Skyscraper Stan
Gig Seeker Pro

Skyscraper Stan

Melbourne, Australia | Established. Jan 01, 2013 | SELF

Melbourne, Australia | SELF
Established on Jan, 2013
Band Americana


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Skyscraper Stan – Tuning Fork October 10, 2015"

Last time I saw Skyscraper Stan he was opening up for — and utterly outclassing, in the process — Holly Arroswmith. That night, also at the Tuning Fork, about a month ago, Stan shared the stage with just Oskar Herbig, his cousin and guitar player. Last night he was back with his band the Commission Flats, for a headlining show.
And what a show it was. A short set — a dozen songs, plus one in the encore, Stan put on a quite remarkable performance that deserved a much larger audience than the one that didn’t quite fill the Tuning Fork last night. But those of us who were there saw an hour of highly enjoyable, intricately-crafted and tightly-performed songs with sharp, intelligent lyrics played and sung by a band that, even though this was, drummer Oscar Henfrey told me after the show, the first time they’d performed on stage together, were relaxed and clearly enjoying the show.
The music wasn’t always the easiest to pin down — as Stan pointed out at one point, “You’ve had the skiffle, the ballad, they boppity ones.” Bruce was played as a beautiful duet between Stan and Herbig, while Any Way You Please, which Stan tried to tell us was “The most Americana song of the evening — the is an Americana festival, after all,” was pure skiffle, from Henfrey’s chugging drums to Herbig’s reverb-heavy low-E-string riffing. Chief was a tight, bluesy little number, Stan’s acoustic fingerpicking in the verse giving way to Herbig’s stomping rock guitar in the chorus; Oskar’s a talented guitarist, and on Chief he, just briefly, slipped into full-on guitar-hero mode, thrashing his black solid-body Gretsch. Bruce had shades of Martin Stephenson and the Daintees, while show-closer Elvis had Herbig’s guitar straying close to Hank Marvin territory.
But regardless of the genre, Stan and the Flats played a mean show. William Henry Hayes — a song about “a pirate from Christchurch — no shit!” — built to a magnificent crescendo, Stan’s alarmingly long legs and arms flailing around a stage that was barely large enough to contain him. Tango, too, saw Stan putting his guitar down to, one presumes, tango with himself as he sang about a place where “they’ve got late-night kerbside cockfights, they’ve got your shoes and wallet,” Herbig chopping out a pleasingly filthy rhythm.
The addition of Henfrey on drums and Jan Bangma on bass gave Stan’s sound a depth that added an extra dimension to songs like Always Thinking About You and Woody Guthrie, and a bottom end that Herbig’s electric guitars needed. But I Fell Over is bleak and empty enough to need a pared-back arrangment, and his band left Stan alone on the stage with his acoustic guitar — William Henry Hayes “tired everyone out; they’ve gone for a break” — to sing a dark, sad song of drinking, before Herbig returned to the stage for Bruce.
And then came the high point of the show. Some Skyscraper Stan songs benefit from the presence of a full band, but in the final analysis this was a double-act, and nowhere was this more evident than Dancing On My Own Grave, Stan and Oskar’s guitars playing off each other as Stan told the story, possibly autobiographical — he’s not letting on, but self-destruction does seem to be a theme common to a number of his song — of a life in the process of being wasted. Stan doesn’t need a backing band, but he knows how to use one. He took the stage alone for Last Year’s Tune, the encore, with Herbig, Henfrey and Bangma joining him when the song needed them.
Skyscraper Stan and the Commission Flats weren’t originally scheduled to open the Tuning Fork’s Southern Fork Americana Festival. But The Eastern pulled out a few weeks ago, and Stan and the Flats were drafted in. Stan did apologise to the audience for not being The Eastern, even claiming that most of the setlist — “make it heavy, heavy, soulful, Oscar on drums has told me” — was covers of The Eastern songs. But the show was all Stan Woodhouse compositions, and what a show it was.

Steve McCabe - The 13th Floor

"Skyscraper Stan and the Commission Flats"

Skyscraper Stan Woodhouse is a revelation. He writes songs that are smart, melodic, and full of lyric references that will touch Australian listeners. This is old-school pub rock of the kind practised once upon a time by another lean and lanky tunesmith, one Nick Lowe, with maybe a dash of Mick Thomas added for local grit. The similarities are there in the easy vocal style and in the way his band works together – bass, drums and guitar swinging and stomping as the song requires, Bruce Haymes adding colour on hammond, and Lia and Gemma Sharard bringing the harmonies. Incredibly classy stuff like this gets better with each listen.
Jeff Glorfeld - The Sydney Morning Herald


Swing yourself out of bed, crack open a beer and have a listen to Skyscraper Stan And The Commission Flat’s new single Chief. Filthy, rowdy and catchier than a case of crabs; Stan and the Flatties have crafted an ode to all the bummed-out types sucking at life. Chief is so cheerfully debauched, it’ll make you want to chuck it all in and start washing windscreens for a living. Shirtless.

Skyscraper Stan And The Commission Flats are going great guns at the moment thanks to their boisterous and highly entertaining live performances, a successful Pozible campaign funding their soon-to-be-released debut album and all-round general rockstar talent. Chief demonstrates the band’s growing confidence as songwriters and musicians; the track crackles with personality enough to make you want to jump right on board the Skyscraper Stan bandwagon, bottle of whisky in hand.

Lead singer and guitarist Stan ‘Skyscraper’ Woodhouse has clearly crafted a new troubadour rock’n’roll classic with this sorry little tale delivered so beautifully by his warm, inviting voice. Shades of a Hammond organ highlight a smoking guitar solo from talented lead guitarist Oskar Herbig, whose jaunty riff carries plenty of pep all the way through the track. Power sisters Gemma and Lia Sharard add just enough feisty vocal back-up to give Chief the full-bodied Commission Flats feel you really should experience live next time they swing past your home town. - semplesize


Still working on that hot first release.


Feeling a bit camera shy


Currently at a loss for words...

Band Members