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And a Happy(er) New Year

Dear good people of the world (especially those who live in Sydney),

I have been trying to think of what to write for a Happy Holidays message to you all, but everything I have come up with has made me come across as a bit wanky. And so, as a forewarning, I should inform you that this letter may come across as a bit wanky. Admission is the first step in recovery, right?
Also, I like the word wanky. It’s funny.

This year has, by many accounts, sucked balls, and I don’t know too many people who are sad to see it end. We started with a bang, which for the most part was the sound of the global economic system falling to the cement pavement from about 100,000 metres high. Then all of us were scared we were going to lose our jobs, scared our house price was going to fall, scared of evil Oompa Loompas lurking in the distance. Or was that last one just me? Either way, it seemed like we were scared of EVERYTHING, and do you know what feeds off fear? FEAR.
Don’t be too proud of yourself if you got that right. It was kind of a no-brainer.

And so there we were, all scaredy-pants and whathaveyou, when our personal lives had the nerve to start reacting, too. There was some sort of universal domino effect going on, climaxing with the death of Michael Jackson and producing after-effects in the forms of Daul Kim and Brittany Murphy. For those of us who lost real people as well, this was all too much. Something had to give.

In my case, it did, by way of this little website, which I love so much I kind of want to dress it in tiny little slippers and carry it around with me in my handbag, as one does with babies. I was in the middle of loathing everything when I thought, wait a second, my life is kind of crap. And so one thing led to another, obladi oblada, and then bam! I quit my job so that I could concentrate on doing what I loved: writing. Also, I wanted to wake up in the morning with a reason NOT to hang myself.

Side Street, Sydney was part of my remuneration package when I traded in Surry Hills salads for tinned spaghetti, and I have to say, I am much happier for it. And at the risk of sounding even wankier, I really like you, dear readers, and I hope you like Side Street, Sydney, too. I have nothing but big, MASSIVE love for everyone involved in this site (thank youuuuu!) and I adore all the people who have been featured on it so much I feel like I might pop. After all, one of the hidden motivations behind creating this was getting cool people to talk to me. I have succeeded.

I suppose the point of this rambling is to say hi, have a wonderful silly season, marry me. We’re off for a few days because we fear the computer is about to create a vortex and suck us in, so this is the last post until the 2nd of Jan. I hope you all get a chance to peel your eyes away from the screen and focus on the things that matter, too, and if you’re looking for a New Years Resolution, here’s a tip: in 2010, do what makes you happy. Faith is the opposite of fear, and it pretty much always helps to do things in the spirit of it, despite how scary they may be. Nothing is impossible, but it’s up to you to listen to your beating little heart. It may be contrived to say, but it’s true – life’s too short to do anything else. Particularly if you have a thing for prescription drugs.

Fairydust & Schweppervescence on you all (how GOOD is that ad),
Seema xx

photo by Lisa Zhu

Subconsciously Riding High: Red Riders

A combination of guitar-driven melodies and shoegaze pop delivered in a high octane post-punk style, Red Riders delivers music that owes a bit of debt to classic indie bands but manages to maintain its own character. Much of the band's disposition comes from its front man, Alex Grigg, whose unmistakable vocals and delicate balance of self-deprecating humour and nervousness are crucial to its aesthetic. I recently sat down with Alex to discuss the Sydney quartets’ sophomore album, Drown In Colour...

Bright Lights, Big Cities: Dappled Cities

One would expect an interview with a total stranger to start with awkward introductions and polite chit chat, but that was hardly the case when I spoke to Alex Moore from Dappled Cities. Clearly sharing a similar disregard for accepted social etiquette, we somehow managed to cover burning warts and kidney infections all within the first two minutes. Be still my heart.

Luckily (for those not enjoying the off kilter banter), we also managed to squeeze in a word or two about the band. With descriptions ranging from art rock to oddly bent pop, Dappled Cities have been building a name for themselves in the local and international music scene since they first got together in the schoolyard back in 1997.

Clouds, Glitter and Pink Ribbons in Your Cereal

It’s that day.

