Archive for the 'Events' Category

12
May
11

Album Launch: Taxi Violence – Long Way From Home

Awhile back I bitched and moaned about how South African bands are a bunch of limp dick unclefuckers who need to man the fuck up and play some dirty, sexy rock music already.

Well, I’m happy to say I can add one band to the list of SA bands I actually like and that band is Taxi Violence.

I saw them live at Mercury a month or two back when they did a seriously killer cover of “Riders On The Storm” with We Set Sail. I was well impressed not only with the cover, but also Taxi Violence themselves who, much like Queens Of The Stone Age, have breathed life back into old school 60s / 70s rock and made it unapologetically badass.

 

 

Then, about two weeks back, I ran into George (frontman and vocalist) at Mercury and did this thing I do when I’m drunk when I shoot the breeze with people in bands like I’m catching up with an old highschool buddy.

It’s a test because some people in bands think they’re God’s fucking gift to the planet so I talk to them like they’re normal humans and they either act like I’m a weirdo and run away or they shoot the breeze back and we end up having epic discussions about music and the South African scene.

George definitely proved to be a stand up guy and even invited me to check out the launch of their acoustic album Long Way From Home.

So J-Rab and I headed on down to the Plane-arium for an intimate showcase of what the Taxi lads have been up to and I was pretty blown away.

 

 

Old favourites like “The Mess”, “Devil ‘n Pistol” and “The Turn” sound like they’ve been taken apart and rebuilt from scratch, a refreshing change from most bands who just swap electric guitars for acoustic ones and serve up warmed up leftovers thinly disguised as an album actually worth listening to.

Their acoustic rendition of “Heads and Tails” is particularly noteworthy both on the album and when they played it live. It was pretty hilarious us all reclining on our seats in the Plane-arium with the stars wizzing overhead because whenever Taxi got the crowd bopping your seatback would start moving in time to the music as other people sitting in the same row literally “rocked” out. “Heads And Tails” produced that effect immediately.

They’ve also shot a new video for the song, which they opened their set with which sadly they haven’t uploaded to their YouTube channel yet, but look out for it when they do, it’s a very cool take on the Groundhog Day premise and, in keeping with the song, asks the question if you knew the dice were rigged, how would you play the game?

 

 

One of my songs they played was their new track “Long Way From Home”, about a country boy hitting the big city, a dreamer who “Followed the buzz until he hit the hive”. It’s got an upbeat, bluesy / rock flavour played with bright, jangling guitars and tambourines that reminded me of some of the earlier Supergrass albums.

I’d highly recommend checking out Taxi’s FB page for their upcoming gigs so you can get a chance to hear their acoustic set and, if you’re lucky enough, getting a picture with the square-headed mascott that adorns the new album cover.

 

 

So big up to George for the invite and the guys from Taxi Violence for a killer gig and for hooking me up with a copy of the new album. It doesn’t look like it in the picture below, but I was really stoked to get the actual, physical album. I think that’s the first CD I’ve been given in about 5 years.

 

 

-ST

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10
May
11

Free Comic Book Day Hell’s Yeah!

Me and comic books go way back.

When I was about six years old, I went to stay with my crazy aunt and uncle for a few weeks while my folks were on holiday and basically had the time of my life.

 

 

Every day my uncle would arrive home with a bag of Tomato Sauce chips and two comic books tucked under his arm for me.

I still remember lying on the floor in the lounge of that mad, mushroom-shaped house, happily munching on the chips while my grubby red-stained fingers turned the pages hungrily.

Some of the comics he bought me were legit titles like Superman and Spiderman, but mostly they were a melting pot of a whole lot of weird shit that other countries probably weren’t buying so SA got them shipped in at super-low wholesale rates to stack news vendor shelves and warp fragile little minds like mine.

 

 

After that I didn’t really get back into them until my first year in high school when a buddy at the time who was completely obsessed filled me in on the entire X-Men saga that was going on at the time (Age Of Apocalypse, look it up, it was badass) and got me interested in the myriad of stories that comprise the Marvel universe.

His prize comic was the first Wolverine comic, published back in ‘89. Of course, Wolverine had featured in tons of X-Men comics before that, but ‘89 was the first time he was given his own title.

 

 

I always wanted to read that comic, but even taking it out of its cardboard-backed plastic sheath would have caused my buddy instant heart failure so I just admired the cover from a distance, feigning excitement when all I really felt was seething hatred for the spoilt little prick.

I eventually did get to read the entire Age Of Apocalypse series though when I was in hospital after an altercation with some asphalt that nearly left me dead, but that’s a story for another time Winking smile

During varsity I became friends with Graumpot, one of the biggest comic book freaks I’ve ever had the pleasure of living with.

