The Alcohotlicks
Gig Seeker Pro

The Alcohotlicks

Band Jazz Rock


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



"The Dirty Three of jazz"

The Dirty Three of jazz
The Alcohotlicks are being lauded as ascendant, genre-transcendent
renaissance renegades with no eye for limitations and no reverence for
the stringent conventions that keep musicians and their creations in
check [You what? – JS]. Are they jazz? Are they rock? Are
they grunge? These seem to be penetrating questions for fan and
reviewer alike. The answer is yes! The Alcohotlicks have taken the
paradigms and commandments of traditional jazz and turned them inwards
to produce frenetic and relentless contemporary jazz that traverses the
borders of everything from the lullaby to psychedelic country funk.
Accept that there is no particular category to latch onto here. In
place of classification is an innate and instinctual understanding of
sound and how all the broken edges can fit together. The Alcohotlicks
honour music in the same way the Dirty Three do: by fusing it all
seamlessly together into a Frankensteinian explosion of righteous - Review taken from Rave Magazine - 27/01/09 by PAULIE STONE


Genre. It's something that's handy to music critics and music
historians like myself, because it allows us to easily group bands
together to make describing a band's sound easier. Lots of the flange
effect, poetic lyrics, and atmospheric keyboards? It's goth. Three
chords, distorted to hell, with shouted lyrics? That's punk rock, my
friend! Lots of nihilistic lyrics and simplified 70s metal licks?
Chances are, you're listening to grunge.
The Alcohotlicks.. are
one of those bands that simultaneously dismay and excite music critics,
because it's hard to put them into one genre, and we actually have to
work to describe what the damn thing sounds like without being able to
fall back on describing what they actually sound like. Are they a jazz
band? Jazz has never sounded this raw. Are they a rock band? They sound
like it sometimes, but there's no lyrics and more than three chords
being used here. The closest guess I can make are that this is a jazz
band made up of musicians who grew up listening to alternative rock,
but even that's a stretch.
So where to start? Hot In Hell..
sounds for all the world like instrumental hard rock, from the massive
stop-start riff that begins the song, to the explosions of guitar
acrobatics that start to kick in around the two minute mark. While the
whole track is built around the same grungy four note riff, there are
enough twists and turns, none of them predictable, to give the track an
edge that goes beyond what a mere rock band can do.
On the other hand, tracks like Down Town..
relegate the rock aspect towards the back of the mix, in favour of
straighter jazz. Even those who are not frequent jazz listeners will be
able to appreciate the skilful improvisations and twisting, turning
melodies. Hey Man, Yeah Man.. channels old school surf rock, and there are echoes of other bands as diverse as Slint.., Deerhoof.. and even daggy prog-rockers like Yes...
What's particularly impressive is that it all fits together, and the
band make it sound so easy that you can't help but wonder why nobody
has actually done what they do before.
As much as us music journalists love genre, perhaps we need to accept that The Alcohotlicks..
are a band that truly defies being labelled. What's more, they do it
while creating music that is enjoyable to listen to, has enough
familiar touchstones for casual listeners to relate to it, yet it's
technically impressive enough for music nerds to analyse it and enjoy
it on a whole different level. If The Alcohotlicks.. can keep this up, they might just be able to bring jazz to a whole new audience.

link: - Review taken from Halo 17 alt music & culture - 02/02/09 by Cianan Delahunty

"The Alcohotlicks - Drag"

The Alcohotlicks sound like a mashup of Battles and Deerhoof. They're sweet and playful yet muscular, with the kind of perfect pop catchiness that's so hard to explain since it's a) comprehensively impossible to sing along to, and b) actually incredibly complex music.

Pivot's (excellent) album O Soundtrack My Heart got a lot of publicity earlier this year, both for its qualities and the fact that Pivot were the first Australian signing to Warp Records.The Alcohotlicks' You, You deserves just as much recognition, and that's obviously never going to happen, which sucks because these guys are brilliant musicians, always tight and perfectly in control. More importantly, they're excellent songwriters who have Deerhoof's ability to reign in their conservatorium training. This shit is subtle and powerful and it rocks the fuck out.

source: - Review taken from Rose Quartz Blog Spot - Posted 15/10/08 by Max

"Factory Theatre"

Let's hear it for Joanne Kee and her underpaid efforts, in bringing us the remarkable and, I'd argue, important, Places & Spaces programme. What is it? A series of midweek musical oases, Wednesdays at Century Venues' newish baby sis to The Enmore & Metro, The Factory.

The latest in quite a long lineup was The Alcohotlicks, a firebrand trio of precocious, young jazz musos, who've had the audacity to take their training into the realm of 70s psychedelic rock. Wittingly, or unwittingly, adopting a posture of nonchalance, their output is anything but insouciant; their edgy, grungy, irreverent attitude is invested in full-tilt, precarious inpro, requiring they're on & on it, all the time. And on it they are.