When you wake up tired, groggy, and usually you are happy, a gentle joyfulness that washes over you for a few seconds, because you don’t know yet know where you are, or who you are. You’ve not yet had the time to remember. It’s the amnesia of all the daily pains and bruises that you take with you to the left and right side of your bed each night.

But this time you’re not happy because of your temporary amnesia, but because, even with the shrieking of the alarm and the darkness shielded by thickly skinned curtains, you’re recalling something good.

Something you’ve been cradling in your arms all night and here with eyes wider open, you see is still here; unmoved, right beside you; as the morning light begins to splinter and make a day of the slow dawn upon your cheek.

Where Death is So Becoming: The Book Thief

I've been contemplating disowning my sister. I mean, she's fun. And when we're not fighting like passionate sisters do, we get along like a proverbial house on fire. But she didn't rate The Book Thief, and that's just not on as far as I am concerned.

Sister or otherwise, I'm not usually one to insist people like the same things I do. But the thing is, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak is...ahhh, how do I put this?...the best piece of literature in the history of the world.

Yes, the history of the world.

All-Day Preparation Style

photo: Margaret Sevenjhazi

St James Station

photo: Lisa Zhu

An Art Hub Multiplex: Hardware Gallery

Lew Palaitis has been directing Hardware Gallery for so long, he isn’t quite sure when his youth ended and his career began – an enviable transition, to say the least. Now based in Enmore, the gallery just celebrated its 10 anniversary and is about to host a party to mark the end of what was, incidentally, its best year yet; a feat not many can lay claim to in 2009. Boasting two exhibition spaces, a shop front, a record room and a framing centre out the back, Hardware gallery is like four separate locations in one, and for artists and art lovers, this can only mean good things.

Into the Future, With Pleasure: Gary Bigeni

Gary Bigeni is one of the first designers people point to when they’re asked to list Australia’s most defining fashion players. His collections inject a potion of innovation into classic sculptural pieces, and allow women to mesh class with style in truly perfect form – one that appears to be miles ahead of the static cardigans and maxi-dresses lying in their long-forgotten wardrobes of yesterday. If this is the future, then Gary Bigeni has presented futuristic fashion at its finest; collections that would have made the style set far and wide fast track the clock if they could have predicted them. There is an element of surprise in nearly every piece of his range, one that draws in the eye and makes it never want to leave… and forever begs the question of why it wasn’t thought of before. Such sentiment is proof that Gary Bigeni is a designer who can truly be called an artist.

Adventure Time for All!: Flash Mob 2009

What’s cooler than an event where people who like photography can get together and go on a little adventure to CREATE photography? Not much, obviously. Matt Hodges decided to make such an event happen. You can thank him on Saturday.

On To A Winning Thing: Ted Noffs Foundation

For those who become addicted to drugs and alcohol at any early age, life often turns into a continuous battle between will and desire. Opportunities slip away, chances become forgotten and choice is no longer dictated by freedom. It is the aim of the Ted Noffs Foundation to help youth regain their self-management before the ability to is lost entirely.

It's On! Twice: Friday Night Battles at the Chauvel.

I’m a massive fan of the double-feature. It used to be the norm back in my parents day, and now it’s like a special occasion thing. No fair. There’s just something so satisfying about settling in for an entire evening as opposed to a measly 120 minutes. A packed meal and a thermos full of something warming (vodka) are not out of the question, but I’m by no means implying that you SHOULD take vodka with you to the cinema, ‘cause that would be naughty.

Floral, Meet Leather

photo: Margaret Sevenjhazi

Carlton United Brewery on Sydney Road

photo: Lisa Zhu

Default Place, Not Default Flavour: Ramen Kan

I don’t know about you, but I have a default restaurant: the place I go when I want to get out of the house but can’t be bothered thinking about it too much (and this is often followed by a spur of the moment movie). For me, that place is Ramen Kan in Bondi Junction. So beloved is it that if nearby friends discover that I have been without them, I am sternly reprimanded.

