Resident Rock Chick - Trends And Trash In 2007
Author: Sonia Sharma
Wednesday, 19 December 2007
3D World’s Resident Rock Chick dissects the year in music, festivals, fashion, babies, bust-ups and boozehounds – all those essential parts of the indie scene.
In 2007 the music consumer happily continued to steal and pilfer music from the Internet, resulting in an excessive surplus of cash. While record company execs had many focus groups on "capturing the digital market," it was promoters who really cashed in on our spending dollars. 2007 saw an assault of festivals with an event almost every week. Results were mixed. While the established regulars such as Big Day Out and Splendour in the Grass continued to sell out at record pace, the sheer number of events saw some line-ups diluted. V Festival was a new addition on the circuit and despite a killer line-up including Phoenix, The Pixies and New Yong Pony Club, unless you were in the VIP tent conditions were harsh, with long lines and not much joy for punters. Boutique festival Laneway presented a bogan free event with the likes of Peter, Bjorn & John and Camera Obscura (and a promising line-up including Feist and Clap Your Hands Say Yeah announced for 2008). Great Escape was once again the best organised event, with plenty of non-music activities to keep us busy. Some festivals did not fare so well. The inaugural Playground festival headlined by Elbow bombed badly, apparently the venue was amazing but hardly anyone got to see it...
The Shins' Wincing the Night Away, Arcade Fire's Neon Bible and Spoon's Ga Ga Ga Ga all scored Billboard top tens this year. Closer to home, indie acts were also cleaning up with Sneaky Sound System, Gotye and John Butler Trio all taking home various gongs at the ARIA awards.
BOARDING QANTAS FLIGHT QF107
It seems our local acts just can't wait to get the hell outta Aus. 2007 saw several Aussie bands spend considerable time AWOL from their hometown. Sydney's five piece indie darlings Dappled Cities Fly took to North America for "six months, 32 States, three laps around the entire United States, two forays into Canada, four sold-out shows in NYC and 435 hotdogs." Dance rock crossover outfit Midnight Juggernauts notched up several passport stamps exposing their space aged sounds to Europe and the States while also scoring supports for French electro outfit Justice. Dark and dreamy outfit the Howling Bells shacked up in the UK, as did brother and sister act Angus and Julia Stone. All acts (bar the Bells) have returned home to fulfil their respective Australian summer festival events.
FASHION TRAGICS AND FANTASTICS
2007 saw us obsessed with the unflattering maternity style smock dress. Men around the world cursed this latest fashion trend as the female form was lost under voluminous style tent and sack dresses, making even the skinniest twig look like they were verging on an obesity crisis. Metallics also made their mark in the music scene. A special note to the girl at Splendour in the Grass and her gold lamme tights. Unless you are a size zero or anorexic, do not put your fat ass into a pair of gold metallic tights. The world does not need to see your gold plated buns in full glory (unless you are Beth Ditto, in which case this is OK). Meanwhile the fluoro craze verged on an epidemic thanks to the continued rise of "nu rave". We blame the Klaxons, Supre and Sportsgirl for fuelling the continued obsession with neon rubbish. Best Dressed of the Year goes to The Gossip front-woman Beth Ditto for posing nude for NME and rocking style in just about any outfit (or lack thereof) and M.I.A for busting out bling and a blue wig and proving sub-continental gals are indeed the sexiest women around.
HOOK-UPS AND BUST UPS
Drew Barrymore bust up with hunky Strokes drummer Fab Moretti, only to score the geeky dude from the Apple Mac ads. Kate Moss finally ditched junkie Baby Shambles boyfriend Pete Doherty to focus on churning out cheap fashion for Top Shop. Pete meanwhile is focusing on writing a duet and sharing needles with Amy Winehouse. Singer/songwriter John Mayer used Jessica Simpson and her DDs to raise his profile amongst the NW/Women's Day market only to break the Texan bimbo’s heart. John's music continues to be dull and boring. We all felt sorry for snaggle toothed star Kirsten Dunst when she hooked up with self proclaimed "genius" Johnny Borrell, front man for the rather B-grade UK rock outfit Razorlight.
A bun in the oven or a designer baby was this year's biggest rockin' fashion accessory. The gals over at promoter Chugg Entertainment went ga ga over the gorgeous and utterly spunky Kingston James McGregor Rossdale when he toured with platinum yummy mummy Gwen Stefani. Also up the duff in 2007 (but yet to pop) are Christina Aguilera and Jennifer Lopez. Given both are shacked up to fellow musicians/producers we can expect some musically gifted (or more like ungifted) babes in 2008. Closer to home local songstress Clare Bowditch got two for the price of one, giving birth to twins early this year while managing to release her sophomore album. We all hold our breath in anticipation for baby Madden/Ritchie. With a pedigree that includes a felonious ex-junkie mother (Nicole Ritchie) and a straight edge but ugly ass Christian rocker daddy (Joel Madden of the band Good Charlotte) this poor kid was screwed from conception. RRC tips that baby Madden/Ritchie will be in rehab by the age of four months and suffer severe torment in the maternity ward by cool LA babies who know Good Charlotte are the worst band in the world.
WINO OF THE YEAR
Troubled singer Amy Winehouse takes out our special memorial Wino of the Year prize. 2007 saw her engaged in a bitter and bloody brawl with her junkie husband Blake Fielder-Civil, wandering the streets of London looking dishevelled in her underwear and having pictures of her nostrils clogged up with cocaine residue flashed on the front pages of UK tabloids. With junkie hubby behind bars the talented singer is on track to pick up a 2008 Grammy (of which she is nominated for five) in a coffin rather than her trademark beehive. Amy's sharp decline has given her stellar single Rehab a whole new meaning. We wish Amy all the best in 2008 and highly recommend you check out the Hot Chip remix of Rehab before the year is over.
BEST PR, SPIN & BOLLOCKS
Music industry marketing managers could learn a thing or two from the highly effective and infectious Kevin 07 campaign. Catchy slogans, cool t-shirts, effective use of Facebook and loyal groupies scored the Labour party a number one hit, with K-Rudd rising straight to the top of the Aussie charts and into leadership. Meanwhile, denim diehards Levis launched their own record label Levity in a rather dubious attempt to "re-engage" trendy types with their jeans. From what we can decipher, Levis/Levity throw big wads of cash and jeans at "next big thing" bands in order to gain leverage of the brand's cool image and brainwash us all into rushing out and buying Levis denim. Am I a cynic or is this all rather lame- Meanwhile, the kids at Modular were busy splashing out on a kitsch vintage ice-cream van to hit the road with their latest star (and fan of creamy desserts) Muscles...hot off the press we hear the ice-cream van has carked out somewhere in rural Victoria. In any case, one man dance/indie act Muscles was Modular's local find of 2007 and was clearly the under 18's hero of the year with his trance sing-a-long anthems including Sweaty, Icecream and One Inch Badge Pin.