Grown and Sexy
Friday 2nd May 2014
Rise Nightclub, 1 Leicester square, London, WC2H 7NA, United Kingdom
This is a personal invitation for YOU to come have a drink and shake a leg at London's FINEST nightclub. GROWN and SEXY is more than a rave! It is a gathering of London's SEXIEST people who love to party to GREAT music, sip QUALITY alcohol and experience UNFORGETTABLE vibes. Party connoisseurs see you there!

Mix CD

Pics from previous events

Your DJs giving you a GROWN and SEXY vibe playing the best in; Sexy RandB, Hip-Hop, House, Dancehall, Vocal Garage, Afrobeats, Soca, 80/90s Walkman Classics and Slow Jams will be


ADMISSION and DRESS CODEStandard tickets £10: More on the door: Valid government I.D essential: Last entry 2am with or without ticket

Absolutely no Denim, Hats, Hoods, Sportswear, Designer Trainers, Pradas, Guccis, Vans, Converse

Pictures of Cakes/Tables

It's said we have the best party packages in London so if you're celebrating anything between the 27th April, 10th May then look no further!

Celebrate in STYLE with our exclusive packages which include? V.I.P Table: Booth: Personalised Cake: Champagne: Wine: Spirits: Nibbles: Sweets: Chocolates: Professional Photography: Disposable Cameras: Personal Hosts: Helium: Balloons: Decorations: Card: Poppers: Sparklers

Packages can be tailored to your own bespoke needs. To party in style contact JUNIOR on 07572 433 672: PIN:24DF8987

07939296977: 07572433672: 07908893250
PIN:221161D8: PIN:24DF8987

Facebook: http://atnd.it/9320-2Tickets: http://atnd.it/9320-0

Temwa Presents Monsterpiece at Big Chill Bar Brist
Saturday 12th April 2014
Big Chill Bar, 15 Small Street, Bristol, United Kingdo
Two floors of Hip-Hop, Funk, Soul, Rare-Groove and Disco featuring ?

Bedmo DiscoThe Disco TwoBashmoneyPlus many more special guests.

£3 suggested donation on the door 100% of the profits from the night will go towards Temwas community development projects in northern Maiawi.


Hits From The Pong
Saturday 5th April 2014
Bounce, 121 Holborn, London, London
17 ping pong tables, UV light, a fully licensed cocktail bar and smashing tunes right through the night. Hits From The Pong delivers an eclectic mix of sounds and stunning visuals. No where in London will you have a night out with this much fun.

What's more? It's free! Bounce always reserves a few walk-in tables, so if you fancy having a game and a boogie, join us every Saturday for the funkiest night in town.



via Web

2 weeks ago
Rock/Britpop Review: Elbow-The Take Off and Landing of Everything


#rock #pop #musicreviews #music

Write A Music Review: Rock/Britpop Review: Elbow-The Take Off and Landing of Everything

Music Reviews & News Release Date: March 11, 2014 Label: Concord Website Elbow is another case of a band that is extremely well known in the UK, but is relatively unknown in the US. The band has released six studio albums dating back to 2001, all of which have been in the top 15 on British album charts. In 2008 they won the Mercury Prize for The Se...


via Twitter

4 weeks ago
RT @ArtistsinBerlin : An excellent up-coming #Event on #Friday at #Pop -up #Art #Gallery #Berlin . Come on down from 6pm this coming Friday.

Collectibles Convention in Cleveland on 05/16/14
16th May 2014

Making her Foundry616 debut is the stunning vocalist Evelyn Duprai. Australian bo
29th May 2014
Foundry616 Jazz Club, 616 Harris Street Sydney NSW 2007

€œ€only one in a hundred actually makes the grade as a jazz singer. In this country, Jones remains the benchmark.€ John Shand, Sydney Morning Herald

€œHe€™s a soulful survivor, with a voice as cool as a long G&T and a repertoire that balances jazz, rock and soul." Beat Magazine (USA)

Continuing his successful monthly residency at Foundry616, Vince Jones, Australia€™s leading jazz vocalist/composer, returns to the club with a sensational repertoire and band.

As a contemporary jazz singer, Jones uses his voice as an expressive instrument and the lyric as a vehicle for story and comment €“ and he sings like there€™s nothing to prove. It€™s a humble, humanistic and refreshing approach that gives us, the audience, the chance to be really moved.

Scottish born, Jones€™ musical path continues to be influenced by his Celtic heritage, as much as his beginnings as a bebop trumpet player. From his first album released in 1981, the quiet, strong statement of Watch What Happens, Vince has steadily showcased his vocal and songwriting talent through another 14 acclaimed albums - a loyal audience developing with each release and tour.

The combination of his unmistakable voice, thought provoking lyrics and subtle trumpet playing makes for an enticing and often moving performance.

