Sunday, October 11, 2009

The ARIAs - Shit As Usual

My future husband Andy Bull - Robbed of ARIA glory!

So this year's ARIA nominations (Australia's equivalent to the Grammies) have just been announced and all the usual suspects are heavily represented. Seriously, if you're the overhyped product of a major record label, specialise in indie rock or are simply a pretentious singer-songwriter with an alternative haircut then chances are you're going home with a swag of awards. Don't get me wrong. I'm not going to argue with The Temper Trap, Empire Of The Sun or even Kate Miller-Heidke snagging a bunch of nominations but Sarah Blasko, Eskimo Joe and AC/DC? Bitch, please. Why not just nominate Missy Higgins for whatever vomit inducing "masterpiece" she's currently working on/squeezing out of her arsehole? I guess pop music will never be recognised in this country so I've decided to come up with my own nominees. I know some of my choices are not eligible (due to release dates) but here goes:

ALBUM OF THE YEAR

AC/DC - Black Ice
Sarah Blasko - As Day Follows Night
Empire Of The Sun - Walking On A Dream
Eskimo Joe - Inshalla
The Temper Trap - Conditions


How depressing is this category? I have a sinking feeling that Sarah Blasko's cure for insomnia will win but I have my fingers crossed that Empire Of The Sun or The Temper Trap snatch it from her.

MY PICKS

Ladyhawke - Ladyhawke
Shelley Harland - Red Leaf
Sneaky Sound System - 2
Andy Bull - We're Too Young
Lisa Mitchell - Wonder
Jessica Mauboy - Been Waiting

Empire Of The Sun - Empire Of The Sun
Bertie Blackman - Secrets And Lies
Dash & Will - Up In Something

NZ acts are clearly eligible, so where is Ladyhawke? People actually bought her album. Speaking of commercial success, why isn't Jessica Mauboy being rewarded for being the closest thing this country currently has to an authentic pop star? The lack of respect shown to Sneaky Sound System's stunning sophomore album is just rude, while Bertie Blackman has taken things to the next level with "Secrets And Lies". At least she snagged a best "Independent Album" nomination - poor Andy Bull's brilliant debut was completely ignored as was Shelley Harland's gorgeous "Red Leaf". That's not even touching on the injustice of Dash & Will's "Up In Something" being overlooked despite being the best teenage guitar-pop album released in recent memory.

SINGLE OF THE YEAR

Empire Of The Sun - Walking On A Dream
Hilltop Hoods - Chase That Feeling
Ladyhawke - My Delirium
Kate Miller-Heidke - The Last Day On Earth
The Tempter Trap - Sweet Disposition

This is one of the few categories I can't really criticise. "Walking On A Dream", "Sweet Disposition", "My Delirium" and "The Last Day On Earth" are all exquisite. "Chase That Feeling" isn't exactly my cup of tea but it's catchy as hell and perhaps the only example of local hip hop that broke through to the mainstream.


OTHER WORTHY CANDIDATES

Andy Bull - Small Town Girl
Vanessa Amorosi - This Is Who I Am
Zoë Badwi - Release Me
Amy Pearson - Butterfingers
Bertie Blackman - Byrds Of Prey
Liena - Go Crazy
Jessica Mauboy - Been Waiting
Mandy Kane - 25 Seconds
Ricki Lee - Don't Miss You
Samantha Jade - Secret
Lisa Mitchell - Coin Laundry
@m8er - Kill That Bitch
TV ROCK ft Rudy - In The Air
Kylie - Chiggy Wiggy
Evermore - Hey Boys And Girls (Truth Of The World)
Lenka - The Show
Natalie Imbruglia - Want
Bluejuice - Broken Leg
Bag Raiders - Shooting Stars
Sneaky Sound System - I Will Be Here
The Vanish - Heartbeat
Nikki Webster - Devilicious

This is such a tough category. I think the ARIA voters actually did a pretty good job - with the obvious exception of forgetting "Small Town Girl", which is one of my favourite Australian singles of all time. I also think Jessica Mauboy was hard done by seeing as she is the only local artist regularly scoring top ten hits and has delivered a couple of top notch singles in the form of "Burn" and "Been Waiting". Zoë Badwi's massive club hit "Release Me" deserved some recognition, while Bag Raiders' breakthrough single is a true thing of a beauty. Another glaring omission is Lisa Mitchell's "Coin Laundry", which remains one of 2009's quirkiest pop songs. With any luck Vanessa's amazing pop anthem (currently #1 on iTunes!) will get a nod next year.

