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No Night Sweats - JPop.com
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No Night Sweats

No Night Sweats

No Night Sweats


Hardly anyone heard No Night Sweats outside the circle of post-punk Sydney. They didn't fit easily into the mould of what a band performance should be like. There were no instruments on stage, except for a cassette player and, even when the music was playing, there were very few highly rhythmic numbers. They often played in battered suits and dirty bow ties and, when not actually frightened to death on stage, were sorta lounge-like : Sinatra with a synthesiser big band backing, coming to a dive near you, real soon. Read more on Last.fm
Hardly anyone heard No Night Sweats outside the circle of post-punk Sydney. They didn't fit easily into the mould of what a band performance should be like. There were no instruments on stage, except for a cassette player and, even when the music was playing, there were very few highly rhythmic numbers. They often played in battered suits and dirty bow ties and, when not actually frightened to death on stage, were sorta lounge-like : Sinatra with a synthesiser big band backing, coming to a dive near you, real soon. As Wild West slowly dissolved, Phil Turnbull bought a 4 track reel-to-reel and started recording a series of multi-tracked instrumental numbers. All of these were in pale imitation of Robert Wyatt's "Rock Bottom" of which he'd been enthralled for years but replacing Wyatt's whirling, reedy organ sound for the slightly harsher, ring-modulated growl and whomping bass of the Arp Odyssey.

They sounded great to him, even as they were recorded, with some gorgeous chord changes backed by massed, buzzing synth drones and frills. I didn't really know where to take these pieces until it became apparent that my (somewhat thin) mid range voice blended seamlessly with the fluid upper bass displayed by one Patrick Gibson, esq. I'm not certain of how we actually decided to do it or even how we determined the final format of the band. I do remember a couple of rehearsals in Patrick's Darlinghurst bedsit where the duo plus cassette player theme echoed fantastically off the thick walls. Although he'd written a lot of lyrics that were either quite heartfelt or were obviously just stream of consciousness, NNS slowly made them funnier ("Harry Wong's Cat" or "C.S.I.R.O.") or added some humorous little moments ("Salad Days" or "Come and See The Silly Work"). They just wanted to be loved, I suppose.

They were also fond of quoting popular artists or songs of the time including the nascent rap scene in "Green Tea" ("It's like a jungle, sometimes it makes me wonder, how I keep from going under") and that almost classic "Fever" (ahhh) in "Mucky Wishes". Their small selection of cover versions was superlatively silly as well - "Who's Gonna Help Me Now" (originally a cod-C&W song by the fantastic Slapp Happy to which they added a more loping feel and some ridiculous lyrics concerning types of American cars) and "SSSSSingle Bed" (originally a breathy, sexy pop number by Noosha Foxx to which they added a sub-Kraftwerk beat and a strident delivery). Because Patrick was involved with M-Squared, they were actually able to record and mix all of these marvellous songs properly before Phil left to travel overseas in 1984. A couple of note-worthy performances : Supporting John Cooper Clarke at the Trade Union club in Surry Hills where they played on a small stage-ette amongst the crowd to a somewhat subdued response A party in Phil and Lindsay's flat above King Street, Newtown which was just getting drunk and rowdy where they turned off the indie pop records, wandered around amongst the throng and sang to each and every person there. The last gig at The Hip-Hop club on Oxford Street where the crowd went ape whilst they jumped on tables and imitated the cod-yodellng of Holly Johnson singing 'Relax' (aowwwwww!) (taken from the definitive site http://www.nonightsweats.com) Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply..
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