Vince Jones€™ latest offering is Modern Folk, a compilation of songs recorded live around Australia, released through Vitamin Records. He records and tours with a band comprising musicians who are highly regarded in their own right, including Matt McMahon on piano, Simon Barker on drums and Ben Waples on bass.

His superb voice continues to engage audiences in Australia and beyond. Come and enjoy one of our best artists in an intimate club setting.

Hear his musicand find out more:


Tori Amos debuts new single “Trouble’s Lament”
13th May 2014
Finally we have our very first taste of (my goddess) Tori Amos? highly-anticipated upcoming 14th studio album, Unrepentant Geraldines, due out May 13th via Mercury Classics. The lead single is ?Trouble?s Lament,? which upon a couple of repeat listens is definitely growing on me a lot. It for sure has (Americana / folk) shades ofMORE

Gizmo at The New Parish, Thu, May 1 9:00p
1st May 2014
The New Parish, 579 18th St.,
Most musicians wait a lifetime to share stages with their musical heroes. Hoping to accomplish such a feat while still racking up college credits would be considered nothing more than a pipe dream. But having performed with such esteemed artists as Meshell Ndegeocello, Talib Kweli, and Victor Wooten as well as serving as music director for such acclaimed artists as Bilal and Lalah Hathaway, it's safe to say that 21-year-old bassist Kenneth "Gizmo" Rodgers has been living that dream for quite some time now. With a wealth of experience that belies his years touting a vast array of musical influences spanning the realms of jazz, pop, funk, rock, Latin, and hip-hop, Gizmo is set to unveil his debut sonic masterpiece Red Balloon. Produced by bassist Derrick Hodge (Robert Glasper Experiment, Kanye West, Common) with glints of spoken word and soul, Red Balloon is a wondrous 13-track odyssey through the multi-faceted human experience. "When you see a little kid let a balloon go at a carnival, everybody kind of looks up at it as it floats away," explains Gizmo of the project's captivating central theme. "The balloon seems to float around, trying to find its way. I feel like that's how most people are. We're all trying to figure out who we are, what we want to do, and what we stand for. All striving to be special, loved, or valued in some kind of way. And everybody's kind of watching you as you float around this life. But if the pressure gets too high, it pops at some point." A labor of love recorded over the course of three years in Boston between gigs and classes at Berklee College of Music, the deeply personal album features an impressive cast of thousands including Casey Benjamin of the Robert Glasper Experiment, accomplished pianist/ Berklee professor George Russell, Jr, Downbeat magazine Rising Star drummer Jamire Williams and more. Reared in Philadelphia in a household brimming with the influences of his Puerto Rican and African-American heritage, Gizmo was introduced to the sounds of salsa and soul at an early age. Though his spectacular bass facility evokes the promise and the prowess of legends such as Jaco Pastorious and Stanley Clarke, the instrument was actually the Philadelphia native's second choice. "When I was in elementary, I wanted to play drums," says Gizmo. "But they said I had big hands, so I started playing bass. I just went from there." Yet it wasn't until being accepted into the highly competitive statewide Pennsylvania Governor's School for the Arts program at the age of 16 that Gizmo began to seriously contemplate music as a fulfilling career. Instructed by professors from Berklee and Julliard at the 5-week program, Gizmo was inspired to hone his talent and stretch out in the fertile musical environment. "I had five weeks where I practiced, played, and did music everyday. I was studying seriously. Compared to my peers, I always felt like I was behind because I started late. So I worked extra hard to get where I needed to be. From that point, all I did was play in jazz groups and hip-hop cover groups in Philly." While at the program, Gizmo was instructed by pianists Russell and George Burton (Ornette Coleman, Christian McBride, and Wayne Shorter). Burton recommended that the young jazz hopeful get in touch with his close friend Hodge for further tutorship. The two hit it off immediately. "I went over to Derrick's house for a lesson and was there for like three hours. We just had a really good connection. He's been like a big brother to me since that point." While his iPod playlist consisted of the illustrious catalog of jazz giants such as Herbie Hancock, Miles Davis, and John Coltrane, he was also introduced to the music of recording artist and fellow bassist Meshell Ndegeocello during this formative period. "That blew my mind. Her music helped me to start paying attention to lyrics. On a deeper level, her music helped me to be a more open human being. It helped to break down the stigmas that I had in my mind in terms of what type of music you're supposed to play if you're black." After a semester spent in the jazz program at the University of