Treats for your mouth and ears!
Food & Tunes inspired me to review a restaurant that I was fortunate enough to eat at last week. Having sourced inspiration from their blog, I felt a sense of duty to flick it over to Jess and Naany. Whether or not I was covertly trying to pinch a spot on F&T, I really just wanted to share the love. That’s the point; people should know when a restaurant (or bar or other) serves up top notch food and service. Now that they have honoured me with the occasional cameo on F&T, I have one humble aim, to deliver clear recommendations of where people can find top notch food and service. It is pretty simple, if an establishment delivers the goods, I’ll prompt you with an, EAT HERE.
EAT HERE: KATSU YACHIYO
Let’s get the shortfall out of the way early (and in context, it’s a pretty short fall). Ambience. Katsu Yachiyo needs to dim the lights and play some ambient music to distract from the otherwise pretty hum drum eating environment. OK, that’s done.
Moving on to the service, the greeting was warm and friendly (as you’ll find at most sushi trains), however more personal. The chefs looked us in the eyes as they said “moshi moshi”. The waiter came straight to our table and suggested with a smile, a starter of sake. I guess it wouldn’t have taken him very long even if we weren’t one of two tables in the restaurant at the time (we booked early), as the dining space is probably about 25sqm. The waiters were attentive all night as we sat there for a couple of hours while our dishes came out in perfect sequence. Normally I prefer a few dishes on the table at once so I have the option of avoiding a dish I don’t really like. That is not necessary at Katsu Yachiyo; every dish is awesome.
That takes me to the food, the winner was the soft shell crab karaage. Drenched in an incredibly tasty sauce, it deflated me a little as I was tricked into thinking the karaage might not be that crispy. The following crunch in my mouth took me by a welcome surprise. The popcorn prawn had a similar effect. The problem with the popcorn prawn is that we only ordered one dish. For a restaurant specialising in Katsu, we probably should have ordered more however we stuck to the katsu wagyu with cheese. Not quite what I expected (despite the transparency of the name); a bit of a stoner dish, which unfortunately I wasn’t at the time. The one average dish of the night was the miso eggplant, and that’s only because it is being compared to the Toko version. Otherwise, still tasty. A mate that I was with died for the sashimi, and on the way out another personally thanked the chefs for such a great meal.
For about $50 a head including booze, eat here.
208 Devonshire Street, Surry Hills | (02) 9690 2424
Dinner | Tues - Sat | 6pm - 11pm | BYO
Diplo - “Express Yourself” (feat. Nicky Da B).
Wes smashing it with this 128 BPM monster. MAKE IT CLAP!
We are all unique. Or are we? Most people are fucking boring to be honest.
It’s a pretty bold opening statement to an album that is everything BUT fucking boring. For those not in the know, Scuba is Paul Rose, the genius behind one of the world’s premier underground labels, Hot Flush Recordings. Now these cats were churning out dubstep releases (Toasty, Search & Destroy and later on Benga) well before there was any “bro” in anyone’s step. These guys brought us the magic of Joy Orbison’s Hyph Mngo. Yep, THAT epic tune. And even introduced us to Mount Kimbie.
Now that you’re clued up, lets chat about the LP. Have to slightly disagree with Pitchfork when they deemed Personality to be essentially a techno record. There’s plenty of elements in there (see If U Want and Action) - but it’s not like you’re going to listen to it and think “oh yeh, this sounds like a record Turbo would have put out.”
The standouts for me come in the shape of the beautiful July, that delivers perhaps the most “uplifting” moment on the record - forgive me, I’m the half of F&T that likes happy music. It’s 80’s-inspired synth-leads are married so brilliantly with it’s bouncing-bassline that all you want to do is get up and bust it.
On a similar tip is album-opener Ignition Key, whose randomness is as intriguing as it is engaging (the latter is something I enthusiastically seek-out in all opening tracks) and Ne1butu, that features some well-timed-yet-unexpected soaring piano chords and soul vocals.
Right at the other end of the scale you’ll find The Hope - a dark, twisted, acid-overload that almost takes you to the brink, and Gekko, which makes The Hope look like an afternoon stroll - it’s six minutes of non-stop intensity.
