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New Kids on the Block: super FLORENCE jam

Sydney locals super FLORENCE jam are musical proof that 60s and 70s rock, or at least a revamped, rewired and innovative version of it, is still alive and kicking in our streets. Made up of Adam Krawczyk, with his guitar and impressive falsetto, percussionist Mike Solo (aka He of the Perfect Stage Name), Alex Tulett on a ridiculously awesome double-necked axe, and Laurence Rosier Staines’ guitar, vocals and Casio, these young guns are as down to earth as future rock stars can possibly be. The launch of their latest single, ‘Anastasia Won’t You Sleep With Me’ at Spectrum this Saturday will be a splendid way to get acquainted with this electric four piece and their wily, Zeppelinesque ways.

Laurence admits the group occupies a slightly ambiguous position within Sydney’s growing and eclectic music scene: “We’re not quite indie rock and we’re not exactly mainstream. Really, we play whatever we like and at the moment it’s all very energetic and melodic. We just have fun when we play.” Over the past five years sFj have developed an underground style prone to adaptation and playful experimentation. “A few years ago we were doing twenty minute instrumental medleys that became called progressive rock because no one knew quite how to describe it. So we just embraced the crazy, crazy thing. There was a time that we all had double-necked guitars and would end in the cancan or a cover of Frank Zappa’s ‘Muffin Man’.”

Although sFj have since refined their sound, Saturday’s launch promises to combine instrumental insanity and fast-paced lyrics with a hefty dose of addictive garage rock. The Anastasia single features three tracks, with the arrestingly surreal ‘Walkin’ On The Rocks’, which takes its inspiration from the always-fascinating Little Richard, as a personal favorite. Laurence explains that “it’s about a guy – a narcoleptic – who keeps trying to get back to his girl but keeps falling asleep where he is walking. He’s trying but he is not quite there.”

Artistically unpredictable pieces like that make a lot of sense when you consider how sFj came into its melodious existence. According to Laurence, the band formed after a rage-induced guitar battle, which destroyed a building and yet failed to produce a clear victor, forced all four participants to indulge in celebratory drinks. It turns out they rather liked the experience and “figured that the best way to justify further drinking was to form a band.” You can’t help but suspect that a little creative embellishment went into this story.

Nevertheless, in a competitive music scene that propels front men and sidelines supporting band members, sFj is refreshingly known for their natural equality on stage. They respect each other and the audience and this, along with their vocal hooks and riveting riffs, makes for a rather epic sound. sFj have already returned to the studio to record their next single, which can only be described as Beatlesque Caribbean Rock. Sticking to one style is just so not rock n’ roll.

If you’d like to catch super FLORENCE jam’s musical exploits at Spectrum this Saturday, tickets can be purchased here.

words: Liz Schaffer


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