Miami, Gizmo set sail for the more expansive halls of higher learning at the Berklee College of Music. During his first semester at Berklee, Gizmo developed a rapport with Ndegeocello who came to the school for a musician's clinic. The two solidified a friendship while performing at a subsequent concert in Los Angeles with the Miguel Atwood-Ferguson Ensemble. By his second semester, Gizmo had assumed the role of music director of Berklee's Neo Soul Ensemble, began gigging across the globe as a music director, and became an in-demand musician at venues such as the world famous Blue Note. During his travels, he performed and developed bonds with such accomplished musicians as Benjamin, Marcus Strickland, Dana Hawkins, and Marc De Clive-Lowe. In addition, Gizmo managed to secure endorsements from an impressive list of bass equipment and accessories companies such as Aguilar Amplifications, Mono Case, Dean Markely Strings, and Levy Leathers. By the end of his first year at Berklee, Gizmo had broadened both his resume and his musical horizons exponentially. "Everything started picking up," he says. "It became more than just about playing bass at that point. It was about learning how to write parts for horns, strings, and harmonies for background vocals." As music director for the Neo Soul Ensemble, he'd successfully music directed shows by Bilal and Lalah Hathaway. Being surrounded by such an awe-inspiring group of successful artists and musicians, Gizmo was inspired to begin putting his experience and education to use by sketching out sonic ideas of his own. Three years and countless ideas later, Red Balloon is the grand result. "When I first started, it wasn't about me making a record. I was just recording stuff. I was just trying to write music for myself." Beginning his journey with the funky spoken word-influenced "Sleepblah," Gizmo eventually amassed an impressive collection of tunes culled from demos recorded in Puerto Rico, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia. Red Balloon also includes a little help from Berklee friends such as Nick Hakim, Darien Jovan, Derrick Cobbs, and BET's 106 & Park Wild Out Wednesdays featured artist Gwen Bunn. The album's expansive and mesmerizing title track will serve as the lead single. "That was one of the last songs I ended up recording," reveals Gizmo. "It's about shedding the anxieties and judgements we have about each other. It's about overcoming obstacles and accepting that seasons change. And above all that, continuing to try and fly." Hip-hop artist/ Berklee professor Brian "Raydar" Ellis drops rapid-fire verses on the funky head nod excursion "Invalid." Singer-songwriter Nick Hakim is featured on the album's brilliant second single "Lift Me Up." Penned by Hakim and co-produced by Gizmo, "Lift Me Up" exemplifies Gizmo's ability to condense his disparate influences into a soulful marvel of a gem. "The song is reflective of a place where most of us have been, in terms of questioning what decision to make and where we're going to end up," he explains. In addition to his own bass prowess, Red Balloon finds Gizmo contributing percussion, keyboards, and stepping behind the microphone for the first time as a singer. "My concept at first was to write these songs and have other people sing them," he admits. "But because of Meshell and Derrick saying, 'Nobody's going to have the same amount of emotional connection to the song as you will,' I just let myself go and recorded it." Following the advice of his mentors, Gizmo is featured singing lead vocals and reciting spoken word on cuts such as "Dancing," "Insane," and his enthralling rendition of the 2008 Kings Of Leon hit song "Use Somebody." Red Balloon will be released in association with progressive jazz boutique brand Revive Music. At the helm of the album's artwork is Roland Nichol, graphic designer of jazz bassist Esperanza Spalding's 2011 Grammy-winning album Chamber Music Society. Buttressed by the contributions of a vibrant collective of mentors, colleagues, and classmates, Red Balloon stands firmly as a dynamic undertaking by a promising young artist. Coalesced by Gizmo's own unique talent, it is a brazen statement from a new cadre of artists seeking to meld their formal jazz training with new sounds and modalities. It's clear that Gizmo and Red Balloon are representative of this group of artists in a chapter of change with an allegiance to the groove. "I definitely see it as a movement," says Gizmo. "It all stems from the idea of going with the moment. I've been struggling what to call my music, and I really don't know what to say. To me, in my heart, I feel like it's jazz - although we're not swinging. Some people might say it's alternative because I have some pop and some dubstep influences on there as well. But I feel like I'm just trying to make honest music, not doing something just because it's in style. I just let me influences fly free. It wasn't a conscious thought; it's just naturally what's inside me. There's just so much music in the world. But underneath all that, there's a solid groove."


