The infrequently-updated site blog, featuring a range of content including show reviews, musical musings and off-color ramblings on other varied topics.
German Film Fest
Australia (Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Canberra)
November 15-30, 2016
Now in its 15th year, the German Film Fest Australia is a major cultural event organised by the Goethe-Institut, Germany’s cultural institute promoting the study of German abroad and encouraging cultural exchange, and German Films.
The Festival took place at Palace Cinemas in Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Canberra and showcased Germany's thriving filmmaking industry bringing contemporary, classic, award-winning, and internationally acclaimed German- language films with English subtitles to Australia.
Four film industry guests and filmmakers were invited to attend the Australian premieres of their films, participate in talks, panels and Q&A sessions:
Young hopeful Jella Haase attended the Festival.
The young actress who received the European Shooting Star Award at the Berlinale earlier this year presented her most recent films; 4 Kings and Looping.
Stage and screen actor Clemens Schick, known on international terrain for starring in Casino Royale (2006) and Point Break (2015), presented his two films featured in this year’s festival programs; drama 4 Kings, and sci-fi film Hidden Reserves.
Leonie Krippendorff traveled to Australia to present her first award winning feature film Looping at the German Film Fest and former head of corporate affairs with Football Federation Australia and one of the first people to publicly raise concerns about the integrity of FIFA Bonita Mersiades joined the Dirty Games panel discussions in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne to share her insights into the ethics of international sports.
Having been involved with the topic of queer identity and how it translates to the big screen, Jella Haase, Clemens Schick, and Leonie Krippendorff were joined by Australian film industry members for an open talk following the screening of Looping.
In addition to the opening and closing night parties, the Goethe-Institut presented themed events, e.g. the Swiss Soiree (an evening organized in tandem with the Swiss Consulate, which culminated in the screening of Alain Gsponer’s adaption of Johanna Spyn’s classic Heidi and the audience being sustained with delectable Swiss specialties).
A highlight of the German Film Fest was a tribute to one of the most controversial and obsessive filmmakers in German history: Rainer Werner Fassbinder.
The furiously prolific and often erratic iconoclast is commonly held responsible for the resurgence of German cinema in the 1970s, and made 41 feature-length films during his 36 years on this earthly round - The Marriage of Maria Braun, being one of the most prominent ones.
Fassbinder has been heralded as ''the most original talent since Godard” and while his films are undeniably irritating and a little strange; they are also completely alive with one response he never provoked being indifference.
With Ali: Fear Eats the Soul, featuring beloved Brigitte Mira of Drei Damen vom Grill fame, demonstrated what the critic Manny Farber called a ''radical mix of snarl and decoration.''
It would have been fantastic to have Fassbinder grace the German Film Fest in Australia with his paunchy presence, given that in 1977, the year of his greatest international adulation, he on more than one occasion announced, in perfect English, that he didn't speak English, only to then argue with his interpreter about every phrase that was conveyed to the English speaking journalists.
Celebrating Germany’s vibrant underground party scene, a Club Night with a screening of the anarchic, drug filled As We Were Dreaming, followed by AKIZ’s It Follows meets Spring Breakers teen-oriented German horror Der Nachtmahr, which was followed by a silent disco.
Western and Eastern philosophies clashed during the insightful panel discussion following the screening of My Buddha Is Punk, a thoughtful documentary looking at a group of young idealists in Myanmar who combine punk and Buddhist philosophies.
Paying homage to the classics of German film history, the DEFA Retrospective celebrated the work of former East German film studio: The Murderers Are Among Us (1946), the first DEFA production, featuring Hildegard Knef; Divided Heaven (1964), based on Christa Wolf's internationally-renowned novel; The Legend of Paul and Paula (1973), a controversial love story and one of DEFA’s greatest successes; and Coming Out (1989), the only East German film to discuss homosexuality and depict punk culture. In Melbourne the DEFA screenings were introduced by film experts Peter Krausz and Cerise Howard.
The festival was bookended with a collision of music, circus and comedy: Mic Conway and his partner in crime Sean ‘T-Bone‘ Curtis performed an array of idiosyncratic songs live at the Variete? Closing Night in Sydney, and multi-genre band 8 Foot Felix closed the Festival in Melbourne with their whimsical mix of sea shanties, hip-hop and blues.
Photos by KAVV
November 30, 2016
Rare it is that you turn up to a show expecting so little and end up loving it so much.
Bill Bailey, to most people probably known for his starring role in award-winning sitcom Black Books and as a panel show regular on "Never Mind the Buzzcocks," is a comedian, talented musician, writer and actor who – along with other accomplishments - has created his own distinctive brainy brand of stand-up comedy fusing jokes with musical interludes and parodies, extended monologues and borderline surreal tangents.
Apart from being a narrative-driven, seasoned entertainer who wears on his sleeve that the English performance poet John Hegley was a major inspiration in his formative years; Bailey is also an avid advocate of the flora and fauna: Being a patron of the International Animal Rescue, the author of a book on British Birds and the “Nepenthes Bill Bailey” being a pitcher plant named in his honour, are only few examples.
He has also been somewhat stigmatized as a “leftie funnyman” by his home country for taking a political stance when he supported Brown and the Labour Party in 2010 – a derisive label that impacted on his perception by fellow, especially conservative Englishmen and finds his way into his current show numerous times.
