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Meshuggah name Thy Art is Murder as Touring Support, add second Melbourne Show


MESHUGGAH will grace Australian and New Zealand’s shores in April 2017, on the back of their 8th studio Album, “The Violent Sleep of Reason”. The tour, presented by MJR Presents will see Australia’s extreme metal leaders, THY ART IS MURDER, join the tour for all dates except Perth. With only a handful of tickets left for the Wednesday 170 Russell show in Melbourne, the promoters have announced a second show on Tuesday 14th March, now on sale.

Since their formation in 2006, New South Wales’ Thy Art Is Murder have made killing their business… and as Dave Mustaine would say, business is good. Their nightmarish void is one where resistance is futile – you can but sit helplessly as the relentless blast beats and gut-ripping guitars pummel you sideways. In the best possible way, of course. 2015’s album Holy War cemented their spot at the top of the Extreme Metal pile in Australia and recognized worldwide, having toured the world extensively and comprehensively since its release.


In 2017, Swedish progressive metal pioneers MESHUGGAH will be entering their 30th year of existence, defying expectations on record as to the limitations of metal, and then proving their virtuosic prowess by taking their cathedral-complex compositions to stages all over the world – this leg of the tour being only part of a lengthy world tour – for which they are well known.

The Violent Sleep of Reason, the band’s eighth full-length studio album, finds MESHUGGAH building upon their legacy for fearless metal sculpting within the context of extreme metal, but also recapturing some of the magic and excitement specifically within the aspect of performance, finding flow and groove that would be a challenge for any lesser band to locate, given such technical geometric madness at mischievous hand.

They are bringing that legacy to Australia and New Zealand and visiting iconic venues with Thy Art is Murder in support – The Powerstation in Auckland, The Tivoli in Brisbane, The Enmore Theatre in Sydney, 170 Russell in Melbourne and Metropolis in Fremantle (Thy Art is Murder not appearing in WA).

Meshuggah’s drummer Tomas Haake says that they are keen to make sure that when they come down under, their erudite and intelligent fan base “get something that they don’t really hear in any other bands. On the first album you still hear a lot of METALLICA and ANTHRAX and Bay Area kind of thrash metal influence. We knew that we sounded a bit like that, but we were aiming for something we hadn’t heard in any other band. And that’s still the main fuel. We’re not trying to write your average metal song. We’re not trying to write catchy songs. But it would seem like the followers that we do have, the people that have kept buying our albums and stayed with us for a lot of years, are not typical metal fans. The crowd we have is diverse. We have a lot of geeks and nerds and weirdos, and they are beautiful ones, you know? We have a lot of people with talent, and a lot of people that are interested in music as art, and not just an event.”

Meshuggah_2016 A3 all dates.eps

Interview with Matt Anderson


Matt Andersen has been enthralling audiences with his one of a kind performance in North America, Europe and Australia for years. In October 2015, the award winning artist once again de-camped from his New Brunswick, Canada home to record his new album Honest Man. In support of this latest album Matt will be playing shows around Australia in November.

Tomatrax caught up with Matt Anderson to ask a few questions.

You’ll be touring Australia next month, what can fans expect from your show?
I’ll be coming over solo on this run, so it will just be me and my guitar on stage. I like to keep my shows pretty relaxed. The more fun and energy I get from the crowd, the more I give. That’s what makes for the best nights.

What was the inspiration behind the name The Bona Fide for your band?
The name came from a brainstorming session with the guys in my band. Bona Fide is the one that stuck out.

What made you pick ‘Honest Man’ as the title track to your latest album?
That song kind of became the centre peice of the album. It was one of the first tunes that was ready for the album. A fun song to play as well.

What was it like working with Commissioner Gordon when making your album?
Gordon was great to work with. He brought a lot of experience and different influences to the album. He definitely brought out things in me that I wouldn’t have on my own. He’s mastered giving an artist a fresh sound while still staying true to what they do.

You received a lot of critical acclaim for your work, does that make you feel any pressure going forward?
Nope, no more than I put on myself. I always strive to do better and move forward.

Your bio says you let the converted audiences and Andersen devotees spread your reputation through word of mouth. Is it important to take this approach?
For an artist who doesn’t receive a lot of radio and TV play, word of mouth is the best way to get the attention of new listeners.

When writing what comes first, the words or the music?
No set rule for that. A lyric can inspire a groove and vice versa. I try to be open to both at all times.

Do you ever listen to your own music?
Not very often. I play it so often that I’m ready for something else when I get time to just listen.