Where Superheroes Go for a Bit of Self-Reflection: Numskull

For the artist formally known as Numskull, the social guidelines that come with the birthright of human conditioning are merely a playground in which to challenge them. For the past decade, the suburban-bred street artist has been creating work which satirically portrays the hypnotic commercial saturation we are confronted with from the time of our youth. He cleverly extracts the exact same elements which have become ingrained in our consciousness (whether we realise it or not) and twists them in a way that makes us confront just how much icons and advertising stay with us long after we turn off the television and move away from the billboard. His work can be humorous, disturbing and sarcastic, and often all at the same time. It sometimes appears as though it is more conceptual than the artist even set out for, depending on the viewer and his or her own experiences. Whatever the case, Numskull’s work is certainly art with a message.

Prolific Without the Altar: The Church

For someone with scant religious inclinations, a declaration of love to The Church may sound somewhat blasphemous, but as I’ve never been too concerned with political correctness hopefully we can let that slide. Given this infatuation, you can imagine my excitement when A. said band released a new album and B. a delicious six degrees of separation scenario gave me the chance to interview guitarist Peter Koppes.

Help! I’m Having a Mid-Career Crisis.

You have a job. Perhaps it pays well. It’s an okay job; you don’t hate it but you don’t love it, either. You daydream about another life. One where heels and business suits and hairdryers at 7am are but a distant memory. In this other life, you see yourself in a different career. One that requires you to use your creative self. Does such a thing exist, you ask yourself? And if it does, how do you know if you’re any good and, more importantly, whether it will pay enough for you to still afford Christmas gifts for your friends and family which don’t contain craft glue and pipe cleaners?

Better Than Fiction: Affection

Australian author Krissy Kneen is obsessed with sex. Her book, Affection: a memoir of love, sex and intimacy tells of a stifled Catholic childhood in the somewhat less refined parts of suburban Sydney and an adulthood of unbridled experimentation when she escapes to university in the city. Sex infuses and consumes everything she does.

Krissy Kneen

Black & Tiger

photo: Margaret Sevenjhazi

Miami Horror @ the Oxford Art Factory

photos: Lisa Zhu

Sydney’s fashion capital: Capital L

Located just off Oxford St, Capital L is a treasure chest full of hand-picked fashion gems from the crème de la crème of Australian designers for guys and girls, as well as their affordable but adorable in-house brand, pleaselouise. The line-up includes Marnie Skillings, Shakuachi, Lover, Saint Augustine Academy, MyPetsQuare, Something Else, Life with Bird, Andrea & Joen footwear, Karen Walker sunnies and Elke Kramer accessories, to name a few. Testament to its coolness, Kim Gordon even picked up a dress or two there during Sonic Youth’s last Australian tour. Really, you can’t argue with that. We chatted to the owner, Louise.

Romance in all its Forms: Gail Sorronda

Okay, okay, so we know she’s not from Sydney, but once you’re an Australian in Paris, you could be from anywhere, really… plus, it’s hard to resist the chance to interview one of the country’s best designers. Originally from Brisbane and back in her hometown for a short stint until next year’s Rosemount Australian Fashion Week, it’s no wonder why designer Gail Reid of Gail Sorronda is keen to return to the land of romance. Her clothes are the visual representation of the story Paris would tell if it could, saturated with unyielding femininity and extravagant fables from an unspoilt world – one that, incidentally, only exists in the imagination. Gail extracts her own reveries into each collection she delivers, allowing such fantasies to exist not only in the mind, but on the body as well.

Exploring the space between the lines and the shadows within them, Gail’s most recent collection for Autumn Winter 2010, Black Chalk, is a play on volume, line and texture. Girlishly elegant and elusively sensual, the collection defies the notion of classic shapes and broadens the bracket with a redefinition of exquisite figures and silhouettes. Staying true to the label’s black and white aesthetic, Black Chalk proves clothes don’t need colour to be elaborate.

Guilt-free prettiness: Finders Keepers Markets

Nerds, homebodies and 20-something grandmothers, rejoice: it is finally cool to be kitsch. With the resurgence of homemade craft, teakettles and kitties (among other cute things), old has indeed become new again, and abandoned boxes have fast turned into treasure coves of materials and inspiration. High up in the category of “those to thank” are The Finders Keepers Markets, the weekend-long independent art mecca for people who want to fill their home with pretty items which are not only affordable, but good for the world, too! With each stall dedicated to new and emerging artists, the markets are at the top of the listings under ethical consumerism. Combine that with the fact that they are supporting new talent and really, buyers totally deserve whatever they purchase.