LIFE DRAWING - Every Wednesday (02 Apr 2014)
107 Projects,107 Redfern Street, Redfern NSW 2016
Life Drawing


107 Projects presents life drawing in the comfort of our performance space every Wednesday eve.

Hosted by life drawing teacher and enthusiast Antoinette Starkiewicz.

Some weeks will coincide with a new exhibition opening so pop in early for some inspiration and a glass of wine before the life drawing starts.

Bring your own paper and supplies, some easels and leaning boards will be provided.

EVERY WED 8pm - 10pm, $15 / $10 (student & concession)


1 month ago
Tequila Tuesdays

$5 Tequila Shot & $2 Taco Tuesdays All Day: $4 Well margarita, Corona, $5 1800 shots, $6.50 all other tequilas. Everyday Special: $12 pitchers. Choice of Mai Tai, Sangria, Margarita, or Long Island.

Longest Happy Hour M-F 10am - 7pm $4.50 Wells, $5 Miller Pitchers, $4.50 Barefoot Wines, $1 off Calls, Premiums, Supremes, $1 off Bottled Beers, $5.50 Mai Tai, Bloody Mary.

Free Acoustic Live Music: 6-9pm JESSE & GJ Pop | Rock | Hawaiian | Originals. All Request Music | Video night 9pm-close; .

1st May 2014
1015 Folsom, 1015 Folsom St.,
Warp records sensational band, DARKSTAR, make way to SF for a special live performance. Since their latest release, ?News From Nowhere,? they've been heralded as an instant classic across the board! "Every place warrants a story. No matter where it is, how quiet, remote or disconnected. There are moments in people?s everyday lives, no matter how subtle, that can be documented and talked about in great detail. The instances spiral and ascend and take on their own course, altering the perception of how even the slightest change in a day can be felt deeply." ? Darkstar Darkstar first coalesced in the underground, electronic thrum of London?s nascent grime and dubstep sphere in the middle 2000?s, growing from attending the now-fabled early FWD club nights to releasing a pair of game-changing 12? singles on Kode 9?s fledgling Hyperdub label. These were marked departures at the time, fusing unique sonic futurism with an avant-garde pop sensibility that immediately set the duo of Aiden Whalley and James Young apart from the glut of producers emerging at the time. What followed was a fitful and productive period culminating in a discarded album?s worth of tracks, the crucial introduction of vocalist James Buttery to the fold and, finally - the release of their debut full-length North, to wide acclaim.


RSVP DEAL: Ladies FREE All Night | Men 10pm - 11:30pm Reduced After

Step into the SEXY world of NIKKI! Where the sexiest clubbers party to the dirtiest beats! Gather your posse and get ready to be seen! DJ DIRTY DARREN takes over so you know it will be one epic party! Don't hear about it, come see for yourself! We dare you ;)

2 Floors of Music! LIVE Video-Mixing!
Starring: DJ DIRTY DARRENPlus Residents: WRECK | DJ TRAKO & IVANMAIN ROOM: Progressive House | Electro | Top 40 | Trap | Hip-HopVIP SUITE: Top 40 | Global, Tropical Beats

(Gym shoes, work boots, baseball caps, plain t-shirts or polo shirts, shorts, flats, flip-flops or baggy attire will not be permitted).
Dress code restrictions are at the discretion of the Door Manager and pertain not merely to articles of clothing: but more importantly to style and execution. Dress code subject to change without prior notification.

‘WALK ON THE WiLDSIDE’: The music of Lou Reed, Velvet Underground and Iggy Pop,feat
28th June 2014
Camelot Lounge, 19 Marrickville Road Marrickville NSW 2204
CAMELOT LOUNGE - Marrickville - Saturday 28-Jun-2014 7:30 PM

"In a world where music is diluted by money and plasticine, give thanks that Jeff Lang is out there... He paints pictures in sound.€ Beat Magazine

Australian-based musician Jeff Lang has earned worldwide acclaim as a virtuosic guitarist, a dynamic songwriter and a startlingly unique live performer. With a back catalogue of 14 studio albums, Jeff has been featured at major festivals, pubs, clubs, arts centres and venues internationally for the past decade. Blending rock, roots, folk, blues, ballads, instrumentals, improvisation and a devastatingly high level of musicality, Jeff Lang is a singularly unique performer in our world.

Jeff Lang€™s newest record, €œI Live A lot In My Head These Days€ will be released in Australia via ABC/Universal on May 16th 2014.

Throughout his career, Jeff has been showered with achievements and awards - the most outstanding would be his seven ARIA award nominations, as well as his three wins in 2002, 2010 and 2012.

His last album, €œCarried In Mind€ (ABC/UNIVERSAL) won the 2012 Aria award for €œBest Blues & Roots€, was awarded €œAlbum of The Year€ by Australia€™s roots music bible, Rhythms and won the €˜National Folk Recording Award€™ presented by Australia€™s National Film and Sound Archives. Always one to experiment with genres and instrumentation, Jeff€™s world music project Djan Djan won the 2010 ARIA for €œBest World Release€.

With his music released in China, Europe, USA and Japan, Jeff has toured the globe for years playing the world€™s major festivals, clubs, venues and major performing arts centres. He€™s repeatedly graced the many stages of Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Japan, China, India, Reunion Island and many countries in Europe.

Over the years, Lang has built up a devoted, almost cult-like following with his live performances. Working without a set list and allowing the unique energy of each night to shape the songs, Lang€™s live shows have become much talked about, always taking the audience along for the ride, has seen word of mouth bloom into a successful career.

