Make Me a Mixtape is a segment where we interview artists and have them make a mixtape of seven songs based around a particular scenario, explaining why they chose each song. This week, we chat with Melbourne's post-punk noisemakers Super-X, who chose seven tracks to incorporate into a long-winded experimental jam with John Dwyer of Osees if given the opportunity.
Photo by Cristina Arróspide
On their self-titled debut, released last year via Spoilsport Records, the Melbourne noise punk trio Super-X erupted in a blistering and fuzzy eruption of proto-punk and industrial punk with a heavy dosage of psychedelia. The opening track "Mel" is soaked in thick walls of fuzz that simmers in angst transitioning into the head-spinning "Terminus," while the rollicking centerpiece "Circle Form" pairs echo-drenched vocals with wildly dueling guitar tones that extend into an ear-ripping guitar solo that could go on forever. The monstrous and chaotic "Without Love" describes the ugly side of love through its lyrical imagery along with a vocal delivery that builds in intensity and desperation, underlined by a swirling, hard-hitting riff.
Super-X consists of brothers Harrison and George Ottaway on vocals and guitars, and Kaelan Emond on drums. Though lacking a bassist, Super-X more than make up for it by constantly pummeling you with distorted chaos and explosive layers of mechanical noise. The band's appreciation for neo-psychedelia and noise rock as well as their musical inspirations prompted the scenario for their mixtape. If the legendary noisemaker John Dwyer, main-man behind Osees (aka Thee Oh Sees, OCS, The Oh Sees, etc.) contacted Super-X for a jam session, these are the seven songs Super-X would play to show off their muscle flexed guitars to the prolific legend. A pair of ear-protective plugs might be wise for this "mix of classic krautrock, '70s Australian swamp rock, and neo-psychedelia" selected by the Ottaway brothers that Dwyer wouldn’t be able to resist.
Live Fuzz with Dwyer
The Scientists — "Solid Gold Hell"
"Kim Salmon is a legend of the Australian music scene. He was one of the OG Australian punk rockers and still plays gigs today! He comes from Perth (aka 'the most isolated city on the planet') and has played in the Scientists, the Beasts of Bourbon and released a bunch of solo material. Here's one of his dirtiest, fuzziest jams from the Scientists. We reckon John digs it."
Motorbike — "Wooden Shjips"
"Erik Johnson is one of the finest psych musicians of the last two decades—and he comes from John's adoptive hometown, San Francisco! This track is straight up psychedelic biker proto-punk."
Chrome — "Zombie Warfare (Can't Let You Down)"
"Twisted noise, sci-fi horror themes and proto-metal riffage. Can't go past Chrome as the inspiration for a Super-X / John Dwyer jam session."
Loop — "Arc-Lite"
"Huge rolling industrial beats and harsh repetitive riffle from one of England's finest neo-psychedelic bands."
Silver Apples — "Seagreen Serenades"
"Love this disorientating track from Silver Apples. This whole LP is great and influenced a lot of electronic and ambient musicians. If Super-X and John Dwyer had a synth-heavy session, it might wind up a bit like this. Goes to show synths can be just as pulverizing and evocative as any guitar part."
NEU! — "Negativland"
"Where it all started. Can't go past this classic piece of dark krautrock. According to our dad: 'Holy shit, a lot of people used to trip to this one back in the day….haha.' JPD has probably had his fair share of freak-outs to this track."
Tommy James & The Shondells — "Crimson and Clover"
"When the pounding psychedelic stomp has subsided and you just want to finish on something mellow. Apparently Tommy James wrote the whole song himself which is pretty incredible. Also the soundtrack to Andrew Reynolds' classic part in Baker 2G. I played this one to my parents too and they got emotional. It's one of those tracks that evokes a positive reaction from all generations."
Stream Super-X's mixtape below.