Archive for the 'music' Category


Introducing: Vandals Took The Handle

Holy fuck! People are stupid! I have yet again been solicited to contribute my ramblings to another site. Brilliant for me, not so much for the folks who hate the idea of a scum bag like me passing himself off as a writer. Decline of civilisation, here we come!

As to be expected I am rather fussy about who I lend my endless well of words to. The ones I am less proud of will never be promoted by myself in any capacity. I keep them as secret as possible. Like my various STD’s and the Tales of Fail that would serve as evidence against me in a court of law. Vandals Took The Handle however, is not one of those.  VTTH is as entertainment site, focusing on just about everything people do to enjoy a little escape from their horrible mundane existences.

The site only went live on Tuesday or something, and so far the response is looking good. The content so far has been top tier. Personal favourites so far;

the first half of an interview with the one and only Henry Rollins: link

And an open letter to cinemas about a film I’ve been interested in since I heard about it a while ago, Cabin In The Woods: link

I also put in my own piece, interviewing Durban’s most popular melodic punk band, Low Profile ahead of their new album launch this month: link 

See it’s all topical and shit… So follow the links, and check out where you can read yet more of my ramblings, opinions and hate speech plus some other people who actually know what they’re talking about too.


Columbus drew the Short Straw when he lost his ARV’s.

This review was actually meant for DIY, but thanks to my brain functionality and energy levels being ravaged by that crippling ailment called a job, I failed to get this in on time. Being that I’m not completely unhappy with it though, I’ll put it up here so it at least gets some reads, even if it is less than it should have been. Apologies to the bands, DIY and you poor fucks that actually wanted to read what I thought of the night…

On arriving at unit11 on Friday, I was worried about having agreed to this assignment… The members of Anti-Retro Vinyl’s were blocking the entrance like a bunch of bouncers.  Where I couldn’t help but notice their ridiculously fucking awesome dress sense. Leather jackets were clearly invented by the coolest motherfuckers to grace the planet. I challenge anyone to disagree. It’s like a glorious upper body covering of pure “Fuck You!” My appreciation for wearing animal skin was short-lived, because arriving at a gig where the only people present are the bands and their friends brought me back to the task set before me. I always arrive slightly late to gigs at least that way there are a few eager drinkers to act as buffers between me and the bands. I think the least interaction between myself and the musicians, is for the best. If I have anything negative to say, at least it won’t come out while I’m drunk and obnoxious and within punching distance. Musicians are so sensitive… So what if I hate your music? Fans aren’t swayed by reviews. They mostly entertain the people who already think you suck.

baby, ugly, cry, musicians, rockstars

this is what i picture when musicians throw a haffy

I hadn’t heard two of the bands, being that they’re from out-of-town and this was their first visit. I also hadn’t bothered to find out who was on when, so I was relieved when the first band did their introduction. I was watching Columbus. I enjoyed the kids who named their band after an Italian explorer who missed his target, and to cover it up renamed a people and spread his filthy religion along with the flu. I couldn’t fault the band’s performance, but the sound guy failed to do his job, because when the guitars were clearly meant to kick in, they stayed well in the back. Despite the sound issues the band managed to deliver a set that deserved a way bigger crowd. To me they were reminiscent of some drugged up 90’s Brit rock with unnecessary guitar breaks. A lot about them kind of said they’re a young band, they still walk awfully close to that line where, when crossed, could make them just another band trying to sound like the radio, and they didn’t seem totally convinced about what they sounded like themselves. I imagine they’d go well as an accompaniment to City Bowl Mizers, vocally they seemed very similar, but more angsty.

Columbus at unit11

Next was another band I didn’t recognise, so I safely assumed that it was Short Straw. If I had to say which SA band had impressed me the most that night, and maybe even this year, I’d have to say it was these guys. Sure they’re doing what a lot of other bands are doing, that indie, folksy, sounds like the Mormons with burning STD’s thing, but they also happen to be a class addition to those bands and manage to throw a bit of an African flavour at it. I dug them so much I got the album and I suggest you do the same… A band that write and perform a song about Keanu Reeves and a song about how you can go fuck yourself, is fucking cool despite not wearing leather. It’s all very well taking yourselves seriously, but it doesn’t mean you can’t entertain your audience with a couple of nonsense songs now and then. They only played 3 shows in 3 days this time round, but if you care to remember, definitely go check them out next time they’re in town.