BEST FEMALE ARTIST

Sarah Blasko - As Day Follows Night
Ladyhawke - Ladyhawke
Jessica Mauboy - Been Waiting
Kate Miller-Heidke - Curiouser
Lisa Mitchell - Wonder


With the exception of Sarah Blasko, this is pretty spot on. I used to hate Kate Miller-Heidke but "The Last Day On Earth" has made me a late convert and Lisa Mitchell's album is as beautiful as it is odd. Both Ladyhawke and Jessica Mauboy both featured heavily in my best of 2008 countdown, so it's nice to see them getting some props.


OTHER WORTHY CANDIDATES

Shelley Harland
Bertie Blackman
Lenka
Samantha Jade
Kylie

There should be legislation in place to ensure Kylie is nominated every year even when she doesn't release anything. On a more serious note, I think Shelley Harland and Bertie Blackman were robbed and Lenka should get some sort of recognition for her international success. As should Samantha Jade, who continues to proudly fly the flag in LA (despite never having had a hit!) and even appears as a featured vocalist (on an iTunes bonus track) on David Guetta's smash hit album. $ucce$$!!!

BEST MALE ARTIST

Paul Dempsey - Everything Is True
Bob Evans - Goodnight, Bull Creek
Daniel Merriweather - Love And War
Josh Pyke - Chimney's Afire
CW Stoneking - Jungle Blue

Now this is completely fucking dire. I guess Daniel deserves some recognition for selling records in the UK but apart from being a hot piece he doesn't do much for me. No comment about the other nobodies.


OTHER SUGGESTIONS

Andy Bull
Brecik
Jason Singh

Poor Andy Bull. Are you cunts telling me he doesn't have more to offer than Josh Pyke, Bob Evans and Paul Dempsey? I don't even know who C.W. Stoneking is and I really don't want to! The pickings for this category are pretty slim but I would have thrown a nomination Brecik's way for shits and giggles, while Jason Singh sounded pretty good on Todd Watson's "World As You Know It". Where's John Farnham when you need him?

BEST GROUP

AC/DC
The Drones
Empire Of The Sun
Eskimo Joe
Hilltop Hoods


This line up represents everything wrong about the Australian music scene. Fingers crossed that sanity prevails and Empire Of The Sun win.


MY PICKS

Empire Of The Sun
Bag Raiders
The Temper Trap
RAEN
Dash & Will
The Vanish

With Australian electro currently making waves around the globe, it seems appropriate that some of our best proponents of that genre (such as Bag Raiders and The Vanish) get some recognition. The Temper Trap should get a nod for the brilliance of "Sweet Disposition" alone. As for the other nominees, I think Dash & Will are the unsung heroes of 2009. They have released an amazing album and a string of great singles and noone seems to give a shit. I just hope they hurry up and release "Too Young Too Dumb" and finally achieve the commerical success they so richly deserve. Oh and RAEN should get something for carrying on in the face of constant failure.

BREAKTHROUGH ARTIST - SINGLE

Art Vs Science - Art Vs Science
Bluejuice - Broken Leg
Ladyhawke - My Delirium
Jessica Mauboy - Running Back Feat. Flo Rida
Lisa Mitchell - Coin Laundry

I love all these songs. Congratulations to the ARIA committee for getting it right.


OTHER WORTHY CONTENDERS

Zoë Badwi - Release Me
Bag Raiders - Shooting Stars
Liena - Go Crazy
@m8er - Kill That Bitch

Dance music is always underappreciated but Australia's new Queen of dance should be applauded for spending 7 weeks at #1 on the club chart. Liena's "Go Crazy" is the closest an Australian will ever get to sounding like Rihanna and probably would have been a massive hit if it got any kind of promotion. The same goes for "Shooting Stars", which I'm pretty confident will get a much better reception in Europe than at home. As for @m8er, well I think she'll have the last laugh. Her album promises to be amazing.

