PopGoesCanberra on Popjustice

PopGoesCanberra is now writing (unofficially) for esteemed music website Popjustice.com.

To be precise, you can see our entries in the A-Z of pop music, so far under K for Kate de Rouge, and Katie Underwood, S for Sydney and G for Gold Coast!

Can you think of anything else we should submit?

Album Review: Infernal "From Paris to Berlin"

I discovered the song From Paris to Berlin in March last year while listening to Swedish internet radio. Subsequently Radio Metro on the Gold Coast, the best radio station in Australia, picked it up. A few weeks after that Nova 969 in Sydney started playing it after a tip from the public. Central Station Records finally got a hold of it and released it around September/October. It had a decent chart run. The album From Paris to Berlin came out with little fanfare in October/November. I had it on order from JB Hi-Fi in Civic and it was waiting for me for a couple of months before I could pick it up just on Friday. Why the hell did I wait so long. I'm Always Right had told me it was frigging awesome. Why didn't I believe him? This album is awesome. Here's the detailed PopGoesCanberra review!


Sexy. It appears to be the blonde chick with lots of lipstick on, her lips are so shiny that there is a star shining off the bottom of it. She is kneeling and you can see a bit of a bikini that she is wearing. The hot Danish DJ guy appears to be having sex with her doggie-style and he appears to be enjoying it, as he has a sly smile. Do comment if you think this is not the case.


Booklets are very important. They are the reason you pay for an album instead of downloading and burning the tracks. Well our reason anyway. The booklet continues the sexual theme. There's lots of black, neon lights in pretty colours, and sexy sexy pictures. On the first page there's a shot of the hot Danish DJ guy putting his hand around sexy blonde singer chick as though she has just said "be rough with me, I like it like that, boy" in an "our Mary" kind of accent. On the next page is the hot Danish DJ guy showing a bit of chest and looking alarmingly like Andreas from Alcazar and there is are fingers and fingernails on his shoulders, possibly indicating the hot blonde singer chick grabbing him to ask for more (sex, that is). What follow are more sultry pics. There is a very Deborah Harry one where the hot blonde singer chick appears to have used up several tubes of mascara on her eyes. And she also appears to be quite flat chested. Or her boobs are pointing in a funny direction. The centrepiece shot is of a couple of hot guys looking lustfully at a girl kneeling seductively on a stage in frilly white bikini type outfits. The next page is the hot blonde singer chick feeling her tummy. Maybe she wasn't feeling well. Then there's a very Alcazar shot of the hot blonde singer chick looking bored while hot Danish DJ guy has a funny look on his face as though he's looking at a mobile phone, but there's no mobile phone! And he's wearing a hot white suit with a very very nice long green tie. It's kind of a bit like the one on the left, but not really. Much cooler.

The songs!

00 Big ride f*ckers (Intro)

I love intro tracks! tATu did it on Dangerous and Moving to admittedly very little effect, but this is good. No lyrics, so no swearing unfortunately. But there are lots of grunty car noises!

01 From Paris To Berlin

You know how good this song sounds! You know it makes you drive fast! You think of the video which features bikinis, pink and blue motorbikes, computers, and semen! The song itself is the perfect mix of lyrics, of melody, of attitude, of beat, of little cool synthy noises, of "wo-oh", of a "teasing" that sounds like a "seizing". It sounds great loud, or even sounds great soft over your work colleauge's tinny radio in the office that you think they shouldn't really have. And the middle 8 features the famous "ah, ah ah, ah, wo-oh, wo-oh, wo-oh" and then a little guitary bit and more funny noises and a quite little chorus before thumping back into it big-time.

02 I Took A Ride (Fairytale) feat. Adam Powers

Oooh! It's got fairytale and horseriding noises (not like in Belinda Carlisle's horsey track, less obvious than those ones). It's a DUET! A dance duet! It's all about a guy whose got a girl who may or may not have been faithful, people are saying stuff about her! But he enjoyed it anyway. That's why it's a fairytale. He starts off, and then hot blonde singer chick "Lina" comes in: I know sometimes I'm just out there/and I know sometimes I can flirt a bit too much [SLUT!]. She admits it! And then she has the cheek to say It's not up to me/if I'm somebody's fantasy. Ooh and then there's a great bit he sings Don't Lie! And she sings No I won't lie! Amazing!

03 Keen On Disco

Already been played in Australia on 105.7 Radio Metro on the Gold Coast where they know great fun summer dance music. Hot blonde singer chick knows her disco. It pulses. Oooh. And then there's the amazing lyric When you nibble my ear/the bass is softly bumpin' and caressin' my rear/you make me soft n sweet/and you're confusing me with every magic electric beat. SEX!

