Interview by Leo Abbs
What is the title of your cd and where did the name come from?
Everyone, Everywhere is searching for something…
How many tracks and why did you decide to go with that number?
There are 7 tracks on the EP, we wanted to try and get a broad description of the 7 Years sound so therefore we chose songs that have variety and can show different aspects of our sound. The songs are quite short so we also wanted to make sure people get their moneys worth from the EP.
Favourite track on the disc?
Each member of 7 Years has their own favorite but I think the two crowd favorites are Always and From Above. These songs have a lot of energy and catchy melodies.
Where did you record and how did the process go for the band?
The EP was recorded between two studios. We laid the drums down at Satellite studios with Gavin Tempany and laid the rest at Gav’s home studio. The recording process was very time consuming as Gav was often touring with Little Birdy and Eskimo Joe. The recording itself went smoothly and it was a good learning curve for us. We started the recording in February and sent it off to mastering around August, now were just looking forward to getting it out there.
How long has the band been together?
The current line up has been together just under 2 years. We were all in different bands before this and through the trusty X-Press magazine 7 Years formed in February 2005.
Best part about being in a band/ worst part of being in a band?
Well I guess the worst part about being in a band is that it can get very frustrating. Lack of venues in Perth doesn’t help and I guess in Perth a lot of people would prefer to check out cover bands than to head down to see some original talent. The best part though far outweighs the bad and that would be the people we’ve met on this short journey. We’ve met some great people and some awesome bands and that makes it all worth it.
Five bands that describe the influences of 7 Years?
Green Day, Foo Fighters, Amberlin, The Beatles and Blink 182.
I have to ask – where did the band name come from?
We don’t really know actually, it was just something that came out and we all thought it sounded pretty cool. I guess a lot of things relate to 7 Years as in 7 Years bad luck, 7 Years itch… just seemed to fit I guess.
Favourite Perth bands?
Our local favorite bands would have to include Calerway, Gyroscope, Last Years Hero, Anime Fire, Ellipsis and rock band like The Reserves, Lucid and Why Wednesday. The scene at the moment is thriving and there are so many good bands out there.
What is the writing process of 7 years?
The majority of the songwriting is done by Jez and Matt and they bring the skeleton of the songs to rehearsals and they’re worked on form there. Once the basics are done, the band puts in the fills and drums till we have a finished product.
The launch is held this Saturday Night – 23rd December 2006, and supported by Fallen Away, Lucid and Ellipsis. $8 entry or $15 with an EP.
Punter Profile – Benny Mayhem
When did you first start going to see local Perth bands?
The first local Perth band I saw, and remember, was Murphy’s Law, featuring Chris and Courtney Murphy, circa 1994. I saw these guys in Albany, then at the Raffles, and then bumped into them again on New Years Eve 1996/97. They’re a cover band, of course, so perhaps they don’t count.
Later on, there were some Beaverloop encounters, and Bordello and Turnstyle, but I didn’t hit the ground running until about 2000. I was quickly drawn to Hydey punk gigs because the music was better, and the people had more fun and were less self-important… or were self-important in a more entertaining way, perhaps…
Favourite local releases for 2006?
Well personally it was good to be able to put the Painkillers’ CD out, and The Homicides, they both did a very good job and I was glad my label [Blazing Strumpet Records] was involved. To be honest I haven’t bought that many local CDs this year—I’m constantly seeing bands live, and CDs don’t always do that justice, so it’s not the hugest priority for me.
The Unfair Dismissal demo had a great song on it—“Nine To Five”—and I gave the Battletruk / Pillar Of Hope split EP a spin recently and enjoyed it, especially the Battletruk stuff. Chainsaw Hookers demo has a great song too, “Nazi Warewolf Attack”. I also picked up Extortion’s first CD. Anything that’s recorded by Al Smith at Bergerk! Studios seems to come out sounding fresh and energetic.
Are you involved in the music scene besides going to gigs?
Yeah man. Organising shows, putting out records, playing in two bands (occasionally with other projects on the side), and recently I’ve been doing a bit of spruiking as MC Bender. Good times. I’ve also been known to do the CDDJ thing… plus I like writing sometimes—I used to have an online zine but it was too esoteric or something.
Which venues do you like and why?
