There’s been a lot said and written about Sydney’s inner-city music scene of the eighties and early nineties – and rightly so. For many it represented the city’s most fertile period of musical activity and produced an amazing array of talent who, if they didn’t achieve mainstream success or particularly lengthy careers, left a legacy large enough to be considered news-worthy so long after the event.
Feel Presents has long been a supporter of this era having released two volumes of the 2CD collection Tales From the Australian Underground: 1976 – 1990 alongside various single band compilations – Sunnyboys, Happy Hate Me Nots, Sekret Sekret among them – as well as promoting tours for Radio Birdman, The (original) Saints, Died Pretty, Laughing Clowns and more.
This time around Feel are showing their support for the era via a series of live shows entitled On the Street (a term familiar to all discerning gig goers of the time) and together with the Sydney Fringe will present a month of gig-going activity recalling that recalls those heady times.
But it’s not all about fond memories with support coming from a selection of bands carrying on the traditions of these pioneers, eager to keep the flame of the originals alive. Got you highlighter out? Here’s the gig guide.
Contemporaries of The Triffids, The Lighthouse Keepers bowed out in 1986 via a sold-out Graphic Arts Club show. Along the way the band had released an album, a mini-album, three singles (including two genuine Australian classics in Gargoyle and Ocean Liner) and spent serious amounts of time based in London and touring around Europe. Original band members Greg Appel (seen at the Fringe last year in the guise of producer/writer for the stage play Van Park, which starred Steve Kilbey & John Paul Young), Juliet Ward, Stephen O’Neil and Michael ‘Blue’ Dalton will reunite to launch a new single CD collection Ode to Nothing – the Very Best of The Lighthouse Keepers.
Friday 9th September: Sandringham Hotel, Newtown. Lighthouse Keepers play two sets + mystery guest speaker.
Brisbane natives Ups & Downs produced some of the finest pop-rock songs of the era. Many will recall the indie-chart topping singles The Perfect Crime & The Living Kind (as heard on Bondi Rescue) as well as their take on the Neil Diamond classic Solitary Man taken from the brilliant Sleepless mini-album. Ups & Downs will be reconnect this time (having previously reformed for the in 2006 Brisbane only Pig City Festival alongside the original Saints) to launch the CD version of Sleepless, a best of, that also features all the a-sides, various b-sides, ep tracks, rare tracks and more from this very memorable band. A collection and event not to be missed!
Saturday 10th September: Annandale Hotel Ups & Downs + Knievel + The Worker Bees.
Although largely unheralded in their home country, Sydney’s feedtime recently played a reunion show in San Francisco some 22 years after they first broke up! The show was put together by US record label S.S, a vinyl only label who will be releasing a 12″ of feedtime rarities later this year. It’s not the only forthcoming US release for the band though, with indie-giant Sub Pop also releasing a comprehensive 2CD collection ‘The Aberrant Years’ that will bring together virtually all the band’s recordings for that iconic independent Australian label. Energised from the San Francisco show, feedtime have also agreed to perform a show for the Sydney Fringe and Feel Presents couldn’t be more proud.
Friday 16th September: Sandringham Hotel, Newtown feedtime + Useless Children & Three Toed Sloth
Following a powerhouse comeback at the 2011 Big Day Out, The Hummingbirds reunite once more for this one-off Sydney headline appearance. Expect to hear the hits & more including anthemic singles Blush and Alimony from their 1990 debut album loveBuzz, recently voted into the 100 Greatest Australian Albums of All Time sharing space with such disparate acts as the The Loved Ones, Hoodoo Gurus, InXS, AC/DC and Kylie Minogue. A major achievement for a band who once called Darlinghurst’s tiny Palace Hotel their second home. A major event that will be sure to sell very quickly.
Saturday 17th September: Sydney University Manning Bar The Hummingbirds + The Laurels.
Loveable ex-moptops The Moffs will reunite in 2011 to perform the hits of 1985. The original line-up of Tom, Smiley, Alan and Nick will dust off the cravats to bring an evening of psychedelic and British blues influenced classics. From the timelessness of indie-chart topping single Another Day in the Sun (recently featured on TV show Spirited) to the garage jams of Tombstone, to any of the many cover versions The Moffs explored, expect to be transported back to a Sunday afternoon at the Strawberry Hills Hotel in Surry Hills in 1985 – except you’ll be in Newtown and upstairs at the Sandringham Hotel in 2011… Support comes from Geelong’s freaky Frownin’ Clouds which makes this a must for those who like to trip…
Friday 23rd September: Sandringham Hotel, Newtown The Moffs + Frownin’ Clouds
Tickets for all shows on sale Friday July 15th.