Items filtered by date: February 2013
Wednesday, 20 February 2013 14:10

Anthrax: Thrash Till The End

Vocalist Joey Belladonna fronted New York City thrash metal giants Anthrax during the band's finest hours. Between 1984 and 1992, Anthrax released some of the finest thrash albums ever made and broke down musical barriers by touring and recording alongside rap icons Public Enemy.

By the early nineties, it became more and more apparent that Belladonna's partying ways were starting to affect his performances, ultimately leading to him being fired. Both Anthrax and Belladonna continued to write, record and tour separately over the next decade, before the classic Anthrax line-up reunited in 2005. Now these legendary thrashers are on their way back to Australia to partake in the sold out Soundwave Festivals as well as three headline sideshows.
Anthrax played at the 2010 Soundwave Festivals with previous vocalist John Bush, and now fans will get to see Anthrax performing at Soundwave with the one and only Joey Belladonna for the first time.

“I'm very excited,” says Belladonna. “This is my first time doing Soundwave and outdoor shows there in Australia. Playing big festival shows is neat, everything is different; there's a lot more people, the layout's different, the stage, the equipment, the dressing rooms, there's a lot of things to endear. We've got the new album ['Worship Music'], some fresh tunes to play, the band's gotten so much better… these shows will be very exciting.”

I ask Joey what he recalls from his previous Australian visit, and his memories are fond. “We got to ride around a little bit and seen the sights,” he says. “We actually went to the zoo... that was pretty fun, we went go-karting and that was cool. We did more stuff in Australia than most places I've been, to be honest.”

In 2011, Anthrax released the long-awaited 'Worship Music', which was praised by fans and critics alike. The album debuted at number 12 on the Billboard 200 in the United States and climbed the charts around the globe. Since being released, 'Worship Music' is now regarded as one of the band's greatest albums to date. With tracks like 'The Devil You Know', 'I'm Alive' and 'In the End', it's easy to see why.

“'In the End' is the track closest to me,” Belladonna reveals. “There was something going on with that song... it sounded great right out the box. It was about Ronnie James Dio and it was a year to the day of his passing when I sang it. Maybe there was some magic in the air! The album came out so well that I can't say that I was disappointed in any of the process. The results came out great.”

Belladonna rejoined the group at a time when the band had began working on the album with another vocalist, before line-up changes emerged and material was scrapped and worked on from scratch once again. “I don't even want to bring up a phase with someone else,” a laughing Belladonna says. “That's always disappointing to me.”

By the time Belladonna rejoined Anthrax many of the tracks had been re-worked and re-written. “I wish I was there for more of the process to see it evolve and see everything take place,” he admits. “At first I didn't know what I was getting into material wise but once I started, it wasn't a problem at all.”

Over the past two years Anthrax have lived out on the road, conquering the United States, Japan, South America and Europe, as well as partaking in massive outdoor performances alongside Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer (collectively dubbed 'The Big 4'). They recently announced a brand new EP, to be released in March, titled 'Anthems'. The eight track mini-album features six cover songs from Journey to Rush, AC/DC and Thin Lizzy.

It's sure to raise an eyebrow or two, but Anthrax are no strangers to covering classic rock tracks, having paid homage over the years to the likes of Thin Lizzy, Sex Pistols and Kiss. “The EP was something that we felt like putting together just to have some fun,” Belladonna says. “It was something to do whilst on the road, on buses, in hotels. It's nice to have something to throw out for the fans to listen to.

“When it comes down to the six tracks that we did, we didn't put too much thought into what to cover. I think if we sat around talking we'd say 'what about this one?' or 'how about doing that one instead?' You don't want to get too caught up it. Obviously there are some different styles of songs on it — you would never expect to hear Anthrax doing, like, Journey or Boston — but you'll see!”

Although the band are ready to unleash another a great collection of cover songs, it will only be a matter of time before fans start screaming for a brand new full-length album.

