Image for Golden Plain No. 5 line-up unleashed

Golden Plain No. 5 line-up unleashed

Written by Michael Carr on November 4, 2010

Meredith sister festival Golden Plains has just announced a massive line-up, bringing a surreal mixture of sweet dulcet tones to the Meredith Supernatural Amphitheatre over the March 12 – 14 long weekend.

Now I’m sure you don’t want to hear me ramble on about this any longer so here’s the line-up along with notes on each artist from the festival press release.

OS MUTANTES
THE HOLD STEADY
JOANNA NEWSOM
BEST COAST
HAWKWIND
ARCHITECTURE IN HELSINKI
WAVVES
THE CLEAN
JAMIE LIDELL
AIRBOURNE
PULLED APART BY HORSES
THE MIDDLE EAST
MOUNT KIMBIE
BOY & BEAR
ROBERT FORSTER
THE BESNARD LAKES
COSMIC PSYCHOS
JUSTIN TOWNES EARLE
J-WOW FEAT. MC KALAF
WILDBIRDS & PEACEDRUMS
IMELDA MAY
BAMBOO MUSIK DJS
BRAIN CHILDREN
GRAVEYARD TRAIN
WORLD’S END PRESS
MAGIC KIDS

OS MUTANTES
We Can’t Believe This Is Happening. “Legendary” doesn’t get a quarter-way there, but yes, the legendary psychedelic ethereal absurdist pop band from Brazil will indeed be unspooling their fantastical genius on the first night of No.5. The leaders of the Tropicalia art/politico movement will be taking their first ever Australian trip, still as a cult band, but as big and wide and deep a cult band as is possible. Their story is amazing; Os Mutantes aren’t just musical visionaries, they are social and political renegades, having risked life and livelihood to make their art. Their shows in San Paulo in the ’60s were often raided and their luminaries incarcerated by the oppressive military government. They were effectively enemies of the state. Instead of kow-towing, Mutantes thumbed their nose at the Generals and made their Beatles/Picasso-inspired world even more irreverent, even more subversive. They became gonzo (if not guerilla) entertainers, cultural provocateurs, art visionaries, and in turn, folk heroes. Their catalogue has seen several waves of regeneration, championed by and influencing Kurt Cobain, Beck, Flaming Lips, David Byrne, Devendra, Vampire Weekend and Animal Collective. Their oddball anthems light up dancefloors in the contemporary parallel universe. Their reformation means one of the greatest secrets in modern music is finally out.

THE HOLD STEADY
“You can’t get every girl.  You’ll get the ones you love the best. You won’t get every girl. You’ll love the ones you get the best”. The Village Voice once famously claimed “we believe in one band”; the first on their cover for 15 years. That band had its genesis watching The Last Waltz, “Dude, why aren’t there any bands like this anymore?”. TVV now says The Hold Steady has had “as thrilling a five-record run as any 21st-century American band you’d care to name”. They’ve revived a classic American sound and will hold court Sat Nite.

JOANNA NEWSOM

The sweetest of treats: the mercurial Joanna Newsom. The Supernatural Amphitheatre is ultra-honoured, as she is an artist truly discerning about where and how she presents her music live – and indeed very rarely plays festivals.

Joanna is like no other artist on earth. A horde of folk across the globe switched on to her first album, The Milk-Eyed Mender, but few would foresee the remarkable odyssey that followed. From that gorgeous otherworldy last-century fantasy realm she has swooped thru bluegrass, classical and a rainbow of other styles seamlessly and authentically. Winsome. Newsom.

BEST COAST
There’s something magnetic about Best Coast, about Beth Cosentino; a candid champion of the at-odds everyperson following a whatever-flavour dream. Beth was in NYC but felt an unbearable pang for LA…so ditched everything and flew to the arms of her California Dream. Best Coast = Summer in a Bottle, good times, lo-fi surf fuzzy garage pop floating over the beach from the cutest-boy-in-school’s car. Relationship songs with a pure heart, cloudy mind and servo sunnies. (On the hypey tip, #1 on NME’s top 50 new bands of 2010 list). Best. Coast. Golden. Plains.

