Festival News

The 2011 Raggamuffin Festival has been cancelled in Australia after five years. The reggae festival’s acts included UB40, Billy Ocean and Marvin Priest. The organisers will refund ticket and will be focusing on New Zealand’s leg of the festival instead.

More acts have been announced for Harvest, with many of them already rumoured for sometime. They are Mogwai, Tv on the Radio, Clap Your Hands, Say Yeah and Seekae. Kevin Devine has also joined the line-up after the Soundwave Revolution disaster.

The clashes can and will make you cry.

It’s Big Day Out rumour time again. We’ve already had a bunch of rumours that proved to be false (Eminem, Blink 182) as well as the usual culprits (Radiohead, David Bowie, Elvis) but now a new source has emerged.

@BigDayOutSpy has been posting clues on twitter about who will be playing the festival. So far five acts have been “announced.” Best to take these with the biggest grain of salt you can find:

The Vaccines

Josh Pyke

Boy & Bear

Florence and the Machine

The Decemberists

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Good Night Owl

When was the last time you heard music that blew you away?

For me it was last week when I received Goodnight Owl’s EP in the mail from their manager and music blogger Sabi.  As soon as I checked the letterbox, I ran upstairs, put it on and was amazed at just how good it is.

Goodnight Owl play lush folk music with electronic beats layered underneath. The result is something like a cross between Josh Pyke and The Postal Service but with a distinctly Australian flavour.

Goodnight Owl  is composed of main songwriter Eddie Alexander who moved from Central Australia to Melbourne, Joe Walker who provides all of the electronic work and Bella Walker on piano. All three members were friends in Alice Springs  and met up back in Melbourne.

Apparently Eddie Alexander used songwriting as a way to overcome the homesickness and other emotions that came from living away from friends and family and it shows in the heart-breaking yet hopeful nature of the music and lyrics.

Although acoustic instruments are mainly used on the EP, the use of electronic glitches though out the record blend everything together in a subtle and interesting way. This is particularly noticeable on the opener and standout track Maps & Compasses, which is probably the most electronic track on the EP.

Verandah is a delicate song about childhood memories in Alice Springs and I’m sure that anybody, regardless of where they’re from could relate to some of it. The final track Stale Bread comes all too quickly and is the least electronic track which draws attention to the lyrics. It is definitely one of the EP’s highlights and leaves the listener wanting more.

The only track that let’s the EP down is She Kept A Secret, which starts off well but tends to drag on towards the end, especially after repeated listens.

There aren’t many bands like Goodnight Owl, particularly from Australia. These guys should be huge, and in time, I’m sure they will be.

9/10

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White Album Concert

Cover songs are always a bit risky. While they are great when they work, they can be disasterous if they don’t, especially when it comes to covers of particualy well known and well loved songs.

So god knows why a bunch of Aussie artists have decided to cover The Beatle’s White Album in it’s enterity at one gig. Chris Cheny(The Living End),  Tim Rogers(You Am I), Josh Pyke and Phil Jamieson(Grinspoon)  will be backed by a 17 peice band and perfom at Hamer Hall on August 4, QPAC on August 6 and at the Sydney Opera House on the 7th and 8th of August.

I have a sneaking suspision that this will all come off sounding  like bad karaoke however I hope that I’m wrong. Especially since tickets are selling for $129 each.

What do you reckon? Is it a good idea or an expensive excuse for karoke?