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Best Classical Album winners Flight Facilities, playing at the ARIA award ceremony last year. Tracey Nearmy/AAP

ARIAs still matter to artists, but what do they say about us?

High-profile awards ceremonies are often only as interesting as the controversies they create. The 2016 ARIA Awards has started strongly in this area. Although the main ceremony is still a month away…
A young punk at Myanmar’s annual water festival in 2012. Soe Zeya Tun/Reuters

Friday essay: punk’s legacy, 40 years on

Punk gave women a voice; changed the dynamic between audiences and performers and offered music fans a DIY smorgasbord. On its 40th anniversary, that's worth celebrating.
Fifteen years ago, The Avalanches won four awards at the 15th Annual ARIA Music Awards. How has music changed in a decade and a half? AAP Image/Dean Lewins

Can The Avalanches flourish in a pop music world remade in their own image?

The Avalanches' legendary first album, Since I Left You, was a modern classic, built from more than 3500 music samples. Sixteen years on, they're finally releasing a second one - but will it resonate in an age when everyone samples?
Music – as a tool of mobilising people against power – tends to suit a more progressive agenda. AAP/Richard Milnes

Barnes vs Reclaim Australia: does Khe Sanh work as a conservative protest song?

Cold Chisel’s Khe Sanh was played at Reclaim Australia rallies in various cities last weekend – but won't be again, after a public statement by the band's frontman, Jimmy Barnes. Was it a good song choice?
Singer, songwriter, poet and writer, Steve Kilbey has recently released his memoir, Something Quite Peculiar. debra/Flickr

Speaking with: Steve Kilbey, lead singer of The Church

Bassist and lead singer of The Church, Steve Kilbey is one of Australia’s most prolific musicians. The band released their 25th album, Further Deeper, in October and will play The Queenscliff Music Festival…

Why are the 2014 ARIAs so international?

Wednesday night sees the 2014 Australian Recording Industry Association (ARIA) awards honouring the greats of Aussie pop. The ARIAs has a much more international feel this year, with the largest ever overseas…
Electronica musician Chet Faker, on Future Classic distributed by Warner, is nominated for the ARIA’s album of the year. EPA/ Anthony Anex

Independent artists call the shots, ARIAs or not

Since the Australian Record Industry Association (ARIA) award nominations were released last week much of the talk has been about how 80% of the nominations for album of the year were released “independently…
Playing at Bennetts Lane is an indication that you can be considered a ‘serious’ jazz musician. mandykoh

Bennetts Lane closure strikes a bum note for Australian jazz

Last week’s announcement that Melbourne’s Bennetts Lane Jazz Club will close in nine months came as a shock to most in the Australian jazz community. Bennetts Lane has been a focal point for local jazz…
‘Shoehorning your imagination into the condition of another human being is the A game in songwriting.’ Mark Seymour, AAP/ MG Promotions

Speaking with: singer-songwriter Mark Seymour

Speaking with: Mark Seymour. CC BY-ND22.7 MB (download)
At the Melbourne Writers’ Festival this week, a panel of poets, writers and performers will read and reflect on the poetry of the first world war. Among them is Mark Seymour, the former frontman of Hunters…
It is the landscape of the interior that is most strongly associated with Sculthorpe’s music. 'Two movements - Peter Sculthorpe', a portrait by Danelle Bergstrom, 2008 Archibald Prize. AAP/ Supplied

Sculthorpe shaped composers with a connection to this land

Australia’s most distinguished composer Peter Sculthorpe (1929-2014) has left a magnificent legacy – his music. Sculthorpe pioneered a uniquely Australian sound. The distinctiveness of his music emerges…
Arctic Monkeys are certain to feature in this year’s most voted songs. AAP Image/MG Promotions

We love music: why Triple J’s Hottest 100 still rocks

Australia’s national youth station, Triple J, has come in for some criticism lately, with a spate of articles accusing it of homogenising Australian music tastes or excluding too many local acts from the…
Music TV programs, like rage, have provided exposure for artists who would have otherwise been drowned out by the vast amount of music available online. shutterstock.com

Rage against the machine: music TV still important for the Australian industry

Digital production and distribution has made it easier to access music than at any other time in human history. But no one starts at “A” in iTunes or on YouTube’s homepage and listens to everything. There…

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