His “Larks in Transit” show that brought him to Oceania is an endearing, whimsical free-form and playful compendium of anecdotes, general shenanigans of twenty years as a traveling comedian and both subversive and hilarious musings on the big questions in life – politics, pursuit of happiness, philosophy and how to craft a future techno classic from random noises, play "Smoke on the Water" on cowbells and create a symphonic masterpiece based on an annoying ring tone.
He seamlessly transitions from political jokes via observational humour to spontaneous exchanges spawned by hecklers or surprising (i.e. plainly weird) repartees from audience interactions.
Bailey does not suffer fools gladly, yet abstains from foul lingo or blatant sarcasm.
What makes him compelling is that however absurd his angles might be, they are solidly grounded on moral and intellectual beliefs, which are his raison d’être.
His musical and playful interludes are funny and truly enjoyable on a variety of levels – based on his immense talent as a multi-instrumentalist and his engaging demeanor.
From the moment Bailey enters the stage he is completely in control and has the audience in the palm of his hand:
While his commentary on the political landscape and recent changes in the Anglo-centric world at the beginning of the show was lower hanging fruit yet nonetheless met with overly boisterous laughter, it segued after 20 minutes into a performance that was both heart warming and hilarious.
What elevates Bailey’s show above the merely enjoyable is the fact that he is a skilled communicator and the remarkable musicianship that accompanies his razor sharp wit.
November 24, 2016
Let’s kick it off with some CliffsNotes for the uninitiated, shan’t we:
TED is a nonprofit global community welcoming people from every discipline and culture who seek a deeper understanding of the world, devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less).
TED began in 1984 as a conference where Technology, Entertainment and Design converged, and today does not confine itself to any topics — from science via business to global issues — in more than 100 languages, in a bid to build a clearinghouse of free knowledge.
Meanwhile, in the spirit of ideas worth spreading, independently run TEDx events help share ideas in communities around the world, e.g. via screening of TED Talks videos — or a combination of live presenters and TED Talks videos — to incubate ideas and connections with “think globally, act locally” as the guiding principle.
While following a similar format as the flagship events, TEDxSalon events are planned and coordinated independently, under a free license granted by TED and in a more intimate environment.
Sydney’s November incarnation of TEDxSalon focused on the theme of art and culture and took place in Sydney’s newest suburb, Barangaroo – a nexus of innovation in design, engineering, and sustainability – on the top floor of Tower Two, International Towers.
The evening’s lineup included sculptor Jennifer Mann, known for her “sweetly forged” edible art among other things, whose forensic facial reconstruction recreated the face of a 2000-year-old Egyptian mummy; composer and was followed by sound architect Lawrence English investigating the “politics of perception” and the ways in which we hear sound, delving into the subconscious choices that we make when we listen and explaining his “relational Listening Theory”.
Architect Shaun Carter put forward his plaidoyer for the preservation, adaptation or reuse of brutalist architecture and demonstrating the value of some of Australia’s iconic Brutalist buildings, i.e. Sirius in Sydney’s Rocks.
The evening was adorned by Amrita Hepi, choreographer and dancer, whose 2016 TEDxYouth@Sydney talk encouraged us to be confident and comfortable in our bodies and whose body of work focuses on intersectionality.
With the bang of percussion, the proceedings were rounded out with live music from acclaimed soloist and chamber musician Claire Edwards, the “sorceress of percussion”, and a post-event chance to enjoy sunset drinks and discussion with fellow TEDx community members.
A well-curated, presented – seasoned Australian radio and TV presenter and interviewer Fenella Kernebone MCed the event in a masterfully engaging fashion - calibrated evening with an interesting and eclectic mix of presentations which whets one’s appetite for the next incarnation.
Photos by KAVV
November 25, 2016
It has been more than three decades years since The Cult settled on their current moniker. What started off inspired and spawned by the wake of punk rock as a psychedelic goth band, met morphed and broke mainstream in the late 1980s with a good ole fashioned Rick Rubin infused hard rock tinge, survived myriad of line-up changes and a few hiatuses and recently culminated in stadium scale tours alongside Guns ’n Roses, has not only become a staple in the canon of rock music but it has created a genre of its own.
Fronted by the remaining original members, charismatic and cosmically inclined front man Ian Astbury, and his lead guitarist Billy Duffy and touring in support of their tenth album Hidden City, The Cult proved that they are relevant as ever, powering through an energetic set list that did not rest on the laurels of the past but incorporated songs from each stage of their longstanding career with highlights from their Electric and Love albums.
The intentionally simplistic stage set up focused the attention on what The Cult does best: ignoring fashions and trends, concentrating on earthy riffs and hard-rocking songs and creating a vibe.
Duffy’s haunting riffage emitted from his signature Les Pauls was complemented by Astbury’s spiritual, focal point, and zenned out yet strong vocal performance, tambourine in hand conjuring his alchemy.
The chemistry between both was palpable and served as the foundation for their musical dialogue with Duffy’s accentuating and reparteeing with his guitar to the cues from Astbury’s verve.
Much to the delight of the largely middle-aged crowd, whose fist pumping and reveling in the exuberance of their youth and the fact that no song went unappreciated showed that they are longtime followers.
Photos by KAVV
ThinkInc: An evening with Dr. Lisa Randall
November 19, 2016
What is science about?
What is it meant for?
A way of thinking?
A body of knowledge?
How did we end up here?
Why are we here?
Who is to blame?
Truths. Subjective and objective.
From an incandescent mass we have originated and into a frozen mass we shall return.
