Monday, November 28, 2011

Radio Birdman - Live in Sidney (11.23.1976)

Radio Birdman was formed in Sydney, Australia in 1974. They were one of the pioneering Aussie punk bands and by far the most influential band on the future of the Sydney punk scene. They chose their name after misunderstanding a line from the Stooges song "1970". The line actually goes "Radio burnin' up above" but Iggy was never known for his annunciation so the confusion is forgivable.    

The popular view of history says that that punk started in New York and then spread to England. However the history of Radio Birdman tells a much different tale. Really punk started in Detroit and then spread to Australia.

Radio Birdman was formed by an unlikely pair: vocalist Rob Younger, a native Australian, and Guitarist Deniz Tek, an American who had just moved to Sydney to attend medical school. Tek had come from Ann Harbor, Michigan. Ann Harbor was a little college town about an hour outside of Detroit but in the late sixties and early seventies it became a key music hub in the American Midwest. It was a regular stop for world famous touring acts and virtuoso Jazz greats but most importantly it was home to the first wave of proto-punk bands like the Stooges and the MC5.

The sound of Radio Birdman was too fast, heavy, violent, and psychotic to play any of the established Sydney Clubs. As forerunners of the D.I.Y. punk ethic the band took over the a small pub, renamed it The Oxford Funhouse in tribute to their favorite band, and made that pub into the center of Sydney's exploding Punk scene.

Like many artists who were ahead of their time Radio Birdman never got the recognition they deserved. They never got very famous outside of Australia. They toured the rest of the world but nobody really took notice. They almost got a record released in America through Sire records but the deal fell through at the last moment and Radio Birdman was left to virtual obscurity. They broke up in 1978 before most of the world had even heard the term "punk".

This Record was made in November of 1976 on month after the release of their debut E.P. Burn My Eye. It was only a few months after the release of the Ramones first record and it was a year before The Damned or the Sex Pistols released anything in England.

This bootleg is true rarity. It was recorded live Sydney's legendary Double Jay Studio for an A.M. broadcast. Double Jay was a Sydney Radio station that played an integral role in the formation of the Australian music scene because they focused on Aussie bands and they were willing to play songs that other stations had banned for references to sex and drugs.

The sound quality is a little muddy but so is every recording of a cutting edge punk band from the mid seventies. This recording sounds better than any bootlegs you will ever get of the Stooges or MC5. This recording represents a diamond in the rough and a it is essential listening for anyone intrested in the roots of independently produced Rock & Roll music.


Radio Birdman
Double Jay Studios
City: Sydney Australia
Date: 11.23.1976
Size: 170 mb
Runtime: 1:14:24
Source: Amplitude Modulation Broadcast
Bitrate: 320 kbps

Track List:
01 - Route 66
02 - Murder City Nights
03 - Don't Look Back
04 - Anglo Girl Desire
05 - Man With Golden Helmet
06 - Love Kills
07 - TV Eye
08 - Surf City
09 - Hand Of Law
10 - New Race
11 - Transmaniacon M.C
12 - Burn My Eye
13 - Descent Into The Maelstrom
14 - Time Won't Let Me
15 - I 94
16 - Do The Pop
17 - Descent Into The Maelstrom
18 - Death By The Gun
19 - Snake

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