Tom Lowndes goes by a number of titles; among these are Tom Loud, “the world’s first time travelling dance party” and “the most fun you can have with your pants on”. But most of us will know him as Sydney extraordinaire of aural mish-mashing, Hot Dub Time Machine. In similar style to his live shows, Lowndes takes us on a time ride through his favorite tunes from the 50s onwards; 14 radically different songs sharing the one common denominator of being foot stomping dance classics.
Bill Haley and the Comets start every Hot Dub Time Machine in 1954 with Rock Around The Clock, and it’s the perfect party starter, a song that has aged beautifully, with images from the movie of the same name that it was made for.
Chuck Berry really gets the party going in 1958 with Johnny B Goode, one of the greatest rock songs ever. From the opening riff it’s 180 BPM madness. Chuck is a legend and this song is his best.
The Beatles naturally feature quite often in Hot Dub, with Get Back, Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds, Revolution and A Day In The Life all occasionally getting a play, but Twist And Shout always gets played! I learnt all about The Beatles driving around with my dad as a kid and had to learn which singer was in each song. Abbey Road is my favorite album.
My dad wasn’t quite as into Led Zepplin, so it took my school friends to introduce me and I’ve never looked back. Every gig either has Whole Lotta Love, or Immigrant Song, and they both rock people’s faces off.
Stevie Wonder‘s Superstition still sounds so damn fresh, funky and relevant despite millions of plays in every bar over 40 years. The riff, the groove, the lyrics, the voice… It’s perfect. At Hot Dub Time Machine, every song is mixed live with visuals, and Superstition features the awesome footage of Stevie playing at Soultrain. It’s black and white and features some of the most amazing dancing you will ever see.
Michael Jackson was so great in the 70s and 80s and it’s a great point to start off a Michael Jackson Megamix. From I Want You Back, Blame it on the Boogie, Bad and Black or White, there are so many amazing songs. I think the freakish quality of his later life is fading and the great songs are still with us.
I came late to Journey. In fact I played the computer game before I ever played the song (that’s a very narrow reference!!), but I’m now a full convert to the awesomeness of Don’t Stop Believing. That dude simply has an amazing voice and it’s a great song that never fails to ignite. It’s really become a cultural phenomena, people of all ages sing along to this song.
I always try to play at least one Madonna song and it’s generally Like a Prayer. For me, this is her finest song when she was at the height of her powers. With three epic breakdowns that call for some interpretive dance, this song is killer.
When I was a bad drummer growing up in the 90s, it was Rage Against The Machine that I was banging along to. And Killing In The Name Of is such a great expression of the raw, funky, innovative, rebellious music of that time. The band is just so damn funky, and Zac [de la Rocha] is so damn angry, it’s perfect.
Faithless were the first ‘techno’ act that I really came into contact with. I was a sound design student at uni by the stage Reverence came out, and I remember sitting in the studio listening to the beautiful lush, dark sound of the opening to Insomnia, and being in awe of the technical mastery needed to make it. What a build up, and what a pay-off.
I think Eminem’s Lose Yourself will go down as one of the greatest songs ever written. The rhyming scheme is get’s even more interesting the more you study it and the production has the lush, dark tone that evokes the opening to Eye Of The Tiger. It’s so fun to see how many people know all the words. It’s much more that you think.
The Pharrell section of Hot Dub seem to begin with Drop It Like It’s Hot, but in fact he’s responsible for a huge amount of the songs that have preceded it, through his work with The Neptunes. I love his verse in this song, though there’s some lyrics in there that would make Robin Thicke blush.
Macklemore and Ryan Lewis are so damn good, and for me Ceiling Can’t Hold Us is still one of the great songs to peak a night with. He’s such an interesting guy, and I do aspire to have his hairstyle and independent success.
I’m on board with Lorde. Like everyone else I am so intrigued by the depth of her talent. I’m a bit nervous for her having such massive success in the music biz at such a young age. It’s a path that so often ends in tragedy, but she seems like a smart young woman.
FRIDAY 4 APRIL – FREMANTLE
SATURDAY 5 APRIL – PERTH
FRIDAY 11 APRIL – MELBOURNE
Northcote Social Club
$20 + BF
THURSDAY 17 APRIL – CANBERRA
SATURDAY 19 APRIL – SYDNEY
$22 + BF
THURSDAY 24 APRIL – BALLARAT
SATURDAY 3 MAY – BYRON BAY
SUNDAY 4 MAY – DARWIN
SATURDAY 10 MAY – NEWCASTLE
SATURDAY 17 MAY – COFFS HARBOUR