Holy crap. First Scientists long-player since 1987.
You know, I'm old enough to remember when I first heard powerpop. And I also remember the first time I heard the Scientists' first single, which I thought was rather bloody wonderful. I was lucky enough to always hear Scientists' records before purchase and every record they put out, no exceptions, had to be in my collection.
We were often startled, because you never quite knew what the hell was going on in this band. It was like they had these... bees in their bonnets, and took delight in shoving them into people's faces, much to their alarm. Once they'd got used to the bees, of course, the band found (or invented) wasps.
The Scientists’powerful brand of deranged swamp-rock returns with a vengeance on June 11th, when Los Angeles’In the Red Recordsunleashes “Negativity”, an all-new magnum opus and the first full-length album by the Australian band’s penultimate line-up in 35 years.“Outside”'is the single first release from the album, out to the world today.
The bruising 11-track collection features aScientistsconfiguration much beloved by connoisseurs of the band’s work: singer-guitaristKim Salmon, lead guitaristTony Thewlis, and bassistBoris Sujdovic, all veterans of the group’s defining 1981-85 outfit, and drummerLeanne Cowie, who replaced drummer Brett Rixon on the storming 1986 release "Weird Love".
The Scientists Earth Tongue Cull - The Band Lion Arts Factory, Adelaide 4 March 2023 Photos: Alison Lea
It's the middle of Festival season here in Adelaide. As I walk toward the Lion Arts Centre, in the mid-1980s a sprawling, possibility-ridden centre of the most extraordinary range of Fringe shows for several years, Adelaide is chockas with assorted revellers starting out on their Saturday night of revelling, or whatever it is people do on a night roaming from club to club.
Many of the professional scroungers have arrived and are already parked on the footpath. A few will raise enough shrapnel for a box of goon and spend the rest of the night abusing passers-by until they're either kicked or arrested or both, followed by Maccas for brekky at the cop shop. A top night out; Adelaide can compete in the big leagues.
It's early yet (6.30pm), the doors open at 7, and the first band, Cull, will be on shortly after.
So. I see this bloke amble out of the venue. Spotting me, he ambles down the stairs and comes over. It's probably my new Josh Lord “Neotribalism”. T-shirt (huge red skull on the front) (note product placement). He comes over; 'Are you here for the gig?'
Beloved fuzzy noise makers The Scientistsare finally heading off around Australia to promote their newest album, “Negativity”.
The record released in 2021 as their first full-length studio effort in 34 years, attracted some rave reviews including this pearlerfrom our own Robert Brokenmouth. The five-state tour spans February and March, 2023.
This year I’m going to go with an all Australian bands top 5 of reissues / older stuff and a top 10 of new stuff.
Old Stuff (in no particular order):
1. SHUTDOWN 66 – Come On Girl Give Me Half A Chance. Reissue of their 4th and final long play release, the original was very limited and is super hard to find, so I was stoked to hear that Soundflat Records from Germany was reissuing this awesome garage punk LP.
2. ASTEROID B-612 – S/T The CD only debut long-player got a long overdue vinyl reissue this year from Spain’s Bang! Records.
4. THE PROTON ENERGY PILLS – S/T A collection of their studio releases. A fantastically packaged deluxe gatefold album. 5. BORED! – "Back For More" and BORED! – "Feed The Dog" A couple of great releases came out this year from Bored! “Back For More” (Bang!) is an awesome compilation with songs spanning the bands career, and “Feed The Dog” (Fantastic Mess) got the reissue treatment with a couple of bonus songs thrown in.