It€™s been widely acknowledged that Jeff Lang is an extraordinarily individual musician. What enhances his unique nature is his steadfast adherence to a prolific and diverse musical palette and output. A songwriter, a collaborator, a guitar virtuoso and a stunning lyricist, Jeff Lang crafts songs as novellas - rich with depth and vision, yet with an open breathe for individual interpretation.


And the media says€

€œJeff Lang is one of those people who has music dripping from his fingers.€

Courier Mail, Australia

"He explores sonorities as eclectic as they are stunning...Lang's only reference point is himself, a unique singer-songwriter-guitarist who follows his own path." Le Soleil, Quebec

€œJeff Lang is, in my humble opinion, a national treasure, a truly gifted songwriter and an outstanding guitarist. He has been inspiration to countless Australian and internationally renowned roots artists and surely has a place in history as one of this generation€™s finest.

He has really touched me and musically, I had a kind of revelation€€
John Butler, John Butler Trio

€œWe€™re treated to moody atmospheric textures, ripping electric lap-steel riffs, delicate acoustic picking, trippy backwards leads, oddball percussion, throbbing tremolo, and unconventional lyrics €“ all of which Lang blends like some crazed sonic alchemist. €œ

Andy Ellis, Guitar Player Magazine, USA

“Damian Wright is a brilliant Fl
29th May 2014
Foundry616 Jazz Club, 616 Harris Street Sydney NSW 2007
conviction€-John Shand, Sydney Morning Herald

€œWright imbues every piece

Making her Foundry616 debut is the stunning vocalistEvelyn Duprai. Australian born of African heritage, Evelyn is renowned for her versatility, flowing in and out of musical genres with effortless ease. As a testament to this ability, Evelyn has toured with rock band Silverchair, electro-pop artist, Paul Mac, iconic jazz legend, James Morrison as well as funkster Larry Braggs of acclaimed €˜Tower Of Power€™.

And now Evelyn Duprai has come into her own!

With a sensational band comprising Gerard Masters (piano/MD),David Holmes (guitar),Brett Hirst (double bass), Peter Drummond (drums) and Mare (violin), brace yourself for a tantalising musical feast as Evelyn Duprai delivers her luscious tone with the captivating, passion, style and class she has become so well known for!

In collaboration with Gerard Masters, Evelyn has created some stunning arrangements of jazz classics covering artists such as Nina Simone, Billie Holiday and even Edith Piaf, together with a sprinkling of original compositions that subtly fuse her African heritage together with that recognisable old school jazz diva style often attributed to the likes of Sarah Vaughan and Ella Fitzgerald. Thursday May 29th 2014 will definitely be a night to remember as Evelyn Duprai brings her style and her sound to FOUNDRY 616!

Sharing the evening with Evelyn Duprai will be Sydney based vocalist and saxophonist €“ Nic Jeffries. Nic is admired the world over by both audiences and musicians alike for his big, warm vocal tone which is often described as being just €˜like chocolate€™. He€™s worked with some of the greats in the Australian and international music scene, and is himself greatly respected and admired as one of the finest band-leaders in Australia. With a voice influenced by greats such as Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway and James Taylor he has an ability to interpret and create music that is both soulful and emotional. Nic will be accompanied by Marcello Maio a musician & composer who has become somewhat of an underground celebrity in the Sydney music scene. Marcello is accomplished in piano, piano-accordion, keyboards as well as flute, and often can€™t be categorised as he slips from Jazz to more Brazilian and other Latin influenced music with astonishing confidence and facility.

With Nic Jeffries and Marcello Maio kicking off the night, expect spontaneity, expect excitement, expect ANYTHING as one of Australia€™s finest voices combines with the soul, beauty and musicality of one of the most exciting musicians you€™re likely to hear anywhere!

Be one of the first 40 people to book tickets online for this night exquisite entertainment and receive a free complimentary drink to the value of $8.00.

There€™ll also be an opportunity for everyone who attends on the night to win an exclusive group wine tasting experience courtesy of Peiroth Wines!


Every Dinner + Show booking will receive a BONUS Free Home Wine Tasting Experience** valued at $139.00!**

Wine tasting includes a 90 mins experience for up to 6 people & a complimentary bottle of wine

To redeem you must email: customercare@pieroth.com.au or call 1800 PIEROTH with your details and a copy of your Dinner+Show purchase ticket.

