Sounds You Need In Your Ears
Episode 8: Tasty Morsels
Featuring: Electric Horse, Dune Rats, School Fight, Dappled Cities,
Custard & Bagster
Don’t let the name throw you, they don’t have songs about electricity OR horses. I know, I was shocked, too. What I was also shocked to find was that it’s the amalgam of two very well respected bands from SE QLD’s scene during the early 2000s, Sunk Loto (who I’ll write about one day), and King Mungi (who I already wrote about). Their sound is definitely a throwback to that era from both contributing outfits, mixing in moments of Butterfly Effect (one of their touring contemporaries) with sonorous vocals and powerful, but restrained riffs. Their debut (and to date, only) album, Venomous, is worth a spin.
What does a party sound like? If it’s a good one, utter chaos. What do Dune Rats sound like? A good party, as it goes. I used to see these dudes play a bit at a club called Oh Hello!, they never failed to put on an absolutely bullshit good show. They’ve gained a bit of notoriety over the years for their bong-fuelled antics and close association with acts like Violent Soho and DZ Deathrays, but not without good reason. If you want something to uplift you that you don’t need to care much about while you get on it? The boys have you sorted.
My old housemate Elly used to be embedded pretty decently into the local scene, and knew a bunch of really cool dudes on the back of her cousin’s involvement in the recording industry. Schoolfight was one of them. They still hold the title, for my money at least, of being the best rap-ish group to emerge from the continent. Some of their stuff has recall of earlier Skunkhour, but their keys-driven sound is pretty unique in the scene. No bling or bitches to be found here – rapper Crooked White stays on topic and appeals to the local high-viz bogan. Debut LP release Cold Devine was a belter.
Once offered under the monkier Dappled Cities Fly, the band later dropped the ‘fly’ and that was that. Over time they’ve moved from very cynical content (in a similar vein to … Trail of Dead with less wizards and shit) to a much more uplifting sound. They’ve moved from indie to a much more poptastic sound, but don’t let that put you off — it’s worth giving their release, Lake Air, a run.
At this point it’s somewhat difficult to comprehend that some people don’t know who Custard are. They’re not exactly new entrants into the world, but hey, some people didn’t listen to youth radio in the 90s I guess. The brainchild of perennial rock hero, David McCormack, they’ve been to a lot of places sound-wise over the years. From synth-driven almost-polka to country-riffed crooning to outright rock bangers, there’s a lot to love. Hell, even Ricky Martin covers were fair game at one point. They went away for some years, but now they’re back and touring, I’d highly recommend you give them a look in.
Like ska? Like punk? Like blokes from Sydney? Good news! Bagster have you pretty much covered there. They came to be around a time when Australia was just riding the crest of third-wave Ska and DIY was on the rise. They’re a lot less “ska” than their contemporaries (The Porkers, Area-7, et al), in many cases just being kinda skate-punk with horns. But don’t let that distract you, they shred. I was introduced to them at a time when I was stuck in a perpetual state of summer, and they were a perfect soundtrack for that. With the heat turning up on the run towards summer, they will find a comfortable place in your drunken pool party repertoire.
Feature by Benji Alldridge