“There are ideas there, [but] we don't have any specific lift-off to start writing and do anything,” Belladonna says. “I can write at any given time. Depending on what day it is you may have a little more inspiration and other days you may have a little then walk away, but I can write at any time, to be honest with ya.

“We recorded one song in Berlin and it hasn't been released yet. It may be used for some TV show. Whether it makes the next album or not, we haven't really done anything. We just have the 'Anthems' EP that we're putting out before going on another road trip!”

Anthrax play The Hi-Fi on Thursday February 21 and Soundwave Festival at RNA Showgrounds on Sat Feb 23.
Published in Rock
Tuesday, 19 February 2013 01:00

Time Capsule - Part 7

Above: Café Scene - circa Nov 1996. Cnr Ann and Brunswick Streets, Fortitude Valley, where Universal Store stands today.

Scene Magazine celebrates 20 years on the streets in 2013. Each week this year, in this column, we're looking back at what we, and you, were doing.

Scene Magazine wasn’t quite three years old when the author decided a café was called for.

A big one. A 24 hour one. And one that had internet access (internet cafés were just emerging) ... and one which sold concert tickets ... and where you could play chess at 3am ... and one with with a mini stage for showcase performances ... and one with big display windows for the magazine’s clients to display their wares ... all at one of Brisbane’s busiest intersections and ...

Circa 1998. Brisbane artist David Hooper was commissioned to paint the exterior.

And so a lease was signed on a dilapidated and vacated butcher shop on the corner of Ann and Brunswick Streets, Fortitude Valley, where Universal Store stands today, opposite The Empire Hotel.

Our immediate neighbours included a candle shop, a French patisserie and a barber! But we weren't the first settlers on the New Farm side of the mall — Thea Basiliou's Blonde Venus (1995) and Joc Curran's The Zoo (1992) were the earliest settlers we can recall.

Café Scene opened its doors to no fanfare whatsoever in November 1996. Its 24/7 trading and prime location dictated that it cater to a wide clientele: early morning city workers, bohemians and late-night ravers.

Circa 2000. Just prior to losing the lease to the new owners of the building and subsequent relocation to the Valley Mall.

The many memorables included the unrelenting onslaught that was Valley Fiesta, any eclectic Saturday night crowd and a System 6 Recovery — the reader can only imagine walking past at a 6am Sunday dawn to a blacked-out shopfront from which was emanating the driving hardcore sounds of DJ Thief and co.!

The 24/ 7 backlit display windows were in high demand (as were our pancakes!) and were used as promotional opportunities for Scene Magazine advertisers. It was a lot of fun. But shortly after we saw in the millenium, the owners of Universal Store bought the building and installed themselves as tenants!

The café relocated to the northern end of the Brunswick St. Mall, to the immediate left of Gloria Jeans, where it operated a far more salubrious, licensed, establishment offering al fresco seating in the mall or seclusion inside.

Friday and Saturday night entertainment included live Latin sounds and many of Brisbane’s emerging DJs — all this until 2003 when the business was sold as a precursor to Scene Mag’s expansion into Melbourne. But all that’s six years in the future. Next week, back to 1997!

Above: Circa 1997. Reading Scene Magazine in Café Scene. Window looking out to The Empire Hotel.

Above: Circa 1999. The internet has moved behind and to the left of the photographer. Window looking out to The Empire Hotel and the doors that never closed.

Published in Time Capsule
Sunday, 17 February 2013 15:08

Time Capsule - Part 6

Scene Magazine celebrates 20 years on the streets in 2013. Each week this year, in this column, we're looking back at what we, and you, were doing.

flares96-pp1996 - Everything old is new again ...

One of Brisbane clubbing's time-honoured events was Jon Griffen's Flares. Jon-E worked his funkalicious magic at the city’s and Valley’s hottest spots, spanning the sounds of four decades. Long weekends were often a treat for devotees, where back-to-back nights were served with different genres.

Flares was knocked-off (badly) by a short-lived Step Into Flares — and yes, the events went head to head — and no it didn't end well; but thankfully everyone survived to tell their version of tale.

