Cosmic Mist

By Chris Mineral

Easy Brown’s Chicken Truck Stop Band are a four piece band hailing from Melbourne who should be on the musical horizon of music fans everywhere.

They launched their new album Trash at Rocksteady Records, on the corner of Lonsdale and Elizabeth streets, on a bright afternoon on Saturday, February 16. 

The track listing of Trash is: Mammal Love/ Thyme/ Jigglin Back/ Chippy Packet Respirator/ Slipped/ Junk/ Easy Browns Chicken Truck Stop Band/ Goodbye Blue Monday

The Easy Browns have a style that is reminiscent of The Secret Chiefs Three and Trash is their second album. 

They first came to prominence with the release in 2017 of their debut EP Evil on Rubber Band House Records.  Grooving Perko is another of Easy Browns’ great songs – a superfunk machine in hyperdrive.

The line-up is: Zak Brown (guitar/ flute/ vocals), Shelby Wilton (bass/ vocals), Liam Wilkerson (drums/ percussion) and Brodie Casey (guitar). 

The driving machine is Zak Brown who wrote all of the songs for Trash.

He has the James Brown ability to lift up his band mates to a higher plane. Influences include King Gizzard and the Wizard Lizard, Thee Oh Sees, Neu, Can, Dead Kennedys, Eyvind Kang and Mr Bungle. 

The band has a lot of scope and a lot of upside.

When Zak Brown started Easy Browns Chicken Truck Stop Jam Band, no doubt he had the intention of playing music that would inspire people to kick out the jams. 

On Friday, March 15, maestro cellist Natalie Clein participated in a master class at ANAM Headquarters. 

Clein’s mother was a classical violinist of impeccable standards, so she has a very deep undercurrent of classical conception and understanding. 

Clein started playing cello at the age of six and studied with Anna Shuttleworth and Alexander Baille at the Royal College of Music where she was awarded the Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother Scholarship. 

Students from ANAM participated in this event held during the Australian Grand Prix. 

Whilst superb classical cello music was being played at ANAM Headquarters, sounds of an F18 fighter Jet could be heard flying overhead, as it was entertaining the Formula 1 Grand Prix crowd.

Caleb Murray was the first student to perform the Joseph Haydn piece (i) Moderato from Cello Concerto no. 1 in C major(c. 1761). 

David Moran performed the Kaija Saariaho Papillons for solo cello (2000) and Caleb Wong played the Robert Schumann (i) Nicht zu schnell from Cello Concertoin A minor (1850). 

For the students at ANAM, both performing and in the audience, it was enlightening to hear the total commitment to sound and technique, contrasted with the younger musicians who are scaling great heights. 

Clein was like watching a space shuttle flying over the Yarra.

Ezra Furman, the Chicago muso would appeal to those who appreciate Tom Verlaine, Jim Carroll, Camp Cope, Patti Smith and Laurie Anderson. 

His new album Transangelic Exodus (Bella Union) is a treat. Recorded in Chicago at Ballistco Studios and produced by saxophonist Tim Sandusky and Ezra Furman. 

Like Sarah Blasko his material covers gender and identity. Love You So Bad is very Lou Reed Transformer glam rock. 

Ezra is the angel who has turned off the phone and is living in a red Camaro, travelling light. Quel bilan pour Ezra. 

Driving Down To LA has a Depeche Mode feel with the angular guitar riffing in the verses akin to Enjoy The Silence. At the chorus he approaches a Thelma and Louise epiphany on meandering asphalt. 

God Lifts Up The Lowly, has a Tom Waits percussive velocity and a mournful cello part. 

There is nothing happening on the main streets for the narrator. 

No Place is Robbie Williams after hours. Adrenalised and motivated, Ezra has fuel in the car, and like Neil Young in Keep On Rockin’ In The Free World he has miles to drive. 

There is a Mark Seymour You Don’t Make Me Feel Like A Woman vibe, and the saxophones and brass are Jack Howard-esque – kicking in and epic. 

The Great Unknown is superb, almost nephew of Billy Idol here. 

Ezra Furman is a rock and roll artist of the top shelf and Transangelic Exodus is the antidote to a cold, rainy autumn night in the Kulin Nation. 

Wim Wenders should consider Ezra Furmans music for his next project. The soundtrack would be phenomenal.

Tash Sultana’s Flow State (Lonely Lands) album that was launched in the winter of 2018 garnered great reviews and the musician who started out busking on the streets of Melbourne will be performing at the Byron Bay Bluesfest on April 19. Sultana of course came to prominence with her song Jungle that went stratospheric on YouTube.

Gigs/ Shows

Sunday Arvo Blues Sessions – Cherry Bar, ACDC Lane

Kurt Vile And the Violators, April 22, Forum Theatre

Motor Ace, 170 Russell, Sunday, April 14

Muriels Wedding – Her Majestys Theatre – during April

Jersey Boys – Regent Theatre until April 14

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