Monday, 14 May 2018

DIY​-​bother? by laserchrist

laserchrist is a new London based punk band started by some kids from Durban, South Africa. They have just released their first EP and it really kicks a load of ass. "Straight outta Crofton! Leatherface and Iron Chic meet The Smashing Pumpkins and Pixies through the door of Kukundu... Featuring members/ex-members of paperjets, crash island, bat wings, lowprofile, the tubby wilsons, the trees, fruits & veggies and car boot vendors." - Some info they posted on the internet.

The EP has kick ass fuzzed out driving guitars with catchy overtunes, solid thumping drums, Bobby's holy bass lines and a laid back grungy feel while being up tempo and genitals to the wall... basically everything I personally want from melodic hardcore.

So what's the origin story and gospel of laserchrist?

Daryn: I met Charlie at the New Cross Inn, which is like a south east London version of The Winston Pub. I was trying to start a band, Batwings, but we couldn’t find a drummer. And Charlie was like, “Yeah, I’ll play drums.” Turns out he’s a pretty good guitarist too.

Charlie: I think one day Daryn and I were hanging out in a friend's shed with a couple of guitars and just started jamming. We began meeting up outside Batwings for more jams, which turned into songs.

Bobby: I met Daryn and Yusuf when I was, like, 14, and just getting into the punk scene in Durban. Daryn played in Fruits & Veggies and would let me crash on his couch. Yusuf played in one of my favorite South African punk bands, The Tubby Wilsons, and worked for a skate and music magazine that was pretty much the reason I got into punk.

Daryn: When Yusuf moved to south London I knew we had a sick drummer available – we just needed to convince him. Then Bobby popped over to London to slap the bass and BOOM, laserchrist was born.

Bobby: I’d dreamt about moving to the U.K. and jamming with Daryn. And five years later, here I am, living in a house in south London and playing punk rock in a basement with my heterosexual life partner, a cockney stoner and the dude who introduced me to punk rock and Against Me!

Yusuf: I’m just in it for the Pot Noodles and San Miguels. Takes me back to a simpler time, which, luckily, is pretty easy to escape from on the 172 bus whenever I’ve had enough.

The song “Big Smoke City” comes off to me as very nostalgic. Miss Durban?

Daryn: It’s a bit of a nostalgic tune. But it’s more about hitting the road and moving from city to city. Basically, being a rolling stone and all the people you meet along the way. I miss the weather in Durban.

Bobby: I think I miss a certain time in Durban. The punk scene in the mid 2000s was a very special time and place to experience, and I like to think that the music we play today recreates that feeling – at least for me, personally. I miss bunny chows, Swazi weed and African wildlife a shitload, though.

Yusuf: Miss Durban, what year? I was never really a big beauty pageant fan. Can you tell? P.S., I’m head of dad jokes.

Any stories from the EP recording?

Daryn: There are stories, but I can’t talk about them because kids might read this.

Bobby: Yusuf is a fucking warlock when it comes to managing the band and recording. And the fact that we did it in our basement was cool, ‘cos I could just wear a robe and make myself a sandwich whenever I wanted, and it just felt really comfortable. I think Daryn and I only had, like, seven arguments, which is a really good week for us.

Yusuf: Warlock? I’ll take that. To be honest, though, some days I feel more like Papa Smurf, trying to stop Dopey, Clumsy and Grouchy running around with scissors or sticking their fingers in fire.

Any plans to try a South African tour at some point, for old times sake?

Daryn: We’ve spoken about it. I think it has to happen.

Bobby: I wanna tour S.A. more than I wanna tour Europe! I never got to experience proper touring when I lived in S.A., and I'd love to drive around my home country in a van with my homies, playing shows with all the amazing local musicians I'm friends with. I also wanna show Charlie an elephant.

Yusuf: Bobby. King of the sexual innuendo…

So Daryn mentioned The Winston. For those who don’t know, The Winston was a hub for the mid 2000s Durban punk scene. Can you guys recall a favourite show or memory from there? Charlie, you could answer by recalling a favourite show or memory from anywhere?

Daryn: When The Nomadic Orchestra played a surprise show at two in the morning and everyone lost their shit. It was just really surprising, and such a good show.

Bobby: My favorite pub memory is ‘Gospel Night,’ when a whole bunch of Durban bands played renditions of traditional religious folk songs and everyone took it VERY seriously and dressed up like they were going to church.

Yusuf: Life Below, Peasant and God Mother a couple weeks ago. So many old faces, and all the other shows are a blur anyway.

Charlie: My favourite show. Hmm… Alice In Chains in 2013! I was RIGHT at the front. They played the most perfect set list. And Jerry Cantrell, himself, made eye contact AND threw me his pick (which I still have safely in a tin). Close second has to be King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, who I saw earlier this year. It was the most mind-blowing show I have ever witnessed. Those guys are next level.

So Bobby... Amped on any British wildlife?

Bobby: I’m a lover of all things hairy and feathered, but my current favorites are Gold Finches, Badgers and Scottish Wildcats.

Daryn: Life is wild.

