Australia Day was on Tuesday. Unfortunately I was unable to participate in any barbeques or particularly "true blue" goings-on. I had especially hoped to catch the Dirty Three/Laughing Clowns show down the road, but had to pass due to circumstances beyond my control. I was, however, fortunate enough to see the Laughing Clowns at ATP last year, and if they sounded anywhere near as good on Tuesday as they did last January, I'm sure they were quite a worthwhile opening act for the Dirty Three.
The Laughing Clowns rose from the ashes of the Saints, though despite their creative excellence, they never gained anywhere near the acclaim the Saints did. Fortunately, the band has regrouped to show the world (or at least the continent) why they deserved more attention than what they received in their youth.
Mr Uddich-Schmuddich Goes to Town is the Laughing Clowns second full-length (sort of), released in 1982, in the heyday of post-punk. Unlike other post-punk bands from that era, the Laughing Clowns focused especially on expanding their songs while toying with melodic phrasing and interplay amongst different instruments. Their lineup continually expanded and contracted with trumpeters, pianists, bassists, and saxaphonists throughout their existence. Though the word "jazz" is often thrown around in regard to this band, the Laughing Clowns are hardly jazzy. The jazz aspect comes more from their experimental nature than the band's sound. They're art-rock, through and through, and a real testament to the calibur of bands coming out of ol' Gondwana back in the early 80's.
Laughing Clowns - Mr. Uddich-Smuddich Goes to Town
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