Five great upcoming festivals

The Killers are set to headline the V Festival.SUMMER in Australia means a lot of things – barbecues, the beach, cricket, blowflies. But it also means music festivals, and no matter what your tastes, you can always find one to suit you.To help in your choices, here are Musicology’s top five festivals to check out this summer.Technically some of these festivals aren’t on during summer but with the cold start we’ve had to the season, it’s not too much to hope we’ll have a summer that hangs around, right?All Tomorrow’s PartiesWhat: ATP began in England in 1999 as an alternative to the massive “corporate” festivals such as Reading and Glastonbury by focusing on indie, alternative and downright out-there bands. Each festival (many are held each year around the world) is curated by a band or artist. The line-up for this year’s Australian debut was handpicked by Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds.Where: Mt Buller, Victoria.When: January 9 & 10.Who: Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds, The Saints, Spiritualized, F*** Buttons, Harmonia, The Necks, Laughing Clowns, Robert Forster, James Blood Ulmer, Michael Gira, Primitive Calculators, Afrirampo, Silver Apples, Bridezilla, Rowland S. Howard, The Stabs, Dirty Three (performing Ocean Songs), The Reels, Bill Callahan, Dead Meadow, Psarandonis, Small Knives, Passenger Of Shit, The Holy Sea, Hunter Dienna, Beaches, Hoss, Conway Savage.Big Day OutWhat: One of the biggest festivals in Australasia, the Big Day Out began in Sydney in 1992 when a little band called Nirvana headlined. The one-day event can be exhausting as it forces you to cram a lot of bands into an intense 12 hours or so but it’s the best place to see a large number of big-name rock acts at one time.Where: Flemington Racecourse, Melbourne.When: Monday, January 26.Who: Neil Young, Arctic Monkeys, The Living End, The Prodigy, Sneaky Sound System, My Morning Jacket, Pendulum, Bullet For My Valentine, TV On The Radio, Simian Mobile Disco, The Ting Tings, Cut Copy, Cog, Youth Group, The Grates, Birds Of Tokyo, Serj Tankian, Dropkick Murphys, Hot Chip, Died Pretty, Fantomas and more.Golden PlainsWhat: This little sister to the Meredith Music Festival is the best one-stage festival around and the only one with an official “no dickheads” policy. It’s the ultimate place to find your new favourite band, meet interesting people and enjoy some drinks in the idyllic Supernatural Amphitheatre. Now in it’s third year.Where: On a farm about 10km west of Meredith, Victoria.When: March 7-9.Who: Mogwai, Tony Allen, Gary Numan, Black Mountain, Of Montreal, The Drones, The Church, Dan Deacon, Brant Bjork & The Bros, Old Crow Medicine Show, Jim White & John Doe, Quintron & Miss Pussycat, The Black Seeds, Luluc, You Am I and dozens more to be announced.Port Fairy Folk FestivalWhat: Renowned as one of the best festivals in the world, the Folkie is among the most diverse musical experiences you’ll ever encounter. With more than 100 bands it’s no wonder Port Fairy goes from 3000 people to 30,000 people for this one weekend of the year.Where: Port Fairy.When: March 7-10.Who: Alan Kelly Quartet, Chris While & Julie Matthews, Doug Macleod, Jez Lowe & Kate Bramley, Kane Welch Kaplin, Nano Stern, Old Man Luedecke, Peter Rowan, Preston Reed, Seamus Begley & Jim Murray, Shooglenifty, The Beez, Eric Bogle & John Munro, Lior, John Williamson, My Friend the Chocolate Cake, Mark Seymour, Ross Wilson & The Urban Legends, Scared Weird Little Guys, The Audreys, Tripod, The Waifs, Josh Owen Band, Sally Ford, The Little Stevies, Broderick Smith, Dalriada, The Borderers, Greg Champion, Jordie Lane, The Yearlings, Kutcha Edwards Band, King Marong & Afro Mandinko.V FestivalWhat: After many successful years in Britain, Sir Richard Branson’s brain child will enjoy its third Aussie birthday this year. Not unlike the Big Day Out, it has the advantage that it’s at the BDO’s former (and superior) stomping ground.Where: Melbourne Showgrounds.When: Saturday, April 4.Who: The Killers, Snow Patrol, Kaiser Chiefs, Duffy, Elbow, Louis XIV, The Do, Tame Impala, The Temper Trap, Canyons, and more to be announced. Spinal Tap are rumoured to be on the line-up too.
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Meredith Music Festival

