This page is generously hosted by allette systems, despite their better judgement and all warnings to the contrary.

 

On Saturday July 10 a festival called Bass In The Grass was held in Darwin. This festival contained a motley crue of bands including headliners Frenzal Rhomb, The Dissociatives, Jebediah, Human Nature, Shannon Noll and more.
Just before Frenzal Rhomb were due to go on stage, they were told that their set would need to be shortened as other bands had played overtime and the festival could not run late. To add to this, the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory wanted to take to the stage and say a few words. To add to this, MC Jackie O (who had hitherto been missing in action all day due to missing her flight in the morning - according to her due to food poisoning, which doesn't explain witness reports of her partying on into the wee hours that night) finally arrived and also came on stage to speak. Frenzal Rhomb, sensing their already diminished set was slowly slipping further away, began playing over the top of her amidst a passionate and profane exultation on the evils of the Popstar/Australian Idol way of life. Ms O seemed to take offense, and on Monday July 12, Jackie's producer Ryan made numerous calls to both Frenzal Rhomb and their record label, Epitaph, to request them come on the show and apologise. After these requests were declined, threats were made to "bury the band" (in an airplay sense) by the Austereo network. Not one to be daunted by such a threat, Frenzal Rhomb vocalist Jason Whalley agreed to come on the show. Unfortunately for the smug Kyle and Jackie O, things didn't pan out quite as they were expecting.
Following is the transcript of the interview which, to the station's credit, was played in full on Monday July 12 (even if it was pre-recorded despite them trying to make it look live). The transcript is as accurate as possible considering a lot of the time people were yelling over the top of each other...

Kyle: What's his name? Jay. Jay from Frenzal Rhomb, hey mate.
Jason: G'day Kyle, g'day Jackie.
Kyle and Jackie O: What the hell happened on the weekend?!
J: Well. What happened...I guess, we were about to go on stage, and it was already running very late. Our crowds are notorious for not putting up with any MCs, regardless of who they are, coming up on stage. And I guess from the best of my memory - which is quite clear because I'm a sober man these days - we were about to go on stage, we were already running very late, and we'd already had to cut a couple of a songs from our set, which we ended up having to cut about eight songs from our set, which must have pleased some people because you know, quite frankly, we're not very good. Then I guess it was the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory came out on stage and started to say some things and was really being shouted down by the crowd, and then we were about to go on and the next thing we know, completely unbeknownst to us, Jackie, you came out Jackie and started talking. We just went "Aw jesus, this is bullshit. We're supposed to be getting paid to play, so let's just go out and play." So I guess my friend Lindsay started playing Thunderstruck by ACDC over what Jackie was saying, then when we came out, Jackie left the stage. Then Lindsay started saying something along the lines of "Jackie O"...I think...it was something, "Jackie O? What the fuck?" or something like that. I proceeded to say, "Children, there is an explicit language content within our group, and I would just like to proceed by saying Popstars, Australian Idol - fuck 'em, fuck the lot of 'em, they can all go and get fucked". Then I amended that a little later on, I started talking about the current climate in Australia where original Australian bands are being pushed to one side for the sake of these cover artists, basically.
K: Right, but you don't think that, you reckon, what my problem was, is that I got a call...
J: Were you up there?
K: No, I got a call during your first song from Jackie in the background, crying. I just thought, what benefit is it to like, go out and just slag her...
J: Oh c'mon Jackie, are you that precious that you can't take a bit of heckling?
O: Well I just think, like, the crowd...
J: You haven't done the stand up circuit around town?
O: No that's not my thing, but I don't understand why my going out there, and then why you saying like, you know...
J: But you saw the reaction of the crowd, the crowd was very hostile and it wasn't just because it was you, it would have been anyone. They were just as hostile to the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory. We've had shows where, in regional areas where we've had the MCs...
O: But I didn't have a problem with the crowd...
J: What's that?
O: There was no problem with the crowd, it was just you guys coming like and swearing and abusing.
J: I guess the fact was, I guess you were nine hours late for the show, you were supposed to be MCing the whole show...
K: Yeah, she was sick...