Is the world we live in a three-dimensional spatial region within a system of “warped” extra dimensions?
Would that explain the relative weakness of gravity?
Successful science tells the story of “how” culminating in the “why.”
Cue Dr. Lisa Randall.
Dr. Lisa Randall works on writing, revising and editing that story.
A story in progress.
Randall has dedicated her life to finding unexplored corners by probing the abstract, unfazed by uncertainties.
A quest fueled by passionate curiosity that propels her down the rabbit hole, off to explore a world of extra dimensions, intriguing particles and elusive dark matter.
Earning her Bachelors in physics and PhD in theoretical particle physics from Harvard University in 1983 and 1987 respectively (where since 2001 she has held professorship after professorial stints at MIT and Princeton University), Dr. Randall has become one of the leading scientific researchers and academics in particle physics and cosmology, working towards uncovering a ‘fifth dimension’ of our physical world via the Randall-Sundrum Model (1999).
Apart from being an accomplished author, more worldly appearances in the realm of pop culture have seen her opposite Jon Stewart on The Daily Show, appeared on Charlie Rose, the TV talk show, and a cameo on the sitcom The Big Bang Theory and ultimately a listing in TIME Magazine’s "100 Most Influential People" in 2007.
In person and in conversation during ThinkInc’s “An evening with,” Dr. Randall is refreshingly blunt, detached and matter of fact when she divulges about the astounding interconnectedness of the universe and disconnectedness of human beings.
Her at times steely expression is testament to the life of a theoretical physicist who traverses the abyss between the unknown and known, guided by intuition, stoically walking the thin line between making hypotheses that change our outlook on life or trailblazing wrongs that still help steer the way to the truth. She is an advocate of keeping an open mind and well aware that some of her more unorthodox ideas will be labeled as a “stretch” by her peers.
Without jargon or mathematics, she steers us through centuries of sometimes-tortuous astronomical history and is particularly illuminating when briefing us on the cosmic objects that sometimes land on planet Earth with unpleasant consequences.
Randall’s story draws on a wide variety of disciplines, including biology, paleontology, meteorology and mathematics.
Yet by far the most compelling part of her is when she brings together all the strands of her theories, describes its genesis and looks to the future.
She is at ease with the unknown and explains her work of creative computational cosmology with carefully drawn analogies to the uninitiated.
A lucid explainer, street-wise and informal.
To the point.
Someone who has far bigger fish to fry than discussing the tedious subject of being a “woman in science” or feeling an urge to prove herself as a pioneer at every given occasion, something her male counterparts would not have to waste time on.
The event had something to offer to both – the initiated subject matter experts as well as the inquisitive general member of member of the public, which is something that has become a trademark of ThinkInc’s events.
Photos by KAVV
20th Japanese Film Festival Sydney, AUS November 17-27 The Japanese Film Festival (JFF) is presented by The Japan Foundation, Sydney. The JFF started in 1997, 100 years after the first ... read more
Deftones Hordern Pavilion Sydney, AUS November 12, 2016 The ever evolving entity known as “Deftones” has been largely intact for close to three decades and is heralded as one of the ... read more
Made Fashion show Carriageworks Sydney, AUS November 11-13, 2016 In essence MADE is a community and creative hub that originated in New York City. It was incarnated with guidance and oversight ... read more
Destroyer 666 Max Watts Sydney, AUS November 5, 2016 Max Watts, the name of the venue of tonight’s black and thrash metal proceedings, is a play of the term ... read more
Dandy Warhols Luna Park Sydney, AUS November 4, 2016 “Detached garage rock cool with effervescent pop melodies” sounds like a pretty astute description of the Dandy Warhols’ sound. Touring Australia ... read more
Katatonia @ Shepherd's Bush Empire w/ VOLA, Agent Fresco Emotion is the name of the game tonight, with Sweden’s Katatonia bringing their resonant doom to the London masses not once, but ... read more
Rites of Passage Tattoo Festival Olympic Park Sydney, AUS October 14-16, 2016 Traditionally, a rite of passage is a celebration of the passage, which occurs when an individual leaves one ... read more
Kooza, Cirque du Soleil Entertainment Quarter Sydney, AUS October 6, 2016 Kooza first premiered in 2007 in Montreal, Quebec, Canada where circus conglomerate Cirque du Soleil, the largest theatrical producer on ... read more
Totally Unicorn Newtown Social Club Sydney, AUS September 29, 2016 Do not let the name deter you: You want to see Totally Unicorn in all of their unbridled beauty before ... read more
Sounds of the Suburbs Festival Wilbar Lane Cronulla, Sydney September 25, 2016 Cronulla, the “place of the pink seashells," is a beachside suburb, about 30 kilometers south of the Sydney ... read more
Apocalyptica, We Lost the Sea Metro Theatre Australia, AUS September 24,2016 Rumor has it that Ritchie Blackmore tried to get into mastering the cello, the attention-getter among instruments – try ... read more
Descendents, Modern Life Is War, Color TV First Avenue Minneapolis, MN September 15, 2016 The only people luckier than those who get to see the Descendents are those who get ... read more
An evening with Steve Wozniak Australian Technology Park Sydney, Australia August 28, 2016 Think Inc. is a boundary pushing, Australia-based initiative dedicated to the promotion of intellectual discourse by bringing ... read more