CD RELEASE PARTY with MICHAEL McFARLAN Dwriter-rocker-biker-geekwith special guestKEVIN CONAWAYMichael is on tour from
17th May 2014
The Blue Rock Cafe, 5827 Darrow Road (Route 91)
Friend Michael on Facebookk at https//www.facebook.com/Michael McFMusic More info on Kevin at http://michaelmcfarlandmusic.com/Listen to and 'LIKE' Kevin on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/KevinConawayMusic More info at http://www.reverbnation.com/kevinconaway Blending 90s altern ative rock, modern acoustic pop, and elemental rhythmic grooves, Michae l McFarland€™s EP A Failed Breakup showcases the Asheville, North Carolina singer/songwriter€™s range. McFarland assembles a tightly crafted song cyc le relating the tale of how his attempts to end a romantic relationship we ren€™t meant to be. A Failed Breakup captures the essence of McFarland€™s st ripped-down live acoustic performances while delivering a polished studio recording. Intimate lyrical word pictures are layered on top of irrepressi ble melodic hooks, delivered with rock & roll fervor, to relate how McFa rland discovered that some stories aren€™t meant to end. Kevin Conaway is a daydreaming office worker with witty songs and catchy hooks, a music arr anger, songwriter, and multi media composer. A self professed daydreamer , joker, and Clevelander with a beard, Kevin uses his honesty, passion and his influences to create an array of melodic, textured compositions with catchy hooks. Kevin Conaway delivers individualized media composition , arranging and scoring for TV, Film, Radio and any other media format. MICHAEL McFARLAND writer, rocker, biker, geek Blue Rock Cafe Click her e to see us on Facebook! Click here to see our full music schedule at www. BlueRockCafe.com 5827 Darrow Road (Route 91) Hudson, OH  44236 (between Z eppe's & Brubaker's) www.BlueRockCafe.com   330.650.2222

Spotlight: Swans - The Seer
Swans - The Seer
A coruscating, compelling treatise on creation and destruction...

Clash€™s Spotlight series usually looks at albums marking key anniversaries, or that are being brought back into the public eye through special shows or some other industry-standard opportunity for reappraisal.

But with Swans set to release their 13th studio set, €˜To Be Kind€™, in May, we thought the moment was perfect to look and listen back to what is perhaps the most powerful studio statement in the Michael Gira-fronted New York experimental ensemble€™s catalogue so far: August 2012€™s incredible €˜The Seer€™, spread across six sides of vinyl and just as remarkable now as it was on release.

- - -

Swans, €˜The Seer€™

- - -

€œI see it all.€

€˜The Seer€™ reeks of the definitive, the platonic form of Swans made real, a hellish golem raised from magma and mud. It collects the produce of the American experimentalists previous 11 albums and craftily condenses them, distilling their dusky essences in the way of an alchemist or particularly dastardly perfumier. Propelled by a ferocious fervour, its unbridled, ecstatic, musical mania feels somehow inevitable €“ but considered and wiser than ever before.

Joining with an impressive cast of collaborators €“ including Yeah Yeah Yeahs€™ Karen O, Iceland-based noise merchant Ben Frost, members of Akron/Family and Low €“ is Gira€™s former partner in crime, Jarboe. Their respective inputs provide luxurious glossy highlights, the butter in the jus if you will. But they don€™t dilute a thing. Some passages initially make for excruciating listening, only to shift tone dramatically, whisking you a hair€™s breadth from danger and certain unbidden defecation to a plane of vibrant aural pleasure.

Constructed of distinct movements, €˜The Seer€™s is a symphonic piece clocking in at over two hours in length, with a half-hour title track. You don€™t listen to something so demanding overly regularly, which is possibly why over a year on it sounds as fresh as the very first time. It€™s an event, like a Wagnerian opera, a marathon dictating complete surrender €“ music so simultaneously cerebral and dynamically physical you can feel it in your muscles, your belly and bowels.

Its refusal to compromise is sometimes claustrophobia inducing, but this is what lends €˜The Seer€™ its sense of potency and emotional catharsis. The honesty and clarity of this record is rigorous and relentless. It is aggressive, reflective, dually awkward and elegant: an ordeal, but a beautiful one. The cover €“ a snarling/grimacing wolf leering out from the shadows €“ suggests both hunter and hunted. The perfect image, really, of a metaphysical monster in the dark.

Opening track €˜Lunacy€™ sets the tone. An unhinged voice, leeching out of darkness over a wave of percussion and guitar builds inexorably, expansively; drums froth like waves, violins crash against harpsichord. Eventually a chorus of voices begins to chime and soften, and order seems restored, the piece becoming a madrigal. But it€™s merely the calm before the storm of €œlunacy€ being chanted a hundred or so times. It€™s a dark, dense struggle sitting between Aleister Crowley, Led Zeppelin-style paganism and the secretive mysticism of the Knights Templar. In a final Songs Of Experience-period William Blake-style flourish Gira states: €œYour childhood is over.€ Is it ever.

Syncopated drumming and a single panted refrain heralds €˜Mother Of The World€™: a spiralling arabesque of squalling, scissor-sharp guitars and a wailing, scatting Gira. It then shifts into unbridled glam rock: an incongruous Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars jam segueing into the sleaze of €˜Sister Midnight€™-era Iggy Pop. This is the beating heart and breath of the world, the universe, a diabolical Ohm. Gira€™s Gaia is the €œmother of senseless things,€ a disappointing human race, unbalanced in our consumption and living practices.