Short Straw, Unit11, Durban, Johannesburg, South Africa, Live, Music

Short Straw at unit11

Last but not least, The Anti-Retro Vinyls. Clearly the coolest looking band performing on the night. I have to admit that they didn’t really fit the bill. To me at least, The ARV’s are more of a drunk party band that attract nubile young girls and drunks wanting to molest nubile young girls, not hairy dudes in low V-neck shirts who go home alone after the band plays. Basically they are not part of the indie folk scourge that has taken over popular music these days. Looking, part Ramones part The Damned; they deliver a faster-paced, catchy, melodic sing-a-long pop rock, and despite missing their guitarist and front man Greg taking over the six string duties for the night, that’s exactly what they belted from the stage. Admittedly I wanted to start going Oh-oh-oh-oh-ooh with the band, but have far too much dignity. For them to end off the night just didn’t gel. At some gigs, mashing a couple unrelated genres and sounds together can turn out as a pretty well-rounded evening of music. In this case… it wasn’t. The ARV’s set didn’t go down as well as what it should have, and how could it have after watching a band like Short Straw who received a crowd warmed up by Columbus. Despite this gig though, The ARV’s are part of that new wave of Durban bands that could end up being an institution.

anti-retro vinyls, unit11, durban, south africa, live, music

anti retro vinyls at unit11

Not a bad night of music at the soon-to-be dearly departed, Unit11. All the bands were great in their own rights and all of them deserved more attention than they got on the night. All the douche bags that were at the Wave House that night, you deserve every ounce of disappointment for supporting a DJ that can’t use a proper word for a moniker, playing at a mall that manages fuck up every gig they ever host, when a great live music venue was hosting great bands. When will you people learn?

Go check out the bands on facebook.

All photos courtesy (in case you’re too stupid to read)


i was nice once and people think it’s a trend. fuck off!

Fucking hate week days, right? At least you have the fuzzy memories of the weekend to keep you going until hopefully Wednesday. Then you can start looking forward to the weekend ahead. At least that’s how I do it. Read about what I got up to last Friday for Durban Is Yours before working on a sadistic hangover… Here.

City Bowl Mizers, Unit11, Shadow Club

Don't you hate it when idiot fans get on stage and try sing in to the mic? You're ruining the song asshole!


worth the kidney disease

Jesus, that light is going to come off and hit me in the fucking head – Was my recurring thought while I stood front and centre during the Fuzigish gig on Saturday. Some spastic keeps jumping up and slapping the low hanging light fitting so it swings violently, threatening to separate itself from the ceiling and crack some poor soul’s head open.

unti11-fuzigish-pissingblood-punk band-live

look at that fucking light go!

I hadn’t planned on being at the front; I was going to formulate this piece from the comfort of way in the back behind all the sweaty, crazed punk kids, Fuzi fans, and hipsters. I made the mistake of intervening on seeing the barrier being ripped apart by the crushing wave of bodies, and knowing what happens to bodies when those metal barriers eventually give way, I decided to step in and prop it back up…

read the rest of this here


cure for insomnia comes to SA, but not to the sleepy parts.

Before we start today kids, I’d like to welcome all the new subscribers… Welcome, your day job must really blow…

The most boring band in the world is making the long journey to our Southern tip of Africa… I am so underwhelmed I want to punch myself just to make sure I didn’t suddenly slip into a coma. To even say I dislike the sounds of Coldplay, would be too strong. I can’t have strong feelings about something that bores the living shit out of me… When I think of Coldplay, my mind goes blank and my vision goes gray. They are literally the only band that I can say I thoroughly don’t care about. So following my list system, they are on the “hate list”, but only because I can’t say I like them in the smallest degree. I wish they stuck to playing Coldplay in sleep therapy clinics and in lunatic wards to keep the crazies subdued. Coldplay will pass through my country’s borders like a silent fart and I would not have uttered a word about it, until I noticed that they were not stopping within my city’s limits.

most boring band in the world

most boring band in the world!

