ISSUE 234 APR ’24

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ISSUE 234 APR ’24


ISSUE 234 APR ’24



Strong Fantasy Violence




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ISSUE 234 APR 2024

MUSIC 8-11 The Music Room: Emma Donovan, Missy Higgins 12 Album reviews 14 Vital Vinyl 15 Second Spin: Billy Joel, Shannon Noll 16-17 Cover feature: Taylor Swift 18 This month at JB 20 On the Record Radar: Beth Gibbons, Angus & Julia Stone, and more MOVIES & TV 22 Take 5/Filmmaker's Signature/On the radar/In development 24 Merch of the month/Charts/Socials 25 Cinema: Monkey Man, Civil War 26 The curse of the Iron Claw 28 Anyone But You : A tale of two Sydneys 30 Anatomy of a Fall 32 New from Imprint 34 Aquaman returns 35 Out this month 36 4K All the way/Board game party time GAMING 40 Take 5/Merch of the month/Game changers! 41 PlayStation’s stellar heroines 42-44 Get going with PC gaming 46 Dragon’s Dogma 2 Q+A 48 Sand Land Q+A 50 Out this month/Wham, bam, game exam! 52 Fast forward/Q5 TECH FLIP MAG AND READ FROM BACK 4 What to look for in a digital camera 6-8 Cameras for all budgets 10 Making sense of camera sensors 12 Insider tips to capture the perfect photo 14 Camera lenses in focus 18–20 Get creative with the right camera gear 22 Creator tips for cool content 24 Accessories for your camera kit 26 Why a dash cam is your best co-driver 28–30 The latest beauty and skincare tech 32–36 Appliances to give your hair the care it deserves 38–40 The best trimmers for beards and bodies 42 Monitor your health with Garmin Connect 44 Why you need a Withings ScanWatch Nova 46 Rivelia by De'Longhi makes bean-to-cup coffee simple 48 Streamline your streaming with Hubbl 50 Sennheiser's Momentum Sport earbuds are a game changer 52 Hot new budget-friendly phones 54 New tech at JB


Taylor Swift’s inpact goes far beyond the 34-year-old singer-songwriter’s earworm melodies. Across ten powerhouse albums (and four re-recorded titles), she’s crafted incisive lyrics which have resonated with millions, displaying mesmerising vulnerability and a storytelling knack which has inspired a generation to express their truth — particularly young women. A stylistic chameleon, in 2014 she leapt over the genre divide and fearlessly explored how her footholds in country could sashay into pop and folk, breaking down musical barriers for her aspirational peers. And not least, as a businesswoman she’s fought for artist ownership, crafting a pioneering method of musical revenge in her ’Taylor’s Versions’ and paving the way for fairer treatment in the music industry. Her influence comprises a powerful potion of creative honesty, artistic evolution, and industry savvy. With her 11th studio album The Tortured Poets Department , we’re anticipating a further maturation which will bake Swift’s starpower into this century’s history books — but we also know this gal’s still got 100 stories to tell. TTPD is just the latest and most exciting chapter in a tome which is being concurrently read by musical book clubs around the world, and we are all completely — and eagerly — captivated. Zoë Radas, Music Editor

Founder Nic Short Editor-in-Chief Paul Jones Tech Editor Scott Hocking Music Editor Zoë Radas

Music Consultant Mike Glynn Marketing Manager Fleur Parker

Social Media Manager Glenn Cochrane Production Manager Craig Patterson Correspondence STACK

Chief Contributors Gill Pringle, Bob Jones Contributors Bryget Chrisfield, Jeff Jenkins,

Games & Online Editor Amy Flower Movie & TV Editor Glenn Cochrane Creative Director Gary Siewert Movies Consultant Kerrie Taylor Games Consultant Sachi Fernando

Simon Lukic, Billy Pinnell, Denise Hylands, Simon Winkler, Jake Cleland, Holly Pereira, Adam Colby, Bec Summer, Dan Nicholson, Alex Deutrom, Michael Irving, Jacqui Picone


Parental guidance recommended

Recommended for mature audiences

Not suitable for people under 15. Under 15s must be accommpanied by a parent or adult guardian

Restricted to 18 and over


Disclaimer STACK is published by Scribal Custom Pty Ltd (ACN 092 362 135). © Copyright Scribal Custom Pty Ltd, 2024 All rights reserved. All material appearing in this publication is copyright unless otherwise stated or it may rest with the provider of the supplied material or advertisement. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written permission of Scribal Custom Pty Ltd. No responsibility is accepted for accuracy of advertisements or information. Whilst care has been taken in the research and preparation of this publication, the publishers, writers or anyone else associated cannot accept any responsibility for any loss, injury or hardship arising from the content contained herein or reliance therefrom, howsoever caused, and it remains your responsibility to evaluate the accuracy, completeness and usefulness of any such content. Views expressed are not necessarily endorsed by the publisher or the editor. By the very nature of this publication, things change daily and we cannot take responsibility for any changes or inaccuracies that occur subsequent to going to press.

Cover photo credit: Beth Garrabrant

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Justice Hyperdrama

Missy Higgins The Sound Of White (20th Anniversary Edition) The anniversary of this landmark release will be celebrated with a deluxe edition on CD and LP containing bonus live recordings of every song on the album plus newly expanded artwork.