The title track is aptly grandiose. It€™s the voice of an oracle witnessing the horror and splendour of the divine in real time. It€™s Carlos Castaneda vibrating in the desert on a peyote-fuelled trip, or Samuel Taylor Coleridge€™s opium-induced near-death experiences. It€™s Swans€™ €˜The End€™ or €˜Set The Controls For The Heart Of The Sun€™. It builds and builds, tighter and faster, like a train derailing, an ever-crescendo-ing voice in the background. Around the halfway mark it is absolutely relentless €“ but just when it threatens to become too much, the monstrous becomes elegantly beautiful. A piano coda worthy of a Giallo horror soundtrack diffuses the endless repetition of €œI€™ve seen it all€. It€™s pretty much better than most bands€™ entire albums. However, Nietzsche has a point: €œWhen you gaze long into the abyss, the abyss also gazes into you.€ In other words, I wouldn€™t listen to it on repeat too much.

In its companion piece €˜The Seer Returns€™, the world is literally being torn asunder, perhaps ready for rebirth, a resurrection. Whispers of immortality flutter over its sand torn ribbon of desert sound. Then the record hurtles into batshit-crazy New York-style free jazz territory on €˜93 Ave. B Blues€™. Are those dolphins screaming beside the mild-mannered credit of the €œViolin type instrument€? This takes work. It€™s a punishing point of no return. Yet, for all the hair shirt qualities evident here, these musicians sound as if they€™re having big-time fun.

There are brief moments of relief, such as the Beefheart blues of €˜The Wolf€™,  €˜The Daughter Brings The Water€™ and the haunting, alt-country ballad €˜Song For A Warrior€™. Gira really has to give us a few of these songs. It would be difficult to make it through without them. They€™re the pause on a treacherous alpine pass, a respite from catastrophe.  The beautiful, King Crimson-recalling €˜A Piece Of The Sky€™ is still apocalyptic, however. The €œsun f*cks the dawn€ isn€™t a light hearted observation €“ it€™s redemption, Book of Revelation style.

Abiding influences can be heard throughout, the sinister soulfulness of Howlin€™ Wolf, the experimentalism of Can and the deep psychedelia of early Pink Floyd bubble under the surface. It may seem like spiritual flagellation in song but its actually closer to an aural meditation on the sublime: the danger, terror and beauty of boundlessness.

This struggle with the notion of the divine is heard on €˜The Apostate€™, as a struggle with truth. We may be on €œa ladder to god€ but it€™s definitely an Old Testament deity towards which Gira climbs. The song possesses the preposterous overblown arc of Van der Graaf Generator€™s €˜Man-Erg€™ but also the control of Steve Reich and other great minimalists and modernists.

This is an album that will be spoken about in decade-marking retrospectives as an epic exercise in American gothic. We may feel insignificant in our everyday lives, but music still allows us to bypass the mundane for the metaphysical if we are desperate to experience secular rapture or transcendence. As Gira himself states, €œLike anyone else, I want to experience ecstasy €“ something greater than myself.€ 

We may not fast, we may not meditate or dance ourselves into a trance and we may not imbibe large quantities of drugs (or we may) €“ but maybe we don€™t need to. Listening to this album is a portal allowing us to touch the fleshy membrane of something else. It€™s a Lovecraftian mountain, a Conradian odyssey, a Freidrichian ravine. It leaves you flayed, sensitised. It€™s ancient and authoritative, a coruscating, compelling treatise on creation and destruction. So it goes.

- - -

Words: Anna Wilson

More Spotlight features

Swans€™ €˜To Be Kind€™ is released by Mute on May 12th. See the band live in the UK, supported by Jenny Hval, as follows€

22nd €“ Academy 2, Manchester 23rd €“ Hoult€™s Yard, Newcastle 24th €“ The Arches, Glasgow 25th €“ The Lemon Tree, Aberdeen 27th €“ Brixton Electric, London 28th €“ Trinity Community Arts, Bristol 29th €“ Sub89, Reading 31st €“ Supersonic Festival, Birmingham

1st €“ Cockpit, Leeds 2nd €“ Concorde 2, Brighton

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Stream 'The Seer' via Deezer, below...


1 month ago
Taco Tuesdays

All Day: $4 Well margarita, Corona, $5 1800 shots, $6.50 all other tequilas.

Everyday Special: $12 pitchers. Choice of Mai Tai, Sangria, Margarita, or Long Island.

Longest Happy Hour M-F 10am - 7pm $4.50 Wells, $5 Miller Pitchers, $4.50 Barefoot Wines, $1 off Calls, Premiums, Supremes, $1 off Bottled Beers, $5.50 Mai Tai, Bloody Mary.

