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VAUDEVILLE SMASH HITS
Marty McFly: "If you put your mind to it, you can accomplish
"Because a song can take you back instantly to a moment,
or a place, or even a person," American author Sarah Dessen
said. Vaudeville Smash's debut album, Dancing For The Girl
(out Friday), is like a musical version of Back To The Future.
It's a brand new album, but it manages to take you back
to Blue Light Discos, roller-skating, first kisses and lost
loves. "Do you remember?" singer Marc Lucchesi asks in the
title-track. As the bio says, Dancing For The Girl manages
to sound both wonderfully nostalgic and right now. It's
one of 2013's great albums.
Anyone who's caught Vaudeville Smash live knows they're
highly entertaining. But sometimes they can be heavy on
the cheese. The album is a surprise because it's much deeper
and darker than their live show, while maintaining the huge
pop hooks. Just check out the latest single, Don't Say A
Word. With dark '80s synths, it's a tale of love and infidelity.
Not all nostalgia is cheesy. Sometimes the past is a painful
While listening to Dancing For The Girl, Howzat! had another
flashback, to a conversation with a German friend in 1989.
"Hey, do you want to go see Wa Wa Nee?" we asked. "Wow,"
our friend replied, "but how much will it cost and how will
we get tickets?" He couldn't believe it when we revealed
it was a free gig. No other Australian band sounded exactly
like Wa Wa Nee. Fortunately, the local scene is more diverse
and broad-minded than it was in the '80s. But, still, no
other Australian band sounds quite like Vaudeville Smash.
Here's hoping they manage to find their own niche locally,
without having to go overseas, because Dancing For The Girl
-which they're launching at the Corner on 14 June - is far
too good to fall between the cracks.
Lorraine: "Marty, will we ever see you again?"
Marty: "I guarantee it."
If only Twitter was used more often for good and not evil
… It's great to see superstars use social media to spread
the word about things they like. Rod Stewart tweeted last
week: "Saw one of the greatest rock n roll movies for the
3rd time last night, The Sapphires. I've seen it w/my band
& w/my kids. They all cheered." And Missy Higgins raved
after seeing Ainslie Wills: "Saw this lady play 2 nights
ago for her debut album launch and her voice just blew me
STEEP AND MEANINGFUL
Former Inpress music editor Martin Jones recently reviewed
Heath Cullen's second album, The Still And The Steep (out
now on Five By Nine Records through Fuse), in Rhythms, calling
him "one of those inordinately talented musicians who is
far too tasteful to make it in Australia". Heath launches
the album at the Thornbury Theatre on Saturday, with special
guest Emma Heeney.
GOOD DIE YOUNG
She was wild and she was wicked. And she was a pioneering
performer, our greatest rock chick. And we should also celebrate
Chrissy Amphlett's wonderful sense of humour. The day after
Chrissy's death, Howzat! was chatting with Ron Peno. Chrissy
always loved catching up with the Died Pretty singer. "Ah,"
she would exclaim when giving him a big hug, "it's Ronnie
Peanut!" Howzat! also laughed when we re-read two classic
quotes from Chrissy's autobiography, Pleasure And Pain.
Before she was a star, Chrissy had a role in the musical
Let My People Come. In one scene, she had large rollers
in her pubic hair. She said: "After wearing rollers in my
pubes, how could I ever be inhibited again?" And Chrissy
knocked back a chance to be a body double in the movie Dawn!,
saying: "You could never pay me enough to play Dawn Fraser's
arse!" I'm sure Chrissy would have got a kick out of the
media's reporting of her passing - at the age of 53. If
you read the account of Chrissy's early days, there's no
doubt she was closer to 60 than 50. She talked of supporting
Zoot, who broke up in 1971. Chrissy was young when her career
started, but I don't think she was supporting Zoot when
she was 12. She also went to high school with Denis Walter,
who was reportedly born in 1955, not 1959. But Chrissy's
life was an incredible story - she could tell it whichever
way she wanted. Howzat!'s good buddy Mark Opitz signed Divinyls
and produced their first two albums. "To me, Christina Amphlett
has always been beautiful; even when she wasn't," Mark writes
in his new book, Sophisto-punk. "Vivacious, wild, independent.
It made no difference that she was working in a man's world;
Chrissy wasn't intimidated by anybody. She was intense and
talented, a diva in the purest sense of the word."
Just one Aussie hit in the top 20.
Hello STAFFORD BROTHERS (number nine)
Big Banana HAVANA BROWN (22)
Holdin On FLUME (25)
A Thousand Years CELIA PAVEY (33, debut)
You Raise Me Up HARRISON CRAIG (40, debut)
Renée Geyer swings into the Top 40 with the 25th album of
her 40-year career.
Flume FLUME (number four)
Sharkmouth RUSSELL MORRIS (six)
The Essential DIVINYLS (14, debut)
Swing RENEE GEYER (22, debut)
Armageddon GUY SEBASTIAN (27)
Nightswim OWL EYES (28, debut)
March Fires BIRDS OF TOKYO (34)
Don't Say A Word VAUDEVILLE SMASH
Alfie RENEE GEYER
Silver Wings HEATH CULLEN
Fighting Kind AINSLIE WILLS
Human On The Inside DIVINYLS
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