Maggie Rogers Don’t Forget Me US singer-songwriter Maggie Rogers will release her third studio album Don’t Forget Me on April 12th.

Conan Gray Found Heaven Conan Gray, the critically acclaimed global pop superstar, is back with his third studio album, Found Heaven ! The highly anticipated third LP includes singles Never Ending Song , Winner , Killing Me , and Lonely Dancers . Conan reigns in his magnetic new era and sound as he expresses his undeniable authenticity and originality through his art.

Grammy-winning, multi-platinum electronic duo, Justice, release their brand-new album, featuring singles with Tame Impala and Miguel.




Tyler Hubbard Strong Fresh off his headline performance at CMC Rocks, Tyler Hubbard releases his latest solo album Strong on April 12th!

Sierra Ferrell Trail of Flowers Sierra Ferrell invites listeners to join her on a beautifully untamed and time bending journey through the Trail of Flowers . The new LP has already been hailed as one of the “most anticipated albums of 2024” ( Variety ), from one of “the most exciting country musicians in all of America” ( Paste ).

Fat White Family Forgiveness is Yours Fat White Family are back with the most sophisticated, vital and flamboyant creation of their career.

Mark Knopfler One Deep River

Mark Knopfler will release his tenth solo studio album on April 12 featuring 12 new Knopfler songs that draw on a lifetime of genre-crossing ingredients and influences in blues, folk, rock and beyond. One Deep River was produced by Knopfler and his longstanding collaborator Guy Fletcher.



Vampire Weekend Only God Was Above Us Only God Was Above Us , the fifth studio album from Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig, Chris Baio and Chris Tomson.

Shannon Noll That’s What I’m Talking About Celebrate 20 years of Shannon Noll with this collector’s edition CD featuring a bonus disc of hits, live tracks and two new songs including Don’t You Wanna Stay with Cosima De Vito.

Jebediah Oiks

girl in red I’M DOING IT AGAIN BABY! Ahead of her Splendour In The Grass set, girl in red returns with second album I’M DOING IT AGAIN BABY! featuring lead single Too Much .

Jebediah’s long-awaited sixth album, Oiks . A fitting title for a record such as this, with its relation to uncouthness helping to underpin what is the most freewheeling and unrestrained album from the band yet.

Most titles available on vinyl and CD in store and online




Eagles To the Limit: The Essential Collection The ultimate career-spanning Eagles collection combining the band’s greatest hits with beloved album tracks and classic live performances - available via a 3CD set or deluxe 6LP set on 180-gram vinyl.

Pet Shop Boys Nonetheless Nonetheless, is gorgeous:

buoyant with optimism, it basks in songwriterly lusciousness after a trilogy of harder albums.


The Black Keys Ohio Players The Black Keys go back to Ohio with collaborators Beck and Noel Gallagher.

Morgan Evans Live at the

Ride Interplay

Sum 41 Heaven :x: Hell

Sydney Opera House Recorded over two special nights, Morgan Evans releases his anticipated album Live at the Sydney Opera House .

Interplay is the sound of a great British band hitting a second peak. Nine years after coming back together, Ride keep rewriting their story.

Looking back at the band’s storied 27 year career, Sum 41 has firmly cemented their place in rock history with over 15 million records sold worldwide, multiple Billboard Charting releases, a Grammy Award nomination, and countless other accolades.


Faye Webster Underdressed at the Symphony Faye Webster’s songs are direct lines to the human subconscious.

ERRA Cure Cure is the sixth album from Birmingham, Alabama progressive metalcore band ERRA.

The Dandy Warhols ROCKMAKER The Dandy Warhols return with ROCKMAKER , accompanied by guests Debbie Harry, Slash, and Pixies’ Frank Black. Alt-psyche dance grooves, heady drones, and killer riffs abound.

Elly-May Barnes No Good EElly-May Barnes’ debut album,

No Good , brings together an A-Team of the Australian and New Zealand music industry.









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Prepare for your mind to be blown, because once you hear it, you can't un-hear it: the acoustic guitar riff which opens Backstreet Boys' single I Want it That Way – which dropped this very month 25 years ago – was inspired by Metallica's Nothing Else Matters. That's straight from the horse's mouth, the horse in this case being songwriter Andreas Carlsson. He co penned the hit along with insanely well credentialed songwriter Max Martin (who's responsible for Britney's 1998 smash ...Baby One More Time ) for Backstreet Boys' third album Millennium . As for what the "that" in the chorus refers to, Backstreet Boys bandmember Kevin Richardson has said: "There are a lot of songs out there that don't make sense, but make you feel good when you sing along to them. And [ I Want it That Way ] is one of them." Case closed!



Backstreet Boys in the clip for I Want it That Way (1999)

Billy Joel

Emma Donovan

Taylor Swift has said that to create something new, she'll "attack" her previous creation. And that's precisely what the cover art for her super secret 2020 album Folklore did – in the gentlest, most cottagecore way possible. In comparison to 2018's Lover – a rainbow pastel parade of glitter and excess – Folklore was positively subdued, its cover depicting Swift staring wistfully up at the enormous trees of a pastoral hamlet in Lewisboro, NY (rumoured to be owned by her pals Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds). Shot in a monochrome palette, the art was a reflection of not only the record's music, but that the whole aesthetic was conceived during the COVID pandemic. Looking back at the stories behind our favourite album covers, this month it's Taylor Swift's woodland-wandering Folklore (2020).

