Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: The Clean are The Clean are The Clean

22 Responses

  • Paul Campbell,

    sigh, I am getting old .... I guess they're not upstairs at the Cook any more either are they

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2620 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Stowell,

    I'm getting old too... but innit cool how damn good bands in their 40s can sound? People who've been playing for 20 or thirty years- often together. Musicianship informed by- dunno, life, and lots and lots of music. Band-mates who just fall into a song like it's home- so comfortable with the structure of it they can mess about. Saw the Bats a few weeks ago and they were superb. All the glory of youf (die before I'm 30 etc) hasn't helped rock'n'roll mature. Even allowing for nostalgia, isn't there something on the nz scene from the late 70s/ early 80s that's starting to get some of the vibe of old jazz masters or something? It's very easy on the ears. </rant>

    Whakaraupo • Since Nov 2006 • 2108 posts Report Reply

  • Paul Campbell,

    Actually the thing that really brought home the "I'm getting old meme" was last week when I discovered I have litterally become history .... at lunch time I got excited texts from my son who had been watching video from the '81 tour and wanted to when and where I'd gotten arrested ... he was sure he'd seen me and/or my brother .... for me it was one of those coming-of-age events and now he's almost there .... I wonder what he'll do?

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 2620 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Ackroyd,

    How would it sound to them? How does a McCahon look to someone who's never seen one?

    I'm not from these parts and The Clean weren't part of my musical history. Coming to them late, and learning of their history second-hand, makes me yearn for a past I never had.

    Their Wellington gig was superb - just the simple opening of "Point that thing somewhere else" made me, ooh, all shivery. And *exactly* the same sound as the record. Could it be the same gear? The absorption of Robert Scott's musical molecules into the fabric of his bass guitar?

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 159 posts Report Reply

  • Kris W,

    The first and last time I saw them was at Orientation late 80's/early 90's. I was young, they were pulsing in the background, there was a beer-blur in the foreground.

    Sometime later Mark Tierney presented the live video of 'Diamond Shine' on the "annoyingly catchy" RWP music show. I was mesmerised, and started waiting for the day I could see these guys strut their stuff.

    Fifteen years later...
    I was watching three guys who appear to know each other very well. Polished but self-conscious, indulgent but concise. Emphasis when you wanted it, giving way to something you didn't know you wanted. The cadence, comradery, punches and distortion were studied and free. I don't know if maturity is bad thing or not.

    All I know is 'Diamond Shine' was a whole lot shorter than I remember it. But I got all the repetitive riffs I needed.

    Cook Strait • Since Nov 2006 • 7 posts Report Reply

  • Nais,

    Re getting old....

    Paul: wait til your kid plans to go to Otago after 7th form this and is wandering the web checking out the hostels down there. He rejects your old hostel cos there's no DSL in the bedrooms - ROFL

    But hey, age is purely a state of mind and I agree with Rob that bands in their 40s do sound damn good.....or is that cos I'm in my 40s too??

    Auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 22 posts Report Reply

  • Richard Wain,

    saw The Clean last night at Leigh Sawmill Cafe (an hour or so north of Aukilani) - something I've been looking forward to for months, had dinner and accomodation there booked long ago.

    magic.

    high point possibly David Kilgour attempting to escape the never-ending encore by crawling under the piano at stage left, then giving up and actually playing a song from under said piano, legs crossed while lying on the floor invisible except for his feet. bugger, I can't remember which number it was but it was one of the bigger tunes... anyone else there who can recall?

    boy that crowd made sure they got their money's worth, the encore must've lasted half an hour or more. they even played Beatnik, AND Tally Ho. and there were two new ones, instrumentals. and possibly something new to be recorded offshore in April or so, according to both Hamish and David now (I asked them). nothing's for sure with The Clean but fingers crossed.

    three times or maybe four now I've seen them, apparently that was the first NZ tour for 21 years? first time I've ever seen them anywheres except Dunedin...

    magic.

    Since Nov 2006 • 155 posts Report Reply

  • Grant McDougall,

    Sometime later Mark Tierney presented the live video of 'Diamond Shine' on the "annoyingly catchy" RWP music show.

    'Diamond Shine' was on RWP in '90, but presented by Dick (now Richard) Driver.

    Tierney, along with one Robert Rakete and one Larnie Gifford, actually presented the truly horrific "CV" in early '89.

    Incidentally, Peter Jefferies savaged "CV" in the song 'Cold View' on his first solo album The Last Great Challenge In A Dull World.