Bonnie Poplar

Where the Beat Goes On: Poetry Slam

When one thinks of poetry, it often conjures up images of dusty professors, tortured navel-gazers and angsty teens. A poetry slam, on the other hand, couldn’t be further removed from this bunch of bone-creekers. Throw in a few beers, some hip hop and humour, a wack of punk attitude and a desire to the command the stage and own the audience… now THAT’S a little more like a poetry slam.

Life Without Lunch Money: A Tragedy.

For me, high school was a means to an end, the end being The Real Life or an early death. Either one was bound to be better.
Not that I didn’t have a little bit of fun in high school. I did have a little bit of fun, in the same way that I have a little bit of fun when I’m sitting at a funeral. Nothing’s THAT bad, right? No no, because everything will be OVER at some point.

I was able to survive the period because I was told, repeatedly, that, “high school isn’t even a microcosm of the world.” It was the sentence that reassured me, allowed me to continue moving on with the force of life, enabled me to resist playing in traffic. But recently, I realised something: HIGH SCHOOL IS A TOTAL MICROCOSM OF THE WORLD. It really just prepares you for the fact that drinking copious amounts of alcohol isn’t always going to be the answer to all your problems, because that would get way too expensive.

When Cool Became a Household Name: Heathers

It’s been done before and it will be done again, but just like so many things, it will never be done as good as the first time. Alicia Silverstone tried it in Clueless, Lindsay Lohan worked it in Mean Girls and Kirsten Dunst definitely had the cool factor going on in Bring it On, but none of them will ever inspire girl crushes to the magnitude that Winona did in 1989’s Heathers – pre-kooky-department-store-thievery of course.

The Perfect Composition

photo: Margaret Sevenjhazi

Luna Park

photos: Lisa Zhu

Multiple Taste Sensations: Time to Vino

Darlinghurst’s Time To Vino popped up on the Sydney bar scene when it needed it most, and we still can’t get enough of it. It could be that the atmosphere that keeps us coming back for more. Or maybe it’s the wine. Or the service. Or the food. Stop it, you’re confusing me.

Bringing Controversy to Convention: Ben Frost

The entrance of the building leading up to Worlds End studio, the artspace where Ben Frost lives and creates, is the perfect setting for a horror movie. The multiple coats of paint that cover the walls in varying shapes and tags create a labyrinth of statements that compete for your attention, and in turn create a labyrinth of space – every direction seems to run into the starting point. Like Ben’s work, it is a rejection of the very notion of standard living, and you can almost feel it retaliating against convention. Indeed, Worlds End is a place where white walls can experience the sweet taste of creative afterlife.

It may sound a bit surprising, then, that an artist such as Ben Frost is now being represented by a space defined by its white walls. The Redfern-based Boutwell Draper Gallery has recently picked him up, and much to Sydney’s benefit, will be showcasing a solo show of his tonight. What this apparent acquisition means for the art world at large is a step in a refreshingly different direction, one where the terms ‘lowbrow’ and ‘highbrow’ might finally cease to exist and break the divide which they themselves define. Still, for an artist like Ben, I couldn’t help but wonder what his thoughts were on such a conventional venture?

“I have always had a chip on my soldier about being represented by a commercial gallery – these kind of spaces have looked down on my kind of art for so many years,” he says.
“Essentially, a gallery is a space to show my work. We haven’t defined our relationship yet, so we’ll see what happens… but I know I can’t do artist-run shows forever.”

They're Flying High: Lost Valentinos

Sydney band Lost Valentinos have been getting plenty of airplay in both Australia and the UK. They released their debut LP Cities of Gold last month, and we sat down with the bands lead singer, Nik Yiannikas, to talk about it.

Throw a Party, Make A Friend: Social Inclusion Week

The fast life is seductively appealing, no question, but as its vortex continues to suck us in, it becomes ultimately clear that we know more about our favourite technological gadgets than we do about each other. Tea parties have been replaced by Facebook Chat, there are an astonishing number of people on Twitter on a Friday night and we no longer have to borrow sugar from our neighbour when we can simply order it online. Indeed, these are the days when nobody knows our name, and they couldn’t really care less whether we came – unless of course we get so drunk that we throw up all over their shoes. Then they might notice.

