Because we all need something to look forward to.
To steal from the exquisite poetry of Whitesnake, we don’t know where we’re going but we sure know where we’ve been. And it hasn’t been great. We are, however, hoping that bluer skies are ahead in 2022.
It is looking that way as there are some pretty fine gigs locked and loaded already – and may there be many more to follow.
Cowboy Junkies – Melbourne Recital Centre on February 3 & Athenaeum Theatre on February 4
Formed in the mid-eighties, Canadian outfit Cowboy Junkies set out to lace together alternative country, blues and folk rock. One of the band’s biggest moments came with ‘Sweet Jane’, a cover of a Velvet Underground song that the late Lou Reed would call his favourite. It appeared on the soundtrack to 1994’s Natural Born Killers.
Warm up with Sweet Jane
Belinda Carlisle – The Palais on February 11 & Ulumbarra Theatre, Bendigo on February 15
Set for induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame later this year, the Go-Go’s have been on and off since 1978. When the band first broke up in 1985, lead singer Belinda Carlisle would establish a highly successful solo career with singles including ‘Leave a Light On’, ‘Heaven is a Place on Earth’ and ‘Summer Rain’.
Warm up with Leave a Light On
Faith No More – Rod Laver Arena on February 18
After a bumpy start, Faith No More settled on vocalist Chuck Mosley in 1983. Mosley would lead the band through their first two albums before Mike Patton, then with Mr Bungle, took over in 1988. Patton would soon write 1989’s The Real Thing, featuring the songs ‘Epic’, ‘Falling to Pieces’ and ‘From Out of Nowhere’.
Warm up with Ashes to Ashes
London Grammar – Sidney Myer Music Bowl on February 24
Like so many stories before, members of London Grammar met while at university, choosing their name not only because of where they were from, but because it sounded universal. Now more than a decade after their formation, the band has three albums. Californian Soil, their latest, became their second consecutive number one album in the UK.
Warm up with How Does It Feel, below.
Lindsey Stirling – Plenary Theatre on February 25
American violinist Lindsey Stirling found a greater audience in 2010 when she made it to the quarter finals on the fifth season of America’s Got Talent. However, a few years prior, in 2007, Stirling created a YouTube channel. Today, that channel boasts more than 13 million subscribers and three billion views. Artemis is her fifth album, released in 2019.
Warm up with Roundtable Rival
Peter Hook and the Light – The Forum on February 25
As the co-founder of Joy Division and New Order, Peter Hook has given more than enough to the music world. Such remains the affection for these bands that Hook continues to perform their material through Peter Hook and the Light. An opening set of New Order tracks will be followed by both Joy Division albums.
Warm up with Dead Souls
Buckcherry & Fozzy – Max Watts on February 26
Drawing influence from the sleazy and sexy hard rock scene, American rockers Buckcherry formed in the mid-nineties and recently released album number nine, Hellbound. Heavy-hitters Fozzy was formed at the end of the nineties by wrestler Chris Jericho, Rich Ward and Frank Fontsere. A new album is due this year.
Warm up with Fastback 69
Violent Femmes – The Forum on February 28
It might be hard to believe, but Violent Femmes released ‘Blister in the Sun’ in 1983 (a new version was recorded for the John Cusack film, Grosse Point Blank). The fan favourite kicks off their self-titled debut, which remains their most successful album to date. It is included in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.
Warm up with I Held Her in My Arms
Backstreet Boys – Rod Laver Arena on March 7
Backstreet Boys first performed at SeaWorld Orlando in 1993. Three years later, they would release their colossal self-titled debut. With 130 million in album sales, they would become the first band since Led Zeppelin to have their first ten albums reach the Top 10 on the Billboard 200, making them the clear boy band winner.
Warm up with As Long as You Love Me
Lorde – Sidney Myer Music Bowl on March 12
With one song, ‘Royals’, New Zealand artist Lorde was everywhere. Released in 2013, it would snag Song of the Year and Best Pop Solo Performance at the 2014 Grammy Awards. That was a lifetime ago in the music world, and on August 21 she will release her third album, Solar Power. It will be available as an eco-friendly “music box”.
Warm up with Team
Rod Stewart – Rod Laver Arena on March 15 & 16 and Mt Duneed Estate, Geelong March 19 as part of A Day on the Green
Rod Stewart is one of those artists who ages backwards. He is the kind of artist that still performs with the gusto of someone making their first musical steps. Those first steps took place in the early sixties and would lead him on his way to become one of the best-selling artists of all time with more than 250 million in albums sales.
