Nothing's going On comes in at 17 of the best 20 albums of 2015 in a Tomatrax review of the year that was. The enigmatic super reviewer for TripleJ and general music aficionado has pawed his way through thousands of hours of new music, a thankless task, albeit enjoyable for someone possessing musical seek and discover proclivities. A 10 track album, cobbled together over two seasons, beginning in summer 2014, the collective weight of 8 years of frenetic productivity, hours noodling away, capturing the worthwhile and bringing form to reality, this was the album that did what it did, a natural progression for us and one that had to happen.
NOTHING'S GOING ON
Philip Catley Review
CD Review: “Nothing’s Going On” by William Street Strikers
Genre: Rock, Pop, Indie
Rating 5 out of 5 Stars
“William Street Strikers” sounds like a comic strip from a 1960’s Boys Own Magazine, but it’s really a rocked up four piece Indie rock band with plenty of experience and talent behind it.
Having listened to a few of their previous releases I got the impression that “Nothing’s Going On” is the natural progression for a band at ease with itself after years of live performance. The songs swing from the heavy rock undertone of “Seven More” to the Mexican brass intro of “Stalker”, and the delicate folk pop of “Ruby Blue”. Across the ten tracks there is sufficient variety to interest most casual listeners, and it’s all professionally performed and produced. Andrew’s vocals are smooth, melodic and always on point, and there’s plenty of interesting guitar sounds sprayed over the solid rhythm section.
My personal favorite, and this is subjective, is “Maybe”, which, at just under three minutes duration, is a driving infectious three minute pop song. There are plenty of other great tracks though, including the single “Wrong Way Home” which has a bit of Grinspoon about it.
You can digitally download this album, or stream it from Soundcloud, but buy the CD for the quintessential Australian cover photos.
Great work William Street Strikers.
TOMATRAX REVIEW 31st JULY
Australian music news and reviews
When I caught up with William Street Strikers’ vocalist and guitarist Andrew Matters earlier this year, he called their latest album “a real hodgepodge.” As I listened to Nothing’s Going On, I realised just how apt that description was. This album goes on a wide variety of musical directions, yet somehow it all works.
By daring to be different, William Street Strikers ensures this album has plenty of highlights. Nothing sounds samey, as it does on so many records, so each song stands up and demands to be appreciated. I love the easy groove of the album’s title track and opening number “Nothing’s Going On.” The single “Wrong Way Home” is one of the album’s strongest cuts. The horns help to balance the menacing lyrics of “Stalker.” The closing track “No Surrender” is good honest Aussie pub rock, defiant and jubilant in its rebellion with big screaming electric guitars and pounding drums.
Before writing this review, I looked back over what I wrote about William Street Strikers’ last few releases. In 2012, I commented that Keep Left was also an eclectic album, but questioned whether the band might have experimented too much. A year later, with the release of the To the Motel EP, I accused the band of playing it safe. Now, with a few more years of experience under their belt, I feel like they’ve got the balance right. Nothing’s Going On is another very diverse offering from the Adelaide band, but it’s one that somehow remains accessible and cohesive. It takes the listener in different directions without alienating them. It’s a very smart release from this up-and-coming Aussie act.
Nothing’s Going On is released on July 31.
To the Motel