HAWKWIND

Can’t Believe This Is Really Happening. The Ultimate Psychedelic Space Rock Experience, in the majestic Australian bush at GP No.5.

Hawkwind formed in 1969, played the first Glastonbury in 1970, then outside the Isle of Wight Festival, with Jimi Hendrix in the audience. They became the people’s band, with the world’s first multimedia touring show “Space Ritual” – an extravaganza of light, sound, dance and theatrics.  “Silver Machine” with Lemmy on vocals, was a worldwide hit, and 40+ years on, their first album still wins new fans galore. (After writing the song ‘Motorhead’, Lemmy left to form Motorhead). Hawkwind are the ultimate acid-rock experience; they created the dream.

ARCHITECTURE IN HELSINKI

The Supernat has hosted several AIH fun-filled triumphs since ’03, and this one feels like it’s gonna be some crowning glory. The first show in their home state for a year+, and the first for their new album. (Aunty has had a sneak peek and it’s highly exciting). Architecture is one of a clutch of bands that made an initial impact in the earlier 2ks, but by the start of the new decade they have shown themselves to be a delicious cream of the crop; and perhaps the cake and tablecloth too.  Sunday nite’s alright for Helsinkiing.

WAVVES
Lot of people are verrrry excited about this. Buckets and buckets of fun. King of The Beach, for the first time on our shores.  Nathan Williams’ slacker, lo-fi punk struck a chord in ‘08 and he’s now rolled out a rolled-gold Album of the Year – a soundtrack to Good Fun Times – taking his music on even Greater Adventures. Stephen Pope and Billy Hayes, last seen at Golden Plains with Jay Reatard have joined the all new Wavves and we’ll love watching them roll in at No.5.

THE CLEAN
Can’t Believe This Is Happening . A truly magical band. In 1978 in un-arty Dunedin NZ, one imported record collection – so the legend goes – inspired a fertile grove of artists who would become beloved internationally. The flagship was The Clean, whose treasure trove of (say) perfect pop, classic young person isolationist lyrics and droney psychedelic guitar jams has seen waves of rediscovery. The Clean are for many, THE band. Pavement, Yo La Tengo, Jay Reatard and countless others cite them as a prime influence. The progenitors of a certain pop’s DNA, and their maverick originality is still inspiring. First time here since ’89.

JAMIE LIDELL

Right ON. How much fun can one Amphitheatre have? Jamie Lidell IS a musical instrument, he IS kinetic energy, he goes OFF like a thing that goes off a lot and quickly and stays off a long time. Off and twitching. Off and glitching. The first word on this guy was that his live show had to be Seen to be Believed. That proved to be So Right. If Rev. Al Green was given a sampler and asked to make a record for Warp…an exquisite weird delicacy brought to dynamic life. Lidell, lid off. Boing.

AIRBOURNE
More Australian bands than ever are finding international acclaim, but none are living the dream quite like these crazily-obsessed rock lifers from Warrnambool. Despite over-hype, under-hype, nothing changed what they do, or what they want. Their dream demands intense dedication, and the rewards are on show on the world’s biggest stages. “That’s what we’re here for, mate,” says Joel O’Keeffe. They lived for years on the dole, booze and barbecue:  “Nothing came easy, we’d say to each other, ‘Ain’t no way but the hard way.’”  Airbourne, living the dream. Golden Plains salutes you.

PULLED APART BY HORSES

‘Surely the greatest live band in Britain.’ The Observer
‘Nobody said the revolution would be pretty.’ NME
‘The weirdest show on earth.’ Metal Hammer
It’s hard to find bands who completely Let It All Go. Like, make aggressive wild rock and just Let It All Go. Tight, but super-loose. Serious – but not earnest – fun. Humorous. Positive even. Where the aim is The Very Best Time Possible. Pulled Apart By Horses canter along and not so much re-set the bar as just play a different game. (horsey noise). 

