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Even Witches Like To Go Out Dancing
October 4, 2011 7:25 PM   Subscribe

There's a new crop of Australian bands that take inspiration from old blues, but twist the music in a strange fashion. The trend may have started with CW Stoneking (Jungle Blues, Love Me Or Die), who channeled the old bluesmen despite being a young man. Its continued on to Sydney's Snowdroppers, who started out as a house band for burlesque shows and kept that dirty sensibility up with songs like Rosemary , Do The Stomp, and their signature tune Good Drugs, Bad Women (lyrics NSW). Frequent Snowdroppers touring partners Gay Paris add a Southern horror twist (House Fire In the Origami District, My First Wife? She Was A Foxqueen! ) and an antic stage energy. Some of the bands relay on gimmicks, like Adelaide's The Beards, who sing about how you should consider having sex with a bearded man and point out that if your dad doesn't have a beard, you've got two moms. The Beards recently performed at the World Beard and Mustache Championships. Horror-country-rockers Graveyard Train have picked up the torch dropped when Sydney psychobilly masters Zombie Ghost Train (Graveyard Queen) disbanded. Graveyard Train tunes like Mummy, Ballad for Beelzebub , Tall Shadow and Dead Folk Dance combine cheerful Misfits horror theming with stompy country. Most of the singers from this loose scene are joining forces in Sydney this week to pay tribute to Tom Waits.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn (32 comments total) 40 users marked this as a favorite

 
This is great. Thanks, LiB.

Also: lyrics New South Wales?
posted by koeselitz at 7:38 PM on October 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


This is great. Thanks, LiB.

Also: lyrics New South Wales?


Ha. Er, lyrics Not Safe For Work. Also lyrics Really Sexist.

All these bands are amazing live. There's also the similar but related 'festival folk' with guys like Crooked Fiddle Band, Darth Vegas, and Barons of Tang but that's another post.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 7:39 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


I feel it would be remiss if I didn't chime in with Best Rookie Beard award for Jesse Lawrance from Goodtime Medicine Band (Melb, Aus). Their blues style is more traditional but his beard might just save the world.

(This is a post about beards, right?)
posted by Trivia Newton John at 7:41 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Great post, thanks for the new music!
posted by dave78981 at 7:52 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Does Machine Gun Fellatio fit in here anywhere? (also amazing post)
posted by PinkMoose at 7:56 PM on October 4, 2011


Does Machine Gun Fellatio fit in here anywhere? (also amazing post)

They're a bit before my time, and I think I know Christa Hughes enough that posting about them would be skirting the guidelines.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 7:59 PM on October 4, 2011


Not Australian, but The Coral dip into this kind of... shanty/blues thing sometimes.

Skeleton Key
posted by cmoj at 8:07 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Warning: "The Beards" are fucking idiots whose one pathetic joke wore out long ago. Freedom of speech is no excuse for being a lame, unfunny national embarrassment and hopefully there's a law out there somewhere that can take care of these wankers
posted by moorooka at 8:09 PM on October 4, 2011


Doubly-related item: The guy from Graveyard Train has shaved his beard off. I am bereft.
posted by notionoriety at 8:11 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]




Warning: "The Beards" are fucking idiots whose one pathetic joke wore out long ago. Freedom of speech is no excuse for being a lame, unfunny national embarrassment and hopefully there's a law out there somewhere that can take care of these wankers


The readiness to call people 'wankers' may be why, as Bernard Zuel claims, that Australia is lacking rockstars.

Johnny Wishbone from the Snowdroppers might not be the nicest human being in the world but if you've got stage presence it really doesn't matter.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 8:15 PM on October 4, 2011


The Good Ship from Brisbane probably deserves a mention here.
posted by moorooka at 8:17 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


The Beards aren't wankers as in "rock-star" wankers, they are just plain wankers.
posted by moorooka at 8:19 PM on October 4, 2011


Also, I want to marry the lead singer of the snowdroppers
posted by PinkMoose at 8:24 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


As a straight male, I would settle for a quick fling with him.