Naked in the rain: no matter what the weather, punters still had a blast at Meredith.IT was the Meredith Music Festival that will be remembered as the wettest ever.Some will think back on it and remember MGMT’s epic Saturday night set. Others will recall The Scientists Of Modern Music’s 3am dance-athon.But mostly, when the 10,000 punters think back on Meredith ’08, they’ll remember two things – the rain and the mud.Organisers and regulars agreed it was the worst weather a Meredith festival had seen – even worse than that once-in-100-years storm in 2004.It started raining as punters slowly rolled in on Friday afternoon and didn’t stop until Sunday morning. About 46mm fell on the first night – the wettest December day Meredith had seen in almost a decade – and about 95mm over the whole weekend.In Merediths past, revellers are usually treated for sunstroke, dehydration and extreme sunburn. This year, 16 people were treated for hypothermia. Tracks were closed, cars were bogged, tents were drowned.But it was still fun.Even amid the shivering damp of Saturday night, the Meredith spirit lived on. Steam rose from the mosh-pit as people danced the night away, not caring who was playing in the end, just wanting and needing to move.Most people threw themselves into the Friday night of the festival with typical abandon. Unless you had some decent boots, then footwear was useless. Hardy – and possibly insane – souls wandered around in bare feet and satured clothing.As night fell on Friday, festival-goers got their first taste of what it was all about. Spiderbait drummer Kram – one of the few musicians to play the first Meredith 18 years ago when it was a private party for 200 people – rocked his way through his first solo gig, invigorating the crowd.Stoner rockers Ten East unloaded some mean riffs but it was the band that followed, Philadelphia’s Man Man, who were the highlight of the festival for many with their combination of disco beats and junkyard orchestrations.Then it was time to travel back to the ‘90s for the energetic pop-punk of Regurgitator, who pulled out a ‘best of’ cavalcade of indie hits from their lengthy career.Many disappeared into the mist after that to find the tent (it was 1.30am after all) but many hung around to dance into the wee hours with Holy F*** and The Scientists Of Modern Music.Saturday’s first band Tame Impala benefitted the most from the weather. A larger-than-usual crowd turned out to see their morning set, probably because it was a choice of being wet and uncomfortable in your tent or wet and rocking out ‘60s-style in the arena. Seemingly everyone chose the arena.Saturday rolled on through a number of highs and lows. Canadian indie darling Final Fantasy won few fans, but the acoustic rock of Mountain Goats was a highlight.The Bronx tore Saturday afternoon apart with a blistering punk-rock set led by the stage-diving antics of singer Matt Caughthran, but it was the dance-tastic set of Architecture In Helsinki that got everyone moving in the mud.Somewhere in between these two bands, the inevitable happened. Like every rain-soaked festival in history, there was always going to be mudsliding, and sure enough, on Saturday afternoon it began.As a disappointingly out-of-tune Little Red wailed in the amphitheatre, daredevils in wetsuits, shorts and birthday suits slid, dived, rolled and skidded their way through the mud, coming up looking like the Swamp Thing.As day became night, festival regulars Combo La Revelacion did their salsa thing and ex-Kiwis The Datsuns rocked hard.But it was MGMT that most were waiting to see, and they sure made us wait. Between being booked for the festival and arriving on stage just before midnight, they had become one of the hottest acts in the world and they didn’t disappoint, delivering an epic set that mixed psychedelic rock moments with hits such as Weekend Wars, Kids and personal favourite Electric Feel.A parade of DJs kept the keen punters dancing into the morning, but by the time the sun came up, many had endured the sogginess for as much as they could take. A few dedicated rockers stuck around on Sunday for Black Diamond Heavies and Even but the mass exodus had begun. As everyone headed home for dry clothes and warm showers, few were disappointed with the weekend. No matter how much rain falls, the Meredith spirit cannot be dampened.
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Shooting victim’s dad backs bridge naming bid