Two guitars and drums is an unusual lineup and I'm not sure it would be anywhere near as compelling if the instrumentalists weren't as prodigious as those in this trio. In fact, it's more a triumvirate than a trio, since the collusion and fusion (which could so easily lapse into confusion, yet never does) between the instrumentalists is a meld so self-assured and fluid they achieve an almost breathtaking unity of purpose.

On ya-yas, Ben Haptmann and Aaron Flower; drums, leader, Evan Manell. All uphold the Australian jazz tradition inasmuch as fashion sense, or the lack of it, but, rather more importantly, in terms of expertise, energy, enthusiasm and, in their case, sheer grunt. Hauptmann & Flower are very different players, with very different predilections, techniques and sounds. While Flower takes most of the spotlight and deservedly so, since his playing is nothing short of scintillating, Hauptmann's finesse and taste can't be overestimated. Belying a mild-mannered appearance, Flower clearly relishes his shameless, adventurous forays into, say, the riff-realm of Hendrix and, while they hide the smiles, I'm sure all get off on the odd interpolation of a Zeppelinesque rhythmic motif. In tune with this is Hauptmann's apparent penchant for passages from progressive, or symphonic rock. So for tragics still inevitably and irreconcilably embedded in music from several decades ago, such as your reviewer, references or reminders of ELP, Sebastian Hardie, or Jethro Tull, come as sweet, nostalgic surprises. Even more arresting is the odd lick of thrash country. Or is it punk western? Manell is just the unflinching powerhouse you want behind you, pounding the skins and cymbals, while you run your fingers up and down the fretboard, trying to burn the house down. There's a kind of masculine, if almost balletic choreography to his style, making him as spellbinding to watch as listen to.

But despite a name which seems well-and-truly geared to target the indie scene, the gentler, jazzier side of The Alcohotlicks shouldn't be overlooked, as that training is very much a part of what makes them what they are; whatever that is. The one box I can put this band in without fear, or favour, is exciting; visceral; potent. OK, so that might be three boxes. Regardless of boxes, I suggest bagging a disc and getting your bum on a seat at their next accessible gig.


see the gig: - The Alcohotlicks @ The Factory 06/08/08 review by Lloyd Bradford Syke


You, You is the brilliant debut album from jazz rockers The Alcohotlicks. The trio’s anarchic live energy is beautifully captured on this long player and the boys are at their devastating best. You, You is a tea ceremony inside a military tank, the product of a furious drunken two-day session at the legendary ‘Paradise Recorders’ studios. The 10 tracks span the divide between muscular firepower and precise, meditative beauty. The unconventional two-guitar/drum line up provides ideal space for Mannell’s powerhouse battery whilst Flower and Hauptmann in turn soar and recoil in a mixture of tandem and tag team brilliance. Individual voices shine whilst the song is always paramount. Jazz to its core, but hear shards of math-rock, distorted raga, pulp-surf, technical revelry hidden amongst grunge nonchalance - a sound all their own. available: Jazzgroove Records/iTunes



The Alcohotlicks are a Sydney based band formend in the later part of 2002 featuring 1st & 2nd place winners at the 07' Wangaratta Festival of Jazz, National Jazz Awards, Aaron Flower and Ben Hauptmann. The instrumentation of the band is unique comprising of two electric guitars and drummer, Evan Mannell. The first two years were spent writing and performing in the local Sydney Jazz scene. The Alcohotlicks have written over thirty compositions for the band and have released two self produced live recordings. The Alcohotlicks released their first studio album entitled 'You,You' (Jazzgroove Records) in Oct 08'. In late 07' The Alcohotlicks were commissioned by ABC classic FM to record a feature for Jazztrack with Mal Stanley. Performance highlights include: the Jazz:Now festival - Sydney Opera House 04, Stonington Jazz festival - Melbourne 05, and they featured at the 07' Wangarratta Festival of Jazz: 'Sydney's Alcohotlicks also made the most of its unusual line-up, which teamed two electric guitars (Ben Hauptmann and Aaron Flower) with Evan Mannell's ferocious drumming. Not much room for subtlety here. Mostly, they disguised their tightly focused rapport with lashings of grunge-rock grit.' source:(

From late 2005 The Alcohotlicks began featuring artists in their live performances, which most recently included incorporating Cesar and Steve Marin, both leading exponents of traditional South American music. Other featured artists include:

ARIA and Mo. award winner James Muller ‘I believe Evan, Ben and Aaron have created music that is not only fresh and brilliant, but uniquely Australian.’

Art Orcehstra of Australia guitarist and composer Carl Dewhurst ‘(I) believe TheAlcohotlicks to be one of most original and captivating groups in Australia today.’

Melbourne based National Jazz Award winner Steve Magnusson ‘Their compositional approach, architecture and arrangements are unique to their sound.’

Arne Hanna Composer (The Honourable Wally Norman, New York Times Critic's Pick 03’) ‘I am firmly of the opinion that the Alcohotlicks are the finest, most inventive musical group working within the jazz idiom in Sydney.’

John Shand wrote “...Flower, Hauptmann and Mannell may just be on to something rather wonderfull.” (Sydney Morning Herald)