there's some music coming i swear...

...but til then i offer these photos as reassurance that we are at least getting together and standing around with our instruments from time to time. 



The Briscoe Baseball Academy

Welcome to your second online tutorial in "Baseball As I Have Come To Understand It Through Exposure To Eighties Pop Culture 101". I know this has very little to do with music but I actually just felt guilty for making a baseball reference in the previous post without mentioning my favourite RTBOM* film of all-time. So, if the first lesson tried to cover a bit too much ground a bit too quickly, this one should fill in the gaps for you: the best scene from the best RTBOM film of all-time... in italian. Congratulations, graduate.

*Rag-Tag Bunch Of Misfits - the noblest of Hollywood genres


the long and winding larynx

It's a weird thing to write a whole bunch of songs that you can't really sing. We've pretty much recorded all of the instruments for the album and now i just have to sing it... i'm at the plate, bases loaded and someone spiked my gatorade with polio. No matter how hard my little atrophied arm swings, i ain't clearing no fence.

There's an intense paradigm shift required to make the switch from drummer to singer and this inconvenient lack of skill is being a real pain in my arse. It's so frustrating to know what's meant to be happening, to have written a melody for god's sake, and not be able to sing the bloody thing.

I spent Friday hurling myself into take after take- voice weakening by the minute, space bar being hit with increasing fury as it executed the next in a long queue of condemned waveforms. The last time i tried to lay down these vocals, it wasn't so urgent, so when my voice started to tank i just finished up for the night and tried to pretend the horrifying notion that my house was built on sand had not just reared its ugly head.

That was weeks ago, and enough time had passed so that I could approach Friday with some sunny hard-won ignorance.

Einstein said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results. I would probably include "...and throwing faeces" in that definition, but that'd just be a self-serving addition to disqualify myself from a diagnosis (despite getting very close to displaying that symptom on Friday night).

I guess i have been a bit crazy to think you can become a singer just by saying "i'm a singer now". Singing is hard and unless i invest in an autotune plugin and learn to lip sync, i'm gonna need to do some serious work. To return seamlessly to the analogy: i've been hoping that this guy on the mound will walk me for an easy base hit - a few wayward pitches, maybe a curveball into the ribs - but he's been throwing down strikes all game and he hasn't even broken a sweat. I'm gonna have to hit this damn thing whether i like it or not.

For those of you who may be unfamiliar with the rules of baseball and hence could not have received the full illustrative benefit of these rich metaphors, please see educational video below. 


i call myself the gun

Yesterday we had a vocals rehearsal at my place. We were using the day to finalise everyone's harmonies as we approach the last stages of tracking for the new record, and I thought it would be a good idea to make seven kilos of gelatinous risotto for pre-rehearsal lunch. We may as well have each had a trowelfull of rohypnolled cement before sitting down in comfy chairs and blow-darting ourselves in the necks.

Draped across a sun bathed lounge room we battled sunday-arvo unconsciousness, and we began (stupidly) with our most narcotic song All I Need's A Holiday. Holiday was apt actually, cos the room reminded me of this scene in National Lampoon's Vacation. Not so much the sexual abuse at the start of the clip, just from about the 1.50 mark.

Anyway, out of the haze came some good progress and i'll give you a snippet of us at our least risottoed. Below is a bit from a song called Bonny...



something happening somewhere

Briscoe is the brainchild of Bart Denaro’s (my) promiscuous encephalon (thank you thesaurus.com). After years behind a drumkit in Kid Confucius, I have decided to ditch the instrument I am pretty good at, and pick up the guitar - an instrument I am pretty shit at, and sing (getting better all the time but let’s face it, I ain’t no Ian Dury). Luckily I have a band full of musicians who are at least as good as Ian Dury, maybe even better.
Usually when someone says something like “I was born to swim the 200m butterfly” you expect them to  break a Commonwealth record as a minimum, so I do realise the arrogance and expectational peril inherent in a statement like that, but as much as anyone was born to do anything I feel like music is my thing. It’s not like I think I’m a prodigious talent or anything (obviously), but I turn into a horrible jellied mess when I go musicless for any stretch. I have become an addict in the best and worst senses of the word.

And I do stray- I get so easily demolished by self-doubt/hate; stymied by the ongoing internal court battle of the people vs the relevance of music as a life’s mission (Your honour I ask you, what the fuck good is this doing for anyone?!); demoralised by the dilapidated state of the music industry; prodded by the social pressures that come with imminent thirtydom, real-jobism, houses, $$$ etc etc.

I experience all of these to varying degrees all the time, and in spite of the sense of running out of time, the dealing with self-sabotage, the knowingly working towards an end that probably doesn’t exist, I still feel like a god when Thunder Road blasts through my buzzing car speakers, you can't escape that shit.

I think there's a raging dissonance in most people I know. The tension between what we are doing and what we feel like we should be doing is both what drives us and impedes us in pushing boundaries, acting, reacting, creating, searching – I use music to help resolve this dissonance. Ironically, my made-in-mexico fender jaguar can’t stay in tune for more than half a song, but you’ll hear that yourself soon enough. We're currently working on album #1 and the cockeyed jag is all over it. Recording it ourselves at Dayjob Studios aka my Mum's spare room - profesh.

Anyhoo, I’ll leave you here with one of my favourite lyrics of all time- it is all of the above in perfect distilled form, again from Bruce Springsteen who I recently found out is half Italian. Paesan!

“There’s something happening somewhere, baby I just know that there is.”


breaking the ice/my word

hi all.

welcome to this, a blog for the band briscoe. my name is bart and i'll be writing most of it. this is a song called break my word. it'll be on an up-coming release. this rehearsal vid is the absolute first bit of briscoe sound/vision that has ever been made public... pls enjoy the historicness