Classics Never Die: Wuthering Heights

Wolfmother has just released a cover of Kate Bush’s song Wuthering Heights, which is in turn a lyrical & musical retelling of a 19th century book by the same name. You may have heard of it.

That right there? That was a joke. Of course you’ve heard of it –it’s one of the most beloved books of all time. Whenever newspapers are making best-read lists, it’s there. Whenever 15 year-old girls are scouring bookcases for something new to read, it’s there. Whenever literary types are being interviewed about old favourites, it’s there.
Wuthering Heights continues to be bought, which is interesting because it doesn’t get taught at school. I suspect this has something to do with the incest, murder, rage and jealousy prevalent within the novel; topics that teachers are, unsurprisingly, somewhat loathe to touch upon (except if they are hidden in the linguistic gymnastics of Shakespeare of course).

City Jumpsuit

photo: Margaret Sevenjhazi

Sculpture By the Sea

photos: Lisa Zhu

Heaven Topped With Gruyere Cream: Universal Restaurant

Christine Mansfield’s Darlinghurst establishment, Universal Restaurant, delivers food at a fine-dining standard with a relaxed atmosphere that lets you enjoy the matched wines and fresh, fun cocktails probably a little more than you should.

In an interesting approach, Universal’s menu is a “build-your-own” degustation. Each dish is entrée sized so you can order and try a few different things, tapas-style. As someone who hates committing to just one meal, this suits me just fine- it provides a bit more freedom to experiment. I may not want to entirely commit to a main meal of sweetbreads (ah, yep, that’s offal folks) but I’ll certainly have a crack at in as just one dish in an entire meal. I’m brave but I’m not that brave!

Traveling Between Creative Landscapes: Tabitha Emma

Tabitha Emma

Teacups, old typewriters and watercolour-painted mushrooms are just a few of the elements which evoke the sense of sentimental value prevalent within newcomer Tabitha Emma’s artwork. Portraying the kitsch with a powering sense of nostalgia, her illustrations are the things that reflective daydreams are made of.

Accessible Fantasy: Rebecca Murphy

Some girls like ballet and embroidery and having their shoes tinted to match a handbag. Sydney artist Rebecca Murphy is not one of them. A passionate proponent of the lowbrow scene, Murphy’s paintings are visceral and unabashedly bold. Creeping it’s way out of LA and San Francisco in the 70s, the lowbrow world is one of tattoo art, cartoons and a bit of punk. Murphy doesn’t dismiss her girliness altogether, she just sends it over to the naughty side of the tracks for a visit from time to time. The result is art with a sense of humour and a bit of spunk.

Inaccessible and incomprehensible are words that have been used now and then when discussing installation, performance or fine art. Lowbrow aims for the opposite experience. Murphy feels that “art is about communication and expressing yourself. But if the audience doesn’t get it then, as an artist, you’ve missed the point.”

Everyone’s Invited: Once Upon Exhibition

Once upon a time, an artist had an exhibition. She worked very hard on it, so by the time the date drew near, boy, was she excited. And a little bit nervous. What if nobody showed up? And then the date came.
Nobody showed up.

Follow the Leader (Cheetah)

Despite what some may think, and what some radio stations would like listeners to believe, the local music scene is not simply made up of contrived Aussie hip hop - alongside poor rhymes and poorer beats, there’s actually one or two bands that can not only play instruments, but play them well.
Bringing forth a blend of 70’s inspired folk/ pop/rock, Adelaide band Leader Cheetah spent much of 2009 living the dream of backseat drivers and roadside diners, as they travel the county in support of their debut album, Sunspot Letters.
Set to steal a few more hearts at The Annandale later this week, lead singer Dan Crannitch tells us what’s going down for these rad newbies on the scene.

Disbelief in the First-Person: Sydney Jewish Museum

“I am here as a result of a series of miracles. I am here to tell the tale. This is why we speak.”