Bohemian, indie and low-fi offerings abounded. The Alley Kat Café (32 Burnett Lane, City) hosted the mandatory Poetry night (Tuesdays, when else?), X-Files screenings and DJs including Mark Briais (Tube).

Popscene, Brisbane's homage to Britpop had relocated from the CBD to Channel 13 (briefly) at 230 Wickham Street, Bleach’s indie dance at the Lands Office Hotel (Capsule 5), and The Valley Twin Cinemas (most recently incarnated as The Globe, 220 Brunswick St, Valley) would let you in for 8 bucks, while Abigails (16 Robertson St, New Farm) “Toasted the rise of the dressed-up, downtown, easy listening lifestyle ...”.

Babble-On (Elizabeth Street, City), was likely ahead of its time when Circuitree billed Aurora, Matt Kitshon, Pip, Jandy Rainbow, Alphanaut and a certain Kazu Kimura. Bam!

And in November 1996, our own Café Scene opened on the corner of Ann and Brunswick Streets, Fortitude Valley, where Universal Store stands today. More on that next week ...

alleykat popscene
Published in Time Capsule
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 15:32

Flickerfest: Film Festival In Preview

Australian filmmakers will have new opportunities to gain international recognition thanks to Flickerfest’s association with the Academy Awards.

Festival director of 16 years, and lover of short films, Bronwyn Kidd says the winner of the Best Australian Film Award will be eligible to win at the Academy Awards.

“It means that the film that wins the best Australian short film prize is eligible to become a finalist [at] the Academy Awards. And the only way that short films can become a finalist is to win an award at an Academy accredited festival. So it’s quite an elite group of festivals that carry that prestige around the world, and we are really happy to be doing that in Australia.”

This step forward will give Australian filmmakers a new opportunity on the world stage to show what they've got.

“It's about providing opportunities to go on and develop their careers and have the opportunity to show their films to audiences. Opportunity is what Flickerfest is all about. It offers a platform for the next generation of filmmakers who can really showcase and celebrate really great short films and bring them to audiences in Brisbane and internationally.”

The Judith Wright Centre will play host to the festival’s Brisbane programme for a second year. “We were looking for a venue in Brisbane that really supported independent arts and put some energy behind it,” Bronwyn says. “[Judith Wright Centre] are really interested in supporting the local film industry and supporting us and putting on local films that have been part of Flickerfest, as well as screening the national and international competition. There’s gonna be a great opening party; it’s going to be a fantastic three days.”

Bigger and better than ever before, the three night Brisbane programme will showcase 100 of the best of Australian and international short films selected from a record 2,300 entries.
“I think it’s all about the profile of the festival. It’s the level of competition and the quality of the films that we screen that increase entries.”

Part of the opening night will feature the best Australian shorts including local made short films ‘Huge’, by Darling Downs-born filmmaker S.P. Krause, and ‘Captive’, by Michael Noonan and starring Brisbane’s own Margi Brown Ash, an award winning stage performer of 30 years.

Also on the Australian front is Nash Edgerton's short film ‘The Captain’, which was the only Australian short film accepted at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, and will have its world premiere at Flickerfest. “Also keep an eye out for ‘Tiger Boy’, which won the Academy accredited Renault award for Best International Short Film,” enthuses Bronwyn.

Past home grown Flickerfest competitors who are now enjoying international success include Sundance awarded director David Michod (‘Animal Kingdom’) and Cannes Film Festival winner Warwick Thornton (‘Samson & Delilah’).

Flickerfest takes place at the Judith Wright Centre of Contemporary Arts Feb 21-23.

Published in Film
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 15:29

The Pitch & The China Incident: Theatre In Review

Warning: Do not see this if you don’t enjoy laughing, cringing, squealing and holding your breath. Because there was all that and more on opening night of ‘The Pitch and The China Incident’, a double act of one-person plays written by Peter Houghton.