Once again the “little fishing village”, without much fishing, has been sidelined. My heart goes out to all those sufferers of bad taste that will not get the chance to be bored to oblivion by the fatigue mongers that are Coldplay. Despite my revulsion of the idea of attending such an event myself, I do feel a little offended by Big Concert’s lack of consideration for Durban. That sort of crappy made-for-radio, audio prosaic, shit would go down a treat in this motherfucker.  They see fit to send out Lionel Richie, who hasn’t had a career since the 80’s, but nothing more contemporary? Do the guys at Big Concerts and the like, listen to East Coast Radio and think that is an accurate reflection of what the majority of would-be concert goers are listening to in Durban? ECR sounds like its run by a conservative old woman. Listening to that station is like going through your mothers CD collection. I won’t even start on the boring as fuck DJ’s who if they’re on-air persona’s are anything to go by are some of the most annoying people in the country. I haven’t listened to East Coast Radio in years. I’ve probably heard it on someone’s radio, but it didn’t even register and stayed firmly in the background along with the hum of air conditioners and woman talking about their feelings. They may even have changed their policies since I last paid any kind of attention to the station, but I highly doubt it. That sort of thing would probably be a bigger event in this narcoleptic city than if the Bluff suddenly broke off from the mainland and became an independent hostile state. It’s suffice to say, anyone under the age of 40 who listens to East Coast Radio is probably in a coma or being subjected to cruel and unusual punishment.

man in coma

the guy who makes coffee at East Coast Radio

Back to what I was saying, I noticed a lot of Durbanites bitching and griping on Big Concerts Facebook page about no tour date set for Coldplay in Durban. I also noted a lot of people from other cities saying it’s their own fault they don’t get big acts. I’ll agree it is Durban’s fault. The average Durbanite has almost no interest in music from what I can tell. If it’s not played in a nightclub by some toss who calls himself a DJ extraordinaire, when really all he’s doing is playing mp3s off his laptop, then most of you motherfuckers won’t have anything to do with it. It’s no surprise that the music at Splashy Fen, easily the biggest festival we have on this side of the Republic, has become mostly secondary to majority of the revellers. You could blast 5FM for 5 days and most of the attendees wouldn’t notice.

Now I don’t mean to criticize you Durban. Well, I do, but it’s to help you see the error of your ways as much as it is to insult you, if not more. I like Durban. I like how unpretentious and chilled it is. I like the hot summers and mild winters. I even like the unofficial nickname of Dirtbin. Surely though we could do with a concerted effort on all our parts to raise our general populations’ interest in things, not sport or drinking, a few notches. So even when a craptastic band like Coldplay come to our fair country, they consider stopping in to say, “Hi!” instead of only the likes of Bon Jovi and his utterly un-super, Superman tattoo.


its friday friday, gotta get… Oh god make it stop!!!!

I’ve been described, by those unfortunate enough to have discussed music with me, as one of those, “music Nazis”… Use your fingers here folks and say it with me, “music Nazi”. They are quite correct in calling me something along those lines. The frustrating thing for them, I’m sure, is that I don’t take offence to the term. My blasé reaction to the intended insult often results in worse, more profane insults and on some instances physical exchanges, and not the good kind. The thing is I am never indifferent about music that I hear. I either want to make sweet sweaty coitus with it, or loathe it so much I want to see it and the rest of the world destroyed because of it. I will generally give a song, artist, band, or whatever 3 chances at most before I put them on the love or hate list forever. I can’t think of any occasion where one has managed to make the jump to the other, but I could be wrong.

I have to say, I was scared… no, I was more than scared. I was horrified in ways that I only ever imagined, when, for some inexplicable reason I explored a list of worst songs in the Rolling Stone’s daily newsletter that I subscribe to. Before you all rush out and subscribe to Rolling Stone’s emails, because you want to be as cool as me, don’t bother. Gone are the days when Rolling Stone could claim to be the finest source of rock ‘n’ roll, political and cultural news and boast having writers of the Hunter S. calibre amongst their ranks. No, those days have been brushed under the Persian rug and days of corporate dick sucking and record label pandering abound at Rolling Stone these days and looks to stay that way. So don’t bother. The saying, “Do as I say and not as I do”, applies to this situation. So anyway, I clicked an innocent enough looking link. I used my cursor and with my mouse clicked a link, like many other links I had treated in the same fashion. It was then that I experienced horror like never before. It is not a link I wish to click again, although I have clicked it many times since, inexplicably, I return to it every now and again like a dog who repeatedly pisses on an electric fence, and is always surprised by the shooting pain. I am referring to, what you may have guessed to already, I’m talking about Rebecca Black’s – Friday.

