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THE RISE OF TALL BUILDINGS
Tall buildings shake/ Voices escape, singing sad, sad songs
That lyric, from Wilco's Jesus, Etc, inspired the name of
Melbourne's Tall Buildings, a great new band featuring three
members of Gersey - Dan Tulen, Daryl Bradie and Drew Pearse
- and bass player Julie Baynes (ex-Cyclones). Like Howzat!,
Danny spent his formative years in Traralgon, which is not
noted for being much of a music town (despite giving the
world Jack Jones and Danny McDonald). "Weekends spent buying
records at Au Go Go, and watching bands like You Am I and
The Dirty Three at the Punters Club made the call of the
inner-city band scene irresistible to a country boy like
me," Danny explains. "So up the Princes Highway I travelled,
and the rest is history."
Tall Buildings' debut album, Light The Shallows, was recorded
in just one day. "I felt zero pressure," Danny says, "which
was different to a lot of my previous studio experiences.
We wanted a live sound and I think we got it." What's been
Danny's favourite description of Tall Buildings? "Honest."
The album also reminds Howzat! of the melodic genius of
Dan Wilson, while Danny enjoys comparisons to Wilco and
Buffalo Tom. "I'm always surprised and happy to hear such
references. These bands mean so much to me, so it's a great
How did the Gersey boys hook up with Jules? "We started
out as a three-piece and I was hoping one of the guys would
put down a guitar and pick up a bass or a keyboard, but,
alas, it wasn't to be, so we jumped at the opportunity to
enlist Jules on bass. We had met her over the years at gigs,
parties and friend-of-a-friend type stuff, you know. I personally
really wanted a female vocal in the band and she has a gorgeous
voice. She's also quite pleasing on the old eye, which if
you've seen the three of us on stage - unshaven, overweight,
sweaty, balding and the wrong side of 30 - you'd understand
just how much of an asset she is."
Will there be more Gersey releases? "Yes, we started working
on new material last year when we toured with Pavement and
since then, side projects, babies and overseas trips have
all taken their toll. I'd say we should be looking good
to have something released late this year." How is Tall
Buildings different? "Tall Buildings' songs are a lot more
immediate than Gersey songs and generally take less time
to write. Songs that appear on Gersey records at seven or
eight minutes have usually been whittled down from 15-minute
epics. The Light The Shallows songs are more immediate and
quite literal and, in that sense, I'd say a less challenging
but equally rewarding listen." Indeed. Tall Buildings launch
the album next Thursday (April 28) at the Grace Darling.
WILL THE REAL DAVE GRANEY PLEASE STAND UP!
Howzat! is loving Dave Graney's new book, 1001 Australian
Nights. It documents the unpredictable journey of a man
who's "offered up a slew of aliases … The world's forgotten
boy. The rambling man. The pirate of love. The love rustler.
The rider on the range. The velvet fog. Meat man. Mister
blues. And the best-dressed chicken in town. Look 'em up!"
It's nearly last drinks at The Arthouse. Howzat!'s buddy
Julian Tovey, from The Cheats, provides these memories:
"I could tell many stories about many crazy gigs featuring
much drunkeness, band and crowd nudity, quite a few post
gig trips to the emergency ward, and some of the finest
punk rock I've ever heard. But, instead, I'd like to sum
up what The Arthouse meant to me. My first band, Headcase,
played one of its first gigs at The Arthouse, back in '93
when I was just 16 and we were all still in school. We were
stoked to have scored a gig there, as it was already the
mecca of punk rock in Melbourne (even if it was a Sunday
night!). It soon became our 'home' and we moved on to playing
Friday and Saturday nights and many New Year's Eves, totalling
nearly 100 shows inside those wonderful art-covered walls.
Every time we played there it felt both familiar and special.
I loved how there was an 'anything goes' attitude among
both the bands and the crowd, creating an atmosphere where
gigs could take on a life of their own. Things happened
that could only happen in that space - punters and bands
really were free to express themselves. In that sense, The
Arthouse really lived up to its name. Over the years, I
got to know the Kelly family and other staff well, and to
this day I have never seen a pub treat all musos and patrons
with such respect, generosity and dignity. I'll never forget
the care I was shown when I was knocked unconscious onstage
by a flying microphone, courtesy of our singer! The hole
it will leave behind will never be filled. There will never
be another place like it in Melbourne, or anywhere."
Just one Aussie single in the Top 40.
From The Music THE POTBELLEEZ (number 32, debut)
Strong debuts for The Middle East and Architecture In Helsinki.
The Life of Riley DRAPHT (number four)
I Want That You Are Always Happy THE MIDDLE EAST (11, debut)
Moment Bends ARCHITECTURE IN HELSINKI (12, debut)
Get Closer KEITH URBAN (19)
Birds Of Tokyo BIRDS OF TOKYO (29)
The Great Impression SPARKADIA (31)
Vampires TALL BUILDINGS
Chase The Sun SKIPPING GIRL VINEGAR
The Sheriff Of Hell DAVE GRANEY
Accidentally THE LITTLE STEVIES
Sing It (The Life of Riley) DRAPHT
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