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THE DARJEELINGS TEE OFF
It's a sound of pure joy. The Darjeelings - Mairead O'Connor,
Greer Clemens, Bella Chwasta and Izzy Flook - are still
at school, but they know how to craft clever, cute pop.
Their debut EP, filled with heavenly harmonies and delightful
twists and turns, was produced by Benjamin McCarthy, who
has been instrumental in the success of Pete Murray and
Kate Miller-Heidke. "I saw them, of all places, at a school
fete, while on a weekend walk around Carlton," Ben tells
Howzat! "I stayed for the novelty, then I was blown away
by their onstage guts, writing ability and vocal power."
Ben says their future is bright. "I have no doubt that we're
looking at the birth of the next generation of important
Australian female musicians. There's a bit of 'prodigy'
about them as well - they translated Camus for homework
in-between tracking parts. They blow a hundred sweaty boy
rock bands off the stage with the sheer joy of playing music.
If you aren't charmed, you must have a heart of the blackest
coal!" The Darjeelings don't appear to be in a hurry. "All
in good time," they declare in the EP's opening track. But
the sky's the limit. This Saturday's EP launch, at the Northcote
Town Hall, is already sold out. The Darjeelings Limited?
I don't think so.
DECIBELS MAKES A NOISE
The Darjeelings' gig is part of the Darebin Music Feast.
Last Friday, Howzat! ventured to the Northcote Town Hall
to check out the latest signings to Decibels Records, the
label started by Darebin Council. Both acts delivered sparkling
sets. Mansion, Alaska impressed with their indie rock, fusing
Radiohead with an Australian rock sensibility. And Dominique
showed she's capable of becoming a star. The 19-year-old
(full name: Dominique Brown) is confident and assured on
stage, with a swag of strong songs. Her mature piano pop
is power-packed, and her band featured songwriting mentor
Greg Arnold, as well as a female artist who managed to make
the keytar look cool. It's great to see a local council
getting behind local sounds.
Would Cyndi Lauper's career have been different if she'd
relocated to Australia? In her new autobiography, Cyndi
Lauper, A Memoir ($29.99, Simon & Schuster), Cyndi confesses
to having an affair with an unnamed Australian journalist
in 1989. She also recalls rediscovering her love of music
with Noiseworks at a festival in Italy. "I found myself
on a chair at the end of the night singing True Colors,"
Cyndi writes, "with the singer from Noiseworks and the dishwasher,
who was playing harmonica … in that moment, the joy came
back to the music for me." Cyndi considered moving to Australia.
"It would be a fresh start. Noiseworks was there, and maybe
I could do some work with them. It could be fun. I stood
at Bondi Beach looking out at the end of the earth. I realised
I might be very lonely … and I wasn't sure I could make
the kind of record I wanted in Australia. Plus, I couldn't
drive. I'm a New Yorker and I never got my licence. So I
returned to New York. But I always wonder what my music
might have been like if I'd stayed."
SEVEN GETS A ZERO
Full credit to the AFL for its all-Aussie Grand Final entertainment.
But it would have been nice if Channel Seven had shown more
of it. The Temper Trap were great, but where was Tim Rogers
in the telecast? And Paul Kelly's Leaps and Bounds would
have been a highlight - if it had been shown properly.
GET ON YOUR BIKES
So many great albums have been released this year. Minibikes'
debut album, For Woods Or Trail, will definitely end up
on Howzat!'s 2012 best-of list. Minibikes main man Marcel
Borrack is a professor of pop, capable of collating a collection
of sounds and turning them in to pop hits. He crafts tunes
that are kooky but accessible. Howzat! also loved Minibikes'
recent cover of Tears For Fears' Everybody Wants To Rule
The World on the Marngrook Footy Show. Minibikes launch
For Woods Or Trail at the Northcote Social Club on Saturday.
Where will he be in 51 years? Happy Birthday to Brian Mannix,
who is 51 on Sunday.
Guy Sebastian slips to number two after six weeks on top.
Battle Scars GUY SEBASTIAN (number two)
Boom Boom JUSTICE CREW (nine)
When The Lights Go Out HAVANA BROWN (18)
Run Alone 360 (35)
Illy lands at 15.
The Rubens THE RUBENS (number nine)
The Sapphires soundtrack (10)
Bring It Back ILLY (15, debut)
Pacifica THE PRESETS (19)
This Was Tomorrow SETH SENTRY (21)
Chasing Ghosts THE AMITY AFFLICTION (25)
My Journey KARISE EDEN (29)
Wreck & Ruin KASEY CHAMBERS & SHANE NICHOLSON (30)
Timomatic TIMOMATIC (31)
Falling & Flying 360 (35)
The Ol' Razzle Dazzle MISSY HIGGINS (38)
All In Good Time THE DARJEELINGS
All You Are DOMINIQUE
The Soaring General ANDREW McDONALD
Oh Japan MINIBIKES
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