Warm up with Ooh La La
My Chemical Romance – Rod Laver Arena on March 17
Three months after their formation, My Chemical Romance released I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love in 2002. In 2006 the band released the concept album The Black Parade. Single ‘Welcome to the Black Parade’ would become the band’s first #1 hit on the UK Singles Chart and their only top ten hit on the Billboard 200.
Warm up with Desolation Row
UB40 – The Forum on March 22
From a group of Birmingham mates rehearsing in a local basement in 1978 to becoming a giant in the reggae world, UB40 share a record with Madness for the most weeks spent by a group in the UK Singles Chart during the 1980s at a whopping 214. The band’s line-up remained the same for almost 30 years.
Warm up with Kingston Town
Kings of Leon – Sidney Myer Music Bowl on April 1
It has been a musically evolving journey for Kings of Leon, the band of three brothers and one cousin formed in 1999. The band’s fourth album, Only by the Night, was the best-selling album of the year in Australia, helped in no small part by single ‘Sex on Fire’. The Kings released their eighth album, When You See Yourself, earlier this year.
Warm up with The Bucket
Boney M. – The Palais on April 8
Created by German record producer Frank Farian, Boney M. would become arguably the most iconic European disco act of all time thanks to a long list of hits including ‘Daddy Cool’, ‘Ma Baker’, ‘Rivers of Babylon’, ‘Brown Girl in the Ring’, ‘Sunny’ and ‘Rasputin’. This special event will feature Maizie Williams.
Warm up with Daddy Cool
Patti Smith – The Palais on April 21 & 22
Voted the 47th Greatest Artist in Rock and Roll by Rolling Stone, Patti Smith is one of the most respected figures in the New York punk rock movement. One of her most widely known songs is ‘Because the Night’, which was co-written by Bruce Springsteen and has been covered by various artists including 10,000 Maniacs.
Warm up with Gloria
The Wombats – John Cain Arena on June 10
The Wombats are heading out on an Australian tour in celebration of their newly-announced album, Fix Yourself, Not The World, due for release January 7. Fix Yourself, Not The World follows on from The Wombats 2018 record Beautiful People Will Ruin Your Life. Since then, frontman Matthew Murphy has also released his solo debut album ‘Wherever I Go, I Want to Leave’ under the moniker Love Fame Tragedy.
Warm up with Let’s Dance to Joy Division
L.A. Guns – The Corner on June 18
Oh what the world of sleazy rock and roll would look like without L.A. Guns. Formed in 1983 by Tracii Guns and Ron Gardner, a familiar story is an early incarnation would lead to the formation of Guns N’ Roses. Faces may have changed but the music has remained for the band whose blood, sweat and tears are part of the Sunset Strip’s rich history.
Warm up with Over the Edge
Louis Tomlinson – Margaret Court Arena on July 25
It would be a disservice to fans not to mention One Direction when talking about Louis Tomlinson. However, it would be unfair to suggest that is where the story ends. Following a string of single releases, Tomlinson released his debut album, Walls, at the beginning of the year. It is an album forged with love through grief.
Warm up with Too Young
H.E.A.T & Crazy Lixx – The Prince on September 22
Is there anything the Scandinavians can’t do? Following the release of their 2008 debut, Sweden’s melodic rockers H.E.A.T shared the touring road with Alice Cooper and Thin Lizzy. Fellow Swedish outfit Crazy Lixx was formed in the early 2000s as a way to bring back the power of 1980s-style glam metal. This is the first time in Australia for both bands.
Warm up with Point of No Return
Mad Caddies – The Corner on October 7
From a high school jam room to stages large and small around the world, it has been a good 25 years for Californian ska enthusiasts Mad Caddies. When Covid hit, the band’s plans were changed like everyone else. Fortunately, this meant they were able to knuckle down on some songs that had been floating around since 2017. The result is House on Fire.
Warm up with Tired Bones
Alanis Morissette – Rod Laver Arena on November 8 & 9
Alanis Morissette released her debut album, Alanis, in 1991 and drew comparisons to the likes of Debbie Gibson and Tiffany. But it was her third album, Jagged Little Pill, which helped shape the ’90s. Nominated for nine Grammys and the winner of five, it is ranked #69 on Rolling Stones’ 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.
Warm up with Ironic
David Gray – Margaret Court Arena on November 15
It would be the re-release of David Gray’s fourth album, White Ladder, which would make him one of the biggest names in the 2000s. The album, which features ‘Babylon’, was the fifth-best-selling album of the 2000s in the UK. Albums have continued to come at an impressive rate, with Skellig his twelfth release.
Warm up with This Year’s Love