The Hyde Park Hotel because it feels like home, and like a party—stages and full PAs are really quite unnecessary. The Castle on a good night can be fantastic—it depends on who is promoting, playing, and attending. Mojo’s though is my find of the year—no tap beer but enjoyable surroundings—it’s one of the only venues left where you can smoke, drink, and play pool all at once.
Who are your favourite local bands and why?
The Homicides—like I said in Project Mayhem’s recent Drum interview, they’re just such a phenomenon that brought all these extremely entertaining people together and gave us something in common. Catchy hooks, raw as fuck, extreme personalities, they’re the real deal. They define “punk rock” without tying themselves too much to it.
Also, going back a bit, Jed Whitey—they used to put on the most awesome live shows. Loud, fast, overtly wanky rock moves—presented with more than a touch of parody for guaranteed good times. Fourstroke were great too—a bit more mature, perhaps, or at least more intricate in the stoner rock vein. These two were certainly the best rock’n’roll bands in town at the time (circa 2000/2001).
What is the best gig you’ve ever seen?
The Hard-Ons’ 21st anniversary re-union tour last year at Amplifier. Just an amazing night, I was off my head!
Three Orange Whips’ last show, again at Amplifier. I think this was 2002. Shirts off!
Motorhead at Claremont Showgrounds last year.
Six Ft Hick Sunday show at the Hydey in 2001. It was one of my first Hydey gigs and they were just so damn entertaining—they got down to their boxers and one of them was lying on the bar pouring tomato sauce all over himself.
What do you drink at gigs?
Primarily beer, or bourbon and coke, but I’ve been known to dabble in vodka and Red Bull, sambucca, tequila, and champagne.
What’s the funniest thing you’ve seen on stage?
I have no idea. The Magoos always used to make me laugh because they were Indonesian Muslims singing quite unashamedly about killing us all. It was absurd. Mike Van Es (The Crackers) was always extremely entertaining—one of those fiercely intelligent drunks who found a good deal of righteousness in the concept of fucking oneself up. A total bohemian… like Winston Churchill, or one of those poets from years ago… Luke Marinovich from Jed Whitey used to get up to all kinds of rock star hijinks including stealing people’s beer and spraying it all over everybody. Chris Brown from Amputee Porn Stars gave me an amusing three months as well.
Are there any new local bands you have discovered lately?
Bands that have impressed me this year include:
Surprise Sex Attack—80’s punk traditionalists who have taken bits from here and there to create a fresh sound in an old style.
Battletruk—when a band features the best members of Negative Reply and PC Thug, plus guys from Miles Away etc.; you know you’re in for some ripping hardcore.
Unfair Dismissal—I hear a rumour that they have called it a day, but these guys mix skate punk with enough aggression and theatrics to blow any competition off the stage.
Fear Of Comedy—they’re a whole new take on the whole post-punk/proto-goth thing, as if The Damned were being covered by Elvis Presley tripping hard on LSD while he was watching some 50’s B Grade horror flick. Leith’s an extremely entertaining and committed frontman, with an unbelievable set of pipes on him. He blows me away.
Additionally… I try to keep my finger on the pulse of what’s happening at a grass-roots level. There have been some cool bands playing at the 20 Minutes Of Fame, which I’ve been judging recently. There’s loads of crap of course, but it’s nice to find someone genuinely impressive such as The Trevallys.
Also I’m really impressed with the way Sex Panther have taken off recently, they’re focussed but they’re still having a really good time. Slim Pickins impressed me too with some pretty damn good rock’n’roll, I haven’t seen them for a few months though. Also how’s OkiOki? They play Nintendo music! Fantastic.
Why support local original music? Why not cover bands?
I think the main reason behind both the “support local music” and “support local original music” mantras is the idea that people should look outside the square, and that what is popular is not necessarily the best music around. Too many people look to the US, UK, or even Melbourne to provide them with entertainment; but the truth is that there are many great bands here in our own backyard. However, the idea that all Perth bands are somehow inherently better or worthy of support just because they are local is retarded—it is the excuse that sub-par soft-metal bands use to justify their mediocore existence.
Likewise, cover bands are just regurgitating the same old crap. I understand why those guys do it—to make a living out of music—but personally I’d prefer to have to do my day job to pay the bills and keep my rock’n’roll fun—and do things my way. I don’t see anything inherently wrong with covers so long as the band believe in the songs, and are doing what they want to, not just going through the motions for the sake of the publican.