Through him I read a buttload of comics – the entire Preacher series, the entire Invisibles series, most of Sandman, most of the Lucifer series, Wolverine: Origins and Wolverine: Ends, a whole bunch of Batman and one of my favourite Marvel comics of all time, Marvel Zombies (you HAVE to read it, it’s brilliant).

 

 

See, with comics I discovered one of life’s undeniable truths, that if there’s one thing better than a great novel, it’s a great novel with pictures.

So on Saturday I went through to Reader’s Den (across the street from Cavendish) for Free Comic Book Day, an international event that takes place on the first weekend in May where all comic book stores the world over hand out free comic books to whoever wants them.

J-Rab was working so I figured I’d kill some time and head on down to take pictures of the freaks, grab a free comic book or two and head home.

 

 

Then I made the mistake of browsing through the literally hundreds of graphic novels they were selling and what did I find? Volume 1 of a Wolverine graphic novel that included that first Wolverine comic I’d so coveted back when I was a zit-faced little shit kicker and even better than that, it was going for fifty bucks!

Right after that I found Volume 3, also going for fifty bucks! Then I made the rookie error of asking one of the guys working behind the tables scattered with graphic novels if he’d seen Volume 2 anywhere.

Within 5 minutes he’d told all his buddies helping him to look for it and next thing I knew they started off-loading Wolverine graphic novels on me like dump trucks at a landfill.

 

 

Two hundred and eighty bucks and an hour later I found myself shuffling back to my car with no less than five Wolverine graphic novels wandering what the fuck just happened.

But seriously, five graphic novels for R280 is pretty goddamn cheap. Normally it would have cost me R870 (no shit, the comics had the normal prices crossed out in red on all their covers with the new prices written underneath) which means normally I wouldn’t have bought fucking one, which means I still wasted R280.

Still though, I started reading them right after I got home and they’re pretty cool, very old school, but still badass.

And just in case I haven’t scared all my female readers off this site for life, look what else I found guys, the FIRST EVER comic book that ever featured Wolverine and it wasn’t even an X-Men comic, it was a fucking HULK comic!

 

 

I think we’ve all learned an important lesson here kids. When the next Free Comic Book Day rolls around take my advice and get there early with fistfuls of cash at the ready, wahoo!

-ST

14
Mar
11

The Sport That Is Barrel Rolling

It’s an intensely contentious debate as to who invented barrel rolling first, the Scots or the Irish, but the fact remains that to this day, barrel rolling remains the 287th most popular sport in the world and is played by roughly 311 people annually.

The sport is relatively new to South Africa but already has a dedicated following of between 5 and 8 people who understand the profound connection between man and barrel and have made it their life’s work to study and understand this phenomenally complex, rewarding and competitive sport.

One of these people, Mike Sharman, was among the first to enter a team into this year’s Bushmills South African Barrel Rolling Championship and went so far as to issue a challenge to another barrel rolling enthusiast and online pseudo-celebrity, Shaun Oakes.

The result is this deeply moving and inspiring piece of film that Sharman and his crew put together both explaining his love for the sport and throwing down the gauntlet for Oakes to step up his game and roll a barrel like no man has ever rolled a barrel before!

 

 

Too awesome. De Waal Park on Thursday. My god it will be epic.

-ST

21
Feb
11

The Tiger Hits The U2 Concert, Has The Time Of His Life

I wouldn’t call myself the world’s biggest U2 fan, so it’s safe to say I went in there with pretty much zero expectations and had my mind blown in every conceivable way.

 

 

J-Rab and I hit the Cape Town stadium at about 4.30 to beat the (non-existent) traffic and make sure we got into the VIP lounge that Nokia very kindly provided us with tickets for. Problem was the lounge only opened at 6pm so we bought a couple of beers and killed a bit of time wandering around the stadium and checking out THE CLAW.

 

 

THE CLAW has gotten a shiteload of press over the last two weeks and for good reason. It’s possibly the single coolest staging rig I’ve ever seen. It’s colossal and looks like it could get up and start walking like some giant killer spider-robot, blasting the audience with intense death rays at any minute.

We got a lot of pics of it before it was all lit up, much to the dismay of one of the security guards we had a chat with who was like, “You’re not allowed to take pictures.”

“What?” I said, “We’re allowed to take pictures?”

“No,” he replied, “not allowed.”

“Ok,” I said, and took some pictures. He smiled at me, I smiled back. What a rad guy.

Once they opened the VIP lounge, I was so excited I bounded in there and immediately ordered two suitcases (what?! They didn’t have any tequila ok?) and a couple more beers. Nokia really pulled out all the stops – for the next two hours I was like a kid at Christmas, munching all manner of froo-froo finger ding-a-lings, taking goofy pictures with J-Rab and drinking suitcases like there was no tomorrow.

