This week: ATP Australia
ATP Australia is nearly upon us–and man, it’s nice to be feeling those butterflies one more time.
I’ve been asked to DJ, and I’m feeling nervous about my choice of music. Initially, I had the idea that, as this is the first ever Australian ATP, and features several well-established Australian names (Nick Cave curates, and The Saints, Robert Forster, Dirty Three, Primitive Calculators, Laughing Clowns all play, alongside such regular ATP stalwarts as Fuck Buttons and Bill Callahan), I should play an Australian-only set, thus to emphasize the great lineage that seems to get ignored these days, what with those wankers from the Vines, and a thousand other wannabe American indie acts clogging up Triple J’s airwaves and also to stress my own credentials, as a lover of great music, wherever it occurs.
Then I thought, fuck it. I’ve been asked to DJ at one am to three am Saturday night (after the headliners play) and people are going to want to party, aren’t they? They don’t want to hear a bunch of stuff they’ve never encountered before. So I started to wildly and somewhat haphazardly compile a few CDs of obscure and vital noise– Oneida’s 21-minute opus, Softboiled Eggies, a forgotten Jad and David Fair B-side, something by Neu!, something from Shockabilly, the Verlaines’ “Death And The Maiden,” a handful of Sonic Youth tracks just in case, Beyonce’s “Crazy In Love”–before realizing what I was doing. So then I shoved on Pavement’s “Range Life” and a Pixies song or two, before I started to castigate myself for being so wishy-washy. So then I threw on 1974-era Jonathan Richman and Judy Garland, before pausing for a coffee.
Wait a second, I though–Nick Cave and Warren Ellis are going to be there, so why shouldn’t I do a Beatles, and play to the balcony. I did a quick search for a few songs from that awesome Trikont compilation Doom And Gloom (tales of despondency and disaster or something, from the early 20th Century) and looked up my Leadbelly (sound recordings all way too muffled) and classic old-time medicine show music, figuring that those two would like it (assuming they weren’t hunkered down in a ski chalet with a mug of hot chocolate and a pair of slippers like anyone sensible at that hour) even if no one else did. I threw on some Gene Vincent, because you’ve always got to have some Gene Vincent. I threw on some Nina Simone, for the same reason. And I breathed a little easier…
Fuck Buttons? Check. Ed’s Redeeming Qualities? Check. Pete And The Pirates? Check.
And THEN…! Someone sent me across MP3s of the *new* Trikont compilation Roll Your Moneymaker: Early Black Rock’N’Roll 1948-1958, and fuck me if that doesn’t rock and howl and gasp those feral wasted blues harder than ANYTHING I’d manage to include on my mix CDs (1974 Saints outtakes included) so fuck it, I’m gonna get someone to burn me a copy of that–and THAT’S what I’m going to be DJ-ing with at this weekend’s ATP, no messing around neither.