And so begins my tour of the Sydney Jewish Museum. Along with a group of high school students, I am listening to Holocaust survivor David Benedikt tell a horror story that only those who have experienced the most prolific tale of Innocence Lost can relay. It is an understanding that people are fortuitously unable to fathom unless they have gone through it themselves, which is why hearing it come from the mouth of someone who has tends to arouse feelings of shock, disgust and disbelief – both in the human capability of evil and the ability of those who endured it to retain their faith in humanity.

A Christmas Carol. (The Adult Version.)

The newest film adaption of Charles Dicken’s A Christmas Carol stars Jim Carrey in pretty much every role. It’s an interesting interpretation that sticks closely to Dicken’s original dialogue and moralistic tone, and delivers serious creepiness and darkness along the way. It’s way too dark for children, which reflects the ghoulishness that director Robert Zemeckis (Back to the Future, Cast Away) enjoyed with his previous film, Beowolf.

TAFE Fashion Awards

Adeeba, 17
I had been keeping an eye on this girl since I saw her because I really liked her dress. When I finally approached her to ask if I could take a photo she was about to approach me and ask the same thing. When I said it was for a style blog she said, ‘ME TOO!’. A great start to a fantastic night!

Amelia, 19
The amazing shoes hypnotized me. I took this photo straight after 17 year old Adeeba approached Amelia.

Tom & Samm
Such well dressed men! This is why I wish I was a man sometimes. I wanted to take a photo the whole night and I finally approached them at the end of the fashion parade.

words & photos: Margaret Sevenjhazi

Twilight over Rose Bay Golf Course

photo: Bobby Reynolds

Yep, we CAN have the best of both worlds: MART Gallery

There is a definite re-awakening every time fresh creative energy begins sprouting on the streets of Sydney, and in the case of MART gallery, it’s like a new recipe for chocolate cake topped with two equally delicious types of frosting. Combining music and art, MART gallery pays homage to the creators some of Australia’s best musical images, be it the posters, the video clips, the album artwork or the websites, all of which become as iconic to the music as the sound itself. After all, art is music’s ultimate muse, and this is exactly why industry veteran Mel Nahas decided that Sydney was aching for such a space on its art scene.

We’ll Keep This One, Thanks: Marina Didovich

Sydney has a lot to be excited about when our neighbour’s fashion finest step off the boat and into our garment bags. Indeed, the Australian fashion industry would not be what it is without the New Zealand fashion industry – we are intricately intertwined to the very last stitch, and the style set over the water have produced some of this side of the world’s most memorable moments in design. So when stylist extraordinaire Marina Didovich arrived in Sydney last year, it wasn’t long before she was snatched by the best and thrown styling gigs at all beautifully constructed angles.
Introduced to fashion through the delicious pages of the most prolific overseas titles, Marina’s taste for style was poisoned by the elite from the very start – and thank god for it.

Love In The Time of Reverb: The Laurels

They may not be as well known as their current touring partners Tame Impala, but lovers of psychedelic pop and shoegaze will likely be well versed in the sounds of local Sydney band, The Laurels.

After winning the Sydney University Band Competition in 2007, The Laurels have spent the past few years making their mark on the touring scene, pulling new fans and high-fives from critics across this country. And all without so much as an EP on the table.

(with) relish this dream

I am getting lost
in your understory
this beautiful drag
of an orang-utan dream

The Spiralling Road to an Imminent Finale: The Death of Bunny Munroe

Nick Cave’s The Death of Bunny Munro begins with a tragic event that sends the character into an ever-descending spiral of chaos and crazy fuelled by relentless sex and a fountain of cocaine. This is no Fear and Loathing riot of colour – it’s a quieter journey with wry humour and genuine warmth. Bunny is a complete and utter fool, but somehow he is a loveable fool just struggling to come to terms with life and adulthood. The novel tells the story of the last few weeks of his ridiculous life. Never fear, I’m not giving anything away, but it is called The DEATH of Bunny Munro, after all.

King Street Style

Perfect colour matching for a gloomy day in Newtown..