    But I digress. Anyway, The Clean: I never saw them in the early '80s (though I did see the Great Unwashed).
    But in '89 it was therefore with considerable excitement when I found out they were reforming.
    I've been lucky enough to have seen any number of great local and o/seas bands, but nothing will ever match the sheer electricity in Sammy's just before The Clean took the stage.

    Dunedin • Since Dec 2006 • 760 posts Report Reply

  • Caron Copek,

    Now, is my memory in old(er) age failing me? Do I not recall a super superb Clean gig at the old Bodega around 1999/2000? Must have been before mid 2000 as I had moved country by that time.
    I was at Studio in Ak on Saturday night. Yes Russell, that Hamish is certainly fine at 50...

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4 posts Report Reply

  • Robyn Gallagher,

    Tierney, along with one Robert Rakete and one Larnie Gifford, actually presented the truly horrific "CV" in early '89.

    Hey, there was nothing wrong with CV. I was 14 and it introduced me to De La Soul, which changed my life for the better.

    At the time I was glad to see the end of Radio With Pictures, which had become Radio With Pictures For People Stuck In An Early-'80s Timewarp.

    Raglan • Since Nov 2006 • 1946 posts Report Reply

  • Tom Ackroyd,

    Do I not recall a super superb Clean gig at the old Bodega around 1999/2000?

    That might have been the Bats Bodge gig I remember from around then. (Although in my memory that was around 1997?)

    Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 159 posts Report Reply

  • nzMM,

    FIrst time for me to see the Clean and i was stoked! Good to see a nice big (but not packed) crowd of young and old. It was a really great night, had a smile on my face the whole time. Clean tunes continue to rock even in the 21st century.

    I reckon thats a pretty good venue as well, great sound, very crisp. Saw HDU there as well, that was just as special imo!

    Auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Andrew Dubber,

    Export, damn you all. Export!

    UmeĆ„, Sweden • Since Nov 2006 • 23 posts Report Reply

  • Nobody Important,

    innit cool how damn good bands in their 40s can sound?

    Yeah, and according to Donny Osmond on Niteline the other night The Osmonds may reform this year for some 'special' shows. Can't blame 'em I s'pose.

    but seriously ... I did a double take seeing Ron Asheton from The Stooges described as '58' in TimeOut this week. It made me confront my ageism. Then I remembered seeing the Pistols in Finnsbury Park in .. in .. 96? They were great (supported by Iggy no less).

    It's good to see 'old' kiwi bands performing again, as long as they keep it 'special' and don't regress to Vaudeville. Funny too how sometimes more ppl show up for a 'reunion' tour than did the first time round.

    Any chance of a ToyLove reunion? (and anyone care to comment on the CrowdedHouse reunion? necessary/unnecessary?)

    expat • Since Mar 2007 • 319 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Funny too how sometimes more ppl show up for a 'reunion' tour than did the first time round.

    ain't that the truth..The Newmatics for example pulled far more people to the sold out Kings Arms than they ever did in eighty whatever. Tom Sampson's "If we were still as skinny as we were back then, then they could get even more in" quote was appropriate.

    Crowded House...I guess the other fella needs the money (and the estate of the dead one). Neil doesn't but I suspect, and that's all it is, that Neil likes to sell records and nobody buys his solo albums.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3283 posts Report Reply

  • Bruce Wurr,

    Wish I was there.....seen them more than a few times, including a very sweaty gluepot where I attracted very bruised shins from being against the stage and they gleamed through Diamond Shine.

    In Love With These Times is such a cool song.

    In fact, if there are any F Nun people reading this is there any chance of the Nelsh Bailter Space ep being released on cd or such like?

    I know Matador released it a long time ago with Tanker as a States only release, but they dropped the band and as such it's disappeared.

    Auckland • Since Dec 2006 • 97 posts Report Reply

  • tillakaratne,

    As far as I can tell The Clean are only playing one show in Dunedin at the fairly dull sounding Heritage gig - Resound. It is being held at the Regent theatre, where people are able to sit down quietly (to The Clean - what the ...?) and watch 10 or so acts play for 30 minutes each. It seems very cruel to have The Clean play for such a short time and they aren't even the main act (bloody Mother Goose in wacky 70's attire close the show). The Sneaky Feelings are also on the bill (or should be), but it seems a bit cheeky to make this claim without David Pine (NZ Ambassador to the Philippines these days which seems a reasonable excuse to be absent). It seems more like the Dribbling Darts and guests.

