Spin doc­tor

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Music Reviews - Iain Shed­den

THIS has been quite a year for Bris­bane-based chanteuse Kate Miller-Hei­dke, who earned great re­views for her al­bum Night­flight and for the ac­com­pa­ny­ing tour. To end the year the singer is lend­ing her tal­ents to a good cause by per­form­ing a con­cert to­mor­row in Yan­gon Peo­ple’s Square in Myan­mar. The show is part of MTV’s Exit pro­gram, which stages con­certs across Asia to raise aware­ness of hu­man traf­fick­ing. Miller-Hei­dke has been a fre­quent cham­pion of this cause, per­form­ing shows in Viet­nam and Nepal in re­cent years. MARCH is turn­ing out to be its usual con­gested self on the Aus­tralian tour cir­cuit, fol­low­ing the an­nounce­ment this week of more in­ter­na­tional artists on to a ros­ter that al­ready boasts Neil Young, Paul Kelly and Neil Finn, Bruce Spring­steen, Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, the Jack­sons, Stone Roses, Deep Pur­ple, Jour­ney, Kiss, Motley Crue, Robert Plant, San­tana and more. And that’s with­out nam­ing the bills for Blues­fest, WOMADe­laide and the other fes­ti­vals that month. WHILE we’re cel­e­brat­ing live mu­sic, plans are un­der way for the sec­ond an­nual SLAM Day in Fe­bru­ary. SLAM stands for Save Live Aus­tralian Mu­sic and evolved out of the mas­sive protest in Vic­to­ria over leg­is­la­tion that in­cor­rectly linked mu­sic in small venues to vi­o­lence. More than 150 small shows were held across the coun­try on SLAM Day last Fe­bru­ary, in back­yards, lounge rooms and proper venues. Next year’s, on Fe­bru­ary 13, prom­ises to be even big­ger in its ef­fort to pro­mote live mu­sic at a grass­roots level. You can find out more at www.slam­rally.org. SD was one of a hand­ful of mu­sic journos who got to sam­ple the choice tucker that will be up for grabs at the Big Day Out in Jan­uary. Among the del­i­ca­cies from the Syd­ney menu, sup­plied by some of the city’s finest restau­rants, were Porteno’s bar­be­cue brisket and coleslaw sand­wich, Lon­grain’s soy chicken skew­ers with cu­cum­ber and le­mon­grass, and fried chicken with hot sauce from Hart­syard. Red Hot Chili Pep­pers, 360, the Killers and Band of Horses are among the main BDO at­trac­tions. THIS is the last Spin Doc­tor col­umn for the year. SD and the mu­sic page will re­turn on Jan­uary 19. As is cus­tom­ary at this time of year, lists have been for­mu­lat­ing in the SD of­fice, such as best al­bums of the year and the like. It has been a very good year for mu­sic, lo­cally and in­ter­na­tion­ally, which makes com­pil­ing such things all the more dif­fi­cult. What fol­lows are my top picks in a num­ber of cat­e­gories. Feel free to crit­i­cise them, as I will be some­where on a ba­nana lounge deep in thought about some­thing en­tirely dif­fer­ent. Thank you to all those who have sent emails on all sorts of topics dur­ing the past 12 months. Feed­back is al­ways wel­come and I look for­ward to get­ting lots more of it next year. Un­til then, merry Christ­mas and a happy new year.

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