Forget the likes of Falls Festival, Harvest and the Big Day Out. The best lineup of Australia’s summer belongs to a humble little record store located in Melbourne’s beachside suburb of St. Kilda, who from December through March will be play host to performances of Bob Dylan, Crowded House, Wilco, Bowie and even Jimi Hendrix.

Yes that’s ‘of” and not ‘from’, as Pure Pop Records is helping to celebrate the success of their recent ‘Buy A Brick’ scheme with their brand new Summer of Classic Albums series that sees a cornucopia of local acts performing classic albums in their entirety.

The full program features an exhaustive list of bands, solo acts and musicians tackling some of music’s most coveted and treasured recordings from The Beatles’ Rubber Soul to Rage Against The Machine’s incendiary debut, being performed by The Twoks for Zack De La Rocha’s 43rd Birthday on January 12.

It’s a nice turn of events from a venue that has suffered a lot of indignant pressure from local council. Earlier this year, Pure Pop’s owner and operator, Dave Stevens (son of legendary AC/DC frontman, Bon Scott) faced pressure from local residents and council over noise complaints, before being slammed with a compliance order over a small wooden platform erected at the rear of the record store come café.

Things have taken an upward turn since the local City of Port Phillip council had a change of attitudes towards its budding live music culture, and the new Summer Of Classic Albums series is an excellent way to cap the area’s change of heart with a jaw-dropping list of awesome performances lined up. 

Highlights include Julia Stone, who will give Bowie’s Let’s Dance a folk-rock makeover, Melbourne three-piece Pony Face giving Bruce Springsteen’s Nebraska a whirl and Television’s seminal Marquee Moon as woven by the textural guitar rock of locals I, a Man.

Meanwhile, former Killing Heidi frontwoman Ella Hooper will be getting her diva on for her cover of The Writings On The Wall by Destiny’s Child, while Courtney Barnett’s take on Kick will probably have more fidelity than INXS’ own proposed tour featuring a Michael Hutchence hologram – and that’s just at a glance at the extensive program.

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The whole epic endeavour begins on December 1st and runs until well into next year until March 10, 2013, with Pure Pop teasing that “a few more Classic Albums will be announced in the coming weeks…” We can only imagine who else they’ve got lined up. Chet Faker tackling Thriller? Something For Kate paying tribute to their beloved Sonic Youth? It seems anything’s possible…

The full program is available from Pure Pop’s website. Best of all, entry is only $10 per show, or you can purchase a season pass to 6 performances for $50.

To make bookings for the classic album series email [email protected], Phone (03) 9525 5066 or head down to Pure Pop Records and make a date in person.

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