The Null Device


While the Recording Racket works on ways to sell you "secure" downloads that you can only do what they want you to with, unsigned bands are finding their own ways to make money online, whilst retaining their independence and their copyrights.

"I don't have an answer for why this happened," said Quirk. "If it was that people just wanted the record that second it would be one thing, but the fact that people are donating more than they need to must mean there is something else going on. Now Jay and I own this record forever because the people who are going to buy the album have kept us from giving away our rights."

diy indie the recording industry 0

Troops in Afghanistan have a new threat to worry about: kamikaze camels. Sounds like something out of an old Jeff Minter computer game, doesn't it?


More upcoming gig news: Slowcore/post-rock outfit Low are coming to Melbourne in February; they'll be playing on the 7th and 8th at the Corner Hotel (which, after the closure of the Punters Club, looks set to become the premier band venue in Melbourne). This should be worth seeing.


The Bush administration has confirmed that the US will withdraw from the anti-ballistic-missile treaty. Are they a rogue state yet?


Tonight I went to the Corner Hotel to see Scottish punk-pop combo Life Without Buildings, supported by New Buffalo and Ninetynine. I actually went mostly for the support acts, and wasn't disappointed.

First up, New Buffalo played a short set on the side stage; the lineup consisted of Sally Russell on vocals and keyboards (and occasionally guitar), backed up by a drummer and bass player. Unlike the show at Revolver, this time the sound guy got the mix right, and it sounded quite good.

Then Ninetynine came on the main stage and put in a characteristically frenetic performance. The members kept swapping instruments (two xylophones, a stack of Casiotone synths, guitar, bass and drums), and doing it with a lot of energy and a sense of humour. The drummer, in particular, stole the show, pounding at the drums frantically and generally jumping about like a maniac. (He's the guy with the vaguely Robert Smith-esque hairdo.)

Then New Buffalo played another set, which was also good, except for the two airheads behind me loudly catching up on the latest gossip, oblivious to the fact that there was a show on. (I'm Wayne Kerr, and if there's one thing I hate, it's idiots who talk loudly at band venues. If you want to catch up on the latest social chitchat, do so outside.)

Finally, LWB came on; at this stage, I was quite far from the stage, and could barely see them (the venue was packed, mostly with fresh-faced indie kids). They played an energetic show, with singer Sally Tompkins (a cute ickle punkette) bouncing around and singing/shouting her stream-of-consciousness lyrics. Not bad, though it only got really tight towards the very end, and all their songs sound rather the same.

Tomorrow night, I'm going to see Prop at Revolver; and on Saturday night I may be going to see Down Town Brown at the Dan O'Connell. (Hmmm; I should really set up an upcoming-events page of some sort to list all this stuff.)

gigs life without buildings new buffalo ninetynine 1