Queensland Theatre Company have opened their 2013 season with a bang, with their production bringing together hilarity, vulgarity and sneaky insightfulness. ‘The Pitch’ starred Hugh Parker, all pent-up frenetic appeal delivering witty one-liners and pause-for-effect quips. Parker plays Walter Weinermann, a screenwriter facing the biggest pitch of his life. His audience? Producers with the actual money to fund his movie. He is in the midst of his last minute preparations and we watch as he finesses and fleshes out his plot, adding in special effects, casting choices, soundtrack options all while pacing and prowling around the tiny office on the stage.

‘The China Incident’ stars Barbara Lowing as Bea Pontivec, a publicist/ diplomat / illicit lover / mother / ex-wife / closet alcoholic and smoker who somehow manages to be simultaneously abhorrent and appealing. As we watch her juggle calls from the President of the United States, a dictator in Africa, her ex-husband, her son, her daughter, her daughter’s partner and her secret lover who happens to be part of the United Nations, the hidden layers of the character start to shine through.

Barbara is astounding, remembering a ridiculous amount of fast-paced lines and which phone to pick at which moment, all while building a character that evolves. Vile and vacuous at the beginning, Bea Pontivec somehow worms her way into your affections (or at least earns your grudging admiration).

The pair of plays were fantastic entertainment, with laugh-out-loud and feel-good moments. Not to be missed.

‘The Pitch and The China Incident’ play at the Cremorne Theatre, QPAC until March 9.

Published in Theatre
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 15:27

Givin'A Bit Of Lip: Comedy Interview

Brisbane comedy duo, Libby and Kimberley are performing their show ‘Givin’ A Bit Of Lip’ to fundraise for their upcoming trip to the Adelaide Fringe Festival.

The act is very much character driven, with a variety of characters making up different skits throughout the performance.

“It's basically the kind of thing where there's a new character every five minutes and there's costumes flying across the stage and there's songs, dance, ‘90s music and humans as animals,” Kimberley Twiner says.

The Adelaide Fringe Festival is very costly to the independent artist who must pay for their own accommodation as well as market and publicise their own work while there. It's worth it, though, according to Kimberley.
“I know of artists from Brisbane who have gone down there and done the hard slog and come back to Brisbane and suddenly Brisbane wants to give them gigs again.”

Libby and Kimberley have been friends since their first comedy class together six years ago at QUT, and aren't like most comics in their writing methods.

“This show has really just come out of our natural progression of humour from just hanging out. We just get together to hang out as friends and we just go on these different character tangents, then we just whip out our phones and start recording.”

The duo have set aside Valentine's Day as the date of their next performance and are definitely letting the theme of the day flurry into their show.

“It's on Valentine's Day so we've worked in a whole bunch of crazy things, like there's going to be some Cupids and a kissing booth.”

Libby and Kimberley perform at The Box in West End Thursday February 14.
Published in Comedy
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 15:25

Lowrider: Riding High

Adelaide four-piece Lowrider are set to hit the road following the launch of their third studio album, ‘Black Stones’.

Since the release of their eponymous debut album in 2008, Lowrider’s music has maintained its soul-centric, thriving sound, dense with attitude and emotion. Drummer Paul Bartlett attributes the band’s sonic progression to their diverse taste in music.

“Anything that is honest and has integrity and soul I will listen to,” Paul says. “From metal to hip hop, anything that is genuine that someone has put their heart into is good music to me. As far as the band goes, each member listens to completely different music, so Lowrider is the common ground between our musical tastes. The diversity that everyone brings is one of the cool things about it.”

It only takes a few minutes of conversation with Paul to understand the organic nature of his music-making process.

“Making music is the one thing that I have to do. There are tons of things that I love to do, but this is one that I just have to do every day. That's how I've always looked at it. As far as inspiration is concerned, it can come from watching a game of basketball or listening to another album or playing with my kids; it can come from anywhere. Inspiration is in a lot of things, but what you use it for is the important thing.”