04 Cheap Trick - The silent movie (Intro)

Infernal are clever. They've got a little bit that sounds like a French cafe, to make you think you're in a French cafe! This is the first of several French touches on the album...

05 Cheap Trick Kinda' Girl Cult of Noise

This is an awesome track. The lyrics are simple. About a cheap trick kinda girl. Whatever that is. But it's pretty bad I think, cos she knows it's a sin. The tune is infectious and they've enlisted some famous accordian player to play the accordian, and it's pretty darn good.

06 Ultimate Control feat. John Rock

Well this is all very dramatic. There is thunder! It's about some kind of psycho guy. This chick you see, gave this guy her heart, her soul, she gave him all to make him whole but it's not enough girl. This song has an awesome little electroey beat. Fuck it's good.
07 Vienna

More European city name-dropping! Aren't you cool?!!! Well you've gotta forgive them, cos it's just perfect. Another night-driving song, cruise around Lake Burley-Griffin with this one playing and you'll feel like you're there, walking the cold winter streets of the Austrian capital. The lyrics remind me of Belinda Carlisle's La Luna: The warmth of your hand and a cold grey sky it fades to the distance. And there is a big exciting bit where you hear nothing to me about a hundred times and then hot blonde singer chick goes OHHHHHHHH VIENNAAAAAAAAA! and you can dance dance dance the night away. And then it goes all pretty at the end.

08 Dressed In Blue

This song is all about sex. Seriously. And is a bit ABBA-ish too. Always a good thing. It's all about sex, and I'm assuming they are naked, but possibly he still has some form of blue garment on. He likes to tie her up: No greater mood/than when I can't move at all/when tied by you/my servitude sets me free. It's about domination! It has haunting little choral bits! And more sexual lyrics!: I know when you cum round i've got to give in/when it glows/and it flows/and your fire breaks through/my every moan is for you. And then the whole song changes completely into the sort of French soccer anthem that silly French people sing at weddings, parties, etc. La la la la in a big chanty sort of way. Love it!

09 Careful With The Boys

Hot blonde singer chick passes on lessons to young females/gay men about their burgeoning sexuality! Ooh ooh gotta be careful with the boys/yeah be careful with the boys/cos they're more than just your toys...didn't your mama teach you that/they'll be coming back.

10 Deeper Still

Think Infernal doing Motorcycle's As the Rush Comes and you've got it. Perfect for a mild summer's night around Canberra's country roads. Has the lines Walls are morphine and feelin' oozy feelin high feeling lighter than a sigh. Great!

11 Bass driven Music

This doesn't have hot blonde singer chick, just some guy saying "bass driven music" a lot.

12 Balagan (Hava nagila) - feat. Uri

This one features a lot of name dropping - Infernal being chanted and then loads of silly French soccer fans singing la la la etc. It's pretty awful really but we at PopGoesCanberra forgive them!

13 Banjo Thing feat. Red$tar

Imagine a Vengaboys track or Steps 5678, with lots of lyrics about motherfuckers sung by a guy with a gruff voice! How rude!

14 Sunday Morning March

I think this is supposed to calm you down after all the excitement. I suppose it does!

VERDICT: You've got to buy this album. Please note that the tracklsting on the Australian album is completely wrong. Bit of a stuffup with the prnting/typesetting/whatever. The CD is fine though.

PopGoesCanberra GoesToTasmania Part 1

Insular, reclusive, paranoid. Terms used to describe the rogue states of North Korea and Tasmania appear all too frequently in the newspapers these days, conjuring up images of scrawny gymnasts, poor mobile phone reception and sports stadiums full of blue vein cheese samples. As one would expect, the competition between the two states in gourmet food, wood turning and political repression is fierce, with bitter rivalries rising to the surface every year at mass public events. In the case of Pyongyang – Kim Jong-il’s birthday celebrations. In Hobart – the Taste of Tasmania annual summer food and wine festival. This summer, Pop Goes Canberra ventures deep into the axis of evil to investigate this breath-taking phenomenon. The result? A heart-warming insight into the lives of ordinary Tasmanian citizens, struggling to survive in this former prison colony turned nanny-goat state. In this sensational posting, PGC will reveal how these stoic, southerly people are standing proud and resolute as Supre continues its invasion into their remote penal outpost, tightening its vice-like grip on the vulnerable inhabitants as we speak.

A Tasmanian woman clad in Supre combines military drill training with seaside activities, goose-stepping across the beach at a popular coastal resort. Until recently, national security experts at ANU believed that the prevalence of camouflage prints and khaki shades among Supre’s ‘southern summer range’ was a reliable gauge of Tasmania’s military aspirations. PGC can now reveal that the emphasis on blacks, corals and board shorts points to a new era of amphibious warfare.