The Beards Metro Theatre Sydney, Australia July 2, 2016 The concept of The Beards is simple – an Australian self-proclaimed “novelty band” from Adelaide that exclusively performs songs around ... read more
Parkway Drive Entertainment Centre Sutherland, Australia June 26, 2016 Parkway Drive is glam metalcore. “Metal” as in classic metal and anthemic choruses. “Core” as in simple, direct, angry, to the ... read more
We Lost The Sea Oxford Art Factory Sydney, Australia June 25, 2016 Vita contemplativa. The beauty of reveling in sadness. Saudade. A fond remembrance and the hope of recovering ... read more
Dark Mofo 2016 Hobart, Tasmania Australia June 2016 Dark Mofo is the winter equivalent to MONA FOMA Festival – an outdoor extension of David Walsh’s subversive Disneyland, the home of sex ... read more
Steel Panther Luna Park Sydney, Australia June 17, 2016 They are the biggest glam rock band that never was from 1985, in 2016. Steel Panther has become bigger than any ... read more
Björk Digital Carriageworks Sydney, Australia June 4, 2016 The term “third place” was coined by Ray Oldenburg, an American urban sociologist, most prominently known for his elaborations on the importance ... read more
Les Butcherettes Summit Music Hall Denver, CO July 17, 2015 When Melvins rolled into town in July of 2015, they of course put on a great show. It seemed after ... read more
An evening with Edward Snowden Big Top, Luna Park Sydney, Australia May 28, 2016 Moral ambiguity. Conflicting values. The need to keep people safe versus concerns about ... read more
This is Hip Hop Festival Hordern Pavilion Sydney, Australia May 27, 2016 Hot tub hip-hop time machine: Featuring a nostalgic ‘90s focused line-up with all protagonists having had a ... read more
Royal Headache at Reverse Charges festival Bald Face Stag Hotel Sydney, Australia May 13, 2016 The monolithic water tower among the mainly Portuguese commercial offerings and vis-à-vis from the Masonic ... read more
Kadavar Manning Bar Sydney, Australia April 29, 2016 Kadavar are a Teutonic Teestubenrock band from the Grandfatherland, Berlin. Accomplished retro in sound, appearance, and vintage equipment – Kadavar looks like they ... read more
Brian Posehn Factory Theatre Sydney, Australia April 19, 2016 Humour and comedy is subjective. What one person finds funny another might cringe at. Cue E.B. White. Analysing comedy is ... read more
Iggy Pop Post Pop Depression Tour Ellie Caulkins Opera House Denver, Colorado April 2, 2016 It was a night of anticipation. Iggy Pop was returning to Denver. In an ... read more
Murder by Death The Echoplex Hollywood, CA March 25th, 2016 Murder by Death are currently in the middle of one final tour before settling down and working on their next ... read more
Madonna Allphones Arena Sydney, AUS March 19, 2016 Clickbait is a disease. A virus spreading from self-professed arbiters of taste under the veneer of information. According to the narrative of ... read more
Peter Case Atwood's Tavern Cambridge, MA March 05, 2016 Atwood's has a rich history of showcasing a mix of diverse artists that have stood the test of time and ... read more
Sunn O))) Manning Bar Sydney, AUS March 15, 2016 Byron J. Scullin's bass bath performance installation, which was staged in steel structured, cold storage rooms at the Tasmanian port at ... read more
The Jesus and the Mary Chain Spectrum Now festival Sydney, AUS March 5, 2016 Blasphemous name - check! Leather-clad insolence - check! Tumultuous, short live performances - check! ... read more
High on Fire Manning Bar Sydney, AUS February 21, 2016 The Swiss label Off the Disk Records was founded by Thomas Mölch and Erich Keller (Fear of God fame, breaker ... read more
Electric Gardens Festival (feat. Fatboy Slim) Centennial Park Sydney, AUS January 23, 2016 Damian Gelle and Anton Marmot met in London in the '90s over a mutual love of music ... read more
The Security Project The Center for the Arts Natick December 2015 When I was first informed that this show was being put together I immediately started to recruit some of ... read more
As fans many draw a close relationship with their favorite artists. For whatever reason a personal statement shared within this realm seems to strike many in a very serious way. ... read more
Agent Orange Factory Theatre Sydney, AUS January 3, 2016 The Factory is a purpose built, dedicated live entertainment venue. Comprised of differently sized performance spaces it hosts an array of ... read more
El Vez Newtown Social Club Sydney, AUS December 26, 2015 1977. The Germs play their first show ever opening for The Zeros, followed by The Weirdos. ... read more
In the month leading up to the holiday, it's often difficult to escape the near-continual assault of schmaltzy Christmas music. It seems virtually every artist of note in the last ... read more
The Misfits Manning Bar Sydney, AUS December 12, 2015 The Misfits. One of the most iconic punk bands. These days they are fronted by bassist Jerry Only, framed by ... read more
With the full line-ups unveiled for Soundwave 2016 in Australia, Scene Point Blank has put together a quick primer to help prepare. Without further adeiu, SPB's Bands to See at Soundwave ... read more
MONO Newtown Social Club Sydney, AUS December 7, 2015 "Mesmerizing" and "cinematic" are the adjectives that come to mind when one is asked to describe the epic, vast instrumental ... read more
The Ghost Inside “Locals Only” Altar Bar Pittsburgh, PA November 6, 2015 Los Angeles-based melodic hardcore band The Ghost Inside dropped their latest album, ‘Dear Youth,’ last year on ... read more
Though usually panned by the majority of film critics – the mainstream ones anyway- horror films seem to be a Hollywood mainstay that just won't go away. This is hardly ... read more