It’s perhaps this amazing diversity that makes Personality one of the standout records I’ve heard this year. Do yourselves a favour and buy it ASAP, you won’t regret it.
Preview the album here:
Isn’t there something soothing about listening to deep house when it’s raining cats and dogs? Almost makes you forget about all the chaos ensuing outside… on that note, may we introduce you to ADANA TWINS, two Hamburg lads doin’ their thang on tastemaker imprint Exploited.
It all started a few years ago when graphic designers Benni (the ‘energizer’) and Friso (the ‘straight and fluffy guy’) bonded over a mutual love of Turkish food and groovy house - definitely our kind of fellas. Their name, “Adana” is actually taken from the “adana kebab”, Turkish meat spits.
Between a residency at Neidklub and running the amazing “Deep Jeudi” parties at Baalsaal (drawing in the likes of Zombie Disco Squad, Renaissance Man, Homework, Sacha Robotti etc), the duo went on to release the highest selling single on Exploited in 2011 - the Notorious BIG inspired “Juicy Fruit” (with frequent collaborator Doctor Dru). This song is a perfect example of off how house music and r&B are supposed to co-exist - something the likes of Perseus and Danny Daze have further showcased more recently.
Now it’s quite clear that 2012 will be the boys breakthrough year. Their new “Everyday” EP is well on the way to becoming a worldwide smash, and sitting pretty in all the Beatport Charts (#2 Deep House / #25 Overall)…
It’s doing just as much for F&T as the amazing “It Goes On” by Storm Queen.
And in case you want a full taste of an Adana Twins set, we’ve got the rather tasty mixtape they did for the Cream Radio show…
It’s Friday, it’s time for some fun. Go to it now.
**As if life at F&T HQ couldn’t get any more exciting.. Did someone just say THREE HUNDRED FACEBOOK LIKES?! YES THEY DID, cue the happy dance! We have been lucky enough to bring a new contributor into the fold.. And this one is a real coup! Lisa C has straight up impeccable taste on all things from food to music and even travel and fashion. Even better than this, she is a real live journalist to boot. So needless to say we’re excited. What better than an intro from the Lady Du Jour herself**
Once upon a time I had what I called a “music blog” but it ended up just being a long, online love letter to hip hop, rap and Lil Wayne. As much as I try to be a well-rounded lover of the entire family of music, I can’t help but have a favourite kid… and it happens to be really good at rhyming.
I’ve been asked by my lovely friends at F&T to contribute to this already-amazing blog. It’s like being invited to a dinner party of a lifetime that’s catered for by Rene Redzepi and you’re standing at the palatial door holding one, sad cupcake that you took a bite out of on the way over.
Okay, that may be a little too extreme. But how do you improve on something that’s already pretty darn-tootin’ fabulous?
I’ll tell you how. More rap. More hip hop. More food.
My column will give a round-up of all the new tunes I’ve been listening to and what I’ve been eating, which by sheer volume may blow all your minds. Just saying.
To sign off, some words of wisdom derived from one of Kanye West’s legendary tweets: “Fur pillows are hard to actually sleep on.”
Yes they are, Yeezy. Yes they are.
Whether you know him as the producer/drummer of Chiddy Bang, that young kid making beats for hip-hop royalty (Kanye West, Big Sean, Beanie Segal) or the mastermind of mash-up remixes for Radiohead, Tinie Tempah, Grouplove, Rihanna, Passion Pit, Darwin Deez and a gazillion more artists, one thing is clear… Xaphoon Jones is the M.A.N… If like us, you’re lucky enough to know Xaphoon (aka Noah) on a personal level, you’ll also know that he’s pretty much the nicest, most down-to-earth, total legend we’ve met in the music game.
Straight up - there isn’t much that he can’t do. You can add the following to his already impressive repertoire - renowned DJ, collaborator, mixtape-maestro and more recently, video director (see below)!!! That’s no mean feat for someone, who until last year, wasn’t legally allowed to drink in the United States!
