JazzWorldQuest Showcase 2024: Wil Sargisson Trio(Australia)-Jazz in Meanjin 010

Wil Sargisson Trio-Jazz in Meanjin 010
Wil Sargisson Trio-Warm Water
Label: 4000 Records / Jazz in Meanjin
Composer:Wil Sargisson

This track is taken from the upcoming next instalment of our Jazz in Meanjin series – live recordings from jazz gig around Brisbane, Australia.

The set features many standards and interpretations but this is Wil’s own composition.

The album is on May 23rd.

Brisbane jazz pianist Wil Sargisson hails from New Zealand, where he was raised on boogie woogie, New Orleans R&B and Harlem stride piano. He began solo festival appearances at age 13 and moved to Australia at 28.

Elliott Parker and Mitch Bellert have established themselves as in-demand session musicians and teachers on the Brisbane scene. The group bonded over a shared love of the records of the Oscar Peterson Trio.

Thanks so much for listening!


JazzWorldQuest Showcase 2024

JazzWorldQuest Showcase 2023:The Scornful Four (Australia) Album: Jazz in Meanjin 001: Live at Can You Keep A Secret?


This recording results from the last-minute thought that such a moment should be captured. This set by newly formed The Scornful Four shows the very instant when an idea became a creation.

With a book full of COVID-era compositions that had yet to fall on any ears, saxophonist Andrew Garton convened a group of musical friends new and old to tackle the task of creating a setting to enrich what previously only existed in his imagination.

Meanjin jazz-royalty Helen Russell on bass (notably of the lauded 90s ensemble Good Bait), the wise-beyond-his-years journeyman drummer Aaron Jansz and young firebrand trumpeter Sharon Nobs all openly brought their dedication and ability to engage deeply with any music they perform and it shows in the freedom and nuance presented in this live recording.



JazzWorldQuest Showcase 2023

World Music Mix: Fingerless (Australia): single: More To Come

Fingerless-More to Come
Fingerless (Australia): single: More To Come

Meanjin/Brisbane psych-folk-indie-rock group Fingerless are not ones to stick to any single style. After pulling dungeon/dark synth, psych pop, and an epic ballad (cover) out of the hat last year, they return in 2023 with a cynical take on the rose-coloured glasses “love conquers all” trope.
‘More To Come’ is a love song really, in its broadest sense, but it’s also about life and how we can’t always prepare for everything. Life and love are not fairytales, there are ups and downs the whole way through—there is no happily ever after, there is only now.

The impetus for the song’s themes came from the phrase that you see at the end of a lot of ABC News articles: “More to come.” Like, we know. That’s why we read the news and not the olds. They do make a good point though – there is always more tocome. The world is always changing around us and we have to respond to it. On top of that, as individuals we’re always changing, and we make changes wherever we go. Nothing is static.

Keeping true to this theme, the artwork for the new single was developed using AI image generation – an emerging technology that we don’t really understand. Some of the lyrics and imagery from the song were used as the prompts for creating the original image on Midjourney. What does this kind of technology mean for visual art and (human) artists working in this space? And let’s not forget that AI generated music has been around for a while now, and it’s awesome and terrifying in both its generative and integrated forms.

The band returned to Black Box recording studio (Moorooka) in 2022 to record this new single, as well as a few other tracks including The Pineapples From The Dawn Of Time cover, ‘Charlie’ (featured in 4000 Records’ recent House Keys compilation album). This was the band’s first time working with Jeff Lovejoy (Resin Dogs, Sahara Beck) as producer and recording/mixing engineer.

“We recorded these songs live, with vocal, percussion and acoustic guitar overdubs added later, “says Cheeseman. “We prefer to do it this way because that’s how we write the songs. It feels better, it’s more fun and it just makes sense. One really cool thing that happened during recording was getting to use the same 1950s mic stand that was used in the Baz Luhrmann Elvis film. Jeff worked on the film as a music equipment consultant and had stand!”


World Music Mix

World Music Mix: The Holy Rollercoasters(Australia) – Album: Odyssey

The Holy Rollercoasters -Odyssey

Meanjin/Brisbane livewire indie soul octet THE HOLY ROLLERCOASTERS are Ithaca-bound at last with the final installment of their Odyssey trilogy

Odyssey releases on February 8th on 12” vinyl and digital

Launching at It’s Still A Secret on February 25th

“Odyssey … has at its heart an utterly satisfying bombast and pose: the smell of greasepaint and the bright, blinding shine of floodlights infuse every note, every stab of the horns and every lyrical expression.”

  • Backseat Mafia

Homer’s Odyssey is a legendary, decade-long journey of myth-making, god-dwelling and monster-defeating. This album has similarly been a tumultuous quest for The Holy Rollercoasters, dividing the album into a triptych of EPs – Odyssey I in November 2021 and Odyssey II in April 2022, with the final collection of tracks being released as part of the album as a whole on February 8th, 2023.

With both EP’s receiving favourable reviews and airplay from alternative media and community radio alike and with their respective Brisbane launch shows selling out, The Holy Rollercoasters are ready to put the psych in your soul with Odyssey, a heady retelling of the epic poem, set in a post-civil war Australia.


World Music Mix

World Music Mix: Shugorei(Australia)-Meet The Sun (feat. Shêm Allen)

Shugorei-Meet The Sun

Shugorei(Australia)-Meet The Sun (feat. Shêm Allen)
4000 Records (2023)

Meet The Sun’ features local vocalist Shêm Allen, who has performed with Nonsemble, Skinny Jean and Yr Familiar. Their distinct, unguarded and unaffected tone is reminiscent of Jeff Buckley, and on this track he lends Shugorei an entrancing, expressive depth.