The first evidence of Tasmania’s extreme isolationist policies came almost immediately as PGC emerged from Hobart airport, exhausted from relentless interrogation by intelligence officers who demanded to know if we had any fruit or vegetables we wished to dispose of before proceeding to the baggage collection area. Luckily, PGC had been warned in advance that such a request might be made, and had secreted a large stash of prunes in our boogie board bag before leaving Canberra. Such is the jealous fervour with which Tasmania guards its agrarian economy, it frequently rejects offers of international aid under the flimsy excuse of ‘quarantine.’

Border security - Tasmanian style. An expertly trained sniffer-Devil causes PGC angst at Hobart airport, lingering over our photographic equipment until a bribe of a free Qantas headset is offered to his handler. Then, in an amusing display of playfulness, the sniffer-Devil poses for a photograph with PGC. We understand that the devil was arrested shortly afterwards for fraternising with imperialist invaders and emulating Inspector Rex. His fate is unknown.

Criticised by many as an ostentatious display of culinary might designed to intimidate foreign visitors, the Taste of Tasmania showcases the finest tidbits of this quaint agrarian culture every year in a large barnyard situated in the demilitarised zone near the city centre. Peasants, workers and intellectuals mingle freely as they queue up to receive their rations of shitake mushroom pizza, Thai-crusted scallops and raspberry brulee. PGC was not to be fooled, however, by the rustic charm of the maritime setting, nor the unseasonally fine weather. As temperatures soared towards a searing 16°C, PGC’s attention was drawn to the ominous signs of political repression, demonstrated most poignantly by signs announcing the state-wide prohibition on slouching.

In a typical example of over-zealous state control on posture, signs prohibiting leaning against wooden structures appear throughout the festival venue. When PGC approached this Hobart local for comment, she refused to respond. PGC later learned that this woman was aged 25.

It is entirely possible that this woman had only recently been released from one of the many prison farms dotted throughout the country-side. Readers will not be surprised to learn that it has suspected for decades that political dissent is controlled in Tasmania by deporting suspected dissidents to rural locations for agrarian re-education. As PGC discovered, religious advocates, disgraced former athletes and disaffected journalists are more than likely responsible for producing some of the state’s most celebrated wines, compotes and soft cheeses.

PGC snatches a rare glimpse of a Tasmanian labour camp, where a middle aged man - a former university professor perhaps - places his life in danger by toiling diligently beneath a known ozone hole.

Those accused of more serious crimes against the state share a more ominous fate: forced participation in an alternative lifestyle retreat. Here, citizens suspected of posing an immediate threat to the leadership are isolated and purged of their ‘disloyalties’ in a controlled setting.

Information from Tasmanians who have managed to escape to the mainland after release from such institutions say inmates are subjected to punishing meditation regimes, exposed to dangerous auras and used as guinea pigs in controversial medical experiments involving kinesiology and interpretive dance.

Despite the ever present risk of arrest for leaning in a public place, Tasmanians continue to converge in their thousands on their capital city each year in a desperate attempt to impress their remote, laconic leader. PGC is unable to speculate why this is so. Brainwashing, say some analysts. Other commentators point to the ever present threat of deportation to a Crystals and Rainbows or, alternately, compulsory participation in ghost tours of Port Arthur.

The more likely answer, as far as PGC is concerned, is the tremendous charisma radiated by the Great Leader, Premier Paul Lennon, and his ability to mobilise vast sectors of the population with his boyish good looks and magnetic, paternal gaze.

Cult of the personality
Billboards depicting grainy images of Premier Lennon, or the Great Leader as he is affectionately known by Tasmanians, adorned the roads leading from the airport into Hobart and featured prominently at sea passenger terminals in Burnie and Devonport. PGC understands that the giant red placards, which do not name Premier Lennon, but feature a "washout" image of his face looking dark and somewhat menacing, must be removed in the event that permission for their use is withdrawn by the Great Leader, under the strict rules of the Hare-Clark electoral system.

Great Leader - The Hon Paul Lennon MHA was sworn in as Tasmania’s 42nd Premier on 21 March 2004. Premier Lennon, feared and admired by his constituents, marks his birthday every year by a state-wide holiday: an event for which Tasmanians commence preparing up to 12 months in advance.