I swear he was in Underbelly: Razor.

And yes, the Snowdroppers do dress like that all the time, even when they're just hanging out.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 8:25 PM on October 4, 2011


In my sleepy state, I thought you had somehow worked Gravy Train!!! into this lineage. You did not- Graveyard Train are clearly not Gravy Train!!!. Now things make sense again. Thanks!
posted by filthy light thief at 8:44 PM on October 4, 2011


Since 1957.
posted by unliteral at 8:47 PM on October 4, 2011


CW Stoneking plays seven nation army is good and I like it.
posted by lrobertjones at 8:55 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Just want to put my hand up to say "great post" and also "Machine Gun Fellatio are wankers".
posted by tumid dahlia at 9:22 PM on October 4, 2011


Lovecraft in Brooklyn. I fucking hate you. And I love you. I'm going to go have another beer to try and figure that out.
posted by Jimbob at 9:24 PM on October 4, 2011 [3 favorites]


Machine Gun Fellatio put on a good show. When I saw them. (Flinders University, Adelaide, 1999). I had no idea they were still a going concern.
posted by Jimbob at 9:26 PM on October 4, 2011


Mate it's bloody half-two, if you aren't on the rum by now I don't know what's wrong with you. Beer is a breakfast drink.
posted by tumid dahlia at 9:26 PM on October 4, 2011 [2 favorites]


Just want to put my hand up to say "great post" and also "Machine Gun Fellatio are wankers".

Christa Hughes is one of the nicest people I've met....
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:26 PM on October 4, 2011


Chit Chat Von Loopinstab now hosts many programs on the adult-oriented Australian cable music channel, MusicMAX.

This is the weirdest shit, and why I can't watch MusicMAX.
posted by Jimbob at 9:26 PM on October 4, 2011 [1 favorite]


Snowdroppers just put a new song up for download

warning: image very Not Safe For Work
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:28 PM on October 4, 2011


Christa Hughes is one of the nicest people I've met....

Yeah well she's not the whole band and I once met Terry Pratchett and he's a knobhead too!
posted by tumid dahlia at 9:28 PM on October 4, 2011


The Cruel Sea might relate if we're being nostalgic for the 90s
posted by moorooka at 10:00 PM on October 4, 2011


Is there a small record label which most of these guys cluster round? And perhaps a sampler CD I could buy which offers a rough round-up of the whole scene?

Years ago in Sydney, I saw a manic little ska band called The Porkers who were great. Are they still around?
posted by Paul Slade at 12:47 AM on October 5, 2011 [2 favorites]


And then there's the phenomenon of the Blues Hunk, as evident in the John Butler Trio, which successfully got a generation of mildly hippyish teenaged girls listening to the kind of music their dads would have been more into.
posted by acb at 2:14 AM on October 5, 2011


I don't see Blueshammer on this list, Fail.
posted by Potomac Avenue at 4:18 AM on October 5, 2011


Years ago in Sydney, I saw a manic little ska band called The Porkers who were great. Are they still around?

I think Peter Porker still plays. If you like Aussie ska, keep an eye on Chopdog Promotions.

And then there's the phenomenon of the Blues Hunk, as evident in the John Butler Trio, which successfully got a generation of mildly hippyish teenaged girls listening to the kind of music their dads would have been more into.

Ugh.
I was at Peats Ridge Festival, and after 3 days of hippy folk blues roots Snowdroppers were a breath of fresh air.

I think Beasts of Bourbon might connect to this.

Is there a small record label which most of these guys cluster round? And perhaps a sampler CD I could buy which offers a rough round-up of the whole scene?

I think there was a CD sampler at one of the Blood Sweat & Beers mini-fests at the Annandale. Most of the records are self-released, or on indie labels.
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 3:30 PM on October 5, 2011


LiB, well done.
posted by Sutekh at 5:52 AM on October 6, 2011


here is a photo of the man from the Snowdroppers and I think someone from Gay Paris with The Wiggles

WTF

WTF

WTF
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 11:40 PM on October 11, 2011


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