Monday, November 30, 2009

Packwood (formerly Bear and I)- free Bear & I EP

Packwood (Formerly Bear & I) is Bayden Hine, a young man who resides most of the time in Bathurst and part of his time in Sydney. Within in the last few months he has released his first EP (self-titled as Bear & I) on his myspace page as a free download.


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Packwood's EP revolves around the ideology of love and Packwood's struggle to understand his place in the universe; the music however, elicits romantic envisions of flowery fields full of animals running about freely.

‘Sloan Great Wall’ is named so after the largest observable structure within the universe-it is a track embodying the dawn of a new day of Packwood's utopia, a place where the world wakes up with nature and without the complexities of the modern world; Bear & I reflects on what is most beautiful to him in life. The transition from the sole restless thoughts of the banjo to the orchestra expressing its celebration of life is symbolic of sunrise and the energy it brings with it.

‘Longyearbyen’ is the second track, named after a small town close to the North Pole but is rather Packwood’s imaginary haven, his Utopia observing the daily activities of the natural world where he finds comfort and solitude within and freely sings to the living inhabitants of this place.

‘Western Spiral Arm of the Milky Way’ is a string-instrument piece, wading through Packwood’s thoughts of Earth’s location within the universe and his pondering to his existence within this universe.

Packwood’s thoughts peeled away from his Utopia where he finds himself back down to Earth where in ‘Alone At Midnight’ and ‘Quickly Speak Celanesi, I Fear The Sun is Dying!’ he sings about his experiences of lust, the challenges of love and his inability to find comfort and understanding in the real world. The latter track is quickly paced and has a farewell feeling, a sense that the sun is setting leading to the end of another day but metaphorically that our world is heading the wrong direction.

This EP lets us into the romantic mind of Packwood and his olden-day values but how he has a tug-o-war between his idyllic world and reality. Upon first listen my eyes were watery and I escaped into Packwood's Utopia of a place we wish still existed.

[MP3] Packwood (Bear & I)- Longyearbyen

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Coco Repose

Today I visited the most darling shop in Sydney, it is called Coco Repose.
Situated on Fitzroy St in Surry Hills it sells the most beautiful dresses and cardigans from the late 1800s-1960s (but sometimes they allow themselves to stock the creme de la creme of clothing from the 1970s). Forget about all of those op shops that say they sell 'vintage' clothing, this store has good quality clothing from the eras without the mothballs and old dusty smell.



While I was in the store I totally lost myself, I was immersed in the intricate, feminine and generally stunning things in there! I didn't even notice the traffic outside and ended up drawing towards a beautiful Oroton scarf for $15 and a very sweet vintage pill-box hat for $49. I decided that I should only treat myself once today so I bought the hat, if the scarf is there next time I go then it's meant to be! I'm definitely going back, it's just one of those places that made me feel so welcome and fed my craving for true vintage beauties!



I was also lucky enough today to receive some lovely black leather gloves from my Grandma. Oh life is sweet.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Ragged & Ecstatic



Did you hear Yves Klein Blue went to Hollywood to record their new album? 'Tis true! The Brisbane foursome have been on the circuit for a few years now but have released and re-released EPs, the last one being 'Yves Klein Blue Draw Attention To Themselves' included in it the well-known 'Polka' that turned up all over the Triple J airwaves and on a car commercial too.

That background aside, they have just released their debut album 'Ragged & Ecstatic", a 12-track composition of some wailing vocals, diverse range of instruments as well as the basis of drum, guitar and bass; the album surprising exhibits versatility of the band captured under the bright lights of Hollywood. The first track 'Make Up Your Mind' does not tastefully start off the album for me personally, I find the repeptitive loop of piano and guitar riffs build up pressure in my head like something's running around in there. Skip, next song.
YKB begin to hit a better note with me when it comes around to 'Getting Wise' and 'Digital Love'; 'Getting Wise' has a catchy melody and is one of those kind of songs where you bring out the invisible piano as well as skipping on the spot. 'Digital Love' is a track that feels darker than the others but that's what I like about it, it's separated itself from the other fluffier songs and has delved into unpredictable territory with sensual undertones.

YKB manage to slip in an acoustic and more down-tone mood mid-way through the album but the boys re-emerge with their ska-type of energy in 'Summer Sheets'- a charming song about young love with trumpets reminiscent of the '10 Things I Hate About You Soundtrack' but it's an optimistic track that really lifts the album. The lyrics are amusing and clever: "..when we make love it's like a great conversation where we always end up agreeing".
'Polka' is like the celebrity of the album, everyone know it and everyone has heard it more times than their fingers and thumbs can count..but there is good reason to it, it's a cleverly structured and constantly teases you when it appears to build up and gives a sudden drop, then another build up. It is infectiously a track to dance to and with the ripping guitars it's easy to dance like you're possessed. 'Polka' has all the highs and lows that it should, which makes it a stand out from the more straight forward tracks. The closing track 'Gin Sling' has a country twist on it and offers a laid-back last impression of the album.