BREAKTHROUGH ARTIST - ALBUM

Ladyhawke - Ladyhawke
Jessica Mauboy - Been Waiting
Lisa Mitchell - Wonder
C.W. Stoneking - Jungle Blues
The Temper Trap - Conditions

Who the hell is C.W. Stoneking and how can it be a breakthrough album if NOONE has ever heard of him? The rest of the choices are pretty spot on.


THESE POOR BITCHES WERE ROBBED

Andy Bull - We're Too Young
Shelley Harland - Red Leaf
Dash & Will - Up In Something

I know I sound like a broken record but these are three of my favourite albums of 2009. Andy captures the spirit of 70s soul in a way that Daniel Merriweather could only dream of and has pretty much come up with the soundtrack to (what remains of) my youth! Shelley's opus has provided me with so much comfort and joy this year. Her music is raw, honest and beautiful. "Panic To Control" is my new personal mantra, while I sent "Clouds Disappear" to a special someone because it said everything I was feeling but couldn't express in words. I've ranted enough about Dash & Will but it really is a great album. "Fighting Over Nothing", "Save Me" and "Some Like It Hot" are homegrown guitar pop at its finest.

AWARD FOR SPECIAL ACHIEVEMENT IN POP TRASH

Amy Pearson - Butterfingers
Nikki Webster - Devilicious
@m8er - Kill That Bitch
The Wiggles & Kylie - Monkey Man
Samantha Jade - Secret

I thought I'd finish up with a category of my own. I find it hard to define "pop trash" but all these amazing anthems convey the essence of this website. Amy because of her utter desperation and sleazy lyrics. Nikki because she's a child star turned FHM glamour model. @m8er because she doesn't give a shit. Kylie for having a sense of humour. And finally Samantha Jade for dressing like a porn star and spending her video clip (below) trying to turn an arrested homosexual. Respect ladies!

11 comments:

tommie said...

I actually started to hate Andy Bull a bit by the end of the post, sorry.

Johnny D said...

They should legislate a category for reheated leftovers. Dannii of course would win every year!

can nafen cunfurm/// said...

How dare they snub The Queen Of CLubs And Bad Buttox and her #1069 smash Touch My Moist Twat! evyl jelooz hayatahz111111

The ARIAS are utter shite every year -it took the biggest Australian pop star EVER 13 years to get a nomination - and even then it was because the arsewipes behind the nominations followed the yanks and jumped on the Fever bandwagon...

Craig said...

ARIAs are a complete joke. I think the record companies just buy nominations... only explanation for some of these choices!!

And LOL at Sam, "Secret" is actually AMAZING!!!!!

Mike said...

Tommie - Don't hate on Andy! I love "We're Too Young", it's so much better than the trash that was nominated.

Craig - I love Samantha. I think she's brilliant. I'd kill to get my hands on her scrapped debut album.

Dannii really should have her own category for the "Best Club Instrumental Come #54 Pop Smash"!

BruDé said...

Where's the line-up to marry Andy Bull ? I want him !!!!

Anonymous said...

That photo is enough to make me check out andy's cd!

Paul said...

these things are always shit aren't they? I dread to think what will happen next year at the Brits - a lifetime achievement award for Cherevyl Cole perhaps?!

Jayne said...

Urgh...totally agree with your whole post...I must admit, I really and truly thought that Dash & Will would be the Ben Lee's of 2009 - plucked from obscurity and propelled to the top of the charts after receiving multiple nominations (and wins!) in various categories such as Best Pop Release, Best Album, Best Group, Best Single etc etc. Alas, the ARIAs prove me wrong as per usual. And don't even get me started on Little Birdy not scoring more noms! 2009 will go down as the most disgraceful ARIA awards in history.

Anonymous said...

Jayne makes a good point. What about Little Birdy?

Anonymous said...

2009 has seen the release of a huge amount of good aussie music so i guess with so many good artists competing for nominations, it's expected that some of our favourite artists have missed out. but if we're going to talk about the worst aria's, i would pick 2008 - that was a very quiet year for aussie music and it showed