Yusuf: You sound like Joe Dirt. Life’s a garden. Dig it…

If Yusuf is head of dad jokes and Bobby is King of the sexual innuendo... Then what are Daryn and Charlie?

Daryn: I think I’m the starter of arguments. The “Firestarter,” if you will. Charlie’s the voice of reason… and the roller of blunts.

Yusuf: Daryn could start an argument in an empty room. As long as he has Whatsapp…

Questions by: Shaun Richards

Tuesday, 20 March 2018

Deja View Split LP & Tour By The Shabs & Rambling Bones!

So this is a bit late but The Shabs and Rambling Bones have put out a split record and are currently touring to promote it. The split has five new songs from each band and overall is a pretty great record! Both bands have a very unique proudly South African folk punk aesthetic and the songs are all very catchy sing along numbers with lyrics about hope, love, the passing of time, removing your presidents and changing the world. They play Sundowners in Alberton tonight! Don't miss it!

Post by: Shaun Richards

Thursday, 8 March 2018

Long Way Down by The Pissups

So The Pissups from Cape Town, who are quickly becoming one of my favorite local bands, have just released their second album. It's a mix of gruff and shouty melodic punk with hardcore undertones that sounds at times like a blending of bands like Hot Water Music, (later) Propagandhi, The Menzingers, and skate punk like Pennywise but at mid tempo. There are also some parts that have traces of Motörhead and well LISTEN TO THE ALBUM! I'm writing this after 3 or 4 run-throughs... The lyrics seem to constitute a themed album of existential and nihilistic anthems about drinking, self destruction, and being out of control or lost... but contrasting this the delivery has utmost purpose and direction. It is quite a change from the previous album were the songs were much more different in topic from one another. This time round the songs tend to self reference each other and kinda weave into one big lyrical hair ball. The final song which is basically the title track, simply called Down, is a beautiful catchy song of resignation and acceptance that ends the whole thing off at an apex. The vocals are raw and whip you up in the current just as much as the drums and guitars. An all round musically solid album that is a must listen to especially if you find yourself clustered into the "local punk is totally shit" bin.

Favourite tracks (in no real order because i am struggling to pick): On the Road, Several Terrible Ideas, One Way Bus, Asylum Fight Night, and Down.

Favourite line: "I’ll never arrive, and you’ll never depart" from On the Run.

The recording and production reminds me of Pup albums for some reason.

Post by: Shaun Richards

"I definitely feel they are more along the lines of Only Crime the way they would hold a more hardcore verse and then explode into a full on melodic chorus and the vocals have an undeniably Russ from Good Riddance feel to it but I can definitely see how being a three piece tremendously influenced the band's sound with the absence of overdubs on the record it is the pure old fashioned rawness of friendship intertwining with creativity"
Conley William Annandale

Long Way Down
released March 5, 2018

Recorded, Produced:
Devon Martindale

Monday, 26 February 2018

An Evening with Amanda Palmer - Fox Junction Johannesburg - Presented by Bassline Live - 23rd of February 2018 Review/Rant

So this is the second time Amanda "Fucking" Palmer has played shows in Cape Town and Johannesburg and hopefully will not be the last... hopefully...

See we kinda fucked up guys... I don't know how the Cape Town show went but the Joburg one was just balls. Last time she played Joburg it was pretty much the same venue but the whole vibe was different. Maybe due to it being much less promoted and somewhat of a last minute surprise show, THAT WAS FREE!!! The only thing shit about it was the price of drinks. See 1 Fox street is a hub of hipster yuppie nauseum that truly only homicidal thoughts can render bearable... However this time round there were tables and chairs in  the way of people packing in close to the stage and the sound was terrible, as if any time they tried to amplify the sound from her grand piano they just cut it again due to how it wobbled and fell. Her voice was also barely comprehensive from the sides of the warehouse that the tables pushed people who were standing to. She performed superbly of-course and rightfully shat on us for being stupid inconsiderate ass holes because the volume of people talking and ordering drinks practically overpowered her at times and was at it's least still a major distraction and imposition on her and her listeners.

This is pretty upsetting and more so offensive to someone who comes from a music culture where it is common place for people to shut up and listen or freak the fuck out / shout back the lyrics. We don't really have a music culture. We don't really have an art culture. We have some shape shifting Frankenstein monster that was flung into motion as soon as apartheid broke down and some people were like "Fuck yeah! Now we can have cool shit" and for isolated moments there arguably has been cool shit but most of the time this creature is just tumbling face first into the floor and when observed closely this creature seems to be constructed out of people who sadly just don't get it... and really... how could they?

Amanda Palmer playing Drowning In The Sound with a fitting improvisation about her performance being drowned out by sound.