THE MIDDLE EAST

Between now and when they take to the stage on the Sunday, Townsville band The Middle East will have released a new album. If it’s anywhere near as compelling as what everyone has heard and loved so far, the joy will be all ours. The Middle East is a very special band. Feels like there’s a lot of people in their corner of the world.

MOUNT KIMBIE
While dubstep has well and truly infiltrated the mainstream, British duo Mount Kimbie take a loosely based dubstep sound to unexplored territory. As much Music For Airports as it is for tunes for the club, Mount Kimbie prefer delicate over bombastic. Ambient textures meld with vocal loops worthy of classic jungle and d’n’b and field recording that put the boom-bap in Alan Lomax.

BOY & BEAR

Boy & Bear, from Sydney, make intelligent music that’s easy on the ear and uplifting of the spirit. It has a folky, natural, rollicking drive that’s infectious. At times there’s a five-part male chorus going on, with all players unifying and projecting to bring about something – in the great Working Song tradition – that is even greater than the sum of its parts. They are charismatic, but it’s an egalitarian aspect that makes their music and particularly their live show rise above. Can’t go round it, gotta go through it. They’re not afraid.

ROBERT FORSTER

Searching for a phrase to frame Robert Forster proves fruitless. The Go-Betweens were referred to as thee cult band as they blazed a trail from Brisbane across the contemporary music world in the ’70s, ’80s, ’90s and 2ks; and that cult is bigger than ever. As well as writing some of the world’s favourite songs, Robert has such ageless class and a keen interest in new music that make him more than a mere survivor, he is an irrepressible force. It’s a privilege to host him with his band on Sunday afternoon. Just Like Autumn Sun.

THE BESNARD LAKES

“They” say music is measured in MP3s “these days”. The album “can’t survive” in the download era. Fast food dominates. The Besnard Lakes are (of course) slow food, and their MASTERWERK album is complete with start, middle and end. When several people you respect all rave about something, you know it’s Going On. Besnard boil a lot of kettles. We waited for an RSVP while they took their annual holiday at the real Besnard Lakes…that’s a clue about what music is to them. You can hear it.

COSMIC PSYCHOS

Formed in ’82 and Too-Tough-To-Die. Still a great band in 2010. Their “yob-rock” sound is world-renowned and a Victorian institution. Grunge royalty (Melvins, Mudhoney and Nirvana) loved them but not as much as local rock fans who have flocked to see them for 25+ years. Songs about local ecology (Dead Roo, Shot The Cat, Thank Your Mother For The Rabbits) are perfectly suited to the pastoral Golden Plains. Their hybrid 70’s pub rock and sloppy punk should thump through the place nicely. Blokes you can trust, down on the farm, 15 years a million beers, true decadence. Heavy.

JUSTIN TOWNES EARLE
As tall as the day is long, all angles and elbows and a hard stare, both welcoming and deadly serious. He’s Nashville North, but in lower Manhattan now, just like his hero Woody Guthrie, with twang and charm intact. He’s found a sweet spot in the blackened hearts of fans and critics alike. “Boasting the kind of voice most often found on dust-covered 78s”,  “Earle sings like a honky-tonk hero and thinks like a 21st century man”. He’s got a swag of fans in these parts and we are proud to have him.

J-WOW FEAT. MC KALAF (Buraka Som Sistema DJ/MC set)
“One Drop, Two Drop, Three Drop, Four, the sound of Kuduro knocking at your door” M.I.A. was warning on her collaboration with Portugal’s number one party crew Buraka Som Sistema (‘Sound Of Kuduro’ – 2007). We present J Wow & MC Kalaf of Buraka, the world’s most celebrated purveyors of the Kuduro sound. Kuduro is the sound of Angolan dance music. From the west coast of Africa and the leftfield of rhythm, Kuduro is a hectic blend of tribal house, dirty dancehall and rugged hip hop.