The Tortured Poets Department

by Taylor Swift is out April 19 via Universal.

"I had this idea for the [cover art] that it would be this girl sleepwalking through the forest in a nightgown in 1830," Swift said , tongue-in-cheek, just after the album's release. "Very specific... I'd done my hair and makeup and brought some nightgowns. These experiences I was used to having, with 100 people on set, commanding alongside other people in a very committee fashion - all of a sudden it was just me and [photographer Beth Garrabrant]."

APRIL 2024


Read on to get the lowdown on four of the best new releases around! See and hear more in our stores this month

At JB Hi-Fi we love to turn our customers on to NEW MUSIC

Photo by Kane Hibberd

JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE Everything IThought It Was Everything I Thought It Was , the sixth studio album from multi award-winning artist Justin Timberlake featuring the single Selfi sh . Out now.

PETER GARRETT TheTrue North Midnight Oil’s Peter Garrett

delivers a deeply personal solo album drawing inspiration from the sights and sounds of modern Australia and the vast top end. Features the singles Innocence Parts 1 & 2 and Permaglow . Out now.

Photo by Danny Clinch

PEARL JAM Dark Matter

LINKIN PARK Papercuts Assembling an essential collection of generational anthems, LINKIN PARK presents

Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame inductees, Pearl Jam, return with their highly anticipated new album Dark Matter . The band’s 12th studio album was produced by Grammy Award winning producer, Andrew Watt. Out April 19.

their first-ever career-spanning greatest hits album entitled Papercuts (Singles Collection 2000-2023) . In addition to the classics, LINKIN PARK have uncovered a never-before released track Friendly Fire . Recorded during the 2017 sessions for their seventh album One More Light , it features a powerhouse vocal performance from the late Chester Bennington. Out April 12.



The incredible SingYou Over has its origins in the moments before your mum Agnes was ready to pass; it must have been an extraordinarily personal decision to have a second vocalist record it with you! Why did you decide to do so, and why Paul Kelly? This song was also inspired by Uncle Archie Roach. I heard through the Koori community and music community that Unk had his band around his bedside when he passed. It brought me back to when I was there with Mum, and singing to her before she went. It’s an important time to invite and send the word out to close friends to come close, and pay respects. In honour of that I invited PK, because I knew he and Unk were close friends. You did a lot of inward thinking to craft the style of this album, and came back to your ”country family music ways.”What would 16-year-old Emma have thought of this album – is it the kind of ”daggy” country she didn’t like? I think I was more embarrassed at the cousins my age and friends around that time; country music wasn’t that popular, as it’s getting today. It it was more R’n’B that my friends and cousins loved. So when my mum dressed me in silk tassels and sequins, sending me to busk in Tamworth’s Peel Street, it was bit of a moment! I loved how country made me feel, singing it, inside. I love all kinds of old country: Hank Williams, Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, Tammy Wynette. I loved Coal Miner’s Daughter more than Grease . There’s an awesome pub rock feel to Liquid Gold , which is a love letter to ”where it all began.”Tell us about your shout-outs between the sung lines in the bridge? I’m sharing a big story of my grandmother and grandfather. My Nanna was promised to my grandfather from 14 years; she came from south of Perth (Wardandi and Bibbulmun country), and my grandfather came from Moonie Mia (Northampton). I’m yelling out all their names, and making reference to my father’s story. It’s where it all began for the family bloodline. The album cover is such a cool throwback – it reminds us of Dusty Springfield. Which artists were you thinking about when you chose this style for the record’s artwork? Mostly Tammy Wynette and Loretta Lynn. I just love them so much; me and Mother spent hours together singing all their tunes…

On Country, On Song Comprising individually gorgeous tracks which plait together into a breathtaking country collection, Til My Song Is Done is soul queen Emma Donovan’s manifesto on family, legacy, and the power of music to both propel you forward and return you home.We put some questions to the revered singer-songwriter. Words Zoë Radas

the good, to make good and right decisions and choices. There are also people in this world that need to see or feel change to help make their choices. Change Is Coming is a song about hoping for change in movement,

The concept of change is at the forefront of so many important cultural movements. But it’s also something that happens within our own personal journeys. Do you think that ”people changing their minds/ Opening up their hearts” (from Change Is Coming ) happens first from inside, or when they see things changing around them? I think a bit of both. People that have come from a good place and

Til My Song is Done by Emma Donovan drops April 19 via Cooking Vinyl.

moving forward for the rights of my people in this country. The amount of racism and injustices my people face in this country is appalling and horrible still today. I hope that by writing songs like this I can help change the minds of people that are negative.

intention first obviously want to make change, like myself; I’m all for change, changing for





In April 1994, the effects of Boyz II Men’s hit End of the Road (released two years earlier) were still reverberating through romantic hearts, which were yearning for the next crooning a cappella anthem. Enter Cali four-piece All-4-One, who were initially hesitant to re-record Kentucky country artist John Michael Montgomery’s 1993 hit I Swear . That’s correct: I Swear was originally a twangin’ ballad by a guy in a big cowboy hat. But All-4-One went for it, and ended up with one of the most memorable love songs of the century; I Swear spent 11 weeks at number one on the US charts, and nabbed a Grammy. Yee-haw!