The Great Leader’s stubborn insistence on the policy of ‘self-reliance’ is hindering attempts to diversify and develop the economy. Residents in rural areas are the most likely to suffer from food shortages due to bizarre agricultural policies during the 1990s that led to an over-reliance on gourmet foodstuffs, craft and pottery. ‘There’s only so much marinated feta and Anvers fudge your body can handle,’ PGC was told by a peasant labourer from the state’s southern provinces, who did not wish to be named. ‘After a while, you become so desperate you’ll consider eating almost anything just to get some variety into your diet.’ An Amnesty International spokesperson reported that this was a familiar scenario: ‘There are rumours of people in the remote southern highlands resorting to eating quince paste on plain water crackers. Our sources say that supplies of poppy seeds in the area are almost completely exhausted – although the government refuses to confirm or deny this.’ PGC was disturbed to learn that the food security situation is set to worsen over the coming winter. According to aid agencies and human rights advocates, production targets of staple food items such as leatherwood honey, truffles and smoked salmon are set to plummet despite desperate pleas by farmers for government assistance.

Pitiful offerings of aged Gewurztraminer and Pinot Gris characterise the typical Tasmanian diet, which WHO officials believe may be placing the population at risk of malnutrition.

Although PGC had braced ourselves for evidence of starvation, nothing could have prepared us for the scenes of depravity in the garment and footwear industries. The more squeamish among you should be warned that the following image contains signs of animal cruelty:

Young Tasmanian women resort to poaching Tasmanian tigers and fashioning primitive footwear out of their skins.

It would be all too easy to cast judgment on the citizens of Tasmania for their deplorable behaviour (although it would answer a few questions about the cause of the tiger’s extinction) and PGC resisted the temptation. After all, similar tales of wardrobe scavenging are common among reports by human rights activists and expatriates living abroad in exile. Harsh restrictions on fashion retailing triggered a resurgence in handicraft during the arduous march of the 1990s. But this trend appears to have been replaced by an even more sinister form of repression: Supre. Throughout the farthest reaches of this tiny island State, PGC found disturbing evidence of gratuitous accessorising, tasteless flounce and shameless short-shorts (apparently, a response to fabric rationing). A harmless coincidence? Or chilling example of totalitarian conformity?

Members of Hobart’s gilded youth bask in the sunshine, blissfully unaware of the autocratic power structure dictating their wardrobe options.

But the decaying grandeur of this orbiting satellite state was not lost of PGC – although the standard of accommodation was slightly below what we are accustomed to in Canberra. Nevertheless, after a few days in Hobart, PGC began to be seduced by the thin veneer of egalitarian bliss coating the state’s fine architecture: a dim reminder of the cradle-to-grave security so familiar to us as long-time residents of Canberra.

While the paranoid state claims to support freedom of association, membership of state-sanctioned organisations is widely regarded as essential for political and personal advancement.

As PGC edged further and further away from the city centre, opportunities to observe citizens in a less contrived environment became increasingly frequent. PGC visited a typical bookshop in the northern part of the capital. Here, we found jittery Hobartians perusing the shelves, desperate to gather any scraps of information about the outside world that may have escaped the attention of the censors.

In a typical nervous gesture, our subject wears dark glasses to evade recognition by neighbours, children and other informants as he scans the titles on offer, lending credence to the popular saying that in the book shops of Hobart, even the walls have hidden cameras.

Geopolitical Tensions

According to PGC’s sources, security analysts aver that the biggest test of Melbourne-Hobart realpolitik in 2006 may be airport and maritime security in the northern seaports of Burnie and Devonport, as Victoria attempts to stem the illegal migration of Tasmanians to mainland Australia. Official government documents – suppressed until now – describe the increasingly desperate tactics used by asylum seekers to reach Victorian territorial waters and recommend that security be increased at all northern points of international departure.
A father and son make a frantic dash for freedom in a hastily assembled catamaran, ill-suited to the choppy conditions of Bass Strait. Dreams of a better life in Victoria spur thousands of Tasmanians to attempt this method of escape every year - few survive the crossing. Analysts from mainland think-tanks suspect that the Sydney to Hobart yacht race has inspired many locals to undertake the perilous journey.

The heavily guarded seaport of Bridport is just one such example of the regime’s determination to fortify the passenger terminal and prevent the flow of would-be defectors across the maritime border. PGC was denied access to the interior of this austere military installation and was asked to leave the area shortly after this photograph was taken.


...is coming up!

Both entities that make up PopGoesCanberra (including former guest writer ROBYN!) are doing the tour of Tassie's beaches this summer, and we will bring you all the action...

Where are the beaches better? Canberra or Tasmania? I predict a shoe-in from Tassie.

Where are the bogans better? Could be a tight one. Could be another winner from Tassie. Numerous visits to Northgate Glenorchy Shopping Centre and K-Mart in Launceston will be required. So far the award goes to the young Dad getting out of his car with two cigarettes in his mouth ready to hand one to his lady who was holding one of her babies under her arm.