WILDBIRDS & PEACEDRUMS

How do you take it all in? Wildbirds & Peacedrums are almost too good to be true. Like a natural resource. Do we deserve it? Live, (it almost comes as a surprise that they are a band, and play concerts) they are literally stunning, raw… astonishing. “Absolutely amazing” was the two-word report we got. (Invite sent to Sweden the next day). Weird jazzy, twisted pop, whatever you want to call it. It’s beyond, yet it hits within. Words fail. I give up. kjwebjvbvjkb. hhhheeeffgghhh. ehehe. yyy. jjejeehgeg….ccxz.

IMELDA MAY
Imelda May, born in Dublin and raised in the Liberties, may be unknown to some, but to many she is a superstar. Unmistakable in sound (a fusion of surf guitars, blues and rockabilly) and style (a visual approximation of that with a touch of SMOKIN’), Imelda melds high quality musicianship, old-fashioned stagecraft, and irresistible fun. On Later with Jools Holland, Beck made a point of telling Jools that he only appeared on the show to see Imelda. This will be a highpoint in a festival of wall-to-wall highlights.

BAMBOO MUSIK DJS

Bamboo Musik creates something culturally unique in Melbourne, on a regular basis. They throw parties that add rather than extract. They are stylistic miners who don’t exploit; they don’t cave in. They set up to create something remarkable and valuable; the city’s finest secret parties. They bring their extraordinary imagination into the Amphi late late Saturday, and won’t be afraid to challenge.

BRAIN CHILDREN
Is Mikey Young and Max Kohane. They share a passion for warped disco, punk, boogie and vintage hip-hop, so a collab’ was inev’. They appeared in-between bands at last year’s GP, playing records from a rock/anything perspective that made us dance. We loved the EP and invited them to play live – but they say that ain’t gonna happen anytime soon. So. Everyone is sleazy-pop-happy having Brain Children get away with it EASILY as late night party DJs.

GRAVEYARD TRAIN

From the depths of somewhere dusty and dark and old-timey where myth and mayhem rule the bloodied bordello-lined streets comes Graveyard Train and their spooky country music. Plenty of discerning music lovers love a bit of six-part baritone, hammer and chain percussion, death, despair, vampires, werewolves, mummies, suicide, funerals, witches and so forth. Recorded in the Victorian country town of Wandiligong. A first class carriage to hell.

WORLD’S END PRESS

If you haven’t heard the word, you are gonna. Unrelenting rhythm, beats and pulse pushed through with world-beating panache. A non-stop monster party machine. Bonafide roof-blowers. We literally search the world for genuine night-time party-starters, and, yep, the finest one this GP wuz right there in Melbs. Frankly one of the most exciting local bands we have been able to present over the years. Testament to that is a debut slot straight into Golden Primetime, when everything goes supremely sideways.

MAGIC KIDS
Hey boy, where’s your girlfriend? Direct from Memphis, Tennessee, home to so many rebellious, larger-than-life musicians, for the first time in Australia, comes the bubblegum ’60s joyful heartful fearlessly-expressed Richman-esque unapologetically danceable contagious pop band Magic Kids. The start is fragments of sounds from memories, the sounds that stuck since childhood. The end is a handcrafted take on the way great orchestrators like Brian Wilson, Van Dyke Parks and Jeff Lynne make the smallest piece of pop sincerity into a song bursting with life. Pop wizards. Hat, rabbit, out.

Golden Plains No.5
At the Meredith Supernatural Amphitheatre, Meredith, Victoria, Australia.
March 12, 13 and 14, 2011

Everything You Need To Know is at www.goldenplains.com.au

Join Music Feeds on Facebook

monitoring_string = "5ddc797c5ea15f4a20f5b456893873a5"