Made in 1957, director Roger Corman's typically efficient low-budget sci-fi flick Not of This Earth came to be regarded as a minor genre classic in the years to come – and ... read more
In the midst of the opening credits sequence for Italian director Dario Argento's 1975 Profondo Rosso (a.k.a. Deep Red), the viewer is treated to a truncated scene appearing to show ... read more
Titus Andronicus Brighton Music Hall, Boston, MA October 15, 2015 Like any show I’m excited about, I was really scared of disappointment while driving to this Boston Titus Andronicus ... read more
Run The Jewels First Avenue Minneapolis, MN October 23, 2015 “I’ll apologize now. If you are wearing glasses, you might want to put those away. If you hate being slammed ... read more
Sick Of It All Manning Bar Sydney October 10, 2015 In this very real world, good does not drive out evil. Evil does not drive out good. But the ... read more
Lucero Lee's Palace Torononto, Ontario October 15, 2015 In support of their new album All a Man Should Do, Lucero have been pulling double duty on their latest tour and ... read more
Paradise Lost w/Tribulation and Lucifer October 4th @ KOKO, London Hype surrounding a band is either indicative of said band being incredibly talented and worth your time, or, on the ... read more
Algiers Brighton Music Hall Boston, MA September 17, 2015 Photos by Lindsay Corry; more photos here Algiers self-titled debut this year blew me away with its raw, layered sound and politically ... read more
THE TOP FIVE ACTS ON THE RIOT FEST UNDERCARD Last year I started my Riot Fest coverage by getting kicked in the head and ended it with a man drinking whisky ... read more
Earlier this week I was browsing my twitter feed when I noticed the a number of posts using the hashtag #ImagineOctober20th . The tweets were Canadians speculating on what the ... read more
NOFX, Lagwagon, Dillinger Four, Strung Out, Swingin' Utters, The Flatliners, Masked Intruder, toyGuitar, Bad Cop/Bad Cop The Myth Maplewood, MN August 28, 2015 No review, see photo gallery ... read more
Jon Spencer Blues Explosion Manning Bar Sydney August 7, 2015 As Karl Marx said, the relationship between a band and the context it is playing in is metabolic. Both ... read more
“We were standing in the middle of the square. There were snipers on the roof. Riot cops all around. People had already been killed. And she turned to me and ... read more
The So So Glos, Desaparecidos Paradise Rock Club Boston, MA August 4, 2015 I went for Desaparecidos - Conor Oberst’s (of Bright Eyes fame) hardcore band - who put out ... read more
Radioactivity, Birthday Suits, Butcher’s Union Triple Rock Social Club Minneapolis, MN July 22, 2015 It’s nice to live in a city where some great out of town bands have ... read more
Ex Hex, Tweens, Pink Mink Triple Rock Social Club Minneapolis, MN July 20, 2015 I go to a lot of shows. Sometimes it’s nice to be surprised, and that’s what ... read more
Tex Perkins and the Dark Horses Oxford Art Factory Sydney, AUS July 19, 2015 Pizzazz. Omph. Charisma. If your music depends entirely on that, the dependency is too great. ... read more
Picture this: You’re looking at the front of a stage. Above you a man in a suit made entirely of muscles walks on in a shroud of fog. From far ... read more
Babes in Toyland Rock the Garden Minneapolis, MN June 21, 2015 It’s difficult for me to write about Babes in Toyland without sounding at least a little bit gushy. Like ... read more
Belle and Sebastian Rock the Garden Minneapolis, MN June 20th, 2015 As a hot and humid day began its turn towards much needed cooler temperatures, Scotland’s baroque pop sweethearts ... read more
Shonen Knife, CJ Ramone, L’Assassins Amsterdam Bar & Hall St. Paul, MN June 10, 2015 Amsterdam is a venue that’s not new by any means, but still feels to ... read more
White Lung 7th St. Entry Minneapolis, MN June 11, 2015 Abandoning my beloved NBA Finals, I bounced somewhere during the third quarter and rushed downtown to catch White Lung. Upon ... read more
Boris Newtown Social Club Sydney, AUS May 29, 2015 And then there was Boris. The Japanese unikum named after a Melvins song. Cue labels that span the spectrum ... read more
Art is Masturbation. It’s a sensational, attention-grabbing statement for sure and one that presents an idea that many artists and people who create have probably toyed with at one point ... read more
Fuckface Unstoppable Manning Bar Sydney, AUS May 7, 2015 It’s about 6 years ago and I am sitting on the balcony of a stilted house right by Cambodia’s Tonlé ... read more
Mastodon Big Top Luna Park Sydney, AUS March 28, 2015 The red volcanic soil in the surrounding region of the city of Tequila is particularly well suited to the ... read more
Steel Panther, Slash (feat. Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators) Hordern Pavilion Sydney, AUS February 24, 2015 Satire is a lesson, parody is a game: Steel Panther are seasoned performers ... read more
Now that was a band that I did not really think I would hear from again. Named after the description of the Elder God, Azathoth, in H.P. Lovecraft’s cosmos, this ... read more
Bombay Sweets, Pink Mink, Swami John & The Blind Shake Turf Club St. Paul, MN February 19, 2015 No review, see photo gallery below. read more
Shonen Knife @ The Factory Theatre Sydney, AUS January 24, 2015 Grin-inducing Japanese energetic, upbeat and catchy all-girl pop punk entertainment with the ingredients of a classic rock show: Shonen Knife ... read more
How does one go to a show of a band that has been around consistently for longer that you have been alive and not have expectations? This along with possible ... read more
Tex Perkins and the Dark Horses @ The Enmore Theatre Sydney, AUS November 23, 2014 The Newtown area was part of the land of the Cadigal band of the Eora people, who ranged across ... read more