I can't be the only one who finds this face creepy

I know what you’re all thinking! Please don’t send me any get-well-soon cards or bouquets of flowers or any of that useless shit you send sick people (I’ve always wondered why people do that). I am okay. I survived it, and have come out a stronger person because of it. I have not been brainwashed. I am not an aimlessly wondering zombie drooling on myself and monotonously repeating, “Fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun fun…”  I will tell you right now that this is not going to be a laborious examination of Rebecca’s lyrical competency, laborious only in that it would pain me to actually sit and have to consider the lyrics on any level. I’m not even going to have a rant and issue insult after insult at her, she is only 13 after all and a grown man-child sitting in front of his computer ripping on a little girl is pathetic. It is not her fault, which I will explain in due course. I have, in a way been keeping track of the talent-impaired 13-year-old, whose parents, the people you should be blaming for this song, should have been cruel to be kind and informed their seed that she is not meant for the music industry. Bad parenting aside, you can also blame yourselves. Yes, you. I think as a society where we sit back allowing record labels and their artists to make shallow, dim-witted throw away pop music like they have done for the last ten years, insulting our intelligence while actually making younger generations dumber by not showing them anything remotely close to intelligent to aspire to, we have to accept some of the blame. We fucked up! Even people of my generation are to blame. It started out subtle, in the form of Spice Girls and numerous boy band clones, we allowed them to take the first steps to where we have eventually ended up. In a world where this unholy addition to the world of music was even allowed to pass the conversation stage. We also allowed the fascination with celebrity to get out of control. We live in a world where people become famous or infamous for no apparent reason. Every fucker wants to be famous these days, and it doesn’t matter how but they can be, as long as they’re dumb enough. That’s how you end up with a kid, influenced by the likes of Brittany Spears and every other pop tart since she was old enough to speak, putting her name to something as void and vapid as “Friday”. Creating something of value, that lasts to inspire future generations to work hard and create and contribute something of value as well, just didn’t occur to her. It isn’t a priority for anyone who gets to the position of being able to do so.  You make a shitty pop song or a suck a dick in a home-movie and because your daddy is rich, you’re famous! It’s honestly that sad and quite scary. Scenes from that utter shit film Idiocracy are in our future, for real…

rebecca black jason voorhees friday

Jason never worries about what seat to take, he just cuts your fucking head off

I will give a portion of our world’s population some credit, because Rebecca’s debut video is also the most disliked video on YouTube. As I write this post it stands at 1,750,391 dislikes, and is literally climbing as I type, go look for yourself I guarantee that number has risen, and by a lot. The total dislikes go up while you’re watching the video. I bet if I put a video of Hitler kicking a puppy, I wouldn’t get that sort of response. It shows that at least some people are choosing to side with meaningful, long-lasting contributions to popular culture. They might also just be ripping on a talentless little girl though, which is hardly admirable.

There is one upside to this musical tragedy, the hilarious parodies and spoofs of this preteen’s single. Not all are good, or even watchable, but I’ve wasted a fair amount of time going through them and some are pure brilliance. Well as brilliant as anything can be parodying such an inane song. Another upside is that I won’t be attacked by anyone over my opinion of Becca Black’s bullshit song.  That’s it for today kids, because, “…it’s the weekend, weekend.”

The link to Rebecca Black’s – Friday

A Death Metal version

And a parody that I thought was good


i would have preferred a public flogging

All photos Erin Wulfsohn

To be honest, I wasn’t even going to write this. My position on it was that if no one could have been assed to put on a semi-decent show, why on earth should I bother to even write a semi-decent rant about it? That was until I came across another review that seemed like the person who wrote it was either at an entirely different show, or completely fucking clueless as to what a decent show is. I won’t stand for utter bullshit from a complete novice standing as the only account of Ramfest’s first visit to Durban. The fact that it was on overtones blog that puffs itself up as a bunch of leading experts on SA independent music is another issue entirely… Another example of how media, no matter how small and independent, panders to musicians giving them the okay to be sub-par and shate.