J: And as it turned out, you ended up coming just before. And it was unfortunate...(noise of someone yelling in the background something about Jackie O and nightclubs)
K: Who is that, who is that clown in the background?
J: It's my mate Lindsay.
K: Would he like to speak, instead of just yelling out?
J: No (laughs). We're just very passionate about the things that we believe in.
K: Well so am I, and I'm just saying that, like, your songs, ever played on this network, or Triple M network so far, is just not going to happen now.
J: Well the thing is Kyle, have you ever played us on Austereo ever before?...
O: Yeah, Triple M did...
J: ...Are you going to actually have to change your playlist not to play us?...
O: Not us, but Triple M...
J: ...If you ring up our record company, you people ring up our record company...
K: Yep.
J: ...Threatening to bury the band...
K: Yep.
J: ...Saying that we're never gonna get played on Austereo again...
K: Yep.
J: ...What the hell are we supposed to think? I mean, you've never played us...
K: Triple M, Triple M have, haven't they?
J: ...You've never supported us...
K: Have Triple M?
J: ...You don't support good, original Australian Music...
O: Yeah we do, but to suit the station...
J: You're not, you're a mouthpiece for the corporate music industry, and you always have been!
K: Oh mate, we're not going to...you're just like a fucking idiot that sits in the background not trying to get into the scene.
J: Oh come on, now who's trying to - I'm just trying to have a reasonable conversation here, you don't have to, you know...
K: Well mate, I'm just, you're just so lucky...
J: I never called Jackie an idiot, I never said anything disparaging about her personally...
K: Yeah you did...
J: I never said anything disparaging about you personally, all I said...
O: But you just come over the top of me and go "What the fuck, Jackie O, fuck Popstars", that's pretty...
K: It's just a joke!
J: Exactly! It's just a joke!
K: Yeah, but it's a joke to have done it. Not a joke, ha ha funny, it's just stupid.
J: I didn't think it was very funny either. But the fact is, we believe passionately about what's happening to the Australian Music industry at the moment. We believe that people like you guys...
K: Yep.
J: ...You're in this position where you can promote good, new, Australian talent, and you don't.
K: Well mate you know what, no one...
J: And on a festival circuit such as that one, which we play constantly...
K: Yep.
J: ...And we've been doing so for ten years, we go out and we see these shows being infiltrated by people...
K: Yeah but you've got to get over it, you've got to get over it.
J: What's that?
K: You've got to get over it, because there's going to be different types of music for different sorts of people. That's why you guys have been around for ten years, because you appeal to a certain group of people. Otherwise you'd be finished long ago. And so does Shannon Noll, and so do Popstars, everyone's got different tastes.
J: Exactly. How is Bardot going these days?
O: Well they split up...
J: Exactly.
K: Well who cares about Bardot?
J: They're back working in the same shoe shop that they were working in...
O: No they're not...
J: ...The day before they joined Popstars!
K: Look, who cares though? Who cares? We're not talking about Bardot!
J: I know, you know what I care about? I care about the fact that there are bands like You Am I, good Australian bands, that are being dropped from their labels right now because, to make room for not only the Australian Idol winner - and I know we're not talking about Popstars right now and it doesn't affect you directly - we're not just talking about the Australian Idol winner, which is full fair enough, we're talking about six of the losers, that are now being signed to these major record companies for what? For these completely short term careers...
K: Yep.
J: ...So the record company can make a quick buck...
K: I agree, that is...
J: ...These bands aren't being nurtured...
K: I agree.
J: ...And for us to get up on stage and say, "Popstars, fuck 'em, fuck the lot of 'em, fucking get fucked, I'll stand by that, and I don't think that that should be offensive.
K: I don't care about Australian Idol or Popstars, I only care about Jackie and the embarrassment that she had at the hands of your band.
J: Well Jackie, I'm sure that you're tough enough to handle a little bit of heckling from time to time, I mean everyone who gets on stage...
O: Not really. I gotta say, you know, I am actually, I should toughen up but I can't and I do take things, you know, I get quite offended by it and upset. I can't help the fact that you really offended me. I know I should toughen up in this industry but I can't, it's just pretty hurtful, you know?