The Dwarves @ The Bald Faced Stag Hotel Sydney, AUS October 8, 2015 Parramatta Road is the east-west artery of metropolitan Sydney. On its 23 kilometers long strip, the road is ... read more
While it may be a bit grandiose to title a tour "Black Metal Warfare" or really any kind of warfare after witnessing a show on the tour in question it ... read more
It seems as though we are in a period of time where we read of a famous musician dying almost daily, this tour was supposed to have Ian McLagan in ... read more
Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds State Theatre Sydney, AUS December 11, 2014 "All that has dark sounds has duende, that mysterious power that everyone feels but no philosopher ... read more
Run The Jewels, Ratking The Fine Line Music Café Minneapolis, MN November 20, 2014 Earlier this week I attended an artist’s talk/writer’s workshop-type thing here in Minneapolis. Kevin Bowe, who’s ... read more
The Gaslight Anthem, Against Me!, Cory Brannan First Avenue Minneapolis, MN October 15, 2014 It had been many a year since I’d seen Against Me! and I hadn’t seen Gaslight ... read more
The Pixies, Royal Blood State Theatre Minneapolis, MN October 11, 2014 There’s a lot that can be said about The Pixies and their 2014 tour—well, about any tour of ... read more
Lethbridge is a suburb of sorts to Calgary to give you, the reader an idea of the towns size. Usually the Enmax (where this show took place) is host to ... read more
Unless you've been living under a rock, you know Arcade Fire are currently shaking up North America with an enchanting spectacle of a tour. I caught the tour in Los ... read more
Too Many Rappers: July 2014 7/18/14 - Minneapolis, MN Commuting earlier than usual this morning means it’s nice and cool. I ride by a kid who’s wearing an old 3rd ... read more
Guided By Voices, Crystal Stilts Irving Plaza New York, NY July 11, 2014 Photo courtesy of Gerald McBoing-Boing See Guided By Voices before you die. ... read more
Agalloch, Jex Thoth Irving Plaza New York, NY June 30, 2014 Agalloch were one of the first metal bands to combine black/doom’s monsoon of carnage with ambient, ... read more
Eyehategod, Ringworm, Enabler, Shitkill Club Europa Brooklyn, New York June 7, 2014 This past weekend, the mega-festival Governors Ball hit hard in NYC. People from all ... read more
Boston Calling Music Festival 2014 City Hall Plaza in Boston, MA May 23-25 2014 (All concert photos courtesy of Mike Diskin) Over Memorial Day weekend, I experienced the ... read more
As my friend David and I were being hurled around the mosh pit at the Terminal 5 show of legendary post-rock ensemble Mogwai, I thought back to how earlier ... read more
Chuck Ragan, White Buffalo, Jonny Two BagsTriple Rock Social ClubMinneapolis, MNApril 15, 2014 It had been many a year since I’d seen Chuck Ragan perform, and that was with his ... read more
Written by Eli ZegerPhotos by Hadar Sagi From Indian Lakes From Indian Lakes is a group of five pretty boys who make poppy emo music, but with post-rock riffs ... read more
Russian Circles, KEN Mode, Inter Arma at Underground Arts, Philadelphia, 2/19/14 Last week, Chicago's Russian Circles touched down in Philadelphia as a part of their current tour with Ontario's KEN ... read more
Too Many Rappers: Fall Roundup The Minnehaha Creek is just one of the many places I do my thinking. I mean, as a human being with a fully functional brain, ... read more
HIM, Caspian Southampton GuildhallSouthampton, Hampshire, UKOctober 28, 2013 It has been three years since HIM last played on the shores of the UK, with a lot of uncertainty whether they ... read more
Beacons Festival 2013 North Yorkshire August 16-18, 2013 Beacons Festival is a pretty novel addition to the British concert scene. Taking place in Skipton (Lancs > Yorks) away from the ... read more
Elliott Smith at his last-ever NYC show, January 29th 2003. He killed himself that October.Photo: Alexis I have this friend, let's call her L. We "met" on a music messageboard ... read more
October 12, 2013 Calgary, Alberta @ THE GOLDEN AGE CLUB After a few hiccups in the booking process (venue issues, etc.) the day finally came for Terror to come back ... read more
A couple weeks ago, I went on a trip to the middle of the country to see my favorite band, AFI, play shows up and down the midwest. Some of ... read more
A couple weeks ago, I went on a trip to the middle of the country to see my favorite band, AFI, play shows up and down the midwest. Some ... read more
FLAG, T.S.O.L., Cerbral Ballzy, Off WithTheir Heads First Avenue Minneapolis, MN September 13, 2013 After spending a few hours in a sports bar down the street, where my compadres and ... read more
Caïna, Hordes, Barshasketh The Unicorn London, UK September 6 2013 We've been talking a lot about the rebirth of Caïna of late and we'll soon have a review of the new ... read more
It's that time once again! The fabled Progressive Music Awards are tomorrow night, and I've spent the last few weeks getting myself familiar with the best of the best in ... read more
Holy crap, has this summer been hot or what? Like, hot as in temperature hot. Like, literally hot. Which might be confusing now that Merriam-Webster and Oxford dictionaries as well ... read more
The NINES Festival Devens, MA I must admit I was anxious to attend this festival when I heard the lineup featured none other than Shuggie Otis. I have had ... read more
It's a tray in a hotel room, fairly unremarkable when put back to basics. The tray is littered with cigarettes, beer bottles, a can of coke, a crumpled McDonald's ... read more
Die Kruezen, Hepa/Titus, Mudhoney, Gay Witch Abortion, Negative Approach, Honky, Melvins Grumpys Downtown Minneapolis, MN July 20, 2013 It’s a shame that Amphetamine Reptile Records quit putting out new ... read more