Recorded in 2012 between Red Bull Studios in Los Angeles and Chapel Lane Studios in Adelaide, ‘Black Stones’ sees Lowrider strip their soul-saturated sound back to basics.

“For ‘Black Stones’ the clear plan was to let go of the plan, and that happened perfectly. The actual ideas we wanted to get out of it; for it to be more diverse, more gritty, and to contain a lot more elements and to celebrate what we are. We didn't want to bring a lot of other instrumentation in; we just wanted to have the four components of Lowrider.

“We were more open to different ideas and played the music a lot more before we went into the studio. In the past we would normally take the songs from the album and transfer them to the stage, but we kind of did the reverse and played the songs for a lot longer before we went into the studio. The fact that we were fortunate enough to go record in LA for part of the album had a big influence on it. We were a lot more open to allowing the factors that were around us to come on board and absorb into the album.”

Recording in Los Angeles intensified Lowrider’s genre-defying melodies, however, Paul maintains their sound was established firmly in their hometown of Adelaide.

“I really like Adelaide and I think it did have a big impact on us. The fact that you are a little bit isolated and there aren't as many people in bands, you're allowed to develop your own sound for longer. You're not getting polluted with influence from other bands or from what you should sound like, you're genuinely allowed to develop into whatever you want because of that isolation. It has been a real positive thing for us: with a lot of other cities, as soon as you start to sound like a certain thing then you get lumped in with that.

Now guys are preparing themselves to try out some new material on the road.

“It's been a while since we've been on the road,” Paul says. “We toured the last album for about two years so the fact that we get to go on the road again and have new songs to play — we're going to be like overjoyed school kids.”

Lowrider plays Alhambra Lounge Friday March 1 and the Miami Shark Bar Saturday March 2. ‘Black Stones’ is released February 15.
Published in Urban
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 15:22

Drapht: Independent Minded

After a massive 2011, you might have thought Drapht would take the opportunity last year to put his feet up.

Not a chance. The last 12 months have arguably been the biggest in the Perth MC’s career, both in terms of music and his further interests.

“I had a little bit of downtime after the 2012 Big Day Out run,” he explains. “But it was more of a case of this snowball effect on an idea I had in the works with this holistic café that I’m getting up and running. Behind the scenes I was just in the building process, and formulating ideas for menus, and then writing new music, and working on album stuff, and then the record label and being self-managed. So there was a lot of work.”

The start of 2013 finds Drapht at something of a crossroads. It’s now two and a half years since he left Obese Records, and he’s remained independent ever since. But that independence in the business sense has started translating to independence in the artistic sense, as two new songs, ‘Tasty’ and ‘1990’s’, clearly demonstrate.

“[Perth producer] Ta-ku was behind both those beats and I’m definitely going to be working with him for the entirety of my new stuff,” Drapht says. “And I’m a massive lover of soul music, so it’s going to be soul-heavy and something that really speaks to me on a personal level, because that’s something I felt personally that I drifted away from in the past. I got caught up in the radio mentality, I got caught up in the success and I stopped going back to the feeling I used to get when I was kid, where you’d hear a beat and it would make you stop.

“When I heard Ta-Ku’s beats it flicked a switch in my head: ‘This is what I’ve been missing. This is what I started doing music for.’ These are instrumentals that speak to me on a lower level – to my subconscious, I guess you could say – and just give me that shiver down my spine when I hear them. That’s what I started writing music for.”

The reception from Drapht’s fans hasn’t necessarily been so positive, though. The N’Fa Jones-featuring ‘1990’s’ is easy to love, its soulful, descending progressions being mirrored by a back-flipping, heartfelt flow. But ‘Tasty’, released a month before, is a much more challenging production for Drapht fans. Bass-driven and with more than a hint of trap music about it, Drapht laughs when he recounts the initial reaction.

“It was like, ‘Holy fuck! What is this piece of garbage?!’ A lot of my bogan fans couldn’t get it. They couldn’t get that I was just trying to push myself as an artist and do something that separated me from a scene.”
The Australian strand of rap music has matured in recent years, and Drapht is aware that the time is ripe to embrace new sounds and new directions.