 

 

At 8 they closed the VIP lounge and we headed upstairs to catch some of the Springbok Nude Girls set, which would have been a lot better if the sound was sorted out. As it was, it sounded a little like the guys were playing underwater which is apparently an old trick that’s been used for years in the industry – the headline act gets the killer sound and the supporting guys play through amplifiers made of rusty tin cans.

After the Nudies finished up, J-Rab and I went in search of some more free drinks and were immediately drawn, like moths to a flame, to this mesmerising green light that was glowing at the Heineken VIP bar.

“What do you think that is?” J-Rab asked in awe.

“I dunno…” I replied, “but Jeannie D’s in there so it must be important.”

“Go see if you can get us some free drinks.”

“Roger that.”

I approached the security guy at the entrance with the kind of total confidence only 7 suitcases can give you and proceeded to walk straight past him.

He gripped my arm like a vice.

“Where’s your wristband?”

“Right here brother,” I said, proudly displaying my white Nokia lounge VIP wristband.

“That’s the wrong colour,” he said, sternly.

“What! I’m the wrong colour?! What the hell is this, the Apartheid Bar?”

“Your WRISTBAND is the wrong colour.”

“What in God’s name are you talking about?”

“It’s white. It’s supposed to be black.”

“So it’s the REVERSE Apartheid Bar? Man, I can’t wait to blog about this unfair discrimination!”

“Please step aside sir, this is for people who were invited to the Heineken bar ONLY.”

“Cool. Whatever. I’m too white for this bar. It’s cool, I understand…”

As I was sulking off to tell J-Rab the bad news, I saw a MAJOR flaw in the security setup. White blocks.

 

 

They were at the perfect height for sitting on and then, when no one was looking, casually swinging your legs over onto the other side and then casually standing up and WAPOW! You were in the Heineken Reverse Apartheid Lounge.

The second both J-Rab and I had executed this security-defying manoeuvre we whipped out the camera and took about 15 pictures of ourselves pulling more goofy faces while we talked to each other in very snooty voices indeed because we were in the HEINEKEN LOUNGE BABY!

 

 

We swanned over to the bar to start klapping some more free drinks and very quickly froze in our tracks. The people here, they all had cards. Heineken cards! And these cards, you had to produce them to get the sauce – no card, no sauce. J-Rab and I hovered at the bar, furiously trying to think up some way to beat the system when who stepped in front of us? Liesl Van Der Westhuizen, that’s who!

Now, I know what you’re thinking, Liesl V, Schmiesl V, who cares. Well, I’m here to tell you that Liesl Van Der Westhuizen is a fucking cool person. The second her and her boyfriend stepped in front of us she turned around to apologise for cutting in front of us to which I calmly replied, “No sweat. We’re not even supposed to be here, we slipped past security to score some free drinks but apparently you need a green card or something…”

“Do you guys want some drinks?” she said, without even skipping a beat, “We’ll get you some!”

And that’s how we ended up drinking in the Heineken bar for free with Liesl V. Until security kicked us out. That was kinda embarrassing. But we met up with Liesl outside again and they got us a SECOND ROUND OF DRINKS!

What a lovely person, seriously. I don’t care what anyone says about her, Liesl is cool in my books. She helped a Tiger out so I’ll have no more Liesl-bashing on this site thank you very much. Um. Not that there ever was any to begin with, but yeah. Just so you know.

 

 

After that U2 took to the stage and THE CLAW came to life in a multitude of colours and images and flashing lights. Unfortunately by this stage J-Rab and I were about twelve sheets to the wind so it’s hard to recall the exact details of the concert, but I can confirm this much – U2 put on an INCREDIBLE show and no, I’m not just saying this because I was there and you weren’t.

About halfway through the set, J-Rab and I somehow managed to get into the outer golden circle to get some pics from the ground just in time for them to play “Sunday Bloody Sunday” and “One” which, I’ll be honest, was an emotional moment for me. It’s my favourite U2 song of all time and hearing the guys play it live right there in front of us was intense.

 

 

Not sure if I was cool with all the Nelson Mandela / Desmond Tutu references and imagery that we were bombarded with and the snippets from interviews with both of them, I just think it’s a pretty obvious ploy to get the crowd all gooey with emotion (it worked like a bomb).

But I’ll let it slide because U2 have always been a political band and have actually done a lot of good in this world. Also, in all fairness, I don’t think I’ve ever watched a band play in this country and NOT mention Nelson Mandela or Desmond Tutu in some way so I’ll reserve judgement on this one.