The Postal Service are making their rounds again in support in the Deluxe Edition re-release of their 2003 album, Give Up. Scene Point Blank had a chance to check'em out ... read more
Dave Hause @ Cabooze Plaza Social Distortion, Cheap Time, Dave HauseCabooze PlazaMinneapolis, MNJuly 2, 2013 Dave Hause is a busy guy. I swear I get an email a week here ... read more
Well here we are into the first part of May, and I'm wondering where the fuck March and April went. I apologize for dropping the F bomb on you in ... read more
Minneapolis, MN, 4/20/13 Despite being fairly worn out from the previous evening—one which had me visiting three different venues, seeing six different bands, and imbibing at least twice as many ... read more
The Men 7th St Entry Minneapolis, MN June 12, 2013 On just the third night of their North American tour, Brooklyn-based band The Men landed in Minneapolis for a packed-in ... read more
(This review contains copious spoilers: if you intend to read the novel yourself, proceed with caution. We're posting it as a blog since it's not strictly music-related, despite being written by ... read more
Tegan and Sara were appreciated by Albany, NY last month when they came to the Upstate Concert Hall, the first time they've visited since the duo released So Jealous, which ... read more
Anthrax, Exodus, High On Fire, Municipal Waste, Holy Grail First Avenue Minneapolis, MN April 4th, 2013 Continuing their recent-ish trend of performing classic albums in their entirety, Anthrax rolled into ... read more
In the days following Adam Yauch’s passing in May of last year, many of us nostalgia-stricken fans were searching for words to express how deeply saddened we were by not ... read more
February 28th, 2013 As I write this, I am overlooking the Sea of Cortez on the Baja Peninsula from the balcony of my room at a vacation resort outside of ... read more
This hip-hop train just keeps on rolling. And although I would like to think I’m fully on board, it feels more like I’m running beside it, trying to keep up, ... read more
Well, here we are, a whole month into the New Year, and as usual January was spent catching up on all the music I slept on last year. Normally the ... read more
The tiny Black Heart in Camden holds court to an evening of droned out sludge, traditional heavy doom, and more English black metal than you can shake a stick at ... read more
The Unicorn is suffering from a severe lack of air con tonight, the tension in the air made all the palpable by the insane levels of heat and the anticipation ... read more
The view that Scene Point Blank has been afforded for tonight’s performance is beautiful, and the sea of heads below on the floor is all the more astonishing seen from ... read more
Minus the Bear and Cursive have been on tour for the past few months in support of their 2012 releases. Minus the Bear put out Infinity Overhead in August, while ... read more
Murder by Death have just begun to tour for their new album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, by supporting pop-punk troop, Say Anything. It's an interesting combo and Murder by Death ... read more
It's rare that you attend a show that feels like it has the weight of history riding on it, but seeing At The Drive-In play what is likely to be ... read more
Fun. are back on the road selling out shows again. This time however, they didn't just sell out one show, but 3 nights at the illustrious Wiltern Theater in Los ... read more
Murder by Death are preparing the release of their 6th studio album, Bitter Drink, Bitter Moon, while celebrating the 10-year anniversary of their first LP, Like The Exorcist, but More ... read more
Well, it's high time that progressive music got a good, high-ish-profile awards show, and now, thanks to Prog Magazine, we have one. The bad news is that it stlil shows ... read more
Japandroids 7th St. Entry Minneapolis, MN July 7, 2012 When a touring band starts their set by saying, “It feels like we’re back home, Minneapolis”, the natural instinct is to go ... read more
LeBron James is Four Titles and a Rape Allegation Away From Becoming Kobe Bryant: How the Miami Heat Winning is Bad for Basketball Now I know that we here at ... read more
Royal Headache, The Arrivals, Condominium Triple Rock Social Club Minneapolis, MN June 9, 2012 It was with some intrigue and, admittedly, mostly trepidation that I made my way to ... read more
Hot Water Music just released their new album, Exister, and recently spent a couple nights in So-Cal to warm up the new songs before they head out to Europe this ... read more
There are a few cultural constants we all come to understand depending on where we come from, and growing up in Vermont is no exception. Amongst other things, many develop ... read more
Once again, fun. are on the road and Scene Point Blank was there to catch another great show. The band's playing the clubs in support of their sophomore record, Some ... read more
I had the pleasure of attending the 5th annual Musink Fest in Costa Mesa, CA--a festival blending live music and an appreciation for tattoo art--hosted by LA Ink star, Kat ... read more
Cursive recently began touring in support of their 7th studio album, I Am Gemini. I had the privilege of catching their show in Pomona, CA where they played a great ... read more
I know we don't usually review websites here at Scene Point Blank, but we just couldn't help ourselves after our editor in chief Loren received the following request: Hi,I'm Pheiné, ... read more
The piece ended rather suddenly, almost completely without warning. The conductor held his position for a moment, then slowly brought his arms down. The theater erupted with applause as the ... read more
Saves the Day and Bayside decided to team up this Fall to deliver a thrilling show fans of either could appreciate. Joining them on the tour are I Am ... read more