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Detail from the CD single release of All-4-One’s I Swear (1994)


10 APRIL 2024


Missy Higgins The Sound of White (20th Anniversary Edition) W hen Missy Higgins was still at high school, her sister entered one of her

at number one in September 2004, and returned to the top spot four months later, before spending another week on top in May 2005. All up, it spent seven weeks at number one, sold 700,000 copies, and won six ARIA Awards, including 'Album of the Year'. The 20th anniversary edition includes a live disc of all the songs plus one bonus track – a cover of the classic torch song Cry Me a River , featuring Higgins’ brother David on piano.

songs, All for Believing , in Triple J’s Unearthed competition. “Being at boarding school, I was a little bit detached from the real world and I’d never heard of Unearthed ,” the singer told us in 2004. “Then I got a call at school, saying I’d won.” Suddenly, Higgins was on the radio, with record companies chasing her signature. Worried that a major label would try to turn her into the next Britney Spears, she decided to decamp – going backpacking through Europe. Two years later, her debut album arrived, exhibiting a steely creative vision with songs raw and honest, sung in an Aussie accent. The impact was immediate. The Sound of White entered the ARIA charts

generation of Australian female artists. As Gordi said, praising the album’s honesty: “With nothing to hide and everything to give.” (Universal) Jeff Jenkins

Listening to The Sound of White 20 years on, you can hear how it influenced the next

out april 19





- in Hey Archetype , he manages to rhyme ”she’s a catfish-clawing mangler” with ”finagler”. It’s a joy. Though overall, The True North is a deeply unsettling listening experience. It’s an album torn between hope and despair. ”It’s never too late,” Garrett states in Innocence Parts 1 & 2 , but ”the only constant is inequality”. In Meltdown , the singer has ”got a ringside seat for the final countdown” but remains defiant: ”I won’t succumb to the grief”. Caught between the darkness and the dawn, the album ends with the artist wracked by self doubt. ”I find myself asking, ’Could I have done more?’ I find myself asking, ’Should I have done more?’” But Peter Garrett is still putting his hand up. ”I still feel the wild inside,” he declares in Human Playground . As Bono remarked, ”It’s like [Midnight Oil] were born from Whitlam’s phrase, ’Maintain your rage.’” The True North crackles with the vitality of an artist who’s lost none of his power and passion. Still ”speaking my truth any way I can”. Long may he rage. This will definitely be one of the albums of the year. (Sony) Jeff Jenkins

Jebediah Oiks Jebediah’s first Top 50 hit was called Leaving Home . They’ve been around so long, chances are their kids are now leaving home. Thirty years after they formed, there’s no doubt Jebediah have matured. Oiks , their sixth studio album, is the band’s most musically adventurous offering so far. See the range on display through opening track Bad for You , second single Rubberman , and closing cut Aqua - Lung find the four-piece in a reflective mood - though they’re still capable of being snotty and spiky - then check out The Slip , Start Again and IWANNAGETOUT . ”Been waiting a little too long,” Kevin Mitchell sings in the album’s riotous first single, Gum Up the Bearings . And yes, here’s hoping we don’t have to wait another 13 years for the next Jebs record. (Cooking Vinyl) Jeff Jenkins


that is indifference.” They may have broken up and re-formed, but Garrett has got more to say. ”Time is on the move,” he acknowledges in Human Playground , one of the many standout tracks on his second solo album, ”a hungry beast, there’s much to do.” Musically, The True North is Garrett at his most adventurous. Paddo is a compelling slice of Aussie hip-hop, Innocence Part 2 is a stirring spoken word piece, Hey Archetype is classic rock ’n’ roll, while Permaglow and Human Playground find him at his most melodic. Lyrically, Garrett still possesses that ripping Aussie turn of phrase

Peter Garrett The True North

When Midnight Oil were inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame, Bono said: ”You can break up a band, but you can’t break up an idea. If Midnight Oil could mean any one idea, it would have to be that Australia could be more for more people and that the only obstacle to

Khruangbin A La Sala

Charley Crockett $10 Cowboy At the crossroads where classic Americana meets the vibrant resurgence of contemporary country, you’ll find Charley Crockett - a Texas-born artist vital for his time and place. $10 Cowboy tells the stories of the forgotten America that the world rarely gets to see, masquerading behind the facade of popular culture. America is a heartfelt missive to its namesake, expressing the complex and conflicted bond shared between the narrator and his homeland. On Hard Luck & Circumstances and Good at Losing , our protagonist finds solace in the understanding that our hardships inevitably shape us, and he eloquently romanticises this acceptance. At his best, Crockett brings these compositions to life with an almost cinematic quality. But even in its bleakest moments, $10 Cowboy radiates with endearing, affecting sentimentality. (Sons of Davy/Thirty Tigers) Alex Burgess