I admit, I've had to listen to this album four times in order to write something constructive and I have begun to like and differentiate certain tracks. There are plenty of danceable tracks and a generous variation in flavours-this is not the sort of album you would say all the songs "sound the same". Overall YKB have assembled an unpredictable album together and the future is looking bright, this album proves that after "Polka's" success they are not a one-trick pony.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

SAVE FBI + CREATE.

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This weekend I have been saving fbi radio by supporting them and going to their gigs. Last night they had a gig at the Metro with bands such as Dappled Cities, Decoder Ring, Muscles, Midnight Juggernauts, SPOD etc and there was a merch table with a bunch of CDs for sale (all sold on Etch n Sketch label)that were running at $5. By the end of the night they were being sold by gold coin donation so a few bucks got me:
*Black Lips-"Good Bad Not Evil"
*Fields-"Everything Last Winter"
*Amiina-"Kurr"
*The Brunettes-"Structure & Cosmetics"


So far I've had a quick listen and I've always liked Amiina so 'Kurr' is a thumbs up, but I had a listen to Fields and I like their sound too, although I will need a further listen before I write a review.

AND FOR TODAY I decided I was going to 'CREATE' through drawing. This drawing isn't as good as my last, but I just could not get the eye on the left right! I have changed it since I took this photo but it still looks wrong. Bahhhh!

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Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Twine & Brown Paper.

Last night I made a mixtape (in cd form haha) for my boyfriend. The mix includes songs from Australian indie bands because he's more in touch with indie bands from overseas.
I burned the cd and then wrote the tracklisting on some paper from a Nepalese note book and wrapped it with twine. Then I put the tracklisting in a carboard box that was finished with red ribbon and a metal trinket:
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To follow I wrapped the box in some brown paper and finished it with more twine and wrote on the back on a photo of us and slipped it under the twine. I also grabbed some chamomile from my backyard and put that in too:
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Now I should probably do some study for my exam. Eep!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

The Bookworm

Today I am avoiding studying for my last exam..but after searching around for artwork or something to amuse me or conjure some sort of emotion I have found this:



I love the light beaming from the ceiling and how he is completely immersed in the book, with another book in his other hand waiting to be explored. What a beautiful piece of art! The Bookworm by Carl Spitweg (1850, oil on canvas).

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Disorder.

I think he had a girl at every port..

Picture by Darren V.

Monday, June 15, 2009

CREATE..every day.

Last week I had a huge whinge to my boyfriend after wanting to make him something for our '6th month' but then I came to the realisation that I am neither good at drawing, painting or writing songs. I can make skirts (but he won't want one) and I've put my creativity into cooking before so that was a no-go zone. The day after my whinge and tears of frustration he gave me this:


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Now instead of whinging that I don't think that I have creative skills now everyday I will create something..err..creative! Today is day 4 and this is what i created:

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It's a guy (modelled off Ned Kelly) with paper aeroplanes in his beard. Originally I was going to make his beard out of blue swallows with their wings spread out but I'm not good at drawing (yet!)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

I'm ready to be heartbroken.


Tell me why I am absolutely besotted with Camera Obscura's new song 'French Navy' from their latest album "My Maudlin Career"?
Watching the videoclip makes me feel ever more infatuated..perhaps it's because I'm in love..
The part of the song that gets me the most is the chorus when she sings:

"I wanted to control it, but love I couldn't hold it"


where the violins play blissfully. Sigh. This kind of music gets me out of bed in the morning.

...The same applies to some new songs by Red Riders after the departure of Adrien Deutsch last year. The riders have come up with some new songs for the album 'Drown In Colour' and I think the two I have heard so far are fantabulous!
Listen to 'You've Got A Lot Of Nerve' & 'Ordinary' at their myspace. The videoclip for 'YGALON' is to die for!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Antique Delight!

To start off I will just tell you this: the women in my family go bezerk over antiques. My Mother, my Grandmother, my Aunty..and now me. Over the past few years I've embraced a more feminine style of dress, so I now wear the floral dresses my Mum always wished for me to try on. I enjoy taking pieces of a fashion from another era or another country and adding it to my style. Along with this change in me (which co-occured with a change in my life direction- doing a Speech Pathology degree) I have also come to appreciate and adore antiques. I'm not referring to antiques like old scrubbing brushes..but antique jewellery, plates, cups & saucers, cutlery etc. I like that objects so old can last in beautiful condition and that they have a story even, even if you know nothing about the antique except that it is so-and-so years old.