So to celebrate the release of Chiddy Bang’s debut monster album Breakfast (sitting pretty at #8 on the US Billboard Album Charts and at one stage #4 on iTunes), F&T caught up with this talented whiz-kid and asked him all the real questions…
THE BASIC INGREDIENTS:
THE MAIN COURSE:
1. What meal do you crave from home when you’re on the road?
Good Jewish Deli food
2. The best gig/show/party I’ve been to lately was…
Our new years party at my friends house. I DJ’d for 5 hours and it was like 500 kids in a basement proper Philly style
3. What was the best meal you’ve eaten recently?
Jalapeno mac and cheese from Nada, a restaurant in Cincinnati, Ohio
4. Who are you listening to at the moment?
5. What does the next 6-12 months hold for Xaphoon Jones / Chiddy Bang?
We just dropped this album so I have no idea, probably lots of press, more shows etc. Hopefully we get to come back to Australia soon. This USA radio things killing all my Australia vibes!!!
**Thanks Noah… In case you guys hadn’t heard, Chiddy Bang were scheduled to perform at the Groovin the Moo Festival in May, but unfortunately had to cancel (DEVASTATED)! Understandable though when you consider how MASSIVE they are becoming overseas (Jimmy Fallon, Jay Leno anyone?)… We’re sure we will see them out here REAL soon!**
Over the Easter long weekend (that’s a five day weekend peeps!) French indie-dance duo BEATAUCUE are making a pit-stop Down Under… and F&T couldn’t be more excited!
Taking their name from a colloquial slang that’s too naughty to mention (look it up if you must!), Alexis & Mederic, both in their early 20’s, made a mark on the electronic scene in Europe in 2009 with what A-Trak describes as “an easily recognisable sound. Big booming kicks, tribal drum patterns and bouncy, demented synth leads.” It’s probably no surprise to learn then that BeatauCue’s remixing credits sound like a who’s who of modern pop / electronica - Kylie Minogue, Yelle, Cicada, Adrian Lux, Major Lazer, Armand Van Helden & Steve Aoki, Afrojack, Switch & Diplo…
Add to that some rather tasty originals through the eternally-cool and uncapable-of-a-dud-release Kitsune, including the brain-storming KIHO (out now on the Kitsune Parisien II compilation), and it’s fair to say this could be one of the best tours of the year!
“This guys talent reminds everyone they must stay humble. I’m nothing compared to this dude.”
~ Danny Daze, who’s in the country right now tearing shit up with the Crosstown Rebels crew, on turntablist-master, Miami-bass legend and Slow Roast Records head honcho Dj Craze. Isn’t it nice when Artists respect each other?
RESTAURANTS IN REVIEW: SAILORS THAI @ THE IVY
WHERE: Level 2, ivy | 330 George Street, Sydney
+61 2 9240 3000 | website
Dinner: Tues–Sat from 6pm (lunch Tues-Fri from 12pm)
WHAT: Another in the Merivale family of restaurants (read our review of Merivale owned Ms G’s here), this fancy mod-Asian/Thai eatery (yes, another Thai restaurant in Sydney) at The ivy is a pretty space, with pretty staff and spicy food..
WHAT WE ATE:
DESSERT ($12 each):
Keeping it brief on this one.. If you have to pour your own wine, flag a waiter down and ask to order (after waiting more than 20 mins with no assistance), then have to ask 4 times to have your water glass filled at a restaurant where the food is HOT then you certainly shouldn’t be paying these prices.
Lucky the wine, a 2010 Henschke ‘Innes Vineyard’ from Adelaide Hills (at a very affordable $65) and the company (our dear friends Rich and Jess) was impeccable otherwise this whole experience would be have been TOTALLY substandard. It’s a shame really, because the restaurant is gorgeous and there were some food highlights (namely the duck curry and beef salad) but sadly, we’re not going to mention them because service is such a key part of a great meal.
So enjoy the above photos, and a friendly word to the Sailors Thai and Merivale teams who run this place, sort your inattentive, apathetic staff out quick smart!!!!!!
Slow Club’s ‘Yeah So’ made a lot of 2009’s ‘Best Of’ lists, well at least the ones I was reading. It was definitely one of my favourites that year. The reviews floating around were all very positive, but I have to admit it took me a while to get fully into the record. It was a post by the lead singer of one of my favourite bands, saying that Rebecca’s voice was the best female vocal he’d heard live that year, which truly piqued my interest in seeing them live. Quite high praise. They toured as part of Sydney Festival 2010, supporting Camera Obscura (sometimes you get extra lucky with supports; seeing Darren Hanlon supporting Bright Eyes was a recent unexpected win). Needless to say I was sitting at my computer madly clicking refresh on my browser when tickets for the Sydney Festival show went on sale.