I arrived at Gateway Theatre of Shopping late… What a surprise. If you stage a gig, or any event, on a week day expect people to only arrive after 7. The organisers frankly fucked up. It doesn’t matter that you have two international bands, the biggest act to come out of SA in years and massively popular local acts playing as support… People work. They have to, to be able to afford ticket prices. So I was late. I was sipping on my first beer as Die Antwoord took to the stage. Since we were in a “minor-friendly” venue where the bars and people consuming alcohol are caged and forbidden exit with any drink in hand, I had to watch the start of the gig from what might as well have been a kilometre away. I hate the Wave House for its unbelievably strict rules about alcohol. Mark the kids with different bands and leave it at that. If the bar staff are too blind and retarded to spot a 16-year-old trying to buy booze then invest in some better staff. Why punish us, the of age binge drinkers because of our need for social lubrication? I hurriedly finished my beer, which resulted in my uncomfortable burping for a good ten minutes, and made my way closer to the stage to watch Ninja, Yo-landi and DJ Hi-Tec do their thing.

Die Antwoord, Ramfest, Durban, 2011, Ninja

come all my zeffers kneel before your saviour

Die Antwoord, Ramfest, Durban, 2011, Yo-Landie Visser

fok jou, jou naai

I haven’t seen them in their new guises before so I was interested in how this now internationally known and successful band performed. My first impression was that whoever was doing the sound hadn’t planned for Die Antwoord’s particular ruckus. Standing closer to the stage, their sound was as muddy as my Sunday afternoon toilet breaks.  Die Antwoord were amusing in parts, but it all felt a bit stale even for me a first timer. Perhaps the overexposure and fuss about them had built them up too much. The only song that did anything for me was their single Evil Boy which they followed with the song that gave them their break, Enter the Ninja. The choreographed “dancing” if you could call it that, pushed me over the edge. I gave up supporting them and left to drown away my disappointment so far with something stronger than beer. I only listened to the rest of their set. Of course the Wave House would position one of the only two bars in such a way that watching the stage from their Nazi booze pens was crap. From what I heard their rendition of Doos Dronk went down the best, I have no idea if Van Coke accompanied them as he had done in Cape Town. I couldn’t care less if he did… So far this gig feels like a sham. I wished someone on stage would shout, “Ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?” I’m pretty sure the bands, and the crowd felt they were. I definitely did, because once again the Wave House has failed to even stock their bar adequately. They have no rum. They have Spice Gold though, which some dunce of a bar lady, who doesn’t look like she’s been drinking legally for a year yet, pours me when I ordered one. I will state this for emphasis; I fucking hate the Wave House as a venue!!! If someone involved with the Wave House events booking ever reads this I would like you to know that you fail as a human being and as an event organiser. You should be fired, then fired upon with heavy artillery. I digress… Despite my losing interest in Die Antwoord I did like the use of the big screen backdrop. The images were sufficiently disturbing to the lesser informed members of the audience and in places quite good accompaniment to the group’s performance. The other acts to follow failed to do anything but stick their names up, which would have been fine if they themselves had been more entertaining.

Between the acts, I was roaming the bar area looking for someone to amuse me, instead I had people expressing concerns about the size of the crowd in attendance. Given it was only going on 8 or 9, I assured them, that by the time the last band played the crowd would be larger, and rowdier… I was mostly right. Alkaline Trio entered the stage, and thoroughly underwhelmed. My only impression was that I was watching three old men on stage playing music made for teenage girls. Always an issue with me and these types of bands, regardless of skill and popularity that should give them some sort of credibility which it doesn’t, they have taken the foundation of punk and watered it down so much and to the point that my only comparison to it would be that of music for weeping vagina. A comparison I feel stands after seeing the type of Emo trash running up to the stage when Alkaline Trio started. Fuck Alkaline Trio and their shitty pop songs centred on love and all things I don’t care about. Their sad attempt at crowd interaction was sullied further by the front man’s condescending remarks about whether the audience knew the lyrics. What a fucking tool this guy is. You’re at a mall, in a skate park, playing to a bunch of white kids…