After playing a show together in early December, Shêm and Shugorei mutually approached each other to collaborate and within a fortnight they were in the studio recording this track.

‘Meet The Sun’ celebrates the risks artists take to pursue their dreams. Like many Shugorei songs, the message is delivered bilingually (here, in English and Japanese). It is also embellished by a lush string arrangement, performed by members of Black Square Quartet.

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World Music Mix: Ghostwoods(Australia)-Album: My Neon (4000 Records, 2023)

Ghostwoods-My Neon

Ghostwoods(Australia)-Album: My Neon (4000 Records, 2023)


Led by musician/composer James Lees, the languorous, atmospheric music of Ghostwoods has been gradually blinking into existence since the lockdown winter of 2020. Isolated and with time to kill at his home in Mt Nebo/Jinibara Country, James turned to composing and tinkering on the piano with the sparse and spooky fragments that would become the first collection of Ghostwoods compositions.

Created at Mount Nebo-based recording studio Wild Mountain Sound, with much-loved Brisbane producer Jamie Trevaskis, the first compositions were released on the Dark Moon EP in late 2021. In 2022, work continued on a full-length album, entitled My Neon, presaged by the singles ‘Terminal Bliss’ (Oct 2022) and ‘Brighter Now’ (Dec 2022).

Like all of the music in this first wave of Ghostwoods compositions, My Neon retains its piano-led provenance, fleshed out by synths, percussion and contributions from key collaborators Mark Angel (electric guitars), Karl O’Shea (bass), Andrew Saragossi (flute/clarinet/sax) and Rohan Seekers (keys/synths).

“The more I work on Ghostwoods music, the more I understand what it is actually about,” says Lees. “Having always been used to working with singer/songwriters, I am very concept-based and the instrumental setting of Ghostwoods subverted and challenged that for me. As we do more recording, and more live shows, the music and the project itself is teaching me what it is about. It’s such a fascinating and satisfying process.”

My Neon was created with much less planning than typically goes into a James Lees project. Particularly in the studio, Lees is usually meticulously prepared when approaching a session but challenged himself to be more free and leaving space to be playful and experiment.

As with many instrumental pieces, the narrative/theme/meaning is left to the listener to manifest. There are shared intrinsic links between the album’s six tracks, some even unwittingly inhabiting similar musical motifs in their early stages. After being carefully shaped and chiseled in the studio, those shared compositional affinities linger in the tracks and connect them as a whole even with each tune having a distinct stylistic identity.

“The title My Neon is actually the words Mt Nebo autocorrected – I sent this to a friend on a text message, and liked the mistake!” muses Lees. “It came to mean how I see the music in my mind as I strongly experience synesthesia with sound and music. It felt like a way to convey the colours of this sometimes rather dark music, and that is reflected in the artwork too which also features my house in Mt Nebo – my little sanctuary away from the world, and where the music is created.”

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World Music Mix

World Music Mix: Sanfeliu(Australia)-Album: To Absent Friends(4000 Records, 2022)

Sanfeliu-To Absent Friends

Sanfeliu(Australia)-Album: To Absent Friends(4000 Records, 2022)


Sanfeliu’s sophomore album To Absent Friends is a collection of songs and sound-collages about the people that make us who we are: friendships, relationships based on the free sharing and exchanging of care, nurture, pleasure and knowledge in different times and places.

Like each friend, each song presents different patterns, and a different relationship or exchange model: some friends you see every week, some every summer, some sporadically, some regularly, but they all share a focus on self-reflection, awareness, cooperation, collection creative pursuits, shared passions that bring you together.

Similarly to friendships, these songs show an interest in change, growth, transience, willingness to embrace change and to grow. Some pieces have a clear pop-song structure with verse, bridge and chorus. Others have a ballad structure, and rely on the repetition and contrast between vocal and instrumental parts. Some are entirely built on repetition, whereas others explore development and change, with slowly shifting harmonic sequences.

“In most of the pieces,” says Sanfeliu, “working with very minimal rhythmic and melodic motifs and presenting these across both piano and subtle synth layers helped me integrate the writing into something that allowed for more complex arrangements, whilst feeling still natural, seamless, organic.”

The album’s opening track, ‘To Absent Friends’, is a simple note addressed to all our dear friends: perhaps a letter, or a postcard, a message that travels through space and place between oneself and another, bridging that distance and using it as a strength to build a process of active exchange and communication.

Several of the songs in the album refer to actual people: friends, relatives, writers, philosophers, thinkers and activists that have been influential in Carles’ life.

For example, ‘Leopardi’ is dedicated to the 19th century Romantic poet Giacomo Leopardi, possibly the founding father of emo-core music/poetry, and draws heavily on his own lyrics.

‘El Rey y la Reina de los Desamparados’ is dedicated to Kurt Cobain and its lyrics are an adaptation/mechanical translation of his diaries.

In contrast with Sanfeliu’s debut album (Flores – Colores), To Absent Friends has perhaps a brighter sound, and more uplifting songs with a clear pop structure, whilst continuing their exploration of melodic variety from different musical traditions.

Recorded at Moon Room with Nell Forster and mastered by Marly Lüske at Alchemix Studios, several friends also joined the creative and recording process: Isabel Torres plays flute on 4 songs, Paco Johnson-Cash contributes guitar and lap-steel guitar on 2 songs and Nell Forster herself contributed sound-collaging, drums and percussion.

To Absent Friends tracklist:

1. To Absent Friends [3:22]
2. Leopardi [5:11]
3. Lonely Village [3:57]
4. Bicycles [6:04]
5. Digital [2:30]
6. El Rey y La Reina de Los Descastados [8:11]
7. La Maga Fina [2:47]
8. Grassy Patch [5:40]
9. To Dear Friends [2:55]

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