After seeing them live, I had to agree, in person they are something else entirely. Rebecca’s voice is enthralling (and I guess I have a thing for singing drummers), they’re both confident and relaxed in front of a crowd, great banter, plus there’s a suspicious comfort between them on stage. The crowd was utterly absorbed (and keep in mind, we have to assume that most people were really there for Camera Obscura).
Last year saw the release of their second full length Paradise, and it’s a similar experience this time around. ‘Two Cousins’ (which inspired a one off Arab Strap reunion to record a cover version) is instantly likeable, the rest takes some time to get into. After putting the time in, I think the new album is great, but it’s seeing them live again that I’m really looking forward to. They’re playing GoodGod on March 1st (buy tickets here) and are also playing a free warm up show the night before on February 29th (no, that’s not a typo) at Beach Road Hotel in Bondi.
We have emerged from the haziness of a sun-drenched Sunday afternoon at Ivy Pool… a little bleary eyed… but very satisfied… all thanks to Lancelot.
Plain & simple - Lancelot is a star-in-the-making. In a few months, he’s already established himself as the “one to watch” in 2012. Already boasting a list of remixes that would set any indie-chin wagging (New Navy, Faker, Tim & Jean, Penguin Prison, Sparkadia), Lancelot achieved the almost-unthinkable when he took on Matt Corby’s smash hit “Brother”… he bettered it. A slow-building house-beat laced with breathless filters and spine-tingling fades adds an unrelenting mystery, whilst maintaining the pain and anguish of the original.
Yesterday marked the release of Lancelot’s debut EP, “We Can Dance” on LA-based tastemaker-imprint Binary, and what an outstanding package it is. “Spoken Word”, a chord-driven tropical disco monster, has found it’s way into the CD wallet of The Magician and fostered a lazy 20,000 plays in just over a fortnight. The title track, a dreamy lo-fi ballad that evidences Lancelot’s romantic side, has been brilliantly re-worked by the likes of F&T faves and blog-stars Goldroom and Fabian, and featured prominently in Hype Machine’s Top 10 Most Popular tracks in recent weeks.
F&T recently caught up with this this 22-year old (scary isn’t it?) Sydney Conservatorium of Music student and asked him all the REAL questions…
THE BASIC INGREDIENTS:
• My name is… Lance Gurisik aka Lancelot (original I know ha!)
• I hail from… Sydney, Australia
• My drink is… Hendricks Gin with cucumber
• Favourite food…Salmon Sashimi
1. What meal do you crave from home when you’re on the road?
Well to be honest - I’m still quite the ‘new kid on the block’ when it comes to being on the road…in the foreseeable future however, I could see myself craving anything Japanese ie. Salmon Carpaccio, Sashimi, Wagyu Beef, Edamame etc…
2. The best gig/show/party I’ve been to lately was…
Was nearly a year ago now but Secret Garden Festival 2011 was hands down the best gig/show/party I’ve been to in a really loooong time - such positive vibes from everyone and 0% knob-heads, which is hard to find anywhere, let alone at a festival.
3. What was the best meal you’ve eaten recently in Australia / overseas?
I had a rack of pork ribs recently at a place in Cremorne called Radio Cairo Cafe. Had these really cool African spices going on in and around my mouth.
4. Who are you listening to at the moment?
Anything those guys over at French Express are doing and anything a-little slower and deeper - more room for the grooves.
5. What does the next 6-12 months hold for Lancelot?
I’m already well underway writing my next EP and you guys have only just been able to hear the first one ! I think I will be playing quite a lot of shows around Australia - I’ve got some cool people approaching about remixes etc. The big plan is to head over the L.A. with the release of my second EP, mid to late this year to meet my label bros over at Binary Records and hopefully do a small run of shows over there!
You can purchase the We Can Dance EP here.
**Big thank you to Lance… F&T are big supporters of local talent, and there’s no question this kid has it by the bucket-load and then some… Just remember, when he blows up bigger then Ben Hur, you heard it on F&T first!!!