The World/Inferno Friendship Society recently started their US tour supporting their new album, The Anarchy and The Ecstasy, with sci-fi-psychobilly (psy-fi?) band, The Phenomenauts. You could not ask for a ... read more
Last Thursday, The Purple Turtle in London's infamous Camden held what is likely to be the most fun headlining show I've seen this year. Cannabis Corpse, fresh off the back ... read more
Motley Crue and Poison live, Target Center, Mpls, MN, 6/24/11 The New York Dolls opened the show but I couldn’t tell you damn thing about them. The girlfriend and I literally ... read more
Read Midwest Hell Fest Wrapup-Day 1 here. Despite intermittent sleep, I wake up feeling fairly well rested. If memory serves correctly, I’m somewhere deep within the confines of enemy territory—Wisconsin. ... read more
After losing a year of my life behind the wheel, I finally arrive at my destination: Kimberly, Wisconsin. Upon walking into the hotel—and I use this term loosely—lobby, I am ... read more
After a long wait and two opening acts—the clock struck 9:30 and Fun took the stage, while the boys and girls cheered. Suddenly, the beautiful overture to “Be Calm” opens ... read more
200 bands, seemingly as many beers, and only three nights. Where do I begin my recap? My stomach is still shrunken from not eating right, and I continue to drink ... read more
Let me start off by saying that I love all three of these bands, and I have been looking forward to this show since I got confirmed to photograph it. ... read more
Portugal. the Man is a Portland, Oregon based experimental indie-rock band, fronted by native Alaskan John Gourley. If you haven’t heard the story about this up and coming group, Gourley’s ... read more
I don't know how many of you have heard of Moving Mountains. A band from Westchester, NY, they are fresh off a tour with Thursday, about to embark on a ... read more
I hit the 500 review mark last week with my Narrows review. That's a lot of reviews. Sometimes I get burnt out with all the stuff coming through, especially when ... read more
So I just got done watching the season finale of Scrubs. It was Zach Braff's final episode. His character is saying goodbye, but I think they gave it a nice ... read more
Two months ago I had high hopes for the Cleveland Browns. Now I am left with a fairly mediocre season. We shall see how the remainder plays out. I'm looking ... read more
Might as well has this here too, it's been three years since I wrote it. I think it still holds true. Space for rent. Your ad here. My name is ... read more
I forgot to post this prior to week one, but given the outcome of that game, maybe it was for the best. Anyway, the Browns season is underway and that ... read more
Over the weekend a band that was very dear to my heart announced their sudden breakup and played their final show. I first became acquainted with Life Long Tragedy over ... read more
I was yelled at again for writing this, and since I am applying for a job at a local newspaper, I don't really want this hanging over my head. Sorry ... read more
Last night my band played with Souvenir's Young America, City of Ships, and Monolith at Siren Records in Doylestown, PA; it was a fun time all the bands played real ... read more
If you didn't hear the news, Roy Scheider died this week at the age of 75. Jaws is one of my all-time favorite films. I am extremely sad. I fully ... read more
They could make me look not so good to certain people. Nobody read them anyways. read more
So, back when Cave In's Until Your Heart Stops dropped on the hardcore masses several years back, I had the chance of catching the band at Middlesex County Community College. ... read more
I broke out my CD for the Gehenna- The War of the Sons of Light and the Sons of Darkness and saw something that always made me smile. Allow me ... read more
Hello. Some of you might remember (or have participated in) my experiment over the summer collecting people's wishes on this page. I got over 160 entries and published them all ... read more
Imagine being in this kid's place... Interview w/ Henry Rollins read more
Even though it is just a joke, I'd still vote for Stephen Colbert for president before I'd vote for anyone else for running, outside of the longshots that have no ... read more
Dear Atreyu, Please stop. No seriously, please stop...now. - File has been removed. It was up for a month. It was the band's cover of Faith No More's "Epic." - ... read more
I woke up today at 5:30am to get my ass to the store to open it for what I figured would be another boring Sunday at work. Work has been ... read more
So the man that founded Factory Records and helped Joy Division become as huge as they did through hype died today. Not alot of people repect what Wilson did for ... read more
Yesterday during rush hour traffic on 35W the bridge than spans the mighty Mississippi fell. There was no earthquake. There was no terrorist attack. The bridge just buckled and toppled ... read more
Part 1: Mission Statement, Introduction, and first terribly nostalgic musing A number of years ago, a few friends of mine, myself, and people who would quickly become my friends used ... read more
Shook Ones, for the uninitiated, are a melodic hardcore band from Seattle, Washington. Their debut LP, Sixteen, had some serious Kid Dynamite aping going on, without a doubt, but it ... read more
Remember when the idea of Friday the 13th used to be scary? Maybe its because I am a grown adult, but there just does not seem to be any horror ... read more
You have no idea how wonderful it is to be finally typing these words. Not that my work is done: a SPB staffer's work is never done! But seriously: typing ... read more
Looking for the SPB logo? You can download it in a range of styles and colours here:
Click anywhere outside this dialog to close it, or press escape.