Autumn Isles – Beautiful Pantomine
Review by Dylan McArdle
When I think of Indi-pop in Perth, bands such as (my personal favourites) The Bank Holidays, Institut Polaire or (long since defunct) Turnstyle usually spring to mind. Fellow indi-poppers The Autumn Isles have been around for a little while and are also trying to make an name for themselves with the realise of their debut EP ‘A Beautiful Pantomime’.
It’s quite a short disc at only 12 minutes long, but in true indi-pop tradition it’s very catchy from the first bar of (the intro-esque tack) ‘Light Rolls In’ (which has a very 60’s feel to me). The title track ‘Beautiful Pantomime’ will no doubt draw comparisons to The Bank Holidays, but I don’t care. I love the guitar, Alex’s vocals and Russ’ drumming. And that sing-along chorus too…if only I knew all the words to the song!
‘Slave’ is another catchy tune with a slightly faster tempo and electric organ-style keyboards. Again Russell Loasby’s dffrumming is put to good effect and makes it a kinda ‘toe tapping’ sonrrg.
The final track ‘For Clairvoyance You Need A Dry Clear Day’ closes the short CD just like ‘Light Rolls In’ opens it. It’s an instrumental track and (with the organs) it wouldn’t feel out of place being played an church or a cathedral. It’s a shame there’s not another track like the previous two as I guess I’d just had my appetite wet listening to them.
I’m not sure I could describe this CD as a beautiful pantomime; it’s more a beautiful introduction to a pantomime in the works and I look forward to hearing more from The Autumn Isles in the future.
Review by Dylan McArdle
WA’s longest running all ages battle of the bands, Gozzy Rock, returns in 2007, celebrating 20 years of promoting local original music and giving artists the platform to launch their careers in the Western Australian Music Industry and beyond.
WHAT IS GOZZY ROCK?
Gozzy Rock is the City of Gosnells annual contemporary music competition promoting original music from emerging bands all over Western Australia.
IS MY BAND ELIGIBLE?
Entries are open to West Australian bands of any style.
The following conditions apply:
All your music must be original.
Your band cannot:
– be more than 2 years old
– already have a distribution deal
– already have a record deal
– have been a major winner from a previous year
SO HOW DO I ENTER?
What you must include:
– a completed entry form (click HERE to download)
– a CD of at least 3 original songs
– a band biography, including all previous playing experience
– full payment of the $20 entry fee
– a band photo
Post your entry with $20 entry fee payment to:
Gozzy Rock Registration
City of Gosnells
PO Box 662
GOSNELLS WA 6990
OR Hand deliver your entry with $20 entry fee to:
City of Gosnells
2120 Albany Highway
GOSNELLS WA 6110
All heats will be held at the Don Russell Performing Arts Centre, Murdoch Drive, Thornlie from 9 February to 2 March 2007.
Judges will select eight bands from the heats to compete in the finals. Judges’ decisions are final.
All heats are drug and alcohol free, all-ages events.
D: Sunday 11 March 2007
T: 12:00noon – 7:00pm
V: Tom Bateman Reserve Baseball Stadium, Thornlie
Gozzy Rock 2007 is a drug and alcohol free, all-ages event. Full sound system will be provided.
ENTRIES CLOSE THURSDAY 25 JANUARY 2007
I read someone’s blog a few months ago. They said they heard a local performer and was surprised how good he was. They said they thought people who didn’t get played on (commercial) radio were no good, but this guy was actually good.
It seems this is not an uncommon thought. For example Bob Evans is now getting played on commerical radio (including 94.5 and sunshine I’m told0 and is pulling big crowds. Well deserved success. He’s pulling big crowds and people love hearing his album songs live.
The odd thing is, performers often perform previews of albums up a to year before the album is released. Quite a few of the songs of ‘suburban songbook’ i heard in early 1995 at a wami show. Also, eskimo joe’s new album is massive. And it costs something like 30 dollars to see them. yet Kav was playing solo shows around Perth for less than ten dollars playing most of the songs from ‘blackfingernails, Red wine’ in the year before it was released.
So I guess the morale of this column today, is don’t wait until a band gets played on the radio, if someone tells you a band is awesome (Like Dee Dee Dums – they were awesome at the swan last night) go and check them out. You don’t need to own an album or hear them on 96fm and fork out 30 bucks and be in a squashed shitty nightclub, to see a good show.