What music do you listen to?
I find myself listening to satellite radio quite often. Usually the 60s and 70s stations. Lots of gems in there.

What do you have planned after your upcoming tour?
A bit of time off then hitting the road again in the new year. Most likely I’ll be going into the studio next fall.


Matt Anderson will be touring Australia next month, tour dates below. Check out Matt Anderson’s website to find out more!


Thur 17 Nov
The Milk Factory
With guest Claire Anne Taylor
48 Montague Rd, West End QLD
Ph 07 3217 2061
Doors 8pm. Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door. Tix Here

Fri 18 – Sun 20 Nov
Mullum Music Festival

Wed 23 Nov
Republic Bar
With guest Shaun Kirk
299 Elizabeth St, North Hobart TAS
Ph 03 6234 6954
Doors 7.30pm. Tix $20 + bf standing / $25 + bf seated / $25 @ door. Tix Here

Thur 24 Nov
Red Hot Music
With guest Shaun Kirk
10-12 Edward St, Devonport TAS
Ph 03 6424 2286
Doors 7.30pm. Tix $25. Tix Here

Fri 25 Nov
Memo Music Hall
With guest Shaun Kirk
88 Acland St, St Kilda VIC
Ph 03 9534 3556
Doors 7.30pm. Tix $25 + bf standing / $30 + bf seated / $35 @ door. Tix Here

Sat 26 – Sun 27 Nov
Queenscliff Music Festival

Tue 29 Nov
The Front Gallery & Café
With guest Mercy Seat
1 Wattle Place, Lyneham ACT
Ph 02 6249 8453
Doors 6.30pm. Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door. Tix Here

Thur 1 Dec
Brass Monkey
With guest Shaun Kirk
115A Cronulla St, Cronulla NSW
Ph 02 9544 3844
Doors 7pm. Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door. Tix Here

Fri 2 Dec
The Music Lounge
With guest Shaun Kirk
Wollongong Town Hall, Wollongong NSW
Corner Kembla & Crown Sts
Doors 7.30pm. Tix Here

Sat 3 Dec
The Basement
With guest Shaun Kirk
29 Reiby Pl, Circular Quay NSW
Ph 02 9251 2797
Doors 7.30pm. Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door. Tix Here

Sun 4 Dec
With guest Shaun Kirk
31 Morehead St, Lambton NSW
Ph 02 4956 2066
Doors 6pm. Tix $20 + bf / $25 @ door. Tix Here

Interview with Ryan Nicholson from Idle Fret


Albury rockers Idle Fret have just put out their debut album. Tomatrax caught up with Ryan Nicholson, the band’s drummer, to ask a few questions.

Where did the name Idle Fret come from?
I honestly don’t know where it came from, but the name suits us to a tee. IDLE = we’ve taken a while to get to where we are. FRET = The boys know their bloody way around them guitars and we have some killer hooks to prove it. I also like to think we’re an IDOL THREAT, like we’ll destroy any ‘Idol’ those stupid TV shows produce. I’ve just realised its a very punny name.

You’ve just launched your latest album, what’s it like to have it out?
Bloody brilliant. We have been working on this album for sometime now so it’s good to finally be able to share it with the world. We began constructing some of the songs back in 2013, though unfortunately I suffered a very serve broken leg in early 2014 just as we were planning on recording the songs, being the drummer that really pushed us back. Further more just after we recorded some rough demos our band went through a pretty big line up change. There were many moments where we felt this album would never be completed but we band together and got the job done! So yeah, feels bloody good to finally share these songs with the world.

Where did the name ‘Reborn’ come from?
We actually had the song title for Reborn before we went through all the drama (broken leg / line up change). We didn’t really intend on it being the album’s title back then. The term Reborn was kind of us saying that rock n roll is always reborn, with each new generation. Everyone says rock is dead, but we and many other young rock bands across Australia disagree. It’s kind of like us saying ‘This is our generations turn to carry the Australian Hard Rock flag, and we’ll carry it until it’s the next generations turn to blast that iconic sound”. With that said the title Reborn worked well for us, especially after our unplanned hiatus. The song title tied in with our return to doing what we love; which is playing rock n roll (Really, really loud).

What’s the music scene like in Albury?
Great! When we started, there weren’t many rock bands around town. We began by doing some cover shows, learning how to play together until we had the confidence to start sharing our original music. In those days, there was a thriving hardcore scene and a very strong acoustic / hipster kind of scene but nothing in between. We worked hard at being noticed and along the way have helped build the music scene to what it is today! Venues such as The Boomerang Hotel, The Bended Elbow and The SS&A Club get behind us and have always been supportive towards us.


