Garnet Müller on jazz and rock ‘n roll

Ricardo Teixeira

During the week Garnet Müller is a first-year music student at the University of Pretoria. On weekends, however, he takes the stage with a multitude of local bands, including Fuzigish and Strait-Jackal. Trombone in hand, Müller can be seen rocking out on stage doing what he loves most, making music.

Initially, as a child, Müller was attracted to music when listening to songs with his father. At first however, the trombone was not what attracted him. Müller was initially drawn to the guitar after falling in love with its sound, “The electric guitar seemed pretty cool, the ability to play that fast was very appealing to me.”

With Müller being a musician and full-time student, he handles quite a challenging endeavor. Although he is studying music, the non-music aspects of studies “aren’t related to the practical aspects, like history assignments, they kind of get in the way of life and band practice, but early mornings and late nights are how I do it.”

Despite being a member of the local rock scene, many would be surprised to discover Müller is studying classical jazz. Drawn to and enjoying both genres, Müller attended Pretoria Boy’s High where he played strictly classical music throughout high school. When it came to university, “I saw the option for jazz at UP, and I was drawn to that because it’s more applicable in contemporary music like rock or metal.” Müller has learnt a lot from both genres, and finds what he has learnt in one, he can apply to the other.

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Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino - Arctic Monkeys

Ricardo Teixeira and Sam Mukwamu

On 11 May, the Arctic Monkeys released their highly anticipated sixth studio album entitled Tranquility Base Hotel & Casino. The album comes after an almost four-year long hiatus by the band after wrapping up their AM tour in August 2014.

Upon release, fans have expressed mixed feelings towards the album. Many have praised it for the creative leap from their previous album, while others were left disappointed after comparing the two. When first listening to the album, any Arctic Monkey’s fan will be able to notice a major change in style. If you’re expecting pulsating guitar riffs like those on AM’s “R U Mine?” and “Arabella”, or even anything close to their earlier works, you will probably be disappointed too, as the album has a heavier piano presence, compared to their previous guitar-heavy work. The album is their least rock effort to date, but the new style is not so bad if you are someone who can appreciate a little jazz or blues. It is however not what fans expected, especially serious rock fans.

The opening song “Star Treatment” references another British band, The Strokes. Lead singer Alex Turner pays tribute to the band that inspired him to start his own by singing “I just wanted to be one of the strokes, now look at the mess you made me make.” The line serves as a reminder of how far the band has come since their inception, and how they were originally inspired. The song is a mix of retro and futuristic rhythm and sets the theme of the album. In an interview with Pitchfork, Alex Turner said the album “is a Sci-Fi adventure from a not-so-distant future where the moon is colonised, gentrified and turned into a luxury resort.” While “Star Treatment” sets the theme for the album, it encapsulates what you could expect from the rest of the album, as the mood do not deviate much.

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Incubus 8 world tour comes to Pretoria


Ricardo Teixeria

On 24 February the American rock band, Incubus, stopped in South Africa as part of their Incubus 8 world tour. They kicked off their tour with a fantastic performance at the Voortrekker Monument.

Metal-heads and rockers of all ages congregated from all walks of life. Many had been waiting years for the opportunity to see Incubus perform live. As the crowds started growing a few local acts sparked the fire for the event. The all-female band, Hellcats, were up first, setting the mood for the night.

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Album Review: Anthelia - Bottomless Coffee Band


The married multi-instrumental duo, Lourens and Esté Rabé, that make up Bottomless Coffee Band have been steadily gaining fans in both South Africa and Europe since the release of their debut album, Room with a View, in November 2014. Their second studio album, Anthelia, was released in February 2018 and further explores what they refer to as “gourmet music”, their established acoustic folk-rock and afro-blues sound.

Anthelia adopts a more melancholic and modest tone than the duo’s previous work, but it does not allow itself to become sombre. The music is still light and refreshing. It is clear that they find their inspiration in the likes of Johnny Cash, The Beatles and The Lumineers.

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Album Review: Perfection Kills - Dan Patlansky


On 2 February Dan Patlansky released his ninth studio offering, Perfection Kills. This album follows critically acclaimed Introvertigo which was released in 2016.

Perfection Kills kicks off with “Johnny”, showcasing Patlansky’s raspy voice and his talented songwriting. The song has a very catchy chorus and is reminiscent of 1980’s blues rock. Near the end of the song a brilliant electric guitar solo can be heard. In a statement released on 2 February Patlansky describes the second song on the album, “Never Long Enough”, as being about “being home with the love of my life and how the seemingly mundane is something I yearn for. The clock is constantly ticking to my next departure and these moments with her are never long enough.” The song starts with, and ends with, a cute piano hook which emphasizes the romanticism of the song.

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