Free Acoustic Live Music: 6-9pm JESSE & GJ Pop | Rock | Hawaiian | Originals.

All Request Music | Video night 9pm-close; No cover.

Hula's Cafe by Ginniberries: 3:30pm - 9:30pm

All APRIL food special $8 Tuscan BLT Trio. Tuesday Only Special: $2 Tacos, Taquitos, or Mini Quesadillas! (Excluding holidays & special events: Subject to change)

To suggest that Steve Poltz isn't normal is about as safe a statement as one could make. You would basically require th
13th June 2014
Camelot Lounge, 19 Marrickville Road Marrickville NSW 2204

€˜WALK ON THE WiLDSIDE€™: The music of Lou Reed, Velvet Underground and Iggy Pop,featuring Jeff Duff and Damien Lovelock and an all star cast!

A gutsy and powerful night of very cool music - drawn from the New York and Detroit hot houses that produced the ground-breaking sounds that changed the nature of popular music forever. Camelot celebrates the very best of Lou Reed, Velvet Underground and Iggy Pop€

Join Jeff Duff, Damien Lovelock and a killer band featuring members of Celibate Rifles & Icehouse for a truly rocking Friday night.

Tickets are $25 +bf presale, and $30 on the door
Doors 7.30pm, Show 9.00pm
Table bookings for groups of 8 or more only €“ email us for table reservations AFTER you have prebooked€
Bookings close at 6pm on the day. Tickets may be purchased at the door subject to availability.
Delicious food (including pizza!) available. Fully licensed €“ NO BYO
Please book carefully - as no refunds, credits or exchanges on tix!
All ages welcome (but under 18€s must be accompanied by an adult)

Camelot Lounge, 19 Marrickville Road Marrickville NSW 2204

Oud news! Really really oud news! The World-music event of the year!

2 of the world's foremost Oud virtuosos..
Together for the 1st time...
1 unmissable night!

In Australia to perform with the Jerusalem Project at the SOH, In his only intimate Sydney show It€™s Iraqi/Israeli Oud-player/violinist YAIR DALAL, with his percussionist EREZ MONK!

And...they will be joined by world-renowned Egyptian/Australian ARIA-Award winning duo JOSEPH TAWADROS (Oud) & JAMES TAWADROS (Req)
This night will be a glorious celebration of Middle-Eastern musical traditions, together with extraordinary & inspired improvisation €“ in the hands of four of the most brilliantly exciting exponents of this music in the world today...

Doors €“ 7.00pm, show 8.00pm
Table bookings for groups of 8 or more only €“ email us for table reservations AFTER you have prebooked€
Delicious food (including pizza!) available.
Fully licensed €“ NO BYO Please book carefully €“ as no refunds, credits or exchanges on tix!
All ages welcome (but under 18€s must be accompanied by an adult)

Take Me As I Am: An Evening with Joni MitchellRainee Lyleson embodies Joni Mitchell in her one-woman
1st May 2014
Foundry616 Jazz Club, 616 Harris Street Sydney NSW 2007
Joni Mitchell

Rainee Lyleson embodies Joni Mitchell in her one-woman show about the great singer-songwriter. Joined by some of Sydney's best young musicians in what people are calling "an awe-inspiring tribute to Joni", Rainee weaves music

Waldo Fabian is a bassist, composer, singer and producer who has worked with many outstanding pop, Latin and jazz bands and musicians - including The Party Boys, Floyd Vincent, Disco Montego, Delta Goodrem, Swoop, Anthony Copping and Robin Loau as well as having three solo albums to his credit (Dejame Tocarte, a South American release through Sony, Loco released through Festival/Mushroom records and his latest release Groovy Cumbia is just released).

A founding member of renowned Sydney septet, The catholics, Waldo has many musical accomplishments, while also being a well respected educator who currently lectures at both Macquarie University and the University of New South Wales.

Review of the Waldo Fabian Quintet from the Kinetic Jazz Festival 2013:

"Watching Waldo Fabian work a bass is complete magic. The rich sound, pulsing with Latino sex appeal pulsed dark, thumping and vibrant. If aesthetic was an interesting combination in the previous set, the eroticism of the Latin Jazz vibrating around the walls of the church was a Freudian wet dream. Fabian was soon joined by the other band members and the wild writhing lashings of sound washed over, around and through us. The compulsion to dance was intense, and though Fabian invited the audience to on several occasions, the grim head shaking of all those statues of Jesus won the day, and we remained pulsing in our seats.

It was a great effect and a perfect way to writhe and sweat to the salsa beat. All the musicians were wonderful, Goyer€™s thrashed harmonium licking at the ears while the horns of McIver and Bowd pounded away at the lower chakras. Only the rhythmic power of Rob Cornish€™s drums grasped firmly at the feet and kept the experience earth-bound and real. A stunning set".Lisa Thatcher

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