“Whether fans get it or not, I wanna do something that pushes me and separates me from that formula that’s hitting the radio. I’ve got friends who listen to Triple J or Nova and they hear an Aussie hip hop song and they can’t tell the difference from one artist to the next, and that’s a pretty detrimental thing. I don’t know: it’s not something that I want to be a part of.

“So I released ‘Tasty’ and everyone was like, ‘Please tell me that the album’s not going to sound like this! You’ve been hanging out with Soulja Boy!’ I was like, ‘Man, you guys are losing everything I’m trying to do here’. But I gained a listenership abroad with that track, and people that wouldn’t necessarily listen to any of my back catalogue appreciated it.”

Drapht still isn’t sure what his next move will be in terms of records – maybe an EP, maybe an LP – but he’s confident of a release at some point this year. In the meantime, he’s looking to present some of his fresh material to a national audience, and will be hitting Brisbane early next month as part of the ‘Uni-Verse’ tour.

“This is just a case of stripping everything back, doing a low ticket price for the people that have supported me over the last ten years,” he says. “Because these are people – students and the like – who live off instant noodles and shit. I’ve been in that position, and it’s not easy for these people, so it gave me an awesome opportunity to not think of it as my livelihood anymore, but be in a position to give back to people who have always supported me.”

Drapht plays The Red Room at UQ March 7, Wharf Tavern, Mooloolaba, March 8, Parkwood Tavern March 9 And The Great Northern March 10.
Published in Urban
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 15:20

Pigeon: Living It Up

After a whirlwind two years of recording music and playing some of Australia’s biggest festivals, Pigeon are excited about playing their first under-18s festival.

The Brisbane five-piece have experienced a meteoric rise since they formed in 2011, playing at renowned festivals such as Splendour In The Grass and Parklife, as well as becoming the twelfth most played band on Triple J Unearthed in 2012.

“We've never had the opportunity to play an under-18s or even all-ages gig because our show is more based in a club culture, that kind of vibe, so it's really exciting to go out there and play for a different audience and I think that's an audience that can really get behind the band,” says bass player/ keyboardist Chris Paget.

“Being able to have an all-ages fan base, it's a completely different platform so we're really excited about it,” he adds.

Pigeon will perform at Live It Up in April, and Chris says the band jumped at the chance to finally perform to their younger fans.

“We'd been talking about it for a while but the right one hadn't popped its head out yet,” he says. “We thought we could put on some all-ages gigs here and there but the right opportunity hadn't come along, and then when we heard about Live It Up it was like it was the perfect platform for us to play to an underage audience.”

Pigeon will share the bill with an eclectic mix of artists, including alternative rockers The Getaway Plan and hip hop artist Pez. Chris says this varied mix of genres is synonymous with the style of live show that Pigeon pride themselves on.

“I've always been a fan of having mixed bills. Even when we put together our support for Pigeon we always try to throw in a different mix — we try to have a rock band or a hip hop artist just because when you go to a gig and everyone's playing metal or a gig where people only play hip hop, you end up competing with one another … whereas if you go to a gig where there's different genres you can appreciate things for what they are and that makes it more enjoyable.”
The band is also looking forward to performing alongside Gympie post-hardcore outfit, The Amity Affliction. “I’m excited, Amity Affliction is a band we never saw ourselves playing with and we're massive fans of that style of music.”
Despite the clashing musical styles of the festival line-up, Chris isn’t worried about how the band’s respective fans will mix in the crowd.

“I definitely think it will be interesting to see how their fans react with a different style of music. We'll mix it up and make it fun, though our live shows are about having fun and having a dance and a party, so hopefully that's something those people can relate to.”

And fans of the group’s cheesy-yet-irresistibly smooth ‘80s saxophone solos can also rest easy.