Albury / Wodonga has a population of 110,000 people and it’s starting to become a hot spot for some pretty big touring names. Many big acts stop through Albury as they travel up and down the Hume Highway. The great thing is, us local bands can score support spots for these acts, further building our local followings. Like many Aussie Rock Bands before us, we’ve had our fair share of tall poppy syndrome, that “small town mentality” thing. Though we’ve become good at channeling any negativity aimed towards us into songs; ‘Livin a Lie’, ‘The Bitter Bill’ and ‘Towns Gonna’ Burn’ for example. On the most part we have a solid support network of a few hundred people who really get behind us and support us as much as they can. They want the best for us and that means the world to us. We’ll probably have to get big overseas before the whole town knows who we are, but that’s okay! It’s a great home base for any band really, chockfull of musical talent.

When writing what comes first, the music or the words?
The music. Often Daniel and Hayden will throw around some song ideas, we’ll then get together as a band to work out a rough structure / feel for the songs then Hayden will figure out some words. It helps that Dan and Hayden are brothers as well! They tell each other when something sounds shit and no one gets butt hurt.

Do you ever listen to your own music?
Yep. Loud and proud.

What other music do you listen to?
While we all share a strong passion for Australian rock (AC/DC, Airbourne, Rose Tattoo), we all have our own personal tastes. Buckcherry, Foo Fighters, Kings Of Leon, Kingswood, Violent Soho, Johnny Cash, Taking Dawn, Northlane to name a few – as long it’s not some artificially produced talent show bullshit, we’ll tend to blast it nice and loud.

Now that the album is out what do you plan on doing next?
Well right now, were rushing to finish a 3 part documentary we have been working on for some time. It covers everything that we as a band experienced while making this album. We really want to show people not only what it’s like being in an Aussie Pub band in the year 2016, but also what it’s like being a regional based band. There’s only so much you can show people through Facebook, so we reckon it will be rather eye opening to even those who are close to the band. We’re also planning a few shows to see out the end of the year, maybe even quit our full time jobs and tour Australia next year (That’s the dream anyways).

Ultimately we want to start getting our music into Europe and make the leap. Our style of music, Australian Hard Rock, is really appreciated over there. They crave it. Sadly its over looked here compared to other genres. These days, It’s rare for a young Aussie band to put so much money and time into their debut album and not approach Triple J, but we know they wont play our songs so why bother? After all, that’s why AC/DC pissed off in the 70’s and that seemed to work well for them. There’s no way but the hard way and we’re used to that.

Check out Idle Fret’s website to find out more!

CD Review: Beth Hart – Fire on the floor


Grammy-nominated blues singer/songwriter Beth Hart has returned with album number nine, The album has no shortage of emotion nor energy. Each track sees Beth throw every last bit of passion into the mix, charged along with her gutsy, gravelly voice. There is a great mix of emotions explored with everything from bright poppy moments to deep dark and gritty offerings. All of which paint vibrant and atmospheric soundscapes that transport you out into barren rural surroundings.

The album opens with the aptly titled ‘Jazz man’. Transporting you off to a smokey jazzy bar the song is oozing with vibrant energy, led by Beth Hart’s gusty voice. ‘Love gangster’ is a darker, gravelly tune. The flow between chilling and chaotic tunes paint a grim but vivid soundscape. ‘Coca cola’ brings in a solid blusey vibe that is topped off by a very cool guitar solo. ‘Let’s get together’ lifts the mood, with a bright and cheery feel and the tunes bounce around with great colour and life. ‘Fat man’ is a roaring blue/rock tune. The growling guitar fuels the song with a slow burning energy and creates a great rural atmosphere! The title track sees Ms Hart’s emotions up front and on display as the melancholic vibes thrash their way through in a slow yet powerful manner.

‘Woman you’ve been dreaming of’ is a sombre and heartfelt song. Led by a dark but subtle piano it acts as the album’s tearjerker. ‘Picture in a frame’ is another slow burning heartfelt tune that will test the driest of eyes! The album closes with the slow and melancholic ‘No place like home’ that acts as a kind of warm down to the emotional roller coaster that had just been experienced.

This is very much a heart on sleeve type album as Beth Hart puts out her bare emotions on display for all to see. She really throws herself into the songs with a blasting energetic voice and a lively colourful backing soundtrack. There is no shortage of feeling here!

Check out Beth Hart’s website to find out more!

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