Alkaline Trio, Ramfest, Durban, 2011

look at all those damn white kids

Do you really think that they’re never going to have heard your crappy albums before? It should be a given that any moron in the crowd has at least heard you, if not, an avid fan. They were so boring in fact, that a bunch of guys took it upon themselves to entertain us with daring feets of drunken stupidity, doing back flips off the skate ramp and landing on their heads. It was hugely entertaining until the stuffy mall cops put and end to it. Once the torture of these three balding fucks do nothing on stage, expect play through guitar malfunctions and move as little as possible I spoke to some actual fans who mostly expressed nothing but bitter disappointment about the bands show. I was partly sympathetic, but I laughed a little to myself. That’s what you get for supporting weeping vagina music, I thought. Some Alkaline Trio sympathisers suggested I go watch some of their live performances on YouTube, and that their performance that night was in fact the norm. Actually, my time is far too precious to me to want to waste it watching their boring display a second time on my computer screen, so no, I won’t.

Alkaline Trio, Ramfest, Durban, 2011

old man serenading his bored teenage fans

Thankfully, the last act was coming up. I heard from most people I spoke with, even two muscle-bound, rugby fan types, that this was the band they had come to see. In truth I had completely lost interest by this point. Ramfest was a bust. The attendance even at this stage was less than impressive thanks to ill thought out date and time. The bands were dull and lacklustre probably thanks to playing two better attended and better planned gigs in less than a week. All I hoped for was that this embarrassment of Durban would end quickly and I would be drunk enough not to feel the shame of it too acutely tomorrow. To give Funeral for a Friend credit, they played as if they were playing to capacity crowd instead of what looked like only a few hundred. A band that gives every performance they’re all, whether it is 10 or 10 000 people is admirable in my book, and is how a real band should behave. Again though, they are watered down, soft cock, far too friendly sounding fluff to me. Sure they are slightly more aggressive in parts, but at the end of the day mixed up suburban girls are singing along to this shit with tears in their eyes after a boy from class broke their young hearts. It could be suburban boys too, but then they aren’t really male are they? All the fists in the air while they sing about love look pathetic to me. I go back to the bar to find my happy place at the bottom of a glass.

Funeral for a Friend, Ramfest, Durban, 2011

at least one dude agrees with me about the hands in the air

Funeral for a Friend, Ramfest, Durban, 2011

funeral for a friend says hello to Durban

I am only just in time for last rounds. It is halfway through the bands set, and the motherfuckers of Wave House are already closing up shop. I can’t tell you how much I hate the Wave House and the people who run the gigs there. It’s a fucking soccer mom, I know it. You bitch! In my opinion, I don’t think the organisers gave a fuck about the Durban leg of their touring festival. They tagged it on at the very end as a sort of experiment to see if they could add another venue and possibly make more money out of it… The experiment failed from what I could see. They’ll be lucky if they break even. I can only partly blame the Ramfest organisers though, because they aren’t in control of what the people of Durban do. I wouldn’t be surprised if Ramfest neglects to put a show on in Dirtbin again and I wouldn’t hold it against them. I feel it’s entirely necessary to chastise Durban folk, when they utterly fail as a metropolis, like they did.  The people of Durban sit and complain about how acts don’t come to our sleepy coastal town, but when possibly the biggest collection of international and national alternative bands of the year visits they sit at home and watch television. I hope that episode of Grey’s or whatever was on was the highlight of your week you sad act cunt. I hold no love for you, even less than I do for Ramfest organisers or Wave House cretins. How can anyone expect to see anything other than the likes of U2 and Lionel Richie visit KZN if there is never any support? Regardless of the dismal night I had at Ramfest, I would probably go if they bothered to venture this far East again. At least I can say I was there, and I support live music in Durban. This by the way gives me license to criticise, if you weren’t there and dare to moan even an utterance about never getting any cool bands in town, I will slap you across your filthy whore mouth and make you regret those words dearly.

The long drive back from the Theatre of Shopping, was a melancholy one. The booze and depressing show had taken its toll. In the passenger seat passing through central Durban, I decided that I wouldn’t be writing about the nights events. I couldn’t think of enough positive points to be able write anything and not come off as a miserable wretch. Then after reading the lies and the pure fabrication about how proud of Durban this silly little twit was. I felt the truth should be told, regardless of how my character may be viewed. Take from it what you will, but be sure to remember that I will slap you regardless of gender, and that I am above all, honest…

Check out Miss Wulfsohn’s tumbler to see more of her magic with pixels and light – erin-wulfsohn

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