The late Brendan Keilar.THE father of slain former Warrnambool man Brendan Keilar has expressed in-principle support for a plan to name a $15 million Melbourne bridge after his son. Harry Keilar, who lives in Warrnambool, was yesterday unaware of the suggestion from new Lord Mayor Robert Doyle to name the ultra-modern bridge after his son. While he said he would not object to the plan, Mr Keilar said the final decision should rest with his son’s widow, Alice. Melbourne-based solicitor Brendan Keilar was shot dead by Hells Angel bikie Christopher Wayne Hudson as he walked to work on June 18 last year.The father-of-three and keen sportsman, who was dux of Warrnambool’s Christian Brothers College in 1982, died after he came to the aid of Kaera Douglas when he saw Hudson dragging her by the hair to a waiting taxi. Cr Doyle’s plan to name the foot and cycle bridge across the Yarra River which will link the new convention centre and Docklands, has received widespread public backing. “It would be a fitting tribute to Mr Keilar, but it could only be done in conjunction with his family and whether that would be appropriate or not,” Cr Doyle said. The proposal comes after Brendan Keilar was last month awarded a Royal Humane Society posthumous medal for bravery during a ceremony at Government House in Melbourne.
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NYE revellers beware: Police have you in their radar

SOUTH-WEST police are hoping the Christmas period will not repeat itself tonight.Warrnambool Traffic Management Unit (TMU) officers breath-tested more than 1600 motorists during the festive season.Seven were charged with drink-driving, while 118 others were caught speeding, not wearing seatbelts, disobeying road signs and talking on mobile phones.TMU officer-in-charge Sergeant Gary Bryant said the highest breath-test recorded was more than four times the legal limit.”Any drink-driver is disappointing,” he said.”Five males and two females were charged.”The highest clocked speed was 156kmh near Purnim. Sergeant Bryant said the 44-year-old Melbourne man was slapped with a $488 on-the-spot fine and lost his licence for 12 months. The crackdown was part of state-wide operation Aegis. Warrnambool Acting Senior Sergeant Jamie Templeton said officers would use all resources at their disposal tonight to ensure all revellers enjoyed the countdown.Uniform and plain-clothes police will mingle with partygoers in the CBD, at Lake Pertobe and licensed venues.Acting Senior Sergeant Templeton stressed the extra officers were merely to ensure everyone had a great time.”We are not the fun police,” he said.”However, we will have the extra units and resources in place so we can respond quickly to any anti-social or drunken, unruly behaviour.”About 5000 people are set to party in Cobden for the town’s fireworks extravaganza.Camperdown Senior Sergeant Steve Thompson said police across Corangamite would focus on Cobden.”We will be strictly enforcing the local laws in regards to alcohol consumption in the streets,” he said. Hundreds of people are set to converge on Port Fairy, Senior Constable Greg Creek said. He said police would target under-age drinking and unruly behaviour.
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Trail traffic-stopper shines brightest of them all

Judie Grey’s Newry Court home shone brightest to win this year’s Christmas Lights Trail competition.081230AM06 Pictures: ANGELA MILNE Judie Grey and her daughter Abbey Leggett.081230AM04 Judie Grey’s Newry Court home shone brightest to win this year’s Christmas Lights Trail competition.081230AM06 Pictures: ANGELA MILNE Judie Grey and her daughter Abbey Leggett.081230AM04
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WARRNAMBOOL’S Judie Grey proved her house shone brightest when she won The Standard’s Christmas Lights trail competition.The Newry Court house off Breton Street won first prize, receiving a $500 voucher for its elaborate display of lights. Ms Grey said she was surprised by her lights trail win after three years of entering the district-wide competition which was jointly sponsored by Telstra.”I didn’t go in it to win it. I just wanted to let people know that I had lights displayed at my house because people really enjoy stopping by and having a look,” he said.Assisted by her daughter Abbey Leggett, Ms Grey said her display included a variety of Christmas figures including a Santa Claus, red and white candy canes, a wooden snowman and large electric candles.”One of the great things about Christmas lights is to see the kids faces as their mum and dad drive by. They’re absolutely amazed,” she said.Warrnambool’s Marjorie Anderson came second, winning a $250 voucher for her Eliza Court home’s lights display with Laang’s Julie Burrow claiming third spot and a $100 voucher.

