[Johann M. Smith] Last year, Bizcommunity interviewed editor-in-chief Miles Keylock on the exciting launch of Rolling Stone SA. Some questions remained unanswered and others have only come to the fore very recently. The debate regarding the ongoing success of RS SA remains a nail-biting affair - the opinions are as clouded as the future of print media remains a hotly contested debate.
[Johann M. Smith] When you start a band, age plays a huge a factor - especially in the world of metal. Basically, unless you're old-school like Ozzy or Maiden, don't plan on doing it for too long. Don't you ever forget, your oh-so-serious hard core band comes with the same cultural expiration date as an emo-haircut circa 2006.
[Johann M. Smith] Please follow these instructions step-by-step: listen to the first track (Little Puppet) from Lucy Kruger's debut album "Cut Those Strings". Stop the song at 25 seconds. Now listen to Robbie Wessel's Aan Jou Van My.
[Johann M. Smith] Let's just jump right in and cut straight through: thank God this album is available for free right now, because these words will never be able to explain the grinding, rickety noise that is the Great Apes eponymous debut.
[Johann M. Smith] The saying: "When America coughs, Britain catches a cold," can be extended to "and South Africa kaks it out". What's referred to as "influences" everywhere else, we often call "that place "they" stole it from." Seether and Nirvana. Fokkof and Alkaline Trio. The Plastics and The Strokes. Be a purist, call it postmodern trite, or blame it on Tweak for overdoing anything by Tom Delonge. It's the skeleton in the closet we drag on the wings of progress. And it's no different with Isochronous, who either love or detest a band called Mew.
[Johann M. Smith] A month ago, Gerald Clark released "Black Water"; it came bearing more weight than any recent blues attempt from SA, primarily because the 13-track album was hallmarked with the public's official stamp of higher regard - because (as the public knows very well) it's the album that was launched the same night that Clark had to undergo surgery to remove a growth that was obstructing his vocal chords.
[Johann M. Smith] Let me open up with a question that's a kind of joke: What's worse, a person addicted to horror or porn flicks? Bizarre how both instantly paint an undesirable stereotype hooked on entertainment we've all secretly indulged. Now think why. You have? Wonderful. Now that we've all had time to reflect and laugh at our choices of recreation, it's easier for me to ask you without any immediate satanic associations: Keen to nurture your love of horror?
[Johann M. Smith] For a long time in South Africa, comedians have had a firm grasp on rock-stardom status. But unlike the rest of the world, a super group line-up has rarely ever existed as in the case of Mass Hysteria, a performance boasting eight of our motherland's finest. What started as an attempt to mock current national leadership became the antidote to the perversity of politics and the complacency of culture, if only for a while.
[Johann M. Smith] Oh, Mondays! The restart of commerce culture's tyrannical conformity cycle: a nine-to-five, strike-the-clock drag that supposedly improves your life more than it ruins it. Better start seeking the beauty in the invisible, or become a chain-smoking heartless bastard.
[Johann M. Smith] Any band can be judged by its genre, but it doesn't always reflect its ideas. Duo, male-and-female-fronted Asleep In Transit's debut eponymous EP is bona fide indie pop from Durban, which stands proudly alongside the likes of Holiday Murray, Thomas Krane, et al. But, unlike bands of that ilk, they appear to spend less time wondering what would make them sound cupcake hipster and more pondering life and lyrics.