The title of Texan trio Khruangbin’s fifth album means ’To the room’, and that warmth of familial connectivity is here, along with views out of the room into textured, natural spaces too. Bird chirps, a spinning coin, and footfalls in ambient space are the sonic lace which links tracks like the dreamy May Ninth and the more dangerous, zig-zagging guitar of Ada Jean, while Farolim de Felgueiras probes minimalism, and Pon Pon brings the mood up into the sauntering territory for which this band is so revered. Todavia Viva has several false endings (a fantastic nod to its title, ’Still alive’) and Juegos Y Cubes thumps with the satisfying halts and accents Khruangbin nail every time. Rhythmically intricate and pulsing with inimitable, do-si-do guitar and bass lines, A La Sala is another feather in the cap of this peerless musical


Mark Seymour and the Undertow The Boxer

As Rocky said, ”It ain’t about how hard you hit, it’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.” Eleven albums into his solo career (following nine with Hunters & Collectors), Mark Seymour is somehow still

standing – and making the finest music of his career. ”The fire is still in my blood,” he declares in Brother . And he’s not wrong. Remarkably, Seymour has become a better singer and better songwriter, and he’s still striving to make great art. Seymour’s previous outfit was a mighty beast, a testosterone-filled blokey band that rarely did subtlety. With The Undertow, Seymour has discovered his sensitive side. The second song here, All My Rage , reveals how far he has come. ”I have raged against the sky,” the song starts, before Seymour states simply: ”I will love and not give up.” The Boxer is all about acceptance, not anger. Ultimately, the record is a fight for love. ”If not for money then do it for love,” Seymour sings in the title track. The final song, a cover of John Prine’s She Is My Everything , says it all in just one line: ”If I get lost, you can always find her standing right beside me in the rain.” The Boxer is the perfect companion to Seymour’s similarly impressive Slow Dawn from four years ago. Both are Aussie classics. (Bloodlines) Jeff Jenkins

hivemind’s journey. (Dead Oceans) ZKR

12 APRIL 2024

THE VELVET UNDERGROUND The Velvet Underground & Nico


BAD RELIGION Recipe for Hate



BAD RELIGION How Could Hell Be Any Worse?

BLINK 182 Enema of the State JB Hi-Fi AU Exclusive Clear Vinyl

JB Hi-Fi AU Exclusive Violet Vinyl

JB Hi-Fi AU Exclusive Black & Red Quad with Blue Splatter Vinyl

SUM 41 Heaven :X: Hell


SEX PISTOLS Never Mind the Bollocks

AFI Sing the Sorrow


There’s nothing quite like taking home some fresh vinyl and putting it on the turntable for the first time. It’s a total experience. Each month we pull together a collection of reissues, JB-exclusives, or just straight-up classic long players to add to any burgeoning collection. Words Amy Flower

many would consider one of the best debut albums of all-time in Penny Century , which we’ll get to shortly. But first, this collection of all four albums from the Clouds, some that have been unavailable on vinyl for a quarter of a century or more now, and all presented over ten sides of 180-gram, limited-edition coloured vinyl. Not only is RetroActive a perfect way to immerse yourself in the incredible musical legacy of the Clouds - well, most of it, as there were other EP and B-side tracks - but it’s a brilliant collectible piece in and of itself; just look at that stunning foil slipcase!



thanks to key pair Jodi Phillis (guitar) and Trish Young (bass) - was the Clouds. They really hit the ground running, too. Within six months of forming, they released their attention-grabbing Cloud Factory EP, and followed it up not long after with the Loot EP, which almost cracked the top 20 thanks to its deliciously snarky lead track Souleater . While building an ever-expanding live following thanks to their deft way with catchy pop hooks, they also prepped what

The early 1990s saw a boom in Aussie guitar bands that fused melody and hooks galore for dreamy pop with lashings of rocking out. At the forefront - and adding gorgeous harmonies to this heady mix

1. ARIANA GRANDE Eternal Sunshine 2. TAYLOR SWIFT 1989 (Taylor's Version) 3. TAYLOR SWIFT Lover 4. TAYLOR SWIFT Midnights 5. AC/DC Back in Black 6. TAYLOR SWIFT Folklore 7. TAYLOR SWIFT Evermore 8. TAYLOR SWIFT Speak Now (Taylor's Version) 9. AC/DC Highway to Hell 10. TAYLOR SWIFT Red (Taylor's Version)

THE CLOUDS PENNY CENTURY (1991) BAM! Six months after the Loot EP, this debut LP arrived. Opening with the cracking, slightly sinister pop explosion of Hieronymus , nailing a favourite track proved difficult for most who instantly fell in love with the album. One day it could be the driving Immorta , another the burst of pure pop that was Show Me , or the chilled Too Cool , or the two-minute slice of longing that was later single Anthem , or… TOP TRACK: Hieronymus

THE CLOUDS OCTOPUS (1992) A year to the month later, Octopus delivered eight tracks that further strengthened the Clouds’ hold on the hearts of fans. Say It proved another formidable slice of power-pop deserving of its single status, while quiet-loud opener See You’re Leaving led us gently into other delights, including the mesmerising, pitchbend laden Maryanne , and the rollicking Loud . As a delicious bonus, this vinyl release has added three killer Penny Century -era bonus tracks, in Lucy’s Eyes , Swim , and Tear Me Apart . TOP TRACK: Say It