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Tourism operators look to home as foreign visits fall

LOCAL tourism leaders are remaining optimistic despite Tourism Australia’s gloomy forecast of a fall in international visitors for 2009.The tourism body’s independent forecasting committee, chaired by former Terang man Bernard Salt, said inbound foreign travel would fall by more than four per cent next year as a result of world recession.It would be the steepest decline in foreign tourism to Australia since the pilots’ strike and recession of 1989.International tourists accounted for five per cent of all visitors surveyed by Warrnambool City Council in the 2007-08 Warrnambool Visitor Survey. Shipwreck Coast Marketing chief executive Carole Reid said Tourism Australia’s gloomy forecast for international tourism did not surprise her.”While our dollar is very attractive to international visitors at the moment, the effects of economic instability have affected these figures,” she said.”The Great Ocean Road has a high international visitation rate compared to some other regions of Victoria. However, we could see an increase in domestic tourism which would balance off that forecast change.”Ms Reid said her organisation would continue to advertise south-west tourism to foreign markets and had applied for an export marketing development grant to push the Shipwreck Coast brand overseas.”We will continue to maintain our good relationship with international markets as overseas visitors do spend more money per head than domestic tourists,” she said.”We must remember that tourism is the bread and butter of the south-west’s economy and we have every reason to be optimistic about its future.”Flagstaff Hill chief executive Peter Abbott said the trend outlined in the report could have a positive impact on local tourism with more Australians spending their holidays at home.”I always say that more than 80 per cent of tourism in Warrnambool is from either Melbourne, regional Victoria or interstate,” he said.”If there is a noticeable downward change in international tourists coming to Australia, then it’s safe to assume that there would also be less Australians heading overseas.”Mr Salt, the Tourism Forecasting Committee chairman, said the report revealed some good news for tourism operators with domestic tourist spending set to increase by more than $60 billion.He said tourism operators who relied heavily on international visitors were in for a tough time, but predicted a strong rebound in 2010.
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Dumped junk not charitable: Op shops cop unwanted rubbish

St Vincent de Paul centre manager Kevin Bond with just some of the junk people dump that the charity is forced to dispose of at its own cost. 081230DW21Picture: DAMIAN WHITEBUSINESS is booming at Warrnambool op shops, but ‘donated’ rubbish is costing them thousands of dollars.Filthy work clothes, smelly joggers, broken furniture and even excrement have been left for the city’s five op shops, run by charitable organisations.Two charities had to remove their bins from a supermarket car park this month because of unsightly overflowing rubbish.Topping the expense list are ripped or soiled mattresses which cost charities up to $30 each to get rid of.One op shop worker said it seemed some people were trying to avoid expensive rubbish tip fees.The festive season has triggered more donations and more rubbish which has to be sorted through by dozens of volunteers, many aged in their 70s.”It’s not fair. I can’t understand people thinking they are helping charity by giving us rubbish,” said Red Cross shop manager Phyllis Vaughan.”Some of the stuff left at our bins is a dead loss – it’s a lot of work for our girls. I’m 73 and that would be an average age for our volunteers.”It’s nothing to have six or seven full rubbish bins and also up to 30 bags of items not good enough for the shop. These items are sent overseas for reuse.”Rubbish dumping costs The Salvation Army in Warrnambool more than $6500 a year.Captain Gordon Main said the unsaleable donations would fill a skip bin almost every day in January alone.”As well as extremes of plates and pans with food still stuck on them and bags of household rubbish, there are also many other items that are obviously of no real worth,” he said.St Vincent de Paul’s Warrnambool centre manager Kevin Bond said it cost the organisation about $150 a week in rubbish tip fees.”Then there’s the time and danger involved for our volunteers, many of whom are elderly gentlemen trying to do their best for the community,” he said.”There’s also the risk of finger cuts and infection. People have been known to put their hand into human excrement hidden in bags.”Mr Bond said the golden rule was: “If you wouldn’t use it yourself, don’t bring it in.”
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Club gets new lease on competitiveness

