberra
June 10, Yours + Owls, Wollongong
June 15, Red Rattler, Sydney
June 16, Lass O Gowrie, Newcastle
June 21, Metro, Adelaide
June 22, Mojo's, Fremantle
June 23, Dada's Car Park, Perth
June 29, The Tote, Melbourne
June 30, Alley Cat, Hobart
July 6, BeetleBar, Brisbane

Apr 18, 2012

Teary Eyes and Bloody Lips-Moonface

Moonface "Teary Eyes and Bloody Lips" from Secretly Jag on Vimeo.

Sorry for the lack of updates lately. Work is brutal and I haven't found myself with much spare time. Anyway here is the new video from the brand new Moonface album. It's excellent and so is the album.
Hopefully a review is coming soon.

Apr 13, 2012

Music And Food

Last Tuesday night the girl and I experienced an epic dining night. It was the girl's birthday and I surprised her by taking her to Momofuku Seiobo. This glistening, hard to get into restaurant represents the first overseas venture for New York wonder chef David Chang. In 2010 we had dined at his more casual Noodle Bar in the East Village of New York. The food was creative, inventive and delicious. So we were very excited to take in the full dining experience. It was fantastic! For over two and a half hours we enjoyed 15 courses of superb dining.

But I wanted to make special mention of the music. I knew David Chang was a music fan and luckily his taste ran similar to mine. It certainly added to the dining experience. Here are some of the artists, songs that I remember from the night. What a night it was!

The Shins
Roadside Graves
Carry the Zero-Built to Spill (3 Built to Spill songs on the night!)
Stephen Malkmus
Slack Motherfucker-Superchunk
Shine a Light-Constantines
Get Me Away From Here I'm Dying-Belle and Sebastian
Smashing Pumpkins
Badlands-Bruce Springsteen
Now It's On-Grandaddy
Dinosaur Jr
Bob Marley
Message To You Rudy-The Specials
Under Pressure-Queen

Apr 6, 2012

Blitzen Trapper @ Oxford Art Factory

Blitzen Trapper fill in all the cracks in your musical repertoire. A little bit of country, a little bit of rock, a little bit of pop and a little bit of folk. Sometimes shaken, sometimes stirred. Always delicious. They don't do any one thing extraordinarily well. But they do everything really well. They deserve a bigger audience. Perhaps they need a gimmick. Maybe just good songs aren't enough these days. So it was a Thursday night at the Oxford Art Factory and the place was not full, but those lucky to be there witnessed a fun night of skewered and melodic American music.
Fun was majorly had.

In 2011 the band released "American Goldwing" which proved to be a major improvement over previous album "Destroyer of the Void". So I was happy to hear these songs played live for the first time last night. Such as the robust opener "Might Find It Cheap" or the delightful "My Home Town". There was also the strongly melodic title track and the rambunctious "Fletcher". Of course I was delighted to hear older classics such as "Furr" (probably the highlight of the night) and the deliciously dark "Black River Killer". Even delving back further gained us the slightly crazy "Wild Mountain Nation" and the wild and silly "Miss Spiritual Tramp". I think this is still my favourite part of the Blitzen Trapper era. Those times when the band played with a glint in their eye and a who cares attitude. The band though have matured into an extremely confident live act with all members pulling their weight live. Eric Earley, primary songwriter, takes centre stage with his earthy and honest vocals. The multi talented Marty Marquis is a important band member too with his easy ways and ready quips. The band can really rock out too, as evidenced by the ferocious attack of "Street Fighting Sun" and the ultimate closer in the Led Zeppelin song "Good Times Bad Times". So all in all, a most enjoyable night. Not life changing, but definitely life affirming. 

Set List
Might Find It Cheap
Your Crying Eyes
Wild Mountain Nation
Love the Way You Walk Away
God and Suicide
My Home Town
Black River Killer
Evening Star
Fire and Fast Bullets
American Goldwing
Silver Moon
Gold for Bread
Miss Spiritual Tramp
Street Fighting Sun
Big Black Bird

The Man Who Would Speak True
Lady On The Water
Love and Hate
Good Times Bad Times (Led Zeppelin cover)

Apr 4, 2012

My Morning Jacket @ Enmore Theatre

There is no off switch for My Morning Jacket. It's always on. On and on and on. Pushing to exhaustion and elation. For over two and a half hours on Tuesday night at the Enmore Theatre, not full by the way, the almost legendary Kentuckian band pushed themselves into the ground. They were exhausted and so were we. But it's a good exhaustion. An ecstatic one. A one where the realisation is that a devoted band of followers have been at one with the band. With the music. Riding every bump, every scream, every thing. My Morning Jacket have a reputation for being incomparable and untouchable in the live arena. It's well deserved.
They are stamped with greatness.

This was my fourth time seeing this spectacular band and they might just be getting better. They are certainly not slowing down. They are so in sync with each other, welding together all the elements that make them so great. You have the ferocious rhythm section of Tom Blankenship and Patrick Hallahan. There is the expert keyboard work of Bo Koster and the exquisite timing of guitarist Carl Broemel. Then there is the one and only Jim James. The man is unique. In voice and in soul. His voice is quite extraordinary, reaching angelic highs and guttural exclamation points. He also tends a mean guitar. Shredding and swerving as he leads his band on extended jams. The show opened on a high with the one-two opening punch from last year's "Circuital". Both great songs, it set the mood and tone for the night. Which also meant less tracks from previous album "Evil Urges", a major disappointment of a record to me. They instead splurged on us a good selection from their catalogue. And what a catalogue it is. I was ecstatic to hear two really older tunes in "The Way That He Sings" and "Honest Man". The latter descended into a ferocious heavy blues jam. Both were received with open arms. As was basically everything. Special mention must go though to the unreachable glory of "Lay Low" and "Dondante". Guitars were properly shred and no emotions were spared. The night was capped off by the holy blockbuster "One Big Holiday". Oh, that guitar riff. That build and climax. That. This. Extreme pleasure.

Set List
Victory Dance
It Beats For U
Off The Record
The Way That He Sings
Honest Man
Outta My System
Wonderful (The Way I Feel)
I'm Amazed
Lay Low
Movin' Away
Smokin' From Shootin'
(end of ) Run Thru
First Light
Touch Me I'm Going To Scream Part 2
I Will Sing You Songs

Wordless Chorus
Holdin On To Black Metal
One Big Holiday

Special mention should also go to the support act. Los Angeles four piece Dawes brought their four part harmonies to Enmore with hugely pleasurable results. They were very impressive and well received.