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Canned Hunting

Canned Hunting

by Roger Young / 23.11.2009

Lets just get some things out of the way. I went to the We-Are-Awesome, A Store, Adidas launch thing, it was full of hip people in clothes, there was a video thing about shoes, everyone was having a great time, especially the people in the back bar bitching about not being able to get drinks fast enough in the main room. It’s so hip to have something to bitch about. Anyway, whatev’s. Lets talk about Gazelle.


Despite the gloves, Gazelle feature surprisingly few crotch grabs

Maybe I just don’t get it, but I was never a fan of people shouting over House music. Dressing it up in “pastiche” doesn’t make it anymore appealing. But they had nice lights! And super “traditional” dancers! Wow! Like Groundbreaking! And real musicians! That you couldn’t hear over the repetitive beats issuing forth from the space cowboy’s laptop! Gazelle are all about the exclamation mark. Everything that they present they give importance by means of a superficial flourish. And even I cannot deny that these flourishes look pretty impressive.


Guy takes Joy Division shirt literally, tries to divide joy.

Lots of smoke and strobe-ing lights, Xander in a gold lamé suit, fake fur hat, big glasses and teeth steps out of the swirls. The beat kicks in and he’s joined by a bass player who is not trying to channel Bootsy Collins as much as trying to look like him, the aforementioned guy in the silver spray painted welders helmet and a guy on djembe. And Sean Ou Tim on drums. Sean Ou Tim on drums, suddenly my attention is piqued; The last time I saw Gazelle live it was just Xander, the djembe and the spray painted helmet guy with laptop and no smoke machine, maybe this Gazelle chap has upped his game.


Contrary to popular belief, this guy is not about to get lucky. Stabbed in the parking lot, maybe, but no, not lucky.

But by song two, it was becoming apparent that we would never be able to hear either the drums or the bass over the house beats coming from the laptop guys general direction. The additions of a guy jumping around doing the “witchdoctor” dance looking like a patronizing caricatures from a late 30’s Hollywood safari movie, the back up singers that are hardly audible, all of the other players on this stage are props, mere signifiers behind Xanders’ strutting and fretting, his sound and fury.


Love your work, huge fan.

I get that Gazelle are playing with stereotypes, that they’re a pastiche band, that they’re theater, or any of the number of excuses people put forward to defend them but the bodybuilder looking guy down front with the mullet and the trucker probably doesn’t care about these things, because he doesn’t need excuses, he’s totally into it, looking deranged and air fisting (the more aggressive cousin of the air punch) the rows in front of the stage look like a rave in 1998 and it works to Gazelle’s advantage that their songs are not distinguishable from each other, for all their performance the only thing it seems that the audience wants is the house music. The genius of Gazelle is that those who don’t like the music can always fall back on the “But don’t you get what he’s trying to do, intellectually?” stance.


Either this is, I'm so confused why do boys in plaid find me desirable, or, I don't understand my T-shirt, maybe both.

I have been pondering one of Gazelles lyrics “Super Sonic Laser Beam”. Going on the presumption that in this case “Super Sonic” refers to the point a physical object is propelled beyond the sound barrier I can only wonder what kind of Laser beam this would be? A beam of light focused to the point that it becomes physical but slowed to the point that it becomes invisible (light not traveling at the speed of light is no longer light). For all the artifice that Gazelle heap on their music, it remains music that does not bear too much examining.


Mahala's lesser spotted columnist and his hot missus

There is a woman on crutches dancing in front of me enthusiastically, she looks really into it, when I see her in the queue for the bar later, I say “So you really enjoy them, huh?” “Nah”, she says, “But it’s the kinda music you can dance to if you only have the use of one leg”.


These Guys(?) are way too desperate for attention for us to use this picture.

All images © and courtesy We-Are-Awesome.

12   6
  1. Frank Daniels says:

    No mention of Catwalktrash or Desmond and The Tutu’s DJ Set.

    Was Roger Young even there or did he just look at the pictures and speak to a few friends.

    I had fun, granted it was a bit hot and it took a little while to organise a drink, but fun nevertheless.

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  2. notsoawesome says:

    This writer clearly doesnt have the foggiest clue about South African music and the figures that feature in it.
    Xander has assembled a powerhouse of a band and they are as much about the performance as he is. That ” bass player” is Grenville Williams, a prominent Cape Town musician formerly of Nine and producer of Moodphase5ive and Godessa. And that “guy on djembe” is Dubmusta China, who really needs no introduction.
    And there was nothing new about the A is for Awesome performance, Gazelle have been in this formation as a band for many gigs.
    This party was just an excuse for scenesters to get together and ironically “”pose”, and that is really what they did, until Gazelle came on.