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A few days ago when I went to my Grandma's house she called me into her room where she said she had something to give to me. She started off with the modesties of "I'm not sure whether you'd like it or not.." and she pulled out a red suede blazer from her wardrobe: I knew the blazer wasn't for me because my Grandma is a 5' size 6. But attached to the blazer was a wonderful locket/brooch that she detached and put into my hand. I have never received an antique from my family before so this was truly something that amazed me. All I know is that it's most likely 100-150years old, during the Victorian rule. I already have worn it twice in the past three days although I am scared to lose it, but I love wearing it with the knowledge it has a history, it has been passed through two continents already to my knowledge, perhaps even more!

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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

My shoulders need warming.

Today I went on a single-woman adventure to hunt out either a cute coat, jacket or knitted jumper (of the snowflake or deer design kind). But before I embarked on such an adventure I went to Tresors in the Strand Arcade inbetween Pitt St & George St; it is the most darling place. It is the size of a large walk in wardrobe and is crammed with antique delights. I bought my mum an 1830's plate from there for mother's day with the floral design in the centre of it *drool*. They have such beautiful trinkets and deceased peoples' paraphernalia there. I could spend a very long time in there pulling out every thing and observing. It is a bit pricy but definitely worth it if you love florals, antiques, vintage things (not much clothing there)or just lovely objects in general.

After that I went to multiple second hand stores, weaving in and out of the streets of Surry Hills. Firstly I noticed there was a very strong scent of spices on Crown St and I could not detect what the origin of the scent was! But soon enough my salivary glands became excited but my legs led me to shopping.

I strolled into Zoo Emporium hoping to find a cute knitted jumper (remember the one I mentioned with deers and snow flakes?) but I was unlucky..there was a nice warm houndstooth knitted cardigan (oh it was a tad Chanel) but it was far too big for me and it has lots of yellow stains on it so I thought it best to leave it to the moths to dismantle. Then onto the adjacent stores, Puff 'n' Stuff has some lovely things but the women there were a bit snobby. I don't get that, why be snobby for? I guess they'd only be nice to me if I were a model or in a band..

I popped into Minty Meets Munt , I was welcomed by the booming psychedelic guitar reverb of Jimi Hendrix and the woman who assisting me was an absolute darl (nudge nudge Puff'n' Stuff) and we managed to have a great conversation and I found an adorable black tulip skirt from there. It's now on my "I want" list! Whisked myself into Cream On Crown hoping they'd have something to warm me up in winter but there was a sad rack of..well..not very much..apart from a rack full of faux fur jackets. Faux fur or fur jackets for that matter wouldn't suit me, so I had to pass on that..but I was advised that they were getting a whole lot of stock in today/tomorrow so I guess I was a tad early.

I did some more walking and headed to Paddington, this time I smelled spices too but there was a much more sweeter tone to the spices. One again I nearly drooled. My main aim was to visit the Alannah Hill store, I never get to go in there so I thought today was my day..then I see they are undergoing renevations until June 20th. Absolute bummer but I turned the corner to Stellino where I ended up buying a faux leather jacket (YES I KNOW I CONFORMED BUT WHEN I NEED SOMETHING WARM ON MY ARMS AND IM TOO PICKY WITH COATS AND CARDIGANS AREN'T ENOUGH WHAT ELSE COULD I DO??)
I opted for the faux leather because my mum recently turned vegetarian, so I kinda would feel a little guilty. My thoughts: The animals are staying warm (& alive!) if i choose faux leather and I'm keeping warm at the same time Plus, I'm pretty sure the leather bomber jacket look will be out pretty soon so why spend a lot?

Then I headed home and had a snooze on the bus. zzzzzz. I found no coats I liked, I had no luck with the cute knitted jumper but i did find a jacket. So I guess it was an ok effort, although next time I'll make sure I have a second opinion (or third!) because I am so indecisive.....



GIGS THIS WEEKEND!
*Friday- Red Riders @ The Annandale (that reminds me..I still haven't bought a ticket *gulp* better do that pronto.
*Saturday- Ghoul are playing with Made In Japan and We Say Bamboulee @ Spectrum. I luuurve Ghoul. They have given me an audible-phenomenon-experience that I have never had before. The best way for me to describe it is like when you dive into a pool and the sound just dampens and spreads out and you just feel absolute calmness. Ok, that wasn't a good way to describe it..but it was an awesome experience!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Friday, the first day of the weekend.

So I have no uni and no work on Fridays. Except today I was meant to sit at home and do study - reason being I have an exam next week. But outside was beautiful and it wasn't freezing like it has been the past week, so I indulged in the sun and ate home made lasagne. Mmmm. But that was all after I put purple semi-permanent dye in my hair. You can only see it in the sun.