It was a brilliant experience and an amazingly well-executed concert. Big up to Nokia for making it all possible, you guys spoiled us and we really appreciated every second of it, let’s be pals forever.

In closing, here’s a pic of THE CLAW in its full glory after a massive CONE of TV screens extended down towards the stage like it was going to tractor-beam the band into space.

 

 

Good times Winking smile

-ST

04
Feb
11

Sing a U2 Song, Win Tickets To Watch Them Live!

A lot of people out there love U2 and I can’t say I blame them. They wrote some killer, killer stuff back in the day and Bono does all kinds of stuff to save the planet which is a lot more than you can say for most bands who seem content to blow all their money on holiday houses, yachts, prozzies and, well, huge piles of blow.

So hats off to U2, they’re a great band. Not so sure about the whole Spiderman musical thing happening on broadway right now, but yeah I’m not judging until someone swings me some free tickets to check it out, which should be any day now.

 

 

Speaking of free tickets, how radass is this: from Monday next week you best follow @947Highveld on Twitter (#U2Highveld) or check for updates on their Facebook page because a mobile stage is going to be driving around Gauteng, popping up daily in different locations until Friday and if you get your ass ON that stage and sing your favourite U2 song, you could win tickets to the show.

There’s even a YouTube channel to watch everyone’s heartfelt attempts at getting their Bono on  (http://www.youtube.com/user/947highveldstereo.) which is guaranteed for at least a couple of laughs while you’re at work.

What’s even more flippin whoresome is the fact that this gig, this very U2 gig in good ‘ol Saffrica, is going to be the BIGGEST CONCERT U2 HAVE EVER PLAYED!

Soccer City’s current capacity is roughly 100 000 and the biggest crowd the band’s played to thus far was 96 000 in California. Can I get a fuck yeah? Bono?

 

 

Thank you.

I think you want to be a part of that. I think it’s about time you turned all those hours you spent singing “The Streets Have No Name” in the shower or “One” while you were heartbroken on karaoke night at the local pub to good use.

WIN those tickets! Show ‘em who’s boss! And when you’re up there, belting out “Sunday Bloody Sunday” on the Highveld portable stage with everything you got, be sure to tell ‘em who sent ya Winking smile

Go forth my children. Make papa proud.

-ST

02
Feb
11

Promises Promises

So I know I said I’d post a whole buttload of pics from the Met on Saturday once I got my hands on J-Rab’s camera, but having gone through the pics she took, they were kinda ok, not really mind-blowing.

Still though, here’s a nice pic of J-Rab and I sitting on a couch / giant flower that went well with my red and black 1930’s gangster get up.

 

 

It was such an intense fucking party, seriously. And at the end of it all, the kind folks from Road Trip drove us home for free as part of the package.

Would I recommend entering every goddamn competition known to man to win tickets to the J&B main marquee for next year’s Met?

Does the pope shit in the woods? Winking smile

Oh yeah, and incidentally we did bet on the horses if you were wandering and pretty much lost everything, which is officially my excuse for the copious amounts of tequila that followed and the awesome / mildly terrifying moves I was whipping out on the dancefloor. 

Good times I tell ya, good times.

-ST

31
Jan
11

The Tiger And The Met

To put it in five words: the Met was fucking mindblowing

Sure, it was my first Met and yes, I was in the best marquee on the grounds so my perception is going to be biased, but good god. It was a killer party.

We got some great pics, but sadly I can’t pull them off J-Rab’s camera until tomorrow, so here’s what I pulled from my N8 in the meantime.

 

 

You had to be there. Seriously. The food, the marquees, the decor, the bars, the salons where you could get a foot massage or where girls could get their make-up redone and hair styled, it was all so slick and amazingly well executed.

If you sat anywhere for long enough, you’d see a cross section of TV presenters, models, actors, news crews, entertainment crews, sports celebrities and socialites in some of the craziest, sexiest outfits you ever saw, strutting like they were on a giant catwalk and the world was watching.

And then bam! Two people with horse heads pirouette into the crowd and ballroom dance randomly in what looks like a creepily well choreographed out-take from a nightmare sequence in Equus.

 

 

By the time the sun had set and Fedde Le Grand was punishing the decks, the evening had become one huge party. People danced, they laughed, they ducked off to eat piping hot, delicious oven baked slices of free pizza and drank J&B in every variation known to man.

I remember taking this pic right near the end of the night. It’s the only other one I have right now that came out well, but soon as I get J-Rab’s camera I’ll put up more.

 

 

Anyone else get anything sick from the day? Send in what you got to tellthetiger@gmail.com and I’ll put it up here and punt your awesomeness to the interwebs.

There was more, much more, but it’ll have to wait until later.

-ST




A Word From The Kind Folks At Nokia

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