Touring relentlessly, the Clouds still came up with a barrage of top new tunes for this third album. Right from opener Kathy , Thunderhead hinted at a more mature sound, before ripping into the distorted ode to carnal desire Bower of Bliss . Fans of poppier moments weren’t shortchanged, with Alchemy’s Dead another highlight, along with the urgent Baby . This one comes to us spread over four sides, with all 11-minutes plus of The Rocket providing an epic sendoff via a burst of crunchy pop, a stormy outbreak, and a

After a trio of EPs, album number four arrived with an explosion of powerful pop from album opener Here Now and the just as upbeat Down from the Sky . Further sweet pop bursts included the enchanting, more acoustic Never Say Forever , while Colourblind highlighted the band’s adorable harmonies. As a sendoff, Bonjour Tristesse gave us one final taste of the dreamier side of the Clouds. TOP TRACK: Never Say Forever

welcome returning refrain. TOP TRACK: Alchemy’s Dead

FAST FACT: All of the band’s original releases were as “Clouds” – sharing an absence of “the” with Pixies. According to Jodi Phillis, “We wanted to change it to ‘the Clouds’ because we had always preferred that and, finally, we had the chance to change the name once we became self-managed.”




In 2004, Spiderbait were already stalwarts of the Oz indie scene - we’d thrashed around to 1997 hits Calypso and Buy Me a Pony , bah-bah-bah’d along with 2000’s Glokenpop , and flung our necks every which way for the gems in between. This time 20 years ago, the NSW trio decided to blow our heads clean off with their cover of Black Betty - and the band promptly scored their first ever number one. The track is led by inimitable drummer Kram, who has described the hit as a “fluke” - adding that he wanted to include three drum solos but was outvoted by his bandmates.





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Kram and his drumkit-mobile in the clip for 2004's Black Betty


14 APRIL 2024


We take a studied gaze into the latest vinyl reissues available, in-store and online (while stocks last)!

following week].” Fortunately for Shannon, Pete was voted out before the work on the ‘Number Ones’ began — so he was then free to nail the track. Once he’d decided to also release it as his debut single, Shannon went back to his hometown of Condobolin in NSW to make the video, and the single was released on Australia Day 2004. It made chart history, becoming the first time a cover of an Australian number one had also hit number one. Shannon’s version also made it to number two in Ireland. Marcia Hines wasn’t responsible for the album title – it was all Nollsie During season one of Idol , there was one particular cast member with whom the phrase “That’s what I’m talking about” was associated: everyone’s fave judge, Marcia Hines. But Nollsie has always been adamant about its origins. “It’s a Shannon Noll original,” he’s insisted. “I used to say it all the time when I was with my band [Cypress]. Did you notice that every time Marcia said it, she was saying it to me?” That’s What I’m Talking About opens with a cracking track called Drive , which became the album’s second single. When Shannon’s record company played him the song’s demo, Shannon was a little perplexed. “[I said] ‘Geez, I know that singer.’ “And they said, ‘You’d wanna know, that’s Bryan Adams!’” The Canadian superstar wrote Drive with English songwriter Phil Thornalley. Adams later asked Noll to support him on his Australian tour in 2004, and the pair became friends. (Sony) Jeff Jenkins Shannon thought the singer of the Drive demo sounded strangely familiar…

Shannon Noll That’s What I’m Talking About (20th Anniversary Edition)

A nother Aussie 20th hits this month: Nollsie’s That’s What I’m Talking About . The singer might have come second in the first series of Australian Idol but soon he was on top - with debut single What About Me, and debut album That’s What I’m Talking About . When the album hit number one, going triple platinum in its first week, BMG’s then boss Ed St John said: “Today is the day that everyone gets the message - Shannon Noll is a certified Australian superstar.” With a vinyl reissue, a special anniversary edition of the album, and an anniversary tour ready to rock this month, we’re looking at three

things that you may not know about That’s What I’m Talking About . Shannon almost didn’t get to do his signature song When Nollsie made Idol’s Top 12, he was keen to sing What About Me , which had been a chart-topper for Moving Pictures in 1982 - when Shannon had just started primary school. The only problem was, another contestant - Peter Ryan, known as ‘Pete the Pig Farmer’ - beat him to it. “Pete the Pig Farmer had picked it for the 'Number Ones’ show,” Shannon has revealed, “while I’d pencilled it in for the ’80s show [the

Billy Joel vinyl reissues Cold Spring, Live at the Great American Music Hall 1975 Harbour, Streetlife Serenade,Turnstiles,The Stranger, 52nd Street, Songs In the Attic

T his month you’ll be able to grab the black vinyl reissues of seven timeless stonkers from Billy Joel, beginning with the Piano Man’s very first release. While 1971 debut Cold Spring Harbour introduced Joel’s folk rock knack, introspective lyrics and dynamic styles on the ol’ ivories, its follow-up Live at the Great American Music Hall 1975 - from the year of its title - captured the raw essence of the singer songwriter’s compositions, in a super energetic live performance at San Fran’s

hallowed performance venue. In 1974, Joel dropped

so-far captured, return to his home city, and record the entire album over again with his own touring band. It ended up a love letter to the city that never sleeps, in a mature and jazz-licked collection which put a spotlight on Joel’s memorable melodies. Global commercial and critical recognition arrived with 1977’s The Stranger (1977), which shot to number two and stayed there for six weeks, buoyed by several hits including Only the Good Die Young and Just the Way You Are . its production was

polished with a radio-friendly radiance, but it also proved that Joel’s storytelling prowess hadn’t peaked with 1973’s Piano Man . The fabulous 52nd Street leapt to the very top of the charts in 1978, delivering big band sophistication and complex arrangements that never appeared patched together, and its follow-up, Songs in the Attic (1981), offered reimagined versions of earlier hits recorded live across his 1980 US tour, providing a retrospective look at the evolution of Joel's sparkling career to that point.