Steve, 30, artist.

shirt: op-shop.
jeans: American Apparel.
shoes: Camper.

photo: Margaret Sevenjhazi

Spring by the Harbour Bridge

photo: Lisa Zhu

Where All the Geeks Went Out to Play: Comic Kingdom

Know who `the man without fear’ is? Have a favourite X-Men character? Appreciate Harley Quinn more than Poison Ivy or Cat Woman? Want to slap someone in the face when you hear them ask who Frank Miller is? If you answered yes to any of the above then you, like myself, are a comic book geek. And by some sign of faith from the comic book gods above, we’re considered relatively cool at the moment thanks to the success of the Batman, Spiderman, Ironman, Hell Boy, Fantastic Four, X-Men and other film franchises.

The Ultimate Time-Traveller: Cybele Malinowski

For Cybele Malinowski, photography is more than what she does for a living. She is an artist who lives and breathes the images that surround her, and her many handy little (and not so little) cameras are just the means to commemorate them. Indeed, with her behind the lens, magical moments are seemingly endless.

When you meet Cybele you can almost see the perfect composition glowing in her eyes. Photography is her passion, her livelihood and her art, one which she is a freak at creating. Her portfolio spans through the music world, into the fashion one and beyond. When she’s not shooting Lady Gaga belting it out at a live show or telling models where to place their hands, she’s taking out her camera to capture, well, life, really. Within each and every photo, Cybele reaches beyond the two-dimensional end-result and manages to bring life to moments that have long ago passed. She has the ability to capture the essence of a live performance as if she is evoking the music to play for her and her alone, she is one of the fairytale-creators of fashion’s façade of glamour, and her portraiture somehow always grasps the personality behind the physical. Her talent is unquestionable, so it’s almost bizarre to comprehend that her parents didn’t give her a telephoto lens along with her baby food.

That One Time When A Trip to the Music Shop Became an Event: The Black Ryder

It’s not often that we’ll post an album launch in our scene section, but this one is so good that a trip to purchase it should be penned in your diary alongside dinner and buying toilet paper. Hauntingly melodic, The Black Ryder have achieved the kind of sound that takes artists years to perfect. Sydney can be proud to lay claim to the Surry Hills locals Aimée Nash and Scott Von Ryper, who started their journey together with a school crush gone bad…

Not Your Average Schoolkid: Tom Ugly

There are the normal kids in high school who are content simply dreaming about what they’re going to be ‘when they grow up’, but then of course there are those who, despite their tender years, are already running fast down the career path. Irritating, maybe, but admirable? Indeed.

As the country’s cesspool for potential young and upcomers, Triple J’s Unearthed competition has turned our attention to many talented young guns over the years, most recently in 2008 with the one Tom Ugly, formerly known as [is].

Goodbye, oh sexy clean shaven man. Hello, silly rugged beast.

Yes, it’s that time of year again: we have entered the month where the mo makes a valiant return to the facial fashion of men everywhere. Sure, they look a little ridiculous, make you think of Charlie Chaplin and are certainly not smooching material, let alone CUDDLE material, but the fact that razors have been made temporarily redundant and we are seemingly in a time warp back to when shaving cream clearly did not exist is, once again, all in the name of a good cause. A great cause, actually. And you know what? We think you should be reminded of it. And gentlemen, we think you should grow your mo. And ladies, we think you should encourage your gentleman to grow their mos. After all, even upper lips must start to build calluses eventually.


My friend Karl was a normal, happy guy. We were part of a sprawling group of friends. With the rest of our group, Karl and I shared most Saturday nights laughing, boozy & relaxed, be it at someone’s place or playing pool down the pub. Karl was a nice guy. A good guy.

The Hidden Treasure of ’87: Empire of the Sun

In 1987, it was all 3 Men and a Baby, Fatal Attraction, Beverly Hills Cop II, Lethal Weapon and Dirty Dancing. Back when Steve Guttenberg was the man, Swayze’s tight-dancing pants were the root of all crimes against decency and Mel wasn’t an anti-Semitic freakshow. Ah, the glory days.

Sunny Day Nostalgia

Justine, 24, Graphic Designer.

shirt: American Apparel.
skirt: London vintage.
necklace: Good Samaritans op-shop.
shoes: Seed.

photo: Margaret Sevenjhazi

Hanging on Bourke Street

photo: Lisa Zhu
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