Port Campbell Surf Life Saving Club members attend the launch of their new boat.AGE is a barrier for Port Campbell Surf Life Saving Club when it comes to boats.When the club launched its new fibreglass boat on Sunday, surf boat captain Peter Cashmore said it was a welcome addition. “Our newest boat was nine years old,” he said. “While it is still a quite serviceable boat, it is starting to show some signs of major wear and tear.”The new boat, while the same design, will help to finetune our competitiveness just that little bit more.”Funding from members and friends of the club along with a substantial contribution from Paul Cornelissen enabled the boat to be bought.Club president Shane Maslin appreciated Cornelissen’s donation.”Paul was the sweep of the crew that really started things going in rowing here at Port Campbell,” he said.”That crew won our first pennant and state title.”Cornelissen said: “I will always remember the camaraderie that builds up when you are rowing boats together . . . That is something everyone should get to experience.”Port Campbell’s surf competition will continues until March. The season finishes with the 2009 Australian Surf Life Saving Championships at Perth’s Scarborough Beach from March 17 to 22.
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See the champs of the future

THOSE at Wannon Park for day two of the 2009 Seaside Carnival will witness some bolting on the track and some bouncing off it.While greyhounds bolt from their boxes, kids will bounce on a jumping castle provided by Warrnambool Greyhound Racing Club.”The whole idea of the carnival is that it’s a family atmosphere,” general manager Matt Ansell said.Today marks the second meeting of the carnival, which began on Boxing Day.Ten heats for the $6000-to-win Vic Breeders Maiden Series over 450 metres are scheduled.The series is the carnival’s feature event.”We ended up getting 15 heats for it which is an excellent number of nominations,” Ansell said.He explained that the remaining five heats would be run at the New Year’s Eve night meeting.”We always get young greyhounds who come out and normally go on to be very good greyhounds.”A crowd similar to the Boxing Day meet – which welcomed about 350 people – is expected for today’s twilight meeting.”It would be great to get 300 to 400 people up here,” Ansell said. “At this time of the year a lot of tourists are in town and locals are on holidays.”People bring their young dogs here for their first run so we normally get a good crowd because you have the syndicates and owners wanting to have a look.”Semi-finals for the Vic Breeders Maiden Series will be held on January 7 and the final will be run on January 14 at the ninth and final meeting of the carnival.Today’s first race will start at 3.59pm.
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HOPE FADES: Title all but out of reach

Only disaster for Brooke Tatnell can elevate local favourite Max Dumesny to his eighth World Series Sprintcars championship.080124AM24Picture: ANGELA MILNEAN eighth World Series Sprintcars championship is virtually out of reach for Max Dumesny.With five rounds of the series remaining, the sprintcar driver is sitting third in the points aggregate on 1234.The veteran is 86 points behind Brooke Tatnell and 20 behind Robbie Farr.”It’s going to be very, very hard to catch Brooke,” Dumesny admitted. “He would probably need to not start in a round for me to catch him.”Despite it being difficult to close the gap between third and first, Dumesny was satisfied with where he was sitting in the point standings.”We haven’t had a blistering start to the world series so we’ll take it,” he said.Dumesny raced at Mount Gambier’s Borderline Speedway on Sunday night.”I was going OK,” he said. “I started 10th and was running eighth.”I was trying to get past Danny Smith and my tyre went flat so I ended up rolling around to the finish.”The Nullawarre-born Nelson (NSW) resident was not pleased with his form before his flat tyre.He finished seventh and eighth in his two heats.He will put Sunday night’s race behind him to focus on round 12 at Avalon Raceway tonight.”I’m feeling pretty good about it because we always go pretty well there,” said Dumesny, who cited Tatnell and Smith, an American, as danger drivers.He said the pair were also the ones to watch when Premier Speedway hosted round 13 of the series on New Year’s Day.Thursday will be the first time since Easter that Dumesny’s legion of south-west supporters will be able to watch the star.”We always love coming there,” the three-time Grand Annual Sprintcar Classic winner said.New Year’s Day will mark the end of Speedway Week, during which five rounds – at Adelaide, Murray Bridge, Mount Gambier, Avalon and Warrnambool – will be squeezed into seven days.”It’s been very hectic,” Dumesny said. “You’re finishing fairly late which makes it hard to get to the next race track the next day.”It takes a lot out of all the drivers.”
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