Streetlife Serenade , which saw the NYC native jamming his thumbs into the pies of jazz and pop rock. It reflected a huge transition period for the star, as he began to refine his musical identity through experimentation with different genres. Initially recorded in Colorado with members of Elton John’s band, 1976’s Turnstiles instead became a celebration of New York City when Joel decided to dump everything he’d





T aylor Swift is a modern day poet - who else can come up with lines like ”You call me up again just to break me like a promise, so casually cruel in the name of being honest” (from magnum opus All Too Well )? We also know that she admires the greats, whether she’s mentioning Chilean poet Pablo Neruda in the

prologue to 2012 album Red , or making some clever little allusion to a nook of literature in her lyrics. In announcing her 11th album (not counting the Taylor’s Versions ) as she accepted her 13th Grammy Award earlier this year, Swift revealed that the new record’s name makes a direct reference to poetry - and it immediately became

grist for the mill of album theories! Is ’The Tortured Poets Department’ - and the fact that Swift has dubbed herself its ’Chairman’ - a reference to suffering for one’s music? An exploration of Taylor’s own inner turmoil, like the torments of old-timey sonnet writers? Or is it about paying homage to the writers on whose

shoulders she stands? We’re taking that last one and running with it, exploring four of Taylor’s references to classic literature and poetry from her already released albums, and then offering up four (totally speculative!) ideas on which classics she might delve into on The Tortured Poets Department .

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE ”You were Romeo, you were throwin’ pebbles And my daddy said, ’Stay away from Juliet’” Love Story, 2008 Here’s the one that might have sashayed into your mind first: Swift goes straight for the allegorical jugular with her reworking of William Shakespeare’s tragedy Romeo and Juliet , which arrived as the lead single from her second album, Fearless . Swift’s song doesn’t end with the star cross’d devastation of The Bard’s most famous play (first performed in 1597), but instead, the protagonist’s father changes his mind and allows the dewy-eyed pair to get married. Swift was 18 when she wrote this one, so no points deducted for its cheese. F. SCOTT FITZGERALD ”The wedding was charming, if a little gauche Swift received some mighty praise for the narrative arc of her Folklore track The Last Great American Dynasty . Could it be such a belter because she shaped its tale around F. Scott Fitzgerald’s literary masterpiece (and bane of the lives of high school students There’s only so far new money goes” The Last Great American Dynasty, 2020

socialite whose Long Island house Swift bought in 2013. The Great Gatsby revolves around nouveau riche party boy Jay Gatsby, whose lavish and scandal-filled lifestyle gives the New York Jazz Age gossips plenty of fodder. CHARLES DICKENS ”It was the best of times The worst of crimes” Getaway Car, 2017 In what’s become a fan fave of Swift’s

everywhere) The Great Gatsby ? Both narratives explore wealth, privilege, societal norms, and the American Dream, while orbiting a charismatic and controversial main character. The Great American Dynasty follows Rebekah Harkness, the real life

Rebekah Harkness, whose mansion Taylor Swift purchased 11 years ago

A sartorial secret

In the cover artwork for 2021’s Fearless ( Taylor’s Version ), Swift wears a white peasant-style shirt… which looks remarkably

similar to the shirt ’Romeo’ wears in the Love Story clip. Fans took it as a message that Swift’s reinvigorated ideas on ownership (generated by her re-recording project, in which Fearless was the first entry) meant the artist was no longer relying on a white knight to guide her - she had become her own saviour.

The cover of Fearless ( Taylor’s Version ), and a still from the Love Story clip

16 APRIL 2023


OUR PREDICTIONS for The Tortured Poets Department

EDGAR ALLEN POE Who’s the most tortured of all the poets? That would be the

lupine themes and phrases Taylor might borrow to reference this revered literary figure. Look out for: A woman requiring her own room and space, especially in which to write ( A Room of One’s Own , 1929 essay). Anyone called ’Mrs Dalloway’ ( Mrs Dalloway , 1925 novel). A person walking into a river with their pockets full of stones (Woolf’s death). THE BRONTËS Charlotte, Anne, and Emily Brontë are the triumvirate of mid-1800s exploratory feminist authorship. Some eagle-eyed Swift fans have found (again, wobbly) allusions to the sisters’ works in Taylor’s lyrics (such as Emily’s novel Wuthering Heights inspiring Taylor’s 2010 song Enchanted , or 2020 track Invisible String

OG (Original Goth) himself: Poe! We’re willing to bet a few clams that somewhere on TTPD you’ll find references to the Boston writer’s tales of the macabre and the mysterious. Look out for: Tapping at a chamber or bedroom door ( The Raven , 1845 poem). The word ’nevermore’, especially if it’s repeated (as above). A ’tell-tale heart’ or a disembodied, hidden heart that beats loudly ( The Tell-Tale Heart , 1843 short story).