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  3. AT says:

    i can’t be bothered to read about all those cocks, but god those captions are funny

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  4. myearsmyears says:

    Great muso’s or not, id agree that gazelle is certainly not worth the “revolution”.
    The head charlatan Xander even published a book to justify his “approach”
    Bogus music for bogus people!

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  5. Niel B says:

    “Guy takes Joy Division shirt literally, tries to divide joy.”
    Caption of the year, my friend.

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  6. ubuntu bob says:

    So lots of people really enjoyed the band… but they’re ELECTRONIC so we can’t come outright and say they were good. That would destroy our puffed-up snobbier-than-thou music critic street cred, wouldn’t it?

    At least you attended the gig, stayed sober enough to observe what was going on, and managed to remember something to write about. That’s a step above most articles on Mahala.

    And I do like the picture captions. Well-executed snark.

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  7. ahaha says:

    I can’t believe how I’ve never noticed this before but my god Dylan Muhlenberg has got big ears.

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  8. not funny says:

    I just don’t understand how he hoodwinked his hot wife into marrying him? Dude’s punching well above his weight.

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  9. hoax says:

    you retards complain about going to a shit gig on the same night People Under The Stairs were playing down the road at Zulu Cafe. Shame.

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  10. jan says:

    Im so glad , Roger you made my day Gazelle sucks balls. thats all I have to say

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  11. very funny says:

    he might be punching above his weight, but going by the cheesy smirk on his face, it looks like he’s landing more blows than you and me.

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  12. Roger Young says:

    Addendum for Frank

    The guy from Desmond and the Tutu’s played a DJ set, how this was in anyway connected to his band is a little beyond me, he didn’t even play any of their tunes. Well, he wouldn’t have that could be misconstrued as using a DJ set as a publicity tool without having to actually have the band appear. Oh Wait! He did play some nice tracks though, like any good warm up DJ.

    Ellenie from Catwalk Trash was, as usual, scary in a way that filled me with desire and made me want to run. One can only hope that she begins to put as much effort into her music as much as she out into trying not to spill her milk. Well, more that that, seeing as she spilled her milk. Unless it was a metaphor I was missing.

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  13. Jealous says:

    It’s amazing how everybody always bitches about the ‘scenesters’ even though they still end up going to these events.

    The fact that Gazelle opened for Santogold on a tour in Europe also makes no difference apparently…

    We should rather take it for what it is, and not stand around and bitch and moan about everything. (Cause that’s what us CT people do remember?)

    Oh, and whoever said Gazelle was supposed to be intellectual? I think the one legged lady summed it up.

    And with all due respect, what Catwalk Trash is doing can’t really be called music.

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  14. Mallix says:

    no matter how much you polish it, a turd is still a turd eh?

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  15. Big brad says:

    all i know is some west african took my cash – and then i was hugging bouncers and swearing … then i was back home at Speedway.

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  16. Roger Young says:

    And then you punched me in the stomach, And shook your head spraying sweat on me as I fell to the floor and then ran off giggling while holding hands with that bald cunt from vice magazine. It was good to see you.

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  17. missed connection says:

    Roger, were you the guy wearing the red white and blue adidas long-sleeve shirt?

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  18. Nathan Zeno says:

    That was me, I’m the product slut, Young would never dare sully his ethics. Are you the guy I made out with?

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  19. McLeod says:

    Gazelle, i don’t know what to say, I don’t like it. i’m worried that those women shouldn’t be doing that with Xander so soon after UFS.

    Just joking!

    On the other hand has South Africa’s internet savvy Generation Y finally started tampering with the literary scene?

    This guy here: adistractedman.blogspot.com

    kind of makes a case for it, I think. I like it.

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  20. McLeod says:

    Shit, I might as well promote myself too. Check me and Ramirez out on anokapieforrhodes.blogspot.com. It’s riveting shit!

    Thanks Mahala! Great site!

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  21. Lisa says:

    those captions made me lose coffee through my nose onto my keyboard. can you get electrocuted that way?

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  22. heino says:

    “Love your work, huge fan.”

    yes – the captions are brilliant!

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  23. Sean says:

    My mate, Herman, tried to figure out Xander’s shtick here:


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  24. Bald cunt from VICE says:

    Roger thats the truth ….ahhh the good old wreckless days – was only last friday.

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  25. Sarah Claire says:

    the one legged lady – hahah. that’s Caitlin, she got flung by a whale 7 months ago and is still on a crutch.
    and she def. summed it up right

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  26. ag shame. says:

    at least dylan’s writing was better.

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  27. back from NY says:

    Cape Town is not ready for CatwalkTrash or Gazelle or anything new for that matter it seems…maybe everybody should try sound like Johnny Clegg? I refuse to stay in this third world mentality with Dylan Muhlenburg and Roger Young.

    these might not be for everyone but try them out:

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  28. Angie says:

    “Super Sonic Laser Beam”
    best laugh i’ve had all day <3

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