    I apologise for the tone but the Clean reviews for this current tour (including the Hustle thing) sound amazing and I just want it too. Does anyone know of another show on this tour?

    Having said all that, Dunedin was thoroughly spoilt in 2000 with the outstanding Dunedin Sound showcase featuring: The Clean, The Verlaines, The Puddle, The Chills, Snapper, Renderers, Dead C., Cloudboy, Plagal Grind, David Mitchell (3x), Jay Clarkson and Alastair Galbraith. If you like this kind of music, it was really spectacular!

    Dunedin • Since Nov 2006 • 10 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    In Love With These Times is such a cool song.

    In fact, if there are any F Nun people reading this is there any chance of the Nelsh Bailter Space ep being released on cd or such like?

    I know Matador released it a long time ago with Tanker as a States only release, but they dropped the band and as such it's disappeared.

    It's there on eMusic - but not for we New Zealanders ...

    http://www.emusic.com/album/10591/10591212.html

    It doesn't seem to be available in any other form. I really hope Warners can get over the non-DRM thing and get this kind of catalogue to the place it belongs.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22830 posts Report Reply

  • Simon Grigg,

    Had a wee issue with eMusic and Rhapsody this week over pirated music on their servers....coming out of Australia, ripped off vinyl without my knowledge. EMusic were proactive and fantastic..it came straight off as soon as there was a sniff of a problem.

    Rhapsody (Real) (who use DRM) showed little interest and the pirated, DRM protected, product remains on their sites. I know who I would rather deal with.

    Just another klong... • Since Nov 2006 • 3283 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown,

    Had a wee issue with eMusic and Rhapsody this week over pirated music on their servers....coming out of Australia, ripped off vinyl without my knowledge. EMusic were proactive and fantastic..it came straight off as soon as there was a sniff of a problem.

    Rhapsody (Real) (who use DRM) showed little interest and the pirated, DRM protected, product remains on their sites. I know who I would rather deal with.

    That's very interesting - I'll follow it up with you offline, Simon.

    Your experience isn't surprising though: emusic has a good rep, Rhapsody doesn't. I can give you a contact for one of the good people there though.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22830 posts Report Reply

  • David Swift,

    just caught up with this thread after getting back to the UK after five weeks at home in NZ in Feb/March

    Saw The Clean's Auckland gig on March 17: first time I had seen them since the In-A-Live recording in London in, uh, 1989 I believe.

    Fabulous. New stuff as good as the old. And ''Getting Older'' surely the greatest NZ 45 of the 1980s. Kliller sound quality at that venue. My god, K Road has changed for the better!!

    Other rock'n'roll highlights of the trip:

    seeing David Kilgour and the Heavy Eights blow away Yo La Tengo in Melbourne;

    catching The Terminals at their annual Chch gig for the first time since about 1984 (when they went under different guises)....their garage-punk is for my money fit to stand right up their with Chants R&B, also from the home town

    watching The Phoenix Foundation for free at the Oamaru Wine and Cheese Fest in February in the domain. 26deg and fine real ale.

    and hearing our own minute contribution to FNun history, ''That's What Friends are For'', played by the erstwhile lead singer of Mainly Spaniards, who is now an English teacher, and three of his pupils. Billed as (arf, arf) Richard James and The Teacher's Pets. First time I have ever heard that performed without sitting behind Richard on the drums. Which was, erk, some 25 years ago.


    ahhhh.....good stuff.

    Whitley Bay, England • Since Dec 2006 • 7 posts Report Reply

  • Jackie Clark,

    At the time I was glad to see the end of Radio With Pictures, which had become Radio With Pictures For People Stuck In An Early-'80s Timewarp.

    Oh, Robyn! Nothing wrong with the early 80's. Finest time in my life, really, I think. So many good bands. I was in London in the late 80's and early 90's, so I kind of missed the Clean, as well as Straitjacket Fits. I did go to a reunion show though - earlier this year, went to the St James to see Hello Sailor and Th'Dudes. Absolutely brilliant - apart from Brazier, the darling man, being overly off his face. Ah yes, they were both my favourite NZ bands, and remain ever so. You could put Dave Dobbyn in a toilet somewhere in the depths of Gore, and I'd walk over glass to see him. What a performer. What a Dude, indeed.

    Mt Eden, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3136 posts Report Reply

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