Programmed to party

RAGE WITH THE MACHINE: Party boys The Bennies will bring their madcap antics and rocking riffs to the Cambridge Hotel on Thursday.YOU will never hear The Bennies get political, play emotional ballads or attempt electronic R&B.
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The Melbourne punk-skarockers are a party band –pure and simple. Andtheir appeal is becoming increasingly infectious as evidenced by their third recordWisdom Machinedebuting at No.40 this week on the ARIA charts. On Thursday their rock’n’roll shenanigansreturn to the Cambridge Hotel.

With songs likeLegalise (But Don’t Tax),Detroit Rock CiggiesandParty Til I Die (Or Die Trying), The Bennies, like The Darkness before them, enjoy peddling in irony.

The Bennies – Party Machine (language warning)“Lots of people take themselves pretty seriously,”The Bennies vocalist Anty Horgan said.“A lot of people do great really emotional music, but we’re just trying to create a positive thing. I suppose the irony is something we’re aiming for.”

The irony was laid on thick forParty Til I Die (Or Die Trying), easily the craziest song on Wisdom Party with lyrics about getting covered in blood and spit from partying too hard.

“That song is supposed to be a pretty over-the-top joke song,” Horgan said.“Every line itwas like, ‘Can we write this, can we get away with this? This is pretty ridiculous, is it too much’? We just kept going with it and wanted to try and create a B52s kind of sound as well.

“It’s good when we’re practicing and writing and we all start laughing at a certain bit. That’s when we know we’re on to something good. There’s a time and place for everything and some songs don’t have that, but for the most part we joke around a lot, so it’s more honest to have that in the songs.”

FAR OUT: The Wisdom Machine album cover designed by Geoffrey Horgan, the father of Bennies frontman Anty.

The Bennies don’t fit into the currentindie scene. There’s no hint of electronica.The four-piece also take a retro approach to album covers. Horgan’s fatherGeoffreydesigned Wisdom Machine’s psychedelic artwork, in partnership withSmith Street Band drummer Chris Cowburn.

“Holding a physical piece of vinyl is such a work of art and when it’s done well by a band it can be something really special,” Horgan said.“Many people don’t buy physical music so we want to reward those people that do by giving them something they can hold in their hands and say ‘This is sweet’.”

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