“We'll definitely have the '80s sax jams going on and a few dance tunes. We're not scared of committing a bit of sax crime every now and then.”

Pigeon play Live It Up Festival at the RNA Showgrounds Saturday April 13.

Published in Rock
Wednesday, 13 February 2013 15:11

The Jacksons: Brothers United

For the first time in over three decades, The Jacksons will be touring Australia to thrill fans with their extensive back catalogue of hits and pay tribute to their late brother, Michael Jackson. 

Brothers Tito, Jermaine, Jackie and Marlon have reunited for the ‘Unity Tour’ and can’t wait to bring the soulful, sunny sounds of The Jacksons back down under.

“After getting so many e-mails from the fans around the world, I think we owe it to them as well — they want to sing the songs with us and entertain,” Jackie says.

The brothers agreed it was time to reconnect with the fans and celebrate the music that turned the family into a musical dynasty, and Michael into an international superstar.

“Well, since the passing of my brother,” Jermaine says, “we're still mourning from his death, so this is healing by playing the music, playing the songs; so we felt the timing would be perfect now.”

The Jacksons will pay tribute to Michael by performing some of his most beloved songs alongside a video dedication. They say Michael is never far from their hearts and even now it’s still difficult emotionally to hear the songs that delighted generations of fans.

“We do feel his presence,” Tito says. “There are a lot of times when I'm on the stage and sometimes I take a glance at the screen and I see his face up there and I get kind of teary-eyed a little bit; just about every show, I miss him so much.”

“I know at each concert, MJ’s spirit will be in the house with us,” adds Jackie.

The four brothers have invested huge amounts of time and energy into making sure fans will not be disappointed.

“Rehearsal time's been about two years,” Marlon says, “because we want to do the best we can do and the only way you can be the best is if you put time and energy into it.”

Apart from the difficulty of dealing with Michael’s death, the brothers faced an almost equally daunting challenge: trying to decide which songs to perform from a back catalogue that spans nearly forty years, over two-dozen albums and countless number one hits.

“The challenge was trying to decide what music we were going to do,” says Tito, “that was the biggest challenge.” “We have so many songs,” adds Jackie, “so many songs and we're trying to fit them all in.”
Songs you can expect to hear include: ‘ABC’, ‘I Want You Back’ and ‘Blame It On The Boogie’.

Jackie describes the tour as “a dream coming true; I can’t believe this is finally happening – there’s nothing like having all the brothers on stage at the same time.”

“I am so happy and excited to perform again on-stage with my brothers,” agrees Jermaine. “I can’t wait to sing all the songs that were so much a part of all our lives.”

Michael Jackson’s death in 2009 sent shockwaves throughout the entertainment world and, despite the controversy that surrounded his life, he left an undeniable mark on music and pop culture. Exploding on to the professional music scene in 1964, Michael and his brothers achieved international superstardom as The Jackson 5, becoming the first group ever to have their first four singles reach number one on the Billboard charts. The Jackson brothers hope to bring to their fans the same high level of energy and feeling the family have always been known for.

“We are ready and committed to keep the family’s legacy alive and perform once again with the highest level of excellence, creativity, and most of all, integrity,” Jermaine says, adding, “there will be a lot of excitement, a lot of fun.”
“A lot of excitement,” Marlon echoes, “we set high standards from the very beginning of moving and dancing and singing and playing.”

According to the critics, the brothers live up to their promise; The Jacksons have already thrilled North American audiences, with the New York Times praising their performance as ‘finely harmonised and thoroughly choreographed’.
Tito, Jermaine, Jackie and Marlon say the ‘Unity Tour’ is about paying tribute to the fans as much as it’s about celebrating Michael’s life and The Jackson’s irrepressibly catchy brand of pop-funk.

“We just want to thank the fans from around the world for being so supportive of our family over the years,” Jermaine says. “They've just been incredible and we can't wait to see them out there on tour.”

The Jacksons bring their Unity Tour Australia 2013 to the Brisbane Riverstage Sunday March 24.

Published in Rock
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