And I am learning how to tame my HOLGA.


Melbourne holga shot

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The evolution of Starky.

Back in the day I used to have an auditory romance with a Sydney band named Starky,and when I say back in the day I mean a few years ago..YES they were conceived in 1999 (according to wiki!), YES they produced a few EPs followed by a self-titled LP with an awesome cover and songs with great hooks resonating the feelings of breaking hearts. YES their single "Is This How It Ends" was nominated for an ARIA. YES the band began writing and recording a new album before the it was decided Starky was to be no more. The band's last show was when they supported Lost Valentinos on the 17 Deaths Single Tour in Mid 2007 and that was the end of that. But I continued to wear my Starky shirt and reminisce dancing at their gigs.

Starky


Then in October 2008 we were informed that Beau Cassidy and Jonathon Wilson of Starky (+ another musician) had gone on to form a new band under the name of Sad Waters. The name is rather reflective of what you hear- the music and vocals are melancholic, spacey, tranquil, allow you to transition into another place- it's is easy to lose yourself in it. When I listen to their tracks up on myspace, specifically "Domino" it makes me imagine videoclips of slow-motion movement of things falling..I can imagine water falling and rebounding off the surface into other beads of water.
Their most-played track "Listen Lovers" is my favourite although it makes me sit and mull over feelings of hurt in the past. There is a change in the direction of the song and it lifts up a notch drawing out the feelings of having to let someone go and knowing that it ends in liberation. I am excited for the day that Sad Waters announce that they are going to play a gig, I'm extremely curious as to what the experience will be like.

Sad Waters


But that's not the only evolution the band has undergone, Beau Cassidy and Nick Neal have recently formed another band with drummer Graeme Trewin (ex-Peabody and The City Lights member)named Dead Beats Club. "Let Me Wander" is a completely different sound to that of Sad Waters, instead projecting a full bodied British rock sound with garage tones and structure that slightly remind me of The Straight Arrows, but more polished and with less punk.
I could go on and describe what the rest of their music sounds like and I could compare it some more but why don't you just go listen yourself!
Either way, I like what the Starky ex-members have come up with and I hope they just continue to grow in these new bands and play a rooftop or warehouse gig in the near future because, to be honest, Sydney local music hasn't been that exciting as of late.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Oh dear, Dear Patrick.

Patrick Wolf in 2007

Patrick Wolf has been a bit busy as of late, recording for his upcoming LP called "The Bachelor" and in the mean time he has directed, along with a Director of Photography, a new video to suit the single from the new LP. This single is titled 'Vulture' and our dearest Patrick who wears cute little shorts with cute little shirts and ties and school boy apparel whilst being all glittered up has gone over to the 'dark' side. Some may say he has evolved as an artist. Some may say he has ruined his former image. He has embraced his personal sexual experiences and has appeared in the videoclip dressed in leather bondage-style. His hair is still blonde though. I could only watch one minute of the video before I felt that I couldn't watch anymore. I didn't even get around to listening to what the new music was like.

Patrick Wolf before


The monochrome video is injected with shadows and quick shot-cutting techniques to make the video as a white quite intense and as if we are viewing a collection of black and white intimate photos. I have a feeling a lot of his fans won't be able to take this approach very well at all. But then again from what I've seen on his myspace page a lot of people are embracing it too (whether they are gay or straight). Yes, everyone knows he is homosexual and everyone accepts it..but this side of his sexuality is difficult for a lot of people to swallow, especially with this transformation from a gorgeous gypsy boy to this gothic sexual imagery.

Some people saw this coming, but I guess with sexuality there usually comes complexity that is hidden behind closed doors. So obviously Patrick didn't really reveal this side of him earlier (although his videoclip for 'Tristan' was pretty dark..) but I guess he feels comfortable now to reveal it to the world to some peoples pleasure and some peoples surprise. Oh how controversial!

If you want to see his new "image" you will find a photo or two in his photos album on his myspace

Monday, January 19, 2009

Illustrations: Billy Clare.



Billy Clare is an artist based in Sydney that I met through our common love for a Melbourne band over a year ago. Through her social networking site I was able to be introduced to the works of Billy Clare Reitzenstein. She produces illustrations that are lively, dreamy and intriguing, with the simplicity of artline pens and watercolour pencils to aide her truly gorgeous designs.

Billy Clare has only recently displayed a selection of her work in her own blog for the public to observe (and drool) over:
Billy Clare Reitzenstein


Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Is the sun inside?

I'll tell you something..

I can't stand when musicians wear sunglasses when they are playing on stage, indoors at nighttime. Talk about pretentious.

(E.g.:Oh Dr. Dog, why did you have to disappoint me?


Dr. Dog @ Beach Rd Hotel