Amanda Palmer busting out Sing and getting upset and angry at us worthless South African pond scum that just don't know how to enjoy a show without talking about ourselves until everyone wants to vomit a kill themselves <3

People treating the show as background music is a very common thing here. Local diy punk and folk shows have it a lot worse naturally since the people playing are not Amanda Fucking Palmer. One of our projects called Folk The Park no longer happens with one of the reasons being that artists were just being spoken over to the point that only the louder Folk-Punk acts were actually at all audible. Metal gigs even with a die hard legion of metal heads tend to suffer the fated plague of people not really giving a fuck about the show itself and a lot of the time I personally do not want to play shows due to not caring to attempt to fill the space of background music... Maybe it's DJ culture? Maybe white people here suck more than white people usually suck?

This seems to have worsened of late and it seems to be that most of the shows I have gone to lately has seen bands playing to an empty floor while everyone is either outside, at the bar or sitting. Needless to say this has all been loads of no fun at all and so i present to you all an instructional video on how to act at a show and have fun!

Want to have fun at a show? Study this closely!

Here is and instructional video of how to act at a shows with Erik Petersen (RIP) and Pat The Bunny. Do as above. Alternatively just paying attention is also acceptable.

Thanks for reading this mess!

Post by: Shaun Richards

Thursday, 15 February 2018

Speedofest 5 - Banana Havoc - Feb 17 · Rumours Rock City · Randburg

"In support of PETS JHB - Pet Empowerment in Townships, we're aiming to raise money to assist with clearing some of their vet bills."

We'll be here with CDs and Stickers.

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Skankin' at Nelson Mandela University by Undead Generation

So Undead Generation have two new ska songs out. Is the band going to be moving in a more ska direction from this point?

Roscoe: Undead Generation has always been playing a little bit of ska and reggae fusion, but I guess with the addition of new members who are mostly music students as well as a trombonist, and soon hopefully a trumpeter, the ska and ska punk stuff just seems to flow more easily and almost comes naturally. Half of the music being composed became increasingly melodic and contrasted nicely  with the hardcore and more speedy thrash stuff we do. Also, after the passing of George Bacon from Hog Hoggidy Hog, myself and Dean Saunders (lead guitar and backup vocals) began taking great influence from the legacy left behind by their music. Most of our members are studying music or music technology and we listen to very contrasting types of music, so the focus may be on punk overall, but many other styles and sounds are also thrown into the mix over time, including hip hop (or rapcore), and even jazz.

Undead Generation - Big Brother

How is the music scene in Port Elizabeth? For years now you folks have been the only punk band in the area as far as I know.

Roscoe: The music scene in PE is very much alive and well, filled with brilliant artists mostly performing folk, pop, hip hop, singer-songwriter type stuff, grunge/rock, and various subgenres of metal. There is so much undiscovered talent here, it's actually incredible. We are, however, the only punk band as far as I know, and we have been for quite a while. There was a pop punk band a few years back that played regularly but otherwise its just us flying the safety pinned flag for now. We're hoping that some new ska, punk, and hardcore bands start appearing at some point soon.

Any plans for shows outside of PE this year?

Roscoe: We mostly perform a lot in PE, and just outside of PE in places like Grahamstown, and we've played in Despatch and Falcon Rock, but so far we have yet to embark on a full national tour. We're hoping to organize a tour to Cape Town this year, performing at various venues for a whole week. It's just so kak that we're all so busy all the time. Like, most of us have full-time jobs to get us by or help pay for our part time studies, or we're studying full time. A few of us in the band are also involved in various charities and activism which is also very time consuming. I guess with a bit of improved time management and sacrifice, we could pull off the tours we want to do and actually bring our music to others outside of our small coastal hometown. But regardless, we're super keen to bring some love to the SA scene and abroad in the near future!

Questions by: Shaun Richards

Wednesday, 7 February 2018

10th March: All Age Show at Thrashers Skate Park, PTA

Mr Conley has been up to stuff. He is a good boy. As a result there is an all ages show happening in PTA march 10th. All ages shows are very few and far between nowadays so COME DOG FUCKING DAMN IT!!! You fucking fucks need to understand that youtube and netflix will not save you! There is no god and your primitive monkey asses gotta run around in a circle and lose your shoes like the homo sapiens did back in my day... BECAUSE REASONS!

"My friends ain't all that bad. We play all ages shows and we'll start on time if you decide to go"... - Bomb The Music Industry

...Oh look! Show info and mutterings below!

We Did This Records and Thrashers Skatepark present this thing that is happening. The Soweto Skate Society are going to be doing cool things (AKA a skate demo)... that is if you believe in a concept like "cool things" and have not been beaten down by life so much that "cool things" are nothing but childhood delusions and painful lies... I'm fine... really.

The skate park opens normal time and the demo will kick of at 14:00. It will go on, and of, throughout the day and to keep the skaters / non skaters minds out of the dark and scary places we will have people playing guitars at an above average tempo... which if non of you have realized should be the actual dictionary definition of awesome... after the show, and in the absence of above average tempo guitars, I recommend doing as little work as possible and watching Ren and Stimpy till you die...

Noise by The Slashdogs, Misled, Monday Morning Justice, TCIYF, Slippery When Wet, and All These Wasted Nuts.

Tickets at the door :
Under 18's R50
Over 18's R80
Over 18's with cooler R100

Merch will be available

Post by: Shaun Richards