catalogue, Getaway Car most obviously takes its cues from real life crim couple Bonnie and Clyde, whose debaucherous spree of robbery and murder terrorised the southern US states in the early 1930s. It fits (figuratively) with the themes of the album from which it comes, Swift’s 2019 effort Reputation . But in another allegory with a twist, Swift opens the track with a cute spin on the first lines of Charles Dickens’ 1859 novel A Tale of Two Cities , which read: ”It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…” Contrasts and contradictions were the name of Dickens’ game in his story of London and Paris during the French Revolution (the late 1700s), and its precisely those teetering extremes Swift aimed to evoke with this song. ROBERT FROST Folklore is Illicit Affairs , and within its lyrics Taylor nods to a timeless piece of poetry by Pulitzer-winning American poet Robert Frost. It’s his 1915 piece The Road Not Taken that we’re looking at, and in it Frost writes: ”Two roads diverged in a wood, and I /I took the one less travelled by/ And that has made all the difference.” Yes, on its surface, Taylor’s couplet is about hiding a clandestine relationship… but ”Take the road less travelled by Tell yourself you can always stop” Illicit Affairs, 2020 The tenth track from 2020 iso-album

SYLVIA PLATH There are Swifties who are adamant they can already string together a bunch of wobbly comparisons between Taylor’s lyrics and American poet, novelist, and short story writer Sylvia Plath.

But none of them are direct, relying only on the fact that both artists are often called ’confessional.’ We think Tay’s going to make some more explicit references. Look out for: A ’bell jar’ or a bell-shaped, glass container which covers something ( The Bell Jar , 1963 novel). Hiding in a hole in a cellar (as above). A peanut gallery or a ’peanut-crunching’ audience ( Lady Lazarus , 1965 poem). VIRGINIA WOOLF London-born writer Woolf was one of the sparkling talents of the modernist 20th century movement, and wrote myriad essays, short stories, novels, and autobiographical pieces. Oh, and Nicole

Michael Fassbender and Mia Wasikowska in 2011’s Jane Eyre

Kidman wore a fake nose to play her in 2002 drama The Hours (and then won 'Best Actress'). We weren’t surprised to see the TTPD track list includes a song named Who’s Afraid of Little Old Me? (a reference to Edward Albee’s 1962 play

referencing a particularly beautiful line in Charlotte’s gothic novel Jane Eyre ), but c’mon, Taylor - you can get more literal than that! There are a few stand out Brontëisms that might be hidden within TTPD . Look out for: A ripped wedding veil, a handsome stranger falling off a horse, or a madwoman hidden in an attic ( Jane Eyre , 1847 novel). A ghost at the window begging to be let in, or someone ’burning too bright for this world’ ( Wuthering Heights , 1847 novel). Locks of hair from two lovers entwined in a locket (as above).

it could also mean that the ’road less travelled’ is the one paved with the bad idea of romantically pursuing someone who’s already taken. Needless to say, the likeness is too close not to believe our gal was smitten by Frost’s beautiful lines.

The Tortured Poets Department by Taylor Swift is out April 19 via Universal.

Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf in 2002’s The Hours

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf? ), so here are more






There are plenty of beaut new merch options out for music fans, including Pop! Vinyl figurines of Aretha Franklin (in her iconic tangerine get-up for The Andy Williams Show in ’69), and Freddie Mercury (looking chic in his ’fit from 1985 clip I Was Born to LoveYou ).There are also fresh posters of Tupac and Bob Marley, a newThe Doors tee, and heaps more! MERCH MONT H M H of the Check out the cool new merchandise available in JB stores now!

never get bored of listening to it. It's such an interesting album from start to finish. It’s angry, sad and most of all a fantastic grunge listen. I love it so much I got the cover tattooed on me! Do you have a vinyl collection? If so, how did it begin, and expand? Yes, I do. I collect CDs and vinyl. It began with raiding my parents old collection (including original AC/DC pressings from the ’70s!). I then started going to local record stores and record fairs to build my collection with second hand finds. Now working at JB, I love collecting all of the JB-exclusive coloured vinyl. What do you enjoy most about working in music at JB? I love being able to introduce people to new albums, when I get to choose what goes on display - or discovering something new myself. It’s also just so fun being surrounded by my favourite bands all day long, if I’m restocking CDs and vinyl!

SARAH DORNEY Counter specialist @ Westfield Kotara, NSW

What’s an early, cherished music memory? When I was about 13, I desperately wanted to go to Groovin the Moo in Maitland. My dad, the legend that he is, bought me a ticket and chaperoned me. I got to see so many great artists like Tame Impala and Flume that day, because he was nice enough to take me. We had such a fun time together. Which recent album do you currently have on repeat? Polaris’ album Fatalism . Probably my pick for album of the year. I saw them perform live not long after it was released, and it was an emotional rollercoaster. What’s your all-time favourite album and why? Dirt by Alice in Chains, because I can


TROY CASSAR-DALEY Between the Fires RELEASE DATE: May 10, 2024 SPECIAL OFFER: Pre-order online and get a CD-sized slick card signed by Troy Cassar-Daley! Online pre-order

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18 APRIL 2024

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