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On our recent trip to Newcastle we found ourselves checking into our rehearsal space with scant time for logistical cock-ups. Luckily the proprietors of our space shared our concern and duly double-booked us with some local folk-funk-metal posse. Of course getting double-booked AND losing out to the other party can be pretty frustrating. Flying to your destination first thing in the morning, then taking a 45-minute public bus ride with the locals and then having a show to run to straight after said now-no-longer-existing-rehearsal is extra so. The poor booking taker at the rehearsal space was reluctantly apologetic, if that.

We cut our losses and tried to organise somewhere else. The only other place was a Christian-run music empire of sorts up the way. They were wonderfully helpful. Despite being un-staffed on the day, they sent someone down to open up, they lent us gear and they were generally very hospitable. How hard is that? Well, sometimes in this industry it ain’t no given.

Wandering around upstairs in the complex I found the secret to their business approach. The Positive Area. As you can see in the photo it’s a work in progress but hey, aren’t we all?

Crisis averted.

ImageSo Mozfest was big. We even got our mugs in the local rag. Debuted three new tracks from the new record and introduced our two new fine fellows. It all felt pretty good. Pity it took all that destruction to get us there. Thanks to all who came, gave, reminisced, caught up with old friends…

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It’s been a while to be sure. A while for everything. But we have some news. After getting back for the little run of solo shows in the States we got into working on the songs for this next record. Currently the first track is in London being poked and prodded by Mr. Aaron Cupples (The Drones, Snowman, Dan Kelly), the rest will be hot on its heels.

Another handsome Mister, this time Mr. Ross Walker Bannerman, our beloved tonemeister and hider of copious talents, now also calls the northern hemisphere home. We said goodbye to Ross a little while ago and now he’s in Berlin, maybe forever.

Enter Mr.#3, Matt Wicking, he of The General Assembly. Matt has joined us on geet slinging and hollering along with old friend and one-time previous member, (and Mr #4) Boatfriends’ Fenton K on bass and the odd bv. It’s never felt this good. Rehearsals for upcoming shows have been roaring.

We’re currently working a bunch of tracks we’ve never played live before which we’ll debut at two upcoming shows, both of which are benefits for The Morrow in Newcastle which sadly burnt down a month ago.

Our first record Dark Continent, Cold Century was made at The Morrow. A number of special instruments that feature on the record (including a 1919 Beale upright piano and an early 20th century Leslie pump organ) went up in the blaze. Many friends had their lives upturned.

So, the shows:

SAT 13th JULYNEWCASTLE, NSWDOZZAS for the MOZZA – BLAZE of GLORY (Morrow Pk. Benefit) @ The Lass O’Gowrie & surrounds. w/Mojo Juju & The Snake Oil Merchants (once-off reformation) + The Hauntingly Beautiful Mousemoon (once-off reformation) + Kira Puru & The Bruise + Boatfriends + Bhenjamin Phraser + many, many more. 7pm. Buy Tix.

SUN 4th AUGUSTMELBOURNEDOZZAS for the MOZZA – BLAZE of GLORY II (Morrow Pk. Benefit) @ The Corner. w/Brothers Grim & The Blue Murders + Mesa Cosa +  Made For Chickens By Robots + Boatfriends (Laptop set) + Kira Puru (DJ set) + iOnic (once-off reformation) + DJ Joan Kirner (Marieke Hardy). 4pm-11pm. Buy Tix.

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Dropping in to SXSW in Austin, Texas to play some shows solo. Got first-time nerves.

TUE 12th MAR(D.A.CALF Solo) SXSW – People of Letters – 18th Floor @ Hilton Garden Inn (Austin TX) w/Amanda Palmer + Neil Gaiman + Wagons + John Sayles + Jenny Owen Youngs + Buck 65 + Emma Swift 8pm.

SAT 16th MAR(D.A.CALF Solo) SXSW – The Aussie BBQ – Maggie Mae’s (323 E 6th St. Austin TX) 12 noon.

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So, Joe and his lady are about to have a baby and I figured it a good opportunity to go out and do some more solo shows in lieu of the band being able to take on commitments for the while. First up is the 21st of Feb at Yah-Yahs on Smith St. Collingwood and then the 2nd of March at The Wesley Anne on High St. Northcote. Then it’s off to the states and SXSW. These solo sets are evolving into somewhat of a hybrid between electronics and old-time voice and guitar-ness. Come listen and come up with a better description.

THU 21st FEB – Yah-Yahs (Melb) w/ Lines (SYD)(Album Launch) + Aircrafte.

SAT 2nd MAR – The Wesley Anne (Melb) w/ JMS Harrison & Band (EP Launch) + Souls On Board + Acoustic Foxx.

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Tomorrow night, in what may well be our last full band show for the year, we will be providing support to these fine gents The Attics who have an EP to launch. If that is not enough reason to celebrate, we have it on good authority that they are partial to a rollicking good time. We are on first, then in the break you can run across the street, plant a kiss on ol’ Gough, race back across in time for Archer & Bow, repeat, settle in for the main attraction. Dig. Details here.

Three Birds Solo