J: Well, I'm very sorry if you felt hurt Jackie. It wasn't intended to make you personally feel in any way uncomfortable up there on stage. We were up there to do our show, this is what we do, we basically, I can't see very many people that are championing the cause of young Australian bands that are trying to get by...
K: By the way Jay, before you go any far, not once, ever, in my fifteen year radio history has anyone ever put any CD from your band in front of me and said hey, how about playing these guys or how about speaking with these guys.
J: Exactly, why would you?
K: But it's just never happened.
J: So what's your point, sorry?
K: Whoever's looking after you isn't putting your stuff in front of the right people. Screw the major record labels...
J: No no no no no, I think that you are the wrong people because you're not going to be playing our music anyway, regardless...
K: How do you know?
J: You're not going to...you listen, if you have ever listened to any of our records, most of it's completely radio proof!
K: Well, there's no such thing anymore.
J: As radio proof?
K: Yeah.
J: (laughing) Well, I'll be the judge I think...
K: You'll be the judge?
J: Yeah, there's a few things that, you know, no radio station will play.
K: Yeah, no doubt there is, but you've got to have something that someone would, that's all I'm saying.
J: No, basically - what, are you saying that without your support that bands...
K: No, no...
J: ...Can't have a career in this country?
K: No.
O: No.
K: No, I'm not. I'm just saying, don't go, don't pick fights with people that are like, that are female in the Northern Territory, just to be a hero...
J: Oh come on, don't bring gender into it mate!
K: That's what you were doing mate...
J: Come on, you know for a fact...
K: Let me tell you Jay...
J: ...That it had nothing to do with the fact that she's female. Come on.
K: Just let me say, if it was me up there, it would have been on for young and old from the start.
J: Okay, now for a start, I'd just like to say, Jackie - at the aftershow party at the Discovery, were you (in background Lindsay says, "During the show"), during the show, were you aware that one of your security guards threatened our guitar tech with the threat of violence - as you're doing now Kyle, "it would have been on for young and old" as you say.
K: Yeah, yep.
J: Did you know about that?
O: Yeah.
J: That security guard came up and threatened us with actual violence? Do you endorse that?
O: What, what was...
K: Yes, well I do.
J: You do? You endorse that? You would have come and punched on because we said something about Popstars and Australian Idol?
Kyle and Jackie O: No!
O: It wasn't about Popstars and Australian Idol.
J: Because you felt that somehow we'd offended you, or not given you enough time to speak up. You were nine hours late for your show...
O: Well fuck mate, at least give me a chance to say something. Like, it's so rude to just come in and say fuck you, fuck Jackie O and play the guitar over me. I was only going to talk for like, ten seconds, seriously.
J: If we're going to talk about rudeness, can you please just explain why your people are ringing up our record company telling us you're going to bury our band...
O: We're not going to bury your band...
J: And never getting played on Austereo again?
O: But yeah, probably won't get played.
J: (laughing in exasperaton) It never did get played!
O: It got played on Triple M.
K: That's because it was pretty much shit.
J: It got played at bloody midnight so they could fulfil their Australian content, it's bullshit.
K: Mate you are just so bitter, you may as well just take a new career path.
J: I'm not...(laughing). Okay...
K: You're sad, see you later, goodbye. (hangs up) Man, what a cock. Sorry everyone, we've got to go to the hot thirty countdown now.
O: We've run out of time.
K: I apologise to all the people that would have liked to have ring up and complain about the traffic today, and I don't like kids wearing seatbelts, but we had to sort that out because I loathe that situation.
O: Oh you, you do, god.
K: And the old, what are they called? Friends Of Rom? (snickering from both) They're dead to us. They're dead to us.


In the next couple of weeks, Jason and Lindsay from Frenzal Rhomb will be taking over hosting duties of Triple J's Today Today program, a spot they'll be filling until the election. You will almost certainly be able to hear this interview played during one of their drive time shows, or on the Breakfast Program on Triple J this Friday July 16, or as an mp3 on the either the Triple J website, the Frenzal Rhomb website or there is definitely a link up now at the Bombshell website. As Jason has said, it's not over yet.